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Author Topic: Korean Adoptee in the American South  (Read 4451 times)

MotownSaint

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Korean Adoptee in the American South
« on: March 09, 2006, 12:58:53 AM »
Hi guys,

I've been reading around and it seems that Asian Americans are not considered URM's at top ranked schools.  That being said, I do think that I have reason to include a diversity statement, but I was wondering if it would be OK or even appropriate to mention that I am a Korean adoptee.  Not only that, but I was adopted into a low income household in Arkansas.

Now, Arkansas probably isn't as bad as some places, but there have definitely been some hard times down here.  Honestly, I was the only Asian guy in my entire city, and even though I grew up here people still stare at me every time I walk into a store or a restaurant.  It's more than a little grating.

In any case, I was wondering if this could factor into my admission at all.

Any opinions?

John Galt

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Re: Korean Adoptee in the American South
« Reply #1 on: March 09, 2006, 01:08:22 AM »
sure. There are so many issues surrounding Korean adoptees. Its one thing I've been studying a lot about lately. Anyway, i think it would be an awesome diversity statement.

cayberr

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Re: Korean Adoptee in the American South
« Reply #2 on: March 09, 2006, 01:24:42 AM »
I think it's beyond "okay/appropriate" to mention that you're a Korean adoptee from a low-income family in Arkansas.  Very diverse background.  You should definitely write about it.  If you didn't, it would be a disservice to yourself.  All those factors have clearly made you the person you are today.  Therefore, I don't think you should limit it to your diversity statement, but include it in your personal statement (I can't imagine being able to write about yourself without including it).  You won't be admitted simply for having a unique background, but it's a big plus factor.

blk_reign

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Re: Korean Adoptee in the American South
« Reply #3 on: March 09, 2006, 01:46:12 AM »
co-sign.... write on!

sure. There are so many issues surrounding Korean adoptees. Its one thing I've been studying a lot about lately. Anyway, i think it would be an awesome diversity statement.
We're not accepting this CHANGE UP in the rules. Period. American presidents have been in the bed with organized crime, corporate pilferers, and the like for years. And all u want to put on this man is that his pastor said "Gotdamn America?" Hell, America.U got off pretty damn well, if you ask me...

coffeeismylifesource

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Re: Korean Adoptee in the American South
« Reply #4 on: April 16, 2006, 10:43:11 PM »
Motown--
Hey I feel that I am almost in your exact situation. I am also a Korean adoptee, living in a primarily white town. I currently reside in the midwest, and my household is also definitely not well off. I talked to my pre-law advisor on this issue, and she said that it would be a good personal statement. I felt awkward using something to my advantage that was never under my control or not an accomplishment. I have had my share of weird feelings throughout life from being a minority, like you said, but I never had any world altering, life depressing things happen. But, she reassured me that it would be okay. It is a competitive world. I would love to keep in touch about this if you'd like. Are you appling this fall?


cyberrev

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Re: Korean Adoptee in the American South
« Reply #5 on: April 16, 2006, 11:40:00 PM »
Hi guys,

I've been reading around and it seems that Asian Americans are not considered URM's at top ranked schools.  That being said, I do think that I have reason to include a diversity statement, but I was wondering if it would be OK or even appropriate to mention that I am a Korean adoptee.  Not only that, but I was adopted into a low income household in Arkansas.

Now, Arkansas probably isn't as bad as some places, but there have definitely been some hard times down here.  Honestly, I was the only Asian guy in my entire city, and even though I grew up here people still stare at me every time I walk into a store or a restaurant.  It's more than a little grating.

In any case, I was wondering if this could factor into my admission at all.

Any opinions?


where are you applying?

smiley

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Re: Korean Adoptee in the American South
« Reply #6 on: April 17, 2006, 01:00:49 PM »
Motown and Coffee,

I am also a Korean adoptee, I don't live in exactly the south (Maryland and Pennsylvania most of my life), but I would be happy to give any advice about applying and integrating your adoption experience into your application. I wrote about the experience of being Asian and adopted in largely caucasian communities in my PS and I think it was very successful. I didn't include it in any "diversity" statements because I think the experience spoke for itself and for my identity in the PS. If you plan to write about other topics in the PS, you should definitely include it in a diversity statement if it is something that you feel shapes your world-view, your identity, and perhaps, what you hope to achieve through law. For me, the adoption process is one that I've focused a lot of time on throughout my life, and have devoted a lot of my professional work (I graduated undergrad 8 years ago) to helping communities work with adoption issues.

 I don't know what your #s are or what they will be, but I had a borderline LSAT at the T14 and a good GPA from a state university and I fared rather well this cycle (going to Michigan, in with scholarships at BU, USC, WUSTL, W&M, only rejected from 1 school). I think the adoption portion and many of the things I did to be involved with that community made my application stand out.

plaintext

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Re: Korean Adoptee in the American South
« Reply #7 on: April 17, 2006, 01:50:04 PM »
From my experience, I don't believe you'll receive URM status, but will receive some soft-factor consideration.  As others stated, it'll help in  tie-breaker/borderline situations, but won't override the numbers game.

In my PS I mentioned it briefly, but since I'm an older applicant with a family, I focused on work and more significant life experiences, which I felt provided stronger diversity elements... however, I got rejected/waitlisted at the 2 schools I applied to, so hopefully my case provides the limits of the boost ;) (LSAT around the 25%)

but it's certainly valid for a PS or a diversity statement... just keep it positive.

smiley

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Re: Korean Adoptee in the American South
« Reply #8 on: April 17, 2006, 02:55:36 PM »
From my experience, I don't believe you'll receive URM status, but will receive some soft-factor consideration.  As others stated, it'll help in  tie-breaker/borderline situations, but won't override the numbers game.

In my PS I mentioned it briefly, but since I'm an older applicant with a family, I focused on work and more significant life experiences, which I felt provided stronger diversity elements... however, I got rejected/waitlisted at the 2 schools I applied to, so hopefully my case provides the limits of the boost ;) (LSAT around the 25%)

but it's certainly valid for a PS or a diversity statement... just keep it positive.


Sorry to hear that, plaintext.

I agree that I don't think it gave me any significant URM boost, just probably helped in the soft factors like you said. I also agree to keep it positive, and authentic. For you, it seems like you had a lot of other equally or more significant experiences you wanted to mention. For the OP and others, even though it's a situation that wasn't necessarily in your control, you shouldn't feel like you are "using" it to gain any advantage, as long as you are telling an authentic story that has helped shaped your world-view or the person you are.

MotownSaint

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Re: Korean Adoptee in the American South
« Reply #9 on: May 01, 2006, 01:18:12 AM »
Hey guys, sorry for not getting checking back sooner.

To Coffee and smiley --

Thanks for the encouragement, and it's certainly always uplifting to see that there are people out there with similar backgrounds.  It's rare enough around here, anyway ;)

I'm not precisely sure where I'll be applying, but I plan to do so this coming Fall.  Really, I'm still formulating what kind of law I want to work with after LS.  Naturally, that's going to greatly affect my choices, but I figure I have at least a little time before then.  I'll start seriously researching and selecting programs after Finals this week (and if anyone knows of any resources helpful to such searches, I'd be obliged).

Right now, I've been eyeing BUSL for sure.  Admittedly, that's mostly because I really like Boston ;)

Hehe, and I'll take all the soft-factors I can get.  I just don't want to be somehow sidelined because of over-representation, which may seem paranoid but I just can't help it!

I'd be more than happy to talk to either of you about all of this outside of the boards.  I've spent a large part of my UG studies focusing on issues of race, cultural identity, and such.  I'm also starting my Senior Honors thesis next semester probably dealing with these same issues, perhaps through fiction or self-reflection.  Feel free to e-mail me at jnjshumate@gmail.com.