Tulane University, located in New Orleans, is a top private university. It is a mid-sized college with about 8,400 undergraduate students. Tulane's most popular majors are finance, marketing, and psychology.
Founded in 1834, Tulane is now the most selective college in Louisiana, with an acceptance rate of 17% for the class of 2022. In 2018, the Office of Undergraduate Admission received over 38,000 applications. Your essays are vital in order to stand out and boost your shot at getting accepted by Tulane.
Below are some verified essay examples written by real students who got accepted into Tulane. Let's jump right into the essays!
Essays and Supplements
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Tulane Common App Personal Statement #1
Written by Anonymous Student
Verified Real Acceptance
Discuss an accomplishment, event, or realization that sparked a period of personal growth and a new understanding of yourself or others. (250-650 words)
First impressions are everything—even in kindergarten.
I was born with Nonsyndromic Aplasia Cutis Congenita. Basically, I have had a scar on my head since birth, and hair couldn't always grow over it. Up until fourth grade, when I underwent two hair transplants that would allow me to slowly grow hair over my scar, it was definitely noticeable.
What I remember vividly about kindergarten is my new peers glaring at my shiny head with a puzzled look. I learned about my classmates through their lunchbox covers and backpack designs; they saw me as the boy with the scar.
It had a nice ring to it, but I wasn’t a fan. Unfortunately, that’s what I imagined everyone saw first, and first impressions stick. In elementary school, it was still my defining characteristic—what separated me from a sea of collared t-shirts and cargo shorts. As I began first grade, the questions started. In retrospect, they were harmless, but they made me feel alienated. I would try to shrug them off, but the benign inquisitions furthered the self-created idea that I was different than my classmates because of something I couldn’t fix.
The idea of my peers seeing only my bare scalp when they looked at me, whether true or not, was a nightmare I couldn’t shake. It was my most distinct feature, but I didn’t want it to be defining. So, I applied myself to my activities. No matter what it was, I always tried to stand out so I wouldn’t be seen as the boy with the scar anymore. My hair wasn’t something I could control, but my personality was. I wanted to build an identity on my interests and attributes, not have one automatically assigned because of a birth mark.
From art to sports to being one of the only first graders on elementary student council, my desire to distract my peers from my scar was the reason I pushed myself to try new things and work at them, even if it wasn’t for the best reason.
As I grew up with it and found hobbies that I genuinely enjoyed doing and talking about, I slowly became more comfortable with the attention that I once shied away from. I found a way, through my activities and interests, to feel comfortable in my skin, whether there was hair on it or not.
I remember walking out of the operating room after my second surgery with a new sense of self, ready to be a different person with a re-created identity and a full head of hair. That didn’t happen. I went back to school as the same person I was before, and that was exactly what I wanted—I just didn’t know it then. For so long I felt restricted by my scar. It wasn’t until hair started growing when I realized I never really was.
I didn’t have a sudden epiphany about my scar after the surgery, nor did I feel like a new person. By that point in my life, I had figuratively grown into my scar just as I grew into my brother’s hand-me-downs. I found and focused on my interests, and from them I developed an identity that I was proud of, well before I went under the knife.
A caveat of my surgery was that the hair would grow, then one-third would fall off. My scar will never be completely gone, but I no longer feel defined by it like I did in elementary school.
Neither the surgeries or my search for a more redeeming quality completely changed my life, but both experiences made me more confident in my self-perception. I can be whatever I want to be; a scar can’t change that. It just took two surgeries and years of nail biting and pushing myself at my activities, some of which I still partake in and am passionate about today, to realize it.
Princeton Supplements and Short Answers #1
Written by Anonymous Student
Verified Real Acceptance
Please describe why you are interested in attending Tulane University (50-800 words).
Tulane University has a unique history, deeply established in the city it calls home, New Orleans. After transitioning from a medical school to a full college in in 1847, then undergoing a name change from the University of Louisiana to Tulane in 1884, as the city changed, Tulane changed with it. Tulane is the crossroad of two distinctly different ideals: being rooted in tradition and adapting to the needs of modern society.
When the city was devastated by Hurricane Katrina in 2005, Tulanians answered the call to serve. Scott S. Cowen, then-President of Tulane, refused to let the hurricane ruin Tulane and the CIty. Tulanians were part of rescue and clean-up teams, devoting time and resources to rebuilding their school and the city it calls home. What was most impressive, however, was their resilience.
It would’ve been easy for the student body and staff to not come back. Being as smart and service-oriented as they are, the students and faculty could’ve found another place to live and learn easily. Yet, they returned. Tulanians have a certain sense of pride and commitment to the school that I admire. They could’ve stayed home and not gone back, but they wanted to pick up the pieces of the school they love. It’s clear that Tulanians take ownership in their education. I want to go to a school that my peers want to go to; I want to be immersed in a community as excited about being in it as I am. That’s Tulane.
I could go on and on about Tulane’s teacher education program. I could write about how Tulane-educated teachers are leaders in their fields because they have both a degree in their area of study as well as certification to teach. Maybe I could mention the service learning requirements necessary to graduate and enter the teacher certification program, ensuring that the teachers are prepared to instill morals in the students that walk through their classroom door.
Truthfully, I could go almost anywhere to become a teacher, but only schools like Tulane that synthesize in- and out-of-classroom learning produce great ones. Tulane, like I said before, houses a resilient and altruistic student body. They served New Orleans specifically in 2005, but Tulanians serve their community every single day. Newsweek ranked Tulane 19th for service-minded schools. Likewise, the U.S. News & World Report placed Tulane in the top 25 schools for service learning. It is one of the top schools for producing Peace Corps volunteers, a program that interested me for post-graduate work.
Whether it is through Outreach Tulane, CACTUS, Wave of Green, or another similar program, I will be immersed in service work throughout my four years. Tulane stands alone in its commitment to community. Classroom education is married with service learning, producing empathetic, worldly leaders ready to set the world on fire. In my case, that will be through educating the next generation.
I need a meaningful education to be a meaningful educator. Tulane is unparalleled in its dedication to development of the students, on a personal and intellectual level. From when I touch the Victory Bell after Convocation all the way to when I say farewell at the Wave Goodbye Party at Commencement, I’ll have changed and grown, both in my mind and in my heart.
The Tulane study body is diverse and well-rounded; finding people and groups with shared interests is inevitable. I could see myself writing for the Hullabaloo or being a tutor in the After-School Newcomb Tutoring (which will bridge my learning and my intended career and give practical application to my education classes). But more so, I can just envision myself at Tulane, as a Tulanian. The willowing oak, myrtle, and cypress trees, the world-renowned research facilities, the dedicated faculty, the motivated and inspired student body, and the timeless school spirit all lend itself to a picture I can see myself in.