Don’t Make These Three Mistakes On Your Nursing Personal Statement
If you are just beginning to write your nursing personal statement, read the advice below so you don’t make these three mistakes on your nursing personal statement. If you have already written a draft nursing personal statement, then use these guidelines to help review your work in the hope of improving it. These are the tips a professional editor would probably offer.
- Don’t write an “ordinary” nursing personal statement, which looks just like all the others.
- Don’t forget to explain how you became interested in the nursing field and your love for it.
- Don’t leave out information about what you have been doing to prepare for a career in nursing.
Professional editors, whose primary job is to review and critique essays submitted by medical applicants, know that this is a highly competitive field. A nursing personal statement which avoids the three mistakes listed above and focuses on the writer’s passion for the field probably has improved his or her chances at being successful in the application process. A polished and creative personal statement nursing could enhance your likelihood of acceptance by making your application memorable.
Personal Statement Nursing Essay Suggestions
First, don’t write an “ordinary” nursing personal statement. You want to make your essay remarkable by writing from your heart about the passion you feel for the field. Many candidates start their essay by writing “I have always wanted to be a nurse.” This is a hackneyed approach which will probably not capture the immediate interest of the admissions committee. Personalize your essay by writing about your own experiences and special motivations. Write in clear, strong language which is easy to follow. Be professional in your approach to the essay.
Second, write about how you became interested in the field. Your nursing personal statement should include a story or anecdote which illustrates how you became interested in nursing as a career. The story can be a personal, family experience or an incident which occurred during volunteer work or an internship. Describe your passion for the medical field in this personal statement nursing.
Third, remember to review how you have prepared for a career in the medical field. Your nursing personal statement should include solid information that shows the reader your commitment to the field and your efforts to have practical experience prior to pursuing an academic degree. If you do not have volunteer experience, perhaps you could write about personal experiences which have motivated your application.
Following these suggestions should help you create a professional and unique essay. The nursing personal statement should describe your dedication and zeal for the field.
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When preparing to apply to a graduate nursing program, there are many requirements and submission guidelines to remember. The component that allows you to tell your unique story — your personal statement — is one of the most important.
Writing a compelling personal statement for an MSN program, like the Nursing@Simmons online Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP) program, takes time and can be challenging for some applicants. Just as a poorly written essay can hinder your chances of acceptance, a great one can set you apart from other applicants. Below are three steps to writing a personal statement that will make a positive impression on any admissions committee.
1. Plan Your Story
Very few people can sit down at a keyboard and craft the perfect personal statement without preparation. It may take several weeks of thinking about how to communicate your story, so give yourself plenty of time to plan, jot down thoughts, and make an outline as ideas come to you. Use the following tips to gather the information you’ll need to create an excellent statement.
- Consider how your work experience as a registered nurse (RN) has influenced you and shaped your goals for the future. How will an advanced education promote your professional growth and help you transition into the role of an FNP?
- Think beyond your resume. What traits, strengths, and accomplishments aren’t captured there? Consider your interests, including how they will contribute to your success in the program. Provide examples of nursing goals, leadership, mentorship, or growth you have accomplished or experienced. Write these down and keep them in mind as you begin your draft.
- Choose appropriate topics for your statement. Avoid soapbox issues, and don’t preach to your reader. This kind of statement can come across as condescending and obscure the point you’re trying to make.
- Research the program. Make sure you understand the school’s values and reputation. Do they align with yours? How so?
2. Create Your Draft
- When it is time to start putting your thoughts on paper, try to avoid overthinking your work. Strive for a natural voice. Pretend you are talking to a friend and write without fear — you can edit and polish your piece to perfection in the next stage.
- Avoid cliches and nursing generalities. Generic descriptors, such as “caring,” “compassionate,” “people person,” and “unique,” have been so often overused that they no longer carry much weight with an admissions committee. They also don’t address your personal experience in the nursing sphere. Try not to start your story with phrases like “for as long as I can remember” or your audience may stop reading.
- Show, don’t tell. Strong storytelling is grounded in personal details that illustrate who you are, both as a nurse and a person. Be specific by describing how many patients you managed, how you earned promotions, or a time when your supervisor praised your professionalism and clinical abilities. Here are examples that illustrate the difference between telling and showing:
“I perform well under pressure.”
“Although my patient arrived for a different ailment, I suspected that her symptoms were consistent with a serious infection. As a result, I was able to advocate for a care plan that prevented further damage.”
- Use specific examples when talking about your experience with direct patient care and evidence-based practice. Provide details about how your clinical experiences have demonstrated patient advocacy, leadership, communication, or confidence.
- Discuss how earning a Master of Science in Nursing aligns with your career plans and why you want to become a FNP. Explain that you understand the commitment required and that you have the skills and dedication to become an FNP. Be sure to let the admissions committee know why you are choosing their program and what makes their program stand apart from the rest. Reflect on the school and program research you did during your planning stage.
3. Edit and Perfect
Even the best writers have to edit and polish their work. Reviewing and revising your personal statement ensures that the piece is clear, organized, and free of errors.
- Once you have written your first draft, take a break and distance yourself from your work. This will allow you to return to the draft with a clear head to review objectively and spot potential issues and errors.
- Read your statement aloud. Does it sound like you? Does it reflect your best qualities and the strengths you’ll bring to a nursing program?
- Take great care to submit a statement that is free of spelling and grammatical errors. Even minor mistakes can make you look careless. Multiple errors could indicate to the admissions committee that you are disorganized or not taking the application process seriously. Here are some tools and tips to help you present a perfect piece of writing:
- Always use spell check on your essay, but be careful as it won’t catch every spelling error.
- Use a grammar editing tool, such as Grammarly.
- Ask a friend, family member, or mentor to review your statement. This is a great way to catch errors or awkward phrasing that you may have missed.
Your nursing personal statement should be a window into your life. Use it to share specific experiences that have influenced your decision to advance your nursing education. Adhering to professional standards and presenting yourself in a positive, open, and honest way will help the admissions committee determine your fit and future in an FNP program.