Writing UPenn essays needs careful consideration and you can start bylearning from our supplemental essay examples. You should also learn how to write a college essay to increase your chance of getting acceptaed. Your cahnces of admission to the University of Pennsylvania are certainly affected by your essays.

The University of Pennsylvania supplemental essays  include fairly standard prompts, such as the “Why this college?” essay and “What do you bring to the community?” essay. But it’s up to you to make these common essay topics your own! Read on to learn how you can stand out in your UPenn essays!

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UPenn essays prompt 1 UPenn essays prompt 2 Conclusion FAQs

UPenn essays prompt 1

Considering the specific undergraduate school you have selected, how will you explore your academic and intellectual interests at The University of Pennsylvania? (300-450 words)

Your goal in writing this essay is to convey why you are perfect for UPenn and why UPenn is perfect for you and your academic and professional goals.

The idea here is to write an essay that will show the admissions committee how you are going to benefit from their academic environment and how it will help you grow as an academic and a professional.

UPenn essays – example 1.1

I have always excelled academically. I loved school, I enjoyed my lessons, and my teachers were my idols. Apart from sucking in the knowledge my teachers bestowed on me, I always did independent afterschool research to deepen my understanding of new subjects.

From a young age, I knew I would join the “knowledge” business. The best way I knew to go about it would be to create my brand of self-help e-books.I started selling these books – and, to my surprise, they were soon being printed in hard copies.

I soon realized that as “knowledgeable” as I considered myself, I had no idea how to run a business. As my publishing business scaled quickly, I soon realized that I needed more than a degree to run my business efficiently if I wanted to continue to grow.

I started my research and soon found that UPenn was the undergraduate business school for me.  The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania is where I want to learn, especially focusing on programs like Entrepreneurship & Innovation Concentration and Entrepreneurship Acceleration Program: Scaling Your Business.

I also intend to share my personal and professional experience with the UPenn community. I hope to join the Penn Social Entrepreneurship Movement (PennSEM), where I plan to implement both my Wharton education and my past involvement in the business field to help local communities build new social enterprises. In the past, I’ve worked closely with my local Big Sister chapter and would love to use that experience to help PennSEM reach new boundaries in the broader community – beyond campus walls. I can bring my experience in organizing and leading workshops and networking events and help the club reach a wider audience. Most importantly, I can learn about how to lead such organizations from the other members of the club.

At UPenn, I hope to learn how to effectively interact with my peers and fellow entrepreneurship enthusiasts as my journey in the business world has been solo for the most part. When I leave Wharton with my business degree, I know I will become an accomplished business leader who has truly mastered both the theory and practical aspects of entrepreneurship. (442 words)

UPenn essays – example 1.2

I apply to UPenn with the blessings and the support of my community on a small island in the Pacific Ocean. My family runs a small hotel on one of the most beautiful beaches in the world. We have owned the hotel for three generations – and it continues to provide a livelihood for 20 families who have become part of our family.

When I graduated from the only high school on the island, it was these families that came together to pay for my college tuition, which I hope to use at UPenn. They gave me the responsibility of becoming an efficient business leader who can transform that small hotel into a world-class resort.

I intend to deliver on their expectations by studying in the Business, Energy, Environment, and Sustainability program, which will help me grow the business with consideration for the environment and my community as a whole.

Apart from being one of the top universities in the world, UPenn also has the best research and development facilities. This attracted me because I want to learn in an institution that has a long history as well as the latest innovations in the business field. We also decided that it would be best because we loved that it is a place where I could feel at home with over 130 nationalities on campus. This is the first time I will be traveling far from home. I hope to learn about various cultures and meet as many people as I can by participating in on-campus communities. I aim to join the Penn Environmental Group as I know how important nature is to both the hotel industry as well as humanity as a whole. Living on a small island in the middle of an ocean also gives me a unique perspective on global warming and rising sea levels. I hope to create awareness via workshops and conferences and perhaps even work towards a solution that prevents an irreversible calamity.

I have also set my eyes on the Penn Club Swim. I aim to participate in activities like being a lifeguard and teaching about safety in the water.

I hope to give back to the UPenn community by sharing the personal experiences of my rich culture. We have traditions that are built on the need to rely on one another and I hope to build this sense of closeness and connection with my classmates(439 words)

Wondering how to write a great supplemental essays?

UPenn essays prompt 2

At Penn, learning and growth happen outside of the classroom, too. How will you explore the community at Penn? Consider how this community will help shape your perspective and identity, and how your identity and perspective will help shape this community. (150-200 words)

This prompt is meant to test how well you will fit in the university’s community as a whole and what kind of knowledge and experience you can bring to the incoming class. The campus hosts thousands of students and they all bring their backgrounds, experiences, cultures, and traditions with them. The question is, how will you contribute to that melting pot, and what will you take from it?

Perhaps, the best advice here would be to delve deep within yourself and consider unique experiences and circumstances that shaped you into who you are today.

UPenn essays – example 2.1

By day I am a businessman, and by night, a writer. Well, at least that is the dream I hope to realize at UPenn – that of being a successful, innovative businessman and a writer at the same time.

Although I started writing in high school, I have never really developed that passion because, like every child growing up in a middle-class family, writing wasn’t exactly as encouraged as becoming a doctor, an engineer, or a lawyer. So, I had to put that “hobby” – as my parents called it – on the back burner as I went through school.

I look forward to attending UPenn because it gives me the chance to earn my business degree as well as pursue my writing via clubs like Curiouser, where I can explore the surreal fiction writing sphere, and Penn Innovators in Business, where I will learn to guide the next generation of business leaders with my writing.

 I also get to make my parents happy by becoming a successful businessman with my business degree – two birds one stone, as the saying goes. (186 words)

UPenn essays – example 2.2

I love singing and The Inspiration A Cappella is the UPenn club for me.

Ever since I found out about this club, I have been following the group’s YouTube channel. I’ve enjoyed every single video and dream of being among them. Anyone that has watched the club perform – or even watched their videos – can see how much they work to achieve that harmony. And that is something that can’t be done without a bond being formed among the members.

I want to be a part of that camaraderie. The beauty of acapella is that everyone needs to do their part or it won’t work – I can see how they “sync” and hope that my voice can enrich this already established group in the future. I bring over four years of singing) experience – several high school awards testify to my “prowess” – but, more importantly, I bring my passion for singing. Being an African, music is an inherent part of our culture, and it would be my pleasure to share my experiences and knowledge of our endemic music traditions. I even have ideas of weaving these beats into a work that appeals to the younger generation – in the hopes that they will also want to discover more about the “foreign-yet-familiar” sounds they experience. (200 words)


Writing college application essays is an art that can be mastered with time and practice. Don’t rush the process, take time to understand the question, and formulate your answers with care. Keep improving your draft until you are happy with the final essay. And, don’t forget to use a spell-check or grammar tool.

If at all you find this to be a daunting task, you can go through some sample college essays. They might help spark a few ideas that you can build on to create your admission essays when the time comes.

Alternatively, you can also look for college essay review services to make sure you have the best essay you can submit.

Want more tips for writing?


1. How far from the required word count am I allowed to deviate?

Do not exceed the word count. You can certainly write less that the required word count, but not more.

2. What are some good pointers to writing a good essay?

The most important thing here is that you address the prompt. Your answer should be built around the prompt and include your unique input, the values you bring to the community, and what you expect to gain when you leave the campus.

You should also include the tangible (technology and facilities) and intangible (school spirit and ethics) assets of the college, as well as the traditions it upholds.

If you can put all these together, then you will have a well-balanced essay.

3. By how much do my essays improve my chances of getting into UPenn?

You have to remember that supplemental essays are just one part of your entire college application packet. Instead of thinking of the essays as a single entity that can boost (or thwart) your chances, you should think of creating a whole application package that will combine to increase your chances.

So, focus on writing good supplemental essays and combine them with a good application package.

4. How many essays does UPenn ask for?

UPenn requires two supplemental essays for new students. But, there are several more that are required by students who seek admission to programs like Digital Media Design, Nursing and Health Care Management (400-650 words), and Seven-Year Bio-Dental Program (250 words). There is also an essay prompt for transfer students about why they transferred from their previous colleges (4510 characters). More details can be found on the UPenn admissions page.

UPenn also requires potential candidates to write personal essays.

5. What is the required GPA to get into UPenn?

UPenn has set its goal to admit some of the top students by setting its admission GPA to 3.9. That means you will need to have scored almost all A’s to get in. But, you can find out how to get into college with a low GPA if you don’t have that near-perfect score.

6. How controversial can I be with my college admission essay?

The general rule of thumb is to avoid controversy at all costs. While it is good that you have your thoughts and views, your UPenn college admission essay is not exactly the place to express them. Why rattle the cage that will be your home for the coming 4 years?

7. Are there any topics that I should avoid in my UPenn essays?

Yes. Topics to avoid are political and social hot topics that are provocative to anyone on any side of the aisle. In short, if it is in the news and debates and clashes are going on about it, it is a topic best avoided. Again, here too – while it is admirable that you have a stance, your college admission essay is not the platform to express it.

8. How personal can I get in my UPenn essays?

Essays are your chance to explain how you and the university will co-exist for the next few years. While your essay needs to reflect you, there is a limit to how personal you can get. There is a difference between personality – which you should write about – and personal – which you should be careful with.

Your essay should tread lightly on personal topics like romance, trauma, sexual content, and radically offensive topics.

In short, use common sense and ask: would I tell this to a stranger? If the answer is, “no” you should skip the topic.

To your success,

Your friends at BeMo

BeMo Academic Consulting

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