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Author Topic: To Super Senior or not to Super Senior  (Read 1922 times)

Simchamo

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To Super Senior or not to Super Senior
« on: May 06, 2010, 03:20:45 PM »
Hello all,

I am currently a junior honors student at a top tier public university. I transferred from a private school with a bad 3.05 gpa after two years and 60 credits. I am now getting pretty consistent A's  and this last year I have maintained a 3.85 gpa. All told, if I continue on this trend, I can realistically expect to graduate with a 3.6 but I really would like a shot at a t10 school. So I'm thinking about an extra semester or two to get that number up to a 3.7. This would mean I would graduate with a somewhat ridiculously large number of credits (185-200.) My lsats will be well in the range of those schools. For the sake of advice assume my lsat will be 170+ My question is essentially, will a t10 school discriminate against me either because I have a huge number of credits or because I am a super senior?   

Thane Messinger

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Re: To Super Senior or not to Super Senior
« Reply #1 on: May 08, 2010, 09:51:12 PM »
I am currently a junior honors student at a top tier public university. I transferred from a private school with a bad 3.05 gpa after two years and 60 credits. I am now getting pretty consistent A's  and this last year I have maintained a 3.85 gpa. All told, if I continue on this trend, I can realistically expect to graduate with a 3.6 but I really would like a shot at a t10 school. So I'm thinking about an extra semester or two to get that number up to a 3.7. This would mean I would graduate with a somewhat ridiculously large number of credits (185-200.) My lsats will be well in the range of those schools. For the sake of advice assume my lsat will be 170+ My question is essentially, will a t10 school discriminate against me either because I have a huge number of credits or because I am a super senior?   


The answer is, in true lawyerly form, yes and no.

The "No" part is that law schools will screen applicants by LSAT and GPA.  The "Yes" part is that, it the vast middle, a positive trend *can* make up for *some* weakness.  Better grades in one's senior years can be a soft plus, especially if there is a clear pattern (such as one or two abysmal semesters) and a reasonably explanation.  (Obviously, worse grades in one's senior year will not be looked upon favorably.)

As to additional credits, unless these are for a particularly difficult core (such as nuclear physics), it's unlikely to be anything but the most modest soft plus.

Your best bet is to ace the LSAT.  Get close to a 180, and the GPA becomes relatively less significant.  This is easier written than done, of course, but one way is to take half of the time that you would have spent on those extra courses and instead spend a full semester studying for the LSAT.

Hope this helps,

Thane.

Simchamo

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Re: To Super Senior or not to Super Senior
« Reply #2 on: May 09, 2010, 01:45:26 PM »
I am currently a junior honors student at a top tier public university. I transferred from a private school with a bad 3.05 gpa after two years and 60 credits. I am now getting pretty consistent A's  and this last year I have maintained a 3.85 gpa. All told, if I continue on this trend, I can realistically expect to graduate with a 3.6 but I really would like a shot at a t10 school. So I'm thinking about an extra semester or two to get that number up to a 3.7. This would mean I would graduate with a somewhat ridiculously large number of credits (185-200.) My lsats will be well in the range of those schools. For the sake of advice assume my lsat will be 170+ My question is essentially, will a t10 school discriminate against me either because I have a huge number of credits or because I am a super senior?   


The answer is, in true lawyerly form, yes and no.

The "No" part is that law schools will screen applicants by LSAT and GPA.  The "Yes" part is that, it the vast middle, a positive trend *can* make up for *some* weakness.  Better grades in one's senior years can be a soft plus, especially if there is a clear pattern (such as one or two abysmal semesters) and a reasonably explanation.  (Obviously, worse grades in one's senior year will not be looked upon favorably.)

As to additional credits, unless these are for a particularly difficult core (such as nuclear physics), it's unlikely to be anything but the most modest soft plus.

Your best bet is to ace the LSAT.  Get close to a 180, and the GPA becomes relatively less significant.  This is easier written than done, of course, but one way is to take half of the time that you would have spent on those extra courses and instead spend a full semester studying for the LSAT.

Hope this helps,

Thane.


Thank you for your answer. What I really am trying to figure out here specifically is whether an excessive credit count and a 5th undergraduate year will count against me. My understanding is super seniors are looked upon unfavorably, however transfer students are expected to take an extra semester or two. So my calculation is as follows. With 200 credits or so my GPA becomes a 3.7 which gives me at least an outside shot to a t3 school. My worry is that a t3 school will look at my transcript and see I have a strangely large number of credits as well as a full extra year and assume that I am a "professional" student  or unable to make up my mind about school and discount me for that. So as far as you know, do these schools even consider the number of credits and years spent in UG? Would a 3.6 in the "normal range" be better or worse than a 3.7 in an unusual gpa/credit range?

Thane Messinger

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Re: To Super Senior or not to Super Senior
« Reply #3 on: May 10, 2010, 02:38:43 PM »
Here's the word from an insider (an admissions dean):


While on the one hand, it starts to become fishy the longer and longer one spends in undergrad, in general, the final GPA is what tends to hold the most weight.


Hope this helps,

Thane.


bigs5068

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Re: To Super Senior or not to Super Senior
« Reply #4 on: May 10, 2010, 07:49:54 PM »
Yea you should if you have opportunity take some B.S. classes to get free A's and then you can get some good scholarship money as well.

Those 8 free A's below I got every year for playing basketball that is literally off my transcripts and I got massive scholarship money, while my one friend in law took molecular biology and got a 2.9 and gets no scholarship money. It is a complete and utter joke, but schools have to satisfy the U.S. Rankings (which is another joke) but play the game take Frisbee Golf, weightlifting, etc and stack your transcripts full of B.S. A's.  It is almost a 100% numbers game I am sure "softs" matter a little, but if you are still in college stack your transcripts. Had I known I was going to law school I would have had my coach keep me on the roster and just stack these free A's my last year of college and gotten more scholarship money.


THEORY OF BASKETBALL    1.00    A         
VARSITY CONDITIONING    1.00    A            
THEORY OF BASKETBALL    1.00    A         
MEN VARSITY BASKETBALL    1.00    A            
Men's Varsity Basketball    1.00    A         
CIRCUIT WEIGHT TRAINING    1.00    A         
PEAC 4    BASKETBALL BIA *V*    1.00    A
VARSITY CONDITIONING    1.00    A

As a sidenote with these free A's half the team could not keep a 2.0 baffling right???

Sheshe

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Re: To Super Senior or not to Super Senior
« Reply #5 on: May 11, 2010, 12:46:33 AM »
Yea you should if you have opportunity take some B.S. classes to get free A's and then you can get some good scholarship money as well.

Those 8 free A's below I got every year for playing basketball that is literally off my transcripts and I got massive scholarship money, while my one friend in law took molecular biology and got a 2.9 and gets no scholarship money. It is a complete and utter joke, but schools have to satisfy the U.S. Rankings (which is another joke) but play the game take Frisbee Golf, weightlifting, etc and stack your transcripts full of B.S. A's.  It is almost a 100% numbers game I am sure "softs" matter a little, but if you are still in college stack your transcripts. Had I known I was going to law school I would have had my coach keep me on the roster and just stack these free A's my last year of college and gotten more scholarship money.


THEORY OF BASKETBALL    1.00    A         
VARSITY CONDITIONING    1.00    A            
THEORY OF BASKETBALL    1.00    A         
MEN VARSITY BASKETBALL    1.00    A            
Men's Varsity Basketball    1.00    A         
CIRCUIT WEIGHT TRAINING    1.00    A         
PEAC 4    BASKETBALL BIA *V*    1.00    A
VARSITY CONDITIONING    1.00    A

As a sidenote with these free A's half the team could not keep a 2.0 baffling right???

Okay so off topic but, OMG Biggs If I had a dime for everytime you found a reason to bring up sports in your posts, I'd probably be able to pay for my entire legal education out of pocket! Sheesh!  :D

A democracy is nothing more than mob rule, where fifty-one percent of the people may take away the rights of the other forty-nine.

~Thomas Jefferson~

bigs5068

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Re: To Super Senior or not to Super Senior
« Reply #6 on: May 11, 2010, 02:15:16 PM »
I know I do, I just see so many similarities to how the sports world works and law school works.

Comparisons I was a really good player in high school
A law school student was a really good undergrad student

When I went to college I expected to dominate at the college level, but EVERYBODY WASa really good high school player. It is another level, but I was sure I would be Team MVP etc. However, I was the 7th or 8th best player on the team I realized I was not special quickly.

When a good student from UnderGrad goes to law school they think they will be in the top 10% easy of course they will get good grades, they work harder and are smarter than everybody else.  However, they are with a bunch of other people that were also very good students in undergrad. Same thing happens in law school few people in fact only 10% will be in the top 10% that is how it works and then you get disappointed, because you are not special.

In both instances it is just another level and I was not the team MVP in basketball and I am not going to be valedictorian of my school.  It is a harder level and most college players don't make the NBA and most law students are not going to work in Big Law or be a Supreme Court Judge.

I think a lot of people go into law school thinking they are special and then they wind up in in the middle of the cruve and they have not even interacted with anybody from other schools for the first year at all and when the real world hits them they realize they are not special at all.

At least in basketball you realize you are not that special during the season, because you lose games and you are exposed to people outside of your bubble.

Rankings
Then in regards to rankings I realized what B.S. they are when I went to college and I should have learned that lesson when deciding about law schools. I was ranked the 68th best center my sophomore year in high school, but as soon as a game started do you think anybody cared about what I was ranked? No in fact they played harder, if I missed a shot I couldn't just stop the game and say hey ref I am a ranked player let me get the ball back. I did not all live up to my rankings and it was a PRE-SEASON RANKIN, which is completely irrelevant to anything just an indicator of potential. Just like if you go to Harvard it is a PRE-LEGAL Career ranking. Obviously being a ranked center got colleges to come scout me and going to Harvard will give interest from employers, but if you can't do what they need an employee or player to do they don't care. A team needs to win games and a firm needs to win cases. If you are ranked number 1 in your class or a 1 high school prospect if you can't make a firm money or help a team win a game they don't need you.

I think law students think if you go to a good law school if you screw up in the real world that you will get a second shot, but it will be the same situation. If you went to Harvard and don't plead special damages in your complaint or just screw up you can't tell the judge hey I went to Harvard let me amend it.

You have to actually prove it no matter what you do and saying I went to so and so school is not that impressive unless you can live up to the hype and it will be quite obvious if you can or can't when you are given assignments. Just like it will be real clear if you are going to win team or League MVP when you play a few games. 

Transferring Comparisoins.
I also think you can see how stupid it would be to transfer from San Jose State with a scholarship to San Diego State without a scholarship, because San Diego is ranked 74th one year and San Jose State is 91.   That would be MORONIC! Would it really matter whether you played the 74th or 91st best school.

That is the same comparison of the 3 people I know that transferred from GGU to USF and Santa Clara. They lost their scholarship going to USF and Santa Clara and yea they are going to schools ranked 84 instead of 112 or something, but at the end of the day does the 84th best school really impress you especially considering that they are working at the same firms as their section mates from GGU. 

So that is just my comparison rankings were irrelevant in sports. Nobody cared what I was ranked when I started playing and at the end of the day I had to perform and nothing that I did in the past really mattered.

Just like in law school the rankings are pretty irrelevant and at the end of the day you have to perform and nobody cares what your LSAT score or UnderGrad G.P.A. was.