PS 2nd attempt, will be applying soon, please help!

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PS 2nd attempt, will be applying soon, please help!

Postby Perstephanie » Sun Feb 05, 2012 12:14 pm

If the last five years have pulled anything kicking and screaming from within me, it is a sense of responsibility and the need to strive for something higher. If you had asked me six or seven years ago--when I was still in high school—what I wanted out of my life, my answer would have no doubt rested on the idea of the happiness that comes with the blissful state of normality; for my mother to miraculously expel the cancer that was eating her from within and for everyone to move on and live their lives.

I admittedly aimed for the middle. A reasonably funny and allegedly artistically talented girl, I skipped class and rarely did homework, opting instead to paint or beg off to go home “sick”, usually when my mother would be in chemo so that I could be there. I had no idea what career I wanted to go into, just that I was for the most part practical, had some decent artistic talents and a passion for the written word. I chose to enter the local community college for marketing, not really knowing what other options I had.

Life continued on the same pattern for the first semester of my collegiate experience, but the floor dropped out from beneath me a week into my second semester. After being admitted into the hospital due to complications from surgery and staying for a little over a week, my mother passed away. A parental death is always hard, but my mother was the family's backbone, the center of our emotional and financial well being. I now had a severely depressed father whose only source of income was from disability paychecks, and who would in the next year have surgeries to place wires along his spine.

It was at this point that I threw myself more into my school work. After taking a week off from classes, I returned and tried to focus as much on getting my work done as I possibly could. Going into my second semester, I decided to major in Hotel and Restaurant Management rather than Marketing, seeing both a potential for using my artistic talents and a steady career should anything else fail. Everyone has to eat, right? In the year that I spent at BCC as a hospitality student, I took a few law classes and enjoyed them immensely. I had toyed with the idea of joining Mock Trial in high school, but had never made a serious go at it. Law as a career, however, still didn't seem like an actual possibility with my grades.

When I transferred to SUNY Delhi, I became more involved in the culinary world. Working on the Gingerbread Team, which probably totaled over 200 hours of my time over three years honed my skills in pastry, working on minute details with sugar, frosting, chocolate, and pastillage (not to mention gingerbread!) I also did an unpaid internship at a bakery, putting in 480 hours total and working in nearly every area of the job. Some days in classes I would spend 14 hours in the kitchen, working on labor intensive dishes to feed the guests in the school restaurant. The experience definitely honed my ability to work under pressure, and to help lead a team.

While law was not a large part of my required studies in my major, I did spend time in Argumentation and Debate and Public Policy, which ended up being two of my favorite classes. The idea of changing policy, or working to uphold those policies and laws already in place took firmer root in my mind. I enjoyed my culinary classes, and excelled in most, but I kept coming back to those classes where my ability to reason was called into play, as well as those that taught me more about the American judicial system; whether it be an exercise in ‘prosecuting Socrates’ or retrying famous cases (in my case, successfully debating to prosecute Patty Hearst.) After talking to a few friends currently attending prominent law schools, it became clear that a career in law was exactly what I wanted.

With some personal reflection, I am realizing that I no longer aim for the middle. After finally ending my last semester at Delhi with a 4.0 (for that semester) while in the Honors program, I see no end to my drive for excellence, especially in the study of law.

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Re: PS 2nd attempt, will be applying soon, please help!

Postby kublaikahn » Sun Feb 05, 2012 6:27 pm

Your writing style is way too informal. Remove all the parentheticals.

Is your thesis that you used to be mediocre but now you strive for excellence? I would rework this piece to simply describe one project you worked on in the kitchen. Use that to explain your creativity and how you can excel when passionate about something. Do not make blanket statements about your "alleged" skills and do not regurgitate accolades from your resume and other parts of the application.

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