Personal Statement Examples

A lot of colleges require students to include personal statements with their applications. For some students, writing personal statements can be very challenging. It can be tough to figure out how to get started. In this post, I’ll tell you how to write a personal statement and give you some personal statement examples.

A personal statement should be exactly what the title implies…personal. This is your opportunity to tell the college admissions committee about yourself – your hopes, dreams, ambitions, and life experiences. This is also your chance discuss your academic performance and how it was either negatively or positively impacted by the obstacles or opportunities that you had during high school.

You should take your time with this assignment; it should be a well written and reflective essay. Once you complete your personal statement, be sure to proofread it several times for spelling and grammatical errors. It’s also not a bad idea to let another person read your personal statement. He or she may be able to catch errors that you may have overlooked.

Now that I’ve given you some pointers on how to write a personal statement, let’s take a look at some personal statement examples:

Personal Statement Examples (1 of 5) – Court Reporter

“There was a day when my mom, who is hearing impaired and has to watch television with the closed captioning on, came to me with an article about closed captioning as a career. She mentioned something about learning court reporting, and using those skills to move into captioning.  I initially dismissed the idea, but as I continued to research careers, I decided to humor her and check it out.  To my surprise, the career sounded too good to be true, and everything I was looking for.

Another reason I became so interested in the field is that I was in a car accident two years ago, and severed my brachial artery.  This injury rendered me unable to move my thumb.  This was very frustrating, but after six months of no motion in my thumb, it began to move.  A few weeks after that, I had full use of it again.  Having played guitar for many years, I greatly enjoy using my fingers.  The idea that could find a good, stable career using my fingers appealed to me greatly.

I researched court reporting and closed captioning, which ultimately led me to enroll in the College of Court Reporting in Hobart, Indiana. My experience there has been nothing short of phenomenal, and I can feel that this is the career path that I’m meant to take.”

*Courtesy of Tennessee Court Reporters Association*

Personal Statement Examples (2 of 5) – Engineering

“Ever since I took my first math class in elementary school, math became my favorite course. As time went by, I started to think of possible math or engineering careers because it was my strongest subject.

My interest in engineering was motivated by my curiosity. Questions such as “How do people make bridges so strong so that they do not collapse as vehicles drive through them?” or “How do they know what are the best materials to build houses with?” have always been on my mind, but none of my friends could answer and did not think much of this.

My interest in engineering existed as a child although I was not aware of it. Even though I wanted to be an engineer, I was not sure I could study a discipline considered to be only for men. I stopped thinking about majoring in engineering, not because I was not interested in it, but because in some way, I believed, too, that engineering was a man’s career since I did not know of any woman in the field.

During the summer of 2008 I participated in an enrichment internship for engineering majors at Chico State University. My passion for engineering began to grow again while I was taking my first physics course and at the same time working in team projects such as building a boat out of cardboard as a competition. I learned that working with teammates makes things easier and enjoyable because all the ideas can be combined into one.

I also had the opportunity to meet more Latino women majoring in different engineering areas. We encouraged each other to realize that we are as capable as men in this field and can get along with them to find solutions to any problem. By the end of the internship, I gained more confidence and direction in my life; and I also became a stronger person with a positive attitude who will not let anything deter me from following my dreams.

After my internship experience, I began to be more aware of media reports about women who were successful in engineering. That was a motivation for me, so I started to think that if other women had done it, I could also set an objective to attain a Bachelor’s Degree in Engineering. I began to explore and read more about the different areas of engineering, but civil engineering rapidly caught my attention especially because it is an area where I can work on fascinating projects that will benefit others.

In addition, I like everything that has to do with construction, building and planning. Every time I see a construction site either of a building or road, I feel that something is pulling me towards it, I feel like I want to be involved with the people who are building structures, measuring walls, or reading plans while deciding what to do next.

Now, my main goal is to become a professional civil engineer and work with other engineers in projects that will benefit our ways of living. Moreover, I want to be a motivation for other Latino women interested in careers like engineering but grow up in a field in which men are expected to dominate.”

*Courtesy of UC-Berkley*

Personal Statement Examples (3 of 5) – Business, Finance, Computers

“Would you please get the mail,” my mother implored as I entered the door. Heading towards the mailbox, I wondered if I would find daily assortment of bills and catalogs or something interesting addressed to me. To my delight, the first item was the new issue of PC Computing. Ever since I was introduced to computers when I was five, I have been fascinated by them. The summer before my sophomore year of high school, I wrote a program called Quickchange 95 using Visual Basic. This program changed the startup and shutdown screens of Windows 95. I distributed the program via shareware archives on the Internet, and I received email from all over the world about my creation.

I shuffled through one of my mother’s clothing catalogs to find my issue of Money Magazine. I have been interested in business and finance since the day which we started studying the stock market in fifth grade. The summer before my junior year, I combined my interests in business and computers by starting a web design company with a friend. We created a web site for a local bike shop which is only one of two bike shops in Connecticut to have a presence on the Internet. Currently, I am the head web designer for my school. I intend to combine computers and business in my future career. My goal is to work on the business side of a computer firm, and eventually, I would like to start my own computer company.

A board of education letter of commendation for my participation in the FIRST robotics program also arrived today. I have been able to develop my entrepreneurial skills through the FIRST robotics program. FIRST is a national engineering competition in which partnerships are formed between local businesses and high schools to design and build a robot-like machine. The team has about six weeks to build a machine that must be able to compete in a timed sporting event. I have been involved in FIRST each year of my high school career.

Last year, I was team captain, and our team finished fourth in the country out of one hundred and fifty-six teams. As a result of my involvement with FIRST, I have improved my confidence, my leadership, and my team working abilities. FIRST gave me experience working with a diverse group of people with a variety of skills. Working alongside engineers from our sponsor company, International Fuel Cells, exposed me to the professional world beyond the classroom. I have a great appreciation for this program which has challenged me to bring out the best in myself and others.

My last piece of mail was Tennis Magazine. I began playing tennis at the age of eight. During my freshman year, I played on the junior varsity tennis team, and I received the Manchester Racquet Club deserving player award which is a scholarship for a year of indoor lessons. The next two seasons, I played on the varsity tennis team. Last year, I was named to the Hartford Courant All Academic Team. Tennis has provided a welcome diversion from my technical pursuits.

“What took you so long?” my mother asked as I entered the house. “Oh nothing, I really have to start my homework,” as I tucked my magazines under my arms and ran up the stairs.”

*Courtesy of*

Personal Statement Examples (4 of 5) – Medicine, Biomedical Engineering

I wish I had more than one life to live. There is so much that I would like to do. Ever since I was about eleven years old I’ve wanted to go into medicine so that I could help those that are ill. When I went on a tour of the prosthetics department at a local hospital, I knew that my future career would be to merge the high tech world with the crude mechanical world of prosthetics.

That is when I decided to be a Biomedical Engineer. I realized that I had the drive to work hard so that I could achieve the lofty and rewarding goal of being a Biomedical Engineer. I hope to take technology that is being developed involving the use of artificial synapses and continue the signal to a mechanical device that would, in turn, send signals back to the brain. This would help those who have lost limbs to regain their sense of touch by an artificial means.

Then I realized that by developing such a device, I could possible help others with even more threatening problems such as paraplegia or Cerebral Palsy. The effects of the development of such a device would be profound. It could literally make the lame spring with glee and the mute cheer. I knew, however, that to achieve such a ponderous goal would take an immense amount of time and dedication to my studies.

Realizing this helped me keep the dedication that I have needed over the years to stay strong in academics while also not denying the community of my services. For my main goal in life is to help others and make them smile, and to do so, it will take much learning and dedication. I believe, with the help of a good university, I will learn the skills that will make others throughout the world smile and show them the happiness that can be gained by feeling normal again and no longer feeling like a “monster” to society.

Whatever becomes of me and wherever I happen to go, I know that I will do my utmost to make the world of the future a better place for many.

*Courtesy of*

Personal Statement Examples (5 of 5) – Physics, Mathematics

A few days ago, as I was eating lunch with friends, I entered a heated debate about the worth of education. “I should not have to learn algebra and calculus because it will have no influence on my life,” my opponent angrily shouted as I tried to defend the usefulness of mathematics.

Three days later, I still mull over the issue, trying to arrive at the origin of the disparity of views between my opponent and me. I treasure every bit of knowledge I gain, in or out of school. When someone contends that a particular academic field or realm of information has no applications, I feel compelled to demonstrate the fallacy of such an argument by citing an example from my life.

As a middle-schooler in Moscow, Russia, I took English for three years. Many of my peers grumbled about having to attend the course, adamant in their belief that these skills would be never used. However, some, including myself, felt that any offer of knowledge was to be accepted and stored away for possible later use.

Lo and behold, three years after I signed up for my first English class, I found myself living in the United States, sending sincere thank you letters to my English teacher for supplying me with survival skills. If I had not taken my class seriously, my integration into the American society would have taken much longer.

My attitude toward learning has not changed since. Striving to excel in every class I take, I regard education in all areas as relevant to my life, rather than remote. I try to link each piece of new information either to my intended field of study (Physics/Mathematics) or to personal enlightenment. Living up to my motto, “The measure of learning is its application,” I prepare myself for all situations and achieve well-roundedness.

*Courtesy of*

I hope the above personal statement examples will be useful as you are completing your college applications.

PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE do not plagiarize. I spent a lot of time searching the internet to find some really good examples of personal statements so that you could see what they look like and to inspire you to get started on your own.

As always, please leave me a comment with your feedback below! I’d love to hear from you!

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Lauren Anderson is a certified school counselor who's passionate about helping students all over the world successfully transition from high school to college! After spending 6 years as a business professional, she obtained her Master’s degree in School Counseling and now spends her spare time helping students.

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