Please offer a brutal assessment of my personal statement

(Personal Statement Examples, Advice, Critique, . . . )
ray1411
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Please offer a brutal assessment of my personal statement

Postby ray1411 » Thu Aug 11, 2011 7:18 am

This is a rough draft...I need honest feedback on its strengths and weaknesses.

Thanks in advance for your assistance.

Surviving childhood and adolescence was not a herculean feat, by any measure, yet experiencing life’s journey was a daunting challenge, a challenge I met with immeasurable fervor. Born in New York to two proletariats, an American mother who was an adjudicator for The United States Postal Service, and a father who immigrated to The United States for greener pastures as a train conductor for the New York City Mass Transit Authority was neither a life filled with abject poverty nor affluence.

I received my elementary schooling at Holy Family Elementary School, a place where I nimbly, and happily, learned to straddle two worlds. One world inculcated my parent’s cultural mores, while the other introduced new traditions from totally different backgrounds, such as Jewish, Italian and Irish. This is where I learned one of my first lessons on selflessness: Donating money to Third World nations, volunteering for food and clothes drives, and selling magazine subscriptions for local charities. These lessons were heuristic in nature and undoubtedly magnanimous. Additionally, weekend math classes at Southshore High School, attending lectures, science fairs, and annual trips to specialized camps played a huge role in my social and mental development.

Then in 1989, my mother was offered a job transfer to either Indiana or California, so she uprooted her two sons and marked California as our final destination. Here is where I reevaluated my concept of community. This “college town” was a community, but a community, mostly, populated with citizens making a “pit-stop” on their way to brighter horizons. So, interconnectedness existed, however, many were interconnected for the most pressing “greater good.” Meaning, simply furnishing donations or doling was not as satisfying for this crowd, looking to physically change the world. A theme repeatedly recited at my alma mater Berkeley High School, where I enrolled in programs for tutoring elementary students, conducted conflict resolution meetings, and handed out free meals to the homeless. All the aforementioned experiences combined with my academic achievement and extracurricular activities—honors program, Student of the Month award, advanced placement courses, theater roles, and athletic events—and an employment history culminated into my acceptance to several University of California institutions.

Fault my myopic view of education or being bereft of direction, especially seeing that neither parent graduated college, I prematurely decided to forego my freshman year to secure employment. The plan was to aid my ailing mother, secure gainful employment, nurture my entrepreneurial spirit, and then attend college. But, much to my chagrin, a flexible work schedule, necessary for attending college, was not a concern for many employers. So as time progressed, I started to consider college as less of a requirement for success, much in the vein of the former chairman of the New York Stock Exchange, Richard Grasso, or journalist and news anchor, Peter Jennings. Not to ruefully reflect on my decision, but while continuously in search of advancement opportunities (mainly supervisory positions), I realized one truth: Job security rested heavily on an applicant’s educational achievement, and no, a high school diploma alone no longer curried favor. Therefore, I decided to pursue a degree in Business Administration with a concentration in Corporate Finance, as well as a Masters of Business Administration with a concentration in Finance. Upon reentry, I made the Dean’s List, actively participated in campus organizations, and then I jump-started a youth outreach program, volunteered for Red Cross and Local churches, and continued to work in my field, all while maintaining a family of four.

Throughout my entire life, I have dedicated myself to one goal: To be of service as an asset and not a liability to society. With me, personally, there are no sanctimonious ideals; I am neither overly malleable nor an ideologue. Even though I have read many of the required textbooks for first-year law students, I know I am not an omniscient legal scholar. As a matter of fact, there are moments when I remain muddled in the thought of “Why Law School”? Why should I become an attorney? Where will I, a non-traditional student, “fit in” as well as inject a new, refreshing perspective? My answer: Law school is a second chance of sorts to complete my quest of fitting in with a clan of professionals with the temerity to specialize in operating as agents of transmutation.
Last edited by ray1411 on Thu Aug 11, 2011 8:20 am, edited 2 times in total.

Faceplant
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Re: Please offer a brutal assessment of my personal statement

Postby Faceplant » Thu Aug 11, 2011 8:09 am

You can't use the word "proletariat" and leave out the word "bourgeois". Find a way to work the word "bourgeois" in there and get back to us.

ray1411
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Re: Please offer a brutal assessment of my personal statement

Postby ray1411 » Thu Aug 11, 2011 8:11 am

Faceplant wrote:You can't use the word "proletariat" and leave out the word "bourgeois". Find a way to work the word "bourgeois" in there and get back to us.



Thank you for the feedback. I will incorporate your suggestions.

MattLiv12
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Re: Please offer a brutal assessment of my personal statement

Postby MattLiv12 » Thu Aug 11, 2011 8:41 am

"Poor Faulkner. Does he really think big emotions come from big words? He thinks I don’t know the ten-dollar words. I know them all right. But there are older and simpler and better words, and those are the ones I use." — Ernest Hemingway

I think it is a bit bombastic and comes off as trying too hard to sound intelligent. Cut out some of the superfluous adjectives and it would be much more powerful.

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PurplePirate
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Re: Please offer a brutal assessment of my personal statement

Postby PurplePirate » Thu Aug 11, 2011 8:44 am

I'm with the previous poster on this one. Your language seems forced. There's no natural flow.

ray1411
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Re: Please offer a brutal assessment of my personal statement

Postby ray1411 » Thu Aug 11, 2011 9:07 am

MattLiv12 wrote:"Poor Faulkner. Does he really think big emotions come from big words? He thinks I don’t know the ten-dollar words. I know them all right. But there are older and simpler and better words, and those are the ones I use." — Ernest Hemingway

I think it is a bit bombastic and comes off as trying too hard to sound intelligent. Cut out some of the superfluous adjectives and it would be much more powerful.



I know the quote, and I found it enterntaining as well. I love Hemingway.

I simply thought complexity equaled scholarship. I will rework or delete unnecessary language.

Thanks! Sincerely.

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Kilpatrick
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Re: Please offer a brutal assessment of my personal statement

Postby Kilpatrick » Thu Aug 11, 2011 9:16 am

I was going to make a list of words you needed to take out, like proletariats, inculcated and transmutation. But the truth is you just need to throw this whole thing out and start over. This isn't a personal statement, this is your whole life story/narrative of your resume.

Find one thing to focus on, not the whole boring story from being born middle class to deciding to go to law school.You say you 'jump started a youth program.' Just write your whole PS about that and what you learned and shit. Or volunteering at the Red Cross. Stuff like that.

And when you do rewrite it, focus more on telling a good story, not using big words. Even if that's how you normally write/talk, nobody wants to read it. Definitely change or take out the last line about why you want to go to law school. It's awful. I'm in law school and I don't even know what it means. And definitely don't say that you've already read "many of the required textbooks" because even if that's true it makes you sound like a giant douche. Your personal statement is supposed to show something that can't be found on your resume, something that makes you sound like an interesting person. Nobody wants to be around people who read law school textbooks for fun.

bbalcrzy23
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Re: Please offer a brutal assessment of my personal statement

Postby bbalcrzy23 » Thu Aug 11, 2011 9:25 am

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Last edited by bbalcrzy23 on Wed Jun 20, 2012 12:36 pm, edited 1 time in total.

ray1411
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Re: Please offer a brutal assessment of my personal statement

Postby ray1411 » Thu Aug 11, 2011 9:50 am

Kilpatrick wrote:I was going to make a list of words you needed to take out, like proletariats, inculcated and transmutation. But the truth is you just need to throw this whole thing out and start over. This isn't a personal statement, this is your whole life story/narrative of your resume.

Find one thing to focus on, not the whole boring story from being born middle class to deciding to go to law school.You say you 'jump started a youth program.' Just write your whole PS about that and what you learned and shit. Or volunteering at the Red Cross. Stuff like that.

And when you do rewrite it, focus more on telling a good story, not using big words. Even if that's how you normally write/talk, nobody wants to read it. Definitely change or take out the last line about why you want to go to law school. It's awful. I'm in law school and I don't even know what it means. And definitely don't say that you've already read "many of the required textbooks" because even if that's true it makes you sound like a giant douche. Your personal statement is supposed to show something that can't be found on your resume, something that makes you sound like an interesting person. Nobody wants to be around people who read law school textbooks for fun.



I sincerely appreciate your honesty. Seriously. I will definitely delete the last line. And the only reason I decided to write my "life story" is becuase Im a nontraditional student with years of work experience. Plus, Kaplan advisors advised students like myself to make a chronological PS.

Once again, thanks.

And for anyone else, keep the feedback coming. Shoot, include a few curse words if you care.

freestallion
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Re: Please offer a brutal assessment of my personal statement

Postby freestallion » Thu Aug 11, 2011 9:54 am

Yeah, I have to agree with others. The language sounds forced and convoluted. It sounds like you're in the 1930s or something, for some reason.

Just simplify the story and make it sound like a narrative. Simplifying the language will also make it more interesting.

Don't use the word "third world" and definitely don't capitalize it. Maybe nitpicky, but "poorer nations" is probably better. Third world has a negative connotation.

Finally, it sounds like a resume or a chronological account of your life. I don't think that's what they are looking for. It would be better to choose one theme and then illustrate it maybe through a particular incident or experience you underwent. Don't tell us your life story year by year!

Choose an anecdote that highlights a theme, and elaborate on this theme.

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cinephile
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Re: Please offer a brutal assessment of my personal statement

Postby cinephile » Thu Aug 11, 2011 9:59 am

Just a general view, it doesn't convey what you would want your personal statement to convey. It's not so much a time line of your life. If you did want to go through various experiences in your childhood, and how they affected you, you'd have to change a couple of things. First, you'd have to limit yourself to one or two anecdotes, otherwise it becomes difficult to follow and you're not able to fully develop these examples. The second thing you'd need to do is talk more about how these things actually affected you. You state what happened to you or to your family, but that makes you a passive object - you want to be a subject here. Also, you need to work on show, don't tell. You say, for example, weekend math classes, science fairs, etc. played a huge role in your social and mental development. How? Show us that, describe them in detail and how it changed your outlook. Overall, there's just too much going on here, too much like a resume -- less is more.

ETA: Don't write the chronological essay. I'm also a non-trad, but I used an example from my job to launch my PS and ignored everything that came before that.
Last edited by cinephile on Thu Aug 11, 2011 1:53 pm, edited 1 time in total.

JDcandidate
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Re: Please offer a brutal assessment of my personal statement

Postby JDcandidate » Thu Aug 11, 2011 10:13 am

Kilpatrick hit the nail on the head. Luckily, acknowledging that it's a rough draft makes it easier to throw it out and start fresh.

I also struggled with my personal statement when I was applying to law school, and ended up writing a series of different statements about a series of different topics. Each statement got progressively narrower in focus, to the point where the one I submitted had nothing to do with law.

Chronicling your life isn't personal, and using extravagant language only further distances the reader from any connection to your writing. You need to focus on something that (compared to what you have now) feels myopic. Focus on a formative experience - really isolate the temporal scope of it - and then draw out a theme or two from that experience and how it molded you into who you are. So, for example, if you went with something like volunteering, you could focus on the development of a relationship you had with a certain person or group of people, and how that relationship was formative in your life. Really, it can be small stuff in scope. If you're a vegan, for example, but were a guest in a foreign country where the host - maybe a poor family who you were staying with - served some meat delicacy in honor of your being there, and you had some huge mental/emotional battle about what to do, but had to decide quickly, that would be a good topic - explaining whether you actually took a bite or not, why, and what it taught you. (Mine was not this). Isolate the topic, and then run with the theme.

Law pivots around communication. Everyone in law school and anyone reading your statement has those big words in their vocabularies to use at the appropriate time, if there ever is an appropriate time. But nobody would use more than one or two of them in a piece of writing. It comes across distant and disingenuous. So try to step back from communicating intelligence (that's what your GPA and LSAT are for), and focus more on narrating a single experience that was actually personal to you.

Your last paragraph is what the heart of your statement currently is, but its really just an attempt to turn water into wine. At most it says your lazy and didn't want to commit to reflecting on some experience of value in your life, and at least it says your a bland person. Saying you are dedicated to avoiding jail and volunteering does not offer a refreshing perspective in law school, or in daily life really. Like Kilpatrick said, this isn't a personal statement. Obviously there is more to who you are, so mull it over and choose something personal to you.

All of this only applies if a quality statement is important to you. If it isn't, which is the case for many people who get into great schools, just pump the breaks on the language.

Lastly, and probably least importantly to what you are asking - I'm surprised no one on TLS has mentioned it yet, but job security is probably not something you want to cite as a factor in your decision to pursue a legal degree.

MumofCad
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Re: Please offer a brutal assessment of my personal statement

Postby MumofCad » Thu Aug 11, 2011 10:18 am

I agree with the comments above. It looks like you wrote this with a thesaurus in hand. It comes off as forced and insecure, like you are trying too hard to be intelligent. Just be honest and sincere. It will be much more powerful.

My second issue is all the listings of your accomplishments. I have been repeatedly promised that they will actually read your resume and are very adverse to having to slog through information they already know in your PS. Your awards and achievements should be there. They don't really care about stuff you did in high school or elementary school.

I think especially since you are a non-trad, you should not waste your PS on experiences so far in your past and really irrelevant to your success in law school. Unless you can draw something meaningful from them, that you can then track in its impact on decisions you made in college/career, it has no place in your statement. Yes, you need to answer the "why law school" question and give them a perspective on why you are changing courses. You can include a particularly insightful high school experience that drove your decisions in the future, but I don't see that connection here.

I feel for you btw. It is a challenge when you have alot of life experience to argue in favor that law school is the right move now. I have my reasons and I know this is the right move for me, but conveying it in an attractive way to an unknown adcomm is challenging. I'm struggling with that too, but I think you've gone in the wrong direction with this particular statement. Law school is going to be interested in those professional accomplishments you brush over. What did you learn in them? What did they lack? How does law school fit into those revelations?

You clearly have solid writing skills - you can do better if you change the substance.

ra25093
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Re: Please offer a brutal assessment of my personal statement

Postby ra25093 » Thu Aug 11, 2011 10:19 am

I typed up a nice, long post, but when I hit submit I had been logged out for some reason and lost it, so I'm just gonna touch on my main points, many of which you've already heard.

-You're using vocabulary in a way that makes it look like it's all you have to impress people with. I'm sure that's not true. Throw away the thesaurus, because it doesn't help.

-When you do use ten-dollar words, use them right. "Proletariat" is a collective noun, like "luggage." "Proletarian" is the singular, like "suitcase." You didn't put your clothes in two luggages, and you weren't born to two proletariats.

-The whole thing is disconnected. You lived your life. You want to go to law school. You talk about the former, then the latter comes out of left field. It doesn't follow from the information you've given.

-The advice I've heard everywhere is you do not write a biography for a PS. All this is information that's probably elsewhere in your application. It makes for a dull read. Unless your numbers are absolutely stellar for where you're applying, you need to interest the adcomm members.

-You put commas, quotation marks, and hyphens where they don't belong. A good style guide should help you out there..

-You use a lot of extraneous text in some places, and leave things unexplained elsewhere. There's no reason to put the underlined part in "This “college town” was a community, but a community, mostly, populated [...]" and when you say things like "an employment history" you should give relevant examples. Assuming, of course, that you even keep those parts.

-You spend a lot of time on high school and college when it's far in the past. You're talking about attending HS (calling a high school an "alma mater" seems pretentious, by the way) in 1989. That was 22 years ago. You spend maybe three sentences vaguely referring to accomplishments since then. I wouldn't even bother talking about things more than half your lifetime in the past unless they're extremely relevant to your decision to pursue law. What's happened since?

Basically, scrap it and start over. What made you decide to go for law? What's interesting about you? What influenced you most in life? Start from at least one of those, and use it to tell a story.

ray1411
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Re: Please offer a brutal assessment of my personal statement

Postby ray1411 » Thu Aug 11, 2011 10:49 am

ra25093 wrote:I typed up a nice, long post, but when I hit submit I had been logged out for some reason and lost it, so I'm just gonna touch on my main points, many of which you've already heard.

-You're using vocabulary in a way that makes it look like it's all you have to impress people with. I'm sure that's not true. Throw away the thesaurus, because it doesn't help.

-When you do use ten-dollar words, use them right. "Proletariat" is a collective noun, like "luggage." "Proletarian" is the singular, like "suitcase." You didn't put your clothes in two luggages, and you weren't born to two proletariats.

-The whole thing is disconnected. You lived your life. You want to go to law school. You talk about the former, then the latter comes out of left field. It doesn't follow from the information you've given.

-The advice I've heard everywhere is you do not write a biography for a PS. All this is information that's probably elsewhere in your application. It makes for a dull read. Unless your numbers are absolutely stellar for where you're applying, you need to interest the adcomm members.

-You put commas, quotation marks, and hyphens where they don't belong. A good style guide should help you out there..

-You use a lot of extraneous text in some places, and leave things unexplained elsewhere. There's no reason to put the underlined part in "This “college town” was a community, but a community, mostly, populated [...]" and when you say things like "an employment history" you should give relevant examples. Assuming, of course, that you even keep those parts.

-You spend a lot of time on high school and college when it's far in the past. You're talking about attending HS (calling a high school an "alma mater" seems pretentious, by the way) in 1989. That was 22 years ago. You spend maybe three sentences vaguely referring to accomplishments since then. I wouldn't even bother talking about things more than half your lifetime in the past unless they're extremely relevant to your decision to pursue law. What's happened since?

Basically, scrap it and start over. What made you decide to go for law? What's interesting about you? What influenced you most in life? Start from at least one of those, and use it to tell a story.



Sidenote: I didnt go to high school in 1989. I was still a child when I moved to California.

Faceplant
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Re: Please offer a brutal assessment of my personal statement

Postby Faceplant » Thu Aug 11, 2011 10:52 am

In my opinion (based off my own personal experience and the personal statements of 4 friends who are attending law school or will soon be attending) you can keep your personal statement exactly how it is and still get into a great school if you have the right numbers. If you are trying to get into YHSCCMB then it still needs some work regardless of your lsat & gpa. All the other schools really only care about your numbers and if you're at or above both medians, don't sweat the PS and send in this draft.

If, however, you are reaching for a school that is above your LSAT & GPA range, you will need to work on the PS some more.

ray1411
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Re: Please offer a brutal assessment of my personal statement

Postby ray1411 » Thu Aug 11, 2011 12:05 pm

I truly appreciate everyones input. Sincerely.

Again, keep it coming. I love brutal honesty.

CanadianWolf
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Re: Please offer a brutal assessment of my personal statement

Postby CanadianWolf » Thu Aug 11, 2011 12:08 pm

Although your personal statement needs some revision, it is interesting. My favorite sentence: "With me, personally, there are no sanctimonious ideals; I am neither overly malleable, nor an ideologue."

As written, your essay contains some engaging thoughts & insights that show you to be kind, thoughtful, intelligent & mature--yet still questioning & willing to grow; however, many of these qualities become muddled by the lack of fluidity & the use of complex vocabulary.

My concern is that in revising your writing that you will dispose of the gems & retain some of the improvable.
If asked to recommend only three changes to your personal statement, then I would suggest:

1) Changing the final phrase "...agents of transmutation." to "...agents of change." or, in a bit of a slightly sarcastic mode matching the tone of "temerity", as "agents of justice."

2) Reword your claim in the final paragraph that you have "read" many required law school textbooks to "having been exposed to" many such publications.

3) Not much else because, even through rehashing one's resume in essay form is not recommended for law school personal statements, you do offer considerable insight into your view of the world & your role in that universe. The thoughts shared in your writing & the manner of expression are entertaining & refreshing. Clearly, your law school personal statement will be viewed as different & as one portraying intelligence & reflection. And--equally important--as an intelligent & reflective person open to learning. And one of the most important lessons that you will learn is that the effective practice of law usually requires a more clear & succinct form of expression. But, one's personal statement is not part of the practice of law.

P.S. Thanks to you & to Goggle's online dictionary, I now know the definition of "heuristic".

thederangedwang
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Re: Please offer a brutal assessment of my personal statement

Postby thederangedwang » Thu Aug 11, 2011 9:01 pm

CanadianWolf wrote:Although your personal statement needs some revision, it is interesting. My favorite sentence: "With me, personally, there are no sanctimonious ideals; I am neither overly malleable, nor an ideologue."

As written, your essay contains some engaging thoughts & insights that show you to be kind, thoughtful, intelligent & mature--yet still questioning & willing to grow; however, many of these qualities become muddled by the lack of fluidity & the use of complex vocabulary.

My concern is that in revising your writing that you will dispose of the gems & retain some of the improvable.
If asked to recommend only three changes to your personal statement, then I would suggest:

1) Changing the final phrase "...agents of transmutation." to "...agents of change." or, in a bit of a slightly sarcastic mode matching the tone of "temerity", as "agents of justice."

2) Reword your claim in the final paragraph that you have "read" many required law school textbooks to "having been exposed to" many such publications.

3) Not much else because, even through rehashing one's resume in essay form is not recommended for law school personal statements, you do offer considerable insight into your view of the world & your role in that universe. The thoughts shared in your writing & the manner of expression are entertaining & refreshing. Clearly, your law school personal statement will be viewed as different & as one portraying intelligence & reflection. And--equally important--as an intelligent & reflective person open to learning. And one of the most important lessons that you will learn is that the effective practice of law usually requires a more clear & succinct form of expression. But, one's personal statement is not part of the practice of law.

P.S. Thanks to you & to Goggle's online dictionary, I now know the definition of "heuristic".

'

Canadianwolf, I usually agree with you on ps review but I am going to have strongly disagree here.

As the above posters mentioned, this ps is more of an abridged biography of the applicants life. There's no strong linking theme other than "I have done all of these really nice things, therefore, since law school is nice, I also want to do it"

In addition, the language is really really bad. If you have to look up a word, it is a really bad sign. Besides, the word proletariat does not belong in any essay unless you are applying to be part of the Karl Marx fan club.

to the OP: I would advise you to start over. The language is florid, unnatural, and screams of "look at the way I use big words and throw out names of famous people...don't know them? Well that just means I am very well versed and as a result, you should admit me because I am smarter and more knowledgeable than you are"

You are not going to win many adcomms over with this implication.

Please take away all politically charged terms like proletariat (who knows, your ad comm reader might be Hayek's great great grandson)

Don't know who Hayek is? Well go look him up (do you get my point here?)

Right now you sound like a snob

kublaikahn
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Re: Please offer a brutal assessment of my personal statement

Postby kublaikahn » Fri Aug 12, 2011 3:46 am

My read is you passed on the traditional pathway to college when you were young and now have lots of regret. You own that "failure" and want a second chance. You are most disappointed that you do not get to leverage your intellect and that you do not swim in a larger body of water. If I were you and you agree with this statement, I would write that PS.

I feel like you are guessing at the political stripes of the adcom and attempting to sublimanally drop the idea that you are on the same sheet of music. True or not, I don't think it will work. What you have put forth is a telling rather than showing of your public interest bona fides. If I am off base, please disregard.

This PS comes across as a bit superior because you use big words but poor sentence and paragraph structure. In addition I feel almost as though you are lecturing the reader based on your past experiences. In addition, as I mention, the writing is not great. Many sentences are really just fragmants. You lack good transitions. You fail to state your thesis early in the draft. You often rely on gerunds and uncommon sentence structure to actually hide your point, as if to test the reader. This is not a good idea, IMO, for a PS.

shoeshine
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Re: Please offer a brutal assessment of my personal statement

Postby shoeshine » Fri Aug 12, 2011 3:51 am

MattLiv12 wrote:I think it is a bit bombastic and comes off as trying too hard to sound intelligent. Cut out some of the superfluous adjectives and it would be much more powerful.

ray1411
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Re: Please offer a brutal assessment of my personal statement

Postby ray1411 » Fri Aug 12, 2011 7:33 am

I know my PS may come across as snobbish and pretentious to a degree. I suppose that's due to my attempt to create image in the adcomms head, an image of maturity and clear-mindedness. But, in actuality, I'm one of the most down-to-earth people you would ever meet.

Either way, once again, thank you for the feedback. And if there is anything, please to not hesitate to share.

thederangedwang
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Re: Please offer a brutal assessment of my personal statement

Postby thederangedwang » Fri Aug 12, 2011 8:55 am

ray1411 wrote:I know my PS may come across as snobbish and pretentious to a degree. I suppose that's due to my attempt to create image in the adcomms head, an image of maturity and clear-mindedness. But, in actuality, I'm one of the most down-to-earth people you would ever meet.

Either way, once again, thank you for the feedback. And if there is anything, please to not hesitate to share.


I should point out that your personal statement is the only place where an adcomm can learn about your personality. So even if you are the most down to earth and humble person ever, your ps suggests otherwise.

They are not going to give you the benefit of the doubt. If you want to show how down-to earth you are, show it in the ps

ray1411
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Re: Please offer a brutal assessment of my personal statement

Postby ray1411 » Fri Aug 12, 2011 12:57 pm

thederangedwang wrote:
ray1411 wrote:I know my PS may come across as snobbish and pretentious to a degree. I suppose that's due to my attempt to create image in the adcomms head, an image of maturity and clear-mindedness. But, in actuality, I'm one of the most down-to-earth people you would ever meet.

Either way, once again, thank you for the feedback. And if there is anything, please to not hesitate to share.


I should point out that your personal statement is the only place where an adcomm can learn about your personality. So even if you are the most down to earth and humble person ever, your ps suggests otherwise.

They are not going to give you the benefit of the doubt. If you want to show how down-to earth you are, show it in the ps



Will do! I plan on scrapping major parts and restructuring the parts I consider gems. I just need an anecdote or two.

Thanks! I really appreciate everyones suggestions.

CanadianWolf
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Re: Please offer a brutal assessment of my personal statement

Postby CanadianWolf » Fri Aug 12, 2011 1:46 pm

OP: Your personal statement needs revision, not condemnation.. Try to start by making a few minor changes; for example, change the wording in the final paragraph as I suggested earlier in order to reduce the suggestion of snobbery. Then, carefully examine your writing for any sentence fragments.
As is, your personal statement has value for attention-getting originality. Additionally, this PS does share a lot about your experiences, values & outlook. Personal statements should be personal & yours is very personal as reflected both by your insightful background information & word choice. Some find your words off-putting, others confusing, while interesting to others.
Start with small revisions by viewing your current version simply as a first draft. Try not to crush your personality by just producing another run-of-the-mill essay; try to keep the refreshing originality without appearing elitist.

P.S. In many instances, personal statements are used as tie-breakers among equally qualified applicants. Based on this draft, your writing is almost certain to garner the attention of the admissions committee.




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