First draft

(Personal Statement Examples, Advice, Critique, . . . )
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john1990
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First draft

Postby john1990 » Mon Sep 09, 2013 4:35 pm

I have found that law is the best profession. I first formed this belief while reading The Republic by Plato. Plato believed that the structure of the law is the best indication of the prosperity of the society. Law gives order to society and all aspects of life from medicine to business. For this reason I consider the study and practice of law to be the most important field today. I decided to begin studying law because of the great impact it has on the world.
During my time as an undergraduate student I took it upon myself to read a variety of legal texts such as the Webster’s Legal Dictionary and Business Law Today’s Comprehensive Seventh Edition in entirety. I found that legal writing interested me greatly and that I enjoyed reading legal texts. Legal texts are interesting to read and discuss because they are important, they are based on logic, and they are subject to differences in opinion. After studying law independently I was confident that law was the most enjoyable study to me. Business law was the most exciting field since it built on my knowledge of business and accounting. Further, business law appeals to me because it has a big impact on the success of businesses and helps businesses grow.
I completed many Pre-Law classes during my time as an undergraduate at the University of Albany. My focus stayed on business law. I greatly enjoyed the lectures and was very active during classes. The classes were interesting because of the significance of the subject matter and how vocal the classroom was. I was happy to have the opportunity to speak regularly during these pre-law lectures with over 100 other students. This experience built my charisma and confidence significantly. This is one of my fondest memories at my university.
I was also active at the Pre-Law Association at my University. Our association would meet in a large lecture center every week to discuss current legal cases and important local events. It was a foundation for a more hands on environment for discussing law and working in the community. Further, it provided a network of students and professionals in the legal field which was highly valuable.
I would like to continue my study and involvement in the legal field at Cardozo Law School. I intend to use my time at Cardozo Law School to build my knowledge of law and advance towards my goal of becoming a practicing attorney and working in the business world. I believe Cardozo Law School will give me the opportunity to begin working in the legal field and the resources I need to grow as a law student.
Last edited by john1990 on Tue Sep 10, 2013 3:05 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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jselson
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Re: First draft

Postby jselson » Mon Sep 09, 2013 8:30 pm

Retake, don't go to Pace.

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john1990
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Re: First draft

Postby john1990 » Tue Sep 10, 2013 8:00 am

jselson wrote:Retake, don't go to Pace.


This is just one sample of my statement. I have a 166 and i will be submitting this to other schools as well. I could retake and try for a 170 but i suspect that i would fall short, however i did have a few 170s in practice

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lastsamurai
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Re: First draft

Postby lastsamurai » Tue Sep 10, 2013 9:54 am

http://blogs.law.yale.edu/blogs/admissi ... e-law.aspx

Might want to read that and rethink the direction you're heading

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john1990
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Re: First draft

Postby john1990 » Tue Sep 10, 2013 12:45 pm

lastsamurai wrote:http://blogs.law.yale.edu/blogs/admissions/archive/2010/09/30/p-s-boot-camp-sir-step-away-from-the-law.aspx

Might want to read that and rethink the direction you're heading


One of the more interesting blogs by a YLS there. To retort his claims

Some of it is tedious and mundane, and an applicant who is a little too excited about THE LAW strikes me as potentially unprepared
As an accounting major (which is mentioned) i am relieved to say that law is exciting in comparison

When someone simply says they are "fascinated," "excited," "passionate," etc. about THE LAW, I have no idea what that means. What, exactly, are you excited about?
I am specific with business law and have taken many classes there. Perhaps a pre-law student is not being considered here

your interest in the general subject matter of the profession is understood.
He is right in saying that this personal statement does seem more formal, but it can't hurt to explain your interest. I do not think a personal story on something outside of school is necessarily better

Most of my work has gone toward law school and i do not want comment on work in a school club because it does not describe me as well. However, i do comment on the PreLaw Association so it is not all academic

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rinkrat19
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Re: First draft

Postby rinkrat19 » Tue Sep 10, 2013 12:58 pm

I suspect most adcomms would have the same reaction I did when reading this PS: "What the fuck is wrong with this guy?"

This topic is beyond awful. Almost nobody loves reading law texts that much (the legal dictionary, SERIOUSLY??), and if they do, they don't talk about it. If they must talk about it, they temper it with some self-awareness that what they're mentioning is fucking bizarre. The adcomms are either going to just flat-out not believe you, or think you are an extremely strange person who would be an insufferable bore to all of his classmates.

Plus, practicing law is absolutely nothing like law school. Law school is three years. Then what?

You tell me that speaking "built your charisma." I have absolutely no basis for believing that; it's just something you have stated without illustration or support. Your writing certainly has none.

Tell me more about yourself as a person. Hopefully, you are much more than a really odd fascination with casebooks. Tell me something that happened to you/that you did/that you witnessed, which changed you/taught you something/helped define who you are. Tell me a story and make me LIKE you and want to admit you to my (hypothetical) law school. As is, this is painful.

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john1990
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Re: First draft

Postby john1990 » Tue Sep 10, 2013 1:15 pm

rinkrat19 wrote:I suspect most adcomms would have the same reaction I did when reading this PS: "What the fuck is wrong with this guy?"

This topic is beyond awful. Almost nobody loves reading law texts that much (the legal dictionary, SERIOUSLY??), and if they do, they don't talk about it. If they must talk about it, they temper it with some self-awareness that what they're mentioning is fucking bizarre. The adcomms are either going to just flat-out not believe you, or think you are an extremely strange person who would be an insufferable bore to all of his classmates.

Plus, practicing law is absolutely nothing like law school. Law school is three years. Then what?

You tell me that speaking "built your charisma." I have absolutely no basis for believing that; it's just something you have stated without illustration or support. Your writing certainly has none.

Tell me more about yourself as a person. Hopefully, you are much more than a really odd fascination with casebooks. Tell me something that happened to you/that you did/that you witnessed, which changed you/taught you something/helped define who you are. Tell me a story and make me LIKE you and want to admit you to my (hypothetical) law school. As is, this is painful.


http://www.google.com/imgres?sa=X&biw=1 ... =117&ty=50

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A. Nony Mouse
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Re: First draft

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Tue Sep 10, 2013 1:18 pm

If you don't want criticism, don't post a draft of your PS. Rink may not be diplomatic but she's absolutely correct.

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john1990
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Re: First draft

Postby john1990 » Tue Sep 10, 2013 1:26 pm

A. Nony Mouse wrote:If you don't want criticism, don't post a draft of your PS. Rink may not be diplomatic but she's absolutely correct.


I don't know she mainly commented on my reading a legal dictionary and speaking in class. The critique is just disagreeable.

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A. Nony Mouse
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Re: First draft

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Tue Sep 10, 2013 1:38 pm

john1990 wrote:
A. Nony Mouse wrote:If you don't want criticism, don't post a draft of your PS. Rink may not be diplomatic but she's absolutely correct.


I don't know she mainly commented on my reading a legal dictionary and speaking in class. The critique is just disagreeable.

No, she said more than that, if you read carefully.

This is an extremely generic statement, in part because the texts you cite as legal texts (a dictionary and a textbook) are extremely generic kinds of texts and nothing like what you will read in law school, let alone as a practicing lawyer. Citing those does not convince me, as a reader, that you know anything about law, nor does the statement actually explain what you find interesting about law in any way that is compelling or convincing to the reader. You make generic statements about why law is important and its impact on businesses that could apply to a whole range of fields ("business law/accounting/construction/economics has a big impact on the success of businesses and helps businesses grow"). The section about your pre-law classes and your participation in the pre-law association sounds like a rehash of your transcript and resume.

Your PS is not trying to sum up your background/experiences (your resume does this) or (necessarily) explain why you want to go to law school (it can, but it doesn't have to do this). As rink already said, "Tell me something that happened to you/that you did/that you witnessed, which changed you/taught you something/helped define who you are. Tell me a story and make me LIKE you and want to admit you to my (hypothetical) law school."

But if you just want people to tell you it's good or identify grammar/typos, don't post it here.

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john1990
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Re: First draft

Postby john1990 » Tue Sep 10, 2013 1:57 pm

So generally there are just a lot of disagreements here, but i thought i did come off as likable and professional from this personal statement. I believe that prelaw is the experience which makes me who i am. Otherwise i would stray into ethics, philosophy, or baseball :lol: I do not have major life events and i did not do meaningful work, but meaningful schoolwork!

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jselson
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Re: First draft

Postby jselson » Tue Sep 10, 2013 2:07 pm

Then take a year off and do meaningful work. It will help you in many, many ways.

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mandyjay11
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Re: First draft

Postby mandyjay11 » Tue Sep 10, 2013 2:14 pm

I dont really see a lot of disagreements here. I think you are disagreeing with people that are trying to tell you that this may not be the best personal statement. I,too, think it really lacks personality. There is a lot of explaining what you did in school that someone could see clearly in your resume. I presume that you solicited a recommendation from the professors of the class in which you "spoke regularly" and I'm sure if that is true, they will highlight that for you.

Maybe choose an experience you had in one of these pre-law class that helped shape you or your path to law school. All I can take away is that you like law books, you liked pre-law, and you rose your hand in class.

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john1990
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Re: First draft

Postby john1990 » Tue Sep 10, 2013 2:25 pm

mandyjay11 wrote:I dont really see a lot of disagreements here. I think you are disagreeing with people


There is a lot here which i would never put on a resume and i state why i like prelaw. I think i have a very professional personality.
The experience i had which made me want to become a lawyer is stated. It was Plato which created my interest in Law. I then advance this interest in the personal statement. The experience of being active in a vocal class was a large part of why i decided to go to law school as well. That is something i did not have in many business classes

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A. Nony Mouse
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Re: First draft

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Tue Sep 10, 2013 2:40 pm

Don't state - show. Give examples. What's a specific example of something you learned in a business law class that made you want to work in business law? SPECIFIC. A particular principle or doctrine, a particular kind of business that was affected. What does business law even mean? What's a specific case or local event that you discussed in your prelaw association, and why was it meaningful to you? How did this actually translate into a hands-on approach to community and law - did you ever do anything in the community? What? How did it change your beliefs about law? Why did reading Plato suddenly convince you law was the greatest thing ever? Why'd you read Plato to begin with - were you in high school? college? was it assigned, or did you pick it up in the library? Why do you agree with what he says?

This is a bit rearranging-the-deck-chairs-on-the-Titanic, because I think you should scrap this and start over, and I think ethics, philosophy, or baseball would give you more to work with (any of them could be the basis for a decent PS). But if you're convinced this is the way you want to go in your PS, try thinking about some of the above questions and using them to make your PS more personal.

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john1990
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Re: First draft

Postby john1990 » Tue Sep 10, 2013 2:44 pm

A. Nony Mouse wrote:Don't state - show. Give examples. What's a specific example of something you learned in a business law class that made you want to work in business law? SPECIFIC. A particular principle or doctrine, a particular kind of business that was affected. What does business law even mean? What's a specific case or local event that you discussed in your prelaw association, and why was it meaningful to you? How did this actually translate into a hands-on approach to community and law - did you ever do anything in the community? What? How did it change your beliefs about law? Why did reading Plato suddenly convince you law was the greatest thing ever? Why'd you read Plato to begin with - were you in high school? college? was it assigned, or did you pick it up in the library? Why do you agree with what he says?

This is a bit rearranging-the-deck-chairs-on-the-Titanic, because I think you should scrap this and start over, and I think ethics, philosophy, or baseball would give you more to work with (any of them could be the basis for a decent PS). But if you're convinced this is the way you want to go in your PS, try thinking about some of the above questions and using them to make your PS more personal.


Thank you, your advice is appreciated

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francesfarmer
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Re: First draft

Postby francesfarmer » Tue Sep 10, 2013 3:21 pm

This personal statement says almost nothing about you that I couldn't glean from a resume. And what it does say makes you look naive. Plato has no place in your law school personal statement unless you've got a PhD in philosophy or something. And law dictionaries have absolutely nothing to do with law school or lawyering. For your own good, write about something else.

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john1990
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Re: First draft

Postby john1990 » Tue Sep 10, 2013 3:26 pm

francesfarmer wrote:This personal statement says almost nothing about you that I couldn't glean from a resume. And what it does say makes you look naive. Plato has no place in your law school personal statement unless you've got a PhD in philosophy or something. And law dictionaries have absolutely nothing to do with law school or lawyering. For your own good, write about something else.


The law dictionary was a personal accomplishment which i thought would help identify myself. Plato applies because he discusses law. There is nothing else i can think of to write about.

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francesfarmer
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Re: First draft

Postby francesfarmer » Tue Sep 10, 2013 3:50 pm

john1990 wrote:
francesfarmer wrote:This personal statement says almost nothing about you that I couldn't glean from a resume. And what it does say makes you look naive. Plato has no place in your law school personal statement unless you've got a PhD in philosophy or something. And law dictionaries have absolutely nothing to do with law school or lawyering. For your own good, write about something else.


The law dictionary was a personal accomplishment which i thought would help identify myself. Plato applies because he discusses law. There is nothing else i can think of to write about.

Think harder. This is not a suitable topic.

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francesfarmer
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Re: First draft

Postby francesfarmer » Tue Sep 10, 2013 3:57 pm

I'm not trying to be a dick but the personal statement is supposed to tell adcomms something they wouldn't otherwise know about you, and this statement doesn't do much of that. This statement will hurt your application and you should not submit it.

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john1990
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Re: First draft

Postby john1990 » Tue Sep 10, 2013 3:57 pm

francesfarmer wrote:
john1990 wrote:
francesfarmer wrote:This personal statement says almost nothing about you that I couldn't glean from a resume. And what it does say makes you look naive. Plato has no place in your law school personal statement unless you've got a PhD in philosophy or something. And law dictionaries have absolutely nothing to do with law school or lawyering. For your own good, write about something else.


The law dictionary was a personal accomplishment which i thought would help identify myself. Plato applies because he discusses law. There is nothing else i can think of to write about.

Think harder. This is not a suitable topic.


It does show on the TLS Personal Statements
#5 Topics for personal Statements the following ideas are used
#7,#8
It shows that law is my passion

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francesfarmer
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Re: First draft

Postby francesfarmer » Tue Sep 10, 2013 4:03 pm

john1990 wrote:
francesfarmer wrote:
john1990 wrote:
francesfarmer wrote:This personal statement says almost nothing about you that I couldn't glean from a resume. And what it does say makes you look naive. Plato has no place in your law school personal statement unless you've got a PhD in philosophy or something. And law dictionaries have absolutely nothing to do with law school or lawyering. For your own good, write about something else.


The law dictionary was a personal accomplishment which i thought would help identify myself. Plato applies because he discusses law. There is nothing else i can think of to write about.

Think harder. This is not a suitable topic.


It does show on the TLS Personal Statements
#5 Topics for personal Statements the following ideas are used
#7,#8
It shows that law is my passion

No, it doesn't. You say that law is your passion and that you read a law dictionary (which is either a lie, or you're really weird) and you were in a pre-law society and took pre-law classes (which is on your transcript and resume). That doesn't demonstrate that law is your passion. And for someone who has no work experience or understanding of what practicing law actually entails, writing a personal statement that claims law is your passion is pretty foolish. On top of this, the statement has zero personality. Write something that has personality. It will serve you better than this, even if you don't mention the words "law" or "law school" in it.

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john1990
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Re: First draft

Postby john1990 » Tue Sep 10, 2013 4:12 pm

john1990 wrote:
francesfarmer wrote:
john1990 wrote:
francesfarmer wrote:This personal statement says almost nothing about you that I couldn't glean from a resume. And what it does say makes you look naive. Plato has no place in your law school personal statement unless you've got a PhD in philosophy or something. And law dictionaries have absolutely nothing to do with law school or lawyering. For your own good, write about something else.


The law dictionary was a personal accomplishment which i thought would help identify myself. Plato applies because he discusses law. There is nothing else i can think of to write about.

Think harder. This is not a suitable topic.


It does show on the TLS Personal Statements
#5 Topics for personal Statements the following ideas are used
#7,#8
It shows that law is my passion

No, it doesn't. You say that law is your passion and that you read a law dictionary (which is either a lie, or you're really weird) and you were in a pre-law society and took pre-law classes (which is on your transcript and resume). That doesn't demonstrate that law is your passion. And for someone who has no work experience or understanding of what practicing law actually entails, writing a personal statement that claims law is your passion is pretty foolish. On top of this, the statement has zero personality. Write something that has personality. It will serve you better than this, even if you don't mention the words "law" or "law school" in it.[/quote]
I read the legal dictionary to increase my vocabulary. If you read a legal dictionary then law must be a passion of yours, there is no other explanation :lol:
Well some of this information is on my resume there are countless new facts here in this personal statement :!:
I believe there is reason to write about law as my passion. This was a goal of mine as an undergraduate and i know i accomplished this and it shows in this personal statement. My personality is in this paper and in the tone taken. The events i mention display my personality.

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francesfarmer
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Re: First draft

Postby francesfarmer » Tue Sep 10, 2013 4:15 pm

john1990 wrote:I read the legal dictionary to increase my vocabulary. If you read a legal dictionary then law must be a passion of yours, there is no other explanation :lol:
Well some of this information is on my resume there are countless new facts here in this personal statement :!:
I believe there is reason to write about law as my passion. This was a goal of mine as an undergraduate and i know i accomplished this and it shows in this personal statement. My personality is in this paper and in the tone taken. The events i mention display my personality.

You have a ton of strangers on the internet (strangers just like adcomms; strangers like myself who got admitted to many T14 law schools) telling you that your statement lacks personality and substance, and yet you counter that it has personality and substance. Ok, sure, you win. Good luck with your cycle.

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john1990
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Re: First draft

Postby john1990 » Tue Sep 10, 2013 4:22 pm

francesfarmer wrote:
john1990 wrote:I read the legal dictionary to increase my vocabulary. If you read a legal dictionary then law must be a passion of yours, there is no other explanation :lol:
Well some of this information is on my resume there are countless new facts here in this personal statement :!:
I believe there is reason to write about law as my passion. This was a goal of mine as an undergraduate and i know i accomplished this and it shows in this personal statement. My personality is in this paper and in the tone taken. The events i mention display my personality.

You have a ton of strangers on the internet (strangers just like adcomms; strangers like myself who got admitted to many T14 law schools) telling you that your statement lacks personality and substance, and yet you counter that it has personality and substance. Ok, sure, you win. Good luck with your cycle.


I have been accepted at a T25 in the past but could not attend :/
I admit this is a more professional statement, but i do not have anything to write about in my personal life besides how i have become a more vocal person in classes




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