Personal Statement - 1st Draft PLEASE HELP!!!!

(Personal Statement Examples, Advice, Critique, . . . )
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onthecusp
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Joined: Thu Sep 10, 2009 4:08 pm

Personal Statement - 1st Draft PLEASE HELP!!!!

Postby onthecusp » Sun Jan 03, 2010 2:56 am

This is the first draft, so please rip into me. I feel like I'm rambling. I've left this open, there is no conclusion at present. I'm trying to find a way to rap it up without adding another 100-200 words.


I grew up the bastard child of juvenile delinquents lost in their own struggle for understanding and belonging; how from this dealt hand could I possibly find my own. I was Joe Amateur sitting at the poker table staring down Phil Helmuth armed with a pair of twos. My world was chaos, moving one family member’s house to another navigating through a dark cloud of violence, drugs, and hunger. For me, role models were scarce, and the one person who might have served as my shepherd early on passed away only months before my birth, the result of an illness that has been speculated to have manifested out of the stress and pain that comes with knowing that your 16 year old baby is going to have a baby.

Never in any coherent thought did I ever consider the possibility that I could become a lawyer. My mind was a wonderful place full of possibilities unrealistic through my circumstance, but beautiful constructs of truth in my heart. Words of encouragement chimed a perfect song through my hopes, but always faded with no tangible foundation to reinforce them. As a child this was maddening, and through my escalating frustration I searched within. If it were true that I were to survive childhood with nothing positive in my life to model myself after, than I would become my own role model. I chose to bend fate to my own dreams and become the opposite of everything I understood my father to be.

Through my obsession, I started a neighborhood bible study, knowing nothing of the bible on my own. Why the Bible? It was that one mysterious place where everything was perfect; where guidance was abundant through supernatural channels to shape me into something resembling a great man. I went for it, knowing that if I stood for something, others would follow even in disagreement. I was right. My first Bible study took place on a Friday night consisting of 10 friends from high school who thought I was absolutely nuts. The next week, their parents joined; mostly out of curiosity. It became the case in ensuing weeks that I would have to prepare for 50+ teenagers and parents every Friday night to squeeze into our living room, all waiting for me to deliver a one hour speech on the topic of the day. My topics would be just about anything, since nobody was there to stop me; I spoke about anything I wanted. I spoke about issues important to who was there at the time. Mostly I spoke of hope, and the importance of modeling one’s self in youth as the person you wished to become in adulthood, using biblical anecdotes to reinforce the importance.

It got to the point where there was enough buzz to attract the attention of a local youth ministry who invited me to join them for a mid week service. I enthusiastically accepted the invitation; here was my opportunity to be taught, not to teach. Not long after my initial meeting with them, I was promoted into leadership where I learned some hard lessons about the truths behind the leaders ushering this ministry. Out of principle I left in shambles knowing that the one constant source of hope in my life was a fraud. I understood that I could not blame all of Christianity for the imperfections of a few individuals, but my faith was shattered.

For the next seven years I underwent a whirlwind of life events all centered on my need to fill the void left by disappointments experienced within the ministry. It wasn’t until after I married at the age of 23 that I decided to take my education seriously. Until then I had no idea what I wanted to do. When It came to deciding a future profession for myself it would always revolve around going into law; knowing that possibility was a pipe dream at best, education simply didn’t matter to me. Now that I was married, it didn’t matter if I knew what I wanted or not, it was time to go after something.

nycparalegal
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Re: Personal Statement - 1st Draft PLEASE HELP!!!!

Postby nycparalegal » Sun Jan 03, 2010 2:58 am

What is your thesis?

Sourpunch
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Re: Personal Statement - 1st Draft PLEASE HELP!!!!

Postby Sourpunch » Sun Jan 03, 2010 6:37 am

It's an interesting story but here are my suggestions.

1) You don't ever answer the question as to why you now want to study law when before it was "never a coherent thought"...all you say is "well now that I got married anything goes".

2) Not sure about the whole "bastard child" statement in the first line. You're being really harsh on yourself and its kind of creepy. You can easily explain that you were born from an impregnated teen or something. You just sound like a supreme Christian fundementalist right there.

3) Use more commas.

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onthecusp
Posts: 218
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Re: Personal Statement - 1st Draft PLEASE HELP!!!!

Postby onthecusp » Sun Jan 03, 2010 7:07 am

You're right, to be honest...I don't want to sound too Christian anything; I'm not a practicing Christian and am very much unresolved as far as that part of my life goes. But it was a significant factor of what I became. I haven't wrapped anything up, and the next obvious question is...so why do you want to be a lawyer? Since this is a first draft, and an uncompleted one at that, I guess I'm just looking for whats working and whats not. What's the most compelling part of the story, what should I exclude....etc.




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