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Messages - jack24

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I wish I had seen this earlier to help. my UGPA was a 3.33 and my LSAT was a 166. I ended up getting amazing offers from schools like Alabama, Richmond, William & Mary among others. The trick was to have great references and personal statement.

Best of luck!

How do you know this was the trick?   

Law School Admissions / Re: GPA: 3.82 LSAT 169 URM Chances Anyone?
« on: February 05, 2013, 01:27:26 PM »
You should have plenty of options with that said really consider location and cost above all else. If you want to be in California go to Stanford or Boalt instead of Yale also remember law school debt is real, but you should have some great options congrats!

Living Legend is full of good advice, but if you get in to Yale (you probably won't) go to Yale, even if you want to work in California.

Incoming 1Ls / Re: What are my chances?
« on: January 28, 2013, 01:41:04 PM »
My first year of college I had no idea what I wanted to do. As a result I did not attend class very often, and my GPA was a 3.2. Since then I have maintained a 3.8 GPA, or higher, through my sophomore and junior years. If I keep my GPA high and do well on the LSAT do I still have a chance to get into a great law school, or does that first year with a 3.2 GPA ruin my chances?

The LSAC calculator is a good place for you to start.

 Most law schools look at the raw data first (since that's what impacts their rankings).   They divide the applications into three piles.  Automatic in, automatic reject, and further review.   The further review applications are analyzed a little bit (but job experience and awards are really only tiebreakers), and then they are divided into reject, waitlist, and accept.

According to LSAC, If you have a 3.5 cumulative and a 165 LSAT, you are the median applicant at schools like  Fordham, BYU, Wisconsin, and UC Davis.

You'd be in the bottom quarter of applications at places like Harvard, NYU, Duke, Penn, Virginia, UCLA, Michigan, USC, Texas, and Cornell.

By contrast, if you had a 3.8 and 165, you'd still be in the bottom quarter of Harvard, NYU, Duke, Virginia, Penn, and Michigan, but you'd be above the bottom quarter of Cornell, UCLA, Vandy, and you'd be around the median at schools like Texas and George Washington.

Job Search / Re: Big Law GPA Cutoff
« on: January 23, 2013, 08:16:03 AM »
I doubt you'll get the information you need on this board.   Maybe you should try TLS or XOXOhth

What rank is a 3.3 at Duke?

I'm no expert, but I have a couple friends who have gone into evironmental, ag, and water law.   They all gained experience and opportunities through internships.    So my advice would be to go to a school that is near a lot of employers who might be hiring environmental attorneys.  Then do everything you can to get an internship and gain some real experience.

Looking for a law school specialty is usually a bad decision.   You need to focus on which schools have the most agriculture law alumni.  Find a few firms that do agriculture law, email the attorneys and ask them whether it matters where you go to school.

Also, my impression is that a lot of agriculture law is contract and commercial law.  You deal with purchases and sales, acquisitions, and other contracts.   You also deal with some water acquisition and disputes.   Environmental law is generally more specialized and focused on disputes involving environmental impact.  A lot of environmental lawyers work for oil and manufacturing companies.

Law School Admissions / Re: What are your thoughts?
« on: January 23, 2013, 08:08:37 AM »
On tier 3/4 schools? I've gotten in a few with pretty decent scholarships and am waiting to hear back from quite a few schools (ranks mixed) still.
I pretty  much have  a job secured after law school but what are your thoughts, is it worth going to tier 4 with good scholarship?

Livinglegend is providing a lot of useful information, but he's overloading you.  You are perfectly capable of evaluating the cost and whether you like the city.   The bigger issue is how the school is viewed in the region you want to work.     For example, the university of Idaho is ranked 129, but it's the only ABA law school in Idaho.   If you want to work in Boise, Idaho is a good choice.  You could go to a much higher ranked school like the University of Arizona and get little to no benefit.   

If you want to live in Topeka Kansas, Washburn Law School will give you similar job prospects to the University of Kansas.   However, if you want to work in another state, the name recognition and superior ranking of the University of Kansas will be a significant benefit.

The top graduates from any school will have an opportunity to get a job based on their performance in school, but the rest (like 85%) will get jobs based on their hustle and relationships.   So in most cases, I would recommend you consider your potential debt load as the #1 factor in your decision, followed closely by where you would like to work.

One additional comment.  Law school applications have declined sharply.  This year, LSAC estimates that there are 50,000 applications for 59,000 spots.   When I applied, there were over 100,000 applications.   This is great news because the legal industry is only projected to create 9,000 new jobs per year and only 10,000-15,000 attorneys are retiring every year.   

Choosing the Right Law School / Re: Decisions-Decisions...<grumble>
« on: January 21, 2013, 11:07:24 AM »
I'm 46 years old. I'm in Memphis.

I can get into Memphis and not add a lot of debt over the 3 years; maybe an extra $35k over my undergrad loans. I can do this with minimal, if any, LSAT prep (but I *WILL* be studying and prepping).  Cold diagnostic (online) was 153 and I went -14 on logic games, -5 & -10 on LR, and -8 on RC.

I can bust my ass for 4-5 months and hypothetically/maybe score a 165-170 (maybe even a little higher), and combined with my projected gpa of 3.8 get some decent scholarship and with living expenses maybe be out an extra $75k over my undergrad loans.

When I graduate I'll be 51 years old. At this age does rank even matter considering how firms will likely ding me for being an old fart?

This really depends on what you'd like to do. And you probably don't know that yet.   I sincerely doubt you'll get over 170.  Why?  because only 2.6% of test takers get over 170. 

What schools would you be shooting for?   Let's say you get into WUSTL.  They are ranked pretty high and they have some good placement, but they don't offer a sure thing.    WUSTL at full price vs. Memphis with no Debt?  I'd say take Memphis.

I did very well at a school ranked around 50 at full price.  I was a law review editor, moot court guy, and top quarter of my class. (graduated in 2010)   The job search was brutal, but maybe things have changed now..   I passed up a full ride at a T3, and I really should have taken it.


As far that goes I don't know if that is true just because you did it one way does not mean it is the same for everyone. I guarantee you I could do everything Lebron James does and I will not be half the basketball player he is. Some people are just naturally better at understanding the law and I think that is what the LSAT does. A person with a 142 LSAT score is probably going to have to bust their ass 10x as hard as someone who got a 175 to pass the bar.

For some people RAP, negligence, IRAC jsut clicks others it does not. So I think the poster you responded you made a good point it will be hard partiuclalry if you go to a CBA school to succeed. So for anyone considering law school if you got a 141 on the LSAT it means you probably don't understand the nuances or handle the pressure of a test that well. Those are things you will need to do in law school and you will need to work harder to succeed than someone that gets it.

I'm talking about potential.  My point is that the difference in your grades between working 50 hours a week and working 100 hours a week won't be that substantial if you are a mediocre student.   Yes, it is extremely difficult to get all As in law school on a curve, but it's not very difficult to get all Bs (or whatever the average grade is.)   
You really start to see harshly diminishing returns as you add more and more hours.  You start to get into minutiae that nobody cares about.
Now that may vary depending on the type of final exams your school has, but not by much. 

I really doubt anyone in the bottom quarter of their class (outside the top law schools) puts in 50 hours of real studying every week.  I'd love to hear about a real world example.

Choosing the Right Law School / Re: I want to be a...
« on: January 15, 2013, 09:42:11 AM »

Not all clerkships are created equal.  If you are hoping for a federal clerkship or a clerkship with a state appellate court, you will face an uphill battle.  However, district court clerkships at the state level are abundant.  That said, I applied for a state court clerkship and learned they received over 100 applications.  (Small state).

I have four friends from law school who became prosecutors after law school.  Each of them essentially took the same road: 1L Summer: Some type of externship for school credit at a courthouse or prosecutors office; 2L Summer: Low-paying hourly internship at a prosecutors office (they all were able to handle a full caseload, including jury trials); wait around fora  few months after graduation until a spot opens up.

The New York market is so very saturated, but you'll still have a fighting chance out of the schools you mentioned.   The best thing you can do is begin to cultivate relationships with attorneys at prosecutors' offices.  Ask them what they are looking for and what you can do to improve your chances. 

Above all, try to avoid debt as much as possible.  Unless a prosecutor tells you that you need to go to a more expensive school, take the best scholarship you can get.   Outside of biglaw and midlaw, school prestige isn't required (though it certainly can help.)

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