Need Advice

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tommyc12
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Need Advice

Postby tommyc12 » Mon Apr 26, 2010 2:49 pm

I have a 2.93 gpa, Tier 1 national university with a 159 LSAT. I also have a masters, accounting field, from a Tier 1 national university with a 3.85 gpa.

I have some decent softs, nothing stellar, but I think with my softs and LOR it will give me a minor boost.

Ideally I would like to practice in California or somewhere in the South/Gulf region. Cost is a factor, but not a major one.

I spent about about 3 weeks studying for the LSAT---about 5 hours a week---and improved my score by 9 points from my first PT to the actual LSAT. I am not opposed to retaking again in June. That might be a very serious option, but I do work full-time and to get the time offer to boost my score significantly may not be viable, so having two scores with only a 2-3 point difference might hurt me? Or so I think.

Where are good places to apply and where would be good values?

Thanks,

Tommy.

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Grizz
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Re: Need Advice

Postby Grizz » Mon Apr 26, 2010 2:54 pm

Any score increase, even a few points, will greatly you. Unfortunately, your GPA will hold you back at a lot of places even with the grad experience, and depending on what schools you want to go to, you're gonna have to really kill the LSAT. I'm talking 170s here. I'm not that familiar with the CA market, so I'll let others speak to that.

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deadpanic
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Re: Need Advice

Postby deadpanic » Mon Apr 26, 2010 3:03 pm

The problem is even if you do manage to get into places like Santa Clara, USD, etc. you are more than likely looking at sticker price, which is a horrible investment.

So, I say retake as well.

tommyc12
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Joined: Mon Apr 26, 2010 2:43 pm

Re: Need Advice

Postby tommyc12 » Mon Apr 26, 2010 3:19 pm

That was my worry, even increases in LSAT will get me into better schools but will still leave me with sticker prices. Am I better off trying to attend a school like LSU with a big scholarship or trying to increase and carry more debt?

I am from Montana, went to school out of state but still claim residency, and I have spoken to admissions offices at a few schools, Tennessee, Kentucky, LSU etc.. and they have all said my "diversity" (being from Montana, not URM) would bring me at least a as they call it "OOS reduction scholarship" because they do not normally see an applicant like myself. While none of those places are ideal I am sure that I could adjust and would be content and possibly even happy.

I was hoping an increase would open doors to Loyola LA and similar schools, but what I have gathered is that it will bring me 150k+ debt and is that really worth it? My GPA is a huge set back and even a 5-7 point increase on the LSAT may not help me that much because the better the school the better GPA medians become. Also, will it help at all that I was an Actuary/Accounting double major? And add as I said before I have an MSA with CPA. I do not work for the Big4, but work for a big company in GT.

Thanks again I hope to get more advice.

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Grizz
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Re: Need Advice

Postby Grizz » Mon Apr 26, 2010 4:09 pm

tommyc12 wrote:That was my worry, even increases in LSAT will get me into better schools but will still leave me with sticker prices. Am I better off trying to attend a school like LSU with a big scholarship or trying to increase and carry more debt?

I am from Montana, went to school out of state but still claim residency, and I have spoken to admissions offices at a few schools, Tennessee, Kentucky, LSU etc.. and they have all said my "diversity" (being from Montana, not URM) would bring me at least a as they call it "OOS reduction scholarship" because they do not normally see an applicant like myself. While none of those places are ideal I am sure that I could adjust and would be content and possibly even happy.

I was hoping an increase would open doors to Loyola LA and similar schools, but what I have gathered is that it will bring me 150k+ debt and is that really worth it? My GPA is a huge set back and even a 5-7 point increase on the LSAT may not help me that much because the better the school the better GPA medians become. Also, will it help at all that I was an Actuary/Accounting double major? And add as I said before I have an MSA with CPA. I do not work for the Big4, but work for a big company in GT.

Thanks again I hope to get more advice.


Double majoring won't help pretty much at all. Your work experience will separate you from it somewhat, but not a ton.

I can say the debt at Santa Clara, Loyola, USD, etc. is almost assuredly not worth it. People here will say that only T-3, T-6, T-14, and T-17(18?) are worth it, and almost no one will argue for paying sticker at less prestigious schools. I agree. If you were aiming high, if I were you, I would try to hit mid 170s and apply to NU, which is fairly friendly to EDs with work experience, and ED to UVA as well. While you'd be paying sticker at these schools, you could be confident it's a good investment. The problem is breaking 170.

Apart from this, some regionally prestigious schools that you could get in-state at would be worth the investment. UGA for example pretty much picked up anyone with a 164 this cycle, though the vast majority of these had a 3.0 plus. You'd have to be cool with not working in CA though, at least for a very long time.

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traehekat
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Re: Need Advice

Postby traehekat » Mon Apr 26, 2010 10:30 pm

Re: LSAT differentials - any improvement, even one point, will be big for you. Unless you are looking at a school that averages scores (which is very, very few now), then they are just going to take your highest. So an applicant with a 161 is virtually just as good as an applicant with a 161, 160, 154. 161 is the number they report, so it is really the only one they care about. As long as you apply early enough, I don't see small differences in LSAT scores being a big difference at all.

That said, just get a big jump! Good luck.

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acrossthelake
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Re: Need Advice

Postby acrossthelake » Mon Apr 26, 2010 10:47 pm

Definitely try very much to improve your LSAT. It opens doors. Good luck!

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hoopsguy6
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Re: Need Advice

Postby hoopsguy6 » Tue Apr 27, 2010 5:14 am

+1 for retake. Stupid California market; you'll be competing for dwindling jobs with Stanford, Berkeley, UCLA, USC, and Hastings grads, along with all the other T14 grads that want to live in California.

Btw, who else knew that there are 20 law schools in CA! Staggering.

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A'nold
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Re: Need Advice

Postby A'nold » Tue Apr 27, 2010 5:32 am

Solution? University of Montana. Durrr.

tommyc12
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Re: Need Advice

Postby tommyc12 » Tue Apr 27, 2010 9:03 am

^Well I have been out of Montana for the last 6 years now with 4 for undergrad plus 2 for basically PT MSA while working at GT. I have enjoyed being other places, enjoyed the nicer weather, and feel that my best way to relocate is through school. I would hate going to UM and then being stuck in Montana for the rest of my career--especially since I do not see myself staying there.

I know each applicant is different and it really depends on when you apply and how you put your application packet together, but where are my cutoffs?

Will 165~ bring me into a certain range of schools? Will 168~, or some other number, bring me into a certain range of schools. I am confident I can increase my score if I put more time into studying for the LSAT. My weakest area was in RC and it is because I never mastered an effective way to read the passages and get through the answers. The LR was probably my best and then LG. If I can finish the LG sections I am normally -1 or -2 and if I continue to work on them and set the games up properly I know I can almost perfect that.

Anyway, thanks for the continued information it is extremely helpful.




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