Writing about the future in a graduate personal statement can be an enjoyable task. Planning your career, thinking ahead to achieving your goals, and “dreaming big” are the best parts of writing about the future.
Graduate personal statements should always include some of the following components in a paragraph devoted to the future.
- Forecast your short term and long term goals. (Include interim goals, if applicable.)
- Define your future career, offering specific details.
- Develop ideas and plans as to how the graduate degree will contribute to your future career.
- Project industry growth, increased demand for employees. Relate it to your specific field.
Regarding goals, short term goals usually include those which can be achieved in the next 3 – 5 years. Long term goals extend beyond 10 years or more. Interim goals apply to some career paths, but not all. The interim goals fall between the short and long term goals outlined in the personal statement for graduate school and depend upon the industry or program.
Your graduate personal statement should relate your future plans to your motivation to achieve these plans. If you introduce the idea of your long term goal in the opening paragraph of a personal statement for graduate school, then it is usually a good idea to return to the idea at the conclusion of the statement. This will remind the reader of your theme, your introduction, and your desire to pursue a career in the field discussed in the graduate personal statement .
Graduate Personal Statements have Never been More Important
Another important part of the section on the future plans in graduate personal statements is the opportunity to focus on the application of the intended degree program to those plans.
The writer of a personal statement for graduate school should include information about desirable coursework in the program and professors of interest who teach those courses. If research is an element of the program, then a discussion of the research lab, its purpose, and the professors in charge of the lab, as well as any past relevant personal research experience , would be a good inclusion in this graduate personal statement.
A graduate personal statement could also benefit from some discussion of future alumni networking and community-building within the program. Potential synergistic relationships, whether in the medical, scientific, business, commercial, or artistic world, could benefit careers and should be noted in the graduate personal statement.