After talking with some admissions people I decided to write an addendum addressing some key problems in my application. This is a rough draft. Any advice or critiques help.
When I was six years old I was diagnosed with a severe case of attention deficit disorder (ADD). It was caught early and I received treatment through medication, allowing me to succeed in school, graduating from high school with a GPA above 3.5. Upon graduating from high school my parents, my family doctor, and I made the decision to stop with the medication. The belief was that I had shown increased maturity throughout high school with strong academic performance, so I would be likely to succeed without the medication. That belief was incorrect.
My first two years of college were a disaster. One of the key symptoms of ADD is an inability to focus on topics that are uninteresting or difficult. This clearly manifested itself as I neglected readings that did not interest me and didn’t bother with the fine details of my work. I failed a class for the first time ever and my GPA over those first two years was 2.69. During the last two years my performance improved, with a 3.14 GPA during those years. I then believed that I had overcome my ADD, but that was not true. In the later years my course load was focused more on topics that interested me, so I was able to focus more easily.
Upon graduating from college my ADD once again hindered me. In May 2010 I finished an internship with the Global Network for Neglected Tropical Diseases, the latest in a series of positions which had been handed to me, or forced upon me, by friends and family. Having exhausted those resources I set forth on my own to find a job, but found myself unable to focus on the task. The result was a seven month period of little-to-no employment. In what little temporary work I did find I was hindered by my disinterest in the menial tasks I performed, resulting in unremarkable to subpar performance.
In March of this year, I finally admitted that I had not overcome ADD and resumed medication. The results have been remarkable. I got a permanent job and have excelled at it, including in working with the uninteresting details I used to abhor. A better indicator of my ability is my LSAT score. On one of my first prep tests I scored a mere 161, but with hours of hard, tedious work and untold effort, I raised that to my final score of 172. I never would have put in the extra effort and worked through the tedium prior to resuming medication.
I now recognize that ADD is not something I will simply overcome through effort and will. I will likely require medication for the rest of my life to treat this disorder. By admitting this, and receiving treatment, I am now no longer the man I was in college that earned a mere 2.91 GPA. I can achieve my full potential, as indicated by my LSAT score.
Medical documentation of my diagnosis and the treatment I am receiving can be provided upon request.
(Personal Statement Examples, Advice, Critique, . . . )
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