Personal Statement *UPDATED X4 in the comments*

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Re: Personal Statement *UPDATED X3 in the comments*

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Jul 18, 2016 4:54 pm

and as for not mentioning therapies before saying school served as cognitive therapy, I did mention that I spent 4.5 years in rehabilitative therapies before that. Again, I mentioned "cognitive therapy" as a means of really saying "Yes, I am ok, my brain can handle the academic workload of law school. This is why"

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kgm1990

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Re: Personal Statement *UPDATED X3 in the comments*

Postby kgm1990 » Mon Jul 18, 2016 5:29 pm

Okay, these are all things that you should include, because I didn't know what they meant. Hehe! Or maybe I'm just some crazy hobo with poor reading comprehension. Both of these are possibilities. The point here is to minimize assumptions. 'Rehabilitative therapies' is vague, or at least to a layman such as myself it is. You desperately need to clarify what cognitive therapies means if you're going to include it.

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Re: Personal Statement *UPDATED X3 in the comments*

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Jul 18, 2016 5:35 pm

kgm1990 wrote:Okay, these are all things that you should include, because I didn't know what they meant. Hehe! Or maybe I'm just some crazy hobo with poor reading comprehension. Both of these are possibilities. The point here is to minimize assumptions. 'Rehabilitative therapies' is vague, or at least to a layman such as myself it is. You desperately need to clarify what cognitive therapies means if you're going to include it.

Rehabillitative therapies is an umbrella term. It includes speech, occupational, and physical therapies in much more precise language. I am making an assumption that the adcomms where not born yesterday, I suppose (granted, giving those terms would make it just as vague -- aka what in the world is occupational therapy? It has NOTHING to do with your job).

I appreciate your perspective, b/c being a complete stranger/layman, your take on understanding what I'm writing is probably much closer to the adcomms, not having the knowledge of what I know.

Anyway, how is this new draft:

"Personal Statement
On November 7, 2004 I attended a men’s basketball pre-season exhibition game between the Penn State Nittany Lions and East Stroudsburg University. Penn State was victorious, as was expected. I left the game, jumped in my car, and began the one-hour voyage back to my parents’ house in North-Central Pennsylvania. Before entering the highway, I decided to stop at a gas station and convenience store, called “Sheetz”, to fill up my gas tank and purchase a Jones Soda. I’m sure that soda was refreshing, but I do not remember drinking it – the next thing I remember was lying on a hospital bed 30-35 days later.

I was in a state of total confusion. I remember people talking about a car accident, but I really could not understand what was being said. I was in complete denial and thought that everything was some type of nightmare – the kind of nightmare where you recognize that you are amidst a nightmare and know that the killer lurking downstairs is just a figment of your own imagination and not real. The kind of nightmare where you are conscious and can open your eyes and end the horror at any time. I thought that I was in that kind of nightmare, but no matter how many times I would open my eyes, nothing ever changed.

My parents brought me a laptop computer to use while in my bed. I downloaded AOL Instant Messenger and logged onto my screen name. Shortly after signing on, I was flooded with messages from my friends, ecstatic that I was doing well enough to be on the internet. One of my friends, Brittany Metzger, was among those who messaged me. I decided to tell her about this horrible nightmare that I had. “I was in a car accident in this nightmare,” I said.

“…Brian, please call me,” she said, speechless about how to handle this situation.

It was at that point when it began to hit me that this was not some kind of morbid dream, but this was a new reality. This was my new life, this was going to be another obstacle to hurdle and overcome. I found out that I had sustained a severe Traumatic Brain Injury, was life-flighted from the scene, and spent 10 days in a coma (the first night on life-support). In all, I spent 40 days in the hospital and up to 4.5 years in rehabilitative therapies (speech, occupational, and physical - up until the summer after my sophomore year in college). I went from being a 2-3 sport athlete, to being fed through a feeding tube in my nose, and unable to walk or stand on my own. I have since regained much of my physical ability, after becoming a certified personal trainer to help aid in my recovery.

After experiencing my car accident and subsequent Traumatic Brain Injury, I attended high school year-round to graduate on time. The benefits of the immediate cognitive therapy derived through an in-depth study of academic subjects was very beneficial to my neurological recovery. Following my graduation, I continued my “cognitive therapy” by attending the Pennsylvania State University and completing a demanding course load. While at Penn State, I was one of only three undergraduate students selected to participate in a certification program to teach English to speakers of other languages (TESOL), culminating with a practicum experience in Otovalo, Ecuador. I arrived at the airport in Quito, Ecuador without knowing the Spanish language. I enrolled in a Spanish class that ran for 10 hours per week, along with my teaching course-load and other papers and projects that I had to complete while in Ecuador.

I visited a school near Quito and was blown away by the degree of disparity that existed in materials and resources between inner-city U.S. schools and schools in Ecuador. The classrooms were surrounded by thin, temporary walls, with slanted tin roofs and no insulation. Inside, the classroom had dirt floors, desks, a chalkboard, and that was it. Books and other school supplies were severely lacking. They were very grateful about a simple packet of Crayola markers that I brought them from the United States.

My life experiences have kept me humble while illustrating that I will not allow my brain injury to hold me back. My father is a civil attorney, thus I have grown up around the law and am well aware of the immense work-ethic that it takes to succeed as a law student and as a practicing attorney. My life experiences have created a strong desire to practice disability law upon graduation. I am blessed and fortunate to have made the recovery that I have experienced, and am passionate about advocating for and helping those who are less-fortunate than myself or who are still undergoing their own recovery.

I have gained invaluable real-world experience living on my own, eight hours from my nearest relative, and working since graduating college six years ago. I had to grow, both mentally and emotionally, during this period of time and it has only made me a stronger candidate for law school. I have been seriously considering law school since high school, and that desire has not left me after six years of teaching and running my Herbalife Nutrition business. I bring more to the table, such as business knowledge and a high-level of client care, at 29 years-old than I would have at 23 years-old. I am honored to be a candidate for admission at your school, and I look forward to visiting your school’s facilities in the near future."



By the way - in reference to your "you're a teacher?" comment - most of my teaching has been inner-city substitute teaching. I've been around long enough that the kids don't look at me like a normal sub though. It's cool being able to talk sports/relate with them and help them out, because a male role-model is SEVERELY lacking in the population that I sub for. One time, as a freaking sub-teacher, a kid entrusted me enough to pass on information (after pulling him aside b/ he wasn't himself) that his friend was planning to commit suicide after school. I immediately relayed that info to the guidance counselors and they were able to call this kid's school, get him help, and prevent anything from happening. That was really rewarding
Last edited by Anonymous User on Tue Jul 19, 2016 1:19 am, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: Personal Statement *UPDATED X4 in the comments*

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Jul 18, 2016 9:12 pm

BTW, "cognitive Therapy" is really what those words mean - anything to improve your cognition/ability to comprehend/understand. After my TBI, my brain had to totally rewire itself... for example, I forgot how to subtract after my TBI, but as soon as someone started to explain it to me, it came right back.

By reading and doing mentally demanding things, those activities help to rewire your brain... aka connect dendrites, neurotransmitters, etc. It's kinda like physical therapy, but for your mind. Your brain is not like a bone, in the respect that you can break it, stick it in a cast, and it will heal. Your brain never returns to it's previous function or state, but you can damn well do what you can to help it recover to its fullest extent.

It makes much more sense to just say "cognitive therapy" as an umbrella term... I assume that addcoms know that "cognative" refers to your brain, and that therapy is something to aid or help you (such as physical therapy, speech therapy, occupational therapy, or just therapy with a counselor... "therapy" should not be a foreign term). Understanding what "cognitive therapy" suggests does take some reading comprehension ability, but I do not feel the definition needs to be spelled out.

I guess that's one comment I disagree with, lol

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kgm1990

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Re: Personal Statement *UPDATED X4 in the comments*

Postby kgm1990 » Tue Jul 19, 2016 11:31 am

Anonymous User wrote:BTW, "cognitive Therapy" is really what those words mean - anything to improve your cognition/ability to comprehend/understand. After my TBI, my brain had to totally rewire itself... for example, I forgot how to subtract after my TBI, but as soon as someone started to explain it to me, it came right back.

By reading and doing mentally demanding things, those activities help to rewire your brain... aka connect dendrites, neurotransmitters, etc. It's kinda like physical therapy, but for your mind. Your brain is not like a bone, in the respect that you can break it, stick it in a cast, and it will heal. Your brain never returns to it's previous function or state, but you can damn well do what you can to help it recover to its fullest extent.

It makes much more sense to just say "cognitive therapy" as an umbrella term... I assume that addcoms know that "cognative" refers to your brain, and that therapy is something to aid or help you (such as physical therapy, speech therapy, occupational therapy, or just therapy with a counselor... "therapy" should not be a foreign term). Understanding what "cognitive therapy" suggests does take some reading comprehension ability, but I do not feel the definition needs to be spelled out.

I guess that's one comment I disagree with, lol


I don't think I can add anything that hasn't already been said. :-) A quick note on the prose: you should watch out for passive voice and unnecessary language.
I.e.:
" Penn State was victorious, as was expected" is better stated " As I expected, Penn State won."
"Shortly after signing on, I was flooded with messages from my friends, ecstatic that I was doing well enough to be on the internet," would better be stated as "Messages from friends, ecstatic that I was doing well enough to be on the internet, flooded my inbox."

On the note of the "Cognitive Therapy," I think you should absolutely toss in some "I did this and this and this was the result" caveats. I have a General Psychology understanding of the term and I'm thinking "retraining" (but that doesn't speak to the symptoms you suffered or what you did to remedy it--i.e.: you take a car to a shop, you leave, you come back, and they charge you $1200 for "car repair," wouldn't you want to know a bit more?), and you yourself said it was an "umbrella term" (and you want to prevent assumptions that umbrella terms roll out the red carpet for). Seriously, specificity is essential to good writing. You got this! Can't wait to read what you come up with!

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Re: Personal Statement *UPDATED X3 in the comments*

Postby bgt1995 » Tue Jul 19, 2016 2:06 pm

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