The person you would call "nontraditional," I would call "interesting." Interesting people get preferential treatment in admissions. Work experience is not some magic elixir that makes you "interesting." Not everyone with work experience gets preferential treatment.
The "nontraditional" students' group at my law school is open to those who were more than one year out of undergrad when they entered law school. In other words they are not "traditional" law students, because they didn't come straight from undergrad, or take the ubiquitous "year off."
This is apparently the problem. You're talking about applying whatever definition is possible. Yes, it's possible in some sense to define just about anyone who deviates in any way as a "nontraditional" student. However, I was talking about the definition as it applies to admissions decisions
, which is different. They don't
give consideration to things with the same level of detail a "students' group" at your law school will, and what your "students' group" does is irrelevant to the conversation.
The only definition of "nontraditional" that really matters on this board is the one that applies to admissions decisions, and that's the one I've been referring to. This is the definition which does not mean merely "interesting", as you put it, but "bringing unique enough life experiences to warrant special attention in a law school application." It's a more specific definition than the others you keep alluding to.
This is a problem you might have in law school, since things often have one definition in the "real world" and a different definition in the "legal world". It works just like this. Just because you can come up with a different dictionary definition of the word/phrase doesn't mean it's applicable here.
Oh, and I though I
was using shady evidence. I'd really like to [strike]see[/strike] know (in case I'm right and it's a part of your anatomy) where you pulled this from.
Looking at adcomms and admission histories, it's apparent the line is drawn somewhere around the 4-5 year mark. People with 4-5 years of WE are recognized by adcomms as having substantially different life experience than the majority of applicants they see.
I can't point to any single thing to show where I got that from. I got it from being someone with 5-6 years' WE, wondering how that would affect my admissions chances, and reading through hundreds of different profiles and TLS threads to get an idea. I admit it is my own reading and opinion
, but from what I've seen, people with less than 4-5 years of WE typically don't get a significant boost. There's no hard line that adcomms use, but in general I've seen a lot of people with 2 or even 3 years WE where it didn't look like it helped them, and people with 5+ years WE who definitely got in with a low GPA for that school. Given that, I interpret that the line is somewhere around
I'd go look up facts and figures for you but I'm too busy studying Civ Pro. Anyone who doubts me should go do their own research into the matter.