That single, hour-long brainstorm for that supplement saved me many hours in the months to come. Almost every other college essay I wrote stemmed from the ideas we found. For that, I want to say thank you!
— Cambridge, MA

For most college applicants, completion of the Common App essay leads to consideration of “Supplements" — college-specific essay prompts. The questions that admissions offices ask range widely, as do the word limits for applicants' responses.  


For example: 

What motivates you to learn?

How have you contributed to a community to which you belong?

What do you find most exciting about your intellectual interests?

How have you been affected by a relationship you’ve had with someone who is very different from yourself?

What do you hope will change about the place where you live?

What are your quirks?

What's so odd about odd numbers?

What have you learned through collaboration with others?

And the most-common type of supplement prompt,
which is some form the following:

Why are you applying here?


Hillside enjoys helping students to turn this challenge into meaningful opportunity. While presenting themselves as applicants who are genuinely interested and well-informed, students can provide new dimensions to their applications through their supplement essay-writing. In addition to guiding students through a preliminary process of research and reflection to prepare for writing compellingly about the specific motivations behind their applications to individual schools, we help applicants to build strategies for responding to their varied collection of supplement prompts. By reviewing the Common App essay a student has written alongside the list of the supplement questions to be addressed, Hillside coaches lead students in explorations to shape other promising material for drafting, revision, and refinement. (Uncommon Essay clients get a boost in this process from the initial "Ten Sentences" exercise and all coaching exchanges that have followed from it.)