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Messages - cvargas84

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Incoming 1Ls / Re: 0L anxious about being a 1L.. any advice?
« on: January 16, 2012, 05:54:38 PM »
Thanks, everyone, for your input.

Mr. Messinger- I don't know if you remember me, but you helped me out quite a bit last year when I was preparing to take the LSAT and researching the law school process. You even mailed me a copy of two of your books for free. Thank you SO much. I read them both and found them to be very helpful.

Incoming 1Ls / 0L anxious about being a 1L.. any advice?
« on: January 10, 2012, 11:38:48 AM »
I was admitted to all three law schools that I applied to, and I'm pretty sure where I will be going. I've started reading some of the 0L books (GTM, 1L of a Ride, etc..) and I'm freaking out a bit. I did fine in undergrad, but to be very honest, it wasn't outrageously difficult. (or even "very", if I am totally honest.) I know law school will be different. My worry is mainly getting on a study "system", one that will work for me and that will be effective. I am prepared to study a lot, but I'm worried that I won't know "how" to properly study in the beginning, and then I'll be trying not to sink by the end of the semester when exam time comes. I know this is probably premature, but can anyone tell me where I can find an idea of how to start my 1L year right? Most texts, posts, tell you to "outline", "take notes", "brief cases", but no one tells you exactly how to do it in the most effective way possible. Is there a prevalent method to 1L studying? a recommended method, or schedule of how much time to devote to each class and avoid time traps (excessive briefing that is unnecessary after covering the basic information that "is" necessary, etc..)?

thanks for the great advice!

That makes sense. I've always wondered how, even with an LLM, a foreign-educated attorney could pass the bar considering the difference in legal systems and laws, while actually knowing enough to practice law.


As far as I know, only New York allows foreign grads to just take the bar without an LLM. But they have to be trained in a common law country. Chile is a civil law country. Even if you could take the bar as a Chilean attorney, the pass rate for foreign trained attorneys is somewhere around 30%.

I do know that. It's just a matter of logistics- for x, y, and z we choose to live here, so I have to go to LS here.

Ha, no. Life conditions are significantly better here and you have to work 10 times harder in Chile. Plus, we like it here, and we want to keep our family in the US for now, unless some extraordinarily good offer in Chile would come along (doubtful), we won't move back. Even with certain advantages in Chile (cheaper tuition, my father being an attorney and owning a lawfirm) I still think I'm better off career-wise here in the US.

not possible, plus I want to practice here and be done with it in 3 years, not 6.


Studying for the LSAT / For those of you that scored 168+ on the LSAT...
« on: December 20, 2010, 06:22:57 PM »
How did you prep? Did you find certain techniques more/less helpful than others? How much time (months, hours per day) did you devote to studying for the LSAT?

Thank you.

Thanks for the link and info. The girl you worked with sounds like a joy! haha.

At least for me, I came to this board hoping to get into a tier 4. Not because I didn't think I couldn't get into a higher tiered school but because I never even considered it- I've always just wanted to be a lawyer and practice law, so it was a no brainer. I never considered a higher tier until the possibility arose of moving to Michigan and I realized that University of Michigan would be so close to where we will be. The debt and strenuous amount of work that it will take to get in are strong cons, though. I'm also going to look into the lower tiered schools around that area in Michigan.

Also, I didn't grow up in the US so the whole Tier-wars is a new thing to me, as was the unbelievably high cost of going to law school. In Chile it's a bit different, as law is a five year long undergrad degree, followed by a final exam and 6 month public assistance externship and parents usually pay for your college education. My sister is in her 4th year of law school at a private "top" law school in Chile and her tuition is around $600 US Dollars per month. This obviously sounds like a bargain to me now, and graduating with $150K v $0 in debt is a pretty substantial difference if you think about how $150k can buy you a home, but one cannot live in their law degree.

Going to school #9 would almost always be better than going to school #90. However, you should always consider location if you have absolutely no desire to live in Michigan or the Midwest attending Ann Arbor might be a bad idea. If you aspire to live in Texas, California, Florida, etc then it may be difficult to get a job in those areas from Michigan. California already has UCLA, USC, Stanford, and Berkeley to choose from so they aren't going to extend to Michigan generally. Texas has UT and people in Texas might prefer someone from a lower ranked school in Texas opposed to someone from a higher ranked out of towner.

On top of that if you are not coming from Money to fly out to interview in these other places will be difficult. As stated before there is a good chance a lot of firms are not going to fly out to Michigan for OCI. They are also probably not going to spend money on flying you out. Remember, there is no shortage of law schools anywhere and in any metropolitan area L.A., Chicago, New York, San Francisco, etc there are already elite law schools they can roll into.

Getting out with minimal debt is also huge. As was stated with no job is guaranteed. Lawschooltransparency is a great website to look at actual salalry numbers. You can look at every school's real numbers here. As you can see University of Michigan has 100% employment, but do they really? 22% of the class has a job, but no salary reported. This mean 22% of their students could be flipping burgers. These 22% are employed, but doing what and being paid how much? If you are making 10 bucks an hour as a file clerk in Ann Arbor it will be quite difficult to pay off 150k in debt on top of 8,000 in interest annually you will be accruing.   I really recommend that site and you can really get a feel for the realities of law school employment. The people working on that site trying to get schools and U.S. News to actually provide substantive data are awesome! If you could somehow get a guaranteed full scholarship at an ABA school in location you wanted to live in it might be a better option.

Michigan is a really good school, but those are just some things to consider. I think I have a bias towards because the one and only person I met from there was awful! I worked with her when I was a paralegal and she was in the top 10% of her class at UM, but I heard about that from her way to often. She never did any freaking work. She constantly talked about her school and class rank, but believe it or not if you are in litigation nobody cares that you got in A in Contracts. In your motions you can't write Bobby breached this contract and needs to pay Sally 1,000,000  because I received an A in Contracts at the University of Michigan. In reality you need to do actual work and if someone from Cooley writes a better motion than you are they are going to win the case. She did not seem to understand that.  Everybody really disliked her and she was not offered a job after her summer gig. I have never wanted to strangle someone so much.  Any assignment she was given resulted in a rolling of the eyes and she just had the worst attitude I have seen in my life. I imagine the majority of UM students are not like her, but it is the only person I have dealt with from the school and it goes to show the name of your school will only get you so far.

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