Here is the final draft of my personal statement. I am very grateful to anyone who can offer their thoughts and/or share some advice. I'm submitting my applications this week (probably within the next day or two) and am just looking for some lsat minute input. Thanks in advance.
When I first thought about what it would be like to become an attorney, the notion of becoming a college graduate, let alone a law school grad, was quite a reach. No one in my family had gone to college and I was an 18-year-old high school dropout without much motivation in life. The only thing I considered to have going for me was that I didn’t inherit my father’s addiction to alcohol. My days in high school were rocky at best; bad grades, poor attendance, procrastination, no goals, and an overall lack of caring about my future. I certainly wasn’t concerned about what I was going to do for a career. However, in the spring of 2009, I learned that I would become a very young father. This news presented a very happy moment but it also posed the concern of how I was going to take care of a family at such a young age, especially given that I had no real plan for what I was going to do with my life. As a soon-to-be teenage parent, I knew I was going to face difficulties. That didn’t frighten me. In fact, I wasn’t worried at all. The only question I needed to answer for myself was if I’d be able to completely change my careless, childish mindset enough to quickly become an adult. Thanks to some of the best sources of inspiration, I embraced every aspect of my life and real determination set in.
As the years went by and the results of my hard work and dedication became apparent, I was very proud of what I had accomplished and how far I had come from where I started. This inspired me to set challenging, yet rewarding, goals. Suddenly, I was rethinking my old thoughts of becoming an attorney. I earned an Associate’s degree, graduating with honors, while helping raise a child and working to make a living. When I transferred schools to continue my undergraduate work, I knew what I wanted to work toward. Attending law school for me was a personal goal. I did not decide that I wanted to become an attorney for money or to enjoy the fictional lifestyle that television shows like to portray them as living. The motivation behind this decision was my continued interest in the intricate field of law and my innate passion for helping those who are not able to help themselves. A brief example of an instance that strengthened my desire to become an attorney was when a family friend was blatantly harmed by their employer. This friend had been a reliable employee at their job for over six years. Then, over the period of a few weeks, he had not received multiple paychecks. He finally raised the issue with his employer. After speaking with the payroll manager, he was told that he would be compensated for all back pay within just a couple days. Although he had every right to be angry, he was accommodating and continued to wait despite having a family to support. Another week went by and he had not received any payment for his work. Again, he confronted his employer. This time, he was informed that he was being terminated for stealing from the shop. Such news blindsided my friend because it was completely false and he was left in a very difficult predicament when they refused to pay what he was owed in back wages. Although he is a very kind person, my friend has little formal education and was not aware of his rights. As a result, he did not know what to do. Ultimately, he was advised to seek immediate legal representation and he received the wages owed to him. It is cases like this, when people are harmed and don’t have the ability to defend themselves, that always succeed in fueling my passion to become an attorney. At this point in my life, I am certain that a career in law is the right decision for me and I am excited to begin down the path.
I have chosen to apply to [school name] College of Law because [school’s city] is where I intend to devote my career. After visiting and researching many schools, talking to current law students, and listening to numerous admission representatives from around the country discuss the benefits of attending their schools, I have decided that [school name] is a perfect fit for me as a future law student. Considering proximity to home, the academic and experiential opportunities for students, commitment to the success of its graduates, fantastic regional recognition, and state of the art facility, I am ecstatic about a potential opportunity to join the [school name] community.
Formal education has taught me to think critically, analyze technical material, memorize complex formulas, and much more. Yet the most important skill I’ve developed in college has little to do with academia. Of all the things I’ve learned throughout my days in higher education, whether it be personally, academically, or professionally, the ability to recognize, acknowledge, and overcome adversity has been the greatest achievement I could have hoped for. My life has presented me an array of challenges that I’ve been forced to either embrace or succumb to. Despite their complexities and the uncertainties they presented, I have succeeded in reducing my life’s challenges to a simple decision: quit or move forward. The same resiliency that has helped me to attain my past goals will certainly assist me in my determination to practice law. Even though I have had to take a few steps back along the way, no obstacle has prevented me from accomplishing my dreams and I am confident that this will continue to hold true. Although my experiences have not been entirely unique, my response to these challenges definitely sets me apart. I consider my past a means of shaping me into the individual I am today. I realize that attending law school at [school name] will provide many more challenges. Nevertheless, these challenges will help to mold me into the lawyer I will be tomorrow.
(Personal Statement Examples, Advice, Critique, . . . )
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