Deleted - Many thanks to all commenters

(Personal Statement Examples, Advice, Critique, . . . )
nbj08
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Deleted - Many thanks to all commenters

Postby nbj08 » Fri Jul 01, 2011 2:33 am

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Last edited by nbj08 on Thu Jul 07, 2011 2:18 pm, edited 3 times in total.

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icecold3000
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Re: Personal Statement Draft

Postby icecold3000 » Fri Jul 01, 2011 9:29 am

Good start, but overall this feels disconnected, unfocused and forced. Additionally, you do a mini resume dump in paragraph 4. I think you should focus on one thing, instead of summing up 3 or 4 different, unrelated stories. Perhaps your advising of governor Rick Scott would make for an interesting PS which will be easy to tie into the "why law" question.

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rinkrat19
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Re: Personal Statement Draft

Postby rinkrat19 » Fri Jul 01, 2011 11:50 am

The first two paragraphs (providing solace after disasters) are totally disconnected from the next two (growing up poor taught me X + resume dump + I did political work)

I also agree with the above commenter; there is too much resume regurgitation in paragraph 4. Several sentences provide nothing more than what your resume presumably already provides.

There are at least three possible topics here, and by trying to hit them all, you don't do any of them justice.

I'm also not crazy about the bit about overcoming the intimidation of NYC...it makes you sound like a bumpkin who might freak out when faced with a subway turnstile. Moving to NYC might be scary (hell, it would be for me), but you shouldn't emphasize that unless it's an integral part of a story you're telling, and you can convincingly write about how you know you'll be up for the challenge.

CanadianWolf
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Re: Personal Statement Draft

Postby CanadianWolf » Fri Jul 01, 2011 11:57 am

I enjoyed reading your personal statement. It is effective. It might be more effective, however, if you delete the specifics in the fourth paragraph & the pandering in the fifth (i.e., mentioning a particular law professor's name & lecture).

nbj08
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Re: Personal Statement Draft

Postby nbj08 » Fri Jul 01, 2011 12:03 pm

Thanks to everyone for the feedback.

To narrow the scope of the PS, which topic would be best to focus on? Disaster relief, growing up poor, or a specific story while doing political work?

My intuition points to the third option, as it can tie into the "why law" question, as icecold pointed out.

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rinkrat19
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Re: Personal Statement Draft

Postby rinkrat19 » Fri Jul 01, 2011 12:09 pm

nbj08 wrote:Thanks to everyone for the feedback.

To narrow the scope of the PS, which topic would be best to focus on? Disaster relief, growing up poor, or a specific story while doing political work?

My intuition points to the third option, as it can tie into the "why law" question, as icecold pointed out.

Any one of those has potential. I personally am intrigued by the disaster relief one, just because it's a topic I hadn't run across before. It's also the only one you really started to flesh out with anecdotal description. The other two were still just "I did this/this happened". But either of them could work just fine, too.

You might try pounding out a few paragraphs on each topic, not worrying about proper intro/conclusion, to see if one starts lending itself easily to writing a compelling story.

kublaikahn
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Re: Personal Statement Draft

Postby kublaikahn » Fri Jul 01, 2011 1:06 pm

Spend another 10-20 hours and I'll give you the help you then deserve. You writing is clear and concise, but your theme is hazy and poorly suppported at this point (that's why commenters call it disconnected).

Here's where I would go: Explain your background and how the dichotomy gave you the wisdom/understanding that you could not get living only on one end of the spectrum. This gave you the ability to empathize with other people facing tough times because you learned that we are all fighting a fierce battle. Then tie this into why you would be an asset for your classmates, your LS, and the legal community at large.

nbj08
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Re: Personal Statement Draft

Postby nbj08 » Fri Jul 01, 2011 1:15 pm

kublaikahn wrote:Spend another 10-20 hours and I'll give you the help you then deserve. You writing is clear and concise, but your theme is hazy and poorly suppported at this point (that's why commenters call it disconnected).

Here's where I would go: Explain your background and how the dichotomy gave you the wisdom/understanding that you could not get living only on one end of the spectrum. This gave you the ability to empathize with other people facing tough times because you learned that we are all fighting a fierce battle. Then tie this into why you would be an asset for your classmates, your LS, and the legal community at large.



I'd like to incorporate the Plato quote "Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle" because it's what I say to myself when I need a reality check. But it seems cliche and lame to put it in writing. How do adcomms view quotes? To me it shows poor writing.

I really appreciate your advice, and I'll be sure to dedicate the time this weekend. I'll have a better product for you in the next few days.
Last edited by nbj08 on Fri Jul 01, 2011 2:18 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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icecold3000
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Re: Personal Statement Draft

Postby icecold3000 » Fri Jul 01, 2011 1:44 pm

How do adcomms view quotes? To me it shows poor writing.


You are correct. It is probably a good idea to avoid quotes unless it is extremely important to your point at hand. Use your own words, and maybe just use the quote to draw inspiration.

kublaikahn
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Re: Personal Statement Draft

Postby kublaikahn » Fri Jul 01, 2011 2:06 pm

nbj08 wrote:
kublaikahn wrote:Spend another 10-20 hours and I'll give you the help you then deserve. You writing is clear and concise, but your theme is hazy and poorly suppported at this point (that's why commenters call it disconnected).

Here's where I would go: Explain your background and how the dichotomy gave you the wisdom/understanding that you could not get living only on one end of the spectrum. This gave you the ability to empathize with other people facing tough times because you learned that we are all fighting a fierce battle. Then tie this into why you would be an asset for your classmates, your LS, and the legal community at large.



I'd like to incorporate the Plato quote "Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle" because it's what I say to myself when I need a reality check. But it seems cliche and lame to put it in writing. How do adcomms view quotes? To me it shows poor writing.

I really appreciate your advise, and I'll be sure to dedicate the time this weekend. I'll have a better product for you in the next few days.


I don't think it will hurt as long as you don't start with it. But you don't need it. Just use your own words and people who understand the reference in the first place will get it. You won't impress people with the knowledge that you understand you are paraphrasing Plato, but you will get credit for applying that knowledge.

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l'aviadora
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Re: Personal Statement Draft

Postby l'aviadora » Fri Jul 01, 2011 3:18 pm

I like the individual stories that you have going. All of them could lead to a powerful personal statement if focused on individually. I particularly liked the one about your financial status growing up. I think it provides an interesting opportunity to explore how that affected you and shaped your goals.

nbj08
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Re: Personal Statement Draft

Postby nbj08 » Tue Jul 05, 2011 12:54 am

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Last edited by nbj08 on Thu Jul 07, 2011 2:16 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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MrBain_
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Re: Personal Statement Draft

Postby MrBain_ » Tue Jul 05, 2011 1:23 am

1st of all: imo using the term humbled once is too many, let alone three times
2nd of all: the second paragraph doesn't sound odd at all
3rd of all: I am questioning you mothers "integrity" when she allows her son to live with his "impoverished father in a smoke-filled mobile home off a dirt road," unless, of course, your living situation was your decision.

oh and 4th of all: Philosophy FTW!

nbj08
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Re: Personal Statement Draft

Postby nbj08 » Tue Jul 05, 2011 1:35 am

MrBain_ wrote:3rd of all: I am questioning you mothers "integrity" when she allows her son to live with his "impoverished father in a smoke-filled mobile home off a dirt road," unless, of course, your living situation was your decision.




Was a rough situation, wasn't really her choice. Do I need to make that explicit?

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MrBain_
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Re: Personal Statement Draft

Postby MrBain_ » Tue Jul 05, 2011 1:46 am

nbj08 wrote: Was a rough situation, wasn't really her choice. Do I need to make that explicit?


A quick intro such as "due to situations beyond her control" or something or the other would be nice. It just seemed to imply that your mother was too determined and focused to raise her son. <-- not saying that this is the case at all since i know nothing about your situation.

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icecold3000
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Re: Update: Personal Statement Draft

Postby icecold3000 » Tue Jul 05, 2011 1:48 pm

1. The introduction should be in the past tense.

2. Reconsider writing that law school is a means for your future political career.




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