Engage the Reader from the Start. When it comes to your application, all the information you submit is already set in stone__ except the personal statement. This is your chance to get your program's attention, especially if you feel that your MCAT scores or GPA may be lacking. You want your reader to be interested from the very start of the essay. Admission committee members are often short on time and may be more likely to gloss over your essay if it has a generic, flat, or boring beginning. One way to begin an essay is with a personal vignette__ a quick snapshot of a moment in your life that relates to your decision to apply to medical school. Consider the following two opening statements: a) I've always known that I want to be a doctor. Since my first encounter with death, I've recognized that it is my responsibility to help people. b) The lights flashed, and the sirens wailed as I watched the ambulances cart my next_door neighbor to the hospital. I was ten years old, and it was my first encounter with death. Do you see how the second example engages the reader's attention right away? It is a snapshot rather than a factual statement, which immediately catches the reader's interest. Personal vignettes are not the only way to start your essay, but they are easy to shape into engaging opening statements.
2 _ Get extra curricula _ If you're still in secondary school think about writing your personal statement after college. Think about something which will make you stand out. A lot of students won't have any legal work experience at this stage; you can really set yourself apart if you can get some. Even if you're in the second year of college it's not too late _ ask for some work experience at your local firm, even if it's for 2 days. You should really try and get at least one extra curricular law activity on your CV. You can also arrange a court visit at your local court. This could be a good chance to make contacts too. It could open the door to a shadowing opportunity _ shadowing any court staff will be exceedingly valuable.