Unit 2: Profile Essay



Write a profile of either a UCR community group (i.e., a club, a fraternity/sorority, a sports team, etc.) or a location on campus (i.e., Ivan’s Café, the area around the bell tower, a food truck’s parking spot, etc.).

The only limitation is that you cannot profile a group you are a member of or a location you frequent. Think of this as an opportunity to explore something outside your comfort zone.

As a genre, a profile essay must transcend general description and convey your thoughts, feelings, and interpretation of your topic. In order to do this, you are required to conduct an interview and a field observation. You must go beyond trite conclusions, like this club is good or this place bad, and use your powers of observation to pull meaning and significance from your subjects.

Key components

  • Conducting a Good Interview: In-class discussion on 4/20; SMG 91-96, 110-114, and, for help with questions, 685; Four Principles from Columbia (though the site itself is dated, the content is good)
  • Integration of Quotations into the Narrative: In-class discussion and handout on 4/25; SMG 95-96 for incorporation and SMG H-63-66 for punctuation help.
  • Field Report and Observation: In-class discussion on 4/22; SMG 91-98.
  • Vivid Description: Review materials from Unit 1SMG 61-62, 72-73, 78, 84, 88, and 102-104.
  • Significance: Review materials from Unit 1; In-class discussion on 4/18 and 4/22.


This paper should be no shorter than 1,250 words. It should be submitted on iLearn through the Remembered Event Dropbox, where it will be checked for plagiarism and graded.

Your paper is due at 3:00pm on Friday, April 29th Monday, May 2nd. However, you can turn it in any time before then.

Remember, late work is not accepted for any reason. In addition, failure to turn in any paper will result in an automatic failure of ENG 1A.


  • Length:
    • Minimum length met, 1,250 words, excluding headers
    • Record word count either in the header or at the end of the paper
  • Format
    • Font: 11-12 point font, any serif style
    • Page number on each page, in the header or footer
    • Your header should include:
      • Name
      • Date
    • Title: A creative title, centered and underlined
  • Content
    • Does this paper answer the prompt?
    • Does it meet the standards of a well-told story?
    • Does it meet the standards of vivid description?
    • Is it autobiographically significant?
  • Editing
    • Did you bring a shitty rough draft to class on Wednesday, April 13th?
    • Did you read your paper aloud to check for awkward phrases?
    • Did edit your paragraphs for clarity? Remembering to include exposition, example, and explanation sentence where they belong?
    • Did you incorporate some of your classmates’ suggestions into your rough draft?


Excellent Good Satisfactory Needs Improvement Needs Vast Improvement
Incorporation of Interview and Field Observations


Vivid Description of People and Places


Integration of Quotations


Grammar/Mechanics/Syntax/MLA Format/Works Cited