Florida State Essay Requirement
This question appears to be more challenging than the previous one, as you have to detail a selfless act of sacrifice while explaining your motivations and avoiding corny wording.
Note that this “greater good” contribution does not limit you to instances in which you interacted with groups of “great” numbers. No matter the scale of your impact, if there existed a beneficiary to your actions, then you can write about it. Remember that “greater good” excludes class assignments or other activities that were required of you.
The key to this essay is making sure your motivations for the contribution are portrayed as personal and unique to you.
Many students will choose to write about a volunteer experience they participated in. If you choose to discuss a community service activity, make sure you differentiate your experience by highlighting your motivations and your emotions during the experience (rather than describing simply the activity you participated in).
For example, you might choose to write about a mission trip to another country that you took in your sophomore year of high school. However, rather than discussing the trip as a whole, it would be more effective to focus on a particular moment or problem that you encountered during the trip.
For instance, you could elaborate on the experience of visiting one of the children’s homes and the feeling of speaking to his parents directly. Describing a particular moment, as well as the specific emotions you felt and how your perspectives changed because of it, would help the essay stand out in a pile of volunteering essays.
In addition, focus on the process of the contribution and how you felt emotionally throughout the act.
Try to answer the following questions:
- What would have happened if you did not make that sacrifice/contribution? How would you have felt then?
- How did the contribution make you feel? How did it make others around you feel? How did it make the beneficiaries feel?
- What did you learn?
Emphasizing the internal development that occurred during your experience is key to making this essay shine.
Freshman admission is a holistic and selective process, and no single criterion guarantees admission. Rather, we consider all the documentation you submit, and we carefully review your academic record and test scores to ensure you are prepared for the rigorous curriculum you will encounter at Florida State University. The holistic review process is based on graduating from a regionally accredited high school (or the equivalent) with specific academic courses, a cumulative grade point average based on these courses, and test scores. Additional factors include the rigor and quality of courses and curriculum taken, strength of senior schedule, math level in senior year, number of years in a sequential world language, and the written essay. Additional consideration will also be given to applicants applying to the CARE Summer Bridge Program as well as exceptionally talented visual and performing artists and athletes.
Applicants who graduate from high school and receive an AA degree at the same time must meet the freshman admission requirements and the major requirements when submitting the admission application. The Academic Program Guide provides you with a detailed program description, an academic map, and a link to your department of interest.
The Office of Admissions must receive all of the information used to make an admission decision by the published deadlines. Please note that there are two deadlines with corresponding decision dates for summer and fall terms.
|Applications And All Supporting Documents Received By:||Decision Available Online:|
|November 1, 2017||January 25, 2018|
|February 7, 2018||March 29, 2018|
The University reserves the right to close freshman admission earlier if warranted by enrollment limitations and the number and quality of applications. Generally, the University does not accept freshman applications for the spring term.
Log on to the Application Status Check regularly to monitor the status of your application materials.
Please note that letters of recommendation are not required and will not be used in the decision-making process. Contact the academic department directly if you plan to major in dance, film (animation or production), music, or theatre.
High School Course Units
The Florida Board of Governors sets the minimum eligibility requirements in the State University System (SUS). Satisfying these minimum requirements does not guarantee admission to Florida State University. Admission is selective, and admitted students typically exceed the minimum requirements.
* Students must have earned a minimum of two sequential units of credit in one world language (e.g. Spanish I and Spanish II) or American Sign Language.
Remember to Monitor Your Application
The Application Status Check allows you to regularly monitor the status of your application and required materials. Most of our communications, including our admission decisions, will be available on the Application Status Check. You are responsible for regularly checking your email account and the Application Status Check. Please ensure that we always have your most up-to-date email address, and include firstname.lastname@example.org in your address book.
We require freshman applicants to submit at least one ACT and/or SAT test score by the application deadline to be considered for admission. Florida State does not require the optional ACT writing score or the optional SAT essay. We encourage applicants to take both the ACT and SAT, and to attempt each exam more than one time to earn the highest possible score.
New for 2018 applicants, FSU is allowing students to self-report their SAT and/or ACT scores. After submitting their application, students will submit their self-reported scores on the Application Status Check. Official score reports are no longer required for the admissions review process. If admitted, students will be required to submit official score reports prior to enrollment at FSU, so that their self-reported scores may be verified.
When evaluating students for admission, we use the highest earned ACT and SAT sub scores to calculate the ACT composite and/or SAT total (a process known as "super scoring").
The December SAT and February ACT are the latest tests that we will use in the admission process for applicants applying for the summer or fall term. Students submitting the February ACT must have at least one test score on file by the February 7 deadline.
Both ACT and the College Board now offer test preparation programs. ACT has partnered with Kaplan Test Prep and will offer an ACT preparation program at no cost to low-income students and to all students at a significantly lower cost than traditional prep programs. The College Board has partnered with the Khan Academy and offers free, personalized SAT practice based on the student's PSAT/SAT test results.
Although the essay is not required but highly recommended, it provides another opportunity to learn more about you. The essay should be no longer than 500-550 words, and may be uploaded after the student's application has been received. Applicants should choose one topic from the list below:
- Tell a story from your life, describing an experience that either demonstrates your character or helped to shape it.
- Describe a time when you made a meaningful contribution to others in which the greater good was your focus. Discuss the challenges and rewards of making your contribution.
- Has there been a time when you've had a long-cherished or accepted belief challenged? How did you respond? How did the challenge affect your beliefs?
- What is the hardest part of being a teenager now? What's the best part? What advice would you give a younger sibling or friend (assuming they would listen to you)?
- Submit an essay on a topic of your choice.
Coalition for Access, Affordability, and Success
A pathway to making smart college choices
Florida State University is a member of the Coalition for Access, Affordability, and Success, a consortium of 90+ public and private universities in the U.S. that have come together to offer a new college planning and application platform. The Coalition platform allows high school students to set up an account and begin learning about the application and the financial aid process as early as the ninth grade. The platform includes three main features: a Virtual Locker where the student can collect and store information that maybe useful when they apply to college; a Collaboration Platform where teachers, counselors, employers, and mentors who are supporting the student's college search can offer feedback; and finally, an Application Portal where the student can select information from their virtual locker that they would like to include with their application to Coalition member universities.
Florida State University will accept both its institutional online application and the Coalition application for 2018 admission.
Center for Academic Retention and Enhancement (CARE)
CARE's Summer Bridge Program is designed to motivate, prepare, and recruit traditionally underrepresented and socioeconomically disadvantaged students from Florida through a variety of programs and academic support services. Applicants selected to participate in CARE will be first-generation college students who are socioeconomically disadvantaged and eligible to receive federal financial aid who have demonstrated a strong desire to succeed. In addition, these students must meet the Florida residency requirements. For detailed information on the program and application process, please visit CARE.
Home Education and GED Information
Florida State University considers applications from students who are educated through a Home-Education program, or who have earned a GED. Home-Education applicants must complete the SSAR, while students earning a GED must submit official GED results along with an official, partial high school transcript.
Must students use the Coalition application to apply to Florida State University?
Does the Coalition application cost any additional money?
Are there any differences between the Coalition application and FSU's institutional application?
What sections of the Coalition application does FSU require?
No. The Coalition application is one of two ways students may apply to Florida State. Students may also apply through the institutional application located on our website. We have no preference for which application a student chooses to submit.
Florida State University's freshman application fee is $30. The Coalition application carries an additional $5 processing fee. If a student qualifies for a CollegeBoard, ACT, or NACAC fee waiver, the entire amount, including the processing fee, is waived.
While the visual presentation of the two applications is different, the information gathered on the Coalition application is identical to the information gathered on FSU's institutional application.
Students completing the Coalition application are required to complete the following sections: Contact Information, Demographic Information, Citizenship Information, College Information, High School Information, Personal Information, Family Information, and Financial Aid.