Stinson confirmed to Refinery29 that she did, indeed, have a Costco ham-inspired conversation about Andrew Jackson, thanks to the connection to his nickname, "Old Hickory."
While the framework for Stinson's essay is unconventional, it's also a great example of adapting personal experiences to fit within the application guidelines. The essay prompt Stinson chose
asked applicants to describe "a background, identity, interest, or talent that is so meaningful they believe their application would be incomplete without it."
And although Costco may not be the first thing that comes to mind when you think "meaningful" interests, a lifetime curiosity and openness to the world, positioned in comparison with a stroll through the warehouse store, makes for quite a unique essay.
"In many ways, I saw Costco as limitless, with its massive size, outrageous portion sizes, and endless samples," Stinson told Refinery29. "That kind of vastness just gets me thinking, and I had a lot of time to think and be inspired while I wandered the place. It was easy to make those connections, because they were related to things that I'm deeply interested in: science, history, philosophy. I tried to explore those subject areas in my daily life."
For now, Stinson is focused on deciding which school she'll attend — she has to decide by May 1. Check out her full essay here
. She's not the only one making waves in the college admissions game this week, by the way — one New York teen was just accepted to all eight Ivy League universities
Editor's note: The author of this piece is a former Costco Wholesale employee and lifetime Costco enthusiast.