By Contributing Author
If there is one thing you want to achieve while applying for college is not to sound like the rest of the flock. When a majority of the students have perfect GPAs, track records, and a list of similar extra-curricular, what might make you unique is your statement of purpose.
A great one will encourage the admission committee to consider you as a prospective student rather than a mere candidate. The statement of purpose is one of the awesome ways to tell the admission committee your story. You need to present your perspective. Also, you’ll need to sum it up to answer how your experience and ambitions would make you a perfect fit for the school.
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After discussing the matter with the professional writers, we have some interesting tips here that will help you craft an impressive SOP.
Find Out What They Expect at School
You cannot draft a personal statement that works for every college. Each university also wants to bring something new to the table. It would be best if you composed an essay tailored to the educational institution and the particular program you are choosing.
Consider the following before starting the work on your SOP:
- Why do you choose this school?
- Why do you want to pursue this program?
- What do you plan to do with the degree?
- What do you bring to the program?
Answering these will help you frame the writing to the exact conditions of the school. You can then build a narrative with answers to these questions in mind. The committee will love such an approach!
The Opening Line
“I am applying for this program because..”
Do you know how many times the admission officer must have read this same line? A majority of the statements have similar openings. You might be following a format that you found online, but it will only make your application more generic.
Instead, use an “attention grabber” right in the first line. There is no reason why you shouldn’t take inspiration from some great essay openings. You can offer interesting statistics, a quote, or even a rhetorical question that will get the reader involved. The goal is to be original.
You might have come across multiple sources that tell you how to write a story. But the tip is in finding the right style that allows the reader to quantify your experiences as well.
In order to do this, you should be focusing on data rather than offering descriptions. For instance, you can write that you worked with a local NGO that helped you grow as a person. But this doesn’t help the reader assess you – and that’s the whole point of the personal statement.
Instead, consider offering more information, but only the relevant things. “During the senior year, I joined a local NGO and tutored some students on environmental science for five months. I have never been prouder because they all achieved A in their tests. Not only that, but they also started becoming more conscious of their actions and the way those affect the planet.”
This gives a better picture, especially if your chosen program is also related to the same topic. It will also suggest that you are passionate and willing to contribute through actions. You need to portray yourself accompanying the presentation with numbers and facts that also show results. It will make your story more realistic and authentic.
Address Your Shortcomings
The statement of purpose is also an opportunity to address any holes you might have in the application. If you have had a troubling or inconsistent academic record, you can mention the reasons that led to them.
Instead of defending yourself, you should also be focusing on how you overcame these issues and what lessons you learned from it. This will paint you in a better light.
Proofread and Edit
A personal statement is just like any other piece of writing. The first draft will have mistakes and proofreading is essential to eliminate them. After you are happy with your paper, it is also recommended to have it looked at by another set of eyes.
Others will also be able to assess how you portray yourself and offer valuable insight. Your family members or close friends can provide you with input that would help you present the best version of “you”. Also, ensure that there are no errors in spelling or grammar.
An excellent state of purpose should show your enthusiasm to learn and learn from the best minds at the school. You have to be selective about what you include.
Don’t be too formal with your words, nor too casual. Your personality should be reflected in the personal statement in a compelling manner that would make you look like a real asset to the college.