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PA Personal Statement Rough Draft. Any help is appreciated!

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Nix the quotes from Goodall and Wilburforce. This reads just as well without -> "Returning back home, I recall spending hours sitting in my living room, pondering how I could live so comfortably while others lived in such misery. How could I turn away from the world that I encountered? How could I forget all that I had seen?"


Also, "After only two-three years..." huh? Two-three? As in two to three? Cuz it can read as two,three...I dunno. Maybe I'm just silly for stumbling on that one.


And as for calling PA a "new force," I don't know if I'd describe it as that, considering the profession has been around since the 60s. Admissions committees might read into that, thinking you haven't done your research.

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@anaguit thanks for the feedback!


So you're suggesting that I remove both of the quotes and leave it just as

"Returning back home, I recall spending hours sitting in my living room, pondering how I could live so comfortably while others lived in such misery. How could I turn away from the world that I encountered? How could I forget all that I had seen?"


Am I correct?

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Yes. Aside from bringing life to personal anecdotes, I'd avoid quoting others. You have 5000 characters to write a personal statement; why waste precious characters being unimaginative and quoting someone else?? 


Furthermore, I'd remove the "like Paul Farmer of Partners of Health" phrase. Perhaps if you had mentioned him throughout the essay, it'd make sense. But it seemed like out-of-no-where name dropping, so I'd delete it. It'd be more meaningful if you take the time to figure out what to say in that for the closing paragraph. I mean, if I were skimming hundreds of essays, at the least I would pay the most attention to the 1st and last paragraphs. You wanna make sure they have the right amount of pow! (Not that I know how to write a good conclusion myself; I'm struggling with my own.) But I'm thinking only saying :


Having the privilege to pursue medicine alongside a life of ministry is one of my greatest aspirations.  I want use my hands to aide third world families, improving the health and lives of many impoverished people... 


Just seems kind of short. Add some other things (not quotes!) for embellishment to really bring your ideas home. Think of it this way: would you write an argumentative essay and end it with just a couple sentences? No! You rephrase your main points and give final push to really convince the reader. So yeah. Convince me. 

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  • 3 weeks later...

The preferred (ie PC) parlance is "developing country" and not "third world."  I would make that small change if I were you.  Also, you repeat that "Third World" a lot.  Especially in the last case, I'd change.  "Sense of urgency for the Third World" is vague, even if you replace it with "developing nation" or something.  "Urgency" for WHAT about the Third World?

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My essay is somewhat lengthy and so I wanted to find ways to shorten. I'm open to any advice!


"Where do you get your water from?" I asked one of the villagers. "Follow me," he replied. We came alongside a river, up to a small makeshift stone well. "There," he pointed. As I reeled up the bucket for some water, I was taken aback. I looked at my indigenous friend in shock. Murky, gray water infested with tadpoles sat in my bucket.


For most of my life, I have been spoiled with many luxuries, whether it was my first cell phone, guitar, or laptop, all of which gave me diminishing pleasure over time. Not only was I a glutton for new possessions, but I also lived as though the universe was my playground and solely existed for my enjoyment. Only until I experienced the Third World, were my eyes opened to the reality of poverty.

In the summer of my junior year of highschool, I traveled with a team from my church to a small village in Nicaragua, a rural area called Apawás. We endured an eight-hour truck ride and a three-hour boat ride through difficult terrains in order to reach the village. Upon arrival, I was taken aback by the living situation of the villagers, who endured life in shanty shacks and depended on self-sufficient farms to sustain their families. The pinnacle of my surprise occurred when I realized that these people lived without clean water and had limited access to healthcare. In order to obtain their water each day, the villagers drank from foul brown river water or the contaminated community well. Because of this lack of clean water and healthcare, disease was rampant. The wife of the pastor who housed us had severe problems within her digestive track due to the combination of contaminated water and limited medical assistance, but could not seek help because of their isolated location. At the time, however, we could not do much to aid her or the village because we lacked the resources and funds, and after a week, we left the village somberly, feeling helpless and disappointed in our inabilities.


Returning back home, I recall spending hours sitting in my living room, pondering how I could live so comfortably while others lived in such misery. In the words of William Wilberforce, "You may choose to look the other way but you can never again say you did not know." How could I turn away from the world that I encountered? How could I forget all that I had seen?


The memories of my trip gradually began to nurture and grow a profound conviction in my heart to serve the impoverished, and since that summer, I wanted to live a life of service. I became the leader of several community service clubs at school in order to aid others in a realistic and practical way. I also increased my involvement at my local church by leading the youth, serving at homeless shelters, assisting the elderly at nursing homes, and going on additional service trips to the inner city as well as the Middle East. After seeing how my actions could positively affect people’s lives, I considered my acts of service a responsibility in my life, and service to the lowly became the vocation I wanted to pursue.


With these experiences in mind, I researched various healthcare professions because of my desire to be a medical missionary in the Third World. I first began my medical journey striving to become a Doctor, but during one summer, however, I met a Physician Assistant named Bill in an internal medicine clinic. What stood out to me was the degree of flexibility that Bill had within his vocation, since he was able to continue his medical education in various other specialties while still practicing Internal Medicine. The PA profession also seemed attractive because of the effective education I would receive. After only two-three years of graduate school and some time in specialty training, I would be able to medically aid those in need around the world. I had a sense of urgency for the Third World, and I felt that the PA profession would not only answer this urgency but also effectively prepare me for my future endeavors. Slowly I began to understand the implications of the PA profession. PA’s could be a new force of medical professionals ready to tackle the world’s myriad of health problems and could change the healthcare system of the world by providing accessible and reliable forms of healthcare to anyone including the poor. Bill’s personal PA journey was deeply persuasive and I was completely sold. I returned home that day to do more inquiry, thus beginning my journey towards the PA profession.


“You cannot get through a single day without having an impact on the world around you. What you do makes a difference, and you have to decide what kind of difference you want to make.” – Jane Goodall


Having the privilege to pursue medicine alongside a life of ministry is one of my greatest aspirations. Just like Paul Farmer of Partners in Health, who improved the health and lives of the many impoverished people, I want to aid families in the Third World through the work of my hands, regardless of how great or how small my contribution will be.

Where to start? I agree with the previous suggestions. To be blunt, I read this PS as too idealistic and naive. You use way too many words and you use many of them poorly. Example: You refer to one of the villagers as though you had chosen him at random and then call him your friend. Which was it? Get rid of "indigenous." That follows from the fact that he was one of the villagers.


"A small village in Nicaragua, a rural area called Apawas." This is redundant. A small village in Nicaragua is enough. The reference to Apawas conveys no useful information.


The eight hour truck ride and three hour boat ride you endured is irrelevant to why you want to be a PA. Earlier, you talked about how spoiled you had been and now you want the reader to see your metamorphosis from spoiled kid to reflective adult with compassion for others. What you saw and experienced matters; What you endured doesn't, especially since it was just an adventure anyway.


A pinnacle is something you seek to attain, like the top of a mountain. It doesn't go with surprise. You could say "I was shocked (or appalled) by the abject poverty..."


PAs refer to "flexibility" as autonomy. It's important to learn the terminology.


PAs may be very compassionate but they aren't really out to "tackle the world's health problems and change the healthcare system of the world." That comes across as very naive. The word "myriad" is out of place, an extra word. (When you write an essay, you can generally eliminate half the words without sacrificing anything important. You can eliminate half the remaining words and still retain all the key ideas while gaining impact because you won't put the reader to sleep.)


Your "future endeavors" should be your future career or vocation.


The part about Bill seems like a brief encounter. It isn't persuasive enough to show that you really understand what it means to be a PA.


Are you really intending to spend your life ministering to impoverished people in developing countries? How will you pay for PA school? Will your PA cert work in all those countries? Can you get loan forgiveness by working in underserved areas outside the U.S.? Why not just become an LVN?


This essay makes you seem like a really kind, albeit naive, individual, but I don't see how it helps you get into PA school unless you are ready to do extensive rewrites. Good luck.

Sent from my Kindle Fire HDX using Tapatalk



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I forgot to add that the best part of your essay was the fourth paragraph. Try to show how you became a leader, inspiring others to follow you. You say it, rather weakly, but don't really demonstrate it, so it loses impact. Also, have you done any paid health care work? I know some schools don't require it but it helps to show that you can work with others in an occupational setting, be responsible and carry out assigned tasks. If so, did you learn anything that might help your PS?


Sent from my Kindle Fire HDX using Tapatalk 2



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