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We get it – you’re dying to include your work experience in your personal statement, but how do you write about work experience in your personal statement? Work experience is an essential component of your personal statement. It shows that you are passionate and knowledgeable about your chosen course. Some courses require prior work experience before you can apply.
So if you’re looking for a way to showcase your work experience, this blog post is just what you need. Learn how to write about work experience effectively in your statement to help you stand out from the crowd and get into the university of your dreams.
Check The Course Requirements For Work Experience
Some courses require you to have work experience before applying (e.g. medical courses.) You may need to complete a certain number of working hours before you’re eligible. It’s best to check out the course requirements before writing your work experience personal statement. If you’re thinking of applying to medicine then check out our medical personal statement advice, likewise with our how to write a law personal statement.
With that said, other courses don’t require work experience. But it does elevate your personal statement if you have relevant work experiences to share.
Examples Of Work Experience
Perhaps the greatest obstacle to writing your work experience personal statement is determining whether an activity counts as “work experience” or not. Here are examples of work experience you may need to include:
- Extracurricular Activities
These are activities that are not included within your formal curriculum. Being a member of the sports team, debate club, Red Cross, or theatre group are good examples.
- Formal Work Placements
Formal work placements are exposures to real-world experience. These are often required as part of your curriculum.
- Volunteer Work
There are tons of volunteer work you could’ve participated in. Maybe you helped out at animal shelters, environmental conservation activities, or feeding programs.
- Part-Time Jobs
Part-time jobs are significant for your work experience personal statement. Working as a customer service agent, freelance writer, or salesperson at a local store demonstrates a sense of responsibility on your part. Mention what’s relevant to the course you’re applying for! Competitions. Look out for competitions in areas that interest you, for example, design, writing, maths, or business.
- Personal Projects
Your personal projects reflect what you love doing. That’s why there’s a high probability they’re related to the course you’re applying for.
If you love coding, you may have built websites. Love writing? Maybe you’ve set up your own blog! Write them down in your work experience personal statement.
- Leadership Positions
If you occupied leadership positions in your organisations relevant to your chosen course, mention them! Universities are on the lookout for motivated individuals willing to take responsibility.
The list of work experiences to include in your personal statement hopefully helps, but make sure to check out our what not to put in a personal statement.
Writing down your leadership positions can take your work experience personal statement up a higher notch.
State Your Work Experience
You now have a solid idea of relevant work experience you need to include in your personal statement. But how will you present it? Here are questions to eliminate writer’s block:
Make good use of these starters to kick off your writing. Brainstorm all relevant details of your work experience. We’ll sort them out later. And, if you’re wondering how to start a personal statement then wonder no more!
Discuss What You Learned, And Why It’s Essential
After stating the facts about your work experience, it’s time to get to the heart of the matter. You are writing your work experience personal statement not to brag about your achievements, but showing why you’re serious about your course.
That’s why discussing what you learned is essential. Beyond your role, share what insights you’ve gained that helped shape your character.
If you’re not sure how to start, let these questions unknot your ideas:
- How did this position impact you?
- What are the primary skills you’ve gained that are relevant to your course?
- How does this experience influence your decisions in pursuing your study goals?
- How does this experience relate to your general ability to succeed in your course?
- What are the major lessons you’ve learned that are helping you grow as an individual person?
- What is your biggest takeaway from this position?
- Are there significant interactions that impacted your desire to take the course?
After answering these questions, craft a powerful paragraph that demonstrates how deep your understanding is.
The more interesting facts you share about yourself, the better. Bring your work experience personal statement to life with vivid details that convey essential ideas about who you are.
Ideas For Essential Skills
You may be unaware of skills you possess that are relevant and essential for your course. To make sure you won’t forget to mention them, here are skill ideas common across fields:
- The ability to communicate to higher-ups, colleagues, and clients
- Perseverance amidst challenges
- A sense of duty and obligation
- Eagerness to serve the community, especially the marginalised
- Critical thinking skills to overcome setbacks
- Initiative to work independently
- Knows how to work in a team setting
- Shows energy and enthusiasm to
- Motivation to work hard and do well
These are some of the common skills valuable across several fields of study. Among these, which describes you most? Go ahead and write about it!
Demonstrate Understanding Of The Course You’re Applying For
Your work experience should deepen your understanding of the course you’re applying for. Dig deeper and reflect on these points:
- How is your course making a positive change in the world? If you’re eyeing health-related courses, explain how health workers significantly impact people’s lives. Do you want to apply for education-related courses? Relay a story of how significant educators in your life changed you for the better.
- Mention the gaps and problems you see in the field. Do you see a severe lack of health facilities? Perhaps you’ve witnessed the challenges teachers and professors experience in the education system.
- What do you plan to do about it? Demonstrate that you’re applying for your chosen course because you want to help solve the problems that you see. Convince the admissions board that you’re the person for the course by writing about your desire to be an agent of change!
Reach Out To People Who’ve Been Where You Want To Be
To enhance your work experience personal statement, reach out to people who’ve been where you want to be. University students and practising staff are the perfect individuals you can approach.
Set appointments with them and ask them about their experience. What is it like to be in their position? What are the challenges that they see? What are they doing to improve their field of study?
Best of all, solicit advice on how to write your work experience personal statement. What skills do the admissions boards search for?
Then go back to your personal statement and write about your new connections. Mention how their insights and advice shed greater light on how your work experience will help you succeed in your course.
Do this, and you’re guaranteed to show a richer work experience personal statement.
Read Up On The Current Situation Of Your Chosen Field
Soak up knowledge on the current challenges and breakthroughs of your chosen field. Read journal articles, news websites, and featured stories. You can also visit blogs written by practitioners or university students.
Make sure to cite authoritative sources and figures when discussing the status quo. Then weave the information back to your work experience.
Do you have similar experiences with the figures you’ve mentioned? Have they discussed situations you experienced yourself? How are you making a difference in the field? Will your perspective matter?
What a perfect way to build credibility for your work experience personal statement!
Check Out Work Experience Personal Statement Examples
You now have a rich draft of your work experience personal statement. But you’re unsure of how to word and structure it.
Why not check out work experience personal statement examples on the web? Examine how they presented their experiences and insights. Make sure to read as many examples as you can.
Choose your top 3 favourites and save them in your documents. If you’re short of ideas, go back to them. Don’t forget to highlight paragraphs, sentences, and words that inspire you.
Be Authentic And Vulnerable
Don’t be afraid of being vulnerable in your work experience personal statement. The admissions board needs to know if you are genuinely passionate about this course or not, so don’t hold back!
But remember to stay authentic. Don’t overdramatise mundane events. State events as they happened, and share your realisations as they are. Authenticity is a precious factor!
Action The Above To ‘Work’ On Your Personal Statement
With the suggestions mentioned above, you’ll be able to craft a more compelling and impactful work experience personal statement. Understand that this is YOUR story. Don’t copy others’ work experience personal statements.
Make your own angle and spin, and rest assured that the admissions board will want to read about YOU in your chosen course!