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Messages - Bulldog86

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211
Where should I go next fall? / Re: UVA IN-STATE
« on: March 06, 2008, 04:16:48 AM »
My understanding is that being financially independent lets UVA's law and business schools set their own tuition at market rates and keep the proceeds (minus a portion that goes back to the University for building upkeep and such). It gives those schools a lot more flexibility and independence on the financial side.

Someone used the example of parents paying for college and calling the shots, vs. not paying and still calling the shots; I think a closer example would be something like, "My parents will pay me $300 per month, unless I get a job, in which case they'll pay nothing, but let me stay on their insurance if I continue to follow their rules. But I can get a job that pays $500 per month; so I'll get the job and live by my parents' rules to keep their insurance."

Eh, imperfect analogy, but I hope it gets the gist across. The law school receives some benefits by remaining a state institution (as if they had a choice...) while also getting some of the benefits of being an independent school.

There's a great article from UVA's COO in 2003 at http://www.law.virginia.edu/html/alumni/uvalawyer/sp04/opinion.htm that explains in detail the costs and benefits of the self-sufficiency program to the law school and the university.

While UVA continues to give in-state students a break on tuition, it's only $5,000 out of a total bill of $38,500, and the state pays half of that $5000. I assume the reserved seats for in-staters is a similar compromise, and an understandable one. The taxpayers built the law school, and though they no longer sustain it, UVA was founded primarily to educate the people of Virginia. You don't spend 200 years building something for your state's citizens only to leave them behind once it's gotten really good...

212
Law School Applications / Re: Crappy situation - anything I can do?
« on: March 06, 2008, 03:51:48 AM »
So pretty much the only reason that your official "GPA" should matter is for what gets reported by US News. If the school you're applying to is actually serious about admitting the best students, and not on trying to game the ratings, then (assuming your narratives are good -- whatever that means...) you shouldn't be screwed over too bad. I assume liberal arts college + PhD means you bring a lot to the table intellectually, so assuming the Ad Comm consists of more than a spreadsheet... they'll realize that.

213
Law School Applications / Re: What Should I Do?
« on: March 05, 2008, 02:25:41 AM »
So first of all, I will have to forward the "LSAT is harder than MCAT" part of your post to my ex-roommate, who's a first-year med student. He'll appreciate that.

Anyway, if you're waiting a year to apply anyway, you might as well do the LSAT thing one more time. Looks like you made a pretty significant improvement last time, so there's reason for optimism, I would think.

Even so, your GPA is gonna hurt. I know science people always complain their GPAs are lower, so maybe that (if law schools know that/care) combined with being at a pretty good school AND having a good LSAT will offset the numerical part. Other than being Canadian, do you have any other soft factors that will help?

Go ahead and eliminate option 3 right now. If you get sad about being a doctor -- no matter how much a test says you might be good at it -- don't go into medicine. If you're gonna spend all the time, money, and stress to go to med school, you don't want to wake up five years later and say, "Man, I hate this and wish I had become a lawyer."

The last thing I want to say, though, is not to be so fixated on the T14 mythology that you let it sabotage your ultimate happiness. If you really want to go to, I dunno, Chicago or something, great, but if you're basing your decision as to what career to practice on the numbers from a US News list, that's probably not wise. Texas is, from what I understand, a very good school that's probably not that different from the T14, especially on the lower end, and if you want to work in Texas, I doubt your career prospects would be any different, especially if you want to do a highly-specialized practice. I don't know anything about that field of law, so I'll take your word for Texas's suitability for it, but I feel like the standard advice is not to choose law schools based on what specific practice area you intend to do, since (despite what you think) it's quite subject to change. You could do a hell of a lot worse that UT.

Anyway, you asked what I would do if I were you. I'd retake the LSAT, find something productive to do in the meantime (maybe something to enhance your soft factors? not sure what that would be...), and then plan on applying to several top (but not exclusively T14) schools in the next cycle. Best of luck!

214
Reviews, Visits, and Rankings / Re: UVA Admitted Student Day
« on: February 16, 2008, 11:16:17 PM »
I plan to be there on the 28th, unless Duke or Georgetown give me a compelling rea$on to go see them instead (since all three are on the 28th).

(And yeah, I know UVA has another one on 3/14, but I'm planning to go see Vandy that weekend...)

215
Where should I go next fall? / Time to apply, but where?
« on: September 04, 2007, 09:25:15 PM »
I'm at Georgia (UGA) undergrad now. Wouldn't mind staying here, especially if I got money (is that reasonable to expect?), but I would consider going somewhere else if the price were right. I've got fee waivers at G'town and W&M, so I'll probably apply to one of those, and to Stanford just for the hell of it. Where else -- ideally in the South or California -- should I think about applying? Note that advice to "apply to all the T14!" like I've seen some places wouldn't be helpful; I don't have any interest in going to Harvard or Yale or the NY schools. I'd just like some suggestions as to whether there's anywhere else I should be thinking about.

I think I'd like to work in Georgia, either in Atlanta or more likely a medium-sized city.

Numbers in signature; resume is decent but undistinguished. White male.

Thanks for your help!

216
Where should I go next fall? / Re: Corporate Law Question...
« on: June 17, 2007, 04:04:25 AM »
I just finished my junior year at UGA. Most of the replies above have good advice -- reading helps, GPA/LSAT is key (more than how "prestigious" your undergrad school or major is), etc. I just thought I'd drop in to say a little more. First, think about why you want to go to UGA. Is it because you think it looks better, or that it's qualitatively better for you (i.e., you would learn more)? The first reason, assuming you would stay at State otherwise, is probably not a good reason; the second probably is.

That said, what would transferring mean? You said the business program is hard to get into; that's what they say, though acceptances ebb and flow and seem to have increased lately. Finance may be one of the harder ones to get into, even of the business majors, though probably not the "hardest". One (minor) thing I would consider is that, at least among business majors (which I am not), the required accounting courses have a reputation for being very hard -- if you haven't taken that or it won't transfer, that won't help your GPA, which (to repeat...) is key. But all that -- both whether you can get into business (odds are probably better than you think) and how hard the program will be -- are very dependent on how smart and hard-working you are. And I've been led to believe those traits are also pretty important for law school, so if you've got 'em, you'll be fine. And if you don't -- well, it really doesn't matter where you get your degree from.

One more thing -- some of the best pre-law advice I've heard is to pick a major you're interested in, that you will do well in, rather than what you think law schools want to see. If you're doing finance solely to "prepare" for corporate law (and you don't really give a damn about finance), that may not be as helpful as you might think.

Good luck and if you have any other questions about UGA feel free to let me know.

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