Law School Discussion

Admitted Studenst: What would you do differently in application process?

Mr. Pink

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as for applications:

1-- i'd apply to safeties first, then reaches, and then the ones that you should be able to get into if you don't f*ck anything up.

apply to all of of them fairly early, if you can... but here's why i say this:

i found that even though i worked SO hard on my personal statement and resumes and suplemental activity lists and the whole package before i got going, the first ones still sucked compared to the last ones.  i caught errors, i thought of things to make the applications better.... in trying to REALLY impress my super-reaches, i came up with stuff that hadn't occured to me before.

i applied to the schools i should have been able to get into first, and then i threw in safeties, and then i did reaches.... and then i realized that i'm an idiot, really, and that if i'd given the schools i'm a solid candidate for the same app package i sent to my reaches then i would've sailed through...

instead i'm looking at it and stressing bc i realize now that the application some of these schools got just was not as strong.

2-- if i could take back one other thing, it would be finding this message board. y'all screwed up already by already finding it... but here's why: honestly, when i threw in an application to harvard, or mich, or northwestern or any of those.. i figured eh, i won't get in, but i don't know anyone who has anyway.. clearly not many people get into those schools, so i won't feel so bad. most people i knew had scored around 163 on lsats, average at penn was 161, and my superhero buddy got a 168 which we all though was brilliant.. so when i got a 165, i thought hey 93 percentile, not too shabby.

and then i discovered on LSD that the average LSAT score is actually a 169, and that everyone and their mom is trying to decide whether they should accept full rides from Penn or Yale or UCLA. 

read: it's just a *tad* scewed, and has the potential to make you feel like a real idiot even if by any other standard you're actually pretty awesome



very funny


joespecial

One last thing - do not take Lawschooldiscussion (or xoxo for that matter) as the gospel. Many people here have no clue what they are talking about. Talk to people in REAL LIFE that are in law school or are already practicing lawyers.

Totally agree with that. Take every opportunity to talk to working lawyers or even law school profs/administrators about legal careers and other questions you have. They will sometimes tell you the exact opposite of the "common knowledge" on message boards.

D. Pro

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this thread is lovely... good stuff people ;D

Mr. Pink

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this thread is lovely... good stuff people ;D

I must agreed...got a lot out of this Thread...now if only John Galt would post here.

Burning Sands, Esq.

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One last thing - do not take Lawschooldiscussion (or xoxo for that matter) as the gospel. Many people here have no clue what they are talking about. Talk to people in REAL LIFE that are in law school or are already practicing lawyers.

Totally agree with that. Take every opportunity to talk to working lawyers or even law school profs/administrators about legal careers and other questions you have. They will sometimes tell you the exact opposite of the "common knowledge" on message boards.

Cosign with a permenant black sharpie.

Victor

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One last thing - do not take Lawschooldiscussion (or xoxo for that matter) as the gospel. Many people here have no clue what they are talking about. Talk to people in REAL LIFE that are in law school or are already practicing lawyers.

Totally agree with that. Take every opportunity to talk to working lawyers or even law school profs/administrators about legal careers and other questions you have. They will sometimes tell you the exact opposite of the "common knowledge" on message boards.

Cosign with a permenant black sharpie.

I think LSD posters assume since someone has high numbers they know what theyre talking about.


THE BLUE SWEATER

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I would have put more thought inot my essays at the top 3 schools.

Burning Sands, Esq.

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To be honest with you, after thinking about it in retrospect I would have applied to Harvard Law.  I was just talkin to cats this past weekend with my exact same LSAT who are there right now.  So to the OP, shoot high, forget what cats on here are talkin about.  I've said it before and I'll say it again, we're NOT admissions committees!  At the end of the day, we don't know jack sh!t.  Apply where you wanna apply, and make sure you get fee waivers when you do it.  I know a girl who applied to 40 law schools and got 40 fee waivers. 

John Galt

I essentially had my applications done at the end of my junior year, so they were pretty polished. The biggest help of the board has been Alcibiades - he gave me some tips and suggestions to augment my application that I wouldn't have otherwise had access to. It is difficult for me to point out something I would have done differently in the application process.

1. I would have planned for financial aid a little bit better and been more prepared to apply for scholarships and things of that nature. Once you're admitted, it becomes all about the money and I think it is a process that often gets less detail than the actual applications (although its just as important IMO).

2. I would have had more casual observers read my personal statement. I only had one member of the board and a close friend read my statement. It was pretty risky, although Toby Stock told me it was one of the best he's ever read.

For a person applying next year, I suggest getting the following books:

How to get into the top law schools
the Ivey Guide

Also, get started early. Finish your essays in the summer, do the LSAT in the summer, and get down a preliminary strategy for recommendations. For me, I actually decided not to ask one of my biggest supporters who has written many battle tested recommendations because his recommendation would have just regurgitated stuff they could've seen from my resume, other recs, ECS.

Once you get your LSAT/GPA, decide where you want to go. Then create a strategy to get there. Montauk will help you find your weaknesses from an adcomms point of view and your strengths. Also there are a number of good quotes by admissions official detailing what they are looking for in an applicant. I singled out the quotes by Megan Barnett and Joyce Curyll for example and made sure that my themes were consistent with what they were looking for. If your numbers are low for a school, then you just have to create a strategy to work around that like Annabel Lee.

I mean, I can't stress enough the time required to put together a thoughtful and compelling application package. You want to make sure you don't say too much to blow your chance if your numbers are solid (for example, i only sent one personal statement), if your numbers are a little low, make sure they know enough to make an informed decision (annabel sent 3 personal statements for example). Talk to other students who attend the school you want - alci, absy, mobell, agitator are all wonderful resources. And you want to be sure you talk to current students because their motives are genuine. You never know the motives of a fellow applicant (not that fellow applicants are bad for advice, but current students are also battle tested).


What would i have done differently?

Spent less money on meaningless books
Spent less money on LSAT prep (take testmasters and be done with it)
Let others give me more feedback on essays
apply to less schools
left school in december
Planned for financial aid better


Also, ever notice the risk tolerance difference between white people and black people on that new game show, deal or no deal?

Mr. Pink

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To be honest with you, after thinking about it in retrospect I would have applied to Harvard Law.  I was just talkin to cats this past weekend with my exact same LSAT who are there right now.  So to the OP, shoot high, forget what cats on here are talkin about.  I've said it before and I'll say it again, we're NOT admissions committees!  At the end of the day, we don't know jack sh!t.  Apply where you wanna apply, and make sure you get fee waivers when you do it.  I know a girl who applied to 40 law schools and got 40 fee waivers. 

How do you get these fee waivers?