What NOT to Write in Your Personal Statement for PA School

PA School • May 25, 2023

A lot of people make the same mistakes when writing their personal statement for PA school. In this video, I show you what NOT to do in your essay so that you can avoid these common pitfalls.

What NOT to Write in Your Personal Statement for PA School

Your personal statement for PA school is a crucial component of your application. It provides an opportunity for you to showcase your passion for the profession and convince the admissions committee why you are a strong candidate. However, there are certain phrases and ideas that you should avoid including in your personal statement for PA school. Let’s explore what not to write to ensure your statement stands out for all the right reasons.

“I want to go to PA school because medical school and medical training for Physicians is way too long.”

While the shorter time to training is an appealing aspect of the PA profession, when writing your personal statement for PA school, it is important to focus on the positive aspects rather than downplaying other career paths. Instead, emphasize why the shorter training duration aligns with your goals and aspirations. For example, you could discuss how it enables you to start making a difference in your community sooner and contribute to bridging gaps in healthcare access.

“I want to become a PA because it has better work-life balance.”

Claiming that the PA profession offers better work-life balance may not be accurate or well-received by the admissions committee. It is essential to recognize that work-life balance is something you have to create and maintain yourself, regardless of your chosen profession. Instead, highlight the unique flexibility and versatility that the PA profession offers, allowing you to shape your career according to your personal and professional goals.

“I am applying to PA school because I could not get into medical school.”

If you are choosing the PA profession after considering medical school, it is important to emphasize that it is your first choice, not a backup plan. Even if you were initially on the pre-med route or applied to medical school, focus on why the PA profession resonates with you and how it aligns with your long-term career aspirations. On your personal statement for PA school, avoid wording that suggests the PA path is a secondary option.

“I want to become a PA because of lateral mobility.”

While it is true that the PA profession offers lateral mobility, solely mentioning this term might imply limited upward mobility. It is crucial to showcase your understanding of the opportunities for growth and advancement in the PA profession. Rather than using the term “lateral mobility,” focus on the versatility, adaptability, and potential for both lateral and upward mobility that the profession provides.

“I couldn’t get into medical school, so I’m pursuing the PA route.”

If you did not get into medical school and are now considering PA school, take the time to reflect on your decision. It is important to genuinely believe that the PA profession is the right fit for you. Avoid discussing your past rejections in a way that undermines your commitment to the PA profession in your personal statement for PA school. Instead, focus on explaining why you have chosen the PA path and how your skills and aspirations align with the role.

In your personal statement for PA school, emphasize your strengths, demonstrate your understanding of the profession, and convey your genuine passion for becoming a PA. Avoid phrases or ideas that undermine your commitment or make it seem like the PA profession is a backup plan. Your goal is to convince the admissions committee that you are the right fit for the profession and that you will make a significant impact on patients and the healthcare system in the future.

Also read: What is a physician assistant?

About me:

I’m Michele Neskey, aka The Posh PA. Welcome to my YouTube channel! My mission is to provide personalized guidance, education, and motivation to build confidence and promote wellness for aspiring physician assistants and beyond.   

Having been a PA for 17+ years and helped hundreds of students gain acceptance into PA school,  I understand the admissions process. I know what they are looking for, and I can help you tailor every component to make you shine, giving you the BEST chance of getting accepted to a program.  But it doesn’t end there. I create personalized plans for PA students and practicing PAs including test-taking strategy for the PANCE, contract negotiations, and tools to overcome and prevent provider burnout. 

My goal is to get you into a physician assistant (PA) school & survive the rigorous program, help you prevent burnout as a practicing PA, and help you take care of yourself so you can be the best version of YOU for your patients, family, and most importantly YOU!