I need help on California schools

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arlandria831
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I need help on California schools

Postby arlandria831 » Sat Oct 29, 2011 12:23 am

-4.0 GPA (Political Science at a state school), Summa Cum Laude and Valedictorian
-will take December LSAT
-practice tests have me around 160, still have a month to get it up (but I'm not the best test-taker, contrary to what my GPA will lead you to think)
-four year experience as a paralegal
-will only be applying to California schools

already sent my applications to the following
top tier: Berkeley, Davis, Hastings
middle: Loyola Marymount, Irvine (?)
safety: University of San Francisco

I'd like to limit it my apps to 8. I need help choosing which of the following ones should I apply to:
Santa Clara University
University of San Diego
University of Pacific (McGeorge)

Should I add more safety schools? Which ones do you recommend?

Thanks a lot in advance for your response!

Curious1
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Re: I need help on California schools

Postby Curious1 » Sat Oct 29, 2011 12:27 am

Repeat after me:

ANYONE CAN GET A 170+

Do not waste your amazing GPA. Study for a year if you have to, and when you get a 175 on the June 2012 test, you'll thank me after you get full schollys at CCN or into HYS.

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snailio
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Re: I need help on California schools

Postby snailio » Sat Oct 29, 2011 12:29 am

Ok I'll bite, too bad about not parlaying that GPA...oh well.

USD

crit_racer
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Re: I need help on California schools

Postby crit_racer » Sat Oct 29, 2011 1:45 am

you don't even need a 175. Just study your ass off and get upper 160s and you can probably get into Boalt and definitely into UCLA, USC, Davis, and Hastings. Do not go to school in Cali unless it is at Stanford, Berkely, Davis, Hastings, UCLA, or USC.

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hdivschool
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Re: I need help on California schools

Postby hdivschool » Sat Oct 29, 2011 1:50 am

Keep studying for the LSAT and apply to Stanford.

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lrslayer
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Re: I need help on California schools

Postby lrslayer » Sat Oct 29, 2011 1:51 am

crit_racer wrote:you don't even need a 175. Just study your ass off and get upper 160s and you can probably get into Boalt and definitely into UCLA, USC, Davis, and Hastings. Do not go to school in Cali unless it is at Stanford, Berkely, Davis, Hastings, UCLA, or USC.

this

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174
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Re: I need help on California schools

Postby 174 » Sat Oct 29, 2011 2:06 am

You should settle for no less than Stanford.

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SilverE2
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Re: I need help on California schools

Postby SilverE2 » Sat Oct 29, 2011 2:18 am

crit_racer wrote:you don't even need a 175. Just study your ass off and get upper 160s and you can probably get into Boalt and definitely into UCLA, USC, Davis, and Hastings. Do not go to school in Cali unless it is at Stanford, Berkely, Davis, Hastings, UCLA, or USC.

arlandria831
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Re: I need help on California schools

Postby arlandria831 » Sat Oct 29, 2011 2:21 am

So... go big or go home??? Meaning 100% NO to applying even to at least one safety school??

random5483
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Re: I need help on California schools

Postby random5483 » Sat Oct 29, 2011 3:18 am

arlandria831 wrote:So... go big or go home??? Meaning 100% NO to applying even to at least one safety school??



LSAT scores are easy to raise. GPAs are hard to fix. You have an awesome GPA. Get your LSAT high enough for at least UCLA.

arlandria831
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Re: I need help on California schools

Postby arlandria831 » Sat Oct 29, 2011 1:53 pm

I am for sure going to apply to the top schools in California. That's a given. My only problem is which "safe" schools I should consider - given that I don't have a fee waiver so I really need to choose wisely. After reading the responses, my gut tells me to apply to all the top ones (Berkeley, Hastings, Davis, UCLA and USC) and consider Loyola and Irvine as my back-ups and USF as my last resort.

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Kring345
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Re: I need help on California schools

Postby Kring345 » Sat Oct 29, 2011 2:10 pm

arlandria831 wrote: given that I don't have a fee waiver so I really need to choose wisely.

If youre so worried about making the right choice, why not apply to them all? Can you really not afford the 100 bucks? Youre obviously not adverse to financial hardship, considering youre about to pay up to 200k for school and forgo an income for 3 years just to have a 50/50 shot at a job (at the schools youre talking about).

It's 70-100 bucks, just suck it up. Also, email them and ask for a fee waiver. If you are in the ballpark number-wise, at least a few of them will say yes.

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Kring345
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Re: I need help on California schools

Postby Kring345 » Sat Oct 29, 2011 2:12 pm

arlandria831 wrote:I am for sure going to apply to the top schools in California. That's a given. My only problem is which "safe" schools I should consider - given that I don't have a fee waiver so I really need to choose wisely. After reading the responses, my gut tells me to apply to all the top ones (Berkeley, Hastings, Davis, UCLA and USC) and consider Loyola and Irvine as my back-ups and USF as my last resort.

Also, most on here would say in the chance that USF is your only acceptance, a much smarter idea would be to not be a lawyer.

crit_racer
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Re: I need help on California schools

Postby crit_racer » Sat Oct 29, 2011 2:14 pm

The problem w/ the tier 2 schools in Cali (besides bad employment prospects, etc) is that their scholarships are all contingent on maintaining a certain class rank (top 1/3 for Loyola, Pepperdine). This makes them bad options. Don't consider any of those schools.

Irvine is fine I guess if you are okay w/ taking a risk (though I think it is virtually guaranteed to be a better school than Loyola/Pepperdine) and are okay with living in the worst part of Southern California. Honestly, though, considering you should be able to nag hastings/davis with even a 162 LSAT, I don't see why you would go lower than those schools. Get a 166-168 and you are good for USC/UCLA. Get 168+ and you look strong for Boalt, and above a 170 puts you in *contention* at Stanford.

Go study for the LSAT
Last edited by crit_racer on Sat Oct 29, 2011 2:18 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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lrslayer
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Re: I need help on California schools

Postby lrslayer » Sat Oct 29, 2011 2:16 pm

email all the schools you are even remotely considering and solicit a fee waiver. wait a couple days for replies. apply to all the top schools and whichever ones you have the waiver to. if you go to usf, expect to live in the bay area and compete with stanford/berkeley/hastings/davis graduates for a job. i'm sure you get the idea. its not worth it and absolutely not worth it to pay to go there. i believe its the same situation with loyola, you will compete with ucla/usc etc. grads and be tied to the region. safety schools like the ones you talk about are only safe if you get a full ride and even then its a gamble.
good luck
oh, and btw. RETAKE!

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crumpetsandtea
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Re: I need help on California schools

Postby crumpetsandtea » Sat Oct 29, 2011 3:12 pm

lrslayer wrote:
crit_racer wrote:you don't even need a 175. Just study your ass off and get upper 160s and you can probably get into Boalt and definitely into UCLA, USC, Davis, and Hastings. Do not go to school in Cali unless it is at Stanford, Berkely, Davis, Hastings, UCLA, or USC.

this

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cinephile
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Re: I need help on California schools

Postby cinephile » Sat Oct 29, 2011 3:52 pm

arlandria831 wrote:So... go big or go home??? Meaning 100% NO to applying even to at least one safety school??


I understand safety schools for undergrad, because you need a BA to be considered for most entry level jobs, but you don't need a JD in the same way. So, don't apply to even one of your safety schools (if your safety schools had decent job prospects, that'd be a different story).

So, I'll echo the retake route.

arlandria831
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Re: I need help on California schools

Postby arlandria831 » Sat Oct 29, 2011 6:01 pm

I haven't taken the LSAT so that's still a big question mark. At this point, re-taking is a non-issue, and postponing until next year is NOT an option. However, I would like to think that scoring in the mid to upper 60s will still give me a good shot at the top schools. I still have a month 'til the LSAT so we'll see.

No safeties, then. Considering the responses, I think Loyola or Irvine will be my new last resort (depending on what scholarship I get). But I'll stay away from the likes of USF, Santa Clara and McGeorge then. I'm appealing my waiver so hopefully that gets approved (and I can expand my options). And to answer a previous question of whether I can afford close to $100 each, I CAN'T. I made too much last year (working full-time as a paralegal) but I quit my job for personal reasons. I recently move backed home to help my mom who just had surgery. All my savings have gone to helping her with medical bills. So no, not having a fee waiver doesn't necessarily mean I'm "not adverse to financial hardship."

I talked to my hubby too (who is generously helping me with my application fees), and he agreed. No point in wasting time and money if I don't get to the big leagues. So there it is, !

Thanks for all your input! I now have the clarity and direction I badly needed.

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Tiago Splitter
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Re: I need help on California schools

Postby Tiago Splitter » Sat Oct 29, 2011 6:06 pm

You don't need to spend $100 on each app. Many of the schools will waive your app fee and you'll only have to pay $16.

arlandria831
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Re: I need help on California schools

Postby arlandria831 » Sat Oct 29, 2011 6:12 pm

Tiago Splitter wrote:You don't need to spend $100 on each app. Many of the schools will waive your app fee and you'll only have to pay $16.


My fee waiver got denied. I'm working on an appeal (which takes a while I heard) so I went ahead and submitted some of my applications and will be contacting the schools directly.

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Tiago Splitter
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Re: I need help on California schools

Postby Tiago Splitter » Sat Oct 29, 2011 6:15 pm

arlandria831 wrote:
Tiago Splitter wrote:You don't need to spend $100 on each app. Many of the schools will waive your app fee and you'll only have to pay $16.


My fee waiver got denied. I'm working on an appeal (which takes a while I heard) so I went ahead and submitted some of my applications and will be contacting the schools directly.


So you haven't taken the LSAT but are submitting apps? This gets weirder by the minute.

Ask schools for the waivers first, then submit.

arlandria831
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Re: I need help on California schools

Postby arlandria831 » Sat Oct 29, 2011 6:24 pm

Tiago Splitter wrote:
arlandria831 wrote:
Tiago Splitter wrote:You don't need to spend $100 on each app. Many of the schools will waive your app fee and you'll only have to pay $16.


My fee waiver got denied. I'm working on an appeal (which takes a while I heard) so I went ahead and submitted some of my applications and will be contacting the schools directly.


So you haven't taken the LSAT but are submitting apps? This gets weirder by the minute.

Ask schools for the waivers first, then submit.


Most applications will ask if you are taking the LSAT at a future date, and if not, they can see it in your LSAC data anyway. It is not weird, it is quite common actually, especially for re-takers.

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IAFG
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Re: I need help on California schools

Postby IAFG » Sat Oct 29, 2011 6:35 pm

Boalt loves early apps

Frankly December is for re-takers, you're already too late, come back next year with a 167+ and clean up

arlandria831
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Re: I need help on California schools

Postby arlandria831 » Sat Oct 29, 2011 7:12 pm

Does everyone else feel the same way? That applying is a hopeless cause since I'm taking the December LSAT? Way to kill my dreams:( but I'm still gonna take my chance.

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crumpetsandtea
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Re: I need help on California schools

Postby crumpetsandtea » Sat Oct 29, 2011 7:24 pm

arlandria831 wrote:Does everyone else feel the same way? That applying is a hopeless cause since I'm taking the December LSAT? Way to kill my dreams:( but I'm still gonna take my chance.

Honestly, I agree with her. If you're not taking until December anyway, you might as well just sit this cycle out and REALLY study until you're scoring really high and take it in June or something. With a 17X you're looking at UCB with money or even Stanford. Imagine how that would change your cycle.

Applying late gives you a significant disadvantage, which means even if you do score in your PT range you're probably shut out of UCLA/USC/UCB/Stanford, with no money at Davis or Hastings.




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