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Personal Statement in Neurology

Discussion in 'Neurology' started by penlight, Jul 23, 2011.

  1. penlight

    5+ Year Member

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    Hi!
    I'm an MS4 going into neurology, and wondering what kind of personalities/characteristics/skills are especially valued in this field.. so that I can highlight those in my PS.

    Also, how do you tweak the PS for the prelim programs?

    Thanks a bunch!
     
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  3. neuro_nandri

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    I'm also interested in this question, if anyone can help!
     
  4. neuro_nandri

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    I have no idea what to write about because we are told not to write about our own medical experiences, or our families, or say why neuro is so interesting/unique? So I'm just confused!
     
  5. warchild

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    curiosity, compassion, commitment. You can write about what inspired you to pursue neurology (possibly something expressing your curious nature), or you can write about unique patient experiences (possibly inspirational but also demonstrating your ability to empathize and go the extra mile for your patient), and you can write about experiences demonstrating your commitment to your career goals (nobody wants to hire a lazy slouch who might drop out when things get rough). You can describe unique experiences that helped you get to where you are, and describe your goals of what you want to do and why a neurology program will get you there. Make sure it is organized well and flows smoothly: eg a sentence introducing your theme, transition sentences between each paragraph, and at least 1 summary sentence summarizing your major points. If you can highlight something unique and memorable about yourself, or present your personal statement in a unique way, it may stand out from the thousands of others. Try not to jump across too many topics or regurgitate your CV. Try to identify what is most important to you and how your career goals relate to it. Try to highlight efforts you have made to reach these career goals. Have a mentor read it, and someone above you in your field, and a program director, and a guidance counselor, and the pope. Have as many people read it as you can, and take their advice with a grain of salt. Don't have the same person read it more than once, otherwise it will start to sound like their personal statement. Despite your years of scientific research, or community service, or public health advocacy, or intense-isolated studying, you are applying for a job to work with people, to learn the nuances of their neurological disease, to learn how to treat them via medical management and counseling, to learn how to work with other healthcare workers, and to learn how to be an excellent clinician.

    Prelim programs are similar just put less emphasis on your research and specific interests in neurology subfields, and emphasize more your hard working nature, compassion, and self driven studying/curiosity. If applying to county programs emphasize your interest in public health, improving government systems, working with underserved and advocating for your patients.
     
    vegasgemm2002 likes this.
  6. TUGM

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    You can write about anything you want. If you're not a confident writer, or don't have a unique story, then just stick to the age-old formula of describing how you became interested, what your goals are, and why you are a good candidate.

    I wrote about playing guitar and ultimate frisbee... and some fun times in the angio suite.

    Honestly, the personal statement is not given that much importance in the big scheme of the application, but you can use it as a tool to help the program director get to know you a bit better.
     
  7. vegasgemm2002

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    You don't have to be a fabulous writer, but a little effort carries weight with programs. Personalizing it is always nice. I like to know why you chose the field you're applying to, but don't over personalize it or make it too long. Anything longer than 3/4 of a page to one page, I lose interest. Most important, spell check your personal statement before uploading it into ERAS. I can't tell you how many applicants over the years have blown their chance for an interview in any of my programs simply by not spell-checking.

    Good luck with interviews!
     

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