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Author Topic: LOW GPA LOW LSAT South Western Law  (Read 2248 times)

SF9119

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LOW GPA LOW LSAT South Western Law
« on: September 14, 2012, 03:01:02 AM »
So I can own up to it and say I totally made a mistake in my Under Grad. I got a measly 2.5 GPA.  This was due to the fact that I was working heavily throughout school.  I was traveling around the world for work, and the last 60 units of my UDG I completed in 1 year while working overseas.  My lsat was not so great as well. I got a 140.

With that being said here is what I would like to know. I would like to attend Southwestern's SCALE Program in June of 2013, and im wondering if it is possible. I dont know what route to go to get there, but I will do anything to make this happen. I have already have visited the campus, and sat in for a SCALE class in August. I had a meeting with the Associate Dean for Interdisciplinary Programs.  I will list somethings that I have in my corner below and hopefully I can get some feedback in regards to the information, to see if it helps my situation, or if someone can help me find some other solutions into acquiring my dream.

I have very strong LOR's attesting my work. One from the President of the top Performing Rights Organization in the world, an extremely successful Songwriter who I have been able to experience some success with. One of the top Executive  Recruiters for the Public Sector/ Health, and a very successful and highly respected attorney who attended Southwestern. I was wondering if these letters would help.

My resume is extremely detailed and shows a lot of success in a world that is very hard to work in, and break into. I have a professional Resume with 6 years of extensive work. Will SouthWestern see this as a big factor? I would think it shows that i'm extremely hardworking and dedicated from the field I had worked in,  and the credits I have acquired.

Like I stated prior. I did the last 60 units of my Under Grad in 1 year while traveling around the world and working fulltime, thus effecting my overall GPA. I was only in town to take mid terms, and finals. Will they be able to see past that, due to the circumstances?

I am someone who has come from a long road to this point. I was sent away to rehab as kid, I had been diagnosed with "learning disability" I had a tough child hood with peer groups. Still with all that,  I found a way to become passionate and successful in a very tough industry to breakthrough in. I'm sure most of you are saying why law school then. I love it, and its something i've wanted to do since I was a child. With all that being said, I know I can addend the GPA, LSAT. But are there other routes for me? Maybe more essay's to compliment the PS? Any information will help, and I greatly appreciate every response. 

P.S. Anyone interested in the SCALE program must do a personal interview prior to being Accepted to SCALE. The Associate Dean explained this to me, and asked if I would be working. I will not be focused on anything but school, and explained that to her. I have set aside funds for the next 2-4 years to make sure I can solely focus on school and work 100 percent towards the goal.


 

cooley3L

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Re: LOW GPA LOW LSAT South Western Law
« Reply #1 on: September 14, 2012, 03:23:24 AM »
Your main issue is your lsat. A 140 can't even get into Cooley on the 5 year plan.

You can most likely raise the score if you take a prep course and can find time to make it your #1 priority (hard when working, but not impossible)

a 2.5 GPA is low, but the lsat is what is your main obstacle.

Maintain FL 350

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Re: LOW GPA LOW LSAT South Western Law
« Reply #2 on: September 14, 2012, 05:15:32 PM »
You've got to retake the LSAT and score significantly higher, period.

I had a meeting with the Associate Dean for Interdisciplinary Programs.

Did you disclose your GPA/LSAT to the Dean? If so, what advice did the Dean provide? Any specific advice you learned straight from the horse's mouth is more valuable than what you can get here.

There are general rules which apply to everyone, and which will weigh heavily in your situation. Law school admission is primarily a numbers game, dominated by GPA/LSAT. Biographical details, work experience, LORs, etc are "soft factors", and will help if you are on the cusp of being admitted/denied. If your numbers are far below average, soft factors will not usually be much help. You seem to have good, solid soft factors. If you can raise your LSAT score significantly they may help you. The greatest LOR in the world, however, will not overcome a 140.

I don't remember exactly, but I think SW's medians are something like  a 3.4/155-159. Entrance to the SCALE program is more selective. I don't mean this to sound rude, but with a 2.5/140 you probably stand no chance of being admitted regardless of soft factors. In fact, I'm not sure if any ABA approved law school will accept those numbers. To have a shot at SW I think you'd probably have to raise your LSAT to something like 165 to compensate for the low GPA. Even then, the SCALE program would be a stretch.

Here's something else to consider: the SCALE program, as you know, is incredibly intense. Your GPA/LSAT profile might be an indication that you'll have a very difficult time in such a program, or in a traditional law school format, and with the bar exam. Something to think about before spending $150K on a J.D.

If you can raise your LSAT to around 160 you might have a shot at some other ABA approved law schools in CA and elsewhere. Instead of focusing on your soft factors, focus all your energies on the LSAT. Take a prep course, study like crazy, and max out your score. See how much you can raise your score, and go from there.

SF9119

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Re: LOW GPA LOW LSAT South Western Law
« Reply #3 on: September 14, 2012, 05:47:38 PM »
Thank you both for the words.

Ronald,

The only information she had suggested to me in regards to the LSAT, is that a 155 LSAT Score would make it so I would not need to take a GMAT. This was for the prospect of doing the dual JD/MBA program through SCALE. We spoke about working, and if I would be continuing while in school ( I obviously assured her I would only be in school , with no outside activities). After we spoke about this, she told that, that was a good choice, and I should be able to excel and flourish in their program due to my strong work ethic and resume. I completely understand your thoughts on the other things surrounded by the LSAT.  The only reason my GPA suffered so much was do to the intense work load I had received from the profession I was in. I do understand that regardless of the circumstances it still doesn't make up for a low GPA.  Standardize Testing has never been my strongpoint, thus why I am looking for anything that can better my cause. I want to thank you both again for taking the time to read this and responding to me. It really means a lot me, and I greatly appreciate it.

AlwaysSunny

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Re: LOW GPA LOW LSAT South Western Law
« Reply #4 on: September 15, 2012, 01:38:38 AM »
Are you set on an accelerated program? I think you can get into Cooley with those numbers, but like a PP said, you should do a cost/benefit analysis.

Cooley applicants chart - http://cooley.lawschoolnumbers.com/stats
Cooley employment statistics - http://www.lawschooltransparency.com/clearinghouse/?school=cooley

I would suggest taking the LSAT again if possible.

cooley3L

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Re: LOW GPA LOW LSAT South Western Law
« Reply #5 on: September 15, 2012, 02:04:20 AM »
Are you set on an accelerated program? I think you can get into Cooley with those numbers, but like a PP said, you should do a cost/benefit analysis.

Cooley applicants chart - http://cooley.lawschoolnumbers.com/stats
Cooley employment statistics - http://www.lawschooltransparency.com/clearinghouse/?school=cooley

I would suggest taking the LSAT again if possible.
refer to my previous post

Maintain FL 350

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Re: LOW GPA LOW LSAT South Western Law
« Reply #6 on: September 15, 2012, 03:46:45 AM »
The only information she had suggested to me in regards to the LSAT, is that a 155 LSAT Score would make it so I would not need to take a GMAT. This was for the prospect of doing the dual JD/MBA program through SCALE.

I'm familiar with the program, it's in conjunction with the Drucker School of Management at Claremont Graduate University. My understanding is that you have to be accepted to each program separately. Personally, I think JD/MBA programs are usually not worth it anyway. They're overly expensive and the potential benefits accrue to a very small number of people. If you want to practice law, you don't need an MBA. Most firms won't care if you have the extra degree. The only people who may benefit are those who plan on going into business rather than practicing law, and that's very few people. I have no idea what you want to do, but consider the utility of the degree versus the cost before committing to such a program. It may or may not make sense.

Southwestern's 25% GPA/LSAT profile (the bottom quarter of accepted applicants) is 3.04/152. Again, you really need to retake the LSAT in order to have any chance at getting into an ABA approved law school. The LSAT is a learnable, predictable exam, but you've got to put in the time to understand what the testmakers are looking for. Take six months or even a year if necessary, and take a prep course. If you're not interested in retaking the LSAT, and you don't plan on leaving California anytime soon, the California State Bar accredited schools might be an option. You could get in with your current numbers, and the tuition is lower, but there are potential drawbacks to attending a non-ABA school (depending on your goals). 

cooley3L

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Re: LOW GPA LOW LSAT South Western Law
« Reply #7 on: September 15, 2012, 12:45:50 PM »
If you did pick a non-ABA school, just don't go online if you can avoid it (or an on campus non-CBE accredited either). The fully accredited (not just approved) CBE get to skip that fybx. Plus they qualify for student loans and aid, the others don't.

SF9119

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Re: LOW GPA LOW LSAT South Western Law
« Reply #8 on: September 15, 2012, 03:45:50 PM »
Guys/ Gals,

I want to thank you again for the responses. After acquiring all the information provided, I have decided to Study for the next 3 weeks, 4-5 hours a day with 2-3 practice exams in between the week.I will also be looking into acquiring Tutoring if necessary, 3 days a week to hopefully complete this task. I  have registered for the October 7th Exam.  If I do not score substantially higher, I will then take a prep course (Blue Print) and devote my time to the December Exam and attempt once more. I once again want to thank you for all the information. Heres to hope that I complete this task!

Best,
SF

cooley3L

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Re: LOW GPA LOW LSAT South Western Law
« Reply #9 on: September 15, 2012, 07:17:13 PM »
Good for you, Best of luck. Keep us posted on your progress! :D