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Volunteers: Big Changes to the University of California Personal Statement Section

This year, 826LA aims to support 1,500 high school seniors on the road to college admission. But to do this, we need your help! To support students this Fall and to learn more about the changes to the University of California application, we ask that volunteers attend a Navigating the New UC Essays training before volunteering in any personal statement sessions this fall. Please note: because the UC application has undergone a significant overhaul, this requirement applies even to those volunteers who have completed personal statement trainings in previous years. Trainings will take place at various times at 826LA in Mar Vista, 826LA in Echo Park, and the Writers’ Room at Manual Arts High School.

In spring 2016, the University of California announced some important changes to the “personal statement” section of their application. Personal statements are those all-important essays that give students the chance to tell universities who they are and to provide a context for the rest of their application. Or, as the University of California puts it, “the personal insight questions are about getting to know you better—your life experience, interests, ambitions and inspirations.”

Starting this year, the University of California’s personal statement section will look very different. Instead of writing from two required prompts, students will now choose to respond to four out of eight “personal insight” questions. Each response is limited to 350 words.

Because of the changes to the UC application, now more than ever before students need caring adults to support their writing these crucial essays. After taking part in Navigating the New UC Essays, you will be one of the few adults equipped to help decipher the UC personal statement section.

Whether you’ve volunteered with 826LA for years or are brand new to the organization or college essay work in general, you will learn new things about how to help students get into the college of their dreams in this special training.

If you’re already a registered 826LA volunteer, check out the projects calendar to sign up for an August or September session of Navigating the New UC Essay training. Interested in volunteering? Sign up here.

The earlier you are trained, the sooner you’ll be helping students achieve their dreams!

To learn more about 826LA’s work with Personal Statements and Personal Statement workshops, click here

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