Explanation of age in ps?

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tliles
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Re: Explanation of age in ps?

Postby tliles » Sun Feb 05, 2012 3:49 pm

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Last edited by tliles on Tue Jul 03, 2012 3:56 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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nygrrrl
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Re: Explanation of age in ps?

Postby nygrrrl » Sun Feb 05, 2012 4:19 pm

OP, where do you want to end up (geographically?)

And I gotta say it, just once - with that GPA... just 3 more points on the LSAT and it's a game changer, if only in terms of money. Well done UG time, for sure!

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bigeast03
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Re: Explanation of age in ps?

Postby bigeast03 » Sun Feb 05, 2012 4:20 pm

J-e-L-L-o wrote:These statements are moronic. Obviously the OP wants to go to law school. Why would she be persuaded because of her age. She graduated college early, and earned the right to attend after taking the LSAT. That's all you need a bachelors and an LSAT score. Age is not a factor.

You should get some work experience before applying. At least a year. That seems to be the general consensus on TLS. You are no more different than any other applicant, you are just younger. Are you less mature? Who knows.

If a 19 y.o. graduated with a B.S. and wanted to get a PhD or go to med school because that is what they want to do and are qualified, would you dissuade them? No. Go out and achieve your dreams. Get a year of work experience. If you still want to be a lawyer, go to law school, get into top 14, and graduate younger than everyone else and potentially have to deal with the debt for less of your life.

but what do I know...I am just a 0L that says follow your dreams.


I'm in a similar situation as the OP, and while technically the only criteria to get into law school is a bachelor's degree and an LSAT score, I am much more concerned about the opinion of recruiters in OCI than in the opinion of admissions committees. General consensus says that AdComs are primarily concerned with numbers, and everything else is secondary. I am more worried that this is not the case with employers and that age will be a factor in whether or not I get a job after graduation.

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cinephile
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Re: Explanation of age in ps?

Postby cinephile » Sun Feb 05, 2012 4:34 pm

Nobody's saying don't follow your dreams. People are simply saying that law school is a huge commitment. It's not just 3 years and a hundred thousand dollars, it's also a huge opportunity cost. After law school, you need to secure a job in the legal field right away, or be shut out forever. This means there won't be any time for exploring personal interests, traveling, finding oneself etc. until retirement. And that's pretty sad actually. Why not take a year to do something you've always wanted to do now before it's too late.


Also, on a different note, we just had our 1L OCI. I'm in my mid-late 20's and I received a number of interviews and one offer so far. Whereas some people I know who were K-JD didn't get any interviews, or only 1. I know 1L OCI is quite different from what we'll face this fall, but I think having full-time, post-grad work experience really counts for something.

tliles
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Re: Explanation of age in ps?

Postby tliles » Sun Feb 05, 2012 4:41 pm

bigeast03 wrote:
I'm in a similar situation as the OP, and while technically the only criteria to get into law school is a bachelor's degree and an LSAT score, I am much more concerned about the opinion of recruiters in OCI than in the opinion of admissions committees. General consensus says that AdComs are primarily concerned with numbers, and everything else is secondary. I am more worried that this is not the case with employers and that age will be a factor in whether or not I get a job after graduation.


I have to say, that hasn't been something that I find particularly concerning. I think that employers, just as adcomms, look for well-qualified competitive candidates for positions. If you carry yourself well and are capable of performing duties to their satisfaction, I see no reason they would dismiss you only because you're younger. If anything, I have no doubt that there will be some employer who recognizes the potential of a candidate who is out-competing men and women 5+ years their senior. Hey, maybe I'm wrong, in which case I'm grateful to have a mother who's an attorney and a myriad of close family friends with private practices.

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IAFG
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Re: Explanation of age in ps?

Postby IAFG » Sun Feb 05, 2012 9:01 pm

tliles wrote:
bigeast03 wrote:
I'm in a similar situation as the OP, and while technically the only criteria to get into law school is a bachelor's degree and an LSAT score, I am much more concerned about the opinion of recruiters in OCI than in the opinion of admissions committees. General consensus says that AdComs are primarily concerned with numbers, and everything else is secondary. I am more worried that this is not the case with employers and that age will be a factor in whether or not I get a job after graduation.


I have to say, that hasn't been something that I find particularly concerning. I think that employers, just as adcomms, look for well-qualified competitive candidates for positions. If you carry yourself well and are capable of performing duties to their satisfaction, I see no reason they would dismiss you only because you're younger. If anything, I have no doubt that there will be some employer who recognizes the potential of a candidate who is out-competing men and women 5+ years their senior. Hey, maybe I'm wrong, in which case I'm grateful to have a mother who's an attorney and a myriad of close family friends with private practices.

Whatever you "see a reason for," I can say that people with solid post-UG work experience do significantly better than people with no work experience or weak work experience, with the same grades. I am not telling you this because I don't want to hang out with younger people-- some of my good friends are significantly younger than me. I am telling you that, for legal hiring and law school, working, exploring the field and getting some points of reference is hands-down the best thing you can do for yourself.

The next thing you can do is re-take the LSAT and get a 17X.

tliles
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Re: Explanation of age in ps?

Postby tliles » Sun Feb 05, 2012 9:19 pm

IAFG wrote:
tliles wrote:
bigeast03 wrote:
I'm in a similar situation as the OP, and while technically the only criteria to get into law school is a bachelor's degree and an LSAT score, I am much more concerned about the opinion of recruiters in OCI than in the opinion of admissions committees. General consensus says that AdComs are primarily concerned with numbers, and everything else is secondary. I am more worried that this is not the case with employers and that age will be a factor in whether or not I get a job after graduation.


I have to say, that hasn't been something that I find particularly concerning. I think that employers, just as adcomms, look for well-qualified competitive candidates for positions. If you carry yourself well and are capable of performing duties to their satisfaction, I see no reason they would dismiss you only because you're younger. If anything, I have no doubt that there will be some employer who recognizes the potential of a candidate who is out-competing men and women 5+ years their senior. Hey, maybe I'm wrong, in which case I'm grateful to have a mother who's an attorney and a myriad of close family friends with private practices.

Whatever you "see a reason for," I can say that people with solid post-UG work experience do significantly better than people with no work experience or weak work experience, with the same grades. I am not telling you this because I don't want to hang out with younger people-- some of my good friends are significantly younger than me. I am telling you that, for legal hiring and law school, working, exploring the field and getting some points of reference is hands-down the best thing you can do for yourself.

The next thing you can do is re-take the LSAT and get a 17X.


I think I'll take my chances.

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bigeast03
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Re: Explanation of age in ps?

Postby bigeast03 » Sun Feb 05, 2012 9:27 pm

IAFG wrote:
tliles wrote:
bigeast03 wrote:
I'm in a similar situation as the OP, and while technically the only criteria to get into law school is a bachelor's degree and an LSAT score, I am much more concerned about the opinion of recruiters in OCI than in the opinion of admissions committees. General consensus says that AdComs are primarily concerned with numbers, and everything else is secondary. I am more worried that this is not the case with employers and that age will be a factor in whether or not I get a job after graduation.


I have to say, that hasn't been something that I find particularly concerning. I think that employers, just as adcomms, look for well-qualified competitive candidates for positions. If you carry yourself well and are capable of performing duties to their satisfaction, I see no reason they would dismiss you only because you're younger. If anything, I have no doubt that there will be some employer who recognizes the potential of a candidate who is out-competing men and women 5+ years their senior. Hey, maybe I'm wrong, in which case I'm grateful to have a mother who's an attorney and a myriad of close family friends with private practices.

Whatever you "see a reason for," I can say that people with solid post-UG work experience do significantly better than people with no work experience or weak work experience, with the same grades. I am not telling you this because I don't want to hang out with younger people-- some of my good friends are significantly younger than me. I am telling you that, for legal hiring and law school, working, exploring the field and getting some points of reference is hands-down the best thing you can do for yourself.

The next thing you can do is re-take the LSAT and get a 17X.


What do you see as being the difference between solid v. weak work experience?

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IAFG
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Re: Explanation of age in ps?

Postby IAFG » Sun Feb 05, 2012 9:49 pm

bigeast03 wrote:What do you see as being the difference between solid v. weak work experience?

Well, of course, it's a question of how you can spin it. It's hard to spin 6 months of making binders as a paralegal at an insurance defense firm well, but people who did substantive work as paralegals, worked in the White House, did consulting, were project managers, etc seem to do better.

But I also think just the process of having gotten a "real" job, having to negotiate office politics, having to grind away at bullshit actual work, just changes people and gives them a world view that's incredibly helpful for convincing a firm to hire you, because you "get it."

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bigeast03
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Re: Explanation of age in ps?

Postby bigeast03 » Sun Feb 05, 2012 10:01 pm

IAFG wrote:
bigeast03 wrote:What do you see as being the difference between solid v. weak work experience?

Well, of course, it's a question of how you can spin it. It's hard to spin 6 months of making binders as a paralegal at an insurance defense firm well, but people who did substantive work as paralegals, worked in the White House, did consulting, were project managers, etc seem to do better.

But I also think just the process of having gotten a "real" job, having to negotiate office politics, having to grind away at bullshit actual work, just changes people and gives them a world view that's incredibly helpful for convincing a firm to hire you, because you "get it."



Yeah, that makes sense. Thank you for the response, I'm just a little concerned about how to work this so that my age becomes less of an issue.

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IAFG
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Re: Explanation of age in ps?

Postby IAFG » Sun Feb 05, 2012 10:07 pm

tliles wrote:
I think I'll take my chances.

I think you will too, because bright teenagers always think they can outsmart wisdom and experience.

tliles
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Re: Explanation of age in ps?

Postby tliles » Sun Feb 05, 2012 10:18 pm

IAFG wrote:
tliles wrote:
I think I'll take my chances.

I think you will too, because bright teenagers always think they can outsmart wisdom and experience.


I don't know that what I'm doing will work any better than what you're suggesting, but it is what I'm doing. I just think it's ridiculous that you seem to be implying that I'm somehow arrogant because I'm not re-evaluating the career choice that I've spent the last few years working toward simply because you think that I should. That's silly.

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acrossthelake
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Re: Explanation of age in ps?

Postby acrossthelake » Sun Feb 05, 2012 10:27 pm

tliles wrote:
IAFG wrote:
tliles wrote:
I think I'll take my chances.

I think you will too, because bright teenagers always think they can outsmart wisdom and experience.


I don't know that what I'm doing will work any better than what you're suggesting, but it is what I'm doing. I just think it's ridiculous that you seem to be implying that I'm somehow arrogant because I'm not re-evaluating the career choice that I've spent the last few years working toward simply because you think that I should. That's silly.


I mean, the fact that you're unwilling to retake the LSAT is basically evidence that you're either overoptimistic or haven't done your due diligence in researching hiring rates, etc. I don't know anybody who has thoroughly researched that information who happily sits tight with a first-time 165. There's understandable reluctance when the person is a non-trad who doesn't want to delay yet another year because they're getting on in age(and in that case, I understand), but you lose that excuse when you're 19. I say this as a fairly young K-JD myself. I'm curious as to what IAFG would think of my own decision.

But to answer the main question, I believe the PS should always be about showcasing your strong points. This is one of the main reasons why I tend to go "ehhh" when people want to talk about things such as overcoming depression or eating disorders, etc. While overcoming such can be a strength, I think it's often more advantageous to talk about some other aspect of their personality (maybe their leadership, or their creativity, or whatever). I definitely think you're better off not mentioning age at all. I was on the younger side for my apps and I just chose not to draw attention to it.

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IAFG
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Re: Explanation of age in ps?

Postby IAFG » Sun Feb 05, 2012 10:54 pm

tliles wrote:
IAFG wrote:
tliles wrote:
I think I'll take my chances.

I think you will too, because bright teenagers always think they can outsmart wisdom and experience.


I don't know that what I'm doing will work any better than what you're suggesting, but it is what I'm doing. I just think it's ridiculous that you seem to be implying that I'm somehow arrogant because I'm not re-evaluating the career choice that I've spent the last few years working toward simply because you think that I should. That's silly.

How many lawyers working at the sort of firms have you talked to about this choice, and the strength of your candidacy now vs. if you got some work experience? I don't think you should follow my advice because it is my advice. I think you should get a sample of the views of people who are likely to be deciding whether to hire you or not and decide based on that information.

And yes, I do think you're being arrogant.

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cinephile
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Re: Explanation of age in ps?

Postby cinephile » Sun Feb 05, 2012 11:00 pm

bigeast03 wrote:
Yeah, that makes sense. Thank you for the response, I'm just a little concerned about how to work this so that my age becomes less of an issue.


You could work for a year, and still be young and have work experience.

Otherwise, just highlight whatever leadership experience you have through school activities, part time jobs, your sorority, etc.

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IAFG
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Re: Explanation of age in ps?

Postby IAFG » Sun Feb 05, 2012 11:00 pm

acrossthelake wrote: I say this as a fairly young K-JD myself. I'm curious as to what IAFG would think of my own decision.


If you had asked me before you committed, I would have told you that law school is always there, and there are pre-law experiences you can only get pre-law. I would have said from HLS, it's hard to lose... UNLESS you realize you didn't want to be a lawyer at all two years out and find yourself back at square one (which happens often enough). I suspect many lawyers find their unhappiness amplified due to a lack of reference points.

I also would have said most people with no work experience at all aren't really equipped to select a profession, and professional schools have realized that and started preferring WE over none. Did you know some dental schools are now requiring a certain number of hours "shadowing" before they'll even consider an application? There's a good reason for that.

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acrossthelake
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Re: Explanation of age in ps?

Postby acrossthelake » Sun Feb 05, 2012 11:06 pm

IAFG wrote:
acrossthelake wrote: I say this as a fairly young K-JD myself. I'm curious as to what IAFG would think of my own decision.


If you had asked me before you committed, I would have told you that law school is always there, and there are pre-law experiences you can only get pre-law. I would have said from HLS, it's hard to lose... UNLESS you realize you didn't want to be a lawyer at all two years out and find yourself back at square one (which happens often enough). I suspect many lawyers find their unhappiness amplified due to a lack of reference points.

I also would have said most people with no work experience at all aren't really equipped to select a profession, and professional schools have realized that and started preferring WE over none. Did you know some dental schools are now requiring a certain number of hours "shadowing" before they'll even consider an application? There's a good reason for that.


I'd agree with that general assessment. I definitely think my reaction to law school is less positive because I'm coming from undergrad (which is a better experience I'm pretty sure than most working jobs) and not a job. I know people who've left after finding they don't like it. Something like 75% of the incoming class had WE. At this point if I could rewind the clock, I'd still continue on with my choice, but I still don't really recommend it to others.

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Re: Explanation of age in ps?

Postby midwestls » Sun Feb 05, 2012 11:12 pm

bigeast03 wrote:
IAFG wrote:
What do you see as being the difference between solid v. weak work experience?


It's much, much easier to spin 3+ years of work experience than anything less. Can you get away with two? Maybe.

But it has to be real experience. Were you a file clerk at a big law firm? Honestly, I don't care. It's meaningless work. If you form connections at the firm and get hired there, good for you, but it doesn't mean anything anywhere else.

Were you a staffer in a congressional office? A journalist who honed his writing skills? A fundraiser for a university where you met a lot of business people and made relationships? A management trainee at a Fortune 500 company? Well ... OK, in those cases, you've got something to sell.

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bigeast03
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Re: Explanation of age in ps?

Postby bigeast03 » Sun Feb 05, 2012 11:30 pm

cinephile wrote:
bigeast03 wrote:
Yeah, that makes sense. Thank you for the response, I'm just a little concerned about how to work this so that my age becomes less of an issue.


You could work for a year, and still be young and have work experience.

Otherwise, just highlight whatever leadership experience you have through school activities, part time jobs, your sorority, etc.


That's what I decided on doing- I took this year and I've been working full time for a local law firm and retook the LSAT. Only thing is the firm I'm working with is very small, and probably what most on here would consider "shitlaw". I know it's got a bad stigma, and it's not something I'd like to do with my career, but I have learned a ton and done more substantive work there than I think I would've at another place. I'm not sure if this looks poorly or if it will count as "solid work experience".
Sidenote: Not OP; don't want to de-rail/hijack

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Re: Explanation of age in ps?

Postby 83947368 » Sun Feb 05, 2012 11:33 pm

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tliles
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Re: Explanation of age in ps?

Postby tliles » Sun Feb 05, 2012 11:57 pm

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Last edited by tliles on Tue Jul 03, 2012 3:59 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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acrossthelake
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Re: Explanation of age in ps?

Postby acrossthelake » Mon Feb 06, 2012 2:32 am

tliles wrote:
Thank you for the advice, and I did just that in my PS. If I'm not accepted anywhere I would really like to attend, I'll absolutely consider retaking and applying next season, but for now I'd like to see how things turn out, especially given the fact that I've already applied to the schools. Yes, there were family issues, they were, however, abuse issues not related to my mom and so career-wise she's given me a fair number of really solid connections. I think I'm far less concerned about finding a job after law school because of those connections. As a point of reference, I spent my summer staying on one of the properties of an AZ Superior Court judge, whom I absolutely love, who explicitly told me that he would help with job options should I choose to go there after graduation. I'm just going to go ahead and wait until I hear back from the schools to which I applied before I decide how I want to handle timing.


It's just a pity since if you had scored maybe a few points higher, Michigan would be a lock, probably with scholarship. 8 points higher and you might go to Harvard. To put this into perspective, if I had your GPA & a 171, the only school left on that list would be Michigan. There are many people who would envy being in the position to retake and do better. I was only okay with going so young because I had locked down my best possible choice (age & some work experience would not help me get into Yale, and neither would retaking the LSAT).

Also, as someone who has seen the extent to which connections with Superior Court judges works, it might extend less than you'd hope. But I don't really know what your goals are. Perhaps they'll extend just as much as you desire.




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