colorado college supplemental essays
“Colorado College — Palmer Hall” by iagoarchangel | CC BY-NC-SA 2.0.

Colorado College Supplemental Essays

Founded in 1874, Colorado College is a private liberal arts college located in Colorado Springs, Colorado. The school is home to approximately 2,000 undergraduates. As part of the admissions process, students must complete 1-2 Colorado College supplemental essays. 

Colorado College Essay Prompts: Quick Facts

  • Colorado College Acceptance Rate: 14%. U.S. News ranks Colorado College #27 on the list of National Liberal Arts Colleges.
  • Colorado College Supplemental Essays Requirements:
    • 1 required 200-word essay
    • 1 optional 250-word essay 
  • Colorado College Application: Students must submit their Colorado College application through the Common Application, Coalition Application, or QuestBridge. Make sure to have all of your Colorado College supplemental essays and other required application materials ready when applying. 
  • Colorado College Application Deadlines:
    • Early Decision I: November 1st
    • Early Action: November 1st
    • Early Decision II: January 15th
    • Regular Action: January 15th 
  • Colorado College Supplemental Essays Tip: There are two Colorado College supplemental essays, though one is optional. The Colorado College acceptance rate is highly selective, so your Colorado College supplemental essays should be authentic and personal to help you stand out among other applicants. 

Please note that essay requirements are subject to change each admissions cycle, and portions of this article may have been written before the final publication of the most recent guidelines. For the most up-to-date information on essay requirements, check the university’s admissions website. 

More details about Colorado College

Colorado College offers a unique course curriculum called the Colorado College Block Plan with over 40 Colorado College majors to choose from. The Colorado College ranking by Forbes is #96 among the Top Colleges of 2022. 

A major aspect that sets Colorado College apart from other schools is its setting, nestled in the Rocky Mountains. Many student organizations and extracurriculars center on skiing and rock climbing. In fact, Colorado Springs is considered one of the best college towns for students with a love for the outdoors and activities like hiking, biking, and fishing. Consider these things when planning out your extracurricular activities essays and how you might fit into the Colorado College community! 

Does Colorado College have supplemental essays?

colorado college supplemental essays

Yes—there are Colorado College supplemental essays. 

The school requires one 200-word Why Colorado College essay. Additionally, there are optional Colorado College supplemental essays—one 250-word essay, to be precise. The second Colorado College supplemental essays prompt asks you to discuss one of your extracurriculars. 

The Colorado College supplemental essays don’t give you a lot of space. Because the required Colorado College supplemental essays are short, it is important to be concise. Make sure every word counts in your Colorado College supplemental essays.

Colorado College Essay Requirements

Here are the Colorado College essay prompts:

Colorado College Essay Prompts:

1. Why do you wish to attend Colorado College and how would the Block Plan serve your educational goals? (200 words; required)

2. Please briefly elaborate on one of your extracurricular activities or work experiences. (250 words; required)

This means that in addition to the personal statement on the Common Application, QuestBridge, or Coalition Application, you will need to complete one brief required supplemental essay. We also recommend that you complete the second of the Colorado College essay prompts. 

Why the Colorado College supplemental essays matter

As we mentioned, the Colorado College acceptance rate is low. As such, the Colorado College supplemental essays can help you stand out. 

Each of the Colorado College essays lets you highlight what you’d bring to the Colorado College community. With only 200-250 words per essay, every sentence counts. Each element of your Colorado College essays should teach the Colorado College admissions team something new about you. 

What is the Colorado College block plan?

colorado college supplemental essays

The Colorado College Block Plan is the unique curriculum structure at Colorado College. Under the Block Plan, instead of taking multiple classes at a time, students study one class at a time. Each block lasts three and a half weeks. 

The Colorado College Block Plan is designed to allow students at Colorado College to focus on things that they really want to do. By taking one class at a time, which generally meets every weekday from 9 am to noon, students learn the curriculum deeply and are not distracted by other classes and assignments. One block at Colorado College is the equivalent of taking one semester’s worth of a class at another college. 

The idea of the Colorado College Block Plan is that having one class allows students to have the time to pursue their passions and interests outside of the classroom. 

Block Plan Basics:

  • Each block spans three and a half weeks, beginning on a Monday and ending on a Wednesday.
  • One block is equal to one semester of a class.
  • There are four blocks per semester and eight blocks per year. Students can also take classes during an optional Half Block in the winter and Summer Session during the summer.
  • Class typically meets 9 AM-12 PM Monday through Friday, with labs in the afternoon where applicable. However, professors can choose to schedule classes in whatever format best suits their classes’ needs. 

Students beginning their education at Colorado College will start with the First-Year Program (FYP). The FYP includes the first two blocks of the Colorado College Block Plan, critical inquiry seminar, and the first-year writing seminar. These blocks prepare students for the rest of their academic journey at Colorado College. 

Students have more than 80 Colorado College majors, minors, and specialized programs to choose from. Be sure to consider how the FYP and Block Plan will serve you and your education goals when writing your Colorado College supplemental essays. 

How to write the Why Colorado College essay

Like many other colleges, Colorado College requires a Why Colorado College essay. The prompt for the first of the Colorado College supplemental essays asks students to explain their interest in CC and in the Block Plan. 

You’ll likely write “why this college” essays for many schools on your list. These prompts require you to describe specific reasons why you would like to attend a school and how you may contribute to the community. For Colorado College, you are asked to explain why you are interested in attending Colorado College and how their unique curriculum will impact your goals. 

colorado college supplemental essays

Before you begin writing your Why Colorado College essay, learn more about the school. A strong why this college essay requires research. So, learn more about specific aspects of Colorado College that align with your educational and career goals. You should want to be just as good of a fit for the school as it is for you.

For example, let’s say you are a student who wants to study out West, making the Rocky Mountains your playground. If your passions are skiing and rock climbing and the Block Plan offers a suitable education for your needs, Colorado College may be the right fit for you. Use these passions and interests to your advantage when answering the Why Colorado College essay prompt.  

Finding your priorities

As you begin your college search, you should look for schools that meet all of your needs. Once you have a list of potential schools, do some research on each school and their requirements. Learn all that you can about each program so that you can submit a well-informed and persuasive application. 

Part of your Why Colorado College essay may address what you want to major in and why. Like choosing a college, choosing a major is a big decision. When choosing from the Colorado College majors, you should consider what interests you, what career you think you would enjoy, and what subjects you were drawn to in high school. However, note that you won’t be tied to the major you select on your application. 

For inspiration on writing your Why Colorado College essay, check out this guide to Why This College Essay Sample. 

Approaching the extracurricular activities essay

colorado college supplemental essays

The second of the Colorado College essay prompts is optional. However, writing this optional essay can help set you apart from other applicants. So, you should complete the second of the Colorado College essays. 

Once again, here’s the second of the Colorado College essay prompts:

Please briefly elaborate on one of your extracurricular activities or work experiences. (250 words)

The second of the Colorado College supplemental essays allows you to showcase who you are outside of the classroom. You can choose to discuss any extracurricular you’ve pursued: school-sponsored activities, sports, community activities, independent activities, or work experiences. Overall, you should make sure you choose an extracurricular activity that is meaningful to you. 

When you are writing about your extracurricular activities for college, you will want to provide specific details about the type, length, and responsibilities of your involvements. If you’re unsure where to start, try making a list of all the extracurricular activities you have participated in. Write down the role you had in this activity, how much time you spent doing it, and what you learned because of this involvement. This will serve as an outline when you go to write your essay about extracurricular activities. 

Here is an easy four-step plan that can help you write a stellar extracurricular activities essay: 

Four-Step Plan for outstanding extracurricular activities essays

1. Choosing the right extracurricular or work

You want to make sure that the activities you write about demonstrate your passion and dedication. These qualities will impress admissions officers. 

2. Brainstorming personal details

Make sure you are personable and vulnerable in the stories you tell and anecdotes you choose to share. Tell a story that allows the reader to see you beyond your accomplishments on paper and demonstrate how you would enrich campus life. 

3. Drafting an essay

Although you are limited to 250 words, your first draft can be longer than that. It is always better to start with more information and narrow it down than to not have enough in the first place! 

4. Editing and revising

It is crucial that you submit an essay that is grammatically sound and structurally cohesive. Have another set of eyes proofread your work before you submit your Colorado College essays. 

If you’re looking for some extracurricular activities essay examples, you can check out our CollegeAdvisor guide to extracurricular activities essays! 

Does Colorado College care about essays?

colorado college supplemental essays

In a word, yes—the Colorado College admissions team considers your Colorado College supplemental essays a key part of your application. 

The Colorado College essays allow you, as the student, to speak directly to the admissions team. So, your Colorado College supplemental essays serve as a way for you to convince admissions officers that you are a good fit for the Colorado College community. 

Overall, the Colorado College admissions team considers the Colorado College supplemental essays a vital part of their review process. Online, you can find some advice and writing tips for applicants to scholarships at CC. While these tips directly address scholarship applications, the same advice applies for the regular Colorado College essays. 

More guidance on the Colorado College essays

First and foremost, writing a personal essay requires persuasive language that sells you to an admissions team. Your Colorado College essays should showcase you in the best possible light. Why do you belong at Colorado College? What do you bring to the table? Finally, what should the admissions committee know about you that isn’t clear from the rest of your application? 

For your Colorado College supplemental essays, keep the following writing tips in mind:

Be clear and concise

Clarity counts for more than creativity of vocabulary. Also, focus on quality over quantity — your essays are limited in length, so make every word count.

Draft, revise, repeat

Never turn in a first draft. Expect to revise multiple times. Most successful applicants revise drafts close to a dozen times in order to get a document that is dense with information yet reads effortlessly and engagingly.

Get feedback

Your essay will improve with each reading. Fresh eyes are always a beneficial addition to proofreading. 

How can I make my Colorado College essays stand out?

colorado college supplemental essays

To best prepare for the Colorado College supplemental essays, start early. You should be thinking about your Colorado College supplemental essays way before the application deadline. That way, you’ll have adequate time to write standout Colorado College essays and answer all parts of the Colorado College essay prompts. 

Organization can also make a huge difference as you approach the Colorado College supplemental essays. Make sure you plan out a timeline for the application process. Additionally, create an application checklist in order to manage your application’s components and deadlines. 

As you write your Colorado College supplemental essays, remember that your application is a persuasive document. Overall, your Colorado College essays should convince the admissions team why you are a highly qualified applicant who deserves admission to Colorado College. 

Your qualifications cannot simply speak for themselves. Instead, you have to make an argument about why you are the perfect fit for the Colorado College community. 

Colorado College Essays – 5 Takeaways

5 Takeaways for Writing Colorado College Essays

colorado college supplemental essays

1. Brainstorm

Do some research on Colorado College and its programs. Then, craft a list of reasons why Colorado College interests you and narrow your points down to no less than three strong arguments. Use these reasons to draft your Colorado College supplemental essays. 

2. Get personal and be specific

Admissions officers agree that the most crucial aspect of a successful essay is authenticity. The Colorado College supplemental essays give applicants the opportunity to express themselves. Remember, the Colorado College supplemental essays are the only component of your application that allows the admissions committee to see beyond your grades and extracurriculars. So, use the Colorado College essay prompts to highlight what makes you unique. 

3. Tell a story

The best Colorado College essays will have a solid introduction that grabs the reader’s attention. If appropriate, consider using a personal anecdote to begin your essay. However, make sure you choose a story that is relevant to your values and/or goals. 

4. Follow the word count

The Colorado College essays are 200 to 250 words. It is critical to follow the word count guidelines. The essay format guidelines are here for a reason, and application readers can be easily frustrated by a student’s failure to follow directions. Remember, the shorter the word count, the fewer ideas you will want to include. If you are only including one idea in your essay, make sure it is your strongest argument. 

5. Leave time to review your essays

When you think you have finished, be sure to proofread and edit. You will want to make sure you have answered and addressed all parts of the Colorado College essay prompts. Additionally, be sure to get input from others. Fresh eyes are always helpful, so ask several trusted sources to review your essay for grammatical errors and structural edits.

Want more guidance on the Colorado College essays? Colorado College offers a series of ten short videos with quick tips and advice from their admissions team on writing stellar Colorado College supplemental essays. Watch them all here

For one-on-one essay guidance, our experts at CollegeAdvisor can help you write the very best Colorado College essays and make your Colorado College application stand out. Click here to schedule a free meeting with one of our Admissions Specialists.

This article was written by Bailey Bennett. Looking for more admissions support? Click here to schedule a free meeting with one of our Admissions Specialists. During your meeting, our team will discuss your profile and help you find targeted ways to increase your admissions odds at top schools. We’ll also answer any questions and discuss how can support you in the college application process.