As a nurse, you will need to manage multiple workstreams, including both administrative tasks and patient care, as well as organize proper treatment steps and potentially other members of the healthcare team. Therefore, a well-developed nursing personal statement that is logical and polished reflects that you have the right mindset for the profession. Follow these tips to help you develop a passionate and professional nursing school personal statement.
Making a Connection with Your Personal Statement
1. Formulate a basic timeline but realize that it’s not carved in stone
While creating a general timeline for brainstorming, writing, reviewing, and proofreading your nursing personal statement only takes a few minutes, many applicants procrastinate on this essential step because it feels like adding yet another set of chores to an already full schedule. Because of this, start early and build some flexibility into the schedule that you create. Plan to have every step completed reasonably in advance of your deadlines to avoid last-minute panic.
2. Repurpose open-ended statements for ones that are specific
Although most nursing schools have an open-ended prompt that allows the applicant great freedom in designing the nursing personal statement, you won’t necessarily need to start from scratch in creating your nursing statement for the schools that have specific prompts. There are probably quite a few aspects of the prompt that you can address by repurposing parts or even whole paragraphs from your open-ended nursing school personal statement. Reading prompts thoroughly and having a plan can save you significant time and effort in the personal statement writing process.
3. Space fills up faster than you might think
Staring at the blank screen, it feels like you’ll never get anywhere near the word count or character count maximum. Then, you start writing. Surprisingly, you begin thinking of all these great ideas to include in your statement. Next thing you know, you’re 35% over the limit and have no clue what or where to cut. Everything is too important!
Don’t be that nursing school applicant.
Instead, write a rough outline so that you’ll not only have a topic for each paragraph but also a general idea of how long each paragraph needs to be. If a good idea pops in your head as you’re writing your nursing school personal statement, you can weigh it against the outline to see if and where it might have a place. Taking this route will save you from the double work of having to significantly trim your nursing statement.
4. Don’t write stories about playing nurse as a kid
Every year, I have to break the bad news to numerous applicants that starting their nursing statement with a story about ‘always’ wanting to be a nurse or playing nurse as a kid is a surefire way to lose the interest of the nursing school admissions officers. I’m sorry. Genuinely sorry. It doesn’t belong. You have to take it out.
5. Always be specific
Nurses get things done for patients. For this reason, don’t expect nursing school admissions officers to be persuaded by general statements. You need to show and not just tell. When writing about your personal qualities and skills, be sure to provide concrete examples. Also, your best examples may not necessarily come from any healthcare experiences you might have had. Feel free to draw on any experience as long as you make a clear connection between your experience and the qualities you need to excel as a nurse.
6. Ultimately, write about the care
At its heart, nursing is about being dedicated to providing care to patients. From the first word of your nursing personal statement to the last, let the admissions officers see that you understand what nursing is really about and why you belong in the profession.
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