Personal Essay is a part of a college application package, written to succinctly present the applicant’s experiences, skills, backgrounds, personal qualities and frames of reference. Students ask us, “How can i write a personal essay?” and “How can I prepare a college application package?”. Personal essays disclose the applicant’s personality efficiently and briefly (a typical personal essay is never longer than 1.5 pages) so that the selection committee does not spend much time learning about the applicant. The selection committee spends less than 2 minutes reading the personal essay, so each essay should be easy to understand and read.
This type of essay will use simple sentence structure and wording, but smooth style that indirectly advertises your advantages (achievements, grades, awards, honors, titled held, etc). The key is to present large amounts of positive information about the application within a limited space in a clear and non-confusing way. At the same time in a personal essay an application should not look like he is boasting.
To write a successful Personal Essay, one should do a homework paying attention to preparation, and interpretation of applicant’s personal information. To select the best information, the applicant should engage in brainstorming. Some of the questions that the writer of an application essay might have before preparing the essay are shown below:
- What makes you unique?
- Why might you be special for this university, college or school?
- What personal information would you want to provide to the selection committee to form a positive opinion about the applicant?
- What information will make the committee learn about you more?
- Why are you interested in a chosen field or school? Why have you decided to apply to that school?
- What are your present and future career plans?
- What plans you had some 5 years ago did come true?
- What skills do you have that make you the best applicant for that position or school?
- What are your weaknesses?
The application package (personal essay) writers should express themselves succinctly in an attention-grabbing manner with no spelling or grammatical errors. The information in the essay should be accurate and true: many university or college boards frequently make background checks of successful applicants and verify the information presented in the personal essay. The tone should be positive and unimposing. The essay needs to avoid prejudices wherever possible. A successful writer always concentrates on relevant and essential points presenting them in a easy-to-understand and easy-to-read manner.
The ultimate goal of the personal essay is to create interest in the review/selection board and prompt them to either review additional information about the applicant (resume, school transcript, letters of recommendation) or invite the applicant to the interview.
For additional information on personal essays and personal statements please visit Personal Statement Timeline. It provides students with a necessary timeline and framework to write a successful personal statement or personal essay for North American colleges and Universities.
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