Early graduation

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jrichmond5
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Early graduation

Postby jrichmond5 » Fri Mar 26, 2010 11:36 pm

I'm a sophomore this year at the University of Minnesota -- Twin Cities. I went here for financial reasons over a couple Ivy League options, and it has offered a lot of opportunities but I have so much credit from high school that I can graduate anytime from this May on. I am seriously considering graduating either 1 or 2 years early and and working/traveling/volunteering for a year or two. I've also considered a masters program.

I took the LSAT last semester and got a 178; I have a 4.0 GPA. How would this early graduation affect my chances at top schools? Will graduating in 2 or 3 years be a disadvantage?

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eandy
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Re: Early graduation

Postby eandy » Fri Mar 26, 2010 11:51 pm

jrichmond5 wrote:I'm a sophomore this year at the University of Minnesota -- Twin Cities. I went here for financial reasons over a couple Ivy League options, and it has offered a lot of opportunities but I have so much credit from high school that I can graduate anytime from this May on. I am seriously considering graduating either 1 or 2 years early and and working/traveling/volunteering for a year or two. I've also considered a masters program.

I took the LSAT last semester and got a 178; I have a 4.0 GPA. How would this early graduation affect my chances at top schools? Will graduating in 2 or 3 years be a disadvantage?

I'm graduating early, and I don't think any schools cared.

09042014
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Re: Early graduation

Postby 09042014 » Fri Mar 26, 2010 11:53 pm

jrichmond5 wrote:I'm a sophomore this year at the University of Minnesota -- Twin Cities. I went here for financial reasons over a couple Ivy League options, and it has offered a lot of opportunities but I have so much credit from high school that I can graduate anytime from this May on. I am seriously considering graduating either 1 or 2 years early and and working/traveling/volunteering for a year or two. I've also considered a masters program.

I took the LSAT last semester and got a 178; I have a 4.0 GPA. How would this early graduation affect my chances at top schools? Will graduating in 2 or 3 years be a disadvantage?


Bank that GPA while you can. That is a very impressive feat. Have fun at HYS in a couples.

dan55v
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Re: Early graduation

Postby dan55v » Fri Mar 26, 2010 11:58 pm

I am graduating a year early and am going straight to law school and it didn't have any negative effect on my applications.

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Tangerine Gleam
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Re: Early graduation

Postby Tangerine Gleam » Sat Mar 27, 2010 3:57 am

Enjoy eventual, latent regret.

Just kidding, congratulations. :D

But after you get in to HYS, defer and travel the world. Please.

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Muckduck
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Re: Early graduation

Postby Muckduck » Sat Mar 27, 2010 4:00 am

Why would they care how fast you burn through UG?

I guess if you are taking way easy classes and don't have any form of W/E then your wonderful numbers could be slightly discounted. I doubt it. I mean, wow. The app. process should be smooth sailing for you.

If you want YLS, you might consider doing something crazy like personally vaccinating a tribe in the amazon.

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gwuorbust
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Re: Early graduation

Postby gwuorbust » Sat Mar 27, 2010 11:27 am

yeah get the fuck out of undergrad. I'm grad 2 years early, numbers are predicting my cycle to a tee. don't risk the 4.0.

Now just invent google or something like that and then enjoy Y.

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jakeoooh
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Re: Early graduation

Postby jakeoooh » Sat Mar 27, 2010 11:57 am

Yeah, definitely get out with that gpa while you can. You will definitely need to do something cool for a year or two before applying, but a masters could work, or if you want a better shot at Yale, a good volunteer program of some sort.

The negative, if you chose to apply to law school right away, is your age. There was a thread going a few months back where posters much more dedicated than myself pulled up previous lsn data showing that applicants who were under 21 had a harder than expected time getting into ultra-elite schools. Something about the law firm culture of booze, and the concern that someone who was 19 or 20 during 2L summer had no chance to get liquored up with the other summer associates. It doesn't sound like you're trying to attend next fall though, so that concern is moot.

Congrats on the gpa! I would imagine from your presence on this board, and the realization that law schools don't give a damn about your undergrad institution (provided your gpa rocks), that you must be happy with your decision to have taken the less expensive schooling option. Good foresight on your or your parents part (as someone with undergrad debt from my school of choice, I wish I knew then what I know now.).

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dextermorgan
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Re: Early graduation

Postby dextermorgan » Sat Mar 27, 2010 11:59 am

jrichmond5 wrote:I'm a sophomore this year at the University of Minnesota -- Twin Cities. I went here for financial reasons over a couple Ivy League options, and it has offered a lot of opportunities but I have so much credit from high school that I can graduate anytime from this May on. I am seriously considering graduating either 1 or 2 years early and and working/traveling/volunteering for a year or two. I've also considered a masters program.

I took the LSAT last semester and got a 178; I have a 4.0 GPA. How would this early graduation affect my chances at top schools? Will graduating in 2 or 3 years be a disadvantage?

:roll:

lawschool1
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Re: Early graduation

Postby lawschool1 » Sat Mar 27, 2010 1:01 pm

I'm no expert but I do remember reading that early graduates -- particularly those who graduate 2 years early -- tend to have a harder time in the application process. Partly because you only took 2 years of college classes and they only have 2 years of grades to look at. I don't know if doing something worthwhile (or planning to) would mitigate that or not.

r6_philly
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Re: Early graduation

Postby r6_philly » Sat Mar 27, 2010 2:28 pm

lawschool1 wrote:I'm no expert but I do remember reading that early graduates -- particularly those who graduate 2 years early -- tend to have a harder time in the application process. Partly because you only took 2 years of college classes and they only have 2 years of grades to look at. I don't know if doing something worthwhile (or planning to) would mitigate that or not.


Unless they let you graduate with half the credit required it would be harder to take more classes and get the same grade. They would still have the same amount of credits/grades to look at. Most UG classes measure work ethic more than abilities, if you can do twice the work at get A's I don't know who would look at it unfavorably.

If you graduate in 2 years but your GPA suffer, then I see why graduating early is not a good excuse, but he has a 4.0. I got through 3 years wroth of classes in year and a half, I know how hard it can be to keep a 4.0, and I don't know how that would not impress a law school.

spcasey
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Re: Early graduation

Postby spcasey » Sat Mar 27, 2010 2:37 pm

Speaking from my experience in two law school admissions offices (Boston U and UCLA), it is paramount that you complete at least three years of UG before applying. As mentioned earlier, age seems to play a MAJOR factor in the admissions office, and it raises red flags when an undergraduate applies so early without maturing. Additionally, it signals that you have not developed the well-rounded education that you would acquire by completing four years. I am assuming that Minnesota must have reasonably loose graduation requirements, or that you entered into UG with a significant amount of high school credit. If the latter is the case, your top schools (Yale, Harvard) undervalue high school credit, assuming that the AP system makes it exceptionally easy to study for the test rather than expanding critical thinking skills. I am not saying that it cannot be done, but there is a chance that it may hurt your chances in the long run.

user101
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Re: Early graduation

Postby user101 » Sat Mar 27, 2010 2:38 pm

yeah dude I wouldn't do it. it screwed me over.

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blurbz
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Re: Early graduation

Postby blurbz » Sat Mar 27, 2010 2:40 pm

I'm graduating a year early and I'm fairly confident that it helped in a number of cases.

Go for it!

r6_philly
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Re: Early graduation

Postby r6_philly » Sat Mar 27, 2010 3:00 pm

spcasey wrote:Speaking from my experience in two law school admissions offices (Boston U and UCLA), it is paramount that you complete at least three years of UG before applying. As mentioned earlier, age seems to play a MAJOR factor in the admissions office, and it raises red flags when an undergraduate applies so early without maturing. Additionally, it signals that you have not developed the well-rounded education that you would acquire by completing four years. I am assuming that Minnesota must have reasonably loose graduation requirements, or that you entered into UG with a significant amount of high school credit. If the latter is the case, your top schools (Yale, Harvard) undervalue high school credit, assuming that the AP system makes it exceptionally easy to study for the test rather than expanding critical thinking skills. I am not saying that it cannot be done, but there is a chance that it may hurt your chances in the long run.


Yale at least would want you to have life experiences before applying, so take the extra two years gaining that by doing something meaningful and challenging. It would be much more preferrable than spending the 2 years in UG.

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billyez
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Re: Early graduation

Postby billyez » Sat Mar 27, 2010 3:11 pm

I don't see the point in taking time off when you graduate early. I didn't and I got in a great school. Honestly, with a 178 and a 4.0 the world is yours. Even if your resume is fairly barren I think you've got a great chance anyway of getting in wherever you want to go.

r6_philly
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Re: Early graduation

Postby r6_philly » Sat Mar 27, 2010 3:41 pm

billyez wrote:I don't see the point in taking time off when you graduate early. I didn't and I got in a great school. Honestly, with a 178 and a 4.0 the world is yours. Even if your resume is fairly barren I think you've got a great chance anyway of getting in wherever you want to go.


The point is to give yourself some time to grow up, mature, see the world before deciding what you should do with your life since the world really is yours for the taking. I am biased in making this statement because I appreciate everything so much more because I was forced to take quite some time off (and not to enjoy myself either) but I appreciate the time off and would not have trade it for anything nonetheless.

To clarify, I had no interest in being a lawyer, or even in social sciences in general when I was 20. NONE. a decade later, looking back, it looks like I was destined for it.

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gwuorbust
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Re: Early graduation

Postby gwuorbust » Sat Mar 27, 2010 4:30 pm

r6_philly wrote:
billyez wrote:I don't see the point in taking time off when you graduate early. I didn't and I got in a great school. Honestly, with a 178 and a 4.0 the world is yours. Even if your resume is fairly barren I think you've got a great chance anyway of getting in wherever you want to go.


The point is to give yourself some time to grow up, mature, see the world before deciding what you should do with your life since the world really is yours for the taking. I am biased in making this statement because I appreciate everything so much more because I was forced to take quite some time off (and not to enjoy myself either) but I appreciate the time off and would not have trade it for anything nonetheless.

To clarify, I had no interest in being a lawyer, or even in social sciences in general when I was 20. NONE. a decade later, looking back, it looks like I was destined for it.


is it easier to 'take the world' as a college grad w/ a BA or a JD from Harvard ?

if you are 23 w/ a JD from Harvard I would say that you have many, many more doors open to you then just another college graduate busting tables.

(obv I do not think OP would be busting tables, however, the point stands that you can do much more w/ a JD)

r6_philly
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Re: Early graduation

Postby r6_philly » Sat Mar 27, 2010 4:40 pm

gwuorbust wrote:
is it easier to 'take the world' as a college grad w/ a BA or a JD from Harvard ?

if you are 23 w/ a JD from Harvard I would say that you have many, many more doors open to you then just another college graduate busting tables.

(obv I do not think OP would be busting tables, however, the point stands that you can do much more w/ a JD)


That's not what I mean. I mean when you are a 20 YO with a BA, 178/4.0, you have the potential to chose MANY careers (other than law) and succeed. There is no reason to rush into something, commit to 3 more years of school and feel (not are, just feel) obligated to go down that career path. The JD isn't going anywhere for 2-3 years, and you can only be stronger in your candidacy when you come back.

I am not necessarily disagreeing with you, I am just saying, personally, I enjoyed spending my 20's pursuing something that I always dreamed of. I would not have been able to do that if I had gone to school first (it is age critical). I think coming back to school and going to LS in my 30's has helped me in this process and I have to be an advocate of taking time off. I admit I am biased.

Seeing the world makes you mature. I know it is hard not to feel offended when someone calling a college grad not mature (not immature I must stress), but from my perspective it is true.

jrichmond5
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Re: Early graduation

Postby jrichmond5 » Sat Mar 27, 2010 5:11 pm

Thanks a lot for all the input.

spcasey wrote: I am assuming that Minnesota must have reasonably loose graduation requirements, or that you entered into UG with a significant amount of high school credit. If the latter is the case, your top schools (Yale, Harvard) undervalue high school credit, assuming that the AP system makes it exceptionally easy to study for the test rather than expanding critical thinking skills. I am not saying that it cannot be done, but there is a chance that it may hurt your chances in the long run.


This would definitely be a problem for me -- the reason why I can graduate early is because AP credit took care of all my distribution requirements and lower-level courses, so I started taking 300-level major courses my freshman year. The result is that it only took 2 years to complete the requirements and I would basically have to continue adding majors to stay for 4 years. I feel like I could do something more worthwhile if I went ahead and graduated, and I agree that doing something else for a couple of years would be a good thing. I just don't want to do it if it will seriously damage chances for admission.

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gwuorbust
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Re: Early graduation

Postby gwuorbust » Sun Mar 28, 2010 11:47 am

r6_philly wrote:
gwuorbust wrote:
is it easier to 'take the world' as a college grad w/ a BA or a JD from Harvard ?

if you are 23 w/ a JD from Harvard I would say that you have many, many more doors open to you then just another college graduate busting tables.

(obv I do not think OP would be busting tables, however, the point stands that you can do much more w/ a JD)


That's not what I mean. I mean when you are a 20 YO with a BA, 178/4.0, you have the potential to chose MANY careers (other than law) and succeed. There is no reason to rush into something, commit to 3 more years of school and feel (not are, just feel) obligated to go down that career path. The JD isn't going anywhere for 2-3 years, and you can only be stronger in your candidacy when you come back.

I am not necessarily disagreeing with you, I am just saying, personally, I enjoyed spending my 20's pursuing something that I always dreamed of. I would not have been able to do that if I had gone to school first (it is age critical). I think coming back to school and going to LS in my 30's has helped me in this process and I have to be an advocate of taking time off. I admit I am biased.

Seeing the world makes you mature. I know it is hard not to feel offended when someone calling a college grad not mature (not immature I must stress), but from my perspective it is true.


I guess it all depends on your perspective. I have wanted to go to law school since I was 17ish and if I did anything else then I would feel like I wasn't doing what I wanted to be doing. I know its weird, but I like studying. Anyways, I would agree, however, if someone felt there was something they would rather be doing then I would suggest they do that for a while. IMO, it is all about utility maximization

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quickquestionthanks
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Re: Early graduation

Postby quickquestionthanks » Sun Mar 28, 2010 6:05 pm

lawschool1 wrote:I'm no expert but I do remember reading that early graduates -- particularly those who graduate 2 years early -- tend to have a harder time in the application process. Partly because you only took 2 years of college classes and they only have 2 years of grades to look at. I don't know if doing something worthwhile (or planning to) would mitigate that or not.


Wouldn't surprise me. If anything, you might come off as immature. The average starting age in LS is like 25-26? You'll be 20?

I would think about getting a master's in a relevant field if you want to be considered for YLS or Stanford. It won't affect your UG GPA, but will show a higher level of academic maturity, especially if your profs have good things to say about you.

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gwuorbust
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Re: Early graduation

Postby gwuorbust » Sun Mar 28, 2010 6:14 pm

quickquestionthanks wrote:
lawschool1 wrote:I'm no expert but I do remember reading that early graduates -- particularly those who graduate 2 years early -- tend to have a harder time in the application process. Partly because you only took 2 years of college classes and they only have 2 years of grades to look at. I don't know if doing something worthwhile (or planning to) would mitigate that or not.


Wouldn't surprise me. If anything, you might come off as immature. The average starting age in LS is like 25-26? You'll be 20?

I would think about getting a master's in a relevant field if you want to be considered for YLS or Stanford. It won't affect your UG GPA, but will show a higher level of academic maturity, especially if your profs have good things to say about you.


I wouldn't pay a dime for a masters if I knew I was going to go to LS. such a waste.

09042014
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Re: Early graduation

Postby 09042014 » Sun Mar 28, 2010 6:16 pm

I'm just repeating rumors I heard, but I hear it doesn't hurt at all in the application process (it also doesn't help, nor does it excuse a poor gpa). But it might hurt at OCI, as some firms don't want to hire a 21 year old.

IMO don't go pay for a masters degree for no reason. If you can get funded PhD, fine, but otherwise get a job. Enjoy your early twenties and in two years go to law school.

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quickquestionthanks
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Re: Early graduation

Postby quickquestionthanks » Sun Mar 28, 2010 7:05 pm

gwuorbust wrote:I wouldn't pay a dime for a masters if I knew I was going to go to LS. such a waste.


Having a master's degree at age 22 sounds like the type of soft that Yale might find appealing.

I don't think it would hurt to graduate a semester or even a year early, but two years? All of a sudden, you don't have too much higher level education under your belt.

And adding onto the IP thread, this would be an opportunity to get the coursework to qualify as a patent attorney, if you want to go that route.




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