Your greatest strength is a powerful personal statement

For many high school students applying for college, the personal statement tends to be seen as the most daunting part of the application process. Some prefer to do it right away, while others choose to take their time and save it for last; either way is perfectly fine. We all know it’s inevitable, but just how important is it to write an impactful personal statement? 

Well, quite important, since this is your chance to prove two things to the admissions committee: How you know that it is the right college for you, and why you deserve a spot.

It is where you can show the reasons why you are applying

Remember the time-tested writing rule, “Show, don’t tell”? This is also applicable when it comes to writing your personal statement. After all, your greatest strength is building a rationale as to why you want to apply to a particular college. 

It’s best to start with a compelling introduction by being genuine and specific about your rationale. From there, you can easily build your case by elaborating on why you are certain that this college is the right fit for you, as well as what you want to achieve from the opportunity.

It is where you can stand out from the rest

At the end of the day, all colleges are interested in interesting students. Of course, “interesting” can be quite a broad term that can apply to one’s academics, extracurriculars, hobbies, or all of the above. Fortunately, this is something that you can work to your advantage. What makes you unique? What are some things that are not included on your resume that would also support your rationale for applying?

That said, it’s important to truly show yourself when writing your personal statement. Not only is this your chance to show what makes you interesting, but it is also how you can differentiate yourself from all the other applicants. 

It is where you can highlight your personal growth

Another thing that your resume doesn’t necessarily show is how you grew from your past experiences. What were the challenges and hurdles you faced? How did you overcome them? Such variations of these questions are common when it comes to prompts for personal statements. But of course, you have the freedom to answer these in the best way you can, so make sure to think things through. 

When all is said and done, you have to showcase how the challenges you overcame helped shape your decision to apply to that particular college. Follow these up by sharing the lessons you learned and the skills you developed from those experiences—and how the college of your choice could push you to grow further.

Indeed, the key to writing an excellent personal statement is telling your unique story that ultimately led to your decision to apply. If it feels daunting, trust that the feeling is simply part of the process. The most important thing is knowing why you want to apply, and the rest will follow.