In one of my earlier posts, I promised that I would post my personal statement as soon as the application deadlines passed. There are only two schools who still have not reached their deadlines, but I think now would be a pretty good time to post. I hope this can help those of you who are looking for an example of a personal statement. I’ve also been asked quite a few questions about what I included in my PS, so hopefully this will answer them. Just remember that not every personal statement will look like this, and everyone should have a different and unique story to tell. This PS is a result from years of corrections, and I made sure to have multiple people read it and give me their input. Also, a lot of people told me to remove the first sentence, but I felt that it described me perfectly, so I left it in. This is the personal statement I used for my AACOMAS application, and the one I used for AMCAS only differed by having an additional sentence or two. I am posting this one since my acceptance was to an osteopathic school. It should go without saying, but my personal statement should not be copied or as used as your own. What I have written below is a representation of me, and only personal to me. Please find experiences that represent you well and give an accurate reflection of why you are pursuing medicine when you go write your own personal statement. Enjoy!
****Personal Statement Below****
I wish I could say that my academic performance was the result of partying or carelessness, but the truth is that I put a lot of blood, sweat, and tears into my education. My desire to pursue medicine stems from my goal of wanting to help those in need and put others before myself, and becoming a physician would allow me to continue to do so while improving lives in the process. There have been many obstacles in trying to achieve this goal, but in retrospect, these hurdles not only motivated me more towards my ambitions, but they fueled my desire to really explore the field of medicine. I also learned to find the positives out of every situation and not let my past dictate my future. It is because of this that I feel I am an excellent candidate for medical school, and that no matter what challenges or obstacles may be presented, I will find a way to achieve my goal of becoming a physician.
My undergraduate years were both rewarding and demanding due to the fact that I became a mother, a wife, went through a divorce, and had to find a balance between school and family issues, all while working to make ends meet. My first semester at LSU was met with Hurricane Katrina, which led to class cancellations and caused the institution to become an emergency center for some of the victims. This was my first time experiencing a natural disaster of this magnitude, and I volunteered my time by helping with patient registration, triage, donation sorting, and by trying to console those who had lost everything in the storm. It was at this point where I learned that compassion and understanding can sometimes do more for a person than just trying to treat them, and this experience really amplified my desire to pursue medicine and dedicate my time and resources to all those in need in and around my community.
I gave birth to my daughter during the fall semester of my sophomore year, and while this halted my ability to donate all of my time and energy to volunteering, the maturing challenges presented with raising a child far outshined the negatives. While adjusting to motherhood, I was still able to persevere and continue to pursue my interest in medicine by physician shadowing and becoming involved in various medically-related organizations. Shadowing was an especially positive experience because I was able to physically see if medicine was the right choice for me, and it allowed me to develop a more solid understanding of what it takes to become a physician.
I took leadership positions in a few organizations, and helped others become more involved as well. These positions provided unique opportunities to help the community which ranged from painting houses for the elderly to spreading HIV/AIDS awareness to the public. I also found meaningful employment in places where I was able to continue to give back to the community, which included everything from teaching autistic children to working for the Battered Women’s Program. Right now, I am fully involved in research, and I volunteer weekly at my local hospital. I am also in a graduate program working to further enhance my academic skills. Being able to use my experiences to make a change for the better and impact lives helped shaped me into the person I am today, and I am thankful for it. I feel that a great sense of humility and a deep drive has been instilled in me, and because of this, I know that I have something meaningful to bring to the field of medicine.
I am proof that it is possible to overcome circumstances, and by achieving my dream of becoming a physician, I hope to push others to accomplish their goals as well. Along with my innate desire to help others, I have a strong interest in the human body and in solving complex problems, and I want to be able to help a person medically from all aspects, including being involved in both the diagnosis and treatment of patients. Furthermore, medicine would not only give me a lifelong learning experience, but it would allow me to essentially dedicate myself to a lifetime of service. I truly feel that medicine is my calling in life, and although there may be many obstacles along the way, I refuse to give up on my dream. At the 2008 SNMA medical conference, Dr. Barbara Ross-Lee stated that qualifications are a measure of opportunity and not of worth, and I am grateful for the chance to finally be able to show my true worth in my journey to becoming a physician and beyond.
Thank you for your time and interest in my application.