ProTip Four: Tell a Personal Story

Our ProTip series is designed to help Professionals on create advice that will become the best answer for any student looking for the answer to a question.
Feb 20, 2017 · 2 min read

Introducing ProTip Four:

“If a student asks a subjective question, include a relevant and helpful personal story.”

Your personal experience is your most valuable mentorship tool. Writing about your personal experiences can impact the choices students make, provide them with better perspective, and help prepare them for the future.


Personal stories are engaging. Students want to know how others overcame the same obstacles that they currently face, will face, or may encounter.

How do you know it when you see it?

An answer is personal when it tells a story that gives insight into something the writer experienced firsthand. This could take the form of an epiphany, a struggle, or even a positive experience. In the end, personal stories share something the writer discovered that students can learn from.

Examples From the Village

Alison goes into detail about her own work and important lessons she learned:

“I handle contracts in the media space and also protect my company’s intellectual property (mainly trademarks). I have colleagues that go to court and litigate…”

Katherine talks about how she got started as a Community professional:

“I myself started by running a community for women with health conditions and disabilities as a volunteer, and 8 years later I’m a project manager with a large community team…”

What’s next?

  1. To see the next ProTip, head over to ProTip #5: Recommend Next Steps or go back to ProTip #3: Use Facts.
  2. Share your thoughts with us by emailing us ( or in the comments below!
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