Not every medical school applicant is a writer, and many are unable to express the central concept of their personal statements. Some may also be in a dilemma about how to start the personal statements. This piece of writing addresses explicitly the issues pertaining to the “how-to” portion of creating a personal statement.
- Draw in the reader – Not only should the personal statement have a sense of immediacy but should also draw in the reader’s attention and showcase the big-picture of the entire statement. The statement should also show the process that one has taken to understand the medical profession and, while at it, convey the broader interest areas while choosing a specialization in the future. Often, it’s the first paragraph that needs to stand out and draw the entire attention of the reader, keeping them engaged in the thoughts and inner dialogue understanding the applicant’s perspective. So make sure to keep the first paragraph intriguing and compelling in nature.
- Choose the Content Very Wisely – Making a decision to become a medical practitioner is not done in the spur of a moment, nor does it come from a single defining moment. In fact, when someone chooses to apply themselves to a medical school, a series of events usually bring them to make a decision as huge as this. That being considered, it can be a hard decision to include just a selective few defining moments to make up the entire content of the personal statement. In that case, it’s imperative to take some moments to reflect upon the experiences and then make a wise decision about which ones to include in the content.
- Show without telling – Good piece of writing consists of showing rather than telling. You cannot directly tell about your ‘compassion’ to serve the community; it will make one look like a prude. Instead, showcase those qualities by convincing the reader about your compassionate behavior through the words chosen to imply this according to the stories you share from the experiences you’ve had. It creates a visual image of your character and makes you a more appealing person than other applicants.
- Convey all that you know – Admission committees are always looking to admit those applicants who show not just a keen interest in becoming a practitioner but have tested well in the medical profession. Your professional qualifications and understanding show that this decision is not a wimpy one but that it is well-informed and realistic. Through the content of the entire statement shows an amassed experience that enlightened the understanding of the realities of the profession. This is the time to confirm one’s interest in the medical profession through your clinical and medical experiences.
- Be logical – Often, most people’s personal statement drafts are very hard to follow. That happens because of the breaks and pauses implied into the text by not connected experiences and showing the right trajectory. Collect all that you want to say, stand back and be logical in the way the personal statement is formulated. The statement should show the gradual yet clear trajectory of one’s life towards medicine. From the very first sentence, make sure that there’s a certain fluidity in the flow of the prose. It should be able to tangibly show the scale of development in the journey up to this point.
- Keep a Journal – Keeping a journal can be very handy to note down the experiences that one’s gone through and especially also for those who are a couple of years removed from writing the personal statement. It’s a good space to note down the reflections and experiences that they have with patients. It can serve as the right space to showcase the draft of the trajectory towards making this decision to study medicine.
Editing the Personal Statements
Even with all the precautions taken during the writing and reflection stage, getting a set of second eyes can always come in handy when it comes to accomplishing one of the biggest dreams of medical school applicants – getting admitted to the school of their choice! With the help of medical school consultants, you can always get them to analyze your tone, content, word-choice, and convey a powerful message.