Tear this apart please.

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Anonymous User
Posts: 273310
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Tear this apart please.

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Nov 05, 2012 9:51 pm

“If you don't like something, change it. If you can't change it, change your attitude. Don't complain.”- Maya Angelou. There weren’t many things growing up that liked about my home life. My father left when I was very young and my mother was constantly facing problems with finances and being alone. The thought that life wasn’t fair for me and my sisters crossed my mind on a daily basis. It wasn’t until I was 15 that I realized that the only thing stopping me from rising above this inherited lifestyle was my own attitude towards it. Once the complaining stopped I found that what I am capable of is far beyond the hand I was dealt. Since then no matter how hard things have gotten for me throughout my life I have always faced it head on and came out a better person.
I was raised in Harrisburg, a fairly small rural town down in the southeastern corner of Illinois. My experiences throughout my upbringing have made me into the man and student I have become today. I was raised in an unstable household; my family was constantly moving and facing financial difficulties. My mother was a single mom trying to raise three kids and hold down a job, sometimes two or three. With my mother gone so much for work and me being the only male in the household my sisters looked up to me which is odd considering I’m their little brother. I felt the obligation from a very early age to be the “man of the house” for both my mom and my two sisters. Through this mind set I was able to develop a work ethic stronger than most young men you will meet today. I took on most of the chores around the house and when I reached the age to start working I did so immediately. I would take any job I could find to help support my mom and sisters. I have helped build homes, laid concrete foundations, installed plumbing, pushed shopping carts and through it all remained in school. I became the first member of my family to graduate with a high school diploma and I strongly believe this is because of my failure to accept anything less than what I have worked for. At the time my high school graduation was not the completion of my first step towards a higher education but instead to me it was a dream come true. To think that now I sit here months away from being the first in my family to graduate college is a reality I have yet to accept.
My education has not always been the most convenient thing for me. In fact right out of high school I decided I should work instead of going to school. I wanted to become completely independent from the stressful environment I had lived in my whole life. I started to notice quickly that I was unhappy, I had a feeling that I was capable of so much more. I got off of work one night and just sat in my car thinking about my next move. I pulled out of that parking lot with my mind made up, I was going to college. At first I was so overwhelmed with the application and financial aid process but with the help of some close friends I stuck with it and started classes in the spring. I admit that my first semester was difficult from many reasons. I continued to work which made school second on my list of priorities because without work I would have no income whatsoever. I took that first summer to search for other ways to help finance my schooling and I was fortunate enough to receive a baseball scholarship which would cover my housing. This was huge, for me now I could work less and focus more on classes. This is where my grade progression begins to improve. Over the next couple of years I worked hard to maintain a GPA that would get me onto the next level. The financial stresses were still there but with the combination of my work ethic and my refusal to accept anything other than success I made it to a four year university. Since arriving at Southern Illinois University-Edwardsville I have maintained above a 3.0 GPA and obtained a paid internship which has allowed me to become more independent than ever.
I have heard my grandpa say a million times that there is no such thing as luck, there is simply hard work meeting opportunity. My background although being hectic and unstable at times has built my character around not just a “want” to succeed but a “need’ to succeed. My professional development and my work ethic make me a strong candidate for law school. My acceptance to law school will not be luck, it will be my hard work meeting the opportunity you have given me.

livurlife
Posts: 8
Joined: Sat Nov 03, 2012 9:56 pm

Re: Tear this apart please.

Postby livurlife » Mon Nov 05, 2012 10:02 pm

Just any advice would be great!

User avatar
fruitoftheloom
Posts: 395
Joined: Sat Mar 31, 2012 10:38 pm

Re: Tear this apart please.

Postby fruitoftheloom » Mon Nov 05, 2012 10:16 pm

Anonymous User wrote:“If you don't like something, change it. If you can't change it, change your attitude. Don't complain.”- Maya Angelou. There weren’t many things growing up that liked about my home life. My father left when I was very young and my mother was constantly facing problems with finances and being alone. The thought that life wasn’t fair for me and my sisters crossed my mind on a daily basis. It wasn’t until I was 15 that I realized that the only thing stopping me from rising above this inherited lifestyle was my own attitude towards it. Once the complaining stopped I found that what I am capable of is far beyond the hand I was dealt. Since then no matter how hard things have gotten for me throughout my life I have always faced it head on and came out a better person.

Okay - so the grammar in the statement needs shoring up, but the ideas aren't quite there, so that's what I'm going to go with first. First - give examples of how your mother faced problems with finances, how that affected you, and how you overcame it. This part of the introduction is too vague. I can't picture you at all.

I was raised in Harrisburg, a fairly small rural town down in the southeastern corner of Illinois. My experiences throughout my upbringing have made me into the man and student I have become today. I was raised in an unstable household; my family was constantly moving and facing financial difficulties. My mother was a single mom trying to raise three kids and hold down a job, sometimes two or three. With my mother gone so much for work and me being the only male in the household my sisters looked up to me which is odd considering I’m their little brother. I felt the obligation from a very early age to be the “man of the house” for both my mom and my two sisters. Through this mind set I was able to develop a work ethic stronger than most young men you will meet today. I took on most of the chores around the house and when I reached the age to start working I did so immediately. I would take any job I could find to help support my mom and sisters. I have helped build homes, laid concrete foundations, installed plumbing, pushed shopping carts and through it all remained in school. I became the first member of my family to graduate with a high school diploma and I strongly believe this is because of my failure to accept anything less than what I have worked for. At the time my high school graduation was not the completion of my first step towards a higher education but instead to me it was a dream come true. To think that now I sit here months away from being the first in my family to graduate college is a reality I have yet to accept.


Everyone's experience made them into the person they are today. Delete that. Show it instead of saying it. Stop using the past passive voice "Was moving" is bad. Say "moved" instead. Look through your statement, you do this a lot.
ALSO - FINALLY! You've got something to work with!!! Talk about how your mother struggled working minimum wage jobs to support 3 kids and how that affected your life outlook. Did she emphasize education? Was that something that you internalized? I think here that you've got something, but you need to develop it more - talk about what sort of things you did as the "man of the house". Be SPECIFIC - Starting at 8, I decided that I was responsible for my sisters. I would get up at 5 a.m., make breakfast, go to school, come home, cook dinner.. etc. Give us a STORY instead of a synopsis.

My education has not always been the most convenient thing for me. In fact right out of high school I decided I should work instead of going to school. I wanted to become completely independent from the stressful environment I had lived in my whole life. I started to notice quickly that I was unhappy, I had a feeling that I was capable of so much more. I got off of work one night and just sat in my car thinking about my next move. I pulled out of that parking lot with my mind made up, I was going to college. At first I was so overwhelmed with the application and financial aid process but with the help of some close friends I stuck with it and started classes in the spring. I admit that my first semester was difficult from many reasons. I continued to work which made school second on my list of priorities because without work I would have no income whatsoever. I took that first summer to search for other ways to help finance my schooling and I was fortunate enough to receive a baseball scholarship which would cover my housing. This was huge, for me now I could work less and focus more on classes. This is where my grade progression begins to improve. Over the next couple of years I worked hard to maintain a GPA that would get me onto the next level. The financial stresses were still there but with the combination of my work ethic and my refusal to accept anything other than success I made it to a four year university. Since arriving at Southern Illinois University-Edwardsville I have maintained above a 3.0 GPA and obtained a paid internship which has allowed me to become more independent than ever.

Instead of education not being "convenient" say something like, Education is something I have worked to achieve. It has not fallen into my lap. Out of high school, attending college was not an option because.. Tell us about the day you decided to go to college more than "I went to work, then decided to go to college". WHAT about the work was it? were you working in fast food? did you fill one too many order of fries? give us something SPECIFIC that made you want to go back to college. Then move into how difficult working full time and attending school is & again give more specifics. I LIKE the baseball thing - how did you find it?? why is baseball not in the first part of the statement?

I have heard my grandpa say a million times that there is no such thing as luck, there is simply hard work meeting opportunity. My background although being hectic and unstable at times has built my character around not just a “want” to succeed but a “need’ to succeed. My professional development and my work ethic make me a strong candidate for law school. My acceptance to law school will not be luck, it will be my hard work meeting the opportunity you have given me.


Overall, I think your statement is disjointed and doesn't do a good job of showing your story to the reader. Find a couple of examples of things that you have struggled with and paint a story for the reader. Honestly - I think this statement should be mostly scrapped. It's too vague for the reader to feel like they know you at all.

livurlife
Posts: 8
Joined: Sat Nov 03, 2012 9:56 pm

Re: Tear this apart please.

Postby livurlife » Mon Nov 05, 2012 10:33 pm

I really needed this type of guidance
Thank you!




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