Personal Statement- why I want to be a lawyer

(Personal Statement Examples, Advice, Critique, . . . )
crackinthekraken
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Personal Statement- why I want to be a lawyer

Postby crackinthekraken » Sun Nov 29, 2009 10:49 pm

It reads below. Any feedback is appreciated. I think it's a bit dry and straightforward, but it covers the angle pretty well.

[begin personal statement]
My name is [the baddest assed law student there ever was] and I am a senior at the [University of Don't Fuck With Me], majoring in Economics and in East Asian Studies. I am writing to express my interest in your law program, and in pursuing a legal career.

Legal practice is a natural fit for my talents. This was first brought to my attention during high school, as I was heavily involved in debate organizations and Junior Statesmen of America. Although there are major differences between legal practice and parliamentary debate, the success I enjoyed in these early organizations reflected my competence in adversarial debate and my aptitude in the political realm. The logical training I received doing battle with other students over a broad range of issues honed my mind and my language into a weapon that I could use to both construct and attack an argument for maximum effect. I have expanded on these skills over the course of my undergraduate career by pursuing additional courses in both domestic and international politics, where I have dissected such issues as the balance of power in multiethnic societies and the interaction of modern states towards one another in their quests for security, prosperity, and hegemony.

Furthermore, an understanding of the law is a major asset. In order to play a game, one must first know the rules. We live our entire lives under a series of laws, and it is too easy for someone with only a rudimentary understanding of these laws to fall prey to someone wishing him harm. The law is such a complex thing, and it relates to our behavior in a complex way involving competing interests, objectives, and individuals. Most importantly, the law can be bent or adjusted depending on who it is being applied to and in what way. I have seen firsthand the power of a good lawyer or a well placed judge, as minor transgressions can be expanded into major obstacles or done away with completely, all within the flexibility of the legal framework. How can any endeavor succeed in such an environment without a thorough understanding of the laws that govern and regulate us?

Thank you for your time and consideration.
Last edited by crackinthekraken on Mon Nov 30, 2009 3:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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AngryAvocado
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Re: Personal Statement- why I want to be a lawyer

Postby AngryAvocado » Sun Nov 29, 2009 10:57 pm

I would focus more on your own experiences than a "Why Law" essay. Tell a story about your time as a junior statesman, or when you saw the "power of a good lawyer firsthand." The adcomms will be far more interested in a personal story about you (especially if you can relate it to why you want to study law) than a list of reasons--none of which are particularly unique or persuasive--about why the law interests you.

Also, the "If you want to play the game, you must learn the rules" stuff struck me as pretty naive and silly. You don't need an in-depth knowledge of the legal system to be successful. And what in the hell does "well placed judge" mean?
Last edited by AngryAvocado on Sun Nov 29, 2009 11:03 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Zapatero
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Re: Personal Statement- why I want to be a lawyer

Postby Zapatero » Sun Nov 29, 2009 11:02 pm

I don't really understand why you've written this. Is this for a "Why Law" prompt? Touching on the law isn't necessarily a bad idea, but I don't think the adcomms want to hear a 0L's take on the legal system. Also, this reads more like a business letter than a personal statement.

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eatmykant
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Re: Personal Statement- why I want to be a lawyer

Postby eatmykant » Mon Nov 30, 2009 1:42 am

You sound like you have a story to tell, but I think you need to focus more on the *personal* aspect of the personal statement. It sounds more like you are telling the Adcom why they should let you be a lawyer (I am good at this, that, etc) - but what they really want to hear is why YOU, and you particularly, John Chao, want to become a lawyer.

Anyway, hope this helps John, and good luck!!

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MC Southstar
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Re: Personal Statement- why I want to be a lawyer

Postby MC Southstar » Mon Nov 30, 2009 1:44 am

Uh.. who are you writing this to? I think you should try to express more about yourself and less about the law itself. Details. I hate saying this to everyone, but details.

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superserial
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Re: Personal Statement- why I want to be a lawyer

Postby superserial » Mon Nov 30, 2009 1:56 am

flame?

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Cupidity
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Re: Personal Statement- why I want to be a lawyer

Postby Cupidity » Mon Nov 30, 2009 1:58 am

This is the worst personal statement ever.

As much as I enjoyed saying that, I did it for you own benefit. I don't know what the guy above me is smoking that thinks "you have a story to tell" because of this, but I want to know where I can buy some of it.

This has to be a joke, what were you thinking. Scrap this. Read the "How to write a personal statement guide" on TLS. Pay someone five dollars to punch you in the face, and start over.

<3 Cupidity.

Kant
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Re: Personal Statement- why I want to be a lawyer

Postby Kant » Mon Nov 30, 2009 2:29 am

Cupidity wrote:This is the worst personal statement ever.



I wouldn't go that far.

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bilbobaggins
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Re: Personal Statement- why I want to be a lawyer

Postby bilbobaggins » Mon Nov 30, 2009 2:30 am

Might not want to put your full name on the internet.

Just sayin'.
Last edited by bilbobaggins on Mon Nov 30, 2009 4:05 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PLATONiC
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Re: Personal Statement- why I want to be a lawyer

Postby PLATONiC » Mon Nov 30, 2009 2:31 am

1. Avoid writing the "Why I want to be a lawyer" statement.
2. Write a "personal" statement that would help adcomms get to know you as a person.
3. Please take a look at some sample personal statements prior to drafting one. Take a look at Ken's free book on this website. It'll help you A LOT.

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Cupidity
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Re: Personal Statement- why I want to be a lawyer

Postby Cupidity » Mon Nov 30, 2009 2:32 am

Kant wrote:
Cupidity wrote:This is the worst personal statement ever.



I wouldn't go that far.


Clearly I would.

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Kohinoor
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Re: Personal Statement- why I want to be a lawyer

Postby Kohinoor » Mon Nov 30, 2009 2:35 am

If that is your real name, edit it out immediately.
Last edited by Kohinoor on Mon Nov 30, 2009 2:36 am, edited 1 time in total.

Kant
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Re: Personal Statement- why I want to be a lawyer

Postby Kant » Mon Nov 30, 2009 2:36 am

Cupidity wrote:
Kant wrote:
Cupidity wrote:This is the worst personal statement ever.



I wouldn't go that far.


Clearly I would.


unfeeling half-Vulcan

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Whats an URM?
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Re: Personal Statement- why I want to be a lawyer

Postby Whats an URM? » Mon Nov 30, 2009 2:39 am

bilbobaggins wrote:Might not want to put your full name on the internet. http://www.facebook.com/#/jgchao?ref=se ... 0259445..1

Just sayin'.


Funny. And you look kind of creepy. I would change that picture before I submitted apps.
Last edited by Whats an URM? on Mon Nov 30, 2009 2:41 am, edited 1 time in total.

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MC Southstar
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Re: Personal Statement- why I want to be a lawyer

Postby MC Southstar » Mon Nov 30, 2009 2:40 am

Whats an URM? wrote:
bilbobaggins wrote:Might not want to put your full name on the internet. http://www.facebook.com/#/jgchao?ref=se ... 0259445..1

Just sayin'.


Are you dating or stalking that girl, John?


I approve of either if she got some yellow fever.
Last edited by MC Southstar on Mon Nov 30, 2009 2:43 am, edited 1 time in total.

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bees
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Re: Personal Statement- why I want to be a lawyer

Postby bees » Mon Nov 30, 2009 2:42 am

bilbobaggins wrote:Might not want to put your full name on the internet. http://www.facebook.com/#/jgchao?ref=se ... 0259445..1

Just sayin'.


FTW

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Whats an URM?
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Re: Personal Statement- why I want to be a lawyer

Postby Whats an URM? » Mon Nov 30, 2009 2:43 am

shadowfrost000 wrote:
Whats an URM? wrote:
bilbobaggins wrote:Might not want to put your full name on the internet. http://www.facebook.com/#/jgchao?ref=se ... 0259445..1

Just sayin'.


Are you dating or stalking that girl, John?


I approve of either.



I second-guessed my remark so I edited, but I suppose fate wins.

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MC Southstar
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Re: Personal Statement- why I want to be a lawyer

Postby MC Southstar » Mon Nov 30, 2009 2:44 am

Whats an URM? wrote:I second-guessed my remark so I edited, but I suppose fate wins.


Funny, I edited mine to go even further. :shock:

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BaiAilian2013
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Re: Personal Statement- why I want to be a lawyer

Postby BaiAilian2013 » Mon Nov 30, 2009 2:46 am

Scrap this, read some books on law school personal statements, and start afresh on a different topic. You're probably smart (hard to say definitively from this PS) and obviously a competent writer, but this is not a good direction to go in with your statement.

MapleM
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Re: Personal Statement- why I want to be a lawyer

Postby MapleM » Mon Nov 30, 2009 12:12 pm

One of the schools that I am applying to clearly suggests not to write amplification of your desire to attend law school and practice law. Your draft is a typical example of such statement. Some comments here are harsh but you really need to rewrite for your own sake. Take a close look at the application forms of schools that you are applying to. They should give you some idea as to how they want you to write your PS or what they want to know from your PS. You may write why you want to study law in an effective manner but you should never write so direcly why you think you are a perfect fit for it. The adcoms will decide whether you are a fit or not from the content of your PS and how well you can write your PS without directly stating why you think you are. Good luck.
Last edited by MapleM on Mon Nov 30, 2009 12:32 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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asfasdagdsfawe
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Re: Personal Statement- why I want to be a lawyer

Postby asfasdagdsfawe » Mon Nov 30, 2009 12:26 pm

Even if it were fine writing a "why law" statement, yours is bad. You're basically saying you want to pursue law because you would be good at it-- that's not a good reason. Additionally, "I'm so badass" personal statements always come off as a bit arrogant.

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dextermorgan
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Re: Personal Statement- why I want to be a lawyer

Postby dextermorgan » Mon Nov 30, 2009 1:48 pm

Scrap it.

ughOSU
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Re: Personal Statement- why I want to be a lawyer

Postby ughOSU » Mon Nov 30, 2009 2:22 pm

Cupidity wrote:This is the worst personal statement ever.

Whenever I start feeling self-conscious about my already-submitted personal statement I read a few of the ones on this forum. Most of them are pretty bad, but this one is REALLY bad. John, you really need to do some research on what schools are looking for out of your personal statement. If you can't even fill two pages about yourself you're in trouble (what is this, like half a page long?).

And get your name off the internet.

crackinthekraken
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Re: Personal Statement- why I want to be a lawyer

Postby crackinthekraken » Mon Nov 30, 2009 3:53 pm

...you really had to link my facebook?

I suppose I had it coming. Proofreading/common sense fail.

Mods if you're looking, this topic has served its purpose and has no more reason to exist.

Kant wrote:unfeeling half-Vulcan

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bilbobaggins
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Re: Personal Statement- why I want to be a lawyer

Postby bilbobaggins » Mon Nov 30, 2009 4:05 pm

crackinthekraken wrote:...you really had to link my facebook?

I suppose I had it coming. Proofreading/common sense fail.

Mods if you're looking, this topic has served its purpose and has no more reason to exist.

Kant wrote:unfeeling half-Vulcan


I edited it out now that you've presumably learned that lesson.




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