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20141023
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Postby 20141023 » Sat Dec 29, 2012 8:38 pm

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Lavitz
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Re: A Guide to Law School Admissions Interviews

Postby Lavitz » Sun Dec 30, 2012 1:11 am

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Last edited by Lavitz on Mon Oct 27, 2014 10:00 pm, edited 4 times in total.

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Mr. Elshal
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Re: A Guide to Law School Admissions Interviews

Postby Mr. Elshal » Sun Dec 30, 2012 12:31 pm

kappycaft1, this is great. Sort of like Encyclopedia Interviewica.

Lavitz already linked to my post in the Harvard thread, so I'm gonna try to write things that weren't there and, for the information that was there, please see his link above.

I only interviewed at Harvard (so far?) so that's what I'll discuss.

While Lavitz interviewed with Karen Buttenbaum, I interviewed with Jessica Soban. The styles are different in that JS asks a few personalized questions (I had 4 or 5 questions total) and KB asks more, and more general, questions like the ones you would expect in a job interview. See here for more: http://top-law-schools.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=7&t=191773&start=2175#p6232471

Prep Style, Appearance, and Setup
I am absolutely neurotic so I will give this information with the caveat that none of this is necessary--it just put my mind at ease a little more about knowing I probably could not have done any more.

I typed up a half-page, single-spaced, answer for every question that Lavitz and other people posted in the Harvard thread, and memorized the general ideas and stories so they wouldn't sound rehearsed. I recommend finding 5-6 stories that can be applied to a variety of questions.

Over the two days before the interview, I forwarded all the questions I could think of to my girlfriend and two friends and did something like 6 or 7 mock interviews with them (most of them were film/acting majors so they played the parts of KB and JS really well). This also enabled me to test out my webcam and external mic more than a few times, so that I caught all the issues well before my actual interview. I also did all these interviews in the same part of my house that I did the real interview in. My house has a lot of windows and, if you're in the same situation, check out the lighting in the place where you want to do the interview at the same time on another day. I did that and found out that the glare from my windows actually put my whole face in shadow and, while it looked like a cool shady character from some anime, it was also really creepy for an interview.

I set up my interviewing area with extra lighting from different angles to make it look even (nothing sophisticated, just all of my siblings' desk lamps). I set up an external mic off-screen but nearby enough to really improve the sound. I wore a suit top and bottom (don't be the moron that does a suit top and just boxers, because you'll accidentally stand up and it'll probably be really awkward). Also, wearing a full suit made me feel more confident about my qualifications.

I also unhooked the phones so they wouldn't ring during my interview, left my cell-phone in another room, and locked the door to the room I was interviewing in with a sign not to knock, speak, or breathe too loudly. This did not stop my brother from walking in halfway and dancing behind my computer. This had the double-effect of making me smile and making me look over my computer/at the webcam.

I sent my entire interview outfit to the cleaners before the interview (expensive but helped reassure me that I've done all that I could.


Moral of the story, you don't have to do all these things, and most people will not want to do them, but I've posted them so that you could know what a really neurotic person would do. I hope this helps you all prepare. It's a stressful process, but it's one you should enjoy. If you've made it this far, you're still among the ~1200 best people who have applied to Harvard and ~70% of you will get in. Those odds are pretty good and the whole purpose of the interview is to give you a chance to make them better.

Good luck, and godspeed.

ETA the reason I didn't post any questions is because I have nothing to add beyond what Lavitz has said and what I already posted in the linked thread above.

JohnMarshall17
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Re: A Guide to Law School Admissions Interviews

Postby JohnMarshall17 » Sun Dec 30, 2012 2:36 pm

This is phenomenal. Thank you!

20141023
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Re: A Guide to Law School Admissions Interviews

Postby 20141023 » Sun Dec 30, 2012 4:00 pm

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Last edited by 20141023 on Wed Oct 22, 2014 2:52 pm, edited 4 times in total.

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soj
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Re: A Guide to Law School Admissions Interviews

Postby soj » Sun Dec 30, 2012 7:41 pm

Great thread, thanks.

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grossindiscretion
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Re: A Guide to Law School Admissions Interviews

Postby grossindiscretion » Sun Dec 30, 2012 10:49 pm

You guys. You da best forever

Granfalloon12
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Re: A Guide to Law School Admissions Interviews

Postby Granfalloon12 » Mon Dec 31, 2012 2:02 pm

Washington University St. Louis began conducting widespread interviews this year, as well.

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Eichörnchen
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Re: A Guide to Law School Admissions Interviews

Postby Eichörnchen » Wed Jan 02, 2013 8:44 pm

Good thread, thanks! :) [Also: taggity tag tag]

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bobr
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Re: A Guide to Law School Admissions Interviews

Postby bobr » Wed Jan 02, 2013 10:42 pm

Awesome information - thank you all for posting!

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Jacq2212
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Re: A Guide to Law School Admissions Interviews

Postby Jacq2212 » Thu Jan 03, 2013 11:38 am

Does anyone have tips for what are appropriate answers for "What is the most difficult decision you have had to make thus far"? For anything that seems seriously meaningful and not just about what class to take or whether to be friends with someone or relationship issues, etc. it seems that the answers would be extremely sensitive topics....I'm not sure how much I want to disclose. Any tips?

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carboncopyx
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Re: A Guide to Law School Admissions Interviews

Postby carboncopyx » Fri Jan 04, 2013 3:30 am

This is great, thanks!

aredhello
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Re: A Guide to Law School Admissions Interviews

Postby aredhello » Fri Jan 04, 2013 2:32 pm

Hi all -- so I have a question about attire. I know that both Lavitz and Mr Eishal wore full suits to their JS/KB1s, but...

I'm a bit older than the average applicant (approaching 30) and work at a job where I just have to be presentable, not wear a suit. I don't mind wearing a suit, but feel somewhat disingenuous wearing one.

I know that sounds kind of ridiculous, but my application is very PI-focused and I just feel so corporate in a suit. I personally think that I'd be a lot more comfortable not wearing a suit, because it's just not in my personality or my job description. Plus, JS specifically mentioned that if people feel comfortable wearing a suit they can, but that a nice dress shirt would be perfectly acceptable.

Granted, if I were interviewing in person or if it clearly stated "business attire recommended (or required)," I'd obviously wear a suit, but since it seems like I have the option...is it truly "common sense" as Mr Eishal suggested that I do in fact wear one?

Would greatly appreciate your thoughts about this.

20141023
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Re: A Guide to Law School Admissions Interviews

Postby 20141023 » Fri Jan 04, 2013 2:42 pm

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Last edited by 20141023 on Sat Feb 14, 2015 1:37 am, edited 1 time in total.

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WhiteyCakes
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Re: A Guide to Law School Admissions Interviews

Postby WhiteyCakes » Fri Jan 04, 2013 2:45 pm

aredhello wrote:I personally think that I'd be a lot more comfortable not wearing a suit, because it's just not in my personality or my job description. Plus, JS specifically mentioned that if people feel comfortable wearing a suit they can, but that a nice dress shirt would be perfectly acceptable.


You already have your answer.

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Mr. Elshal
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Re: A Guide to Law School Admissions Interviews

Postby Mr. Elshal » Fri Jan 04, 2013 3:07 pm

aredhello wrote:Hi all -- so I have a question about attire. I know that both Lavitz and Mr Eishal wore full suits to their JS/KB1s, but...

I'm a bit older than the average applicant (approaching 30) and work at a job where I just have to be presentable, not wear a suit. I don't mind wearing a suit, but feel somewhat disingenuous wearing one.

I know that sounds kind of ridiculous, but my application is very PI-focused and I just feel so corporate in a suit. I personally think that I'd be a lot more comfortable not wearing a suit, because it's just not in my personality or my job description. Plus, JS specifically mentioned that if people feel comfortable wearing a suit they can, but that a nice dress shirt would be perfectly acceptable.

Granted, if I were interviewing in person or if it clearly stated "business attire recommended (or required)," I'd obviously wear a suit, but since it seems like I have the option...is it truly "common sense" as Mr Eishal suggested that I do in fact wear one?

Would greatly appreciate your thoughts about this.


I didn't mean to imply that it is common sense to wear a suit; just that it is common sense to not wear only half an outfit.
Mr. Elshal wrote:I wore a suit top and bottom (don't be the moron that does a suit top and just boxers, because you'll accidentally stand up and it'll probably be really awkward). Also, wearing a full suit made me feel more confident about my qualifications.

You would be shocked by some of the stories recruiters from major banks and accounting firms have told me about this exact scenario.

It is by no means required and I remember more than a few people telling me they wore a dressy shirt and nice slacks (some with a tie). I don't think that's inappropriate. I come from a business background where suits are the norm for pretty much every occasion, so I would not have felt comfortable without one. However, based on what the adcomms have said so far, I do not think it is by any means required or common sensical. You should wear what you feel comfortable in, with the caveat that if comfortable means a dressy shirt and basketball shorts, that might not reflect very well. That's all I meant to say.

aredhello
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Re: A Guide to Law School Admissions Interviews

Postby aredhello » Fri Jan 04, 2013 5:03 pm

Thanks all for the responses.

Mr. Elshal -- my bad, I actually meant to refer to kappycaft1' comment that "it is still common sense to wear a suit and tie." I'm totally with the notion that it is common sense to not wear only half an outfit :lol:

And kappycaft1 -- I actually did interview in a dress shirt and slacks for the last two jobs I've held...not out of laziness or apathy, but because I work in a field in which wearing a suit is not commonplace and can in fact send the wrong message. But I'm certainly not challenging your or anybody else's opinion...was legitimately curious whether the prevailing wisdom ("common sense," if you will) on this forum was that it was the safest play to wear a suit despite the JS blog comment, or whether folks felt like other options were appropriate as well.

And man -- I certainly feel old, at least relative to all of the undergrads on this forum! Haha.

At any rate, thanks both of you for contributing to this thread and making the process a bit less opaque for the rest of us. And congrats on both of your cycles!

20141023
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Re: A Guide to Law School Admissions Interviews

Postby 20141023 » Fri Jan 04, 2013 6:03 pm

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Last edited by 20141023 on Sat Feb 14, 2015 1:37 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Yukos
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Re: A Guide to Law School Admissions Interviews

Postby Yukos » Sat Jan 05, 2013 1:20 am

Tagging. This is awesome thanks Asparaguskappycaft1

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Jaqen
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Re: A Guide to Law School Admissions Interviews

Postby Jaqen » Sat Jan 05, 2013 1:35 am

Yukos wrote:Tagging. This is awesome thanks Asparaguskappycaft1


+1, just in case.

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sinfiery
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Re: A Guide to Law School Admissions Interviews

Postby sinfiery » Tue Jan 08, 2013 10:37 am

awesome thread.

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fragrock
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Re: A Guide to Law School Admissions Interviews

Postby fragrock » Wed Jan 16, 2013 1:11 am

Prepping for my Northwestern off-campus interview this week using this thread as a guide. Thanks for creating!

zabava
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Re: A Guide to Law School Admissions Interviews

Postby zabava » Mon Jan 21, 2013 10:09 pm

thank you so much for this thread :-)

racrfish
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Re: A Guide to Law School Admissions Interviews

Postby racrfish » Tue Jan 22, 2013 10:23 am

Wow, very helpful! Thanks!

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dnptan
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Re: A Guide to Law School Admissions Interviews

Postby dnptan » Tue Jan 22, 2013 11:49 am

Jacq2212 wrote:Does anyone have tips for what are appropriate answers for "What is the most difficult decision you have had to make thus far"? For anything that seems seriously meaningful and not just about what class to take or whether to be friends with someone or relationship issues, etc. it seems that the answers would be extremely sensitive topics....I'm not sure how much I want to disclose. Any tips?


Well as always try to paint yourself in a positive light. I was involved in the hiring process of my company, and this was my boss' favorite question - mostly because it's a quick test on the nerve of the applicant. Some of the most impressive answers were:

Dropping full-time work to do a startup full time
Leaving the country to pursue a Masters', leaving sick family behind
Choosing to take over leadership of an organization

Some of the dumbest ones were:

Switching mobile phone carriers
Relationship stuff




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