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How to Write the Georgia Tech Supplemental Essays: The Detailed Guide

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Located in the heart of Atlanta, Georgia, Georgia Tech is a school well-known for its engineering and computer science programs.

Its admissions rate has decreased over the years, hitting around 23% in 2017 as it becomes more selective. As such, you need a great application to be considered for admission to Georgia Tech.

While your academic success and extracurricular activities are all important aspects of the application process, Georgia Tech takes your essay responses seriously and treats them as “an important way to get to know you, and what you have to bring to Georgia Tech.”

Luckily, you don’t need to be a future English major to create a personal, powerful essay. 

Georgia Tech takes both the Common Application and the Coalition Application. On top of the Common or Coalition App general essay, you are expected to write two short answer responses, one required, and one from a selection of prompts.

In this article, we will guide you through each of Georgia Tech’s short answer questions to give you an idea of how to approach them.

General Guidelines: Georgia Tech Essays

Each essay response is 250 words long, respectively. That translates to about 2-3 paragraphs in length. You need to be economical with your words to make every single one count.

That means there is no room for generalities. You need to be specific and get straight to the point. Every word should contribute to showing your personality, your motivations, your ambitions, or your successes. 

You should also focus on topics that you haven’t covered elsewhere in your application. Georgia Tech wants the essays to bring out what they can’t already figure out from your transcripts and club participation.

Most of all, be authentic. Don’t write what you think the admissions officers want to read. Be honest in your interests and your accomplishments, and try to approach your life from a different angle.

Prompt 1 – Why This Major at Georgia Tech?

Why do you want to study your chosen major at Georgia Tech, and how do you think Georgia Tech will prepare you to pursue opportunities in that field after graduation? (max 250 words)

This is your standard “Why This College” essay mixed with a significant flavor of “Why This Major?”.

  • When writing about why you want to attend a specific college, the location, athletics, and ranking should not be in your response.

Always show Georgia Tech your interest through anecdote. Show what you are doing now that you can carry over to college.

  • For example, write about an experience in the classroom that sparked your interest in STEM subjects and how you reached out to a teacher for more information.
  • Or, write about founding a club, which then inspired you to learn what it takes to start your own company or organization.

There are a couple of ways to approach this question.

The first way is to approach this from an academic perspective. Remember, they don’t want you to tell them they’re highly ranked in engineering and computer science – they want you to be specific in your desire to attend Georgia Tech.

  • What do they offer that is unique to them?

Look at some of the research happening at Georgia Tech. For instance, they are currently researching sodium- and potassium-based batteries to replace the lithium-ion batteries in our laptops, smartphones, and other rechargeable devices as cheap and more stable energy storage.

  • If you’re interested in the intersection of chemistry and electronics to create sustainable and affordable energy for everyone, that may be a reason why you’d want to choose Georgia Tech.

You can also look at some of their faculty members’ research interests. If their research interests fall in line with what you might want to do, mention that and reach out to that professor.

Doing so shows Georgia Tech that you have initiative and a real interest in research at Georgia Tech, and you’ll likely have a professor to connect with when you attend college.

Afterward, make sure to demonstrate your ambitions or post-undergraduate pursuits.

It’s important to note that you don’t need to know exactly what you want to do with your life after college – you’re too young to know the answer.

With that said, it’s good to have a general idea of the field you want to enter. This job or field should be closely related to the major you choose. Once you’ve connected your major to the job/field, you can write your essay utilizing one of the following strategies:

  • For instance, if you’re an aspiring computer science major, you may be interested in building software or applications after college. If so, describe how Georgia Tech’s resources will prepare you for the world of electronics, coding, and computers.
  • If you want to build biomechanical body parts for veterans, discuss how Georgia Tech’s fellowships and practical immersions in the field of biomechanics will help you learn more about the human body and its interactions with physics.
  • Do you want to become the next Elon Musk? Describe how Georgia Tech’s entrepreneur programs and projects will promote the interplay of your business and aerospace skills.
  • If you’re an entrepreneur, you may be interested in the different competitions Georgia Tech offers to encourage entrepreneurial spirit and innovation in its students. Your essay could focus on your desire to found a startup tech company, using Georgia Tech’s guidance to help you succeed.

All told, you must demonstrate that you know about Georgia Tech’s offerings and have a vision for taking advantage of them. Colleges want students who will use campus resources to build their educations and become successful professionals.

Thus, be specific about one or two of Georgia Tech’s offerings that you want to become a part of.

Like all other colleges, Georgia Tech can offer a purely unique experience to its students, but you have to research the various pieces it has to offer.

If possible, try scheduling a campus tour and asking questions about the various aspects you’re interested in. Look at Georgia Tech’s website and its various faculty directories for research and campus event news. Also, check college forums like College Confidential to get an insider’s perspective on student life for inspiration.

Prompt 2 – Describing You

For your 250 word essay, you must choose one of three different prompts. However, each prompt is an opportunity to showcase your accomplishments and passion outside of an academic context. 

For these, you should focus on what makes you a unique asset for the Georgia Tech community. Also, remember that your accomplishments don’t have to be extraordinary; you don’t have to save a town or invent the next smartphone to be considered.

If you can identify and write about small differences you’ve made in someone’s life, or the steps you’re taking to change the world around you, that can create just as much of an impact.

Prompt A

Tech’s motto is Progress and Service. We find that students who ultimately have a broad impact first had a significant one at home. What is your role in your immediate or extended family? And how have you seen evidence of your impact on them?

This prompt asks what you have done to make a difference for your family. This can allow students that have taken up extra responsibilities in their households to really show the commitment they’ve made for their communities.

  • If you are a part of a low-income family and took up a side gig or part-time job to help your parents, that can be an opportunity to show Georgia Tech that you sacrificed time you could have spent doing normal teenager activities like hanging out with friends to support your family.
  • On the other side, you could write about taking care of younger siblings while both your parents work, and how you took that time to read to them or teach them what you were learning in school.

Remember to reflect on the impact you’ve made on your family. With both scenarios, you may have noticed that your parents seem less stressed, whether it’s because you work or because they don’t have to worry about a babysitter.

  • Taking care of your siblings may have given you a chance to create a confidant-like bond with them, or your reading and teaching may have helped them rise to the top of their class.

Also turn that reflection onto yourself. Maybe you’ve learned how to manage your time more effectively than your peers. Maybe your babysitting has taught you leadership and management skills early in life. Maybe helping your family simply developed your compassion and interest in helping those close to you.

While there are a lot of different ways to take this essay, it may not be the ideal essay for every applicant, so consider all of the essay prompts before choosing which one works best for you.

Prompt B

Georgia Tech is always looking for innovative undergraduates. Have you had any experience as an entrepreneur? What would you like Georgia Tech to provide to further your entrepreneurial interests?

This prompt is perfect if you are an innovator at heart. Remember there are two questions at the heart of this prompt. You need to write about your experiences as an entrepreneur or as an aspiring one, and you need to write how Georgia Tech can help you succeed in your goals.

  • First, if you’ve invented or designed anything, you can write about that.
  • Creating an app, building a website, or building a functional robot can all be examples of your innovative spirit.
  • Even if these were just made for your own entertainment and you aren’t applying entrepreneurial business models, they still show your interest in being inventive.

If your entrepreneurial experience hasn’t extended to what you actually want to do, mention your goals in your essay. Do you see a problem in our technology that you want to solve? Do you think you can create a medical device to help disabled people?

Now, how can Georgia Tech factor into your interests? As mentioned before, it offers a lot of support for those interested in becoming entrepreneurs. You may want to sign up for one of their startup competitions while in college.

They also offer Startup Lab, which is a college course that teaches students how to launch a tech startup. This class could be perfect if you’re wanting to launch software that can help people connect online more meaningfully, or you want to make some interesting video games.

Make sure to look at their website to see all of the help they offer to students and choose one or two to apply to your own entrepreneurial interest.

Prompt C

Describe your typical day.

This is the vaguest prompt that they offer, which can be daunting. However, this can be a great opportunity to show Georgia Tech a side of you that your college application may not give space for otherwise.

While this asks you to describe a typical day, you may not want to choose a day in which you don’t accomplish anything of note. Your best bet is to focus on an aspect of your life that occurs at least three times a week, so it’s common enough to be a regular occurrence in your life.

Skip over inessential parts of your day like waking up, going to school, etc. Remember, you only have 250 words to make an impact on the admissions officers. Instead, focus on something that might make you stand out.

  • Maybe you assemble blessing bags for the homeless people in your community and hand them out weekly with your family.
  • Perhaps you stay after school to tutor a friend who is struggling with a class.
  • Maybe you stay after to learn more in-depth concepts about a subject with your favorite teacher.
  • Perhaps you enroll in various MOOC (massively open online courses) created by colleges to pursue your interests.

Choose to focus on a particular part of your everyday life. Make it something that can’t fit into a tidy space like “academic achievements” or “extracurricular activities”.

You should also reflect on this part of your life and how it has affected your personal growth and development. Maybe it has inspired you to find other opportunities to help the those that are struggling, or it has taught you how to seek out information for yourself.

Whatever you write, make sure it is something personal to you, as this prompt is an opportunity to give Georgia Tech a glimpse of your life, to see who you are as a person.

Conclusion: Georgia Tech Short Answers

Georgia Tech’s essays allow you to demonstrate your passion for the institute as well as introduce yourself to them.

Remember, these short answer responses give you a chance to communicate with Georgia Tech’s admissions officers in a way that your testing scores and transcripts can’t. Use that to your advantage.

Overall, you will write two short essays. One will be your statement of interest in Georgia Tech. The other is one of three prompts designed to show a side of you that your application may have missed.

Choose the prompt that best shows who you are and what you have to offer your university.