Where do I begin?

(Applications Advice, Letters of Recommendation . . . )
PJENNEWE
Posts: 29
Joined: Mon Jan 10, 2011 10:02 pm

Where do I begin?

Postby PJENNEWE » Thu Jan 13, 2011 11:12 am

This is my very first post in the this forum and I am pretty sure this is the right place but I am sorry if I am incorrect.

My name is Patrick and I go to Saint Louis University (ranked about 85 or so, nothing too special but still a good school) and I am in a Pre Law Scholars program that will grant me instant acceptance to SLU's law school upon graduation if I keep a 3.5 GPA and my primary major is english. I am only a freshman and so I only have one semester under my belt. However, this fall I received a 3.94 GPA. I am currently employed at Best Buy and have been since '08 and plan to be all throughout college. In addition, I have done hundreds of hours of community service in high school and right now I am looking for unique community service opportunities here around the St. Louis area. Also, I plan on being a Resident Advisor until graduation (assuming I nail the interview I have in a few weeks!). I know it is very early but I have been wanting to be a lawyer since I was in 7th grade so I know what I want. Yet I still have questions on how to get to an amazing school that I can get admitted to with proper preparation, hard work, and a little luck.

1) What are some things that can boost my resume in the years to come? I know that community service always looks good, but is there any specifics? Also, how many hours is the norm? I like doing community service so I just want to know if I have only been doing the minimum amount compared to others or not.

2) If I begin with a nearly perfect GPA, does that mean a wobbly grade trend that isn't a solid 4.0 hurt me? If I get a 3.8 next semester, a 4.0 in the fall, and 3.9 in the spring, does that look worse than gradually increasing?

3) I know it is way early to start studying for the LSAT but I would still like to educate myself with one hour a week of working through problems. When I study for the LSAT, do I study one concept at once and then switch to another? For example, would I go through a book on logic games, then a book on reading comp, then a book on so and so, etc.?

Please share your experiences and some good ways to really market myself. Thanks guys!

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Sentry
Posts: 1235
Joined: Tue Mar 02, 2010 6:38 pm

Re: Where do I begin?

Postby Sentry » Thu Jan 13, 2011 11:17 am

PJENNEWE wrote:This is my very first post in the this forum and I am pretty sure this is the right place but I am sorry if I am incorrect.

My name is Patrick and I go to Saint Louis University (ranked about 85 or so, nothing too special but still a good school) and I am in a Pre Law Scholars program that will grant me instant acceptance to SLU's law school upon graduation if I keep a 3.5 GPA and my primary major is english. I am only a freshman and so I only have one semester under my belt. However, this fall I received a 3.94 GPA. I am currently employed at Best Buy and have been since '08 and plan to be all throughout college. In addition, I have done hundreds of hours of community service in high school and right now I am looking for unique community service opportunities here around the St. Louis area. Also, I plan on being a Resident Advisor until graduation (assuming I nail the interview I have in a few weeks!). I know it is very early but I have been wanting to be a lawyer since I was in 7th grade so I know what I want. Yet I still have questions on how to get to an amazing school that I can get admitted to with proper preparation, hard work, and a little luck.

1) What are some things that can boost my resume in the years to come? I know that community service always looks good, but is there any specifics? Also, how many hours is the norm? I like doing community service so I just want to know if I have only been doing the minimum amount compared to others or not.

2) If I begin with a nearly perfect GPA, does that mean a wobbly grade trend that isn't a solid 4.0 hurt me? If I get a 3.8 next semester, a 4.0 in the fall, and 3.9 in the spring, does that look worse than gradually increasing?

3) I know it is way early to start studying for the LSAT but I would still like to educate myself with one hour a week of working through problems. When I study for the LSAT, do I study one concept at once and then switch to another? For example, would I go through a book on logic games, then a book on reading comp, then a book on so and so, etc.?

Please share your experiences and some good ways to really market myself. Thanks guys!

1.keep 3.9 gpa
2.score 173+ on LSAT
3.Enjoy HYS

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txadv11
Posts: 922
Joined: Fri Aug 27, 2010 3:06 pm

Re: Where do I begin?

Postby txadv11 » Thu Jan 13, 2011 11:22 am

1. It honestly is a numbers game despite what you hear.....but I went this route: http://www.presidentialserviceawards.gov/
2. Not really, especially if you are aiming for SLU. Downward trend would be 3.94, 3.6, 3.4, 3.2, 2.9, etc 3.8's 3.9's going back and forth aren't an issue really.
3. Not everyone learns the same. I'd recommend taking a prep course (after you try a "cold" test) and at the least, look for an online schedule that has worked for many others.

About the RA job and community service.... They are great, if they don't impact your GPA or LSAT study time. But honestly soft factors are way overestimated by just about everyone applying and typically underrated or even looked over by admissions committees. I can think of plenty of things you should hold more important (in the scope of law admissions) LSAT, GPA, Personal Statement, Good letters/recommenders, clean record, making money to minimize debt, choosing a "safe" major and coursework for consistently good grades etc.

edit- basically there are plenty of people with strong GPA and LSAT scores, with average or OK softs that get accepted to great schools
there are way fewer people with crappy GPA and LSAT scores even with RA like positions and volunteer work that get accepted to great schools. It is possible, but the former has a higher and proven track record.
Last edited by txadv11 on Thu Jan 13, 2011 11:25 am, edited 2 times in total.

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Upton Sinclair
Posts: 233
Joined: Mon Mar 15, 2010 3:10 pm

Re: Where do I begin?

Postby Upton Sinclair » Thu Jan 13, 2011 11:23 am

PJENNEWE wrote:This is my very first post in the this forum and I am pretty sure this is the right place but I am sorry if I am incorrect.

My name is Patrick and I go to Saint Louis University (ranked about 85 or so, nothing too special but still a good school) and I am in a Pre Law Scholars program that will grant me instant acceptance to SLU's law school upon graduation if I keep a 3.5 GPA and my primary major is english. I am only a freshman and so I only have one semester under my belt. However, this fall I received a 3.94 GPA. I am currently employed at Best Buy and have been since '08 and plan to be all throughout college. In addition, I have done hundreds of hours of community service in high school and right now I am looking for unique community service opportunities here around the St. Louis area. Also, I plan on being a Resident Advisor until graduation (assuming I nail the interview I have in a few weeks!). I know it is very early but I have been wanting to be a lawyer since I was in 7th grade so I know what I want. Yet I still have questions on how to get to an amazing school that I can get admitted to with proper preparation, hard work, and a little luck.

1) What are some things that can boost my resume in the years to come? I know that community service always looks good, but is there any specifics? Also, how many hours is the norm? I like doing community service so I just want to know if I have only been doing the minimum amount compared to others or not.

2) If I begin with a nearly perfect GPA, does that mean a wobbly grade trend that isn't a solid 4.0 hurt me? If I get a 3.8 next semester, a 4.0 in the fall, and 3.9 in the spring, does that look worse than gradually increasing?

3) I know it is way early to start studying for the LSAT but I would still like to educate myself with one hour a week of working through problems. When I study for the LSAT, do I study one concept at once and then switch to another? For example, would I go through a book on logic games, then a book on reading comp, then a book on so and so, etc.?

Please share your experiences and some good ways to really market myself. Thanks guys!


1). Do something in which you can organize and/or lead. Schools won't care what you did in high school.

2). With a 3.8/3.9 GPA, it won't matter how you got there. Keep this GPA, but not at the expense of drinking/smoking/gettting laid.

3). Do NOT start studying as a freshman.

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txadv11
Posts: 922
Joined: Fri Aug 27, 2010 3:06 pm

Re: Where do I begin?

Postby txadv11 » Thu Jan 13, 2011 11:26 am

Do NOT start studying as a freshman.

+1, you CAN but most people don't and shouldn't

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DoubleChecks
Posts: 2333
Joined: Fri Sep 25, 2009 4:35 pm

Re: Where do I begin?

Postby DoubleChecks » Thu Jan 13, 2011 11:30 am

Upton Sinclair wrote:
PJENNEWE wrote:This is my very first post in the this forum and I am pretty sure this is the right place but I am sorry if I am incorrect.

My name is Patrick and I go to Saint Louis University (ranked about 85 or so, nothing too special but still a good school) and I am in a Pre Law Scholars program that will grant me instant acceptance to SLU's law school upon graduation if I keep a 3.5 GPA and my primary major is english. I am only a freshman and so I only have one semester under my belt. However, this fall I received a 3.94 GPA. I am currently employed at Best Buy and have been since '08 and plan to be all throughout college. In addition, I have done hundreds of hours of community service in high school and right now I am looking for unique community service opportunities here around the St. Louis area. Also, I plan on being a Resident Advisor until graduation (assuming I nail the interview I have in a few weeks!). I know it is very early but I have been wanting to be a lawyer since I was in 7th grade so I know what I want. Yet I still have questions on how to get to an amazing school that I can get admitted to with proper preparation, hard work, and a little luck.

1) What are some things that can boost my resume in the years to come? I know that community service always looks good, but is there any specifics? Also, how many hours is the norm? I like doing community service so I just want to know if I have only been doing the minimum amount compared to others or not.

2) If I begin with a nearly perfect GPA, does that mean a wobbly grade trend that isn't a solid 4.0 hurt me? If I get a 3.8 next semester, a 4.0 in the fall, and 3.9 in the spring, does that look worse than gradually increasing?

3) I know it is way early to start studying for the LSAT but I would still like to educate myself with one hour a week of working through problems. When I study for the LSAT, do I study one concept at once and then switch to another? For example, would I go through a book on logic games, then a book on reading comp, then a book on so and so, etc.?

Please share your experiences and some good ways to really market myself. Thanks guys!


1). Do something in which you can organize and/or lead. Schools won't care what you did in high school.

2). With a 3.8/3.9 GPA, it won't matter how you got there. Keep this GPA, but not at the expense of drinking/smoking/gettting laid.

3). Do NOT start studying as a freshman.


lolwut. ignoring whether i think smoking is good or not, how would smoking jeopardize his grades at all? lol

jdbarr06
Posts: 8
Joined: Fri Dec 10, 2010 9:00 pm

Re: Where do I begin?

Postby jdbarr06 » Thu Jan 13, 2011 11:33 am

DoubleChecks wrote:
Upton Sinclair wrote:
PJENNEWE wrote:This is my very first post in the this forum and I am pretty sure this is the right place but I am sorry if I am incorrect.

My name is Patrick and I go to Saint Louis University (ranked about 85 or so, nothing too special but still a good school) and I am in a Pre Law Scholars program that will grant me instant acceptance to SLU's law school upon graduation if I keep a 3.5 GPA and my primary major is english. I am only a freshman and so I only have one semester under my belt. However, this fall I received a 3.94 GPA. I am currently employed at Best Buy and have been since '08 and plan to be all throughout college. In addition, I have done hundreds of hours of community service in high school and right now I am looking for unique community service opportunities here around the St. Louis area. Also, I plan on being a Resident Advisor until graduation (assuming I nail the interview I have in a few weeks!). I know it is very early but I have been wanting to be a lawyer since I was in 7th grade so I know what I want. Yet I still have questions on how to get to an amazing school that I can get admitted to with proper preparation, hard work, and a little luck.

1) What are some things that can boost my resume in the years to come? I know that community service always looks good, but is there any specifics? Also, how many hours is the norm? I like doing community service so I just want to know if I have only been doing the minimum amount compared to others or not.

2) If I begin with a nearly perfect GPA, does that mean a wobbly grade trend that isn't a solid 4.0 hurt me? If I get a 3.8 next semester, a 4.0 in the fall, and 3.9 in the spring, does that look worse than gradually increasing?

3) I know it is way early to start studying for the LSAT but I would still like to educate myself with one hour a week of working through problems. When I study for the LSAT, do I study one concept at once and then switch to another? For example, would I go through a book on logic games, then a book on reading comp, then a book on so and so, etc.?

Please share your experiences and some good ways to really market myself. Thanks guys!


1). Do something in which you can organize and/or lead. Schools won't care what you did in high school.

2). With a 3.8/3.9 GPA, it won't matter how you got there. Keep this GPA, but not at the expense of drinking/smoking/gettting laid.

3). Do NOT start studying as a freshman.


lolwut. ignoring whether i think smoking is good or not, how would smoking jeopardize his grades at all? lol


I think he meant smoking "the devil's lettuce."

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DoubleChecks
Posts: 2333
Joined: Fri Sep 25, 2009 4:35 pm

Re: Where do I begin?

Postby DoubleChecks » Thu Jan 13, 2011 11:36 am

jdbarr06 wrote:
DoubleChecks wrote:lolwut. ignoring whether i think smoking is good or not, how would smoking jeopardize his grades at all? lol


I think he meant smoking "the devil's lettuce."


hahaha clearly im too much of a nerd to be on the up and up :P

point rescinded lol

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beachbum
Posts: 2766
Joined: Tue Jun 29, 2010 9:35 pm

Re: Where do I begin?

Postby beachbum » Thu Jan 13, 2011 11:50 am

Another SLU student on TLS? Now I've seen it all...

Anyway, you're off to a great start. Do your best to maintain that GPA (slight deviations won't hurt you) while keeping a well-rounded approach to college. High numbers are necessary but insufficient to get into the best schools in the country; pick some clubs and activities that you enjoy and take an active role in them. Also, don't stretch yourself too thin: a few solid leadership positions are much better than a dozen club memberships.

Don't worry about the LSAT until your junior year. Seriously. Starting now is a recipe for burnout.

Keep an open mind about college and your career path. Don't have tunnel-vision simply because you've envisioned yourself as a lawyer for so long: explore various majors, classes, and careers. Don't get sucked into the pre-law bubble, and don't take the pre-law advisor's advice as gospel. O'Hallaron is very nice, but I've found that some of her knowledge and advice on law schools and the legal field is misleading, or downright wrong.

And finally, enjoy college. SLU is not exactly a party school, but there's still plenty of fun stuff to do. Go to parties, hook up, pledge a frat (if that's your thing), and have fun. You get 4 years of college and then it's done for good: make the most of it.

If you have any further questions about SLU or law schools, feel free to PM me. Good luck.

emmbar53
Posts: 112
Joined: Thu Dec 30, 2010 2:17 pm

Re: Where do I begin?

Postby emmbar53 » Thu Jan 13, 2011 11:50 am

PJENNEWE,

Something else to consider is taking a couple critical thinking and symbolic logic philosophy classes, as those will help you greatly on the LSAT (and make you a more rational person in general).

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IAFG
Posts: 6665
Joined: Mon Jun 15, 2009 1:26 pm

Re: Where do I begin?

Postby IAFG » Thu Jan 13, 2011 11:51 am

transfer to HYP, enjoy grade inflation and an admissions bump

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ahduth
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Joined: Wed Sep 29, 2010 10:55 am

Re: Where do I begin?

Postby ahduth » Thu Jan 13, 2011 12:00 pm

These threads make me sad for some reason. :?

emmbar53
Posts: 112
Joined: Thu Dec 30, 2010 2:17 pm

Re: Where do I begin?

Postby emmbar53 » Thu Jan 13, 2011 12:07 pm

ahduth wrote:These threads make me sad for some reason. :?


Same here. I think, for me, it's because I spent my undergraduate being half-worried about grades and my future and half worried about alcohol, partying, and banging.

And I don't regret it at all.

To each his/her own though. Some get committed and serious at a much younger age than I did.

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AreJay711
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Joined: Tue Jul 20, 2010 8:51 pm

Re: Where do I begin?

Postby AreJay711 » Thu Jan 13, 2011 12:21 pm

IAFG wrote:transfer to HYP, enjoy grade inflation and an admissions bump

Except P. I think this is the best idea but idk if HY take very many transfers. If you aren't full scholy, transferring to a sate school can lead to a full scholarship.

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androstan
Posts: 2708
Joined: Mon Jul 19, 2010 8:07 am

Re: Where do I begin?

Postby androstan » Thu Jan 13, 2011 12:28 pm

emmbar53 wrote:
ahduth wrote:These threads make me sad for some reason. :?


Same here. I think, for me, it's because I spent my undergraduate being half-worried about grades and my future and half worried about alcohol, partying, and banging.

And I don't regret it at all.

To each his/her own though. Some get committed and serious at a much younger age than I did.

+1

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IAFG
Posts: 6665
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Re: Where do I begin?

Postby IAFG » Thu Jan 13, 2011 2:30 pm

AreJay711 wrote:
IAFG wrote:transfer to HYP, enjoy grade inflation and an admissions bump

Except P. I think this is the best idea but idk if HY take very many transfers. If you aren't full scholy, transferring to a sate school can lead to a full scholarship.

someone from my UG had similar grades and xferred to H. i think their funding for UGs is pretty generous too.




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