Law School Discussion

what should i write about


what should i write about
« on: May 06, 2001, 02:53:56 PM »
hi everyone,

i'm a junior at james madison university in virginia.  i'm just getting started on my law school applications and i'm starting to think about what i'm goign to write for my personal statement.  my only problem is, i really haven't done anything that extraordinary or law related.  i've heard that it's not good just to talk about why you want to be a lawyer.  does anyone have any advice?

Re: what should i write about
« Reply #1 on: August 14, 2001, 11:58:27 AM »
I know you wrote this in May but maybe you will check this again. Anyway I am having a similar problem. I was trying to think of an experience in my life that would reveal the kind of person I am without just coming out and saying I am this and I have done that and I want to do this etc.

Any suggestions PLEASE!!!
Even just suggestions for brainstorming are welcome

(Senior at Southern Illinois University, Edwardsville)

harvard 1L

Re: what should i write about
« Reply #2 on: September 07, 2001, 09:15:51 AM »
the obvious answer here is to write about yourself.  this is your opportunity to tell admission committees what makes you special.  you have several options:

1. write about an experience or activity (hopefully not law-related) that reveals your best qualities.  for example, i wrote about the characteristics that i developed through musical studies--self-motivation, perseverance, leadership and teamwork (through chamber music).  as long as the characteristics that you choose are broad enough, it will be easy for the law school to see how that could make you a good law student and, eventually, a good lawyer.

2. if you've been out of school for a while, or if you have a non-traditional route to law school, you may want to take a chronological route to explain why you want to go to law school now...  what are (were) you doing?  why don't you want to do it anymore?  what made you consider law school?  why do you think that you'll like practicing law more than what you were doing?

3. write about overcoming some type of obstacle--physical disability, family problems, anything--and how that difficulty changed your life.  a good friend of mine wrote about food allergies.  she was so allergic to wheat products (everything made with flour) that she would go into respiratory distress.  her story is one from painful reality to triumph (as she identified her allergy, then learned to live with it).  i don't think that she ever mentioned law anywhere in her essay, but her strengths (optimism, creativity, etc.) were highlighted without sounding stuffy or self-righteous.

4. write about the factors that have shaped you into the person you are today, a person wanting to pursue law as a career.  you could merge themes of family, education, extra-curriculars, honors, and work experience into this type of general personal statement.

5. write whatever you want... there really aren't any rules for this, as long as it's not too long.  most schools want a 2-page double-spaced document, so you'll probably have to do some serious editing.  get something on paper first, though, and take your time.

if, at some point, you'd like me to look over your current draft, i'd be happy to do so.  just e-mail me at  i'll respond as i have time.


me too!
« Reply #3 on: September 10, 2001, 11:13:23 AM »
Hey!  I'm right outside of Philly!  Are you applying locally?  

I just found this site; I usually am found perusing the Princeton Review discussion boards, but this seems like a helpful site. Needs more traffic, though, to liven it up some...


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Re: what should i write about
« Reply #4 on: September 10, 2001, 12:06:54 PM »
Here's a tip that an admissions officer gave me. Paraphrased, of course.

The person holding your essay isn't reading it with a big red pen going, "Why didn't she say this? Why didn't she say that? Where's the explanation for this? Why didn't she cure aids?" Instead, we're just reading it to get a sense of you as a person. Don't write "I want to go to law school because . . ." but tell us what led you to where you are.

Heh, this may not help at all, but I hope it does . . . a little? 8) Good Luck!


Re: what should i write about
« Reply #5 on: June 09, 2002, 10:37:05 AM »
Most of the posters have provided excellent input.  But to put my advice in a nutshell:  Write about what's most important to you and distinctive about you.

Good luck!

Linda Abraham


Re: what should i write about
« Reply #6 on: July 12, 2002, 07:39:54 AM »
Have you checked out the website  You can look through their many successful application essays for free.  If you decide to use their editing service, you'll need to pay a fee though.  But with the 10% discount coupon code ("1018119302"), the price is actually quite reasonable, plus their editing expertise is top-notch.  

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Dustin Farahnak

Re: what should i write about
« Reply #7 on: April 29, 2003, 02:37:05 PM »
great thomas, thanks for the commercial, i know of people who used essay edge, paid a fortune, and got nothing in return.  here's a tip friends, if you are such a poor writer that you need to pay hundreds for someone to write about you, or you don't feel like you are the most qualified to be your own personal statement author, don't go to law school.  being an attorney means having one skill first: the ability to write.  it is obvious when you submit a canned resume or essay, and people who are great authors can find better work.  do it yourself, and get your school or freinds to look it over...

sorry if i offended anyone, but getting into a law school that meant to screen out non-writers when you can't write is an expensive exercise in mediocrity >:(


Re: what should i write about
« Reply #8 on: May 30, 2003, 06:34:30 AM »
I completely agree. There's nothing wrong with having someone proofread your essay, but you don't need a paid service for this. If you cannot write well enough to get into law school (given appropriate credentials), then it may well be worth considering other options. As far as "canned" essays go, you must also consider whether you feel ethically comfortable representing that product as your own work. I certainly wouldn't.


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Re: what should i write about
« Reply #9 on: July 26, 2003, 05:32:14 PM »
A guy actually had the nerve to post on Craigslist, looking for someone to write his law school personal statement. As he put it he was just too busy with work and lazy to write the paper. You've got to be foolish to solicit writers on the web for a personal statement. That person has probably written the same or similar paper for others!  ::)