personal statement for PhD holder -- any advice/suggestion?

(Personal Statement Examples, Advice, Critique, . . . )

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personal statement for PhD holder -- any advice/suggestion?

Postby 1278 » Mon Oct 15, 2012 12:26 pm

PhD in hard core science (+postdoc experiences), applying for law school now. Have to explain why gave up on academia and research. Anybody with similar experiences? Maybe examples? Or any advice on how to explain this in a way as positive as possible???

Comments greatly appreciated!


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Joined: Tue Nov 20, 2012 10:11 pm

Re: personal statement for PhD holder -- any advice/suggestion?

Postby jp973156 » Tue Nov 20, 2012 10:34 pm

I'm going through the same process. I'm not framing as "I gave up on academia"; rather, "...academia taught me many lessons, such as X, Y, Z, which I feel make me a great candidate for a career in 'Z' law." and yadda yadda. This is presumably a positive experience that will facilitate personal growth. Framing your previous (extensive) education in a positive light (rather than something you just gave up on), is likely to have greater impact than taking a negative approach to your life in academia: those experiences are likely a good leverage point for personal statement and application, so use as such.


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Re: personal statement for PhD holder -- any advice/suggestion?

Postby collegebum1989 » Wed Nov 21, 2012 12:46 am

Not a PhD holder, but an MS in engineering, with a lot of research experiences and similar vantage point...

You have two options:

(1) Explain why you chose to leave academia by discussing some of the structural and philosophical defects of academia (there are plenty) and how this brought about an interest in a career shift. In doing this you should provide detailed information about the characteristics of your field that will enhance your future legal career.


(2) Leverage your experiences in a way to market yourself as a diverse law school student and future graduate. If you have a specific career interest after law school, you should write this essay in the context of your previous academic research and explain why your experiences will be an asset to the entering law class and in your future legal career.

In both cases, you need to show that you are more experienced than the average K-JD. As such, your essay should have a professional focus. If you want an example, PM me and we can swap essays.

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