Nursing is one of the most coveted courses in the US and globally. In fact, a comparison of various organizations that collate data on preference of courses and careers shows that nursing has ranked in the top 10 preferred course for the longest time.
Therefore, to join one of the top universities in the world to pursue nursing, one must have good qualifications. John Hopkins University, Yale Nursing School, and Stanford University, some of the best universities in the world to study nursing, have an acceptance rate of less than 20%.
If all or most of the applicants meet the minimum admission requirements to join these universities, you must do something special to stand out. This is where the nursing school statement of purpose comes in.
This article will explain in simple but detailed terms what a nursing school statement of purpose is, how to write one, tips to make it and stand out, and a sample to guide in your writing.
We’re now offering one-on-one expert guidance on how to write a statement of purpose. This is in addition to our reviewing, editing, and standardizing services. Check out our ordering page, fill out the required details and let us help you craft a statement of purpose that will flood your email with admission offers.phdstatementsofpurpose.com
What is a Nursing School Statement of Purpose?
A nursing school statement of purpose is an essay written to a university to express interest in a nursing program. The essay provides vital details about the applicant’s background, interest in the field of study, career goals, and justification for choosing the school.
The other way to view a nursing school SOP is to consider it as your introduction to the admission panel. You want to tell the committee the following:
- Who are you?
- Why are you interested in nursing?
- Why in our school and not elsewhere?
- What do you intend to do after this program and why are we better placed to help you?
Sounds easy right? Let’s break it down further.
What should you include in your Nursing School Statement of Purpose?
While most admission experts will give you a list of 5 or 6 elements to include in a nursing SOP, our experience is that what to include depends on one most important factor.
This factor is the requirements by the specific university you’re applying to. To understand what these requirements are, visit the particular university ‘requirements page’ and examine the specifics they require and follow it without equivocation.
If no such requirements have been provided, then you’re free to follow the standard format of a nursing SOP. The following should be included:
Introduce yourself by stating your name and possibly where you come from. Also mention the specific program you’re applying to.
- Academic/Education background
Describe the schools you attended, grades you attained, and coursework or any research work you did. You do not need to write about your kindergarten or elementary school education unless you’re using it to tell a personal story that relates to your interest in nursing.
- Volunteer Experience
If you’re applying to nursing school, it’s very useful to your application if you’ve engaged in volunteer work in a nursing setting.
This will show the admission panel that you have passion in nursing. It will also show that you’ve acquired some skills that will be useful in nursing studies and careers.
You may emphasize that you learned how to practice empathy, communication, and the inter-disciplinary nature of nursing that calls for collaboration.
- Work Experience
You may have held a job in the past even if it’s not related to nursing. This may have been helping with the family business, a part-time job at a fast food joint or so.
Describe it and show transferable experience that you acquired, such as team work, time keeping, and communication.
Even if this experience is not transferable, underscore that you demonstrated a strong desire to learn, motivate yourself, or deployed remarkable work ethics.
Remember you’re applying for a competitive slot so your passion for nursing may be what sets you apart from the rest.
This is the place to bring in personal details, for example an encounter with a nurse that made you fall in love with the profession.
Our experience reviewing nursing school statements of purpose is that many applicants fall into the easy trap of just saying how passionate they are about nursing.
Nursing SOPs that stand out show rather than state. Rather than saying that you’re passionate about nursing, describe/illustrate an event where your passion was shown.
- Talk about the program and the educational institution
Before applying to the program/university, make sure you’re familiar with it. Look up for information about in the university’s website about the coursework and how it’s taught.
Look up some of the professors and their work. When writing your SOP, describe these specifics about the program and how they appeal to you.
This will impress the admission committee that you’re really interested in their program and university.
Now that we know what a nursing school statement of purpose is and what elements to include, let’s dive into how to write one.
How to write a Nursing School Statement of Purpose
A nursing school SOP is typically 500-1000 words. We’ll work with five paragraphs each containing 100-150 words.
This is where you introduce yourself. State your name and that you’re applying for a nursing program. Specify whether you’re applying for pediatric nursing, adult nursing etc.
It’s at the introduction where you describe your academic background, work and volunteer experience. If you’re applying fresh from high school take about your high school grades and programs you attended.
If you’re applying for graduate nursing school, talk about your undergraduate/masters research and teaching experience.
(A more detailed guide for writing a graduate school statement of purpose is available here
After reading the first paragraph, the admission committee should have a clear idea of who you are and what you want.
- Describe your Readiness for the Program
After you’ve introduced yourself, it’s now time to describe how prepared you are for the program. In this section, discuss any research or coursework that you have done relevant to the nursing program.
If you have done any volunteer work or jobs, describe them here while underscoring the skills that you acquired.
- Let your Passion Show
The third paragraph is where you discuss what attracted you to nursing. This may be a personal story or an inspiring moment that you encountered. Remember everyone will talk about how passionate they are about nursing (why would you apply to nursing school if you are not?).
To stand out therefore, show your passion with an example. Is it the day that you were admitted at the hospital and saw a nurse save a life? Are you alive because a nurse intervened and saved your life as a child?
- Discuss the Program and show that you are a Match
Do your research and know as much as possible about the program and university. Think about the personal traits that align most with this program and discuss them.
If the program or university has a strong community orientation and you’ve been involved in community work, talk about it here.
- Explain your Future Goals
Universities want to admit students who have clear goals. Having clear goals also helps the university assess whether it’ll be useful to you. In the last paragraph, talk about your professional goals and contributions you want to make in the nursing field and how the program/university will help you.
Proven Tips to make your Nursing SOP Stand out
We’ll shortly use the above format to write a nursing school statement of purpose but before then, why not sample these amazing tips so that we can incorporate them?
Tip 1: Tailor your Nursing SOP to the specific Program
- If you haven’t figured out yet, most students apply to multiple nursing schools to increase their chances of landing admission. However, most of them also undermine their chances by using a generic nursing school SOP that is sent to all programs.
- From our experience at phdstatementsofpurpose.com, a statement of purpose tailored to the particular nursing school increases your chances of being admitted.
Tip 2: Edit/Review/Standardize your SOP before sending
- Before you click submit, proofread your nursing SOP. Make sure it has flow, it’s free of error, and it’s concise. (A guide to help with editing and reviewing)
- You may ask an admission expert to help with this. Luckily, this is our specialization and you can get expert help by clicking HERE.
Statement of Purpose Sample for Nursing
By now, I am sure that you’re ready to write your nursing school SOP. Let’s dive in together.
“My name is Cate Houston, a resident of Tennessee recently graduate from Tennessee Fifth District High School. I am excited to be applying for admission at the Wisconsin Nursing School to pursue a nursing program as an adult nurse specialized in elderly care. While my interest in nursing has endured for years since I was admitted as a child with a broken femur, it received a timely impetus when I lost my grandparents to the Corona virus. I decided to dedicate my life to improve the wellness of the elderly and vulnerable by becoming a nurse.
To prepare for this nursing program, I pursued biology, psychology, and mathematics in high school and obtained A*s in the three subjects. I thereafter enrolled for a Nursing certificate program at Tennessee where I familiarized myself with elderly and vulnerable care. For my coursework, I collected data on impact of a nurse’s racial orientation on patient’s perception of care. My work as published in the program’s newsletter, making me the first and only person without nursing education to be published. My working with this medical facility equipped me with the fundamentals of nursing. I also learned that to be effective, nurses have to work with other medical professionals, skills and lessons that will come in handy during my nursing studies.
My interest in nursing is long standing and deep rooted. As a child, I received the best care from nurses that restored my legs. However, I was heartbroken when during the Covid-19 pandemic, my grandparents died in a facility where they did not perceive care to be optimal. It buttressed my observation that patients feel greater connection with nurses that they can identify with, including racially. My goal is therefore to bring my background as a minority to fore and help many elderly patients who do not feel like they are receiving optimal care.
The nursing program in your school appeals to me for many reasons. First, the curriculum is robust and recognizes that nursing is a dynamic and complex discipline that should at all time place the patient at the centre. I am also drawn to the racial diversity in the institution and the important work by Professor White, from whom I draw inspiration that the inordinately poor perception of care by minorities can be corrected by having more nurses from minorities.
In future, I hope to lend my contributions to improvement of wellness and care for the elderly and a nursing program at this esteemed university will go a long way in helping me achieve this goal.”
It’s always recommendable to have someone go through your SoP before you submit it.
A friend or a family member can help to tell whether you’ve represented yourself credibly and compellingly enough.
A professor or a faculty member may also help to tell whether you’ve captured your academic and research background well enough and connected them to your research interests and suitability for the program.
At phdstatementsofpurpose.com, we are that friend and faculty member.
After reviewing thousands of SoPs and personal statements, we can tell a good from a not so good SoP, and a good one from a great one.
We’ve internalized the structure and language of writing SoPs and with our team of experts; we’ll sit down and dissect your draft.
We’ll point out areas of strengths and weaknesses and propose how to structure and express your SoP better.
We’ll give intense and detailed feedback so that you express your thoughts with clarity and bring out your uniqueness.
We’ll ensure that the final product is delivered in time, is logical and coherent, intellectual, and polished.
Tell us which aspect of your SoP writing you’re struggling with:
How to start?
How to conclude?
Written your SoP but you’re unsure whether it meets high enough standards?
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Frequently Asked Questions about writing a statement of purpose for nursing
How do I start writing my nursing school statement of purpose?
Follow the following 4 steps:
- Brainstorm about what you want to write
- Create an outline with 5 parts discussed earlier
- Create a draft of your SOP
- Review, edit, and standardize your SOP
We’ve provided an some questions to help with the brainstorming, which you can access HERE
How do I conclude my statement of purpose for nursing
We recommend that you conclude your nursing school SOP by describing your career aspirations and how the program/university will help you achieve them.
I have written my nursing SOP but I don’t know if it’s good enough. Can I hire an expert to edit, review, standardize, or customize my SOP?
Yes. Drawing from our many years in nursing school admission, we can help you with this. Click here to connect with an expert.
I would like to apply to nursing school but don’t have a strong academic, professional, or volunteer background. Will I be accepted?
That will depend on the university. However, a nursing SOP is also an opportunity to convince the school that despite certain weaknesses, you’re still good enough for the program. Use your SOP to underscore that you have transferable experience, mental acuity, and a compelling vision. We’ve written a handy guide to help you with this kind of situation.
My university also requires that I submit an academic CV/Admission resume. Can you help with that?
Yes. We are specialists in all admission documents. Click here to connect with an expert.