Diversity Statement Help, (mental health)

(Personal Statement Examples, Advice, Critique, . . . )
mfleviathan2

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Diversity Statement Help, (mental health)

Postby mfleviathan2 » Tue Aug 13, 2019 7:35 pm

Dear TLS Community,

TLDR: debating if I should write a DS. Sexually assaulted last summer, crippling depression, anxiety, diagnosed ptsd. Almost dropped out of school, but explained how I get stronger and finished with a 3.9 GPA graduating Summa cum laude UCLA. I explain the steps I am taking to get better and how the experience changed me. I explain my motivation to advocate for survivors, trauma victims, and reduce the stigmatization of mental healthy. I end by explaining how I can cultivate a happy and collaborative student body in law school by empathizing with those who are struggling the most.

Regards

Please PM to read full essay, any feedback is appreciated.

Halp

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Re: Diversity Statement Help, (mental health)

Postby Halp » Tue Aug 13, 2019 9:24 pm

I don’t know for sure that this counts as diverse. I do think it could potentially be a good personal statement, but I think a lot of people may not view this as diverse (whether justly or not). Others may have a different view, but I see these more as formative experiences and traumas than diversity for law school purposes. My sense is that mental illness isn’t viewed the same as, say, deafness or maybe even being on the Autism spectrum.

PS, glad you’re doing better. That’s some rough stuff. This isn’t meant to be invalidating, just a view in how I think adcomms may view this.

QContinuum

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Re: Diversity Statement Help, (mental health)

Postby QContinuum » Tue Aug 13, 2019 10:14 pm

Halp wrote:I don’t know for sure that this counts as diverse. I do think it could potentially be a good personal statement, but I think a lot of people may not view this as diverse (whether justly or not). Others may have a different view, but I see these more as formative experiences and traumas than diversity for law school purposes. My sense is that mental illness isn’t viewed the same as, say, deafness or maybe even being on the Autism spectrum.

PS, glad you’re doing better. That’s some rough stuff. This isn’t meant to be invalidating, just a view in how I think adcomms may view this.

I'm with Halp here. I'd add that if your mental health issues resulted in some adverse impact on your college transcript (excessive withdrawals one semester? dropping out one semester? things like that), then it could be worth plugging this as a GPA addendum. But other than that, I think this could make for a powerful personal statement. This is a seriously compelling "why law" narrative.

MFLeviathan

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Re: Diversity Statement Help, (mental health)

Postby MFLeviathan » Mon Aug 19, 2019 3:59 am

QContinuum wrote:OP: I saw your report, but wasn't sure what you wanted. I would have PMd you to clarify but you would not have been able to respond to my PM (as you haven't made 5 posts yet). Please submit a new report making clear what you want, or feel free to reply to this post.


Hi sorry for the late reply. I took both your advice and drafted it into a personal statement. I am afraid I am focussing on myself on pitying myself and victimizing myself. Could I Personal Message my very preliminary draft. Any advice would be appreciated in my direction.

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LSATWiz.com

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Re: Diversity Statement Help, (mental health)

Postby LSATWiz.com » Mon Aug 19, 2019 12:38 pm

I don't know if I would highlight mental illness if you don't have to. While it's impressive you overcame that, there may be a stigma attached to it that is not attached to being racially/religiously/socioeconomically diverse or surviving trauma. It's also not diverse in the way law schools think about diversity.

Aside from the URM bump, law schools like having a diverse class with a wide range of experiences - those can include students from disadvantaged backgrounds or who have overcome trauma like sexual assault so as to have classrooms that are as diverse as our society. This doesn't explain to mental illness. It's not like law schools want to have a certain percentage of happy and mellow students, and a certain percentage of depressed and anxious ones. They think about diversity insofar as background, and to some extent life experience, not really about personality and mentally ill vs. mentally healthy.



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