Law school personal statement topic

(Personal Statement Examples, Advice, Critique, . . . )
asilva2018
Posts: 3
Joined: Tue Nov 28, 2017 3:03 pm

Law school personal statement topic

Postby asilva2018 » Tue Nov 28, 2017 3:34 pm

This is my idea for my personal statement (it's not a draft by any means, just my thoughts):

Almost 3 years ago, I was arrested for driving under the influence. It was a life changing experience. For me it was bottom and a wake up call. Though I was lucky no one was hurt, I felt even more lucky that it happened. I didn't realize how much I was drinking and for how long it was going on. While everyone drinks in college, the combination between strict parents, deaths of close relatives, and an unhealthy relationship, caused my drinking to exceed the norm. Though my grades weren't terrible, they did reflect my capabilities nor what I truly learned in my classes. After college, I was lucky enough to be offered an interview at Genentech and the position thereafter. However, as I was working long graveyard shifts and had long weekends, the drinking continued with my coworkers - that is until the night of my dui. For the first time in 5 years, I realized the toll drinking had taken on me and though my performance at work wasn't effected, I was complacent. It was time for a change. I gave a month's notice and bought a ticket to Europe where I would spend the next 6 months of my life working on farms. I returned rejuvenated and joyous. I felt I had a second chance to live up to "my potential". I became president of a national organization, secretary of the board of a local organization, captain of my rugby team and a personal trainer. More importantly I was recruited for a job at thriving start-up pharmaceutical company where I was and am a top performer. In only a year, I helped the company take a product from R&D to cGMP. This process, specifically, the FDA's involvement and importance, made me realize how I would turn my job into a career. With my educational background, work experience and overall passion to improving the quality of life for others, I set forth to be a compliance and regulatory lawyer for the FDA. Achieving a high LSAT score while working two jobs, playing a sport, and being involved in the community, made me realize how capable and ready I am to attend and thrive at law school.

Thoughts on this idea for my personal statement????

cavalier1138
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Joined: Fri Mar 25, 2016 8:01 pm

Re: Law school personal statement topic

Postby cavalier1138 » Tue Nov 28, 2017 5:51 pm

Absolutely not.

You'll need to write a short addendum about this anyway, and you should not build a PS around your alcoholism. It sounds like you have plenty of other experiences to write about.

asilva2018
Posts: 3
Joined: Tue Nov 28, 2017 3:03 pm

Re: Law school personal statement topic

Postby asilva2018 » Tue Nov 28, 2017 11:55 pm

is this a better approach?

In the early 1930s, my maternal grandmother and grandfather migrated from Italy with their respective families, escaping the rural poverty of Southern Italy and chasing the “American Dream”. Though they left the motherland behind, they held onto the traditions and mentality with a tenacious grip. While I cherish most of the traditions and will certainly continue to embrace them with my future family, I wish that certain “traditional” ways of thinking, such as the double standard for men and women, would have ceased before my generation. I am the middle of child of three children, the other two being boys. When they cleared their own dishes from the table, they were praised. Any time I did not offer to help wash everyone’s dishes, I was reprimanded. Needless to say, the expectations were slightly imbalanced. In my family, boys were meant to play with cars and play sports and girls are to play with dolls and dance ballet. While I could live with the exceeding amount of chores, I refused to succumb to engaging in an activity solely because “that’s what girls” do. Luckily for my family, I happened to really like ballet. I also happened to like soccer. So I did both. As I do with everything, I dedicated the necessary time and energy to excel in both.
Years later, when I was freshman at Santa Clara University, a couple girls from the women’s rugby team solicited me to come to a rugby practice. At the time, all I knew about rugby was that it is a contact sport and that my family probably wouldn’t approve – so I agreed! The first practice I attended involved hitting football pads and being tackled by girls twice my size and concluded with a pizza dinner. I never thought I would enjoy a sport more than soccer, but after only one night of rugby practice, that surely changed. Perhaps it had something to do with the comradery I felt from the moment I stepped on the pitch, or with the feeling of utter satisfaction of hitting a pad for the first time in my life, but regardless of the reason, I knew rugby was sport I would grow to love. As predicted, my family did not want me to play. Only boys and less feminine and lady-like girls played rugby. Girls of my stature would surely get hurt. Again, I ignored the double standard and followed my heart which told me to play. As I continue to learn, when you do anything from the heart, success automatically follows. I am now captain of the women’s side of the Rugby club I play for. Who knew that you could be both a feminine girl, yet fierce on the field? I did. And after seeing me play, my family quickly learned that too.
Upon graduation, I began working at Genentech as a Bioprocesses Manufacturing Technician. Most Biology majors would probably be in consensus that a job in a applicable field at the largest Biotech company in the world, is the ultimate career move. And then there is me, always going against the grain. While my experience at Genentech provided me with invaluable information about the Biotech Industry that I could apply to future jobs and ultimately, unknowingly at the time, to my future career in Law, I yearned for something greater.

cavalier1138
Posts: 4657
Joined: Fri Mar 25, 2016 8:01 pm

Re: Law school personal statement topic

Postby cavalier1138 » Wed Nov 29, 2017 7:31 am

Pick a single topic.

I get that you want to weave your whole life story in to the statement, but it's just going to be vague and boring if you do that. Pick one thing--your family history, rugby, biotech, or something else--and write a focused statement on that topic. Don't just skim the surface. And avoid platitudes.

asilva2018
Posts: 3
Joined: Tue Nov 28, 2017 3:03 pm

Re: Law school personal statement topic

Postby asilva2018 » Wed Nov 29, 2017 2:37 pm

My intention was to tie all of the experiences back to "following your heart" even when others are doubting the the decisions. Doing so has lead me to the decision to leave a secure job with a potential for significant growth in order to pursue a career in law.

Alternatively:

I spent 6 months traveling alone in Europe, working on farms, building sustainable living etc. That was a significant time in my life. That, in conjunction with my current job has helped pave the road to finally making the decision to go to law school as well as clarify exactly what area in law. Do you think that is focused enough?

sparty99
Posts: 1511
Joined: Sat Dec 11, 2010 8:41 pm

Re: Law school personal statement topic

Postby sparty99 » Fri Dec 01, 2017 2:46 am

Both of the personal statements are horribly written. Poor sentence structures and grammar. You use flowerly language. Additionally, the first statement you talk about a DUI. WHY? Why would that be your first sentence in an application to LAW SCHOOL. You definitely sounded like a drunk and that you have problems. Why would a school accept an alcholoic when lawyers have the highest rate of alcohol abuse.

The second essay talks about the home life, then rugby, then some job about Gentech or something. Just focus on one topic. You need to start from sctratch and read personal statements to get a better understanding of what's a good personal statement.

sparty99
Posts: 1511
Joined: Sat Dec 11, 2010 8:41 pm

Re: Law school personal statement topic

Postby sparty99 » Fri Dec 01, 2017 2:48 am

asilva2018 wrote:My intention was to tie all of the experiences back to "following your heart" even when others are doubting the the decisions. Doing so has lead me to the decision to leave a secure job with a potential for significant growth in order to pursue a career in law.

Alternatively:

I spent 6 months traveling alone in Europe, working on farms, building sustainable living etc. That was a significant time in my life. That, in conjunction with my current job has helped pave the road to finally making the decision to go to law school as well as clarify exactly what area in law. Do you think that is focused enough?


Also, stop speaking in metaphors. What the hell does "following your heart" mean? And who is doubting what decisions? "Significant growth." Stop with the buzz words, etc. Speak in simple english will be the first key in your next essay.

mrorange242
Posts: 2
Joined: Sat Dec 02, 2017 3:53 pm

Re: Law school personal statement topic

Postby mrorange242 » Sat Dec 02, 2017 9:25 pm

sparty99 wrote:Both of the personal statements are horribly written. Poor sentence structures and grammar. You use flowerly language. Additionally, the first statement you talk about a DUI. WHY? Why would that be your first sentence in an application to LAW SCHOOL. You definitely sounded like a drunk and that you have problems. Why would a school accept an alcholoic when lawyers have the highest rate of alcohol abuse.

The second essay talks about the home life, then rugby, then some job about Gentech or something. Just focus on one topic. You need to start from sctratch and read personal statements to get a better understanding of what's a good personal statement.


jeez, a little harsh, doncha think?

jd21
Posts: 18
Joined: Sat Oct 22, 2016 2:20 pm

Re: Law school personal statement topic

Postby jd21 » Sun Dec 03, 2017 12:09 am

asilva2018 wrote:My intention was to tie all of the experiences back to "following your heart" even when others are doubting the the decisions. Doing so has lead me to the decision to leave a secure job with a potential for significant growth in order to pursue a career in law.

Alternatively:

I spent 6 months traveling alone in Europe, working on farms, building sustainable living etc. That was a significant time in my life. That, in conjunction with my current job has helped pave the road to finally making the decision to go to law school as well as clarify exactly what area in law. Do you think that is focused enough?


I would avoid the travel one simply because I've seen that many people make personal statements revolving around travel and it could be seen as very cliche. The same advice applies to the rugby team. Many people write about it and do so poorly. Unless you have flawless execution you risk being seen as cliche.

I also agree with the other poster that you're trying to write about too many topics. Any of the things that you mention could, individually, make for a great personal statement. I would focus on one and make it the best that I can.




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