I remember how much I struggled when writing my college personal statement as a transfer student back in 2009. I had no idea what to write and constantly felt overwhelmed by the process.
While moving last year, I found it in a folder and was shocked by how little it did to showcase my resiliency at that age. Instead of highlighting how I overcame my lung collapsing three times and maintaining a 4.0 GPA, I wrote about the struggle of being a TA at an elementary school.
They would not specify why, but I still believe the reason I did not get accepted to Occidental College the first time I applied was due to my subpar personal statement. I cringed and felt embarrassed for my former 20-year old self after reading it for a few minutes and then it clicked. This was another reason why I launched PLUS ME Project.
Writing a personal statement when applying to college or grad school is one of the toughest things a student must do. I experienced it first hand and have now committed myself to making it easier for others.
Our Storytellers PLUS ME curriculum guides students through a 10-hour process helping them identify and share their own powerful, resilient personal narratives. They each get to share their stories in front of their peers and leave with the building blocks that they use when writing their college personal statements.
Help me continue to bring this important work to more students this year by supporting our #5Years5Days5Dollars campaign in celebration of PLUS ME’s 5th anniversary or bringing our program to your school!
Richard Reyes is the founder and executive director of PLUS ME Project. To contact Richard, email him at email@example.com