Revised further. Help needed... kind of lost here.

(Personal Statement Examples, Advice, Critique, . . . )

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This needs a lot of work
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Start over dude
1
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Total votes: 5

cayerjt
Posts: 23
Joined: Tue May 25, 2010 2:37 pm

Revised further. Help needed... kind of lost here.

Postby cayerjt » Wed Dec 29, 2010 2:20 pm

deleted
Last edited by cayerjt on Fri Apr 08, 2011 4:10 am, edited 1 time in total.

weejonbu
Posts: 219
Joined: Sun Apr 12, 2009 8:48 pm

Re: Revised further. Please help me =]

Postby weejonbu » Wed Dec 29, 2010 2:46 pm

HERE ARE SOME EDITS:

Visiting my grandmother as a child didn’t always mean big hugs and sweet treats. For me [delete "for me"--this essay is about you already, so it's understood that you're talking from your point of view] , it sometimes meant tagging along to a place where, on my best behavior, I witnessed countless private affairs unfold [sounds weird, sounds like your grandma is a drug dealer] . People would walk into the courtroom [okay, NOW I see what you're getting at... still, it's presented in a very confusing way. Why not start in the courtroom and THEN introduce your grandma? I'm quite confused by the structure.] and I would quietly observe until their session was over—never comprehending the gravity [not sure what kind of court your grandma was bailiff at, but to be honest NOT ALL kinds of courtroom happenings are of great importance. I mean, sure, you could argue that, but sometimes it's just boring procedural stuff that isn't terribly life-changing. I just wouldn't speak of the law in such sacred terms, comes across as sort of wishy washy.] of what I was seeing. I never once questioned a judgment that was made in the courtroom for which my grandmother was a bailiff because things appeared very straightforward, but with age has come added experience and appreciation. A housing disaster while in my third year of college prompted a new understanding for the art and necessity of interpreting the law and subsequently triggered my curiosity in the process.

During a January interim at the University of X, the apartment building I was living in made news headlines after a fire in the apartment adjacent to mine destroyed the building. While I was not a suspect in the investigation, I found myself working with an attorney to prevent an attempt by our landlord to charge every tenant’s insurance company for the loss of the building. This of course was shocking in light of the circumstances and I found myself repeatedly reading the statutes regarding tenant rights; questioning if what seemed so clearly wrong had any legal backing. Unfortunately, we were dealing with a gray area, but because of this I got to see an aspect of the process I had never considered as a child—how much time actually goes into preparing for a court appearance.

Our attorney’s professional demeanor was shown as I described the invasive conversation with our landlord that left me deeply concerned. The lawyer’s fluency in the language of the law was showcased as he recorded a message riddled with legal terminology onto a tape recorder [sounds goofy in my opinion. may just be me] . There was a feeling of vindication as he finished the letter and finally, I felt relief. ["I found relief? sounds a little weird, like an immodium commercial]

Through our lawyer, I understood the satisfaction of successfully advocating on another’s behalf. ["Through our lawyer" sounds pretty weird. I know what you're getting at, but that is an awkward construction.] Or rather, I could infer this from the smile breaking on his otherwise serious face as he excitedly returned our long overdue security deposits. [That's sweet, but weird wording once again. Are you trying to say that it was cool to know that he wasn't just in it for the money? This experience, while of course not the end of the world, [are personal statements supposed to be written about the end of the world? doesn't fit here. I know what you're trying to say, but don't say it this way] undoubtedly is what spurred my curiosity in law. Being able to modify a contract, however, took the curiosity a step further and caused me to realize how my personal strengths could flourish into those essential for corporate law.

Everyone in line for advertising manager at the university newspaper relinquished his or her chance to head the only student organization on campus over $30,000 in debt. Jumping at the opportunity, I moved from the lowest position to having as much power as the editor-in-chief. I investigated the paper’s financial situation and discovered a huge problem that had for some reason gone unrecognized. A loophole in the advertising contract provided no consequence for delinquent accounts. Many local businesses were simply taking advantage of free advertising! After one week on the job I went before the financial commission, threatening to close our doors, to prove why a niche source of information would not fail like the big newspapers. The negotiations were thrilling for me and we moved forward with a staff that believed in me although I had generated nothing tangible to substantiate my theory of how the business could be fixed.

The effect I saw I could have on the newspaper and its resulting fulfillment brought my understanding of the law’s impact, even at the most fundamental level of contract law, into perspective. This has developed far beyond a curiosity and while I didn’t always know I wanted to become an attorney, this compilation of experiences has strongly directed my life toward a previously unrecognized passion. It was right in front of me all along.

I didn't get past my last edit, but I saw in your final part that you go into some story about the school newspaper. So we go from your grandmother being a bailiff to something about losing your apartment to being on the school newspaper? This essay needs more focus. Don't mean to come across as a jerk, but you ARE posting this on an online forum for editing. Hope this helps.

cayerjt
Posts: 23
Joined: Tue May 25, 2010 2:37 pm

Re: Revised further. Help needed... kind of lost here.

Postby cayerjt » Wed Dec 29, 2010 2:53 pm

The story I am trying to tell here is:

1. I grew up going to court at least once a week every summer
2. having my house burn down is what sparked my curiosity in law
3. I found the area of business law very interesting (yes, I am a business major) after fixing a problem in a contract that had cost the university $60,000.

I went from going into sales to wanting to be an attorney. Good lord, if only selling things was a little more stimulating haha.

Does that make a little more sense as to where I am trying to go? Now I just need to get there. Your edits were awesome by the way weejonbu.

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

Re: Revised further. Help needed... kind of lost here.

Postby kcdc » Wed Dec 29, 2010 3:03 pm

I think you have some good material to work with, but you need a common theme to tie everything together. Also, I would introduce the newspaper story with your interest in business law. The whole "everyone who was in line..." confused me at the beginning. There's nothing I hate more than reading a sentence, wondering in the world the author is talking about, then having the point become clearer in the next sentence. I think you do that consistently throughout your essay.

Also, I'd lose the exclamation point.

I think, in general, you try too hard to write a flowery narrative instead of just clearly presenting information. You can take that with a grain of salt, though-- I'm just a fellow law school hopeful with little to no experience with this personal statement business.

P.S. Did you go to Pitt? This reminds me of Pittsburgh for some reason...

weejonbu
Posts: 219
Joined: Sun Apr 12, 2009 8:48 pm

Re: Revised further. Help needed... kind of lost here.

Postby weejonbu » Wed Dec 29, 2010 4:18 pm

cayerjt wrote:The story I am trying to tell here is:

1. I grew up going to court at least once a week every summer
2. having my house burn down is what sparked my curiosity in law
3. I found the area of business law very interesting (yes, I am a business major) after fixing a problem in a contract that had cost the university $60,000.


Glad to know that you took the criticism constructively. Going off of what you say above, I don't see how number 1 is of any relevance whatsoever. A personal statement is about more than just piecing together every moment of your life that just so happened to intersect with the law. It's good to bring in the law when relevant, but what they really want to hear about is YOU, or something that happened in your life that had a profound influence on who you are. There are many ways of going about this, but what you have so far is too scattered. Think about WHO you are, what sets you apart, and what you have to bring to a law school. Then write about it and come back to your main theme, whatever you decide that is.

cayerjt
Posts: 23
Joined: Tue May 25, 2010 2:37 pm

Re:

Postby cayerjt » Wed Dec 29, 2010 6:04 pm

o
Last edited by cayerjt on Sat Jun 25, 2011 6:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.

jasonc.
Posts: 119
Joined: Mon Oct 18, 2010 1:22 am

Re: Revised further. Help needed... kind of lost here.

Postby jasonc. » Wed Dec 29, 2010 6:13 pm

cayerjt wrote:Visiting my grandmother as a child sometimes meant tagging along to the Brown County Courthouse where she worked as a bailiff. At a young age I was lucky enough to witness a few pieces of big trials in the Green Bay area and though I watched intently, I don’t remember fully comprehending the gravity of what I saw. Through experience I have developed a heightened appreciation for the law, starting with a housing disaster in college. The event prompted a new understanding for the art and necessity of interpreting the law and subsequently triggered my curiosity in the process.


This getting better. But still need a better transitional sentence from courts to the fire peaking interest.

cayerjt
Posts: 23
Joined: Tue May 25, 2010 2:37 pm

Re: Revised further. Help needed... kind of lost here.

Postby cayerjt » Wed Dec 29, 2010 7:01 pm

I really appreciate the critiques. I'll post another revision soon.
Last edited by cayerjt on Mon Aug 01, 2011 12:33 am, edited 1 time in total.

CanadianWolf
Posts: 10439
Joined: Wed Mar 24, 2010 4:54 pm

Re: Revised further. Help needed... kind of lost here.

Postby CanadianWolf » Wed Dec 29, 2010 7:24 pm

This essay needs substantial revision. Do you have a university writing center available to help you ?

P.S. Insurance companies have their own investigators & attorneys so why did you hire outside counsel (which could have voided some of your protection under your renters' policy) ?

rockspaperjesus
Posts: 66
Joined: Thu Nov 04, 2010 1:06 pm

Re: Revised further. Help needed... kind of lost here.

Postby rockspaperjesus » Wed Dec 29, 2010 7:37 pm

cayerjt wrote:Working on this thing until I die! And no, I actually live in Wisconsin haha. Are landlords really THAT scheming in pitt too?!?! Maybe it's my midwestern accent coming through :lol: Packers, beer and deer.

I really appreciate the critiques. I'll post another revision soon.


Did you live on Mifflin?

cayerjt
Posts: 23
Joined: Tue May 25, 2010 2:37 pm

Re:

Postby cayerjt » Wed Dec 29, 2010 7:42 pm

I
Last edited by cayerjt on Sat Jun 25, 2011 6:20 pm, edited 1 time in total.

cayerjt
Posts: 23
Joined: Tue May 25, 2010 2:37 pm

Re:

Postby cayerjt » Wed Dec 29, 2010 7:45 pm

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