I gripped my best friend Melissa’s hand in a heartfelt, yet futile effort of comfort. We were sixteen years old, and her mother had just passed away from breast cancer. The sadness I felt could only be amplified by the profound sense of loss that was obvious in Melissa’s tear-filled eyes. Not only was I sad, but angry at how unfair this disease and the grief it brought were. Soon after this ordeal, my grandmother and uncle were diagnosed with cancer, and my mother was informed of her own serious case of skin cancer. While healthy myself, cancer was affecting everyone around me and shaped my adolescent years. My sadness, anger and perseverance compelled me to action, and I decided to commit myself to fighting this deadly disease.
For three years in high school, I captained a rare “all-male” team for the American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life event. Our team raised thousands of dollars for cancer research and I fell in love with the cause. I arrived at college and was excited to join Wake ‘N Shake, which is my school’s campus-wide dance marathon benefitting the Brian Piccolo Cancer Fund.
The event mobilizes the campus in an effort to raise funds and awareness for cancer research, and I was a proud committee member my freshman year. I was honored to be selected to the executive committee as the hospitality and entertainment chairperson the next two years respectively. I grew tremendously during these two years of leadership as I needed to arrange food and entertainment for eight hundred college students for twelve hours, mostly through donated goods from local businesses. The memory of the strength of Melissa’s mother and my family members inspired me and gave me confidence as I tried to convince businessmen to donate to our cause and busy college students to surrender twelve hours of their weekend to attend the event. This year I was honored to be selected as the co-chair of Wake ‘N Shake. As the leader of this worthy event, I have made countless local business contacts, worked closely with the hospital’s development office and learned how to effectively manage and lead a diverse committee of student leaders.
The executive committee of Wake ‘N Shake makes a yearly visit to the Comprehensive Cancer Center at the Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center to tour the facility and meet the doctors who work miracles for those patients like Melissa’s mother. While the director of the Cancer Center was speaking to our group, I realized I could and should not let my passion end after college. I was always confident that my skills of argumentation and critical analysis would make me a very good lawyer, but was never sure which area of law I would pursue. As a student of social sciences, it was not the director’s discussion of Glioblastoma multiforme cells that interested me, rather the passion I sensed in his eyes and in his voice. This talented man and thousands of doctors like him make tremendous sacrifices to work towards a cure every day. I realized I could use my skills and passion to pursue a career as a medical malpractice defense or insurance law attorney to protect these doctors from baseless lawsuits, especially those concerning the risks of their clinical trials and experimental drugs.
I seek admission to law school, because I feel blessed to have both good health and the determination to be a leader against a disease that affects so many lives. I have not only succeeded in the classroom, but I feel what defines me most is my commitment to volunteer work for a worthy cause. I hope to renew this commitment through a law school education, and turn my passion into a career.
(Personal Statement Examples, Advice, Critique, . . . )
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