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Messages - flhelms

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Law School Admissions / letters of recommendation
« on: November 12, 2014, 09:24:44 AM »
Hello all,
I'm having trouble with letters of recommendation. I've been out of undergrad for about 6 years so its been difficult. I work in customer service and I got my boss to write one of them but most of the schools I am planning on applying to require two. I've asked a former supervisor/training class teacher but I can't get her to return my emails anymore. Not sure if my retail jobs supervisors would do. Family friend won't work. I thought about asking others at my previous job. Will co-workers suffice or does it have to be a supervisor? I also thought about getting in touch with some of my college professors or perhaps my counselor (therapist). But I don't know if they would remember me. I thought about taking a class at a local community college just to get a professor's recommendation. Even though I am planning on retaking the LSAT in June and not planning on applying until next fall, I am stressing out about these letters of recommendation. I wanted to know if anyone had any advice on getting them.

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Studying for the LSAT / Re: SEPT 27 LSAT
« on: September 30, 2014, 03:06:09 PM »
Thank you for your kind words. I'm feeling pretty confident just on the fact I took the LSAT. I can't believe its over and I don't have to study right now. I think all I can do now is wait to get the score back and make a decision from there about my next move. Attending a forum may be a good idea, the next one and the closest one to me is in Atlanta in November (I'm outside of Charlotte, NC). The benefit there is I have friends in Atlanta I could stay with so no hotel costs but I know they are busy. Also, they are full of themselves. Yeah, there's the cost of the train ride or a tank of gas but if it saves me a lot of money on applications it could be worth it. It's something to think about. Worst case scenario, I'll wait until next year. Right now though, I need to focus on getting a job so I can get the hold removed from my LSAC account so I can get my score. But once again thank you for your kind words.

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Studying for the LSAT / Re: SEPT 27 LSAT
« on: September 29, 2014, 11:02:53 AM »
So, I took the LSAT on Saturday and I have no plans to cancel my score. LR and RC seemed to be easier than expected but LG killed me. It was exhausting but I did it. I had other reasons for this as well but I was awake for 21 hours straight right before the LSAT, during, and after. I expect my score to be 150-155. As a precursor to today's post, I am very stubborn. I don't see myself as putting off life by planning to start law school in Fall 2016 as opposed to Fall 2015. I see myself as being better prepared and taking the necessary steps to achieve my goal.

Law school has been an option in my head for a long time but I've never put serious thought into it. Earlier this year I had a dream I attended law school and I had some other things telling me law school was the answer. And when I lost my job law school was my option to start over. And you are right there is no guarantee I won't lose my job next June or I won't have some other extenuating circumstance. But I feel if I prepare better on LG alone, I will get a better score the second time I take the LSAT. As you said, my score will allow me to get in and start somewhere but I am not ready. I need to take the steps to get there. 

I visited UNC-School of Law Friday and I mentioned that my LSAT score was going to be bad. The tour guide, who was a 3L, said her score was on the lower end and that she wrote addendums. And I definitely plan on writing one for my GPA. I had a major depression one semester and against the advice I received I did not drop any classes. My aunt taught me to never quit and be strong in hard times. But because I didn't quit, my GPA suffered. I think I had a 1.8 that semester. Anyway, that was a tangent but point being I could write an addendum for a lower LSAT score as well. While on the topic of my visit to Carolina Law, I spoke with a fellow visitor about putting off law school for another year and told him I was trying to get more financially ready. He said "when will that ever happen?" And he's right to an extent. I will never be fully financially ready but I can be more ready than I am now. And the same goes for the LSAT I think I will never be fully ready but I can feel  and be more ready than I felt Saturday. Honestly, if its on the high end of my expected score range of 150-155 I may not retake it. But I will never know if I can't get in a better financial situation. I'm broke right now, I have nothing in savings. I was unexpectedly denied a fee waiver. My account is on hold right now because I registered when I thought the fee waiver would be approved and I will never be able to get my score if I don't get a job and pay the fees. I'm worried about $170 test fee because I have nothing right now.

I went on a few dates with this guy. He talked a lot about making a life plan and sticking to it. And seeing everything as a step to get to an ultimate goal. Even though that's I think part of the reason he's 39 and single, he's got a good point. I need to take the necessary steps to get to my goal of going to law school. And I cannot do them all in less than a year. And taking a year another year is one of those steps in order to complete all the little steps.  I cannot feasibly do everything I need to do to start in 2015. But starting in 2016, I can maybe not complete every little step but I can more realistic do what I need to do.

My point is I took the LSAT and I am proud of myself that I did it. I've had days when I can barely get out of bed. And I took the LSAT. And I'm proud regardless of whether I got a 120 or a 180, both of which are unlikely. I think all I can do now is get a job so I can pay the fees. Get my score and I will make a decision from there on whether to retake it. But I think regardless I am going to have to take a year to save up some money to prepare for law school. I have a lot of cost/fees with preparing for law school (test fees, CAS fee, my computer is on its last days, application fees, etc.) Plus, I got into some trouble and my credit cards are on a debt management program which I will complete in spring 2016 just keeping the payments the same so that will be alleviated by time I start school. Finances are a big concern for me right now. And I need it to be better for entering law school. I am definitely considering the cost of law school. But I know I will qualify for loans and need based grants, etc. I am stubborn, driven, and I do not give up. So, I am going to law school, I just have to be a bit realistic.

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Studying for the LSAT / Re: SEPT 27 LSAT
« on: September 23, 2014, 08:47:52 PM »
I really do not want to put the LSAT off waiting my life to be in the right place. If I had things my way, I would be preparing to ace this test and start law school next fall. But that's unlikely to happen. When I lost my job in May I knew the LSAT and law school was what I wanted to do to start over. I'm ready to get life moving. But my finances from losing my job are a complete wreck. So, its more that I am putting off law school for financial and vocational reasons. As you said, I know there are a number of law schools I could get into with my GPA and LSAT score. I feel its more that I need time to prepare for law school. And while I'm at it why not try the LSAT again and try really hard to do better. Because I know I can do better and I want this. I was asked a couple weeks ago if I thought law school was for me and I've done some soul searching and it is what is right for me.

I feel like this time around even though I dedicated a lot of time to prep work it perhaps wasn't the right method or that I rushed through the material without having a through understanding or just simply did not do enough because I didn't take it seriously enough. Admittedly, it is my strong point throughout my prep work, but I had to completely neglect preparing for reading comprehension from running out of time. Maybe I was distracted by being broke and unemployed which left me feeling pretty depressed through this process. I see this week's LSAT as a hurdle to jump and in a way prep for the next one. I've put a lot of effort into this. I'm not chickening out and I'm not going to cancel the score. I'm not a quitter. The fees are an issue as well between being unemployed and denied a fee waiver. But I can get in somewhere if I really wanted to.  I just don't feel ready to go to law school. I feel like a poor performance will be motivation to do better next time. I see myself accepting the challenge and succeeding. The last Prep Test I took I scored a 145. I scored a 151 on another Prep Test. I know I can do so much better.

I've accepted the reality of the LSAT. I'm probably not going to score as well as I'd like and I'd like to retake it in June 2015 to give myself time to prepare thoroughly and to also get more prepared for attending law school in 2016. And retake it to get a better score. I'm right now scoring in the 145-151 range on Prep Tests I would like to get in the 160-165 range which is a lot but I think possible based off my current issues and how much improvement I've made in a short time. The 141 to 151 jump was between one prep test.

I know I'm probably not smart enough nor do I want to go somewhere like Harvard. But I don't want to go to a school that accepts 145 LSAT 3.0 GPA either. I'm probably rambling but I hope I've made my point clear. I'm not putting off the LSAT. I've worked too hard. I'm going to take it Saturday and I may just surprise myself. But thinking logically and usually probability I don't think I will do well enough to satisfy myself. And the test will be just another prep test and in a way the diagnostic for taking the big one in June 2015. Also, my finances are horrible right now. So, I am putting off law school for another year. And to help prepare me for the June 2015 LSAT I am thinking I will take a 7sage course to keep me on track with my prep instead of using self-study.

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Studying for the LSAT / SEPT 27 LSAT
« on: September 22, 2014, 09:35:35 PM »
Hello,
I am taking the LSAT on Saturday September 27. If I perform similar to how I've been doing on PrepTests, I will be lucky if I get a 150. And with a less than stellar college transcript that's not good (GPA around 3.0).  My diagnostic was a 141 I think if that. I've read nearly two-thirds of the PowerScore Bibles. And a little less than half of The LSAT Trainer. I've been using 7 Sage videos some for LG prep and explanations. I ran out of time to study for reading comprehension and I am still not a giving a strong performance in any of the other sections. Time and guessing a lot being my biggest downfall. But there are major question types in LR that I am just not getting. PowerScore seemed to me to be more aligned to the way I think. But it is very detailed and at times too much information.

I feel I will more than likely retake the test. Due to a dire financial situation, I will probably wait until June to retake it. And I will start law school in 2016. I'm not a morning person anyway. Being in school won't be an issue with finding time to study. I was thinking of taking an LSAT prep course. Right now I am deciding in between taking a PowerScore course or a 7 Sage course.  PowerScore is significantly more expensive but may be more tailored to my learning style with detail and in person teaching. Regardless, cost may have to be the deciding factor. However, 7 Sage has been excellent prep especially for help on LG. And seems to be very visual which is also suited to my learning style. So I wanted to ask if anyone had any experience with either course and any pros and cons I may not be considering.

Thank You.

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Studying for the LSAT / LSAT prep and family
« on: August 02, 2014, 09:46:05 AM »
Hello,
I am planning on taking the LSAT on September 27 but I am having a big problem with preparing for the test. Let me give some background first, I am not in school. I graduated from undergrad in 2010. I am currently unemployed  and I live with my family (mom, dad, brother, niece, puppy, cat). My niece is 5 and needs a lot of attention. Mom works at home for the family business. So most days it's just me, mom, and my niece. Mom seems to think since I am unemployed I have no responsibilities and nothing to take care of on my own. My niece doesn't understand privacy and silence. So between my mom not realizing the importance of the LSAT and having to be with my niece a lot it's been difficult to prepare for the LSAT.  I've tried explaining to my family how important the LSAT is with little success. I've tried compromising by saying I need to study a few hours a day everyday. That attempt was better than trying to explain but it still didn't go very well. I get made to feel guilty if I study all day and by time I get those few hours to study I am exhausted. I wanted to know if anyone had any suggestions on how to deal with this or knew of any articles/literature I can give my family. Thanks.   

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Law School Admissions / Re: Just Getting Started
« on: May 29, 2014, 12:14:29 PM »
Thank you so much for providing such kind and encouraging words. Some of my family did not have encouraging words when I told them of my intent to go to law school.

Thank you all for answering my questions. I was starting to get around that depression will not work for a personal statement.
NewlyMinted the idea of writing about history and law is a definite possibility. There are a number of topics that would work better. At this point, I have to get my thoughts organized and focused.

I know I am getting ahead of myself and I need to slow down. I want to be ready or close to ready to apply after I take my LSAT. I'm confident about it, hopefully no overly. I've been doing some practice questions and I am learning where I need to study the most.

Thanks again.


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Law School Admissions / Just Getting Started
« on: May 28, 2014, 11:29:14 AM »
Hello,
Law school has always been something that was tossed around in my head but I finally made the decision to attend law school. I am planning on taking the LSAT in September (I'm reading a lot about it and going to get study books but any study tips would be appreciated) and applying to start in Fall 2015. I received my BA in History from NC State University in 2010. And I have been working this time and had some family issues. But I had some questions.

#1-For undergrad I went to community college for two years where my GPA was at least a 3.5. I don't recall the exact number. And when I transferred to NCSU, my cumulative GPA is 2.56, not including my transfer work. I also took some post-graduate work at the community college but did not complete (thats my second question) and that GPA is I think 3.0 roughly. My GPA at NCSU was greatly affected by a major depression my two worst semesters are the semesters where my depression was the worst. From my research so far on applying for law school, I think I should do an addendum. However, do you think that depression is considered an excuse or a legit illness/disability by admissions representatives? Do you know if they take just my NCSU undergrad work alone of if admissions takes an average of all college work? I have about a 3.0 if they take the average. Regardless I realize this probably disqualifies me from the T14 schools.

#2-I know some schools require a statement on why I didn't complete a legal program. I was enrolled in a Paralegal program but did not complete it. Actually it is part of the reason I decided to go to law school. But the reason I did not complete the program has other circumstances as well. Would it be a good idea to explain these circumstances in an addendum?

#3 I'm starting to brainstorm on my personal statement. To make a long story short, I am thinking about writing about my depression and what I learned from it. I think a lot of it was caused by childhood bullying and there may be some tabula rasa philosophy as well. Is writing about depression taboo or again is it considered just whiny?

I think that is it for now.
Take Care.

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