Are you preparing to apply to Stanford University? Then you must have heard about the Stanford roommate essay. This is one of the four essays you must complete before being offered admission at Stanford University. It is a unique essay in which the university asks applicants to write to their future roommates.
If you need some tips to help you write your Stanford future roommate essay, you should keep reading this article. We’ll show you the rudiments of the Stanford roommate essay. You’ll also get real-life Stanford roommate essay examples to help you write a successful essay.
The university doesn’t give stringent requirements for the essay. They only pose an essay question to you, then ask you to turn in a 100-250-word essay. The essay aims to help your future roommate and the university to get to know you more. Therefore, this article will give you useful tips on how to write the best Stanford letter to future roommate.
Fundamentally, the essay should show realism and sound interesting enough to captivate any reader. By asking you to write a roommate essay, Stanford University is communicating something to you. They are telling you indirectly that community and people matter. You should also know that the university places a premium on social skills.
Since most Stanford university students stay on campus, they want to know if you fit well into their community from your roommate essay. Stanford University stands out in this regard, as they are not just interested in your past academic accolades. The question is, what else do you have to offer? The answer is best presented by writing an informative roommate essay.
What is Stanford Roommate Essay?
A Stanford roommate essay is required to be submitted as part of an admission application at Stanford University. This essay contains interesting details about you – the writer. Such details cannot be expounded upon in a formal application to the university. It is a tool used by the university to know you better as your peers. They also want to know how well you’ll be able to fit into the university system (through your well-written Stanford roommate essay).
Essentially, the Stanford future roommate essay is different from other formal essays. You don’t have to talk about your academic achievements or superpower in extracurricular activities. The essay should contain things you engage in after school and how you spend your free time. It should also inform the reader about what you love to do aside from academics.
This is a beautiful way to paint out what you look like outside school. What does your daily routine look like aside from academics and extracurricular activities? The tricky part is that you must never imply that you would trade academic distinction for fun. Instead, you want to emphasize that, after doing your schoolwork, you have other exciting activities to enjoy. This helps to paint a picture of the reality of you being a good fit for your roommate and the entire student community.
By now, it is clear to you that the Stanford letter to roommate isn’t a tool to enhance or expand what your resume already states. It is everything else outside academics and extracurricular activities. It must be written as such.
How to Write the Stanford Roommate Essay
Writing the Stanford roommate essay may not be on the list of the easiest things to do for your application. Therefore, there we have some useful tips that can be of help to you in this regard. Here are a few things you should bear in mind when writing your Stanford essay letter to roommate.
- Write It Yourself
As much as possible, write the Stanford future roommate essay by yourself. This is a fundamental requirement clearly stated by the university. The goal is to make you write with an open mind, flexibility, and excitement. It’s like talking to your peers. You don’t hold back. You just flow. Also, be original when writing your Stanford essay letter to roommate.
- Don’t Leave Back Specific Details About Yourself
Go all in. Stay everything that matters about yourself. Be expressive enough to keep your future roommate from surprises. Those interesting things about your personality can be shared in the letter to future roommate.
- Be Holistic in your Approach
You don’t want to focus too much on what kind of roommate you will be. This is clearly exemplified in the Stanford roommate essay example below. You need to be holistic in your approach. Talk about what your daily routine looks like. Talk about your likes, experiences, healthy habits outside academics, and the like. You also want to portray yourself as a considerate roommate. This means you’ll find a way to infuse the interest of your roommate into the write-up.
- Add Realism
As much as possible, don’t force quirkiness. Just focus on your personality traits and present them with an off-beat tone. Humor does it better. Just be real. It is clearly stated on the Stanford website, “We want to hear your individual voice in your writing. Write essays that reflect who you are and write in a natural style.” This must be at the core of your mind when writing your Stanford future roommate essay.
Grammatical errors are turn-offs. Avoid them. Read and re-read your Stanford future roommate essay to avoid punctuation, spelling, and grammatical errors.
How to End Stanford Roommate Essay
The end of the Stanford roommate essay is often the third or fourth paragraph. The essay must have a concise end. It could be an overview or summary detail of your personality features. This is where you round off all your points. It is the final opportunity for you to present yourself as a likable and exciting person.
End your roommate essay on a good note. Say something that makes the reader know that you anticipate meeting your new/future roommate.
The Qualities of a Stanford Letter to Roommate
In writing a good Stanford letter to roommate, certain standards and qualities must be met. Although there isn’t a format for writing a Stanford roommate essay, certain elements should be incorporated into the essay structure. And even though the essay sounds informal and interesting, you should make it orderly.
Yes, you have a lot of interesting things to say about yourself to your roommate. You want to paint yourself as realistic as possible. Yet, you must present your expressions in an orderly manner. There is something about the order. It helps the reader enjoy the progression of your thoughts and articulate your words understandably.
Again, the letter to future roommate essay has a limited word count. Therefore, every word must count. Every sentence must capture your reader and send accurate information about you. You don’t want to leave your reader confused because you wrote so many things – so much that they can’t even pinpoint the direction of your information.
The essay is about you. Make it so. Feel free to express yourself. Try not to hide anything fun about you. You are writing to your future roommate, so sound excited, sound conversation. Sounds friendly. Write the essay with a free and clear mind.
Be careful not to shove down your opinion or principles to your future roommates.
For example, if you are used to leaving the doors opened in your house. That’s the norm in your home. You may want that to continue in your room at college. In presenting this to your roommate, you could sound something like…
We leave the door open all the time in my home. I know this may sound strange to you. The only doors closed are that of the fridge and an occupied bathroom. I hope you and I would be that free with each other – and not have to hide behind closed doors every time.
Sounding this way presents you as a considerate fellow. You wouldn’t have to shove down your opinion on your roommate. This brings in the element of maturity, and the school authority knows you would have a peaceful stay throughout your degree program.
Stanford Roommate Essay Topics
Stanford University may not put out rules to writing a top-notch roommate essay. However, that doesn’t mean there are no subtle rules. We are aware that certain things must not be attributed to the Stanford future roommate essay.
- It shouldn’t be formal;
- It shouldn’t be lengthy (the requirement is 100-250 words);
- It shouldn’t be stuffed with past high school achievements. No groundbreaking records or awards are needed. It is not a place to show off your genius academic prowess.
Then, you may be wondering… What should you write about? Well, there are many fun things you can write about in the Stanford roommate essay. There isn’t any hard-fast about choosing a good Stanford roommate essay topic. However, we will guide you on how to choose one.
An important aspect of choosing the right topic is brainstorming. You may want to take out a good time to do that. This is just to further ease your topic selection process. Here are some questions you can ask yourself to facilitate your brainstorming process.
- What does your daily routine look like?
- Do you have any habitual exercise?
- Do you have any secret mode of communication with your close friends?
- Is there anything about you that interests people? Your skill, habit, etc.
- What’s the most exciting thing you want to share with your roommate or any new friend?
- What are your go-to fun activities outside academics and extracurricular activities?
Answer these questions. Write out the personal details about yourself, then flesh it out in a nice way. After brainstorming and coming up with nice details about yourself. You must ask yourself the final question:
Are these things right to share on a college application?
You should seek a second opinion too. Check with your parents, siblings, etc. You don’t want to jeopardize your college admission. This jeopardy can happen when you share unnecessary details that the college would consider dangerous to the student community.
Yes, we are saying you should be yourself. We are saying you should be expressive and that you shouldn’t hold back. However, you should also be meticulous. Even if the Stanford future roommate essay isn’t meant to be formal, it is still a part of your college application. Never forget that. The college wants to know what you will contribute and how well you fit into the student community. Shape your essay around these two things.
Stanford Roommate Essay Examples
There are several Stanford roommate essay examples available online. However, it’s not about reading examples; you need to know how to come up with yours. Again, you can’t copy someone else’s essay example. Originality is key.
Check out this Stanford roommate essay example.
Dear future roommate,
When I meet new people, they often ask me: why do you look so gentle? However, they soon realize that I’m not so gentle. This happens after I meet them properly. I am quite shy. So, I wait to be sure I’m in good hands before pouring my heart out to new people. I’m glad I have the opportunity to tell you this already. So, once we meet, there wouldn’t be initial quiet moments.
I read a lot of books and watch lots of movies. Are there any Marvel Studios movies I haven’t seen? I doubt it. I also love good music. I dance too. I hope you wouldn’t mind watching me make some dance moves at any random time in the room – I promise I wouldn’t disrupt your personal space.
When I’m not reading my academic books, I love taking long walks. I stroll with friends sometimes, and we get to gist about anything and everything! I hope we can do this together?
When I’m not strolling, I could be found in the cinemas or library devouring my adventure books. I’m also working on publishing my book someday.
At first, I may be a bit too principled for you. This wouldn’t last, I promise. We just need to understand each other.
I look forward to trying new things, so if you prefer to go hiking, visit the museum, or any other thing you like – I’m in. Let’s do this!
Can’t wait to meet you in person.
What makes the example above a good Stanford roommate essay example?
The first paragraph is captivating. Strangers think Roland is gentle, but he isn’t so gentle. This little information grabs the attention of the reader. The reader wants to know more. And this element is one of the vital keys to making your essay stand out. It must contain attention-grabbing details about yourself.
In paragraph two, he expanded on what he likes to do with his spare time. Then he skillfully allayed the reader’s fears by promising not to interfere with his roommate’s personal space. This implies he is fun to be with and considerate at the same time.
In the next paragraph, he wrote about the activities he often enjoys with friends. He made it clear that he is interested in bonding, friendship, and peaceful association with his roommate. He also sounded serious and futuristic – saying he wanted to publish a book. This means he is not just about academic excellence, fun, and enjoyment. He, too, wants to contribute something to humanity. That’s a very important detail about him, skillfully presented.
In the final paragraph, he made it clear that he is willing to learn new things. That’s a good spirit. He wants to stay with his roommate and leave a better person.
We have another example of a successful Stanford future roommate essay standard.
Take a look at this example of a letter to a future roommate.
Dear future Roommate,
First and foremost, my Starburst is our Starburst. Feel free to take some from my desk at any time (but don’t touch the lemon). I’m hoping that also works the opposite way around.
I, like most others, have my own peculiarities. For starters, I can imitate a hyper-realistic frog. (Don’t worry, any stray frogs will be chased away.) In addition, I prefer socks and sandals to sneakers because I adore feeling the breeze on my toes.
I’m frequently seen reading back editions of Model Airplane News or eating strangely amazing food combinations like strawberries and black pepper. While studying, I hum minor-key Bach fugues, yet in the shower, I sing Disney songs. With bad interdisciplinary science jokes, I’m sure I can make you cry. What happens if a mountain climber is bitten by a mosquito, for example? Nothing can cross scalars; vectors can’t.
Beethoven is one of my favorite composers, and I often find myself humming along to his chords. When the brass arrives, I might even start trumpeting “BAA DAA DAA DUMMM.” Please let me know if I’m humming or trumpeting while you’re studying for your o-chem final, and I’ll stop.
We’ll get along fine if you don’t mind going on 3 am donut runs (lemon cream-filled is my personal favorite). Here’s to four years of grumbling about p-sets and doing everything we can to keep the fun going, even if it looks like it’s on life support around finals week.
This essay, just like the first, opened on a high note. Captivating and conversational. In the second paragraph, Evelyn wrote about her likes and preferences.
The third paragraph spoke about her favorite activities, painting her personality to the reader better. Then in the last paragraph, she shows her level of consideration and willingness to make things work.
She acknowledged her roommate and made it clear that the roommate matters too…In general, the essay was well structured and arranged. This second essay was well written and got her admission, just like the first.
Get Stanford Roommate Essay Easily
Perhaps you already have a draft made. Here we would talk about how you can get a Stanford roommate essay that can’t be rejected. We know this is your desire. So, get set to transform that draft of yours into an admission-fitting Stanford roommate essay.
It is normal to feel skeptical about releasing details of yourself to a roommate you have never met. This is where we are starting from because it is okay to be skeptical. You are worried. You wonder if your future roommate would like you. You want to sound nice. You want to hide something. However, in the midst of this, be open-minded. And write using the same tone with which you converse with your peers.
It’s that simple. You could even write it in the form of a list. Showcasing what you like to do after reading your books. Take a look at these exciting things:
- I love Rihanna, Justin Bieber, Avatar, and Marvel Studios movies.
- I wake up as early as 5 am every day to do calm meditation.
Things to Avoid in a Stanford Letter to roommate
Don’t say, “I hate watermelon seeds,” and “I don’t eat watermelon.” Pick one since the information is similar. Your essay has to be concise and straight to the point. Again, make every word count. You should also be careful not to choose words that are synonymous because you want to sound different. The exception is where you mentioned an important point and choose to expound on it a little.
The main goal is to drive home your point using fewer words and sentences. Repetition makes your Stanford letter to roommate sound bogus and full of fluff. This is undesirable and wouldn’t yield the best results.
In being specific, you start with choosing an interesting area, topic, or information about yourself. Then, you decide whether you want to expound on it or not. Either way, your point must be concise and clearly passed across.
Now take a look at your own Stanford future roommate essay. What do you think needs to be tweaked? Make appropriate additions and subtractions. Dot your I’s and cross your T’s. Get set to deliver the best Stanford roommate essay ever written!
We believe you are now thoroughly equipped with the nitty-gritty of what it takes to write a good Stanford letter to roommate. The ball is now in your court. Sit, meditate, pick your pen and let your thoughts flow. Express yourself freely, and write the best essay for your future roommate!