1st draft PS

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1st draft PS

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Aug 24, 2013 7:49 pm

Editing--*no replies so I'm doing a little editing and reposting it in a few hours.


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Re: 1st draft PS

Postby thelawschoolproject » Sat Aug 24, 2013 10:36 pm

Here are some thoughts:

1). Your first sentence is too hard to picture. Shorten it. Make it more direct. This is an image you want your reader to easily visualize. Right now he can't.

2). Your use of language, in general, needs work. You use three words when one would do. You frequently attribute descriptions to inaccurate subjects. You have run-on sentences that need to either be edited down or separated into multiple sentences. If you have a writing center at your school, I recommend letting them edit this for you.

3). You start one paragraph with "When I entered college, no one knew my story." I find this interesting because even at this point, I don't feel like I know your story. All that I have gathered thus far is that you are trying to live up to your brother. However, that in itself isn't really a "story." Certainly, there must be more behind it. You have spent far more time telling us about how you want to live up to your brother as opposed to showing us how you either did or did not accomplish that.

4). You mention the failings of your hometown's school system in a very nonchalant way. It's striking because you never referenced this before. It sticks out. And, I for one would be much more interested in how you handled overcoming a failing school system than I would be in learning how awesome of an athlete you are.

5). There are some issues with the chronology of your piece. You mention receiving good grades, for which you are proud, before you tell your audience about the struggles you had while in school. It seems that it should be the other way around.

6). Why do you keep tossing your father into your story? He seems to sit in the periphery in this piece and I don't understand what hold he has over you. If you're going to make him integral to your personal statement, then you need to provide us with more context. The same can be said for your brother. My assumption is that your brother passed away, but you never outright say that. You never discuss that story, which in all honesty, seems far more interesting than what you have here.

7). Overall, I would say that your PS lacks focus and clarity. There are several threads here that, if you focused on one of them, could make a decent PS. This includes explaining the failing school system and how you overcame it, discussing losing your brother, or digging into the relationship with your father. Also, I want to say that in your PS I am more impressed by the 2 or 3 lines that I know about your brother than all of the paragraphs that I know about you. While I'm sure your brother was an amazing person, this is your personal statement. You need to be the star that shines in this piece. Don't give the stage to someone else.

Ultimately, the best advice that I can give to you is to really think about what you want to convey to the admissions committee. If they could only know one thing about you, what would you want it to be? What is going to show them that you can excel at their school and as a lawyer? Right now the one image I'm left with is that you love your dad and brother. While this is notable, it doesn't make me say "yeah, he'd succeed here."

Good luck.

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Re: 1st draft PS

Postby HarvardHopeful » Sat Aug 24, 2013 10:59 pm


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