A few facts about the University of Chicago
University of Chicago is a private institution founded in 1890. Undergraduate enrollment is just over 5,600 students. University of Chicago is ranked 4th among notional schools in the United States for 2015. The acceptance rate for the last class of applicants was 8.8%. There are over 400 student organizations active at University of Chicago. University of Chicago has several graduate and professional schools on campus including Boothe School of Business. Famous alumni include civil rights activist Jesse Jackson, author Kurt Vonnegut Jr., Nobel Memorial Prize in Economics recipient Milton Friedman and former U.S. Attorney General John Ashcroft.
Tips on responding to University of Chicago essay prompts
An essay will be written using University of Chicago essay prompts similar to this one:
“Discuss an accomplishment or event, formal or informal, that marked your transition from childhood to adulthood within your culture, community, or family”
Try these tips when writing responses to University of Chicago essay prompts:
- Choose the right topic. Consider what information is already included in your application and what additional information you would like known. Provide that information by making the topic selection that best allows you to do that.
- Be personable and be specific. Don’t write a generic essay that looks like all the others. Use specific examples from your life that illustrates what you say.
- Use anecdotes. Everybody likes good story and even more so when compared to a boring recital of grades, awards and accomplishments. It will also be remembered longer.
- Make sure that your essay is well organized and structured logically. Outline your essay first to organize your information in the way you would like to present it.
- Revise, edit and proofread. Start early so you have time to try different things. You may also ask to ask for help with statement of purpose writing to make sure that all is correct.
The following is an example of a University of Chicago personal statement written in response to the above prompt:
After my mom’s divorce, me, my 2 younger brothers and my younger sister stayed with her. My dad traveled abroad all the time for work so there wasn’t any choice really. When I was 16 my mom was in a pretty bad car accident. We didn’t have any family near, and I didn’t know for sure where my dad was. I made the decision to not say anything to anybody. I was worried what they might do with us. At our ages I didn’t think we would be allowed to stay unsupervised.
Originally, it wasn’t that bad. In the morning I would get up to do laundry and at night I would make sure to clean up. Day after day, however, these insignificant events eventually became a hurried rush that often didn’t get done. Once school started, the routine got more difficult. I had to juggle getting to school on time and keeping my grades up, all the while taking my siblings schedules into account. Between boy scouts, movie nights with friends, and other activities, if they had to be somewhere then I was their ride, because there wasn’t anyone else. Being tired ceased to exist; I slept when everything was taken care of, usually between 10 and 11pm.
My mom got better. She was in the hospital for 2 months and most of that time she thought there was an adult with us. By the time she knew she had improved and was going to be getting out soon. The experiences I have had since those hard and discouraging times matured me and pushed me to the edge of adulthood. My mom looks at me differently and depends on me more and my brothers and sisters are different with me and often come to me for help.
I take pride in guiding my life in the direction I want and helping my family. Growing up came sooner than I expected, but it has made me more independent and strong. Helping lead my family has been the most important thing I have ever done. I hope to continue to learn and experience everything that I can as I move forward from high school and into college.