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Messages - livinglegend
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« on: January 13, 2013, 04:38:10 PM »
I don't think the ABA has as much control as you think you should probably be sending your message to the various state bars if all 50 states allow non-aba grads to take the bar exam then the ABA won't have much stay they are just what the state bars recognize as an accrediting agency.
As for the overall message I think there is a lot of good served by the traditional brick & mortal schools. Making friends in law school, having a centralized place for speakers, learning how to use traditional practice guides in real law libraries etc is often far superior to spending exorbiant amounts of money on Westlaw or Lexis. However, I am just some guy on the internet.
« on: January 12, 2013, 12:01:07 AM »
Yea KJW is right if I remember correctly you transferred from a school in the Midwest to the Bay Area which probably made a far bigger difference than any ranking. For example if you want to do IP law go to a school in the bay area that is where start-ups, major tech companies etc are located. Even if South Dakota has the best IP law program according to U.S. News few companies are going to bother interviewing someone in South Dakota when there are 7 ABA law schools in the bay area already.
Same goes for Entertainment law go to an ABA school in New York or L.A. and you can probably find a job somewhere in the entertainment industry as that is where entertainment law happens.
KJW is also write about the grades all law school exams are similar if you have mastered IRAC, Issue spotting, and analysis you will do well at any school. Here is President Obama's Con Law Exam from University of Chicago http://lawprofessors.typepad.com/files/conlaw3.obama.1996.fall.pdf
Here is a law school exam from a Professor who teaches at a Tier 4, Tier 2, and Tier 1 law school in San Francisco all at the same time in San Francisco.
Here is his Tier 4 law school exam http://law.ggu.edu/media/law/documents/law-library/exams/keane_p/Keane_ConLawII_Exam_SP11.pdf
Here is his Tier 1 law school exam http://librarysource.uchastings.edu/exams/test/Exams/Professors/Keane,%20Peter/Constitutional%20Law%202/Keane,%20Peter%20-%20Constitutional%20Law%202%20-%202010%20Spring.pdf
They are both Con Law II exams dealing with Freedom of Speech, Freedom of Religion etc, Obama's deals with Equal Protection, Abortion, etc but they are all things you learn in Con Law at any ABA school whether it be University of Chicago or Cooley. If you understood the rules and how to IRAC at the Tier 1 or Tier 4 it would not make a difference. You would also be learning from the same exact professor, but somehow one school is quote on quote better and this may come as a surprise, but there are numerous duplicates like this at least in the Bay Area where the same professor teaches at Hastings, University of San Francisco, and Golden Gate. Yet somehow when your are reading the same textbook and learning from the same professor at Hastings it is somehow "better" than learning it at USF, because a magazine said so.
« on: January 11, 2013, 08:57:18 PM »
I know nothing about Western State never even visited the campus, but if you can't handle the pressure of a law school exam then your really going to struggle with the bar. I know attrition sounds bad, but having gone through the bar personally I can tell you 1L exams are an absolute cakewalk compared to the bar.
I don't imagine Western State requires people to get kicked out as that would make no sense if they think you are capable of passing the bar and you are paying them they will want you to succeed. However, if it does not appear you can handle 1L your much better of leaving then opposed to spending another two years of your life and 80,000 dollars to fail the bar. A J.D.without a license to practice law is really not that helpful in the real world.
I am not saying Western State is some pinnacle to legal education, but plenty of people attended Western State and are doing very well the head District Attorney of San Francisco is a Western State Grad, Head District Attorney of San Diego Western State Grad,
San Diego D.A. http://www.sdcda.org/office/meet-da.html http://members.calbar.ca.gov/fal/Member/Detail/74343
( Bar Info)
San Francisco D.A> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/George_Gasc%C3%B3nhttp://members.calbar.ca.gov/fal/Member/Detail/182345
I worked on a few cases in orange county and many of the city attorneys were Western State Grads and many were quite good. Bottom line is if you pass the bar from any school you are a lawyer it is extremly difficult to do though and realistically if you cannot handle 1L exams the bar is going to be literally impossible and your much better off getting out while your ahead.
Again I don't think Western State is some phenomenal school, but can get you a bar exam ticket and if you get a law license it is up to you to succeed with it. Sure going to Harvard will open more doors and attending Western State may close the door to becoming a Supreme Court Clerk, but not many people get those jobs anyways.
Just my two cents about the school having never been there, but I think that Western, Cooley, and many other schools get an unfair rap. If you think a law school exam is difficult when you are told exactly what the subject will be try balancing thirteen different ones for 3 days straight i.e. the California Bar Exam. Once you get into practice that isn't that tough either representing a client, getting objected to, being on time deadlines, etc is far more strenuous than the bar. The end of my rant mercifully : ) and anyone that attends Western State good luck!
« on: January 11, 2013, 08:03:17 PM »
Groundhog is correct an upward curve is great, but in reality law schools look to the total numbers i.e. overall college GPA and LSAT. They are looking at thousands of applications and transcripts etc from personal experience I imagine when thousands of papers are on your desk and an overall number summarizes each one you still look straight to that number if you have a 4.0 and an LSAT score that is well over the numbers for X school, no criminal convictions, a resume not drawn in crayon, and a semi-coherent personal statement your in.
If on the other hand you have a 2.0 and 140 LSAT an outstanding resume and a touching personal statement your probably not getting in anywhere.
If your right on the cusp and I mean right on the cusp which I imagine 50 or so applications are every year they may take some real time to really analyze everything, but generally speaking it is all a numbers game.
Go to lawschoolnumbers.com to see the reality of that. If you have done something exceptional i.e. Nobel Peace Prize, won the Heisman Trophy, were a Navy Seal, wrote a best-selling novel, or something along those lines the numbers may not play a big role, but 99.9% of people don't have anything that is something that will simply grab an admissions committees attention.
« on: January 11, 2013, 07:27:51 PM »
There are certainly pros & cons to attending a correspondence school. First off law school is difficult and if your juggling extensive traveling with the study of law you may not do well. Also as I understand it every non-aba school requires you to take the first year law students exam already mentioned in this thread. I believe you get three chances to pass this and if you don't do it on the third try your out. I went to an ABA school and do not know how easy or difficult this exam is, but I can tell you the California Bar Exam was extremely difficult I did pass it, but I studied 10 hours a day weekends included for 2 months straight to pass.
What I would recommend you do is take the LSAT nothing to lose there if you do really well it is possible some of these correspodence schools will give you a significant scholarship, which could save you thousands of dollars.
Another thing to consider is that you live in Texas and although there is a lot of debate non-aba schools really only let you sit for the California Bar I know some exceptions exist, but if you plan on staying in Texas a J.D. without a Texas law license will not serve you that well.
If you really love to study law want to take a shot at it and are ok with spending a few thousand dollars knock yourself out. It may or may not work out and if your juggling a full-time job with extensive travel odds are against you not to say it can't work out, but it will be tough.
My personal belief is that if you want to be a lawyer you should go in 100% and go full-time I don't think part-time ends up working for the majority of people. Again, I know there are exceptions but just my two cents as an anonymous internet poster. If you are going to undertake something as rigourous as becoming a lawyer I think it is better to dedicate yourself to it. Generally speaking those that work and go part-time don't end up finishing, but this is not to say you cannot be the exception. Good luck whatever you decide.
« on: January 11, 2013, 06:34:04 PM »
I don't if it is very realistic to improve significantly as Niceone suggests it depends on what you do. If it were easy to get a 170 or into Harvard many more people would do it. The LSAT can be learned and your score can be increased with crazy studying, but we could all have 6 pack Abs if everyone worked out for 2 hours a day and ate right still most people don't do that.
A 160 is pretty hard to get can it be done? Sure, but 80% of people who take the LSAT don't get it and those are usually college graduates motivated enough to take the LSAT it is a difficult test. I cannot tell you how many people say they get 160-170's on practice tests etc, but these people seem to always have an excuse for not taking the real test. It is hard and a lot of pressure it can be done, but if you really want to be a lawyer you can do with a 151 good luck.
« on: January 11, 2013, 06:21:39 PM »
Well what you should do is go to each school's handbook here is the link for Widener's http://law.widener.edu/CampusLife/AdvisingandCounseling/OfficeofStudentAffairsHarrisburg/StudentHandbook.aspx
on page 85 of this you can see their curve and their mean grades range from 2.3 to 2.7 furthermore it is required that 10% of the class get a D+ in each class which seems pretty harsh to me. Widerner requires a 3.0 based on that it seems like you probably need to rank in the top 30% or so.
I tried to look for Duquesen's handbook, but couldn't find it in a 10 second google search I am sure it's there, but I don't feel like digging. You should go to every school you are interested look at the handbook then ask the admissions officers how many people keep their scholarship. They will tell you if you ask, but they are not going to go out of their way to explain things that will help them. Remember law school is a business and your a customer it is a semi-adversarial relationship in this negotation stage and get numbers don't be afraid to ask it is a 3 year 100,000 investment. If you were a buying house you would ask a lot of questions and do the same here.
Good luck to you!
« on: January 11, 2013, 05:57:07 PM »
Very good point Maintain I think a good option for anyone in the OP's position is to send out some transfer apps and then ask their current school for some scholarship money if they stay. The reality is transferring from a T3 like New York Law School to a T2 like Brooklyn Law School will not make much difference in your NY career prospects. There is already NYU, Colubmia, and Cornell in the area then Harvard & Yale a train ride away then plenty of people from University of Michigan, Stanford, Boalt, etc are eager to move to New York. When compared to those schools there really is no difference between Brooklyn or NYLS. They are both fine schools i am sure, but the pedigree of Brooklyn is not going to open anymore doors realistically than NYLS. However, if you can get out of NYLS with 100,000 less debt then your better off getting out with less debt. If NYLS is not offering you any money then why not go to Brooklyn since you wouldn't even need to move cities and go to a Tier 2 instead it can't hurt.
« on: January 11, 2013, 05:14:52 PM »
Indeed Louisiana has a very unique bar exam unlike anything I have ever seen they even tell you what subjects will be tested on which day and they do not use the MBE i.e. Multiple Choice questions which every other state uses. Therefore, I imagine they will not require you to do multiple choice questions, which if you plan on taking the bar in another state may have a big impact on you
Bottom line if Louisiana is where you want to be other schools will not prepare you for the Louisana bar that well and if you plan on going somewhere other than Louisiana it will probably be a disadvantage. As you can see Tulane had a 59% bar passage rate in California http://admissions.calbar.ca.gov/Portals/4/documents/gbx/JULY2012STATS.122112_R.pdf
Tulane is still an ABA school so there will be many similarities, but based on Louisiana's unique legal system it will likely be a little harder to take another bar exam just something to think about.
« on: January 10, 2013, 09:59:46 PM »
Groundhog is right on now do not make any academic decisions based on the potential of going to law school. Do the best you can and be involved as possible, but even if you finish up with straight A's if you score poorly on the LSAT you are not going or you may get a 180 on the LSAT, but decide law school is not for you. Get everything you can out of undergrad unlike med school etc there are no per-requistese courses for law school. The bottom line is law schools really could care less what your major is they simply care about grades and being involved which you should do whether you are planning on attending law school or not.
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