For those of you who have ever applied to graduate school or have looked into what applying entails, it is a lot of work! Most schools require your transcript, two to three letters of recommendation, your resume, GRE scores
, and the dreaded personal statement. The personal statement is a short narrative that describes your education, experience, and professional career objectives. You basically have to sell yourself to the university you are applying to. It is a lot of pressure to put on a 1,800 word essay!
Here are some tips to writing your personal statement:
● Go to a workshop class. DePaul offers workshops specifically to help you write your personal statement. Use this free resource!
● Think about a moment or experience that is really important to you or has shaped who you are as a person. I wrote how my worldview was expanded by my love of reading. I had a friend who wrote about how her trip to the Philippines opened her eyes to the reality of human trafficking. Then, connect that experience to the reasons you want to go into the field you are applying to.
● Give yourself time. Do not do what I did and give yourself a week to write your personal statement (I mixed up the deadlines for the programs I was applying to. Whoops!). You do not want to feel hurried or pressured to write this essay. Give yourself as much time as possible to make it the best quality.
● Use friends or professors as resources. I had a couple of my good friends who I knew were well-educated and eloquent edit my personal statement and it was one of the most helpful things I did. Getting another perspective on what I was writing and having someone fix a mistake I had glossed over really improved my personal statement.
I hope these help! Good luck! I promise, writing your personal statement is not as intimidating as it looks.