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How to Write a Letter of Intent for College

How to Write a Letter of Intent for College

Writing a letter of intent for college can be tricky, but with the right guidance, you can go about writing a good letter that will get you ahead in the admission procedure. Here are some helpful tips that tell you how to write a letter of intent for college.
Puja Lalwani
Last Updated: Jun 3, 2018
A letter of intent for college is a document that explicitly states your intent for pursuing a particular course, details of your previous academic life, and what you intend to do in the future. Apart from your grade sheets, SAT scores, and other relevant indicators of academic performance, a letter of intent is a document that gives your admission application a slight push in the right direction, if written well. In short, it helps convince the college committee that you should be given admission because you are among the best they can get. How is such a convincing letter written? Let's take a look.
Helpful Tips
When writing a letter of intent for admission to a college of your choice, ensure that you know enough about the college and the program that they are offering. The course should be suitable to lay a foundation of your future plans. Once you are sure of this, go ahead and find out whom the letter is supposed to be addressed to, and address it to that specific person. It shows that you have conducted thorough research about the course well and that you are serious about your admission to the college.

Introductory Paragraph: In the first paragraph mention the program you have applied to and why you have chosen this specific program as well as this college for a bachelor's degree. You have to ensure that you capture the reader's attention in the very beginning of the letter, because this reader has to go through several letters to shortlist students who will make it into the college. If you keep beating around the bush, your letter is not going to take you anywhere.

Body: In the next paragraph talk about your school performance, how you developed interest in the field you are applying for, and how you intend to go about achieving the goal that you have set out for yourself by being a part of this program. If you have done extraordinarily well in a subject, mention it in the letter, along with any other academic achievements. In the same paragraph, mention if you have had any work experience, your strengths (personal abilities, skills and aptitude), and make a mention of the extracurricular activities you have engaged in while in school (this could even include volunteering with a non-profit organization). If you have something that you think is a weakness, make it sound like a positive. For instance, if you find working independently difficult, mention that you are a great team player. Mention hobbies you are passionate about and let your passion reflect in your letter. Your letter should exude some difference from the rest of the letters that the admission committee receives.

Closing Paragraph: In the closing paragraph of the letter of intent, reiterate in very specific terms why you want to be a part of that specific program, and how this program will help you achieve the academic goals you have laid for yourself. Conclude by telling them why you think you should be a part of the program, and how the college will benefit by giving you admission. Let your determination and commitment show, so that you are taken seriously.
Additional Tips that will Help
While given above was the format of a letter of intent for college, here are some additional tips that will help you write an exceptional letter and have it stand out from the rest. Take a look.

Make a rough layout and format of your letter before you actually write it. This will give your letter a defined structure, as well as an idea about how you would like it to proceed.

Your letter should be direct. As mentioned earlier, beating around the bush is simply unacceptable. You have to make your point right at the start.

A letter of intent is written so that it states your intention and highlights your achievements, thereby allowing the admissions committee to make a decision. This means you have to state all these details crisply, but not in a manner that makes you sound pompous.

It is imperative that you proofread your letter thoroughly and edit it as many times as possible so that only the most relevant details are included in it.

Write your letter so that your enthusiasm, passion, dedication, and commitment toward the program and your desire to get admission into it is thoroughly reflected in it. Without these elements, it will just be a bland piece of writing, much like the other letters by other aspirants.

Your letter should not be very long, neither should it be very short. Don't hesitate to give examples to demonstrate your qualities. The committee is not likely to comprehend everything you are saying, and the examples you provide will help them understand your letter better.

Finally, to ensure that it is a great letter of intent that you have written, imagine yourself to be on the admissions panel and see how you would perceive the writer of the letter. Would you like to invite her/him for an interview and get to know about him better? Or would you dismiss her/him as just another aspirant for admission to your college? This exercise will give you a lot of clarity about how your letter has been written.
With the aforementioned tips, you will find that the process of writing a letter of intent for college has become much simpler. Now simply go ahead and write that letter to get you into the college of your dreams. Good luck!