Thus, it is essential to take great care in preparing this part of your application.
Because graduate schools make important selection decisions that are partly based on what you say in this essay, the writing of it can be an intimidating prospect.
This is another one of those places where caution should be exercised: you want to explain the cause of your poor grades, etc. Do focus on an aspect of yourself that will show your best side.
You might have overcome some adversity, worked through a difficult project, or profited from a specific incident.
It is important, however, that the anecdote is related to the questions asked and not just a retelling of a catchy life drama.
After you have written the first, second, or third draft, there are another set of evaluative questions that you can work through to help you revise your essay.
Although it can be frustrating to write an original and well-devised statement, through time and drafts it will be written. The ones that are bad can sabotage your chances for success.
It is also important that you show your drafts to a Writing Center tutor, your academic advisor, Career Planning advisor, and friends; they will help you write an essay that reveals the right balance of personal and academic characteristics and specifics.
The overall application package will represent who "you" are to people whom you will most likely not know personally.
The written expression of your qualities as an applicant will often be a very important way for committee members to get to know why you are an acceptable candidate for their program.