Late Decision Program

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Would a matching registry for "late-decision" law school applications be a good idea?

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Late Decision Program

Postby PDaddy » Tue Oct 16, 2012 5:09 am

Undergraduate programs have participated in a little known program called the "Late-Decision Program", whereby they register with a database that matches them with candidates who have exhausted their candidacies and are still looking for schools. it works sort of like the LSDAS Candidate referral Program, but it includes any and all students with all different backgrounds and academic profiles. The participating schools range from "decent" (like Rutgers) to "very prestigious" (like the University of Chicago). ... m/302816/#

An excerpt from the article:

The two sides of the [application] process don't always match up perfectly: qualified students find themselves without colleges; excellent schools find themselves with empty seats in the freshman class. The college-application season is usually thought to end in April, when colleges send out their decisions—or at the beginning of May, when students send in commitment deposits. But for some, this time is just the beginning of an under-publicized late-admission process.

The most important tool in this process is something that became available directly to students just a few years ago. Each year between May and August the [b]National Association for College Admission Counseling
maintains a space-availability survey—a continually updated list of schools seeking students. As late as this July about 300 schools were still on the list of those looking for fall matriculants.

Although NACAC does not keep official statistics on how many people apply late each year, the organization estimates that the number is in the thousands. The survey, which is available free on the Internet, received more than 20,000 unique hits this past year. It is searchable by state, and schools on the list indicate whether they have financial aid or housing still available.[/b]

In August 2008, I received a letter asking me to submit an application to Wake Forest for the 2008-09 school-year (I would have literally had two weeks to get moved had I been interested), even though I had not expressed any interest in the school. In fact, I had decided to wait on law school altogether. Then there are the schools that pull students from CLEO and other pre-law programs at the last minute, some of which are schools like GULC, Cornell, etc. I personally know of two people who were admitted to GULC three days before orientation after having been denied during the cucle. They attended the CHH summer law preparatory program at GULC.

The law schools should implement a formal registry - one that operates like the NACAC - that matches law schools with applicants who are still looking for schools and prefer not to wait an additional year to reapply, allowing schools to shore up their classes with late additions, whether it be for diversity reasons, to boost the LSAT scores or GPA's of the incoming classes, to adjust for unexpectedly low offer acceptances, or just to provide opportunities to students they want to reconsider. It would, in effect, become an expanded waitlist that would include students who haven't applied to or even considered certain schools.

Do you think this would be a good idea? Waitlisted law school applicants might not think so, until they consider that they too in August could be tapped by a more prestigious law school than any they've applied or been admitted that might offer more money.

What would it take to start such a program? I think it would be great for a lot of students and schools.

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