Personal Statements

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  • Howdy. My name is __________, and I work at the University Writing Center. We are available to all TAMU students to help with any writing project. You can find out more about us by asking me, or by visiting our Web site at writingcenter.tamu.edu. [If you have time, talk about the hours and locations of the UWC]
  • Follow directions. Exactly—read them twice. If they want 500 words, don’t write 700. If they have a specific question you need to answer, e sure you stick to it.Tell the truth. You will be more convincing and more interesting if you tell the truth without embellishing it. The trick is to find a truth that tells about you.Consider your audience. This is a fairly formal situation, so don’t be too casual. Don’t be too formal, either. Your audience wants to get to know you—so, for example, you will have to use “I” even if you normally would not in formal writing.Revise and Proofread.Don’t just write it once. It won’t e good enough. Write a draft, revise it, and make sure to end with a careful proofreading. Get help—have a UWC writing consultant or a friend look over the first draft.Support general statements with specific examples.The burden of proof is on the writer, not the reader. You need to provide convincing details and specifics to support the claims you are making about yourself.
  • This is the biggest mistake people make when writing personal statements.
  • Whoever reads your personal statement needs to remember you. You want to stand out in a good way.
  • Personal Statements

    1. 1. Write on target. We can even answer rhetorical questions. 458-1455 writingcenter.tamu.edu 1
    2. 2. Personal Statements 2
    3. 3. Personal statementshelp graduate schooladmissionscommittees andpotential employerslearn about who youare to see if you are agood fit for theirprogram. http://www.docstoc.com/docs/3733094/personal-statement-examples-graphic-design 3
    4. 4. The Steps to Writing1. Follow directions.2. Tell the truth.3. Consider your audience.4. Revise and proofread.5. The burden of proof is on the writer. 4
    5. 5. Identify the Following Personal Statements 5
    6. 6. Personal Statement #1When the old knight asked me which cup wasthe Holy Grail, and knowing that in order tosave my father I had to answer correctly, Iknew that there were more important thingsthan money and fame. I realized my courageand life experiences could be really valuable inthe classroom, and that’s why I have decidedto return to teaching. 6
    7. 7. Highlights from #1Tells a storyUses some general information,but not too muchIs unique to the story teller 7
    8. 8. Personal Statement #2I have worked as the assistant manager atStrickland Propane for about fifteen yearsnow. Working with propane and propaneaccessories has changed my life; I eventaught my son, Bobby, all I know aboutpropane. 8
    9. 9. Highlights from #2Gives personal experience relevant tothe hiringMaintains a somewhat personal touch 9
    10. 10. Personal Statement #3When faced with the compromise ofliberty, the best a human can do is toconfront the oppressor and retain hopethat happiness and justice will prevail. Ipossess, among all things, the power tohope that can be beneficial in anysituation. 10
    11. 11. Whoops! #3 is . . .Way too generalGenericForgettableAnd a little boastful 11
    12. 12. Let’s Do anExerciseYou don’t haveto stand up.It’s not thattype ofexercise. 12
    13. 13. Pick a quality that a future employer orscholarship committee would appreciate.Compassion ResourcefulnessFriendliness IngenuityImagination PersistenceThriftiness PersuasivenessNow write a short anecdote showingthat quality. (Or another you think of.) 13
    14. 14. What Do I Take Away From This?Make hiring andadmissionscommitteemembers relateto you as aperson. Don’tleave the photoblank. 14
    15. 15. Don’t Forget We are here to help with any of your writing concerns. Check us out on…214 Evans Library | 205 West Campus Librarywritingcenter.tamu.edu | 979-458-1455 15

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