Internal Medicine Residency Personal Statement

  • Your residency personal statement should start out with an introduction explaining why you want to become a resident. 
  • You should then explain how your background and experience fit into the program requirements. 
  • Next, you should describe your interest in the field and your motivation for pursuing this career. 
  • Finally, you should conclude with a summary of what makes you unique.

What To Include In Your Personal Statement

Most residency programs, whether through US-based ERAS or Canada-based CaRMS, require applicants to submit a letter or statement. Some programs will give applicants a topic to write about, while others will provide no guidelines. 

ERAS, as opposed to CaRMS, asks that applicants’ statements be limited to 1 page, approximately 750-850 words.

Your experience in this specialty can be used as an example of why you want to work in this field. You may also use your experience in this specialty to show what kind of training you need.

Example 1

I am applying to the program because I want to learn about how to work in the city and improve my skills as an urban planner. I have worked in the city before, and I know that I can help the program by contributing my knowledge and experience. 

I think that I have some personal strengths that I can contribute to the program, such as being organized and having strong communication skills. I also think that I should explain why I chose the program and what I hope to get out of it.

I am very interested in this specialty. My research experience includes significant contributions to my field. I have published several papers and presented them at national conferences. My academic record was excellent. 


I am interested in this specialty because I enjoy working with my hands. Code blue, electrophysiologic lab, a voice announces over the intercom. As the code team rushes to the patient, an old man in shock, seamlessly, we each assume our assigned roles. 

I quickly review the patient’s chart and note to the leader that this patient had a prior ejection fraction (EF) of 10% and just got cardioverted, vasopressors administered, endotracheal intubation, central lines secured, and the patient stabilized and sent to our floors. 

During my rotations, I was consistently elated by my team’s ability to come together at these key moments. This gave me a sense of joy I didn’t find in other rotations, and I had inspiring attending physicians who served as my mentors and residents who were my teachers. 

These lessons and the pleasure of managing highly complex cases, along with the satisfaction of being part of a dedicated team, consolidated my interest in internal medicine.

Compassion and a holistic approach are essential for patient care. Learning from patients at the bedside and through independent reading helped me become an efficient communicator. 

Courses outside of the formal curriculum gave me experience in caring for patients in their most vulnerable times. I will continue my commitment to academic excellence and compassionate patient-centered care.

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