Are you getting frustrated with your personal statement?
You’re not the only one, a lot of my Facebook messages and emails are about this at the moment.
One applicant told me that she’s put so many buzzwords in that she wishes admissions tutors have a system whereby they stick a statement on a wall and throw a dart at it, and if they like the midwifery concept where it lands, the applicant should get an interview!
I’m hoping by the end of the post you can breathe a sigh of relief because today I'm sharing an excellent example personal statement.
It should give you some great pointers; passion, common sense and experience really come through here.
Big thanks to Elle who donated her statement to feature. Elle successfully applied back in 2015. She tells me she was the kind of child who was obsessed with midwifery and used to go up to Mums in Tesco and ask them all about their babies! Gorgeous, haha.
To begin with I’ll run through why Elle’s statement is so good and got 5/5 interviews:
- Elle mentions advocacy and shows understanding of how important this concept is. Women should make their own choices and midwives should support this
- It shows clearly Elle understands the role of the midwife – she uses terms like ‘the antenatal, intrapartum and postnatal period’. This is how midwives talk about pregnancy, labour and birth, and after the baby is born. Elle is speaking the language of a midwife!
- Elle understands the wider role, including breastfeeding, public health and being up to date with research
- Elle mentions some brilliant volunteering work and – crucially – she explains some of the skills she gained from this and why they’re important in midwifery
- Elle demonstrates her solid academic ability
- She also shows awareness of how important compassion is and her ability to be supportive to all women and families, regardless of circumstances
- Elle shows excitement, passion, and wanting to work ‘with women’ throughout
Elle’s Personal Statement
For me, there could be no role more honourable and rewarding than that of a midwife. Midwifery encapsulates everything that I love and is a role which I feel I was made for. I wish to have the joy of being an advocate for women, supporting, enabling and empowering them during the most incredible time in life. I consider midwifery to be more than a job, rather a privilege and a vocation. I feel that I have developed a deep understanding of the role of a midwife and the requirements surrounding it; I will always have a full commitment to a future in midwifery.
I dream to be a source of support for women throughout their antenatal, intrapartum and postnatal periods, delivering information and giving advice on family planning and conception, breastfeeding education and support. I would play a key role in regards to the public health and would potentially possess the ability to improve general public health by promoting healthy living in pregnancy. If I were to be accepted onto this course, I would develop my basic knowledge and experience of breastfeeding support to reinforce the importance of establishing breastfeeding within the immediate postnatal period, in accordance with the UNICEF baby friendly initiative, as only 74% of women reported breastfeeding in Scotland, in a study from 2010.
I am someone who is committed to ongoing professional development, reading current midwifery topics such as AFFIRM, GAP and Keeping Childbirth Natural. This allows me to form an evidence-based opinion, which in the future will enable me to advise and care for my women appropriately. I have sought advice and spoken to many midwives, ranging from current students to senior practitioners, and visited those working in my local hospital frequently. Being within the hospital environment and maternity wards, I realised how passionate and dedicated I was to working within this profession.
My compassionate and non-judgemental nature allowed me to provide support for school children with additional needs. I did this over the course of a year on a weekly basis as part of my whole school achievement. I demonstrated my organisation and listening skills when planning events to help raise funds for their care, while working with others to stay dedicated and focused on my role. This provided me with the transferrable skills that would support working in a healthcare setting. Over the past year, I have worked each week as a teaching assistant at a primary school, a young leader at the Rainbows and Brownies and an assistant at a toddler/newborn group. When possible I attended a breastfeeding support class, I did this all whilst working towards my Higher qualifications, demonstrating the ability to work under pressure. Due to staff shortages and budget cuts within the public health sector, I would have to balance a heavy workload as a midwife while providing the same standard of care to every woman. This skill would aid me in handling my responsibilities so that my care meets the needs of the individual mother and her family. Having achieved four Highers and five SCQF level 5 SQA qualifications by the end of S5, I have demonstrated my time-management skills and determination to succeed, a commitment I would show through my training at university. As a young leader, I enjoyed interacting with the families of the children and those working around me, it demonstrated my social skills and conveyed my friendly and supportive nature to those around me. As a future midwife, I am committed to making those in my care feel comfortable around me as I would be a source of support for women and their families. In my role at the newborn/toddler group, I demonstrated my kind and supportive nature to the mothers and proved my ability to make mothers feel comfortable around me.
I am excited by the prospect of using my commitment to lifelong learning for a vocation in midwifery, in order to develop new skills and provide the best support possible in my life’s work. I can’t wait to begin.’
You can write a statement of the same quality, just take your time and think hard about what every skill, quality or experience you mention offers midwifery.
Elle is a ‘traditional’ aged student and I know there are many of you out there who are applying as mature students.
Just to reassure you, cohorts are a 50:50 split and as long as you have the skills and qualities the admissions tutors are looking for, your age doesn’t matter at all. And the techniques and topics in Elle’s statement are relevant to all.
A note from Elle:
When I was applying, my personal statement really didn't happen overnight. I must have asked about fifty different people to read it, ranging from English teachers, to art teachers, to student midwives, qualified midwives and even the head of midwifery at my local hospital. I also did about twenty different drafts because it just had to be perfect. I truly know how difficult it is to write a personal statement. I hope this helps someone - best of luck to you all! - Elle xxx
Of course, you shouldn’t use any of Elle’s statement as your own work. It’s been through ‘copycatch’ on UCAS so reusing phrases will flag up a warning to admissions tutors.
I know I don’t have to tell you this, but just in case, you should have all the information.
If you’re struggling with your statement please check out:
Personal Statement School (My highly reviewed course on personal statement writing)
My one to one coaching (books up fast!)
Elle and I would love to hear from you now! Please tell us:
- What have you found hardest about writing your statement?
- What has been easiest? What came out onto the page easily in terms of your passion and inspiration?
Much love and happy writing,