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Applications: Not the End-All, Tell-All

By Rachel Schwarz

I am currently in the process of applying to law school. While many of the schools I’m interested in gave me the opportunity to write one, two, or even three additional essays in order to gain a better perspective into who I am, I finished my applications unsatisfied.

I am personable, outgoing, and funny. These qualities are, unfortunately, looked down upon in the application world because they indicate a lack of interest in completing the application or attending the school itself. Reading it on paper simply isn’t the same as interacting one on one.

It is frustrating that in applying for college, law school, and the job market, we are consistently judged on paper before we get a chance to show how much a unique personality and energy can contribute to an environment. Only one of twenty schools to which I am applying even offers an interview. I am saddened that despite knowing that I have earned the opportunity to attend any school of my choosing, I will be compared to others… on paper.

This process only lends more credibility to the power of speaking. I get a better sense of who someone is, how they will fit into my life, and what I appreciate about them from personal experiences. So, before I step off my soap box for the time being, I encourage everyone to pick up the phone and call instead of sending an e-mail. Go for a drink as opposed to catching up on iChat. Communication comes in many forms, but the most rewarding – and the most telling – comes in the form of face to face interaction.

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