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Messages - Maintain FL 350
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« on: August 20, 2014, 11:01:11 PM »
I think the seven points you listed are right on point. Distance learning and non-ABA law schools can be the right fit for the right student. It all depends on your goals, where you want to live and practice, and whether you are a highly motivated self starter. If so, I think it can work.
In fact many personal friends of mine completed their law degrees by working directly underneath a Judge or already practicing attorney.
CA is one of the few states that allows study in a judge's chambers or with an attorney, but very few people go this route. The number of individuals sitting for the bar exam via this method is usually in the single digits, and of those only a few pass.
Most people need the experience and structure of a law school (either brick and mortar or DL) to adequately prepare for the bar.
« on: August 19, 2014, 01:55:03 PM »
I don't know if LSAC will grant an appeal, but I do think you need to consider whether there is any point in taking it again. If you've taken the test three times and have been disappointed with your score all three times, you may need to 1) accept that you're scoring within your abilities or 2) take some serious time off to prepare.
I would only consider this last option if I had some real, concrete reason to believe that I would score higher. For example, if I didn't have time to prepare, didn't take a prep class, etc. But if you properly prepared and put in the time, it's unlikely that your score is going to magically increase simply by taking the test again.
I think most people end up scoring lower on the LSAT than they hope. At some point, you just have to take what you've got and apply.
Just my two cents. Good luck with your studies.
« on: August 15, 2014, 12:24:13 PM »
I'm familiar with those schools, they're among the oldest and best established distance learning programs.
If you plan to remain in NY/NJ you could look at CUNY, NYLS, Touro, St. John's, maybe Seton Hall and Rutgers. As a splitter, you might want to apply to lots of schools and just see what happens. Like I said before, it's harder to predict.
« on: August 14, 2014, 10:31:12 PM »
You're a splitter, and that makes it more difficult to predict where you will or won't get into. That said, there are definitely law schools that will accept someone with your numbers based on your LSAT score.
You should narrow it down to a geographic region, specifically the state/city you plan to practice in. If you can score a scholarship, great, although it will be difficult with a 2.12 GPA (except at a few places like Cooley as Newly Minted mentioned).
I've only completed 6 classes that I received a letter grade for, this is the only reason I have a low GPA (which maybe I can explain in my PS). The rest of my classes are ALL pass/fail.
Just curious, was your undergrad at a traditional four year university? It's just that I've never heard of a program where almost all of the classes are pass/fail. That's very unusual.
You can definitely explain it in your PS, but it probably won't make much difference. Your GPA is what it is, and it's very low for the purposes of law school admission. Your best bet is to apply to schools for which your LSAT score is above average.
One last thing (and don't take this the wrong way): make sure that whatever obstacles resulted in a low undergrad GPA are resolved before you begin law school. Law makes undergrad look like a joke. It's very, very demanding and you won't get a passing grade just by showing up.
Your LSAT score indicates that you have the brains to succeed, but law school requires a huge investment of time and self-discipline. Something to think about before you write a check for $100K.
« on: August 12, 2014, 11:06:14 AM »
I've never even heard of a JSM.
There are a slew of LL.M and non-LL.M legal grad degrees now (M.A. in Law, M.S., some funky doctorates). Other than an LL.M in Taxation or Natural Resources I'm not sure that any of them are worth the tuition.
« on: August 11, 2014, 11:22:39 AM »
Take a look at LSAC's Official Guide to U.S. Law Schools. They have grids which show how many applied within a certain GPA/LSAT rang and how many were accepted. It looks like with numbers similar to yours almost all were accepted.
Also consider using your numbers for a full scholarship somewhere else if necessary. Or maybe the Army covers it?
« on: August 09, 2014, 09:24:03 PM »
I agree that July is the "gold standard" for bar results, the pool of first time test takers is much larger.
Nonetheless, these are first time results. Although the numbers are small, if a school has 18 out of 20 first timers pass that's pretty good. Too good to be accidental, IMO.
That why I didn't mention schools like Irvine, which had a 100% pass rate, but only three test takers. I don't think anything can be gleaned from such a small cohort.
« on: August 09, 2014, 07:41:38 PM »
Calbar has posted the stats for the last bar exam (Feb 2014). I couldn't link it here for some reason, maybe someone else can.
Here are a few highlights:
CA ABA first time pass rate: 68.6%
Out of state ABA: 44.3%
CA accredited 42.3%
CA unaccredited: 34.6%
Honorable mention goes to Pepperdine (92%) and La Verne (88%). A few other schools had 100% pass rates but only had a few students taking the bar. Both of these schools had decent numbers of test takers.
Among the CA accredited schools, Monterey had a 75% pass rate, and Ventura (67%) and Santa Barbara (69%) also did well. Others had much lower rates or only a few test takers.
Among unaccredited schools Concord (36%) beat the others by a mile, as most had 0% pass rates.
« on: August 09, 2014, 01:05:39 PM »
I agree with Citylaw, I don't think it's a big deal unless you fail to disclose it. Your applications to law school and the bar will ask about disciplinary actions and it's important to fully disclose everything.
I don't think this will have any impact on law school admissions, but the bar may require a more detailed explanation. They will probably require you to submit all paperwork associated with the action, so make sure you are 100% honest in your explanation. In law school you will learn that the bar is pretty forgiving, but they take even a hint of dishonesty very seriously.
« on: August 06, 2014, 04:21:59 PM »
Based on my background/profile, would it be a good idea to go to law school?
Well, not to sound snarky but it depends on whether or not you want to be a lawyer.
If you really
want to be a lawyer, and are willing to make the necessary intellectual and financial commitment, then yes. If you are just trying to figure out what to do for the next few years and law sounds kind of interesting, then no.
Law school, the bar exam, and the job hunt are huge undertakings. You should only do it if you are sure you want to be a lawyer, an only you can answer that.
I would definitely take the time to find out what it's really like to be a lawyer (very different from TV and movies), and think about your long term goals. Law can be a great career but it's not for everyone.
I'm not sure what a 68% translates to in GPA, but if you want to go to law school start preparing for the LSAT as soon as possible. Your LSAT score is a huge factor in admissions, and a high score can help with obtaining scholarships.
Hope that helped!
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