For Amherst College Applicants: Common App Essays & Inside the Admissions Office Video

  1.  Calling all Amherst College applicants and seekers.
  2. This is an Amherst applicant goodie bag: a video and 4 Common App essays by students recently admitted to Amherst.
  3.  How important are the essays?  They matter, for sure, but they’re only one piece of the puzzle that admissions officers judge. This fascinating video – a behind-the- scenes peek at how Amherst College makes decisions about whom to admit and whom to put on the waiting list – has been online for a while, but every time I look at it, I learn something new.
  4.  Keep in mind as you watch that the students being considered in this room are those who have made the penultimate cut: they’re the top candidates left standing near the end of the process, so their academic credentials have already been noticed.
  5.  The message here is not that hardship = admissions to Amherst but that the committee values success despite impediments. A top student who has faced considerable hardship is one who impresses. But many others students do too.
  6.  Keep in mind that the video does not report every moment of these intense meetings.
  7.  I’m lucky enough to see the Amherst College Alumni magazine regularly. A recent issue featured four of the application essays that got these students into Amherst Class of 2019. If you click here, you can read my original post with these essays as they appear in the magazine. It’s proving too difficult to transfer them to this new website. My apologies! I think you’ll find it worthwhile to click through.