A personal statement is a special type of essay that you write usually when you are applying to school or applying for scholarship or grant programs. Personal statements are intended to tell a little bit about who you are and usually explain to the admissions committee why you might be a good fit for their academic program.
When You Write Personal Statements
There are many examples of personal statements that you might have to write. For example, some personal statements include:
- A personal statement for an application to a special gifted and talent program at your school
- A personal statement for an application for admission to college
- A personal statement for an application for admission to graduate school
- A personal statement for an application for admission to business school
- A personal statement for an application for admission to law school
- A personal statement for an application to teach ESL that shows your philosophy of education
Sometimes, you will be given a topic that your personal statement is supposed to discuss. In other cases, you'll just be asked to talk about yourself or why you would be a good fit.
Personal Statements About Why You Want to Attend
One type of personal statement that is commonly written is a statement explaining why you would be a good fit for a specific academic program or about why you would want to attend that program.
Some examples of personal statement ideas that you might use include:
- For admission to a graduate program in education: "When I was a child, I was always looking for role models and my fourth grade teacher stepped up to fill the role. My fourth grade teacher took a personal interest in me and her belief that I could be successful changed my life. I want to be able to give back and provide other children with the same inspiration that I received."
- For admission to a medical school program: "I believe that doctors can shape a society and help a society to grow. Healthcare is the most basic and fundamental of human rights and my goal is to become a doctor so I can work to make sure no one is denied access to the healthcare they need."
- For admission to a law school program: "My first encounter with the legal system was when my friend's parents were wrongfully evicted from their apartment. A lawyer helped them to get their money back and to get back into their home, and the lawyer gave them hope. I, too, want to be able to pursue a noble profession that allows me to give the average person a voice within the legal system."
- For admission to a particular college: "It has always been my dream to study journalism, and College X has the course program that will allow me to pursue my passions and to develop my skills."
Personal Statements About Who You Are
In some cases, your personal statement will be focused not on why you want to attend a school program but instead on who you are and why you would be the right fit. For example, some people might focus on the struggles they overcame in order to be in a position to attend the school. Others might discuss how their unique perspective would make them a valuable addition to the class.
Some examples include:
- As the first person in my family to have the opportunity to attend college, I will value the opportunity to attend your school because I know how important education is in opening doors."
- As an immigrant who came to the United States when I was 15, I believe I have a unique perspective on social issues that will allow me to make valuable contributions in my law school classes.
These types of personal statements are focused on showing that you would be a valuable addition to the class so the admissions committee will be eager to have you attend.
Do you have a good example to share? Add your example here.comments powered by
Examples of Personal Statements
By YourDictionaryA personal statement is a special type of essay that you write usually when you are applying to school or applying for scholarship or grant programs. Personal statements are intended to tell a little bit about who you are and usually explain to the admissions committee why you might be a good fit for their academic program.
Alliteration is a term that describes a literary stylistic device. Alliteration occurs when a series of words in a row (or close together) have the same first consonant sound. For example, “She sells sea-shells down by the sea-shore” or “Peter Piper Picked a Peck of Pickled Peppers” are both alliterative phrases. In the former, all the words start with the “s” sound, while in the later, the letter “p” takes precedence. Aside from tongue twisters, alliteration is also used in poems, song lyrics, and even store or brand names.
How to Identify Alliteration
The best way to spot alliteration being used in a sentence is to sound out the sentence, looking for the words with the identical consonant sounds. For example, read through these sentences to test your skills in identifying alliteration:
- Alice’s aunt ate apples and acorns around August.
- Becky’s beagle barked and bayed, becoming bothersome for Billy.
- Carrie's cat clawed her couch, creating chaos.
- Dan’s dog dove deep in the dam, drinking dirty water as he dove.
- Eric’s eagle eats eggs, enjoying each episode of eating.
- Fred’s friends fried Fritos for Friday’s food.
- Garry’s giraffe gobbled gooseberries greedily, getting good at grabbing goodies.
- Hannah’s home has heat, hopefully.
- Isaac's ice cream is interesting and Isaac is imbibing it.
- Jesse’s jaguar is jumping and jiggling jauntily.
- Kim’s kids kept kicking.
- Larry’s lizard likes leaping leopards.
- Mike’s microphone made much music.
- Nick’s nephew needed new notebooks now.
- Orson’s owl out-performed ostriches.
- Peter’s piglet pranced priggishly.
- Quincy’s quilters quit quilting quickly.
- Ralph’s reindeer rose rapidly and ran round the room.
- Sara’s seven sisters slept soundly in the sand.
- Tim took tons of tools to make toys for tots.
- Uncle Uri's united union uses umbrellas.
- Vivien is very vixen-like and vexing.
- Walter walked wearily while wondering where Wally was.
- Yarvis yanked you at yoga, and Yvonne yelled.
- Zachary zeroed in on zoo keeping.
In each of these examples, the alliteration occurs in the words that have the same sound. As you can see:
- Not every word must be alliterative. You can use prepositions, such as 'of' and pronouns such as 'his' and still maintain the alliterative effect.
- Alliteration does not need to be an entire sentence. Any two-word phrase can be alliterative.
Even some single words can be alliterative, if they have multiple syllables which begin with the same consonant sound.
Brand Names and Alliteration
Companies use this alliterative effect all the time. The major reason companies use this technique is to ensure that their brand name is memorable. Think, for example, of all of the famous and well known brands and companies that have used alliteration in their names:
- Dunkin’ Donuts
- Best Buy
- Lulu Lemon
- Park Place
- American Apparel
- American Airlines
- Chuck E. Cheese
- Bed Bath & Beyond
- Krispy Kreme
- The Scotch and Sirloin
Famous People and Alliteration
Alliterative names can also help you stand out in the crowd and can make you more memorable. For example, both fictional characters and real people may stand out in your head as a result of the alliterative effect of their name. Think of:
- Ronald Reagan
- Sammy Sosa
- Jesse Jackson
- Michael Moore
- William Wordsworth
- Mickey Mouse
- Porky Pig
- Lois Lane
- Marilyn Monroe
- Fred Flintstone
- Donald Duck
- Spongebob Squarepants
- Seattle Seahawks
- Katie Couric (Remember, alliterative words don’t even necessarily have to start with the same letter, they simply have to have the same first sound).
Phrases and Quotes
Finally, many famous phrases, quotes and saying also make use of alliteration:
- Busy as a bee
- Dead as a doornail
- Get your goat
- Give up the ghost
- Good as gold
- Home sweet home
- Last laugh
- Leave in the Lurch
- Living the life
- Look to your laurels
- Mad as a March hare
- Make a mountain out of a molehill
- Method to the madness
- Moaning Minnie
- Neck and neck
- Not on your nelly
- Out of order
- Pleased as punch
- Primrose path
- Right as rain
- Ride roughshod
- Round Robin
Alliteration is a commonly used stylistic tool since it adds interest to a sentence and can be a great way to help you remember names and phrases that you might otherwise forget. Enjoy playing with alliteration. It is a very fun and useful literary device.