Law School Discussion

166, 4.0 -- Chances

166, 4.0 -- Chances
« on: June 25, 2009, 11:24:45 PM »
I got my June retake score back today, and it was a 166 just like last October. Even though my PT average was 172 (prior to both writings), I'm not taking this goddamn test again. Anyway, here's the breakdown:

LSAT:  166
GPA:  4.0
UG:  bad third-tier state university
URM:  Not one, but I have a diversity statement about growing up very poor in an abusive household

Plenty of softs:  graduating with triple honours (both majors + general studies, including two theses); undergraduate symposium; resident advisor three years for honours college hall; note-taker for disabled students; grade grievance committee representative; pre-law society; various environmental/animal welfare volunteer work; solid part- and full-time work experience during summers.

My area of interest is international law with a focus on human rights, democracy and labour. I know, jobs for that don't exist, but that's not relevant to me right now. I know Cornell and Virginia have decent courses of study for international law, and those are really the only schools I have even a remote shot at within the T14.

I've checked LSN, Chiashu, etc but would like to hear the opinions of fellow LSDers.

Thanks.

Re: 166, 4.0 -- Chances
« Reply #1 on: June 26, 2009, 08:32:04 AM »
Ah, that's rough.  It's frustrating to put so much effort into a test only to perform the exact same, especially when your GPA is so awesome.

Unfortunately, your excellent softs really don't matter all that much for most places, although you should consider throwing in an app at UMich, where you may also have a decent chance.  I say this so often that I sound like a broken record, but Mich has an excellent reputation for considering the whole candidate, apart from their LSAT (which is why they are not ranked higher).  You may also look at NU or GULC (although I think GULC prefers LSAT to GPA).  If I were you, I'd also throw in an app to Boalt (they love GPAs) even though the LSAT makes it a longshot.

What other advice/opinions were you looking for?  If you weren't insistent on not taking the test again, I'd tell you "Third time's a charm..."

Re: 166, 4.0 -- Chances
« Reply #2 on: June 30, 2009, 01:37:39 PM »
I had the same stats and made it into UVA.

If you can't get into UVA or Cornell, I think you would be a shoe-in at Vanderbilt, which is on par with both of those schools.

Re: 166, 4.0 -- Chances
« Reply #3 on: June 30, 2009, 01:39:11 PM »
I'd also throw in an app to Boalt (they love GPAs) even though the LSAT makes it a longshot.

Boalt is a waste of money with these stats unless you are a CA resident, and then you only barely stand a chance.

Re: 166, 4.0 -- Chances
« Reply #4 on: June 30, 2009, 02:11:52 PM »
I'd also throw in an app to Boalt (they love GPAs) even though the LSAT makes it a longshot.

Boalt is a waste of money with these stats unless you are a CA resident, and then you only barely stand a chance.

Which is probably the definition of "longshot."

goaliechica

  • *****
  • 6178
  • It's only forever - not long at all.
    • View Profile
Re: 166, 4.0 -- Chances
« Reply #5 on: July 01, 2009, 12:48:26 AM »
I'd also throw in an app to Boalt (they love GPAs) even though the LSAT makes it a longshot.

Boalt is a waste of money with these stats unless you are a CA resident, and then you only barely stand a chance.

Which is probably the definition of "longshot."

I actually don't think OP is so much of a longshot at Boalt. Like Michigan, Boalt loves folks with interesting life stories and softs and is even more of a sucker for uber-high GPAs. OP, I actually think you sound like exactly the sort of candidate who gets into Boalt, especially if you really sell it in your essays.

Good luck! I'm sure the identical retake was frustrating, but I think you have a very solid shot at a number of T-14's, especially if you're willing to ride some waitlists. Just anecdotally, it seems that people with super-high GPAs and solid LSATs often get pulled off of certain waitlists once schools realize their LSAT stats are taken care of, and they might like to bolster their GPA numbers. I'm of the opinion that your numbers are the type that will actually benefit from your interesting softs. You have a GPA that a lot of schools will want, and your LSAT is solid. You are really right on the border for a lot of schools, and sounding like an interesting person may actually be enough to tip the balance in your favor. I think your essays will really be what makes or breaks your cycle. Just my two cents!

Re: 166, 4.0 -- Chances
« Reply #6 on: July 01, 2009, 01:44:15 AM »
Thanks, everyone, for the responses. It looks like I'll be applying to GWU, GULC, Cornell, UVA, UMich, Berkeley and NYU. No shot at NYU but I feel the need to apply there.

Goaliechica:  Exactly what aspect or characteristic would you recommend playing up in my essays? Also, I noticed that Berkeley's application asks for the typical LoRs, PS, etc, and then has a "socioeconomic diversity questionnaire" and encourages applicants to submit any other essays they feel will help give the admissions committee some idea of who they are. I will submit my diversity statement, but is a "Why Berkeley?" essay focusing on UCB's committment to public service and so on be something which would give a boost, or would time be better spent writing on something else?

Any other advice would be great!

Re: 166, 4.0 -- Chances
« Reply #7 on: July 01, 2009, 09:38:50 PM »
Boalt is the first school that comes to mind.  I think you should apply to at least 5 out of the top 14-7.  Definately include Duke and Cornell. 

Re: 166, 4.0 -- Chances
« Reply #8 on: July 01, 2009, 10:36:17 PM »
Boalt loves me some me.