Today i had the opportunity to speak with a group of college bound high school seniors. They all came from different walks of life, with different G.P.A.s, extra curricular activities, and career aspirations. As we sat and talked about their promising roads ahead, we found that there were a few things that no matter what your walk of life or personal goals are, some things we all need to learn how to do. At the very top of that list… learning to sell yourself, in the form of a personal essay… make a list of your qualities, and outstanding character traits that the college, job, or scholarship foundation of your choice would benefit from having chosen you to represent them. Then, make a list of the challenges you have faced in the last few years (that you have over come and may have hindered you temporarily from doing your best.) Now is the time to be more than just your G.P.A., test scores, and extra curricular activities. Give people an opportunity to get to know you, as a person in a structured format of course. This essay will stand as a format that all personal essays of yours will derive themselves from. With minor tweeks to some information based on the school you may be applying to or scholarship application requirements, you will be able to use this personal essay to “sell yourself” many times over with every application you fill out. So start writing! Don’t edit! Just write, then when you flush everything out, go back and take out what you don’t need, make certain things clear that might need clarity and then let your English teacher or college advisor look it over to make sure it is saying everything it needs to say and is grammatically sound.
Selling Yourself… The Personal Essay