Introduction Paragraphs

Some Examples of Catchy Introductions
(From the book Essays that Worked for College Applications)

Your introduction to your college essay should grab your readers’ attention immediately. Here are a few options for how to do that.

Put the reader in your scene:

    He is the strangest person I have ever met, not simply eccentric, truly strange.  He stumbled into my life (or rather I into his) the day Oma took me into that laundromat.  With the wind at my back, I flew through the doors into a room of sticky, moist air that vibrated with the hum of a dozen different cycles.

    Last Thursday was my father’s birthday.  I was standing on the sideline at my soccer game, shivering in the cold October drizzle, when suddenly I remembered.  He would have been 53.

Begin with a short, intriguing statement:

    Misconceptions–I hate them.  Although they will always exist, I will still fight my private little war against them and especially against one that concerns me directly.  During my travels in the summer, I always meet interesting people and attempt to make new friends.  However, one common bond ties all of these strangers together: fallacious thoughts about my city.

    My adventures as Donut Boy started this summer.  I wanted to work in a book or record store, but even the ones that gave me applications demanded experience.

Set an interesting context:

    Several years ago, I faced the toughest internal struggle of my life thus far.

    I had been going to a Christian school for several years; the students went to Bible classes and were preached to regularly by the faculty.  Most other kids were Christian; I was, from birth, a Jain.  At first, the difference was unnoticeable.  Others didn’t really care that I was different and never really made me feel sensitive about my ethnic differences.

    My family gives advice, discussion, argument and thought, but never orders.  I was never pushed to become an olympic athlete, a great artist or genius.  My family felt that it was not their role to decide who I was to become; with only their input I was left to decipher the world with my own eyes, make my own judgments and decide for myself what I would become.

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