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How personal should your personal statement be?

I have an idea for a personal statement, but I'm not sure if it's a little too personal. To give you guys a better idea, I would tell the general story with all feelings removed to a stranger. However, the things I'd need to write about (aka feelings) are typically reserved for close friends. What I have in mind covers some of the basics; it shaped my world view and I can directly tie it into why I want to be a lawyer. I don't have any other topic ideas. Thoughts?


  • AlexAlex Alum Member
    23929 karma

    Hard to say without knowing the exact topic. And I know it's obviously very personal judging by the question you're asking. There's really not one objective answer, unfortunately. Personal statements by their nature are supposed to be personal. But I would think certain topics may risk crossing a line of being too personal.

  • samantha.ashley92samantha.ashley92 Alum Member
    1777 karma

    @"Alex Divine" it’s not too bad haha. I’ll fill you in with my response to your PM. :)

  • goingfor99thgoingfor99th Free Trial Member
    edited November 2017 3072 karma

    If your story is emotional, it's okay for it to be a touch emotional. I think above all, though, you should focus on making an argument for yourself. If your story is personal and you think it shows schools why you will succeed at law school, show them that. Don't expose yourself too much, but don't hide either.

    My two cents.

  • samantha.ashley92samantha.ashley92 Alum Member
    1777 karma

    @goingfor99th thank you. I was in a mass violence situation that wound up all over the news. It really makes me want to be a prosecutor, so I think it is relevant enough to talk about.

  • marcosmcqueenmarcosmcqueen Member
    241 karma

    I think it has potential, but make sure that you stay away from the generic ideas such as "it really made me appreciate every day" or "suddenly I understood that any day could be my last".
    Make sure you're able to set up the you "before" and contrast it with the you "after", otherwise there's no story arc. I'd also make sure that your aspiration to be a prosecutor is about more than the fact that you're angry. Did you have interactions with the prosecutors? Did those interactions have a particular impact on you? Did they ask you something or speak to you in a manner that made you feel much better or much worse about the situation?
    In short, make sure that it's more than "I was in this nasty situation and now I want to throw suckers behind bars."

  • samantha.ashley92samantha.ashley92 Alum Member
    1777 karma

    @marcosmcqueen I think it’s more about justice than revenge. I’m glad you pointed that out though. Thanks for all of that!

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