4 Tips for the Duke Fuqua Community Involvement Essay

Updated for the 2020-2021 admissions cycle.

Through this ‘essay’ Fuqua wants to understand how you plan to better the Fuqua community. In your own unique way, the Admissions Committee is trying to get an idea of how you will show Authentic Engagement throughout your time at Fuqua.

1. Authenticity is Key.

The Admissions Committee is full of experts in determining whether an application is genuine or a cookie-cutter response. They want to know what YOU plan on doing to make Fuqua a better place. Let them know what you are genuinely interested in doing and why you are passionate about a certain activity, club, or event. Relating clubs or events to past experiences will show that your plans are authentic. For example, if you grew up playing an instrument, maybe you plan to get involved in one of Fuqua’s many extracurricular activities pertaining to music.

2. Be Fuqua Specific.

This one sounds obvious but it is incredibly important to make sure you are using the same terminology that Fuqua uses. The Healthcare club at Fuqua may be named something different than the Healthcare club you talked about in your Wharton essay and not correcting that in your application would be detrimental. Making errors like this will show a lack of research and genuine interest in Fuqua, which is the last thing you want the Admissions Committee to think when reading your application.

3. Tie to Your Goals.

Saying you want to be the President of the Tech club is great but that is not sufficient. Elaborating on what you plan to do as President of the club, what unique skills you can bring to the position, and relating the position to your goals will make you stand out. You’ve just told the Admissions Committee about your short and long-term goals in the short answer questions. How will the contributions you plan to make to the Fuqua community help you reach those goals? Keep in mind that the goal is to show how you will help Fuqua, but tying that into your goals will add authenticity.

4. Engage with Fuqua Community.

At the end of the day, you’ve never been a student at Fuqua so how can you really understand what it means to authentically engage with the Fuqua community? Network, network, network! Whether it is a student you met at your campus visit or an alumnus from a Fuqua event, pick their brains for what it means to be authentically engaged at Fuqua. Additionally, reaching out to students currently involved in the clubs, centers or events you decide to write about will give so much more insight than you can find online and will show that you went the extra mile.