YLS 1L Taking Questions

(Applications Advice, Letters of Recommendation . . . )
naruhodo
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YLS 1L Taking Questions

Postby naruhodo » Sun Dec 19, 2010 6:35 am

This board was a godsend to me when I was applying last year, and, now that I have some free time, I'm happy to answer any questions that people might have regarding YLS and law school admissions in general.

wildcatpride
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Re: YLS 1L Taking Questions

Postby wildcatpride » Sun Dec 19, 2010 6:51 am

1) Congratulations.

2) LSAT? GPA?

3) How'd you study for the LSAT?

4) Does YLS give a slight preference for International students, who did undergrad in US? Or do we compete in the same pool as US applicants?

naruhodo
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Re: YLS 1L Taking Questions

Postby naruhodo » Sun Dec 19, 2010 7:59 am

So I had a 3.95 GPA and got a 176 on my LSAT. I took a few years off after undergrad, so I actually spent about eight months studying for the LSAT. I started off taking a Powerscore course and then spent the six months after that studying on my own, taking as many practice tests as I could.

I can't give you a good answer as to whether or not international students get a leg-up. There are a number of international students in my class -- mostly students who went to American colleges but a few who went to school outside of the U.S. -- but in terms of official admissions policy, I don't think there's a preference given to international students. YLS is of course big on looking at applications holistically, so I wouldn't be surprised though if the admissions staff and faculty readers saw coming from another country (or, for that matter, an "underrepresented" state in the U.S.) as a plus in terms of the diversity you'd bring to the 1L class.

Hope this helps!

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hellojd
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Re: YLS 1L Taking Questions

Postby hellojd » Sun Dec 19, 2010 11:38 am

Thanks for answering questions. I am not at the medians for Yale personally, but probably high enough to get my application "into play" at a holistic school like Yale (>25%).

What are some of the things that those without powerhouse numbers did prior to Yale? Any sort of trend among these guys?

dissonance1848
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Re: YLS 1L Taking Questions

Postby dissonance1848 » Sun Dec 19, 2010 11:58 am

Um, why were you studying? You know Yale gives Passes and Honors at random so there is no class ranking. And if they tried to flunk you, it could hurt their USNWR Ranking.

naruhodo
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Re: YLS 1L Taking Questions

Postby naruhodo » Sun Dec 19, 2010 12:22 pm

Since I don't know what GPAs and LSAT scores my classmates had, I can't tell you what those without "powerhouse numbers" did in particular. But there are a fair number of folks who did consulting, fellowships abroad, and/or work with nonprofits/NGOs. The backgrounds in our class really run the gamut.

If you haven't seen these links yet, take a look:

http://www.law.yale.edu/admissions/profile.htm
--LinkRemoved-- (an LSN search of people admitted to Yale last year with LSATs between the 25th percentile and median)
--LinkRemoved-- (search of people admitted with GPAs between 25th and median)
--LinkRemoved-- (search of people admitted with GPAs and LSATs between 25th and median)

Hope this helps!

dissonance1848 wrote:Um, why were you studying? You know Yale gives Passes and Honors at random so there is no class ranking. And if they tried to flunk you, it could hurt their USNWR Ranking.


Who said I was studying? :lol:

dissonance1848
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Re: YLS 1L Taking Questions

Postby dissonance1848 » Sun Dec 19, 2010 12:44 pm

That's what I thought :D

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hellojd
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Re: YLS 1L Taking Questions

Postby hellojd » Sun Dec 19, 2010 1:25 pm

naruhodo wrote:Since I don't know what GPAs and LSAT scores my classmates had, I can't tell you what those without "powerhouse numbers" did in particular. But there are a fair number of folks who did consulting, fellowships abroad, and/or work with nonprofits/NGOs. The backgrounds in our class really run the gamut.

If you haven't seen these links yet, take a look:

http://www.law.yale.edu/admissions/profile.htm
--LinkRemoved-- (an LSN search of people admitted to Yale last year with LSATs between the 25th percentile and median)
--LinkRemoved-- (search of people admitted with GPAs between 25th and median)
--LinkRemoved-- (search of people admitted with GPAs and LSATs between 25th and median)

Hope this helps!

dissonance1848 wrote:Um, why were you studying? You know Yale gives Passes and Honors at random so there is no class ranking. And if they tried to flunk you, it could hurt their USNWR Ranking.


Who said I was studying? :lol:


Thanks!

notanumber
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Re: YLS 1L Taking Questions

Postby notanumber » Sun Dec 19, 2010 6:27 pm

Thanks for stopping by.

How do you enjoy living in New Haven? What's the housing market like? Did you secure housing long before you arrived at YLS or did you wait until late summer? Where in New Haven did you end up living and is it close to many classmates?

Also, how was your first semester of classes? Any highlights or things that you wish you did differently?

Renzo
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Re: YLS 1L Taking Questions

Postby Renzo » Sun Dec 19, 2010 6:28 pm

What did you write your 250 about?

naruhodo
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Re: YLS 1L Taking Questions

Postby naruhodo » Sun Dec 19, 2010 6:51 pm

notanumber wrote:Thanks for stopping by.

How do you enjoy living in New Haven? What's the housing market like? Did you secure housing long before you arrived at YLS or did you wait until late summer? Where in New Haven did you end up living and is it close to many classmates?

Also, how was your first semester of classes? Any highlights or things that you wish you did differently?


I absolutely love New Haven. Granted, I went to Yale for undergrad and could not wait to get back. New Haven is a wonderful small city. Having grown up in a large city, I love the fact that I can walk almost anywhere within 15 minutes and that New Haven offers a disproportionate number of good restaurants for its size. New Haven gets a bad rap for crime, but I think it's exaggerated: it has gotten a lot better in the past 15 years and, if you exercise the same caution you would in most U.S. cities, you'll have no problem with security at all. The weather is by far the worst part of New Haven, but it's not something you can avoid unless you head out to California for law school.

The housing market is fine; as you may know, all YLS students live off campus. Most students live in one of three areas: East Rock, Downtown, or (less commonly) Wooster Square. Downtown, the Towers (University, Madison, Crown), 900 Chapel, and the Oxford/Cambridge seem like the most popular options. These tend to get snapped up pretty quickly, so if you're interested in living in a large apartment building relatively close to the law school, then I would consider signing a lease at ASW or shortly thereafter. I was abroad up until early July, so I didn't find a place until July 15, but I am totally happy with my find: I have an inexpensive but livable studio in East Rock.

First semester of classes was great. I have a fantastic small group, and we ended up with a lineup of professors with generally straightforward teaching styles. Not sure if I have any regrets (perhaps I'll know better when I'm studying for finals after the holidays!). Perhaps missing class so often may be one of them, but we'll see.

naruhodo
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Re: YLS 1L Taking Questions

Postby naruhodo » Sun Dec 19, 2010 6:54 pm

Renzo wrote:What did you write your 250 about?


For the sake of anonymity, I won't be too specific, but mine was not a personal essay at all. It was more of a brief critique of the nonprofit sector, in which I had worked for a few years out of college.

CrabDribble202
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Re: YLS 1L Taking Questions

Postby CrabDribble202 » Mon Dec 20, 2010 4:07 am

Hey thanks for taking questions. What would you recommend in terms of finding housing? Craigslist? Admitted students facebook group? Do most students try to live with other students?

naruhodo
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Re: YLS 1L Taking Questions

Postby naruhodo » Mon Dec 20, 2010 9:58 am

CrabDribble202 wrote:Hey thanks for taking questions. What would you recommend in terms of finding housing? Craigslist? Admitted students facebook group? Do most students try to live with other students?


No problem! The three main resources that incoming YLS students use to find housing are Craigslist, the Admitted Students Facebook Group (the admissions office also posts on the group page a link to a Google doc where current YLS students can post housing opportunities), and an internal Yale off-campus housing database. I found my place off the Yale database. As I said in an earlier reply, finding housing is generally not a problem for people, even students like me who started their housing search in July.

These are totally ballpark figures without any science behind it, but I would estimate that about 70% of 1Ls live with others (mostly other 1Ls, but some live with people in the medical school, graduate school, etc.). 30% of us live by ourselves (mostly 25-and-older people who have lived on their own for a while).

HTH!

062914123
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Re: YLS 1L Taking Questions

Postby 062914123 » Mon Dec 20, 2010 10:32 am

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Last edited by 062914123 on Sun Jun 29, 2014 5:30 pm, edited 1 time in total.

naruhodo
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Re: YLS 1L Taking Questions

Postby naruhodo » Mon Dec 20, 2010 11:11 am

bee wrote:Ahhhh Yale is my absolute it-will-never-happen-in-a-million-years dream school. CONGRATS! Tell me, is it everything you hoped for/expected? :D


It absolutely is! I'm a firm believer that YLS goes far out of its way to make sure law school is as stress-free and enjoyable as possible. My classmates are fantastic -- I always feel humbled to hear about all of the crazy accomplishments people have made in college and in the handful of years after graduation. Yet YLS culture makes sure that our overachiever personalities don't get the best of us, and the law school is one of the most social environments I've ever been in. We all came into the law school with our tendencies to stress out and worry, but the administration, the 2Ls, and 3Ls have made it clear: our main takeaway from our first semester is to chill out. First semester is strictly pass/fail, and the 2Ls encourage us to spend our time building friendships with each other rather than poring over books.

Apart from the sheer talent in the building, YLS's biggest asset is its small size: socially and academically, I would guess it makes a world of difference. At the same time, I think its small size may also be YLS's single downside. The only thing that's disappointed me this semester is the realization that there isn't a single faculty member whose academic and professional interests completely align with my own. Additionally, although there are a ton of classes I'm interested in taking, there are still some gaps in the course offerings that I wish didn't exist. Nevertheless, YLS offers students the freedom and support to fill in these gaps: students have endless opportunities to start student orgs or even courses (albeit one-credit reading groups) to make sure they're getting the most out of their law school experience.

In short, yes -- although it's not perfect, YLS has exceeded my expectations, and I feel really lucky to have the privilege to attend such a wonderful school.

CrabDribble202
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Re: YLS 1L Taking Questions

Postby CrabDribble202 » Mon Dec 20, 2010 3:21 pm

naruhodo wrote:
CrabDribble202 wrote:Hey thanks for taking questions. What would you recommend in terms of finding housing? Craigslist? Admitted students facebook group? Do most students try to live with other students?


No problem! The three main resources that incoming YLS students use to find housing are Craigslist, the Admitted Students Facebook Group (the admissions office also posts on the group page a link to a Google doc where current YLS students can post housing opportunities), and an internal Yale off-campus housing database. I found my place off the Yale database. As I said in an earlier reply, finding housing is generally not a problem for people, even students like me who started their housing search in July.

These are totally ballpark figures without any science behind it, but I would estimate that about 70% of 1Ls live with others (mostly other 1Ls, but some live with people in the medical school, graduate school, etc.). 30% of us live by ourselves (mostly 25-and-older people who have lived on their own for a while).

HTH!


Thanks!

Do you have any impression of how hard it is to get into the Supreme Court clinic?

What would you say a good ratio of Hs to Ps would be? Is the number of Hs you get very important for top firms/feeder clerkships, or are interviews/knowing the right profs more important?

naruhodo
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Re: YLS 1L Taking Questions

Postby naruhodo » Mon Dec 20, 2010 3:42 pm

CrabDribble202 wrote:Do you have any impression of how hard it is to get into the Supreme Court clinic?

What would you say a good ratio of Hs to Ps would be? Is the number of Hs you get very important for top firms/feeder clerkships, or are interviews/knowing the right profs more important?


As a 1L, I may not be that helpful on either of these questions.

I actually am not entirely familiar with the bidding situation for the Supreme Court clinic, since it's assumed that 1Ls won't get in. If it's anything like the Constitutional Litigation seminar that Judges Walker and Calabresi teach, then it's always overbid and even 3Ls can't be sure they'll get in (it's on the basis of a lottery).

I definitely can't be too much help on the grades, since I haven't taken my first set of exams yet (and they're also strictly pass/fail). What I've heard from 2Ls and 3Ls is that the number of Hs and developing relationships with professors (working as a research assistant or TA for them, etc.) are both important for feeder clerkships. Around YLS, people feel relatively confident that if they wanted to get a firm job they would be able to, but people regularly say that you need a lot of Hs in order to guarantee yourself a job at a place like Wachtell.

HTH.




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