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Messages - chi2009

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I really appreciate this thread, and I am getting sick of being dumped on for going to a T4 school as if that makes me subhuman.  Here's my question.  How can I best position myself for a job after graduation when I'm going to school part-time, since that limits my ability to get summer internships, etc.?  I chose to go part-time so I can keep my current job while in school and therefore my income, and take out fewer student loans.  Plus, my job is somewhat related to the area of law I want to go into, which may help me in certain ways.  But I'm concerned about not getting internships.  I'm thinking of trying to transfer after my first year to a better school, but that would mean quitting my job and finishing school full-time.  Any advice?

I think b-f-b's first comment is pretty spot on.

I recently read an Illinois CLE packet for drunk driving/DUIs (including tips on motions to suppress) that was written exclusively by Depaul/Chicago-Kent types.  I think that gives you a good indication of where they end up.

At least they're on top of their game enough to be writing the CLE on suppression matters. The analogous book in my state is written by state judges. (And for what it's worth, motions to suppress are incredibly important because they can be dispositive if they are granted and the state ends up not being able to prove an element of the crime. The scoffing attitude I hear in my head when you talk about "tips" on how to do them is ill-founded.)

OP, for what it's worth, Wally has a pretty serious superiority complex about the Chicago schools, so you have to take it with a grain of salt. Although the nuanced core of his argument is correct -- in a tough economic climate, people from less prestigious schools will have weaker job opportunities, starting salaries, etc. -- it is an impermissible logical inference to say that "where they [graduates] end up" is solely in DUI defense, or even in comparable practice areas. Many probably won't do well, as b-f-b indicated. But I guarantee there will be some people from those schools who will do biglaw, although it will be fewer than at higher-ranked schools. They will almost certainly need honors or law review, but that's a typical requirement.1  I also guarantee there will be people from our school who will do defense work, including suppression motions on DUIs, and they won't necessarily be the ones at the bottom of the barrel. The numbers are different at each school.

1 At Mayer Brown, see;

I know a Northwestern grad who works at Sidley Austin - alongside a couple Chi-Kent grads.

Choosing the Right Law School / Re: 3.67, 175 LSAT
« on: July 31, 2009, 03:49:40 PM »
Hi everyone, this is my first post! A few years back, my study habbits were atrocious. I began undergraduate school without a plan; I eventually came to the conclusion I had a passion for law. I brought a 3.0 GPA up to a 3.67 (University of Florida), and recently took the LSAT (175). I decided two years back it was Harvard Law or Bust. I began studying for classes harder, and studying portions of the LSAT. For now I'm hoping my hardwork has paid off; I'm by no means overly intelligent but I tried my hardest.

- What are my chances?

LSAT: 175
Undergrad Major: Health Science
Electives: Heavy Journalism/Writing
UGPA: 3.67
Volunteer: Measly 60 hours of helping disabled children as an OT aide.
Personal Statement: Falls into the 'Decent-Solid' Category
Work History: Part-Time 20 hours weekly throughout college (retail)

Good luck.  You have good numbers, but numbers aren't everything.  I seriously doubt that going to Harvard versus other top schools will be the difference between big law and the streets.

Choosing the Right Law School / Re: 157/3.7 Chances
« on: July 31, 2009, 03:45:11 PM »
Nice guys finish last. I for one, think I will be a model lawyer.

Yes.  Yes you will.

Choosing the Right Law School / Re: 157/3.7 Chances
« on: July 31, 2009, 03:42:50 PM »
wow, wish i was an "URM"...

I hear that!

Current Law Students / Re: Critique my brief
« on: July 31, 2009, 03:34:13 PM »
Thanks for all of the great advice.  I have one question- how are we, as beginning students in the law, actually supposed to be able to figure out why the law was included?  To me, all I see in this case is that airplanes aren't considered motor vehicles.  Is that really the big picture I am supposed to get out of this case?

First, it is typical that for the first few weeks you will read cases and completely miss the point. A big part of the first few weeks is understanding how to look at a case and find what is important for class. Just keep briefing and paying attention to class, and you'll eventually get it.

In the case you are briefing, it is irrelevant whether or not the airplane is actually a motor vehicle. Rather, this case illustrates a point about statutory interpretation and the judge's role. Specifically, an airplane probably fits the literal definition of the statute, or at least people can make reasonable arguments that an airplane fits the literal definition. But, did Congress intend airplanes to be covered? Does it matter what Congress intended? Does the policy behind this statute cover airplanes? If the judge is to be a faithful agent of Congress, where should he draw the line? If an airplane is not a motor vehicle, what about a motorized wheelchair? A hovercraft? etc. These are all issues you'll likely talk about for 30 minutes to an hour based upon this particular case, but in the end, it doesn't matter at all what this particular statute said or how this court came out. What matters is introducing you to these issues of judicial interpretation.

This is sound advice - and described in great detail in Getting to Maybe, which was the most helpful book I've read so far in preparing me for my first exams.

Law School Admissions / Re: really late in the game
« on: July 15, 2009, 12:15:26 PM »
It's not "totally fine."  Last cycle I took the test in October and most of my applications were in and complete by the time I took the test (side note, this was my second cycle). I told the schools to hold my applications and retook in December, so as soon as that score was in I went under evaluation. My cycle was fairly predictable based on my numbers, but according to LSN there were several schools where I got waitlisted instead of accepted and rejected instead of waitlisted compared to people with similar numbers that went complete earlier.  Its of course possible that this was in part due to multiple scores, but I truly believe the time I went complete compared to others seems much more likely.


True, especially for schools with rolling admission.  There's just so many factors at work that it's hard to tell.  But if you really don't want to wait an extra year, I'd say take it in December and apply now.

I agree it will make for a unique statement, which will help them remember you.  Just keep it really tight with one central theme so as not to be too vague and, thus, not really saying anything.  Having life experience will definitely help you.

Also - mention your rural upbringing in your statement.  No need to elaborate - just mention it.  Some schools give special consideration to those people, similar to the way they do minorities.

Law School Admissions / Re: really late in the game
« on: July 15, 2009, 11:30:32 AM »
December's totally fine. They'll have the score by the deadline.  The only catch is, if you mess up you won't have a chance to retake it.  So just be sure you're prepared.  Get the letters from your profs now and submit them to LSAC.  Then you'll have that out of the way and won't have to worry about it.

Choosing the Right Law School / Re: Totally mezzed up
« on: July 15, 2009, 11:23:52 AM »
Yikes.  You should have canceled your exam before you got your score.  Honestly, I doubt you have a good shot at either with that score.  At best, you're looking at T4, possibly even non-ABA accredited.  If you really want to go to law school, you  need to retake the LSAT and get a score of about 30 or 40 points higher to compensate for your first score and GPA.  Take a class and make sure you're prepared.  That will let schools know that you are capable of doing much better and just had a bad day.  Say you became ill the morning of the exam or something - obviously don't say that you just got drunk and slept late. 

Moreover, it sounds like you don't really want to go to law school.  Are you sure it wasn't subconscious self-sabotage?  Maybe your family expects you to go.  They'll get over it.  It's your life, and if you don't want to go to law school, you shouldn't even apply because a) it's three years of your life and a lot of work and b) if you don't even want to be there, you're probably not going to do very well anyway.  Do some soul searching and decide what you want.  If it's law school, get serious about the LSAT and boost your score.  And get some stellar letters of recommendation and write a brilliant personal statement.

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