Law School Discussion

Need advice

Need advice
« on: October 31, 2008, 09:18:43 PM »
Allright I need some advice guys/gals. Any help would be greatly appreciated.
I'm 27 and going back to school to finish my degree (undergrad). The last time I was enrolled in college was 2002 and I had a 3.4 GPA. I'm older and more mature now (wife, family etc) and know that I will achieve a 4.0 for the remaining 27 credits I need. I would like to go to a good law school in the NYC area.
I can only get my GPA so high due to my previous college grades and I know I will probably not blow anyone away with my LSAT score (I think I'll do well but I know my limits).
I have been working full time since I was 18 years old in finance and now law enforcement. Will my work experience and dedication to public service help me in getting into a good law scool? Do law schools empathize with students like myself who took time off from college "grew up" and really hit the books when they went back?

Re: Need advice
« Reply #1 on: November 02, 2008, 11:34:43 AM »
My opinion only.

When applying, stress your higher grades in your more recent time in university.  Hope that adcoms will look favorably upon it. 

Start studying for the LSAT now.  It's just a matter of mastering three skills (games, reading, logic).  Of those, it's a matter of mastering the sub-components.  Reading questions are almost always one of six different question types.  Learn them.  Get use to the way the answers are commonly worded.  Also, there's only a handfull of game types.  Get the previous tests and do them all.  Wait a few months, then do them again (plan to do this up front, so make photocopies of the tests so you don't ruin the originals).  Then do them a third time separated by a few months.  Learn the different types of questions on the Logical Reasoning section.  Go to the wikipedia page that lists all the logical fallacies and learn them, and learn to recognize them.  This is a good life skill to have regardless of going into law or taking the LSAT. 

You have one to two years, so start now.  I am a firm believer the LSAT is a skill like any other that can be improved dramatically by anyone of reasonable intelligence if they work hard enough at it. 

A high LSAT will help offset a poor GPA.  Depending on your final set of numbers, you may or may not have difficulty getting into a top school.  But it's not impossible. 

NYC is also a tough market.  Will you be going full time or part time?  You've got to consider the cost of the school you get in, and how long you will be going.  Part time, expect a law degree to take you five years, and that's with three summers of classes.  And will you be able to maintain good grades while working full time and taking three classes?  If you're at a T2 school, staying in the top 20% is crucial for getting one of those 150,000/yr jobs out of school.  Otherwise, it's tough to pay off a $100,000 loan on a $60,000/yr job.  While you have 6 years work experience and a family to raise, the other fresh graduates may not and may be better suited to take on a situation like that. 


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Re: Need advice
« Reply #2 on: March 26, 2009, 05:40:30 PM »
contrarian is right - study your but off for the LSAT and you'd be surprised what you can do


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Re: Need advice
« Reply #3 on: March 26, 2009, 05:47:00 PM »
No doubt it will give you a boost, especially with your personal statement. But without knowing what your LSAT scores are, you can really know too much about your prospect. You have a good gpa and a good personal story, which will get you over the hump against those with similar numbers. So it depends on your LSAT score what range of "similar numbers" you are working with. Until you get your LSAT scores back, you have no way of knowing where you stand!!!

Get that 4.0 you mentioned and do your best on the Lsat, then you can go from there!!

Good luck!!