Oh man. This is exciting. A high school senior recently shared with me the content she's including in the Additional Information section of her Common App. She has her eye on a career in creating and marketing digital content, and she's applying to some stellar communications programs with amazing opportunities in film & media production.

If you have three or so minutes to watch, the video below speaks for itself. She has taken the initiative to explore her interests and expand her skills independently, to question her own personal views, and to take the risk of putting her work out into the world. For the colleges that can really follow through on a fully holistic review, this will be her application's icing on the cake. 

This past summer, I created a short film called “The F-Word,” using six of my close friends to spread a message about feminism. I always thought the word itself sounded negative, like some sort of cult. But I researched the true definition of this word and learned that feminism was a movement for equality—the basic idea that women are people, deserving of rights.  But I encountered too many instances in which people my age were certain that being a feminist meant trying to bring men down and make women the superior sex.

My original idea was to make an observational study, choosing people of all different backgrounds to answer simple questions about gender roles in society, but then I realized that I didn’t want to simply observe the flaws of some people’s views; I wanted to shed light upon the views that I believed to be most important for girls my age. I spent weeks coming up with questions, taping all the interviews, and editing the clips together.  I struggled a lot, and was unsure at some points whether it was truly delivering what I wanted it to. But in the end, I am happy with the way it turned out, and I felt that it was important to mention it in my application.


Many thanks to Ella Bell for her permission to post,  and for having the courage to share her work and views freely!