How To Write The Best Personal Statement For Residency Application?

Excellent Tips To Develop An Extra Ordinary Personal Statement For Your Residency Application

Once you get an interview, personal statement is a very important document that the program director looks at. I developed my own personal statement when I applied for residency. I did an extensive research while writing my personal statement.

 

Here are some points that I want you all to know while writing a personal statement.

 

First choose a specialty (IM here) in to which you want to apply for. Then, think all the reasons why you personally want to go into that specialty. Write all those points in to a word document randomly and keep editing it as and when you get time to work on it. First write two or three pages and cut is short gradually with multiple edits to make a single page.

 

Start early as it takes a lot of time. I started months early. The process of writing a personal statement actually motivates you to read well.

 

Convey that you are committed to your career choice.

 

Get straight to the point: Do not beat around the bush. Think that you should not waste their time.

 

It is an opportunity to explain your personality including your experiences, aspirations, philosophy –they are looking for a good colleague to work with.

 

Include what skills will make you a good internist?-clinical, communication, team spirit, teaching, research, enjoy solving problems, coordinating care with specialists, empathy, bedside manners, team work etc.

 

Mention what you are looking for in a residency program. Stay away from giving financial and lifestyle reasons as reasons for your specialty/program selection.

 

Avoid taboo topics like Religion, political beliefs, romantic relationships, and opinions about sex, abortion or other political issues.

Mention your future goals-don’t mention hospitalist as they prefer you say a fellowship.

 

No general points that everyone knows. It will be boring to read.

 

Avoid spelling and grammar mistakes. Read repeatedly and correct mistakes.

 

You should be able to discuss or explain what you wrote in your personal statement during interview.

 

It should make program director want to meet you in person.

 

Write two personal statements for specialties that you are planning to apply for two, one for each.

 

Don’t repeat what is written in your CV.

 

Don’t write in a chronological order starting from your childhood to medical school and residency application. You should write based on a theme.

 

Write in a few short paragraphs of a few lines each and do not write lengthy sentences or paragraphs.

 

Show it to multiple people and make adjustments or corrections as needed.

 

Never show your weakness or vulnerability in it. You should make them feel that you are a mature, thoughtful, enthusiastic, responsible, and stable individual.

 

Do not lie.

 

You can discuss serious weaknesses in your application but handle them carefully, quickly and positively. Show proof that you have rectified your weakness or failures.

 

Don’t say why you did not choose other specialties.

 

Don’t say anything negative about anything or anybody.

 

You don’t have to say what fellowship you want to do unless your residency program has extra ordinary fellowship program. You can say you will decide in future.

 

I personally don’t recommend writing quotes said by some great people in personal statements.

 

Courier 10 point font with one inch margins most closely replicates how ERAS will format the statement. So put your personal statement in this format and see how it looks.

 

Good Luck.