Law School Discussion

Academic Probation/ Suspension-- HELP

06hopeful

Academic Probation/ Suspension-- HELP
« on: August 06, 2005, 10:03:25 AM »
I was a hardcore screw-up in the first half of my college career.  Academic probation once, and I was eventually suspended (with a 1.8 ).  The second half was pretty good, and I was able to get it up to a 2.6. 

OF COURSE, an addendum is in order. But, I am wondering if anyone knows the implications of academic suspension on getting a Dean's Certification (whose purpose, as I understand it, is so certify that you've never been on probation/suspension).

Also, are there any schools that WILL NOT ACCEPT someone who has been suspended, under any circumstances.  And will this affect my ability to sit for the bar later?

Thanks, guys.

jhare

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Re: Academic Probation/ Suspension-- HELP
« Reply #1 on: August 06, 2005, 11:04:20 AM »
My situtation is similar - I had to withdraw with a 1.9 after freshman year - and the dean is going to 'explain' the situation to the schools. I imagine he does that on the dean letter forms also.

I have no idea if there are schools that will not take you if you've been suspended. I'm guessing there probably are.

theunderdog

Re: Academic Probation/ Suspension-- HELP
« Reply #2 on: August 06, 2005, 11:28:40 AM »
Rock the LSAT.  That is the best "cure-all" solution to your situation.  Some schools will be hard-pressed to ignore you if you have an impressive score.

Re: Academic Probation/ Suspension-- HELP
« Reply #3 on: August 06, 2005, 08:20:01 PM »
i had a similar but more spotty situation - i think i was actually on probation twice, and not two semesters in a row. i've been out of school for quite some time and never thought my past would come back to haunt me. i ended up calling the dean's office at my undergrad and talked to a super nice dean who not only said the certification was no problem but that she'd write a rec for me based on my blah blah blah. i don't think the rec did much good because she didn't know me well, but i'm sure it didn't look bad to have it coming from the school where i screwed up so much.

long story, but just meant to say call the dean's office, explain your situation and see what they have to say. chances are they'll want to help you out.

Denny Crane

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Re: Academic Probation/ Suspension-- HELP
« Reply #4 on: August 06, 2005, 08:44:02 PM »
I was a hardcore screw-up in the first half of my college career.  Academic probation once, and I was eventually suspended (with a 1.8 ).  The second half was pretty good, and I was able to get it up to a 2.6. 

OF COURSE, an addendum is in order. But, I am wondering if anyone knows the implications of academic suspension on getting a Dean's Certification (whose purpose, as I understand it, is so certify that you've never been on probation/suspension).

Also, are there any schools that WILL NOT ACCEPT someone who has been suspended, under any circumstances.  And will this affect my ability to sit for the bar later?

Thanks, guys.

The probation may affect your ability to get the Dean's certification.  From what I understand, Dean's letters are mostly restricted to students who have been put on probably for non-academic violations such as assault or rape, or for students accused of plagiarism.  I do not believe that having failed classes before will hinder your chances of getting Dean's certification.  If you were suspended for any of these violations, then yes, you will probably have great difficulty getting certification.

Also, the probation will not hinder your chances for admission to the bar, although if your suspension was for non-academic reasons, then depending on the circumstances, it may hurt your chances of getting admitted to the bar.  Without more information it's hard to tell.  Could you give more specifics?

06hopeful

Re: Academic Probation/ Suspension-- HELP
« Reply #5 on: August 06, 2005, 11:41:00 PM »
I was suspended for having a semester gpa of about .3 or something, which took my cumulative to about a 1.8 .  I don't have anything horrible like plagiarism or cheating, but I am starting to get pretty discouraged about the whole process.  :(  It appears that second chances are few and far between, and my past (of which I am removed by about 3.5 years) will never be behind me...

Denny Crane

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Re: Academic Probation/ Suspension-- HELP
« Reply #6 on: August 07, 2005, 01:47:43 PM »
I was suspended for having a semester gpa of about .3 or something, which took my cumulative to about a 1.8 .  I don't have anything horrible like plagiarism or cheating, but I am starting to get pretty discouraged about the whole process.  :(  It appears that second chances are few and far between, and my past (of which I am removed by about 3.5 years) will never be behind me...

I think most people would be discouraged in your situation, however you're far from hopeless.  Certainly, you'll need an addendum, and if you can explain why you had such a bad semester, adcomms may be willing to look away a little (they won't forget about your GPA, but they might look closer at other factors, namely your LSAT and what you've been doing since graduation).  Try not to be defeated by your past.  It might slap you around a few times during the application process, but you have a chance at a lot of schools.  You're going to want to emphasize your work experience.  Make that the focus of your application, and I think you will be pleasantly surprised.  Good luck.

Re: Academic Probation/ Suspension-- HELP
« Reply #7 on: August 07, 2005, 09:37:54 PM »
I was suspended for having a semester gpa of about .3 or something, which took my cumulative to about a 1.8 .  I don't have anything horrible like plagiarism or cheating, but I am starting to get pretty discouraged about the whole process.  :(  It appears that second chances are few and far between, and my past (of which I am removed by about 3.5 years) will never be behind me...

I think most people would be discouraged in your situation, however you're far from hopeless.  Certainly, you'll need an addendum, and if you can explain why you had such a bad semester, adcomms may be willing to look away a little (they won't forget about your GPA, but they might look closer at other factors, namely your LSAT and what you've been doing since graduation).  Try not to be defeated by your past.  It might slap you around a few times during the application process, but you have a chance at a lot of schools.  You're going to want to emphasize your work experience.  Make that the focus of your application, and I think you will be pleasantly surprised.  Good luck.


I can certainly relate to you. My first semester freshman year, I was the absolute and complete definition of a @#!*-up slacker. I had a 0.25 g.p.a. I simply nenver studied, never went to class, and never did anything remotley related to school. The best way to downplay that horrible start is to do IMHO a couple of things; First, its necessary to write a short and concise addendum addressing the fuckup and indicating that the problem is in the past. Second, get a high LSAT. You cannot underestimate how much a high LSAT score compensates for a low g.p.a  Third, do well in school to get your g.p.a up. That shows schools that you can do well in your courses and that maybe that screw-up semester is an isolated incident. I started off as a total screw-up but thankfully got my act together and graduated with a 3.39 overall college g.p.a. BTW, your 0.3 g.p.a in that specific semester as far as I have heard from other message boards will not necessarily hurt you. Most likely, it hurts you only in the sense that it brings down your overall g.p.a. Good luck.

HippieLawChick

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Re: Academic Probation/ Suspension-- HELP
« Reply #8 on: August 07, 2005, 10:41:36 PM »
I was on academic probation after being assaulted (didn't go to two finals and was too dumb to contact profs until too late), and I had literally no problem whatsoever getting my dean's certification. 

The certification will state the probation/suspension, but the purpose is to show you are in good standing NOW.

Call your school today...I am sure you will find that it's a non-issue.

Re: Academic Probation/ Suspension-- HELP
« Reply #9 on: August 08, 2005, 05:17:36 PM »
I had a few things go wrong my sophomore year (won't go into that) and was placed on Academic Probation and then was not allowed to return for one year, but the Dean broke policy and let me back in a semester early.  I only missed one semester.  Do I need a Dean Certification?  I never heard of it.  I did graduate a couple years ago.  This was at the University of Wisconsin - Go Bucky!  Any info would be much appreciated!!