– Hey! My name is Muhammed. I run the bog called dentalschoolcoach.com where I help pre-dental students get into their dream dental school.
This video is about my own personal statement. In this video, I’m gonna go really deep into the personal statement and tell you what’s good about it and what’s bad about it. It’s not a flawless draft. It has some of its own mistakes but overall, it’s a good enough draft that got me into Penn, UCSF, UMD and J, Pittsburgh, and NYU. So I would pay close attention to some of psychological triggers I’ve used.
Also pay… When you read it, you can get the link under my signature. Read it with focusing what stories I tell and how I tell the stories. Those are very important. Let’s go right in.
This is a personal statement you’ll see many stories. In this, I don’t just tell one story and look back to it at the end. I tell multiple stories to give the reader glimpses of my life at different times.
And it worked really well… It really worked well for me. For some people, they don’t like to tell multiple stories. They just want to use one story and want to look back to that story at the end. That is also fine. There is no single way of writing a personal statement so make sure that when you write one, try different approaches.
See what works for you. Secondly, I use… In the second paragraph, I used financial struggle as one of my character-defining in experience and if you may know that to be come a good dentist, you must be patient and perseverance. And I bring that right in the second paragraph, right into the second paragraph. I mention that because of my financial struggle, I have gained perseverance and patience ingrained in me.
Now, a lot of people might say, “Oh, this is cheesy,” and whatnot. Yeah, that’s fine. But the thing that I want you to take home is that if you have defined experiences in your personal statement or if you write stories about something in your personal statement that defines you characteristic, that makes you who you are today, it’s absolutely very important to mention. For me it was my financial struggle. For some people, it might be just the death of a close person or… There are many stories you can tell that defines your characteristic.
And any characteristic that will make you a good dentist, definitely put that in your personal statement. Going into the third paragraph, I’ve done something that I don’t see many people doing in their personal statement. This is what I see in many people’s personal statement.
A lot of people would write how gracious their dentist is or how generous, compassionate their dentist is and it inspired them to become a dentist. That’s perfectly fine. You should mention that if you found a dentist to be absolutely amazing. However, you should also look back and talk about yourself and mention that you also have those soft qualities and soft skills that will make you a good dentist. For example, I mentioned that through one of the experiences I had, I volunteered at a refugee camp where I helped out some other refugee kid named Abdi. I helped him to get a scholarship program at Syracuse University.
That’s showing compassion, that’s showing generosity to someone who doesn’t have the access to help. So, if you have qualities, if you have characteristic trait through experiences you had in your life or through experiences you are continuing to do at the moment, make sure you mention that in your personal statement. It’s valuable. The readers are going to absolutely love that.
Do not shy away from mentioning something that… Some ingrained qualities you have. Personal statement is a sales copy, basically. You have to sell yourself. And if you’ve come short in selling yourself, there might be someone else who would be doing a better job selling himself and you won’t get in.
Now, going to the third paragraph, it’s about leadership experiences, about one of the clubs that I started at Penn. Now, what I want you to take out of from this paragraph is that I don’t just talk about what I’ve done. I lot of people would just stop at, “Oh, I’ve done X, Y, and Z.” That’s boring, you know?
What you need to do is write about your experiences and learning points and write about the results you had. Write about what impact you created at the extracurricular activities you did. For example, saying that I’ve hosted an event with 150 people does not make me impressed about your accomplishment. But if you said that, “Well, I’ve made changes “in someone’s life. “I’ve thought how to do X, Y, and Z.” Or, “I have made sure that she got into “X, Y, and Z program.”
Or, “She got a scholarship at this school and that school.” That’s a bigger accomplishment you have and you should mention that. If you do some extracurricular activities or volunteer activities, make sure you talk about impact more than what you did. Going into the paragraph where I talk about sculpture and then my lab work. A lot of people made fun of me because I used clay bosom of Abraham Lincoln.
That was a mistake. I now understood. Back then, I didn’t have any idea and I’m guessing that dental school were much more forgiving about that. Anyways, going into the sculpture class, I don’t just talk about what I did at the sculpture course.
I talk about a specific project I’ve done and I also talk about how much hard work I put into it. Dental schools love to see people working hard because in dental school, its not gonna be easy. People that work hard will stick and people that don’t put that much effort are not gonna stick. So they want to see someone who is working hard and can work hard throughout the dental school.
And finally, in the lab work, I don’t mention anything about what I did in the lab. And it’s important. They’ll ask you what you have done in the lab if you get an interview.
But what I mention is that I got a paper published. There was no place I could put that down and it’s a significant accomplishment that I had. And a lot of undergraduates I’ve seen, they don’t have a paper published in a highly impact organic journal or high impact any kind of journal. So it makes me stand out in a standly. Now, you can mention that, “Oh, you’re just bragging “about yourself.”
Isn’t that what the intention of the personal statement? Also, I’m not coming across as arrogant here. I’m trying to come across as someone who put a lot of work in and is just proud of the effort that I put in. So… That’s it about my personal statement. One final point.
When you write the conclusion, make sure that your last statement is catchy. For example, here, I talk about how I vow to stay patient, stay focused. Now this is something I copied from Steve Jobs. When he was giving a commencement speech at Stanford, he said, “Stay foolish, stay hungry.” I copied that and I put stay focused, stay patient. It’s catchy, it makes the reader remember you more, and at the end of the day, it’s all about if the reader is gonna remember you and recommend you for an interview.
Anyways, that’s all about my personal statement. If you have any question about personal statement, shoot me an email at this email address. This is my personal email address.
And feel free to visit my site, dentalschoolcoach.com. I’m gonna put out more blog posts, more videos, and much more tricks and tactics to get into dental school. Until then, take care. Bye!