Law School Discussion

Need critique on personal statement please

Need critique on personal statement please
« on: November 10, 2014, 01:21:52 PM »
Here is a rough draft of my personal statement. Should I stick with this topic?

Growing up with a police officer as a father and a school teacher for a mother meant a life of order and morals.  Being the child of a law enforcer also made me realize the importance of abiding by the laws that were in place whether I agreed with them or not. I always thought that it was strange that my father would confess his hatred for police officers when he was growing up until he finally revealed that he had joined the force in an effort to be the “good cop” in a sea full of corrupt ones that he had witnessed in his poverty stricken neighborhood. However, I could still see a sense of disappointment behind his eyes as the years went by. I could feel the exhaustion and the disappearance of the spirit he once had when discussing his profession. My father had not known that his desire for change had rubbed off onto his little girl.
I spent many years contemplating joining the police academy and picking up where my father had left off. I witnessed all of the things that my father had seen growing up. Countless friends and family had fallen into the justice system. It didn’t take long for me to realize that these injustices, the mass incarceration surrounding me, the crippling schools, and corruption could not be changed in the way my father had thought. I had stood by hopeless as the cousin whom I looked up to was dragged through a visous cycle of incarceration when there was obvious need for rehabilitation and psycholohogical help. His spiral ended with a life sentence. My desire lied in changing the law rather than working alongside it. My father’s hopelessness had come from swimming with the current while I wanted to fight it and change its direction.
While I had not known exactly how I would fulfill my desire, I knew that I had to follow this passion. I knew that I could not live a life that did not give back to the community that made me. No one would ever look at me and see my father’s disappointment behind my eyes. The law had always been of great importance in my household and I fell in love with the thought of enforcing laws that I actually stood for. I also fell in love with research and used research as a guide to help me in my journey.
I realized how much information was at my fingertips that could help me in my journey. As I sat at the desk of the nation’s top public interest law firm, the Southern Legal Counsel, I was bombarded with a list of school boards in my state and the injustices that consumed them. Among this list were the many inner city schools that I and loved ones had attended. Being so close to a team that was there for the sole purpose of fixing the institutions that my father’s heart had held as unfixable stirred a determination in me that public advocacy was my path to change the current.
While I focused on aligning my goals, I soon realized that I was not the only one in my family who felt a desire to pick up where my father had left off. My brother decided to begin a non - profit organization whose mission is to help young athletes in inner cities understand the importance of education and he ultimately plans to open his own after-school program. I assisted my brother as the secretary of the organization and witnessed the many strides that we have taken in such a short amount of time. We have renovated many after school facilities and held summer camps in our community with the partnership of the Miami Dolphins and St. Thomas University to reach our goal. 
   As a college student, I have continued to do what I know how in an effort to fulfill my passion. Knowing that research has always led me into the right path, I decided to conduct an honors thesis on public advocacy so that I could understand what steps are required. I conducted a thesis on a case that occurred in Tulia, Texas where 46 men and women were arrested and given life sentences with no evidence. I looked at the faces of these victims who, if it had not been for public interest lawyers, would have spent their life behind bars. These victim’s faces looked so similar to the faces of my loved ones. Many have unsuccessfully attempted to deter me from my field of choice using monetary gain as an argument. However, throughout my entire life, I have never heard my father complain about his salary but rather his failed attempt at fulfilling his passion. Ideals like these were instilled into my brother and I at a very young age and I believe that law school is my way of these goals come into fruition.

Re: Need critique on personal statement please
« Reply #1 on: November 10, 2014, 06:55:22 PM »
I actually think it is a really good message, and overall very solid. A few things on the first read is you use some unnecessary words occasionally. i.e.

revealed that he had joined the force in an effort to be the “good cop”

get rid of had and say revealed he joined the force in an effort to be the "good cop"

The "had" doesn't add anything. I noticed throughout there are a sentences that have a an unnecessary word or two, and I think if you get rid of them it will read a little better. Overall, the message, story, and passion is really quite good, but I think with a few tweaks it can be great.

If you want to personal message me I can give you my real e-mail and do a redline of the personal statement.

Good luck on your pursuit of a legal education, you sound like the type of person the legal profession could use.