By Jasmin Siguenza
O All applicants must respond to two essay prompts.
O Responses to the two prompts must not exceed
1,000 words total.
O Allocate the word count as you wish. If you choose
to respond to one prompt more at a greater length,
it is recommended that one prompt is no less than
O Lastly, make sure to use a word
processing program– DO NOT type
directly into the application until you are
ready to submit the application.
O Freshman example:
O Describe the world you come from- for
example, your family, community or
school – and tell us how your world has
shaped your dreams and aspirations
Prompt #1 (continued)
O Transfer example:
O What is your intended major? Discuss how your
interest in the subject developed and describe any
experience you have had in the field- such as
volunteer work, internships and employment,
participation in student organizations and activities-
and what you have gained from your involvement.
O Tip: if you haven’t had experience in the field,
consider including experience in the classroom. This
may include working with faculty or doing research
O Both freshman and transfer applications
include a second prompt that is the same.
O Tell us about a personal quality, talent,
accomplishment, contribution or
experience that is important to you. What
about this quality or accomplishment
makes you proud and how does it relate
to the person you are.
O Start early on your personal statements! It
is important that you give yourself time.
O Brainstorming before you begin writing.
O Write persuasively; sell yourself.
O Use “I” statements.
O After writing it the first time, proofread and
edit it as much as possible.
O Solicit feedback; have others read your
Tips from us!
O Think about your accomplishments in general. It
doesn’t have to be only in school, but things that
you are proud of in your life.
O Write passionately, it is important to show how
much you care, or cared, about your
O Don’t flood them with your accomplishments,
choose a couple and elaborate with specific and
O Don’t be afraid to fluff up your story.
O This has a 550 word limit.
O At the end of the UC application, there is an “Additional
comments” section where you can write another
statement at your own will, it is not required, nor does it
help your chances of getting in, but it is there to give you
the option of explaining yourself further.
O In this section you may provide addition clarification of
other accomplishments, such as honors, awards, and
O This is where you will want to add anything the
application did not ask for, but you feel that it is
absolutely necessary or important.