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Topics - wjo9522

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Minority and Non-Traditional Law Students / Summer Income
« on: August 08, 2012, 06:00:03 PM »
Ladies and Gentlemen:

My law school journey hinges upon an ability to support my family (of six) while attending.  My spouse is a schoolteacher and I will have a decent military pension coming in, but our recent stab at a budget has indicated that health insurance and living expenses will consume a great deal of our assets.  Tuition is free to me under the Illinois Veteran's Grant (in any state funded IL target is UIUC).

I understand that 1Ls are not allowed to work---nor should they, I suppose.  Can someone advise me on what a 1L/2L might expect to earn (if anything) during his or summer internship experience? 

I look forward to the discussion.  Thanks.


Minority and Non-Traditional Law Students / In a holding pattern...
« on: December 01, 2011, 06:57:34 AM »
Ladies and Gentlemen:

Background: I have served 18+ years in the US Marine Corps and was recently selected for one more promotion.  I can retire with a decent pension in two years, but for pay purposes, I'm sticking it out to the 22-year mark.  The next four years will definitely require me to move the family to the Mojave Desert of California, where I will leave them while while I deploy back to Afghanistan (for my fourth combat deployment).  You can probably imagine that the thrill and excitement of the job don't appeal to me as much as they used to; the writing is on the wall that it will soon be time to retire.  Nowadays, I find myself reading about, talking about, and researching my law school prospects.  Thanks to Thane Messinger, I now understand where I am going and how I will get there.   

Knowing what I do now, I'd hate to 'waste' the next four years twiddling my thumbs just waiting for that retirement date.  With this in mind, I looked into a couple of MA (Distance ED) programs, which I might be able to complete prior to my USMC--LS transition.  The one which stands out to me is the Legal Studies M.A. from University of Illinois, Springfield.  As an Illinois resident/veteran, all my tuition and fees for a state-funded university are waived.  So, my next 120 S/H of school are essentially FREE...including LS (if I go to one of the state-funded LS in Illinois).  UIUC is my target LS.

I realize that the UG GPA/LSAT are the most important admissions factors and I believe that my bases are covered there.  What I am wondering is if this or any type of MA program worth the effort in the long run (such as in LS/or in the career itself); or should I be focused elsewhere?  Recommendations?

Minority and Non-Traditional Law Students / White (non-hispanic) URM?
« on: April 21, 2011, 05:59:21 AM »
If diversity is not solely based upon skin color, ethnicity or gender identity, then what merit would a white, non-hispanic male have in claiming URM status?  According to LSAC, "We use the term diversity broadly to include all aspects of human differences, including but not limited to socioeconomic status, race, ethnicity, language, nationality, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, religion, geography, disability, and age."

I consider myself to be a socioeconomically disadvantaged caucasian male who is the first family member in generations to graduate high school, let alone college, despite having perservered through poverty, homelessness, domestic abuse, parental drug abuse, and child neglect. 

I know where to look in the dictionary to find sympathy, and that is not the premise of my post.  What I'm looking for is any words of wisdom from other LSD contributors who may know of someone who had similar experiences and was succesful/unsuccessful in claiming URM status.  Thanks.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

I am working on a short term plan which is based on my retirement from the Marine Corps in late 2015.  I'll have 22 years of service at that point and look forward to drawing a small pension from Uncle Sam.  I'll be 40 years old in December 2015, but I think that is a great time to begin a new career in law.  Thanks to the dialogue of all of those nontraditional students who have gone before me, I have no fear in taking on this challenge. 

Just a couple questions:

1.  Since I have a few years to go before I become a 1L, what kinds of publications or courses should I be focused on now?  My undergrad was Criminology and Criminal Justice,  but I can see myself continuing to serve in public interest or environmental law. 

2.  Can someone recommend a Masters program or course of study that would give me a good foundation for law school? 

3.  If I retire in December and the 1L program does not begin until August, what are some options to gain legal experience in the "off time"? 

4.  I qualify for the Illinois Veteran's Grant for 120 SH of free tuition in any Illinois State funded university.  Add in the monthly GI Bill Benefit and I should be looking at leaving Law School with zero school debt.  (Dave Ramsey would love that.)  Currently looking at SIUC, U of I, then NIU.  I don't care about tiers and rankings at this point, just looking for the best quality of life for my family and the most indepth clinical experience.  Any ideas from the group on personal experiences at each university?   

5.  How is the job outlook for a 44 year old law grad with military service?  I'm not looking for special entitlements, but GPA and class standing aside, does that service count for anything?

Okay, so I have asked more than a few questions and I will appreciate any response provided.  Thank you for your time and assistance.



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