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Messages - Groundhog

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Distance Education Law Schools / Re: Touro College vs. Novus
« on: October 02, 2014, 02:58:24 PM »
Hmm, what action would you recommend the state bars take? The State Bar of California is not an accreditation or business licensing agency so they can't order a business to shut down. All they can do is "inform you that Novus Law School does not have degree-granting authority from any recognized U.S. educational entity," as you noted in the other thread (

Distance Education Law Schools / Re: Touro College vs. Novus
« on: October 02, 2014, 02:12:15 PM »
The complaint said a Novus grad launched a frivolous lawsuit against Touro, when Touro would not honor their bogus degree.  So Touro had to pay legal fees because Novus was falsely telling grads they had a "foreign law degree" and all they had to do is enroll for a LLM to qualify for the bar.

Clearly, this demonstrates the ABA needs to approve more schools!

Studying for the LSAT / Re: LSAT Abroad
« on: October 02, 2014, 02:11:46 AM »
Out of curiosity to OP, why the Master's in Peace and Conflict Management Studies? What jobs does this prepare you for without a law degree? What attorney positions, international or domestic, does this help you get?

Very few attorneys practice international law. Most of that would be handled by Ambassadors and political appointees as matters of foreign policy or the military. Are you interested in a position in the State department? Would you rather be an attorney or the kinds of jobs that graduates of the Master's degree you seek receive, perhaps a Foreign Service Officer?

While I realize this may assume a lot, your original post comes off as you wanting to be convinced that a Master's degree can help with law school admissions or make up for GPA points, but neither is particularly the case. If that is the reason why you are getting a Master's degree, STOP. If you want to be an attorney, practicing real law, then I would also say STOP. The Master's degree isn't worth the time and money. If you want to join the foreign service or something that is more on the foreign policy side, I would consider alternatives to law school.

Studying for the LSAT / Re: LSAT Abroad
« on: October 01, 2014, 06:32:34 PM »
Lastly, I have heard things like an MA, MS, MBA, etc. are not helpful for getting into law school. I find this to be a silly conclusion when you look at certain scenarios. Student A holds a 3.9 GPA and 170 LSAT score, but has no graduate studies, nor have they ever lived outside of the general area which they were raised. Student B holds a 3.9 GPA, 169 LSAT score, an MA, and has studied in the Pacific Northwest, the South (North Carolina- boondocks land)  and abroad. According to many, the thought proceeds that student A will still be more valuable to the university that both A and B applied to. If it were to come down to only A or only B being accepted, is A really going to win that battle?
Student B is also 22, not that I think that is a very important factor. Obviously, this is all theoretical.

I can't comment on any of the global LSAT administration questions. I imagine the best idea would be to contact LSAC and the testing center directly.

As far as admissions goes, I have a little knowledge, which may not be applicable in all situations. In your example, generally student A and B are never going to be compared directly to each other, except in rare circumstances I'll discuss below. Law schools organize review of applicants a number of ways, but strictly by GPA is not one of them, which is the only way those two candidates are equivalent. They're more likely going to use an index and/or organize by LSAT score. This is because a 3.5 in Basket Weaving from Eastern Middle Central State is only better than a 3.3 in Electrical Engineering from Berkeley for US News purposes. In reality, one is eligible for the patent bar. The only way that Student A and B would be compared together is if they were borderline, either as part of a large group that could go either way, or during a waitlist cycle. During a waitlist cycle the LSAT could be key or irrelevant. If the 170 gets the school's 25th percentile LSAT up or contributes to that, it may be essential. If both are above or below the 25th percentile, it may not even be considered by the school, or it could be determinative. It really depends on what the school is going for at the time.

Most schools will already know whether or not they will admit Candidates A and B based on their numbers. A vast majority of candidates are either accepted or rejected outright, pending a review to make sure no serious criminal convictions or other issues were missed in the acceptance pile and no amazing accomplishments like winning an Olympic medal were missed in the rejection pile. A very small percentage of overall candidates go into the maybe pile, in which candidates can end up accepted, rejected, or waitlisted. As I said above, this is where Candidates A and B could potentially be compared in the same group or even directly if being considered for a waitlist admission.

Now that I've addressed the admissions process generally, I can discuss your question about other graduate degrees. To be honest, most Master's degrees, outside of a technical or hard science field, do not mean much in the legal profession or admissions. It may mean you have the capability to complete graduate work, but if you are admitted to an ABA-accredited school it is already very likely that you have the capacity to succeed in law school and pass a bar exam. I have noticed the JD/MBA combination is a popular route these days.

I did a joint Master's in law school, which I recommend if you can truly get value out of it. I did, but for most attorneys outside of specialized areas of law, they are not that useful. I think the best ones are probably hard sciences, engineering or something that will allow one to take the patent bar, MBA, accounting, tax, or anything finance-related.

Studying for the LSAT / Re: SEPT 27 LSAT
« on: September 30, 2014, 05:38:54 PM »
Attending a forum, if you can do so at minimal cost, is an excellent idea even if you ultimately decide to wait until next year. It is almost the only chance you will have as an applicant to meet admissions committee members and school representatives. Make a list of schools at the forum in which you'd be interested, hopefully a mix of reaches, targets, and safetys if you know your LSAT score by then. Approach them and ask thoughtful questions about their school and programs, not general questions about law school or the application process. If there is an opportunity for a chat, you can introduce yourself and tell them a little about yourself. You can also potentially get fee waivers. It may not give you a shot somewhere you weren't being considered, but demonstrated interest in the school and its programs can make a difference on the border/wait list.

It is good that you have taken the LSAT so now you will have the final piece of objective information you need to consider your future for now. But, if you have to wait until next year, it is not the end of the world. Admissions committee members won't hold it against you. Remember, law school will always be there.

consider military, you can enlist as a paralegal as an officer in JAG even with just undergrad
This is incorrect.  JAG paralegals are enlisted, which means that they are not officers and are outranked by every 21-year-old ROTC graduate fresh out of college. Some eventually have the opportunity to become legal administrators, which is a warrant officer position, but only for those who go career non-commission officer.

Serving in the military has many benefits, but enlisting to become a JAG paralegal in the hopes of helping with law school admissions is a bit extreme and won't necessarily help OP. It might not be fun being treated like a 17-year-old kid who barely finished high school. Also, it'd be at least 4 years before he could apply again to law school.

General Off-Topic Board / Re: A day in the life of a law school student
« on: September 20, 2014, 11:54:39 AM »
Mid-terms in law school?

Also, half of that stuff is not necessary.

General Board / Re: Applying to an LLM with a Misdemeanor
« on: September 20, 2014, 11:34:42 AM »
What everybody else said: Disclose, disclose, disclose.

Depending on the circumstances, it won't be a big deal. Many people have done dumb things and been admitted to law school and the bar without further issue. Just don't go and execute an endangered bird in Vegas.

Roger Williams / Re: Anyone recently attended?
« on: September 07, 2014, 07:22:07 PM »
Do you want to practice in Rhode Island? If the answer is yes, there are going to be some advantages to attending law school locally. If you are unsure, but don't have the numbers to attend a top tier, you need to consider seriously where you want to live. Most law schools are local and your connections and internships will be developed in the state you attend school.

Of course, if you have guaranteed family employment or other options, your situation may be different.

News Discussion / Re: news legally defined as...
« on: September 03, 2014, 05:03:37 PM »
I don't know if there is a legal definition of "news" beyond First Amendment cases, but I did find this about the Code of Federal Regulations:

"The term representative of the news media is defined by 47 CFR 0.466 as 'any person or entity that gathers information of potential interest to a segment of the public, uses its editorial skills to turn the raw materials into a distinct work, and distributes that work to an audience. In this clause, the term news means information that is about current events or that would be of current interest to the public.'"

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