2 potential topics, not sure which is most compelling

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mallyn
Posts: 5
Joined: Wed Aug 08, 2012 3:26 pm

2 potential topics, not sure which is most compelling

Postby mallyn » Wed Sep 12, 2012 4:34 pm

So, I've drafted a statement that in retrospect, I hate. Decided to scrap it and change up the topic.

I think my strong point is a unique aspect of the small town I grew up in. Home of at least 5 prisons within city limits, and the headquarters of the state's prison system. Very industry-dependent, I grew up with lots of influence from prison life. So I definitely want to focus on where I came from quite a bit.

Difficulty is figuring out how to do so in an interesting and concise way since I have no real major life-changing stories about what happened in my town.

1) I made a really big move when I was 20 to a big city to follow my dreams of getting the hell out of my small town. Thought I could play it up as a "this is the path my life has taken, and this is where i want it to go" sort of thing. Complete with roadblocks, flat tires, etc.

2) Discussing how the job I held putting myself through colleg (working with inner city kids) afforded me the opportunity to really make a difference in some lives. (I'm afraid this might come off too much like all of those Teach for America essays though)

Suggestions? It's a given that I don't want to sound too cliche in whichever topic I go with...afraid I'm stuck for now. Help? Please?

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Cobretti
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Joined: Tue Aug 21, 2012 12:45 am

Re: 2 potential topics, not sure which is most compelling

Postby Cobretti » Wed Sep 12, 2012 4:41 pm

mallyn wrote:So, I've drafted a statement that in retrospect, I hate. Decided to scrap it and change up the topic.

I think my strong point is a unique aspect of the small town I grew up in. Home of at least 5 prisons within city limits, and the headquarters of the state's prison system. Very industry-dependent, I grew up with lots of influence from prison life. So I definitely want to focus on where I came from quite a bit.

Difficulty is figuring out how to do so in an interesting and concise way since I have no real major life-changing stories about what happened in my town.

1) I made a really big move when I was 20 to a big city to follow my dreams of getting the hell out of my small town. Thought I could play it up as a "this is the path my life has taken, and this is where i want it to go" sort of thing. Complete with roadblocks, flat tires, etc.

2) Discussing how the job I held putting myself through colleg (working with inner city kids) afforded me the opportunity to really make a difference in some lives. (I'm afraid this might come off too much like all of those Teach for America essays though)

Suggestions? It's a given that I don't want to sound too cliche in whichever topic I go with...afraid I'm stuck for now. Help? Please?


They are both pretty cliche subjects, but that isn't necessarily a bad thing. With that being said I think the second one would be better. Just avoid cliche language, and stay humble , and I'm sure you can write a respectable PS out of your work with inner city kids.

I think the biggest potential pitfall with cliche personal statements is that they are all written to sound so unique when they are by definition not very unique, and the writer comes off as naive for thinking they are special. so just go out of your way to avoid saying anything that exaggerates your importance over every other applicant and you should be fine.

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CorkBoard
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Joined: Sat Sep 03, 2011 6:05 pm

Re: 2 potential topics, not sure which is most compelling

Postby CorkBoard » Wed Sep 12, 2012 6:01 pm

The second one.




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