How to Write a Killer Personal Statement for a Scholarship | Honor Society (2023)

Statistics showthat 1.7 million scholarshipsare awarded every year to students. Despite this high number, only 7% of students will receive a scholarship.

Getting a scholarship is no easy task for the average college student. You will need to write a personal statement for a scholarship to give yourself the best chances.

Scholarship essays are very common and help to set students apart. If you're doing scholarship applications, this is a necessity for getting a scholarship.

Keep reading to find out how to write a personal statement for a scholarship.

Understand the Basics

Before you start writing a personal statement, you need to understand what it is. This is a type of essay that many people have heard about but don’t know the specifics of.

This is a type of essay used to describe who you are as a person. It should give the reader a strong feeling of who you are and why you should get this scholarship.

Thousands of students apply for scholarships, so you need to stand out. This essay is an example of your intellectual achievements and writing capabilities.

You want to approach your personal statement as a kind of interview. Think of what you would want to tell someone about yourself to best describe who you are.

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This usually includes past achievements and your present interests. It should also put a strong focus onyour future aspirationsand your career path.

You want this essay to show that you are serious about your education and your future. These are the kinds of students that can get scholarships.

Create an Outline

When you sit down and startapplying for scholarships, you need an outline. When you begin any kind of essay, you are usually going to create an outline to follow.

The same rule applies to a personal statement for a scholarship. An outline helps to guide you through the process and keep you on track.

This is a hard essay to write since you are not writing about a specific topic. Writing about yourself can get a bit tricky since it is easy to go all over the place.

You have to make sure you are following a structure to keep the reader interested. You should not go off topic or string together thoughts that don’t go with each other.

Your outline can be as detailed as you want it to be. For most people,having an outlinewith the beginning, body, and closing is enough to keep them on track.

Don’t rush this beginning step, you may want to give yourself a few days to create an outline.

Make it Personal

A very important part of writing a personal statement is making it personal. This may seem obvious, but it is something that many students fail to achieve.

It is easy to become too technical in describing your achievements and goals. You may become lost in all of these details and forget about the purpose of this college essay.

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Colleges are going to be looking at how personal this statement is. You need to share who you are, as a person and personal aspects of your life.

You are a unique individual, and the more personal your essay is, the more it will stand out. It needs to be authentic, with details that do not feel forced.

You can include things like your family background and how you grew up. If you were bullied, you can add a few examples of how this pushed you to achieve greater things.

Adding a bit of vulnerability will improve your essay and make it feel like it’s coming from a real person.

Don't Forget Character

If you have written a lot of essays, you may forget about adding character. Most essays are strict and structured, not leaving much room for personality.

A personal statement is completely different and requires a different approach. You need to add a character that is a good example of how you are as a person.

For many people, this includes adding small hints of humor throughout their essays. Others may add a creative flair if they have a particular writing talent.

Keep in mind that you don’t want to add so much character that it becomes forced. This is still a professional essay and needs to present you in the best light.

The reader may not necessarily understand your humor or the different details you add. That is where reading it over comes in handy since you can better understand what needs to go.

Use Examples

To create an engaging personal statement, you needto add examples.Examples help to illustrate what you are talking about and create an image for the reader.

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You can use examples to show your growth and your perseverance in life. You can provide examples of past accomplishments and how you grew from them.

These examples need to apply to the kind of scholarship you are applying for. You want this essay to be designed to put you in the best light for this opportunity.

Start Early

Writing a personal statement for a scholarship is something that requires time. This may take significantly more time than you would think since it can be challenging.

That is why it is so important to start early when approaching this essay. You should give yourself at least 2 to 3 weeks to accomplish this essay and have it completely polished.

The last thing you want to do is start this late and run out of time. A rushed personal statement is going to be very obvious and will not match up with the competition.

When you are writing such a vague topic, it can be difficult to get started. This may come easy to you, or it may be a struggle, so it is always best to be prepared.

You may even decide to start over or create multiple drafts, which takes more time.

Edit and Proofread

Once you have completed your personal statement, you need to begin editing it. The last thing you want to do is send your statement as a rough draft.

It can be tempting to simply call it quits and send your statement in as is. But this can be detrimental if there are grammar errors or it lacks enough clarity.

It is a good idea to read your statement a few times to catch any errors. You should also have others read it for you to see what their comments are.

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Friends and family are more likely to catch issues than you are since you are the writer. They can help you create a clearer essay that represents you in the best way possible.

Things to Watch Out for

When you are working on your personal statement for a scholarship, there are a few things to be aware of. There are some common mistakes that students make that can be detrimental.

These are issues commonly found in personal statements that could easily be avoided. Understanding these mistakes will help you to write a better statement to give you the best chances.


The format of your essay is important since it creates a flow. If you are jumping all over the place, it’s going to be unpleasant to read, and it will lower clarity.

You can go in chronological order from your past to your present to your future. This is a great way to structure your essay so that it is easy to read.

Essay Voice

When writing this essay, you need to have a particular voice. This voice should present who you are as a person to the reader.

Many students make the mistake of making their essays too professional or too silly. You need to find the perfect balance between being serious and authentic.

If you try to go too much in one direction the tone of the essay will come across as inauthentic.

Personal Statement for a Scholarship

If you are getting into college, you may be writing a personal statement for a scholarship. This is something that many students do, but not many get the scholarships.

The reality is that getting scholarships is difficult since many students are applying. That is why your personal statement is so important in setting you apart from others.

(Video) GKS (KGSP) - 5 DOS for Your Great Personal Statement

Do you want to apply for different college scholarships to help you on the way to your future career?Contact us todayat Honor Society to find the best scholarships available through the Honor Society Foundation.


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