Advice For Getting Started

(Personal Statement Examples, Advice, Critique, . . . )
tanyrseay
Posts: 39
Joined: Mon Jun 03, 2013 4:12 pm

Advice For Getting Started

Postby tanyrseay » Thu Oct 10, 2013 8:22 pm

Hello everyone! I have started on my personal statement, but feel I want to go in a different direction. Here are some things I want to fit in to my personal statement that I feel are essential:

- I am a first generation college student.

- Born and Raised in Rural East Tennessee (Appalachia)
- economic disadvantage
- few opportunities, poor high school

- I have been diagnosed with a mild form of Tourette's Syndrome

How do I fit these things into a personal statement? Should it be through a narrative, say I tell a story and some how fit those things into it? I am lost as to how to get this thing rolling. My original personal statement I began by telling a story of when I traveled to Oakland, California and a young child asked me, "Why you twitting in those skinny jeans, white boy?" I framed the story through the lens of that conversation, but I felt this was too risky and the humor may throw off admissions.

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AnonymousAlterEgoC
Posts: 247
Joined: Tue Oct 08, 2013 9:13 am

Re: Advice For Getting Started

Postby AnonymousAlterEgoC » Fri Oct 11, 2013 8:35 pm

tanyrseay wrote:I am a first generation college student.


This probably belongs in a diversity statement


- Born and Raised in Rural East Tennessee (Appalachia)
- economic disadvantage
- few opportunities, poor high school



See above. You want to avoid talking about high school.


- I have been diagnosed with a mild form of Tourette's Syndrome



I would run with this. Tell the adcomms why you would make an ideal law student. That's basically the point of the PS.

I felt this was too risky and the humor may throw off admissions.


That's my thought too.

My pre-law advisor told me (and I've seen this in several strong PSs since): start out by writing down three characteristics that would make you a good candidate for law school (maybe intelligent, hard-working, and creative). Now show them. Start by telling a story. Go for it.

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Ramius
Posts: 2005
Joined: Mon Jul 02, 2012 12:39 am

Re: Advice For Getting Started

Postby Ramius » Sun Oct 13, 2013 10:01 am

Everything camelthing said above is solid advice, and I'd venture one other thing. Stop worrying about the what of your personal statement and really worry about the how of it. Effective PSs run the gamut of topics from hobbies and passions to extraordinary life experiences. There are a thousand ways to skin this cat, so just figure out what will work best for you and run with it. You won't know you have a good, bad or amazing PS until you've put words on the page. So start off by figuring out what qualities you're trying to sell, find a personal anecdote from your past that shows those qualities and run with it.

I don't think you necessarily need to try for three positive qualities in your PS, but you should definitely have at least one main positive you're trying to highlight. Good luck!

chinadoll
Posts: 32
Joined: Fri Sep 21, 2012 11:50 pm

Re: Advice For Getting Started

Postby chinadoll » Sun Oct 13, 2013 12:59 pm

it doesn't matter what your topic is as long as your ps shows a side of you that's not on paper.

if you have good numbers: write something that shows you care about something besides yourself

if you have mediocre numbers/ unusual resume: write something that shows you are focused and aren't just going to law school because you ran out of options

if you have low numbers: write something that shows you're tough, practical, and can get back up after something knocks you down

good luck!




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