How to Write 2013 Common App Essay Prompt #5: Transition from Childhood to Adulthood
The Common Application essay topics are all new this year.
How do you choose which essay to write?
In this 5 part series I’m helping you figure out which question on the 2013 Common Application essay is right for you.
- So far I’ve covered Common Application Essay prompt #1, prompt #2, prompt #3 and prompt #4.
- For the complete list of 2013 Common App essay questions click here.
We’re down to the last one. Whew!
Ready for #5?
Let’s do it.
Common Application Essay Prompt #5:
Discuss an accomplishment or event, formal or informal, that marked your transition from childhood to adulthood within your culture, community, or family.
Is this Prompt for You? Look at the Keywords:
“Accomplishment or Event” … “Transition from Childhood to Adulthood” … “Culture, Community or Family”
What the Keywords Mean:
- “Accomplishment or event.” This phrase is broad, which is great. You can choose almost anything you’ve done, experienced or accomplished.
- “Transition from childhood to adulthood.” Don’t feel quite like an adult yet? Ask yourself these questions: Do you think more like an adult than you used to? Have you taken on more responsibility? Do you teach, instruct, guide or mentor when you used to be the one who was taught? There are many ways we grow into adulthood. Maybe you have a story.
- “Culture, community or family.” This phrase is also broad. It gives you lots of possibilities to choose from.
- Don’t forget to include a learning experience. Ask yourself, “How did I grow? How am I different today? Why is it important for me to tell this story?”
Not Sure This Question Relates to You?
Here are Two Scenarios to Start You Thinking:
- A young woman began dancing before she could tie her shoes. The tradition at her dance studio was that the older dancers mentored the younger ones. As she grew older and became more accomplished she started teaching the younger students. Now she proudly continues the studio’s tradition, having become the young dancers’ mentor and friend.
- A student and his dad weren’t getting along. The dad was strict about studying and the student wanted more free time. It was getting really rough in their house until the student went on a school retreat. During the retreat, the students received letters their parents had written to them. In the letter, his dad explained that he loved him and wanted the best for him. The student thought about what his dad had written. He came to understand that his dad did want the best for him, and that it was important to see both sides to every point of view. That realization saved their relationship.
Tip: Want to rise to top of the essay pack? D0n’t settle for the easiest answer that comes along. Think of an answer to each of the five Common App essay prompts and then choose the one that’s the most interesting and thoughtful, and says good things about you.
We’re done! We’ve covered all the prompts. I’m sure you’ll be able to find one that really makes you shine.
For a complete list of The Common Application essay prompts click here.
Sharon Epstein is owner of First Impressions College Consulting in Redding, Connecticut. A Writers Guild Award-winner and two-time Emmy Award nominee, Sharon teaches students how to master interview skills, write killer resumes, and transform their goals, dreams and experiences into memorable college application essays. She works with students everywhere: in-person, by phone, Skype and email. Visit her website for more info. Connect on Google+, Pinterest and Twitter.