Law School Discussion

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Messages - LawSchoolDunce

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11
Recommendations / What to do if I have no good recommenders?
« on: November 30, 2006, 07:22:38 PM »
My family has been in an f'ed up financial situation for the past 4 years or so. Because of this, I worked full-time and attended Hunter College at night. Due to my personal time constraints and the fact that Hunter is a urban/commuting school, I didn't really have a chance to cultivate the sort of personal relationship with professors that seems to be necessary for law school recommendations (if I'm to believe everything I've read in these boards and other places).

Even the professors that I had for more than one class didn't really get to know me personally (or vice-versa). My favorite professor, who mostly knew me based on my class performance, would only have written a general recommendation, I think. Incidentally, I did approach him and he told me to find a tenured professor to do it because it would look better than a recommendation from an adjunct (I think this may have been his polite way of declining).

I don't know what to do. From what I understand, general recommendations are worthless. I can't get one from my employer of the past several years because I left the job on bad terms.

Are there alternatives?

12
Where should I go next fall? / Re: I'm Terrified of the Socratic Method
« on: November 30, 2006, 06:52:36 PM »
I want to thank everyone for their input here. The fact that the final exam is what counts is actually sort of relieving.

If I can just get past the overwhelming nausea that hits me everytime I enter a classroom, I think I'll be okay...

13
Where should I go next fall? / Re: I'm Terrified of the Socratic Method
« on: November 30, 2006, 01:02:03 AM »
Allow me to clarify a bit:

I'm the nervous sort of person that will lose his head in anticipation of being called on. Butterflies in the stomach, flushed face, nausea, the works.

I'm already having nightmares about attending law school, and I haven't even applied anywhere yet. :'(

14
Where should I go next fall? / I'm Terrified of the Socratic Method
« on: November 30, 2006, 12:52:25 AM »
I get the feeling I'm going to attract serious criticism for this topic, but I'm posting it anyways.

I've almost always been a good student. I'm a good note-taker, I always do homework, reading, etc. I always write good papers and do well on exams. Basically, I've discovered the closest thing I have that resembles a talent is the ability to figure out what a professor wants and giving it to them. However, in performing this action that comes so naturally to me, I tend to avoid class participation.

I don't know why; I always have the right answer when the professor calls on me, but I just can't bring myself to raise my hand and offer the answer before I'm called on. Every semester, I dreaded the opening week where some professors would go around the room having every student state their name and something about themselves.

In short, I'm really shy.

If you managed to get through the above without gagging, you might understand why I'm absolutely terrified of being grilled by a law professor this fall.

My question, finally, is: Which schools don't use the Socratic Method? You may be guessing that this is a yellow-bellied attempt to run away from something I don't want to do, and you'd probably be right.

I'm specifically interested in finding out about the schools in NYC that use this method (Fordham, Cardoza, Brooklyn, etc). Unfortunately, a Google search revealed nothing...

15
Law School Applications / Re: How Important are Old Undergrad Transcripts?
« on: November 28, 2006, 01:12:10 PM »
One of the things that might matter is the number of years between that not-so-great undergad and your current GPA.  Unfortunately LSDAS is going to calculate all of your information in together, so your LSDAS GPA will probably be lower than you hope.

Well, I was dismissed in 2000 and I ended up at my degree earning college in 2003, so I guess not much time has passed. In my mind, there's a big difference between a 19 year-old and a 22 year-old, but law schools might not see that. :(

I realize that LSDAS will be sending a cumulative GPA to the law schools I apply to, but I was hoping that they would also send the individual transcripts. That way, the abrupt shift in my GPA would be evident when viewing the old transcript and the recent one in chronological order.

Quote
You'll probably just have to explain and explain everything you can through your PS and an addendum to your application.

I'm not sure if I'll be going into that in my PS, but I have already written up an addendum that explains the circumstances of my early low grades (namely, that I shouldn't have entered an engineering program when I was so bad at calculus!). In the addendum, I specifically point out how my later grades were on the opposite end of the spectrum from my earlier grades.

16
Law School Applications / Re: Is Feb 10 test too late???
« on: November 27, 2006, 11:59:44 PM »
I called up Fordham this morning and they said that Feb. is the last one they accept.

17
Law School Applications / How Important are Old Undergrad Transcripts?
« on: November 27, 2006, 11:57:32 PM »
I suspect I might already know the answer to this, but I'm hoping someone here knows something I don't and proves me wrong.

First, a little background: I started out as an undergrad at an Ivy League university but flunked out (sue me, I was immature). Since then, I got my act together: I worked a full-time job and attended classes at night (also full-time). I managed a 3.7 gpa at the school I graduated from.

My question, as stated in the title, is: How important are old undergrad transcripts?

If law schools factor in my Ivy League gpa, my cumulative gpa drops to around a 3.1. If this is the case, I'm almost completely sure that I won't get into Columbia Law or NYU Law, my top choices. I'm sure it won't help that Columbia is the school I flunked out of (meaning they have my record already) and NYU's application requires a letter from the dean's office of the dismissing school concerning the circumstances of the dismissal.

I've had several people tell me that my transcript will look good to prospective schools because they'll see the complete about-face I've made academically. However, I have a feeling that as good as it might look, it won't be enough for the top two schools I want to get into (and maybe not good enough for my number three, Fordham, either). The fact that I don't have any extracurriculars due to my full-time job doesn't help my case either, I believe.

Any insight on my situation would be greatly appreciated.

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