LOR question

(Applications Advice, Letters of Recommendation . . . )
amberlyrose
Posts: 2
Joined: Thu Jun 03, 2010 9:10 pm

LOR question

Postby amberlyrose » Thu Jun 03, 2010 9:22 pm

I recently graduated this May and plan on applying to law school for the 2010-11 cycle. I don't have many people to ask for an LOR, and it is a huge problem for me. I had a professor this spring for a philosophy class entitled "Politics and the Law" who said my arguments were sound and that he could tell I was very intelligent from my papers. I only met with him one-on-one in his office twice, but he did remember my name in class and said hi to me at graduation. I worry that if I ask him for a recommendation, it will sound generic and will not make the impact that I need. It could boast well that he is the Pre-Law advisor for the whole state school system and a millionaire in a small state (with connections), or it could go bad if he doesn't remember me and the letter is generic. I have one from another professor that was the city attorney of a major city and it comes across as if he just filled in my name and class I was taking with him. Should I go ahead and ask him, knowing that it is highly likely that I will not be able to read it?

twopoodles
Posts: 107
Joined: Mon Nov 02, 2009 1:42 pm

Re: LOR question

Postby twopoodles » Thu Jun 03, 2010 10:06 pm

I think you're trying too hard to get people connected with law. Just find professors who know you well. And, regardless, don't worry too much about it because it seems it is by far the least important part of an application.

User avatar
ApexChaser
Posts: 153
Joined: Tue Sep 08, 2009 6:10 am

Re: LOR question

Postby ApexChaser » Thu Jun 03, 2010 10:47 pm

Probably my strongest LOR came from the person who knew me least. I think if you can give them the glimpse of a complete person, not just as a diligent student (who isn't?), you will be more likely to have a strong LOR. On the same token, some people aren't good at writing LORs and you can't change that.

In my case, I had been lax and did not keep in touch with my professor for over 2 years. What helped was he met with me during lunch and we talked about a variety of topics besides from law school. I showed highlights of my recent work and activities, and we discussed my resume pretty much line by line. You could see if your LOR would be willing to meet with you, and you can always ask if they feel comfortable writing a strong LOR at the end of your meeting. Give them the chance to say no if they don't feel like they could write a strong letter. I think people all too often fail to feel out their recommendations.

I would agree with twopoodles in the assessment that your LOR will likely not make a huge difference though. It doesn't sound like your LORs will be writing about stellar softs or some one-in-a-million attribute. Quite honestly, most LORs will sound generic to admissions boards.

amberlyrose
Posts: 2
Joined: Thu Jun 03, 2010 9:10 pm

Re: LOR question

Postby amberlyrose » Fri Jun 04, 2010 12:00 am

I do have one LOR that is from a teacher in middle school who I also had in high school and then went on to help me in college. I didn't get to read his LOR, so I don't know exactly what it says. The funny thing is that I asked him to write it a few days before I met with someone from admissions at Denver and she said that the best LOR she had ever seen was one from a girl's 1st grade teacher who had followed her throughout her educational career. The teacher knew everything about this girl, which impressed admissions that someone cared enough about her goals to follow her progress for 15 years. The letter sealed the deal for them and they offered her a spot.




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