Personal Statements

For Graduate and Professional School

Personal Statements are an important part of a graduate and professional school application.  A personal statement is your opportunity to bring your individual voice and personality to your application, and its purpose is to convince the reader that you are an ideal candidate to enter the program.  You need to show evidence that you have the research skills, mindset, and scholarly interest to succeed.  Keep in mind the following options for your statement:

  • A well-written statement takes time to craft.  Expect to write several drafts of your personal statement and be sure to proofread.
  • Follow any directions outlined by the program and/or the graduate or professional school and answer any required questions.  
  • To start, try brainstorming 8-10 reasons why you would like to pursue this degree.  

Ask for help - at any stage, whether you are writing your first draft or about to submit your personal statement, Career Development is here to help!  Call (507-933-7575) or stop in to schedule an appointment or drop in during the academic year to meet with a Peer Career Advisor.  

Gustavus Resources

Personal Statements Booklet The Writing Center

Additional Resources

Writing Personal Statements Purdue OWL: Writing the Personal Statement
University of Minnesota Online Short Courses for Health Professions: Personal Statements Peterson's: Graduate Personal Statement



Updated 5/4/2017 JV