Law School Discussion

Any chance of law school?

Any chance of law school?
« on: June 26, 2008, 09:09:11 PM »
Hello everyone.

First of all, I am not interested in getting into a top tier school. I'm looking at Vermont Law, Roger Williams, and Western New England. I'd like to go into public interest law so not looking to join a major firm or anything.

I started off college at a community college where I had a 4.0 GPA for my freshman year, then transferred to a university where I ended up partying too much and being placed on "academic probation". My GPA was absolutely horrible. I then took some time off and worked abroad for a year and went back to school to complete my junior and senior years at another university where I have a 4.0. I also have been working at a legal clinic for the past year.

I am currently studying for the LSAT and will take it in October. Not sure how I'm going to do as I don't do so hot on standardized tests. I'm not expecting myself to do over 160.

Question is- should I throw all hopes of going to law school with my undergrad record? I know it isn't possible for me to pull off some LSAT miracle!


Re: Any chance of law school?
« Reply #1 on: June 26, 2008, 09:23:57 PM »
How long is 'took some time off'? 6 months? 2 years? If you can show that your lousy grades were a result of 'youthful misadventure' and argue that your current grades are much more indicative of the mature adult you've grown into, then your application cycle will probably turn out alot better than your LSAC GPA would indicate.
Good luck,

PS: From my experience, if your lousy grades are from a while back and your current grades are all A's, the AdCom's will look more at your grade trend than your overall GPA. My degree GPA was a 3.98 while my LSAC GPA was a 2.92 due to some really old, REALLY BAD grades, but I got into the 2 schools I applied to with $$.
St. John's University School of Law '11
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Re: Any chance of law school?
« Reply #2 on: June 26, 2008, 09:27:26 PM »
You'll do fine. I had one and a half terrible years, left for a cery long time and came back to finish. Ended up with a 3.48 LDAS GPA and a degree GPA of 3.98. 158 LSAT.

Got into some Tier 1's and starting in the fall. I am public interest oriented as well.

If you really work hard on the LSAT, you might get some money as well.

Good luck!

Re: Any chance of law school?
« Reply #3 on: June 26, 2008, 10:55:14 PM »
Don't give up hope! I think you're in decent shape...

I'm curious what your overall LSDAS GPA will look like; from the sound of it, you had three years at 4.0 and one (?) year of crap grades, so you're at least a 3.0, likely (a little) better, right? So that's something.

If LSN is to be believed, people with 3.0s are getting into your target schools with 150-160 or less... granted, the LSN sample size for those schools is incredibly small. The LSAC calculator concurs, though: a 3.0/155 candidate is quite likely to get in.

Now it's possible that you didn't say, or I misinterpreted, something that would change that. If your GPA is much less than 3.0, or if "academic probation" means dishonesty as opposed to flunking out, then you might have issues -- but, with those target schools, I think you're in good shape.

That said, a couple thoughts:

--What do you mean "public interest"? Are you talking about criminal defense or prosecution type stuff, or like "I want to work for the ACLU"? The latter type of job would be pretty competitive, on par with major firms. Don't assume public interest = easy to get.

--You seem awfully self-defeating w/r/t the LSAT. I feel like (in my experience) a lot of people are so ready to say "I don't test well" that they end up blowing off prep, having lots of anxiety, and --gasp!-- fail to do well. Now, it looks like you're not going to need to ace the thing to reach your goals, but I really urge you to take as positive an attitude as possible, for two reasons: First, if you go in thinking your cap is a 160, you probably end up in the low 150s, and while that might be enough, why add risk? Second, the better you do, the more likely it is that you will get scholarships, which means you can take home a lot more of your (likely meager) public interest paycheck. A few more correct multiple choice questions on one exam could mean thousands of dollars... not the best system, perhaps, but the one we've got, so make it work for you.

Good luck!
UVA Law Class of 2011