Rough 1st draft

(Personal Statement Examples, Advice, Critique, . . . )
jsvaughn
Posts: 181
Joined: Fri Jul 01, 2011 10:52 am

Rough 1st draft

Postby jsvaughn » Thu Sep 15, 2011 11:20 am

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Last edited by jsvaughn on Tue Oct 22, 2013 10:34 pm, edited 1 time in total.

jsvaughn
Posts: 181
Joined: Fri Jul 01, 2011 10:52 am

Re: Rough 1st draft

Postby jsvaughn » Thu Sep 15, 2011 2:43 pm

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Last edited by jsvaughn on Tue Oct 22, 2013 10:35 pm, edited 1 time in total.

CanadianWolf
Posts: 10439
Joined: Wed Mar 24, 2010 4:54 pm

Re: Rough 1st draft

Postby CanadianWolf » Thu Sep 15, 2011 3:13 pm

Although not well written, your personal statement essay is convincing.

jsvaughn
Posts: 181
Joined: Fri Jul 01, 2011 10:52 am

Re: Rough 1st draft

Postby jsvaughn » Thu Sep 15, 2011 7:02 pm

^thanks, this is about the 26th time ive written it. I finally had all the ideas in my head that I wanted to say so I just rushed through to get it typed, so i know that it isnt anywhere close to being put together properly but i think I finally have the message that i want to convey

jsvaughn
Posts: 181
Joined: Fri Jul 01, 2011 10:52 am

Re: Rough 1st draft

Postby jsvaughn » Tue Sep 20, 2011 11:21 am

CanadianWolf wrote:Although not well written, your personal statement essay is convincing.


Any specific areas to improve?

jcarsen
Posts: 11
Joined: Tue Sep 20, 2011 11:45 am

Re: Rough 1st draft

Postby jcarsen » Tue Sep 20, 2011 11:51 am

My sense is that you've got two separate statements going on here--one on coaching, and one on your work at the DA's office; there isn't much of a transition between the two halves. I would recommend choosing one topic or the other and expanding it into a full statement--probably the DA half, as it seems you're more passionate about it.

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Good luck with your application!

alleg2010
Posts: 6
Joined: Thu Sep 08, 2011 11:27 pm

Re: Rough 1st draft

Postby alleg2010 » Tue Sep 20, 2011 10:38 pm

Just my opinion, so take it for what it's worth...

I agree that it might make more sense to focus in on your job with the DA. It just seems jarring to go from a feel-good intro on coaching into an intense piece on prosecution and child molestation. A journalist would probably say that you're "burying the lead" by starting off with something that is of secondary importance and only indirectly related to the main point of the statement.

I'm sure you have more than enough material from your job experience to put together a good PS and tell a compelling story. Go with it. How many other applicants have worked behind the scenes in helping to prosecute a child molester? Probably not a lot. But I'd venture a guess that more than a few will end up writing about their experiences in coaching, mentoring, etc.

You've got something unique. Play it up.

I will say, though, that I don't really like the idea of boxing yourself into the ADA job. Is it really the only career that you would be proud to have? I like that you come across as passionate about children and victims of abuse, but there are several other ways that you could apply your law degree and still make an impact in those cases or on the issue more broadly.

It made me wonder whether you would be able to sit through all of the standard classes - that probably have very little to do with that issue or with prosecution in general - without feeling bored and uninterested. And I don't mean that to imply that you couldn't or wouldn't... just that you may want to strike a better balance between showing your passion for that particular area and also coming off as open-minded and ready for new experiences.

Not sure if any of that will help, but those were my initial reactions. Either way, you've got a great story to work with.

dani_burhop
Posts: 64
Joined: Wed Sep 21, 2011 5:14 pm

Re: Rough 1st draft

Postby dani_burhop » Thu Sep 22, 2011 12:10 pm

Hmmm. Both good topics. Do you already have a DS? The coaching story could possibly go there.

Sports, and strong accomplishments in sports, work very well in JD personal statements - the reader walks away with a real sense of commitment and accomplishment, and believes that you can rise to a challenge. It is also the stronger story here. The ADA story is of course directly relevant. It is a hard call!

I don't think you can keep both in the same essay, although I've seen stranger PS bedfellows. How do these topics relate, other than your ability to fully commit to whatever task is at hand?

One note: try not to use the word passion, or only use it once. Passion should be felt through the contents of the story, not directly stated for the reader. They'll feel true passion; saying it a bunch of times alters the tone of the essay in a strident way; it's a sort of "believe me! believe me!" way of delivering info. Best to avoid it, IMHO.

Best, Dani




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