Here are Five Lessons Your College-Bound Kids Can Learn in the Next 15 Days That Will Guarantee Them a College Acceptance Letter (#3)

Write a Good Conclusion that “Seals the Deal!”


A conclusion is the final impression you leave the reader. And keep in mind, your reader here is usually an admissions officer or scholarship committee member who has been confronted with lots of writing.

They have probably seen the phrase “In conclusion” many, many times.

Think of your conclusion as the perfume that remains in the room once you're gone.  You want it to be pleasing and distinctive, but not too strong, and definitely not offensive.

So how do you do that?

Well, I’ve already imbedded one hint in my comments so far.


Avoid overused transitions: “Last,” “Finally,” and “In conclusion” should be banned from the room!


The next trap that college bound writers fall into is simply restating their claim.

In lesson #1, we talked about how to create the claim. The claim is a sentence or group of sentences that tells the reader what the essay will be about.

The most general version of a claim was provided in lesson #2. It looked something like this:

“This experience illustrates that I have intellect, perseverance, and resilience even in the face of disappointment or failure.”

Now guess how many students I’ve read who go on to add a sentence like this in their conclusion:

So this is why this experience illustrates that I have intellect, perseverance, and resilience even in the face of disappointment or failure.

Come on!


Instead of making this repetitive move of simply saying the claim over again, use the conclusion as a time to explain how this challenging experience positively affected you.


Here’s an example of a brainstorm list of our “pretend” student’s reasons:

  • I learned the importance of teamwork
  • It helped me accept that failure happens, but we can learn from it
  • Taught me not to be overconfident
  • Showed me that sometimes pressure can bring out great work

I can see how this list could become some really soulful writing. Can’t you?


The final tip I’ll give is make sure you connect your goals and interests to the school’s academic programs. Being able to connect your goals and interests with the college to whom you are submitting your entrance essay is an important skill.


Here is an example:

“The [insert experience you had] solidified my commitment to teaching in the deaf community. This is why your program for teachers of special education with a Linguistics and Sign Language emphasis dovetails
perfectly with my goals and experiences.”

Practice this. Create two sentences. One should describe a goal or experience. The other should tie in a program at a prospective college.

These are just some of the ways you can make sure your essay’s ending leaves a lasting impression and helps you Get The Acceptance Letter.

Come back each week for strategies like these that help college bound kids write an extraordinary college entrance essay, opening the door to the safety, financial security, and choices that a college degree provides.

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