My dad shot me a stern look from across his oak desk that he had in his home office, sending me the message to listen closely and keep my mouth shut. “You’re going to be 21 pretty soon, so I’m cutting you off financially. I’ll pay for your travel expenses to come home, and the rest is on you now. If you run out of money from the summer, you’ll either have to get a job or make new friends that play that computer crap all weekend” Not particularly liking the latter option my dad gave me, I decided it was probably time to find a job to financially support myself. I did just that, and it ended up not only introducing me to a little financial freedom, it also allowed me to greatly strengthen my time management and work ethic.
After working 10-15 hours per week as the director of webcasts for sporting events at my school during my junior year and seeing an increase in my grades, I decided the summer before my senior year that I would apply to be a wireless consultant at Verizon Wireless. Once interviewed and hired, I was informed that another consultant had just quit and as a result, they would need me to work at least 25-35 hours a week, sometimes more. I analyzed the time commitment that would be required to accept the position, and decided it was very much possible with the proper time budget and dedication to specific tasks. Having not been accustomed to such a responsibility-laden week, I struggled at first to see the need for commitment to a schedule and experienced a learning curve that I had never experienced in my life, including school.
While I was told I would be working 25-35 hours per week, it became pretty clear to me that it was going to be 35 hours or more per week, which resulted in an urgency to adjust to a tighter schedule. While it became stressful at times, I greatly benefited from the experience in regards to my academic life. Instead of procrastinating on an assignment because I could, I instead chose to do the assignment as quickly and efficiently as I could because I had to. I was a physics major in addition to a mathematics minor that was taking over 16 hours of courses, and completing my work on a daily basis more efficiently (and accurately) than when I was taking less classes earlier in my college career. I had been taking this approach the previous year, just to a lesser extent due to the decreased working hours. However, it was not until I was so constricted for time that I realized the importance of treating school identical to a job, where tasks needed to be completed accurately and efficiently.
While spending time selling phones at Verizon Wireless improved my task management and brought out my work ethic in school, it also blessed me with the opportunity to sharpen my communication skills with people from all different walks of life. Being just outside of Lincoln, Nebraska I can have a farmer, a CEO, and a high school principal in line at the store, and the need to effectively communicate with them all is absolutely necessary to perform my job. Fortunately, I enjoy talking to different people and finding a way to accomplish their goals, whether as large as opening up a business account, or something as small as showing an elderly woman how to turn the volume up on her phone (you would be surprised how often that happens). Regardless, the interpersonal communication skills I’ve been able to develop and strengthen are invaluable and appreciated, and will always be applicable to everyday situations in the future.
Taking over 16 hours of classes in a curriculum as rigorous as physics coupled with a job that required over 30 hours per week of my time accelerated my growth as an individual in many facets. While the communication skills and added work experience will be forever appreciated, I do not wish to continue my employment with the company after I graduate from XXXXXXX. The increased attention I’d put forth into my education in physics and math had directed me to pursue a career using one (or both) of these subjects. My problem solving skills I have developed through an education in physics and math coupled with my comfort in communicating with people to accomplish their goals has propelled me to pursue an education in intellectual property law. Given XXXXXXX’s nationally recognized Intellectual Property Certificate Program and noted excellence in aiding students in their legal studies, I feel as though it would be a perfect fit for me. My abilities to adjust to new situations and the amount of work I will be able to put forth towards law school without a job will allow me to reach my ceiling not just in the classroom, but also outside of it to contribute to the diverse community at XXXXXX and foster the growth of both parties.
(Personal Statement Examples, Advice, Critique, . . . )
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