Located in the middle of bustling lower Manhattan, New York, NYU’s campus is intertwined with the city. It is not a campus in a traditional sense – its buildings and lifestyle are organized around Washington Square Park, enabling students and faculty alike to take advantage of everything offered by this energetic area.
NYU grants degrees from its NYC campus along with campuses in Abu Dhabi and Shanghai. In addition, it has satellite campuses in London, Accra, Berlin, Buenos Aires, Tel Aviv, Sydney and more; access to these locations around the world provide opportunities for a truly global undergraduate educational experience. Many students are particularly attracted to the ease with which they can study abroad and remain under the larger intellectual umbrella of the University.
NYU offers several admissions options including binding Early Decision I (November 1st deadline) and Early Decision II (January 1st deadline), as well as Regular Decision (January 5th deadline). In addition to the main Common Application essay, NYU requires only one additional essay response.
The admissions committee is already aware of your grades, test scores, letters of recommendation, honors/awards, activities and whatever you wrote about in your main Common Application essay. Now is your chance to share your passion for NYU! Be careful not to repeat information you shared in your main essay. Use your NYU response to convince the admissions committee that NYU is the best place for you and to show how you might contribute to the diverse community at NYU.
NYU’s supplemental essay question
We would like to know more about your interest in NYU. What motivated you to apply to NYU? Why have you applied or expressed interest in a particular campus, school, college, program, and/or area of study? If you have applied to more than one, please also tell us why you are interested in these additional areas of study or campuses. We want to understand – Why NYU? (400 word maximum)
The sole purpose of this prompt is to provide an opportunity for you to demonstrate your fit with NYU. You will want to do this in 3 ways (and all 3!): prove an intimate knowledge of NYU and its offerings, of NYC and all it has to offer, and of what makes you stand out as a diverse contributor to the NYU community.
You only have 400 words to communicate what draws you to NYU specifically- to the campus, school, college, program and/or specific area of study. Think about your personal connection to the school and the city. Don’t just list interesting things about the city—you are not a tour guide. Instead, explain why those things are so important to you and your potential growth.
Consider your values and how the unique qualities/opportunities at NYU appeal to you. In short, make a personal connection. How might the approach to education at NYU support your learning? This might include: studying abroad, potential experience with internships, relationships with people from around the world, specific academic requirements or programs, career-related opportunities, or anything else you feel is important to your success. Ultimately, you want to prove, not only your own qualifications, but your informed knowledge of NYU and the research you’ve done to be certain NYU would be the perfect fit for you.
In addition to demonstrating an intimate knowledge of NYU as a university, this essay also offers you a chance to think about what living and learning in a fast paced city like New York might be like: how is it similar to what you are accustomed to, or perhaps different? What are the particular reasons you find this setting appealing? Once you’ve explained the appeal of the city, you must also demonstrate your independence because you will need to be independent in order to navigate the NYU world. How will you survive, contribute to and thrive in this atmosphere. How will you embrace this environment? How can you benefit from this experience? Why is studying at NYU your true calling?
Keep in mind that NYU is assembling a first-year class that represents regional, global, and cultural diversity. NYU values difference and supports students of all identities and backgrounds. Don’t underestimate yourself and your story. Each applicant has something to offer that can enrich this distinct cohort. How might you utilize this opportunity to grow as a person, as a global citizen, as a future leader?
Final thoughts on applying to NYU
To offer some context for where you might stand: NYU’s Fall 2020 acceptance rate was 21%. Although NYU offers one of the most flexible standardized testing policies (see NYU admission website for details), the average SAT scores are 738 for Math and 701 for Evidence-Based Reading and Writing. The average ACT score is 32. This is a competitive applicant pool.
Although it is wise to keep these statistics in mind, take a moment to relax and plan. Make sure you meet all deadlines and allow yourself adequate time to write and revise your essays. Consider the best way to reflect your personal experiences, convey your interests, express your enthusiasm for learning, and demonstrate how and why NYU is the best place for you!
If you’re applying to NYU, you already know you’re up against tight competition. Don’t be overwhelmed. Get the guidance of an experienced admissions specialist who will help you stand out from a highly competitive applicant pool so you can apply with confidence, and get accepted! Click here to get started!
***Disclaimer: Information is subject to change. Please check with individual programs to verify the essay questions, instructions and deadlines.***Marie Todd has been involved in college admissions for over twenty years. Marie has both counseled applicants to top colleges and evaluated 5000+ applications for the University of Michigan's College of Literature, Science and the Arts; College of Engineering; School of Kinesiology; School of Nursing; and Taubman College of Architecture. Want Marie to help you get accepted? Click here to get in touch with Marie Todd.