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do u really need a new PS?

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by aspiring med, May 5, 2007.

  1. aspiring med

    aspiring med 2+ Year Member

    Dec 14, 2006

    I am on 3 waitlists and am preparing to reapply for next cycle (Class 2012). I love my personal statement. I have tried to revise it, but it doesn't seem to work.

    It is not out of date--the ideas are still relevant to why I'm applying to med school.

    My only concern is that waitlist schools, who have actually taken time to review my application, will see the same PS next cycle and say, "Hmm, this applicant hasn't changed at all, why should I consider her this time?". BTW my app will have changed because I would be in an SMP program, but anyhow...

    If I love my PS, if people have told me that my PS is strong, and if my low science GPA and NOT my overall application probably hurt me this round---do I have to change my PS?
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  3. Jccripe

    Jccripe 2+ Year Member

    Sep 12, 2006
    Dude if your PS is good just re-use it. I think my PS is a little weak so I will probably write a new one. Good luck
  4. AnEyeLikeMars

    AnEyeLikeMars Member 7+ Year Member

    Dec 2, 2005
    Carrboro, NC
    If you have outside confirmation that PS is solid and not holding you back, go for it. I don't know much about reapplication, but you might want to find out from someone that does whether or not your new PS should address the fact that you're a reapplicant and what you've done to improve your app. I don't know though, maybe there are other ways to address that.
  5. musiclink213

    musiclink213 My room is a mess 7+ Year Member

    Oct 20, 2003
    New York
    I had to reapply, and everybody (advisors, professors, med school deans I met with) told me I need to write a new PS even though that wasn't my problem either. My problem was my majorly unbalanced MCAT score (7 in PS, 11's in VR and BS). But, the way it was explained to me, keeping the same PS shows that you haven't changed at all, which really shouldn't be true. The themes in my PS were pretty much the same both times, I had the same reason for going into medicine, and mentioned many of the same experiences.

    However, I changed the overall theme to how being a reapp has made me even more determined to enter medicine and I added in some experience I had traveling on my own to exemplify independence. I really just wouldn't go with the same PS. I was told by more than one school that if htye see someone is a reapp, they will pull out your old application and see how you've changed since the last time. As one dean told me, keeping the same PS might make some ADCOM's think that you don't care enough about this process. For me, that wasn't a risk I was willing to take. And of course, different schools might do things differently, maybe some schools don't look at the old applications. But it could be a potential gamble. Besides, if you wrote a good one last year, who's to say you can't write a good one this year? It doesn't have to be drastically different, but try to include some new experiences. And if you can't revise it, start from scratch. It sucks, I know, but you have to decide if you want to take the risk that the schools will think your app hasn't changed at all.
  6. etf

    etf Moderator Emeritus 10+ Year Member

    Apr 27, 2005
    this is my biggest fear as a reapp as well. my original personal statement was gold, and even some of my interviewers had said that it was one of the better ones they have seen. alas, i've got to write another one...
  7. xanthomondo

    xanthomondo nom nom nom Banned Physician 10+ Year Member

    i would (and am planning myself) to write a new one, although similar, but explain that you are a reapplicant

    my advisor told me that reapplicants are looked at "differently", so letting them know through your ps might not be a bad idea
  8. emaj1n

    emaj1n M1 2+ Year Member

    Oct 16, 2006
    I agree, reapps have to write a new one. I would say you could keep some of the same ideas, but wording should definitely be different.

    Here's the thing, and I mean this in a constructively critical way: If you don't change your PS, you are saying that you haven't changed in a year or done anything worth while in a year, either. You are presenting the same "person" with different numbers; the same person schools didn't accept a year ago.

    Rewrite it and make it more powerful than before. You have experience in this process now, so you have a better understanding of what adcoms expect.

    Good luck! I think you'll end up turning this into a success story thread a year from now.
  9. kypdurron5

    kypdurron5 10+ Year Member

    Dec 3, 2005
    I vote for a re-write as well. I've been extremely happy with all of my personal statements, but the word count is so short you can't possible say everything there is to be said. My first statement was all about why I wanted to go into medicine, the second was about this from a different perspective and why I'm a better applicant the second time around. I'm working on my third PS now (although I am on a few waitlists this time); despite how happy I was with the first two, I now think this will be the best of the bunch. I'm focusing this time on talking about my background, another perspective on why I want to go into medicine, and what I've learned and experienced over the last 2 years.

    Someone mentioned writing about being even more determined after unsuccessfully applying. I think that's a great idea...but do be careful to explain why you're more determined. If you're more determined because rejection makes you want something even more, well, that only says something about your personality, not your commitment to medicine. Just a thought.
  10. holafarita

    holafarita 2+ Year Member

    Apr 10, 2007
    i agree, i think we re-applicants gotta dig deep and write something new each time. i'm waiting on two schools (not waitlisted...yet, just interviewed late :rolleyes:) but am thinking about my 3rd PS right now...

    the other two were pretty good, but every year i keep refining exactly why i'm putting myself through this application process, and i think that's reflected in a better PS.

  11. njbmd

    njbmd Guest Moderator Emeritus 5+ Year Member

    May 30, 2001
    Gone Walkabout!
    If you were not successful in gaining admission into medical school with your current application, change it. It didn't work no matter how much YOU loved it. If something doesn't work, change it. Change everything about your unsuccessful application that you can. You are not the one that is making the decision on whether or not to admit you to medical school.

    No matter what "people" told you, your application wasn't successful. Change what doesn't work. You can keep loving your old application once you get into medical school.

    When we are faced with re-applicants, the first thing we do is compare the older application with the new application and look for changes and upgrades. Unless you are applying to totally different schools, change everything about your unsuccessful application that you can.
  12. gary5

    gary5 Senior Member 7+ Year Member

    Sep 24, 2003
    I'd have your premed advisor read it and ask them for advice. Or a dean. I really liked my PS when I wrote it, but now that I read it a few years later, there are some major changes that I'd make to it. Things that I thought were important really aren't desirable to adcoms.
  13. aspiring med

    aspiring med 2+ Year Member

    Dec 14, 2006
    to help us all premeds, some more conflicting advice!!

    I e-mailed the premed advisor at my school, a big one with a good reputation, to ask her whether i needed to rewrite my statement. she has not read it, i only told her that i felt it was strong and have been waitlisted, so my PS wasn't some huge red flag. She said:


    so some food for thought. I was well on my way to rewriting a new one after everyone on SDN's reasonable advice, but i consider my premed advisor pretty trustworthy, so I think I will opt to NOT rewrite my PS.
  14. kypdurron5

    kypdurron5 10+ Year Member

    Dec 3, 2005
    Thanks for the addition, but note that Dr. NJBMD has already posted on this thread. You don't have to take her advice, but she's a practicing physician and an active adcom (if I'm not mistaken). Personally I always look for posts by her and LizzyM; any advice that conflicts with their posts is what I would be skeptical about >).
  15. musiclink213

    musiclink213 My room is a mess 7+ Year Member

    Oct 20, 2003
    New York
    Yea, I would listen to njbmd also. You can always call up a few schools you're interested in and see what they do. You don't have to believe me either, but I met with a few schools to see why I didn't get in hte first time, and they all told me while my PS wasn't the problem, I still had to rewrite it. To say that every school throws away old files is too large of a generalization. I would call the schools and ask them yourself how they look at reapps, if you can't meet with them in person.
  16. gsmithers68

    gsmithers68 2+ Year Member

    Nov 29, 2006
    why don't you let some people from the PS help thread who volunteered to read statements take a look at it. maybe we can give some advice on how to improve it if there is room for improvement that is... just use the search function for the thread on PS readers for 2008 and pm some people off the list.
  17. RuthP

    RuthP 2+ Year Member

    Nov 4, 2006
    I'm a 3rd time applicant this past cycle. I LOVED my first PS but got no love the first time I applied. Second application cycle I was told to re-write my PS. I did, struggled, and was not 100% happy with the final result. I really wanted to use the old one, but was told to rewrite it completely. Again, no love. Third application cycle I cut and pasted a new PS that was 75% from PS #1, 20% from PS #2, and a small fraction of filler "stuff" that was new. I got in on the 3rd cycle - the two schools that accepted me were schools I had applied to 3 times, so they had PS #1 and PS #2 available but this didn't seem to stop them from accepting me.

    I would work to update the personal statement (add a paragraph at the end, change the intro, incorporate recent information or activities, etc.) But I don't think it is necessarily beneficial to rewrite the entire thing if you feel so strongly about it.
  18. Depakote

    Depakote Pediatric Anesthesiologist Rocket Scientist Physician Moderator Emeritus Lifetime Donor Classifieds Approved 10+ Year Member

    You might think you've got a great PS, but you never know how great your second PS is going to be until it's written.

    This coming from someone that's written three (they got better each time).
  19. IceMan0824

    IceMan0824 Holy crip, he's a crapple 5+ Year Member

    Dec 7, 2006
    Why not just update your ps? It's quicker than re-writing a new one, and it still allows you to show growth and improvement.
  20. notdeadyet

    notdeadyet Still in California Moderator 10+ Year Member

    Jul 23, 2004
    Agreed. Now is not the time to get lazy.

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