First (ROUGH) Draft of PS

(Personal Statement Examples, Advice, Critique, . . . )
User avatar

Posts: 95
Joined: Sat Jun 08, 2013 1:55 pm

First (ROUGH) Draft of PS

Postby Tariffs » Tue Nov 12, 2013 9:14 pm

Here's my very first (and very rough) draft of my PS. It provides an overview of where my legal interests lie and how I've come to realize them through work experiences the past 2 summers. One question I already have is whether it would be better to just focus on one experience and provide more detail about it than it is to walk through everything.
I have yet to receive a wholly positive reaction from the friends, acquaintances, and coworkers to whom I have revealed my interest in family law. An attorney at Walder, Hayden, and Brogan P.A., the law firm I worked for this past summer as a matrimonial law intern, asked me if I enjoyed other peoples’ misery and despair. A good friend of mine informed his mother of my goal over speaker phone the night of his 21st birthday; as a former litigant in a custody battle over my friend and his two brothers, she could only muster an unenthusiastic “that’s…nice” before resuming her investigation of the number of alcoholic drinks my friend consumed that evening. Even the disinterested responses I receive are not-so-lightly salted with accusatory questions: “That’s cool. Did your parents go through a rough divorce or something?”

No, my goal doesn’t derive from my turbulent relationship between estranged parents. I grew up in a stable home, the product of an interracial relationship that has lasted thirty-seven years. This stability aided my pursuit of academic excellence throughout my elementary and secondary school education, culminating in my acceptance to and eventual attendance at Cornell University. While a student at Cornell, I chose to study both Government and History for several reasons: a desire to develop my already strong writing and critical thinking skills, my budding interest in the law and pursuing a career in the field, and my long-standing interest in studying the past and present conditions of nations around the world.

This array of interests prompted me to participate in the Cornell in Washington program in the summer of 2012, and it was in my time working as a Volunteer Associate for the White House that I first realized my interest in family law. While completing my weekly shift on the phone line, I received a call from a distraught man whose divorced wife had disappeared with his two children despite his sharing legal custody over them. His compelling story combined with my frustration towards only being able to assist him to a limited degree are what first set my sights on researching family law.

That experience led me to apply for and accept an internship offer from a law firm in Northern Jersey where I primarily worked for a matrimonial law attorney. While there, I performed research for a number of different cases: a few divorces, a guardianship proceeding, some insurance cases for my boss' co-worker. However, the project that solidified my career goals was a Division of Youth and Family Services case involving a father trying to retain sole custody of his two kids from his psychologically unstable wife; at one point earlier in the year, the son had voiced that living with his mother and her extreme emotional issues was pushing him towards committing suicide. A lot of the work I did for my boss (briefing cases, assisting him in developing questions for direct and cross examinations, and taking notes on materials produced during discovery) was crucial for an upcoming custodial hearing to review his client's sole custody status, which he ultimately won.

While my work was directed towards assisting my boss’ client, the satisfaction I gained from the experience stemmed from helping his teenage son see an end to such a turbulent legal proceeding. I now know that I want to work in public interest law as it relates to family and children. In particular, I want perform legal work for foster care and adoption agencies to help kids through those difficult processes.


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

Re: First (ROUGH) Draft of PS

Postby lawschool2014hopeful » Tue Nov 12, 2013 11:44 pm

Is really hard to criticize a storyboard, hard to tell you what are good stories to tell without its full execution on display. The world's most mundane topic can be written with such sophistication that it brings tears to people's eyes, and vice-versa.

Just trust your instincts on what story to tell, and develop it, then post it for criticism.

O try to avoid the incessant name dropping.

Return to “Law School Personal Statements?

Who is online

The online users are hidden on this forum.