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Topics - Denny Shore

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Current Law Students / Petition for readmission - help?
« on: October 20, 2008, 08:01:37 PM »

I've been lurking for some time now and am pretty sure that this isn't going to be pretty.  I need some help and I'm hoping to get some here.  Be gentle.

When I was 19 or so, I was diagnosed with ADHD (maybe ADD, I wasn't paying attention).  I was placed on meds and had bad reactions to them.  Besides being somewhat opposed to the idea of medicating my problem, the drugs made my heart race and I found myself focusing too much on meaningless nonsense.  For example, during logic classes I'd focus on writing examples of common fallacy arguments and, inevitably, my teacher would ask me a question that would require that I had been listening to a word he'd said.

I stopped taking the meds and forced myself to concentrate.  The first few years of college were awful, but the last two were all A's and B's, and I was on the dean's list every semester.  When I got into law school, I was sure that I had figured out how to cope with the distraction and frustration that had made my education challenging.

While I was at law school, I thought I was doing well.  My prof's liked me and when I was called upon to participate, I usually sounded like I knew what I was talking about (except the first time, of course).  I studied hard and worked with other students to make sure I had a good grasp on the subject matter. 

Halfway through the semester (the morning of my only midterm), my grandfather died.  No *&^%.  I took the test and got a C+ on it.  I told my Prof about my grandfather because I had to take a class day off to attend to family stuff.  He was nice about it, but didn't adjust the grade (not my expectation, but some friends think he should have).  The loss of my grandfather hit me hard and I really didn't know how to deal with it.  Being a busy law student, I didn't really have enough time to spend with him as I knew he was dying.  I tried to ignore the loss, and I didn't have time to deal with it until after the semester ended.

When finals came about, I turned into a machine.  I studied every day, 12 or so hours a day Monday through Friday, and spent every waking moment on the weekends eating and reviewing everything about my courses for two weeks.  For the last two weeks before finals, I started a small study group with two guys I know and believe to be smart and capable.  We ran E&E's, law in a flash, commercial outlines, various other problem books, and general on topic discussion.  We did this every day.

My first final was my favorite course, Contracts I.  I knew this class cold and had spent close to half a day teaching a friend how to apply the statute of frauds.  I was confident and calm.  I was also the first one out of the test.  Immediately, I began to wonder if being first out was a good thing or a terrible, awful thing.

The next final, Torts, was the same.  First out.  I was solid in torts, but details are the essence of proper tort analysis.  Uh oh.

My Property final was brutal.  I was the second person to leave.

I figured that I had over prepared and at worst, I'd pass but not by much.  Then I tried to analyze my test performances and realized that one reason I was the first out was that I was anxious, wanted to finish as fast as I could, and felt frustrated throughout the tests.  It took forever to get my grades, and they were a huge shock.  My GPA was below the schools academic dismissal threshold and I was dismissed.  I spoke to every Prof, and none of them were permitted to change my grades (literally, if one prof had raised a grade by half a letter, I'd still be in school).

When I knew nothing could be done, I accepted it an reached out through family and friends to find anyone at my law school that could help me sort through this.  I met with one of the Dean's who is a close friend of a close friend and he put me in touch with a person who has helped other dismissed students get back in.  I made an appointment to see her, but she was all emotional and weird when what I wanted was advice and guidance.  After listening to her shtick about it not being so bad (it is) and how everything is about perspective (mine is that I want to be a lawyer and the school kicked me out) and blah blah.  So after half an hour of her verbally hugging me, she gave me some ridiculous advice that would have me working full time, taking more undergrad course full time, volunteering full time, and who knows, writing a book.  Seriously, I did the math and her idea would have me working, studying, going to school and volunteering 90-100 hours a week.  She did offer to read my petition and give suggestions/advice, which I'll take her up on in a few weeks.

After sulking for a few weeks, my Dad asked me to help out for a few days at his law firm, which was busier than normal.  Three days later, his receptionist quit and he asked me to stay and answer the phones, do some filing, etc until he found a replacement.  Inside of a week, I was working on petitions and expungements.  On the side, I upgraded all their computers and handled a lot of their IT issues.  They found a replacement receptionist and asked me to stay on as a law clerk/IT guy.  For the last few months, I've been busy drafting motions and petitions, doing document review, handling expungements and combing through transcripts looking for issues that can be challenged (on top of implementing a new billing system and fixing various other IT problems).

SO, what I am hoping is that someone out there either submitted a successful petition for readmission or knows someone that did who can dole out some advice or provide me with their winning docs.  Essentially, I think I have a good idea of what to write about, but I'd appreciate any help possible.

I plan on saying that my past performance is not indicative of future results because
- I had been untreated for ADHD (I have since been to a doctor and placed on different meds that don't weird me out at all and seem to be just mild enough to be comfortable, but effective enough to make me more productive and patient) and have corrected that.
- My Grandfathers death had an enormous impact on my ability to perform well.
- I've been working in the legal field since leaving law school and it has increased my desire to become an attorney while improving my skills and knowledge.
- I truly want to be a lawyer and am willing to work at a law firm for bupkies when in my previous career I had been making a high five figure salary and could be doing that now.

Any advice?  What should I emphasize?  Does anyone have a copy of a petition for readmission that worked?  Is anyone else working on one that would be willing to share?

PM me, post it here - whatever you are comfortable with....

Thanks in advance.....

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