Sorry it's taken so long to respond, Kaycee. Stuff got hella busy hella quick with our Orientation being last week and classes beginning this week. (And my first trip happening in two weeks!)
KAYCEE wrote:1. Being that my numbers are right below median (even in 25% range), how can I make up for that in my application? I have worked full time since high school, and currently working for District Attorney. I know a GREAT deal about child support and hope to be a prosecutor in this area. I will be graduating with my undergrad in paralegal studies next year, which brings me to my next question:
By now I guess you have your results from the June LSAT. Hopefully you were able to crack LSU's median because truthfully, it would probably be a long shot for you to get any kind of significant merit-based aid with both LSAT and GPA around a school's 25th percentiles. According to their grid on LSAC.org (https://officialguide.lsac.org/RELEASE/ ... spx?sid=76
) only 15 of 84 applicants with 150-154 and 3.0-3.4 were admitted.
The things that usually get those double-below-medians in are things like bad/old early grades and big upward grade trends, rigorous undergrad (e.g. engineering major or Ivy League school or Honors program), or near perfect graduate school grades in a rigorous program. Work experience seldom makes up for academic shortcomings because they usually involve different skills. The skills you need to do well in undergrad are basically the same as those needed in law school. The same cannot be said for working, though, even in a legal setting. You will definitely want to write an addendum to make us aware that you worked full-time while going to school. Too often students don't even put their hours/week on their resume so there's no way to know what their true time commitments were.
In the year you have left you might also consider taking some of your electives in other departments like Political Science or History. If you do well in them (by which I mean make an A/A+), those professors could write you letters of recommendation that could prove valuable. I say this because generally speaking, paralegal studies is not seen as a very difficult major nor one that prepares students for law school. (Sort of how nursing school has a courses related to
medicine, but isn't recommended as a major for students wanting to go to medical school to become doctors.)
KAYCEE wrote:2. I will be graduating in August 2015, because I'm having to take this summer (currently in process) and next summer to graduate on time. Will this effect my chances of admission when they see the number of credit hours I have left when I apply? I'm planning to apply early.
No one will care. I bet only a few even notice that you won't graduate until August. Unless you're speeding through undergrad to save money, you are probably better off slowing down and taking normal loads to prove you can earn excellent grades. I know it's tough when money is tight, but higher grades will benefit you more in this process than the work experience. You have to work and need to get done to save money on additional semesters of living expenses, but all that time often stretches students too thin and they aren't able to perform up to their fullest potential. That puts the student in a position of trying to convince me that they can do better with only their word to go on. No offense to you guys, but you all think you can make law review, right?
I need actual proof of a student's ability.
As to your "need" to "make up time", I encourage you to re-examine that. Too often I see applicants putting artificial pressure on themselves. I'm sure you now feel like you "lost" time, but that doesn't necessarily mean there is anything to "make up". Life isn't a race. If your finances are that precarious, it's probably a better idea to work, save money, and get stable before taking on law school. Law schools aren't going anywhere (well, most of us, anyway...). There are a LOT of people starting law school around 25-35 years old. Heck, most law schools have at least one or two students in each class over 50! All this is to say going fast won't help you get in to law school. But getting all A's and a higher LSAT score will, so to the extent less work allows more time to study for class and "just" working full-time without having school allows more time to study for the LSAT, I think you should consider that.
I feel like I had another point to make, but I've lost it and it's 8'm and I'm still at work. I have some leftovers at home calling my name, but I'll come back and
shamelessly bump my own post
revisit my answer if it comes back to me.