Foster Care?

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redguy1
Posts: 2
Joined: Mon Jan 20, 2014 6:08 pm

Foster Care?

Postby redguy1 » Mon Jan 20, 2014 6:20 pm

So, I'm just wondering if growing up in foster care has any affect on admission decisions. Basically, my parents are both mentally ill (one severely as in, in and out of mental institutions for my whole life) and drug-addicts/ alcoholics. I grew up switching homes a lot (from relatives to the stereotypical foster homes with a bunch of kids), although I was mainly raised by a distant relative. I was a ward of the court for the entirety of my childhood, and for the first half of it, I routinely went to court hearings once a month, before being put into a "permanent home." So, basically, will this affect admission decisions, at all? If so, how much of a boost will it have-- something like a strong soft or? Thanks for any information, in advance.

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Nonconsecutive
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Joined: Thu Sep 27, 2012 4:58 pm

Re: Foster Care?

Postby Nonconsecutive » Mon Jan 20, 2014 6:28 pm

I'd say its a usable soft depending upon how you weave it into an effective PS/DS. Its not going to make any doors fly open though.

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rinkrat19
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Joined: Sat Sep 25, 2010 5:35 am

Re: Foster Care?

Postby rinkrat19 » Mon Jan 20, 2014 6:32 pm

Would certainly make a good diversity statement topic, and it's a much better soft than being president of a fraternity. If I had to guess, I'd say it's maybe on a level with military experience. It could be a tiebreaker against a whitebread suburban kid with the same numbers. But you're not going to outperform your numbers by a vast amount. There are very few softs that do that.

However, you also need to make sure that your application doesn't leave any fears that you won't fit in in the academic and white-collar world. You'll need to be able to put on a suit and schmooze with lawyers at a cocktail party, pretty much from the start of law school. But I would think that mentioning subsequent stable permanent home life and success at college in a diversity statement and just not having a chip on your shoulder would go a long way toward neutralizing any potential fears.

Good Diversity Statement:
1. I had this terrible early upbringing
2. I got through it and it taught me stuff
3. I am now normal and successful, while still remembering my past.

Bad DS:
1. I had this terrible early upbringing
2. I got through it
3. It now informs everything I do and I can't leave it behind and did I mention I had a really rough upbringing so I'm better than other people?

That is not to say that I have any impression of you having that sort of attitude from one post. :P Just general/preemptive advice.

redguy1
Posts: 2
Joined: Mon Jan 20, 2014 6:08 pm

Re: Foster Care?

Postby redguy1 » Fri Jan 24, 2014 6:13 pm

rinkrat19 wrote:Would certainly make a good diversity statement topic, and it's a much better soft than being president of a fraternity. If I had to guess, I'd say it's maybe on a level with military experience. It could be a tiebreaker against a whitebread suburban kid with the same numbers. But you're not going to outperform your numbers by a vast amount. There are very few softs that do that.

However, you also need to make sure that your application doesn't leave any fears that you won't fit in in the academic and white-collar world. You'll need to be able to put on a suit and schmooze with lawyers at a cocktail party, pretty much from the start of law school. But I would think that mentioning subsequent stable permanent home life and success at college in a diversity statement and just not having a chip on your shoulder would go a long way toward neutralizing any potential fears.

Good Diversity Statement:
1. I had this terrible early upbringing
2. I got through it and it taught me stuff
3. I am now normal and successful, while still remembering my past.

Bad DS:
1. I had this terrible early upbringing
2. I got through it
3. It now informs everything I do and I can't leave it behind and did I mention I had a really rough upbringing so I'm better than other people?

That is not to say that I have any impression of you having that sort of attitude from one post. :P Just general/preemptive advice.


Awesome, thanks for the advice! That's kind of what I expected. Definitely no plans on claiming I'm better than other people for having a rough upbringing :P, more so just explaining how it's influenced my perception of the world and my life.
Thanks, again, to both of you for responding.




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