How far can connections go in the application process?

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5ky
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Re: How far can connections go in the application process?

Postby 5ky » Wed Jan 06, 2010 1:43 am

Couldn't possibly hurt, definitely use it if you can.

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Vincent Vega
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Re: How far can connections go in the application process?

Postby Vincent Vega » Wed Jan 06, 2010 1:45 am

Ragged wrote:
chicoalto0649 wrote:
As a secondary matter, would you feel bad about utilizing these connections in order to gain admission?



Don't feel bad. You gotta use what you can. :wink:


Some people get awesome congressional internships and things of that nature (even attorney jobs) because of who they know and what strings they can pull. Someday, you might even be negotiating and pulling favors with friends and acquaintances. Get used to it.

PoliticalJunkie
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Re: How far can connections go in the application process?

Postby PoliticalJunkie » Wed Jan 06, 2010 1:45 am

Why not? It's not going to be a smoking gun (the guy has to go to bat for you) but if he is willing to do so enjoy the school.

I did the same thing with my MBA program (top 5) and it frankly was the only reason I got in.

The world doesn't play nice. Neither should you. Make every effort to take advantage of all the resources you can. Even if "mommy and daddy" can help. No shame in that - you'll be the one laughing in the end.

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Ragged
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Re: How far can connections go in the application process?

Postby Ragged » Wed Jan 06, 2010 2:16 am

Halibut6 wrote:
Ragged wrote:
chicoalto0649 wrote:
As a secondary matter, would you feel bad about utilizing these connections in order to gain admission?



Don't feel bad. You gotta use what you can. :wink:


Some people get awesome congressional internships and things of that nature (even attorney jobs) because of who they know and what strings they can pull. Someday, you might even be negotiating and pulling favors with friends and acquaintances. Get used to it.



I wasn't being facetious. You gotta use what you can because that's what everyone does.

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84Sunbird2000
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Re: How far can connections go in the application process?

Postby 84Sunbird2000 » Wed Jan 06, 2010 2:28 am

Ragged wrote:
Halibut6 wrote:
Ragged wrote:
chicoalto0649 wrote:
As a secondary matter, would you feel bad about utilizing these connections in order to gain admission?



Don't feel bad. You gotta use what you can. :wink:


Some people get awesome congressional internships and things of that nature (even attorney jobs) because of who they know and what strings they can pull. Someday, you might even be negotiating and pulling favors with friends and acquaintances. Get used to it.



I wasn't being facetious. You gotta use what you can because that's what everyone does.


Is everyone really that Machiavellian? I mean... how can people approve of nepotism? Hell, I don't even believe in the value of a meritocracy, but this is even worse!

So, yes, I think you should certainly feel bad about it and should actively dissuade someone from "pulling strings" out of principle. Yet, it appears I'm in the minority.

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Dignan
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Re: How far can connections go in the application process?

Postby Dignan » Wed Jan 06, 2010 2:30 am

chicoalto0649 wrote:As a secondary matter, would you feel bad about utilizing these connections in order to gain admission?

Although I wouldn't fault anyone--including you--for taking advantage of this kind of opportunity, I don't think I would do it. For me, it would feel like I was about to compete in a race and someone offered me an undetectable performance enhancing drug that would ensure that I would win. In the end, I would feel like I didn't actually win the race, even though I was the first person across the line. Inside, I would feel like I didn't deserve it.

Now, it's completely within your rights to utilize your connections. People do it all the time. You aren't cheating; you aren't breaking any rules. And, to be fair, there probably are situations I would encounter in which I would be desperate enough to ask a powerful person to pull a few string for me (like if, for example, I was facing a jail sentence or something like that). But I don't think I would do it just so that I could attend a particular law school that I couldn't otherwise get into. I would just settle for another law school that I could get into on the merits.

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Ragged
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Re: How far can connections go in the application process?

Postby Ragged » Wed Jan 06, 2010 2:51 am

Who can honestly say that if they could get into Harvard by someone making a call for them they wouldn't do it? (given that you could not get in otherwise of course)

In 10 years (or hell even next fall) no one will care how you got there. Eat your pride and take advantage of the favorable hand of cards you got delt.

drsomebody
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Re: How far can connections go in the application process?

Postby drsomebody » Wed Jan 06, 2010 3:37 am

Perhaps I'm reading this wrong, but this person is just somebody who "knows" a bunch of donors? Why would s/he have any pull with an admissions committee? Seems rather odd.

In any case, I'd personally not do it even if it were somebody whose voice would carry weight. I'm big on the idea of achieving based on what you've done with what you've been given, not who you know.

If a LOR writer wants to make an additional phone call in support of your application or a donor wants to write a formal LOR in support of your application then it would seem fine, that's just the normal review process, but a phone call from a "I know rich people so let this kid in" kind of person? More than even being distasteful it also seems a little pathetic and if I were on an adcom I'd not look favorably on it.

scuzle
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Re: How far can connections go in the application process?

Postby scuzle » Wed Jan 06, 2010 3:43 am

You have to use it! I would have used one which my father has at one of the top 10, however I didnt do that well on the LSAT and independent of my connection my app still probably would have been rejected!

Good Luck!

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5ky
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Re: How far can connections go in the application process?

Postby 5ky » Wed Jan 06, 2010 4:36 am

I shudder to think how people who believe it is immoral to network or use connections to advance in life will fair in the legal profession. You have to pick your battles.

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Mickey Quicknumbers
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Re: How far can connections go in the application process?

Postby Mickey Quicknumbers » Wed Jan 06, 2010 4:40 am

Taking this thread on a tangential direction with regards to connections, i've actually been wondering: my sister goes to an anonymous Vanderbilt university that I desperately want to attend, and with numbers on the borderline i'm wondering how much this will help me if at all? Would it only be helpful to have parents that attended?

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5ky
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Re: How far can connections go in the application process?

Postby 5ky » Wed Jan 06, 2010 4:57 am

adh07d wrote:Taking this thread on a tangential direction with regards to connections, i've actually been wondering: my sister goes to an anonymous Vanderbilt university that I desperately want to attend, and with numbers on the borderline i'm wondering how much this will help me if at all? Would it only be helpful to have parents that attended?


I can't imagine that this would help you at all, especially if I am comprehending correctly that she does not go to Vanderbilt Law.

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asfasdagdsfawe
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Re: How far can connections go in the application process?

Postby asfasdagdsfawe » Wed Jan 06, 2010 5:38 am

Dignan wrote:
chicoalto0649 wrote:As a secondary matter, would you feel bad about utilizing these connections in order to gain admission?

But I don't think I would do it just so that I could attend a particular law school that I couldn't otherwise get into. I would just settle for another law school that I could get into on the merits.


I think networking skills are a great "merit".

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Rand M.
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Re: How far can connections go in the application process?

Postby Rand M. » Wed Jan 06, 2010 5:47 am

drsomebody wrote:Perhaps I'm reading this wrong, but this person is just somebody who "knows" a bunch of donors? Why would s/he have any pull with an admissions committee? Seems rather odd.

In any case, I'd personally not do it even if it were somebody whose voice would carry weight. I'm big on the idea of achieving based on what you've done with what you've been given, not who you know.

If a LOR writer wants to make an additional phone call in support of your application or a donor wants to write a formal LOR in support of your application then it would seem fine, that's just the normal review process, but a phone call from a "I know rich people so let this kid in" kind of person? More than even being distasteful it also seems a little pathetic and if I were on an adcom I'd not look favorably on it.


+1

I am pretty surprised that the bolded was not addressed earlier. I may be ignorant of how this would work, but I am just not sure that the call of an associate of VIPs would help secure admission. If the person does not have a name of their own to introduce themselves with then what do they say? "Hi, I know [fill in wealthy donors] and they know me. We would be very interested in seeing 'chicoalto' admitted to your school. KTHXBAI!" Just seems like a stretch to think that this would be viewed favorably much less benefit the applicant. Again, maybe I am missing something.

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Unitas
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Re: How far can connections go in the application process?

Postby Unitas » Wed Jan 06, 2010 9:16 am

Rand M. wrote:
drsomebody wrote:Perhaps I'm reading this wrong, but this person is just somebody who "knows" a bunch of donors? Why would s/he have any pull with an admissions committee? Seems rather odd.

In any case, I'd personally not do it even if it were somebody whose voice would carry weight. I'm big on the idea of achieving based on what you've done with what you've been given, not who you know.

If a LOR writer wants to make an additional phone call in support of your application or a donor wants to write a formal LOR in support of your application then it would seem fine, that's just the normal review process, but a phone call from a "I know rich people so let this kid in" kind of person? More than even being distasteful it also seems a little pathetic and if I were on an adcom I'd not look favorably on it.


+1

I am pretty surprised that the bolded was not addressed earlier. I may be ignorant of how this would work, but I am just not sure that the call of an associate of VIPs would help secure admission. If the person does not have a name of their own to introduce themselves with then what do they say? "Hi, I know [fill in wealthy donors] and they know me. We would be very interested in seeing 'chicoalto' admitted to your school. KTHXBAI!" Just seems like a stretch to think that this would be viewed favorably much less benefit the applicant. Again, maybe I am missing something.


I think the op meant the person he knows is going to go to the donors and "pressure" them into supporting the op. At least that is what I got out of it. This is probably where the moral complications came into the decision for op.

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englawyer
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Re: How far can connections go in the application process?

Postby englawyer » Wed Jan 06, 2010 9:30 am

let's not kid ourselves. this is not a harmless thing to do. OP will be stealing the spot of someone more qualified.


however, that's how the world works i guess. Just like some won the genetic LSAT lottery and got a 175, some won the connections lottery and happen to know wealthy donors :o

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Anastasia Dee Dualla
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Re: How far can connections go in the application process?

Postby Anastasia Dee Dualla » Wed Jan 06, 2010 10:10 am

.
Last edited by Anastasia Dee Dualla on Sun May 10, 2015 1:11 am, edited 1 time in total.

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capitalacq
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Re: How far can connections go in the application process?

Postby capitalacq » Wed Jan 06, 2010 11:01 am

if you want to be able to say/know that you got in and became who you are completely based on your own merits and accomplishments, then don't do it... if you want to get into a better law school, then go ahead and make the call. I don't think you should feel "bad"... it's just a personal decision you need to make.

kwhitegocubs wrote:
Ragged wrote:
Halibut6 wrote:
Ragged wrote:

Don't feel bad. You gotta use what you can. :wink:


Some people get awesome congressional internships and things of that nature (even attorney jobs) because of who they know and what strings they can pull. Someday, you might even be negotiating and pulling favors with friends and acquaintances. Get used to it.



I wasn't being facetious. You gotta use what you can because that's what everyone does.


Is everyone really that Machiavellian? I mean... how can people approve of nepotism? Hell, I don't even believe in the value of a meritocracy, but this is even worse!

So, yes, I think you should certainly feel bad about it and should actively dissuade someone from "pulling strings" out of principle. Yet, it appears I'm in the minority.

lulz

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Dignan
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Re: How far can connections go in the application process?

Postby Dignan » Wed Jan 06, 2010 1:07 pm

asfasdagdsfawe wrote:
Dignan wrote:
chicoalto0649 wrote:As a secondary matter, would you feel bad about utilizing these connections in order to gain admission?

But I don't think I would do it just so that I could attend a particular law school that I couldn't otherwise get into. I would just settle for another law school that I could get into on the merits.


I think networking skills are a great "merit".

I agree. But the (perhaps mistaken) impression I have is that the OP knows this person as a friend or relative of the family. Relying on those kinds of connections is not "networking" in any meaningful sense. In fact, when people talk about meritocracies, they are usually referring to schools, businesses, and governments that don't allow the status of parents (or the parents' friends) to influence admissions or hiring decisions.

awesomepossum
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Re: How far can connections go in the application process?

Postby awesomepossum » Wed Jan 06, 2010 1:10 pm

My guess is that it really depends on the law school.

For example, after the admissions flap at Illinois, it would be near impossible to pull strings to get in there.

I actually think it's possible that it could HURT you. Why? Because this is supposed to be a merit based system and I could see some adcomm getting annoyed at getting some pressure to get someone in.

09042014
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Re: How far can connections go in the application process?

Postby 09042014 » Wed Jan 06, 2010 1:12 pm

awesomepossum wrote:My guess is that it really depends on the law school.

For example, after the admissions flap at Illinois, it would be near impossible to pull strings to get in there.

I actually think it's possible that it could HURT you. Why? Because this is supposed to be a merit based system and I could see some adcomm getting annoyed at getting some pressure to get someone in.


I don't know. The former governor got caught trying to sell the Senate seat, then after national press about it, still sold it, and the buyer is still there.

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84Sunbird2000
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Re: How far can connections go in the application process?

Postby 84Sunbird2000 » Wed Jan 06, 2010 1:28 pm

Desert Fox wrote:
awesomepossum wrote:My guess is that it really depends on the law school.

For example, after the admissions flap at Illinois, it would be near impossible to pull strings to get in there.

I actually think it's possible that it could HURT you. Why? Because this is supposed to be a merit based system and I could see some adcomm getting annoyed at getting some pressure to get someone in.


I don't know. The former governor got caught trying to sell the Senate seat, then after national press about it, still sold it, and the buyer is still there.


But at least the buyer can add "Senator" to his magnificent monument. If you don't know what I'm talking about, look it up.

gmichaelbluth
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Re: How far can connections go in the application process?

Postby gmichaelbluth » Wed Jan 06, 2010 1:32 pm

If you know someone who knows someone with pull at a school, it's really not going to help you. As others have said, it would be different if the connection were more direct, and you knew the person in any kind of meaningful way (i.e. worked for her, did business with her, etc.). And if the connection were more direct and the person was calling on your behalf because of how impressed they were with your work, tenacity, etc., that's not nepotism...it's more like a recommendation from someone the school knows and values. And that could come in handy if the applicant is borderline, not at the bottom of the stack. But that's not OP's situation.

I don't think it's really a moral question--I just don't think a connection that's not direct will help.

rocaveli
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Re: How far can connections go in the application process?

Postby rocaveli » Wed Jan 06, 2010 1:33 pm

ec2xs wrote:When I was 18 and thought the world was made of rainbows and sunshine, I would have felt bad.

Nowadays....use any tool you can. Use that connection into the ground.


Pearalegal wrote:
bloodonthetracks wrote:hmm, maybe not the ex-Governor of Illinois, though.


I hear Jon Stewart pronouncing his name every time I think about that guy now.



These two are the credited answers.

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fl0w
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Re: How far can connections go in the application process?

Postby fl0w » Wed Jan 06, 2010 1:49 pm

I actually know someone that was an adcomm at one of the schools I'm applying to after getting her JD there. When I went to visit, just dropping her name triggered everyone in the admissions office to come talk to me and get excited.

you better believe she reviewed my stuff. yeah she's going to chat to her friends in admissions about me.
and I'm URM.

All signs point to yes.

Do I feel guilty? Nope, just fortunate.




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