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The Name's Dali

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Teach for America?
« on: August 21, 2004, 04:18:16 PM »
Do any of you guys know how competitive the admissions process is for TFA and how much do you think it enhances your chances for Law School admission?

cali444

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Re: Teach for America?
« Reply #1 on: August 21, 2004, 05:05:37 PM »
The admissions process for TFA is quite competitive.  I went to a top-5 UG, and dozens of people tried for it.  I think only about 15% of them were accepted, and maybe even fewer than that.  But I think if you get accepted, and complete the full 2-year program, you're in a great place for LS admissions.  You still need the numbers, obviously, but I've heard that it adds significantly to your "interest/diversity" points.

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Re: Teach for America?
« Reply #2 on: August 21, 2004, 05:39:30 PM »
yes, the admission process is competitive.  i think that it varies from year to year, however -- somewhere between a 14% acceptance rate and 20%, i am guessing.  i know the 2002-03 admissions cycle had significantly greater applicants than the 2003-04 application cycle.  i don't know how it will be for this year.

as for helping out in the admissions process, it must help, but how much is very hard to determine.  tfa does have a relationship with some graduate schools -- including about 30 or so law schools -- which grant application fee waivers and deferrals to incoming and graduating corps members.  i think that the two-year commitment qualifies as "unusual work experience," in mh(and biased)opinion.  if anything, it will give you a good letter of recommendation, a ps topic, and a little bit of prestige. 

i am entering my second year of tfa and it is, by far, the hardest thing i have ever done.  i would recommend it highly, simply because it has given me an experience i will never have again in my life.  honestly, though, i wouldn't go into it just to up your chances to get into a good law school, because it is a heavy duty committment and a ton of work. 

hope that helps,

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lawguy

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Re: Teach for America?
« Reply #3 on: August 21, 2004, 08:42:45 PM »
Hey Dustin Hoffman, Jr. (very weird typing that, I hope you really aren't like his son or something ;) ), my sister was in TFA.  If you're seriously interested, give me your email and I can get you into contact with her and you can find out more if you like. 

The Name's Dali

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Re: Teach for America?
« Reply #4 on: August 21, 2004, 10:16:13 PM »
Hey Casino,
I am definitely not doing it primarily for admission purposes.  I want to do something where I can have a positive impact upon people's lives, and I think this program would render a tremendous opportunity to do so.  I also think it would benefit me as a person, providing growth and maturity.  I asked my question to gain more insight into this idea, and see whether my instincts are correct.

The reason why I asked about the admissions benefit (for Law School) and the acceptance rate (for TFA) was that I am considering applying for LS after TFA (rather than being deferred).  I don't want to stall my application process if I don't have a good chance of acceptance into TFA.  If I plan to do TFA before LS regardless of whether I defer or apply later, I might as well explore admissions advantages to applying after TFA.

Anyone else have any input?  I would also be interested in the pro's and con's of the program, if anyone has any information.

The Name's Dali

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Re: Teach for America?
« Reply #5 on: August 21, 2004, 10:29:29 PM »
Also, for those accepted (Casino and others), what were your stats?  GPA/Community Service/Activities/Prestige of UG School

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Re: Teach for America?
« Reply #6 on: August 21, 2004, 10:32:07 PM »
hey dustin hoffman jr., don't get me wrong, i wasn't implying at all that you were thinking about doing the program in order to help out your chances of admission to law school afterwards.  i apologize if i came off that way.

you and i have chatted a little bit on this subject before.  i have a friend who is in the corps with me who is going to duke next year; he received a defferal when he went into the program.  i really admire him (and anyone else, for that matter) for doing that, simply because two years, even though they are going by, is a decent amount of time.  

after reading your post, i think you should definitely go for it.  all the things you are looking for -- growth, maturity, impacting people's lives -- are definitely great aspects of the program, and those beliefs would play a huge factor in your admittance into the program.  if you decide to apply, please drop me a pm.  from someone who went through the admissions process, i think i can give you some good advice.  in some ways, it is similar to law school; you have to write two statements, teach a lesson, and go through a group and individual interview.

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The Name's Dali

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Re: Teach for America?
« Reply #7 on: August 21, 2004, 10:45:31 PM »
Thanks Casino. I appreciate you taking the time to articulate your honest opinion of the program and furnish advice. The only problem is that I will not be applying for another year (still in UG). Do you think that we could correspond through email in the near future, since you might be more busy in the future?

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Re: Teach for America?
« Reply #8 on: August 21, 2004, 10:49:38 PM »
well, i went to tulane (decent school, but certainly not the bomb), had a 3.3 (but with a 4.0 my senior year), and my extra stuff at the time consisted little more than receiving an academic award at college for my work in brazilian studies, and study and work experience in brazil.  

there are two parts of the admissions process.  the first part consists of writing two statements -- one why you would make a good corps member and another, more personal, statement.  you also submit transcripts and your resume at this time.  a lot of people get wacked at this stage.

the second stage is a group interview, a five minute lesson you teach to other applicants, and an individual interview.  

the application process is not all about stats, though.  if you get through the first part and do well in the lesson and interview, you probably will get in.  

there are many pros and cons to the program, but the majority do not have to deal directly with tfa.  as you can imagine, the variables while teaching in the poorest, most bureaucratically inept school districts in the nation offer most of the cons, but the rewards you gain from making a real and measurable impact on children's lives offer most of the pros.  hopefully it will help me get into law school, too. :)

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Re: Teach for America?
« Reply #9 on: August 21, 2004, 10:51:00 PM »
yes brother.  my email -- or should i say "gmail" -- is on here.

c