Law School Discussion

Transferring after first year...

ktcarlin

Re: Transferring after first year...
« Reply #10 on: June 28, 2005, 12:35:33 PM »
So what would anyone give me with 3.6 and 150.  I am a non-traditional student, 3 kids, stopped my schooling for 2 years to serve mission for church, military, returning from Iraq just recently...

You're applying for the first time, or as a transfer? 

First Timer...

Re: Transferring after first year...
« Reply #11 on: June 28, 2005, 12:56:37 PM »
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/transferapps/

join this group, then click on the database tab on the left.  it's got a list of transfer applicants, and how they fared.

Excellent link. One stat I didn't notice on the database, however, was scholarship money. If you are in the top 1 or 2% at your lower ranked school & transfer to a very high ranked school (like a T14), is it uncommon to get scholarship money? Do transfer students usually only get acceptances without any scholarship offers? I'm definitely not counting my chickens before they hatch, but I'd always be curious as to schools' policies are about transfer acceptances.

Re: Transferring after first year...
« Reply #12 on: June 28, 2005, 05:08:48 PM »
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/transferapps/

join this group, then click on the database tab on the left.  it's got a list of transfer applicants, and how they fared.

Excellent link. One stat I didn't notice on the database, however, was scholarship money. If you are in the top 1 or 2% at your lower ranked school & transfer to a very high ranked school (like a T14), is it uncommon to get scholarship money? Do transfer students usually only get acceptances without any scholarship offers? I'm definitely not counting my chickens before they hatch, but I'd always be curious as to schools' policies are about transfer acceptances.

To my knowledge no school will give scholarship money to transfer students. This isn't to say that it doesn't happen, but if it does I'm sure it's exceedingly rare.

Re: Transferring after first year...
« Reply #13 on: July 02, 2005, 04:33:13 PM »
I just finished my first year, and I am transferring to a top 20 school. I have done a lot of research on transferring and have talked to other people who have transferred. Basically, the major mark one should try to hit to transfer is top 10-15% in your class. Many schools will require top 10%, and unfortunately, the lower ranked your school is, the higher the school will want you to be ranked. Some schools have very large transfer classes, like Georgetown, NYU, Columbia; however, these schools also receive many applications for those spots. Other schools only fill the class according to how many people drop out from the previous year.

There is no GPA cutoff because every school has a different curve. Thus, schools focus on your rank.

My main advice to you is to work as hard as you can. Many people will tell you not to go to a school with the intent to transfer because making top 10% is incredibly difficult, and you will likely be let down in the end. I went to my Tier 2 this year with the intent to transfer from Day 1. I still got involved in the school and made friends and whatnot, but I made the work my main priority, had a certain school in mind as my goal, and I reached that goal. Having a goal like that was a HUGE incentive when I felt like giving up (I also got involved to bulk my transfer resume and make sure I made connections in case I had to stay at my school). Make sure you go to a school you will like and you can handle being at for 3 years, but also use transferring as an incentive to be at the top of that school. Good luck.

Re: Transferring after first year...
« Reply #14 on: July 02, 2005, 11:44:58 PM »
I just finished my first year, and I am transferring to a top 20 school. I have done a lot of research on transferring and have talked to other people who have transferred. Basically, the major mark one should try to hit to transfer is top 10-15% in your class. Many schools will require top 10%, and unfortunately, the lower ranked your school is, the higher the school will want you to be ranked. Some schools have very large transfer classes, like Georgetown, NYU, Columbia; however, these schools also receive many applications for those spots. Other schools only fill the class according to how many people drop out from the previous year.

There is no GPA cutoff because every school has a different curve. Thus, schools focus on your rank.

My main advice to you is to work as hard as you can. Many people will tell you not to go to a school with the intent to transfer because making top 10% is incredibly difficult, and you will likely be let down in the end. I went to my Tier 2 this year with the intent to transfer from Day 1. I still got involved in the school and made friends and whatnot, but I made the work my main priority, had a certain school in mind as my goal, and I reached that goal. Having a goal like that was a HUGE incentive when I felt like giving up (I also got involved to bulk my transfer resume and make sure I made connections in case I had to stay at my school). Make sure you go to a school you will like and you can handle being at for 3 years, but also use transferring as an incentive to be at the top of that school. Good luck.

Good post. In general, if you had no shot of getting into a school as a regular admit, then unless you made Law Review at your "safety school," you're probably not going to transfer there. If you do make Law Review (top 10% or so), then you can probably transfer up to a much more highly ranked school, but if you want to crack the top 15 or so, you better have had a shot of being admitted as a regular admit but just failed to make the cut. NYU can fill up its transfer class with just those who they denied but strongly considered, for example.

Re: Transferring after first year...
« Reply #15 on: July 04, 2005, 02:44:39 PM »
Good post. In general, if you had no shot of getting into a school as a regular admit, then unless you made Law Review at your "safety school," you're probably not going to transfer there. If you do make Law Review (top 10% or so), then you can probably transfer up to a much more highly ranked school, but if you want to crack the top 15 or so, you better have had a shot of being admitted as a regular admit but just failed to make the cut. NYU can fill up its transfer class with just those who they denied but strongly considered, for example.

I don't know if I entirely agree with the law review part, but I do agree with the top 10% part. The thing about many schools, even T14, is that when they consider your transfer application, they don't put the same (and some put very little) emphasis on your LSAT and UG GPA. First of all, your prior numbers don't affect them because they won't be placed in their stats for US News. Secondly, the point of the LSAT is to determine how one will do first year. If one does poorly on the LSAT, but then makes top 10% of his or her class, the school no longer needs an LSAT score to determine one's law school performance.

That said, I did not do as well as I wanted on my LSAT. I didn't bomb it, but I didn't do top 15 Law school performance. My GPA, however, was better than even many top 15 law schools. I made the top of my law school class, and have already been admitted to a top 15 school. I didn't even try out for the journal at my first law school (which is why I disagree with the journal portion of the post) because I already knew I was admitted by the time the journal competition started. Beyond that, some schools don't notify people of journal results (like my old school) until well after transfer applications should be in to your schools.

My point? I don't think it matters whether or not you could've gotten into the school the first time around. With a school like Harvard, it does, but with most others, it doesn't. Yes, it is competitive at some top schools, and perhaps they consider your past scores (and also, as I think Bosco was saying, schools like NYU and CLS have tons of applicants who got waitlisted last year but still want to transfer, even if they are already at top schools - making those schools even more competitive). But, in the end it comes down to your rank at your new school. If you get onto a journal before your apps are due or in complete, then definitely tell the school this, but in my case, such information was not necessary. However, if what Bosco meant by journal was that you basically have to be top 10% (which is normally an invite spot or at least very good indicator that one will be on journal) then I agree.

Anyone who is more curious about transferring should check out the Transfer Board on Yahoo. There are statistics of plenty of people who lacked numbers to get into their dream schools, but ended up in the top of their classes in law school and are now heading to those schools.