Hard time deciding what law school is best for me

(Rankings, Profiles, Tuition, Student Life, . . . )
APIII
Posts: 9
Joined: Tue Jun 09, 2015 2:29 pm

Hard time deciding what law school is best for me

Postby APIII » Tue Jun 09, 2015 3:09 pm

Hey everyone, I'm having a hard time deciding where I should attend law school in the fall. Everyone keeps trying to give me advice, but none of them have found themselves in my shoes.

I applied late so it was a little more difficult to get in where I wanted, was wait-listed at a bunch of schools so I'm still waiting on:
University of Florida (My top choice because its a T1 and I'd get in-state tuition)
Penn State Dickinson
Michigan State
U of South Carolina
Ole Miss
Syracuse

I was accepted to a few back up TTT schools, but I'm just kind of on a limb with those.

Those wait-listed schools aside, I've narrowed it down to two schools, University of Arkansas Little Rock and University of Louisville. I have a full ride for all 3 years to UALR contingent on the fact that I remain in the top 50% of my class. I'd have to pay full price at Louisville ($36K out of state tuition), but I do have some good connections in the area for job prospecting, clerkship, internships, etc.

My ideal situation would be maintain top 5% to 10% of my class my first year and transfer after my 1L to a T14 or a high ranked T1 with good job prospects. I know it'll be tough, but doable nonetheless. I'm just really distraught and confused on what to do. Take the full ride to the school no one has heard of, pay face value at UL. Its such a struggle.

What do y'all think?

User avatar
smaug
Posts: 12669
Joined: Thu Feb 19, 2015 8:31 pm

Re: Hard time deciding what law school is best for me

Postby smaug » Tue Jun 09, 2015 3:10 pm

Don't go.

BillClinton Jr
Posts: 306
Joined: Mon Feb 23, 2015 9:41 pm

Re: Hard time deciding what law school is best for me

Postby BillClinton Jr » Tue Jun 09, 2015 3:14 pm

You can never really bank on getting awesome grades and transferring so if your goal is to end up at a T-14 or a T1, just sit out, retake the test if you can, build some more work experience and apply earlier this cycle or whenever. None of these schools are worth the risk.

User avatar
Big Red
Posts: 3023
Joined: Thu Nov 13, 2014 1:29 pm

Re: Hard time deciding what law school is best for me

Postby Big Red » Tue Jun 09, 2015 3:19 pm

APIII wrote:I know it'll be tough, but doable nonetheless.


You really, really need to sit out a year, retake the LSAT, and get your applications in early next cycle.

With the options you're looking at now, it will change your life

User avatar
stego
Posts: 2881
Joined: Thu Apr 30, 2015 3:23 am

Re: Hard time deciding what law school is best for me

Postby stego » Tue Jun 09, 2015 3:20 pm

APIII wrote:My ideal situation would be maintain top 5% to 10% of my class my first year and transfer after my 1L to a T14 or a high ranked T1 with good job prospects. I know it'll be tough, but doable nonetheless. I'm just really distraught and confused on what to do. Take the full ride to the school no one has heard of, pay face value at UL. Its such a struggle.

What do y'all think?


No, you don't know it's doable. Transferring up requires top grades and 1L grades are unpredictable (forced curve, mostly/totally based on 1 exam). You should assume median grades but you can't even be sure you'll be above median (50% of students aren't) so even your scholarship stipulation is a risk. It would be much easier to retake the LSAT and reapply early in the admission cycle than it would be to try to transfer.

Don't go this year, reapply in the fall. I don't think you want Arkansas-Little Rock's job placement prospects. That's not going to help you get a job outside of Arkansas.

User avatar
pancakes3
Posts: 3923
Joined: Sun Jul 20, 2014 2:49 pm

Re: Hard time deciding what law school is best for me

Postby pancakes3 » Tue Jun 09, 2015 3:26 pm

In order to receive the best feedback in this forum, please provide as much of the following information in your original post as possible:

-The schools you are considering
-The total Cost of Attendance (COA) of each. COA = cost of tuition + fees + books + cost of living (COL) + accumulated interest - scholarships. Here is a helpful calculator.
-How you will be financing your COA, i.e. loans, family, or savings
-Where you are from and where you want to work, and other places where you have significant ties (if any)
-Your general career goals
-Your LSAT/GPA numbers
-How many times you have taken the LSAT

APIII
Posts: 9
Joined: Tue Jun 09, 2015 2:29 pm

Re: Hard time deciding what law school is best for me

Postby APIII » Tue Jun 09, 2015 3:31 pm

I appreciate all the insight you guys. I can retake the LSAT and get a better score, even apply early, but I'll be quite frank. I was quite the screw up my first two year of college. I had a 1.6 GPA through the first two years. Luckily, I got my shit together and managed to bring it all the way up to a 3.0 by graduation. Unfortunately, even with a stellar LSAT, I can't hide from the fact that I do have a 3.0 undergrad GPA (2.96 according to LSAC's weird calculating method).

CanadianWolf
Posts: 10439
Joined: Wed Mar 24, 2010 4:54 pm

Re: Hard time deciding what law school is best for me

Postby CanadianWolf » Tue Jun 09, 2015 3:34 pm

Based on your current two acceptances, UALR is the better choice because you may be able to graduate debt-free. If you have connections to law firms, take advantage & work there during your summers.
Of course, retaking the LSAT for a higher score & better options should be your first consideration. If that's not the path for you, then a debt-free law degree should be a priority.

APIII
Posts: 9
Joined: Tue Jun 09, 2015 2:29 pm

Re: Hard time deciding what law school is best for me

Postby APIII » Tue Jun 09, 2015 3:35 pm

As I said before, I was kind of a screw-up in college and did not take as things seriously as I should have. I have a 3.0 GPA and took the LSAT twice. Once without even so much opening a book and another time with minimal effort.
(02/2014) LSAT Score: 140
(12/2014) LSAT Score: 151

CanadianWolf
Posts: 10439
Joined: Wed Mar 24, 2010 4:54 pm

Re: Hard time deciding what law school is best for me

Postby CanadianWolf » Tue Jun 09, 2015 3:36 pm

Even with a 2.96 GPA, a stellar LSAT score can greatly improve your options. How many times have you taken the LSAT & what were the results ? URM ?

With a reasonable amount of prep work or a prep course you should be able to break 160 on the LSAT. This will make you competitive for the Florida law schools among many, many others.

User avatar
smaug
Posts: 12669
Joined: Thu Feb 19, 2015 8:31 pm

Re: Hard time deciding what law school is best for me

Postby smaug » Tue Jun 09, 2015 3:40 pm

APIII wrote:As I said before, I was kind of a screw-up in college and did not take as things seriously as I should have. I have a 3.0 GPA and took the LSAT twice. Once without even so much opening a book and another time with minimal effort.
(02/2014) LSAT Score: 140
(12/2014) LSAT Score: 151

tried too hard here

it was enjoyable otherwise, though

CanadianWolf
Posts: 10439
Joined: Wed Mar 24, 2010 4:54 pm

Re: Hard time deciding what law school is best for me

Postby CanadianWolf » Tue Jun 09, 2015 3:43 pm

I'm somewhat surprised that a 151/2.96 earned a full tuition scholarship from UALR. URM ?

User avatar
pancakes3
Posts: 3923
Joined: Sun Jul 20, 2014 2:49 pm

Re: Hard time deciding what law school is best for me

Postby pancakes3 » Tue Jun 09, 2015 3:44 pm

Jason Taverner wrote:
APIII wrote:As I said before, I was kind of a screw-up in college and did not take as things seriously as I should have. I have a 3.0 GPA and took the LSAT twice. Once without even so much opening a book and another time with minimal effort.
(02/2014) LSAT Score: 140
(12/2014) LSAT Score: 151

tried too hard here

it was enjoyable otherwise, though


Yeah, not buying it either. Trolled too low on the scores.

User avatar
stego
Posts: 2881
Joined: Thu Apr 30, 2015 3:23 am

Re: Hard time deciding what law school is best for me

Postby stego » Tue Jun 09, 2015 3:46 pm

A full ride at UALR doesn't make sense unless you want to practice in Arkansas.

Can we stop for a minute and wonder at how laughable it is that UALR is giving full rides to people with sub-3 GPA and sub-155 LSAT scores? How does this school make any money?

OP, you should retake the LSAT and actually study for it properly this time. Especially since this will be your third take within two years.

You have upward trend in your GPA, so you could write an addendum explaining that and what you learned from your mistakes the first two years. It might help a tiny bit.

User avatar
trebekismyhero
Posts: 387
Joined: Fri May 22, 2015 5:26 pm

Re: Hard time deciding what law school is best for me

Postby trebekismyhero » Tue Jun 09, 2015 3:46 pm

CanadianWolf wrote:I'm somewhat surprised that a 151/2.96 earned a full tuition scholarship from UALR. URM ?


No. He's trolling. He did a good job until the LSAT scores. He should have put at least a 157 or something to make it more plausible

Edit: Actually I might be wrong. I just looked it up and the median at UALR is like a 150-151 so it is possible I suppose

User avatar
pancakes3
Posts: 3923
Joined: Sun Jul 20, 2014 2:49 pm

Re: Hard time deciding what law school is best for me

Postby pancakes3 » Tue Jun 09, 2015 3:50 pm

trebekismyhero wrote:
CanadianWolf wrote:I'm somewhat surprised that a 151/2.96 earned a full tuition scholarship from UALR. URM ?


No. He's trolling. He did a good job until the LSAT scores. He should have put at least a 157 or something to make it more plausible

Edit: Actually I might be wrong. I just looked it up and the median at UALR is like a 150-151 so it is possible I suppose


It's also pretty much impossible to pull up a 1.6 through 2 years of school up to a 3.0

User avatar
trebekismyhero
Posts: 387
Joined: Fri May 22, 2015 5:26 pm

Re: Hard time deciding what law school is best for me

Postby trebekismyhero » Tue Jun 09, 2015 3:54 pm

[/quote]

No. He's trolling. He did a good job until the LSAT scores. He should have put at least a 157 or something to make it more plausible

Edit: Actually I might be wrong. I just looked it up and the median at UALR is like a 150-151 so it is possible I suppose[/quote]

It's also pretty much impossible to pull up a 1.6 through 2 years of school up to a 3.0[/quote]

Actually I had two friends in undergrad who did move their GPAs from under a 2.0 after their sophomore year to almost a 3.0 by the time they graduated. But they were pulling in like 3.8s and also took summer classes to increase their credits

APIII
Posts: 9
Joined: Tue Jun 09, 2015 2:29 pm

Re: Hard time deciding what law school is best for me

Postby APIII » Tue Jun 09, 2015 3:55 pm

I definitely wish I was trolling. All the credentials, if you can even call them that, are 100% true. I know I messed up and aren't the best of candidates, but I'm a broke URM (Cuban-American) from Hialeah, FL. I'm sure meeting some quote of quota was was got me money from these schools or even made them look at me, but I'll get what I can take. I'm 22 years old, have been out of undergrad for about a year, and I did write an addendum on why my GPA and LSAT scores were so shitty. I had medical complications from a lung collapse and was working 40-50 hours weekly during my undergrad (including at the the time) I took my LSAT.

And way I brought my GPA up was being on the Dean's list almost ever semester after that. (3.5-3.7 GPA from then on forward).

I really wish I was "trolling".

User avatar
Big Red
Posts: 3023
Joined: Thu Nov 13, 2014 1:29 pm

Re: Hard time deciding what law school is best for me

Postby Big Red » Tue Jun 09, 2015 3:56 pm

APIII wrote:URM


If you can get your LSAT up to a school's medians they will jump at you. You need to retake.

PoopNpants
Posts: 856
Joined: Sun Oct 05, 2014 9:40 pm

Re: Hard time deciding what law school is best for me

Postby PoopNpants » Tue Jun 09, 2015 4:02 pm

If this isn't a troll, re-take the LSAT and actually take it seriously, alotta people on this website (myself included) spends months studying 20-30 hours a week.

User avatar
stego
Posts: 2881
Joined: Thu Apr 30, 2015 3:23 am

Re: Hard time deciding what law school is best for me

Postby stego » Tue Jun 09, 2015 4:13 pm

If you took 12 hours a semester for 4 semesters and got exclusively C's and D's after 2 years you could have a 1.6. To raise that (48 hours at 1.6) to a 3.0 in 2 years, you would have to have 63 credit hours of straight A's, so 15+ hour semesters and/or summer coursework. Even more credit hours would be needed if you didn't quite make straight As. Possible but difficult.

lawman84
Posts: 3314
Joined: Thu May 28, 2015 5:01 pm

Re: Hard time deciding what law school is best for me

Postby lawman84 » Tue Jun 09, 2015 11:30 pm

PoopNpants wrote:If this isn't a troll, re-take the LSAT and actually take it seriously, alotta people on this website (myself included) spends months studying 20-30 hours a week.


Whoa. Y'all are dedicated. :shock:

timbs4339
Posts: 2733
Joined: Sat Apr 02, 2011 12:19 pm

Re: Hard time deciding what law school is best for me

Postby timbs4339 » Wed Jun 10, 2015 10:03 am

On the off chance you are not a troll (5%) then I agree with the retake crowd. You clearly don't want the job prospects that would come out of your only viable options at these debt ranges. Waiting another year and really studying is nothing in the scope of a 40 year career.

marowl0
Posts: 18
Joined: Mon Jun 08, 2015 2:31 am

Re: Hard time deciding what law school is best for me

Postby marowl0 » Sun Jun 14, 2015 9:22 pm

I would say definitely retake. As a URM if you can bring that LSAT up to a 160 you will have a shot at a top 20 school. If you can get it to 165ish you have a shot at a low end T14. I understand that with the scholly money you may not be in much, if any, debt but you need to remember that 3 years is a long time to waste if your job prospects are near 50 percent.




Return to “Choosing a Law School”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests