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Messages - Maintain FL 350

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Minority and Non-Traditional Law Students / Re: Should I proceed?
« on: July 23, 2013, 06:33:15 PM »
Yes, you definitely have a chance but it all depends on your LSAT score. the LSAT is such a major component to law school admissions/scholarship offers that without a real score everything is pure speculation.

Your undergrad GPA is the only one that law schools will pay much attention to, since it's the one that gets reported for statistical purposes. Your UGPA (3.46) is alright, but not exactly high for the purposes of law schools admission. Most applicants will have a similar GPA. In order to maximize your chances at scholarship offers you need to score very well on the LSAT. The fact that you did well on the MCAT or GRE is good, but it does not necessarily guarantee a high LSAT score. You'll still need to prepare as much as possible.

Law school admission is very numbers driven. Your med school experience/work experience will help, but your GPA and LSAT profile will still dominate the process.

I believe that SMU and Texas Wesleyan are the only law schools in the DFW area (might be wrong about that). Check out their admissions averages and you should get a good idea as to what LSAT range would make you attractive enough to offer significant money.

Current - working on Certificate in Public Health and will proceed to MPH or PhD if I'm not accepted to law school

I don't know you at all, but it sounds like you aren't sure what you want to do. Sort of like "Well I'd like to be a public health expert, but if that doesn't work I'll just go to law school." Or vice versa.

The type of work that you'll do as a lawyer vs. as a public health professional is very, very different. As a general rule, I'd say don't spend the considerable time and money on law school unless you really, REALLY want to be a lawyer.

Online Law Schools / Re: Current ABA Response to Distance Education
« on: July 20, 2013, 08:21:12 PM »
If only I had known that maintaining an A average in social work school is not the same as maintaining an A average in law school.  (I have an MSW.)

Many of my law school classmates had M.A./M.S./MBA degrees. They pretty much all agreed that master's level grad school was a joke compared to law school. Master's programs can be academically rigorous, but they aren't competitive like law school.

BTW, an A average? That's harsh. I assume you must have had good numbers to get scholarship to Mercer. Is it possible to use those numbers to get a large scholarship at one of the newer law schools in the area? Someplace like Elon or Charleston? 

Thanks for the kind words.

I don't know where you're located, but maybe one option would be attending a local law school. That way you could still be around your family, stop by and visit, maybe even live at home. It could allow you to attend school and maintain a connection with your dad.

That's an incredibly tough situation to deal with, no matter what. I really feel for you and your family. My father died of bone cancer when I was 18, just as I was starting college, so I have some notion as to what you've got on your plate.

I don't know enough about your situation to feel competent to offer advice, but here are a few things to think about.

1) The first year of law school is very tough, tougher than you think it's going to be. You will have to be able to dedicate yourself to it 100% in order to pass. Law school is nothing like undergrad. You will be expected to digest voluminous amounts of very dense material every day, then turn right around and apply it to legal problems. That first year is difficult, confusing, and stressful.

2) As exams get closer you will be required to invest even more time into preparation. Unlike undergrad (where you can get away with cramming the night before), law school exams require practice to master. You will need lots of time.

3) Just based on what you've written, I think it would be tough to dedicate yourself 100% to law school and 100% to your family. Something is going to suffer. If you decide to wait a year, that's not the end of the world.

Lastly, don't take anonymous internet advice from me or anyone else too seriously. You know your capabilities better than anyone. Good luck!

Online Law Schools / Re: Current ABA Response to Distance Education
« on: July 16, 2013, 10:20:55 PM »
Law school professors have to be licensed attorneys.  This means they have to have passed a bar exam.

Is that an ABA rule? I've never heard that before.

I know that you definitely don't have to be a member of your state bar to teach. Several of my law school profs were not members of the CA bar, although they had passed another state's bar.

Pursuing an LLM / Re: U of Washington(UW) Tax LLM
« on: July 14, 2013, 02:13:01 PM »
UW is very well respected in the Pacific Northwest, but I have no idea what the market is like for tax lawyers in Seattle. Although it's a well respected school, you still might have a hard time relying on a UW pedigree alone to land jobs outside of the western U.S.

I'd contact UW and ask about their placement for tax LL.Ms, and about the tax market in general.

Online Law Schools / Re: Current ABA Response to Distance Education
« on: July 14, 2013, 02:09:01 PM »
For what it's worth, some of best teachers I had were adjunct faculty (prosecutors, public defenders, etc.) and some of the worst were tenured academics with impressive pedigrees.

Your point is well taken, though. The bar pass rate is just one of many factors the ABA considers. The entire institution is evaluated over a period of several years. The ABA looks at financial resources, bar support services, academic attrition, the physical plant, you name it. They even interview past and present students to get candid opinions on the school. This is why ABA approval is the gold standard for law schools, it's difficult to attain. 

In order to have a shot at accreditation either the ABA or Concord will have to drastically change its current requirements. I don't see that happening anytime soon.

Online Law Schools / Re: Current ABA Response to Distance Education
« on: July 13, 2013, 07:54:16 PM »
I agree, it's a Catch 22. They can't attract better students without approval, and they can't obtain approval without better students. This is why ABA approval seems unlikely to me, despite Concord's financial resources. 

I suppose there is one route:
Concord could start requiring a degree and the LSAT for admission, which would drastically reduce it's class size but provide higher quality students. Then, attrite the underperformers and seriously support the rest with quality bar prep. If they were thus able to raise their pass rate it might give them more leverage with the ABA.

At this point, however, I just don't see what Concord is bringing to the table other than open admissions and low pass rates.

Transferring / Re: Emory or WashU for Tfer
« on: July 13, 2013, 12:20:23 AM »
If his goal is to end up in D.C., he should look into transferring to a local school: Georgetown, GWU, American, George Mason, etc.

As between Wash U and Emory, I doubt if one has better connections to D.C. than the other. Frankly, showing up in D.C after law school and having to compete with the multitudes of local talent who have had three years to network is not an enviable situation. I would advise your brother to make every effort to secure internships in D.C. and make connections.

Online Law Schools / Re: Current ABA Response to Distance Education
« on: July 12, 2013, 04:16:01 PM »
I agree that Kaplan has the money and the lobbying ability to take on the ABA. They have the biggest bankroll of any online school, by far.

However, is the ABA is going to extend approval to a school with a 35% pass rate? Remember, they've recently denied approval to schools with much better pass rates.

Which brings me to my point:

Either Concord will have to drastically increase it's bar pass rate to 60-65% on the California bar (which gets them within 10-15% of the statewide ABA average), or the ABA will have to drastically reduce it's bar pass requirements. Neither is an impossible scenario, but both seem unlikely. Maybe there is another route, but I don't know what it would be.

California CBE approval is a different story, and I could definitely see Concord becoming the first CBE approved online school.

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