UCLA PS

(Personal Statement Examples, Advice, Critique, . . . )
Anonymous User
Posts: 273591
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

UCLA PS

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Oct 09, 2012 11:37 pm

Hi all, here's my PS tailored to UCLA. Information in here is personal, so please keep the comments focused on the writing itself. My main concern is I'm coming off really naive at the last paragraph, but my experiences don't really make me naive, but I don't want it to still come off that way. Maybe I didn't articulate that clearly, but you'll know what I mean when you read the PS.
-----

As I walked past the men in orange, I somberly realized my aspirations almost came true. When I envisioned visiting prison for the first time, I imagined myself as an attorney consulting a potential client. Instead, I wore a t-shirt and denim jeans, not a well-kempt suit, and I came to see someone more personal than a client. Finally sitting down in his designated spot, I noticed the unexpected lack of partitioned glass. Soon, the guards escorted the gaunt man I almost did not recognize, and the ramifications of my visit became clear. Without any barriers between us, I would look directly into the eyes of the man who almost ruined my life, if I let him. The man I directly helped send to prison, yet was determined to eventually forgive – my father.

Two years before my father was convicted and sentenced to prison, I discovered illegal files on his personal computer. Trapped in a difficult situation, I needed to decide whether to stay silent, confront my father, or notify the proper authorities. If I chose to stay silent, it is possible I could have avoided my current situation. However, after considering the harm such a choice would cause outside my family, I sent an anonymous tip to the police. While I could have personally convinced my father to stop, this would never rectify the pain of the previous victims. Despite the grief my decision has caused to others and even myself, I still shudder at the thought of silence.

Although my conscience was at peace, dealing with aftermath was certainly the most difficult time of my life. Due to the media coverage involving my father back home, my family name was tarnished, and I felt embarrassed in my own community. The fallout from my father’s firing as an accountant and partner severely also limited my family’s income, causing my father to file bankruptcy and my mother to nearly file as well. Close family members urged I seek therapy, but ultimately I knew the only person who could pull me through was myself. As an alternative route, I decided to involve myself more than ever in my schooling, seeking to redeem my family name. In order to pay for my education virtually on my own, I began two other part-time jobs in addition to the job I already held. In between classes, I worked in the office of the sociology department, studying and completing homework whenever I had free time during my shifts. When I was not studying at night, I worked at the XXXXX Cinema as I earned money to help myself and also gain an escape from reality watching the movies I love. At the concerts I ushered through my third job, I similarly used my free time to pursue my studies. While my work obligations allowed me to continue my education, they also educated me in maintaining responsibility in the midst of personal turmoil.

Through my experience, I also developed a strong interest in practicing and potentially advocating changes in criminal law. As I continued to visit my father, I saw the effects of our generally punitive legal system, but also noticed a lack in rehabilitation. Although I believe punishment is essential, a more rehabilitative approach could help prevent repeat offenders, as seen in countries with low repeat offenses such as Norway. The UCLA School of Law is thus appealing to me because of its highly regarded Criminal Defense Clinic. By helping to represent actual criminal defendants, I will gain the valuable experience necessary to become a successful public defender and legal advocate. I am also intrigued by the potential opportunity to work with faculty such as David Dolinko, whose research on the philosophy of punishment is relevant to my interest in criminal rehabilitation. As a result of my experiences in Los Angeles through internships, I definitely want to practice in the area as well. The UCLA School of Law will provide me the best foundation for achieving my goals to practice and also reform criminal law. Although my first prison experience came under different circumstances than I once envisioned, I am confident that with the lessons I learned and an education at UCLA, when the day hopefully comes that I finally enter a prison for a client, I will be stronger than I ever imagined.

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Br3v
Posts: 4174
Joined: Mon Jun 13, 2011 7:18 pm

Re: UCLA PS

Postby Br3v » Wed Oct 10, 2012 1:22 am

Anonymous User wrote:Hi all, here's my PS tailored to UCLA. Information in here is personal, so please keep the comments focused on the writing itself. My main concern is I'm coming off really naive at the last paragraph, but my experiences don't really make me naive, but I don't want it to still come off that way. Maybe I didn't articulate that clearly, but you'll know what I mean when you read the PS.
-----

As I walked past the men in orange, I somberly realized my aspirations almost came true. When I envisioned visiting prison for the first time, I imagined myself as an attorney consulting a potential client. Instead, I wore a t-shirt and denim jeans, not a well-kempt suit, and I came to see someone more personal than a client. Finally sitting down in his designated spot, I noticed the unexpected lack of partitioned glass. Soon, the guards escorted the gaunt man I almost did not recognize, and the ramifications of my visit became clear. Without any barriers between us, I would look directly into the eyes of the man who almost ruined my life, if I let him. The man I directly helped send to prison, yet was determined to eventually forgive – my father.

Two years before my father was convicted and sentenced to prison, I discovered illegal files on his personal computer. Trapped in a difficult situation, I needed to decide whether to stay silent, confront my father, or notify the proper authorities. If I chose to stay silent, it is possible I could have avoided my current situation. However, after considering the harm such a choice would cause outside my family, I sent an anonymous tip to the police. While I could have personally convinced my father to stop, this would never rectify the pain of the previous victims. Despite the grief my decision has caused to others and even myself, I still shudder at the thought of silence.

Although my conscience was at peace, dealing with aftermath was certainly the most difficult time of my life. Due to the media coverage involving my father back home, my family name was tarnished, and I felt embarrassed in my own community. The fallout from my father’s firing as an accountant and partner severely also limited my family’s income, causing my father to file bankruptcy and my mother to nearly file as well. Close family members urged I seek therapy, but ultimately I knew the only person who could pull me through was myself. As an alternative route, I decided to involve myself more than ever in my schooling, seeking to redeem my family name. In order to pay for my education virtually on my own, I began two other part-time jobs in addition to the job I already held. In between classes, I worked in the office of the sociology department, studying and completing homework whenever I had free time during my shifts. When I was not studying at night, I worked at the XXXXX Cinema as I earned money to help myself and also gain an escape from reality watching the movies I love. At the concerts I ushered through my third job, I similarly used my free time to pursue my studies. While my work obligations allowed me to continue my education, they also educated me in maintaining responsibility in the midst of personal turmoil.

Through my experience, I also developed a strong interest in practicing and potentially advocating changes in criminal law. As I continued to visit my father, I saw the effects of our generally punitive legal system, but also noticed a lack in rehabilitation. Although I believe punishment is essential, a more rehabilitative approach could help prevent repeat offenders, as seen in countries with low repeat offenses such as Norway. The UCLA School of Law is thus appealing to me because of its highly regarded Criminal Defense Clinic. By helping to represent actual criminal defendants, I will gain the valuable experience necessary to become a successful public defender and legal advocate. I am also intrigued by the potential opportunity to work with faculty such as David Dolinko, whose research on the philosophy of punishment is relevant to my interest in criminal rehabilitation. As a result of my experiences in Los Angeles through internships, I definitely want to practice in the area as well. The UCLA School of Law will provide me the best foundation for achieving my goals to practice and also reform criminal law. Although my first prison experience came under different circumstances than I once envisioned, I am confident that with the lessons I learned and an education at UCLA, when the day hopefully comes that I finally enter a prison for a client, I will be stronger than I ever imagined.


This held my attention throughout the whole thing, so that speaks to something.

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nick_scheu
Posts: 64
Joined: Mon Sep 17, 2012 3:32 pm

Re: UCLA PS

Postby nick_scheu » Wed Oct 10, 2012 1:59 am

The beginning is much stronger than the end. I actually feel like you're a bit too specific in the last paragraph... Ideally, you'd find a way to continue the narrative while still accomplishing that paragraph's goals.

Child porn?

Anonymous User
Posts: 273591
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: UCLA PS

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Oct 10, 2012 9:53 am

br3v - thank you! your opinion means a lot haha. do you have any advice on how i could make it better?

nick_schue - can you elaborate on what i am too specific about? i'm not sure if you're saying i'm too specific about UCLA or my law interests. I tried to continue the narrative by connecting my experiences to my interest in law, so i had to make that specific (i posted this before to the forum, and I was told it was too vague). Maybe I'll have to find a balance between the two? As far as the second question, I'm not going to answer, but what happened will be fairly obvious, but my point in the essay is being discreet enough about it.




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