How to Write a Personal Statement (Iyori and Krzyztof)
Example of a personal statement (Iyori's)
I remember the day very well. Standing in front of my freshman year classmates in the French class to present on tourism in France. My face started to burn as if I had a 104F temperature. I began to sweat. I got extremely anxious, and I went silent several times, quite frankly, forgetting what to say while presenting the first quarter of my slides. I stuttered through the rest of the presentation, with a flat voice as if I was dead inside. When I finally finished and stopped speaking, I realized that the whole class was so quiet, waiting for me to say something more. They didn’t even realize I was finished. It was embarrassing.
That’s the day I realized I was not happy with my complete lack of confidence in public speaking. I also decided that I wanted to improve and be really good at it. It is only a positive thing to be able to speak smoothly and confidently in public, I thought. I made it my goal for my sophomore year to overcome my fear of speaking in front of an audience.
To try to overcome my fear of public speaking, I joined the Model United Nations club (Model UN) at my school during my sophomore year. It was the perfect activity because I also had an immense interest in politics because of the 2016 US presidential election which was extremely interesting to me. The Model UN club was the most political activity the school offered.
In the club, I learned the format of an actual United Nations conferences. It also gave me chances to attend model conference events with students from not only all over the United States but from across the globe. It also gave me many opportunities to practice speaking in front of an audience.
Improving wasn’t easy at all. I remember the first Model UN conference I attended at New York University. It was incredibly overwhelming, and I was anxious the entire time. My face blushed as always. But I realized I had to keep practising if I wanted to get better, and I did the best I could.
It was during the second conference I attended at Yale University that my view towards public speaking began to change dramatically. My role was to represent Nigeria in the UNHCR (United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees), the UN refugee agency. The role was perfect for me because I had previously researched the 2015 refugee crisis for an assignment. My prior knowledge gave me courage, and I was able to present my statement very smoothly and quite confidently.
As I continued to improve, I have developed two ways to help me cope with the anxiety of speaking in public. The first is to apply my knowledge to understand the topic I am presenting instead of just remembering facts. The second is to have a full script of what I want to say ready before I present. With these two points covered, I know that I am well equipped to be able to give an excellent presentation. As I am confident that I am well equipped, I get less anxious and nervous. Although I still get somewhat nervous speaking in front of an audience, I now have the tools to help me do my best. As a result, I feel that I am becoming better and better in public speaking. It is my wish to continue with improving my skills of public speaking more and more as I move on to the university. I am confident that in the university, I will learn more and more technics that I could obtain from my professors, classmates, guest speakers at the university in the years to come. There is no such thing as perfection. However, I am determined to strive for excellence in public speaking in many years to come. After all, public speaking is one piece of me.
I did not have enough time to complete a personal statement patiently before the deadline. I created that choice of doing it last minute, and three weeks before deadline meant last minute to me because I always have something I need to edit and polish up my essays. Brainstorming was very time consuming because I had to reflect on what I have done throughout my life even though there were some pasts I didn’t want to think about; but, that's life, and I must overcome it completely. As a result of brainstorming, I managed to use reasonable content to add for my statement which is public speaking.
The Art of the Personal Statement is a short book with practical tips and tricks on how to write a perfect essay, in addition to showing examples of essays that are good or not as a format.
It helped me edit errors and understand better on essays.
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