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Category Archives: Admissions
It’s still winter, and that means plenty of people have already been admitted to law school. (Jerks). For those of us not touched by angels, this also means that declinations abound. (Please pass the tub of chicken). Then there’s that special third group of people in their own little circle of hell. The waitlisters.
This post, all of you waitlisted and in law school limbo, is for you.
What to do when you’re waitlisted for law school:
1. Read the instructions you’re given.
Some schools explicitly invite waitlisted applicants to send additional materials. If this is the case, you’ll want to submit a letter of continued interest, along with any updates you have.
Some schools may expressly ask you NOT to send additional information.
Read Entire Article…
This blog post goes out to anyone who thinks they might possibly have even a casual interest in applying to law school. There are a few things I did that aided me greatly, and one or two that I wish I’d done that would’ve been a huge help.
Firstly, something I wish I did:
Get to know a professor whose subject you love.
One irritating reality of applying to law school is that law schools require letters of recommendation. At least one of those letters needs to come from a professor or someone else in academia with whom you are well-acquainted.
If you cast your memory all the way back to last week, I discussed the different situations that dictate whether to write an explanatory essay. Now that we know when to write an explanatory essay, it’s time to cover what a good one says.
1. Describe the problem
Don’t equivocate here – own the issue. If you try to hide it, or explain it away without admitting that it was your fault, you’ll come across as whiny and as someone who makes excuses.
Instead, in as straightforward a manner as possible, describe what happened. If you can gussy it up to make it an interesting tale, all the better. Just don’t glorify it – this isn’t an HBO series.
Last week, I promised a quick rundown on explanatory essays. This week, I make good on my promise. Because I’m a trustworthy guy.
No one wants to write an explanatory essay. You should have thought about that before you passed out drunk in front of your house at the ripe old age of 17. What, you were just a dumb kid back then? I know; that’s why you passed out drunk, right in front of your house!
As much as it might suck, this essay is another opportunity to show off your writing skills and give the admissions committee a little insight into who you are. Turn this problem into an opportunity with a well-written essay.
Not only is math hard, but it’s against you! A lot of you are, thankfully, not aware of this; some of you, however, have battled to raise a GPA plagued by a semester of low grades. As time marches on, it becomes more and more difficult to get that GPA to jump up another .3 as your number of grades increases and each semester becomes just a drop in your GPA bucket.
And then, you submit your transcript to LSAC.
You see your hard work erased as they recalculate their GPA with some arcane formula that only they (and anyone who reads the policy on their website) knows!
When I was a kid, life was a lot tougher. We had to actually be in the room when a show aired if we wanted to watch it. Or learn how to program a ‘VCR’ and record onto a ‘video cassette’ (I hope you were picturing me making air quotes when I typed those words, which makes the typing of them even more impressive). A rumbling controller was a novelty, and our graphics scrolled in two dimensions. And we had to walk both ways to school, uphill, etc… etc…
So it wasn’t all that bad. But law schools applications used to involve a complicated process of filling out many forms, coordinating an orchestra of paperwork, and making calls to ensure everything got there on time.
I’ll be heading off to law school in a few short months, and my mailbox certainly shows it. Over the last three months, I have received admissions responses from law schools (mostly acceptances, I am happy to report), followed by daily credit card offers, followed by a persistent bombardment of brochures from a company called Law Preview. I was happy to hear back from law schools, and as far as the credit card offers go, if a brotha’ is going to take out a $60,000 loan, he might as well earn some frequent flyer miles when he buys his top ramen and SpaghettiOs, am I right?
The majority of you visit MSS each day because the LSAT currently owns what used to be your free time. One of our students recently confessed that she had a dream that took place entirely at an LSAT test center. She begrudgingly admitted on her beginning course survey that “the LSAT is all up in my subconscious and shit.” In other words, you aren’t thinking about law school applications yet, let alone actually preparing for your first year of law school. I was in your shoes last year. For now, don’t worry about the application process, specific law schools, financial aid, or six-figure debt. I will now completely contradict that statement by giving you a quick rundown of what you can expect in the months leading up to that beast known as 1L.
Unless you’re one of those people who have, paradoxically, a thousand things on your resume and too much time on your hands, you haven’t yet started your personal statement. And that’s fine. You have all summer to work on it, and you don’t want to be one of those people who, when talking about law school applications, makes everyone else feel dumb with a snide, “You mean you haven’t started your essay yet?”
However, the earlier you start on the essay, the more polished it will be.
Many of you are still waiting for admissions responses from certain law schools. Unless you submitted all of your applications at 11:30 pm on January 31st, there is a good chance you have heard back from at least one or two institutions, but I understand that waiting can be frustrating. I have heard from two law schools that I would be happy to attend, but am still waiting on my reach school. It takes time to review hundreds and hundreds of applications. Like my great grandfather always used to say “don’t hate the playa’, hate the game.” The truth is that there is plenty you can do in the meantime, as the mailman only comes once a day. Here are some actual productive steps you can take instead of staring out the window as Judge Judy yells at some divorced couple in the background.