Help with targeted (and probably strange) personal statement

(Personal Statement Examples, Advice, Critique, . . . )
kcdc
Posts: 63
Joined: Tue Dec 28, 2010 1:28 pm

Help with targeted (and probably strange) personal statement

Postby kcdc » Tue Dec 28, 2010 6:36 pm

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Last edited by kcdc on Thu Jan 06, 2011 2:45 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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gbpackerbacker
Posts: 634
Joined: Sun May 17, 2009 12:13 am

Re: Help with targeted (and probably strange) personal statement

Postby gbpackerbacker » Tue Dec 28, 2010 6:42 pm

Conventional wisdom is not to start with a quote, especially something so painfully cliche.

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Flips88
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Re: Help with targeted (and probably strange) personal statement

Postby Flips88 » Tue Dec 28, 2010 6:50 pm

a) do not use contractions
b) It doesn't take a genius to figure out you're applying to Georgetown
c) The whole first paragraph is not really about you. Not good for a personal statement.
d) Scrap your entire last paragraph. It is bad. really really really bad. Find specific programs at Georgetown you would like and talk about them.. Do not talk about how you have a below median GPA, or how you personally crafted your personal statement for them. Do no talk about how people think you'd be a great lawyer. All of these things are either unnecessary, cliche, or will hurt you.

I think the structure is creative. I'm not particularly religious and i think it's still creative. However, I can't say if the AdComm will think it's weird or not. Notre Dame might like it. Georgetown might not.

This needs lots of work. The whole final paragraph must go. Good luck.

kcdc
Posts: 63
Joined: Tue Dec 28, 2010 1:28 pm

Re: Help with targeted (and probably strange) personal statement

Postby kcdc » Tue Dec 28, 2010 6:58 pm

Thanks so much. Yeah, I'm obviously applying to Georgetown. Isn't it a rule on this website that we have to take out school names though?

I know the prayer is different, since Georgetown is Jesuit I thought they might go for it. I can easily take that out though.

I should have deleted that last paragraph before posting.

forty-two
Posts: 433
Joined: Tue Jan 19, 2010 12:33 am

Re: Help with targeted (and probably strange) personal statement

Postby forty-two » Tue Dec 28, 2010 7:06 pm

The main problem I see is that you're telling, rather than showing, the reader how great you are. For instance, you're an effective communicator and leader? Really? Why do you say that? What makes you a better communicator and leader than everyone else who makes those assertions in their personal statements. Also, people think you would make a good lawyer? Are these people lawyers or judges? Why don't you instead show that you have many of the qualities that a good lawyer would have? Thinking and writing about things like this I think really helped me white a good PS and outperform my numbers last cycle.

Essentially, you really need to show the reader who you are/that you are someone that you are someone they'd like to admit. Good luck!

kcdc
Posts: 63
Joined: Tue Dec 28, 2010 1:28 pm

Re: Help with targeted (and probably strange) personal statement

Postby kcdc » Tue Dec 28, 2010 7:34 pm

forty-two wrote:The main problem I see is that you're telling, rather than showing, the reader how great you are. For instance, you're an effective communicator and leader? Really? Why do you say that? What makes you a better communicator and leader than everyone else who makes those assertions in their personal statements. Also, people think you would make a good lawyer? Are these people lawyers or judges? Why don't you instead show that you have many of the qualities that a good lawyer would have? Thinking and writing about things like this I think really helped me white a good PS and outperform my numbers last cycle.

Essentially, you really need to show the reader who you are/that you are someone that you are someone they'd like to admit. Good luck!



Well those claims are backed up by my resume and letters of recommendation, but if it really sounds like I'm trying to tell the reader how "great" I am, I'll definitely change it... that stuff was only put in there to show that I gained confidence and came into my own during college (which corresponds with an upward grade trend).

Oh, and yes, the people who are pushing me towards law school are lawyers :) ... I was only planning to take the test in December, hence the late applications. That whole paragraph was awful, though. Gone.

Thanks!

forty-two
Posts: 433
Joined: Tue Jan 19, 2010 12:33 am

Re: Help with targeted (and probably strange) personal statement

Postby forty-two » Tue Dec 28, 2010 8:14 pm

kcdc wrote:
forty-two wrote:The main problem I see is that you're telling, rather than showing, the reader how great you are. For instance, you're an effective communicator and leader? Really? Why do you say that? What makes you a better communicator and leader than everyone else who makes those assertions in their personal statements. Also, people think you would make a good lawyer? Are these people lawyers or judges? Why don't you instead show that you have many of the qualities that a good lawyer would have? Thinking and writing about things like this I think really helped me white a good PS and outperform my numbers last cycle.

Essentially, you really need to show the reader who you are/that you are someone that you are someone they'd like to admit. Good luck!



Well those claims are backed up by my resume and letters of recommendation, but if it really sounds like I'm trying to tell the reader how "great" I am, I'll definitely change it... that stuff was only put in there to show that I gained confidence and came into my own during college (which corresponds with an upward grade trend).

Oh, and yes, the people who are pushing me towards law school are lawyers :) ... I was only planning to take the test in December, hence the late applications. That whole paragraph was awful, though. Gone.

Thanks!


Reinforcement with your resume and LOR is great!. I'd still make the middle section longer and add more detail there though. I like this section best because it's about you, who you are, and what your best qualities are, and that's really what a PS is all about.

Oh, and it's awesome that lawyers are pushing you toward law school...I asked that because they know best what it takes to excel in the field, so claims from people who know nothing about the law wouldn't be nearly as persuasive.

RockinJosh
Posts: 30
Joined: Tue Dec 28, 2010 7:35 pm

Re: Help with targeted (and probably strange) personal statement

Postby RockinJosh » Tue Dec 28, 2010 9:33 pm

Looks like you've gotten some good advice on content, so I'll just add a few style things that jumped out:

"6 weeks of dating" and "10 years my..." I would change to "six weeks" and "ten years"
"It seemed like every chance she had, she tried to find a way to corrupt me. " This was a bit awkward to me when I read it. Something about the comma.
"When it came time for college applications, my sister was drug-free and we were working toward reunification." needs a comma after "drug-free" since what follows is an independent clause.
"throughout college" -- i'd put a comma after college
"I realized I was smart—smart enough to declare Mechanical Engineering as my major. " Can you use a better word than smart? It struck me the wrong way
"2 months... 6 months" same as above
"on a daily basis" this phrase seems cliche (or maybe not cliche but just too common) to me

Good luck!




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