Should I retake or go this year?

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pyramidenergy888

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Should I retake or go this year?

Postby pyramidenergy888 » Sun Mar 05, 2017 9:12 pm

I want to pursue a career in criminal defense. I'm really passionate about public criminal defense because I want to do my part to represent average individuals who don't have access to the legal resources that big money can buy. I also am thinking about a clerkship with a state or federal judge as a possibility as well.

164 LSAT / 3.3 GPA --- Took in Dec and got a 163 and again in Feb and scored 164

While I know that I want to go into criminal law, I have no idea where I'd like to practice. I live in Reno, NV. Was born and raised in California. My SO and I are ready to move somewhere new and have that experience of living in a part of the country we've never been to. I'm open to a lot of possibilities but I qualities in a town/city such as: walkability, natural beauty, cultural diversity and vibrancy. I hate cars.

I am extremely debt averse. I would like to go into this with an eye towards taking out no debt the first year and if I end up needing to borrow something for 2L and 3L then that would be OK... My SO is moving with me and she will cover some living expenses but I can't expect her to take on everything... I guess to reach this financial goal I probably need to retake and get better offers...

I know I COULD improve my LSAT score --- I'm still only getting to three of four games, scoring -5 to -10 on that section. I am doing well with LR and RC, scoring anywhere from -1 to -5 per section consistently. On the Dec test I was -4 for both LR sections and -5 for RC, bombed the games... But spending more time on the LSAT does not sound fun........... but when each point means thousands of dollars it's kind of like what choice does one have?

I was offered $35,000/yr at Wake Forest, $37,500 at W+L, and $25,000 at Nebraska. So basically looking at $10,000 tuition per year at all of those. I was offered $30,500 at Indiana. I spent a month in Bloomington a while ago and really enjoyed it and would love to go there but it's too expensive right now.

I will hopefully have some assistance coming from family which can cover some of my tuition costs to the tune of less than $10,000 per year.

Thinking about taking another year, aiming for a job as a paralegal, getting some experience, and retaking the LSAT... Please validate this line of thinking...... lol JK please offer me your thoughts? Any helpful insights? Thank you.

Charlie802

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Re: Should I retake or go this year?

Postby Charlie802 » Sun Mar 05, 2017 9:26 pm

I'm in a similar situation and I am leaning towards waiting another year and retaking. Your lsat is higher than mine, but I was testing higher and am thinking of taking a course/really dedicating myself to studying and will then reapply. Your train of thought is valid if you're willing to wait a year and work for it!

Rigo

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Re: Should I retake or go this year?

Postby Rigo » Sun Mar 05, 2017 9:45 pm

If you're stuck on games, definitely retake.
You should really think about where you want to practice and settle down with your SO. You applied to random regional schools all in places you're not from and have never really lived. On top of that they don't even seem to fit your preferences for what you like in cities.
Start with a retake though.
4 more points and WUSTL will shell out.

pyramidenergy888

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Re: Should I retake or go this year?

Postby pyramidenergy888 » Sun Mar 05, 2017 9:56 pm

Rigo wrote:If you're stuck on games, definitely retake.
You should really think about where you want to practice and settle down with your SO. You applied to random regional schools all in places you're not from and have never really lived. On top of that they don't even seem to fit your preferences for what you like in cities.
Start with a retake though.
4 more points and WUSTL will shell out.


Any suggestions on cities/schools to apply? WUSTL is definitely on the list if I decide to retake.

Rigo

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Re: Should I retake or go this year?

Postby Rigo » Sun Mar 05, 2017 10:09 pm

pyramidenergy888 wrote:
Rigo wrote:If you're stuck on games, definitely retake.
You should really think about where you want to practice and settle down with your SO. You applied to random regional schools all in places you're not from and have never really lived. On top of that they don't even seem to fit your preferences for what you like in cities.
Start with a retake though.
4 more points and WUSTL will shell out.

Any suggestions on cities/schools to apply? WUSTL is definitely on the list if I decide to retake.

Not really. I don't know your life. I would suggest asking simple questions like:
Do you want to practice in Reno or Nevada? Do you want to practice in California? On the west coast?
You can be a public defender anywhere so go to school somewhere you want to live and build connections and ties.
It's nice that you're flexible but try not to be whimsical with your geographic choices.

pyramidenergy888

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Re: Should I retake or go this year?

Postby pyramidenergy888 » Mon Mar 06, 2017 1:54 am

Rigo wrote:
pyramidenergy888 wrote:
Rigo wrote:If you're stuck on games, definitely retake.
You should really think about where you want to practice and settle down with your SO. You applied to random regional schools all in places you're not from and have never really lived. On top of that they don't even seem to fit your preferences for what you like in cities.
Start with a retake though.
4 more points and WUSTL will shell out.

Any suggestions on cities/schools to apply? WUSTL is definitely on the list if I decide to retake.

Not really. I don't know your life. I would suggest asking simple questions like:
Do you want to practice in Reno or Nevada? Do you want to practice in California? On the west coast?
You can be a public defender anywhere so go to school somewhere you want to live and build connections and ties.
It's nice that you're flexible but try not to be whimsical with your geographic choices.


"Geographically whimsical" is a funny way to put it but yeah I have no idea where I'd like to be.. all I know is that I want to explore and move somewhere completely different. So no I would not like to practice in California... Pretty much I'm avoiding places I've been and that I feel are culturally similar to California where I lived for the first 21 years of my life before moving to NV. Looking to go somewhere east of Colorado at minimum.

BigZuck

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Re: Should I retake or go this year?

Postby BigZuck » Mon Mar 06, 2017 2:26 am

I'm not sure law school and a whimsical jaunt across the country really mesh together well. I think I'd try to get the wanderlust out of your system first and then think of law school sometime down the road if you still want to go. Once you start down the law school path I think a desire to pack up and move and experience new places could potentially really set you back.

I'd also make sure you really know what it means to do criminal defense. Working as a paralegal or even interning in the field could be very helpful for that. Likewise make sure you're being realistic about career opportunities- a federal clerkship would be very much a long shot given the types of schools you're talking about.

pyramidenergy888

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Posts: 85
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Re: Should I retake or go this year?

Postby pyramidenergy888 » Mon Mar 06, 2017 3:31 am

BigZuck wrote:I'm not sure law school and a whimsical jaunt across the country really mesh together well. I think I'd try to get the wanderlust out of your system first and then think of law school sometime down the road if you still want to go. Once you start down the law school path I think a desire to pack up and move and experience new places could potentially really set you back.

I'd also make sure you really know what it means to do criminal defense. Working as a paralegal or even interning in the field could be very helpful for that. Likewise make sure you're being realistic about career opportunities- a federal clerkship would be very much a long shot given the types of schools you're talking about.


Thanks man/woman really helpful :-)



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