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Bring Back the Supplement: Questions for Kenyon’s Common Application

October 18, 2016
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Party Hard University was my top choice and Kenyon was my safety

As Kenyon plummets itself into a whirlwind of changes, I find myself asking, “which of Kenyon’s old habits die hard?” (Not many, it turns out.) We’ve got First-year sing and Send-Off and various other rights of passage, and for a while, Kenyon’s supplement to the Common App was one of those things. Just like “no-cell phones on Middle Path” and Cove O’Clock, the supplement to the Common App has become a whisper of a memory – its absence a scapegoat for disgruntled seniors looking to explain perceived mediocrity of underclassmen.

Some background: my older brother also went to Kenyon. During his application process, my family talked all too frequently about what hell was on the edge of “his map” or what he was carving out of a block of stone. Though I never wrote the supplement, I’m all too familiar with its absurdities, and frankly, I want it back. Call me a hypocrite. I don’t care. I want it back in a BAD way. Mmmm. Yeah. So while the administration sorts through my requests to #bringbackthesupplement, peruse these suggested prompts.

  1. In 500 words, explain which is more valid: Graham Gund’s fear of clocks or Graham Gund’s fear of trash cans.
  2. Faculty member Bruce Hardy once said, “You don’t need a grapefruit spoon to eat a grapefruit.” Do you agree and why?
  3. If a tree falls at the BFEC and no one is there to hear it, does it make a sound?
  4. Clowns are here! OK, maybe not, but here in the Office of College Admissions we are persuaded that current clown sightings at other colleges are part of a wider conspiracy involving five of the following: A deep, dank corner in Olin, Chef Meagan’s food truck, wet laundry on top of a washer, dogs, Adirondack Hopping, getting tipsy in beer lab, the condiments cart, and a pleasant hook-up. Help us get to the bottom of this plot by constructing your own theory of how and why five of these items and events are related. Your narrative may take any form you like, but try to keep your theory to under two pages.
  5. Based solely on looks alone, tell us which NCA is the best and why (250 words or less).
  6. Based solely on looks alone, tell us which Taft is the best and why (250 words or less).
  7. Sailing stones, also known as sliding rocks or rolling stones are a geological phenomenon in which rocks move and inscribe long tracks along a smooth valley floor without human or animal intervention. The same holds true for library bean bags. What force do you believe is moving these bags? Keep your response to one page.

Want more supplement prompts? We got you.

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