Advice on the Dartmouth Application
One thing that sets Dartmouth apart from other schools I applied to is the peer recommendation. Like at other schools, two teacher recommendations are required for Dartmouth, but admissions officers want to know what you're like outside of the classroom! The "peer" can really be anyone close to you, including friends, classmates, siblings, cousins, etc. My peer recommendation was from my high school best friend (also named Caroline!) who knew me better than anyone else.
When picking your peer recommendation, I would choose someone who can vouch for your personal qualities or stories you want admissions to know about you. After getting into Dartmouth, Caroline shared her recommendation letter with me. She wrote about abstract qualities about me, but what stood out was a story. She wrote about how much time I put into my toga costumes for Latin state conventions in high school. This demonstrated to admissions a different side of myself aside from my academic work. It also showed my commitment to my major, Classics.
For the "Why Dartmouth" essay, you only have 100 words to talk about all the reasons you want to attend Dartmouth! This essay was both exciting and challenging. How in the world could I describe the school of my dreams in under 100 words? For me, I chose specific aspects of Dartmouth I would participate in. While I did highlight the academic programs I wanted to do, I spent most of my words on what I would do outside of the classroom. I wrote about hiking The Fifty and writing for The Dartmouth, and I did both just this weekend!
The alumni interview is a fantastic opportunity to show Dartmouth who you are and to get to know Dartmouth on a deeper level. In my interview, my interviewer was a '20 who asked me about five questions about myself, but my favorite part was when I was able to ask her questions. She was very honest about her experience and provided concrete examples of her time on campus.
Applying to college can be intimidating, but taking it in small bits can make it more manageable!