Good safeties for my list?

(BLS, URM status, non-traditional, GLBT)
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brinicolec
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Good safeties for my list?

Postby brinicolec » Tue Jul 19, 2016 8:57 pm

Current list:

Columbia
Chicago
Cornell
Emory
Georgetown
GWU
Harvard
Michigan
Northwestern
NYU
UPenn
UT Austin
UVA
Vanderbilt
WUSTL

I'm wondering if I should add some safety schools. I'm a AA female splitter and am trying to get my LSAT to the next level by retaking in Sept. but still, being a splitter makes things a little more tricky. I'm thinking of adding Miami. Would you all recommend adding some schools to my list or do you think even with this list, I'm bound to get in to a few of them and should stop worrying so much?

EDIT: My current stats are ~ 3.4/164. I say approximately because my GPA hasn't been finalized just yet but I used one of the LSAC GPA calcs. to get an idea. Goal is to do big law, at least for a little, but I also have interests in criminal law and racial injustice so I guess my ideal job would be big law that does some probono work in those types of things. I don't really consider myself tied to a specific region because I was a military brat growing up. I suppose you could consider it where I went to college but I don't like NC, which is why neither UNC nor Duke is on my list, and I'm also not staying in the area during my gap year. I'm more of a city person so I'd love to end up in NYC or DC after LS. I've also heard Chicago is a nice city but haven't personally been there as far as I can remember.
Last edited by brinicolec on Wed Jul 20, 2016 11:19 am, edited 2 times in total.

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Nachoo2019
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Re: Good safeties for my list?

Postby Nachoo2019 » Wed Jul 20, 2016 2:36 am

LSAT/GPA/Goals are necessary to answer this question

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Barack O'Drama
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Re: Good safeties for my list?

Postby Barack O'Drama » Wed Jul 20, 2016 2:51 am

Nachoo2019 wrote:LSAT/GPA/Goals are necessary to answer this question



Yeah, that information is pretty important to be able to provide an answer.

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brinicolec
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Re: Good safeties for my list?

Postby brinicolec » Wed Jul 20, 2016 3:44 am

Barack O'Drama wrote:
Nachoo2019 wrote:LSAT/GPA/Goals are necessary to answer this question



Yeah, that information is pretty important to be able to provide an answer.



Whoops, sorry about that.

Currently ~ 3.4/164. (I say approx. because my transcript isn't finalized yet) Goals: probably big law, at least for now, although I also have an interest in criminal law & race issues.

pittsburghpirates
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Re: Good safeties for my list?

Postby pittsburghpirates » Wed Jul 20, 2016 8:17 am

Would also be helpful to know where you want to practice so we can identify some strong regionals too

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mukol
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Re: Good safeties for my list?

Postby mukol » Wed Jul 20, 2016 9:45 am

brinicolec wrote:
Barack O'Drama wrote:
Nachoo2019 wrote:LSAT/GPA/Goals are necessary to answer this question



Yeah, that information is pretty important to be able to provide an answer.



Whoops, sorry about that.

Currently ~ 3.4/164. (I say approx. because my transcript isn't finalized yet) Goals: probably big law, at least for now, although I also have an interest in criminal law & race issues.


Think you could edit your original post and just put this info in it?

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oidsedidy
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Re: Good safeties for my list?

Postby oidsedidy » Wed Jul 20, 2016 10:13 am

brinicolec wrote:Current list:

Columbia
Chicago
Cornell
Emory
Georgetown
GWU
Harvard
Michigan
Northwestern
NYU
UPenn
UT Austin
UVA
Vanderbilt
WUSTL

I'm wondering if I should add some safety schools. I'm a AA female splitter and am trying to get my LSAT to the next level by retaking in Sept. but still, being a splitter makes things a little more tricky. I'm thinking of adding Miami. Would you all recommend adding some schools to my list or do you think even with this list, I'm bound to get in to a few of them and should stop worrying so much?


I'd definitely recommend adding some schools that are located near home for you- having ties to your region will give you a leg-up in future interviews. If Miami is close to home then by all means add it, but otherwise I wouldn't in your shoes. Your current stats, I think, would probably book you full-tuition at some schools within T1, and I'd be really surprised if you couldn't get into WUSTL and GW right now. Emory took a slight tumble and fell out of T20 this year- that may cause them to be more selective but you're prob better than 50% there. If you're from Texas you have a good shot there as things stand. Your lower end T14 is possible but wouldn't count on it, and everything Penn and up is unlikely (but you really never know).

All that said, unless you like the security of knowing you can go to a variety of schools I wouldn't add more than 2 safety schools to this list tops- and only those close to home where you'd get full-rides. Best of luck on retake- I think if you are hellbent on going to T14 you will sneak in with 166+; 3.4 isn't ideal, but URM may make it a wash.

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KunAgnis
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Re: Good safeties for my list?

Postby KunAgnis » Wed Jul 20, 2016 10:45 am

I know you didn't ask, but if this helps you widen your application list so that you are safer in your process, many schools offer fee waivers. I didn't use this as much but if you apply carefully, you'll realize the application process is not as expensive as you think it might be. Hope that helps with your process. Also - for the T14, UVA and NU were splitter friendly (I was 2.55 GPA and 171 LSAT and got onto both's waitlist even though I had applied late).

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brinicolec
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Re: Good safeties for my list?

Postby brinicolec » Wed Jul 20, 2016 11:18 am

mukol wrote:
brinicolec wrote:
Barack O'Drama wrote:
Nachoo2019 wrote:LSAT/GPA/Goals are necessary to answer this question



Yeah, that information is pretty important to be able to provide an answer.



Whoops, sorry about that.

Currently ~ 3.4/164. (I say approx. because my transcript isn't finalized yet) Goals: probably big law, at least for now, although I also have an interest in criminal law & race issues.


Think you could edit your original post and just put this info in it?


Done!

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Mullens
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Re: Good safeties for my list?

Postby Mullens » Wed Jul 20, 2016 11:22 am

I am strongly against the idea that people should apply to "safety" law schools. It is thinking that bleeds over from undergraduate applications and does not belong in a professional school context. You need to shift your thinking to two things: employment outcomes and cost. The questions you should be asking is "will this school allow me a reasonable shot at my desired employment at a reasonable cost." The answer to that question varies greatly for different people in ways that the USNews rankings provide little value other than as a signal of prestige and ability to place into biglaw jobs.

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oidsedidy
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Re: Good safeties for my list?

Postby oidsedidy » Wed Jul 20, 2016 11:27 am

Mullens wrote:I am strongly against the idea that people should apply to "safety" law schools. It is thinking that bleeds over from undergraduate applications and does not belong in a professional school context. You need to shift your thinking to two things: employment outcomes and cost. The questions you should be asking is "will this school allow me a reasonable shot at my desired employment at a reasonable cost." The answer to that question varies greatly for different people in ways that the USNews rankings provide little value other than as a signal of prestige and ability to place into biglaw jobs.


I think that makes perfect sense, but just remember that at least a couple of schools on OP's list, at least that I am aware of, have scholarship matching programs. Although it's true that schools mostly entertain giving more money to you based on what peer schools, rather than safety schools, offer you in the way of scholarships, it never hurts to have a free-ride from somewhere when asking for more money (this was my experience when I was negotiating more money from the school I currently attend- which was included in OP's list).

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Mullens
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Re: Good safeties for my list?

Postby Mullens » Wed Jul 20, 2016 11:31 am

Apply to Duke. Even if you have no intention of going there, it might still be useful for scholarship negotiations. Makes no sense to eliminate a school that fits your career goals based on geographic preference.

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brinicolec
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Re: Good safeties for my list?

Postby brinicolec » Wed Jul 20, 2016 11:34 am

oidsedidy wrote:I'd definitely recommend adding some schools that are located near home for you- having ties to your region will give you a leg-up in future interviews. If Miami is close to home then by all means add it, but otherwise I wouldn't in your shoes. Your current stats, I think, would probably book you full-tuition at some schools within T1, and I'd be really surprised if you couldn't get into WUSTL and GW right now. Emory took a slight tumble and fell out of T20 this year- that may cause them to be more selective but you're prob better than 50% there. If you're from Texas you have a good shot there as things stand. Your lower end T14 is possible but wouldn't count on it, and everything Penn and up is unlikely (but you really never know).

All that said, unless you like the security of knowing you can go to a variety of schools I wouldn't add more than 2 safety schools to this list tops- and only those close to home where you'd get full-rides. Best of luck on retake- I think if you are hellbent on going to T14 you will sneak in with 166+; 3.4 isn't ideal, but URM may make it a wash.


So what would you recommend since I'm not really tied to a certain region? Just leave the list where it's at?

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oidsedidy
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Re: Good safeties for my list?

Postby oidsedidy » Wed Jul 20, 2016 12:23 pm

brinicolec wrote:
oidsedidy wrote:I'd definitely recommend adding some schools that are located near home for you- having ties to your region will give you a leg-up in future interviews. If Miami is close to home then by all means add it, but otherwise I wouldn't in your shoes. Your current stats, I think, would probably book you full-tuition at some schools within T1, and I'd be really surprised if you couldn't get into WUSTL and GW right now. Emory took a slight tumble and fell out of T20 this year- that may cause them to be more selective but you're prob better than 50% there. If you're from Texas you have a good shot there as things stand. Your lower end T14 is possible but wouldn't count on it, and everything Penn and up is unlikely (but you really never know).

All that said, unless you like the security of knowing you can go to a variety of schools I wouldn't add more than 2 safety schools to this list tops- and only those close to home where you'd get full-rides. Best of luck on retake- I think if you are hellbent on going to T14 you will sneak in with 166+; 3.4 isn't ideal, but URM may make it a wash.


So what would you recommend since I'm not really tied to a certain region? Just leave the list where it's at?


I think your current list is fine, but what I was referring to is a school located by maybe where you grew up/have family, or where you have significant WE. So, for instance, if you were from Houston you might apply to UH, because not only would you automatically get in but you would get a ton of money. The same might be true for other state schools, like UF or or Colorado, etc. Just a place where not only would you get in with money, but if for some inexplicable reason you chose to go there you could at least convey to interviewers that you are strongly committed to practicing in that region.

tl;dr your current list is probably fine

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brinicolec
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Re: Good safeties for my list?

Postby brinicolec » Wed Jul 20, 2016 12:28 pm

oidsedidy wrote:I think your current list is fine, but what I was referring to is a school located by maybe where you grew up/have family, or where you have significant WE. So, for instance, if you were from Houston you might apply to UH, because not only would you automatically get in but you would get a ton of money. The same might be true for other state schools, like UF or or Colorado, etc. Just a place where not only would you get in with money, but if for some inexplicable reason you chose to go there you could at least convey to interviewers that you are strongly committed to practicing in that region.

tl;dr your current list is probably fine


That's what I'm saying though. I was born into and grew up in a military family. My dad hasn't retired yet, so they're not settled yet. For example: They're currently in WY and I'm gonna go and spend my gap year there (unfortunately) but they don't expect to stay for more than another year, which would put them at like two years in WY. Prior to that they spent two years in VA. Prior to that, they spent a couple years in FL (which is where I graduated HS). And so on and so forth. I went to ten different schools before graduating HS. The closest we have to roots is the fact that my mom is in love with VA and there's some good jobs my dad could get there so that's where they intend to go once he decides to retire & there's a few family friends there and FL.

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brinicolec
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Re: Good safeties for my list?

Postby brinicolec » Wed Jul 20, 2016 12:29 pm

Mullens wrote:Apply to Duke. Even if you have no intention of going there, it might still be useful for scholarship negotiations. Makes no sense to eliminate a school that fits your career goals based on geographic preference.


I'll put it on the list for now then think about it some more because I agree it works for my career goals but when I tell you I don't think I can get out of NC fast enough....

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oidsedidy
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Re: Good safeties for my list?

Postby oidsedidy » Wed Jul 20, 2016 12:39 pm

brinicolec wrote:
oidsedidy wrote:I think your current list is fine, but what I was referring to is a school located by maybe where you grew up/have family, or where you have significant WE. So, for instance, if you were from Houston you might apply to UH, because not only would you automatically get in but you would get a ton of money. The same might be true for other state schools, like UF or or Colorado, etc. Just a place where not only would you get in with money, but if for some inexplicable reason you chose to go there you could at least convey to interviewers that you are strongly committed to practicing in that region.

tl;dr your current list is probably fine


That's what I'm saying though. I was born into and grew up in a military family. My dad hasn't retired yet, so they're not settled yet. For example: They're currently in WY and I'm gonna go and spend my gap year there (unfortunately) but they don't expect to stay for more than another year, which would put them at like two years in WY. Prior to that they spent two years in VA. Prior to that, they spent a couple years in FL (which is where I graduated HS). And so on and so forth. I went to ten different schools before graduating HS. The closest we have to roots is the fact that my mom is in love with VA and there's some good jobs my dad could get there so that's where they intend to go once he decides to retire & there's a few family friends there and FL.


I see- hence the Miami consideration. In your case then... outside of a random app tossed towards Miami, UF, or FSU I think you could just leave your list alone- especially given that you would never want to actually go to law school in Florida. Again, the 3.4 might be more annoying than can reasonably be anticipated, but I can't imagine you not, at the very least, getting accepted to at least a few of your listed schools even without improving the 164. Good luck!

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brinicolec
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Re: Good safeties for my list?

Postby brinicolec » Wed Jul 20, 2016 12:54 pm

oidsedidy wrote:
brinicolec wrote:
oidsedidy wrote:I think your current list is fine, but what I was referring to is a school located by maybe where you grew up/have family, or where you have significant WE. So, for instance, if you were from Houston you might apply to UH, because not only would you automatically get in but you would get a ton of money. The same might be true for other state schools, like UF or or Colorado, etc. Just a place where not only would you get in with money, but if for some inexplicable reason you chose to go there you could at least convey to interviewers that you are strongly committed to practicing in that region.

tl;dr your current list is probably fine


That's what I'm saying though. I was born into and grew up in a military family. My dad hasn't retired yet, so they're not settled yet. For example: They're currently in WY and I'm gonna go and spend my gap year there (unfortunately) but they don't expect to stay for more than another year, which would put them at like two years in WY. Prior to that they spent two years in VA. Prior to that, they spent a couple years in FL (which is where I graduated HS). And so on and so forth. I went to ten different schools before graduating HS. The closest we have to roots is the fact that my mom is in love with VA and there's some good jobs my dad could get there so that's where they intend to go once he decides to retire & there's a few family friends there and FL.


I see- hence the Miami consideration. In your case then... outside of a random app tossed towards Miami, UF, or FSU I think you could just leave your list alone- especially given that you would never want to actually go to law school in Florida. Again, the 3.4 might be more annoying than can reasonably be anticipated, but I can't imagine you not, at the very least, getting accepted to at least a few of your listed schools even without improving the 164. Good luck!


I THINK Miami gave me a fee waiver too so that was another reason I was gonna shoot one there. & yeah, I have some concerns regarding my GPA but hopefully it'll be alright. Thank you!

MyNameIsntJames
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Re: Good safeties for my list?

Postby MyNameIsntJames » Thu Jul 21, 2016 10:03 am

brinicolec wrote:
oidsedidy wrote:
brinicolec wrote:
oidsedidy wrote:I think your current list is fine, but what I was referring to is a school located by maybe where you grew up/have family, or where you have significant WE. So, for instance, if you were from Houston you might apply to UH, because not only would you automatically get in but you would get a ton of money. The same might be true for other state schools, like UF or or Colorado, etc. Just a place where not only would you get in with money, but if for some inexplicable reason you chose to go there you could at least convey to interviewers that you are strongly committed to practicing in that region.

tl;dr your current list is probably fine


That's what I'm saying though. I was born into and grew up in a military family. My dad hasn't retired yet, so they're not settled yet. For example: They're currently in WY and I'm gonna go and spend my gap year there (unfortunately) but they don't expect to stay for more than another year, which would put them at like two years in WY. Prior to that they spent two years in VA. Prior to that, they spent a couple years in FL (which is where I graduated HS). And so on and so forth. I went to ten different schools before graduating HS. The closest we have to roots is the fact that my mom is in love with VA and there's some good jobs my dad could get there so that's where they intend to go once he decides to retire & there's a few family friends there and FL.


I see- hence the Miami consideration. In your case then... outside of a random app tossed towards Miami, UF, or FSU I think you could just leave your list alone- especially given that you would never want to actually go to law school in Florida. Again, the 3.4 might be more annoying than can reasonably be anticipated, but I can't imagine you not, at the very least, getting accepted to at least a few of your listed schools even without improving the 164. Good luck!


I THINK Miami gave me a fee waiver too so that was another reason I was gonna shoot one there. & yeah, I have some concerns regarding my GPA but hopefully it'll be alright. Thank you!




Break 170 & your GPA shouldn't be an issue outside of HYS. Ideally 172+ will make you ok. Don't think you need "safeties" at that point because schools like GULC, GW, etc., will almost be a shoe-in from there.


Reading the thread I think some people are substantially under rating URM boost... From the URM cycle threads, myLSN etc., & general trends and numbers the evidence suggests that even in your current situation you have a pretty legitimate shot at the bottom half of T-14 & everything under it. Do your business on the LSAT & safeties outside of T-14 shouldn't be needed. Just send an app to places you actually want to attend + a couple ones to T-14 that might throw you a substantial scholarship for the purposes of negotiation with other schools.




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