Make it Distinctly Yours
Professors are looking for students who are able to clearly define what unique ideas and experiences they will be bringing to their class and, just as importantly, perhaps, what questions they hope to explore in class and what they hope to take away from the experience. Most important of all, however, they want to know about you. Who are you? What makes you tick? You want your statement of interest to be so distinctly your own that no one else could have written it.
Focus your statement of interest on explaining:
- Why this class?
- Why you?
- Why this class and you?
INTROSEM STATEMENT DO'S AND DON'Ts:
Here are some general tips:
- Do: Strive to write a first sentence that could not have been written by anyone other than you. Start with something personal and engaging (but make it relevant to the course).
- Do: Use vivid examples to make an impression. It helps to tell a story that illustrates the qualities you have. You could also start with a provocative question or thought.
- Do: Ask your reader some of the questions that you feel are raised/hope are answered by the class. What elements of the course topic do you find the most provocative? What issues do you hope will be addressed? Discuss what you hope to get from taking the class.
- Don’t: Be too impersonal or abstract. Your examples should be concrete and immediate. You want the professor to think, “This is the student who does/thinks/has experienced/will contribute something unique.” What is your hook?
- Don’t: Waste words talking about how important the topic of the class is. The instructor knows this and does not need to be convinced. The thing they don’t know, the thing they need to know in order to make a good decision, is who you are.