Don't Just Read It, Grade It!

(Personal Statement Examples, Advice, Critique, . . . )

How would you rank this statement on a scale of 1 to 3, with 3 being the highest.

Poll ended at Sun Nov 13, 2011 9:23 am

1, Needs major improvement
No votes
2, I see the direction, but it isn't ready for admissions yet
3, An admissions council would find interest in this statement
No votes
Total votes: 3


Posts: 24
Joined: Thu May 28, 2009 10:01 am

Don't Just Read It, Grade It!

Postby Acumen » Mon Oct 24, 2011 9:23 am

Please read the Personal Statement below and let me know what you think. I really need it to be GREAT because my GPA isn't. I had a 2.7gpa coming out of undergrad, but I have a few decent softs that I'm trying exhibit in my ps.

I was a political machine, spending all of my spare time attending campus events, rallying student supporters, and speaking with key student groups. I had assembled a political team of students with diverse educational backgrounds, skill sets, and even some that brought a ton of student supporters with them. Campaigning became my entire life and commanded all of my attention outside of the classroom; I considered myself lucky if I got four hours of sleep. Coffee began to take on a whole new meaning for me; it became my fuel. These efforts were all for one reason, to be elected President of the Student Government Association (SGA).

I wore my blood shot, sleep depraved eyes as a badge of honor because to me they were marks of determination. A week before the voting commenced, SGA hosted the last televised debate of the election. After only a few minutes of debating, I could see my competitor faltering under the stress of it all; this really helped to boost my confidence. I began my first statement by confidently laying out my track record, which included repealing a thirteen year old school mandate that prevented many students from graduating within four years, environmental awareness initiatives, and speaking on behalf of the student body during the hiring committee meetings for the University’s new Head Master. I then went on to layout my platform of lowering student activity fees, improving the lines of communication between the financial aid office and the students, and strengthening the campus’s community ties. The polls closed after two days of voting, and the SGA Advisor stood to announce the new SGA officers. I began to smile on the inside because I was certain of my victory; after all, these same tactics won me SGA Vice President of Academic Affairs and Homecoming King, so why not this? Thirty minutes later I was shaking the hand of the guy who won and preparing a concession speech.

All of the late hours, think tank sessions, meticulous speech writing, and efforts to persuade voters now felt like a waste of time and energy. I was not the presidential victor, but I could not fathom letting all of the support I was able to garner go in vain. I asked myself “why was I running for President and what was I looking to accomplish?” From this question I gathered three conclusions; 1) I was determined to make a positive contribution to my school, 2) I wanted to be in a position that would allow me to improve the quality of life for as many people in what ever way that I could, and 3) I wanted to achieve heights that would make my family proud. At that moment I made a promise to myself that I would meet my goals one step at a time.

I spent the summer before my senior year building a base of student and faculty supporters to aid me in drafting a detailed constitution to start a new campus organization. Two months into the fall semester I received an official charter establishing the Black Student Union (BSU) as a new organization on campus. As President of this new organization I pushed “Eight Pillars of Unity”: self cultural awareness, effective leadership, community service, scholarship, coalition building, social awareness, political awareness, and economic empowerment. By the time BSU’s second semester rolled around, it had grown to be the premier organization for minorities on campus, and our membership grew to over 70%. As a result BSU became the leading voice for minorities on campus. Though I was not able to accomplish my overarching goals through SGA, I was able to create my own avenue which allowed me to be a catalyst of change.

When I was closed out of the institution (SGA) it was my resilience that propelled me to continue toward my goals. I was able to preserve and effect change by creating BSU to help others in a different way. In creating this organization, I was tasked with the privilege of drafting a constitution. Similar to the United States Constitution it outlined governance, politics, relationships, and the rule of law. Legal doctrines such as this are the bedrock on which the United States, major businesses, and numerous organizations stand. It would be an honor to study at _______ University to further my understanding of such important doctrine and soon begin a career in drafting doctrines that will provide service to many people.

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