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Writing can be daunting, especially when you are required to write about yourself! But a personal statement can make or brake a college application. Now this is one of the few instances that Google (or Bing, if you’re one of the weird ones) is NOT your friend. The search for anything related to “personal statement” will yield from 8 to 10 million results, so naturally you will get lost. Now there are some hacks that can help you write this important piece of work which may sound tricky but I am sure that in the end (and after a lot of typing and deleting) will ensure that you achieve your goal - write a winning personal statement!
Now, it is super important that you avoid cliché statements or what is considered safe. Statements like “From a young age I have always wanted to study...” guarantee that the college admissions adviser will just fall asleep and put you on the "maybe pile". Even if your credentials are fantastic they will think twice about giving you the green light (for more info visit this link).
Instead, open your statement with what you consider has contributed to the awesomeness you bring into the world! In my case I decided to start with a description of my family background which I believe – due to our global footprint - gave me the ability to adapt and thrive in new cultures and complex environments. Don’t be afraid to make connections like that, dig deeper than what you are expected too. They know your grades and trust me from the way your CV looks and what it includes they have a fairly good understanding of who you are as a person. So give them more, give them the picture of who you are while at the same time reminding them what you can bring to their University. And this is crucial: you need to feel comfortable with what the university portrays as its philosophy and outlook of the world. Forget IVY league universities just because they are first in rankings, if you don’t fit in their structure you will just be another pay check for them and wont find your true potential or make the most out of university experience-rant over; but, let's get back to business.
You can continue your personal statement by explaining who you are and what your skills are, but the trick here is to briefly show how you got to the point where you are today by outlining key determining factors of your personal, work and academic life. What was the deciding factor for choosing your major? Which experience led to the enlightening moment of “Aha! This is what I want!”? And which parts of your personality will make you a well respect expert in your field? Combining these questions in a well defined narrative can guarantee the winning closing statement.
In the last part you need to explain to the person reading why will this degree help you achieve your goals. And don’t be lazy! You must adapt this section to each application. Read the curriculum, understand what you will gain from the learning outcomes and show them why you want to be there and where you want to go after ! Et voila! There you have it, a winning personal statement.