Will Someone Please Critique my First Draft?

(Personal Statement Examples, Advice, Critique, . . . )
Anonymous User
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Will Someone Please Critique my First Draft?

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Oct 22, 2016 2:03 pm

Lay it on me.

I was standing outside the tent, arguing with my dad. I was probably about nine or ten years old, a bright eyed little boy who had found something about this particular Cub Scout camping trip that didn’t quite strike my fancy. Another boy’s dad walked by us and remarked, “I see you have a lawyer in your family too.” That hackneyed statement sparked my interest in the law for the first time. That first time I thought about the law would ultimately prove to be the easiest.

As I progressed through my high school years, I lived the average suburban life: making good grades in high school, playing in the band, and hanging out with my friends, viewing the injustices of the world only through the narrow lens of a TV screen. I progressed along the typical “pre-law” track: applying to a large state university and enrolling as a history major.

Before my freshman year of college, I only thought of the law as a potential career. I was interested in it, but not fully aware of its power. Now, I am called to the law not as the bright eyed young Cub Scout, but as a witness of an injustice very much tied up with the law. The injustice I witnessed – the injustice of sexual assault – helped solidify my decision to pursue a career in the law.

When she was a freshman in college, someone very close to me was sexually assaulted. I did not know her at the time of the incident, but her story has inspired me nonetheless. Like many other college women, it happened at the hands of an acquaintance, someone she thought she could trust. She was caught off guard, shocked, and had to withdraw from school for a time. When the incident was reported to the University, entering the legal system was not presented to her as a workable option: she was told that it was, unfortunately, “too late.”

Her story is not uncommon. My friend is one of many women that have been through this tragic event: according to some sources, the rate of sexual violence among college women is as high as one in five. My friend ended up doing great things: she reenrolled in school and is well on her way to a fulfilling career. Some women, however, still feel threatened and need to use the legal system to feel safe and to begin a recovery.

My friend’s story and the story of so many other women inspired me to pursue a career in the law. After hearing the story of a victim and doing personal research into the nature of sexual assault among college students, I realized the positive change the law can make in the lives of people.

As a survivor’s advocate, I can help people who have gone through such a tragedy. I can use my legal education to make a positive change in the lives of people, helping them recover and return to a normal life after suffering through an injustice. I can help people finish their college careers, feel safe on their campuses, and live the life they are entitled to as college students.

I feel more called to the law now than ever before, and the [REDACTED] School of Law would help me advocate for survivors before even graduating. One of the main reasons I want to attend the [REDACTED] School of Law is their guarantee that all students get a clinical experience before graduation. The Domestic Violence Law Clinic is of particular interest to me and represents one way I could achieve my legal goals while still a student at the [REDACTED].

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Mr. Archer

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Re: Will Someone Please Critique my First Draft?

Postby Mr. Archer » Thu Oct 27, 2016 11:13 pm

Do you have any other ideas for a PS topic? The first part of the PS is weak. The Cub Scout story is kind of cute but the part about high school just shows you're pretty regular. I don't agree with your description of a typical pre-law path. It has some truth but is too general. The rest could come off quite badly for you. You're a guy using a woman's sexual assault story to show why you have a passion that drives you to go to law school, even though you already apparently had the drive since 9 or 10 years old. I see you're tailoring this PS for a specific clinic at a school. I just don't think this works.


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Re: Will Someone Please Critique my First Draft?

Postby paytonalexandra » Fri Oct 28, 2016 3:38 pm

As a survivor of sexual assault, and someone who is also writing their PS on this subject, I appreciate seeing the subject being written about more. However, I am not sure this works. It seems kind of ingenuine. I'm not really getting a sense of the passion you claim to have. I'm not too sure how I feel about using someone else's assault for your PS, but if you are going to stick with this story I think you definitely need to rewrite and inject more passion into this, do her story justice.
Also, I'm not sure what you mean by law having a positive impact on victims, considering among victims, the genuine consensus is the exact opposite. So I would change that statement, maybe discuss the positive impact supporters and advocates can have instead.
One more thing, this may be nitpicky, but I wouldn't use the phrase "normal life."


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Re: Will Someone Please Critique my First Draft?

Postby JazzyMac » Mon Oct 31, 2016 7:24 am

If you're really amped to talk about sexual assault, put it from the perspective of what you've seen and done as an advocate. How has it affected you? What's driving you to use your experience as an advocate to transition to a career in law?

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