Personal Challenges of Writing A Personal Statement
- Feb 21, 2017
If you were to ask me what my greatest struggle has been thus far as a preprofessional student, I would tell you without hesitation it has been writing my personal statement. Yes, I know. More than studying for the MCAT, more than struggling through taking multiple rigorous science courses simulatenously, more than bucking up to ask professors for letters of recommendation. It is not that I see myself as a bad writer, I just have no idea where to start. How am I supposed to sum up why I want to be a doctor into a few thousand characters?
Many underestimate the impact that a good personal statement has on an application. A good GPA and MCAT may open the door, but a good personal statement is what sets you apart as more than a statistic. It gives admissions committees an idea of who you are apart from your credentials. Everyone applying to medical school has good grades and everyone has a good MCAT score. What not everyone has is the ability to present themselves as more than that. For years we have been conditioned to focus solely on our academics and extracurriculars, but now we must put that aside to look deep and answer the almighty question: Why do you want to become a doctor?
Personally, I think my struggle lies in that I don't feel like I have one defining moment that made me realize that medicine is my one true calling. I have a collection of blips here and there that have further convinced me that what I want is for the right reasons, but I don't know how to make that standout in a short essay. I have read countless samples of personal statements with vivid depictions of eye-opening experiences and personal struggles, but I try to look back within myself and feel as if I am missing something there. If you are struggling with writing your personal statement, know that you are not alone. It is not easy to open up and bare your soul to a committee of strangers who is ready to judge your every move, but it is necessary if you hope to continue on the road to your dream.
Check out some of these websites for some great tips:
- Writing Personal Statements
- 5 Pitfalls That Can Make Your Medical School Personal Statement Suck
- Advice on Tackling the Personal Statement
- Brainstorming Unique Personal Statement Topics
- Sample Medical School Personal Statements
- Before You Write Your Personal Statement, Read This