Here is your chance to be BRUTAL!!!

(Personal Statement Examples, Advice, Critique, . . . )
hawaii
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Here is your chance to be BRUTAL!!!

Postby hawaii » Mon Oct 25, 2010 11:26 pm

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Last edited by hawaii on Tue Nov 23, 2010 12:57 am, edited 1 time in total.

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crysmissmichelle
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Re: Here is your chance to be BRUTAL!!!

Postby crysmissmichelle » Tue Oct 26, 2010 11:40 am

I think this is a really strong start. I worry that a "seasoned" adcomm might think you naive if you word your admiration for the universal fairness of our system quite this strongly. While comparatively it is less corrupt than India (or my husband's Pakistan) it is hardly equal and fair, though that is its noble goal.

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crysmissmichelle
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Re: Here is your chance to be BRUTAL!!!

Postby crysmissmichelle » Tue Oct 26, 2010 11:40 am

But as I said, a well told story and a STRONG start.

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ShuckingNotJiving
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Re: Here is your chance to be BRUTAL!!!

Postby ShuckingNotJiving » Tue Oct 26, 2010 12:08 pm

is it "divorced parents PS week" on tls?


sorry that wasnt helpful.

hawaii
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Re: Here is your chance to be BRUTAL!!!

Postby hawaii » Tue Oct 26, 2010 3:38 pm

Thanks for the input. Any suggestions for what I can do to make this a better personal statement. Does this say enough about me? Does the introduction grab your attention?

CanadianWolf
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Re: Here is your chance to be BRUTAL!!!

Postby CanadianWolf » Tue Oct 26, 2010 3:47 pm

This is a satisfactory personal statement in the respect that it should neither help nor hurt your law school applications while complying with the requirement of a personal statement essay. The strength is that it it written in clear language, while the weakness is that it doesn't offer as much about you & your thoughts as the reader would like. Additionally, your proffered insights are weak.

cubswin
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Re: Here is your chance to be BRUTAL!!!

Postby cubswin » Tue Oct 26, 2010 4:10 pm

hawaii wrote:This is a rough draft so feel free to be brutal.

For the majority of my childhood after my parents' [The apostrophe needs to be after the 's' to show that you are referring to both of them] divorce, I did not think much about the law and its enormous impact on my life. I grew up wanting to become a pediatrician because I could not imagine a better job than that of helping those who are incapable of helping themselves [barf]. I enrolled in all the required science courses at college but I soon discovered that medicine just was not for me [So much for dispelling the "I couldn't pass organic chemistry so I decided to go to law school instead" stereotype]. Then the research for my final paper in my Comparative Constitutional Politics course brought back all those memories of my complicated childhood. I was tasked with comparing the legal systems of the United Kingdom and India. While I certainly had my fair share of courtroom time in Indian courts [redundant; eliminate the 'courtroom' in 'courtroom time'] as a child, I realized that I really knew nothing about an entire system of law that had an enormous impact [One example of your tendency to use the passive voice quite a bit. I think the passive voice gets a worse rep than it deserves - sometimes it actually feels correct - but you could very easily use the verb "impacted" rather than "had an enormous impact" here; consider making similar changes throughout] on my life.

Studying the legal system in India made me appreciate just how wonderful our system is in the United States. While my father was able to get away with bribing a judge in the Indian courts, albeit for a short time before he was discovered, the American legal system has been able to withstand such corruption [I would probably hedge this with "largely able" or "most of the time" so that it doesn't sound like you have a childish perception of the incorruptibility of the American legal system]. The Indian constitution is riddled with contradictory laws that apply to some people but not to others. The thing I found amazing thing about the American legal system is that everyone is treated equally; the law is fair in what I otherwise believed to be an unfair world. [kind of barf]

[You start nearly every sentence in the following paragraph with "I" or "my", which I have bolded. Get more creative with your sentence structures.]
My undergraduate experience taught me that I loved studying the law [Did it now?]. After spending such a long time thinking that I wanted to be a pediatrician though, I needed to be sure that law was the right profession for me. Fortunately, working as a paralegal for the Office of _________ in the Department of _______ has only reinforced my interest in the law. My first day in the office, my boss told me that our job was not to win cases; our job was to find the truth and do what is right. I immediately knew that this was somewhere I would enjoy working. I always did my best to go above and beyond what was asked of me. My passion for the law must have been apparent because before long, I had a docket of litigation cases that resembled that of a first year attorney. I was assigned to assist on a project for the Joint Committee on Taxation and I even helped to draft published guidance on the effect of _________ on the _____ deadlines for taxpayers nationwide. After two years at the office, I was given a national award, the ___________ Award for Superior Paralegal Support (Paralegal of the Year), beating out over a hundred other intelligent and dedicated paralegals around the country.

While my parents' [same mistake as above] divorce certainly led to quite a bit of childhood drama, it opened the door to my legal education. It has driven me to seek more fairness [Question: Is there such a thing as "more fairness"? Are there varying degrees of fairness? Or is something simply fair or unfair, like pregnancy? One is either pregnant or not pregnant. Consider revising.] in an otherwise unfair world and I hope to continue on this journey as a student at XYZ law school.

AUC2MIC
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Re: Here is your chance to be BRUTAL!!!

Postby AUC2MIC » Tue Oct 26, 2010 6:05 pm

I really enjoyed this, good start!

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WonkyPanda
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blerb

Postby WonkyPanda » Wed Oct 27, 2010 2:08 am

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mala2
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Re: Here is your chance to be BRUTAL!!!

Postby mala2 » Wed Oct 27, 2010 6:39 pm

The my parents' divorce ruined my life is in general a bad topic, in my opinion. However, your story does have some unique aspects that could make the topic work for you.

1. I would scrap it and start over
2. Start with a better hook, maybe a kidnapping attempt? that's dramatic
3. Scrap the part about college savings accounts and applying for scholarships from poverty, makes you sound like a little whiner because that's what it is. Most people don't have college savings accounts. wah. Nobody owes you a college freaking savings account. Unless you were a 3 year old street orphan in Calcutta, you aren't really that poor.
4. Focus on what the experiences taught you, not what they did to you.

hawaii
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Re: Here is your chance to be BRUTAL!!!

Postby hawaii » Wed Oct 27, 2010 8:53 pm

mala2 wrote:3. Scrap the part about college savings accounts and applying for scholarships from poverty, makes you sound like a little whiner because that's what it is. Most people don't have college savings accounts. wah. Nobody owes you a college freaking savings account. Unless you were a 3 year old street orphan in Calcutta, you aren't really that poor.


Yea, I agree. I was just trying to say something that corrolated with going from "riches to rags." I wasn't a street orphan in Calcutta, but I was homeless for a short time (not that this is in any way the equivalent of being an orphan in a third world country). I see your point and will be sure not to include that in my next draft.




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