PS Critique - Please Destroy

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danget bobby
Posts: 28
Joined: Mon Mar 29, 2010 6:08 pm

PS Critique - Please Destroy

Postby danget bobby » Wed Jan 05, 2011 5:55 pm

The look in her eye and the tone of her voice confirmed the gravity of the expectations: I sat across from attorney VLT on the first day of my internship as she explained my role as her intern. She leaned in, making an ‘L’ on her forehead with the thumb and pointer finger of her right hand and said, “I’m in the business of protecting the Liberty of indigent clients. As my intern, you will help protect the Liberty of these individuals.” My expression betrayed my excitement as she told me I would gain exactly what I put into this internship. Already four months in, I realize that decades will pass before I can truly appreciate everything I have learned.

***
I was raised to believe I could achieve anything I set my mind to and my parents afforded me every opportunity to succeed. When they learned that Medicare would require medical practices to use Electronic Medical Records software to file claims in the spring of 2008, I was eager to help. Together we researched the most cost-effective software and began implementation in May 2008. The software representatives estimated a six month adjustment period in which the patient-load, as well as bottom-line, would be drastically reduced. After three months of working with the staff of nine audiologists, nurses and receptionists, the practice was back to a normal schedule. Today they not only serve more patients than before, they are eligible to receive over $40,000 in bonuses from Medicare over the next five years, a significant increase to their annual profits.

Back in school I continued to help others and extend my comfort zone. I took 21 credit hours in the spring of 2010 to free up my senior year schedule. During that semester I received an email after midterms from a student in my statistics class asking for help: she was failing and did not understand the material. We met regularly to work on assignments and study for exams, and she finished the course with a B. My interest in law continued to grow as I took courses in Criminology and Law Studies, Psychology and English. I took two courses with Dr. K that examined the influence of literature on law and social change; these courses required extensive writing and research on the development of American law and the ability of literature to represent those overlooked by society and culminated with a moot court simulation. My team acted as defense counsel for a woman charged with murder and won an acquittal from the jury; the experience solidified my desire to practice law.

It was the second day of my internship in late August 2010 when I made my first visit to jail. My nerves came to a head as the first of two sealed doors unlocked allowing attorney VLT and me into the visiting rooms. I steadied my breathing and regained composure as I waited in the room next to attorney VLT for ‘my’ clients to arrive – she was preparing a guilty plea with one client while I was to meet alone with two other clients to review their discovery. Both of these clients were charged with armed robbery and I was anxious (terrified) at how our meeting would go. Up until now, my privileged upbringing had sheltered me from criminals – alleged or otherwise. I was reviewing the lines I would say when a timid young man with braided hair wearing orange denim came to the door. I introduced myself, shook his hand and told him, “I am here to review your disposition – excuse me, your discovery.” My brief embarrassment passed as I saw how nervously he accepted the materials: he refused to make eye contact and his right knee jumped up and down; the first words out of his mouth were, “I’m so sorry. I didn’t mean to do what I did.”

That moment I began to bridge the gap between the knowledge of crime and the legal system I had from my undergraduate education and reality. This client never had an advocate, never had a voice, and was facing lengthy prison time for a mistake he made. The meaning of the ‘L’ attorney VLT gave me became clear: she advocates for the Liberty of those in need, regardless of their charges; and I fully immersed myself in this world. I have made regular trips to jail to visit clients – both with and without attorney VLT. I have drafted motions, guilty pleas and investigator requests. I have become acquainted with judges, lawyers and clerks through my regular time in court. My undergraduate education has taught me the fundamentals of law and attorney VLT has given me an honest look into the practice of law: often brutal, occasionally beautiful and always demanding, criminal defense is what I desire to practice with my law school education.

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MrSparkle
Posts: 154
Joined: Mon Jan 03, 2011 3:06 pm

Re: PS Critique - Please Destroy

Postby MrSparkle » Wed Jan 05, 2011 10:36 pm

You need to focus your work. Parts of it sound like an extended resume. The best essays are like trees - there's one primary example (the trunk, in your case experience with criminals) and there are branches here and there that flesh out you as a character.

Use the PS as an opportunity to create a fictionalization of you in the best light. Tell a tightly focused story and you'll be better off.

danget bobby wrote:The look in her eye and the tone of her voice confirmed the gravity of the expectations: I sat across from attorney VLT on the first day of my internship as she explained my role as her intern. She leaned in, making an ‘L’ on her forehead with the thumb and pointer finger of her right hand and said, “I’m in the business of protecting the Liberty of indigent clients. As my intern, you will help protect the Liberty of these individuals.” My expression betrayed my excitement as she told me I would gain exactly what I put into this internship. Already four months in, I realize that decades will pass before I can truly appreciate everything I have learned.

***
I was raised to believe I could achieve anything I set my mind to and my parents afforded me every opportunity to succeed. Bad transition into the next - "they" makes me think it's your parents, but then I realize you jumped back to your internship, then I have no idea why you are talking about your internship at all When they learned that Medicare would require medical practices to use Electronic Medical Records software to file claims in the spring of 2008, I was eager to help. Together we researched the most cost-effective software and began implementation in May 2008. The software representatives estimated a six month adjustment period in which the patient-load, as well as bottom-line, would be drastically reduced. After three months of working with the staff of nine audiologists, nurses and receptionists, the practice was back to a normal schedule. Today they not only serve more patients than before, they are eligible to receive over $40,000 in bonuses from Medicare over the next five years, a significant increase to their annual profits. <-- extended resume paragraph

Back in school I continued to help others and extend my comfort zone. I took 21 credit hours in the spring of 2010 to free up my senior year schedule. During that semester I received an email after midterms from a student in my statistics class asking for help: she was failing and did not understand the material. We met regularly to work on assignments and study for exams, and she finished the course with a B. My interest in law continued to grow as I took courses in Criminology and Law Studies, Psychology and English. I took two courses with Dr. K that examined the influence of literature on law and social change; these courses required extensive writing and research on the development of American law and the ability of literature to represent those overlooked by society and culminated with a moot court simulation. My team acted as defense counsel for a woman charged with murder and won an acquittal from the jury; the experience solidified my desire to practice law. <-- bad story, you talk about tutoring, then classes, then moot court. Uh, OK? So what?

It was the second day of my internship in late August 2010 when I made my first visit to jail. My nerves came to a head as the first of two sealed doors unlocked allowing attorney VLT and me into the visiting rooms. I steadied my breathing and regained composure as I waited in the room next to attorney VLT for ‘my’ clients to arrive – she was preparing a guilty plea with one client while I was to meet alone with two other clients to review their discovery. Both of these clients were charged with armed robbery and I was anxious (terrified) at how our meeting would go. Up until now, my privileged upbringing had sheltered me from criminals – alleged or otherwise. I was reviewing the lines I would say when a timid young man with braided hair wearing orange denim came to the door. I introduced myself, shook his hand and told him, “I am here to review your disposition – excuse me, your discovery.” My brief embarrassment passed as I saw how nervously he accepted the materials: he refused to make eye contact and his right knee jumped up and down; the first words out of his mouth were, “I’m so sorry. I didn’t mean to do what I did.”

That moment I began to bridge the gap between the knowledge of crime and the legal system I had from my undergraduate education and reality. This client never had an advocate, never had a voice, and was facing lengthy prison time for a mistake he made. The meaning of the ‘L’ attorney VLT gave me became clear: she advocates for the Liberty of those in need, regardless of their charges; and I fully immersed myself in this world. I have made regular trips to jail to visit clients – both with and without attorney VLT. I have drafted motions, guilty pleas and investigator requests. I have become acquainted with judges, lawyers and clerks through my regular time in court. My undergraduate education has taught me the fundamentals of law and attorney VLT has given me an honest look into the practice of law: often brutal, occasionally beautiful and always demanding, criminal defense is what I desire to practice with my law school education.

thereelshaq
Posts: 57
Joined: Sat Jun 26, 2010 1:25 am

Re: PS Critique - Please Destroy

Postby thereelshaq » Wed Jan 05, 2011 10:52 pm

danget bobby wrote:The look in her eye and the tone of her voice confirmed the gravity of the expectations: I sat across from attorney VLT on the first day of my internship as she explained my role as her intern. She leaned in, making an ‘L’ on her forehead with the thumb and pointer finger of her right hand and said, “I’m in the business of protecting the Liberty of indigent clients. As my intern, you will help protect the Liberty of these individuals.” My expression betrayed my excitement as she told me I would gain exactly what I put into this internship. Already four months in, I realize that decades will pass before I can truly appreciate everything I have learned.

***
I was raised to believe I could achieve anything I set my mind to and my parents afforded me every opportunity to succeed. When they learned that Medicare would require medical practices to use Electronic Medical Records software to file claims in the spring of 2008, I was eager to help. Together we researched the most cost-effective software and began implementation in May 2008. The software representatives estimated a six month adjustment period in which the patient-load, as well as bottom-line, would be drastically reduced. After three months of working with the staff of nine audiologists, nurses and receptionists, the practice was back to a normal schedule. Today they not only serve more patients than before, they are eligible to receive over $40,000 in bonuses from Medicare over the next five years, a significant increase to their annual profits.

Back in school I continued to help others and extend my comfort zone. I took 21 credit hours in the spring of 2010 to free up my senior year schedule. During that semester I received an email after midterms from a student in my statistics class asking for help: she was failing and did not understand the material. We met regularly to work on assignments and study for exams, and she finished the course with a B. My interest in law continued to grow as I took courses in Criminology and Law Studies, Psychology and English. I took two courses with Dr. K that examined the influence of literature on law and social change; these courses required extensive writing and research on the development of American law and the ability of literature to represent those overlooked by society and culminated with a moot court simulation. My team acted as defense counsel for a woman charged with murder and won an acquittal from the jury; the experience solidified my desire to practice law.

It was the second day of my internship in late August 2010 when I made my first visit to jail. My nerves came to a head as the first of two sealed doors unlocked allowing attorney VLT and me into the visiting rooms. I steadied my breathing and regained composure as I waited in the room next to attorney VLT for ‘my’ clients to arrive – she was preparing a guilty plea with one client while I was to meet alone with two other clients to review their discovery. Both of these clients were charged with armed robbery and I was anxious (terrified) at how our meeting would go. Up until now, my privileged upbringing had sheltered me from criminals – alleged or otherwise. I was reviewing the lines I would say when a timid young man with braided hair wearing orange denim came to the door. I introduced myself, shook his hand and told him, “I am here to review your disposition – excuse me, your discovery.” My brief embarrassment passed as I saw how nervously he accepted the materials: he refused to make eye contact and his right knee jumped up and down; the first words out of his mouth were, “I’m so sorry. I didn’t mean to do what I did.”

That moment I began to bridge the gap between the knowledge of crime and the legal system I had from my undergraduate education and reality. This client never had an advocate, never had a voice, and was facing lengthy prison time for a mistake he made. The meaning of the ‘L’ attorney VLT gave me became clear: she advocates for the Liberty of those in need, regardless of their charges; and I fully immersed myself in this world. I have made regular trips to jail to visit clients – both with and without attorney VLT. I have drafted motions, guilty pleas and investigator requests. I have become acquainted with judges, lawyers and clerks through my regular time in court. My undergraduate education has taught me the fundamentals of law and attorney VLT has given me an honest look into the practice of law: often brutal, occasionally beautiful and always demanding, criminal defense is what I desire to practice with my law school education.




this entire thing is inchoate and rambling in all the wrong places. what do the second and third paragraph have anything to do with the first paragraph, about law school, about anything at all? you need to drop these two paragraphs and begin the essay with your potentially gripping encounter with the criminal. as it stands, the 'hook' of the essay (the convo w/ your boss) is boring.

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danget bobby
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Re: PS Critique - Please Destroy

Postby danget bobby » Thu Jan 06, 2011 3:23 am

thereelshaq wrote:what do the second and third paragraph have anything to do with the first paragraph, about law school, about anything at all?


paragraphs 2 and 3 are intended to highlite experiences and qualities I have that make me ideal for law school: paragraph 2 illustrates my ability to work well with others to achieve a goal under time and financial constraints; paragraph 3 shows my continued interest in crim. law, willingess/eagerness to help others and work well with others, etc.

how can I better include these (especially 2, 3 could be scrapped) within the focus of the topic (ie: my internship experience has given me a realistic view of criminal defense and makes me an ideal canidate etc etc)?

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danget bobby
Posts: 28
Joined: Mon Mar 29, 2010 6:08 pm

Re: PS Critique - Please Destroy

Postby danget bobby » Thu Jan 06, 2011 3:34 am

MrSparkle wrote:The best essays are like trees - there's one primary example (the trunk, in your case experience with criminals) and there are branches here and there that flesh out you as a character.


This is the idea I had in mind...base the statement around my internship experience with criminal defendants with the branches as paragraphs 2 and 3.

How would you restructure this with that in mind? Or would you scrap those examples in lieu of other material?

I am hesitant to focus solely on my internship experiences because I feel the focus might be too narrow and only on the last 4 months of my life...am I wrong in thinking this?

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MrSparkle
Posts: 154
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Re: PS Critique - Please Destroy

Postby MrSparkle » Thu Jan 06, 2011 4:58 am

danget bobby wrote:
MrSparkle wrote:The best essays are like trees - there's one primary example (the trunk, in your case experience with criminals) and there are branches here and there that flesh out you as a character.


This is the idea I had in mind...base the statement around my internship experience with criminal defendants with the branches as paragraphs 2 and 3.

How would you restructure this with that in mind? Or would you scrap those examples in lieu of other material?

I am hesitant to focus solely on my internship experiences because I feel the focus might be too narrow and only on the last 4 months of my life...am I wrong in thinking this?


As long as you come across as a human being, there is no such thing as "too narrow." The problem with those other paragraphs is that it detracts from your message/story. You should not waste space going off on tangents. You can talk more about how you grew from your internship, the feelings you experienced, etc.

I went through the same issues you did - trying to talk about too many things. In the end, my PS revolved around two different days (really two hours) in my life that I connected together, and I was fine. It is more important that the essay is a well-written piece of work than something that covers a lot of bases. Depth, not breadth.




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