My one caution, as a reader of 1000s of essays, is to avoid approaching the essay too broadly. Do not turn your Activities section into paragraph form and use the essay to recount all you've done. Think small. Think of a time, a moment, a single experience, a musing, a question, and expand on that in the essay. This will allow you to build a stronger narrative and backstory while leaving time to really build out your ideas and give your writing space to shine. Remember that readers are using the essay to evaluate not just what you say, but how you say it.
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