Please Edit PS

(Personal Statement Examples, Advice, Critique, . . . )
Rosebud523
Posts: 30
Joined: Mon May 18, 2009 10:48 pm

Please Edit PS

Postby Rosebud523 » Wed Jan 13, 2010 11:27 am

I am really behind on my personal statement due to writers block and vacation. Everytime I try to fix it, I end up getting nothing done. I know I need to delete a lot and have gotten comments that it reads too much like a resume but I still can't figure out what I should delete. I would really appreciate any help! Thank you so much.

I walked through the bare corridors with color-coded padlocked doors. The facility was fairly empty during the school day. The girls who were not in school were those in the first two weeks of the program or in segregation due to poor behavior. The silence was interrupted by a loud commotion down the hall. “Bitch I shouldn’t be in here,” she screamed as the guards dragged her into the small and empty time-out room. She pressed herself against the solitary, tiny window, glaring at us with large, vacant eyes. She kept screaming. Sometimes the staff shushed her, while other times they simply ignored her. As we walked away, her face was still pressed against the window and she was sucking her thumb. I witnessed this teenage girl during a fieldtrip to the Indiana Juvenile Correctional Facility and instantly saw countless other voiceless juveniles in her lonely, scared eyes. My heart ached for this girl; I could not stop thinking about how terribly I wanted to help her. That was the very moment when I made my decision to attend law school. She was one of many girls at the juvenile facility that grew up in an unstable home life with no discipline. Misbehaving was the only way she knew how to get attention. Fortunately, the caring yet structured program at the facility would help her learn how to cope and live a better life once she was released.

I strive to help others learn the means to cope with troubled lives and avoid a criminal lifestyle. There are many children and adults that need treatment and deserve a second chance. I want to defend those who will be more successful in a treatment program. Those who do not have the money or resources still deserve the best representation.

My undergraduate studies further honed my passion for the law and criminal behavior.
My major in journalism with a concentration in criminal justice, coupled with my love for writing and fascination with public relations makes me a unique candidate for the Loyola law school public service program. I dedicated myself to public relations in the health and nonprofit sector as a means of advocating for others. My concentration in criminal justice gave me the opportunity to take a variety of criminal justice classes in which I learned about different aspects of the criminal justice system, criminals and victims. I was immediately intrigued as to why offenders disobey the law and motivated to help such troubled individuals.

While I had the opportunity to pursue my passion for criminal justice, I yearned to use my journalism skills to make an impact on others. I was drawn to the Muscular Dystrophy Association after watching my cousin transform from a chubby, happy boy to a frail teenager with poor eyesight, muscle weakness and impaired speech due to a neuromuscular disease called Myasthenia Gravis. He passed away three days before his twenty-first birthday, never having that same opportunity to pursue his dreams. My internship with the Muscular Dystrophy Association (MDA) gave me the opportunity to utilize my journalism background, competence in writing and public relations skills to advocate for a cause that I believed in as well as help those who could not advocate for themselves. MDA ensures that families affected by muscular dystrophy and other neuromuscular diseases do not have to suffer financially and can live a higher quality of life. I watched my cousin’s family struggle to afford his healthcare, and I wonder if he would still be alive if he received the proper treatment.

My title at MDA was a Regional Public Affairs Coordinator, and I was responsible for public relations in the Chicago region. This position gave me an immense amount of responsibility and independence. Without the publicity and funding that I got for MDA events and the Jerry Lewis MDA Telethon, MDA would not have been able to afford treatment for all of the families they help. I began work each day with an immense amount of pride and determination to succeed. My hard work and accomplishments were reflected when I was selected as the regional public affairs coordinator of the week out of all of the interns in the country.

I started my public relations planning and research class in the fall of my senior year with a strong confidence in my ability to succeed as well as make an impact in peoples lives. I was selected as one of six account executives out of my class to lead a group in developing a public relations campaign for a local nonprofit organization. The winning team would have their proposal implemented by the organization. Our organization, Volunteers in Medicine of Monroe County, is a local nonprofit that provides free healthcare for uninsured, low-income families. My team had four members while the rest of the teams had five, and my professor saw us as the disadvantaged team. We were also competing against other really competitive, highly qualified teams. Although my class, team, and professor all thought the odds were against us, I continued to believe in our capabilities due to my experience working at MDA as well as the experience and passion of my team.

As a true compliment to my leadership, teamwork, and advocacy skills, my team’s campaign was selected as the one to be implemented. This reminded me how hard I can work to achieve anything I set my mind to. This was one of the greatest accomplishments of my life, and I was filled with emotion as I accepted our award. Of the 150 students who have taken this class during the last five semesters, I was one of only four to receive an "A+" grade. This is a constant reminder that my professors recognize me as a compassionate, driven student with the potential to do anything I set my mind to.

The leadership, research and advocacy skills I developed as a journalism student are all essential skills for law school and my career as a lawyer. Although I am proud of my undergraduate accomplishments, I want a career where I can make a greater impact. As a lawyer, I can take a more active hands-on role in changing people’s lives. I believe Loyola law school will help me use my strong persuasive voice to effect change and advocate for those who need legal representation. I know I can accomplish anything I set my mind to, and my experiences thus far are a refection of my extreme motivation, compassion and drive for success. I cannot wait to start law school and continue to learn and grow into the lawyer I dream of becoming.

Rosebud523
Posts: 30
Joined: Mon May 18, 2009 10:48 pm

Re: Please Edit PS

Postby Rosebud523 » Wed Jan 13, 2010 6:58 pm

bump...anyone?

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fonzerelli
Posts: 215
Joined: Thu Jan 07, 2010 8:00 pm

Re: Please Edit PS

Postby fonzerelli » Wed Jan 13, 2010 7:03 pm

Edit: "my passion for the law [strike]and[/strike] in the context of criminal behavior"

As it stood... it sounded like you have a passion for criminal behavior. ;)

Also... I like the latter half as far as style is concerned. The first half was too "drama-novel-like."

Good things though...

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Lermontov
Posts: 220
Joined: Fri Oct 23, 2009 8:09 pm

Re: Please Edit PS

Postby Lermontov » Wed Jan 13, 2010 7:07 pm

Seems much too long for most schools.
Also, you use the verb 'to be' a lot, especially at the intro. Kindof a turnoff. Also, use fewer overly colorful adverbs/adjectives. I think it creates the unfortunate drama-novel feel that the above poster mentions.

Edit: That said, I think that with polishing the first part could be a much better PS than the second part. The second part is good, but has a sortof resume feel to it. Maybe focus on one of them and tie in better to the polished drama-novel. Added bonus: closer to required length.

Rosebud523
Posts: 30
Joined: Mon May 18, 2009 10:48 pm

Re: Please Edit PS

Postby Rosebud523 » Thu Jan 14, 2010 2:55 pm

ahhhh that is what everyone says I just can't figure out which to get rid of, but if I don't decide soon my applications are going to be wayyy too late. I definitely don't want to get rid of the part about my accomplishments but then it does read too much like a resume which is why I put that beginning in. I wish I could just look at it know exactly what to delete and be done.

Rosebud523
Posts: 30
Joined: Mon May 18, 2009 10:48 pm

Re: Please Edit PS

Postby Rosebud523 » Mon Jan 18, 2010 4:09 am

Anyone else? I REALLY need to get my applications submitted this week. I'm so stressed. I will take any criticism

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reebtoor
Posts: 107
Joined: Sun Sep 27, 2009 2:14 pm

Re: Please Edit PS

Postby reebtoor » Mon Jan 18, 2010 4:25 am

You really should shoot for around 2, maybe three pages, double spaced. I don't even read apps all day, and I wanted to start skimming the second I saw how long it was. You have a lot of good stuff, but you shouldn't be duplicating your resume. Your first paragraph does a good job explaining your motivation and some of the character traits that might make you successful in law school and as a lawyer. Keep that part and then use one of your other paragraphs/experiences as an example of all the rest. It just seems like you are telling the school how good you are, when the personal statement should show WHO you are. I haven't seen your resume, but if it were my personal statement, I would take out everything or all but one thing that is on my resume. I would talk about how that experience reinforces/highlights the feelings you mentioned in the first paragraph. your resume will speak for itself.




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