You know yourself better than anyone else, but writing about yourself can still be tough! When applying for scholarships or to lớn college, essay prompts can feel so general (and yet so specific!) that they leave us stumped. So we’ll show you 8 tips lớn write an essay about yourself, so that you can land more scholarships. (Psst – Going Merry makes applying easy.)

Let’s start with some examples of personal essay prompts:

Tell me about yourself.

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Describe a challenge or sự kiện that made you who you are today.What are your short & long-term goals, and how vì you plan to lớn achieve them?Write about a time you failed at something. How did it affect you?

These are just a few of many scholarship essay prompts that require you lớn look internally, to answer a question, solve a problem, or explain a scenario in your life.

We get it. You might not be a big fan hâm mộ of bragging about yourself, or you might want to keep your personal stories to lớn yourself. But by opening up & sharing your story, you can show scholarship providers, colleges và universities who you are, & why you’re deserving of their scholarship.

(Don’t just take our word for it – kiểm tra out our scholarship winners page full of students lượt thích you who were brave enough to nói qua their stories with us).


To get started, kiểm tra out these 9 tips on how khổng lồ write an essay about yourself:

1. Create a danh mục of Questions

After reading through the scholarship essay prompt, breathe, & make a list of smaller questions you can answer, which relate to lớn the big essay prompt question.

Let’s say the main essay prompt question asks you, “What were challenges or barriers you had lớn work to overcome?” Then the smaller questions might be something like:

What is your background? Family, finances, school.What was challenging about that background?What’s your greatest accomplishment? How did you get there? How have previous challenges influenced your goals?

Think of these questions as mini-prompts. They explain your story and help you answer the main essay prompt with more details than if you just answered it without a plan in place.

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2. Brainstorm & Outline

After considering smaller questions, it’s time to brainstorm your answers. Take out a pen & paper – or open up a document on a computer – and take your time in answering each mini-prompt. Organize your responses in order:

Intro lớn main essay prompt.Answer about 3 mini-prompt questions.Conclude by rewriting the answer to lớn the main essay prompt with a summary of your mini-prompt answers.

This organization will help you stay on topic & answer the prompt directly. (Or check out these 6 scholarship essay examples for alternative essay structures.)

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4. Use Personal Examples

Since this essay is all about you, you should make your answer as specific as possible! Avoid using generalizations (e.g., “I’m really good at music). Instead, go for more personalized statements (e.g., “My fourth-grade teacher Ms. Matay really inspired me to pursue my interest in the clarinet”). Your personal examples are what will help your scholarship essay stand out among the thousands of applicants..

5. Write in the First Person

You’re telling your story, so write from your perspective! You can narrate your story. You can provide an overview of what you learned from your experiences. However you choose to answer the prompt, we recommend writing in an active tone, và using “I” and “me” throughout your essay.

6. Don’t Be Afraid to Show Off…But Stay on Topic!

Most students worry about bragging in their essay, but we say go for it! This is your time lớn shine, so highlight your accomplishments and strengths. Review your essay khổng lồ make sure that you’re keeping the tone informative and that you’re still on topic. (Brag while answering the essay prompt; don’t just mention random, unrelated but impressive facts about yourself!)You can use this brag sheet where you can brainstorm your accomplishments. While the worksheet is geared toward requesting letters of recommendation, you can still use it lớn write out your hobbies, interests, college list, and strengths to lớn help you answer your scholarship essay prompt.


7. Show Personality

Just because it’s an essay doesn’t mean it has to be dry và boring. This essay is all about you, so let your personality shine through. If you’re the class clown, you can use a bit of humor. If you wear your heart on your sleeve, don’t be afraid lớn show emotion. Trying your best khổng lồ express who you are as a person will have a huge effect on the admissions or scholarship committee!

8. Know Your Audience

If you’re applying for a scholarship, research the scholarship provider. If you’re applying to college, research the school. Understanding what makes the provider/college unique và what their motivations are, will allow you khổng lồ incorporate that information in your essay. For example, many scholarships are funded by private companies that sell products. You might want to lớn reference those products in your essay. A good example of this is Emily Trader’s essay for the Life Happens organization, where she uses her personal narrative to explain the importance of insurance planning, since that is the mission of the organization (which is funded by insurance companies).

9. Proofread & Edit!

The last step in answering your essay prompt is lớn double-check your work! One typo can be distracting & cause scholarship providers to scratch their head while reading the essay. (Psst, humble brag: Going Merry’s application platform includes spellcheck because we’ve got your back.) In addition to proofreading for typos & grammatical errors, also consider whether the sentence or paragraph structure makes sense. Are you breaking paragraphs in the right place? Are you using topic sentences well lớn signpost your main ideas? Does the essay flow? Consider these “bigger” structural questions too. You might also want lớn ask a friend, family member, teacher, or guidance counselor to đánh giá your essay. They might catch something you didn’t see the first time around, & that can really help your essay! In fact, that is scholarship winner Daniel Gill’s #1 tip. (Another tip is khổng lồ apply for scholarships using Going Merry!)


Also, check out this helpful danh mục of the 10 most common scholarship essay topics while you’re brainstorming!

Now that you know how khổng lồ write an essay about yourself, it’s time khổng lồ start applying for scholarships! Remember: You’ve got this.

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Sign up for your miễn phí Going Merry profile . From there, you can easily upload and submit your essay for thousands of scholarships. We make it easy so you’ll only need to lớn enter your profile information once! and then, you can apply away. In fact, we even have some bundled scholarships so that you only enter your essay once, lớn apply for multiple scholarships at the same time.

Or if you’re not ready to register, simply sign up khổng lồ receive an email with trăng tròn new scholarship opportunities each week. Just enter your thư điện tử address below: