Copy-editor * Can you find any errors? Feedback welcomed

(Personal Statement Examples, Advice, Critique, . . . )
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alexrodriguez
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Copy-editor * Can you find any errors? Feedback welcomed

Postby alexrodriguez » Sun Sep 01, 2013 12:09 am

Class “zero-five-zero” made it. We earned our seats at our graduation from the Defense Information School (DINFOS). We were an unusual class comprised of many college graduates which made things all the more competitive between us. In many ways expectations at the schoolhouse had become greater because of us. We stuck together as a team unlike many of the prior classes. We were friends, colleagues, and enlisted sailors striving to become Mass Communication Specialists. We shot video day and night. We learned advanced photography within a matter of weeks. We learned the inner workings of Adobe programs and created our own websites. We scrutinized our news stories for style guide mistakes. We learned all this as quickly as we possibly could because the United States Navy entrusted us to tell its story.

Soon thereafter, my friends and I were all on planes headed for different places all across the world. I received orders to a small island seven degrees south of the equator. This island, known as Diego Garcia, is the Navy’s best kept secret. Its location within British Indian Ocean Territory makes it a hub for replenishment in support of regional conflicts. Submarines and aircraft continuously transit through. As a sailor working at the American Forces Network I acted as a radio personality informing and entertaining all service members here.

“Good Morning Diego Garcia! This is Seaman Luis Rodriguez also known as DJ Louie here on the midday show! Hopefully you all had a wonderful weekend. Anyone out there participate in the four on four volleyball tournament yesterday? I sure had a lot of fun and hopefully you did too! Well anyways, I have four hours of great music and vital command information coming your way so stay tuned on the world famous power 99.1! Up next, Mat Kearney with “Nothing Left to Lose.”

For the duration of my one year tour I was instrumental in putting service members in touch with home. Due to the island's remote location many service members dealt with emotional hardship. I often provided information on suicide prevention, how to get in touch with counselors and chaplains, and resources to deal with stress and anxiety. The slogan “One Team, One Island, One Mission,” was huge here. Boosting morale and keeping people actively involved within the community was vital for the atmosphere here. Maintaining this environment was my responsibility. It was my job.

Receiving comments such as, “You played my favorite song,” or “Cool interview with the retired NFL players,” really brightened my day. Representing the people here is what put a smile on my face and it was my mission. Ever since my time at DINFOS, I have thought about how, “Everyone has a story to tell and it’s your job to tell them all.” A few significant stories that I covered aboard Diego Garcia were the service members running a marathon in support of the victims from the Boston bombings, the sailor who overcame alcoholism and was promoted, and the hard-at-work Seabees building an extension to the ship store.

My small contribution to the service members here has been rewarding. I often think about how many people I speak to on their drive to the airfield that soon after deploy to war zones. The last song or message they hear was from my doing. I may just be a pawn in this great game of chess, but I am honored to have had the opportunity to serve in this capacity.

As Captain Matthew Vandersluis the Commanding Officer of Naval Support Facility Diego Garcia told me in an interview, “I expect them [the sailors here] to understand they wear the cloth of the nation and this isn’t just a job. No matter what you’re doing on the base, whether you’re the commanding officer or doing a routine admin task— this is important to our country. This base is vital and we’re out here in the Indian Ocean for a reason. It’s an honor to be here and be a part of this nation and this uniform and service.” His words struck me. It may not come across the same in writing, but I found them inspiring.

Serving my country has been my greatest accomplishment. I knew in signing my name on that dotted line that I would have to adapt to an unfamiliar lifestyle. I joined because I believed I would come out a stronger, more disciplined, and virtuous person. Going to law school has been something I have been thinking about for the last five years. When I graduated college at twenty years of age I did not believe I was ready. I did not think I had the maturity, discipline, or work ethic required of a law student. I have gone searching for these attributes and in looking for them I have traveled all over the world. With my new mindset and views I believe I am prepared for anything life may throw at me.
Last edited by alexrodriguez on Thu Sep 05, 2013 1:11 am, edited 3 times in total.

NYstate
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Re: Copy-editor * Can you find any errors? Feedback welcomed

Postby NYstate » Sun Sep 01, 2013 12:14 am

Louie: this is light years ahead of your first attempt. I will try to give it a closer reading later this weekend when I'm not just on my phone.

Keep studying.

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alexrodriguez
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Re: Copy-editor * Can you find any errors? Feedback welcomed

Postby alexrodriguez » Sun Sep 01, 2013 12:33 am

Will do NYstate!

Time to 7sage it up.

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manofjustice
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Re: Copy-editor * Can you find any errors? Feedback welcomed

Postby manofjustice » Sun Sep 01, 2013 12:45 am

Robin Williams?? Is that you?


Gooooooood morning Vietnam!!!

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Emma.
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Re: Copy-editor * Can you find any errors? Feedback welcomed

Postby Emma. » Sun Sep 01, 2013 12:47 am

Can you change "It has been preached" in P5 into active voice?

"Spoke to" in P6. I'd also change "I'm" to "I am" in the last sentence. In fact, I'd reconsider some of the other contractions too.

Claiming that your impact on the island has been "incalculable" smacks of hubris to me.

There's something off about "Among my favorites that I covered..." Can you rephrase slightly?

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Anastasia Dee Dualla
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Re: Copy-editor * Can you find any errors? Feedback welcomed

Postby Anastasia Dee Dualla » Sun Sep 01, 2013 1:36 am

, known as Diego Garcia,

Some of my navy friends use a comma in "one team, one fight;" not sure whether there is actually a preferred way to write that.

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alexrodriguez
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Re: Copy-editor * Can you find any errors? Feedback welcomed

Postby alexrodriguez » Sun Sep 01, 2013 1:48 am

Thanks for pointing all these things out.

Please look over it again and see if the corrections I made are suitable.

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manofjustice
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Re: Copy-editor * Can you find any errors? Feedback welcomed

Postby manofjustice » Sun Sep 01, 2013 2:34 am

What is your personal statement supposed to tell me about you?

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alexrodriguez
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Re: Copy-editor * Can you find any errors? Feedback welcomed

Postby alexrodriguez » Sun Sep 01, 2013 2:41 am

That I'm ready.

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manofjustice
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Re: Copy-editor * Can you find any errors? Feedback welcomed

Postby manofjustice » Sun Sep 01, 2013 2:47 am

louierodriguez wrote:That I'm ready.


For?

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alexrodriguez
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Re: Copy-editor * Can you find any errors? Feedback welcomed

Postby alexrodriguez » Sun Sep 01, 2013 2:53 am

Cut to the chase Manofjustice.

Tell me what you do not like.

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manofjustice
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Re: Copy-editor * Can you find any errors? Feedback welcomed

Postby manofjustice » Sun Sep 01, 2013 3:14 am

louierodriguez wrote:Cut to the chase Manofjustice.

Tell me what you do not like.


Everything. It won't hurt you, but it won't help.

What are you ready for? And why?

You have to know this in specific form before writing an "I'm ready" personal statement.

"Why law school" personal statements are great for people who have had prior careers. Why? Because people who decide to switch careers and go to law school usually actually have reasons and feelings for doing so.

Surprisingly, when people start writing personal statements, they forget all their actual reasons and feelings and descend into descriptive masturbation.

I had a guy turn a terrible personal statement that actually made me despise him a bit into the best one I ever read just by adding a few sentences. His was a "why law school" personal statement and his few sentences...well, what do ya know, were just plain-English, unpolished recitations of his actual reasons and feelings for going to law school. You might try something similar. Our internal lives are more dramatic and inspiring than we realize, without the bullshit filter. Just tune in to yourself and be willing to share.

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alexrodriguez
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Re: Copy-editor * Can you find any errors? Feedback welcomed

Postby alexrodriguez » Sun Sep 01, 2013 3:33 am

The fact that you said, "It won't hurt you, but it won't help," is another way of saying "this isn't a bad PS, but I didn't like it." If there is nothing with this PS then I'm okay with the fact that you didn't enjoy it.

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manofjustice
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Re: Copy-editor * Can you find any errors? Feedback welcomed

Postby manofjustice » Sun Sep 01, 2013 3:46 am

louierodriguez wrote:The fact that you said, "It won't hurt you, but it won't help," is another way of saying "this isn't a bad PS, but I didn't like it." If there is nothing with this PS then I'm okay with the fact that you didn't enjoy it.


Nothing with this PS? You mean nothing wrong with this PS?

Almost all personal statements are very bad. It doesn't take much to avoid being hurt by a personal statement. I think other posters addressed points that could hurt--i.e., arrogance with respect to your incalculable impact on the U.S. Armed Forces.

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alexrodriguez
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Re: Copy-editor * Can you find any errors? Feedback welcomed

Postby alexrodriguez » Sun Sep 01, 2013 3:50 am

manofjustice wrote: I think other posters addressed points that could hurt--i.e., arrogance with respect to your incalculable impact on the U.S. Armed Forces.


It wasn't meant to be arrogance obviously, and I've already made the corrections.

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manofjustice
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Re: Copy-editor * Can you find any errors? Feedback welcomed

Postby manofjustice » Sun Sep 01, 2013 3:53 am

My guess is that instead of saying you made an incalculable contribution to the armed forces and you were "proud to serve your country," what you really feel (and what you meant to say) is that you had never felt as important as you did during this experience and it made you feel grown-up and mature. While your friends were playing video games, you were doing something real. Even if it wasn't the biggest deal for the Armed Forces as a whole, it mattered to individual service members and it was the most important thing you ever did before. You realized that and it made you proud. Now you feel ready to take on professional responsibilities. I think you should consider just saying something like that--if that's how you really feel about it.

edit: you could turn this into a narrative that begins with describing your motivation for joining in the first place and describing your motivation to leave and move on.
Last edited by manofjustice on Sun Sep 01, 2013 3:58 am, edited 1 time in total.

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alexrodriguez
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Re: Copy-editor * Can you find any errors? Feedback welcomed

Postby alexrodriguez » Sun Sep 01, 2013 3:57 am

I've already changed it. Read paragraph six.

"My small contribution to the service members here has been rewarding."

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manofjustice
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Re: Copy-editor * Can you find any errors? Feedback welcomed

Postby manofjustice » Sun Sep 01, 2013 3:58 am

louierodriguez wrote:I've already changed it. Read paragraph six.

"My small contribution to the service members here has been rewarding."


I know.

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alexrodriguez
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Re: Copy-editor * Can you find any errors? Feedback welcomed

Postby alexrodriguez » Sun Sep 01, 2013 4:01 am

very well

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Re: Copy-editor * Can you find any errors? Feedback welcomed

Postby risanian » Sun Sep 01, 2013 9:12 pm

manofjustice wrote: Our internal lives are more dramatic and inspiring than we realize, without the bullshit filter. Just tune in to yourself and be willing to share.


I agree.

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alexrodriguez
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Re: Copy-editor * Can you find any errors? Feedback welcomed

Postby alexrodriguez » Wed Sep 04, 2013 3:18 am

Would appreciate more feedback.

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guano
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Re: Copy-editor * Can you find any errors? Feedback welcomed

Postby guano » Wed Sep 04, 2013 8:24 am

manofjustice wrote:It won't hurt you, but it won't help.

That is the general consensus about personal statements




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