Discussing Arrest as Impetus for Interest in Law?

(Personal Statement Examples, Advice, Critique, . . . )
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lawrencecis
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Discussing Arrest as Impetus for Interest in Law?

Postby lawrencecis » Sat Jul 03, 2010 12:58 am

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Last edited by lawrencecis on Fri Jul 23, 2010 4:24 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Geat27
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Re: Discussing Arrest as Impetus for Interest in Law?

Postby Geat27 » Sat Jul 03, 2010 1:00 am

It's a risk, but I think perhaps one worth taking. Good luck!

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lawrencecis
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Re: Discussing Arrest as Impetus for Interest in Law?

Postby lawrencecis » Sun Jul 04, 2010 7:34 pm

Yeah, that's what I'm thinking, too. It's nothing too major - hosting a party. Although, the drinking aspect of the crime doesn't look well either. Bump

Scott4LLM
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Re: Discussing Arrest as Impetus for Interest in Law?

Postby Scott4LLM » Mon Jul 05, 2010 3:37 pm

Maybe I am too cavalier but it sounds fine to me--hosting a party is pretty tame. In fact, I would say there is a risk at the other extreme of overleveraging it as something that changed every aspect of your life.

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blurbz
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Re: Discussing Arrest as Impetus for Interest in Law?

Postby blurbz » Mon Jul 05, 2010 3:42 pm

I think it sounds okay.

My recommendation is simple: Be careful. Don't come off as if you're bitter about the PD who represented you. In a PS like this I suspect there will be a fine line between telling a compelling story that shows your progression and thought process and telling a story that reeks of immaturity ("I got a misdemeanor instead of an infraction. The system is BROKEN")...Just be aware of how your readers might interpret what you're saying and try to write it in a way that there is only one interpretation: Yours.

Good luck.

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KMaine
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Re: Discussing Arrest as Impetus for Interest in Law?

Postby KMaine » Mon Jul 05, 2010 3:47 pm

Not going to lie. Makes you sound like a spolied rich kid to me. Not trying to be a jerk here, somebody on the committee may feel the same way. Just trying to offer a different perspective.

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Kohinoor
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Re: Discussing Arrest as Impetus for Interest in Law?

Postby Kohinoor » Mon Jul 05, 2010 3:49 pm

KMaine wrote:Makes you sound like a spolied rich kid.

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blurbz
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Re: Discussing Arrest as Impetus for Interest in Law?

Postby blurbz » Mon Jul 05, 2010 3:50 pm

KMaine wrote:Not going to lie. Makes you sound like a spolied rich kid to me. Not trying to be a jerk here, somebody on the committee may feel the same way. Just trying to offer a different perspective.



I understand not liking the idea, but not for the reason you mentioned. Where do you get the "spoiled rich kid" from the post? He had a public defender, not Johnnie Cochran..

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Kohinoor
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Re: Discussing Arrest as Impetus for Interest in Law?

Postby Kohinoor » Mon Jul 05, 2010 3:52 pm

blurbz wrote:
KMaine wrote:Not going to lie. Makes you sound like a spolied rich kid to me. Not trying to be a jerk here, somebody on the committee may feel the same way. Just trying to offer a different perspective.



I understand not liking the idea, but not for the reason you mentioned. Where do you get the "spoiled rich kid" from the post? He had a public defender, not Johnnie Cochran..

House party and dad's friend giving legal advice.

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KibblesAndVick
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Re: Discussing Arrest as Impetus for Interest in Law?

Postby KibblesAndVick » Mon Jul 05, 2010 4:00 pm

Do you want to be a lawyer so you can defend impoverished kids unjustly charged with hosting house parties? Because that's what I got out of the story.

Moreover, instead of the narrative of your arrest being "I got arrested and subsequently matured. Now I'm a more responsible adult." it comes off as "I got arrested and learned that you can manipulate the system to your advantage. Fuck the police."

I'm not saying what you did was wrong or that the lesson you learned was not the correct one. But I can't see the target audience of your personal statement taking you very seriously.

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blurbz
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Re: Discussing Arrest as Impetus for Interest in Law?

Postby blurbz » Mon Jul 05, 2010 4:08 pm

Like I said, I think if you do it, you need to do it really well. Given the responses on here, though, and the different ways this audience has interpreted your story, I think it might be best to just forget about it.

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KMaine
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Re: Discussing Arrest as Impetus for Interest in Law?

Postby KMaine » Mon Jul 05, 2010 4:24 pm

Kohinoor wrote:
blurbz wrote:
KMaine wrote:Not going to lie. Makes you sound like a spolied rich kid to me. Not trying to be a jerk here, somebody on the committee may feel the same way. Just trying to offer a different perspective.



I understand not liking the idea, but not for the reason you mentioned. Where do you get the "spoiled rich kid" from the post? He had a public defender, not Johnnie Cochran..

House party and dad's friend giving legal advice.


This, especially the last part, plus I guess I saw enough of this teaching at a private school. In any case, it was a snap judgment which, I think, is what you get from an admissions committee. Overall, I don't think the idea is a sure loser, but it is not a sure winner. I think with some thought + creativity OP could come up with a better topic.

Hey-O
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Re: Discussing Arrest as Impetus for Interest in Law?

Postby Hey-O » Mon Jul 05, 2010 4:41 pm

It may or may not be necessary depending on how you structure your application. If include an excellent addendum that really covers this issue then use your PS for something else. But if you feel that this is your reason for law school and it really shows who you are then do it. But do it well.

03121202698008
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Re: Discussing Arrest as Impetus for Interest in Law?

Postby 03121202698008 » Mon Jul 05, 2010 4:43 pm

Kohinoor wrote:
KMaine wrote:Makes you sound like a spolied rich kid.


I wouldn't go negative about the legal profession at all. What if an Adcom was a former PD and takes offense? I also don't think it's that unique of a story. Many people want to be a lawyer after interacting with the legal system.

If already writing an addendum, don't re-mention it. I mean, the commanding officer did nothing illegal right? Just chose to apply the statute as written? Everyone who breaks the law thinks they deserve a lighter charge.

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taw856
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Re: Discussing Arrest as Impetus for Interest in Law?

Postby taw856 » Mon Jul 05, 2010 4:51 pm

lawrencecis wrote:I talk about how the police charged me with a misdemeanor for hosting a house party, although other officers around the commanding officer were recommending to him to just give an infraction.


I'm sorta wondering what you did to tick off the commanding officer if every other officer was cool with an infraction.

lawrencecis wrote:My charges were reduced to the infraction - the fairer punishment.


I'm also sorta wondering if your addendum includes this aggrieved "I almost got worse punishment than I deserved but justice prevailed" language, or if it's as humble as it should be. (It doesn't matter if you really did deserve only an infraction or not -- your goal is to convince the person reading your PS that you're a mature individual ready to take school seriously, not to convince someone who has no way of knowing what really happened that your prior legal troubles were more "I looked at a cop funny" than "my party could be heard five miles away.")

Scott4LLM
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Re: Discussing Arrest as Impetus for Interest in Law?

Postby Scott4LLM » Mon Jul 05, 2010 5:28 pm

maybe write a bit more and let us hear it before you dismiss the idea

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Teoeo
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Re: Discussing Arrest as Impetus for Interest in Law?

Postby Teoeo » Mon Jul 05, 2010 5:32 pm

If I were an adcom I would be pissed by this premise. Your statement assumes that PD's are inherently bad, when the truth is that most lawyers in general aren't that great. Maybe you should take a different approach since, like me, I am sure the adcoms have PD friends (by choice, I know its hard to believe, but some PD's choose to be there over higher paying firm gigs)

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lawrencecis
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Re: Discussing Arrest as Impetus for Interest in Law?

Postby lawrencecis » Mon Jul 05, 2010 11:24 pm

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