Excellent post by burning sands 100% right on.
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Messages - Citylaw
« on: June 11, 2014, 11:28:59 PM »
I actually think my point applies even more to the LSAT.
Many 0L's who obtained 3.5 GPA and got an A in some pre-law classes assume that means their solid performance in an undergrad classroom will apply to the LSAT, which is the furthest thing from reality.
Again, just my two cents and reasonable minds will disagree.
« on: June 11, 2014, 10:17:19 PM »
I think the only reason criminal justice etc majors struggle is they often go in thinking they know everything already due to a few pre-law classes, which is the worst thing you can do in law school IMHO.
Agreed it used to be very active back when I was applying, but I am not sure what happened.
Everybody started going to the other sites you mentioned, because it is a lot easier to say how awful everything is, which is what those other sites do.
Over time hopefully people will come back to this site as I believe many of the posters offer a realistic viewpoint.
« on: June 11, 2014, 11:22:18 AM »
As Maintain stated it is all speculative until you take the LSAT.
With a 3.3 GPA your odds of getting into a t14 school not high and you will need to do extremely well on the LSAT to have a chance.
If you want to be a lawyer, however it is not necessary to attend a T14 school and only 5% of lawyers attended T14 schools.
I would recommend taking the LSAT and then evaluating your options without that information there is really no point in speculating.
Good luck in your pursuit of a legal education.
I think one of the best ideas I heard to change legal education is to allow students to sit for the bar after 2L and if they are able to obtain a license they can spend their third year as licensed attorneys and complete an apprenticeship program to complete 3L.
If a student is unable to pass the bar during 2L summer they can spend their third year taking a number of bar prep courses etc to prepare them for the second go around.
I realistically took a number of bar study courses during 3L that I probably did not need, but you tend to overprepare for the exam.
The current problem with the bar structure now is that students are basically thrown to the wolves after graduation and once they take the bar they have to wait four months before they find out if they pass or not. They are not enrolled in school and a sedentary four months ensues and many employers are not hiring graduates waiting for bar results it is not economical to do so, which leaves the student in limbo for several months and if they do not pass the first time around they are in limbo for over a year.
This alternative system would allow first time passers to not have the long wait period and be able to go straight work. For students with extra assistance they will not just fail the bar and have nowhere to turn instead they can be around faculty etc during 3L and work on their weak spots and pass after 3L and be able to go straight to the workforce.
« on: June 10, 2014, 06:19:50 PM »
I wanted to be an NBA basketball or professional basketball player in Europe, but after a below average college basketball career it was not a realistic option and I knew it wasn't realistic even in high school. I then wanted to be a police officer and was in the process of the backgrounds etc, which can take up to two years. I was working as a paralegal out of college and decided to take the LSAT expecting to do terribly. I did pretty well and was then offered a number of scholarships and I thought why not go to law school with a scholarship I did not have much to lose. In all honesty I really thought I would fail out, but my background for to be a police officer woudl be done by then and I would go back to that.
I ended up finishing in the top 10% of my class, which was a complete surprise to me and ended up loving law school and being a lawyer, but for the first 24 years of my life I thought there was no way I would ever be a lawyer, but it happened.
I think every story is unique and since law school does not require pre-req courses like med school it results in a lot more diverse backgrounds.
« on: June 10, 2014, 11:41:11 AM »
Excellent post by Maintain and he covered pretty much every point, but I want to add one important consideration scholarship conditions and a few follow up points.
I see Chapman requires a 2.9, Southwestern a 2.7 etc. I imagine like many incoming 0L's you believe obtaining those GPA's will be a piece of cake. Law school however, is very different due to the strict curve and at many schools you need to finish in the top 35% just to have a 2.5 G.P.A it varies from school to school, but there is a strong chance you will not maintain the scholarship years two & three. This is nothing against you personally, but the reality is everyone in law school is smart, hard-working and motivated and 100% of students think they are going to be in the top of the class, but 50% of them will be finishing in the bottom half and 25% in the bottom 25%. This New York Times Article does a far better job explaining the situation than I can. http://www.nytimes.com/2011/05/01/business/law-school-grants.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0
Personal Feelings about School:
It sounds like you have done the important process of visiting the campuses you are interested in and it seems like you are a person that does not enjoy downtown S.F or Downtown L.A you want a smaller environment, which is fine . Chapman provides much more of a college feel and you appear to have enjoyed your visit and that is very important. Each student has their own personal feelings about schools when I was visiting there were some I hated and others I loved, but you could have the opposite feeling. I liked Southwestern, because there was so much going on and Chapman felt isolated although the campus is beautiful. Nothing wrong with having your own preference this is a 3 year, $100,000 commitment so list to your gut. It sounds like Chapman left you with a good impression and the other schools did not. That says something about what YOU want and this is your life. Do not let anonymous internet poster like myself, a for profit magazine like U.S. News, or anyone else that knows nothing about you tell you what is best for you.
You mention talking to students etc at Chapman should be taken with a grain of salt, but I think those opinions should carry the most weight. Every posting on this board or other law school boards is behind a computer screen and you have no way of gauging our credibility. I could be a crackhead in a public library there is no qualification for posting on the internet talking to students, professors, and walking around the campus is reality and can offer far more insight than the internet.
District Attorney Reality:
Maintain also makes a great point about D.A's there are very few positions and even if you get hired as D.A. the reality of it is a lot different than what is displayed on T.V. and many people end up not wanting the job. So as Maintain suggests keep an open mind, but if you really want to be D.A. if you graduate from an ABA school it can happen, but just be 100% sure that is what you want.
Choosing a School :
To answer your question I would negotiate with all of these schools for better scholarship terms more money and better conditions. Worse case scenario they will say no, but nothing bad will happen by asking.
This is also a pretty good article explaining factors to consider when choosing a law school. http://www.legalmatch.com/choose-the-right-law-school.html
Knowing nothing about you it seems like Chapman is a good fit for you. Do not make things more complicated than they need to be, but I do encourage you to negotiate for better scholarship conditions and money you have nothing to lose and everything to gain by doing so.
Good luck in your legal career.
Do they not allow you to take the second semester?
It seems like you should have a full year.
If you are in California I know one girl who was dismissed, but she was reinstated after passing the California Baby Bar.
I would not make excuses in your Petition, but come up with ideas to prove that you are capable i.e. you are willing to take the baby bar exam, enroll in additional tutoring etc. Excuses do not go very far in the legal profession, but creative solutions do. Prove to them you are capable, smart and dedicated.
Exactly and I also think it has to do with realities. I work for a government agency in just outside of San Francisco and if when we see an out of state resume we think it is really worth the time and energy to interview and offer this person a job when they may have thoughts about actually moving.
I believe a lot of like to say they want to move across country etc, but when it becomes real people often get cold feet. In addition to that government budgets are tight and we are not going to pay for travel and lodging for someone from Michigan State and a Michigan State law student is unlikely to have $2,000 on them to fly into San Francisco and pay for a hotel for a few days.
Geography is just such an important factor in the real world, but in the law school bubble people get lost and I was guilty of it myself as 0L, but thankfully practicing lawyers explained it to be before I made a horrible decision.