First Draft...Very basic review needed!

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akasabian
Posts: 113
Joined: Sat Jan 15, 2011 8:11 pm

First Draft...Very basic review needed!

Postby akasabian » Mon Oct 15, 2012 11:31 am

Hey guys, this is my first draft with this theme (I was all over the place on my other first draft to the extent I couldn't even bring myself to post it here). I wanted to see if this is something worth saving and if the theme would look good to adcomms.

Socrates once said, “The only good is knowledge, and the only evil is ignorance.” This quote, to me, separates the world into knowledge and ignorance. I consider myself one who is driven to pursue the former. If money were no object, one of my top career choices would be a professional student – I have a passion for knowledge. While there may not be any long-term gains from understanding feminist theories in relation to Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings, it still does not stop me from absorbing any and all information at hand.

My passion for knowledge has followed me since before I began kindergarten. Questioning followed curiosity, which helped give me understanding about the world around me. As a child, my parents would attempt to explain something to me, such as why the sky was blue. I was not content with the answer “because it is a reflection of the ocean.” I would push it farther, asking “why is the sky blue when we are not near the ocean?” This path continued throughout my childhood and adolescence. However in my time in college, this commitment to the pursuit of knowledge has been boosted.

As I arrived in college, my passion for knowledge was heightened. Studying abroad for a year gave me a whole new perception on which to try and learn about the world beyond my college, state, and country. From that time abroad, I was able to refine a key trait – the ability to perceive a situation from any angle and to gain understanding, regardless of my own personal beliefs. This is a trait that I believe plays a key role for everyone in life, especially those seeking a career in the legal field. I know that much of my success in college is directly relatable to the passion I had for knowledge and learning – both traditional and experiential learning.

This passion for knowledge has reached a new high with my enhanced exposure to the legal field. Through a Constitutional Law class, I have been able to see the true beauty of jurisprudence. While it may sound nerdy, just reading about decisions such as Heart of Atlanta Motel v. United States has been an incredible opportunity to read briefs written by some of the most brilliant minds, who take so few words and do so much good with them. In my limited experience reading the briefs, they are similar to art, with the best cases transcending time like a timeless piece of art. Seeing the good that can be achieved through the legal field has guided my passion of knowledge towards the legal field.

Law school to me is the opportunity to not just continue learning, but to obtain knowledge that can truly provide the potential to help others. While law school will not be just like that Constitutional Law class, understanding the law has become a source of passion. Chances have it that I will not write a decision like Justice Clark did in Heart of Atlanta, but that does not mean that law school or the legal field is any less appealing. I know that my passion for knowledge and the law will be a great addition to XYZ University, and this passion will translate into future success in law school and beyond.
Last edited by akasabian on Mon Oct 15, 2012 11:40 am, edited 1 time in total.

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eyescream
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Joined: Sun Aug 26, 2012 3:47 pm

Re: First Draft...Very basic review needed!

Postby eyescream » Mon Oct 15, 2012 11:39 am

Quote is from Socrates, fyi. Also, I've always heard it as, "There is only one good, knowledge, and one evil, ignorance."

Just from a quick skim: Use "passion of knowledge" fewer times. Say it once, and then describe how you have a passion of knowledge instead of repeatedly saying it. You've already done that somewhat with your recourse to classwork and what not, but try to take the one extra step and show the audience how that makes you special or unique.

Also, you kind of diminish one of those examples. You say you're passionate about knowledge, then you write, "While there may not be any long-term gains from understanding feminist theories in relation to Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings, it still does not stop me from absorbing any and all information at hand." So, on the one hand, you like learning, but you're admitting that you may not have have received any long-term gains from this coursework.

If you don't think you may have gained anything from it, why put it in your PS in the first place? I think you're trying to show the adcoms how you've taken some interesting classes. Maybe use this coursework as an example of how you looked at a subject through a different lens? And how you will similarly look at law through a different lens.

The theme itself is fine, but I have the nagging suspicion that adcoms will be receiving a lot of "I love learning" essays. It's not a problem that you're writing yours with this theme. Just work with it.

Just my random musings. Except for the Socrates bit. Definitely Socrates.

akasabian
Posts: 113
Joined: Sat Jan 15, 2011 8:11 pm

Re: First Draft...Very basic review needed!

Postby akasabian » Mon Oct 15, 2012 11:44 am

akasabian wrote:This passion for knowledge has reached a new high with my enhanced exposure to the legal field. Through a Constitutional Law class, I have been able to see the true beauty of jurisprudence. While it may sound nerdy, just reading about decisions such as Heart of Atlanta Motel v. United States has been an incredible opportunity to read briefs written by some of the most brilliant minds, who take so few words and do so much good with them. In my limited experience reading the briefs, they are similar to art, with the best cases transcending time like a timeless piece of art. Seeing the good that can be achieved through the legal field has guided my passion of knowledge towards the legal field.


I was also concerned this paragraph about legal decisions seemed too fake. It is 100% sincere, it just was something that was awkward to write at first. Thoughts?

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eyescream
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Re: First Draft...Very basic review needed!

Postby eyescream » Mon Oct 15, 2012 11:53 am

Hm. You're telling me, the audience, that you've seen the true beauty of jurisprudence. The only example you're giving about this true beauty is in the next sentence, which cites a court decision and then says "take so few words and do so much good with them." Jurisprudence is a wider field than just that.

It's kind of like saying you've seen the true beauty of a cookie while only experiencing a small part of it, like sugar. That was the first analogy to come to mind, so bear with me.

If you want to say how you saw the "true beauty" of jurisprudence, explain that a bit. Use general terms, if you have to. Right now the example does seem disingenuous. However, if you spend some time writing about what you mean by true beauty and then use your example to really hit it home, it'll come off much more cleanly.

"In my limited experience reading the briefs, they are similar to art, with the best cases transcending time like a timeless piece of art." If you want to keep this, be sure to strengthen the analogy and reword the sentence; "transcending time like a timeless piece of art" doesn't really pop. If your only reason for analogizing briefs to art is because they both are timeless, the same could be said about a brief and a rock. You're not really selling me on this analogy.

"Seeing the good that can be achieved through the legal field has guided my passion of knowledge towards the legal field."

Also, this bit may make for a more resonant theme. Loving knowledge, but feeling lost, then finding a good avenue through which you can funnel your education and make it more applicable. The wayward intellectual who finds a home, and such.

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eyescream
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Re: First Draft...Very basic review needed!

Postby eyescream » Mon Oct 15, 2012 11:58 am

Also, if you're going to lead with the quote you've chosen, you need to have thematic elements in your statement that relate to it. The quote is about ignorance and knowledge, but your statement only relates (right now) to knowledge. Have you ever witnessed first hand bad decisions resulting from ignorance? Adding some aspects about ignorance will better tie the quote to the rest of your personal statement.

Just remember, if you choose to lead with a quote from somebody, that quote will dominate the themes of your statement, and I'll be expecting certain tropes and personal experiences that relate to that quote. If there aren't any, the quote is useless.




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