Personal statements are a critical part of the application process

Your son is applying to college and wants help writing a personal statement. Your daughter is applying to graduate school and ditto. 

The personal statement, or autobiographical essay, gives admissions officers a fine opportunity to learn about the student beyond the GPA and athletic ability.

The University of California says: “In reading your application, we want to get to know you as well as we can. There’s a limit to what grades and test scores can tell us so we ask you to write a personal statement.”

The University of Texas lists tips for writing personal statements. Under quality matters, it says: “Although you may be tempted to rush through the process of applying for admission, remember that the quality of the item you submit can make a difference.”

As a writing coach, I suggest areas for improvement. I highlight the excellent sections and suggest passages that need improvement. If appropriate, I include lessons on organization, transitions and commas.

We can communicate in person, on the phone or via e-mail. We can exchange drafts online. The student and the assignment determine the number and the length of coaching sessions. Choose this service if you

  • Are applying for an undergraduate or graduate degree.
  • Have a son, daughter, nephew or neighbor who needs help writing an autobiographical essay.
  • Don’t feel confident coaching your own child’s essay.
  • Could help your son or daughter assemble a space rocket but not a cogent paragraph.

I do not correct students’ writing, because such behavior is unethical and unhelpful. I coach and offer ideas for improvement.


“Susie is an amazing writing coach. Her insights on the usage of active verbs and their effectiveness were very helpful in personalizing my essay and improving my expressiveness.” 

-- Piayon Lassanah, B.A. Political Science, Temple University, Class of 2009 

“Susie was able to help me simplify my personal statement while more clearly expressing the points I wanted to make!” 

-- I.L., Lewis Katz School of Medicine, Temple University, Class of 2018

"I can’t thank you enough for the help you gave me in editing my essay for graduate school. I was worried that I wasn’t going to be able to put together a good essay. Working with you gave me the confidence I needed to complete my application. I appreciated your humor and candid criticism — and I’m not forgetting your warmth. You helped me effectively convey what I really wanted to say in my essay. Thank you!” 

-- Matu Saye 

"What I feel, thanks to you, Best Writing Coach Ever! -- is freedom, from a shadow in which I’ve dwelt for so long. I hope you can appreciate what you’ve done for me.” 

-- Pam Fernsler

“Thank you, Susie, for evaluating my admission essay for law school. I really appreciate the care and attention you took. You really touched on the things I was concerned about. Your invaluable feedback and suggestions on how to edit my essay greatly strengthened the paper. Thank you again! I could not be happier with my final draft.” 

-- Fadila Selmani, paralegal, law-school applicant. Accepted within one month.