Ideas for diversity statement, please help!

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Joined: Tue Oct 11, 2011 9:04 pm

Ideas for diversity statement, please help!

Postby coralpur » Tue Oct 11, 2011 9:18 pm

I'm trying to figure out what to write my diversity statement on. I'm a female, born and raised in Puerto Rico.

These are the topics im thinking of:

A- Went to boarding school in the US my junior and senior year of high school, and then went on to college as a division I swimmer. Should I focus on all the people i met from different countries and what i learned from them?

B- Living in Puerto Rico, my dad left for the Navy when I was 4 years old, basically raised by my mom my whole life. I could talk about the socioeconomic struggles?

C- Being in the Puerto Rican national team I got to travel every year to a different country, talk about those memories and learning about so many different cultures?

Or can someone think of a way to actually mix all three topics?

It just seems like the diversity statement's instructions are super broad on what you should write about, so any guidance from anyone would be super helpful! Thanks in advance.


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Joined: Wed Jun 29, 2011 10:53 am

Re: Ideas for diversity statement, please help!

Postby EMZE » Wed Oct 12, 2011 9:37 am

Disclaimer first and foremost, I am not an expert nor have I completed an application cycle.

Based on the advice I have received, I would advise you to consider what it is you believe you would cocntribute to the diversity of the student body. Does being a Div I swimmer make you different then most? Maybe, I was one too and I am not writing about it, but if you really were competitive and all, perhaps. There are tens of thousands of Div I athletes out there though.

Growing up in a military family, perhaps. I am in the military myself, and I know that the lifestyle is hard. If that is something you believed you learned a lesson from that makes you more unique, then write about it. But I would advise against writing about something that may sound trite, and like you are writing a DS for the sake of writing a DS. And again for perspectives sake, there are 2.3 million veterans of the GWOT from the U.S. alone, and I imagine most have families.

Whatever you do choose to write about, just remember that the purpose of it, while the content can be broad, must be to express what diversity you will add. Whereas the PS can be about anything and its on you to define your purpose and content, the DS does have an explicit purpose for its inclusion with your application.

I hope this is helpful for you.


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Re: Ideas for diversity statement, please help!

Postby kublaikahn » Wed Oct 12, 2011 11:54 am

When people try to focus on some success like D1 swimming, too often the PS becomes a trite recital of how hard they worked to achieve their goals. You should never think of the point of your PS being to convey that you were a div 1 swimmer or a navy brat. These things are context for some larger message. For example, using swimming as a backdrop, you can write a PS about how much better and faster you get with the right training and support. How quickly you raise the bar for yourself when surrounded by more talented people, etc.


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Re: Ideas for diversity statement, please help!

Postby CanadianWolf » Wed Oct 12, 2011 11:59 am

All of your topics offer great potential. Insights learned or gained from diverse experiences should help create a strong diversity statement.
It is difficult to comment on DS topics without reading a draft of your essay.


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Re: Ideas for diversity statement, please help!

Postby Seneca » Wed Oct 12, 2011 1:34 pm

I think honing in on your upbringing in Puerto Rico would be great. Lots of potential there for discussing how growing up there and integrating into a culture different than your own has given you a unique perspective. If athletics come up as part of that discussion somehow, fine, but you have better material beyond that subject.


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Re: Ideas for diversity statement, please help!

Postby coralpur » Thu Oct 13, 2011 1:24 am

thanks everyone! will def keep your comments in mind!

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