LGBT International student: PS or DS?

(BLS, URM status, non-traditional, GLBT)
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LGBT International student: PS or DS?

Postby applepiecrust » Fri Jun 18, 2010 7:05 am

I've been considering writing at least one of my statements on my experiences as a queer female from a third world country studying in the US.

See if any of what I talk about below (not a draft, just rambling) could serve as content for a PS or a DS (and which one), and if there are pieces I should focus on.

Here's the gist of what I want to write about:

I arrived in the US (for the first time ever) as an 18 year old, by myself, with the hope that I would find a place where I would be accepted. The country I come from places a huge emphasis on family and society, and being out had not been an option there. In fact, being gay was actually against the law, and I didn't know any out people. Besides, the society also placed a huge emphasis on two professions: medicine and engineering (no prizes for guessing what country I'm talking about now), and I didn't believe those could be the only two acceptable paths to a successful career. At any rate, I came to the US expecting huge changes in my life. However, I didn't expect that I would have to change the environment I was in as well.
My first semester of undergrad, there were two anti-LGBT hate crimes at my university, essentially dispelling my notion of the US as a liberal utopia. There was a huge outcry from the student body agains the administration's inactivity. While that first semester I was only involved in the LGBT activism on-campus from the sidelines, I ran for the board of our only LGBT student organization. The following semester, I started/led a new peer-led discussion/support group for queer/questioning students, and was elected president of the LGBT student group. I've since been involved with LGBT activism on a national scale in both the US, interning at a national LGBT political/legal org, youth board of another national LGBT org that deals with youth suicide prevention, and in the home (third world) country (where homosexuality is newly decriminalized), starting a nationwide students' collective. [Potential topic A: my invovlement in LGBT activism and how that has shaped my desire to study law]
As I mentioned before though, being out in my home country wasn't really an option for me as a 17 year old (which is about how old I was when I last lived here for the full year). At first, I was content to keep my identities divided between the two countries: out in the US, closeted in home country, and accordingly try to balance every other aspect of what was revealed about one side of my life in the other. However, the time I spent in the US made me more comfortable with my identity and got me to accept myself. That, and the ability of the internet to transcend thousands of miles of distance, brought about the conflation of my two identities. The results were mildly disastrous: my mother decided she wanted to have nothing to do with me if I were to stick to this "perverted choice" and bring dishonor to my family. However, my mother's discontent were not enough to get me to back down from my LGBT activism: quite simply, I didn't want others to go through what I had, and I wanted to be there as a support for them, if need be. [Potential topic B: overcoming adversity
and how that has made me stronger].

It would be difficult for me to move away from the LGBT angle for my diversity statement at least, since that has played such a key role in shaping my identity and interests in college and beyond. However, I'm considering using the LGBT and international only for a diversity statement. Do you think that makes sense, or should I try to work this into my PS and not write a DS?

PM me for numbers and other softs, or more details. I've put enough out here to be identified anyway, not throwing out more.

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Re: LGBT International student: PS or DS?

Postby MusicNutMeggie » Fri Jun 18, 2010 3:19 pm

Definitely write both a PS and a DS. Typically, a DS is short-- just the basics about why you're diverse and how that'll contribute to the community. Your PS is your place to shine as a writer; it's not a problem if there's some overlap in the content as long as you don't repeat yourself. Good luck!

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Re: LGBT International student: PS or DS?

Postby PlugInBaby » Sat Jun 19, 2010 12:56 pm

What are you looking to do in law school? If it is involving LGBT activism definitely include all that in your PS. Sounds like you have a very interesting and compelling story which should take you far.

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Re: LGBT International student: PS or DS?

Postby YCrevolution » Sat Jun 19, 2010 2:13 pm


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