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The 10 Best Universities in the U.S.
Every year, millions of students in the United States graduate high school and set off on their next big adventure. For many of them, that adventure is attending college at one of the country’s many universities. If you’re preparing to go to college in the next year or two and you only want the best in the U.S., these 10 universities consistently earn high rankings for academics, program options and other factors.
Located in New Jersey, Princeton is one of the oldest schools in the country. It’s the alma mater of plenty of famous people, from presidents to movie stars, and the school’s top programs include degrees in international affairs and engineering. Princeton is also known for its extracurricular activities, and even undergrads have to write a senior thesis.
Harvard consistently ranks as one of the top colleges in the nation. Founded in 1636 just outside of Boston, the school boasts business and medical schools that are consistently considered the best of the best. Eight presidents have graduated from Harvard, including Barack Obama, George W. Bush and John F. Kennedy.
Located in Durham, North Carolina, Duke University consistently ranks in the top 10 for both undergraduate and graduate students. Some of its top programs include nursing, business, public policy and engineering. The school is home to highly-ranked medical and law schools and has a strong sports program, particularly in men’s basketball. Notable Duke alumni include Melinda Gates, Elizabeth Dole and Tim Cook.
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in Cambridge, Massachusetts, is known around the world for its math, science, technology and engineering programs. Buzz Aldrin, Kofi Annan and actor James Woods all attended the school. MIT is also a recognized leader in scientific research and often spends more than $700 million each year on various groundbreaking projects.
If you prefer a school on the West Coast, Stanford is in sunny California, just outside of San Francisco. Its education, engineering, medicine, law and business schools are highly ranked, and the school has a prominent sports program and ample Greek life opportunities. Supreme Court justice Anthony Kennedy, NFL star John Elway and entrepreneur Elon Musk all attended Stanford.
Located in New Haven, Connecticut, Yale is another school that always ranks near the top of the list of best universities in the U.S. Founded in 1701, the university has top-ranked medical, law, art and nursing schools and has popular drama and music programs as well as extracurricular activities. Presidents George H. W. Bush and Bill Clinton, Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas and CNN anchor Anderson Cooper all attended Yale.
University of Chicago
One appeal of the University of Chicago is its big city setting. It’s located in Hyde Park, so there’s plenty to do if you get bored with the school’s 400 organizations and 15 sports teams. The university’s law, medical, public policy and business schools are all highly ranked. Notable alumni include economists Milton Friedman and Thomas Sowell, Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens and writer Kurt Vonnegut.
Located in New York City, Columbia is another school that sits in the heart of a big city. Its business school, law school, dental school, journalism school, teacher’s college and school of surgeons and physicians are all highly ranked and in demand. Warren Buffett, Amelia Earhart, Eric Holder and Supreme Court Justice Neil Gorsuch are all notable alumni.
University of Pennsylvania
Benjamin Franklin founded the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia in 1740. Today, it sits on 299 acres, has 12 unique schools and colleges and is popular for students seeking extracurriculars, like sports, Greek life and religious organizations. Education, engineering, design, business, medicine and dentistry are all highly-ranked programs. Presidents WIlliam Henry Harrison and Donald Trump, Noam Chomsky and fashion designer Tory Burch are all notable alumni.
California Institute of Technology
Another West Coast option, the California Institute of Technology (CalTech) has graduated leaders in fields like the arts, aerospace, government and business, including 17 Nobel Prize-winning scientists and several important entrepreneurs. The science and engineering school is located just north of Los Angeles in Pasadena and features highly-ranked physics, computer science, engineering, mathematics, biology, chemistry and earth science programs.
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12 Personal Statement Examples + Analysis
If you’re applying to college, you’ll most likely need to write a personal statement as part of your college application.
But before diving into analyzing some great personal statement examples, it helps to get some context on what a personal statement actually is, and what writers should plan to include when writing their own personal statement.
What is a personal statement?
It’s the main essay required by the Common Application as well as most other application systems. They basically require you to answer some version of the question “Who are you, and what do you value?” And in recent years, the main Common Application essay has become more and more important in colleges’ decision making process, especially as many colleges are relying less and less on standardized test scores.
Why read personal statement examples?
In our work with students, we often encourage students to review examples of personal statements to get a sense of what a great essay might look like and to just generally share a wide range of topics, structures, and writing styles so that they can see what’s possible when writing this essay. In this spirit, we’re sharing 12 of our favorite examples from the past few years. We’ve also included analysis for what makes them outstanding to (hopefully) help you uplevel your own essay.
What should a personal statement include?
The personal statement should demonstrate the qualities, skills, and values that you’ve cultivated over your life and how those skills have prepared you for attending college. I (Ethan) have spent the last 15 years answering this question, which you can learn more about in my free 1-hour guide .
In our opinion, a great personal statement example has 4 qualities . After reading the essay, you can identify whether your essay or topic show each of the four qualities by asking yourself the questions below:
Values : Can you name at least 4-5 of the author’s core values? Do you detect a variety of values, or do the values repeat?
Vulnerability : Does the essay sound like it’s mostly analytical or like it’s coming from a deeper, more vulnerable place? Does it sound like the author wrote it using mostly his or her head (intellect) or his or her heart and gut? After reading the essay, do you know more about the author AND feel closer to him or her?
Insight : Can you identify at least 3-5 “so what” moments of insight in the essay? Are these moments kind of predictable, or are they truly illuminating?
Craft : Do the ideas in the essay connect in a way that is logical, but not too obvious (aka boring)? Can you tell that the essay represents a series of carefully considered choices and that the author spent a lot of time revising the essay over the course of several drafts?
Want a more thorough guide on how to write a personal statement? We’ve got you covered.
Let’s read some essays.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Example #1 - The Tally on My Uniform Example #2 - Quattro Lingue Example #3 - 12 Example #4 - Flying Example #5 - Arab Spring in Bahrain Example #6 - Poop, Animals and the Environment Example #7 - Entoptic Phenomena Example #8 - The Builder & Problem Solver Example #10 - The Little Porch and a Dog (With Spanish Translation) Example #10 - Life As an Undocumented Student Example #11 - Umbra Example #12 - Angry brown girl, feminist, singer, meme lover
Personal Statement Example #1 The Tally on My Uniform
Day 19: I am using my school uniform as a slate to tally the days. As the ink slowly seeps through the fabric of my shirt, I begin to understand that being a conscious Arab comes with a cost.
Day 7: I come across a live stream on social media, 1,200 Palestinian political prisoners are on their seventh day of a hunger strike against the Israeli occupation. It is the first I have heard of its occurrence. I allow myself to follow the news daily through social media while regional mainstream media and our local news channels refrain from reporting any news of the strike.
Day 13: I am engulfed by the cry for justice. I feel helplessly overwhelmed, not wanting to confront reality, but I force myself to anyway; actively searching, refreshing my phone to tune into live streams from protests, plugging in “Palestinian hunger strike” on the search engine to stay connected to the cause.
Day 18: No one else seems to know anything about what is going on. I am compelled to find a way to embody the struggle. In my first period class, I see a marker beside the whiteboard. I pick it up, not sure what I’m going to do, but then hear myself asking my classmates to each draw a vertical line on my shirt. It seems funny at first--they laugh, confused. But each time the marker touches the fabric it tells a story. It is a story of occupied countries, a story in which resisting apartheid becomes synonymous with criminality, a story we refuse to address because we have grown too apathetic to value life beyond our borders. As my classmates draw the tally, together we tell the story of the hunger strike and mourn the distance human beings have created between each other.
Day 20: My uniform has become a subject of question. Each pair of eyes that fix their gaze on the ink, I share the story of our Palestinian compatriots. The initial responses are the same: disbelief, followed by productive conversation on our moral responsibility to educate ourselves on the conflict.
Day 28: Each day the strike continues, I have asked my classmates to draw another line on the tally. While it still comes across as unsettling, it seems to no longer represent the reality of the hunger strike. My classmates are no longer interested in what it means. I am supposed to move on already. I am called in to the principal’s office. After being instructed to get a new shirt, I choose to challenge the order. As long as the hunger strike lasts, I will continue to voice the reality of the hundreds of prisoners, in hopes of recreating the sense of responsibility I originally sensed in my peers.
Day 41: A compromise deal is offered to the political prisoners and they suspend their hunger strike. I walk out of school with a clean uniform and feel whole again, but unnaturally so. I was left feeling an unspoken kind of weakness where I broke under the realisation that not all sorrows could resonate with people enough for me to expect them to lead movements.
I would need to be the one to lead, to recreate the energy that the tally once inspired. I decided to found a political streetwear brand, Silla, where fashion choices transcend superficial aesthetics by spreading a substantial message of equality and donating the profits to NGOs that advocate for social change. Through Silla, I am able to stay in touch with my generation, keeping them engaged with issues because of how they can now spend their money Silla has mobilized people to voice their opinions that align with equity and equality. Because of my adherence to justice, I was elected student government president and I use it as a platform to be vigilant in reminding my peers of their potential, inspiring them to take action and be outspoken about their beliefs. When the ink seeped through the fabric of my uniform it also stained my moral fibres, and will forever remind me that I am an agent of change.
Why This Essay Worked:
Uncommon topic and uncommon connections. Overall, this is just a stand out piece. The unique story of how the author had lines drawn on her shirt pulls the reader in. But while this story is not something you’d typically find in other people’s applications, don’t feel intimidated. Having an uncommon topic makes writing a strong essay a bit easier, but by itself is not enough for a great essay. What really elevates this piece is the connections and observations that the author makes about her classmates and the school’s collective response to distant but important political conflict. The student does a great job evoking the emotional response of her peers and beautifully articulates her own indignation with the apathy that emerges. When you write your essay, consider how you can use uncommon connections to take your reader to places they may not have expected to go.
Experimental structure. One of the many cool things about this essay is its structure, which demonstrates the quality of craft . The author uses a montage structure that emphasizes numbers and chronology, two ideas that are central to the content of the piece itself. By playing with the idea of time and distance, the applicant emphasizes some of the critical ideas in her essay and shows that she’s unafraid to think outside the box. Remember, admissions officers read tons of personal statements; an uncommon structure can go a long way in setting you apart from the crowd.
Answers the question “so what?” The thing that really brings this essay home is the last paragraph. Although the story of the uniform being marked by lines for each day of the hunger strike is fascinating, we’re not totally sure of its relevance to the life of the author until she gets to that last bit. In it, she tells us about her politically-aware fashion line and her appointment as school president. This answers the question of “so what” because it shows us that she took the lessons she learned during the strike and applied it to her life outlook/practices more broadly. After you’ve written your first draft, go back through it and make sure you’ve clearly shown what you’ve done to act upon your reflections or values .
Personal Statement Example #2 Quattro Lingue
Day 1: “Labbayka Allāhumma Labbayk. Labbayk Lā Sharīka Laka Labbayk,” we chant, sweat dripping onto the wispy sand in brutal Arabian heat, as millions of us prepare to march from the rocky desert hills of Mount Arafat to the cool, flat valleys of Muzdalifa. As we make our way into the Haram, my heart shakes. Tears rolling down my cheeks, we circumvent the Ka’ba one last time before embarking on Hajj, the compulsory pilgrimage of Islam. It became the spiritual, visceral, and linguistic journey of a lifetime.
“Ureed an Aśhtareę Hijab.”
“Al-harir aw al-Qathan?”
“La. Khizth sab’een.”
“Show me hijabs.”
“Silk or cotton?”
“How much do these cost?”
“No. Take 70.”
“Fine. Thanks Hajjah.”
In Makkah, I quickly learn shopkeepers rip off foreigners, so exchanges like this, where I only have to say a few Arabic words, make me appear local. It also connects me with real locals: the Saudi Arabian pharmacist who sells me cough syrup, the Egyptian grandmother seeking directions to the restroom, the Moroccan family who educates me on the Algerian conflict. As the sounds of Arabic swirl around me like the fluttering sands (Jamal, Naqah, Ibl, Ba’eer…), I’m reconnecting with an old friend: we’d first met when I decided to add a third language to English and Bengali.
Day 6: The tents of Mina. Temperature blazing. Humidity high. I sleep next to an old woman who just embarked on her twentieth Hajj. When I discover she’s Pakistani, I speak to her in Urdu. Her ninety-year old energy--grounded, spiritual, and non-materialistic--inspires me. So far, every day has been a new discovery of my courage, spirit, and faith, and I see myself going on this journey many more times in my life. My new friend is curious where I, a Bengali, learned Urdu. I explain that as a Muslim living in America’s divided political climate, I wanted to understand my religion better by reading an ancient account of the life of Prophet Muhammad, but Seerat-un-Nabi is only in Urdu, so I learned to read it. I was delighted to discover the resonances: Qi-yaa-mah in Arabic becomes Qi-ya-mat in Urdu, Dh-a-lim becomes Zaa-lim… Urdu, which I had previously only understood academically, was the key to developing a personal connection with a generation different from mine.
Day 8: “Fix your hair. You look silly,” my mom says in Bengali. When my parents want to speak privately, they speak our native tongue. Phrases like, “Can you grab some guava juice?” draw us closer together. My parents taught me to look out for myself from a young age, so Hajj is one of the only times we experienced something formative together. Our “secret” language made me see Bengali, which I’ve spoken all my life, as beautiful. It also made me aware of how important shared traditions are.
As I think back to those sweltering, eclectic days, the stories and spiritual connections linger. No matter what languages we spoke, we are all Muslims in a Muslim country, the first time I’d ever experienced that. I came out of my American bubble and discovered I was someone to be looked up to. Having studied Islam my whole life, I knew the ins and outs of Hajj. This, along with my love for language, made me, the youngest, the sage of our group. Whether at the Al-Baik store in our camp or the Jamarat where Satan is stoned, people asked me about standards for wearing hijab or to read the Quran out loud. I left the journey feeling fearless. Throughout my life, I’ll continue to seek opportunities where I’m respected, proud to be Muslim, and strong enough to stand up for others. The next time I go to Hajj, I want to speak two more languages: donc je peux parler à plus de gens and quiero escuchar más historias.
It’s visceral and evocative. Details about the specific resonance of Urdu words and the conversations this author shared with the people they met on their Hajj brings this essay to life. Nearly every line is full of vivid imagery and textured language . Those details make this piece fun to read and truly bring us into the world of the author. Whenever you’re writing, think about how you can engage all five senses to show, not simply tell, how you experienced something.
Uses images to convey a sense of time, place, and self. Notice how this author’s use of images and details give this personal statement a dream-like quality, hopping between spaces, people, languages, and thoughts. As a result, the author is able to talk about so many different aspects of their culture. The way the details are conveyed also speaks to the aesthetic sensibilities of the author, providing another window into who they are as a person. When you’re writing, think about how you can use imagistic language to show the reader what you care about.
Uses dialogue effectively. Dialogue isn’t always the best strategy, as it can take up a good chunk of your word count without explicitly saying anything about who you are. In this piece, however, the author does a great job of using their conversations with people they meet along their journey to convey their values and interests. Not only does the dialogue emphasize their fascination with language and cultural exchange, but it breaks up what would have been dense paragraphs into nice manageable chunks that are easier to read.
Learn how to write your personal statement here
Personal statement example #3 12.
12 is the number of my idol, Tom Brady. It’s the sum of all the letters in my name. It’s also how old I was when I started high school.
In short, I skipped two grades: first and sixth. Between kindergarten and eighth grade, I attended five schools, including two different styles of homeschooling (three years at a co-op and one in my kitchen). Before skipping, I was perennially bored.
But when I began homeschooling, everything changed. Free to move as fast as I wanted, I devoured tomes from Jefferson, Hamilton, and Madison to London, Kipling, and Twain. I wrote 10-page papers on subjects from Ancient Sparta and military history to the founding of the United States and the resounding impact of slavery. I discovered more than I ever had, kindling a lifelong joy for learning.
While high school offered welcome academic opportunities--studying two languages and taking early science APs chief among them--the social environment was a different beast. Many classmates considered me more a little brother than a true friend, and my age and laser focus on academics initially made me socially inept. I joined sports teams in spring and built better relationships, but my lack of size (5’1”) and strength relegated me to the end of the bench. Oftentimes, I secretly wished I was normal age.
That secret desire manifested itself in different ways. While I’ve loved football since I was a little kid, I soon became obsessed with personal success on the gridiron--the key, I figured, to social acceptance and the solution to my age problem. I had grown up obsessively tracking my New England Patriots. Now, instead of armchair quarterbacking, I poured hours into throwing mechanics and studying film after my homework each night. Itching to grow, I adopted Brady’s diet, cutting dairy, white flour, and processed sugar. But in the rush to change, my attitude towards academics shifted; I came to regard learning as more a job than a joy. No matter what talents I possessed, I viewed myself as a failure because I couldn’t play.
That view held sway until a conversation with my friend Alex, the fastest receiver on the team. As I told him I wished we could switch places so I could succeed on the gridiron, he stared incredulously. “Dude,” he exclaimed, “I wish I was you!” Hearing my friends voice their confidence in my abilities prompted me to reflect: I quickly realized I was discounting my academic talents to fit a social construct. Instead of pushing myself to be something I wasn’t, I needed to meld my talents and my passions. Instead of playing sports, I recognized, I should coach them.
My goal to coach professionally has already helped me embrace the academic side of the game--my side--rather than sidelining it. I have devoured scouting tomes, analyzed NFL game film, spoken with pros like Dante Scarnecchia, and even joined the American Football Coaches Association. Translating that coach’s mentality into practice, I began explaining the concepts behind different plays to my teammates, helping them see the subtleties of strategy (despite Coach Whitcher’s complaints that I was trying to steal his job). And I discovered that my intellectual understanding of the game is far more important in determining my success than my athletic tools: with the discipline, adaptability, and drive I had already developed, I’ve become a better player, student, and friend.
Physically and mentally, I’ve changed a lot since freshman year, growing 11 inches and gaining newfound confidence in myself and my abilities. Instead of fighting for social acceptance, I’m free to focus on the things I love. Academically, that change re-inspired me. Able to express my full personality without social pressure, I rededicated myself in the classroom and my community. I still secretly wish to be Tom Brady. But now, I’m happy to settle for Bill Belichick.
There’s a wonderful hook. The first line is great. It’s funny, intriguing, and doesn’t give too much away. In just the first bit we already know that the author is a football enthusiast, detail-oriented, and academically gifted. Not only does it tell us a lot about him, but it allows him to transition into the meat of his story about how his unconventional educational trajectory influenced the person he is today. Think about how you can use the first sentence or two of your personal statement to effectively introduce readers to your narrative voice and rope them into reading more.
It has a great “Aha!” moment. Great personal statements often convey growth. In this example, the author struggles to find a place for himself in high school after skipping two grades and being homeschooled for a significant portion of his life. It isn’t until his friend on the football team affirms his value that he starts to see all of the ways in which his unique skills benefit the people around him. If you think of your essay like a movie reel of your life, this moment is sort of like the climax. It’s when the mindset of the main character changes and allows him to embrace what he’s got. The anticipation and release of this “aha moment” keeps readers engaged in the piece and demonstrates your ability, as the applicant, to be self-reflective and adaptable to change.
It covers a broad time frame, but still fits in tons of nice details. This essay essentially talks about the author’s life from 5th grade to present day. He’s not focusing on one specific moment. This is absolutely something you can do as well if you want to demonstrate how you’ve grown over a longer period of time. However, notice that the author here doesn’t sacrifice depth for breadth. Even though he’s covering a pretty significant chunk of time, he still touches on great details about his favorite classes and authors, football role models, and conversations with friends. These are what make the essay great and specific to his life. If you’re going to talk about more than just one event or moment, don’t forget to highlight important details along the way.
Personal Statement Example #4 Flying
As a young child, I was obsessed with flying. I spent hours watching birds fly, noting how the angle of their wings affected the trajectory of their flight. I would then waste tons of fresh printer paper, much to the dismay of my parents, to test out various wing types by constructing paper airplanes.
One day, this obsession reached its fever pitch.
I decided to fly.
I built a plane out of a wooden clothes rack and blankets, with trash bags as precautionary parachutes. As you can imagine, the maiden flight didn’t go so well. After being in the air for a solid second, the world came crashing around me as I slammed onto the bed, sending shards of wood flying everywhere.
Yet, even as a five-year-old, my first thoughts weren’t about the bleeding scratches that covered my body. Why didn’t the wings function like a bird’s wings? Why did hitting something soft break my frame? Why hadn’t the parachutes deployed correctly? Above all, why didn’t I fly?
As I grew older, my intrinsic drive to discover why stimulated a desire to solve problems, allowing my singular passion of flying to evolve into a deep-seated love of engineering.
I began to challenge myself academically, taking the hardest STEM classes offered . Not only did this allow me to complete all possible science and math courses by the end of my junior year, but it also surrounded me with the smartest kids of the grades above me, allowing me access to the advanced research they were working on. As such, I developed an innate understanding of topics such as protein function in the brain and differential equation modeling early in high school, helping me develop a strong science and math foundation to supplement my passion for engineering.
I also elected to participate in my school’s engineering pathway . As a team leader, I was able to develop my leadership skills as I identified and utilized each member’s strength to produce the best product. I sought to make design collaborative, not limited to the ideas of one person. In major group projects, such as building a hovercraft, I served as both president and devil’s advocate, constantly questioning if each design decision was the best option, ultimately resulting in a more efficient model that performed significantly better than our initial prototype.
Most of all, I sought to solve problems that impact the real world . Inspired by the water crisis in India, I developed a water purification system that combines carbon nanotube filters with shock electrodialysis to both desalinate and purify water more efficiently and cost-effectively than conventional plants. The following year, I ventured into disease detection, designing a piezoresistive microcantilever that detected the concentration of beta-amyloid protein to medically diagnose a patient with Alzheimer’s disease, a use for cantilevers that hadn’t yet been discovered. The project received 1st Honors at the Georgia Science Fair.
Working on these two projects, I saw the raw power of engineering – an abstract idea gradually becoming reality . I was spending most of my days understanding the why behind things, while also discovering solutions to prevalent issues. In a world that increasingly prioritizes a singular solution, I am captivated by engineering’s ability to continuously offer better answers to each problem.
Thirteen years have passed since that maiden flight, and I have yet to crack physical human flight . My five-year-old self would have seen this as a colossal failure. But the intense curiosity that I found in myself that day is still with me. It has continued to push me, forcing me to challenge myself to tackle ever more complex problems, engrossed by the promise and applicability of engineering.
I may never achieve human flight . However, now I see what once seemed like a crash landing as a runway, the platform off of which my love of engineering first took flight.
The author isn’t afraid to ask questions. This writer is clearly a curious and intellectual person. The questions they ask in the first part of the essay (“Why didn’t the wings function like a bird’s wings? Why did hitting something soft break my frame? Why hadn’t the parachutes deployed correctly? Above all, why didn’t I fly?”) highlight that. In your essay, don’t shy away from asking tough questions. In the end, the author still hasn’t achieved human flight, but you can clearly see how his interest in the whys of life has propelled him to take on new engineering problems. Sometimes, you don’t need to answer the questions you pose for them to serve a purpose in your essay.
It returns back to where it started. There’s something satisfying about returning to your intro in your conclusion. In this case, the author comes back to his first flying experience and re-evaluates what the experience means to him now as well as how his thinking has evolved. Think of your essay as a circle (or maybe a blob depending on what you’re writing about). Your end should loop back to where you started after your narrative arc is mostly complete.
Uses specific jargon (but not too much). We might not know what a “piezoresistive microcantilever” is or how it relates to “beta-amyloid proteins,” but that’s not really the point of including it in this essay. By using these terms the author signals to us that he knows what he’s talking about and has a degree of expertise in engineering. On the flip side, you don’t want to use so much jargon that your reader has no idea what you’re saying. Including a little bit of field-specific language can go a long way, so you don’t want to overdo it. If you’re not sure what specific details or language to include, check out our 21 Details Exercise and see if that helps you brainstorm some ideas.
Personal Statement Example #5 Arab Spring in Bahrain
February 2011– My brothers and I were showing off our soccer dribbling skills in my grandfather’s yard when we heard gunshots and screaming in the distance. We paused and listened, confused by sounds we had only ever heard on the news or in movies. My mother rushed out of the house and ordered us inside. The Arab Spring had come to Bahrain.
I learned to be alert to the rancid smell of tear gas. Its stench would waft through the air before it invaded my eyes, urging me inside before they started to sting. Newspaper front pages constantly showed images of bloodied clashes, made worse by Molotov cocktails. Martial Law was implemented; roaming tanks became a common sight. On my way to school, I nervously passed burning tires and angry protesters shouting “Yaskut Hamad! “ [“Down with King Hamad!”]. Bahrain, known for its palm trees and pearls, was waking up from a slumber. The only home I had known was now a place where I learned to fear.
September 2013– Two and a half years after the uprisings, the events were still not a distant memory. I decided the answer to fear was understanding. I began to analyze the events and actions that led to the upheaval of the Arab Springs. In my country, religious and political tensions were brought to light as Shias, who felt underrepresented and neglected within the government, challenged the Sunnis, who were thought to be favored for positions of power. I wanted equality and social justice; I did not want the violence to escalate any further and for my country to descend into the nightmare that is Libya and Syria.
September 2014– Pursuing understanding helped allay my fears, but I also wanted to contribute to Bahrain in a positive way. I participated in student government as a student representative and later as President, became a member of Model United Nations (MUN), and was elected President of the Heritage Club, a charity-focused club supporting refugees and the poor.
As an MUN delegate, I saw global problems from perspectives other than my own and used my insight to push for compromise. I debated human rights violations in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict from an Israeli perspective, argued whether Syrian refugees should be allowed entry into neighboring European countries, and then created resolutions for each problem. In the Heritage Club, I raised funds and ran food drives so that my team could provide support for less fortunate Bahrainis. We regularly distributed boxed lunches to migrant workers, bags of rice to refugees and air conditioners to the poor.
April 2016 – The Crown Prince International Scholarship Program (CPISP) is an intensive leadership training program where participants are chosen on merit, not political ideologies. Both Shia and Sunni candidates are selected, helping to diversify the future leadership of my country. I was shortlisted to attend the training during that summer.
July 2016 – The CPISP reaffirmed for me the importance of cooperation. At first, building chairs out of balloons and skyscrapers out of sticks didn’t seem meaningful. But as I learned to apply different types of leadership styles to real-life situations and honed my communication skills to lead my team, I began to see what my country was missing: harmony based on trust. Bringing people together from different backgrounds and successfully completing goals—any goal—builds trust. And trust is the first step to lasting peace.
October 2016 – I have only begun to understand my people and my history, but I no longer live in fear. Instead, I have found purpose. I plan to study political science and economics to find answers for the issues that remain unresolved in my country. Bahrain can be known for something more than pearl diving, palm trees, and the Arab Spring; it can be known for the understanding of its people, including me.
Orients the reader in time. As you’ve seen in several other example essays already, date and time can be used very effectively to structure a piece. This author talks about an intensely political topic, which changed drastically over the course of a specific timeframe. Because of that, the use of timestamps elevates the piece and makes it easier for readers to follow the chronology of the story. If your essay topic is something that has changed significantly over time or has developed in a chronological way, this might be a great blueprint for you. Check out our Feelings and Needs Exercise to brainstorm for this kind of essay where you learn something along a narrative arc from Point A to Point B.
Gives us the right amount of context. When you’re talking about political or cultural issues or events, don’t assume that your reader has a base level of knowledge. Although you don’t want to spend too much time on the nitty gritty details of policy reform or history, you should offer your reader some sense of when something was taking place and why. The author of this piece does that very succinctly and accessibly in his “September 2013” entry.
Emphasizes the author’s role and contributions. With political topics, it’s easy to get carried away talking about the issue itself. However, remember that this is ultimately a personal statement, not a political statement. You want to make sure you talk about yourself in the essay. So, even though the author is discussing a huge event, he focuses on his participation in Model UN, CRISP, and Heritage Club. When possible, think about how big issues manifest in your day to day life as well as what you specifically are doing to take action.
READY TO START WRITING? How To Start a College Essay: 9 Surefire Techniques
Personal statement example #6 poop, animals and the environment.
I have been pooped on many times. I mean this in the most literal sense possible. I have been pooped on by pigeons and possums, house finches and hawks, egrets and eastern grays.
I don’t mind it, either. For that matter, I also don’t mind being pecked at, hissed at, scratched and bitten—and believe me, I have experienced them all.
I don’t mind having to skin dead mice, feeding the remaining red embryonic mass to baby owls. (Actually, that I do mind a little.)
I don’t mind all this because when I’m working with animals , I know that even though they probably hate me as I patch them up, their health and welfare is completely in my hands. Their chances of going back to the wild, going back to their homes, rely on my attention to their needs and behaviors.
My enduring interest in animals and habitat loss led me to intern at the Wildlife Center of Silicon Valley over the summer , and it was there that I was lucky enough to meet those opossum joeys that defecated on my shoes whenever I picked them up (forcing me to designate my favorite pair of shoes as animal hospital shoes, never to be worn elsewhere again). It was there that a juvenile squirrel decided my finger looked fit to suckle, and that many an angry pigeon tried to peck off my hands.
And yet, when the internship ended, I found myself hesitant to leave . That hesitation didn’t simply stem from my inherent love of animals. It was from the sense of responsibility that I developed while working with orphaned and injured wildlife. After all, most of the animals are there because of us—the baby opossums and squirrels are there because we hit their mothers with our cars, raptors and coyotes end up there due to secondary rodenticide poisoning and illegal traps. We are responsible for the damage, so I believe we are responsible for doing what we can to help. And of course, there is empathy—empathy for the animals who lost their mothers, their homes, their sight and smell, their ability to fly or swim. I couldn’t just abandon them.
I couldn’t just abandon them the same way I couldn’t let big oil companies completely devastate the Arctic, earth’s air conditioner . The same way I couldn’t ignore the oceans, where destructive fishing practices have been wiping out ocean life.
These are not jobs that can be avoided or left half-finished. For some, the Arctic is simply too far away, and the oceans will always teem with life, while for others these problems seem too great to ever conquer. And while I have had these same feelings many times over, I organized letter-writing campaigns, protested, and petitioned the oil companies to withdraw. I campaigned in local parks to educate people on sustaining the seas. I hold on to the hope that persistent efforts will prevent further damage.
I sometimes wonder if my preoccupation with social and environmental causes just makes me feel less guilty. Maybe I do it just to ease my own conscience, so I can tell people “At least I did something.” I hope that it’s not just that. I hope it’s because my mother always told me to treat others as I want to be treated, even if I sometimes took this to its logical extreme, moving roadkill to the bushes along the side of the road because “Ma, if I was hit by a car I would want someone to move me off the road, too.”
The upshot is that I simply cannot walk away from injustice, however uncomfortable it is to confront it . I choose to act, taking a stand and exposing the truth in the most effective manner that I think is possible. And while I’m sure I will be dumped on many times, both literally and metaphorically, I won’t do the same to others.
Another great hook. Much like the football essay, this one starts off with a bang. After hearing about all the pecking, hissing, pooping, and clawing that the author endured, chances are you want to read more. And notice how the initial pooping hook comes back in the last line of the essay.
The scope gets wider as the piece progresses. The author starts with specific details about an internship opportunity then gradually works her way to broader topics about social justice and environmental activism. Every part of the piece emphasizes her values, but they are more explicitly stated towards the end. This trajectory is nice because it allows the reader to ease themselves into the world of the author and then see how specific opportunities or interests connect to broader goals or ambitions. When you’re revising your essay, take a look at each paragraph and see if each one brings something new to the table or moves the narrative forward in some way.
It’s funny . This author does a great job of using humor as a tool to endear her to readers, but not as a crutch to lean on when she has nothing else to say. Not only is she cracking jokes about poop, but also deeply interrogating her own motivations for being interested in social and environmental activism. The balance of humor and genuine reflection is fun to read while also saying a lot about the author and her values/interests.
Personal Statement Example #7 Entoptic Phenomena
I subscribe to what the New York Times dubs “the most welcomed piece of daily e-mail in cyberspace.” Cat pictures? Kardashian updates? Nope: A Word A Day.
Out of the collection of diverse words I received, one word stuck out to me in particular.
Entoptic : relating to images that originate within the eye (as opposed to from light entering the eye). Examples of entoptic phenomena: floaters, thread-like fragments that appear to float in front of the eye but are caused by matter within the eye. (for a picture: https://wordsmith.org/words/entoptic.html)
As I read through this entry, I was suddenly transported back to the first grade, when I was playing Pokémon Go one day with my friends during recess. Our version was epic: we escaped into virtual reality with our imagination rather than our phone screens, morphing into different Pokémon to do battle.
My friend Ryan had just transformed into an invisible ghost-type Pokémon capable of evading my attacks. Flustered, I was attempting to evolve my abilities to learn to see the invisible. Between rubbing my eyes and squinting, I began to make out subtle specks in the air that drifted from place to place. Aha—the traces of the ghost Pokémon! I launched a thunderbolt straight through the air and declared a super-effective knockout.
...Of course, I never was able to explain what I was seeing to my bewildered friends that day in first grade. But after learning about entoptic phenomena, I realized that my entoptic adventure was not a hallucination but, in fact, one of my first intellectual milestones, when I was first able to connect meticulous observation of my environment to my imagination.
Nowadays, I don’t just see minuscule entoptic phenomena: I see ghosts, too. Two of their names are Larry and Kailan, and they are the top-ranked players in the Exynos League.
Exynos is the name of the elaborate basketball league I have created in my imagination over the last ten years of playing basketball on the neighborhood court in the evenings. As I play, I envision Larry and Kailan right there with me: reaching, stealing, and blocking. Undoubtedly, I might look a little silly when I throw the ball backwards as if Larry blocked my layup attempt—but imagining competitors defending me drives me to be precise in my execution of different moves and maneuvers. More than that, it is a constant motivator for all my endeavors: whether I’m researching for debate or studying for the next math contest, I am inventing and personifying new competitive ghosts that are hard at work every minute I’m off task.
But I perceive perhaps the most vivid images through music, as I tell a different story with each piece I play on the violin. When I play Bach’s lively Prelude in E Major, for example, I visualize a mouse dashing up and down hills and through mazes to escape from an evil cat (à la Tom and Jerry). But when I play Tchaikovsky’s Violin Concerto, I describe a relationship plagued by unrequited love. I revel in the intellectual challenge of coming up with a story that is not only consistent with the composer’s annotations but also resonates with my own experiences.
Between re-living Tom and Jerry episodes and shooting fadeaway three-pointers against ghosts, then, perhaps entoptic phenomena don’t tell my whole story. So, here’s my attempt—in the form of a word of the day, of course:
Pokémon Boom : a legendary form of augmented reality so pure that it is commonly mistaken for hallucination. Denizens of this world are rumored to watch Netflix re-runs without WiFi and catch many a Pikachu via psychokinesis.
It makes tons of uncommon connections. Think about the range of topics covered in this piece: words, Pokémon, basketball, ghosts, debate, math, and music (to name just a few). Yet the author uses the idea of imagination and its relation to vision to weave these disparate topics into a coherent narrative. In fact, his ability to do so emphasizes his ability to think creatively in ways that the average person may not. To find these, consider brainstorming everything you want colleges to know about you and then think of interesting ways in which these might intersect.
It doesn’t try to be overly intellectual. This essay spends most of its time talking about things that we wouldn’t traditionally consider “academic” or “college-y.” In fact, at least a third of it is devoted solely to Pokémon. The author briefly touches on his interest in math and debate, but otherwise it’s used more as a short example than a key point. The takeaway is: you don’t have to talk about classes or academic interests to write a killer essay. You absolutely can if you want to, but feel free to let your imagination run wild. If something excites or intrigues you, try writing a draft about it and see where it takes you.
It’s specific to the author. The combination of examples and insights you see in this essay truly couldn’t have been written by anyone else. Imagine you’re the admissions officer reading this application. It would absolutely stand out from the other essays in the bunch. Sure, other people play basketball. Sure, other people might like Pokémon or enjoy music. But, the particular way in which the author articulates his interests and connects them makes it memorable.
Personal Statement Example #8 The Builder & Problem Solver
Since childhood, I have been an obsessive builder and problem solver . When I was 6, I spent two months digging a hole in my backyard, ruining the grass lawn, determined to make a giant koi pond after watching a show on HGTV. After watching Castaway when I was 7, I started a fire in my backyard--to my mother's horror--using bark and kindling like Tom Hanks did. I neglected chores and spent nights locked in my room drawing pictures and diagrams or learning rubik's cube algorithms while my mother yelled at me through the door to go to sleep. I've always been compulsive about the things I set my mind to. The satisfaction of solving problems and executing my visions is all-consuming.
But my obsessive personality has helped me solve other problems, too.
When I was 8, I taught myself how to pick locks . I always dreamed of how cool it must have been inside my brother’s locked bedroom. So I didn't eat at school for two weeks and saved up enough lunch money to buy a lockpicking set from Home Depot. After I wiggled the tension wrench into the keyhole and twisted it counterclockwise, I began manipulating the tumblers in the keyhole with the pick until I heard the satisfying click of the lock and entered the room. Devouring his stash of Lemonheads was awesome, but not as gratifying as finally getting inside his room.
As the projects I tackled got bigger, I had to be more resourceful . One day in history class after reading about early American inventions, I decided to learn how to use a Spinning Jenny. When my parents unsurprisingly refused to waste $500 on an 18th century spinning wheel, I got to work visiting DIY websites to construct my own by disassembling my bike and removing the inner tube from the wheel, gathering string and nails, and cutting scrap wood. For weeks, I brushed my two cats everyday until I had gathered enough fur. I washed and soaked it, carded it with paddle brushes to align the fibers, and then spun it into yarn, which I then used to crochet a clutch purse for my grandmother on mother's day. She still uses it to this day.
In high school, my obsessive nature found a new outlet in art . Being a perfectionist, I often tore up my work in frustration at the slightest hint of imperfection. As a result, I was slowly falling behind in my art class, so I had to seek out alternate solutions to actualize the ideas I had in my head. Oftentimes that meant using mixed media or experimenting with unconventional materials like newspaper or cardboard. Eventually I went on to win several awards, showcased my art in numerous galleries and magazines, and became President of National Art Honors Society. Taking four years of art hasn't just taught me to be creative, it’s taught me that there are multiple solutions to a problem.
After high school I began to work on more difficult projects and I channeled my creativity into a different form of art - programming . I’m currently working on an individual project at the Schepens Institute at Harvard University. I'm writing a program in Matlab that can measure visual acuity and determine what prescription glasses someone would need. I ultimately plan to turn this into a smartphone app to be released to the general public.
The fact is that computer coding is in many ways similar to the talents and hobbies I enjoyed as a child—they all require finding creative ways to solve problems . While my motivation to solve these problems might have been a childlike sense of satisfaction in creating new things, I have developed a new and profound sense of purpose and desire to put my problem solving skills to better our world.
It turns a perceived weakness into a critical strength. At the beginning of the essay, the author talks about all of the problems she caused because of her obsession (ironically) with problem-solving. However, as the piece progresses, we begin to see how her childlike curiosity and interest in making things became a clear asset. It becomes a way of emphasizing values like resourcefulness, empathy, and dedication. In several other essay examples, we’ve highlighted this idea of growth. This example is no exception. Highlighting the ways in which you’ve changed or reframed your thinking is a great thing to show off to college admissions officers. If you know you’ve experienced some significant change but you’re not sure how to describe it, use our Feelings and Needs Exercise to get started.
There’s a discussion of what’s next. Many colleges are interested not only in what you’ve done, but also how you’d like to pursue your interests in the future. The author here spends some time at the end talking about her plans for a prescription-measuring smartphone app and her general interest in learning more about computer coding. While the piece has a clear conclusion, these examples highlight the ongoing nature of her educational journey and her openness to further learning. It answers the question of “ so what? ”
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Personal statement example #9 the little porch and a dog.
It was the first Sunday of April. My siblings and I were sitting at the dinner table giggling and spelling out words in our alphabet soup. The phone rang and my mother answered. It was my father; he was calling from prison in Oregon.
My father had been stopped by immigration on his way to Yakima, Washington, where he’d gone in search of work. He wanted to fulfill a promise he’d made to my family of owning our own house with a nice little porch and a dog.
Fortunately, my father was bailed out of prison by a family friend in Yakima. Unfortunately, though, most of our life savings was spent on his bail. We moved into a rented house, and though we did have a porch, it wasn’t ours. My father went from being a costurero (sewing worker) to being a water-filter salesman, mosaic tile maker, lemon deliverer, and butcher.
Money became an issue at home, so I started helping out more. After school I’d rush home to clean up and make dinner. My parents refused to let me have a “real” job, so on Saturday afternoons I’d go to the park with my older brother to collect soda cans. Sundays and summertime were spent cleaning houses with my mother.
I worked twice as hard in school. I helped clean my church, joined the choir, and tutored my younger sister in math. As tensions eased at home, I returned to cheerleading, joined a school club called Step Up , and got involved in my school’s urban farm, where I learned the value of healthy eating. Slowly, life improved. Then I received some life-changing news.
My father’s case was still pending and, due to a form he’d signed when he was released in Yakima, it was not only him that was now in danger of being deported, it was my entire family. My father’s lawyer informed me that I’d have to testify in court and in fact our stay in the US was now dependent on my testimony.
The lawyer had an idea: I had outstanding grades and recommendation letters. If we could show the judge the importance of my family remaining here to support my education, perhaps we had a chance. So I testified.
My father won his case and was granted residency.
Living in a low-income immigrant household has taught me to appreciate all I’ve been given. Testifying in court helped me grow as a person, has made me more open-minded and aware of the problems facing my community. And my involvement in the urban farm has led me to consider a career as a nutritionist.
Though neither of my parents attended college, they understand that college is a key factor to a bright future and therefore have been very supportive. And though we don't yet have the house with the small porch and the dog, we're still holding out hope.
I believe college can help.
Drops us in a moment in time. The beginning of this essay is a bit disorienting because it places us in a scene within the author’s life as they experience it. We don’t know all of the information, so we’re a bit confused, but that confusion makes us want to read more. This is a great tactic when done well because it helps us identify with the author and piques our curiosity.
Shows the agency, independence, and resilience of the applicant. The author here goes through a lot over the course of the essay. They have to face very real fears about incarceration, deportation, and financial instability on a daily basis. Talking about the ways in which they approached these obstacles highlights their ability to think clearly under pressure and make the most of what they have. If you have faced significant hardships , worked through them, learned valuable lessons, and want to share these with colleges, the personal statement can be a good place to do that. If you’d prefer to write about something else in your personal statement, but you’d still like to mention your challenges somewhere in your application, you can instead briefly describe them in your Additional Information section. If you want to write about struggles that are particularly related to COVID-19, check out our guide for specific suggestions.
Era el primer domingo de abril. Mis hermanos y yo estábamos sentados en la mesa del comedor riendonos y deletreando palabras en nuestra sopa de letras. El teléfono sonó y mi madre respondió. Era mi padre. El estaba llamando desde la cárcel en Oregon.
Mi padre había sido detenido por inmigración en su camino a Yakima, Washington, donde había ido en busca de trabajo. Quería cumplir una promesa que le había hecho a mi familia de tener nuestra propia casa con un pequeño y agradable porche y un perro.
Afortunadamente, mi padre fue rescatado de la cárcel por un amigo de la familia en Yakima. Pero lamentablemente la mayor parte de nuestros ahorros se gastó en su fianza . Nos mudamos a una casa alquilada, y aunque teníamos un porche, no era nuestra. Mi padre pasó de ser un costurero (trabajador de coser) de ser un vendedor de filtros de agua, fabricante de baldosas de mosaicos, libertador de limones, y carnicero.
El dinero se convirtió en un problema en casa, así que comencé a ayudar más. Después de la escuela llegaba temprano a mi hogar para limpiar y preparar la cena. Mis padres se negaron a dejarme tener un trabajo "real.” Por lo tanto, los sábados por la tarde me iba al parque con mi hermano mayor para recoger latas de refrescos. En domingos y en el verano limpiaba casas con mi madre.
Trabajé dos veces más duro en la escuela. Ayudé a limpiar mi iglesia, me uní al coro, y dí clases particulares a mi hermana menor en las matemáticas. Mientras las tensiones disminuyeron en casa, volví al grupo de porristas, me uní a un club escolar llamado Step Up, y me involucré en la granja urbana de mi escuela, donde aprendí el valor de la alimentación saludable. Poco a poco, la vida mejoraba. Luego recibí una noticia que cambia la vida.
El caso de mi padre todavía estaba pendiente, y debido a una forma que había firmado cuando fue liberado en Yakima, no sólo era él que estaba ahora en peligro de ser deportado, era toda mi familia. El abogado de mi padre me informó que yo tendría que declarar ante los tribunales, y de hecho, nuestra estancia en los EE.UU. ahora dependia de mi testimonio.
El abogado tuvo una idea: yo tenía sobresalientes calificaciones y cartas de recomendaciones. Si pudiéramos demostrar a la juez la importancia de que mi familia se quedará aquí para apoyar a mi educación, tal vez tuviéramos una oportunidad. Así que di mi testimonio.
Mi padre ganó su caso y se le concedió la residencia.
Vivir en un hogar de inmigrantes de bajos ingresos me ha enseñado a apreciar todo lo que se me ha dado . Dar mi testimonio en el tribunal me ha ayudado a crecer como persona y me ha hecho más consciente de los problemas que se enfrentan en mi comunidad. Y mi implicación en la granja urbana me ha llevado a considerar una carrera como nutricionista .
Aunque ninguno de mis padres asistieron a la universidad, ellos entienden que la universidad es un factor clave para un futuro brillante, y por lo tanto, han sido un gran apoyo . Y aunque todavía no tenemos la casa con el pequeño porche y el perro, todavía estamos tendiendo la esperanza.
Creo que la universidad puede ayudar.
Personal Statement Example #10 Life As an Undocumented Student
At six years old, I stood locked away in the restroom. I held tightly to a tube of toothpaste because I’d been sent to brush my teeth to distract me from the commotion. Regardless, I knew what was happening: my dad was being put under arrest for domestic abuse. He’d hurt my mom physically and mentally, and my brother Jose and I had shared the mental strain. It’s what had to be done.
Living without a father meant money was tight, mom worked two jobs, and my brother and I took care of each other when she worked. For a brief period of time the quality of our lives slowly started to improve as our soon-to-be step-dad became an integral part of our family. He paid attention to the needs of my mom, my brother, and me. But our prosperity was short-lived as my step dad’s chronic alcoholism became more and more recurrent. When I was eight, my younger brother Fernando’s birth complicated things even further. As my step-dad slipped away, my mom continued working, and Fernando’s care was left to Jose and me. I cooked, Jose cleaned, I dressed Fernando, Jose put him to bed. We did what we had to do.
As undocumented immigrants and with little to no family around us, we had to rely on each other. Fearing that any disclosure of our status would risk deportation, we kept to ourselves when dealing with any financial and medical issues. I avoided going on certain school trips, and at times I was discouraged to even meet new people. I felt isolated and at times disillusioned; my grades started to slip.
Over time, however, I grew determined to improve the quality of life for my family and myself.
Without a father figure to teach me the things a father could, I became my own teacher. I learned how to fix a bike, how to swim, and even how to talk to girls. I became resourceful, fixing shoes with strips of duct tape, and I even found a job to help pay bills. I became as independent as I could to lessen the time and money mom had to spend raising me.
I also worked to apply myself constructively in other ways. I worked hard and took my grades from Bs and Cs to consecutive straight A’s. I shattered my school’s 1ooM breaststroke record, and learned how to play the clarinet, saxophone, and the oboe. Plus, I not only became the first student in my school to pass the AP Physics 1 exam, I’m currently pioneering my school’s first AP Physics 2 course ever.
These changes inspired me to help others. I became president of the California Scholarship Federation, providing students with information to prepare them for college, while creating opportunities for my peers to play a bigger part in our community. I began tutoring kids, teens, and adults on a variety of subjects ranging from basic English to home improvement and even Calculus. As the captain of the water polo and swim team I’ve led practices crafted to individually push my comrades to their limits, and I’ve counseled friends through circumstances similar to mine. I’ve done tons, and I can finally say I’m proud of that.
But I’m excited to say that there’s so much I have yet to do. I haven’t danced the tango, solved a Rubix Cube, explored how perpetual motion might fuel space exploration, or seen the World Trade Center. And I have yet to see the person that Fernando will become.
I’ll do as much as I can from now on. Not because I have to. Because I choose to.
Again, the author shows growth. We’ve said it a couple times, but it’s nice to highlight growth when possible. Although the author’s family circumstances and immigrant status meant he had to face significant hardships, he learned how to take care of themselves and use his obstacles as motivation to succeed. We see concrete signs of growth in the way he improved his grades and got more involved in school clubs like the California Scholarship Federation as well as athletic extracurriculars like swimming. Essentially, he shows how he made the best of his situation.
The author’s curiosity is palpable. One of the best things about this essay is the very end. The writer has already shown us how much he has had to overcome and how much he’s thrived in high school despite his circumstances. However, he doesn’t just stop. He tells us about all the other things he hopes to do and conveys a clear excitement at the possibility for learning in the future. There’s something lovely about seeing someone who is excited for what the future might hold. It endears him to readers and demonstrates his natural inclination to continue pushing forward, no matter what life might throw his way. Plus, it’s worth noting that he ends on the quality of autonomy , which was his #1 value when you completed the Values Exercise .
Personal Statement Example #11 Umbra
Umbra: the innermost, darkest part of a shadow
The fifth set of chimes rings out and I press my hands against the dusty doors. My nose itches, but scratching would smudge the little black whiskers painted onto my face. I peer through the tiny crack between the cupboard doors, trying to glimpse the audience. The sixth set of chimes, my cue, begins, and I pop onto stage, the brilliant lights flooding my vision. Clara and Drosselmeyer stand to my left, and in front of me lies an endless ocean of audience. I pause a moment, taking it in, then do my best mouse scurry towards the wings. I love performing and dancing to connect with an audience. I dance to inspire others, to share my joy and passion, and because I love the rush of excitement while I’m surrounded by the stage lights .
My hands, covered in grease, hurt terribly as I help another girl with the wire crimper. We force the handles together, and our Anderson connector is finally ready. People scurry around us—several students are riveting metal, assisted by my father (for me, robotics is a family activity), while another pair, including my younger brother, works on assembling the drive train. The next room is filled with shouted Java commands and autonomous code. I’m working on a system that will focus on the reflective tape on our target, allowing the camera to align our shooting mechanism. I love the comradery in robotics, the way teams support each other even amid intense competitions. I love seeing the real world application of knowledge, and take pride in competing in front of hundreds of people. Most of all, I love spending time with my family, connecting with them in our own unique way. Back in the electrical room, I plug in my connector, and the room is filled with bright green light .
I pull on a pair of Nitrile gloves before grabbing my forceps. I carefully extract my latest Western Blot from its gel box, placing it on the imaging system. I’m searching for the presence of PARP1 and PLK1 in dysplasia and tumor cells, especially in reference to DNA damage and apoptosis. I’ve already probed the blot with a fluorescent reagent for imaging. On the screen, I see my bands of protein expression, the bands of red light showing PARP1 and the bands of green showing PLK1. I haven’t been doing research for long, but I’ve already fallen in love with constantly having something new to learn.
Christmas carols play softly as I chase my little brother around the living room, trying to get him to wear a Santa hat. The smell of tamales wafts through the air as my mom and grandmother stand over the pot of mole sauce. The ornament boxes are opened on the floor, each one special to our family, representing our adventures, our love, our history. My dad is winding a mile-long string of lights around the tree, covering the room with a soft glow. My homemade gifts—hats, scarves, blankets I’ve knitted—lie messily wrapped beneath the tree. My family has made tamales on Christmas Eve for generations, and each year it’s a way for us to connect to both each other and our heritage.
Light will usually travel in a perfectly straight line, but if it comes in contact with something it can bounce off it or bend around it, which is why people make shadows. The very innermost part of that shadow, the umbra, is where no light has bent around you—it has completely changed direction, bounced off. People are constantly changing and shaping the light around them, and never notice. But in hindsight, I see it’s the lights that have shaped me.
It demonstrates craft. This author went through 10+ drafts of this essay, and her effort shows in her refined language and structure. She uses images to beautiful effect, drawing us into each experience in her montage, from the moments on stage to robotics to the lab to her family. She also demonstrates craft through the subtlety of her structural thread—we’ve bolded light above, to make it more obvious, but notice how she essentially saves what would traditionally be her introduction for her final paragraph (with some beautiful, refined phrasing therein), and uses “Umbra” and light to thread the paragraphs. This is very hard to pull off well, and is why she went through so many revisions, to walk a fine line between subtlety and clarity.
Show and tell. Rather than just “ Show, don’t tell ,” in a college essay, we think it’s useful to show your reader first, but then use some “telling” language to make sure they walk away with a clear understanding of what’s important to you. For example, this author shows her values through details/actions/experiences—more on values in a sec—then uses the ends of her body paragraphs to more directly tell us about those values and reflect on what they mean to her. And her final paragraph both shows and tells, using language that offers strong symbolism, while also ending with some poetic phrasing that tells us how this all comes together (in case we somehow missed it).
Values and insight/reflection. Because values are core to your essay and application, we’re going to end this post discussing them one more time. Notice how each paragraph demonstrates different values (art/performing, community, engagement, inspiration, joy/passion in the first paragraph alone) and reflects on how or why those values are important to her. We walk away with a strong sense of who this student is and what she would bring to our college campus.
Personal Statement Example #12 Angry brown girl, feminist, singer, meme-lover
My Twitter bio reads: angry brown girl, feminist, singer, meme-lover. You will notice live-tweets of my feminist Pride and Prejudice thoughts, analyses of Hamilton’s power for musical representation, and political memes. Just as my posts bring together seemingly disparate topics, I believe there is a vibrancy that exists at the multidimensional place where my interests intersect.
Growing up as a debater and musician, it was easy to see the two as distinct entities where I had to make unequivocal choices. At the start of my junior year, I decided not to participate in the musical in order to work for Emerge California, an organization that helps Democratic women run for office. There I learned about data science, gender distributions in public office, and how to work with the evil printer. I also halted my voice and piano lessons to focus on building my student-led non-profit, Agents of Change. As someone who has diverted my energy into community activism, I can attest to the power of grassroots movements. It has been so rewarding to measure the impact that my team has had on my community. But even so, I felt that I was losing touch with the music that was such a profound part of me.
I found a new way of being when I started combining my artsy and political sides. I took an intensive class on protest music, where I learned how political movements have been shaped by the music of their time. While in the class, we were asked to compose our own songs. I am not a songwriter, but I am an activist, and I embraced the opportunity to turn music into an outlet for my political beliefs. As a first-generation American, I am dedicated to raising awareness about refugee rights and immigration. My songs about the Syrian Refugee Crisis let me find a way to bring the two sides of me together and gave me a rush that neither music nor politics by themselves would have provided.
This introduction led me to apply to the Telluride Association Protest Poetics program, where I dove deeper into my own identity. I wrote songs about police brutality and the ways that as a non-black person of color I am implicated in instances of subliminal racism. Over the course of the program, as I became more familiar with the visual, literary, and performance art we analyzed, I slowly started to realize that, though I confront colorism, jokes about Indian culture, and intra-community violence in some form every day, my proximity to whiteness still gives me immense amounts of privilege. I have come to know that this means I have a responsibility to both be at the forefront of movements, and conscious of not stepping over the voices of other intersectional identities. I hope that the music I choose to perform and the way I live my life can amplify, not overwrite, any of the struggles that others deal with daily.
Last year, I had another opportunity to use music to pay homage to an issue I care deeply about. In my South Asian community, mental health is an issue that is often papered over. When a member of my school community committed suicide, I was asked to sing “Amazing Grace” for the school to both unify and honor the student. Though I thought that I had really understood the power of music, holding that space for my entire school had a profound resonance that I still don’t fully understand.
My voice is an instrument for change -- whether it be through me raising my hand to contribute to a discussion in a classroom, speaking out against gun violence at a rally, or singing at an event of solidarity. I know that someday my voice, in conjunction with many other unique voices and perspectives, will make a difference.
Get clear on the story you’re telling. Debate? Political organizing? Musical theater? Protest music? This writer probably had a lot more to say about all of those experiences. But we don’t get the whole backstory about her journey toward musical theater. Why? Because she’s clear on what this story is about (she may have even written a logline to get that clarity…). We don’t need a lot of context about her decision “not to participate in the musical” because this essay isn’t about her experiences with musical theater; it’s about her forging a new identity by combining seemingly disparate interests (e.g., music and political advocacy). Telling us every musical she’s ever been in won’t help us “get” what she’s saying in this essay (and she has the activities list to tell us that…). Instead, she shows us only the details relevant to her trying to balance a love of music with her newfound interests: she decides “not to participate in the musical,” and she “halts voice and piano lessons.”
Bridge the gap (between paragraphs). Stronger essays have paragraphs with clear relationships to one another. This writer uses various phrases to achieve that clarity. When she starts paragraph four with “this introduction,” you understand that she’s referring to her “songs about the Syrian Refugee Crisis” from the end of paragraph three. Similarly, she resolves the problem of her “losing touch” with music at the end of paragraph two by beginning paragraph three by stating she found a “new way of being…” She’s using those key moments of transition to tell her readers: hey, I’m going somewhere with all these ideas, you can trust me.
You don’t have to have all the answers . When the writer tells us that she sang “Amazing Grace” to honor someone in her community who died by suicide, she gets vulnerable—she says that she still doesn't “fully understand” the effects of that moment. In admitting that she’s still coming to terms with that experience, she comes off as a mature, reasoned person who thinks deeply about lived experience. No one reading your essay is going to expect you to have fully processed every difficult experience you’ve ever had in your life. That would be outrageous. What they will appreciate seeing, though, is that you’ve reflected deeply on lived experiences. Sometimes reflection yields answers. Sometimes it just yields more questions. Either is okay—just don’t feel like you need to have everything figured out to write about it (or that you need to pretend like you do).
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4 Great Personal Statement Examples and Why They Worked
by Will Geiger , on Jul 22, 2021 11:46:24 AM
In the admissions process, most students will encounter the dreaded personal statement. Whether you are using the Common App, the Coalition Application, or a college-specific application, you’re bound to encounter the personal statement. While a personal statement may seem daunting, the very best personal statements will begin with moments from your life. And don’t worry, these moments can be from everyday experiences like a memorable meal or a walk around your neighborhood.
Keep on reading for four great personal statement examples and our expert analysis on why they worked!
Here’s what we will be covering:
- What is the personal statement?
- Essay #1 by Kenny L. - Accepted to Cornell University
- Essay #2 by Sarah S. - Accepted to Smith College
- Essay #3 by Michael - Accepted to Howard University
- Essay #4 by Romain D. - Accepted to the University of Chicago
Best practices for your personal statement
What is a personal statement.
Essentially, the personal statement is an essay that allows the admissions reader to learn more about you as a person . This means that they should reveal something about who you are in both the content and voice of the essay.
You might be wondering at this point, is the personal statement going to be the same on all applications? What if I have to use a few applications--will the personal statement be consistent?
The specifics of personal statements can vary depending on the application. The Common App will give you up to 650 words, while you will only get 500 words on the Coalition Application. Don’t stress though, in these situations students can usually edit their longer personal statement to fit a lower word count limit.
Different applications will also give you different essay prompts. The good news is that most of the prompts are general and many of the applications--including Common App and the Coalition Application--will allow you to write about anything.
Why do personal statements matter?
College admissions is equal parts art and science. While data points like GPA, test scores, and number of AP or honors classes matter, admissions officers are also interested in learning more about applicants as human beings. College essays are one of the primary ways that the admissions officers get to know you as a person. This is an opportunity for the admissions officer to learn about you outside of your application, grades, and test scores.
According to a survey of admissions officers by the National Association of College Admission Counseling , essays were the next most important factors for admissions decisions after grades and test scores. With more and more colleges going test-optional, this means that essays are even more important factors for admissions.
Now that we have that covered, let’s dive into some of the essay examples and analysis!
Essay #1 by Kenny L. - Cornell University
“Vote Paul Lee for District Leader!” My face brightened as morning commuters passed by and took flyers from my hand. As they turned the corner, they carelessly tossed the flyers away. My brows furrowed. Is this what I woke up at seven in the morning for? To hand out flyers to indifferent strangers who won’t give the time of day, nevertheless a second glance? I was just a background character, a boy handing out flyers in the scene of a lively street. I was a mannequin, easily passed by unnoticed.
After my flyer shift had ended, my boss took me out to lunch at a diner. My eyes were darting back and forth, unsure of the situation. My boss slouched casually in his seat across from me. I had only met him twice before and instinctively, I began surreptitiously examining him. I slyly lowered my menu and peered over the “wall.” He wore a simple white polo shirt and his greying hair was brushed back in an old 60s hairstyle. He seemed like just an average Chinese man. The waiter came and pulled me out of my idle thoughts. As we made our orders, he put down his menu, and said, “how about a story?”
He opened with a story about his stint with the army, when he brashly enlisted at the Chinatown recruitment center. Next was a lighthearted tale of his moment of “stardom” when he debuted on the silver screen in Hollywood. Finally, the curtains closed with a story of an “extreme makeover” of his parents’ antique store to a game shop.
I vicariously experienced the vivid fragments of his past through his stories. I felt the hope and energy of a young man slightly short in stature, but big in heart, enlisting in the army, the excitement of a risk taker trying to make it big in Hollywood, and the freedom of a high spirited man who followed his hobby and turned his parents’ antique store to a game shop.
In my mind Paul Lee had transcended the typical mannequin of an average Chinese man. I had inadvertently made the same oversight as the people that passed me on the street. I fit him into a general mold without trying to see him as an individual, just as they did to me. Looking around me, I had been blind. Every person in the room had their own unique story and character just like Paul had his, and I had mine.
Upon my realization, I found the courage to convey my own unique character to Paul through my ideas. There is a balance between practicality, creativity, and fun that I have come to hold at the highest value in my life. I proposed to Paul an idea that was the embodiment of all three: to host carnival games at the Pavilion with a voter registration stand on the side. Instead of discarding my idea as I had expected, Paul encouraged it. Throughout the next week, the volunteers worked to create flyers, brainstorm ideas for games, and gather prizes. However, on the day it all came together, it rained. Discouraged, I looked to Paul only to see that he was still in high spirits. In that moment I knew I couldn’t be the same defeated, overlooked mannequin handing out flyers in the street. Optimism and vitality surged through the mannequin within me. I wiped the scowl from my face and proudly presented to him the six registration forms we received that day with a smile. The mannequin had come to life; I was no longer a background character but the center of the scene.
Story2 College Coach Explains: Why This Essay Works
Remember, regardless of the prompt the essay is about you. The essays let colleges know what they will be missing if they don’t admit you. In essays about influences, students sometimes make a stronger case for the person who has influenced them than for themselves. Kenny avoids this common mistake.
From the start of the essay Kenny shows us his initiative and enthusiasm as we hear his voice campaigning, “Vote Paul Lee for District Leader!” Kenny gives us enough detail to understand how Mr. Lee has influenced him, but focuses the essay on his own actions. He takes a unique approach to voter registration, setting up carnival games to attract registrants. Through his actions we see a fun-loving, creative problem solver with attention to detail and perseverance. We understand his influence and have a strong reason to believe in him as a college student.
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Essay #2 by Sarah S. - Smith College
New York City, 9pm. Friends are laughing in the next room squeezed around the dinner table, as I try to whip something up. I put the water to boil, adding salt. As I wait, the steam begins to twist, to twirl, filling up the kitchen. I pause to wipe the sweat from my brow.
At eight o’clock in the morning my shirt is already moist. Sweat rolls down my face, every inch of my body. A typical morning in Perugia.
Sauté the garlic in olive oil on medium heat.
The gravel in the driveway crunches and crackles, “E’ arrivato zio Mario!” I run barefoot, almost tripping down the stairs, all the way to his car arms outstretched. His hair, grayer this year, falls over his tanned face. His hands rest on his belt, one finger cut off above the joint. I pull on my boots and he climbs onto the tractor. He hauls me onto his lap holding me tightly. The tractor roars, an olive branch lightly grazes my face, the grasshoppers go silent. At the back of the field, Mario climbs up a ladder and starts trimming the tips of the branches, the polloni. I take them and pile them in heaps. The trees are brimming with olives this year.
Chop the tomatoes, put them to simmer with the garlic, add salt and pepper. At noon, I walk back towards the house to find my Nonna in the garden, wearing a flowered apron. She tells me puoi portarmi il cestino un po’ più vicino? “bring that bucket a little closer, would you?” She fills it up with plump, juicy, purplish-red tomatoes, a meal in themselves.
Pour in the linguini, stir fresh basil into the tomatoes. We break off stems of basil. Nonna says, vedi si devono prendere quelli pieni di fiori, così la pianta può crescere. “See we have to take the ones with the most flowers on them, so the plant grows.” We climb the small hill with a full bucket of pomodori. It’s hot.
Dice the mozzarella, strain the linguini, pour the sauce over them, and add the mozzarella.
I follow Nonna into the kitchen trying to avoid the gang of mothers, uncles and aunts. I reach for the mozzarella and it melts in my mouth; creamy, smooth, dripping, flavor that overloads my senses. I thought I was so clever, but as I turn around “Sarah can you set the table? And stop eating all the mozzarella!” They caught me. I take the tablemats and retreat to the step outside. The neighbor’s cat rubs against my legs. I tear off a small piece of cheese and feed it to her.
Serve right out of the pot. “Hey guys,” I call over their laughter, “help me set the table, dinner is ready!”
The ultimate goal of a college essay is to reveal who you are as a human being. Simple moments, like a spaghetti dinner with friends, can say a lot about a person. Sarah organizes her essay around the steps of a recipe and shows us two moments from different parts of her life. In doing so, she removes all interpretations and judgments from her writing. She never states a lesson she learned or tells us about her traits. When you tell the reader what to think, they lose the ability to connect with you.
Instead, Sarah presents us with details, dialogue, and descriptions that let the reader get to know her. From stealing bites of mozzarella to dialogue in Italian to the description of her uncle with one finger cut off above the joint, we are given loads of details that set her story apart and make it impossible to forget.
Essay #3 by Michael - Howard University
There was a girl and her name was Michael. This girl first picked up a camera when she was seven. It was a point-and-shoot camera, but it was hers. The upgraded camera she got for her 15th birthday was hers also. And so was my book. One summer she was in Florida. Her hair was dripping from the pool water, her skin shimmered in the blazing sunlight, and her eyes squinted at her stack of books. She picked the smallest of the bunch; she picked mine. The one labeled “Hawthorne.” It only had one story and she read it quickly. “Hm,” she said as she finished the first time. She said, “What?” when she finished the second time, and at the third ending she raised her sunglasses over her head and squinted at the sun. “Beautiful,” she murmured. She grabbed a pencil and wrote, “There is no absolute beauty. There is only what you make of it” on the last page of my story.
Back home she was entering another photo contest. This one had a theme of beauty. She booked the studio for two hours and brought in her friend. Her friend had high cheekbones, emerald eyes, curly red hair, and lips that sat outward. She was short but had the body of a dancer. When she moved everyone watched, mouths slightly ajar. Her muscles flexed and released with ease. Michael placed the girl in a wooden chair, turned her face upward toward the enormous lights and took a photo of every angle she could possibly get. She switched from black and white to high resolution, back to black and white. When the photos developed she never picked the winning shot for herself. “This is the one,” said her teacher.
“Wow, you don’t need to take any more pictures, Michael, this is it,” said her peers. Michael went home that night and gazed at the photo. Her brow wrinkled and eyes narrowed. She put the photo in her drawer and went to sleep. The next day Michael set out with her most basic camera, the one that is always on her person. She’s walking up 34th street and sees a woman. This woman had dirty skin and dirty clothes. Her blackened flingers held a sign that said, “I’m hungry.” Her eyes were vacant, and she looked to the side. Her eyes were trained in that direction and never moved. Michael took out her camera and took a quick picture, just one. She went to develop it that same day and put it in a folder to take home. On her bed, crosslegged, she sat looking at the red-haired girl. Her eyes cast upward, her cheek bones highlighted; Michael’s mom gazed at the picture and said, “That should be in Vogue.” Michael pulled out the other picture, of the hungry woman and placed it next to the other. Her eyes widened as she saw how the light created a shadow over the woman’s face. There was no dirt, just an eye looking away. “Now that,” her mother said, “shouldn’t be. Easy choice, huh?”
“Yes, it is,” Michael said. She placed her finger over the shadow and tapped the photo four times. She smiled. She folded the color image in half and put it in her drawer; she placed the photo of the woman in a protective folder and placed it in her bag. As she laid down that night she smirked into the glow of the TV. She said, “There is no beauty. There is only what we make of it,” and closed her eyes.
Great college essays draw you in from the beginning, take you on a clear journey, and make you want more at the end. At Story2, we call this structure Magnet, Pivot, and Glow. It keeps readers engaged by ensuring a strong sense of purpose and direction throughout the essay:
- The Magnet of this essay is simple but effective. The tense catches the reader off guard, as does the surprise of a girl being named Michael. We want to find out who this person is.
- The Pivot is the point where Michael needs to make a choice that will reveal her character. She has two photographs to decide between and is being heavily pressured to choose the one that represents conventional ideas of beauty.
- The Glow stays in the moment and ends with action. We hear her voice. It answers the question in the beginning: who is this girl named Michael? Now, we know that she is a strong woman who will make her own decisions and stand up for what she believes in. The influence of Hawthorne is clear and there is no need for a summary or a lesson learned.
Essay #4 by Romain D. - University of Chicago
Try to find us on these pages of our lives, and I believe we are hard to distinguish.
As Wenda often reminds me, traveling allows us to discover who we really are by giving us the opportunity to blend in and inspire ourselves from imitating the best in other people. Here and there I collect tools that I find useful—rope, candles, an under-water compass, along with open-mindedness, humility, responsibility, drive, and curiosity—and add them to the arsenal I carry along the road in my backpack and in myself.
One evening, after an intense day of traveling in Beijing, walking along the Great Wall and contemplating the remnants of China’s glorious history in the blistering cold, a couple of my friends and I decided to end the day by celebrating our western heritage at the nearest McDonald’s. The dark cold night had sent the streets’ beggars into the warm 24/7 restaurant. The passive look on employees’ faces as they cleaned the improvised hotel suggested this happened on a regular basis. People were lying or sleeping on every chair and bench, so we settled on the floor, in the middle of the room. We ordered a few extra burgers, and after a few bites, one by one the beggars woke up and asked us to share. We insisted they join our circle. At first they resisted. As we exposed our broken Chinese, they opened up and challenged us at a game like Yatzee, that required throwing 5 dice around and scoring high multiples. Next some young Western and Chinese kids joined in. The better generation at languages and breaking social barriers, the kids took the game to new dimensions. We ended up spending the night in our sleeping bags on the floor under the disdainful stare of the confused McDonald employees. In the end our American burgers gave us an authentic taste of China
When an environment becomes too familiar, we change pages. Whether it was wearing the same letters as my American brothers in California, acting the part of a professional fund manager when interviewing the executive board of major corporations, or tutoring Chinese children in English, the Waldo within me adapts, challenges himself and discovers something new about the people around him.
Who knows where life will take me next? I have heard of a particular platform of intellectual and cultural exchange that gathers the most interesting minds from all around the world. The institution is praised for its ability to convey experience and wisdom through round tables of interaction and Socratic rhetoric. I believe it is a place where, as my Chicago family and friends would say, “finding passionate people is easier done than said.” In other words, it is/would be a wonderful page to be on, completely invisible and singular at the same time
With a prompt like, “Where’s Waldo?” it’s very easy to get lost in your ideas. The two biggest mistakes students make writing college essays are staying too general and writing about thoughts rather than actions. Romain avoids this by becoming Waldo. This narrative technique allows him to tell the story through his unique perspective and in his authentic voice.
Romain uses a specific moment to show readers who he is. The night spent at McDonald’s gives the reader reasons to believe in Romain as a person and community member. We see Romain as a compassionate and curious person who brings people together, explores new ideas, and welcomes the opportunity to teach and learn. He uses his fourth paragraph to give the audience the scope of his experiences and the fifth paragraph to make a specific connection to the University of Chicago. However, the heart of his essay is the third paragraph, which takes the reader into a moment and gives powerful details that reveal his character.
Now you should be feeling ready to tackle your own personal statements! The above personal statement examples are powerful and yours can be, too! That’s why, before we wrap up, we want to recap three of the most important best practices to follow.
1. Strong writing
Grammar is certainly important, but it is more important to write with the power of storytelling—using description, detail, and dialogue instead of interpretations, generalizations, and cliches.
2. Unique perspective
Focus on specific moments when you learned a key lesson, changed in a fundamental way, or made a difference in the lives of others to reveal your character strengths through your actions.
3. Authentic voice
Tell your story out loud to capture your authentic voice—the unique idiosyncrasies that make you you! Psychologists call this term “mirroring” and it is a scientifically-proven way to connect with others. Beware of over-editing your essays from sounding like an individual to something generic.
After grades and test scores, your essays are going to be the most important part of your college application. Essays can be the difference between admission officers saying, “we’ve absolutely got to have this student!” and “this student could be a good fit here.” These essays, our Story2 coaches’ expert analysis, and best practices will give you a great foundation as you begin to write your own personal statements.
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Will Geiger is co-founder of Scholarships360.org. A graduate of Wake Forest and Penn, Will was previously Senior Assistant Director of Admissions at Kenyon College where he personally reviewed over 10,000 admissions applications and essays and oversaw the merit aid program; Associate Director of College Counseling at a high school in New Haven, Connecticut; and Marketing Manager at Story2.
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College Personal Statement Examples and Writing Tips
So, you have started your college application process and are hitting a wall. You got your high school transcripts and letters of recommendation in order. Your SAT scores are on the way. But your college personal statement is sitting there unfinished, and the deadline is coming fast!
But have no fear!
Because Wordvice edits thousands of essays every admissions season, we have seen some of the best (and worst) college application essays out there. This guide will tell you how to write the best personal statement for college possible for your college application. Included are examples of successful college personal statements and analyses.
What we will learn here about writing a personal statement for college:
- What is a college personal statement?
- How important is the personal statement for college admissions?
- Why do colleges require a personal statement?
- Read examples of successful personal statements
- Successful personal statement example & analysis
- Essay editing services can improve your personal statement
Personal Statements and Other College Admissions Essays
Even knowing what specific terms regarding college admissions documents means can be a bit confusing. To clear up any questions, here is a brief rundown of some main college application terms that are often used:
- Personal statement for college — an essay you write to show a college admissions committee who you are and why you deserve to be admitted to their school. It’s worth noting that, unlike “college essay,” this term is used for application essays for graduate school as well.
- College admissions essay— this is essentially the same as a college personal statement. (I’ll be using the terms interchangeably.) It can also include supplemental essays or widely-used essays such as the Common App Essay .
- Essay prompt— a question or statement that your college essay is meant to respond to.
- Supplemental essay— an additional school or program-specific essay beyond the basic personal statement. Some schools require both a supplemental essay and a personal statement. Check your college’s application guidelines to determine which specific admissions essays are necessary for submission.
What is the personal statement for college?
The college personal statement is a key part of the college application and a key factor among admissions committees. It is the one opportunity for high school students applying to college to sell themselves on their own terms and using their own words.
Personal statements for college differ from SAT scores and academic transcripts, which are more standardized. Further, while letters of recommendation touch on many of the same issues as personal statements, they are not written by you but by a recommender.
A focused and effective personal statement for college serves three major functions:
1. Personal statements give broad, comprehensive insights into your personal and academic background.
Ultimately, your academic, personal, and even professional background can be the determining factor in your admission to any college program. But there’s a big difference between a personal statement and resume or CV.
2. It provides college admissions counselors with an accurate overview of your academic goals.
A good college personal statement must explain how your background relates to your university’s program and your goals. It must put in context the tools, resources, and background you bring to the table and how they are aligned with your school’s profile. In the business world, this is called “ vertical alignment .”
In other words, how you write about your background should make you stand out from other college applicants as well as connect with what you want to accomplish. Your background empowers you to succeed!
In admissions essays, small steps can yield big results.
3. Personal statements answer very specific questions.
Often, your college application will require you to apply to a specific program and will ask very specific questions. For example, applying to your university’s business college will require answering different application essay questions than applying to a performing arts program.
So be sure to research not only your target university’s profile but also your specific college major and professors in that department.
We illustrate this exact idea in the two successful personal statement examples below!
How Important is the personal statement for college to admissions officials?
Covid-19 has made the sat/act less important.
Common App announced that it will include a dedicated essay prompt on COVID-19 for the 2020-2021 admissions cycle. As a result, students are scrambling to figure out how to write about COVID-19 in their college admissions essays .
There’s even more evidence that the college personal essay is becoming the most important part of the application process. As CBS News reports :
A growing number of U.S. colleges and universities are abandoning ACT and SAT scores as part of their admissions process. The so-called test-blind movement has gathered steam this year amid widespread cancellations of standardized tests because of COVID-19.
Moreover, a court recently ruled that the University of California public school system can no longer consider SAT/ACT scores in the admissions process . The days of the standardized test may be numbered.
This means that the application essay just got a lot more important.
How to Write a Personal Statement for College to Impress Admissions Officers
Why do college admissions committees rely on college application essays so much? The answer is that a college personal statement sets you apart from your high school peers by explaining three ideas:
Show your personality in your personal statement
College admissions committees rely on your transcripts and GPA as a measure of your academic prowess. Letters of recommendation focus more on how others view you and how you interact.
On the other hand, your college personal statement application essay gives admissions counselors a sense of your personality. It demonstrates how you will fit in as well as contribute to the university community.
Are you hyper-focused and ambitious with a lot of professional experience and projects to back it up? Or are you more curious, with a wide range of interests? Are your motivations related to achieving concrete objectives, or are they more personal or emotional in nature? The lens through which you interact with the world is exactly what your personal statement essay should show.
On paper, your SAT score, GPA, and extracurricular activities may be the same as other applicants. You may end up in the same college classes. College counselors know no two applicants are the same. What matters is that both fit in with what the university wants for its students.
Describe any extenuating circumstances
Are your grades a bit below average? Did you fail a class in high school? Those things jump out when it comes to numbers on paper. Universities want to know the context for abnormal records, and most importantly, how you view them.
As the world continues to become more global and aware of social disparities, the definition of “traditional success” is becoming increasingly irrelevant. It has become standard for U.S. universities to have action plans for the diversity and inclusion of underprivileged students.
Most importantly, colleges want to understand how you struggled and overcame a difficult situation. Those are the exact students they want!
Explain why you are applying to this school
Besides selling your personality and explaining any drawbacks or holes in your record, a great college personal statement should provide insights into why you are applying to university. This may seem obvious, but unfortunately, many students get caught up in proving themselves like a job application. They totally forget to explain why they are applying to college.
How to write about reasons for applying to college:
- Define what part(s) of the university appeal to you. Explain how they align with your personal goals and personality.
- Pick out a couple of unique characteristics of the school. These can be professors, programs of study, or facilities.
Successful College Personal Statement Examples
Now that we know how important a college personal statement is and what it does, what’s the first step?
Success imitates success
At Wordvice, we encourage college applicants to look at successful personal statement examples to really absorb and gain insights into what an engaging personal college essay is. Read as many as you can, as no two students are the same. But you will see many of the themes discussed above again and again in successful college personal statements.
College Personal Statement Examples and Sample Essays
To start, Wordvice is including a couple of successful personal statement essay examples, including comments and feedback provided by our editors to the students. Both of these essays were edited by Wordvice’s professional editors , with both students gaining admission!
Personal Statement Essay #1: The “Holistic Profile” Essay
Dear Sir or Madam, I am writing to express my interest in studying at the University of ________ as a Supply Chain Management student. Thank you in advance for taking the time to read my letter. I am currently studying for a bachelor’s degree in Public Finance and Supply Chain Management at ________ University. I have decided to apply to your Supply Chain Management programme because I am sure it would strongly enrich my future studies and help me in my prospective career. Moreover, I consider this programme as a great opportunity to get to know ________ culture and its well-developed logistic background. I am also very curious about the different approaches taken in this field at a prominent university. I have chosen to apply to the University of________ because it examines all types of supply chain management perspectives, from production to services. During my previous studies, I discovered that simply working on procurement is far from enough. My fellow students and I had the opportunity to create an e-commerce project. At the time, the only thing in our control was the procurement decision, but I soon realized I had the capacity and drive to learn more about solutions and innovations. Another reason I am applying for this programme at ________ is its close relationship with relevant companies in my desired field. I learned on the university’s website that there is a specific resource that helps to connect students with these companies. Since I am interested in working in the Netherlands after I graduate, this resource will definitely be useful for my career. In addition, the fact that this programme offers an option to participate in an apprenticeship is very appealing to me. This could not only broaden my horizons through practical experience but also provide a chance for me to expand my connections in the industry. My current undergraduate studies make me highly suitable for this programme. I have learned the basic foundations of supply chain management through courses such as operations management, strategic purchasing, and inventory management. I have also taken mathematics and statistics to help me understand data problems. In addition to my academic interests, I have a full and interesting life off-campus. I was a member of our school volleyball team, which won several championships; this led to me graduating as an honour’s student. Those times spent on the court have strengthened my team spirit and my ability to work under pressure. During summer vacations, I spend time travelling around Europe and the United States. My first experience in Amsterdam was unforgettable, and it made me consider coming back in the future. Planning the trip carefully, and living alone in an unfamiliar area, have turned me into a more independent young woman. Professionally, I have done internships in international companies such as Red Bull and ASUS. These experiences gave me the chance to work in a global context with people from different countries, which has encouraged me to have a more flexible and adaptive mindset. Because of these wonderful experiences, I am certain I will conquer all future challenges and make the most out of them. In conclusion, I am very eager to study Supply Chain Management at the University of ________, as it would give me a chance to deepen my skills and knowledge in one of the field’s top universities. I am confident I excel in this programme due to my solid educational foundation in business and personality strengths. Thank you again for reading my personal statement. I look forward to hearing from you.
Why was this personal statement for college successful?
The essay is well-organized and directly answers key questions.
The applicant clearly lays out her educational and professional background as well as her skills. She also includes two solid paragraphs about why she has chosen her program of study and later explains why she is both qualified and a perfect fit.
This essay displays excellent organization and has a natural flow of ideas indicative of a native English speaker who can write exceptionally well.
The essay is personal and does not feel like a resume or CV
This college applicant came with a very strong academic and professional background. A solid handle on supply chain management (not the most exciting major) with internships to back it up. But notice how she doesn’t dwell on just that? She is able to connect things like her academic math experience with personal motivation. She even includes her extracurricular activities to show she’s more than a number cruncher.
First, she shows that she is a well-rounded person , not just a student that studies for grades. Second, she conveys her well-developed personal identity that has chosen this course of study at this particular college in this particular country. Make sure your college essay communicates this!
The essay specifically targets the school
Every major university has a business school, and every business school has a supply chain management program. How do the college admissions counselors reading her personal statement know she’s motivated to apply there?
This applicant clearly explains how she personally wants to attend this particular university in The Netherlands. She lists her personal travel experience and mentions a specific mentorship program.
Personal Statement Essay #2: The “Enthusiastic Achiever” Essay
I am passionate about computers because technology will continue to play a fundamental role in our lives. Based on this fact, I researched colleges that have both a strong computer science program and co-op program, and this is when I found Hofstra. I visited the campus for a tour and was really impressed with what I saw. Not only are the campus facilities top-notch, but the advanced computer science labs are world-class. This shows Hofstra’s focus to be able to provide the best intellectual and technical resources for students. I asked my tour guide about the class sizes and curriculum style. I was thrilled when he told me that average class sizes are in the 20s and that the curriculum emphasizes experiential learning. I am looking for more than just academic excellence; extracurricular activities, including community service opportunities, are also very important to me. In researching schools that would provide students with the most well-rounded lifestyles, I was amazed to see the number of philanthropic events that the school hosts and supports. Philanthropy seems ingrained in the school’s culture. I also saw hundreds of clubs that can cater to everyone’s unique interests. Students are also welcome to start new clubs if no existing clubs can foster their interests. The energy on campus is something that I noticed right away. Both the students and staff show a lot of pride for Hofstra, and it’s truly memorable how enthusiastic the school spirit is among students. Leaving home to attend college is a big change for everyone, and I think school pride and a strong sense of community will help me make a smooth transition. I was very happy to hear that students get two tickets to events on campus. This is especially great because I am a sports fan and would love to experience the electric game-day atmosphere of a division one basketball game and cheer on the Lions! Hofstra’s location is also ideal because it has the advantages of being in a smaller town but also being very close to New York City. I do not want to attend college in a big city, but the fact that New York City is so close opens up a lot of opportunities. First off, there are numerous internships at top companies in the city. In addition, it would be great to visit the city from time to time and see a show or sports game. Being able to do that with friends would give me great experiences and memories. Hofstra is my top choice because it fulfills my most important criteria: esteemed faculty members, a strong computer science program, a strong sense of belonging, amazing internship and community service opportunities, and a diverse campus. I cannot wait to be a Hofstra Lion!
This personal statement is brief and under the word count
This essay is 461 words, which is perfectly under the 500-word limit on many college admissions essays. Although content is the main focus, your personal statement needs to abide by all rules laid out in the essay brief. That includes mundane but essential stipulations such as word count.
It is multi-faceted and hits major selling points
The student talks about Hofstra’s location, academics, sports, extracurriculars, and even philanthropy. The student doesn’t just list these as a marketing brochure would; each selling point is connected to the student personally and emotionally. Excitement is something that every student tries to portray in their admissions essay, so be sure you emulate something like this.
Improve Personal Statements with College Essay Editing Services
It’s an understatement that college is one of the most important factors, affecting your social and professional future. Unfortunately, college personal statements and admissions essays sometimes come a bit disorganized and unfocused, just like the students who write them. That’s where essay editing services like Wordvice come in. They are beneficial for a number of reasons.
Why Use an Admissions Essay Editing Service?
1. they help fix errors that you miss.
College admissions committees have to reject a certain number of applicants every year. You can be sure that your application essay will go straight into the reject pile if it has any grammar or spelling errors.
It definitely takes a bit of self-awareness and experience to realize when it’s best to let someone help you. No one person has a monopoly on knowledge or perspective, no matter how strong their background is. Ever played the “what’s the difference between these two pictures” game?
Our brains are hard-wired to lock in our own biases. That’s a major problem when it comes to writing a personal statement where the entire point is convincing someone else.
2. They save students time
College consulting services have stated that the average number of applications is about 5.9 per college applicant. Of course, students will try to maximize their chances of getting into a good college. The downside is lack of time, which no one can buy more of.
English editing services like Wordvice help free up time so you can do what you need to do: apply to college.
3. Editors help improve your ability to communicate
Whether you are an ESL student or a native English speaker, everyone can improve their writing. In the case of a college application essay, this can mean the difference between getting into your dream college and attending your second-choice school. In addition to fixing grammar and basic errors, editing services go above and beyond to match the flow and readability of your writing with your goal – academic or admissions.
If you are writing a personal statement or college essay, you want editors with first-hand college and university admissions experience reviewing and editing your essay.
Additional College Personal Statement Tips
We hope you learned a lot from these examples of successful college personal statements. So what’s next?
I want to learn more about the college admissions process
Interested in learning more tips from experts about the college admissions process, personal statements, or letters of recommendation? Check out the Wordvice Admissions Resources blog.
I am interested in professional editing for my personal statement
We also got you covered! Whether you choose personal statement editing , recommendation letter editing , resume editing , or any of our other essay editing services , you can find the help you need to improve your college essay.
I want to improve my college personal statement for college right now
Check out our turnaround times and conditions on our editing FAQ page. Or you can jump straight in and use our Editing Price Calculator to start the ordering process.
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A-Z of Personal Statements
Learn from previous student personal statements here. We have collated over 700 personal statement examples to help you on your university journey and to help you with how to write a personal statement.
These personal statement examples will show you the kind of thing that universities are looking for from their applicants. See how to structure your personal statement, what kind of format your personal statement should be in, what to write in a personal statement and the key areas to touch on in your statement.
A personal statement is a chance to tell your university all about you - a good personal statement is one that showcases your passion for the subject, what inspired you to apply for the course you’re applying for and why you think you would be an asset to the university.
Our collection includes personal statement examples in Mathematics, Anthropology, Accounting, Computer Science, Zoology and more.
Writing a personal statement has never been easier with our vast collection of personal statement examples.
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Personal Statement Help
What is a personal statement.
A personal statement is an essay written by a student applying to either a college or university. A personal statement is written and then uploaded to UCAS and is then attached to any university applications that the student may then make.
If you need more information check out our personal statement advice articles .
How to write a personal statement
There isn't a clearly defined personal statement template for you to use as each person's statement is different.
When it comes to writing a personal statement for universities, your personal statement should touch on your passions, your interest in the course, why you're applying for the course and why you would be an asset to the university you're applying to.
Talk about the clubs and societies that you belong to, any work experience you may have and any awards you might have won.
If you're still looking for information check out our article on how to write a personal statement .
How to start a personal statement
When it comes to starting your personal statement, the best thing to do is to be succinct and to have enough tantalising information to keep the reader informed and eager for more.
Your introduction should touch on your personal qualities and why you are applying for the subject you're applying for. Keeping things short and sweet means that it also allows you to break your personal statement up, which makes it easier for the reader.
We have plenty of advice for students that are wondering about what to include in a personal statement .
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Personal Statement Examples
Browse our UCAS personal statement examples for university in the UK by subject, from A to Z. Please do not plagiarise phrases, sentences or whole paragraphs, as UCAS can detect this and will penalise your application.
Accounting and Finance
These two subjects lie at the heart of any business, and a degree in at least one of these will equip you with essential skills for life.
View 47 Accounting and Finance Personal Statements
To become a successful actuary you will need to use both mathematical and business skills to solve problems concerning financial risk and uncertainty.
View 13 Actuarial Science Personal Statements
Learn more about American culture, society, history and politics with this specialised degree
View 4 American Studies Personal Statements
Study the evolution and history of humanity around the world.
View 24 Anthropology Personal Statements
Dig into the history of human activity.
View 23 Archaeology Personal Statements
Understand the processes involved in the planning, designing and constructing of buildings and other structures.
View 35 Architecture Personal Statements
Art and Design
Pursue painting, pottery, textiles, sculpture and any other discipline that interests you in the world of art.
View 53 Art and Design Personal Statements
Investigate biological processes at the molecular level.
View 18 Biochemistry Personal Statements
Use traditional engineering techniques and apply them to real-world problems.
View 6 Bioengineering Personal Statements
Study a wide range of biological topics, and choose to specialise in microbiology, ecology, zoology, anatomy or any number of other areas.
View 84 Biology Personal Statements
Study and explore medically related subjects such as genetics, physiology, pharmacology and neuroscience.
View 65 Biomedical Science Personal Statements
Learn how to apply biological organisms, processes and systems to industrial tasks.
View 6 Biotechnology Personal Statements
Learn about economics, accounting, management and more.
View 85 Business Management Personal Statements
Learn all the skills you need to be successful in the world of business.
View 111 Business Personal Statements
Gain a solid theoretical foundation and practical training in this fascinating arm of science.
View 35 Chemistry Personal Statements
Delve into the literature, history, philosophy and archaeology of the Greeks and Romans.
View 8 Classics Personal Statements
Combine analytical knowledge and technical skills to ready yourself for an in-demand career.
View 107 Computer Science Personal Statements
Computing and IT
Get ahead in IT by becoming an accomplished programmer, learning how computers work and expanding your Mathematics skills.
View 120 Computing and IT Personal Statements
Study the science behind criminal behaviour, laws and justice.
View 39 Criminology Personal Statements
Explore the practice of dance and develop your performance, choreography and teaching skills
View 1 Dance Personal Statement
Study the latest approaches in dentistry, combined with practical clinical experience that will prepare you for your career.
View 14 Dentistry Personal Statements
Apply your artistic skills in a commercial environment.
View 24 Design Personal Statements
Qualify as a dietician in the UK with this degree that explores the science of nutrition and how to communicate it to the wider world.
View 2 Dietetics Personal Statements
Combine theatre theory and practice to help you on your way to centre stage.
View 19 Drama Personal Statements
Learning the fundamentals of this subject will pave the way to many career options, including a data analyst, stockbroker, forensic accountant and external auditor.
View 156 Economics Personal Statements
Explore how people develop and learn in their social and cultural contexts.
View 25 Education Personal Statements
Browse our engineering personal statement examples to help you write your own, unique statement.
View 181 Engineering Personal Statements
Improve your reading, creative writing and critical thinking with an English degree.
View 157 English Personal Statements
Explore different habitats, climates, formations and societies and how we can reduce the human impact on nature.
View 10 Environment Personal Statements
Learn more about the science of the environment through collaborative research, expeditions and teaching partnerships.
View 12 Environmental Science Personal Statements
This varied and exciting field will prepare you for a number of careers, including a hotel manager, charity fundraiser and a tourism officer.
View 4 Event Management Personal Statements
Find out more about the fundamentals of fashion and find out more about how to research, design and develop clothing.
View 16 Fashion Personal Statements
Discover the core skills required to become a screenwriter, director or critic.
View 23 Film Personal Statements
Equip yourself with the basic skills and techniques needed for a successful financial career.
View 57 Finance Personal Statements
Food Science and Catering
Discover more about travel, tourism, event management and food science in this exciting subject.
View 3 Food Science and Catering Personal Statements
Study a wide range of subjects from chemistry and biology, to criminalistics and toxicology.
View 10 Forensic Science Personal Statements
Personal statements written by students taking a year out before university.
View 6 Gap Year Personal Statements
Study the earth’s physical structures and scientific processes to prepare yourself for a career in urban planning, environmental consultancy, conservation and many more.
View 61 Geography Personal Statements
Understand the evolution of the earth, how our planet works and what the future holds for us through both laboratory and field work.
View 14 Geology Personal Statements
This subject provides a broad base of scientific knowledge and skills applicable to many occupations and potential career opportunities.
View 21 Health Sciences Personal Statements
History of Art
Increase your understanding of ancient and modern society and culture.
View 5 History of Art Personal Statements
Study the events and people from the past to better understand what our future could be like.
View 143 History Personal Statements
Give yourself a solid foundation for many different career options in this exciting and thriving sector.
View 6 Hotel Management Personal Statements
Understand how politics, history, geography, economics and law all require international co-operation to resolve global problems.
View 96 International Relations Personal Statements
Read personal statement examples written by international students.
View 23 International Student Personal Statements
A subject that is applicable to a wide range of professions in the private and public sectors, including international agencies and government bodies.
View 10 International Studies Personal Statements
Study the foundation and development of Islamic knowledge from a broad and multidisciplinary perspective.
View 4 Islamic Studies Personal Statements
Explore Japan’s society, culture and language, with some universities offering the opportunity to spend a year abroad.
View 9 Japanese Studies Personal Statements
Develop the full set of skills required for a career in journalism.
View 14 Journalism Personal Statements
This multi-disciplinary social science course focuses on the study of economics, business and law and their relationship to the environment around us.
View 1 Land Economy Personal Statement
Set yourself on the path to an international career with a languages degree.
View 87 Language Personal Statements
Develop a critical awareness of the common law legal tradition and apply problem-solving skills to a range of legal and non-legal settings.
View 166 Law Personal Statements
Learn the science behind languages, and how to understand and interpret language on a global scale.
View 19 Linguistics Personal Statements
Gain a broad foundation in topics relating to business, finance, economics and marketing.
View 44 Management Personal Statements
Give yourself the knowledge and skills you need to excel as a professional marketer.
View 24 Marketing Personal Statements
Take your understanding of the theories and concepts of mathematics to a higher level.
View 105 Mathematics Personal Statements
Read personal statement examples written by mature UCAS students.
View 15 Mature Student Personal Statements
This degree is ideal if you want to pursue a career in PR, journalism, film, advertising or broadcasting.
View 45 Media Personal Statements
Become a great doctor with one of the most rewarding degrees at a UK medical school.
View 102 Medicine Personal Statements
Gain the necessary skills and clinical experience to become a qualified midwife.
View 9 Midwifery Personal Statements
Develop your ability to create new music by studying topics such as composition, performance and music theory.
View 24 Music Personal Statements
Prepare yourself for a career in the music and audio industry.
View 7 Music Technology Personal Statements
Focus on various perspectives of the natural world, including chemical, physical, mathematical and geological.
View 18 Natural Sciences Personal Statements
Explore the workings of the human brain, from molecules to neural systems.
View 12 Neuroscience Personal Statements
Qualify for a rewarding career as an adult, children’s or mental health nurse.
View 35 Nursing Personal Statements
Learn the knowledge and skills to treat people with psychological, physical or social disabilities.
View 8 Occupational Therapy Personal Statements
Learn the knowledge, skills, and experience you need to become a registered osteopath.
View 1 Osteopathy Personal Statement
Personal statements by those applying to study at Oxbridge.
View 149 Oxbridge Personal Statements
Apply for this course to successfully qualify as a registered pharmacist in the UK.
View 20 Pharmacy Personal Statements
Find out how to form and voice your own opinions, and how to analyse and communicate ideas clearly and logically.
View 85 Philosophy Personal Statements
A course combining academic study and hands-on practice to help you become a skilled photographer.
View 8 Photography Personal Statements
Learn about the fundamental building blocks and forces of nature and how physics helps us understand the world around us.
View 53 Physics Personal Statements
Choose from a medical, human or general physiological science course.
View 3 Physiology Personal Statements
Learn the theoretical disciplines and gain the practical experience required to become a qualified physiotherapist.
View 6 Physiotherapy Personal Statements
Study how governments work, how public policies are made, international relations and other topics to open the door to a wide range of careers.
View 194 Politics Personal Statements
Read example personal statements written by postgraduate students for their chosen universities.
View 43 Postgraduate Personal Statements
Explore how our minds work and why we behave the way we do.
View 154 Psychology Personal Statements
Help diagnose and treat illness by producing and interpreting medical images, or learn how to treat cancer patients with therapeutic radiography.
View 5 Radiography Personal Statements
A creative discipline, vital to contemporary understandings of economy, art, politics, media culture and globalisation.
View 4 Religious Studies Personal Statements
A popular degree course, with a practical focus, that allows you to develop your professional skills and knowledge as you study to become a qualified social worker.
View 25 Social Work Personal Statements
Gain the knowledge and skills required to critically engage with issues facing society today.
View 66 Sociology Personal Statements
Sports & Leisure
Understand the value and purpose of sport in society, as well as the social, cultural and economic importance of sport and contemporary issues in sport and leisure.
View 13 Sports & Leisure Personal Statements
Learn about sports performance and the factors that affect behaviour in sport.
View 14 Sports Science Personal Statements
Discover how to manage buildings by exploring topics such as project management, legal and technical advice, building reports, defect diagnosis and conservation.
View 2 Surveying Personal Statements
Become a qualified teacher with this popular training course.
View 13 Teacher Training Personal Statements
Understand the different religious and spiritual perspectives in the contemporary world.
View 9 Theology Personal Statements
Travel and Tourism
Prepare for a career in one of the fastest growing industries with this vocational degree.
View 3 Travel and Tourism Personal Statements
Gather the skills required to help you shape and design the world around us.
View 3 Urban Planning Personal Statements
Study the basic veterinary sciences first before learning to apply that knowledge to veterinary practice as a clinical student.
View 5 Veterinary Science Personal Statements
Learn about all kinds of animals, including their anatomy, physiology, genetics, and their adaptations for survival and reproduction in different environments.
View 7 Zoology Personal Statements
How To Write A Bad Personal Statement
Find out more
Personal Statement Mistakes To Avoid
What is a personal statement?
The UCAS personal statement is an important piece of writing you need to put together for your UCAS application .
It is where students should sell themselves in order to try and secure a place at their chosen universities . This includes your strengths, achievements, interests and ambitions, and you need to convey why the university should choose you over other candidates.
How do I write a personal statement?
We recommend you start by making some notes about what you want to study at university and why, as well as a list of skills and interests, and your gap year plans (if you have any).
We then suggest reading some example personal statements for inspiration, and to see how previous students have successfully applied for courses at university.
This should give you an idea of how to put your own statement together, starting with an attention-grabbing opening that explains what aspects of your subject you enjoy and why.
The next few paragraphs need to cover your relevant work experience and activities outside of school, as well as your interests or hobbies, and anything else you’ve done related to your subject that isn’t already on your UCAS form.
The final paragraph should round off your statement succinctly and talk about your future plans after university, and how a degree can help you achieve these.
Our personal statement template can help you structure your statement correctly.
Remember that the language you use and the way it is laid out will be judged too, so it’s important to get all aspects of your statement right.
Once you’ve written your personal statement, ask family, friends and tutors to read it and give you some feedback. Look through their comments and amend your statement accordingly (if you feel they improve it).
Try to ask for several rounds of feedback to make sure it's as good as it can be before sending it off.
For more advice, please see our in-depth personal statement writing guide .
How do I start a personal statement?
The first rule with opening your personal statement is to avoid using any cliches or over-used phrases or sentences that the admissions tutors have seen a million times before.
These include: "ever since I was young/a child", "I have always wanted to be..." and "for as long as I can remember".
If you want the reader to go to sleep or immediately put your UCAS form in the rejection pile, then this is a sure way to go about it.
Instead, try to put together an eye opening sentence or two that will grab their attention and make them want to read on.
Our example personal statements above will help you with this, by showing you how students have constructed successful statements in the past.
Many students choose to start their statement by talking about a specific aspect of the subject they enjoy most and why they are interested in it. Others choose to relate a life experience (avoiding cliches) from their younger days, while some decide to begin their statement in another way.
There's no right or wrong answer - just make sure it doesn't read like hundreds of other statements the tutors have already seen before!
How do I end a personal statement?
You should conclude your personal statement with a concise summary of why you are an ideal candidate for this course, your career plans, and any other ambitions you have for the future.
Try to keep it to no more than three or four lines, but make sure the content sells you as a person and has a positive tone that will encourage admissions tutors to offer you a place.
Take a look at your initial notes to help you - remember, it doesn't have to be perfect at this point, as you will have time to redraft it later.
Again, our example personal statements above will provide you with some inspiration for this part of your personal statement (but please don't copy any of them, or UCAS will penalise your application!).
How do I structure my personal statement?
Your personal statement should have a clear beginning , middle and end.
Structure is important if your statement is to be a coherent creative piece of writing, so all the paragraphs should flow nicely together.
At Studential, we recommend the following approach as a guideline:
- Paragraph 1: Introduction to your subject, the aspects you’re interested in and why
- Paragraph 2: What you have done related to the subject that isn’t already on your UCAS form
- Paragraphs 3 and 4: Work experience placements and relevant extracurricular activities at school
- Paragraph 5: Your interests and hobbies outside of school, particularly those that show you are a responsible and reliable person
- Paragraph 6: Your goal of attending university and a memorable closing comment.
Of course, you may wish to structure yours differently and it's entirely up to you at the end of the day - just remember to make sure it's coherent and flows together well.
For additional help on piecing it together, use our personal statement template , which will give you an idea of how a successful statement should look.
What makes a great personal statement?
Tell the reader why you're applying to this particular course and university – include your ambitions, as well as what interests you about the subject, the course provider, and higher education.
Think about what makes you suitable – this could be relevant experience, skills, or achievements you've gained from education, work, or other activities.
You need to show the admissions tutors why you make a perfect candidate for your chosen course, and what value you can bring to their department.
What should you not write in a personal statement?
Avoid these common mistakes if you want your personal statement to be successful:
- Listing your skills, experience etc. Use full sentences and examples to back everything up.
- Any form of negativity - be positive!
- Omitting any relevant skills or achievements
- Embellishing the truth or lying outright
- Not checking for spelling and grammar issues - this sort of sloppiness just tells the admissions tutors you don't care very much
- Not asking for feedback from friends, family and teachers - this is a great way of receiving objective advice
- Stating the obvious or repeating what is already mentioned on your UCAS form elsewhere
- Including over-used words, phrases and sentences, such as "ever since I was a child..." and "I have always wanted to be...".
- Using jokes or humour - this isn't the time or place, and the admissions tutors probably won't appreciate it!
How long should my personal statement be?
For undergraduate courses, UCAS allows students up to 4,000 characters for their personal statement.
This isn't a huge amount of space, so you need to make sure every word counts and you sell yourself in the best possible light at all times!
Once you have put together an initial draft, you can check if it's too long or short with our personal statement length checker .
When should I start writing my personal statement?
We recommend you begin writing some notes during the school summer holidays, and maybe even have your first draft written before going back in September (especially if you're applying to Oxbridge ).
The sooner you start writing, the sooner you can get your final draft in place ready for your UCAS form. This also helps to take the pressure off, and means you won't be rushing to get it done at the last minute.
Use our handy UCAS personal statement template to help you structure your statement, and make sure you have included everything you need to.
Personal statement tips
For a successful personal statement, we recommend following these top tips:
- This is your opportunity to sell yourself - so use it! Talk about your strengths, abilities, achievements, personal traits, hobbies, extracurricular activities and anything else relevant that makes you an amazing candidate for this course.
- Start writing your personal statement early - ideally over the summer holidays, which give you plenty of time to get a perfect statement in place by the autumn (this advice especially applies if you are applying to Oxbridge , or for medicine , veterinary science , or dentistry ).
- Make sure you back up everything you say with solid examples, using your initial notes to help you.
- Talk about your motivations for choosing this particular course, and showcase all strengths using your own voice.
- Don’t embellish the truth or lie outright (you’ll get caught out at the interview!), and don’t use humour or tell jokes (this isn’t the time or place).
- Use positive language and let your enthusiasm shine through - tutors only want students on their course that are passionate about their subject!
- Don't get someone else to write your statement for you, or buy/plagiarise a statement online. UCAS check statements for similarity, and your chances of being offered a place at university could be affected if they find you have cheated on your statement.
- Ask those you know and trust to provide you with feedback, and incorporate their comments and suggestions accordingly.
- Go through at least several rounds of feedback before polishing your statement into a final draft.
- Don't just rely on a Spellchecker to check your statement for errors - read it through carefully three or four times to make sure there are no spelling or grammar mistakes.
- Use an reputable personal statement editing service if you're struggling with your final draft, or just want to try and give it some extra shine!
These tips and advice apply to all personal statements, whether you’re applying for an undergraduate or postgraduate course. If you follow them, you will have a better chance of securing a place at your chosen universities.
Best of luck with your UCAS application!
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Examples of Personal Statements for Strong Applications
- DESCRIPTION young man creating personal statement for application
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Get a quick overview of what a personal statement is along with the preferred structure to help you craft your own. See several personal statement examples in action, and read a full personal statement to help you on the journey to writing your own.
What Is a Personal Statement?
A personal statement is a special type of essay that you typically write when applying to school or scholarship programs. Personal statements are an opportunity to share a little bit about who you are and demonstrate that you're a good fit for a particular program. However, before viewing examples of personal statements, it's important to know a bit about their structure.
How to Structure a Personal Statement
Personal statements should make an impact. In addition to showcasing you as a multifaceted individual, it’s important to show why you are the right candidate. Therefore, a personal statement should address three things:
- why you want to attend
- how you're supremely qualified
- how you'll go on to achieve greatness
A common theme in personal statements is overcoming adversity. You can convey significant personal achievements while demonstrating your diversity too. You're not simply writing why you want to attend a certain program. You're explaining why they'd benefit from having someone like you in their program.
Starting a Personal Statement
You may choose to begin with what influenced your decision to apply in the first place. Was it an important moment, a series of events or a significant person in your life? Then, demonstrate how significant events in your life brought you here today. Close with what you hope to achieve after you've completed the program you're looking to enter. View a few personal statement examples to get you started.
Personal Statement Examples
One of the main goals of a personal statement is to explain why you're an ideal candidate. To do that, touch upon your beliefs and experiences. See if any of these personal statement examples relate to your life. Then, you can use them as a springboard to tell your own story.
Graduate Education Program Admissions Sample
Explore a simple example of what the start of a graduate education program personal statement looks like.
When I was a child, I always looked for role models, and my fourth grade teacher stepped up as a very influential figure in my life. Mrs. Reilly took a personal interest in me. Her belief that I could be successful changed my entire life. I want to be able to provide other children with the same inspiration that I received many years ago.
Medical School Admissions Sample
Dive into how you might start your medical school admissions statement.
Doctors shape society and help it to grow. Healthcare is the most basic and fundamental human right. I learned that the hard way. My journey on the path to medicine didn’t begin the typical way. In fact, as a child, I wasn’t interested in becoming a doctor at all. However, the importance of medicine hit me in the face when the person I loved most in the world got sick.
Law School Admissions Sample
Are you looking at law school? See how these personal statements might start out.
My first encounter with the legal system was when my friend's parents were wrongfully evicted from their apartment. A lawyer helped them get their money back and return to their home. Beyond that, and perhaps more importantly, he gave them hope. I, too, want to pursue a noble profession that allows me to give the average person a voice within the legal system.
General College Personal Statement Sample
See a general admissions statement to give you a good starting point.
It has always been my dream to study journalism. Journalists share knowledge and help people make informed decisions about the world around them. It's well known that your university has one of the highest-rated Communications programs in the country. As such, there's no better place to pursue my passion, develop my skills, and, ultimately, shape the world we live in today.
Personal Experience Achievement Examples
Beyond sharing what brought you here today, you also want to illustrate why you're the right candidate. Consider what you've had to overcome in order to attend the program or school you're interested in. Or perhaps you have a unique perspective that would make you a valuable asset. See if any of these personal statement examples prompt you to recall an important person or experience in your life.
First-Generation College Student Sample
Telling your personal story can show your determination. See this first-generation college student excerpt.
As the first person in my family to have the opportunity to attend college, I will value every moment in your school because I know education opens an endless array of doors. I didn’t always think of going to college. None of my family had attended, so I considered joining the trades like my father and uncles. However, after watching their struggles in a job, they aren’t passionate about I started to truly consider my dreams.
Immigrant Student Sample
Showing that you've experienced and fought diversity can show your determination.
As an immigrant who came to the United States when I was 15, I believe I have a unique perspective on social issues that will allow me to make valuable contributions in each of my classes.
Financial Difficulties Sample
Diving into your life experiences can show admissions advisors you are prepared for the challenge of college.
In my final year of college, I found myself facing homelessness. For a month, I lived out of my car, too ashamed to admit to anyone how far I'd fallen. Nevertheless, I maintained my internship at BET as well as my 3.98 GPA. Now, I live in a gorgeous studio in the heart of Manhattan and work as an executive producer on one of BET's hottest shows. I say all this to illustrate my ability to push forward and achieve great heights, even in the face of terrible adversity.
Personal Goals Sample
Did your parents make a huge impact on your college choices? Share that in your personal statement.
My father was a strong man. He rose every morning at 5 a.m., commuted to the city for an 8 a.m. start, and returned home by 5 o'clock on the dime. He did all this to ensure he'd never miss an evening dinner with his family. When he retired, he confided in me that he dreaded 30 of his 33 years on the job. But, he pushed through because of the stability it provided for his home life. It was at that moment I vowed never to work a day in a job that doesn't suit me. My entrance into your program will assure the kind of life that I know my father would be proud of.
Full Example of a Personal Statement
While it’s important to know how to begin, it’s also pivotal to see the whole picture. Explore a personal statement from a student planning to enter a special education program.
It’s hard to remember what I wanted to be as a child. My dreams were always changing and molding. At one point or another, I wanted to be an astronaut, artist, and train conductor. Thank you, Thomas the Train. However, I distinctly remember the moment, I decided I wanted to be a special education teacher. My brother, Bobby, is 12 years younger than me. Therefore, I was very hands-on in every aspect of raising him. So, our brother-sister dynamic is a bit skewed. I’ve always watched him grow and protected him. Therefore, I was the first to notice that reading was much harder for him than it should be. In fact, all his classes were. At first, my parents did everything they could think of to help him succeed. Nothing worked. Eventually, my brother was diagnosed with a severe learning disability. His struggle with reading was at times painful to watch. Being his sister and protector, I started to volunteer in his special education classroom. Over time, I began to admire the determination of his special education teachers and acknowledge the difficulties of teaching children with learning disabilities. Each child is unique and special and their learning journey is as well. As I was entering my Freshman year of high school, I knew without a doubt I wanted to be a special education teacher. Throughout my high school career, I volunteered in the special education classroom, getting as much hands-on experience with the children as possible. I also started actively researching different learning models and styles, trying out different ones during my tutoring sessions to see the effectiveness. In addition to maintaining a 3.8 grade point average, I actively tutor special needs children in and around my community. I even started a club to help get more students involved. Additionally, during my senior year of high school, I started taking college courses just to prepare myself for the challenges that college would bring. While I know that specializing in special education in college will be a difficult road, I anticipate the challenge in education and classroom techniques that my major will bring. I look forward to becoming an innovator in the special education field to help children like my brother succeed.
When to Write Personal Statements
There are many times in life when you might have to write a personal statement.
an application to a gifted program at your school
an application for admission to college
an application for admission to graduate school
an application for admission to business school
an application for admission to law school
an application to teach ESL, demonstrating your philosophy of education
Sometimes, you'll be given a topic that your personal statement should address. In other cases, you'll simply be asked to talk about yourself or why you would be a good fit.
Perfecting Your Personal Statement
Tell your story, and tell it with pride. Personal statements are meant to make the review board want to select you beyond any shadow of a doubt. Only you can tell your story. So, be sure to focus on the three key components. Often, you'll be asked to submit a resume along with your personal statement. Use these resume writing examples to make sure you're in tip-top shape. Then, if you get called in for an interview with the review board, here are some smart questions you'll want to have at hand.
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Examples of Successful Statements
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Media File: Examples of Successful Statements
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Below are samples of personal statements. You may also select "Sample Statement" in the Media Box above for a PDF sample.
My interest in science dates back to my years in high school, where I excelled in physics, chemistry, and math. When I was a senior, I took a first-year calculus course at a local college (such an advanced-level class was not available in high school) and earned an A. It seemed only logical that I pursue a career in electrical engineering.
When I began my undergraduate career, I had the opportunity to be exposed to the full range of engineering courses, all of which tended to reinforce and solidify my intense interest in engineering. I've also had the opportunity to study a number of subjects in the humanities and they have been both enjoyable and enlightening, providing me with a new and different perspective on the world in which we live.
In the realm of engineering, I have developed a special interest in the field of laser technology and have even been taking a graduate course in quantum electronics. Among the 25 or so students in the course, I am the sole undergraduate. Another particular interest of mine is electromagnetics, and last summer, when I was a technical assistant at a world-famous local lab, I learned about its many practical applications, especially in relation to microstrip and antenna design. Management at this lab was sufficiently impressed with my work to ask that I return when I graduate. Of course, my plans following completion of my current studies are to move directly into graduate work toward my master's in science. After I earn my master's degree, I intend to start work on my Ph.D. in electrical engineering. Later I would like to work in the area of research and development for private industry. It is in R & D that I believe I can make the greatest contribution, utilizing my theoretical background and creativity as a scientist.
I am highly aware of the superb reputation of your school, and my conversations with several of your alumni have served to deepen my interest in attending. I know that, in addition to your excellent faculty, your computer facilities are among the best in the state. I hope you will give me the privilege of continuing my studies at your fine institution.
(Stelzer pp. 38-39)
Having majored in literary studies (world literature) as an undergraduate, I would now like to concentrate on English and American literature.
I am especially interested in nineteenth-century literature, women's literature, Anglo-Saxon poetry, and folklore and folk literature. My personal literary projects have involved some combination of these subjects. For the oral section of my comprehensive exams, I specialized in nineteenth century novels by and about women. The relationship between "high" and folk literature became the subject for my honors essay, which examined Toni Morrison's use of classical, biblical, African, and Afro-American folk tradition in her novel. I plan to work further on this essay, treating Morrison's other novels and perhaps preparing a paper suitable for publication.
In my studies toward a doctoral degree, I hope to examine more closely the relationship between high and folk literature. My junior year and private studies of Anglo-Saxon language and literature have caused me to consider the question of where the divisions between folklore, folk literature, and high literature lie. Should I attend your school, I would like to resume my studies of Anglo-Saxon poetry, with special attention to its folk elements.
Writing poetry also figures prominently in my academic and professional goals. I have just begun submitting to the smaller journals with some success and am gradually building a working manuscript for a collection. The dominant theme of this collection relies on poems that draw from classical, biblical, and folk traditions, as well as everyday experience, in order to celebrate the process of giving and taking life, whether literal or figurative. My poetry draws from and influences my academic studies. Much of what I read and study finds a place in my creative work as subject. At the same time, I study the art of literature by taking part in the creative process, experimenting with the tools used by other authors in the past.
In terms of a career, I see myself teaching literature, writing criticism, and going into editing or publishing poetry. Doctoral studies would be valuable to me in several ways. First, your teaching assistant ship program would provide me with the practical teaching experience I am eager to acquire. Further, earning a Ph.D. in English and American literature would advance my other two career goals by adding to my skills, both critical and creative, in working with language. Ultimately, however, I see the Ph.D. as an end in itself, as well as a professional stepping stone; I enjoy studying literature for its own sake and would like to continue my studies on the level demanded by the Ph.D. program.
(Stelzer pp. 40-41)
Top Personal Statement Example for College
Your personal statement can well be the decider if your high school GPA and tests score are on par with other applicants.
Listed below are personal statement examples that will help you in putting together your personal statement. Each of these personal statement examples is of students who were accepted at some of the top universities.
Personal Statement Examples: #1
This personal statement for colleges is of a student who got accepted at Harvard University to major in Psychology .
Personal Statement Examples: #2
Watch Molly who is now studying English Literature at Oxford University read out her personal statement for colleges.
Personal Statement Examples: #3
Read the personal statement for colleges of six students who were accepted at Johns Hopkins University
Personal Statement Examples: #4
Read the personal statement for colleges of Janice who was accepted to major in neurobiology at Harvard University.
Personal Statement Examples: #5
Here is the personal statement for colleges of five students who were accepted at the Law School at the University of Chicago.
Personal Statement Examples: #6
Read the personal statement for colleges of two students who were accepted at Purdue University.
Personal Statement Examples: #7
Read Laura’s personal statement for colleges which helped her in being accepted to major in Political Science/Economics at Harvard University
Personal Statement Examples: #8
Read the personal statement for colleges of a student who was accepted at Rice University to major in Math.
Personal Statement Examples: #9
Read the personal statement for colleges of a student who is now studying Environmental Science and Public Policy at Harvard University.
Personal Statement Examples: #10
Read the personal statement for colleges of a student at Emory University https://blog.emoryadmission.com/2018/08/strong-personal-statements-part-3/
Personal Statement Examples: #11
Watch some videos and also read the personal statement for colleges of students who are now studying at Tufts University.
Personal Statement Examples: #12
Read the personal statement for colleges of students majoring in medicine at The School of Medicine at University of North Carolina—Chapel Hill https://www.med.unc.edu/ome/studentaffairs/files/2018/11/Personal-Statement-Samples.pdf
Personal Statement Examples: #13
This personal statement for colleges is of Ariel who was accepted at Harvard University to major in Philosophy.
Personal Statement Examples: #14
Read the personal statement for colleges of students who were accepted at the University of Florida
Personal Statement Examples: #15
Read the personal statement for colleges of five students who have been accepted at Boston College
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For the aspiring entrepreneurs and business leaders, a business management degree is consistently a popular choice. After much deliberation, I have decided to pursue BA (Hons) Business Administration (Top up) at University of Bedfordshire. This course will provide me the academic knowledge and skills to pursue global career opportunities and will develop a broad understanding of businesses. In addition, this course also features different modules which wil....
Personal Statement of Purpose BSc Pharmacology
I am keen to pursue BSc Pharmacology at University of Hertfordshire. Pharmacologists’ studies how drugs work in the body and use this information explore how the body itself functions. My four years’ work experience in pharmacy sector has laid a strong foundation in motivating me to acquire depth knowledge about drugs; in this manner I have become more conversant with drugs, generic and some side effect of most drugs; gain excellence communicat....
PS - MSc Management with Professional Development and Planning
I am keen to pursue MSc Management with Professional Development and Planning at BPP University, London. The course is ideal for starting a successful career through invaluable insights and practical knowledge which will be playing a vital role to achieve my future career objectives and also extend my academic attainments. Moreover, I believe getting a chance to pursue my study career in this University will progress me both professionally and intellectual....
SOP - MSc International Business
In the era of “Information & Technology”, the world has truly provided a wonderful platform for every person to chase their own dream and turn them into reality. As for me, my dream is to study MSc International Business at University of Bedfordshire. I set my heart on developing my current academic achievement under University of Bedfordshire, because I will be constantly exposed to skills and ideas that will enable me to develop into a ma....
SOP - MSc Healthcare Leadership
My name is Sonya Ghosh. I am 28 years old and my nationality is Bangladeshi. I have a desire to gain a deep understanding of the key principles, practices of leadership, and subjects affecting today’s leaders in the NHS and this is why I want to pursue the MSc Healthcare Leadership programme at BPP University. I believe that if I am successful on this course I can use my knowledge and skills to help others with great satisfaction from giving somethin....
Biotechnology is a rapidly developing field of biology that involves the use of living organisms and systems to produce products. I am intending to pursue an MSc BiotechnologyProgramme at the University of Bedfordshire because it will provide me with open doors to careers in biotechnology and related industries. This course will give me the opportunity to understand molecular and computational biology as well as microbiological techniques for technological....
SOP - MSc Human Resource Management
I am writing this statement to express my enthusiasm regarding the application of MSc Management (HR) at university of Brighton in the SEP 2022 intake. I have found this course as best suited according to my future career ambitions. This statement will cover my background, interest towards the study in the UK and how the course and university can assist me in my future professional roles. My last academic attainment is Bachelor of Arts (Hons) in English....
MSc Management and International Business
I am keen to pursue the MSc Management and International Business programme at Birmingham City University. This course is ideal for gaining practical knowledge and other skills which will be playing a significant role to achieve my future career aspirations and also enhance my academic attainments. In addition, it will give me the opportunity to apply my theories and ideas in practice which will benefit me to enhance my skills and knowledge and to achieve ....
Personal Statement – MSc Information Systems Management
I am well pleased to apply this application with concentration to study the course Information Systems Management MSc at the University of Bedfordshire. My interest in information technology and information systems drives me passionate to pursue management roles in charge of information systems. The course is designed to study aspects of information systems, digital analytics, marketing and the digital future and strategic management. From this course, I w....
SOP - BSc (Hons) International Tourism with Hospitality Management
The course I am intending to pursue is BSc (Hons) International Tourism with Hospitality Management at University of Bedfordshire. This course will help me to understand the changing nature of international tourism as well as the challenges and the rapid growth of Hospitality Management in industries. Moreover, the course will prepare me academically and professionally which will boost my career prospects. I want to do career in this field and I am pretty ....
SOP - BSc (Hons) Computer Science programme
I am eager to pursue the BSc (Hons) Computer Science programme at University of Bedfordshire to learn a broad-based range of subjects which is increase my vocational skills. I have researched the University website and found that this programme will help me to develop my knowledge and skills with a solid understanding of Computer science concepts and techniques. Moreover, getting an opportunity to study this course at University of Bedfordshire will help m....
BSc (Hons) Business Studies (International)
I am Md Y Hossain from Bangladesh and I am intending to pursue a BSc (Hons) Business Studies (International) programme at the University of Bedfordshire because it will enhance my analytical, critical appreciation, and research skills. This course is suitable for me because it will help me to enhance my academic qualifications, gain practical experience and knowledge and provide opportunities to build a successful career. Moreover, this course will show me....
Personal Statement - MA Business and Marketing
I am willing to study the MA Business and Marketing at Bangor University to learn advanced tools, models, theories, techniques, and trends of Business as well as Marketing. This course is suitable for me to enhance my academic qualifications and it will be a great opportunity to start a successful career through deep insights and practical knowledge. Moreover, getting an opportunity to study this course at Bangor University will help me to gain the employm....
Personal Statement - BA (Hons) English
I construct this application with great exuberance, initiating my journey to study the BA (Hons) English (Including Arts, Humanities, Law and Social Sciences - International Foundation Year) programme at Cardi? University to enhance my current academic attainments, proliferate my skills in a subject synonymous with my character, and pave a path to better career opportunities in the ?eld. Following my high school graduation from European Standard School ....
SOP - MSc Computing and Information Communication Technology
The course that I’m looking to pursue is MSc Computing and Information Communication Technology at University of East London (UEL). Through the studying of this course, I will be able to gain invaluable in-depth and practical knowledge which will help me in starting a successful career. Moreover, getting the opportunity to study in this university will help me advance both professionally and academically. In addition, the opportunity to apply my theo....
Personal Statement - MSc Business with International Management
I am intending to pursue MSc Business with International Management with Advanced Practice at Northumbria University. This course is ideal for starting a successful career through invaluable in-depth and practical knowledge which will be playing a significant role to achieve my future career aspirations and enhance my academic attainments. Moreover, I believe getting a chance to pursue my study career in this University will progress me both professionally....
SOP - MBA (Master of Business Administration)
I am interested in applying for admission into the MBA (Master of Business Administration) with Advanced Practice in the Ulster University Business School. Academically, this program will enhance my professional accomplishment, and career-wise, it will enable me to develop practical and relevant skills in leadership, operations management, marketing, economics, strategy development and finance. Studying this course will further enhance my capabilities i....
Personal Statement – BEng (Hons) Mechanical Engineering
I am keenly interested to study the Bachelor of Engineering with Honours Mechanical Engineeringat Birmingham City University. This program provides its students with the knowledge and professional skills that go beyond the scope of standard engineering, and I believe that this program will give the premise to me to advance into a profession with extraordinary potential. I have researched and found highly contemporary modules in the Bachelor of Engineeri....
Personal statement of purpose - MSc Public Health
I am keen to undertake the MSc Public Health course at Birmingham City University (BCU) to fill in my academic gap in knowledge and skills in the contemporary trending functional areas of Health. My Pharmacology & Therapeutics background has given me the drive to move my career to increasing awareness of disease prevention. My previous study of BS in Pharmacology & Therapeutics at Delta State University, NigeriaIprovided me with comprehensive kn....
Personal Statement – MSc Management
Management is a speedily emerging field, with a keen eye on emerging Management and I am passionate to study the MSc Management Programme at University of Brighton. It provides comprehensive and profound knowledge and expertise of contemporary business organizations worldwide. This MSc Management programme will assist me to prepare for a larger career in management with the specializations offered in human resource management, entrepreneurship, and interna....
Personal Statement of Purpose - MSc Computer Science
The course that I’m looking to pursue is MSc Computer Science at York St John University (YSJU). By studying this course, I will be able to gain invaluable in-depth and practical knowledge which will help me in starting a successful career. Moreover, getting the opportunity to study in this university will help me advance both professionally and academically. In addition, the opportunity to apply my theories and ideas in practice will benefit me to e....
PersonalStatement- BSc (Hons) Pharmaceutical Science
I want to pursue the BSc (Hons) Pharmaceutical Science programme at University of Hertfordshire. The University works with a wide range of pharmaceutical industries who input the course design and teaching which meets the changing demands of the workplace and give students a path to achieve their future career goal. Over and above, I believe getting a chance to pursue my study career in this University will progress me both professionally and intellectuall....
Personal Statement - BSc (Hons) Biomedical Science
The human body is one of the most amazing things on earth. The desire to study biomedical science came from my school life when I was studying biology and was greatly fascinated by the biology of the human body. My goal in studying biomedical science is to gain a deeper understanding of the human body. I am willing to pursue a BSc (Hons) Biomedical Science with International Foundation programme (Malvern House) at the University of East London. By studying....
Personal Statement - MSc Logistics and Supply Chain Management
I am keen to pursue MSc (PGCertPGDip) Logistics and Supply Chain Management progamme at the University of Brighton because the professional world today is highly competitive and the importance of supply chain management and logistics in globalization, and digitization has multiplied. As I aim to improve and strengthen my knowledge of this Logistics and Supply Chain Management. This course covers topics such as Digital Supply Chain, International ....
PersonalStatement- BSc (Hons) Computer Science
The course that I’m looking to pursue is BSc (Hons) Computer Science at University of East London (UEL). Through the teachings of this course, I will be able to gain invaluable in-depth and practical knowledge which will help me in starting a successful career. The opportunity to apply my theories and ideas in practice will benefit me to enhance my skills and knowledge and to achieve a deeper understanding of the field of Web Technologies, Computer S....
Personal Statement - LLM International Law and Social Justice
I am keen to pursue LLM International Law and Social Justice at University of Brighton. This LL.M in international law and Social Justice will complement and enhance my Bachelor degree. The application is supported by my CV and evidence of my qualifications, references and my eligibility to study. This will verify the information contained within this application. If I may complete the LLM international law and Social Justice, I will get a vast idea about ....
Personal Statement - MSc Management with Professional Development and Planning
I, S Ahmed, am from Bangladesh a highly ambitious boy. I am 27 years old. I have decided to study in the MSc Management with Professional Development and Planning (PDP) Programme at BPP University because it is a comprehensive and detailed course of study that provides the knowledge and skills needed by contemporary global business organisations. As this course prepares graduates for management-level positions and so I am looking forward to achieving this ....
Personal Statement of Purpose - MBA
I am keen to study MBA at York Saint John University, London. This course is suitable for me to enhance my academic qualifications and it will be a great opportunity to start a successful career through deep insights and practical knowledge. Moreover, I believe getting a chance to pursue my study career in this University will progress me both professionally and intellectually, besides the opportunity to apply my theories and ideas in practice will benefit....
Personal Statement of Purpose - BSc (Hons) Computer Science with International Foundation Programme
I am intending to pursue the BSc (Hons) Computer Science with International Foundation Programme at University of East London (Malvern House). This course is currently in the midst of a technological and computing revolution that will radically change my life and potentially redefine what it means to be human. I will be able to build a strong foundation in computer science fundamentals in this course, including modeling and designing information systems, d....
Personal Statement - BSc (Hons) Business Management
I am keen to study the BSc (Hons) Business Management with International Foundation Programmeat the University of East London.I am very ambitious and I have always been interested in management-related things. I believe Management to be a fast-developing profession as business industries are heavily involved with their management for all kinds of decisions, and I find the prospect of working in this field inspiring. And I found that studying this course wi....
SOP – MSc Management with Project Management
My name is BalajiYadagani, and I’m a 28-year-old Indian looking to pursue MSc Management with Project Management with Professional Development and Planning (PDP) at BPP University. This course is suitable for me to enhance my academic qualifications and it will be a great opportunity to start a successful career through deep insights and practical knowledge. I have gained knowledge and skills of English language during my bachelor’s at Jawaharl....
SOP - MSc Management with Professional Development and Planning
I want to study the MSc Management with Professional Development and Planning (PDP) module offered by BPP University because the programme is a comprehensive and detailed programme of study that offers the knowledge and skills demanded by contemporary global business organizations. The programme provides a range of theoretical knowledge of modern business practice while equips with number of practical skills that can enhance my competitive edge to potentia....
Personal statement - MSc International Management
I am keen to pursue MSc International Management at University of Brighton. By researching the course curriculum available at university website, I become to know that this course helps students to develop the global business knowledge which will help me to achieve my future career goal. Moreover, I believe getting a chance to pursue my study career in thisUniversity will progress me both professionally and intellectually. Besides the opportunity to apply ....
Personal Statement - MSc Healthcare Leadership
My name is Md R Islam and I am 25 years old. I am from Bangladesh. Right now, I am intending to pursue the MSc Healthcare Leadership programme at BPP University. By studying this programme I will be able to evaluate critically a range of leadership models, techniques, and appropriate application to everyday working practice. Moreover, I believe getting a chance to pursue this MSc course at this University will progress me both professionally and intellectu....
SOP - MSc Computer Science with Professional Experience
I amkeento pursueMSc ComputerSciencewith ProfessionalExperienceatYork StJohn University. This programme will balance bothadvancedpractical skills and theoreticalknowledge to providewith theabilityto entera range ofprofessionalIT disciplines andemployment.Moreover, this coursehelps student to furtherdevelop their knowledge andskills within the cutting-edgeareas of ComputerScience. Accordingto myresearch andfindingsIhavefound that an MScin ComputerScience....
SOP - MSc Accounting and Finance [Advance Diploma Route]
I have chosen to study MSc Accounting and Finance [Advance Diploma Route] at BPP University. This course modules is designed to develop critical thinking and analytical skills, the further study is essential for a successful global accounting career. The course is ideal for starting a successful career through invaluable insights and practical knowledge which will be playing a vital role to achieve my future career objectives. BPP University offers some....
Personal Statement - MSc Planning and Development
I am M Ali and from Bangladesh. I am writing this application with great joy to study the course MSc Planning and Development at the Queen’s University Belfast. This course is designed to provide a broad knowledge of planning and professional skills and to use statistical analysis. More importantly, this course will teach me how they solve problems, and create new solutions for the built environment and understand the complexity of environmental mana....
PS - MSc Accounting and Finance [Advanced Diploma Route]
I am willing to study the MSc Accounting and Finance [Advanced Diploma Route] programme at BPP University. The course is ideal for starting a successful career through invaluable insights and practical knowledge which will be playing a vital role to achieve my future career goal. After completing my HSC & SSC in Science group, I completed my Bachelor of Arts and Masters in Da’wah and Islamic Studies. During my school days, I had taken part in ....
Personal Statement of Purpose - MSc Management
I am intending to study the MSc Management at University of Brighton to enhance my academic knowledge and create better and further opportunities for my career. By doing a lot of research on the University website for the course, I can confidently say that this course will satisfy my curiosity and hope and it will lead me to a career that I aim to develop in a sustainable way. In this MSc Management program at Brighton University, I will be able to do c....
Statement of Purpose - MBA
I am Md S Uddin,keen to study the MBA with work placement at York St John University London Campus to enhance my current academic attainments, extend my skills in Business and with professional skills and create better opportunities to design my career in the field. Following my Secondary and Higher Secondary education were science background and I studied my Bachelor and Master Degree in Daw’ah and Islamic Studies under the International Islamic ....
Personal Statement - MSc International Business
I have been doing extensive research since my last graduation to narrow-down my prospective course of study. After much deliberation, I have decided to pursue MSc International Business at University of Bedfordshire. The program provides its students with the knowledge and professional skills that go beyond the scope of standard management and I believe that this program will give the premise to me to advance into a profession with extraordinary potential.....
Statement of Purpose-MSc International Business
Following my Successful completion of the MSc International Accounting and Finance at London South Bank University, I have made a strategic decision to extend my academic knowledge and skills further with an MSc in International Business so that I can gain mastery in varied functions of business and organisations. My aim is to gain control over my efficiency and leave no gap in my accomplishments so that I can be a human asset for my employer or my own pro....
Statement of Purpose - MSc International Business
Upon finishing my recent study of MSc International Finance, while waiting for the final result, a thorough inspection in my accomplishments till now, I find myself narrowed to a one dimensional direction of accounting and finance. A transition and shift to UK’s dynamic environment from my home country Pakistan, I have observed the broader aspects of career directions and demands of global business organisations. The needs for rounded knowledge and s....
Statement of Purpose - DBA Course
I am very keen to follow Doctor of Business Administration (DBA) course at University of the Wales Trinity Saint David (UWTSD). While doing my Master in Management with Finance from BPP University after my MBA from University of West London, I became more attached to the management area of business and industry and planned my career in this arena. The DBA course will enable me to gain new horizon of knowledge in those areas and boost my career prospects as....
Statement of Purpose MSc Clinical Dermatology course
A medical graduate from the College of Medicine, University of Sulaimani, Iraq with few years of experience as a Dermatology Professional, I am driven to gain advanced level knowledge and skills in the field from scholastic institution and specialise in Clinical Dermatology with a master degree. After exploring my options and researching different study opportunities, I am keen to follow the MSc Clinical Dermatology course offered by Kings College London. ....
MBA - sample statement of Purpose
To master my business management knowledge and skills that I have gained from my recently completed Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) course, I aim to follow the Master of Business Administration course (MBA) and progress towards my career goals. After extensive search and research of course, universities and study destinations, I have decided to undertake the MBA programme offered by the University of the West of Scotland (UWS). At UWS, this MB....
LLM Commercial and Corporate Law - Sample Personal Statement
My name is T Ahmed. My nationality is Bangladeshi and I am 25 years old. I am intending to pursue the LLM Comparative Commercial Law at BPP University to to achieve a deeper understanding of the field of Comparative Commercial Law. I look forward to having the opportunity to study it to a higher level. Following my SSC & HSC, I have completed my Bachelor of Laws (Honours) from ASA University of Bangladesh in 2019. Then I admitted myself at Jagannath Un....
MBA with pre-master's
A recent graduate of Political Science, I have been in search of scopes for job opportunities in my home country and found very limited options let alone extreme competition in Bangladesh Job Market where unemployment rate is too high. The analysis has prompted me to re-think and plan realistically for further study options that can facilitate more and better career prospects. An evaluation of the current trends of the job market in Bangladesh, I have esta....
MSc Business with International Management with Advanced Practice
Today’s changing nature of global business and organisations that are evolving at fast pace to emancipate traditional management with business leaders who are versatile and pragmatic. Given the recent development that my home country India has seen in the last decade, it has become integral to co-ordinate and sustain the growth with skilled and professional human capital. This importance goes further with demands for skilled and educated women to put....
MBA (Master of Business Administration)
I am keen to pursue the Master of Business Administration (MBA) programme offered by the celebrated Bristol Business School of University of the West of England (UWE). As the MBA is recognised as the benchmark professional qualification in management, this rigorous and career-oriented MBA programme, once qualified will give the message to my employer that I can think strategically and beyond my immediate role. These programmes will undoubtedly help me g....
Following my recently completed Master of Business Studies under the National University of Bangladesh, I take great interest to study an MBA programme under the Northampton University, the ‘Gold’ ranked university by the Teaching Excellence Framework. I have made the decision after considering all aspects of my academic and career developments. In my Master of Business Studies, I have gathered one-dimensional knowledge mainly focused to man....
MSc Clinical Dermatology
Note: the example personal statement (statement of purpose) below is for guidelines only and to help you understand how to write one - do not copy any part of it. When applying to universities, write your own personal statement (statement of purpose) according to your profile for the course you are applying. Please check HERE for detailed guidelines on how to write a personal statement (statement of purpose). I am keen to follow the MSc Clinical Dermato....
DBA - Doctor of Business Administration
I am highly motivated to study the Doctor of Business Administration (DBA) programme to enhance my academic accomplishments and gain further personal and professional developments. The qualification would facilitate me to realise my career plan as a business management consultant and develop it to further height. I have recently completed MSc Management with Finance course - the study has provided me insights into various areas of management and busines....
Personal Statement for MBA course application
A recent graduate with a Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) Degree, the Master of Business Administration (MBA) course as my postgraduate study pathway is the reflection of my academic pursuance for greater depth of knowledge in the area. While reviewing my options for a master’s study between MSc and MBA, I have concluded that being a premier business and management qualification, an MBA could provide rounded knowledge while complementing my ....
Doctor of Business Administration - DBA
I am keen to follow the DBA programme offered by the University of the West of Scotland to gain further academic progression and enhance my academic heights to next level. This accomplishments along with my current qualifications would provide me the strength to realise my career plan as a consultant for business and organisations. From my research, I have found out that as the number of MBA holders continues to grow, the DBA qualification enables gradu....
MSc International Human Resource Management
I want to pursue my higher education at University of Bedfordshire for the MSc International Human Resource Management in November 2021 intake. I want to study this course to enhance my current academic credentials and prepare myself as a career ready graduate with required skills and knowledge for my future managerial role (HR & Admin ) at BEXIMCO Textile Limited , Bangladesh. I strongly believe that this course will meet the requirement with relevant....
MSc Finance and Business Management
My Enthusiasm knows no bound to apply for the MSc Finance and Business Management course at the University of Bedfordshire. While researching on my further study options in the UK, the course and its contents have caught my attention – the 3 in 1 combination of finance, business and management incorporated in one master degree is truly a perfect opportunity to specialise in 3 vital functional areas of business organisations. The course has been ....
MSc Computing Networking Programme
I am interested to follow the MSc Computing Networking programme at the University of Bedfordshire because this course will enhance my knowledge of computer networking technologies - through the use of real-world applications, I will gain an in-depth understanding of advanced and academic computing skills. I have studied BCS Certificate and Diploma level in computing followed by year 3 top up BSc in Computing under the University of Greenwich. In thes....
The MBA Global Business is a premier masters qualification offered at Coventry University London – the qualification is a powerful demonstration of some of the most sought-after attributes in any executive: intelligence; innovation; and determination. It blends established expertise with the latest thinking of contemporary business and management to provide a real catalyst to develop career. In a fiercely competitive employment market, the MBA giv....
LLM Commercial Law
With the procession of globalisation internationally based and active industries continue to grow each year and marching together. In this climate of globalisation, commerce and trade exert some of the most powerful influences on human activity and commercial relationships reflect a constantly evolving world. The above aspects have brought good practice along with malpractice in business and organisations. The ingenuity of traders and the complexity of ....
Developing countries like Bangladesh, my home country, we need Accountancy and Finance professionals equipped with Western and European qualifications accompanied by practically experienced social, cultural and economic activities practised there. There was a time, it had been almost impossible to gain access to these special qualifications by students in general. ACCA (The Association of Chartered Certified Accountants) – the largest accountancy b....
BSc (Hons) Professional Accounting Course
Note: the example personal statement (statement of purpose) below is for guidelines only and to help you understand how to write one - do not copy any part of it. When applying to universities, write your own personal statement (statement of purpose) according to your profile for the course you are applying. Please check HERE for detailed guidelines on how to write a personal statement (statement of purpose). My aim is to become a ....
I am motivated to study the ACCA course which predominantly focuses in accounting and finance with other key functional areas of business and organisation. The syllabus of the programme is modernised to address global issues virtually in all aspects of business. Being qualified with ACCA would equip me with complete knowledge and competences in professional capacity for accounting, finance, tax, audit, management, consultancy, marketing, human resource, co....
The ACCA Programme
I am an MA in the subject of English – English is a major international language and the language of corporate world. The language dominates the communications among business communities across the globe. The study of English itself does not have much merit in itself except for academic learning. The knowledge does not have much use apart from communication in the present global climate of business revolution. I have realised this after coming to ....
The ACCA Course
Though I have very strong academic achievements and qualifications, I have realised my attainments have enabled me extensive theoretical knowledge which requires transformation with professional skills and competences. Moreover, the theoretical parts of learning can be further explored with critical analysis techniques and tools. This findings in my skills shortage have prompted me to decide to study ACCA programme that offer professional edge with advance....
ACCA - Association of Chartered Certified Accountants Study
I am keen to pursue the ACCA programme because the programme is a comprehensive and intensive investigation into key areas in accounting and finance - it is both academically rigorous and closely in line with professional practice. Accounting has been defined as the measurement and disclosure of financial information that is used by managers, investors and others to make decisions about the allocation of resources within organisations. It is much more t....
MSc International Marketing Course
In today’s era of globalization, business functions are more independent and require specialist knowledge to sustain growth and remain competitive. General management with bit of knowledge in every function is no more effective and hence traditional management has shifted focuses on specialist knowledge and skills in individual units or single functions. Modern business organsiations now demand specialists in every department. I have learned this ....
Today’s world of success is dominated by business and Accounting is often described as the 'language of business', it involves analysing and using financial information to understand and evaluate the financial position of an organisation. Accounting is really the language business speaks. Business communicates in dollars and pounds and accountants are an integral part of that communication. A professional accounting qualification is not ju....
MSc International Marketing programme
From my recent study MBA, I have learned that marketing marks the heart and soul of most business because the success of a business is directly impacted by marketers – from the analyses of markets and consumers, to the advertising and selling of products. Successful businesses like Virgin, McDonalds, KFC, Apple, Coca-Cola, they all have one thing in common – a successful, dynamic marketing team. In a world where social media and relationship....
MSc Computer Networking
I write to express my enthusiasm and interests in the MSc Computer Networking study opportunity and particularly why University of Bedfordshire is my first preference as an institute for my higher study. As because I completed BEng (Hons) Telecommunication and Computer Networks Engineering from London South Bank University and as because Computer Networking one of my favorite subjects in undergraduate, I am very passionate and wish to promote my career in ....
Note: the example personal statement (statement of purpose) below is for guidelines only and to help you understand how to write one - do not copy any part of it. When applying to universities, write your own personal statement (statement of purpose) according to your profile for the course you are applying. Please check HERE for detailed guidelines on how to write a personal statement (statement of purpose). The world is changing, a....
LLB - the Bachelor of Laws (Hons) Course
My upbringing has honed my perception of society and people leading me to be acutely aware of social injustice, inequality, exploitation, discrimination, and religious fundamentalism, especially in a society such as the one I am a citizen of – Sri Lanka. As I grew up I nurtured a desire to work through my life in establishing a society that would be free from these. As such, I have chosen to study law (LLB) and take training as a Lawyer/Ba....
BSc (Hons) Business Management Course
A devoted student of business discipline since my secondary school, I have recently completed a BTEC Level 3 Certificate in Business successfully. The qualification has perfectly set a platform for me to start my bachelor degree study in the area of business in the UK universities. I have taken considerations for options available for me at different institutions, and finally decided to study the BSc (Hons) Business and Management at the BPP University, th....
BSc (Hons) Business and Management
Ba (hons) business management programme (final year).
I have chosen to pursue the BA (Hons) Business Management degree course under the University of Sunderland London because this course has been developed not only to reflect the increasing international dimension of business and management, but also to provide a range of opportunities and experiences that will help develop my the intercultural skills necessary to operate effectively across national and cultural boundaries. The study would give me a true ins....
Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA) programme
The globally recognised ACCA qualification is a badge of quality and professionalism – it provides knowledge and skills at the highest professional standard. It is a broad-based qualification, focusing on the essential skills of accounting, business, finance and management - ACCA incorporates subjects, in fact, areas of accountancy, management, audit, tax, corporate law, finance and other related functions of business and organisation. I am intere....
PGD Strategic Leadership and Executive Management Programme
I intend to follow the Post Graduate Diploma in Strategic Leadership and Executive Management programme at the Westminster Kingsway College (WKC) which is in the forefront in providing this life-skill course. The programme has been designed on a combination of executive coaching and work based learning – this allow learners to define a set of objectives designed to have a real impact on their workplace and develop these into a work-based learning ....
MSc Project Management
The principle reason that motivated me to pursue the MSc Project Management course is the appeal and challenge Project Managers experience in delivering assignments they undertake in their career. The qualification, indeed, lead to very smart and modern careers for graduates who love challenges, creativity, leadership and success. As a graduate of Mathematics, I have cultivated these features in my student life. Now, for my master level of study, I would l....
MSc Medical Ultrasound Programme
I am keen to study the MSc Medical Ultrasound programme to develop my skills and work towards advanced and consultant-level practice. As a healthcare professional, the area has drawn my interest and I believe the study will enhance my competences to further level with newer domain of knowledge and skills. From the study, I aim to develop my understanding of the relevant ultrasound principles including current applications of ultrasound and imaging modal....
MSc Marketing and Business Management
As they say: without marketing there is no business; and both marketing and business must be management efficiently and effectively, I have decided to study a post-graduation qualification that combines both and carry on from my current qualification. I have found the MSc Marketing and Business Management fulfils my academic goals and would help achieving my career aspirations. In fact, today’s business world is constantly changing; technological ....
MSc Management programme
Note: the example personal statement (statement of purpose) below is for guidelines only and to help you understand how to write one - do not copy any part of it. When applying to universities, write your own personal statement (statement of purpose) according to your profile for the course you are applying. Please check HERE for detailed guidelines on how to write a personal statement (statement of purpose). I have chosen to study t....
MSc Management with Project Management
As a student, I have been always in search for the knowledge and skills that would put me the right direction with concurrent trends of global business and position me in strong career role that I enjoy with thorough and complete knowledge, skills and efficiency and thus be in demands with employers as a key player. With my BSc in Computer Science and MSc in Mathematics from India, I sought for business management knowledge from Europe to earn transfera....
MSc Management with Finance
A bachelor degree holder in the business administration from south Asia, I have recently accomplished a BSc (Hons) in Business Studies from the University of Ulster, United Kingdom. While these two qualifications from two different continents are at same academic level, the different learning set up and environment, education system have transformed my knowledge with newer perspectives and better insights. The study has, in fact, driven my academic pursuan....
MSc International Tourism and Hospitality Management
I have noticed that tourism and hospitality are closely-related areas of an economic and social phenomenon that have developed a critical role in the world economy. The industry has become one of the major players in international commerce, and represents at the same time one of the main income sources for many developing countries with economic and employment benefits. The profession is not only profit oriented but also interesting and full of colourful f....
MSc International Marketing
I take great inspiration from my recently attained higher study programme, MBA International under Anglia Ruskin University to further expand my knowledge in the branches of business management and gain all-round efficiency. One of the major areas that has been highlights of global business success in most recent time is International Marketing and this was not served in the menu of my MBA syllabus. To fulfil my academic aspiration with complete satisfacti....
MSc International Business Programme
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Note: the example personal statement (statement of purpose) below is for guidelines only and to help you understand how to write one - do not copy any part of it. When applying to universities, write your own personal statement (statement of purpose) according to your profile for the course you are applying. Please check HERE for detailed guidelines on how to write a personal statement (statement of purpose). I have chosen to study MSc Applied Finance p....
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Note: the example personal statement (statement of purpose) below is for guidelines only and to help you understand how to write one - do not copy any part of it. When applying to universities, write your own personal statement (statement of purpose) according to your profile for the course you are applying. Please check HERE for detailed guidelines on how to write a personal statement (statement of purpose). I have chosen to study MSc Ac....
Today's business environment is continuously changing and the management is facing diverse challenges ranging from the financial constraints of the current global economy, to the demand for raw materials and the need to focus on sustainability and corporate social responsibility. Future managers must be prepared with knowledge and skills that addresses international business issues in contemporary time and reflects on the actions and needs for capabili....
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Note: the example personal statement (statement of purpose) below is for guidelines only and to help you understand how to write one - do not copy any part of it. When applying to universities, write your own personal statement (statement of purpose) according to your profile for the course you are applying. Please check HERE for detailed guidelines on how to write a personal statement (statement of purpose). I am eager to follow the Degr....
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I am pleased to apply for the BSc (Hons) International Business Management since I have found the programme crossing my academic progression route. I have found the programme offered by Anglia Ruskin University (ARU) very interesting in fulfilling my academic and career goal. The course offered by ARU covers all the major functional areas of business and organisation from finance and marketing to human resource management and information management; it ....
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Examples of Awesome Personal Statements Article Type: Tasty Bits
Write your own awesome personal statement with our COLLEGE APPLICATION ESSAY LAB , which will guide you through the process, providing tips and even more examples along the way.
Before you start, check out our own sample essays—or scroll down for the Best of the Web. Whether you're an athlete, a minority, or no one special (or, uh, probably some combination), we've got you covered.
No One Special
- Common App Prompt 1 Example: Background and Identity
- Common App Prompt 2 Example: Failure and Success
- Common App Prompt 3 Example: Challenging Beliefs
- Common App Prompt 4 Example: Problem-Solving
- Common App Prompt 5 Example: Accomplishment or Event
- What matters to you and why? Example
Some are surprising and some are clever, but they're all good examples of a "hook," not the kind with the pointy mustache but something that writers use to grab their reader's attention and make them want to keep reading.
Grab Them with the First Line Stanford Magazine compiled the following list of great opening lines written by hopeful Stanford applicants.
Essays That Worked Connecticut College posts a list of college essays “that worked.”
More Essays that Worked Hamilton College provides access to some of their favorite application essays.
Other Resources for College Essay Writing
Writing the Personal Statement The Purdue Online Writing lab offers a guide to writing all kinds of personal statements.
Application Tips: Tackling the Personal Essay Abc.com provides some good tips on approaching the personal essay.
10 Tips for Writing the College Application Essay The famous U.S. News & World Report offers some writing advice.
The Elements of Style Flip through this famous guide to writing by William Strunk, Jr. that many students and teachers use. Read the 1918 version for free online.
Get Your Writing On Some great handbooks on writing by writing guru Andrea Lunsford.
Grammar Resources The University of Chicago’s guide to grammar.
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Personal Statement Examples
Great Personal Statement Examples for your Help
25 min read
Published on: Feb 28, 2023
Last updated on: Feb 28, 2023
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The pressure to write a compelling personal statement can be stressful and intimidating. You can get stuck in a cycle of self-doubt and anxiety, wondering if you're presenting yourself in the best light possible.
Well we have good news for you!
In this personal statement examples blog, you will get some examples of powerful and effective personal statements. You can check them to learn some strategies and techniques to write your own personal statement.
So get set to gain the confidence and skills to write a personal statement. Explore our examples now!
What is a Personal Statement?
A personal statement or essay is a chance for you to get into the college of your choice and study what interests you. It’s also an opportunity for many people to fulfill their dream.
In easy words this is an essay that is written at the time of an admission. This essay focuses on the unique experiences, ideas, or beliefs that are not mentioned throughout the application.
What Should a Personal Statement Include?
The personal statement is a key component of your college application. It's an opportunity to let the reader know who you are and what they can expect from working or studying with you. So it should be well-written.
Below we've listed some basic things that should be included in your statement.
- Mention achievements/experience
- Your academic goals
- Talk about your problem-solving techniques
- Highlight your strengths and weaknesses that justify your personality
Be concise and stay to your point while writing. The admission officers read hundreds or thousands of applications and hardly give 2-3 minutes to each application. Therefore, try to avoid writing irrelevant and obscure information.
Need to learn more about personal statements? Click on this useful link - Personal statement - An ultimate guide for beginners
Example No 1 -
Qualities That Make This Statement Successful:
It highlights the key qualities: The qualities make the student unique, such as communication and problem-solving skills, resilience, and determination. It also shows how these traits have allowed the student to overcome his/her fears and create meaningful change in his/her life.
It emphasizes their commitment: The statement highlights the student’s commitment to service and helping others reach their full potential. All of these qualities will make the student an attractive candidate for any program or job they’re applying to.
The statement is written with a positive attitude and enthusiasm that comes through in the writing. This is important because admission officers want to see applicants who are dedicated and motivated about their work. The statement reflects this and will make the student stand out from other applicants.
Example No 2 -
Its ability to capture the emotion behind a true appreciation for nature . The author conveys their lifelong passion and connection to the beauty of nature. Moreover, he has also expressed how it has served as an inspiration, source of hope, and reminder of life's changing cycles.
The commitment to protect nature : He has then expressed his commitment to protecting the environment and inspiring others to do the same.
Vivid and Descriptive language: The author's language is vivid and descriptive, which helps the reader be drawn into their story and feel a connection to what they are saying.
The statement also uses specific examples of nature, such as sunsets and walks in the woods, making them more relatable for readers.
Finally, the statement ends with a heartfelt sentiment of gratitude for being able to witness nature's beauty. All of these elements together create an effective and moving personal statement that conveys the author’s true love for nature.
Example No 3
Qualities of success of this statement:
The qualities of this personal statement that make it successful include its clarity, honesty, and specificity. It communicates the author's deep connection to music in a way that is clearly communicated and deeply felt.
The impact of music on an author's life: The statement delves into how music has impacted the author's life on an emotional level. This gives readers a better understanding of why they are so obsessed with music.
The importance of sharing music with others: This emphasis conveys a sense of purpose and social connectivity that is often missing from personal statements.
Finally, the author's genuine passion for music and its impact on their life shines through in this statement, making it both powerful and memorable. Overall, this statement effectively conveys the author's obsession with music in a way that is both reflective and inspiring.
Example No 4
Qualities of Success of this Statement
This statement engages the reader and captures the reader's attention right away by describing a specific scene. It then dives into an exploration of why the author wants to travel to the United States.
The essay also paints a vivid picture of what they hope to experience while being there. This makes it easier for readers to connect with the writer’s motivations and dreams.
Ends on a positive note that reflects the author’s enthusiasm for what lies ahead, which is sure to leave readers feeling inspired.
Overall, this statement paints a picture of an individual who is passionate about exploring new experiences in foreign lands. He conveys his excitement in such a way that it encourages others to do the same. It is this combination of engaging storytelling, vivid imagery, and inspiring optimism that makes this statement a success.
Example No 5
Qualities of Success of This Statement:
The qualities of success for this statement are determination, resilience, and advocacy . Determination is the key to any successful endeavor. This statement clearly demonstrates how determination has helped to overcome the challenges of being an undocumented student.
With resilience and dedication , the reader is able to make the best out of the situation and fight for what he believes in.
Lastly ,we can see advocating for the rights of undocumented students and creating pathways for them to pursue their education. This speaks volumes about his commitment to making a positive difference in the lives of others.
Overall, this statement is a testament to how far he has come as an undocumented student and used his experience to become a stronger person.
Example No 6
Qualities of Success in this Statement:
It effectively communicates the author's appreciation for photography and how it has informed their approach to capturing beauty.
It Reveals a deeper understanding of the subject. The statement also reveals a deeper understanding of the concept of beauty. It emphasizes that it can be found in places beyond what we normally associate with beauty such as in tragedy or in small details.
By referencing a particular photo of a homeless woman , the author conveys their understanding of beauty in an emotive way that resonates with readers.
Finally, the author's goal to evoke emotion through photography is clear and inspiring. It also provides readers with a sense of hope that they too can discover beauty everywhere. Together, these elements make this personal statement compelling and effective.
Looking at these examples can be a good way to get an idea about what your own statement should look like. These different topics and styles, which will help you become more creative with words.
To help you write your own, we've gathered some more examples from the past few years. These will help you see what great essays look like and learn how they were constructed.
Paper Due? Why Suffer? That's our Job!
Personal Statement Example For Students
The personal statement is a part of your admission application, and it tells the admission officers why you decided to pursue admission into their institute.
It increases your chances of university or college admissions. It should be written in a way that makes you stand out from the rest of the other applicants.
Moreover, it is a chance for students to impress the admission officers with their writing skills. When you opt to write a personal statement, you should follow these tips that make your statement noteworthy.
- Carefully read the instructions of the admission officers.
- Use accurate examples to support your point.
- Demonstrate why you are a suitable candidate.
- Make it engaging and relevant.
- Don’t attempt to sound too clever.
Done with these? Now express the following…
- Why are you a suitable applicant?
- What makes you unique from other candidates?
- What are your long-term and short-term goals?
- What are your strengths?
- What are your career aspirations?
Here are some example for you to get guidance and help with writing
Personal Statement Example for University
Personal Statement Example for College
Grad School Personal Statement Examples
Personal Statement Example for MBA
Personal Statement Examples for BBA
Personal Statement Examples for Jobs
Some employers require the applicant to submit a personal statement with their resume. The personal statement for the job summarizes what an applicant offers to the company.
Therefore, try to write a well-written personal statement that helps you get a job easily. Also, show that you are the best candidate in front of the recruiters.
When you write a personal statement, you should consider some questions that recruiters ask the candidates.
- What benefit will an employer get from hiring you?
- What are your career goals?
- Why did you apply for this job?
- What are your strengths and weaknesses?
- What area of expertise do you have?
- How much work were you able to complete within a day or a week?
- Describe your professional experience.
Therefore, keep these questions in mind, and they will help you create a great personal statement for the job. You can also read this example for your help.
Personal Statement Examples for CV
Personal Statement Example for Internship
Personal Statement Example for Resume
Personal Statement Example for Scholarship
A personal statement is a main part of the scholarship application. It showcases who you are and why you deserve this scholarship.
Therefore, writing a great statement is necessary to win the scholarship. It should be written in a way that grabs the scholarship provider’s attention. It should also make them realize that you are the most deserving candidate for the scholarship.
When you write the personal statement for scholarship, it should be:
Below is an example that you can use to write a personal statement on your own without any problem.
Fellowship Personal Statement Example
Personal Statement Example for Computer Science
Writing a great personal statement for computer science students becomes a daunting task if they haven’t written it before. However, it is not as tough as it sounds.
With little guidance and help, you will easily write an excellent statement. Therefore, we compiled some guidelines that you should follow for writing a good personal statement.
- Discuss your technological skills.
- Focus on your achievements and interests.
- The statement reflects yourself.
- Explain your future goals.
- Write in a positive tone.
- Talk about your hobbies and extracurricular activities and how they are relevant.
Therefore, follow these guidelines and try to write a compelling statement for computer science. We also gathered an example that makes your writing phase easy.
400 Word Personal Statement Examples
The personal statement is an important document for students applying to any academic institution or job. It is the only document that shows your real personality apart from your academic grades. Also, it is an essential part of the college/university common app.
Writing a 400-word personal statement reveals your best qualities and shows you a better candidate. It also gives a strong sense of the applicant’s personality.
Before you start writing the 400 words personal statement, do your research where you apply and follow their guidelines. You should know what they want and how you will present yourself in front of them.
We collected some examples of the personal application essay; use them for your help.
Good Personal Statement Examples
Psychology Personal Statement Example
Short Personal Statement Example
Tough Essay Due? Hire Tough Writers!
Personal Statement Example Law School
The law school personal statement is written the same way but with different content. When you start writing the law school personal statement, you should mention your goals and highlight your personality in the best way.
Moreover, highlight that allows the admission officers to understand your motivation to attend law school. Also, be professional and write only relevant information about yourself.
Take a look at this example and effectively create a great law school personal statement.
Law School Personal Statement Example
Medical School Personal Statement Example
This medical school personal statement example provides insight into the journey of prospective students as they strive to become a doctor. It covers the applicant's:
- Academic and professional background
- Reasons for pursuing medicine, and
- What makes them an ideal candidate for medical school
Some medical students get stuck when writing the statement for admission. Therefore, we gathered an example that guides you in writing a great personal statement for medical school.
Dental School Personal Statement Example
Nursing Personal Statement Example
This nursing personal statement example outlines the reasons why a student decided to pursue a career in nursing.
It must provides an insight into their ambition, skills, and passion for the field. It should also explain how their background and interest has led them to develop the qualities necessary for success in this chosen profession.
Without these points, the personal nursing statement is incomplete, and the admission committee rejects it. Check this example that will inspire you to write your own without any difficulty.
Vet School Personal Statement Examples
Personal statements are an opportunity to let the reader get to know you. They're also your ticket into veterinary school, so make it count.
When writing your veterinary statement, it is a chance for you to show the world who you are. It is also a time for self-reflection and thinking about what makes you unique from others.
Here is an example that gives you a better idea of writing a great statement.
Vet School Personal Statement Example
Don’t miss this helpful video that highlights some basic points to write an engaging personal statement.
Tips for Writing the Personal Statement
Ready to craft your personal statement after getting guidance from the examples? Wait and go through these helpful tips first.
Follow these expert tips will help you write an engaging personal statement that will make you stand out from the crowd.
- Avoid using vague language .
- Show the positive side of yourself.
- Keep it simple and clear for the readers.
- Take plenty of time and then start the writing phase.
- Research about the institute or company for which you are applying for.
- Check the admission officer’s guidelines.
- Mention your career objective.
- List your achievements and specific skills.
- Check the word count.
- The opening paragraph will show why you are applying for admission or a job.
- Try not to repeat the same sentence again and again.
- Never add useless arguments and opinions.
- Follow the proper personal statement format .
- Choose the best personal statement prompt to grab the reader’s attention.
Here you get a complete list of some good personal statement examples for your college essay that professional writers write. However, you need professional writing help, then look no further. Simply consult CollegeEssay.org .
So, you have gone through different examples of personal statements and now understand the basics of how to compose one. But, before you start writing your personal statement, remember that it should reflect your individual skills and abilities.
The examples and tips mentioned above will help you craft an engaging statement that will surely impress your readers. Although if you still face difficulty in crafting an engaging statement, contact our essay writing service .
At CollegeEssay.org, we have expert writers who provide professional writing help to students around the globe.
Our writers have extraordinary writing skills that will help you in writing a good personal statement. So, place your order now and get help for your academic assignments from our experts.
Frequently Asked Questions
What makes a great personal statement.
A good personal statement should:
- Show who you are except your grades
- Show your interest in the college in which you take admission.
What should you not write in a personal statement?
Here are some things that you don’t write in your personal statement.
- Talking about your childhood memories
- The bad experience of your school and college life
- Not trying to portray yourself in a funny way
Nova A. (Literature, Marketing)
As a Digital Content Strategist, Nova Allison has eight years of experience in writing both technical and scientific content. With a focus on developing online content plans that engage audiences, Nova strives to write pieces that are not only informative but captivating as well.
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