just want to take this opportunity to say one more time that the "everyone at the T6 has amazing softs" meme on TLS has got to stop. No they don't. Yale and Stanford are maybe the only schools where this kind of hyperbole is acceptable. First generation American child of single parent with disabled sibling publishing work and starting organization and volunteering for 200 hours is ABSOLUTELY above average. If well done in a PS, these will stand out. Not going to dramatically change the game, but calling them average, especially by 0Ls has just got to stop. Wait til you get to law school and realize just how vanilla this crowd is.
I agree with this to some end, but I feel like you're attacking a strawman. I doubt anyone here would say that you must have amazing softs to get into CCN -- quite the contrary if you spend any time on LSN. But unless a soft is metaphorically game-changing, it's as viable in the admissions process as any other soft factors. Sure, they'll stand out, but unless you're an Olympic medal winner, you're not going to "jump over" the LSAT/GPA thresholds for these schools.
I have no problem with the idea that OP's softs will be the difference between an acceptance and a waitlist, but unless he was the tank guy at Tiananmen square, it's not going to be the deciding factor over the LSAT.
I agree with this. I guess I should moderate my statement this way:
1. My real issue is with people saying that softs like these are "average" or that "at this level, everyone has got them." I have no problem with people saying that the softs will not make someone outperform their numbers. However, just as a matter of fact, if softs are above average, they are above average. We are all smart enough to separate the two issues.
2. I think people here do occasionally underestimate how important tie-breakers can be. If a school like Harvard gets 8000 applications, how many of those can we really toss due to woefully inadequate numbers, maybe half? So that leaves a lot of people with whom ties must be broken. LSN is a valuable tool, but remember that right now on LSN, Harvard has 720 listed applicants. There are many poeple who do not know about LSN and there are a lot of stories we don't know. My point, more moderately put, is just that OP has the softs to guard against underperformance, because his story is above average. There are many applicants who cannot say that. Have you guys read some of the personal statements on here from people whose big hook is "when I volunteered at the immigration ngo, I realized..."?
3. Kudos on the Tiananmen reference. Shit made me laugh. That guy would be a lock at Yale.