Law School Preparation/Advice (I'm currently in Grad School)

(Applications Advice, Letters of Recommendation . . . )
User avatar
JAlexCIP
Posts: 2
Joined: Sun Jul 08, 2012 5:02 pm

Law School Preparation/Advice (I'm currently in Grad School)

Postby JAlexCIP » Mon Jul 09, 2012 7:03 pm

Hi, I'm a recent graduate (2012) from a decent state school in FL (UCF). I had some family health issues throughout undergrad (father has Multiple Sclerosis) and ended up unfortunately with a 3.4 GPA with a BA in Interdisciplinary Studies. I'm starting my Master's in Health Services Administration (MS-HSA) at the same school this fall and plan on it taking about 2 years to complete.

Yes, I'm aware that I do not need a MS-HSA degree to practice health related law. But, right now I have the time and it's relatively inexpensive with in-state tuition to get the extra degree. It also gives me some flexibility down the road if I don't like law or if I simply want to incorporate it into hospital administration/management.

I have yet to take the LSAT, but I have scored around 154-156 on a few practice exams without any prior practice/prep courses. I would like to end up scoring in the mid to high 160s, if possible. I plan on maintaining a 4.0 throughout my MS-HSA degree and establishing solid contacts with professors for future recommendation letters, something I did not do during undergrad.

So with that being said, what should I be doing over the next two years to make my law school applications more substantial? I would like to attend either UF/FSU in FL or Emory/UGA in GA. Do you recommend any extracurriculars, volunteer work, internships, etc. or is a solid LSAT/grad school GPA sufficient?

Any input would greatly appreciated, thanks.

User avatar
2014
Posts: 5831
Joined: Sat Jun 05, 2010 3:53 pm

Re: Law School Preparation/Advice (I'm currently in Grad School)

Postby 2014 » Mon Jul 09, 2012 7:29 pm

Your grad school GPA is somewhere between very and absolutely meaningless. It is a good idea to interact with professors though as networking is an important skill and academic LORs are necessary.

Honestly if you are planning to fill your time with ECs, Volunteer stuff, etc you are better off using that time to get a Part time job and fill that same time making money. The work will look just as good/neutral as any club or volunteer organization you could join and it serves to minimize your debt going forward. Do something law/health/both related to have some sort of material for your PS or for a screening interview and it's even better, plus you get to potentially dabble in the day to day of lawyers and see if it's a 3 year investment you want to make.

The most valuable thing you can do is study like hell for the LSAT whenever you choose to take it. You have enough time that there is no reason to shoot for 160's, you can do better even from where you are starting. The LSAT forum here is a great resource.

Finally with regard to your target schools, all 4 are acceptable if you aren't gunning for big firms but at any of the 4 it becomes even more important that you kill the LSAT as none are worth paying full price at. With a 3.4/170 all of those schools should offer you substantial scholarships and you will be competitive for the better schools which might give better options for the niche you are gunning for.

User avatar
TTTehehe
Posts: 190
Joined: Fri Apr 20, 2012 7:00 pm

Re: Law School Preparation/Advice (I'm currently in Grad School)

Postby TTTehehe » Mon Jul 09, 2012 7:31 pm

2014 wrote:Your grad school GPA is somewhere between very and absolutely meaningless. It is a good idea to interact with professors though as networking is an important skill and academic LORs are necessary.

Honestly if you are planning to fill your time with ECs, Volunteer stuff, etc you are better off using that time to get a Part time job and fill that same time making money. The work will look just as good/neutral as any club or volunteer organization you could join and it serves to minimize your debt going forward. Do something law/health/both related to have some sort of material for your PS or for a screening interview and it's even better, plus you get to potentially dabble in the day to day of lawyers and see if it's a 3 year investment you want to make.

The most valuable thing you can do is study like hell for the LSAT whenever you choose to take it. You have enough time that there is no reason to shoot for 160's, you can do better even from where you are starting. The LSAT forum here is a great resource.

Finally with regard to your target schools, all 4 are acceptable if you aren't gunning for big firms but at any of the 4 it becomes even more important that you kill the LSAT as none are worth paying full price at. With a 3.4/170 all of those schools should offer you substantial scholarships and you will be competitive for the better schools which might give better options for the niche you are gunning for.


Unless his grad GPA is 0.00 - 2.99. Grad GPA can SOMETIMES help, but it can ALWAYS hurt.

User avatar
2014
Posts: 5831
Joined: Sat Jun 05, 2010 3:53 pm

Re: Law School Preparation/Advice (I'm currently in Grad School)

Postby 2014 » Mon Jul 09, 2012 7:34 pm

From experience you have to legitimately try to do worse than a B in Masters programs.

User avatar
TTTehehe
Posts: 190
Joined: Fri Apr 20, 2012 7:00 pm

Re: Law School Preparation/Advice (I'm currently in Grad School)

Postby TTTehehe » Mon Jul 09, 2012 7:35 pm

2014 wrote:From experience you have to legitimately try to do worse than a B in Masters programs.


From experience, I've seen just that.

bp shinners
Posts: 3091
Joined: Wed Mar 16, 2011 7:05 pm

Re: Law School Preparation/Advice (I'm currently in Grad School)

Postby bp shinners » Tue Jul 10, 2012 11:59 am

JAlexCIP wrote:I have yet to take the LSAT, but I have scored around 154-156 on a few practice exams without any prior practice/prep courses. I would like to end up scoring in the mid to high 160s, if possible. I plan on maintaining a 4.0 throughout my MS-HSA degree and establishing solid contacts with professors for future recommendation letters, something I did not do during undergrad.

So with that being said, what should I be doing over the next two years to make my law school applications more substantial? I would like to attend either UF/FSU in FL or Emory/UGA in GA. Do you recommend any extracurriculars, volunteer work, internships, etc. or is a solid LSAT/grad school GPA sufficient?


Starting from the mid-150s should allow you to get into the 170s with 1-2 years of prep - don't sell yourself short. Even if you have your heart set on Emory, where a 172 would be overkill for admissions, it'd be amazing for scholarships.

Sounds like your plan for the Master's is solid - keep that up.

Your grad GPA won't matter too much in the process, unless it's poor in which case it will hurt you. As far as ECs, anything that keeps you busy. Law schools aren't really looking for anything in particular; they just want to see that you spend your time doing something meaningful. However, if you're fairly certain of wanting to work in health care, volunteering at a hospital would be great for future employers to see.
Last edited by bp shinners on Thu Jul 12, 2012 11:52 am, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
JAlexCIP
Posts: 2
Joined: Sun Jul 08, 2012 5:02 pm

Re: Law School Preparation/Advice (I'm currently in Grad School)

Postby JAlexCIP » Wed Jul 11, 2012 9:37 pm

Thanks for the feedback everyone, definitely on track now.




Return to “Law School Admissions Forum”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Commoncourtesy, cooldog, jtawil and 6 guests