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Author Topic: Undergrad school important in law school admissions?  (Read 645 times)

Anastasia158

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Undergrad school important in law school admissions?
« on: July 17, 2004, 02:38:56 AM »
How important is the college you attend for undergrade education when it comes to law school admissions? Specifically  at top school such as Stanford, Harvard or Yale? I am still in high school, but suppose I don't attend the highest caliber of institution, lets say its a UC like Santa Cruz or Davis, will I still have a chance at one of those schools? (btw, I'm planning n majoring in political science or sociology. is one of those a good major to prepare me for law school?)

 I have heard in the past many times that highly selective law schools generally will take into account the college u went too,, and weight it as important as your grades and LSAT score. Does that have any truth to it whatsoever?

BTW, what else do these schools look for in the JD law students the admit? Obviously good grades, good LSAT scores, but do they put much emphasis on volunteer work or spiffy internships? 


Anastasia158

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Re: Undergrad school important in law school admissions?
« Reply #1 on: July 17, 2004, 02:42:47 AM »
 Sorry I double posted :( my computer malfunctioned and froze.. not my fault! lol

EDIT: triple posted! omg...

elo

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Re: Undergrad school important in law school admissions?
« Reply #2 on: July 17, 2004, 03:18:12 AM »
I'm not in admissions, but I speak with admissions people from time to time. My view, which is certainly not the last word on this subject, is that the school makes a difference, but only in how grades are interpreted. That is to say that a 3.8 from a Yale or Columbia will be read differently from a 3.8 from Oklahoma State (with no offense intended towards Oklahoma State). I don't think, however, that admissions offices split hairs on this point. In other words, while it routinely is acknowledged that some schools are better and more difficult than others, such a calculation cannot be made consistently across all undergraduate schools and majors, which themselves vary in terms of difficulty and relevance.

My advice, then, becomes similar to my advice for choosing law schools. If the schools are very different, then choose the best one. Between schools that are relatively closely ranked, however, then choose the one that best meets your particular needs. That's because the rankings are generally, but not specifically, accurate, and because they include only a limited amount of information. For an undergraduate school, you have a much broader range of choice, but there are limits.

I'm an East Coast person, so I can't comment on the UC schools. Still, my impression is that the particular school matters most when comparing like grades between unlike schools, or when the competition for law school is particularly tight at approximately the GPA/LSAT point at which you fall. Excel at your school and you stand a better chance of avoiding the issue of your particular school choice.

Either of those majors would be fine. Choose your major, though, according to your own interests and not by trying to look a certain way to law school admissions. Lawyers come from a very wide range of undergraduate majors. I've been told more than once by admissions people that *music* majors are the most likely to excel in law school! In any law school, though, you would see almost every possible major represented. Do what you love and make sure you get top grades for the schools you mentioned.

elo