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Author Topic: New Member with questions  (Read 513 times)

AllisonKC

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New Member with questions
« on: June 07, 2005, 01:41:30 AM »
It's nice to see a whole group of people that are as obsessed with this subject as I am!  I took the LSAT this afternoon without studying very much.  What a mistake. That being said, I have a few questions.  First, is the reported score to law schools just the 120-180 combined score or do they receive a copy of each scored section?  I have looked for this answer on the boards and have not found it.

Second, my deceased father is an alumni of the law school I am applying to.  Shall I put this in my personal statement (my last name is different now) or will it backfire?  His firm is well-known in the area (even after his death) and several of his former law parters are still in practice.  One of the newest attorney's on staff (she never knew my father though) is a very active alumni at the university and I think she teaches there part-time.

Third (related to the previous question), should I ask one of my father's former law partners for a LOR?  I knew them fairly well growing up and still keep in contact, although very infrequently (weddings, funerals, etc.) but they do not know me all that well now. I am employed full-time (social worker) and my boss is writing me a great LOR.  My other LOR is from the Dean of the School of Social Work where I graduated from about 3 years ago.  I only need 2 LOR's, by the way.  I was not planning to ask one of them but others have told me I am crazy not to. However, these people have never applied to law school or done any research on the admissions process, which it appears most people on these boards have.

I am just concerned because I think it might appear as if I am entitled.  My personal statement is based on having to work my way through college and graduate school and this might appear less genuine when I also let them know my dad was a wealthy attorney.  I just don't think I have enough space in my PS to get the whole story in!

I don't know what my LSAT score will be except that it will not be below 135 0r over 160.  ??? I can be reasonably sure of this!  Great GPA, grad with honors, top 10%, balh, blah, like most law school hopefuls.  Any advice would be appreciated. 


Thanks, Allison

bruin

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Re: New Member with questions
« Reply #1 on: June 07, 2005, 02:07:23 AM »
First off, welcome to the board Allison!

LSAC only reports your overall LSAT score (120-180).

I don't think you should put your dad-alumni into your personal statement, unless it for some reason flows from your intended topic. You might want to try talking to the active alumni/professor, or have one of the partners that knows you talk to her about you. It couldn't hurt.

I don't think an LOR from one of these partners will help; A good LOR comes from someone who knows you and your work/abilities well. 2 LOR's are enough; if there is another professor who could write one, that would be great, but not necessary.
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Re: New Member with questions
« Reply #2 on: June 07, 2005, 08:31:11 AM »
If you discuss how your father's work inspired you to follow a career in law, social justice etc. then bring up his name.  Also, the third letter couldn't hurt. 

loulielawyer

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Re: New Member with questions
« Reply #3 on: June 07, 2005, 10:06:31 AM »
I read a lot about the do's and don'ts of personal statements before I wrote mine and the authors always caution against the "I come from a long line of lawyers"  or the "my parent was a lawyer and I want to carry on the legacy".  My advice to you is to try your hardest to analyze the life experiences you have had thus far that are unique to you.  Or more specifically, the reactions you have had to these experiences as a unique individual. 

It sounds to me that you have a wide variety of experience that you can draw from.  You have lost a parent and you have dealt with this unbelievable loss and committed your life to helping others through social work.  Did your father instill these values through his own legal work?  How did he influence you before he passed away?  How does his influence connect to the person you are today (a social worker with a desire to continue helping others through the legal profession perhaps?) I am speculating here and maybe your Dad did not influence this decision but I suspect he might have.  Writing your statement from the heart based on the story that is yours and no one elses is what admissions committees are looking for.  It breaks the monotony for them and makes your application stand out.

I think a 3rd LOR from a lawyer may be a nice addition to 2 strong academic references because it will show that someone who is established in the legal profession can see that you have the attributes that will make you a successful lawyer.  Admissions committees are looking for indicators that you have what it takes to suceed in law school. Most schools accept 3 letters and while this is no substitute for an academic letter you can add it as the 3rd priority letter in you LSAC file.

Good Luck! I hope everything works out for you!

Robespierre

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Re: New Member with questions
« Reply #4 on: June 07, 2005, 10:22:08 AM »
I have no inside info, but I would definitely find a way to let them know your father was an alum (if the app doesn't already solicit this fact).  Children of alums are more likely than others to become big boosters of the school, contribute money, and employ the school's grads.  The adcomms know this and might give you a small boost for it.  Do it tastefully, though.
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risingMC

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Re: New Member with questions
« Reply #5 on: June 07, 2005, 11:05:05 AM »
Ditto what everyone else said. If you did absolutely no prep on the LSAT, though, I'd consider cancelling it. You can easily increase your score by 10 points (possibly more) by just a little prep. You still have the Oct exam ...

jacy85

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Re: New Member with questions
« Reply #6 on: June 07, 2005, 11:24:13 AM »
I second what a lot of other people are saying.

And if you really think you didn't do as well as you could have on the lsat, and you didn't really prep at all, cancel your score.  Don't wait for a crap score to come in.  You'll regret it more than anything else when it comes to law school.  Retake in October, get the Powerscore LR and LG bibles, and lots of practice tests.

Not prepping can be a diaster for most people.  There are those rare individuals that can just walk in, having not seen an lsat and get a great score.  Odds of you (or me, or the kid sitting next to you during the lsat) being one of these rare test takers probably aren't good.

AllisonKC

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Re: New Member with questions
« Reply #7 on: June 07, 2005, 03:57:32 PM »
Thanks so much for the advice, it has really been helpful.  I had not considered including my dad was an alumni b/c I just thought it would sound kind of cheesy and beggarish.  Plus, what if he happened to have pissed off someone on the adcomm?  Very possible since he practiced for many years and made a lot of people very angry, LOL:)  Plus, he only went for 1 semester and graduated, he spent most of his law school career at Duke so they might not consider him a real alumni, I suppose.

I think I did OK on the RC, the 2 logic sections, & the writing-- it was the games section that really threw me for a loop. Is that a skill that is inherent or can it be taught?  I suppose I could pay for a class but I would rather not.  Is it a bad idea to just take it again and let the school see both scores? 

The school I am applying to is the University of Missouri-KC, I am not even sure how UMKC is ranked but considering my plans, it does not matter. They have a part-time day program and it's close by.  The average LSAT score is just 153-155 and GPA is about 3.4 or something. UMKC states they consider "all scores" but what exactly this means, I am not sure.  If I were planning to apply to a higher ranked school I would have to raise my score (at least I think) just to get the envelope opened!  Any opinions would be great. 

Thanks, Allison

jacy85

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Re: New Member with questions
« Reply #8 on: June 07, 2005, 05:06:52 PM »
Games are the most improvable section of them all.

Hit the LSAT board for a bunch of recommendations for the Powerscore Logic Games Bible.  I used it when I studied, and it was one of the best things I spent money on!

Good luck no matter what you plan on doing with your score, and also best of luck getting through the application season!!