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Poem for personal statement?

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Hello all! These past few cycles have had increasing numbers of applicants so I attempted to stand out from the crowd with a poem for my personal statement. Is it unprofessional and, "bad taste" or original and unique enough to land some interviews? Any and all feedback is appreciated -Jeff-

I appreciate you reading this and I value your time

I don’t want to bore you, so I wrote up a rhyme

My life until now has been very exciting

Admissions committees are tough so here I am fighting


This topic is quite dull and not very exciting

But for you who must read all these applicant’s writing

I decided to write this with words that may rhyme

So, you can get an idea of what I did with my time


I’ve got a disease they named Crohn’s and it hurts in my bones

It can attack the whole gut, from the mouth to the butt

It’s got some weird symptoms, this autoimmune

So, relax, take a seat while I sing you this tune


I can eat all I want but I’m still losing weight

People say, “Wow, I’m jealous, for me that’d be great”

They say they’d switch places to lose some weight too

Everyone is an expert, self-labeled, “Guru”


I was Taking steroids, but not getting big

I eat so much food some might call me a pig

Prednisone I can condone but it made me look fat

Cortisol after all had results that fell flat


I’ve been through so much with these scars that I’ve earned

But it’s just another chapter in this page that I’ve turned

The story is far from over in this book of my life

But it hasn’t been easy, filled with pain and with strife


Two years of my life spent just sleeping and crying

This wasn’t living it was simply occupying

This body was defective, was I missing directions?

When God made me this body that needed corrections


Diagnosed at eighteen weighing ninety-one pounds

I lived in the E.R where (PAs) did their rounds

Ruptured colon, high fevers I quickly turned sceptic

I almost died twice, man this Crohn’s thing was hectic


Intensive Care Unit six weeks and a day

I decided I wanted to be a PA

To help people one day who were sick just like me

Young, old, rich, poor or as broke as could be


Four surgeries later and a bag for good measure

I made it through that hell so it’s my life that I treasure

Eight months later the bag was reversed

I went right into studying I jumped in headfirst


I’ve got joy that’s contagious, friends don’t understand

The blessings I’ve got so I’m writing freehand

Second chances at life do not happen each day

It’s impossible to hide this joy I display


Eight years have gone by, in remission at last

Some say that time flies when we look back on the past

I’m stronger than ever before all the doctors agree

Standing here weighing in at one forty-three


College took seven years, I was first generation

Lots of ups and some downs but I had this fixation

Physician assistant one day I would be

This job, not the title would be my grand prix


Received my bachelor’s degree, it was quite celebrated

Because even though it was more than belated

Two jobs, Crohn’s and class just to mention a few

Were what it would take for this dream to ensue


Health and fitness are my passions, I love to workout

Discipline is what it takes I don’t want a handout

I work hard in all I do I am very consistent

So that I may succeed as a Physician Assistant


Number two of nine kids seven younger than me

I love my big family and I think you’d agree

I’m an ambitious, dedicated, team-oriented student

I can continue this praise, but it might not be prudent


If you accept me today to work towards a PA

I’ll give it all that I’ve got so please don’t delay

I’ll work hard and learn fast helping doctors succeed

Because I’m one of a kind, you might say a rare breed 



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It's certainly creative, and you have a very interesting story for what attracted you to the PA field. As someone who reviews and grades admission essays, a poem is too far off of the beaten path in my opinion. My honest first thought if this were submitted to me for review would be "this person failed to read the actual essay prompt". There's a lot of room for creativity with the personal narrative, but it should really be in true essay form.


That said, there's usually an interesting piece of literature or prose at the end of the JAAPA, the Journal of the Academy of PAs. You should consider submitting this once you've successfully interviewed (published as MaNamezJeff, PA-S) for that publication. All the best.

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I personally wouldn't recommend it. The goal is to give a slice of yourself, not so much a performance. I think it would be like sending a video of you doing an interpretive dance. 

The PANCE folder for each individual is large and full of numbers. The only things that the reviewer see that presents a slice of what the applicant is like are the essay and the letters of recommendation. Your poem, though entertaining and heart-felt, doesn't give me enough of a view of who you actually are.

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Certainly not recommended. Stick to explaining from the heart your desire to become a PA and why you chose PA over any other profession in health care. I would be off-put as a person on the admissions board if I were to be reading a poem regardless of how poignant it may be. 

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I love this so much - made my day. I do feel like I got to know you, your personality, a bit of your story and what really drives you. I've got no experience to add on whether you should submit it or not, but I wanted to chime in and say how impressed I am. If you decide not to submit for your app, I'd love to see you do something else with it - maybe published like Beattie suggested!

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