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English and Criminology and Law Personal Statement

'The lawyer's greatest weapon is clarity and its whetstone is succinctness.' - Judge Prettyman.

From an early age, I realised the importance of written and spoken word and how harnessing this ability could grant its wielder power in everyday verbal interaction to presenting oneself to prestigious universities for further acquisition of valuable knowledge to making a contribution to the society. Encouraged by Judge Prettyman's wise counsel, I aim to fulfil my ambition of becoming a criminal justice barrister.

I developed a keen interest in Criminology through classic literature such as Harper Lee's 'To Kill A Mockingbird', Berlin and Dyer's 'The Law Machine' and as well as modern fiction pieces by Jodi Picoult. A few years ago, as part of a P.A.T.H.S. workshop where a group of adolescents called the 'Harmony Ambassadors' within the school is chosen to facilitate community service based on personal merits, I was exposed to the lenient Hong Kong Criminal Justice system when during 2008-2010 an acid thrower was arrested after injuring over 300 citizens but released despite overwhelming evidence against his person. When I followed the court hearings those two years and familiarised myself with the Basic Law of HK, I encountered a completely different aspect to utilise English Language actively. As a natural debater, this made me more appreciative for the application of English with Criminology and Law - especially when it came to use when writing my HKDSE Independent Enquiry Studies for Liberal Studies, which I chose to base on HK's criminal justice system.

As an International student, I enjoyed living in a language-diversified society. I excelled in both First Language English and IGCSE English Literature and was awarded the First Placement in the latter internally. I have also received 'Outstanding Effort' certificates in for my consistent hard work in academics since the 9th grade. As a result, I perused a vivid interest in academic English by joining the YHKCC Junior English Debate Team and the Creative Writing Club. I experienced the power of language and persuasion through acting out convincing arguments and applying creative problem-solving skills and as a student who is hard of hearing it was most rewarding to have overcome the petty barriers of language. I am currently taking A-Level English Language and Literature alongside my HKDSEs and I enjoy the challenge of balancing my workload efficiently throughout the year.

I have held various leadership roles to augment my interpersonal skills - I am the elected Head of the Graduation Book for the Class of 2015 and President of Music Society wherein I am to act as a mediator between the interest of the Student Body and the school and relish my ability to be a negotiator between conflicting parties. I was made Editor for the YHKCC Yearbook, then being promoted to Chief Editor and Team Leader in 11th grade to supplement my English writing and analytical skills since 8th grade. As a hobby, I read extensively on various classical literatures and case files and have taken to shadow various police procedures, district debates and court procedures. I've also worked in various rehabilitation programmes with young offenders as part of my four-year Harmony Ambassadors expedition to better understand the mentality of criminals which fuelled my desire to either cultivate my communication skills or to utilise them to prevent miscarriage of justice.

Criminology, Law and English and Comparative Studies all hold a similarity - the empathy of humanity in its rawest, uninhibited yet its most complex essence. They require passion, impartial and unbiased perception and a strong discipline to be utilised in its most effective form. I believe I possess these qualities and thus hopefully am suitable for a university education based on my fierce desire to learn, serve and participate to my fullest capability for the society.

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Author's Comments

It took me one day to come up with this - 15 hours to be specific. As a natural improviser, it took a lot of hard work to actually plan this ahead but at the same time I don't think I planned this nearly as much as I could have. Yet I realised one very important lesson to be learnt from writing this - never overthink. Always go with the flow. Also, I'm an international student living in HK applying to UK.

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