Feedback/help on personal statement appreciated!

Students Post Graduate


  • Specializes in Medical/Surgical.

I need some help proof-reading my personal statement for FNP graduate school and would really appreciate if anyone can just give me some feed back. Anything you guys can think of - changes, opinions, or criticism would be great! I have excluded personal info in this draft. I don't know if it is too long, too personal, not too personal, and I am not sure if I adequately addressed what admissions want my statement to say?

Admissions want my statement to describe how my work experiences and professional interests have prepared me to be successful in the FNP program and how completing the program will meet my professional goals. Alright here it is....:nurse:

MSN Statement of Purpose

How I entered the nursing field was a leap into the unknown. Growing up I never put much thought into what nurses did and instead dreamed of becoming a doctor. Throughout my life, I have witnessed my father take care of various members of my family that were sick, all the while working full-time. He was the sole provider for my immediate family. My father cared for my mother who passed away when I was a child from complications related to a car accident; my grandmother who had renal failure and required dialysis several times a week; and finally my grandfather who had Alzheimer's dementia and suffered a series of strokes. I knew my father was always going to the hospital or to doctor's appointments. I was too young to go and therefore was never exposed to the nursing field. Throughout the years, I continue to admire this quality of his to comfort and care for others. He embodied the filial duty that is so engrained in our _____ culture that I wanted so much to return to him someday. Hence, I continued to work towards a medical career.

The realities of life materialized once I was in college. I realized the long years required for a medical education did not fit into my plan of supporting my family. I changed my major freshman year in college to nursing not knowing too much about this new career choice besides what was on television. Delving further, nursing was an interesting option that not only satisfied my interests in healthcare but also promised a stable future with career advancement. My various work experiences have allowed me to mature as a caring goal oriented professional. I now hold a B.S.N degree from _________ School of Nursing and work on a busy adult medical/surgical unit at _________. Working at a large teaching institution close to the city has exposed me to a vast array of patients coming from all walks of life.

This daily encounter of so many lives has opened my eyes as to why I choose to advance my career in nursing as a Family Health Nurse Practitioner. I can see that each patient comes from a unique background with their own story. I want to have time to sit down with each patient and not only be able to care and treat their medical problems but also to listen to their own personal history. I want to provide quality care through building a trusting relationship. This challenge will give personal meaning and fulfillment to my life each day I wake up to go to work.

Growing up I have always strived to mirror the work ethics my father embodied. I have held several jobs throughout my working life that has allowed me to strengthen skills necessary in nursing. I have always been on the front lines of customer service whether it was in retail, food service, or nursing. My job experiences have all allowed me to develop great interpersonal skills to communicate with and understand others. During my college years I held several jobs at the same time all the while going to school and clinical full-time. I also found time to tutor young children in an after-school program. I take great pride in being able to balance various areas of my life even under stressful circumstances. Therefore, I feel very comfortable taking on the challenge of graduate school while continuing with bedside nursing. It will be an exciting opportunity to become involved with the evolution of the nurse practitioner field. I have a genuine interest in learning how to become a knowledgeable provider of care for patients from one end of the lifespan to the other. I know I will be able to accomplish more by holding an advance practice degree.

I hope to someday work with patients in the primary care setting and develop trusting relationships. My goal is to connect with patients on a level that can promote them to take interest in taking their personal health into their own hands. I feel that I can make an impact in encouraging patients to take control of their health before progressing into the more acute problems that I encounter everyday at work in the hospital. This challenge will be a great one. It is very easy to forget that each patient is an individual when working within an acute care setting as the patient turn over rate is so frequent. I enjoy the time that I sit to read my patient's chart to fully understand their history and problems. Unfortunately, there is sometimes not enough hours in the shift to do that with bedside nursing I want to cherish the time to sit down with each patient and discuss their needs without disruption.

One of the first experiences I had with a nurse practitioner was during my community health clinical rotation. I had a chance to shadow a nurse practitioner at a public high school and work with adolescents individually. It was an eye-opening experience in that many of these teens did not have positive role models or ways to find adequate healthcare. I was able to sit down with several teenagers to know their history, discuss their needs, and let them know there is someone to turn to for help. I want to be able to continue to do this in the future at a clinic or facility where I can volunteer my time and services. I fully understand how difficult it can be when a patient has questions and it is difficult to find a doctor that not only can you trust in but also has the time to give you. In college I always went to my school's health clinic where a family nurse practitioner was available to help. Her care stands out as she always had the time to sit down with me, answer my questions, and educate me on what I needed to know to better take care of myself. To treat the person and not just the condition is a way of showing compassion in my book.

These personal encounters where I am able to give time to the patient as simple as it is would be a dream. Based on all of this, I do have a vision to someday be in an environment where nurse practitioners can come together in partnership and provide accessible services for people in need. I want to have the goal of developing lifelong health plans for my patients so that they can be participants in their own health. Without more exposure and education it is difficult for me to plan on how this may all come together. I am sure that it will come in time and I am excited to see how this profession will advance in the future.

It was not a difficult choice on where I wanted to continue my professional goals. ______ MSN graduate program is my first choice as I would love to stay within the ______ institution. I feel that ______ undergraduate program has prepared me well to be competent in the nursing profession. I have the same expectations that the graduate program will also provide me with the tools I need to advance my career as family health nurse practitioner. The flexibility that ________ nursing program offers is great as it is also affiliated with the medical center, itself a teaching institution. I enjoy the idea that I may be able to go to work, school, and even study all within one campus. While researching into the program, I also recognized several professors that I have had in undergraduate classes, listed in the program's faculty. Based on what I know of these professors from past instruction, I feel that I will enjoy the challenge their classes may offer.

The various aspects of my life whether it is through family, school, and or work have shaped me into the individual I am today. Growing up in an immigrant family I have a special awareness to be tolerant and understanding of other cultures. My strong family values to care for my loved ones have also extended to be patient and minding of the people I care for at the bedside. My years in customer service as well as health care has led me to develop an ear to listen closely to what others have to say, effectively communicate with people, and become a trusting member of a multidisciplinary team. The ability to multi-task and time manage has allowed me to be successful in school and at work. All these simple qualities can go a long way in delivering patient satisfaction. My leap into the unknown nursing world has not only given me the satisfaction and fulfillment to know that I have touched people's lives but a lifetime challenge to need to know more and better help others. If given the opportunity, I will do all I can to continue to provide for my patients and to devote my life to make the lives of others easier each day. Now that I am able to support and provide for my family, I want extend this care to others. I was inspired as a young girl by my father to simply work hard and care for people. Now I wish to develop into the primary care provider role to do good for others by pursuing an advanced education with _______ in the Family Nurse Practitioner Program. I hope that _____ can be the school that continues to provide me with the tools I need in order to deliver a better quality of patient care.

If you made it this far...thanks for reading! I plan on submitting my application the next few nervous!! Thanks in advance for the help =):wink2::nurse::nuke:

UVA Grad Nursing

1,068 Posts

As one who has sat on admissions committees for 20 years and read 10,000+ personal statements, I caution you from using a generic statement (and then merge-mailing in the name of the school and program specialty). Admissions committees and faculty easily recognize these generic personal statements --- and most faculty will mark the essay "down" for showing a lack of creativity, seriousness of purpose, or initiative. No one wants a student who takes shortcuts.

In the MSN program at my university, we receive 3x as many applicants as there are spaces --- so admissions is competitive. What stands out is someone who has read our website thoroughly, and whose personal statement reflects what our school is particularly strong in. Some other memorable statements will indicate that the applicant has read the research of the people who will teach them (with citations using proper APA formatting, of course). The generic statements where it is obvious that the applicant is using the same essay for multiple schools really does not stand out. Every year we also receive essays with the wrong school mentioned in the essay. For example, last year I received an essay that talked about how the applicant wanted to go to Vanderbilt! I contacted my colleague at Vanderbilt to see if the applicant sent the essay for Virginia instead (she had). Neither school appreciated the student using the same essay for both schools.

So I would encourage you to write different essays for each school that you are applying to. Convince the admissions committee that you have done your research on that program/university/faculty --- and why that particular program is right for you. Part of the essay could use some common sentences, but much of it should be individualized.

If you are applying to a program that accepts all applicants (yes, there are several of those schools that accept everyone), then a personal statement really does not matter. But if you are applying to a program that is competitive, I would encourage you to take the time to tailor your statement.

I realize that this may not be the answer you wanted to hear. But as someone who sits on the other side of the table, I wanted to provide you with some feedback.


44 Posts

Specializes in Medical/Surgical.

First of all, thank you for taking the time to provide feedback as it really helped me to think further and be more specific into what I want to say.

I actually was not using this statement for different schools but taking your comments into thought I can see why it can be read that way as my statements were a bit too generalized and I did not truly address the admission questions.

Since then, I have wrote another draft. I emailed you. Another opinion if I am going the right direction would be great. Thanks again UVA Grad Nursing =)

Daytonite, BSN, RN

1 Article; 14,603 Posts

Specializes in med/surg, telemetry, IV therapy, mgmt.

you're using the kindness of allnurses members to write and compose this essay. you are not keeping track of what you are sending out to people. you sent a pm to me that said at the end "if you have the time would you mind briefly reading over my new draft? even just a "your going in the right direction" would be sufficient. i emailed you my draft as it is too long to send via private message." the problem. . .i don't list my e-mail address in my personal profile, so where you sent this new draft to is anybody's guess! it never came to my e-mail because you couldn't possibly have the e-mail address. that is pretty disorderly. you'll have to be better organized than this to put together an essay that will get you noticed and then make it through a master's program! :o

i critiqued this essay on another forum ( many problems with it. a few major points: (1) fnp is referred to as both family health nurse practitioner and family nurse practitioner. which is it? (2) in one place this blunder was made: i want to have time to sit down with each patient and not only be able to care and treat their medical problems but also to listen to their own personal history. we're not doctors. we can only treat nursing problems. we can assist docs in treating the medical problems, but that is not what you said.

allnurses Guide

ghillbert, MSN, NP

3,796 Posts

Specializes in CTICU.

Brief comment: say "advanced practice degree", not "advance practice".

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