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UPenn Supplemental Essays 2023-2024

By Eric Eng

By Eric Eng

Writing an essay on a table.

UPenn Supplemental Essays 2023-2024

The application process, a critical gateway to this journey, demands academic excellence and a profound understanding of oneself and one’s aspirations. UPenn’s supplemental essays for 2023-2024 are a series of thoughtfully crafted prompts designed to unveil multi-faceted personalities. Also, they showcase the diverse backgrounds and unique ambitions of aspiring students.

How Many Supplemental Essays Does UPenn Require?

For the 2023-2024 admissions cycle, the University of Pennsylvania requires applicants to complete a set of two mandatory short answer prompts, each designed to uncover different facets of the applicant’s personality, experiences, and aspirations.

Additionally, depending on the specific undergraduate school to which a student is applying – the School of Nursing, College of Arts and Sciences, The Wharton School, or the School of Engineering and Applied Science – there is an additional essay requirement.

This structure of UPenn’s supplemental essays 2023-2024 underscores the university’s commitment to comprehensively understanding its applicants. It’s a deliberate approach, ensuring that each student’s application reflects academic prowess, personal growth, community engagement, and a clear vision for their future.

Breakdown of the Short Answer Prompts and the School-Specific Essay

Delving into the specifics, the first of UPenn’s supplemental essays 2023-2024 is a short thank-you note, a prompt that invites applicants to express gratitude to someone who has made a significant impact on their life. This exercise is not just about politeness; it reflects character and insight into the relationships and values that shape the applicant.

The second prompt asks students to contemplate their potential engagement with the Penn community. Here, applicants must intertwine their narratives with their aspirations for community involvement at UPenn, showcasing how their unique perspectives will contribute to and benefit from the university’s dynamic environment.

The Wharton School of Business signage

The third prompt requires a more focused approach, depending on the chosen undergraduate school. For instance, applicants to the School of Nursing might discuss their passion for healthcare and how UPenn’s program aligns with their career goals. At the same time, those applying to The Wharton School could delve into their fascination with business and entrepreneurship. These school-specific essays demonstrate why the applicant wants to attend UPenn and why they are a perfect fit for their chosen program.

Each essay, though distinct in its theme, collectively forms a narrative arc that encapsulates the applicant’s past achievements, present motivations, and future aspirations, all while underlining their suitability for the unique academic and social fabric of the University of Pennsylvania.

What are the UPenn Supplemental Essays 2023-2024?

UPenn’s supplemental essays 2023-2024 are a crucial component of the application process. It offers a platform for students to present aspects of their personality and intellect that standardized test scores and transcripts cannot capture.

  1. Write a short thank-you note to someone you have not yet thanked and would like to acknowledge. (We encourage you to share this note with that person, if possible, and reflect on the experience!) (150-200 words, only required for first year applicants)
  2. How will you explore community at Penn? Consider how Penn will help shape your perspective, and how your experiences and perspective will help shape Penn. (150-200 words)
  3. (The school-specific prompt will now be unique to the school a student is applying to.)

For the 2023-2024 admissions cycle, these prompts include a unique thank-you note, a reflection on the community at Penn, and a school-specific essay that varies depending on the undergraduate program to which the student is applying. Navigating these prompts requires both eloquence and honesty and a strategic understanding of how each essay can collectively paint a comprehensive and compelling picture of the applicant.

How to Write the UPenn Essays 2023-2024?

Writing the UPenn supplemental essays for the 2023-2024 admissions cycle is a task that requires introspection, creativity, and strategic thinking. These essays are your opportunity to show the admissions committee who you are beyond your grades and test scores.

Remember, quality over quantity is vital. Each word should serve a purpose in conveying your message. Finally, proofread your essays meticulously to ensure they are free of grammatical errors and flow well.

UPenn Supplemental Essay 1: The Thank-You Note Short Answer

The first of UPenn’s supplemental essays, 2023-2024, a short thank-you note, is a unique prompt that stands out for its emphasis on gratitude and personal reflection.

Write a short thank-you note to someone you have not yet thanked and would like to acknowledge. (We encourage you to share this note with that person, if possible, and reflect on the experience!) 

This essay, limited to 150-200 words, is not just an exercise in writing but an opportunity for applicants to delve into their personal experiences and relationships. It challenges students to identify and articulate their appreciation for someone who has made a significant, yet perhaps unrecognized, impact on their lives.

Understanding UPenn Supplemental Essay 1

The first UPenn supplemental essay prompt for 2023-2024 requires you to write a short thank-you note to someone you have not yet thanked but would like to acknowledge. This prompt is unique as it focuses on gratitude and personal reflection.

a nutritionist talking to. a female client

 

It’s an opportunity to showcase your ability to recognize and appreciate the impact others have had on your life. This essay should reveal your character, values, and the relationships that have shaped you. It’s not just about whom you choose to thank but also about how you express your gratitude and what this says about you.

Brainstorming Your Response to UPenn Supplemental Essay 1

When brainstorming your response to this essay, consider the following:

  • Identify the Person: Think about someone who has significantly impacted your life. This could be a teacher, coach, family member, or friend.
  • Reflect on the Impact: What specific actions or qualities of this person have influenced you? How have they helped shape your perspectives or choices?
  • Personal Growth: How has this person’s influence contributed to your growth? Consider moments of challenge, inspiration, or change.
  • Unique Angle: Find a unique angle or a specific instance that encapsulates their impact rather than general statements of gratitude.
  • Emotional Connection: Reflect on the emotions you associate with this person. Gratitude, respect, admiration, or inspiration can be good starting points.

Structuring Your Response to UPenn Supplemental Essay 1

In structuring your response, follow a clear and concise format:

  • Introduction: Start with a direct address to the person you are thanking. Briefly introduce them and the reason for your gratitude.
  • Body: Elaborate on the impact they have had on your life. Use specific examples or anecdotes to illustrate this.
  • Reflection: Reflect on how this person’s influence has shaped you. Connect this to your broader life experiences or aspirations.
  • Conclusion: Close with a heartfelt statement of thanks, summarizing the essence of your gratitude and its significance in your life.

Remember, this essay is as much about you as it is about the person you are thanking. It should provide insights into your character and values, demonstrating your capacity for reflection and appreciation.

UPenn Supplemental Essay 2: Your Perspective and Contribution

The second prompt of UPenn’s supplemental essays 2023-2024 invites applicants to reflect on their potential engagement with the Penn community.

How will you explore community at Penn? Consider how Penn will help shape your perspective, and how your experiences and perspective will help shape Penn. 

This question is about what you hope to gain from being a part of this vibrant community and what you can contribute to it. It’s an invitation to envision your place within the diverse mosaic of Penn’s student body. This essay should blend introspection and foresight, showcasing your understanding of what community means at home like UPenn.

Understanding UPenn Supplemental Essay 2

The second UPenn supplemental essay for the 2023-2024 admissions cycle asks you to reflect on your potential role within the Penn community. This prompt is designed to gauge your understanding of being part of a diverse and dynamic university community. It’s an opportunity to demonstrate how you envision yourself contributing to and benefiting from the Penn environment.

View of UPenn sign

The key here is to show a mutual relationship: how Penn’s community will influence you and, in turn, how you will add value to it. This essay should highlight your ability to engage with others, your willingness to embrace new perspectives, and your desire to actively participate in university life.

It’s also a chance to showcase your understanding of Penn’s values and how they align with yours. Remember, this essay isn’t just about your academic interests; it’s about your character, your passions, and how you see yourself fitting into the broader Penn community.

Brainstorming Your Response to UPenn Supplemental Essay 2

When brainstorming your response, consider the following points:

  • Personal Interests and Passions: Identify your fundamental interests and passions and how they might align with clubs, organizations, or initiatives at Penn.
  • Community Involvement: Reflect on your past experiences with community involvement. What have you learned from these experiences, and how can you apply these lessons at Penn?
  • Penn’s Resources: Research specific resources, programs, or opportunities at Penn that excite you. How do you plan to take advantage of these?
  • Personal Growth: Think about how being part of the Penn community might challenge and contribute to your growth.
  • Contribution to Penn: Consider what unique perspectives or skills you can bring to the Penn community. How will you make a positive impact?
  • Long-term Vision: How does being part of the Penn community fit your long-term goals or aspirations?

Structuring Your Response to UPenn Supplemental Essay 2

In structuring your response, consider the following format:

  • Introduction: Begin by briefly introducing your main interest or passion and how it relates to your desire to be part of the Penn community.
  • Body: In the body of your essay, delve into specific aspects of the Penn community that align with your interests. Discuss how you plan to engage with these aspects and what you hope to gain from the experience. Also, detail how your past experiences and perspectives will contribute to the Penn community. Use specific examples to illustrate your points.
  • Conclusion: Summarize how your involvement in the Penn community will mutually benefit you. Emphasize how Penn will help shape your perspective and how you, in turn, will contribute to the Penn community. This should tie back to your introduction, creating a cohesive narrative that clearly articulates your vision for your time at Penn.

UPenn’s Supplemental Essay 3: School-Specific Prompts

The school-specific prompts in UPenn’s supplemental essays 2023-2024 are designed to assess an applicant’s fit and enthusiasm for their chosen field of study. These prompts vary across the School of Nursing, College of Arts and Sciences, The Wharton School, and the School of Engineering and Applied Science, each asking for a nuanced understanding of the school’s ethos and how the applicant’s interests align with it.

  • Short Answer Prompt for School of Nursing: Penn Nursing intends to meet the health needs of society in a global and multicultural world by preparing its students to impact healthcare by advancing science and promoting equity. What do you think this means for the future of nursing, and how do you see yourself contributing to our mission of promoting equity in healthcare? (150-200 words)
  • Short Answer Prompt for College of Arts and Sciences: The flexible structure of The College of Arts and Sciences’ curriculum is designed to inspire exploration, foster connections, and help you create a path of study through general education courses and a major. What are you curious about and how would you take advantage of opportunities in the arts and sciences? (150-200 words)
  • Short Answer Prompt for The Wharton School: Wharton prepares its students to make an impact by applying business methods and economic theory to real-world problems, including economic, political, and social issues.  Please reflect on a current issue of importance to you and share how you hope a Wharton education would help you to explore it.  (150-200 words)
  • Short Answer Prompt for School of Engineering and Applied Science: Penn Engineering prepares its students to become leaders in technology, by combining a strong foundation in the natural sciences and mathematics, exploration in the liberal arts, and depth of study in focused disciplinary majors. Please share how you hope to explore your engineering interests at Penn. (150-200 words)

Each response should reflect your understanding of these unique aspects and how they resonate with your academic and professional goals. This is not just about stating your desire to study at a particular school; it’s about demonstrating a thoughtful and informed connection between your aspirations and what the school uniquely offers.

Understanding UPenn’s School-Specific Prompts

UPenn Supplemental Essay 3 is unique to the specific undergraduate school you are applying to. This essay is crucial as it allows you to demonstrate your understanding of and alignment with the school’s ethos and objectives.

View of computer engineers working on a project.

For the School of Nursing, the focus is on how you perceive the future of nursing in a global and multicultural context and your role in promoting equity in healthcare. The College of Arts and Sciences prompt asks about your curiosities and how you plan to explore them through their flexible curriculum. The Wharton School seeks to understand how you would apply your education to a current issue that matters to you. Lastly, the School of Engineering and Applied Science wants to know how you plan to pursue your engineering interests at Penn, emphasizing a combination of natural sciences, liberal arts, and focused majors.

Each prompt requires a tailored response that reflects your interests, goals, and how they align with the school’s mission.

Brainstorming Your Response to UPenn’s School-Specific Prompts

For each school, consider the following brainstorming ideas:

School of Nursing:

  • Reflect on what equity in healthcare means to you.
  • Think about experiences or observations that have shaped your understanding of healthcare disparities.
  • Consider how you can contribute to advancing science and promoting equity in nursing.

College of Arts and Sciences:

    • Identify areas of curiosity or specific interests within arts and sciences.
    • Explore how the college’s curriculum can help you pursue these interests.
    • Consider how a broad education can contribute to your personal and academic growth.

The Wharton School:

    • Choose a current economic, political, or social issue you are passionate about.
    • Reflect on how a business education can help you understand and address this issue.
    • Consider the specific aspects of Wharton’s program that align with your interests.

School of Engineering and Applied Science:

    • Identify your specific engineering interests and how they developed.
    • Explore how Penn Engineering’s approach to education aligns with your goals.
    • Think about the role of liberal arts in shaping your engineering perspective.

Structuring Your Response to UPenn’s School-Specific Prompts

Your essay should be structured to clearly and concisely address the prompt:

  • Introduction: Begin by directly addressing the prompt, setting the stage for your response. Introduce your main interest or the issue you are passionate about.
  • Body: In the body, delve into how your interests, experiences, and goals align with the school’s mission and offerings. Use specific examples to illustrate your points and show a deep understanding of the school’s ethos.
  • Conclusion: Summarize how your education at this specific school will help you achieve your goals and contribute to the school’s mission. This should reflect your introduction, creating a cohesive narrative that underscores your enthusiasm and readiness for the program.

Conclusion

As we conclude our exploration into UPenn’s supplemental essays 2023-2024, it’s evident that these are more than just a requirement for your college application; they are a profound opportunity for self-expression and self-discovery.

A computer science student

Each essay serves a distinct purpose, allowing you to showcase different facets of your personality, intellect, and aspirations. The University of Pennsylvania, through these prompts, seeks to understand not just your academic capabilities but also your character, values, and vision for the future.

These essays are your chance to step beyond the numbers and lists of achievements that make up the rest of your application, offering a glimpse into who you are as a person and how you see yourself fitting into and contributing to the Penn community.

Recap of the Key Points for Each Type of Supplemental Essay

In recapitulating the critical points for each supplemental essay type, remember that the thank-you note is an exercise in gratitude and reflection, allowing you to acknowledge someone who has impacted your life. It’s a chance to show depth, empathy, and the ability to appreciate the roles others have played in your journey.

The essay on exploring community at Penn is where you align your personal experiences and aspirations with the ethos of the Penn community, demonstrating how you intend to engage with and contribute to it.

The school-specific essays require a tailored approach, reflecting your understanding of and fit for the school you are applying to. Whether it’s the School of Nursing, College of Arts and Sciences, The Wharton School, or the School of Engineering and Applied Science, your response should testify to your informed interest and alignment with the school’s unique offerings and values.

Ready to Elevate Your UPenn Application? Discover How AdmissionSight Can Guide You

Embarking on your journey to the prestigious University of Pennsylvania requires more than just academic excellence; it demands a compelling narrative through your application essays. At AdmissionSight, we specialize in transforming your aspirations and experiences into powerful narratives that resonate with UPenn’s admissions committee. Our expert team, well-versed in the nuances of UPenn’s supplemental essays 2023-2024, is dedicated to helping you craft essays that not only meet but exceed the expectations of the admissions officers.

View of a woman using a laptop.

Whether articulating gratitude in a thank-you note, showcasing your vision for community involvement, or tailoring your response to the specific undergraduate school of your choice, our consultants provide personalized guidance at every step. We understand these essays’ unique challenges and opportunities and are committed to helping you navigate them confidently and creatively.

Make sure to let the complexity of the application process dim your chances of getting into UPenn. Join the ranks of our successful clients who have made their dream of attending top-tier universities a reality. Contact AdmissionSight today for a consultation and take the first step toward crafting an outstanding application. Let us help you turn your Penn aspirations into achievements.

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