PS - NW Georgetown GW ND hopeful

(Personal Statement Examples, Advice, Critique, . . . )
jmcerney
Posts: 10
Joined: Tue Jul 02, 2013 4:25 am

PS - NW Georgetown GW ND hopeful

Postby jmcerney » Tue Nov 12, 2013 7:53 am

I was 3.442 UGPA and 165. I majored in Arabic and Mathematics. Looking for some advice/critiques on my PS.

Thanks ahead of time for any feedback. I am still working the end a bit. Not sure how this seems to admissions, so I thought Id ask what you thought. Thanks again!!!!


After 40km of cycling we have reached the road, or path rather, leading to the top of Jebel Al Shams, “the mountain of the sun”. Our group of riders represents a half-dozen different countries. Though from very different walks of life, on this day we have a common goal, to conquer the tallest mountain in Arabia. As we take a brief rest before tackling the 60 km and 3000m of climbing ahead of us, I realize my life is very much like the task ahead of us. To get to where we are, and to overcome the challenge ahead of us, takes a will to achieve, a love of adventure, much determination, and a great deal of hard work.
My journey here began 6 years prior in a classroom in Chicago. I had decided to take an Arabic class. After four years of Latin in high school, I wanted to study something very different, and very difficult. I recognized the importance of Arabic to global security, as well as to international business, politics, and history. The importance of studying the language and the challenge it presented appealed to me. Indeed, I love a challenge, and this particular challenge was certainly a critical one.
A year later, I found myself living with an Arab family in Fas, Morocco. My Moroccan family did not speak a word of English, which made life difficult, but, as a result, my Arabic improved markedly. Before long, I developed a passion for Moroccan (and Arab) culture. This culture, and the adventure it presented, became my life’s pursuit. The shock of squat toilets (and lack of toilet paper), the thrill of eating steamed goat head with your hands, the horror of your 4x4 breaking down on the edge of the Sahara: these things are not for most people. I am not like most people; I embrace adventure.
Over the next three years, I worked to experience this adventure again. I began searching for the money and support to return to the Arab world. I applied for many scholarships and grants to continue my language acquisition. With each application came denial. While these denials were discouraging, they also offered me the time to take on another challenge: completing my Math degree. Further, they made me ever more determined to return to the Arab world. When I set a goal, I do everything in my power to achieve it.
These three years proved to be very demanding. Majoring in Arabic and Math took much time and effort; indeed, it was difficult work. Even more demanding was everything I was doing aside from studying. Throughout college I labored for food, rent, and tuition. I worked a wide range of jobs: a caddy, a waiter, a bartender, a valet, a city employee, a lab technician, a retailer, a forklift operator, an office assistant, a chess teacher, and a tutor. At times, I was two or three of these at once. More so, when I was not working for myself, I was volunteering for others, as a tutor, a coach, or an all-around helping hand. To say I am a hard worker is an understatement.
Although I was busy doing these things, I never lost sight of my mission to return to the Arab world. After completing my degree, I switched tactics. No longer would I be simply a language student; I was to become a language teacher. I spent the following year earning a TEFL certificate and establishing my financial independence. Soon I was applying for jobs all over the Middle East and North Africa, and in short time, I found a perfect fit.
My perseverance finally paid off and I was on my way to Saudi Arabia where I would spend nine months living and working. Few are given such an opportunity and fewer still are able to do it with one of the most prestigious universities in the world, McGill University. This work and life experience is invaluable. I learned not only to appreciate Arab and Islamic culture, but to truly appreciate the freedom and opportunity afforded to me by my own background. This experience also allowed me to secure a job with the Omani Ministry of Defense. It is here that I find myself ready to climb to the sun.
Indeed, my life is very much like the challenge of cycling up a mountain. I love an adventure and a challenge. I am determined and persistent. Mostly, I am hard working. These qualities are a recipe for success in law school and as a lawyer. Like any ride, there is a destination. My life for the last six years has been working on language and logic. I now want to use these skills to help people in a manner other than teaching. I see a Juris Doctorate as the natural extension to these skills. Ideally, I will use my Arabic skills in my career as well. I want to use knowledge of both US and international law in immigration and human rights work. Further, I want influence American business and political interests in the Arab world. My ambitions are high, but certainly no higher than the Sun.
Starting in the Fall of 2014 I want to begin my studies at _____ University. It is a good fit for me because of ______.

lawschool2014hopeful
Posts: 554
Joined: Mon Oct 25, 2010 8:48 pm

Re: PS - NW Georgetown GW ND hopeful

Postby lawschool2014hopeful » Wed Nov 13, 2013 12:26 am

I will be brutally honest, this is pretty bad.

From a general overview, I understand you are Arabic, but you find the study of Arabic/language difficult and a challenge? I mean, that is pretty counter-intuitive lol....

Your transitions felt forced, I see no relation between mountain climbing and discussing the difficulty of major, perhaps partly due to the reason I dont buy into the difficulty.

Squat toilets is not adventurous, and enjoying a 4x4 dropping near you is just plain stupid.

I just dont quite understand/believe your story with the need to understand arabic, if that is the route you want to take, then start with that, it just all become muddled with all of these sort themes you are trying to execute.

The whole list anything is quite silly, and your job experiences is just a resume list, we dont need that.

Needlessly to say, I would recommend a complete start over. Try to think what the purpose of your statement is and what you are trying to convey.




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