It is commonly known that University of California schools require two personal statements based off of prompts that they offer. Many universities require this in conjunction with their standard application in order to take a more holistic approach to the admission process. Writing these statements can be a daunting challenge, but here are 5 tips to make the process a bit less stressful.
1. Start early
The worst thing you can do is start your statements days or even the week before you are required to submit it. This will not only create more stress, but will allot less time for revisions. By starting early, you will give yourself more time to brainstorm, outline, and revise your work. Also, you can use the extra time to have others review and critique your statements for improvement. The best part about starting your statement early is finishing early!
2. Follow the prompt
Like any paper you write, it is very important you follow the prompt. Many personal statement prompts are broad in order to allow a person freedom in their writing, but universities do still want you to stay within the loose boundaries they set. It is easy to stray away from the prompt when they’re so broad, so make sure you review your writing and stay on track.
3. Write about you!
It is easy to get caught up in writing about other people or things when trying to describe yourself. Make sure to tie it all together and back to you! Remember, these statements are to give admissions officers insight into the type of person your are. It is your opportunity to show them that you are more than the numbers on your application. You get to show them that you are human and have valuable qualities.
While writing your personal statements, keep in mind that you are writing these statements to show that you are a unique individual. This isn’t about showing admissions officers that you are perfect, it is about showing them you are human! Give yourself enough time and make sure not to stress too much!