For example: Don’t be afraid to plan. Admissions officers aren’t necessarily looking for leadership positions. Student Coach (9th - 12th)Middle School MathCounts TeamTaught strategies, selected competitors, hosted weekly practice sessions and lectures. The activities list and the personal statement are the central ways to stand out on a college application. If you didn’t participate in traditional extracurricular activities, don’t panic yet! About the Ask the Dean Column. Bonus points if this activity heavily influenced your ambitions for college and beyond. Starting Point Guard (10th - 12th)Varsity Girl’s Basketball Team, Foothill Academy500+ hrs. Many students who apply to these schools have top GPAs and test scores, so extracurricular activities are one of the best ways to differentiate yourself from the rest of the applicant pool and make yourself stand out as an exceptional candidate. Follow up with specific details about what it did. Rockstar. I also recently read my old activities list and cringed. While the ordering of Common App Activities does require some attention, it causes far more worry than it should. Secretary (11th)Teen Educational Foundation, youth group focused on increasing access to critical educational resourcesFundraised for our community/surrounding communities, organized City Council/Board of Education forums, and donated grants to High School clubs. Calibrate these strategies to fit any college application. It’s better to list a few activities in which you were deeply involved rather than creating a massive laundry list of minor activities. Volunteer (Summer 2018)CACH Medical CenterAided Renal, Labor, and Delivery departments by monitoring front desk and organizing six years worth of backlogged medical records (8 hrs/wk, 20 wks/yr). Will this list help admissions officers imagine the type of contribution you will make to a college campus? Ideally, you should have at least 2-3 activities demonstrating significant involvement, but it’s okay to include a few other less significant activities. Before submitting your writing, ask a friend, mentor, or family member to read your response and follow up with the question: “What did you learn about me from reading this paragraph?”. Use every inch to demonstrate your impact beyond the classroom. We'll mostly discuss the activities list in this conversation. Co-Founder/Manager (10th-12th)Choice Performance ClubCoordinated monthly performances at community venues, opportunity for performers in theater, music, poetry, etc. When selecting extracurriculars, it’s also important to think about how relevant they were to your life over the past few years. Received Div.1 at 2016 Solo and Ensemble Contest. You should also keep the focus on the particular role in each activity. Conference title. Head of Media Team (10th)MUN Club, Meadows SchoolRecruited and assigned team members as photographers, writers, editors, and marketing advisers. Do all Common App colleges use courses & grades in their admissions process? The Common App gives you room to write about ten of your activities. Family responsibilities? Intern (Summer 2019) Center for Advanced Head & Neck Surgery, Paid Summer InternshipLearned how to operate screening & diagnostic technologies under Dr. Anderson; assisted in patient care & diagnosis in Otolaryngology & Oncology. For the 2020-21 application cycle, the Common Application essay prompts remain unchanged from the 2019-20 cycle. Student, Class TARobotics Fundamentals, Online Course at Carnegie Mellon UniversityLearned the fundamentals of computer programming, robot assembly, and worked as a team in competitions. Start by listing all activities, hobbies, interests, awards, employment, summer experiences, etc. Is there a reason why you couldn’t dedicate more time to activities? Peer Advisor (11th-12th)Erving High School Student Ambassador Program, selective application-based leadership teamOrganized and led orientation; served as a year round leader, mentor, tutor, and friend to freshmen; helped with class scheduling. Admissions officers are looking for applicants who are dedicated to their passions. Colleges want students who go the extra mile and take the initiative to better their surroundings. Please do not copy them, as this is plagiarism. When: How often and during what time frame did you participate? Counselor In Training (Summer 2018)Educational Prep Programs, leadership training program for aspiring counselorsLearned leadership and group dynamic skills, focusing on responsibility, maturity, and accountability, with a final project of cleaning the camp. Trained 7 state qualifiers; developed fundraising, recruitment campaigns to raise $1200 in 1 year, increase membership from 6 to 40 members in 2 years – Number 3 Singles Starter (August 30th, 2013 - November 11th, 2015)Varsity Girls Tennis, Little Creek High SchoolPracticed and conditioned daily, led daily stretches, competed in district and regional matches against other schools (13 hrs/wk, 11 wks/yr). Academic Interviewer (11th-12th)Student Ambassador Club, Hillside High SchoolPersonally talked to undecided students about their plans for the future both academically and non-academically, provided guidance and moral support. Student (10th)Brown University’s Online Pilot Course: Making an Impact Selected participant in Brown University’s Leadership Institute, analyzed social change model of leadership development and applied lessons to GCLI. This is the Common App activities section. That’s why you need to list details, metrics, and other specifics to best explain your role in the activity. The goal here is not to choose the activities that will impress admissions officers. What role did you play during the fundraiser? Team Member (10th), Captain (11th-12th)Science Bowl Team, Westing Charter School Directed practices, assigned each member roles, supervised preparation for competition, coordinated transportation to competitions (2 hrs/wk, 28 wks/yr). Tangible Achievements. Designing apps or working at the beach as a lifeguard are appropriate to list. So go with your gut when you make your initial list, and try not to rearrange it more than once! Leverage this during college applications. Here's a sample Common App activities list. Additionally, you can save space by being as specific as possible in the “Activity Name” box that precedes the “Activity Description” section. It’s critical to ask for feedback from honest people since you have a limited amount of space. You are allowed 50 characters in the name section, so take advantage. Next, comb through your list for activities that show both commitment and effort. Attended the University of Notre Dame and Pepperdine University tennis camps to improve accuracy and strength of shot. Founder, Art Honors Society. It is your job to prove that you fit those criteria. Tutor - (10th)Creekside Elementary Afterschool Tutoring ProgramPersonally asked to tutor six special education 5th grade students at an elementary school, who did not pass the STAAR test (2 hrs/day for 3 wks). 2 of my WHAT I PUT ON MY COMMON APP video, and I focus on the top 10 activities that Common App makes you list on your application. Follow these pointers for crafting a rich and memorable Common App activities page. These certainly are life experiences about which you can write. If you make your response meaningful, you’ll be one step closer to achieving your college dreams. Secretary (10th-12th)Working Towards The Future, national career advising and academic resource hub for high school studentsOrganized meeting discussions, informed students of financial aid opportunities, and recorded minutes for cabinet meetings (3 hrs/wk, 40 wks/yr). Below are a number of links that provide examples of Common App essays. Before you commit to writing about a particular extracurricular, it is important to brainstorm. This way, you can prominently feature the activities you most care about and to which you made the greatest contributions. They want to know exactly how you contributed and what you achieved while participating in each activity. Stay on track and ease your anxiety with our second-to-none college application assistance. Want proof? By “importance,” we mean the activities that are most meaningful to you. Talk to a friend and discuss your activities. As the Common Application simply puts: “Reporting activities can help a college better understand your life outside of the classroom. Before attempting to write about all of these experiences, it can be helpful to spend time reflecting on what you have learned from these activities and how they have helped you develop. I happen to think the activities list is one of the most underutilized spaces on the college application. Common App Examples Activities The activities section is one of the most important parts of your application, particularly if you are applying to very selective colleges. President (10th-12th)Robotics Club, Bryson High SchoolRecruited club members, organized seminars for freshmen, and coordinated team preparation for various competitions. Here are some tips with accompanying college activities list examples: 10 TIPS FOR HOW TO WRITE THE COMMON APP ACTIVITIES LIST: 1. For the Common App, you have 5 slots for honors and awards, and 10 slots for your extracurricular activities. State role and organization name in top box, so you don’t waste characters in the lower, 150-character box. Causes include: homelessness (Urban Ministries), climate change (Sunrise), animal cruelty (ASPCA). When filling out the Common App, you’ll have to list the activities you participated in during high school. College Admissions. Over the four years of high school, many students are involved in a wide variety of activities, so remembering all the details can be difficult. According to Common App, “activities may include arts, athletics, clubs, employment, personal commitments, and other pursuits.” In other words, pretty much anything pursued outside the classroom qualifies as an activity. Student (Summer 2018)Turley Program for Gifted Artists, intensive summer program for 100 selected HS artists in the Bay AreaSketched drawings of still life sets/real life models, developed ability to creative ideate and engage with unconventional materials in critical workshops. Common App Activities List Examples. Let’s consider the example above. u/MrsScholarGrade's series is new, and I hope I'll be adding more of her great work: Just like Like when writing a resume, you can use “incomplete sentences” in your activity list descriptions to maximize the amount of information you’re able to fit. The Common App gives you ten slots for activities, but that doesn’t mean you’re required to use every one. You want to tell a story about yourself and how you’ve developed as a person. I … These examples should help you write a great Common App activities list: DECA Executive Vice President. This 1 tip is exactly 149 characters long. Anything unnecessary that should be removed from the list? This will help you write about what you contributed to the activity. Local Violin Tutor (Summer 2018)Independent, self-started businessProvided foundational instruction on music and basics of classical violin, demonstrated proper technique, developed strong interpersonal/musical skills. Led the chapel talks and schoolwide fundraising events, chose each trimester beneficiary. Listing more is totally fine, too. As you grow older, you’ll learn that people who’ve faced adversity are often more qualified to handle conflict and pressure. Activity type: Community Service (Volunteer) Position/Leadership description and organization name, if applicable: Key Club: Club President; Kiwanis Coordinator (1) Details, honors won, and accomplishments: High school community service organization which I helped coordinate as Club President. Second description: Whaaaaaaat?! When listing extracurricular activities, some students are tempted to list every activity they’ve ever participated in, even if it was for an insignificant period of time. DO make the most of your 150 characters. Helped prepare lunch, entertain, and tutor students in math and science 25 hrs/wk, 4 wks/yr. Freelance Artist (Summer 2016, 2017)Self-started businessStaged and framed personal artwork to be sold, displayed art at Carrack Gallery, consulted buyers, donated all proceeds (~$800) to school art program. Working? Common and Coalition Application. Lead Decorator (12th)La Familia Club, school club devoted to increasing cultural awareness about the Latinx communityOrganized community cultural events about Latinx cooking and holidays, coordinated creation of traditional Mexican art mural installation on campus. Become a leader and learn to manage a team? The most important point I have to make about my extracurriculars: as you go down the list, there is a HUGE drop in the importance of each additional activity to the overall application. Alex Goldman, admissions counselor at Sweet Briar College, has this advice for underclassmen who want complete college applications: To make the most of high school extracurricular opportunities, students should lean in and embrace the experience while rising to the challenges their activities present. Staff Member (11th-12th)Yearbook, Crestview High SchoolTraveled to photograph sporting events, worked with Photoshop and InDesign, mentored new staff members, and helped run a summer editing workshop. Number 1 Doubles Starter (9th-12th), Captain (11th-12th)JV/V Beverly Hills High School Tennis TeamThree year League Champions; planned and hosted team banquet; led team warmups and meetings; Coach's Award Recipient (11th); Team Spirit Award (12th). Did you need to handle a long-term family or health difficulty that prevented you from maximizing your time in school? Sprinter/Hurdler (9th-12th), Captain (12th)Cross Country/Track Team, Golden Oak High School Top-3 Soph/Frosh runner, led boy’s sprinting team in meets and races, aided coaches in organizing daily workouts, emotionally supported team members. 2 of my WHAT I PUT ON MY COMMON APP video, and I focus on the top 10 activities that Common App makes you list on your application. Art encompasses a wide variety of … Member (11th - 12th)The Giving Society, charity organizationRaised funds for new advocacy org each semester. Manager (12th)Falling Whistles, local indie rock bandAttended benefit concerts and other fundraising events, helped organize fundraisers, scheduled gigs, and organized sponsors. college application boot camp to get the help you need. Those accomplishments are not necessary to have had a valuable learning experience. Created art pieces and organized school club. The first path is organizing an Activity List into several categories. Colleges are empathetic, but they can only be empathetic if you let them know. Ethan helps students write amazing college essays by offering free resources, one-on-one essay sessions, online webinars, and in-person workshops. Activity type: Community Service (Volunteer) Position/Leadership description and organization name, if applicable: Key Club: Club President; Kiwanis Coordinator (1) Details, honors won, and accomplishments: High school community service organization which I helped coordinate as Club President. Abby explained, “I see far too many students lose a valuable opportunity in the activities section by not using the space to its fullest. Instead of saying “Helped with fundraisers,” you should add specifics. Improved public speaking and research skills serving as a delegate. You will have only 150 characters per activity description. See additional info and short extracurricular essay for details. Here is Pt. Volunteer (July 2015 - October 2015)Museum of Life and Science Sold souvenirs in museum gift shop, took inventory, managed sales/financial accounts, and completed all administrative tasks 14 hrs/wk, 16 wks/yr). to serve others through talent. Example 1. Volunteer (June 2012 - August 2012)Boys & Girls Club, youth tutoring/mentorship afterschool program Served as mentor for K-8 grade kids. What you should do if you have no ECs. Want to know how to write an amazing activity? Volunteer (10th-12th)Boys and Girls Club, Pearson County Local ChapterTutored students and facilitated games once a week, established and taught a summer tennis clinic for a group of ten year old students. Editor/Cover Artist - (10th - 12th)Visions Literary Arts Magazine, Granite Bay High SchoolLead team in creating an annual 80-page publication and drew cover art for each edition. (See Add’l info. Instead, the point is to show admissions officers what matters to you. This means you’ll have to focus on what’s most important. Played varsity soccer for 4 years; served as captain for 2 years; led stretches and drills at the start of each practice. If you’re not satisfied with their answers, go back and revise by adding details that elucidate what you want your reader to understand. Intern (Summer 2017)Holston Medical Center - Neurology DepartmentRecruited students for study on relation between cerebral microbleeds and head contact sports, used data to expand Center’s ability to provide effective care. Listing several or more activities is fine, but you need to have solid experience within each activity. Common App Activities Section Examples. This student played varsity soccer all four years and served as captain for two. Member (9th-12th)Rotary Club of CalcuttaSet up and maintained a school for 80 children in a slum area. 8 tournaments, 22 concerts. Organized and ran meetings, set up field trips, brainstormed and created group art activities, wrote and sent newsletter to members. Wordiness will dilute the power of your response. Colleges like seeing this. Theater Volunteer (11th-12th)Non-Profit American Cinematheque, community blackbox theaterCollected tickets, mounted posters, distributed flyers, answered phone calls, assisted with organizing film forum panels, photographed events. Student (Summer 2019)Georgetown U’s Medical Institute, intensive summer program for high schoolers interested in medicineStudied medical techniques (took vital signs, drew blood, analyzed human cadavers) to prepare for clinical medicine career. Staff Member (11th)Music Makes Miracles, community youth theater Staged and performed in four benefit concerts throughout the school year, coordinated club events and fundraisers, raised money for American Red Cross. Student (10th)Brown University Intensive Summer Program, Leadership and Global Health Class Reinforced background knowledge on issues of social justice; investigated biopsychosocial determinants of the Global Burden of Disease (35 hrs/wk, 2 wks/yr). Executive Officer (10th-12th)Association of Latin American Students, affinity group for student of Latin American descent at Woodland HSOrganized meetings and trips to conferences/colleges, advertised cultural events, planned fundraisers, delegated responsibilities between members. Don’t be afraid to voice your story. Intern (10th - 12th)Ovarian Cancer Lab Published journals, conducted independent projects, facilitated cell maintenance, attended lab meetings, collaborated with fellows and graduate students. Do the activities present an accurate picture of your high school experience, particularly time spent outside of the classroom? Overview for the Common App. Teen Volunteer (Summer 2019)Centreville Medical CenterInteracted with patients; assisted nursing staff in providing clinical care; designed, produced, and delivered holiday greeting cards to patients. However, college admissions officers are interested in quality over quantity. The best activities to include are ones that you’ve engaged with on a regular basis over an extended period of time. Member (9th/10th) Treasurer (11th/12th)National Honors Society, Ridgefield High School ChapterWe are amongst the highest academically achieving students at our school, who collectively and consistently participate in community service projects. The Best Common App Activities Example for Students Posted on July 23, 2018 July 23, 2018 by AdmissionEssayCom When I was 14, my friend and I participated in the athletics competition. Consider these questions when brainstorming the effect of your extracurricular activity: This, of course, is not an exhaustive list of ideas. Where: Name the location that hosted you. Created art pieces and organized school club. Part-time EMT  (11th - 12th)Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center, 1 of 5 EMTs selected for job out of 100Responded to emergency calls, performed BLS protocols, interacted with patients/families, assisted paramedics, organized ambulance rigs (24 hr/week). Did you receive any awards, certificates, medals, etc.? The Common App has space for students to list ten activities, but you should not feel obligated to fill out all ten. If you can frame this correctly, then this will be a strength during the college admissions process. Team Member (11th-12th)Varsity Cross Country, Bright High SchoolRan 20 miles a week for practice, organized middle school cross country meets, qualified to go to state, 2nd place at annual Bull City XC Run. Watch the lessons on your own or via the live option. Common App Activities List Examples: Member, (9th,10th) Treasurer (11th, 12th) National Honors Society, Ridgefield High School Chapter We are amongst the highest academically achieving students at our school, who collectively and consistently participate in community service projects. Because space is so limited, it’s okay not to use complete sentences in this portion of the Common App. Topic Title: Volunteer Tutor, NYC Cares. Here's a sample Common App activities list. Team Member (9th-12th), Captain (11th-12th)JV and Varsity Tennis Team, River Fork AcademyNumber 1 Singles, Number 2 Doubles. 40,000 and gathered over 100 clothing items, Learned Android Studio programming to develop an Android App, MyClassicHelper, which connects students with available tutors at their high school, Employed as a competition mathematics teacher for 20 middle school students; taught studentsalgebra techniques to solve MathCounts problems, Tutored 20 elementary and middle school students in mathematics and reading fundamentals, Trained pianist; performed at four recitals every six months; earned all-county honors in 2020. Be honest and brief when you explain your reason. Volunteer (9th-12th)American Red Cross, Baskins High School ClubAssisted supervisors, filed paperwork, made phone calls to donors, prepared facilities for training programs by helping with class planning. In addition to listing your family responsibilities in the activities section, ... share on this topic, and they will treat your personal story with respect and confidentiality. Manager/Administrator (Summer 2019)ViolinMan Resource, secondhand store for renting used musical instruments Approved and updated online information database on classical music instruments for use by music enthusiasts. At this point, it’s fine to list anything that comes to mind. Feel challenged and learn to overcome those challenges? Volunteer (Summer 2019)Migrants’ Rights Advocacy Center, org campaigning against exploitation of worker rights in QatarTranslated and spread information regarding rights in Nepalese and provided health aid, organized fund drive to financially support workers’ families. I studied with one girl until her Cs became As. Reading over the list, do you get a glimpse of who you are as an individual? Graffiti Removal Team Leader (11th)Towson County Youth Commission, youth-led faction of the Towson government dedicated to civil serviceLead a group of classmates in coordination with the city to remove graffiti, in an effort to reduce crime based on the broken window theory. HEY GUYS! It’s time to seriously start looking at the application and what should and shouldn't be included under the activities section. Description: Provided homework and study help to underprivileged kids. Won 6th place out of 50 schools. This includes summer activities, volunteer work, political activism, and employment; both in and out of school clubs and organizations like speech and debate, music, drama, art, sports, or Boy Scouts / Girl Scouts; as well as unstructured – yet productive – activities like baking, robotics, family responsibilities, cultural activities, and more. College admissions officers don’t know anything about you before they read your college application, so you need to supply pertinent information to paint a portrait of yourself. That’s why you’ll hear about leadership so often — students who pour time and effort into activities are often rewarded with leadership positions because they’ve demonstrated their dedication. I think your activities list can make the difference in your application. Here are some examples. No need for complete sentences. Trending Articles. Your Common App activities list is endless, but to provide you with an idea of what can be considered an “extra-curricular”, here are a few examples: Arts. over 4 yrs. This may include leadership roles, special achievements, noteworthy progress, and other significant contributions. It’s a good idea to use phrases that begin with action words, like on a resume. Developed, designed, and maintained club website. Competitor (9th)British English Olympics Preparation, opt-in afterschool training offered for Raleigh HS students8 months intensive preparation on English language proficiency and presentation skills for British English Olympics. Graphics Editor and Editorial Writer (9th - 11th)East Side High School NewspaperDesigned graphics (backgrounds, typesets, layouts, digital drawings); wrote and proofread peer articles; updated print newspaper to digital format. President (9th-12th)National Art Honor Society, only one student inducted from each eligible high school per yearRan public workshops and art critiques, displayed work in five gallery shows, participated in art community service, and coordinated field trips. DO list your most impressive and relevant activities … If you still have space to write, concluding with how or what you learned from your experience will serve you well in college or later in life. The Activities section is one of the only spaces on the Common App, besides the essay, to insert your personality and flare. How to Write Your Common App Activities List This is a guest blog post written by Ethan Sawyer, The College Essay Guy . Founder & President (10th-11th)SAT Skill Building Club, Shady Hill Charter SchoolOrganized weekly meetings and lessons, coached students on techniques for the three parts of the test, raised money for resource costs and upcoming lessons. Overall, your discussion of extracurricular activities should be short, sweet, and to-the-point. As a technique, try to write a very short story, and then shorten your response once you’ve written the essential details. Since the character count is limited, staying focused is key. Branch out of your comfort zone and what did you learn? Consider if you didn ’ t feel discouraged if you didn ’ t leave any... Activity description 10th-12th ), climate change ( Sunrise ), animal cruelty ( ASPCA.. 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