My new personal statement

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Dmoore27
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My new personal statement

Post by Dmoore27 » Thu Mar 01, 2018 9:49 pm

Hi guys, I just wrote a new personal statement I've been applying for 2 cycles now and I'm still not in a school, I believe my essays needed work. I cannot change my undergraduate GPA. So I want to improve my softs. If someone could give me a feedback on content or substance that would be great !!

" As I sit here on this first day of March 2018, I contemplate what I can tell this admissions committee without sounding too cliché or pleading for sympathy. I sit here with an open mind and an open heart preparing to let you in on my journey. Now, this is not the first time that I have sat to write this statement, but I am hoping this is the last and the most meaningful. I am just nine days away from my twenty-third birthday, and I have been questioning myself and my dreams. I have applied to many schools and have been turned down many times, because of this my confidence in myself and my dreams have started to fall short. Sitting here at this very moment while I write this I remember why I choose this path or better yet why this path chose me.
Like many others before me I did not have, it easy growing up. I was raised by a single mother of three children with a little help from my grandmother. As a child, I may not have, getting everything I wanted but my mother made sure that I had everything that I needed. When I was 4, I began singing and writing songs, and this is something that I still do to this day. Back then all I wanted to be was a musician, and no one could stop me by the age the age of everything had started to change in my home as my mother had her first stroke only being in her early thirties and this is when I learned what cancer was. From that point on I knew I wanted to help people and it started with her. Around this time, I began to witness wrongdoings and learned what a lawyer was and what they did. I remember like it was yesterday sitting on a classroom floor in elementary school having a prosecutor come in and talk to us about her job and what her work meant to others. That experience started a spark in me that I never knew would grow to what it is today.
As I got older, I saw the struggles a single parent had to go through, the choices that had to be made and the silent cries she thought no one could hear. Seeing her strength and she perseveres through life gave me the courage and hoped to do the same thing.
I never thought that I could go to college so when I got there, I thought nothing could stop me. This was when I realized that being on my own, in a city with no family was not going to be easy. When I stepped onto campus wanting to conquer the world I quickly realized what that entitled. I had no money, no job and no idea where to get and at this time in my life, I didn't even want to ask for help because I wanted to prove that I could do it all on my own. Even though my first semester I could not afford books I was determined to do well. I joined every study group that would take me, and I tried never to miss a class. I even became an official university note-taker so that I could have all the materials I could find available to me. When I finally found a job and tried to buy books for some classes, it was just too late, and this is how I failed my first class. Despite everything that was placed in front of me I was still able to finish my first term with a 3.2 GPA.
As time went on and things became harder for me, I started to lose confidence in my abilities, but I still never gave up. I struggled a little more sometimes having to put work or my mother's health first as her situation got worse throughout my time at university. My life and my GPA had many ups and downs during my time in undergraduate school. Even with all the obstacles in front of me, I knew after my 3rd semester what I wanted to do, become a lawyer.
Being a lawyer is something that I had joked about in high school, but the music was my "thing" everyone knew this is what I loved, and I couldn't just abandon that dream. As I started to experience more and more tragic events like the senseless deaths of 3 of my friends I knew I had to do something. I have had it in my mind ever since that I wanted to study criminal law, I have been drawn to it, and after my life experiences, I know that I would be successful in its practice. Looking back, I think to those times when I was younger and saw things that could easily break a child fuel me and spark my current interest; it just took me longer to realize what I was meant to do. After changing my major three times and speaking with amazing people at career expos and other events, I realized the impact I could have in the legal profession.
I buckled down, I networked, and I worked hard. I earned my first degree in December of 2016, and I will soon be finishing my master's degree. Going to law school and becoming a lawyer is more than just a dream to me it is a passion and a love for the law. My mother always said "If you believe in you like I believe in you, you will never fail" and now I finally see what she saw in me for all of these years. With my perseverance, strength, and desire to succeed I know that from here there is nothing that I can't do."
Last edited by Dmoore27 on Thu Mar 01, 2018 11:44 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Finn
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Re: My new personal statement

Post by Finn » Thu Mar 01, 2018 10:13 pm

Is this for the 2017-2018 or 2018-2019 cycle?
Dmoore27 wrote:
Thu Mar 01, 2018 9:49 pm
As I sit here on this first day of March 2018, I contemplate what I can tell this admissions committee without sounding too cliché or pleading for sympathy. I sit here with an open mind and an open heart preparing to let you in on my journey. Now, this is not the first time that I have sat to write this statement, but I am hoping this is the last and the most meaningful. I am just nine days away from my twenty-third birthday, and I have been questioning myself and my dreams. I have applied to many schools and have been turned down many times, because of this my confidence in myself and my dreams have started to fall short. Sitting here at this very moment while I write this I remember why I choose this path or better yet why this path chose me.
Please reconsider this entire paragraph before you move on to the body of the PS.

Dmoore27
Posts: 5
Joined: Thu Mar 01, 2018 12:03 am

Re: My new personal statement

Post by Dmoore27 » Thu Mar 01, 2018 10:26 pm

I’m considering applying for one more school during this cycle if not it will be for the upcoming cycle
Finn wrote:
Thu Mar 01, 2018 10:13 pm
Is this for the 2017-2018 or 2018-2019 cycle?
Dmoore27 wrote:
Thu Mar 01, 2018 9:49 pm
As I sit here on this first day of March 2018, I contemplate what I can tell this admissions committee without sounding too cliché or pleading for sympathy. I sit here with an open mind and an open heart preparing to let you in on my journey. Now, this is not the first time that I have sat to write this statement, but I am hoping this is the last and the most meaningful. I am just nine days away from my twenty-third birthday, and I have been questioning myself and my dreams. I have applied to many schools and have been turned down many times, because of this my confidence in myself and my dreams have started to fall short. Sitting here at this very moment while I write this I remember why I choose this path or better yet why this path chose me.
Please reconsider this entire paragraph before you move on to the body of the PS.

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Finn
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Re: My new personal statement

Post by Finn » Thu Mar 01, 2018 10:36 pm

Dmoore27 wrote:
Thu Mar 01, 2018 10:26 pm
I’m considering applying for one more school during this cycle if not it will be for the upcoming cycle
I would recommend you reconsider applying this late—save your money. Moreover, I highly encourage you to start editing your first paragraph by rewriting it so there are no meta-references to the action of you writing the PS or the schools that have rejected you.

Dmoore27
Posts: 5
Joined: Thu Mar 01, 2018 12:03 am

Re: My new personal statement

Post by Dmoore27 » Thu Mar 01, 2018 10:48 pm

Thanks for the help
Finn wrote:
Thu Mar 01, 2018 10:36 pm
Dmoore27 wrote:
Thu Mar 01, 2018 10:26 pm
I’m considering applying for one more school during this cycle if not it will be for the upcoming cycle
I would recommend you reconsider applying this late—save your money. Moreover, I highly encourage you to start editing your first paragraph by rewriting it so there are no meta-references to the action of you writing the PS or the schools that have rejected you.

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UVA2B
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Re: My new personal statement

Post by UVA2B » Thu Mar 01, 2018 10:50 pm

This won't sound kind, and I'm sorry for that, but this statement is so riddled with errors grammatically that it should probably just be scrapped. If you had a coherent narrative that shows your strengths in a way that I found persuasive, I might suggest trying to edit it to make it work, but to be quite honest, this isn't worth salvaging.

Your first paragraph isn't an intro paragraph you'll ever want to use, but that's been covered. Beyond that, your narrative, despite possibly being interesting for how your awareness of the law and the legal process came to be, just comes off as naive and superficial.

I know you're probably not thrilled to start from scratch, but you really should. I'm going to quote some advice I offered to another poster that will hopefully help you craft your own message and narrative (it doesn't fit perfectly, but I didn't want to type out an entire unique message that covers the same idea again).
UVA2B wrote:
Tue Feb 20, 2018 3:04 pm
You don't have to have any amount of adversity or things you think others will find interesting about you in order to write an effective PS. What activities have you been involved in that isn't sitting in a hot tub at a gym? Have you taken any classes that particularly captured your attention and made you think intellectually about a difficult issue? Have you ever been confronted with a difficult decision that made you realize you have certain values that are particularly important to you? Have you learned any lessons in life that you feel guide you in any substantial way?

A solid PS is usually about very personal introspection, so your time will be best served if you really stop and think about your life experience. Ask yourself, "why do I think I'll be a strong law student and attorney?" and "what qualities do I feel I could bring to this school and this profession that will add value to it?" Questions like that could bring out an interesting and unique take about you as an applicant. It doesn't have to be about why you want to be a lawyer if that doesn't serve the purpose you're trying to achieve, and it doesn't have to be a can't put it down, dramatic saga about your amazing life. It just needs to show something positive about you as a person and prospective law student.

I've read many PS in my time helping 0Ls, and some of the most effective were about pretty ordinary things of life. Mine personally centered around my mom's old adage that I should always leave something better off than I found it and connecting that to my professional work experience. It wasn't groundbreaking, but it allowed me to show some interesting and desirable qualities about myself through a single anecdote. I won't say it will win any Pulitzers, but I got into my top choice law school, so at minimum it didn't turn a yes into a no.

Dmoore27
Posts: 5
Joined: Thu Mar 01, 2018 12:03 am

Re: My new personal statement

Post by Dmoore27 » Thu Mar 01, 2018 11:48 pm

I’ll take that into consideration
UVA2B wrote:
Thu Mar 01, 2018 10:50 pm
This won't sound kind, and I'm sorry for that, but this statement is so riddled with errors grammatically that it should probably just be scrapped. If you had a coherent narrative that shows your strengths in a way that I found persuasive, I might suggest trying to edit it to make it work, but to be quite honest, this isn't worth salvaging.

Your first paragraph isn't an intro paragraph you'll ever want to use, but that's been covered. Beyond that, your narrative, despite possibly being interesting for how your awareness of the law and the legal process came to be, just comes off as naive and superficial.

I know you're probably not thrilled to start from scratch, but you really should. I'm going to quote some advice I offered to another poster that will hopefully help you craft your own message and narrative (it doesn't fit perfectly, but I didn't want to type out an entire unique message that covers the same idea again).
UVA2B wrote:
Tue Feb 20, 2018 3:04 pm
You don't have to have any amount of adversity or things you think others will find interesting about you in order to write an effective PS. What activities have you been involved in that isn't sitting in a hot tub at a gym? Have you taken any classes that particularly captured your attention and made you think intellectually about a difficult issue? Have you ever been confronted with a difficult decision that made you realize you have certain values that are particularly important to you? Have you learned any lessons in life that you feel guide you in any substantial way?

A solid PS is usually about very personal introspection, so your time will be best served if you really stop and think about your life experience. Ask yourself, "why do I think I'll be a strong law student and attorney?" and "what qualities do I feel I could bring to this school and this profession that will add value to it?" Questions like that could bring out an interesting and unique take about you as an applicant. It doesn't have to be about why you want to be a lawyer if that doesn't serve the purpose you're trying to achieve, and it doesn't have to be a can't put it down, dramatic saga about your amazing life. It just needs to show something positive about you as a person and prospective law student.

I've read many PS in my time helping 0Ls, and some of the most effective were about pretty ordinary things of life. Mine personally centered around my mom's old adage that I should always leave something better off than I found it and connecting that to my professional work experience. It wasn't groundbreaking, but it allowed me to show some interesting and desirable qualities about myself through a single anecdote. I won't say it will win any Pulitzers, but I got into my top choice law school, so at minimum it didn't turn a yes into a no.

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darthlawyer
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Re: My new personal statement

Post by darthlawyer » Fri Mar 02, 2018 2:20 am

Love it. What are you getting a masters in?

Dmoore27
Posts: 5
Joined: Thu Mar 01, 2018 12:03 am

Re: My new personal statement

Post by Dmoore27 » Fri Mar 02, 2018 9:06 am

Its still a very rough draft I literally wrote it yesterday and I still have a lot of work to do on it and have to have it read by a consulting firm but i am currently getting my masters in business administration
darthlawyer wrote:
Fri Mar 02, 2018 2:20 am
Love it. What are you getting a masters in?

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DrGlennRichie
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Re: My new personal statement

Post by DrGlennRichie » Fri Mar 09, 2018 10:32 pm

I would suggest scrap it. This is one of the worst I have ever read

js2hopeful
Posts: 48
Joined: Sun Feb 18, 2018 6:37 pm

Re: My new personal statement

Post by js2hopeful » Sat Mar 10, 2018 1:52 pm

DrGlennRichie wrote:
Fri Mar 09, 2018 10:32 pm
I would suggest scrap it. This is one of the worst I have ever read
Last sentence was unnecessary. So is mine, but, you're a little bitch.

Mod edit: user has been banned one day for this. Don't call other posters "a little bitch."

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DrGlennRichie
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Re: My new personal statement

Post by DrGlennRichie » Sat Mar 10, 2018 1:55 pm

js2hopeful wrote:
Sat Mar 10, 2018 1:52 pm
DrGlennRichie wrote:
Fri Mar 09, 2018 10:32 pm
I would suggest scrap it. This is one of the worst I have ever read
Last sentence was unnecessary. So is mine, but, you're a little bitch.
This is a compliment for me. And a fair assessment

NukinFutz
Posts: 192
Joined: Fri Jan 26, 2018 5:16 pm

Re: My new personal statement

Post by NukinFutz » Sat Mar 24, 2018 10:51 pm

With all due respect, I recommend scraping this PS. It's describing instead of illustrative; you're wasting a tremendous number of words talking about what you are going to talk about; it's incredibly passive in tone, which isn't good... And this is my personal opinion and preference about personal statements... but they should be positive, meaning, that it shouldn't just be a sob-story, or a list of bad things that have happened to you. Illustrating that bad things have happened to you provides zero justification for why you would make a good law student, or much less a lawyer. Writing about adversity or hardships you've experienced can be just fine or even exceptional, so long as you explain how it positively added to you personally and hopefully, added to your vision of your future. I like positive personal statements; I want to feel good - at least by the end - after reading someone's statement.

I concur 100% with UVA's comments, including the notably sub-par syntax and writing ability. You have to write a ton in law school and as a lawyer. This personal statement reflects very poorly upon you in this regard. This is not to say that you are a bad writer, or that you can't write a good statement. (I did see you wrote this yesterday). It does mean, however, that this personal statement is not going to cut it and no admissions officer is going to be excited about bringing you to their school illustrating this level of writing. Furthermore, it is so far from anything that should be used that you should head back to the drawing board.

There are a lot of examples of personal statements out there on the internet; you should read those to gain insight to how different people approach writing their statements. I think that would help you in this endeavor. There is an entire thread "LSL Bank of Personal Statements" (or something close to that title) that has a few personal statements (and I'm sure more once the cycle ends) - read them.

For nearly all of us that have applied to law school, we have written many versions. Some have wound up in the trash bin inevitably. Most of the time, people write many drafts of the same personal statement in effort to refine it, make it better, to bring forth the message and theme one wants to communicate, etc. A good personal statement takes a lot of time and dedication. It should be taken very seriously and it should be expected to be a difficult process that can be frustrating sometimes (or often). Take the advice offered in this thread to heart, for everyone here (except for one individual from above) is genuinely trying to help you and save you from bad outcomes had you submitted anything close to the personal statement you have provided here. Don't give up. Try again, you will get it eventually!
Last edited by NukinFutz on Mon Mar 26, 2018 7:16 am, edited 4 times in total.

ajordan
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Re: My new personal statement

Post by ajordan » Sun Mar 25, 2018 12:19 pm

Maybe try to come at this a different way. Think about a final thoughts/emotions loop you want the reader to experience after they read your statement. Then ask yourself about times in your life you have mirrored that state of mind. Ask yourself what happened, internal or external, to produce that state. Then do a bit of free writing on times in your life where you've performed actions that mimicked those with which you've previously identified.

That's probably going to get you closer to writing something that somebody else is actually going to want to read. Until you have some real substance, however, no amount of editing is going to help.

Whodareswins
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Re: My new personal statement

Post by Whodareswins » Sun Mar 25, 2018 10:31 pm

This comes off as defensive, which is problematic. You want to showcase your strengths instead of apologizing for and explaining your GPA. The overall tone is one of pity rather than purpose. I suggest framing a stronger narrative about your career goals instead of focusing on your hardships as much.

Feel free to PM me an updated copy if you'd like feedback or editing.

Good luck with your cycle!

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