« on: June 09, 2003, 03:43:01 PM »
I've seen a lot of people on this board talking about writing letters to better their chances of getting into a school from the waiting list. I thought I'd share a letter I wrote when I was applying. It didn't get me into the school, but it seemed to have a positive effect - got me past two cuts and ultimatly got a nice letter encouraging me to apply as a transfer student. I ecourage others to post letters to give other a starting point. Please don't copy my letter, but you're welcome to use it as a reference:
(I edited out a couple things, such as the name of the school. Things in brackets were not in the original letter. There are some notes at the bottom.)
Dear [Actual name of admissions officer],
I would first like to thank you for your continued consideration of my application to this fall's class. As the admissions season progresses, I would also like to update my application and express my continued interest in attending [your badass] Law School this fall.
When I submitted my application in mid December, I was not yet aware that I had graduated with honors from my undergraduate university ([name of school]). This became apparent when I received my printed diploma at the end of December, and I confirmed it in January via an email correspondence I had with the office of the registrar at [name of school]. The “Honors at Graduation” distinction was earned by my being amongst the top [X%] of my graduating class at graduation. The [name of school] office of the registrar can be reached at [phone number] should you require verification of this award.
In addition to this application update, I wanted to emphasize my interest in attending [your badass] Law School this fall. The reputable and distinguished faculty will no doubt be academically stimulating and nurturing to my legal studies, and [your badass school]’s diverse group of experienced and committed students will surely maintain an intellectual environment to which I would be honored to contribute.
My decision to give up my current vocation as a [my job title]at a promising technology company in favor of a legal education required great consideration. However, working this year has given me an increased appreciation and enthusiasm for technological development, and I think that returning to the technology industry and working in a legal capacity will be even more interesting, challenging, and rewarding. I believe that my work experience, studies and travels abroad, and undergraduate academic achievements will provide a solid foundation for my legal education, and allow me to make a strong contribution to the student body at [your badass] Law School.
Thank you for your continued consideration. I look forward to hearing from you.
As you can see, my letter really had two purposes, first to update my application, and second to beg for admission to the school. The update really was legit. I really didn't know I had gotten "honors" and that's certainly the kind of thing you'd want on an application (I'm still a little bitter about that.) I think it would be perfectly appropriate to write a letter expressing your continued interest without an update, but you might think about things that have changed since you applied that you'd want the school to know (ie, you moved to the area and you really want to stay - or you found a job working for an attorney and you're even more excited about the law school - or you met a distinguised alum, and are even more interested in that particular school as a result.)