PS

(Personal Statement Examples, Advice, Critique, . . . )
kjames511
Posts: 38
Joined: Mon Mar 14, 2011 10:30 am

PS

Postby kjames511 » Sun Jan 01, 2012 12:00 pm

UPDATED: thanks to all of those that offered advice!
Last edited by kjames511 on Mon Jan 02, 2012 11:09 pm, edited 3 times in total.

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FratLaw
Posts: 31
Joined: Sun Dec 18, 2011 2:51 pm

Re: please critique my PS- applying this week :)

Postby FratLaw » Sun Jan 01, 2012 2:00 pm

Very nice PS!
*Grammar issues pm'd*

kublaikahn
Posts: 647
Joined: Wed Feb 09, 2011 12:47 am

Re: please critique my PS- applying this week :)

Postby kublaikahn » Sun Jan 01, 2012 4:20 pm

This is a good story and a favorite subject for the educational monopolists who are your audience. Too much about the ivy covered building and the feeling of anger. Make that a single paragraph and suffice to say you felt "unfulfilled" in your mission. In the third paragraph you state, "During the 15-minute walk back to my dormitory I decided writing a thesis simply wasn’t enough, and with this decision my life changing four-month journey began." This goes below the DC experience as the start to paragraph 6.

Your writing is weak in places. As you discuss the impetus for the thesis, you need to tie it in better. Tell the reader that you learned of the problem during your internship and your thesis was an effort to address it. Having turned it in, you acknowledged that it benefited no one, save you.

But this is good, it just needs to be reworded and cleaned up. Get rid of the passive statements. And avoid overly dramatic phrases like "life changing", so trite.

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

Re: please critique my PS- applying this week :)

Postby CanadianWolf » Sun Jan 01, 2012 4:33 pm

Lacks sufficient substance, in my opinion. Consider deleting the names of the two named for-profit schools since that adds nothing to your essay. The content is open to challenge since the primary targeted market of many for-profits is military personnel--regardless of race or ethnicity--who have educational benefits available as a military benefit.

The primary problem with your writing is that it shares little about you other than that you had to write an honors thesis & that your brief study of for-profit schools revealed scant insights. Consider a new theme that focuses more on you.

P.S. Today, I reread your PS. My impression is more favorable today than yesterday. Yesterday the negative, whiny tone affected my assessment, while today I find a retrospective quality that prompted you to take action. Nevertheless, naming the for-profits weakens & cheapens your message.
Last edited by CanadianWolf on Mon Jan 02, 2012 10:02 am, edited 1 time in total.

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3v3ryth1ng
Posts: 295
Joined: Tue Jun 14, 2011 10:48 pm

Re: please critique my PS- applying this week :)

Postby 3v3ryth1ng » Mon Jan 02, 2012 12:43 am

Wow. This is a good statement. You sound like the kind of person that will accomplish something with a law degree. The story line itself is great, and it offers real insight into your thought process. I don't see how it would hurt your chances unless the adcomms happen to have a strong affinity for for mail order clown colleges.

DO NOT submit it like this.
Your lead in particular could be more interesting.
You tend to start your sentences prepositioal phrases. Your first four sentences begin this way, and it's hard to ignore. "As I did this...Having done that...Turning the corner here...As I turned the corner there..." Honestly, you could probably just omit most of these phrases entirely because they're not really important to the story. Does the act of you turning around need 10 words? Does it even need to be there?

Also, do a better job of anticipating reader misunderstandings. I scanned through your essay thinking I'd missed you description of Matthew before I realized that he functions more as an "everykid" example. Because you dropped his name so abruptly, I thought he was a developed character. Consider either not naming him, or explaining who he is before you name him.

One of the better PS ideas I've read! Good luck revising, and good luck with LS!

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thelawschoolproject
Posts: 1364
Joined: Thu Jun 23, 2011 12:58 am

Re: please critique my PS- applying this week :)

Postby thelawschoolproject » Mon Jan 02, 2012 12:59 am

Your personal statement leaves a lot to be desired. Below are some overall comments:

* You have far too many grammar issues in this piece. If this is indeed what you're going to submit, ensure that you get these things cleared up. You don't come across as professional with this level of writing. It's not nearly polished enough. Remember, you want to put your best foot forward, and right now you aren't.

*Your utilization of passive voice renders your PS inactive. It doesn't show me what you're doing. I get no sense that there's something exciting going on. (I do not mean exciting as it daredevilish or extreme, but more in the riveting, this-makes-me-care kind of a way).

*It's a personal statement. There is nothing personal in this statement. It does nothing to show me who you are. It doesn't help me see you as a person. I get no idea of what's really important to you as a human being. Your PS is all about for-profit universities. And, in all honesty, the beginning of your PS where you discuss the ivy and writing your thesis needs to be removed or limited to one sentence. The most compelling part of your PS is the very end where you discuss making brochures and traveling around SC. IMO, this is where your focus should be.

*Personal statements need to reveal who you are. Right now it doesn't and this will adversely affect the adcomm's understanding and conception of who you are.

Best of luck on your cycle!

kjames511
Posts: 38
Joined: Mon Mar 14, 2011 10:30 am

Re: please critique my PS- applying this week :)

Postby kjames511 » Mon Jan 02, 2012 1:19 am

Thank you so much to those of you that have already commented. You're advice is wonderful and very eye opening. I'm very thankful for the time yall have spent helping me out

kjames511
Posts: 38
Joined: Mon Mar 14, 2011 10:30 am

Re: please critique my PS- applying this week :)

Postby kjames511 » Mon Jan 02, 2012 12:01 pm

CanadianWolf wrote:Lacks sufficient substance, in my opinion. Consider deleting the names of the two named for-profit schools since that adds nothing to your essay. The content is open to challenge since the primary targeted market of many for-profits is military personnel--regardless of race or ethnicity--who have educational benefits available as a military benefit.

The primary problem with your writing is that it shares little about you other than that you had to write an honors thesis & that your brief study of for-profit schools revealed scant insights. Consider a new theme that focuses more on you.

P.S. Today, I reread your PS. My impression is more favorable today than yesterday. Yesterday the negative, whiny tone affected my assessment, while today I find a retrospective quality that prompted you to take action. Nevertheless, naming the for-profits weakens & cheapens your message.


Thanks CanadianWolf- I'd love to get your opinion on the new draft. It is definitely not complete but IMO is better. Hope you had a happy new year :)




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