The Student Room Group

Cambridge personal statements/ interview

Do they care if i write that i have researched and entered into 2 essay competition but have won neither? Would that make me a worse candidate than others who are applying?
This is for med :smile:
I’m just another applicant, and also don’t want to apply to medicine so please take my advice with a grain of salt. Given that you only have a limited amount of characters to use in the personal statement, I personally wouldn’t want to draw attention to any negatives when that space could be used to highlight strengths. Could you talk about researching the topics you wrote about in a different way without mentioning the competition?
(edited 7 months ago)
Reply 2
Original post by Anonymous
Do they care if i write that i have researched and entered into 2 essay competition but have won neither? Would that make me a worse candidate than others who are applying?
This is for med :smile:


I don’t think it matters very much whether or not you win. The main thing they want to see is that you have super curricular interests and that you have seriously engaged with them. Writing essays requires a lot of research and understanding, so if you can show that you are interested in the essay topics, then mentioning them would do not harm. I’m also applying for medicine and I’m including an article I’ve written about super curricular interests but I didn’t win anything.
Reply 3
Original post by Anonymous
Do they care if i write that i have researched and entered into 2 essay competition but have won neither? Would that make me a worse candidate than others who are applying?
This is for med :smile:

If ur applying to med, yes cambridge will be looking for an academic application, but this is different to other unis, and for ur other 3 med choices, there are much more important things u can talk about with ur limited characters
Original post by Anonymous
Do they care if i write that i have researched and entered into 2 essay competition but have won neither? Would that make me a worse candidate than others who are applying?
This is for med :smile:

*Put it in!*

I talked about some essay competitions in my personal statement last year - it shows you are serious about your subject and enjoy spending time/doing research. Maybe frame it more positively than you did here, like “I really enjoyed exploring xxx in an essay I entered for the xxx Prize.” By implication, you haven’t won, but that only makes you worse than applicants that DID win (maybe 3-10) so they probably haven’t even gone for the same college as you then given that there are around 60 colleges across O and C. You are still putting in a really good accomplishment (because entering these things takes a lot of work!!) which many other applicants may not have done.
Reply 5
Thank you everyone!
Good luck w your application too :smile:
Original post by Anonymous
Do they care if i write that i have researched and entered into 2 essay competition but have won neither? Would that make me a worse candidate than others who are applying?
This is for med :smile:

I'm not a med applicant but I have a place to study starting this year and I mentioned an essay competition I didn't win and I still got a place. They obviously know only a very small number of people can win these competitions so if they only let in the winners that would make no sense. I'd actively advise you to mention it as it shows that you are doing extra-curricular academic activities which is ultimately what they want to hear about.
Original post by Anonymous
I'm not a med applicant but I have a place to study starting this year and I mentioned an essay competition I didn't win and I still got a place. They obviously know only a very small number of people can win these competitions so if they only let in the winners that would make no sense. I'd actively advise you to mention it as it shows that you are doing extra-curricular academic activities which is ultimately what they want to hear about.

This is kind of reassuring actually. I had it in my head that it wasn't a good thing to mention but clearly, I was wrong! When you mentioned yours did you state that you didn't win? Or did you just mention the competition?
Original post by closetarchivist
This is kind of reassuring actually. I had it in my head that it wasn't a good thing to mention but clearly, I was wrong! When you mentioned yours did you state that you didn't win? Or did you just mention the competition?


Just put in that I did it and mention what I talked about. Didn't mention outright that I didn't win but they must have known I didn't

Quick Reply

Latest