Take a look at my PS. please dont be nice, rip it apart

(Personal Statement Examples, Advice, Critique, . . . )
User avatar
szb5058
Posts: 98
Joined: Sat Oct 01, 2011 4:33 pm

Take a look at my PS. please dont be nice, rip it apart

Postby szb5058 » Mon Aug 06, 2012 10:18 pm

deleted
Last edited by szb5058 on Tue Aug 07, 2012 12:49 pm, edited 1 time in total.

delusional
Posts: 1190
Joined: Thu Jul 15, 2010 7:57 pm

Re: Take a look at my PS. please dont be nice, rip it apart

Postby delusional » Mon Aug 06, 2012 10:20 pm

szb5058 wrote:I was in the middle of a fantastical daydream when my freshman seminar professor rudely interrupted my thoughts and simultaneously altered my life’s trajectory. Dramatic, I know, but true nonetheless.

Ms. Hanley, a drab young woman who had been droning on about the proper business attire we were expected to wear at Career Day, looked around at the half-awake students, smiled a very broad un-Ms. Hanley-like smile, clapped her hands emphatically and announced that she had a “challenge” for us all. She proceeded to the chalkboard and wrote in a sweeping, ostentatious hand, “Make a positive impact and tell us about it.”

At first I was relieved. There were a million and two ways to make a positive impact, many of which required little thought or energy. But as time wore on I began to take the “challenge” part of the project more and more seriously, striving to come up with an idea that would leave a lasting impact instead of one short-lived. After all, taking the easy way out had lost its flavor in high school. I was now an esteemed constituent of academia, almost a man grown, and that meant confronting my challenges head-on with aspirations higher than mere class marks. Even so, I struggled to capture my unrealized ambitions in a tangible medium until a late night phone conversation with a friend provided the inspiration I needed.


A seasoned veteran of the Marines, Tommy called late one night to tell me of his recent assignment – a second tour of duty in Afghanistan. When I asked him what he wanted me to include in the care package I was already planning on sending he replied, “Just send me some letters and some pictures. It’s nice to be reminded who you’re fighting for.” These simple words ultimately proved to be the catalyst that transformed a semester-long assignment into a four-year, twenty-five-person operation that continues to this day.

The idea was to create an organization that allows students to show their support for people who protect our country in an unbiased and non-political fashion. The final product came in the form of Penn State Unites Soldiers Abroad (PSUSA), an official non-profit, university-affiliated organization that encourages students to form one-on-one relationships with American soldiers overseas by offering the means to send and receive letters and care packages. By partnering with well-known soldier support groups Any Soldier and Soldier’s Angels, we were able to successfully work out deals allowing PSUSA to streamline contacts to individual students in bunches, eventually allowing us to adopt an entire platoon.

Even though I graduated, PSUSA continues to hold meetings, write letters, and partner with local businesses to fundraise for care-packages. Hundreds of soldiers from platoons in over ten different countries have received pictures, drawings and thanks from PSUSA students. Finally my answer to Ms. Hanley’s challenge was realized.

Law school is the next big challenge in my life and my experience founding and leading a non-profit organization has given me the tools to answer this one as well. Through this process I’ve learned the rewards of exceeding expectations by viewing challenges as opportunities for improvement. As a lawyer I will have the opportunity to bypass the easy route by continuing to make a positive impact each and every day. Four years ago I daydreamed about a better world; today I make it become a reality.

User avatar
szb5058
Posts: 98
Joined: Sat Oct 01, 2011 4:33 pm

Re: Take a look at my PS. please dont be nice, rip it apart

Postby szb5058 » Mon Aug 06, 2012 10:48 pm

alrighty then. does the story compliment my argument for why i will succeed in law school? any feedback would be great

delusional
Posts: 1190
Joined: Thu Jul 15, 2010 7:57 pm

Re: Take a look at my PS. please dont be nice, rip it apart

Postby delusional » Mon Aug 06, 2012 11:12 pm

szb5058 wrote:alrighty then. does the story compliment my argument for why i will succeed in law school? any feedback would be great

No, but it has potential. It sounds like you just said "I did this awesome thing, and I will also do awesome at the law." Try to connect it thematically, like "despite the political connotations of the war, I connected to the human experience. The law is similarly politically fraught, but I hope to connect to the people who deserve representation blah blah blah." I mean, my example was terrible, but it demonstrates the point.

geauxsaints
Posts: 25
Joined: Sat Nov 26, 2011 3:52 am

Re: Take a look at my PS. please dont be nice, rip it apart

Postby geauxsaints » Wed Aug 22, 2012 1:59 pm

I'm sorry but I disagree with the above poster completely.

"The law is similarly politically fraught.." is probably the worst statement that you can put into a PS. A majority of these personal statements are read by law professors and to discuss the law, lecture about the law or describe the law as "politically fraught" is heresy.

That being said, I think your topic demonstrates many of the characteristics adcoms probably look for. I feel your work with the non profit is interesting and illustrates those characteristics. You do not necessarily need to blatantly state how you will succeed in law school, your statement should say it for you.


Another point I want to make is that I agree with the original editor. Remove all three of those paragraphs and go easy on adverbs. Also, words like "fantastical" and "drab" sound thesaurus'ed. You should include your own writing style, but do not try to be to poetic with the adjectives and adverbs.

THIS IS ALL MY OPINION!!! I'm sorry if some of it is harsh but I really feel your story is self-less and has a lot of potential to leave an impression. Also, as a Marine veteran, I want to say thank you for what you're doing and I think that is awesome of you.


Last bumped by szb5058 on Wed Aug 22, 2012 1:59 pm.




Return to “Law School Personal Statements”

Who is online

The online users are hidden on this forum.