Boston College Transfer Essay Help

Applying to Boston College? Here are the supplemental essay prompts and tips on how to tackle them:

Among all the universities and colleges located in the Boston area, Boston College stands out as a private Jesuit Catholic university located in Chestnut Hill, MA. Its religious affiliation is embedded in the university’s teaching philosophy and student body, which makes the liberal arts education of the diverse student body of different religions all the more interesting and challenging.

Students can apply to study in one of the 4 schools and colleges that offer undergraduate programs: Morissey College of Arts & Sciences, Carroll School of Management, Lynn School of Education, and the Connell School of Nursing. If BC is one on your college list then note that on top of your Common App essay, you’ll also have to respond to one of the 4 following supplemental essay prompts:

We would like to get a better sense of you. Please respond to one of the following prompts. (400 word limit)

Prompt 1

Human beings have a creative side that tends to shine most when we are truly invested in the world around us. Describe a situation when you responded effectively to a particular need and found yourself at your creative best.

TIP: First, let’s break down the prompt and see what the questions is really asking. The prompt wants the applicant to address three different topics—service, passion and creativity—and how they overlap and intertwine. And, they often do!

With this prompt, begin by asking yourself: how are you truly invested in the world around us? Put more simply, how have you contributed or impacted the world? Jot down some things that come to your head. Did anything on your list involve innovative or creative approaches?

You can also start by brainstorming different creative outlets you have. Do you notice a pattern of how you utilize your creative side? And remember, creative doesn’t just mean the arts. It’s also how you think outside the box and how flexible you are about approaching a problem.

Prompt 2

Experience teaches us the importance of being reflective when making major decisions. Share an example from a recent event when a leader or an average person faced a difficult choice. What were the consequences of the decision? Would you have done the same?

TIP: Let’s break down this essay prompt as well. This prompt is multi-layered. First, it’s asking there is a person you look up to, or learned from. In other words, a role model or an inspiration to you. There is no right or wrong answer here; who you look up to is a personal choice, but you should choose carefully. What it can demonstrate is your knowledge in a particular field, your character and your critical thinking.

How? Because the prompt is also asking you why you look up to this person through an example from a recent event. What did he or she do to earn your following or understanding? This is where you can demonstrate your knowledge in a particular field and what your personal values are.

Finally, do you empathize with the difficult decisions he or she made? Is hindsight 20/20? By reflecting on this decision, what have you learned and could you have done something different that yielded a better result? You may not want to do anything different. The decision may not have resolved everything, which yielded mixed consequences but that could also have been the  best scenario given the circumstances.  This is how you’ll be able to display your critical thinking abilities.

Prompt 3

Boston College strives to provide an undergraduate learning experience emphasizing the liberal arts, quality teaching, personal formation, and engagement of critical issues. If you had the opportunity to create your own college course, what enduring question or contemporary problem would you address and why?

TIP: In a nutshell,, this question probes your intellectual curiosity. What class would you die to get into if you saw it on the curriculum? This is where you can show off a little bit about what you want to know and what you want to pursue.

The course can be something related to history that really fascinates you. For example, Adolf Hitler vs. Mao Zedong: The Psychology of World Leaders. This allows you to dive deep into your knowledge in history, if you’re a history buff, but also take a more creative approach of understanding history. Or the course can be more related to current events and developments: gender inequality, climate change, or artificial intelligence. Whatever it is, choose a topic where you can easily fill a whole page with questions you want answered!

Then reel it back in. Filter those questions and focus on the major ones. Why do you want to address these issues? Is there an application to the betterment of our future? How can you apply what you’ve learned in a classroom to the real world? Pull from real experiences you’ve encountered.

Prompt 4

Jesuit education stresses the importance of the liberal arts and sciences, character formation, commitment to the common good, and living a meaningful life. How do you think your personal goals and academic interests will help you grow both intellectually and personally during college?

TIP: There’s a lot going on in this essay prompt, but the main question here is simply: Why Boston College? The prompt asks you how BC’s jesuit education can help foster your personal goals and academic interests. To answer this, you’ll also need to have done your research into BC’s student and academic life, and what Jesuit education is. In the prompt itself, there are 4 key factors. Break them down and start from there.

Importance of Liberal Arts & Sciences

Why is a well-rounded education important to you? If you want to be a doctor, for example, maybe it’s having the knowledge of hard sciences, but also having an understanding of other cultures so you can empathize with  your patients and their family. Maybe it’s developing critical thinking skills through literature that you can apply to your desired profession.

Character Formation

Who are you? Who do you want to be? College is a supportive environment to help you figure out what you’re interested in and who you want to be. You can tie this to the importance of a well-rounded education on how your academics can have you search for your answer. The answer might also lie in the faculty and student body. How do students of different religious background all come together to learn at a Jesuit university? What new perspectives do they offer?

Commitment to the Common Good

If you’ve done any community service during high school, this is something you can plug in. Why was it apart of your high school life? Are you committed to continue those efforts at BC? It can be an extracurricular you can point to, but it can also be related to your studies and future endeavors. How do you want to impact the world and help people?

Living a Meaningful Life

What is a meaningful life to you? In other words, what do you value the most? What can’t you live without? This would be another opportunity for you to showcase how well you know the school. Are there student groups that help support and foster the things that are important to you? Or even in the city of Boston?

There is a 400 word limit so you can start by breaking the 4 key factors down and brainstorming each of them. Maybe you’ll find overlaps and can tie those values together. At the end of the day, remember to emphasize why this type of academic and personal development is best done at Boston College.

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We hope these tips are helpful as you work on your BC supplemental essays! Remember to look at your college application as a whole. What else have you not shown or discussed in your application? Based on that answer, choose the essay prompt that will allow you to divulge a different aspect of who you are.

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About The Author

Frances Wong

Frances was born in Hong Kong and received her bachelor’s degree from Georgetown University. She loves super sad drama television, cooking, and reading. Her favorite person on Earth isn’t actually a member of the AdmitSee team - it’s her dog Cooper.




 

Boston College Application Essay Prompts

 

We would like to get a better sense of you. Please select one of the questions below and write an essay of 400 words or less providing your response.

 

Human beings have a creative side that tends to shine most when we are truly invested in the world around us. Describe a situation when you responded effectively to a particular need and found yourself at your creative best.

 

Best for those with a humanitarian bent (and whose activities reflect that), this is a loaded prompt with many aspects to address. There are two main topics involved: volunteer/humanitarian-related work and creativity. The prompt asks how helping others has led to an outpouring of personal creativity in your life, weaving the two topics together.

 

Choose an experience where you responded to a need, and how you were able to exercise creativity through it. This will most likely show up in the form of having to come up with unconventional ways to solve problems that you face with volunteering. Did you need to serve dinner to a couple hundred people at a homeless shelter and had to come up with a spontaneous line organization system?

 

You don’t need to limit yourself to strict volunteer work, though. You can write about teaching your younger sister how to tie her shoe in a way she could remember, or starting a food compost system at your school with limited supplies. Just remember to illustrate your creativity through solving the problem.

 

Experience teaches us the importance of being reflective when making major decisions. Share an example from a recent event when a leader or an average person faced a difficult choice. What were the consequences of the decision? Would you have done the same?

 

This prompt also allows for a wide range of responses. You can write about virtually anyone here. The essay should be divided into two portions, the first part describing the event and its consequences, and the second your thoughts on whether you would have made the same decision and why.

 

Feel free to choose a widely publicized event or one that is more personal, at which you may have been present. You have higher chances of landing a more unique topic if you choose to talk about a friend’s decision versus a political leader’s, but choose whatever you feel most strongly about; what matters most is your analysis of the event and decision, not the event itself.

 

The goal of this prompt is to communicate to admissions committees your method of thought and the process through which you come to logical conclusions.

 

You can choose to delve into something deep such as the U.S. deciding to bomb Japan to end WWII, or something lighter, such as someone deciding between pursing college or going directly to the workforce to support family (keep in mind the restrictive word count). Can you detect the ramifications of certain actions, beyond the obvious? The key is to explain clearly your reasoning for whether or not you would have chosen the same path.

 

Boston College strives to provide an undergraduate learning experience emphasizing the liberal arts, quality teaching, personal formation, and engagement of critical issues. If you had the opportunity to create your own college course, what enduring question or contemporary problem would you address and why?

 

Similar to the second question, this prompt provides an opportunity for you to write about real-world thoughts and experiences. Keep in mind that the prompt is focusing on a problem (contemporary or otherwise). While you should definitely choose a topic that you are passionate about, remember that the class is supposed to address and discuss a problem rather than a set, concrete topic (such as microbiology).

 

This question is best for those who are passionate about a contemporary issue or general problem, and have spent a bit of time thinking about it. The prompt asks you not so much to explain how you would structure the class, but rather why you would choose that question/topic for your course.

 

Why are you passionate about finding a cure for breast cancer? Why are you really interested in the food-waste problem in the United States? Ideally, you would have thought about the issue to an extent that you have ideas of rough solutions. Feel free to break up your essay into three paragraphs: stating your issue, explaining why you chose that issue (this paragraph should be the longest), and providing thoughts on possible solutions to this problem.

 

Keep in mind that the point of every essay is to reveal more about who you are. The admissions officers want to know more about you than they do about the topic you are writing about, so keep in mind while writing to write intentionally and portray yourself in a light in which you wish them to see you.

 





 

Jesuit education stresses the importance of the liberal arts and sciences, character formation, commitment to the common good, and living a meaningful life. How do you think your personal goals and academic interests will help you grow both intellectually and personally during college?

 

This is a subtle “Why Boston College?” question, and if you have strong, specific reasons for applying to BC, you may want to take this opportunity to write a more school-specific essay. The question itself is broad, and like for other essays, focus on being truthful and stick to what you are passionate about. Take some time to think about how you truly want to grow in college.

 

What kinds of skills (academic and otherwise) do you want to learn? Are there are any personal characteristics you wish to strengthen or weaknesses you hope to turn into strengths? Is there a specific research project at Boston College that you wish to work on? You don’t need to know where you will be in four years; in fact, the question is not asking how attending will meet your personal goals, but rather how your current goals will help you grow during your college career.

 

In this response, be sure to have a balance of personal and academic goals; mention your desire to delve into metaphysics and also your wish to try something completely new and out of your comfort zone, like hip-hop dancing. Admissions officers want to know that you are coming into BC with developed interests and passions, but also a heart to gain new ones.

 

The “living a meaningful life” phrase in the prompt is key. Reflect on how your interests and goals tie into living (what you consider) a meaningful life, and how you hope to develop and grow those ideas in college. Communicate to BC how going there will influence you as a person, and also touch on how you might be able to make an imprint on the campus as well.

 

The Boston College prompts allow for deep, personal reflection and the chance to share that with admissions officers. Don’t be afraid to be honest and candid in your answer.

 

Want more assistance on your application? Check out the CollegeVine application guidance program.

 









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