Am I naive or making the right choice?

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Pastels
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Am I naive or making the right choice?

Postby Pastels » Mon Apr 12, 2010 3:50 pm

I am a senior in UG, 22 years old, dual major finishing up this May. I took the LSAT this past December and scored a 161, a good 8 points below my practice range. Needless to say I was upset because I studied hard but I blamed the score on the burnout I felt all Fall due to trying to study for the LSAT and taking my hardest UG schedule thus far.
A few weeks back I was admitted into my TTT state Law School with a full scholarship. + instate tuition. The state I come from is not the most "sexy" of locations and I am about 60% sure I want to come back to live there after I graduate law school. Two weekends ago I went to the ASW and the city of the law school is very poor, the facilities were good, the other students were, "bleak."
Now I am at a stand still, my gpa is a 3.4 LSDAS and my parents are telling me that the scholarship is the right choice. I know my GPA is not phenomenal but both of my parents are very thriving lawyers in our state and have assured me that I will have no problems getting hired/taking over their client list.
The issue: I was far from in love on ASW at my state school and I am not 100% sure I want to come back to my state immediately after UG. I was thinking about holding a year to retake since my summer is free and I could dedicate the time to study properly for the LSAT (October). However, my gpa is only a 3.4 and I am slightly worried about the idea of taking a year and falling behind my peers. Needless to say I am at a crossroads and I am looking for any advice or idea people have.


Typed this on my phone, sorry for the lack of grammar/choppy sentences.

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Kchuck
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Re: Am I naive or making the right choice?

Postby Kchuck » Mon Apr 12, 2010 3:57 pm

I am going to try and avoid sounding like a hippie, but do what feels right.

If the state school isn't somewhere you can imagine yourself being for three years, then don't go there. It doesn't take a stranger on a message board to tell you that. If you didn't like it, don't do it. I'd encourage the retake. I retook a 161 and only moved up to a 163. It sucked. But, I'd still encourage someone to do the same thing. In the end, though, just do what you have to do to be comfortable/happy.

jetlagz28
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Re: Am I naive or making the right choice?

Postby jetlagz28 » Mon Apr 12, 2010 4:01 pm

If you have connections and are pretty certain you'll end up in your own state + full scholarship? That's a pretty good deal. Make sure that you have something to gain by going to school out of state.

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WhiskeyGuy
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Re: Am I naive or making the right choice?

Postby WhiskeyGuy » Mon Apr 12, 2010 4:05 pm

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Last edited by WhiskeyGuy on Fri Jul 22, 2011 12:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Pastels
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Re: Am I naive or making the right choice?

Postby Pastels » Mon Apr 12, 2010 4:06 pm

I do not know if I want to stay in state, that is the issue.

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j.wellington
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Re: Am I naive or making the right choice?

Postby j.wellington » Mon Apr 12, 2010 4:09 pm

Even a full scholarship isn't worth years of unhappiness, and since you're 60% sure that would be the end result, I would pass on it. It sounds like you've already arrived at that conclusion.

If your parents are already promising you a client list, I'm going to go out on a limb and guess that they could probably set you up with a paralegal position or some kind of legal internship. That would allow you to tell your scholarship school that you would rather get a year of legal experience before diving into law school and perhaps even get a non-binding deferral. In the meantime, you could retake the LSAT and figure out what you really want to do, then reevaluate next fall. Just an idea.

And out of curiosity, what state is this?

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missvik218
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Re: Am I naive or making the right choice?

Postby missvik218 » Mon Apr 12, 2010 4:12 pm

Kchuck wrote:I am going to try and avoid sounding like a hippie, but do what feels right.

If the state school isn't somewhere you can imagine yourself being for three years, then don't go there. It doesn't take a stranger on a message board to tell you that. If you didn't like it, don't do it. I'd encourage the retake. I retook a 161 and only moved up to a 163. It sucked. But, I'd still encourage someone to do the same thing. In the end, though, just do what you have to do to be comfortable/happy.

I agree and totally don't mind sounding like a hippie. Do what feels right. Unless you'll be totally comfortable wondering what could have been I'd suggest retaking and trying again next year. If your score increases you'll have new potentially better options and if it doesn't chances are you're not going to be in a worse situation. A 3.4 while it could be too low for a T10 is certainly good enough to get you into some great schools, so don't sell yourself short.

I scored 161 my first time too, retook and scored 169. FWIW.

mugrad06
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Re: Am I naive or making the right choice?

Postby mugrad06 » Mon Apr 12, 2010 4:12 pm

j.wellington wrote:
And out of curiosity, what state is this?



curious as well

Pastels
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Re: Am I naive or making the right choice?

Postby Pastels » Mon Apr 12, 2010 4:13 pm

state is WV

mugrad06
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Re: Am I naive or making the right choice?

Postby mugrad06 » Mon Apr 12, 2010 4:17 pm

Pastels wrote:state is WV


i figured. I'm from WV. Unfortuently WVU didn't like me, I think it is because I went to Marshall. If you don't want to stay in WV, then don't go to WVU but if you do want to stay here, then it's your best bet.

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FunkyJD
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Re: Am I naive or making the right choice?

Postby FunkyJD » Mon Apr 12, 2010 4:18 pm

Do not spend three years going through a difficult experience in a place you do not like -- whether that experience is law school, prison, a marriage, or anything else.

reverendt
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Re: Am I naive or making the right choice?

Postby reverendt » Mon Apr 12, 2010 4:20 pm

mugrad06 wrote: If you don't want to stay in WV, then don't go to WVU but if you do want to stay here, then it's your best bet.

Mr. Pablo
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Re: Am I naive or making the right choice?

Postby Mr. Pablo » Mon Apr 12, 2010 4:35 pm

Pastels wrote:I am a senior in UG, 22 years old...(stuff)... I am slightly worried about the idea of taking a year and falling behind my peers. ...


You are not going to 'fall behind your peers'. I hate to sound like that only marginally older douche who's all 'when I was your age', but I'm 30 and starting law school in the fall- I certainly don't feel behind my peers (many of whom have been making six figures for a couple of years or have made a name for themselves in large fields). Really, a year isn't that much time. Relax, and do what feels right.
As a note, your LSAT and GPA are considered to be 20% predictive of your grades in LS. The other 80% is made of things that are intangible like work ethic, health, and happiness (whatever that may be for you). If you think you are going to miserable at WVU (yes?), then don't go, your misery will affect everything you do. Do what is right for you, not your parents (they think its the right thing and they want what is best for you, but only you really know that at this point in your life).
Good luck with everything.

mailmanstalker
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Re: Am I naive or making the right choice?

Postby mailmanstalker » Mon Apr 12, 2010 4:44 pm

If you had a 161 and a 3.4 and this school is your only option after this cycle.... you may want to think about not just improving your score but adding to your softs.. Do something meaningful experience wise this year (aka dont work at the mall). Dont worry about falling behind your peers, if anything this will give you an advantage!

jetlagz28
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Re: Am I naive or making the right choice?

Postby jetlagz28 » Mon Apr 12, 2010 5:34 pm

Mr. Pablo wrote:
Pastels wrote:I am a senior in UG, 22 years old...(stuff)... I am slightly worried about the idea of taking a year and falling behind my peers. ...


You are not going to 'fall behind your peers'. I hate to sound like that only marginally older douche who's all 'when I was your age', but I'm 30 and starting law school in the fall- I certainly don't feel behind my peers (many of whom have been making six figures for a couple of years or have made a name for themselves in large fields). Really, a year isn't that much time. Relax, and do what feels right.
As a note, your LSAT and GPA are considered to be 20% predictive of your grades in LS. The other 80% is made of things that are intangible like work ethic, health, and happiness (whatever that may be for you). If you think you are going to miserable at WVU (yes?), then don't go, your misery will affect everything you do. Do what is right for you, not your parents (they think its the right thing and they want what is best for you, but only you really know that at this point in your life).
Good luck with everything.


Just want to support what Pablo said. The last thing you should be thinking about is falling behind your peers. Life is not a race and you shouldn't judge yourself by what your friends are doing compared to you. I was 25 and turned 26 in 1L. The average age of my peers were 24-27.

CanadianWolf
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Re: Am I naive or making the right choice?

Postby CanadianWolf » Mon Apr 12, 2010 5:58 pm

You have a difficult decision, but several options. One option is to matriculate at West Virginia University College of Law, do well academically & transfer to a school more to your liking. Another option is to request a deferment for a year so that you can travel, work in your parents' law firm or study for a LSAT retake while working, travelling or relaxing. Alternatively, you could commit to three years at WVU College of Law, work hard, graduate in the top 5-10% of your class & explore legal opportunities in other locations.
Are you willing to share information as to your double majors & current college/university? Also, if you scored a 165 on the LSAT, where would you like to attend law school? More info. shared may lead to better advice offered.
Did you apply to other law schools? If so, which schools & what results?

Pastels
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Re: Am I naive or making the right choice?

Postby Pastels » Mon Apr 12, 2010 7:35 pm

Sure. My 2 majors are economics and marketing. I attend a top 40 UG. The schools I would like to attend would be your usual vandy/Georgetown. However, I would like to have a degree that opens up more mobility and networking. I figured with my 2 business degrees and a solid JD I would be afforded the opportunity to land a job in law or business due to my diversity. On my LSAT I melted down on my last section, RC, and went -15. I attribute this to my 161, along with strong burnout from a tough fall.

keg411
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Re: Am I naive or making the right choice?

Postby keg411 » Mon Apr 12, 2010 7:47 pm

I echo the sentiments about asking your parents to set you up with a paralegal job (or apply for marketing-related jobs in your area). Get some WE and make some money. In the end it will help strengthen your resume for both law school and for your future employment prospects. You won't be falling behind by taking a year or two off, and you will also have time to go back and re-focus for the LSAT (and likely score much higher as a result).

Take this from a late 20-something. And your GPA isn't that dismal; 3.4 is still pretty acceptable.

CanadianWolf
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Re: Am I naive or making the right choice?

Postby CanadianWolf » Mon Apr 12, 2010 8:06 pm

With a double major in economics & marketing you may want to consider retaking the LSAT & taking the GMAT to see what other opportunities develop. Many pursue joint MBA/JD degrees. Best to complete your formal degreed education prior to starting a family.
A developing trend in law some law schools is to become more MBA like in the sense of practicality. Two notables are Northwestern University School of Law & Harvard Law School. Duke & Michigan are receptive to joint degree seekers, but require an LSAT in the 170 range.
P.S. Ask WVU if they will waive the GMAT & allow you to pursue a joint JD/MBA degree.

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iSpool
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Re: Am I naive or making the right choice?

Postby iSpool » Mon Apr 12, 2010 8:21 pm

:shock:
Last edited by iSpool on Thu Feb 24, 2011 1:43 am, edited 1 time in total.

icydash
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Re: Am I naive or making the right choice?

Postby icydash » Tue Apr 13, 2010 1:19 am

iSpool wrote:My most difficult decision now is whether to defer or just withdraw my apps. Does anyone know if you can withdraw a deferred if you get into another school? I've heard it's unethical and you can get in trouble.

I actually deferred for not one, but two years while completing my masters (got into law school, then decided to pursue my masters when a tremendous opportunity arose). While pursuing my masters, I studied hard and realized I was going to do MUCH better on the LSAT the second time around, and withdrew from the school at which I'd been deferring. I retook the LSAT (in December) and did much better as projected, and am now admitted to some fantastic schools.

The key is to withdraw your admission before you retake the LSAT -- then it's not really unethical because you're taking a gamble. You could blow your retake and then be shit out of luck, but if you prepare adequately this shouldn't be a problem.

Long story short: you can defer and study hard for the LSAT. If you think you're going to do much better, then withdraw your app and retake. If not, then don't retake and keep your admission. It's totally fine -- people do this often, and you have to pay a non-refundable seat deposit to the schools usually in order to defer, so they actually end up happy.

---------
Now to the OP: if you really tested around 8 points lower than your practice scores, you should absolutely hold off and retake the LSAT. It sounds like you have the potential to get into some great schools, and don't really want to attend the school at which you've already been admitted anyway. While it's great that your parents can hand you a practice, just in case you decide you don't want to practice the kind of law they practice, or practice in the same region, it would be a wise idea to get a JD from a great school.

Oh yeah and also isn't there some statistic like the average age of law school students is 24-25? Long story short: you won't fall behind. A huge portion of law students are not coming straight out of undergrad.




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