Something my adviser told me about personal statements....

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honestabe84
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Something my adviser told me about personal statements....

Postby honestabe84 » Sat Mar 20, 2010 1:56 pm

I gave my PS to my adviser to edit, and he basically told met that this is no way to write a personal statement. After reading many personal statements on TLS, I decided to take the narrative approach - I told a story that ties directly into my motivation for applying to law school. He said, however, that I should definitely NOT do this, but instead write about my accomplishments and achievements academically and professionally. I have not seen many of these types of personal statements on TLS, so I was wondering if I should take his advice or if I should keep my personal statement as is. It seems like my advisers suggestions would make my PS just an in-depth resume.

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Kiersten1985
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Re: Something my adviser told me about personal statements....

Postby Kiersten1985 » Sat Mar 20, 2010 1:58 pm

If you're willing to post it, you should. It's kind of hard to tell exactly what your advisor was saying. I'm thinking maybe you wrote too narratively.

blsingindisguise
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Re: Something my adviser told me about personal statements....

Postby blsingindisguise » Sat Mar 20, 2010 1:59 pm

I wrote a kind of cheesy narrative first draft for mine and showed it to a professor and he basically mocked it and gave me a kind of "WAKE UP, YOU ARE APPLYING TO LAW SCHOOL. YOU ARE NOT A CHILD ANYMORE" speech.

I then wrote a new essay about what actually was interesting to me in the law and why I would make a strong candidate for law school and it seemed much more mature and better and the prof liked it. I think his speech not only improved my essay but made me do better in law school in general.

The trap, however, is that you don't want to just go listing things that are already on your resume. It's sort of a fine line to walk - you do want to make it a bit personal but just not corny.

honestabe84
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Re: Something my adviser told me about personal statements....

Postby honestabe84 » Sat Mar 20, 2010 1:59 pm

Kiersten1985 wrote:If you're willing to post it, you should. It's kind of hard to tell exactly what your advisor was saying. I'm thinking maybe you wrote too narratively.



I really don't feel comfortable posting it. Would you be willing to read it via PM?

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chicoalto0649
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Re: Something my adviser told me about personal statements....

Postby chicoalto0649 » Sat Mar 20, 2010 2:00 pm

honestabe84 wrote:I gave my PS to my adviser to edit, and he basically told met that this is no way to write a personal statement. After reading many personal statements on TLS, I decided to take the narrative approach - I told a story that ties directly into my motivation for applying to law school. He said, however, that I should definitely NOT do this, but instead write about my accomplishments and achievements academically and professionally. I have not seen many of these types of personal statements on TLS, so I was wondering if I should take his advice or if I should keep my personal statement as is.


The advice offered on TLS is usually going to be better than what a pre-law adviser has to say.

Along those same lines, your pre-law adviser is a fucking moron.

Write something that is personal and about you. Make sure the writing is solid/not too bloated. Be sincere and don't be a jack ass. Do not rehash your resume. Trust me, adcomms read enough of these things and they don't want to see a restatement of your resume.

That's pretty much all there is to writing a personal statement. Follow these steps, then profit.

EDIT: Reading comp fail on my part....you actually wrote a story? Dude, don't do that either. Adcomms dont want a piece of fiction....

blsingindisguise
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Re: Something my adviser told me about personal statements....

Postby blsingindisguise » Sat Mar 20, 2010 2:02 pm

This is one situation where I DON'T think TLS is going to know better than a professor or advisor. No one on TLS actually knows what got them into law school and a lot of people here are young 0Ls. People tend to write their law school statements too much like college statements imo -- "Look at me and my special little personal experience!". A law school essay should come off as more mature.

ViP
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Re: Something my adviser told me about personal statements....

Postby ViP » Sat Mar 20, 2010 2:05 pm

honestabe84 wrote:I gave my PS to my adviser to edit, and he basically told met that this is no way to write a personal statement. After reading many personal statements on TLS, I decided to take the narrative approach - I told a story that ties directly into my motivation for applying to law school. He said, however, that I should definitely NOT do this, but instead write about my accomplishments and achievements academically and professionally. I have not seen many of these types of personal statements on TLS, so I was wondering if I should take his advice or if I should keep my personal statement as is. It seems like my advisers suggestions would make my PS just an in-depth resume.


The two worst personal statements=

1) Ever since I was 3 days old I wanted to be a lawyer...

2) (insert resume here)

Your adviser's advice falls beautifully into the 2nd category.

Don't do it.

Don't.

honestabe84
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Re: Something my adviser told me about personal statements....

Postby honestabe84 » Sat Mar 20, 2010 2:07 pm

blsingindisguise wrote:This is one situation where I DON'T think TLS is going to know better than a professor or advisor. No one on TLS actually knows what got them into law school and a lot of people here are young 0Ls. People tend to write their law school statements too much like college statements imo -- "Look at me and my special little personal experience!". A law school essay should come off as more mature.



The reason I was thinking that he is wrong is because I always assumed that the purpose of personal statements was so that adcomms could gain insight into the applicants character.

erniesto
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Re: Something my adviser told me about personal statements....

Postby erniesto » Sat Mar 20, 2010 2:08 pm

chicoalto0649 wrote:
honestabe84 wrote:I gave my PS to my adviser to edit, and he basically told met that this is no way to write a personal statement. After reading many personal statements on TLS, I decided to take the narrative approach - I told a story that ties directly into my motivation for applying to law school. He said, however, that I should definitely NOT do this, but instead write about my accomplishments and achievements academically and professionally. I have not seen many of these types of personal statements on TLS, so I was wondering if I should take his advice or if I should keep my personal statement as is.


The advice offered on TLS is usually going to be better than what a pre-law adviser has to say.

Along those same lines, your pre-law adviser is a fucking moron.

Write something that is personal and about you. Make sure the writing is solid/not too bloated. Be sincere and don't be a jack ass. Do not rehash your resume. Trust me, adcomms read enough of these things and they don't want to see a restatement of your resume.

That's pretty much all there is to writing a personal statement. Follow these steps, then profit.


LOLZ

With that said, I wrote a narrative. It's done well for me.
viewtopic.php?f=9&p=2729928

But my narrative talked about how I used to get high on methadone and barbituates then go beat up old men in the park and after wards have wild orgies and drink milk, but I turned my life around after I went to prison and was released on good behavior.

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dbt
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Re: Something my adviser told me about personal statements....

Postby dbt » Sat Mar 20, 2010 2:10 pm

Generally you're not supposed to just write about your achievements since the adcom will already know all about those (from your resume). In my experience, pre-law advisers are nowhere near as knowledgeable about the process as students that have just recently gone through the process (i.e. TLS people).

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chicoalto0649
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Re: Something my adviser told me about personal statements....

Postby chicoalto0649 » Sat Mar 20, 2010 2:13 pm

dbt wrote:Generally you're not supposed to just write about your achievements since the adcom will already know all about those (from your resume). In my experience, pre-law advisers are nowhere near as knowledgeable about the process as students that have just recently gone through the process (i.e. TLS people).



Also actually applying to law schools/attending law school is not required to become a pre-law advisor....


ITT: TLS posters shit on pre-law advisers....are there even any pre-law advisers on here?

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kazu
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Re: Something my adviser told me about personal statements....

Postby kazu » Sat Mar 20, 2010 2:13 pm

blsingindisguise wrote:This is one situation where I DON'T think TLS is going to know better than a professor or advisor. No one on TLS actually knows what got them into law school and a lot of people here are young 0Ls. People tend to write their law school statements too much like college statements imo -- "Look at me and my special little personal experience!". A law school essay should come off as more mature.

I'm not sure about pre-law advisors, but I think generally non-law professors know very little about what kind of personal statements law schools prefer. TLS might be a more reliable source. I remember one professor asked me why the hell my resume was so short - he was expecting more of an academic-type resume (which can go on for a gazillion pages), whereas I had cut mine down to 1 page, tops.

OP, take his advice with a grain of salt. Without seeing the actual PS it'll be hard for us to offer you substantive advice, but I strongly doubt that a rehash of your resume will be effective. On the other hand, your PS might have gone too far in the other direction.

honestabe84
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Re: Something my adviser told me about personal statements....

Postby honestabe84 » Sat Mar 20, 2010 2:14 pm

Would anyone be willing to take a look at my PS?

blsingindisguise
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Re: Something my adviser told me about personal statements....

Postby blsingindisguise » Sat Mar 20, 2010 2:15 pm

Message me with it - I'll take a look.

taytay
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Re: Something my adviser told me about personal statements....

Postby taytay » Sat Mar 20, 2010 2:18 pm

.
Last edited by taytay on Sat May 25, 2013 6:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.

honestabe84
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Re: Something my adviser told me about personal statements....

Postby honestabe84 » Sat Mar 20, 2010 2:22 pm

blsingindisguise wrote:Message me with it - I'll take a look.


Thank you. I sent it.

mhernton
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Re: Something my adviser told me about personal statements....

Postby mhernton » Sat Mar 20, 2010 2:28 pm

Put yourself in the Adcoms shoes, you read 5K or 6K PS in a cycle, do you want something where a kid drones on about their seeming invincibility or something that may be mildly entertaining. Remember your advisor has nothing to gain by giving advice, good or bad....

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swc65
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Re: Something my adviser told me about personal statements....

Postby swc65 » Sat Mar 20, 2010 2:29 pm

dbt wrote:Generally you're not supposed to just write about your achievements since the adcom will already know all about those (from your resume). In my experience, pre-law advisers are nowhere near as knowledgeable about the process as students that have just recently gone through the process (i.e. TLS people).



This. Your personal statement is nto supposed to be a rehash of your resume. Many law schools state this directly on their websites.

honestabe84
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Re: Something my adviser told me about personal statements....

Postby honestabe84 » Sat Mar 20, 2010 2:29 pm

taytay wrote:I take what most school employed advisors say with a grain of salt. so many of them don't really know what they are talking about it's shocking. my statement comes from personal experience as well as many grapevine stories I have heard


Not this adviser, but another one told me that in order to get into Chicago, I would need to be a double major and have a 4.0. :)
Last edited by honestabe84 on Sat Mar 20, 2010 2:30 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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T14_Scholly
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Re: Something my adviser told me about personal statements....

Postby T14_Scholly » Sat Mar 20, 2010 2:30 pm

chicoalto0649 wrote:
The advice offered on TLS is usually going to be better than what a pre-law adviser has to say.



That's a funny joke.

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dbt
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Re: Something my adviser told me about personal statements....

Postby dbt » Sat Mar 20, 2010 2:32 pm

chicoalto0649 wrote:
dbt wrote:Generally you're not supposed to just write about your achievements since the adcom will already know all about those (from your resume). In my experience, pre-law advisers are nowhere near as knowledgeable about the process as students that have just recently gone through the process (i.e. TLS people).



Also actually applying to law schools/attending law school is not required to become a pre-law advisor....


ITT: TLS posters shit on pre-law advisers....are there even any pre-law advisers on here?


I'm just speaking from personal experience. Our pre-law advisor was pretty misinformed about the differences in prospects coming out of different schools and advised myself and others at our school accordingly (and poorly). This seems to be the consensus from posters on TLS too.

And no, you don't need to apply to law schools or attend law school to become a pre-law advisor. You do need to know the most basic things that even applicants on TLS know to be at least a mediocre pre-law advisor, though.

Edit: Just to give you an idea of where I'm coming from, my stats are in my profile. I went to my pre-law advisor and spoke with him for about 30 minutes on applying ED (to either Columbia or NYU). He instead spent the last 10 minutes of the session trying to convince me to apply ED to UT. I'm not trying to shit on UT, but come on. This is terrible advice, and I can only imagine what sad saps end up following his word as gospel.

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Kiersten1985
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Re: Something my adviser told me about personal statements....

Postby Kiersten1985 » Sat Mar 20, 2010 2:39 pm

Yeah, you can PM me.

honestabe84
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Re: Something my adviser told me about personal statements....

Postby honestabe84 » Sat Mar 20, 2010 2:52 pm

Kiersten1985 wrote:Yeah, you can PM me.


Thanks. I sent it.

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quickquestionthanks
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Re: Something my adviser told me about personal statements....

Postby quickquestionthanks » Sat Mar 20, 2010 3:11 pm

Once you've revised it and those other TSLers don't wanna read it a second time, you can send it to me.

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Mattalones
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Re: Something my adviser told me about personal statements....

Postby Mattalones » Sat Mar 20, 2010 3:20 pm

erniesto wrote:
chicoalto0649 wrote:
honestabe84 wrote:I gave my PS to my adviser to edit, and he basically told met that this is no way to write a personal statement. After reading many personal statements on TLS, I decided to take the narrative approach - I told a story that ties directly into my motivation for applying to law school. He said, however, that I should definitely NOT do this, but instead write about my accomplishments and achievements academically and professionally. I have not seen many of these types of personal statements on TLS, so I was wondering if I should take his advice or if I should keep my personal statement as is.


The advice offered on TLS is usually going to be better than what a pre-law adviser has to say.

Along those same lines, your pre-law adviser is a fucking moron.

Write something that is personal and about you. Make sure the writing is solid/not too bloated. Be sincere and don't be a jack ass. Do not rehash your resume. Trust me, adcomms read enough of these things and they don't want to see a restatement of your resume.

That's pretty much all there is to writing a personal statement. Follow these steps, then profit.


LOLZ

With that said, I wrote a narrative. It's done well for me.
viewtopic.php?f=9&p=2729928

But my narrative talked about how I used to get high on methadone and barbituates then go beat up old men in the park and after wards have wild orgies and drink milk, but I turned my life around after I went to prison and was released on good behavior.

That is different because it is super-interesting




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