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BUmiken12

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1. Do you think it's okay to use contractions in your essays for the secondaries? It just sounds weird to me if I don't use them.

2. This is a stupid question, but am I a first generation college grad? My brother graduated college, but my parents didn't. I would think I am, but then if you answer "no," they ask you how many people in your family graduated college.

3. Do PSU, Mt. Sinai, or SLU screen?

Thanks in advance!!!
 

Cydney Foote

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1. Try to avoid contractions as much as possible. A good way to do this is to use more active sentences (e.g., instead of "I'm planning to work this summer," say "I plan to work this summer"). However, if you're quoting someone (My advisor said, "You'll be a great doctor.") the contraction is much more natural.

2. I think you'd be considered a 1st generation college grad. The generation distinction separates you from your parents, not your siblings. It should be similar to immigration status. My mother and uncle are both considered 1st generation Americans, because their parents were immigrants.

3. Dunno!
 

SMW

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SLU doesn't screen, but their office seems to be stuck in the dark ages and is woefully inefficient. I don't think Mt. Sinai screens either, at least they didn't last year. What is PSU?

I don't think contractions are a terrible no-no. I used them, and even made a joke in my PS. It's a personal statement, not a research report.
 
S

shamthis

I tried to avoid contraction (over)usage in my AMCAS application, since it's a first impression. However, the secondary stage is the interim between primary and interview, and with that the applicant earns new rights and responsibilities. The applicant earns the right to loosen up a little and feel comfortable with "I've" and "It's", etc. The applicant is responsible for expressing him/herself accurately, and not many people naturally have a boot up their behind. The first word of my response to Georgetown's "Why Georgetown" last year was "I've". I received an invitation to interview there.

Rather than strict grammatical limitations and rules, I think your goal in the secondary stage is to present yourself professionally and accurately. If that means you can't say "don't", then so be it. But I can and did. Candid, no pun intended, hahah.
 
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