Law School Discussion

Nine Years of Discussion

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 on: October 05, 2015, 12:30:34 PM 
Started by legalpractitioner - Last post by Novus Law School
In a decision issued September 17, the Supreme Court of the State of New York handed Novus University a complete legal victory over Touro Law School, dismissing in its entirety Touro’s lawsuit against Novus which falsely alleged that degrees conferred by Novus University Law School were in some way not valid or worthless. The court ruled that “Touro failed to set forth a justiciable controversy” and “dismissed [Touro’s] complaint in its entirety,” and with prejudice.
Touro filed suit against Novus in October 2013. The Supreme Court of New York’s decision now fully resolves the action in Novus’ favor.
Note the following NY-State Court info for the Touro suit information:

 on: October 03, 2015, 03:27:27 PM 
Started by care111 - Last post by Maintain FL 350
A couple of points:

1) Don't stress too much over the essay. It should be well organized and clear, but it pales in comparison to your GPA/LSAT.

2) This essay needs a lot of work. I agree with Miami, see if your college has a writing center that can give you feedback and guidance.

They want to see that you can write a coherent paragraph and get your point across while learning a little something about you. This essay is too long and rambling, and doesn't seem to have a main point that you're driving home. Maybe try to pick one area, whether it be your military service or your interest in international law, and stick with it. (Keep in mind that half the essays they read will be about the applicant's "passion for justice").

The writing itself needs work. Sentences are too long, and the syntax is sometimes confusing. Again, your university writing center can help here.

 on: October 03, 2015, 03:26:14 PM 
Started by care111 - Last post by Citylaw
Excellent critique and solid start, but when you are writing something important it needs to be shortened and edited countless times to make it shine.

As Miami states you want make your point with as few words as possible. 20-25 word sentences are to long, it is important to remember that an admissions committee is reviewing thousands of personal statements and although everyone assumes their statement will be reviewed in detail after the sentence or two if it doesn't grab their attention it is likely to be skimmed and do little to help or hurt your application.

Referencing law & order in the all important first sentence is likely to get an eye roll.  Remember it is a personal statement about you, not a T.V. show. It is also possible you are not referencing the T.V. show I can't really tell from the opening sentence. You say simply be saying your passionate about justice, but many lawyers hear about law & order all the time from non-lawyers so that is where my head went.

Even the opening statement is what Miami is referencing shorten it. 

that is your opening,
I have always since I was a youngster been passionate about Law & Order

I am passionate about justice,

(it says the same thing in 4 words instead of 11.) Eliminating unnecessary words is important (the "since I was a youngster" adds nothing.) the word "always" puts it all in one.

With all that it is also worth nothing that in reality the personal statement means very little, your LSAT-GPA are the crux of your application. Of course you want to have a nice personal statement, but unless you have some amazing story i.e. were the Navy Seal that took down Osama Bin Laden, or were the Mayor of a City or something truly newsworthy it is not going to help your application that much. Conversely, if you do a terrible job in your essay and go on some racist rant or god knows what it can hurt.

From reviewing your statement I wouldn't say there is an amazing story nor is it terribly done.It is a fine statement that can be edited, but remember your numbers make up 90-95% of the decision.

Good luck!

 on: October 03, 2015, 12:06:05 PM 
Started by care111 - Last post by Miami88
I would strongly recommend re-writing from scratch (and your school's pre-law advisor and/or writing center may be able to help).

Here are a few broad notes:

1) Consistency. It's either "I have" or "I've." Pick one. I would strongly suggest "I have" because "I've" is a bit informal. Also, keep an eye on your tense. If you are talking about the past, you the past-tense.

2) Whether true or not - you probably don't want to lead your PS with an explanation of why Law & Order motivated you to become a lawyer. I'm not saying you can't do it, but unless it is impeccably done, it makes you sound trite.

3) Also, whether true or not - things like "writing in legal terms is my career goal" is equally odd. It makes you sound insincere.

4) I would delete the first full paragraph - it adds nothing to your story.

5) Cut down your sentence length. Once you start approaching 20 or 25 words, you should get to a period. Example:

"My first job came when I was in my early teens working for a summer job, I was in need of a job because my mother was a struggling parent with no father around, and any help that I can offer I knew would be vital for the family."

can be written as:

My mother was a struggling parent with no father around. Any help that I could offer would be vital for the family. So, when I was in my early teens, I got my first job.

which can be re-written as:

My mother was a struggling parent. My father was not around. My family needed my help. So, on my thirteenth birthday, I got my first job.

6) Drop superfluous phrases. You use phrases "like most kids in high school" or "I knew that I..." Drop those phrases entirely. They add nothing to your story or your rhetoric.

7) You talk quite a bit about things that are likely on your resume. There is nothing wrong with bringing it up, but make sure that you are adding to your story. In other words, don't just say things like "I have X degree" and leave it at that. If you are going to talk about your degree, talk about the context behind it. For example, why you chose that degree; what you have done with it; how you think it will help you moving forward; etc.

8) Drop things that are (should be) obvious. Don't tell admissions that you promise to study hard. At best, these phrases will take up space - space that you can use for beneficial points. At worst, admissions may take it as a signal that you may not be willing to study as hard as you can and are saying this in order to compensate. Again, it's better to just leave these things implied. Imply that you will study hard with your impeccably written PS.

What you have is a great first draft - you put onto paper your background and aspirations. Now comes the hard part - making that into a unique, compelling story.

Good luck!

 on: October 02, 2015, 07:40:35 PM 
Started by care111 - Last post by care111
I have always since I was a youngster been passionate about Law & Order, I've always believed in justice for all and equal opportunity to make the best of this life for everyone. I can remember as a kid that if I saw someone in school or in public that needed a helping hand that I just wanted to be the one to help them in their legal matters because I know it's very important for people to have justice. I think writing in detail critically analyzing every detail in legal matters is very important, because this vital perspective on things can help to find the who, what, when, and where to legal matters.  Writing in legal terms is my career goal, it's something I find that can help to make other people lives better, I know that if I can graduate from your Law School that I can receive the vital important instruction to research for someone on the field as a prospective Lawyer. I know that when all is and done that I along with a team is making a difference in the life of the clients. I never had a doubt in my mind about how much I wanted to become a Lawyer, and Judge as well. I have so many hopes and dreams with being able to attend a prestigious Law School as yours. I feel it would be a huge blessing to be able to attend your Law School classes, work very hard in preparing for class assignments, and one day having to graduate from your Law School as an Alumni would be one of the biggest dreams of mine. I appreciate your Law School very much, and would do everything possible to be great Law Student.

It began when I was in my early teens when heading towards my freshman year of High School that I knew I had to make a important decision on my career path, because as all students know that after High School there is either working full time or heading to college. I knew that college would be my choice, because if you want to have a quality career then education would be one the ideal ways to get their. My first job came when I was in my early teens working for a summer job, I was in need of a job because my mother was a struggling parent with no father around, and any help that I can offer I knew would be vital for the family. In my early years growing up I knew like many kids in poverty that education and playing in sports or Hollywood was the way to get out of the struggling situation that we were in. I always wanted to play college basketball, though I never realized my dream because well my parents did not make enough so I had to during High School , and well working became my option instead of fulfilling my basketball dreams. A lot of the students though believed I should been a football star because I could run so fast, and I probably should of considered that as well. I wanted to play on the division 1 teams. 

Since I knew that having a basketball ball career was out of my reach because of finances and perhaps being able to dunk was somewhat something that would be considered. After realizing my dream of becoming a college basketball player, I decided to continue with my dream of standing for justice, that’s when I realized that I will get my education, and someday become an attorney. I had many different options of getting to college, but instead of going straight to college I had decided to join the United States Military. I had enlisted at a early age so that I help out and be part of a great military tradition by enlisting for several years full time service. I had went on to bootcamp for some weeks, going through drills and important training that they teach us for our service duties. Ever since I was a teen it was my goal to become a part of the Military because I like what it had to offer, it was a combination of many things, the travel, helping your country, offering education for training and money for school, and so many other great opportunities. I also wanted to serve my country to be in the capacity that was needed of me. 

During my time in the United States Military I had been deployed to Iraq for months,  where I traveled  also to Egypt, Italy, Greece, Dubai, and other places. During my time in the Military I assisted  in many different capacities, I had been apart of a team that would assist one for one of the highest officers in the military assisting the Admirals Barge Bow Hook, the barge belonged to the Admiral.  The team I was on a helped the Captain or Admiral in different situations that was needed of the team, and the fact that we also were on staff.

When I had completed my duties with the United States Military with Honorable Discharge, and several awards while being in the Military I had a goal in mind to work towards my College Degree & Law School. In the Military I was working on my Associate Degree when I had time to do it. While  the military I had looked into a lot of career options, I did a review of the JAG Attorneys in the Military which I found that if given the opportunity that I would consider working for in the Military after Law School as a member of the JAG Team. I got to understand a lot of things that Lawyers do in the Military because they were always around me, and because they worked for the Admiral and Captain. They would also assist their colleagues as well if they needed any legal help. I like what they did and something I find really important to become apart of.

A lot of the reasons why I want to go to Law School because of also those who came before me and stood for justice such as Martin Luther King Jr, Mahatma Gandhi, John F Kennedy, and many others. I look at them as they are people who I look up to in the legal field and for those who stood for equality & justice.

I have a Bachelor's degree in Bible Studies and a Second Bachelor's Degree in Organizational Management, both of these degrees I believe has helped to me think critically and helped to understand my community. My goal for obtaining a Law Degree from your school is to seek a concentration in either International Law, Constitutional Law, Criminal Law , Public Law Or Intellectual Property. In considering my passion for a concentration I would say that International Law and Human Rights, Constitutional Law, or International Criminal Law would be the idea pursuits that I would highly consider for becoming as an Attorney. All of these opportunities involving helping people in need, where I can help people on a large scale where I hope to travel to different countries helping people in legal matters, standing up for those who seek justice within their circumstances, and help give a voice to people. I would like to work for the United Nations, NGO, government agencies, Supreme Court, run for public office, write a book, become a Professor , and many ideas I have for obtaining a Law Degree. I would also consider obtaining a Law School Degree and Master's Degree.

 In my experience I have volunteered for salvation army, where I assisted in getting donations for them, I have experience with Microsoft office, I love all animals, and also I have passion for helping others. Other than being in the Military as a Veteran, I also have worked for Parks and Recreation during a seasonal crew member assignment after their was a storm in my state residence, also I have done two assignments for a Political campaign where I assisted in helping with getting voters to vote for a Mayor Candidate who owns & Helping someone become to become City Council.

I hope that even though my grades or gpa may not be as high as I would like it to be, I hope your Law School will consider me, it would be a dream come true if I get accepted at a prestigious Law School as yours and fulfill my goal of becoming one of the best Lawyers, Judges, Supreme Court, Professor, Author, JAG Military Lawyer, and many goals for a Law School Degree from your School. I would really like to see my dream come true. 

I know your Law School is very competitive, but I accept the opportunity that if your school offers me admission I would do everything possible to get great grades in your Law School. I will study as much as possible. If I get accepted by your Law School I would like to be apart of your Law School community, like joining any  Veterans opportunities at your school, extra curricular activities, volunteer services, I would look into volunteering abroad in helping to get experience in the field and within your state. Also I would look to be a great member to your Law School, also would help in volunteering on your schools campus as well, it would be an honor to help your Law School if you need my help, and I would really love to be apart of your Law School. 

 on: October 01, 2015, 07:36:13 PM 
Started by calgal27 - Last post by i VIII 🐍 π
Of course they do, doesn't change what I was trying to get at. I honestly didn't learn a single thing in bar prep that I didn't already know. Its just refresher. My point overall is that the best prep in the universe is like the best roof in the world, useless if its placed on top a pile of broken twigs.

 on: October 01, 2015, 04:43:32 PM 
Started by calgal27 - Last post by Citylaw
I assume most people even in "easy" states take a prep course. After spending that much time and money getting a J.D. selling a "bar-prep" course that each school recommends, because of course why would they tell you not to do everything you can to pass is a pretty easy market to sell to.

I personally feel like schools should pay for Bar-Bri or Kaplan and that would probably bring the costs down. It is a genius marketing scheme film Chemerinsky talking for a few hours and sell those lectures for $5,000 or so a pop per student.

 on: October 01, 2015, 03:33:53 PM 
Started by calgal27 - Last post by Maintain FL 350
Yeah, I know what you mean and I agree. Pass rates for ABA grads tend to be significantly higher, with a few exceptions. For example, we have a couple of Calbar accredited law schools whose pass rates are pretty much equivalent to T3/T4 ABA schools. Also, out of state ABA grads tend to have relatively low pass rates, even from respected schools.   

This is something I've wondered about:

In my graduating class, I think probably 95% of the class took a bar prep course. Maybe even 100%, I'm not sure. But in someplace like, say South Carolina or Arkansas where the pass rates are higher and the exam is shorter, do plenty of folks just study on their own? Or at this point does pretty much everyone at least take an online BARBRI course?

 on: September 30, 2015, 09:40:08 PM 
Started by calgal27 - Last post by i VIII 🐍 π
Not sure if that is true, but honestly most ABA grads could sit it with a 12 hour prep the week before and pass it IMHO.

Really??? Not in CA. Look at how many ABA grads who took BARBRI and other prep courses fail.
I agree that I was exaggerating a bit. But ABA pass rate is literally laps beyond non ABA. Granted some states are easier than others all together.

 on: September 30, 2015, 05:47:25 PM 
Started by calgal27 - Last post by Maintain FL 350
Not sure if that is true, but honestly most ABA grads could sit it with a 12 hour prep the week before and pass it IMHO.

Really??? Not in CA. Look at how many ABA grads who took BARBRI and other prep courses fail.

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