Personal Statement...Is it too fluffy??

(Personal Statement Examples, Advice, Critique, . . . )
Gabby1283
Posts: 10
Joined: Fri Feb 19, 2010 9:26 pm

Personal Statement...Is it too fluffy??

Postby Gabby1283 » Wed Oct 27, 2010 12:54 pm

I tried over and over to write different topics for my personal statement but every single one just led me back to this topic. It is definitely something law schools would not know about me after reading my application or resume which a lot of people have said you should not reiterate. But is it too "fluffy?" I mean, are there certain things I should leave out?

Any and all help would be much appreciated....Thank you!

My dedication to community service started when I was in grade school. It started off as simple tasks that were organized by my school and church for a few days a month. Although raking leaves for the elderly or cooking for those at the soup kitchen seemed like mundane, unimportant tasks to most, I was one of the few that actually enjoyed it. Just hearing a simple thank-you was all I needed to know that my work had been well-worth it. However, once I was in high school I wanted more. I wanted to help both young children and the elderly in any and every way I could. I started volunteering as a religious education teacher to students every Saturday morning. I remember sitting in those very seats my students did over five years ago and I vowed to make their experience better than mine had been. I made the class an enjoyable experience learning to balance the fine line of fun and learning. At a young age I remember wishing I had someone to talk to about my family and I wanted to make sure I was available to these children as well. By the end of the year I felt as if I knew these kids like they were my own brothers and sisters. Listening to them talk about their family and school problems I was so ecstatic that they wanted my advice.

Then, when my brother was sent to Iraq it once again fueled my desire to help. This time, I threw myself into a cause that would benefit others as well as me and my family. I coordinated monthly fundraisers and care package drives so we could consistently send care packages to those in Iraq, including my brother. After three months, and having sent over 100 packages I received over 75 letters from members of my brothers’ platoon sent letters expressing their thanks and appreciation for everything we were doing here. One letter said, “The last week of every month is Christmas around here. We all sit and wait around for the boxes wrapped in pink duct tape. With everything going on here it’s nice to know we aren’t forgotten.” That letter still hangs in my room.

For the next few years I picked up volunteer projects here and there. Volunteering with fundraisers at my local library and running weekly support groups for families of soldiers overseas. I was convinced my love of community service was solely because I loved the idea of event planning and therefore decided to pursue a degree in Public Relations. Although I always had an interest in the law I decided instead to minor in it due to the simple interest I had in it, nothing more, or so I thought. During my time in school I was convinced I had found my calling. Working with the media, creating press kits and event planning was exactly what I wanted to do. Therefore when I finally got an internship with a PR firm in NYC right before Fashion Week I couldn’t have been more ecstatic. I loved every minute of it. Interacting with models, designers and celebrities all while having over a dozen other things on my plate was like a dream come true.
However after time went on and even with a new Marketing position, I felt that restless feeling lingering again. That was when I stumbled on the volunteer position at the Center for Women and Families. I went in for an interview to be in charge of coordinating the programs for children who had been victims of abuse. I was so excited and nervous as well to be working with children once again. However, after my interview the Director asked me if I would instead be interested in a position as a Rape Crisis Counselor at their satellite location. She told me it would be something I would not regret. And she could not have been truer.

Working as rape crisis counselor is the most difficult, draining and yet rewarding experience. Even after months of training, the actual experience is nothing like they say. My first hospital visit was with a woman named Karen. Karen had called in on a Friday night when I was assigned to work the midnight shift of the hotline. She told me she had been raped and didn’t know what to do. I told her exactly what I had learned in my training. Don’t shower and don’t change. Go straight to the hospital. I told her I would meet her there. Although we had heard story after story from victims of rape, sitting in a hospital room hearing it first hand was nothing like I could have imagined. It broke my heart having to hear what Karen went through and knowing that as much as I wanted, there was only so much I could do. Karen allowed me to be with her during the entire process, even in the court room. Watching the prosecutor argue on behalf of Karen was what I had wanted to do since the moment Karen had called in that Friday night.

Those years I longed for someone to protect me as a child, that day my brother was sent to Iraq, and the phone call I received that late Friday night all remind me of why after all these years, I still make it my mission to try and help others. I want to make a difference to someone. After all, "the purpose of life is not to be happy - but to matter, to be productive, to be useful, to have it make some difference that you have lived at all." -Leo Rosten

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gdane
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Re: Personal Statement...Is it too fluffy??

Postby gdane » Wed Oct 27, 2010 12:58 pm

Its a great topic, but I would recommend leaving out the details in the beginning. You can talk about how youve been committed to volunteering since you were young, but you dont need to go into full details. Everything else is fine, especially the Iraq stuff. That might pull at some heartstrings.

Is this the complete statement? It mentions nothing about law school and how you would tie your experiences in with it.

Also, remove the quote at the end. Definitely fluff.

Gabby1283
Posts: 10
Joined: Fri Feb 19, 2010 9:26 pm

Re: Personal Statement...Is it too fluffy??

Postby Gabby1283 » Wed Oct 27, 2010 3:01 pm

Thanks!!! That's very helpful because I don't want to go over 1,000 words so I'm trying to figure out what I should take out so that I can talk about how it is relevant to me going to law school.

mala2
Posts: 225
Joined: Wed Oct 20, 2010 4:39 am

Re: Personal Statement...Is it too fluffy??

Postby mala2 » Wed Oct 27, 2010 6:25 pm

remove the quote

Gabby1283
Posts: 10
Joined: Fri Feb 19, 2010 9:26 pm

Re: Personal Statement...Is it too fluffy??

Postby Gabby1283 » Wed Oct 27, 2010 9:27 pm

Second Draft.....I definitely took all your advice, thank you so much! But I feel like it still needs some work.

Raking leaves for the elderly and cooking for those at the soup kitchen seem like mundane, unimportant tasks to most, but as a child I was one of the few who actually enjoyed it. Just hearing a simple thank-you was all I needed to know that my work had been well worth it. As a child these community service activities were more than enough to keep me feeling like I was doing my part, but not in high school. I started volunteering as a religious education teacher to 3rd grade stdents every Saturday morning. I remember sitting in those very seats only five years ago. Before I even walked into the classroom that first day I vowed to make their experience better than mine had been. I tried to create a learning experience that balanced the fine line of fun and learning but by being more than a teacher to the kids and instead a person to talk to and trust. By the end of the year I felt as if I knew each and every one of my students like they were my own brothers and sisters. It was an unimaginable experience being able to be the ear and shoulder I looked for but never really found.
When my brother was sent to Iraq it once again fueled my desire to help. I coordinated monthly fundraisers and supply drives so that there would always be an ample amount of care packages to send over to those in Iraq, including my brother. After three months and having sent over 100 boxes I received over 75 letters right before Christmas from members of my brothers platoon. One letter said, “the last week of every month is Christmas around here. We all wait around for those boxes wrapped up in pink duct tape. With everything going on here it’s nice to know we aren’t forgotten.” That letter still hangs in my room.
For the next few years I picked up volunteer projects here and there running fundraisers at my local library and running weekly support groups for families of soldiers overseas. I was convinced my love of community service was solely because I loved the idea of coordinating events and promotions and pursued a degree in Public Relations. Although I always had an interest in the law I decided instead to minor in it due to the simple interested I had in it and nothing more, or so I thought. When I got an internship with a PR firm in New York City right before Fashion Week I couldn’t have been more ecstatic. Working with the media promoting our events, interacting with celebrities and trying to juggle over a dozen other tasks constantly pushed me to my working limit and I loved every minute of it.
Months went by and even with a new marketing position I felt that restless feeling starting to linger. After making some phone calls I went in for an interview at the Center for Women and Families to be in charge of coordinating programs for children who were victims of abuse. The following day the director asked me if I would instead be interested in a position as a rape crisis counselor at their satellite location.
My work as a rape counselor is the most difficult, draining and rewarding experience I have to date. During one of my Friday night shifts a woman named Karen called the hotline saying she had been raped. Within 10 minutes I was on my way to meet Karen at the hospital. Although I had heard stories from numerous rape victims during my training, sitting in a hospital room, seeing all of the cuts and bruises and hearing her store first hand was nothing like I could have imagined. Even after months of training there was no preparing for what Karen had to say.
It broke my heart knowing that as much as I wanted to there was only so much I could do to provide Karen with the justice she deserved. Sitting in the courtroom during her trial I watched the prosecutor argue on behalf of Karen as if his life depended on it. He was doing everything I had wanted to do for Karen since the moment she had called in that Friday night.
Those years I longed for someone to protect me as a child, that day my brother was sent to Iraq, and the phone call I received that late Friday night all remind me why after all these years, I still make it my mission to try and help others. I have now come to a crossroads in my mission with law school being the next step. With my dedication to helping others and my experience in dealing with a diverse group of individuals, I am looking forward to using this knowledge to aid me in law school and for a long time after. Being able to help others is all I have ever wanted to do and law school will allow me to do that. I think we all have a duty to help those who are less fortunate than us. This is just me doing my part in the only way I have ever known.




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