2010 Graduate Poli Sci
URM - mom from sierra leone, west africa/ dad jamaican with portugese descent (never met father)
will be first college grad in family.
3.0-3.1 GPA at graduation if I maintain current pace of straight A's. (Upward Trend-two straight years of all A's. 0.73 GPA after freshman year)
167 LSAT - Shooting for 171-172 on retake
Compelling Personal Statement and LOR's. Former gang member/been stabbed in torsow/ scars to prove it. Not proud of it, just stating the facts. Left gang and decided to attend college at 22 yrs. old after best friend was sentenced to 18 years in prison (fed time-no parole). REALLY turned my life around
Started a youth mentorship program here in Atlanta....My Brother's Keeper which links underprivileged black males with black male college students.
I'm shooting for T-14. HYS and other top of the heap schools etc.
What are my chances?
Though this topic is old, I think that it might be relevant to a number of BALS (Black Aspiring Law Students).
First, I'd say it is really great that you turned your life around. Turning your life around and getting out of the gang life probably saved your life or kept you out of prison.
Second, I think that your admission to the top law schools will depend on the execution of your application. I think a pretty impressive personal statement would be comparing your story to your friend who is behind bars for 18 years. You have to write it a certain way to let the adcomms know that you've grown from that gang life and that it is behind you.
Now I think you'll get into a great law school, but being realistic, know that there are others in similar situations or worse. For example, I went to a HYS and met some former gang members. I also met some kids who spent time in prison doing time. They changed their lives around too...
but they were able to go to college at get 3.8 GPAs + 165+ LSATs. I know two particular people with this sort of profile. And let's be real, HYS is only going to accept maybe 1 or 2 people with such a profile every other admission cycle so the competition is FIERCE even with your story.
So you have to execute your application. Have to have perfect essays, GREAT recommendations, your LSAT is a little low, but shouldn't be too big a deal, and have an addendum discussing the challenges of adjusting to academic life from the street life and then talk about your grade trend. You might also want to consider penning a statement of purpose so ADCOMMS know why you want to go to law school. Saying you one day want to be a federal prosecutor might be particularly powerful given you're Black and led a street life at one point.