Personal statement for application

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 rare opportunity to learn about the real you beyond your 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 items you submit can make a difference.”

Do you want help writing a personal statement? Try me.

I suggest areas for improvement. I deploy track changes to highlight the excellent sections and suggest areas 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 length of editing 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.

Please post your questions on this page. Please know that I do not correct students’ writing, because such behavior is unethical and unhelpful. I simply coach and offer ideas for improvement. I do not write personal essays for students.


“Susie was able to help me simplify my personal statement while more clearly expressing the points I wanted to make!”
Lewis Katz School of Medicine, Temple University, Class of 2018

“Susan 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

“Your supportive, humorous, but no-nonsense style of teaching gave me a firm sense of what to emphasize, what to downplay, and – most importantly – how, to express myself.”
John Shakespeare, Student

“The class has stimulated me into thinking about ways to improve my writing. You are an encouraging, helpful and interesting trainer.”
Anonymous student

“Susan, 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 given the deadline. Although it was short notice, you made time to help me and I am thankful. 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 in reviewing and commenting on my writing.  You really touched on the things I was concerned about. Your invaluable feedback and suggestions on how to edit my essay and make it better greatly strengthened the paper and helped me to convey more effectively my message to the schools’ admission committee. Thank you again! I could not be happier with my final draft.”
Fadila Selmani, paralegal, law-school applicant. Accepted within one month. 

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