PS First Draft- Very Rough

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Anonymous User
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PS First Draft- Very Rough

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Dec 13, 2013 10:31 pm

Feel free to rip it to shreds. I don't feel strongly about it yet, but I'm not sure if its the topic or the way I wrote it. Note: I don't need it to be stellar, as my scores are a bit above the 75th percentile of the school I'm aiming the school I am primarily aiming for, so a passable PS will suffice.


Growing up, I had always envied children who seemed to intuit their professional passions right out of the womb. It was as if there was some pre-school class about finding your calling at the age of four, and I, by unfortunate happenstance, had not shown up that particular day. Though perhaps in stark contrast to the majority of those seeking entry to law school, I admittedly have not always known that the law would become my passion.

I was born to two young Lebanese immigrants who fled that country's grueling civil war. Though initially destitute, my parents managed, through wit and perseverance, to lay the foundations for a stable and secure life. Unfortunately, their marriage would be a casualty of their struggle to succeed. At the age of five, my parents' divorce would serve as my first introduction to the law, and my first opportunity to work within its stable framework. Unwilling to idly suffer the perceived injustice of losing one of my parents for most of any given year, I brought them together and encouraged them to cooperatively craft a custody plan which allowed me see each of them every other week. The law rewarded me for my effort; the custody plan I had sought became part of the divorce agreement, and, by acting as a mediatory force, I solved my otherwise heart-breaking dilemma.

During my formative teenage years, I sought to live up to my parents' individual successes. They had overcome considerable obstacles to carve financial stability out of the chaos of poverty, and as the primary beneficiary of their efforts, I could not fathom failing and thereby wasting the opportunities they had painstakingly afforded me. However, my fear of failure served as a woefully ineffective motivator. My academic performance, while respectable, was more a product of expectation than inspiration. I did not fail, but I also did not thrive. Instead, I would thrive in the practice of martial arts, which consumed much of my extra-curricular time. It afforded me an outlet to think strategically, to learn to see things from my opponent's perspective and anticipate their actions. Yet I still yearned to find my true calling.

My desire to find my professional passion remained fervent as I began college. Prior to settling on my choice of major, I found myself frequently engaged in political discourse and debate with both peers and professors. In the course of these conversations, my perspective on various topics evolved and took new dimensions, and so too did my ability to articulate and argue. As I began my first semester at the University of (City College), Political Science presented itself to me as the obvious field of study. With each class discussion and essay, I became better at crafting compelling arguments. In one essay, I outlined a multifaceted solution to Social Security's failing solvency that did not resort to privatizing or dissolving it, contrary to the popular view in my class. In another, I asserted the need for the United States to cease its default policy of democratizing critically unstable countries-- a controversial stance that was nonetheless well received. It seemed I had finally found that academic passion that had eluded me for so long.

However, as I neared the end of my mandatory Political Science course hours, I found myself inexplicably eager to move away from politics. I used the freedom of my elective courses to pursue unrelated areas of study, such as Philosophy of the Mind, Antiquities, and, most importantly, Principles of Advertising. In Advertising, I was assigned to a five-member group tasked with creating an ad campaign for the (City) Metrorail which would appeal to Millennials, the "Internet Generation" of people in their late teens to early twenties. One group member proposed that we create a festival featuring live entertainment and food, which would be sponsored by, and heavily promote, the rail. Another asserted that the best way to reach Millennials was through their livers with a Metro sponsored pub-crawl. Though both of these ideas seemed meritorious to me, the two group members almost immediately broke into open conflict, attacking each other's ideas and yelling loudly enough to attract the concern of the entire classroom.

When the group had been formed, I had been unsure of how great a role I could to play as the only non-Advertising major. However, in that moment, it became quite clear to me what I needed to do, as I am no stranger to being caught in the middle of two angrily opposed sides. The ideas they proposed were in no way mutually exclusive, and could very easily be combined. Metro could hold a festival which would allow businesses, especially the pubs, along the Metrorail to feature their products, increase their exposure, and benefit themselves as well as Metro by giving Millennials a greater incentive to use the rail-- to reach these businesses. The fighting ended the exact instant I finished explaining my proposal. The group seemed to have a collective "eureka" moment, and every member, myself included, immediately set to writing the radio ads, YouTube video scripts, and billboard ads that would promote this festival, which we called Discover (City Name) because of its location at Discovery XXX, a park in (City's Downtown). Eventually the time came to present our proposal to Metro's representatives. My group members, however, were petrified by the thought of standing before the representatives to present the ads and ideas we had put months of effort into creating. Again, I found an opportunity to apply my abilities-- this time as an advocate rather than a mediator. I agreed to present Discover (City Name) to the Metro representatives who would be, in effect, my group's judge and jury. As I presented, my passion seemed to shine through, just as it had when I had presented my own essays to my Political Science professors and peers. The representatives loved our idea, and that same day announced that they intended to hire members of my group for Advertising and Social Media internships.

Though I opted not to take on an internship with Metro, I gained something more valuable from the experience than an internship. As I brimmed with the sense of accomplishment after the presentation, I felt the motivation I had sought finally and fully materialize within me. I knew then how someone acting as a mediator and an advocate on behalf of a group, organization, or company, could be an invaluable force. By resolving conflicts through critical analysis and waging arguments with conviction, I performed a function that was truly meaningful to others, yet not commonplace. Most importantly, I knew then, without a doubt, that being an attorney was a pursuit that truly inspired me, regardless of whether I ultimately worked in a law firm, in the public sector, as in-house counsel, or as a solo practitioner. I had finally managed to attend that class about finding your calling, only twenty years later.

jac101689
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Re: PS First Draft- Very Rough

Postby jac101689 » Sat Dec 14, 2013 1:07 am

This reads like an autobiography. Decide and distill.

Scan it and you'll see that it's too wordy. Read it aloud and ask yourself if you'd want to listen.

Examples:

"Though perhaps in stark contrast to the majority of those seeking entry to law school, I admittedly have not always known that the law would become my passion." "Seeking entry to law school" = "applying to law school." "Stark" adds nothing; "admittedly" is unnecessary as no guilt is warranted in picking a career after childhood. The sentence as a whole says nothing at all.

"Through wit and perseverance" reads like a gratuitous excerpt from an English translation of the Aeneid as it says nothing about you and you don't explain how it applies to your parents.

You have a good vocabulary and you pull off wordiness much better than most. But, this needs work in my opinion.

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sjgonzalez3
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Re: PS First Draft- Very Rough

Postby sjgonzalez3 » Sat Dec 14, 2013 2:14 pm

jac101689 wrote:This reads like an autobiography. Decide and distill.

Scan it and you'll see that it's too wordy. Read it aloud and ask yourself if you'd want to listen.

Examples:

"Though perhaps in stark contrast to the majority of those seeking entry to law school, I admittedly have not always known that the law would become my passion." "Seeking entry to law school" = "applying to law school." "Stark" adds nothing; "admittedly" is unnecessary as no guilt is warranted in picking a career after childhood. The sentence as a whole says nothing at all.

"Through wit and perseverance" reads like a gratuitous excerpt from an English translation of the Aeneid as it says nothing about you and you don't explain how it applies to your parents.

You have a good vocabulary and you pull off wordiness much better than most. But, this needs work in my opinion.




Agree. Far too long. My attention was strained and, unlike the ad coms, I'm not on my 400th PS of the week.

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scoobysnax
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Re: PS First Draft- Very Rough

Postby scoobysnax » Mon Dec 16, 2013 12:03 am

As others have said already, condense!!

This paragraph confuses me: At the age of five, my parents' divorce would serve as my first introduction to the law, and my first opportunity to work within its stable framework. Unwilling to idly suffer the perceived injustice of losing one of my parents for most of any given year, I brought them together and encouraged them to cooperatively craft a custody plan which allowed me see each of them every other week. The law rewarded me for my effort; the custody plan I had sought became part of the divorce agreement, and, by acting as a mediatory force, I solved my otherwise heart-breaking dilemma.

What you're saying is that, as a five year old, you were able to:
1) see the injustice of not being able to see one of your parents for most of the year
2) serve as a mediator and make your parents work cooperatively
3) craft a custody plan

It's hard to believe.

Anonymous User
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Re: PS First Draft- Very Rough

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Dec 16, 2013 12:20 am

OP Here. Thanks so much for all of your input! I am currently in the process of writing a much less wordy version of this draft. However, I am also considering writing a new personal statement that focuses primarily on the experience with the Advertising group, which makes very brief mentions to my experiences that prepared me to deal with the problems that group faced, and how the group's ultimate success solidified my desire to become a lawyer. Might that make a better statement, since this one comes off very autobiographical?

Scoobysnax- Believe it or not, that is what happened. When my mom informed me of the divorce, I asked her what might happen with regards to seeing my parents. She told me that it was very likely I would live with one of them and only see the other on summer and holidays. Even as a five year-old that seemed unthinkable to me. So, I was extremely vocal that they needed to sit together and sort out a plan to allow me to see them both regularly-- the biggest part of which would be that they would need to live in the same city. They eventually relented to my wishes and with me worked out said plan. My parents still remember it quite well, and actually quite fondly. Our city has been rather kind to us financially speaking, and very recession-proof.




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