Transfer PS (Short, please critique)

(Personal Statement Examples, Advice, Critique, . . . )
kaiser
Posts: 2940
Joined: Mon May 09, 2011 11:34 pm

Transfer PS (Short, please critique)

Postby kaiser » Wed Jun 29, 2011 11:51 pm

Hey guys, if you could critique my PS, it would be much appreciated. I didn't get all flowery with the grandiose language or imagery people tend to use on their initial PS. This is a transfer PS so I just wanted to get right to the point regarding my circumstances and what I like about the new school. Let me know what you think so I can submit this application ASAP:


I am a lifelong resident of the [location of new school] area, and it has always been my intention to attend law school and secure employment close to home. My fiancé, however, secured a position in [location of current school] after earning her masters degree from [new school's] Graduate School of Arts and Sciences. I decided it would be best to remain close to her and consequently chose to attend [current school]. Unfortunately, my fiancé’s position ultimately fell through and she soon returned home to the [location of new school/home] area while I remained in [location of old school]. I greatly enjoyed my first year at [old school] and it is certainly difficult to leave, but it is very important that I remain close to my fiancé. [New school] has long been my dream institution for law school. Rather than pose an inconvenience, my present circumstances present a wonderful opportunity to both return home to my fiancé and continue my legal education in the vibrant [new school] community.

As a student of Hispanic descent, I intend to continue my long history of community service through [new school's public service program]. While an undergraduate in [old school], I organized an extensive community service program in which members sought out victims of employment discrimination in Hispanic communities. By mandating a pro bono requirement of all students, [new school] demonstrates the commitment to public service I seek in a law school. I also hope to supplement my pro bono work with externship experience. I am particularly interested in the domestic violence prosecution and immigration defense clinics. [New school's] close access to a vibrant and expansive Hispanic population allows me to continue serving my community through both clinical and pro bono work.

I became quite interested in labor and employment law while working in the hospitality industry. As a front office intern, I initiated an extensive research project on behalf of Hispanic employees who were unable to raise their concerns to management because of cultural and linguistic barriers. The hotel consequently altered previously rigid scheduling policies. I took great pride and passion in my project, and I will one day continue this work in a legal capacity. I look to take advantage of [new school's] extensive course offerings in the area of labor and employment law. I am familiar with Professor [X]’s scholarship on labor law, and I hope to enrich my legal education through his instruction. I look forward to the challenges of [new school's] unparalleled academic rigor.

At [new school], I can pursue my dream of working in employment litigation while staying close to my fiancé. I look forward to learning from and contributing to the prestigious and unique [new school] community. Thank you very much for your time and consideration.

kaiser
Posts: 2940
Joined: Mon May 09, 2011 11:34 pm

Re: Transfer PS (Short, please critique)

Postby kaiser » Thu Jun 30, 2011 12:12 am

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Last edited by kaiser on Thu Jun 30, 2011 12:28 am, edited 1 time in total.

Danteshek
Posts: 2172
Joined: Wed Dec 10, 2008 4:40 pm

Re: Transfer PS (Short, please critique)

Postby Danteshek » Thu Jun 30, 2011 12:14 am

This is terrible.

You do not have to explain why you attended your school.

Your race is irrelevant.

Explain in less than 200 words why you need to attend the new school.

kaiser
Posts: 2940
Joined: Mon May 09, 2011 11:34 pm

Re: Transfer PS (Short, please critique)

Postby kaiser » Thu Jun 30, 2011 12:21 am

Danteshek wrote:This is terrible.

You do not have to explain why you attended your school.

Your race is irrelevant.

Explain in less than 200 words why you need to attend the new school.


Really? I don't need to give the context of my present circumstances in order to show why the transfer is necessary for me? And isn't it better to at least be honest? I'm just a bit confused since this is my real reason for transferring, and I want them to know that.

I'm pretty excited for the public service programs that will allow me to become more active in the cultural affinity groups I've been involved in for a long time. You don't think its necessary to tie in my cultural background to show why those groups/programs mean something to me? Once again, I'm a bit confused since I'm drawn to these programs particularly because of my background.

I mean, I could easily make a 200 word essay that pretty much just says "my fiance got a job back home, so I want to come back home as well", but I was under the impression that they would want something more. I still don't quite understand what schools want in a transfer PS.

kaiser
Posts: 2940
Joined: Mon May 09, 2011 11:34 pm

Re: Transfer PS (Short, please critique)

Postby kaiser » Thu Jun 30, 2011 12:28 am

Anyone else agree/disagree that this statement is terrible? I mean, if it is that bad, I can certainly change things. I'd like to hear any other feedback people have.

sparty99
Posts: 1433
Joined: Sat Dec 11, 2010 8:41 pm

Re: Transfer PS (Short, please critique)

Postby sparty99 » Thu Jun 30, 2011 12:35 am

kaiser wrote:Anyone else agree/disagree that this statement is terrible? I mean, if it is that bad, I can certainly change things. I'd like to hear any other feedback people have.


This is poorly written.

Danteshek
Posts: 2172
Joined: Wed Dec 10, 2008 4:40 pm

Re: Transfer PS (Short, please critique)

Postby Danteshek » Thu Jun 30, 2011 12:36 am

sparty99 wrote:
kaiser wrote:Anyone else agree/disagree that this statement is terrible? I mean, if it is that bad, I can certainly change things. I'd like to hear any other feedback people have.


This is poorly written.


Agreed.

kaiser
Posts: 2940
Joined: Mon May 09, 2011 11:34 pm

Re: Transfer PS (Short, please critique)

Postby kaiser » Thu Jun 30, 2011 12:38 am

sparty99 wrote:
kaiser wrote:Anyone else agree/disagree that this statement is terrible? I mean, if it is that bad, I can certainly change things. I'd like to hear any other feedback people have.


This is poorly written.


In what way? Wordiness? Grammar? Organization?

Danteshek
Posts: 2172
Joined: Wed Dec 10, 2008 4:40 pm

Re: Transfer PS (Short, please critique)

Postby Danteshek » Thu Jun 30, 2011 12:44 am

kaiser wrote:
sparty99 wrote:
kaiser wrote:Anyone else agree/disagree that this statement is terrible? I mean, if it is that bad, I can certainly change things. I'd like to hear any other feedback people have.


This is poorly written.


In what way? Wordiness? Grammar? Organization?


In every way. Good writing is concise. Subject, verb, object. Your tranfer PS should only answer the question: "why this school?"
I would cut out all the crap about your fiance, except maybe to say that you need to transfer to be near him.
I would also cut out all the crap about your oh so special hispanic heritage. What are you expecting? A URM boost? It comes off as forced and a bit dishonest.
The only good reasons for transferring are (1) Academic, and (2) Location/Personal. Does the new school have a wide range of tax law classes you want to take? Does it have a particular strength in trial advocacy? Is there something special about the school that fits your profile unusually well?
Wanting to be part of some random community service organization that caters to your special interest group is NOT a good reason to transfer. Overall, your PS smacks of a 23 year old who does not know why she is in law school.

kaiser
Posts: 2940
Joined: Mon May 09, 2011 11:34 pm

Re: Transfer PS (Short, please critique)

Postby kaiser » Thu Jun 30, 2011 12:48 am

I guess my alternative is to use my original PS I used when I originally applied (which reads more as a diversity statement), and add in a section toward the end about the situation with my fiance, since that is my real reason for transferring, and the things I like about the new school. That PS recounts the research project I did on behalf of hispanic employees at the place I was working at. It shows how I became interested in employment law to begin with. People seemed to really like that older PS, so if this one doesn't seem good, I'm inclined to re-work my older one.

Danteshek
Posts: 2172
Joined: Wed Dec 10, 2008 4:40 pm

Re: Transfer PS (Short, please critique)

Postby Danteshek » Thu Jun 30, 2011 12:52 am

kaiser wrote:I guess my alternative is to use my original PS I used when I originally applied (which reads more as a diversity statement), and add in a section toward the end about the situation with my fiance, since that is my real reason for transferring, and the things I like about the new school. That PS recounts the research project I did on behalf of hispanic employees at the place I was working at. It shows how I became interested in employment law to begin with. People seemed to really like that older PS, so if this one doesn't seem good, I'm inclined to re-work my older one.


No. Do not send a diversity PS to a transfer school. They do not give a shit.

Tell the school why you want to attend that school. In 200 words or less.

kaiser
Posts: 2940
Joined: Mon May 09, 2011 11:34 pm

Re: Transfer PS (Short, please critique)

Postby kaiser » Thu Jun 30, 2011 12:57 am

Danteshek wrote:
kaiser wrote:I guess my alternative is to use my original PS I used when I originally applied (which reads more as a diversity statement), and add in a section toward the end about the situation with my fiance, since that is my real reason for transferring, and the things I like about the new school. That PS recounts the research project I did on behalf of hispanic employees at the place I was working at. It shows how I became interested in employment law to begin with. People seemed to really like that older PS, so if this one doesn't seem good, I'm inclined to re-work my older one.


No. Do not send a diversity PS to a transfer school. They do not give a shit.

Tell the school why you want to attend that school. In 200 words or less.


You said my reasons aren't good enough. My only reasons are:

1. I want to move back home to be with my fiance, and maximize job prospects in that region
2. This school was my dream school all along
3. The overall academics and employment prospects of the school are excellent, and the public service programs are secondary to that, though still very good. I am prospectively interested in one particular academic area, but its not like this school specializes in it or anything, so no particular academic program piques my interest. Its just the overall academic quality and job placement

I just don't know how to dress this up I guess

sparty99
Posts: 1433
Joined: Sat Dec 11, 2010 8:41 pm

Re: Transfer PS (Short, please critique)

Postby sparty99 » Thu Jun 30, 2011 1:04 am

kaiser wrote:
Danteshek wrote:
kaiser wrote:I guess my alternative is to use my original PS I used when I originally applied (which reads more as a diversity statement), and add in a section toward the end about the situation with my fiance, since that is my real reason for transferring, and the things I like about the new school. That PS recounts the research project I did on behalf of hispanic employees at the place I was working at. It shows how I became interested in employment law to begin with. People seemed to really like that older PS, so if this one doesn't seem good, I'm inclined to re-work my older one.


No. Do not send a diversity PS to a transfer school. They do not give a shit.

Tell the school why you want to attend that school. In 200 words or less.


You said my reasons aren't good enough. My only reasons are:

1. I want to move back home to be with my fiance, and maximize job prospects in that region
2. This school was my dream school all along
3. The overall academics and employment prospects of the school are excellent, and the public service programs are secondary to that, though still very good. I am prospectively interested in one particular academic area, but its not like this school specializes in it or anything, so no particular academic program piques my interest. Its just the overall academic quality and job placement

I just don't know how to dress this up I guess


You sound like a chump. Also, the school you are apply to is "everyone's dream school." I don't even get how you stand out, even if this is true. You talk more about your fiance then you do the school. This is your dream school? Proof it. How many people are going to this school to get better job placement? EVERYONE. Come on, man. You are asking for a seat at the table. You need to convince them that THIS IS THE ONLY SCHOOL FOR YOU. Talk about employment prospects, but back it up. You want to transfer to NYU so you can be close to wall street and firms like Latham & Watkins. Or you want to go to UCLA so you do entertainment law and there is no where else in the world where you can get that education. LIke a professor? Cite his work and show that your background/interest fit with what he is teaching. The fact that your fiance is in the area, should be your last reason! And it should be mentioned quickly!

kaiser
Posts: 2940
Joined: Mon May 09, 2011 11:34 pm

Re: Transfer PS (Short, please critique)

Postby kaiser » Thu Jun 30, 2011 1:08 am

I appreciate your advice and I will spend tomorrow thinking it over to come up with some more compelling reasons. Thank you.




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