Law School Personal Statement - Ugonna2
Questions:(1) A personal statement is required as part of your application. Your statement should address factors that have been significant in your development and identity, something that may distinguish you from other candidates, or highlights any special achievements or accomplishments. As such, you should feel free to discuss a topic or topics of your choice. Please limit your submission to two pages of double-spaced type.(Penn State)
(2). Attach to your application a personal statement that will give the Committee on Admissions any information you believe relevant to the admissions decision that is not elicited elsewhere in the application. The personal statement is your opportunity to tell us about yourself. You may address your academic or intellectual interests, significant accomplishments or obstacles overcome, personal or professional goals, educational achievements, or any way in which your perspective, viewpoint, or experiences will contribute to the rich diversity of the School of Law community.(U of SC)
All I could hear was screaming on the other end of the phone, I could barely make out the words being spoken. Mrs. O’Neil begged me to speak with Brianna; she had been threating to run away from home because she just couldn’t live with her parents anymore. Her mother called me to complain about Brianna’s behavior and was fearful that if she disciplined her that she would lose custody. I was her guardian ad litem and I had believed that things were starting to improve for Brianna emotionally and mentally.
I was drawn to the Court Appointed Special Advocate program because I believed that I could make a tangible impact on the lives of children who suffered abuse and neglect at the hands of those they were meant to trust the most. Working as a guardian ad litem has I believe prepared me for the rigors of law school. Being a court appointed advocate is deeply personal for me, I realized that passivity wasn’t an option that I would ever be comfortable with. I was raised in Nigeria where corruption ran rampant amid religious ethnic and tribal divisions. As it often is the children suffered most, children were often kidnapped, and used for all manners of abuse, I was witness to many of those abuses and I also suffered from it.
Brianna was my first case suffering from emotional disturbance and a learning disability that kept her back at the fifth grade at the age of thirteen. She came into care because of her parents’ drug addiction and neglect; she was understandably untrusting. I was determined to be an active voice on her behalf, seeing her reminded me of many of the children back in Nigeria who needed a representative who fought for them and did everything in their power to ensure their safety. That memory has been the most important motivating factor in my life; I identified with Brianna I wanted to help her, but I couldn’t do it alone, not without her help.
It took a month and a half to gain her trust and to reassure her that I had her best interest at heart; Brianna had big dreams of becoming a doctor and playing basketball for her school. I focused on stabilizing her home life, taking her mother out the equation was the first step; due to her habitual theft of her daughter’s social security checks and mental instability. Working with her father to keep on track with his drug rehab and parental classes, which seemed to calm down the situation, until that day I received a call from her mother. Through representing her I learned the importance of clearly stating what needed to be accomplished to ensure her safety and how to work with the individuals that painstakingly work to prevent child abuse and neglect.
Attending law school would strengthen the skills that I have acquired as a guardian, alongside with the experiences of my youth has given me a great insight into the needs of children’s rights. Upon receiving my degree I hope to go work with children’s rights organizations and return to Nigeria to improve the lives of thousands children whose lives have be clouded by violence and uncertain futures.
Become a Lawyer comments:
Ok, now that you have provided the specific questions from your respective law schools we can sharpen your essay.
First, delete the first paragraph as it does not contribute anything to the essay.
The first paragraph of your essay has to ANSWER THE QUESTION AT HAND. Both of the questions at hand concern distinguishing yourself from other law school candidates. I suggest you organize the essay on some variant of the below:
"I believe that my childhood experiences in Nigeria, subsequent work as a guardian ad litem with the court appointed special advocate program and my professional goal to continue to pursue advocacy on behalf of children distinguishes me from other law school candidates."
Paragraph #2 = Discuss Nigeria and childhood and the things you witnessed (don't get too graphic).
Paragraph #3 = Discuss your work as a guardian ad litem.
Paragraph #4 = Discuss your passion to continue to advocate on behalf of children.
Conclusion: "In conclusion, my experience and passion in life have prepared me as a viable candidate for admittance to your law school program and I will strive to contribute both in the classroom as a student, and further contribute as an alumni of your school to the community at large."
Also, you have to ask an English major or another high quality writer to critique your grammar... some sentences do not have the proper tense, and you should not end a sentence with "it"… keep revising and make the language I suggested “your own”.
I hope this gets you moving on the right track!