First, the Don’ts:
Don’t show your face or any other part of your anatomy. It’s your mind the school is interested in, not your body parts.
Don’t try to impress. People can spot a fake a mile away.
Don’t audition. You’re not trying to get on America’s Got Talent.
Don’t have family members waving at the camera. It looks ridiculous.
Don’t let the dog bark. It’s annoying to say the least.
Don’t burp or pass gas. Very uncool!
Don’t video any bedrooms or bathrooms.
Here are the Do’s:
Use your cell phone to do the video. The quality is typically very good and the phone/camera is very easy to use.
Walk around the first floor of the house where the viewer can see the kitchen,
the dining room, and the living room where you spend a lot of your time.
Capture any awards that are on any walls of the house that reflect any achievements you’ve had, even if it’s little league baseball. An award for a high school sport, of course, would be better.
If you have a passion for something, like soccer, lacrosse, hockey, and all your equipment are out the garage, go out into the garage and film the equipment for not more than 7 seconds.
Or, if your passion is playing the guitar, just show the guitar, not you playing it. If you play and you don’t show your face, the viewer cannot tell it’s really you playing the guitar. So just video the guitar itself for not more than 3 seconds.
Keep the video to 60 seconds or less.
What’s the purpose of this video? It has nothing to do with academics. It has everything to do with giving the college admission office a sense that you come from a typical if not nurturing home environment, signaling to the school that you are a safe candidate who isn’t coming to campus to prove your ability to be an on-the-spot terrorist.
Remember…colleges already know what you know - with your grades and test scores. This video will give them a sense of who you are, which could very well make the difference on your getting into the college of your choice.
Copyright 2015 Paul Hemphill