Why? essays for schools that don't ask for one.

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dabbadon8
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Why? essays for schools that don't ask for one.

Postby dabbadon8 » Fri Jul 30, 2010 2:46 pm

This question came up because of the one about doing this for emory. I know UVA doesn't ask but likes them but what is the general consensus? Is it worth doing a why? essay for a school if they don't ask for it? (Given you have something to say)

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billyez
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Re: Why? essays for schools that don't ask for one.

Postby billyez » Fri Jul 30, 2010 2:56 pm

I'd ask the school about whether they would accept one. Problem solved.

I don't think it's disingenuous to send one to each school as long as you focus on specific reasons why you want to attend each school in each document.

Bumi
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Re: Why? essays for schools that don't ask for one.

Postby Bumi » Fri Jul 30, 2010 4:05 pm

I haven't decided yet which (or how many) schools will get why essays, but I plan to at least tailor the personal statement at least partially towards each school to which I'm applying. I don't know if it'll help any, but i've read enough around here about people regretting not doing it that I don't want to wish I had done more after the rejections come in.

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capitalacq
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Re: Why? essays for schools that don't ask for one.

Postby capitalacq » Sat Jul 31, 2010 11:38 am

dabbadon8 wrote:This question came up because of the one about doing this for emory. I know UVA doesn't ask but likes them but what is the general consensus? Is it worth doing a why? essay for a school if they don't ask for it? (Given you have something to say)

the importance of these essays is overstated on these forums and 95% of the time, the essays suck.

The better way to do it is to tailor your PS statement to the school. Don't just add the school's name to the PS, but make sure that what your PS says about you/your interests/etc. makes it clear that you're a good fit for the school and visa versa-- and this should be clear throughout the whole PS, not just the last paragraph.

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billyez
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Re: Why? essays for schools that don't ask for one.

Postby billyez » Sat Jul 31, 2010 12:55 pm

Pasting something like that onto a PS can ring rather hollow. I'll admit from personal experience that "Why" essays are by their very nature predictable and dry, but its a much better alternative to forcing a targeted appeal to the law school in your PS. If it works within the context of your PS's narrative, go for it. But otherwise, you're better writing a "Why" essay in my opinion.
Last edited by billyez on Sat Jul 31, 2010 7:14 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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cinefile 17
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Re: Why? essays for schools that don't ask for one.

Postby cinefile 17 » Sat Jul 31, 2010 1:59 pm

I've seen plenty of "Why" essays that look like they were thrown together from the schools website or that you can tell are just dry. In these cases, I'm not sure the "Why X" essays help much at all (and they may actually hurt). If you don't know the school enough to write a genuine, accurate, and worthwhile "Why" essay or they are not actually your top choice your "Why" essay may hurt more than help.




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