Personal Statements and Their Examples
Do you remember that one girl or boy that made your heart skip a beat every single time you saw them in your teenage years? If you were courageous enough, you probably got a chance to ask them out, or alternatively, you were asked out, and with a little bit more of luck, they said yes. Now to the preparations for the actual date begun and you shifted your focus to how you would present yourself. For girls, you probably got a new dress and decided to try on that red wine shade of lipstick that you have carefully tucked away at the corner of your make up bag. As a guy, you probably decided to get yourself a new coat in that color that your mother said looks good on you. You could not afford to have anything going wrong, everything had to be just right and how you had planned it as you only had one shot to present yourself like this successfully or blow everything up. Well, while we can only hope that the dates eventually went well, you cannot underestimate the power of presentations. How you presented yourself on that day ultimately mattered. The power of first impressions is immense, and therefore, it is crucial that every time you present yourself somewhere, you leave a substantial impact.
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The same concept of presentation is not far-fetched when we speak about personal statements. Personal statements come in handy not only in the academic settings but also beyond the school settings. Before you go to a school or for that job interview, it is your personal statement of who you are that will speak for you. How you present yourself in this case, therefore, is a vital determinant of how the admission office will view you and ultimately a determinant of whether you will get a chance at the institution or not. It is, therefore, your duty to ensure that you make the best possible presentation of yourself in your personal statement. This guide will, therefore, help you understand how you can best present yourself using a personal statement. Additionally, you can contact us at onlinewritingexperts.com to access some of the personal statements and their examples.
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Things to consider before writing a personal statement
• Your uniqueness. Consider your life story and see what is special and what makes you distinct or impressive.
• Personal life details. Through your personal details, you can establish what your family and personal problems are and how they have shaped you and your life this far. Relating your personal life details helps the admission committee understand you and sets you apart from other applicants.
• Interest in the field. Here, you can reflect on your interest in the field and how you developed an interest. You can also consider what you have learned during your time in the field.
• Experience. Additionally, consider your experience, if any and how this helped you grow significantly in your field of interest.
• Career goals. Consider what you aim for in your professional life and how the institution or organization you are applying to will be of help in achieving these goals.
• Gaps/discrepancies. Consider if there are any discrepancies in your academic or career record that need explaining.
• Compelling reasons. Think about why you are the best applicant that can take the position available, for instance, what unique skills do you possess? What personal characteristics make you different and how can you demonstrate these skills?
Types of personal statements
There are generally two categories of personal statements
• Comprehensive personal statements. These kinds of statements are called comprehensive because they allow the applicant freedom to express themselves. Mostly, these statements are written for law and medical schools.
• Specific question personal statements. These are common in business and graduate schools. In such a scenario, the student is usually expected to answer a specific question. There may be prompts for multiple essays, all of which may require different responses.
Tips for coming up with the best personal statement
• Have a succinct hook. A hook is the opening statement that you use to capture your reader’s attention. If you have a great opening, you have a chance at retaining the interest of the admissions board, increasing your chances of getting a chance at an institution. Ensure that you get to the main point of your personal statement soon enough and explain why you are enthusiastic about a subject or course early enough.
• Avoid quotes and clichés. Admission committees detest quotes and clichés. Personal statements are supposed to be a display of your thoughts and not another person’s. It is, therefore, important to avoid the above mentioned. If you are, for instance, an engineering student with an aptitude for mathematics and sciences, do not just state it plainly, that is cliché, explain more on how you have engaged these subjects in your particular field as this is what the admissions committee needs to see.
• Avoid writing one personal statement for different schools. Sometimes, personal statements may seem to have similar instructions, even when they are from different institutions. However, there may be small differences in the requirements that you may miss should you choose to write the same statement for different institutions. You can look at different personal statements and their examples online to fully understand how you can craft your statement
• Ensure that the details of your statement are relevant to your choices. Express your interest by relating to general course themes and subject areas. You do not need to include dramatic details in your personal statement as staying relevant is enough to get you aboard. A comprehensive description of your subject areas, course themes and your experiences. It may be wise to avoid using any experiences that happened in high school and earlier.
• Research if you need to. Sometimes a school may require you to state why you chose their institution over the others. You can research different types of personal statements and their examples to get an idea of what the school of your choice offers and how others approached this requirement before.