Law School Discussion

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Topics - RedWine

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Oh Canada! / U.S. lawyers practicing in Canada?
« on: March 03, 2007, 06:16:27 PM »
What happens if a one attends law school in the US, and then for reasons unrelated to one's career, ends up living in Canada? Is the degree usable in Canada, or is there an LLM or similar course to be able to practice there?  This isn't something I ever would have thought of before, but due to some recent happenings, there's a slim chance it might be something I'll have to consider.  I'm a US citizen, which probably won't help.  I'm afraid to take on a lot of law school debt if I won't be able to pay it off...but I don't want to automatically choose my cheapest school and sell myself short if the Canada thing doesn't work out or if rank matters equally either way.  Unfortunately, I won't have any idea about whether Canada is on the horizon until well after I've started school...sigh. Help?

2
Financial Aid / Difficulty with Need Access
« on: January 12, 2007, 03:21:23 PM »
I'm having a really hard time with all the 2007 estimates they want filled in.  How am I supposed to know how much financial aid I anticipate receiving next year -- isn't this why I'm filling out the wretched form in the first place? 

Also, the way they have things broken down into academic year and summer categories is confusing because I'm going to be leaving my job about halfway through the summer but I'm not exactly sure when, so I really don't know how much my earnings for June through either mid-July or early August will be.  Yet I have to plug in both my estimated earnings for the year and my estimated summer earnings, even though the summer earnings will be included in the whole amount and I don't know what either of those amounts are.  I won't know how much student health insurance will be until the school tells me, yet they require an estimate of that -- my current insurance through work is awesome and cheap, so I don't know what it's like anywhere else.  And on, and on, and on.

Is anyone else experiencing this, or am I just particularly dumb about this stuff?  This form is horrible and the website doesn't give any real instructions about anything.  Argh.  Help!?!

3
I have a Gateway laptop that I really like, but it just turned 3 years old, and it's big (17.1" widescreen) and weighs a ton.  Well, not that much but enough that I'm not going to want to haul it back and forth to school every day.  Plus, I'm going to need a new battery for it and the battery life was fine but not spectacular even when it was new.  So I'm thinking I'll probably need a new laptop when school starts, but I don't know whether to go with something reliable but relatively inexpensive just to use for school-related stuff with my current one as my main computer for other stuff (photo editing, music, etc), or to get something more advanced for 2x+ the price.

Does anyone have recommendations either way?  I know some people love Macs but they're not for me, so I won't be buying one.

My second question is going to make me sound incredibly stupid, but does anyone have any recommendations for note-taking methods and ways of practicing?  I haven't ever really had to take notes -- in high school I flew through without having to take notes or study, and I was an English major in college so it was mostly writing papers, with the exception of a couple of math/science courses that I didn't really take notes in, either.  So I'm starting to worry about law school, because I know I'm going to have to learn how to do this and it's going to be rough unless I can figure it out pretty quickly.

Thanks!

4
Acceptances / In at Villanova AND Temple!
« on: December 14, 2006, 07:06:34 PM »
Got both acceptances in today's mail.  Also, a full-tuition Beasley Scholarship at Temple for all three years, as long as I stay in the top half of the class.

I'm VERY EXCITED!

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Law School Applications / "Diversity characteristic?"
« on: November 28, 2006, 10:17:30 AM »
Some of the apps I'm (still) working on have a line for "any diversity characteristics you may wish to provide."  In most ways, I'm pretty average -- white, working class background, no huge hardships or anything.  However, I'm wondering whether to put my status as the first in my family to graduate college and the first to apply to any sort of graduate/professional school.  Is this actually a diversity characteristic?  My parents have a GED and a high school diploma, and while my grandmother did go to college, she dropped out after a year to get married.  One aunt has a college degree, as well as a cousin, but I'm not sure whether they count for this.

I don't want to come across as whiny, and I didn't have to overcome any special hurdles in order to go to college, but it actually is a big deal in my family that I'm going to law school.  Thoughts?

6
Law School Applications / Credits Earned...
« on: November 13, 2006, 12:16:23 PM »
My undergrad institution calculates credits differently than just about everyone else.  So the credits I earned on my transcript and the credits LSAC calculates for me on my LSDAS summary are completely different.  Also, I have some AP credits floating around on there, which are technically credits I earned, but not by going to class at that particular institution.  I have no idea what to put when apps ask for "credits earned."  I've just plugged in what LSDAS has put on their summary, since that's the most standardized version, but has anyone else encountered this?  If so, what did you do?

7
Recommendations / Gentle reminder?
« on: October 26, 2006, 11:15:28 AM »
My boss submitted her LOR for me weeks ago, but neither of the profs I've asked have sent anything yet.  Admittedly, it's partially my fault for not giving a specific deadline when I asked them -- I just said that I'd be applying in November so I'd need them by then.  Well, November is almost here and nothing.  How do I gently remind them without seeming too pushy?  Email them and say something like "I just wanted to check with you to make sure you don't need anything else from me for the LOR, please let me know if you do?"  I dearly love both of these women but I know one of them is notorious for taking as long as possible (which is why I asked her in early August!) and the other is now retired.

I know they'll both write me terrific letters, but how do I get them to actually move on it?  I want to submit my apps!

8
Personal Statement / I feel like a boring person...
« on: October 13, 2006, 01:50:13 PM »
Seriously, I can't think of anything particularly interesting that's ever happened to me.  White, middle-class, rural, relatively sheltered upbringing with no adversity or obstacles to overcome.  Very good but not exceptional student at a Seven Sisters college (one of the ones that's still all-women), involved in lots of activities but nothing really stands out in my mind.  I've been out for two years, working in fundraising for an amazing cultural organization, and want to do trust and estate work (eventually transitioning back into nonprofits to do Planned Giving, but probably not for awhile).

I wrote a personal statement about how I was interested in law all my life but never really knew what I wanted to do with it until I started working and learned about Planned Giving, but even though it's the most honest thing I could write, it just seems so dull.  Especially after reading some of the other posts on here.  Does anyone else feel this way?  And if you've felt this way, how did you manage to spice yourself up in your PS?

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Where should I go next fall? / Help?
« on: October 11, 2006, 01:53:41 AM »
I need to know whether I'm really selling myself short with my law school applications.  I have been out of college for a couple years and have built a life in Philly.  My SO is here and will be forever, pretty much, because of his job.  He's about to buy a house in the next few months.  My GPA is a 3.55 and I'll have my LSAT score in a few days, but since I scored in the high 160s - mid 170s on all my practice tests, I'm hoping it'll fall in that range.  Money is definitely an issue, since I'm paying on undergrad loans and my current job barely pays enough for me to feed, clothe, and shelter myself all at the same time.

I've really been set on the Philly schools - definitely Temple and Villanova, possibly Penn if my LSAT score comes in high, and I might apply to Drexel even though it's not accredited yet because of the co-op program.  I'll almost definitely be in this area for a long time.

Anything in NYC is not an option because I HATE the city and couldn't bring myself to be there for the better part of three years.  But should I consider some of the DC schools?  I really love DC, even though it's a little far away, but I think we'd survive.  I just don't know if I could bring myself to choose a DC school over a Philly one (if I had the option) and it seems silly to throw away money needlessly on application fees.  But I think my GPA and hopefully LSAT score could get me into a few "better" schools than Temple/Villanova, so I'd feel kind of guilty for not applying to a wider range.

I want to specialize in trusts and estates, if that makes any difference.

Any advice?  I'm sure I'll have a better idea of what to do after I get my LSAT score, but any outside perspectives are much appreciated!

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