It is time to start the grad school application process and you have been asked to submit a personal MBA statement. You remember having to do the same thing years ago when you applied to your college. So you noticed straight away that most educational institutions require a personal explanation.
A personal statement is an essay that you write about yourself to apply to a school. It’s also a great way to share a little bit about who you are.
In addition, those who review applications will find out whether or not you are a good fit for their school. Sometimes you will be given a topic to cover in your personal statement, but in many cases you will simply have to write about yourself.
In order to create an ideal personal statement, it is important to keep some do’s and don’ts in mind. Let’s start with what to include, then let’s take a look at what to avoid.
Keep your personal statement precise and within the recommended length. If you’re asked to write 400 words and send in an application with a personal statement that is 50 or 800 words, you are unlikely to leave a positive impression.
If the school doesn’t ask for personal opinion, come up with something unique about yourself. Keep in mind that other applicants are likely to have excellent test scores and grades as well. So instead of mentioning your impressive grade point average, talk about an unusual hobby or poignant life experience. Remember, these stories ideally relate to the program you are applying for. For example, a Personal MBA statement could include an anecdote about how you opened a successful lemonade stand as a kid and donated your winnings to an animal shelter.
Keep your tone professional. This is not the time to spread slang or abbreviations, much like when you are writing to your friends. When you are finished, proofread what was written, then ask someone you trust to do the same.
But please do not:
Exaggerate. Yes you are a great student. You are worthy of being included in this program. That said, you have to resist the urge to exaggerate. If you embellish your personal statement, it will be obvious and most likely turn off the admissions office.
Be ambiguous. Another tip is to avoid vague and impersonal statements that could apply to almost anyone. It might be a sensible idea to draw up a more general personal statement that you can then send to several institutions. Avoid this temptation. Rather, it is best to bring your A-Game with you to every application. Write something new and original every time.
Drive into the weeds. Also, avoid providing irrelevant personal information that does not support your desire to participate in a particular program. For example, you might have been a four-time athletics star in high school. This is great, but if you can’t relate this achievement to your desire to study a particular Masters program at a school, leave it out.
You can do it!
Understandably, the first time you’re writing a personal statement, it can take a little longer than you’d like. This is to be expected. Keep these dos and don’ts in mind and focus on the things that make you a candidate. Triple check for spelling mistakes. Once you get into a groove, each additional personal statement should become easier and maybe even funnier to write.