Personal statement time
Are personal statements some kind of torture that American uni’s and scholarship bodies have made up? I mean what wrong with a few competency based questions? No, instead I have to tell a story, throw in some key words and generally make it a jolly good read. What’s even worse there is no set word limit for the Fulbright personal statement. GULP!
I haven’t attempted a personal statement since I applied for my undergrad, so I’m a bit rusty with the whole concept. The first draft of the personal statement I’ve done is all over the place. It also has the potential to be a bit long, or is that a bit short? So its safe to say I don’t like my draft.
I’ve done a couple of things to help me get the information I need to improve my draft.
To get a better idea on word limits I phoned up Fulbright UK office to get a bit more guidance on what they expect from the personal statement. Yep, got it confirmed, no set word limit. But they like it concise. (No comment.)
I’ve had a look at other examples online. Here are a couple I dug up:
My conclusion after reading them is that I flatly refuse to write in the style I saw. While it might suit a 22 year old, it doesn’t me at 32, nor my writing style. So I have a problem.
Upside I got some really good piece of advice from a friend. To write a good personal statement all I need to do is identify my personal brand. I can do this by identifying what is my offer to Fulbright, my unique selling points. Then write the personal statement selling those three/ four things. Brilliant, I can do that. Now what’s my brand?
Anyone got any hints/tips on how to write a good personal statement?