Brainstorming Personal Statement Ideas (Part 1 of 6)

You’ve Got This!

Personal statements are always daunting because you have to find the magical balance of communicating how impressive you are while being modest. To make it more challenging, each school will have a slightly different prompt. Even with these differences, the basic structure is as follows: what is your experience, which population(s) do you want to work with and why, and why should the school pick you?

Before Writing

Before taking on the task of writing the essay, spend some time brainstorming about important moments in life, school, volunteering, research, work, etc. Try to think of times that have been important in your decision to become a nurse practitioner. Choosing the right story can be challenging, so try not to put pressure on yourself for the “perfect story” while brainstorming. Consider brainstorming about specific patients who have left an impact (make sure to not violate patient privacy laws), classes that sparked an interest in healthcare, a family member experiencing an illness, or anything else that has been important in your path.

Brainstorming Tips

If you’re still unsure about ideas for stories, think about your dream job. Is your goal to be a nurse midwife and to work with pregnant women? If so, maybe write about a birth that impacted you during your experience as a doula. Pursuing a career in pediatrics? Consider discussing the experience when your child was sick and you were moved by the care you received in the hospital. Interested in family practice? Discuss learning about the impact of vaccines and wanting to be able to help patients prevent illness. Each person has an infinite number of stories that would work well in a personal statement; consider what has moved you in your life and write about the experience.