Critique my PS draft

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jazzmastersc
Posts: 56
Joined: Tue Oct 19, 2010 10:43 pm

Critique my PS draft

Postby jazzmastersc » Mon Jan 10, 2011 3:25 am

*Edited with revised draft*

Now that December LSAT scores are out I'm trying to finish my applications this week. I'd appreciate feedback on my PS rough draft.I will also gladly proof your PS if you would like.
FYI my stats are LSAT: 170 GPA: 3.4.
Please critique and comment:

As the stage lights dimmed, the room buzzed with energy. The raucous crowd of people unsettled me since most of those in attendance were my parents’ age. Leon Russell, one of rock and roll’s legendary elder statesmen, prepared to take the stage. It was time for me to grab my guitar, find the stage-left exit, and get out of his way.

On Valentine’s Day 2009 my band was honored to perform as the opening act for the sold-out concert with Mr. Russell in my hometown of Charleston, South Carolina. It was a high profile show and the largest audience of my musical career. Weeks of practicing boosted my confidence, and I was more elated than nervous when it was time for the concert. Individual and group preparation for the concert helped my band put on a seamless and well-received performance. By the end of the show I was beaming, but my exhilarating experience was the result of years of effort and discovery.

I was introduced to formal music training through a year of piano lessons during elementary school. This endeavor was merely a stopgap until my first electric guitar arrived as a Christmas gift when I was eleven. If my parents had any concerns about my commitment to learning the instrument, I assuaged their doubts by remaining steadfast in my pursuit and practicing regularly for the past sixteen years. Many of the lessons learned and skills developed while learning to play the guitar transcended the realm of music. Studying music theory and an instrument is like many other pursuits in that self-determination and hard work are essential for success. By participating in my high school jazz band, I learned the success of an ensemble is dependent on the willingness of its members to support and trust each other. I was taught that the key to improvisation is not just proficiency with an instrument, but also a dedication to studying theory and a keen ability to listen. As I developed a flexible thought process, an open mind, and an ear for subtle detail, I realized these skills were invaluable both on and off the bandstand. The skills I acquired through music helped me lead my high school Mock Trial team to the state championship the following year, despite it being my first year participating. In college I continued my involvement in Mock Trial, becoming the organization’s president at the University of South Carolina and winning Most Effective Attorney awards at regional and national tournaments. Though musical experience contributed to my success, my unique family dynamic also served as continued motivation to pursue trial advocacy.

When I was four years old, my brother Lucas was born with a rare case of total blindness called anopthalmia. At first I did not understand why my younger brother was born without eyes. My parents were confused, and many of their questions went unanswered since Lucas was born long before the current information age. When Lucas entered the public school system my parents became tireless advocates on his behalf. As Lucas grew older my family faced many complex challenges, such as acquiring state funding for continued education and occupational training. This was my first exposure to the legal implications of public education. As a young boy I told my dad that I would one day invent robotic eyes so Lucas could see. He responded, “That is a great idea, but even if Lucas never has sight, we will make sure he has a chance in life like everyone else.” To this day I remember those words as a true example of advocacy. Growing up with Lucas and adjusting to the challenges he continues to face have provided me with patience and a deep sense of empathy. These same qualities will enrich my legal education and help serve my future clients.

Sharing the stage with Leon Russell on Valentine’s Day was one of the most memorable experiences of my life. That night I had a realization about my future. I expected the concert to be a stepping-stone to a successful musical career; instead, I left the venue knowing that I had a greater unfulfilled purpose than defining a personal legacy through artistic pursuits. For the past two years I have hosted story-time events as part of my job at Barnes and Noble. By incorporating my musical talents, I have increased attendance by over three hundred percent to reach a weekly average of over forty children. By volunteering in music and art classes at Title I schools where most students face severe economic hardship I have encouraged children in need to pursue music, literacy, and community involvement. While these experiences have been rewarding, I recognize the magnitude of the problems these children face. I also realize my limited ability to help them in my current capacity.

I am applying to law school so that I may advocate for special needs in the education system and community at large. I am also drawn to the complexity and intellectual challenge of studying law. Through studying the universal language of music I have honed my ability to communicate. By utilizing these skills and drawing from life lessons I will contribute to law school classes in a meaningful way. Justice is often referred to as blind to convey ideas of impartiality and fairness. My brother Lucas also taught me that inherent to blindness is a fearlessness of facing life’s challenges. Law school is my next important challenge, and I am ready to face it fearlessly.

LSATclincher
Posts: 476
Joined: Mon Nov 30, 2009 12:09 pm

Re: Critique my PS draft

Postby LSATclincher » Mon Jan 10, 2011 10:48 pm

A few things here. Tone the language down a bit. Did you really use the word "assuage?" Leave that for the makers of the LSAT. I didn't really comprehend the transition from music to mock trial. I agree these both must be in the PS, but tie them in a bit better. I like the story of Locus, but it doesn't fit here. I'd delete it.

I think theme is great. The tie in to law is pretty weak. Unless you've been out of school a few years, I think a "why law" PS is un-needed. You have enough experiences to make this a plus PS. Just finish strong.

User avatar
jazzmastersc
Posts: 56
Joined: Tue Oct 19, 2010 10:43 pm

Re: Critique my PS draft

Postby jazzmastersc » Tue Jan 11, 2011 11:22 am

Thanks for your suggestions. I have made revisions but want to at least briefly address why law as I have been out of undergrad for 4 years and will be attaching an addendum about leaving school to pursue a music career. At least it was a fun way to kil my GPA.

Here goes:

As the stage lights dimmed, the room buzzed with energy. The rowdiness of the audience was surprising since most of those in attendance were my parents’ age. Leon Russell, one of rock and roll’s legendary elder statesmen, prepared to take the stage. It was time for me to grab my guitar, find the stage-left exit, and get out of his way.

On Valentine’s Day 2009 my band was honored to perform as the opening act for the sold-out concert with Mr. Russell in my hometown of Charleston, South Carolina. It was a high profile show and the largest audience of my musical career. Weeks of practicing boosted my confidence, and I was more elated than nervous when it was time for the concert. Individual and group preparation for the concert helped my band put on a seamless and well-received performance. We were beaming by the end of the show. Performing with such an iconic musician was an exhilarating experience made possible only by a long journey of musical education and discovery.

I was introduced to formal music training through a year of piano lessons during elementary school. This endeavor was merely a stopgap until my first electric guitar arrived as a Christmas gift when I was eleven. If my parents had any concerns about my commitment to learning the instrument, I eased their doubts by remaining steadfast in my pursuit and practicing regularly ever since. Many of the lessons learned and skills developed while learning to play the guitar transcended the realm of music. Studying music theory and an instrument is like many other pursuits in that self-determination and hard work are essential for success. By participating in my high school jazz band, I learned the success of an ensemble is dependent on the willingness of its members to support and trust each other. I was taught that the key to improvisation is not just proficiency with an instrument, but also a dedication to studying theory and a keen ability to listen. As I developed a flexible thought process, an open mind, and an ear for subtle detail, I realized these skills were invaluable both on and off the bandstand. The skills I acquired through music helped me lead my high school Mock Trial team to the state championship the following year, despite it being my first year participating. In college I continued my involvement in Mock Trial, becoming the organization’s president at the University of South Carolina and winning Most Effective Attorney awards at regional and national tournaments. Though musical experience contributed to my success, my unique family dynamic also served as continued motivation to pursue trial advocacy.

When I was four years old, my brother Lucas was born with a rare condition of total blindness called anophthalmia. At first I did not understand why my younger brother was born without eyes. My parents were confused, and many of their questions went unanswered since Lucas was born long before the current information age. When Lucas entered the public school system my parents became tireless advocates on his behalf. As Lucas grew older my family faced many complex challenges, such as acquiring state funding for continued education and occupational training. This was my first exposure to the legal implications of public education. As a young boy I told my dad that I would one day invent robotic eyes so Lucas could see. He responded, “That is a great idea, but even if Lucas never has sight, we will make sure he has a chance in life like everyone else.” To this day I remember those words as a true example of advocacy. Growing up with Lucas and adjusting to the challenges he continues to face have provided me with patience and a deep sense of empathy; qualities that will enrich my legal education and help serve my future clients.

For the past two years I have hosted story-time events as part of my job at Barnes and Noble. By incorporating my musical talents, I have increased attendance by over three hundred percent to reach a weekly average of over forty children. By volunteering in music and art classes at Title I schools where most students face severe economic hardship I have encouraged children in need to pursue music, literacy, and community involvement. While these experiences have been rewarding, I recognize the magnitude of the problems these children face. I also realize my limited ability to help them in my current capacity. Sharing the stage with Leon Russell on Valentine’s Day was one of the most memorable experiences of my life and led to a profound realization about my future. I expected the concert to be a stepping-stone to a successful musical career; instead, I left the venue knowing that I had a greater unfulfilled purpose than defining a personal legacy through artistic pursuits.

I am applying to law school so that I may serve as an advocate for special needs in the education system and community at large. I am also drawn to the complexity and intellectual challenge of studying law. Through studying the universal language of music I have honed my ability to communicate. By utilizing these skills and drawing from life lessons I will contribute to my law school classes in a meaningful way. Justice is often referred to as blind to convey ideas of impartiality and fairness. My brother Lucas also taught me that inherent to blindness is a fearlessness of facing life’s challenges. Law school is my next important challenge, and I am ready to face it fearlessly.




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