Personal Statement re ADHD

(Personal Statement Examples, Advice, Critique, . . . )
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Titleist
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Personal Statement re ADHD

Postby Titleist » Thu Oct 27, 2011 11:39 am

After receiving information I rewrote my PS. I have it revolving around my experience in how I overcame ADHD. Additional feedback would be appreciated.

Question: is 2.5 pages too long?

Like clockwork, every day just a few minutes before lunchtime I would stop by the nurse’s office to take my daily medication. With one swift gulp, I would swallow my pill and quickly make my way to the cafeteria to sit with friends. Beginning in the third grade, I continued this daily routine until my freshman year in high school. Although the dosages and prescriptions varied throughout the years, my peers’ perceptions of me did not because, unlike them, I had to take medication to get through the day. In elementary school, I was dealt naïve comments and laughter from classmates when I would return from the nurse’s office. When I got to middle school, my need for medication became a joke among my friends—even those closest to me. Today, as a senior in college with my commencement date approaching, I will proudly graduate with honors knowing I have used this subjection from my past to drive me to achieve great things.

In the third grade I was diagnosed with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. In the past my disorder was a constant and reoccurring struggle both socially and academically, but it is now a quality I embrace and utilize to do well in college as well as prepare for law school. The toughest part of my journey with ADHD began in elementary school and continued through my middle school years. Rather than wielding acceptance of my disorder as I do now, I felt embarrassed because I was different from everyone else. The internal struggle I faced with my disorder affected me inside and outside the classroom. I was viewed by peers and school personnel as a hyperactive child who regularly got in trouble for talking and in turn had the grades to prove my lack of focus. By the end of middle school, however, I had begun redirecting my abundance of energy in more positive ways and learned to ignore ridicule from classmates. My grades improved and I found myself enjoying school much more, though once I began high school I soon learned that conquering ADHD was not that easy. Even though I was exceling in all of my classes, teachers and peers continued to discount my success. One day during teacher evaluations, my classmates and I were informed that the principal would be sitting in during class and following up the lesson by asking students questions. My teacher stated that the principal would not direct questions to the brighter students of the class, but rather to me, insinuating that I would be targeted as not fully grasping the material. Although my fellow classmates stood up for me, this moment served as a turning point in my academic career because I realized that although my grades were comparable to those at the top of my class, I would continue to be dismissed as a student with ADHD whose success in the classroom was simply a fluke.

The snide comment made by that teacher was painful because, at that point, I thought I had finally overcome the stigma associated with my disorder. I have used the experience that day, on top of previous years of belittlement, to drive me to perform to my maximum potential. Although I will always be a person with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, I no longer rely on daily-use of medication. Unlike the past, the disorder no longer has adverse effects on my academic performance and social life. The characteristics of my disorder have actually enabled me to become an accomplished student and an overall better person. I contribute the turnaround of my academic fortunes to my vigorous work ethic. I learned that if I wanted to achieve academic success, the only way I could surpass my fellow classmates was by discovering my individual learning style and creating tactical strategies. In a classroom setting my attention span is typically not as strong as my peers; rather than viewing my attention deficit as a setback, I am much more observant and diligently focus my attention at all times. I now direct my abundance of energy in a more proactive way. My hyperactivity has instead been a source of creativity whether musically as a bass player in a band or when I am creating a legal argument for moot court—both hobbies of which I exhibit enthusiastic passion for. Perhaps the most important lesson I have learned from being a person with ADHD is how to persevere when faced with a challenge. Rather than letting the negativity of an unfavorable event take control of my attitude, I continue to maintain a positive attitude under any pressure.

Because I have a disorder, I know that I will always face hardships; but thanks to my disorder, I know that I can successfully trudge through any struggle, although it may take me a few more steps than most people. I believe my positive attitude will not only enable me with success in law school, but also throughout my lifetime. My experience with ADHD has revealed to me that even in the face of adversity, I will always have the strength to put my head down, focus, and keep pushing forward.
Last edited by Titleist on Mon Nov 14, 2011 9:54 pm, edited 1 time in total.

CanadianWolf
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Re: Personal Statement revolved around Moot Court/Work

Postby CanadianWolf » Thu Oct 27, 2011 11:48 am

A few careless errors & poor organization make this an unacceptable law school application personal statement. Much of the information contained in your last two paragraphs is forced into the essay rather than a logical progression of your theme.

bmore
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Re: Personal Statement revolved around Moot Court/Work

Postby bmore » Thu Oct 27, 2011 11:57 am

This is not my cup of tea. I am sure Moot Court is elsewhere on your application. For your personal statement I would not focus on law. But that's just me.

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Titleist
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Re: Personal Statement revolved around Moot Court/Work

Postby Titleist » Thu Oct 27, 2011 3:47 pm

I do not know what other angle I could take. I play music and have preforming in bands since 7th grade. I did not study music in college or anything it is just a hobby/passion. Would that be a relevant route to take?

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Justdoingmybest
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Re: Personal Statement revolved around Moot Court/Work

Postby Justdoingmybest » Thu Oct 27, 2011 5:44 pm

Here are my comments

1. It kind of sounds like a Why XXX law school essay instead of a PS. I know you are trying to tailor your PS around some schools but this PS lacks the 'personal' element. Most of the statements try to flatter the adcomms rather than show them who you really are.
2. Topic. I'm also not sure about the topic (at least this version of the topic). You do not have to base your PS on law alone because the schools know that already. You might want to explore other aspects of your life while still showing you will be a great candidate.
3. There are errors that make the statement unclear.
4. Brainstorm. What do you want the admissions board to know about you? Pick a theme.

Keep trying, I'm sure you will end up with a great PS
Good luck.

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Titleist
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Re: Personal Statement revolved around Moot Court/Work

Postby Titleist » Fri Oct 28, 2011 10:15 am

During a brainstorming session after the most depressing baseball game I have ever seen I came up with two "themes". However, the one I want to write on does not seem relevant for a personal statement. I would like some opinions on these three themes.

1. As I mentioned music is a big part of my life, its actually what got me interested in the law (listening to bands like The Clash and Bob Dylan). How about "the passion that I have for music has led me to a passion I have for the law"?---this is the one I like the most.

2. Another theme I might explore is teaching. As mentioned in my posted PS I come from a family full of educators and teaching/helping has been a part of my life. Some I could somehow make a connection between the two.

3. This is the one I'm not sure about, but it would certainly tell about me personally. I grew up ADHD and I struggled at first with it during elementary school but I now I see it motivated me to do better. However, I don't see how I can write two pages on this.


And above poster, is that Roy Orbison in your avatar? It vaguely looks like him. If so that is awesome.

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Justdoingmybest
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Re: Personal Statement revolved around Moot Court/Work

Postby Justdoingmybest » Fri Oct 28, 2011 10:34 am

Honestly I prefer 2&3 and I'm leaning towards 3.

Reasons
--This would give you and opportunity to show growth
--Its an interesting topic
-- The fact that it has 'motivated you to do better' can be a great way to show the admissions board that you have the qualities and drive to be a lawyer.

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Titleist
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Re: Personal Statement re ADHD

Postby Titleist » Mon Nov 14, 2011 9:55 pm

I rewrote my PS if anyone wants to give feedback. I edited my original post and put the revised PS there.

llachans
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Re: Personal Statement re ADHD

Postby llachans » Tue Nov 15, 2011 11:40 am

UNTravis wrote:I rewrote my PS if anyone wants to give feedback. I edited my original post and put the revised PS there.


I think this is a good start. The first paragraph drags...a lot. Instead of describing every action in how to take a pill, just say you took the pill. We've all swallowed a pill before.

If you make the first paragraph more concise and get to the meat of your PS, I believe it'd be a lot stronger.

On the other hand, I really like your last paragraph.

northside
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Re: Personal Statement re ADHD

Postby northside » Tue Nov 15, 2011 4:16 pm

I'd be weary of centering it around this. Not to be harsh, but a lot of people don't consider ADHD to be real anymore because its so over diagnosed. I was diagnosed when I was younger and medicated every since, but haven't mentioned it to any profs, teachers, employers et cetera. There is a real stigma attached to it for some people.

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Titleist
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Re: Personal Statement re ADHD

Postby Titleist » Tue Nov 15, 2011 4:49 pm

llachans wrote:
UNTravis wrote:I rewrote my PS if anyone wants to give feedback. I edited my original post and put the revised PS there.


I think this is a good start. The first paragraph drags...a lot. Instead of describing every action in how to take a pill, just say you took the pill. We've all swallowed a pill before.

If you make the first paragraph more concise and get to the meat of your PS, I believe it'd be a lot stronger.

On the other hand, I really like your last paragraph.


Thanks, I see what you are are saying about the first paragraph. I will definitely work on that.

Northside, I was weary to write about this topic for the very fact that it is overly diagnosed these days. That being said, I truly am ADHD and my PS is sincere and not a stretch of the truth. So hopefully the admission council will not dismiss it for other reasons.




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