A personal statement is a requirement needed by admission committees, along with your test scores or GPA, to let them know what the aspiring applicant can do inside and outside the classroom. It almost sounds like a ‘pitch‘ but nevertheless, you need to write your personal statement with the aim of letting them know how bad you want to be in their program and what makes you think you are a viable candidate for your chosen course.
Do you have trouble writing the start and conclusion of a personal statement?
You are not alone if you think you are going to have a hard time writing the introduction and conclusion of your personal statement. Many people have failed to open up their personal statements properly and the results are terrible.
From years of experience handling different kinds of personal statements, most admission tutors rely on how personal the essays is and how it reflects the applicants aim towards the chosen course. But they also told us that the most efficient and powerful personal statement all comes down to how straightforward the opening is and how strong it ends.
Below are tips on how to write the start and end of your personal statement, what needs to be written, what should be included, and how you should write it.
Do you want to write an impressive personal statement?
For you to write an impressive personal statement, you should already have a clear picture of how you would like it to turn out and what are those relevant things and experiences you may want to include. Remember, you need to make sure the statement reflects your passion for the said course and how you would like to end up once you have finished the course. Also, make sure that the personal statement states your goals, not only during your stay at the university but also once you have completed the program. This will allow them to know that you are a type of person who has long-term plans.
1) How to start a personal statement?
Piquing the interest of any admission tutor all comes down on how you open your personal statement, so using the cliché openers can be considered as a no-no when writing your introduction. Another reason why you need to avoid the usual openers is to exclude yourself from potential applicants who use these openers just to pitch their dramas on their personal statements. Remember, you are SELLING yourself so one better way to do that is to use a unique opener or not to use them at all.
As an example, here are some of the most cliché openers used by many people in their personal statements:
- ‘For as long as I can remember…’
- ‘Throughout my life, I have always enjoyed…’
- ‘From a young age…’
- ‘I have always been interested in…’
- ‘I am applying for this course because…’
These openings have been used for so many times now that although they sound good, it is not as powerful as they were. You could spare yourself from judging eyes by innovating a better introduction for your personal statement. To gain uniqueness in your personal statement, you can follow the guidelines below to start your personal statement:
- Get to the point quickly.
Most people who have received offers from college programs are those who do not use playful words or killer openings on their personal statements because they knew that it is just waste on what you have to say. It is a filler, and fillers do not make your personal statement fruitful. Get to the point quickly and provide relevant and interesting thoughts about it.
- Be enthusiastic.
Starting off with an enthusiastic opening gains the engagement you need for your personal statement. This helps you give the admission committee the proper engagement and interest in what you have to say.
- Write what comes naturally.
Make sure to write what comes out naturally because if not, you may right some unnecessary things which are irrelevant on what you are really pointing out. This helps you filter if the idea you want to write is good and bad.
- Give an account of the present, not the past.
Too many people give account from their childhood days but this is not always the right road to take. Instead of a personal statement, you are starting to write an autobiography. Always make sure to include incidents and experiences that is currently happening to you and what do you think will be your stand in the future. They are not interested with what happened when you were six but with what are your recent experiences which could pique their interests.
The guidelines above are necessary for you to write a good introduction for your personal statement. But if you are still having trouble after reading the above guidelines, there is another trick to do it. You can try to WRITE THE OUTLINE OF YOUR PERSONAL STATEMENT FIRST before WRITING YOUR INTRODUCTION. This way, you can make a simple start which will directly open your personal statement outline. The simpler, the better.
2) How to End a Personal Statement?
On the other hand, personal introductions should end with a powerful message. Normally, people will just summarize what they have written on the personal statement and ends it right there. That is a big NO. Your end message should not summarize the whole personal statement itself but should give them your ultimate goal as to how you want your future with the program to go and how you are different from other compelling applicants applying on the same course.
There are many things to include on the conclusion part of your personal statement but the three reasons below are the best ones you can use:
- You want to be a mentor.
- You love research.
- You want to be of service in the future.
The endings stated above can be written in a way which will relate to what you have mentioned in the body of your personal statement. They show how likely you are to grow and excel in the said program you are applying for. This gives the tutors an idea on what you want to fulfill in the future and what are the things you can do to achieve them.
Here is a noted example of a personal statement ending:
“With all of these experiences, I am able to gain a lot more confidence towards this field. I’m inclined to do my best to finish this course and be a mentor someday if my destiny leads me to be one. And success can come after. But right now, I am very excited to learn new things and explore what your university can offer me. I would be glad to become a part of the society which aims to make the world a better place.“
Tips for writing personal statement powerfully?
So you may have an idea on what to write for the introduction part of your personal statement, as well as the ending, but do you know how can you make it powerful enough to remember you? Well, this can be hard depending on what course you are applying for. But to generalize everything else, always remember that your personal statement is something that you ‘pitch’ to universities for them to consider you as a compelling applicant. With that being said, your personal statement should talk more about yourself and your experiences that led you to apply for the said course. No need to include your experiences from when you were younger but include those most relevant experiences which are relevant and interesting to know.
Here are some examples of sentences which you can use to explain what your goal really is:
- “Through these moments I was able to test my patience and be a man of character..”
- “My father always told me that having a determined mind can achieve huge success in life. From that point on, I have started to think thoroughly on any decision I came across.”
- “That simple mistake I made from the past changed me so much that I started to regain the sense of responsibility which I just failed to realize before.”
As what you have noticed from the top, these are all related to recent experiences where the applicant had a turning point in their lives. If you also have the same experience, make sure to recount the incident if, and only if, it is relevant to what your course is and make sure to tell how important this incident is in your drive to study the course.
Other pointers you may want to check when writing your personal statement:
1) Be yourself. There is a reason why there is a word ‘personal’ in the personal statement. Kidding aside, your personal statement should reflect who you are as a person, what experiences brought you to this decision, and how passionate you are on the said course. You may also tell a story which leads to your thought but before you tell one, make sure it is relevant to what you have to say.
2) Go beyond your resume, GPA and test score. The main reason why you are given a chance to write a personal statement is because they want to know what you can do way beyond what numbers tell you. Take this chance to separate yourself from other compelling applicants who has the same test scores and GPA as you.
3) Keep it simple. The simple, the better. Never include irrelevant information about you since those things do not really give them enough to know what you can do as a person.
4) Be succinct and take after bearings. Although it may sound the same as above but you have to make sure you are concise and all of the things indicated on your personal statement must be connected and are related to each of them. Do not waffle.
5) Show diversity. Avoid redundancies which mess up a certain thought. Just be precise and vary your statements from one point to another. It is enough to ponder on the thought for two sentences but it is bad if the whole paragraph states the same thing because that makes things uninteresting.
6) Do research and tailor each article appropriately. You don’t need to be an English Major to do a write a good personal statement as long as you do the necessary research for terms you can use to make it as formal and concise as possible. Also, make sure that each of the information you relay in your personal statement is not all over the place. If you are tackling a present experience, just dwell on it for a couple of sentences and move on to the next.
Why is a personal statement so important?
In the end, it all comes down to how you start and end your personal statement, as well as how fruitful the content is. Your personal statement could be a key to an interview or an offer, we never know. But do not be afraid to take risks and include those things which you think will help you out. Your personal statement is a mirror of yourself and all you have to do is write what comes naturally. Let your mind flow and everything will be in place. Make sure to make it as memorable as possible and you will be surprised if opportunities come to your doorstep.
- How to Write an Impressive Personal Statement Essay for Pharmacy School?
- Tips on How to Write a Perfect Psychology Personal Statement