Plz critique - happy to read yours in exchange too

(Personal Statement Examples, Advice, Critique, . . . )
dcgirl31
Posts: 1
Joined: Thu Jan 14, 2010 7:00 pm

Plz critique - happy to read yours in exchange too

Postby dcgirl31 » Thu Jan 14, 2010 7:06 pm

The only guideline for this application is that the PS should be no more than 500 words.

Before the summer of 2005, I had never used public transportation in the city I had grown up in - New Delhi, India - nor traveled by myself unaccompanied and unsupervised. That same summer laid the foundations of my leaning towards a career in law by inspiring my passion for social change and development. I am applying to the __ School of Law to further study the evolution and role of legal and political systems at one of the nation’s finest centers for law and economics.

I come from a privileged Indian family, and was born into opportunities for growth and a comfortable lifestyle in a country with rampant economic and social inequality. My realization of the extent of social inequalities began when my movement outside the protective walls of my parent’s home became increasingly restricted in my teenage years. New Delhi is a city notorious for its unusually high number of brutal crimes against women, and these provisions were explained as an extension of the sheltering. Yet, I found the reality of these incidents of violence vexing. I was restless, desiring to act for change. However, any expression of discontentment and desire for political involvement was discouraged. Even careers seemed to be determined by the kind of family you were born into. In my case, I came from a family with no political connections and neither the finances that made it reasonable for me to invest my time in a cause and career with little potential for income that would be fitting to sustain the upper-middle class lifestyle I was raised into.

Under these circumstances, I chose to attend college in the United States, 8000 miles away from home, where I had no family. It was here that I was first given the freedom of thought and movement like I had never experienced before. The contrast from my life in New Delhi struck me; such as why could I not use public transportation there the same way I comfortably navigated the equally crowded and arguably unsafe New York City subway?

Returning back to Delhi in 2005, I interviewed Indian government officials, activists, journalists and scholars about their priorities for the Indian women’s rights agenda. My interviews were undoubtedly informative and influential as it was my first direct interaction with social justice advocates. The real eye-opener was the unraveling of years of stigma and fear of my travelling alone, an unescorted woman. While I do not deny the legitimate concerns for my protection, I realized that the real danger of social and economic inequality is how the system seeks to sustain itself.

Economist Amartya Sen describes development as the removal of obstacles for the expansion of freedom. I seek further inquiry into the application of law as a medium for social change and economic progress, and am applying to __ to receive this education and training. With my own international and transnational perspectives to contribute in the classroom, I look forward to working with the diverse faculty and student body of this institution and learning from their experiences.



Thank you for your feedback!!

phila
Posts: 15
Joined: Sat Nov 01, 2008 10:57 am

Re: Plz critique - happy to read yours in exchange too

Postby phila » Thu Jan 14, 2010 8:00 pm

I didn't read through closely for spelling and grammer, but I am confused about the information you share about your background.

You mention your upbringing was priviledged...but then you go on to say that your family is not in the position for you to pursue certain careers that won't pay well or allow you to pursue a line of work they are not involved in. And then later you talk about interviews with people who sound pretty important and involved in government...so how did you get to meet these important people?

Just a little confusing to someone who doesn't know anything about you when reading.

alohashoyu
Posts: 10
Joined: Thu Jan 14, 2010 2:18 pm

Re: Plz critique - happy to read yours in exchange too

Postby alohashoyu » Fri Jan 15, 2010 12:54 am

First, how you introduce New Dehli in the first line doesn't fit well. Break down the sentence. You might want to go through and break down a few of the sentences.... The trick is to break patterns up and have some long sentences and some short. You have too many run-on sentences, and can be too wordy when it could be said in less words.

Here's a couple things I saw:

My realization of the extent of social inequalities began when my movement outside the protective walls of my parent’s home became increasingly restricted in my teenage years

My realization of the extent of social inequalities began in my teenage years, when my movement outside the protective walls of my parent's home became increasingly restricted.

"Yet, I found the reality of these incidents of violence vexing."

I think "I found the reality of these violent incidents vexing" sounds better... Cut out words where you can.

Overall, it's good. :) The only other suggestion I have is to cut out what you can of your background. I do understand that addressing how protective your parents were is integral to contrast your travels in 2005, but you should spend a significant part of the essay explaining HOW the summer of 2005 affected your decision to pursue a career in law. As it is, you've dedicated almost no space in the essay to explaining this.

Good start! Keep working on it!




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