Final draft??

(Personal Statement Examples, Advice, Critique, . . . )
JMcLeod7
Posts: 12
Joined: Sun Jun 27, 2010 5:20 pm

Final draft??

Postby JMcLeod7 » Sun Oct 31, 2010 1:12 pm

This should be pretty close to my final draft. Does anyone have any suggestions? Any would be greatly appreciated.

I awoke to the sight of flashing lights through my blurred vision and the muted sounds of sirens outside the van. A man asked me to hold a bandage against my forehead to stop the flow of blood trickling out of a gash less than an inch above my left eye. Despite that discovery, I felt a surreal sense of calm as I surveyed the scene about me. “Two DOA,” I heard someone yell outside. As I was put in a neck brace, I overheard conversation about the helicopter en route to take the driver of my vehicle to the hospital. Surprisingly, neither of these comments gave rise to any panic in me. Where I was and what had happened in the preceding moments were unclear. Recollection of my whereabouts slowly came back to me in the following hours, but any memory of the crash was lost. It was only over the next few weeks that I would piece together exactly what had happened.

The van I was on ran from LOCATION X to the LOCATION Y airport about thirty times a day. I had elected at the last minute to take the late van to LOCATION Y on Sunday instead of the first one on Monday as I normally did after trips home from college. PERSON X and PERSON Y made a similar decision that night. They, however, chose to drive themselves back to LOCATION X after partying at a bar in LOCATION Y. They were both ejected and died instantly when their vehicle crossed the median and struck our van nearly head on. I was very lucky; had I not been wearing my seatbelt, I would have likely been ejected and faced a similar fate to theirs. I asked the paramedic who rode with me to hospital what my injuries might be, and he recited a list of possibilities ranging from a fractured skull to a dislocated hip. Luckily, none of his guesses were correct. The injuries I did suffer included a partially torn posterior cruciate ligament, a chip in my tibia, and numerous assorted cuts and bruises. I consider myself extremely lucky to have had this be the extent of my injuries, especially after receiving such dire initial prospects. It was still quite a list, however, and would require a substantial amount of rehabilitation.

The wreck threatened to put one of my biggest academic goals in jeopardy. I missed the first two weeks of class and was told by the dean that I should certainly withdraw from some of my classes to ease the burden of the setback. I took her advice into consideration, but reducing my course load was never really an option. I took only four courses the previous semester and often found myself bored and with excess time on my hands. For that reason and others, I committed myself to the goal of graduating in three years without taking classes in the summer. Towards that goal, I registered for eighteen credit hours before finding myself in the predicament I was now in.

Missing the first two weeks of class was not ideal by any means. In fact, it was close to the last thing I needed as a college freshman with a heavy course load. I took a test in one class on my very first day back to school. It didn’t get much easier from there; Long nights sleeping in a full leg brace, frequent trips home to visit the doctor, intermittent pain, and seemingly endless rehab, among other things, made my daily routine much more stressful than it had been before. It took a couple of weeks, but I eventually managed to catch up in all of my classes, and I learned how to best balance the rigor of my coursework with the demands of my injuries. I ultimately achieved a 4.0 grade point average that semester and increased my confidence that I could accomplish my goal of graduating in three years.

I am proud of myself for the growth I made in this period. Not only was I able to make the best of a bad situation, but I now more fully understand how to balance academics with extracurricular activity and that doing so is essential to achieving success. I am intrigued by the opportunity to continue my success in law school. SCHOOL X is clearly a great school at which to begin this journey. The school’s clinic programs especially pique my interest. Both the criminal and civil clinic programs intrigue me and are programs that I will look forward to participating in if I attend SCHOOL X. The opportunity to participate in these practical, hands-on experiences is invaluable, particularly in determining areas of interest in law. These programs along with many other aspects of the school make SCHOOL X a school that I would be proud to attend.

whymeohgodno
Posts: 2508
Joined: Mon Jul 19, 2010 8:15 pm

Re: Final draft??

Postby whymeohgodno » Sun Oct 31, 2010 1:28 pm

This seems like an addendum for an overall gpa that is weaker than what you want.

JMcLeod7
Posts: 12
Joined: Sun Jun 27, 2010 5:20 pm

Re: Final draft??

Postby JMcLeod7 » Sun Oct 31, 2010 5:13 pm

I guess if my GPA was above 4.0 and I was explaining how the 4.0 I got this semester brought it down then maybe it would be a GPA addendum. It's just supposed to be a good story about an event that I had to overcome.

Korlath
Posts: 63
Joined: Sun Sep 12, 2010 3:13 am

Re: Final draft??

Postby Korlath » Sun Oct 31, 2010 5:51 pm

I think the story is good and it does show that you overcame a big obstacle in your life. It's not really doing much by itself here, though...
I mean, you're not really letting the committee know a lot about you except that you survived a pretty awful car accident. I know where you are going here: "I overcame this and still succeeded academically, so I will succeed in law school." It's a good approach, but let the committee know a bit more about you. What your undergraduate degree is in, for example, would be helpful. What you plan to do after law school would also be helpful. Anything else that lets them know why you are a strong candidate to law school would be helpful.

bklynav
Posts: 13
Joined: Sun Oct 31, 2010 5:33 pm

Re: Final draft??

Postby bklynav » Sun Oct 31, 2010 8:54 pm

I think it's a great essay. It definitely captures the reader's attention and there are not many people who have been in similar circumstances. The essay shows your perserverance, but there was a moment (starting from the third paragraph) where I felt this essay was leading up to be an excuse for poor grades. I know it will be difficult, but to counteract that initial reaction, maybe find a way to fit your achievments into the essay at an earlier point.

Also, here are some structural suggestions for the second paragraph to increase clarity:

"The van I was on ran from LOCATION X to the LOCATION Y airport about thirty times a day. I made a quick decision to take the last van of the night instead of waiting until tomorrow morning. PERSON X and PERSON Y made a similar decision that night. They, however, chose to drive themselves after partying at a bar in LOCATION Y. When their vehicle crossed the median and struck our van nearly head on, they were thrown from their seats and died instantly."

HowdyYall
Posts: 444
Joined: Thu Oct 28, 2010 8:49 pm

Re: Final draft??

Postby HowdyYall » Sun Oct 31, 2010 8:58 pm

Please tell me you got that "pique my interest" phrase from the clinical programs page of the Duke pamphlet.....

JMcLeod7
Posts: 12
Joined: Sun Jun 27, 2010 5:20 pm

Re: Final draft??

Postby JMcLeod7 » Sun Oct 31, 2010 9:34 pm

HowdyYall wrote:Please tell me you got that "pique my interest" phrase from the clinical programs page of the Duke pamphlet.....


Can't say I did. I guess I'll have to change that if I apply to Duke though haha.

JMcLeod7
Posts: 12
Joined: Sun Jun 27, 2010 5:20 pm

Re: Final draft??

Postby JMcLeod7 » Sun Oct 31, 2010 9:35 pm

bklynav wrote:I think it's a great essay. It definitely captures the reader's attention and there are not many people who have been in similar circumstances. The essay shows your perserverance, but there was a moment (starting from the third paragraph) where I felt this essay was leading up to be an excuse for poor grades. I know it will be difficult, but to counteract that initial reaction, maybe find a way to fit your achievments into the essay at an earlier point.

Also, here are some structural suggestions for the second paragraph to increase clarity:

"The van I was on ran from LOCATION X to the LOCATION Y airport about thirty times a day. I made a quick decision to take the last van of the night instead of waiting until tomorrow morning. PERSON X and PERSON Y made a similar decision that night. They, however, chose to drive themselves after partying at a bar in LOCATION Y. When their vehicle crossed the median and struck our van nearly head on, they were thrown from their seats and died instantly."


Thanks for the comments

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CGI Fridays
Posts: 897
Joined: Tue Sep 21, 2010 5:46 pm

Re: Final draft??

Postby CGI Fridays » Sun Oct 31, 2010 11:50 pm

JMcLeod7 wrote:Thanks for the comments


Are you editing your draft based on any of these comments?
If so, edit & re-post?




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