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I am getting ready to reapply for PA programs this cycle. I have four years (7,084 hours) of nursing experience with the last 1152 hours as a Neuro/Trauma ICU nurse. MY SGPA 3.46 and my under graduate GPA is also 3.46. I graduated Magna Cum Laude from my ADN program in 2013. I have four great letters of recommendation (1 PA , 1 former PA now ortho resident, 1 NP I've worked with in the ICU, and 1 former chemistry professor). My GRE is pretty bad since I only studied two weeks for it: Quantitative 143, Verbal 146, Analytical writing 3.0

 

I was rejected from every school I applied to last cycle and the only thing I can assume is because either my admission letter, GRE, or applying late in the cycle (I applied mostly in August/September).

 

My question is, has anyone used a professional writing company for your admission letter? If so, who would you recommend?

 

I am preparing to retake the GRE soon, but I figured working on my admission letter would hurt either. 

 

Any recommendation are appreciated

 

Thanks!

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I would try using Magoosh as a way to study for the GRE. They have great study plans and explanations to every problem. It also comes with practice GREs and it's all at a low cost compared to other services. I think you need to shoot for above the 50th percentile in every section of the GRE.

 

When you say admission letter are you referring to the essay/personal statement that CASPA requires?

 

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I would try using Magoosh as a way to study for the GRE. They have great study plans and explanations to every problem. It also comes with practice GREs and it's all at a low cost compared to other services. I think you need to shoot for above the 50th percentile in every section of the GRE.

 

When you say admission letter are you referring to the essay/personal statement that CASPA requires?

 

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Yes, sorry I am referring to my essay/personal statement. I heard there are services that help and critique personal statements and was wondering if anyone has used one or recommends one to use. I had both my sister who has an MBA and boyfriend who has a master's in healthcare administration look over it, but they are not physician assistant's, nor do they completely understand the role of a PA or what admission directors are looking for.

 

 

 Thanks for the recommendation in Magoosh, I will look into it. I used Kaplan to study for the GRE the first time but didn't feel like it helped (it was very helpful for my NCLEX for my nursing licences , so I thought I would stick with them)

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I would try using Magoosh as a way to study for the GRE. They have great study plans and explanations to every problem. It also comes with practice GREs and it's all at a low cost compared to other services. I think you need to shoot for above the 50th percentile in every section of the GRE.

 

When you say admission letter are you referring to the essay/personal statement that CASPA requires?

 

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I may be naïve, but I think your setback was probably the late application. I would definitely retake the GRE to show that you are actively trying to improve your application, but I find it hard to believe that with your HCE and GPA that the GRE held you back. In fact, many schools are moving away from requiring the GRE. One of the local schools in my area had an open house a few months ago, and the program director said that the GRR is designed to predict an applicants success in the first semester of graduate school. He went on to say that he is not interested in an applicants first semester but their entire stent. This guy also happened to be a former president of the AAPA.

 

All that to say, definitely take it again and Magoosh is a great resource. But I think your primary concern should be submitting ASAP.

 

 

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I have never used a source to edit my essay but I have heard great things from myparesource.com as well as mypatraining.com when it comes to an editing service.

 

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highly recommend myparesource.com. They were amazing to work with. I was hesitant at first, but I figured that if I'm using up so much money to apply to all of my schools, why not get professionals involved with my essay to maximize my chances? I edited and revised for months until I was sure it was perfect, and then I sent it in to them. They still made it 100x better and now I look at my old essays for laughs, because they were definitely going in the wrong direction (and this is coming from an English major. Lol). Anyway, that's my 2 cents. Good luck.

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Maybe I'm in the minority here, but paying a service to "review and edit" my essay seems borderline disingenuous. The personal statement IMO should reflect your writing, your ideas and your vernacular- not that of a professional service. That's a short step away from just paying someone else to write your statement entirely. I understand having friends and family, maybe even professors, LOR writers or even something like the writing center at your university review them, however the aforementioned alternative leaves a bad taste in my mouth. Not to mention that it might raise concerns if you have a 3.0 writing score on your GRE but an incredible personal statement. PA schools are cognizant of the use of such services and, from what I've heard from one admissions director, frown on their use. I think it goes without saying that you should re-take the GRE and apply earlier in the cycle. Just my .02. Good luck!

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Maybe I'm in the minority here, but paying a service to "review and edit" my essay seems borderline disingenuous. The personal statement IMO should reflect your writing, your ideas and your vernacular- not that of a professional service. That's a short step away from just paying someone else to write your statement entirely. I understand having friends and family, maybe even professors, LOR writers or even something like the writing center at your university review them, however the aforementioned alternative leaves a bad taste in my mouth. Not to mention that it might raise concerns if you have a 3.0 writing score on your GRE but an incredible personal statement. PA schools are cognizant of the use of such services and, from what I've heard from one admissions director, frown on their use. I think it goes without saying that you should re-take the GRE and apply earlier in the cycle. Just my .02. Good luck!

 

Eh. I think you have the wrong idea. My personal statement does reflect my "writings" and my "vernacular," but what the editing service did was help me shorten superfluous info and focus on extending the important aspects of my essay, while limiting the unimportant/cliche/detrimental. Lol, they didn't "write" anything on my PS. They advised me on what I should focus on (which is no different from what people on the personal statement forum do on here. Only they have a better idea of what adcoms are looking for). I don't see how having professional PAs review your essay, as opposed to friends, family, and generic writing centers should leave a bad taste in your mouth. It's emphasized everywhere to have a PA look over your statement, but I don't know any PAs who would have the time to do that. Anyway, I think that only people who actually use the services can really understand what it is that they provide their clients.

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Personally i would have applied in April or May. Once you take the GRE again and get all of your application verified it will likely be Late July or August again and you may find yourself in the same situation. If you do not get in this time around, my biggest piece of advice would be to apply as early as possible next cycle. You are great credentials aside from the GRE, so you also may want to consider applyingto more programs that do not require the GRE if you dont do well second time around.

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Eh. I think you have the wrong idea. My personal statement does reflect my "writings" and my "vernacular," but what the editing service did was help me shorten superfluous info and focus on extending the important aspects of my essay, while limiting the unimportant/cliche/detrimental. Lol, they didn't "write" anything on my PS. They advised me on what I should focus on (which is no different from what people on the personal statement forum do on here. Only they have a better idea of what adcoms are looking for). I don't see how having professional PAs review your essay, as opposed to friends, family, and generic writing centers should leave a bad taste in your mouth. It's emphasized everywhere to have a PA look over your statement, but I don't know any PAs who would have the time to do that. Anyway, I think that only people who actually use the services can really understand what it is that they provide their clients.

Don't take it personally, I didn't mean it as ad hominem, nor did I suggest that you didn't write your statement. I just think that it's a little disingenuous to use a professional service to provide edits and revision to a personal statement. Shouldn't your essay reflect your writing ability, organization and thought process? Shouldn't your essay expound your understanding of the profession in your own words? You're an English major... if you were to write a paper, send it off to a professional editing service, make those changes and then, without notifying your professor that you used such a service, turn that in as your own work you wouldn't feel slightly dishonest? I would, and that's all I'm saying.

 

The fact that someone can slap together a draft, pay $299 and have them edit it 3 times and send it back to you (each time editing, re-organizing and re-directing your writing to match what adcoms want) doesn't sit well with me. I worked tremendously hard (not suggesting other didn't) on my personal essay and wrote dozens of drafts over the span of a year. I had family, friends and colleagues edit my essay, but they didn't "provide line by line comments, edits and recommendations" and 3 professional revisions. To each their own. It's a very competitive process and everyone is looking for a slight advantage. Best of luck this cycle.

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Don't take it personally, I didn't mean it as ad hominem, nor did I suggest that you didn't write your statement. I just think that it's a little disingenuous to use a professional service to provide edits and revision to a personal statement. Shouldn't your essay reflect your writing ability, organization and thought process? Shouldn't your essay expound your understanding of the profession in your own words? You're an English major... if you were to write a paper, send it off to a professional editing service, make those changes and then, without notifying your professor that you used such a service, turn that in as your own work you wouldn't feel slightly dishonest? I would, and that's all I'm saying.

 

The fact that someone can slap together a draft, pay $299 and have them edit it 3 times and send it back to you (each time editing, re-organizing and re-directing your writing to match what adcoms want) doesn't sit well with me. I worked tremendously hard (not suggesting other didn't) on my personal essay and wrote dozens of drafts over the span of a year. I had family, friends and colleagues edit my essay, but they didn't "provide line by line comments, edits and recommendations" and 3 professional revisions. To each their own. It's a very competitive process and everyone is looking for a slight advantage. Best of luck this cycle.

 

I see what you're saying here. Some people abuse this service and rely on it too much for their PS. I would believe most people are on their final draft and want suggestions on better transitions, grammar errors, redundant statements, etc.

I didn't have anyone else I personally knew read my personal statement as it was a bit too personal and I would rather have a stranger read it who is well versed on grammar and such.  I think I am naturally a good writer, but there might be some small grammar rules I missed. In this way, this service is really no different than a professional writing service at your university.

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Don't take it personally, I didn't mean it as ad hominem, nor did I suggest that you didn't write your statement. I just think that it's a little disingenuous to use a professional service to provide edits and revision to a personal statement. Shouldn't your essay reflect your writing ability, organization and thought process? Shouldn't your essay expound your understanding of the profession in your own words? You're an English major... if you were to write a paper, send it off to a professional editing service, make those changes and then, without notifying your professor that you used such a service, turn that in as your own work you wouldn't feel slightly dishonest? I would, and that's all I'm saying.

 

The fact that someone can slap together a draft, pay $299 and have them edit it 3 times and send it back to you (each time editing, re-organizing and re-directing your writing to match what adcoms want) doesn't sit well with me. I worked tremendously hard (not suggesting other didn't) on my personal essay and wrote dozens of drafts over the span of a year. I had family, friends and colleagues edit my essay, but they didn't "provide line by line comments, edits and recommendations" and 3 professional revisions. To each their own. It's a very competitive process and everyone is looking for a slight advantage. Best of luck this cycle.

No, I would not feel dishonest having someone look over my paper and then revising it according to their suggestions, because that's literally what we're taught to do our entire schooling careers. You're supposed to have people revise your work as objectively as possible in order to write a better essay. The "personal" in "personal statement" doesn't mean writing an essay and submitting it willy-nilly because it's what comes to you. That's just not smart. "Personal" means drawing on your experiences in order to write an essay, which I did. You said "in your own words," again, suggesting that the revision service wrote words on my personal statement. I will repeat, "they didn't 'write' anything on my PS. They advised me on what [aspects] I should focus on." They also didn't "'provide line by line comments, edits and recommendations' and 3 professional revisions." I just went on the myparesource page, and I'm realizing that you're drawing your conclusions from the most-expensive package deal. Well I can't speak to that, because I used the cheapest one, which gave broader comments for each paragraph I wrote. But again, you'll never really know unless you use the service yourself.

 

The way you sound, you make it seem as if personal statement revision services are a sort of black market. Which is weird, because I have yet to come across any program or representative of a program who has advised applicants against the use of these services. In fact, I've had representatives recommending using professional services if we didn't know any PAs personally. That's actually how I found out about them. Law school, MBA, and Med school applicants commonly use revising services, so why can't PA school applicants?

 

Like you said, to each his own. Good luck this cycle to you too!

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Personally i would have applied in April or May. Once you take the GRE again and get all of your application verified it will likely be Late July or August again and you may find yourself in the same situation. If you do not get in this time around, my biggest piece of advice would be to apply as early as possible next cycle. You are great credentials aside from the GRE, so you also may want to consider applyingto more programs that do not require the GRE if you dont do well second time around.

 Like I said before "I feel that way also 

moorecarson121, but I figured at least revamping my cover letter wouldn't hurt. Once I have that done I will be submitting application and redoing my GRE later. "

 

 

I am about to apply this week, I was waiting for my last set of transcripts from last semester to help boot my GPA and prerequisites to apply to more schools this time. 

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Don't take it personally, I didn't mean it as ad hominem, nor did I suggest that you didn't write your statement. I just think that it's a little disingenuous to use a professional service to provide edits and revision to a personal statement. Shouldn't your essay reflect your writing ability, organization and thought process? Shouldn't your essay expound your understanding of the profession in your own words? You're an English major... if you were to write a paper, send it off to a professional editing service, make those changes and then, without notifying your professor that you used such a service, turn that in as your own work you wouldn't feel slightly dishonest? I would, and that's all I'm saying.

 

The fact that someone can slap together a draft, pay $299 and have them edit it 3 times and send it back to you (each time editing, re-organizing and re-directing your writing to match what adcoms want) doesn't sit well with me. I worked tremendously hard (not suggesting other didn't) on my personal essay and wrote dozens of drafts over the span of a year. I had family, friends and colleagues edit my essay, but they didn't "provide line by line comments, edits and recommendations" and 3 professional revisions. To each their own. It's a very competitive process and everyone is looking for a slight advantage. Best of luck this cycle.

I have completed dozens of drafts as well and I have three different versions. I have had three people look over my essays (two have masters, one in healthcare administration, one an MBA, and the other has a doctorate). However, none of them is a PA or know a lot about the profession. I just feel like a different set of eyes with a different view may help me this time around.

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I'm old school by definition. It's your application and your new career; it's fine to have a bunch of people check it grammatically, but hiring a PA to see if it is accurate from a PA standpoint seems over the line.

 

Have some confidence in yourself; you're going to be needing that by the barrel anyway!

 

Good luck!

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At the end of the day, whatever counsel, advisor, coaching services you utilize, make sure that what YOU submit is what YOU would say/do if put on the spot.  Many programs include a writing exercise as part of their interview process ... and the interviewers can and may use yours for discussion in the one-on-one interviews (this was the case in more than one of my interviews).  It not only gives them something to talk about besides your application that they've already reviewed ... one program quite candidly informed us that it's one way they ascertain the genuineness of your CASPA and/or supplemental.  

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Wow, I had no idea the negative context I would receive from this post.   I understand your reservations and concerns. I just want to reiterate that I am using my own words and experiences for my essay letter. I just want to make sure I don't mistakenly say something that could cost me an interview. My first admission letter I had put physician's assistant and unbeknownst to me that was a faux pas. I just don't want to make that same mistake. I'm not asking a PA to write it for me, I am only seeking guidance to not shoot myself in the foot again. I know I have what it takes for this profession, I have a good academic background, I am an ICU nurse, and I have overcome adversity that would make most people give up. I can handle stress and criticism, but I feel like some of you may have the wrong idea.

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Wow, I had no idea the negative context I would receive from this post.   I understand your reservations and concerns. I just want to reiterate that I am using my own words and experiences for my essay letter. I just want to make sure I don't mistakenly say something that could cost me an interview. My first admission letter I had put physician's assistant and unbeknownst to me that was a faux pas. I just don't want to make that same mistake. I'm not asking a PA to write it for me, I am only seeking guidance to not shoot myself in the foot again. I know I have what it takes for this profession, I have a good academic background, I am an ICU nurse, and I have overcome adversity that would make most people give up. I can handle stress and criticism, but I feel like some of you may have the wrong idea.

 

No offense intended by me.  I don't fault anyone for seeking assistance in any area they feel even marginally deficient, whether it's their personal statement or their interview skills or anything else.  

 

Take it for what it's worth - free advice based only on what you've stated.  Also, keep in mind that many frequent posters will often answer 'unasked' or 'implied' question(s) ... both for the possible benefit to the OP and for those who may search and find this thread in the future.  

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It's a service available to all, if you decide not to use it, that is your own decision.  

 

It is one thing if it states things that are not genuine to the applicant but as long as it's a polished version of what you have done and believe in, nothing to be ashamed about it.  

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I am getting ready to reapply for PA programs this cycle. I have four years (7,084 hours) of nursing experience with the last 1152 hours as a Neuro/Trauma ICU nurse. MY SGPA 3.46 and my under graduate GPA is also 3.46. I graduated Magna Cum Laude from my ADN program in 2013. I have four great letters of recommendation (1 PA , 1 former PA now ortho resident, 1 NP I've worked with in the ICU, and 1 former chemistry professor). My GRE is pretty bad since I only studied two weeks for it: Quantitative 143, Verbal 146, Analytical writing 3.0

 

I was rejected from every school I applied to last cycle and the only thing I can assume is because either my admission letter, GRE, or applying late in the cycle (I applied mostly in August/September).

 

My question is, has anyone used a professional writing company for your admission letter? If so, who would you recommend?

 

I am preparing to retake the GRE soon, but I figured working on my admission letter would hurt either.

 

Any recommendation are appreciated

 

Thanks!

It sounds like a wonderful application. Yes your GRE is low but your experience should help. I am concerned about your recommendations ? One could be hurting you. Just a thought. Retake the GRE and look for a score if 300 combined and 3.5 or higher.

 

Hope this helps.

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I am surprised that you got rejected all programs you applied last year.  What you described in here is a lot like my story, so I felt strange when I was reading your post.  I am a ICU nurse too.  My GPA is slightly lower than yours, but I have longer ICU experience. I also graduated with Magna Cum Laude from my nursing program(ADN) in 2011. My GRE is not very good either, thought I haven't taken the test officially.  I also got LORs from NP, PA, and MD from my unit. I hope to see you get many interviews this year! (and will get into the program you want)  I wish you luck!! :) 

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I am getting ready to reapply for PA programs this cycle. I have four years (7,084 hours) of nursing experience with the last 1152 hours as a Neuro/Trauma ICU nurse. MY SGPA 3.46 and my under graduate GPA is also 3.46. I graduated Magna Cum Laude from my ADN program in 2013. I have four great letters of recommendation (1 PA , 1 former PA now ortho resident, 1 NP I've worked with in the ICU, and 1 former chemistry professor). My GRE is pretty bad since I only studied two weeks for it: Quantitative 143, Verbal 146, Analytical writing 3.0

 

I was rejected from every school I applied to last cycle and the only thing I can assume is because either my admission letter, GRE, or applying late in the cycle (I applied mostly in August/September).

 

My question is, has anyone used a professional writing company for your admission letter? If so, who would you recommend?

 

I am preparing to retake the GRE soon, but I figured working on my admission letter would hurt either. 

 

Any recommendation are appreciated

 

Thanks!

 

hello, I took the GRE twice and I didn't do so well on both. My second attempt, I got 150(v) 144(q) 4.0(w). I would suggest working on your personal statement. I think it was my personal statement and my HCE that landed me a couple interview invites and hopefully more. Also, I had multiple individuals in the healthcare industry critique my essay. Finally, had my cousin who is a english/writing major proof read it. I actually took a few months working on my essay. Hope everything goes well. 

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