What makes a great personal statement?
What should you not do in your essay?
How to get started writing your personal statement?
Step 1: Write a brag sheet
- Was there a project, exam, sport, idea, etc that you excelled in?
- Were you ever promoted at work or given more responsibilities due to preforming well?
- Do you have any leadership or management experience?
- Have you ever started a successful business? Even if it is tiny.
- Do you speak any other languages and has it benefited you?
- Have you published anything or done any research?
- What are your extracurricular (sports, clubs, etc.) involvements?
- Have you ever volunteered?
- Have you received any honors, awards, medals, etc.?
- Have you overcame any obstacles in your life?
- Do you have any skills that are unique?
- Are there any unique features to your heritage, culture, or upbringing?
Step 2: Research the Business School
- Are you a legacy? Did you parents or grandparents attend that school?
- Did you grow up in the same location as the University or is the location of that University important to you?
- Are there any key features about the curriculum that this school has that other schools don’t?
- Did you attend this school for undergrad or any other degree?
- Do you have an affinity to this school for any particular reason?
- Did you visit this school and like it? This could have been with a friend, to sit in on a class, etc.
- Is there certain values or mission statement that is specific to this school?
Step 3: Brainstorm the specific prompt
Each Business School will have a different question, so make sure to look up the prompt for each school prior to writing. However, some of the most common questions are listed below:
- Why do you want to attend our business school and how can it pertain to your future plans?
- Please tell us about a leadership experience and challenges that you encountered.
- Our school is a diverse environment. How can you contribute?
- Please explain a failure or a challenge in your life and how you overcame it.
- Please explain an accomplishment and how you grew from it.
Step 4: Format into an Essay
Step 5: Proofread
Before submitting your personal statement, make sure to carefully proofread it for spelling, grammar, and punctuation errors. A well-written personal statement can be undermined by simple mistakes, so take the time to make sure your statement is as polished and professional as possible.
What is the best writing style?
FAQs about Personal Statements
When should you start writing your essay?
Early! Early! Early! Give yourself enough time to reflect on your experiences, goals, and motivations, and to craft a well-written and thought-out personal statement. This is not a task you want to rush through, as the quality of your personal statement can make or break your application. Additionally, most of Prep For Success Tutor’s students create 10-15 drafts and revisions before submitting their final essay.