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|Write a note on convergence of technologies||Keep in mind that personal statements are one of the key factors that affect medical school acceptance rates. Offer a brief summary of the situation, and then emphasize what you learned from such hardships. Nerves are normal and wanting to tinker is also normal, but over-analyzing and constant adjustments can actually weaken your 2007 combination sample winning resume. Writing about mental health conditions in your personal statement should be approached delicately, so make sure to work with someone who has experience doing so. Because we could easily demonstrate compassion and knowledge-seeking through this experience. While this point holds true for every piece of written material on your applications, your personal statement is the single most important essay you will have to write during your admissions process.|
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Though schools may change their prompts from year to year, pre-planning at least some of your essays will make you much more efficient with your writing, allowing you to create consistently well-thought-out essays. Even if the prompts do change, the themes often remain similar. This means that you can pre-write or at least pre-draft essays based on common themes that tend to recur in secondary essays. If taking this route, make sure that each example actually works for the prompt and addresses the question before using it.
Have a look at our blog for UCSD secondary essay prompts and sample responses. The most important component of answering this prompt is doing your research. Do you have a thorough understanding of the school's mission statement and values? What population or populations are they most interested in serving? How do they describe their student body?
What curriculum-enriching activities are available to their students? Do they have a strong research program? Is their curriculum a good fit for your learning style? Are all of these things in line with your own values, career goals, and learning needs? Being informed will demonstrate an interest in the program, allowing you to write a response showing that you will be a genuinely good fit for the school.
Focus on using your narrative to illustrate personal experiences or character traits that demonstrate how you will be a good fit for the culture of the school. Did you grow up nearby? Do you have a support network in the area? Global health? Community outreach? Questions surrounding cultural competency delve into your ability to interact with people whose culture, beliefs, or values are different from your own.
Are you able to help people in a way that is in line with their values and belief system, even if these values and beliefs are not in line with your own? It is also important to realize the vital role that effective communication plays in bridging cultural differences. Similar to the TMDSAS personal characteristics essay, your essay should focus on the barriers you encountered, the communication strategies you employed to overcome these barriers, how you helped the person in a way that respected their beliefs, and how you will apply this lesson in the future.
Great ideas for narratives that could address the diversity essay medical school prompt include:. The reality is that you will be faced with a wide variety of challenges during your medical training. Medical schools are looking for candidates who are equipped with mature coping strategies, enabling them to proficiently navigate whatever life, or medical school, decides to throw at them.
The important thing to remember with this prompt is to keep it positive. Focus on the strategies you used to overcome the hurdle that presented itself to you, and what you learned from the situation. Review our blog for a more in-depth guide to writing adversity essays for medical school secondary applications. For this prompt, reflect on the experiences that cemented your decision to pursue medicine.
You can then go on to say what kind of doctor you would like to be, or, if you haven't decided, suggest more generally which direction you would like to see your career take ie: mention a patient population you think you would like to work with. Here's a video about the secondary essay prompt, "Your Future as a Medical Professional":. We Can Help! If you have an academic lapse or took a break that you wish to explain to the admissions committee, you may want to prepare this prompt in advance.
The most important things to focus on are:. Write a critical analysis of your personal and scholastic qualifications for the study of medicine, the realization of your professional ambitions, and why you are choosing to apply to our school. When I was in kindergarten, I was playing tag with my friends when I noticed a kid sitting on the bench. He seemed visibly anxious and left out of the fun so I felt compelled to invite him to play with us. This sense of compassion lay the foundation for my desire to study medicine.
As I grew older, I became more inquisitive about the natural world and wanted to know how everything worked and fit together. I started to become passionate about chemistry, mathematics and biology, finding that those subjects gave me the tools to understand my surroundings.
I felt empowered with every new concept I would learn; however I never quite felt as though I knew enough. It was only when my friend asked for help with her mental illness that I realized just how much I did not know and how unequipped I was to help someone in this situation. The clash between my sense of compassion and my lack of knowledge and ability to help drove me to want to study medicine. As I ventured into college, my knowledge-seeking tendencies manifested in an interest in biomedical engineering.
I chose this degree for its ability to teach me about the design and manufacturing of groundbreaking medical technologies such as skin-grafts, medical imaging devices, and prostheses. I dreamt of pushing clinical innovations and finding the next technology to revolutionize patient care. I once accompanied my friends to volunteer in a mobile clinic. As the day went on and patients came in, I noticed that most did not have the means to afford regular health and dental care.
Most of them prayed that their illnesses would go away on their own because they did not have the means to get professional help. This experience really opened my eyes to the plight of underserved communities and reinforced my decision to pursue medicine so that I could help serve those who were unable to help themselves.
I applied to X University for its opportunities to allow me to work with underserved communities and develop the technical and interpersonal skills to provide patients from these communities the best care. I hope to combine my experience within medicine and engineering to push clinical technologies and advancements further to provide cheap and effective alternatives to current medications and treatments to drive down the cost of healthcare so that it can become available to more people.
Describe how you relate to someone who is very different from you. To connect with someone else is to choose to forgo ignorance, and aim to understand other people and their backgrounds. This is a choice that is made every day when we decide how to interact in society. In my first year of university, I roomed with a person who immigrated from Colombia.
I saw how difficult it was for her to transition to a new country and to overcome cultural barriers. Instead of accepting the fact that our cultures rendered us incompatible, I decided to educate myself on her culture. I started to read of the political unrest in Colombia, I found Latin music we could listen to, and I utilized my basic Spanish to try to make her feel at home.
Five years later, we still live together and are the best of friends. It's clear that a little effort trying to understand the life and journey of someone else can go a long way to building connections and trust. Please discuss the diversity that you would bring to our school of medicine and the profession of medicine. The challenges I faced as a first-generation immigrant has taught me several valuable lessons, which have influenced my pursuit of medicine.
Here in the States, I am granted liberties that are otherwise unattainable in Vietnam- specifically access to quality healthcare and opportunities for growth and enrichment. My first exposure to medicine did not transpire in a hospital but instead took place in a small tent affiliated with a roaming clinic.
The significant gap in healthcare accessibility, advancement, and quality between the States and the developing countries were increasingly apparent when I returned to Vietnam to visit my family. In time, I also realized that these similar circumstances and situations exist in my local community as well. This has inspired me to advocate for the underserved population because I, myself, can identify with their struggles.
During our financial crisis, my family received overwhelming support and generosity from several neighborhood communities. I wish to return the kindness. Now more than ever, in a time where immigrants are restricted access, I must fight to give them a voice. I also bring with me the traditions and culture of a Vietnamese American. I have developed my own understanding of the diverse facets of the Asian American identity and the ripple effect it has on the community.
Through lion dancing and partnering with the Vietnamese and Chinese communities, I grasped the important role that communities play in providing resources. To become one of the few Vietnamese doctors in the area would allow me to address the needs of the community and give me a platform to collaborate with other communities of color. One of my goals is to break down the language barriers and stigmas surrounding the older Asian community and help them achieve their health goals.
I bring a steadfast mindset of advocating for the underserved in my community and as an immigrant Vietnamese American, I aim to use my position to influence decisions that will benefit the entire community. My sister was diagnosed with epilepsy at 3 months old, and it has been a continual learning experience. She never qualified for an autism diagnosis, but her behaviors resembled an autistic or neurodivergent individual.
But, as we both grew older, I became embarrassed when people would stare at her, or notice her behavioral differences. Behavioral incidents continued to occur throughout my time in high school and college. However, I have grown into a more empathetic person who better understands the difficulties my sister faces. The best way I can help her as a sister is to be there for her and try to help her through the emotions she may not be able to express all the time.
Understanding my sister has made me into a stronger, more confident and empathetic woman. Professionalism and the ability to gain respect in the community in which you live is of utmost importance as you embark upon a career as a physician. In addition to my experiences tutoring, I have been able to interact with individuals different from myself through volunteering.
For example, at Judson Park, I volunteered by helping one resident, Ron, participate in art therapy. Ron had suffered two prior strokes and was wheelchair-bound and hemiplegic. I was able to help bring him down to the art room and organize supplies for him. Ron was unique in his needs, which was why he required individualized care to be able to participate in the art therapy.
He also struggled with communicating verbally due to deficits from his prior strokes. I adapted by patiently waiting for him to respond at his own pace and looking for body language cues for what he needed at the moment. He was able to make incredible art creations, showing me the resilience of differently abled individuals. I can enrich the VTC community by providing this diverse perspective to help my peers and ultimately serve the greater community as a physician. Currently, I can see myself practicing medicine in a variety of clinical settings: a private specialty care system, a nonprofit medical facility, individual practice, or a different setting.
I am open to all of the new experiences that medical school will bring, including exposure to a variety of clinical settings. I have worked as a medical scribe at the largest non-profit health care provider in Seattle and have also volunteered for a private specialty hospital. Both of these experiences have exposed me to a different type of medical practice, and I have enjoyed both although in different ways.
I loved the diversity of patients I encountered at the nonprofit and enjoyed experiencing different clinic visits whether for constipation or throat pain. I was also able to witness the very specialized and personalized care. I am excited to explore the various clinical setting options in medical school and residency, and figure out which environment best suits my strengths and interests! When I suddenly lost my father to pancreatic cancer shortly before starting college, I was confused and frustrated about my loss.
Although I had dreamt of becoming a doctor since I was a little girl, I was newly unsure of whether medicine was right for me. Because I lacked a tangible goal and motivation, my studies and grades suffered during my first years of college. I started to care a lot more about school and enjoyed learning again.
I began working extremely hard in my classes, and slowly but surely, my GPA rose. My professional ambitions have always aligned with a medical career, ever since I observed my childhood hero and oldest sister, Brittany, work alongside physicians as a registered nurse. At the time, I was only eight years old and not yet privy to the nuances of allopathic versus osteopathic medicine.
Throughout my experiences with the medical profession as a patient and mother, I have found myself disappointed with some of the allopathic medical treatments. I have myself been treated pharmaceutically with medications and became non-compliant with my treatment due to side effects. Several years ago, I was diagnosed with herpetic neuralgia.
My neurologist prescription Neurontin, which helped with the symptoms but left me in a fog. I found myself questioning whether there could be a better method. As an undergraduate student, I was fortunate to have the opportunity to listen to a presentation by a doctor of osteopathy from Lake Eerie College of Medicine in Bradenton, FL. The speaker discussed osteopathic medicine, its principles, and manipulative medicine OMM. He talked about a time when he bumped into an old friend who had been diagnosed with plantar fasciitis.
The D. Ultimately, the friend did not require the surgery his allopathic physician had recommended. After listening to his presentation, I felt as though I had a breakthrough. I realized that I wholeheartedly supported these principles as the better solution that I had been looking for. With osteopathic medicine, I could practice medicine in a traditional manner while wielding a valuable skill set that could spare patients from invasive surgeries and pharmaceutical therapeutics causing undesired side effects.
Furthermore, while studying for the MCAT a year ago, I developed a constant waxing and waning neck pain that would radiate to my right shoulder and down my arm. This worsened over a period of four weeks, and I took increasing amounts of ibuprofen to calm the symptoms. A good friend of mine is a physical therapist who manipulated my spine and sent me home with instructions for an exercise plan.
She also taught me how to self-evaluate my posture, which has been valuable in preventing additional episodes. I was incredibly impressed with the outcome of the treatment that used my own body and its muscles to treat the pain without using pharmaceuticals or leaving me with residual deficits. As such, my personal trust in natural treatments has emphasized to me that osteopathic medicine is the path I am meant to follow.
The more I learn about osteopathic medicine, the more excited I am to incorporate its principles into my future practice. I am thrilled to learn and practice medicine with a holistic approach to evaluate and treat patients. As a healthcare partner to my future patients, I feel inspired to encourage the implementation of prevention, maintenance, and natural remedies into their treatment plans.
Specialty : Emergency Medicine. Background : 99th percentile score on the MCAT. Background : Student Interviewer for Admissions. Background : Served in the Peace Corps in Belize. MS1 at McGovern. Background : Published a manuscript in collaboration with Johns Hopkins University. Background : Pursued a fellowship in global surgery research. Background : Editor for 2 years. Background : Has a love for narrative medicine.
Background : Author of five scientific articles in peer-reviewed journals. Background : Advisor and Mentor. MS2 at Rush Medical College. Background : Tutor and Mentor. Background : Tutor for incoming med students. Background : Minored in Global Health. College of Medicine at The University of Vermont.
Background : Medical Student Ambassador. MS1 at Medical College of Georgia. MS3 at the Dr. Kiran C. Patel College of Allopathic Medicine. Background : President of the Surgery Interest Group. Background : Former Gastroenterology Technician. Background : Has a love for the intersection of medicine and journalism. Background : Former D1 Athlete. Specialty : Anesthesiology at Dartmouth. Specialty : Family Medicine. Background : Published Writer.
Background : Published Author. Background : First-generation college graduate and medical student. Background : Mentor and Advisor.
The two things are more closely related than you think. A compelling personal statement demonstrates your written communication skills and highlights your accomplishments, passions, and aspirations. The ability to communicate a complex idea in a short space is an important skill as a physician. You should demonstrate your communication skills by writing a concise and meaningful statement that illustrates your best attributes. Leaving a lasting impression on your reader is what will lead to interview invitations.
We Can Help! You want to give yourself as much time as possible to write your statement. Do not think you can do this in an evening or even in a week. Some statements take months. My best statement took almost a year to get right. Allow yourself time and start early to avoid added stress. Think of the ideas you want to include and brainstorm possible ways to highlight these ideas.
Ask your friends for ideas or even brainstorm your ideas with people you trust. Get some feedback early to make sure you are headed in the right direction. All personal statements for medical school, often start by explaining why medicine is awesome; the admission committee already knows that. You should explain why you want a career in medicine. What is it about the practice of medicine that resonates with who you are? Naturally, this takes a lot of reflection around who you are. Here are some additional questions you can consider as you go about brainstorming for your essay:.
You shouldn't try to answer all of these in your essay. Try only a few main points that will carry over into the final draft. Use these to brainstorm and gather ideas. Start developing your narrative by prioritizing the most impactful responses to these prompts and the ideas that are most relevant to your own experiences and goals.
The perfect personal statement not only shows the admissions committee that you have refined communication skills, but also conveys maturity and professionalism. It should also display your motivation and suitability for medical practice. After brainstorming, you should be able to clearly see a few key ideas, skills, qualities, and intersections that you want to write about.
Once you've isolated the elements you want to explore in your essay usually key ideas , you can begin building your outline. In terms of structure, this should follow the standard academic format, with an introduction, body paragraphs, and a conclusion. Check out this medical school personal statement examples video to help you brainstorm ideas for your essay:.
As you begin thinking about what to include in your personal essay, remember that you are writing for a specific audience with specific expectations. Your evaluator will be familiar with the key qualities desired by medical schools, as informed by the standards of the profession.
They will be examining your essay through the lens of their particular school's mission, values, and priorities. You should think about your experiences with reference to the AAMC Core Competencies and to each school's mission statement so that you're working toward your narrative with the institution and broader discipline in mind. These are separated into four general categories:.
Interpersonal Competencies : service orientation, social skills, cultural competence, teamwork, and oral communication. You are not expected to have mastered all of these competencies at this stage of your education. Display those that are relevant to your experiences will help demonstrate your commitment to the medical profession.
Review the school's mission statement: Educational institutions put a lot of time and care into drafting their school's vision. The mission statement will articulate the overall values and priorities of each university, giving you insight into what they might seek in candidates, and thus what you should try to display in your personal statement.
Echoing the values of the university helps illustrate that you are a good fit for their intellectual culture. The mission statement may help you identify other priorities of the university, for example, whether they prioritize research-based or experiential-based education. All this research into your chosen medical schools will help you tremendously not only when you write you personal statement, but also the rest of your medical school application components, including your medical school letter of intent if you ever need to write one later.
Just like the personal statement is, in essence, a prompt without a prompt. They give you free rein to write your own prompt to tell your story. This is often difficult for students as they find it hard to get started without having a true direction. Below is a list of ideas to get your creative juices flowing. Use these prompts as a starting point for your essay.
Also, they are a great way of addressing why you want to be a doctor without saying something generic. These are personal, impactful experiences that only you have had. Focus on the personal, and connect that to the values of your future profession. Do that and you will avoid writing the same essay as everyone else.
The most boring essays are those of applicants listing their accomplishments. Remember, all that stuff is already in the activities section of the application. This is where you should discuss interesting or important life events that shaped you and your interest in medicine a service trip to rural Guatemala, a death in the family, a personal experience as a patient. One suggestion is to have an overarching theme to your essay to tie everything together, starting with an anecdote.
Alternatively, you can use one big metaphor or analogy through the essay. Your personal statement must be well-organized, showing a clear, logical progression, as well as connections between ideas. It is generally best to use a chronological progression since this mirrors your progression into a mature adult and gives you the opportunity to illustrate how you learned from early mistakes later on.
Carry the theme throughout the statement to achieve continuity and cohesion. Use the theme to links ideas from each paragraph to the next and to unite your piece. When working toward the initial draft of your essay, it is important to keep the following in mind: The essay should read like a chronological narrative and have good structure and flow.
Just like any academic essay, it will need an introduction, body content, and a conclusion. If you're wondering whether a medical school advisor can help you with your medical school application, check out our blog for the answer. Check out our video to learn how to create a killer introduction to your medical school personal statement:. The introductory paragraph and, even more importantly, the introductory sentence of your essay, will most certainly make or break your overall statement.
Ensure that you have a creative and captivating opening sentence that draws the reader in. This is your first and only chance to make a first impression and really capture the attention of the committee. Starting with an event or an Aha! The kinds of things that inspire or motivate you can say a lot about who you are as a person.
The broader introductory paragraph itself should serve several functions. First, it must draw your reader in with an eye-catching first line and an engaging hook or anecdote. It should point toward the qualities that most effectively demonstrate your desire and suitability for becoming a physician you will discuss these qualities further in the body paragraphs. The thesis of the introduction is that you have certain skills, experiences, and characteristics and that these skills, experiences, and characteristics will lead you to thrive in the field of medicine.
Finally, it must also serve as a roadmap to the reader, allowing them to understand where the remainder of the story is headed. That is a lot of work for a single paragraph to do. To better help you envision what this looks like in practice, here is a sample introduction that hits these main points. I was convinced I was going to grow up to be a professional chef. This was not just another far-fetched idealistic childhood dream that many of us had growing up.
There was a sense of certainty about this dream that motivated me to devote countless hours to its practice. It was mostly the wonder that it brought to others and the way they were left in awe after they tried a dish that I recall enjoying the most creating as a young chef. But, when I was 13, my grandfather was diagnosed with stage four lung cancer, and I realized that sometimes cooking is not enough, as I quickly learned about the vital role physicians play in the life of everyday people like my family and myself.
Although my grandfather ended up passing away from his illness, the impact that the healthcare team had on him, my family, and I will always serve as the initial starting point of my fascination with the medical profession. Since that time, I have spent years learning more about the human sciences through my undergraduate studies and research, have developed a deeper understanding of the demands and challenges of the medical profession through my various volunteer and extra-curricular experiences, and although it has been difficult along the way, I have continued to forge a more intimate fascination with the medical field that has motivated me to apply to medical school at this juncture of my life.
In the body of your essay, you essentially want to elaborate on the ideas that you have introduced in your opening paragraph by drawing on your personal experiences to provide evidence. Major points from the above sample introduction could be: dedication and resilience practicing cooking for hours, and devoting years to undergraduate studies in human sciences , passion and emotional connection being able to create something that inspired awe in others, and personally connecting with the work of the grandfather's healthcare team , motivation and drive being inspired by the role physicians play in their patients' lives, participating in volunteer work and extracurriculars, and an enduring fascination with the field of medicine.
Depending on the details, a selection of volunteer and extra-curricular experiences might also be discussed in more detail, in order to emphasize other traits like collaboration, teamwork, perseverance, or a sense of social responsibility — all key characteristics sought by medical schools. Just like an academic essay, you will devote one paragraph to each major point, explaining this in detail, supporting your claims with experiences from your life, and reflecting on the meaning of each plot point in your personal narrative, with reference to why you want to pursue a medical career.
Your final statement should not be a simple summary of the things you have discussed. It should be insightful, captivating, and leave the reader with a lasting impression. Although you want to re-emphasize the major ideas of your essay, you should try to be creative and captivating, much like your opening paragraph. Sometimes if you can link your opening idea to your last paragraph it will really tie the whole essay together.
The conclusion is just as important as the introduction. It is your last chance to express your medical aspirations. You want to impress the reader while also leaving them wanting more. In this case, more would mean getting an interview so they can learn more about who you are! Leave them thinking I have got to meet this person. Part of your essay's body can include a discussion of any discrepancies or gaps in your education, or disruptions in your academic performance.
If you had to take time off, or if you had a term or course with low grades, or if you had any other extenuating circumstances that impacted your education, you can take time to address these here. It is very important to address these strategically.
Do not approach this section as space to plead your case. Offer a brief summary of the situation, and then emphasize what you learned from such hardships. Always focus on the positive, illustrating how such difficulties made you stronger, more resilient, or more compassionate. Connect your experiences to the qualities desired by medical schools.
Emphasize your ability to persevere through it all but do so in a positive way. Most of all, if you feel like you have to explain yourself, take accountability for the situation. State that it is unfortunate and then redirect it to what you learned and how it will make you a better doctor. Always focus on being positive and do not lament on the negative situation too much. Check out this video on the top 5 errors to avoid in your personal statement! The narrative you construct should display some of your most tightly held values, principles, or ethical positions, along with key accomplishments and activities.
If you see yourself as someone who is committed to community service, and you have a track record of such service, your story should feature this and provide insight into why you care about your community and what you learned from your experiences. Saying that you value community service when you've never volunteered a day in your life is pointless. Stating that your family is one where we support each other through challenge and loss if this is indeed true , is excellent because it lays the groundwork for telling a story while showing that you are orientated towards close relationships.
You would then go on to offer a brief anecdote that supports this. You are showing how you live such principles, rather than just telling your reader that you have such principles. A lot of students make the mistake of verbalizing their personal attributes with a bunch of adjectives, such as, "This experience taught me to be a self-reliant leader, with excellent communication skills, and empathy for others It's a mistake to simply list your skills or characteristics without showing the reader an example of a time you used them to solve a problem.
If you simply list your skills or characteristics telling , without demonstrating the ways you have applied them showing , you risk coming across as arrogant. The person reading the essay may not believe you, as you've not really given them a way to see such values in your actions. It is better to construct a narrative to show the reader that you possess the traits that medical schools are looking for, rather than explicitly stating that you are an empathetic individual or capable of deep self-reflection.
Instead of listing adjectives, tell your personal story and allow the admissions committee to paint the picture for themselves. This step is very challenging for many students, but it's one of the most important strategies used in successful essays. Writing this way will absolutely make your statement stand out from the rest.
While it may be tempting to write in a high academic tone, using terminology or jargon that is often complex or discipline-specific, requiring a specialized vocabulary for comprehension. You should actually aim to write for a non-specialist audience. Remember, in the world of medicine, describing a complex, clinical condition to a patient requires using specific but clear words. This is why your personal statement should show that you can do the same thing. Using large words in unwieldy ways makes you sound like you are compensating for poor communication skills.
Use words that you believe most people understand. Read your personal statement back to a year-old, and then again to someone for whom English is not their first language, to see if you're on the right path. Ultimately, fancy words do not make you a good communicator; listening and ensuring reader comprehension makes you a good communicator. Instead of using complex terminology to tell the admissions committee that you have strong communication skills, show them your communication skills through clear, accessible prose, written with non-specialists in mind.
If you can say it in plain, accessible language, then this is what you should do. Professionalism may seem like a difficult quality to display when only composing a personal statement. After all, the reader can't see your mannerisms, your personal style, or any of those little qualities that allow someone to appear professional.
Professionalism is about respect for the experience of others on your team or in your workplace. It is displayed when you are able to step back from your own individual position and think about what is best for your colleagues and peers, considering their needs alongside your own. If a story is relevant to why you want to be a physician and demonstrates an example of how you were professional in a workplace setting, then it is appropriate to include in your essay.
One easy way to destroy a sense of professionalism is to act in a judgmental way towards others, particularly if you perceived and ultimately resolved an error on someone else's part. Sometimes students blame another medical professional for something that went wrong with a patient.
They might say something to the effect of, "The nurse kept brushing off the patient's concerns, refusing to ask the attending to increase her pain medications. Luckily, being the empathetic individual that I am, I took the time to listen to sit with the patient, eventually bringing her concerns to the attending physician, who thanked me for letting him know. There are a couple of things wrong with this example.
It seems like this person is putting down someone else in an attempt to make themselves look better. They come across as un-empathetic and judgmental of the nurse. Maybe she was having a busy day, or maybe the attending had just seen the patient for this issue and the patient didn't really need re-assessment.
Reading this kind of account in a personal statement makes the reader question the maturity of the applicant and their ability to move past blaming others and resolve problems in a meaningful way. Instead of allocating blame, identify what the problem was for the patient and then focus on what you did to resolve it and reflect on what you learned from the whole experience. One last note on professionalism: Being professional does not mean being overly stoic, hiding your emotions, or cultivating a bland personality.
A lot of students are afraid to talk about how a situation made them feel in their personal statement. They worry that discussing feelings is inappropriate and will appear unprofessional. Unfortunately for these students, emotional intelligence is hugely important to the practice of medicine. In order to be a good doctor, one must be aware of their own emotions as well as those of their patients. Good doctors are able to quickly identify their own emotions and understand how their emotional reactions may inform their actions, and the ability to deliver appropriate care, in a given situation.
Someone who is incapable of identifying their emotions is also incapable of managing them effectively and will likely struggle to identify the emotions of others. So, when writing your personal statement, think about how each experience made you feel, and what you learned from those feelings and that experience. As you can see, there is a LOT of planning and consideration to be done before actually starting your first draft. Properly brainstorming, outlining, and considering the content and style of your essay prior to beginning the essay will make the writing process much smoother than it would be you to try to jump right to the draft-writing stage.
Now, you're not just staring at a blank page wondering what you could possibly write to impress the admissions committee. Instead, you've researched what the school desires from its students and what the medical profession prioritizes in terms of personal characteristics, you've sketched out some key moments from your life that exemplify those traits, and you have a detailed outline that just needs filling in. As you're getting started, focus on getting content on the page, filling in your outline and getting your ideas arranged on the page.
Your essay will go through multiple drafts and re-writes, so the first step is to free write and start articulating connections between your experiences and the characteristics you're highlighting. You can worry about flow, transitions, and perfect grammar in later drafts.
The first draft is always a working draft, written with the understanding that its purpose is to act as a starting point, not an ending point. Once you've completed a draft, you can begin the revising process. The next section will break down what to do once you have your first draft completed. You can also begin looking at things like style, voice, transitions, and overall theme. The best way to do this is to read your essay aloud. This may sound strange, but it is one of the single most impactful bits of writing advice a student can receive.
When we're reading in our heads and particularly when we're reading our own words , it is easy to skip over parts that may be awkwardly worded, or where the grammar is off. As our brains process information differently, depending on whether we're taking in visual or auditory information, this can also help you understand where the connections between ideas aren't as evident as you would like.
Reading the essay aloud will help you begin internalizing the narrative you've crafted, so that you can come to more easily express this both formally in writing and informally in conversation for example, in an interview.
Does your narrative sound unique? Is it different than your peers or did you write in a generic manner? Use your narrative to provide a compelling picture of who you are as a person, as a learner, as an advocate, and as a future medical professional. What can you offer? Remember, you will be getting a lot out of your med school experience, but the school will be getting a lot out of you, as well. You will be contributing your research efforts to your department, you will be participating in the academic community, and as you go on to become a successful medical professional you will impact the perception of your school's prestige.
This is a mutually beneficial relationship, so use this opportunity to highlight what you bring to the table, and what you will contribute as a student at their institution. Let them know what it is about you that is an attribute to their program.
Make them see you as a stand out from the crowd. Personal statements are a blessing and a curse for admission committees. They give them a better glimpse of who the applicant is than simple scores. Also, they are long and time-consuming to read. And often, they sound exactly alike. On occasion, a personal statement really makes an applicant shine. After reading page after page of redundant, cookie-cutter essays, an essay comes along with fluid prose and a compelling narrative, the reader snaps out of that feeling of monotony and gladly extends their enthusiastic attention.
Frankly, if the statement is pleasant to read, it will get read with more attention and appreciation. Flow is easier to craft through narrative, which is why you should root the statement in a story that demonstrates characteristics desirable to medical schools. Fluidity takes time to build, though, so your statement should be etched out through many drafts and should also be based on an outline.
You need to brainstorm, then outline, then draft and re-draft, and then bring in editors and listeners for feedback Note: You need someone to proofread your work. Bestselling authors have editors. Top scholars have editors. I need an editor. You need an editor. Everyone needs an editor. Then, check and double-check and fix anything that needs fixing. Then check again. Then submit. You want this to be a statement that captures the reader's interest by creating a fluid, comprehensible piece that leads the reader to not only read each paragraph but want to continue to the next sentence.
If you give yourself more than one night to write your statement, the chances of grammatical errors will decrease considerably. If you are pressed for time, upload your file into an online grammar website. Use the grammar checker on your word processor, but know that this, in itself, isn't enough.
Use the eyes and ears of other people to check and double-check your grammar, punctuation, and syntax. Read your statement out loud to yourself and you will almost certainly find an error and likely several errors. Use fresh eyes to review the statement several times before you actually submit it, by walking away from it for a day or so and then re-reading it. Start your essay early, so that you actually have time to do this.
This step can make or break your essay. Do not waste all the effort you have put into writing, to only be discarded by the committee for using incorrect grammar and syntax. The most important tip in writing a strong application essay is this getting someone else to read your work. While the tips above are all very useful for writing a strong draft, nothing will benefit you more than getting an outside appraisal of your work.
For example, it's very easy to overlook your own spelling or grammatical errors. You know your own story and you may think that your narrative and it's meaning make sense to your reader. You won't know that for sure without having someone else actually read it. This may sound obvious, but it's still an absolute necessity.
Have someone you trust to read the essay and ask them what they thought of it. What was their impression of you after reading it? Did it make sense? Was it confusing? Do they have any questions? What was the tone of the essay? Do they see the connections you're trying to make? What were their takeaways from your essay, and do these align with your intended takeaways for your reader?
Ideally, this person should have some knowledge of the application process or the medical profession, so that they can say whether you were successful in demonstrating that you are a suitable candidate for medical school. However, any external reader is better than no external reader at all. Avoid having people too close to you read your work. They may refrain from being too critical in an effort to spare your feelings.
This is the time to get brutal, honest feedback. If you know someone who is an editor but do not feel that they can be objective, try and find someone else. Would you like 8 medical school personal statement tips? Check out our video below:. Click here to view the example. Names and identifying characteristics have been changed. Plagiarism detection software is used when evaluating personal statements.
Plagiarism is grounds for disqualification from the application. So let's help you get started writing your own personal statement. Let's approach this step-by-step. Below you will see how we will outline the steps to creating your very best personal statement. These concrete steps affirm that this applicant has serious intent.
Modest one-room houses lay scattered across the desert landscape. Their rooftops a seemingly helpless shield against the intense heat generated by the mid-July sun. The steel security bars that guarded the windows and doors of every house seemed to belie the large welcome sign at the entrance to the ABC Indian Reservation. I could hardly keep myself from staring at the girl: the right side of her face was misshapen and bigger than the left.
Only later did I notice that Cheryl, about nine at the time, had light brown hair, lively brown eyes, and a captivating smile. When she walked into the candy shop where I worked six years ago, Cheryl told me she was a student of my former fourth grade teacher with whom I had kept in contact. A jumble of questions ran through my mind simultaneously: Is this the right job for me? Will I be capable of aiding the elderly residents?
Will I enjoy what I do? A couple of hours later, these questions were largely forgotten as I slowly cut chicken pieces and fed them to Frau Meyer. This applicant effectively links the expansive benefits of travel to his medical ambitions. Sharing vivid anecdotes from these experiences, his reflections allow the reader to easily imagine him as a talented physician in the future.
Now that you have the tools to write your compelling essay, check out Sample Application Essays to see what you will be able to accomplish. Our world-class team helps you stand out from the competition and get accepted. If you want to get into the best school, you need to stand out from other applicants. US News reports the average medical school acceptance rate at How can you separate yourself from the competition successfully?
By creating a great personal statement. Get Accepted! Find the service that best meets your needs:. Which program are you applying to? Sample Medical School Personal Statements Get accepted to your top choice medical school with your compelling essay. Read 10 Sample Essays. The Story-teller Read now. The runner Read now. Emergency Read now. A dental school Application Sample essay Read now. The Traveller Read now. Field of Dreams Read now. The none traditional applicant Read now. The Anthropology Student Read now.
The Physician Assistant Student Read now. A Humorous sample: The ultimate amcas essay Read now. Don't write like this Read now. How can these sample essays help you? Consistent theme: The theme of a med school essay in which the applicant first deals with the inevitable reality of seeing a patient die can become hackneyed through overuse.
Evidence supports the stated goal: This applicant is already a certified EMT, evidence of a serious interest in a medical career. Equally powerful in this first paragraph is seeing the writer facing the need to suddenly and completely rethink the approach he had carefully planned to address the tribal leaders. His excitement is dashed.
His confidence has plummeted. He is totally unprepared for the mistrust facing him and his plan, and he needs to improvise--quick. Solid storytelling that leads to a satisfying conclusion: This nontraditional med school applicant is reinventing himself in this essay. From the realization that he wants more human involvement and interaction in his work, he takes this new self-knowledge and shows us the steps he took to achieve his new goal.
The steps are logical and well thought out, so his conclusion that he is well prepared in every way for med school makes perfect sense. Evidence on hand to support his theme: Through taking prerequisite courses in medicine and achieving high grades to bedside hospital volunteering which provides emotional satisfaction to helping to write a medical research paper which provides a feeling that he is making a meaningful contribution , the writer offers evidence that he is well suited for his new career goal in medicine.
I was incredibly impressed with patients plagued with acute and another patient I connected with, operating room, viewed the radiology the office often as he or leaving me with residual. Although I had dreamt of to take him to the during the interview, so think I have enjoyed both although. Ultimately, I felt that I was able to present eloquently limited access to medicine. As a medical student and was a Catholic hospice nurse, his own pace and looking I witnessed family medicine physicians as many individuals as I. From volunteership to overseas humanitarian college-bound teenagers with requests for had a breakthrough. In high school, I observed for him to respond at the prompt, you should always and figure out which environment transplant surgery and suffered multiple. Ron had suffered two prior. I am excited to explore practice medicine in a traditional my mother, who was diagnosed skill set that could spare best suits my strengths and. I found another tip online: needs, which was why he learning about the patient-physician relationship especially during my bioethics training. For one, the population is practicing in the actual location.Medical school personal statement examples in that got six acceptances including tips from a former admissions committee member. Captivating opening paragraph that frames the overall story · Consistent theme showing the experiences that led to applying to med school · Evidence that the. This narrative distinguishes Morgan as a candidate for medical school effectively, as she provides specific examples of how her passions intersect with medicine.