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How to Create a Killer Opening on Your Personal Statement

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Your personal statement is another way to stand out from the rest of the CRNA school applicants. It’s also a great way to show off your accomplishments, how much you like the school and why you want to be a CRNA. 

But oftentimes we get hung up on the introductions and conclusions. And not knowing exactly how to start your personal essay so it shows you in the best light and all within the maximum number of words or characters is even more frustrating.

This results in you procrastinating and stressing out on what to write. Then you either don’t get the personal statement written in time or do a terrible job writing it. I experienced the same stressors while writing my personal statement for CRNA school. So I completely understand. 

Read: Managing Stress During Your CRNA Journey And Beyond

Keep reading for the ways to ensure you have a killer opening personal statement.  

1. Brainstorm ideas based on your updated CV available

While you don’t want to repeat things on your CV onto your personal statement, it is wise to look over your CV to jog your memory. You may remember an event or story that would be great to include in your personal statement. 

2. Get to the point fairly quickly 

In order to get the attention of the admissions committee, you want to make a great impression right off the bat. It’s alright to warm your reader up for what you have in store. But ideally you want to get to the point pretty soon after your opening statement. 

3. Don’t waste time on a catchy opening 

When writing your personal statement you want to leave plenty of time for proofreading and editing before submitting your final draft. So don’t spend valuable time trying to come up with the perfect opening line. Whenever you try too hard it may come off as fake or not make any sense.  

4. Write what comes natural 

Your personal statement will come across more genuine and unique by just being your authentic self. Because you have to remember your personal statement is for the admissions committee to get to know you better. It’s your story to tell.  

5. Use an anecdote

A great way to grab any reader’s attention is by telling a mini true story or anecdote. It’s a great way to keep the reader engaged and keep them wondering what’s next. This is the technique I suggest to those I have consulted with in regards to writing their personal statement. 

  • This is how you would begin your introduction with a mini story about a shadowing experience. Start with the 5w’s- Who, What, When, Where and Why. For example the 5w’s are- Myself, or the patient. At the hospital. While shadowing. One morning. Witnessed a cardiac event during surgery. 
  • Next, include any sensory details that go along with the story. What did you see, hear, smell, feel, etc. For example, I heard someone yell for the crash cart. 
  • Then you want to put it all together and start with the “where”. You want to start as close to the peak of action as possible

6. Leave the introduction for last

I normally like to write my introduction first, but sometimes whenever I am struggling to get started I leave it for last or later in the writing process. The bottom line is don’t let indecisiveness stop you from writing your personal statement. 

7. Avoid the most obvious cliché sentences 

You want to avoid sounding like everyone else. Remember it’s all about how you present yourself and standing out from others. Here are the some of the most overused openings according to UCAS:

  • From a young age…
  • For as long as I can remember…
  • I am applying for this course because…

8. Ditch someone else’s quotes 

Avoid using someone else’s words after all it’s your personal statement. And it’s even worse when you use quotes without tying it in to your essay. After all it’s not about what their thoughts are, it’s all about you. 

Bottom Line 

Your personal statement or essay is another important part of your CRNA school application. A well written statement gives the admissions committee a glimpse into who you are. If after writing your personal statement draft and you still need additional help join CRNA Chase ACADEMY for more extensive 1 on 1 help or purchase a personal statement review

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