How can I edit my PS down? Its half a page too long.

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Duramax80
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How can I edit my PS down? Its half a page too long.

Postby Duramax80 » Sun Jan 08, 2012 5:59 pm

As I looked around at the sea of unfamiliar faces, surrounded by the ambient murmur of whispered conversation, I anxiously awaited the professor of my first law course to address the class. When the professor took the podium, a wave of silence overtook the lecture hall, broken by her opening statement of “this class will be different from the classes you have taken, as you will be required to think critically, form your own opinions, and be required to defend your position.” Upon hearing that, I knew I had ventured into uncharted waters, a realm of academia that would press me to exercise skills I had not previously utilized.

After the first week of Constitutional Law and Criminal Procedure, I felt that I had finally found my place, something that I had previously thought to be nonexistent. I had previously struggled with motivation and direction in my academic career, seemingly unable to find a field of study that inspired me. However, I was quickly pulled out of this vacillation and indecisiveness through my enrollment in this class, solidifying my professional goal of practicing law.

The course and the concepts it included were demanding, yet I was able to understand and successfully apply them in their entirety. The format of the class included in-class debate, case analysis, fact pattern analysis, strength assessment of potential defenses and hypothetical judiciary decisions, all of which significantly challenged and fueled my intellectual curiosity. I especially enjoyed the exams in the class, which were composed of fact patterns in which the students were required to identify violations, indicate possible defenses, and hypothesize the best way to ensure convictions and jury opinions. Objectively analyzing situations in combination with social and political consideration was completely new to me, but I greatly enjoyed the intellectual freedom it provided. As the class came to an end, I continued to seek a strong foundation in legal education, enrolling myself in as many law classes as possible. I had found my drive that I had been lacking, unlocked by a sincere interest in all aspects of law, and I knew from that point on that this was the field I wanted to be a part of. As time went on, scholarly life became incredibly enjoyable and rewarding, further fueling my desire to enter into the legal profession. The transformation that ensued was so significant, that in my final two years as an undergraduate, I earned my place on the Dean’s List honor roll and obtained a cumulative grade point average of 3.7. I had found where I belong, conquered my uncertainty, and therefore, conquered myself.

After graduating from XXXXX, ready to take on new challenges, I ventured out into the professional world in hopes of expanding my interest and foundation in law even further. I volunteered for an unpaid internship position at the XXXXX, a local law firm that specializes in several areas including business law, family law, bankruptcy, immigration and DUI. The wide range of specialties the firm worked within gave me the opportunity to develop and sharpen the skills necessary to successfully operate in vastly diverse and high stress environments. Maneuvering through the different legal niches, I enhanced my ability to adapt to new situations, relate to people from different demographics, apply an objective approach to each situation, and view each case from beginning to end, including hypothesizing potential outcomes and rulings the case may generate in court.

Aside from the skills I developed behind the phones and desks, working in such a diverse firm gave me the opportunity to see many different types of people, and witness the multitude of complexities inherent in the problems they faced on a deeply personal level. Specifically, I can remember speaking with a prospective client who, in tears, had told me that her spouse was physically abusive and she quickly needed a divorce. After her initial consultation with our legal team, I distinctly remember XXXXX, the senior attorney and my chief mentor, looking her in the eyes and saying, “don’t worry, we can help you.” I felt proud in knowing that I had been a part of the instrument that would grant her freedom. It was from this challenging scenario, and others like it, that I became completely cognizant of the fact that people need attorneys to help them through troubling circumstances. I now know, with no doubt in my mind, that the calling I felt in my undergraduate law classes is incontrovertible. Not only do I have a passion and understanding of law, I see the importance of practicing law and the extent to which it could improve the wellbeing of others, reinforcing my goal of law school and the life I want to lead.



*This is too long, as I need to comply with the 2 page double-spaced limit. Currently, this is 2.5 pages, double spaced. Can you see anywhere to shave off some fluff?

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paratactical
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Re: How can I edit my PS down? Its half a page too long.

Postby paratactical » Sun Jan 08, 2012 6:07 pm

Duramax80 wrote:As I looked around at the sea of unfamiliar faces, surrounded by the ambient murmur of whispered conversation, I anxiously awaited the professor of my first law course to address the class. When the professor took the podium, a wave of silence overtook the lecture hall, broken by her opening statement of The professor began, “this class will be different from the classes you have taken, as you will be required to think critically, form your own opinions, and be required to defend your position.” Upon hearing that, I knew I had ventured into uncharted waters, a realm of academia that would press me to exercise skills I had not previously utilized.

After the first week of Constitutional Law and Criminal Procedure, I felt that I had finally found my place, something that I had previously thought to be nonexistent. I had previously struggled with motivation and direction in my academic career,seemingly unable to find a field of study that inspired me. However, I was quickly pulled out of this vacillation and indecisiveness through my enrollment in this class, solidifying my professional goal of practicing law.

The course and the concepts it included were demanding, yet I was able to understand and successfully apply them in their entirety. The format of the class included in-class debate, case analysis, fact pattern analysis, strength assessment of potential defenses and hypothetical judiciary decisions, all of which significantly challenged and fueled my intellectual curiosity. I especially enjoyed the exams in the class, which were composed of fact patterns in which the students were required to identify violations, indicate possible defenses, and hypothesize the best way to ensure convictions and jury opinions. Objectively analyzing situations in combination with social and political consideration was completely new to me, but I greatly enjoyed the intellectual freedom it provided. As the class came to an end, I continued to seek a strong foundation in legal education, enrolling myself in as many law classes as possible. I had found my drive that I had been lacking, unlocked by a sincere interest in all aspects of law, and I knew from that point on that this was the field I wanted to be a part of. As time went on, scholarly life became incredibly enjoyable and rewarding, further fueling my desire to enter into the legal profession. The transformation that ensued was so significant, that in my final two years as an undergraduate, I earned my place on the Dean’s List honor roll and obtained a cumulative grade point average of 3.7. I had found where I belong, conquered my uncertainty, and therefore, conquered myself.


Okay, I cut stuff from the first few paragraphs to show you a few things:

1) You keep saying something is "X and Y" when you could simply chose to say either X or Y. When you're trying to conserve space, this should be the first thing to go.
2) You're doing some serious verbiage shit in here that doesn't add anything to the essay. You need to tone it down.

But more than that, you need to watch out because it seems like you're basically rehashing your resume, which is generally regarded as not a good tactic to take with PS.

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Duramax80
Posts: 134
Joined: Fri Dec 16, 2011 4:34 pm

Re: How can I edit my PS down? Its half a page too long.

Postby Duramax80 » Sun Jan 08, 2012 6:51 pm

paratactical wrote:
Duramax80 wrote:As I looked around at the sea of unfamiliar faces, surrounded by the ambient murmur of whispered conversation, I anxiously awaited the professor of my first law course to address the class. When the professor took the podium, a wave of silence overtook the lecture hall, broken by her opening statement of The professor began, “this class will be different from the classes you have taken, as you will be required to think critically, form your own opinions, and be required to defend your position.” Upon hearing that, I knew I had ventured into uncharted waters, a realm of academia that would press me to exercise skills I had not previously utilized.

After the first week of Constitutional Law and Criminal Procedure, I felt that I had finally found my place, something that I had previously thought to be nonexistent. I had previously struggled with motivation and direction in my academic career,seemingly unable to find a field of study that inspired me. However, I was quickly pulled out of this vacillation and indecisiveness through my enrollment in this class, solidifying my professional goal of practicing law.

The course and the concepts it included were demanding, yet I was able to understand and successfully apply them in their entirety. The format of the class included in-class debate, case analysis, fact pattern analysis, strength assessment of potential defenses and hypothetical judiciary decisions, all of which significantly challenged and fueled my intellectual curiosity. I especially enjoyed the exams in the class, which were composed of fact patterns in which the students were required to identify violations, indicate possible defenses, and hypothesize the best way to ensure convictions and jury opinions. Objectively analyzing situations in combination with social and political consideration was completely new to me, but I greatly enjoyed the intellectual freedom it provided. As the class came to an end, I continued to seek a strong foundation in legal education, enrolling myself in as many law classes as possible. I had found my drive that I had been lacking, unlocked by a sincere interest in all aspects of law, and I knew from that point on that this was the field I wanted to be a part of. As time went on, scholarly life became incredibly enjoyable and rewarding, further fueling my desire to enter into the legal profession. The transformation that ensued was so significant, that in my final two years as an undergraduate, I earned my place on the Dean’s List honor roll and obtained a cumulative grade point average of 3.7. I had found where I belong, conquered my uncertainty, and therefore, conquered myself.


Okay, I cut stuff from the first few paragraphs to show you a few things:

1) You keep saying something is "X and Y" when you could simply chose to say either X or Y. When you're trying to conserve space, this should be the first thing to go.
2) You're doing some serious verbiage shit in here that doesn't add anything to the essay. You need to tone it down.

But more than that, you need to watch out because it seems like you're basically rehashing your resume, which is generally regarded as not a good tactic to take with PS.


Thanks, but what do you mean by verbiage? Should I treat my word selection as I do in simple conversation?

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paratactical
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Joined: Wed Feb 04, 2009 1:06 pm

Re: How can I edit my PS down? Its half a page too long.

Postby paratactical » Sun Jan 08, 2012 6:55 pm

Duramax80 wrote:
Thanks, but what do you mean by verbiage? Should I treat my word selection as I do in simple conversation?

You don't have to go that simple, but be aware that one of the staples of bad writing is getting overly thesaurus on some shit that doesn't warrant that kind of word usage.

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WhatSarahSaid
Posts: 293
Joined: Tue Jun 02, 2009 2:01 pm

Re: How can I edit my PS down? Its half a page too long.

Postby WhatSarahSaid » Sun Jan 08, 2012 7:02 pm

Duramax80 wrote:
Thanks, but what do you mean by verbiage? Should I treat my word selection as I do in simple conversation?


Phrases like "sea of unfamiliar faces," "ambient murmur," and "uncharted waters" are part of it (especially the last; the way you use it with the comma makes it sound like "uncharted waters" is the name of the realm of academia). There's no need for a word like "vacillation" when another word will do (such as "indecisiveness," the one you also chose).

I think "witness the multitude of complexities inherent in the problems" is especially brutal. Find a way to be more concise and remove the 40+ word sentences.

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

Re: How can I edit my PS down? Its half a page too long.

Postby CanadianWolf » Mon Jan 09, 2012 11:14 am

In my opinion, the second & third paragraphs could be condensed in order to comply with the length stipulation.




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