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Messages - changethegame

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11
General Board / Re: Dont study law!
« on: December 31, 2009, 05:01:24 PM »

My advice goes like this:
1)Were you offered a full ride to LS?
-if yes, attend.
-if no:
2)Don't go.
      -->Rationale: People who really want to be lawyers will ignore your advice and go anyway.  As for everyone else, you are helping them avoid becoming very poor and very unhappy.

I think this is close--your rationale.  I think that's actually the crux of it.  If you look at the OP's argument, he basically says "Pursuing a law degree is likely to be a poor financial investment."  Thus, if you want to practice law, and are not looking at law school as a mere means to financial ends, you are much more likely to be happy with your decision (and much likely to be a happier person, generally, when looking at decisions from a range of perspectives as opposed to solely the financial perspective).  It's a very basic premise, but sadly one that escapes many; it's scary how few people on this board seem to value whether or not they will enjoy their profession.

But I don't think a full ride, unless it's to a reputable school, is necessarily a good idea.  If you got a full ride somewhere, chances are you got into a better school.  You could easily end up regretting your decision to take a full ride, lessening the short-term financial risk, when you could have gone to a better school, where you would have better long-term opportunities.  And, if you do poorly at the lesser school, it could even end up being a worse mid- to long-term financial investment than the full-price option.

TITCR

12
There are only like 20 blacks total a year who score 170+.  A score that high (if he is black)  would get him in anywhere except maybe HYS.  

Agreed in general...read my previous posts. As I keep saying, softs are everything in URM admissions. URM's are evaluated more by soft factors. they are treated as "hard" factors.

13
Where should I go next fall? / Re: How do I get out of ED
« on: December 31, 2009, 04:42:22 AM »
I think some of you are being a bit presumptuous. A URM's chances for admission at any T-14 are just about the same across the board; either he's a good candidate or he's not...period.

Admissions is a much wilder game for URM's (especially African-Americans and Native-Americans/Indians).

Because "soft" factors are actually "hard" for them, it's much more difficult to predict which schools will want them, particularly when talking about top schools, b/c they intuitively place differenct weights on the intangibles.

At Duke and Harvard, for example, a URM's having overcome severe impoverishment might be worth 10-12 points on the LSAT,raising a 158 LSAT scorer to 168-170 (well within range for admission with $$$ at any top school), or a 163 to 173-175 (an automatic admit with $$$ at any school).

There's no real science to it, so i can see how a URM candidate might underestimate his chances of getting into Harvard. Besides, there are students every year who turn down Harvard to go to schools like Northwestern, Penn, Columbia, UVA, etc. Many of you may not want to believe this, but not everybody needs to drop "H-Bombs" for the rest of their lives to be or feel successful.  

If you're going to direct your post at me, then at least do it outright.  

Are you really saying that the URMs have equivalent stats, on average, across the T14?  Are you fk'in serious?  Do you really think that URMs at HYS have stats that are no different than a UVA or a Northwestern?  Get Real!!!


I can see someone applying to Duke and HLS regular decision and seriously doubting that he or she will get into HLS.  But to apply to Duke binding ED and have the qualifications to get into HLS is an action that is hard to comprehend.  This is one of the most misinformed actions I have seen to date.





No! I am NOT saying that URM's have the same "stats", necessarily, across all T-14's (if you look back, I mentioned "qualifications", meaning holistic predictors: grades, LSAT, soft factors like W.E., CMU Svc, LOR's, overcoming disadvantage, etc.). I am saying that URM's who are qualified for T-14 tend to be evaluated in a more holistic fashion than the typical white students, and that, while they generally tend to have great objective stats across T-14's, their soft factors come into consideration more often, and that can make the process much less predictable. It is possible to find more than a few URM's at Northwestern with better numbers than URM's at Harvard (African American, Latino, Indian). It is this dynamic that threw OP. He wasn't prepared for the prospect of getting into Harvard, (although one would question why he applied at all). OP's situation totally supports what I am telling you.

And remember..."QUALIFICATIONS" are different from "STATS". Don't interchange the two.

14
Where should I go next fall? / Re: How do I get out of ED
« on: December 31, 2009, 04:35:31 AM »
How did you guys do on the reading comp portion of the LSAT? I'm guessing not too well. I am being severely misquoted here. I have made absolutely no statements about the relative qualities of these schools, only their thought processes insofar as URM's are concerned. And, clearly you are not URM's or, if you are, not URM's who have had the pleasure of being admitted to T14's and rejected by top-25's. The only thing I am saying is that OP had a right to be unsure b/c the law admissions game is wildly unpredictable for URM's.

Even OP himself has misunderstood me, as I was defending him. Secondly, I am sayinmg EXACTLY that URM's and other students attend non-HYS schools for personal reasons. That's the point, which is why i said, "Not everyone needs to drop H-Bombs for the rest of their lives to feel successful". A URM from North Carolina or Chicago might choose the elite home school over HYS or one of the other top-10's for personal reasons or "logistics"...specialties, family concerns, money/cost/scholarships, fellowships, mentorships, etc.  

I am defending OP, get that straight. But I do believe he should honor his commitment for two reasons: 1) He should avoid setting a bad precedent in his career by reneging on his commitment, and 2) if he was admitted to Harvard as a 1L, he stands a good chance of getting in as a transfer if he's in the top-15% or better at Duke.

And I stand by everything else I said, as well. URM's either have the stuff for T-14 or they don't. The way in which adcoms view each URM candidate will differ slightly at each school. A URM can be rejected at Duke or GULC but get into Penn and Yale. i am not saying that these schools are equal, I am not saying that this SHOULD happen...I am saying that it DOES happen. I know from personal experience. Argue the point until you are blue in the face, but you are working against irrefutable facts here.

15
General Board / Re: Dont study law!
« on: December 31, 2009, 03:51:41 AM »
Law school will destroy your life.  Dont fall for the false statistics put out by law schools.  You will have crippling debt and wont be able to get the most basic job paying 30k.  Learn from others who have suffered this fate.  Everyone thinks they will be in the top 10% of the class- they wont be!

NOT NECESSARILY THE CASE THAT 90% OF INCOMING 1L'S ARE HEADED FOR DISAPPOINTMENT...(fixed)

Fact: for every 100 entering 1L's, 10 will be in the top-10%, meaning 90 will not. Let's say, for argument's sake, that 70 out of every 100 actually projected themselves to wind up in the top-10%, while the other 30 of every 100 (humbly) did not. Let's also suppose that, holding 10% constant for believers and non-believers, three non-believers and seven believers out of every 100 1L's would wind up in the top-10%. Reasonably assuming the majority of non-believers to be "non-caring" as well (about reaching the top-10%, versus reaching top-25% or "doing well"), that would leave only 63 disappointed folks out of every 100, not 90.

And, for argument's sake, let's say that a constant percentage of each group was lying about their relative belief, i.e., a certain number of purported believers really did not believe, and a certain number of so-called non-believers really believed the entire time that they would wind up in the top-10%. It would be fair to assume those percentages to be congruent to each other, thus the numbers would still be the same.

Now, let's say that a certain percentage of the believers who don't make the top-10% are not disappointed that they didn't make the top-10% (remember, believing something will happen is an altogether different proposition from being disappointed if it doesn't happen). Here's a somewhat analogous scenario:

I thought I could get Jay-Z tickets a few months ago, even though the stats were against me. That is, I knew I had a chance, however small, and went for it. I didn't get them, and I didn't care that much. I knew I would have other chances to see Jay-Z. One can imagine that some believers feel the same way...they believe but won't be pissed if it doesn't happen.

And, rationally, one can also believe that, as a coping mechanism, many stated non-believers talk themselves out of believing so that they will actually relax during 1L and wind up performing better (these are the "secret believers", for some of whom this method will actually pay dividends), while the rest of the non-believers really don't believe and, thus, cannot be dissappointed (save for the small few who wind up near failure).

The number of non-successful secret believers who care that they didn't make the top-10% is likely to be outnumbered by the non-successful believers who don't care. Offset the disproportunately small number of non-successful secret believers who actually care with the larger number of non-successful believers who don't care, and those 63 dissappointed students for every 100 actually shrinks to about 50.

Hence, I say that about 50%, not 90%, of incoming students is dissappointed about not being in the top-10%. Accounting for the egos that pervade the few "truly elite" schools (HYS, CCN, et. al.) versus those at the larger number of lower-ranked and/or less prestigious schools and one could argue that even fewer than 50% of all incoming 1L's expect to do more than make the top-30% or top-half of their classes. And, at the elite schools, a higher percentage of believers can be said to be in that group that isn't as worried about not having reached the top-10%, because the job prospects tend to be better at those schools. And students at lower ranked schools have aready been humbled by the admissions process, so they are acquainted with the world of "anything-can-happen-law". Thus, they are less likely to be shocked when they don't make the top-10%, even at their respective, relatively lower ranked, schools.

Of course, there are the students at lower ranked schools who go to such schools believing they are superior to their peers and, therefore, should have been admitted to "better schools". But IMHO, there would not be enough of them to offset the number of students who just want a law degree and believe they can build their careers after law school and, indeed, expect that they will have to do just that.

Bottom line, I give students a little more credit than most. I think 40-50% of 1L's, at the absolute most, may wind up dissappointed, and to various degrees, at the end of their first year(s) of law school. But nowhere do I believe "suicide watch" is in order.

16
Law School Applications / Re: Chances of Xferring from T3 to UNC?
« on: December 30, 2009, 08:05:00 PM »
I hear UNC is a fantastic school academically, but that usually is not enough to lure students at the rate a school like UNC does. It doesn't look that inviting. Chappel Hill seems like a boring place to me, and the law school's facilities look bland. Yet this school is very popular. Is it just the rankings, or am I missing something about the "student life" - other than watching an elite basketball program beat the crap out of other schools?

17
Actually, given a 170 and 2.6, his index scores for the following schools are:

UC Davis (rank 35): 6.818 (25/median/75 are 6.687/6.826/6.965)
W&Lee (rank 30): 66.840 (64.210/69.159/74.108)

So given a 170+ score, it is reasonable to expect admittance in the t40 range.
Indiana would probably take a 170/2.6 too.

source: lawschoolpredictor.com

I don't disagree with you at all. In fact, I cautioned OP not to expect 160+ to pay huge dividends, absent amazing softs. With a 170 I think all bets are off, especially if he's had some time off of school and can get great softs. I think his GPA would be almost completely discounted and he might go T-14 (though maybe not HYS) at that point.

18
Law School Applications / Re: "The Blind Side"
« on: December 23, 2009, 06:49:18 AM »


You guys don't get it. And I am not going to explain it. 

19
Where should I go next fall? / Re: How do I get out of ED
« on: December 23, 2009, 06:45:45 AM »
I think some of you are being a bit presumptuous. A URM's chances for admission at any T-14 are just about the same across the board; either he's a good candidate or he's not...period.

Admissions is a much wilder game for URM's (especially African-Americans and Native-Americans/Indians).

Because "soft" factors are actually "hard" for them, it's much more difficult to predict which schools will want them, particularly when talking about top schools, b/c they intuitively place differenct weights on the intangibles.

At Duke and Harvard, for example, a URM's having overcome severe impoverishment might be worth 10-12 points on the LSAT,raising a 158 LSAT scorer to 168-170 (well within range for admission with $$$ at any top school), or a 163 to 173-175 (an automatic admit with $$$ at any school).

There's no real science to it, so i can see how a URM candidate might underestimate his chances of getting into Harvard. Besides, there are students every year who turn down Harvard to go to schools like Northwestern, Penn, Columbia, UVA, etc. Many of you may not want to believe this, but not everybody needs to drop "H-Bombs" for the rest of their lives to be or feel successful. 

If you're going to direct your post at me, then at least do it outright. 

Are you really saying that the URMs have equivalent stats, on average, across the T14?  Are you fk'in serious?  Do you really think that URMs at HYS have stats that are no different than a UVA or a Northwestern?  Get Real!!!


I can see someone applying to Duke and HLS regular decision and seriously doubting that he or she will get into HLS.  But to apply to Duke binding ED and have the qualifications to get into HLS is an action that is hard to comprehend.  This is one of the most misinformed actions I have seen to date.



You missed the entire point of my post. What I was saying was that URM admissions are much more difficult to predict because numbers have less weight, which everyone knows. And, yes, URM's at Penn (African-American and Indian) would have the same numbers across T-14 schools. I personally know of African Americans who had the stats to get into HYS but went to Columbia, Penn or Northwestern instead. This isn't odd at all, considering that there are so few of us in the field that recruiters will dig deeper into the talent pools and the rankings to find URM's.

These sorts of realities piss white applicants off, but they are REALITIES. Trust me, for some Black dude from Morehouse, Berkeley is as good as Yale or Harvard. And, I know for certain that the same Black dude with stats of 3.65/160 would have the same likelihood of getting into Harvard as he would Columbia or Virginia. Duke and Cornell might go a little easier on him because they are known to put even less weight on URM applicants' numbers than the other T-14's.

So, to answer your question..Hell Yes! OP should have known that if he was a good candidate for Duke, he also had a decent shot at Harvard. Harvard, Yale and Stanford take URM's with sub-160 LSAT's every year. And they take them with sub-3.8 GPA's, too. And yes, URM's can even get into Harvard with 3.6/159. "Misinformed"? I don't think so.

Another  after-effect of this is that a school like Illinois will reject a top URM assuming that he's going to a T-14, just because his numbers look better than the typical URM at Illinois. So a URM can be rejected by a sub-top-20 school but get scholarships to Duke and Michigan. This CAN happen to white students, too. But admissions is so much more of a numbers game. Ideally, every student should be treated in a more holistic fashion, like URM's are. But we know that's not what really happens. 


20


I was admitted to law school last year and opted to defer at one school. But I forgot to mention these 5 infractions to the schools. I am planning to send addenda to the schools explaining these citations.

Some schools ask about traffic violations, while others ask about "major traffic infractions". Most schools don't ask about traffic at all unless it involves vehicular assault/homicide, DUI/DWI, reckless driving, joy riding, stolen vehicle, failure to secure contents, driving on a suspended license/driving w/o license, etc.

Has anyone had to tell schools after having been admitted that (oops!) they forgot something? How did the school react?  




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