Am I on the right track? What should i be doing?

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caruiz93
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Am I on the right track? What should i be doing?

Postby caruiz93 » Tue Jan 15, 2013 4:50 pm

I hope it isn't a faux-pas to post this in this section; I'm new to the forum. But I have recently decided that law school is what i want to do after undergrad. However, i come from a single parent home in which education isn't a big deal so i have no real context on what i should be doing. I was a terrible high school student. I graduated with a 2.8 gpa and 24 act from high school. I got into a very small ( around 1200 students) Christian liberal arts university that is tier 2 and not very well known at all. I got tired of being a mediocre student and decided to really work hard and prove myself during my undergrad years and make the jump to a good law school. I am not obsessed with a T14. I would of course like to go to a top 14 LS but i would be happy going somewhere at least decent. Apart from the T14s I would also like to go to a school like Saint louis University, Chicago-Kent, etc. I am really confused because my academic advisors at school say that law schools want someone active in the community....but everything that i read online says that softs don't really matter. Heres how i stand:

-currrent sophomore
-history major/econ minor 3.75 GPA ( shooting for a 3.8 at least by the time i apply to LS)
-havent taken the LSAT but shooting for AT LEAST a 160 (of course higher would be preferable)
-I work at a coffee shop/restaurant 30+ hours a week to pay for school.
-I volunteer at a reading clinic for middle schoolers twice a week.
-recently joined the campus newspaper
-Im a URM student (i was born in Mexico, and i know that theres a slight boost to chances from that)

Should i be doing more? i feel like the pressure is on to find great internships and do more volunteer work but I'm already working a lot so i don't know how i can fit in a demanding internship or more volunteering. I am considering writing for the campus newspaper, and maybe starting a debate team or participating in intercollegiate legislature. I enjoy all of this things but i don't want to add unnecessary stress to an already full plate. Am I on the right track to getting into a good law school? what else should i be doing?

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Rahviveh
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Re: Am I on the right track? What should i be doing?

Postby Rahviveh » Tue Jan 15, 2013 4:57 pm

Study for the LSAT. You dont need to start now but aim for a 168+ to ensure you can get into a T14, and potentially with money. Keep the GPA as high as possible. Only do that extra stuff like volunteering as long as it doesn't interfere with studying for college/LSAT.

Good luck!

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radar714
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Re: Am I on the right track? What should i be doing?

Postby radar714 » Tue Jan 15, 2013 4:59 pm

If you are MA URM you should be shooting for a 165 minimum b/c it'll give you good chance at a few t14, but if you hit 168/170+ with that GPA you're looking at HYS

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francesfarmer
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Re: Am I on the right track? What should i be doing?

Postby francesfarmer » Tue Jan 15, 2013 5:00 pm

Get your GPA as high as possible. Your school counselors don't know what they are talking about.

When you do study for the LSAT, do it right! But don't worry about that now. Just focus on your GPA.

rad lulz
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Re: Am I on the right track? What should i be doing?

Postby rad lulz » Tue Jan 15, 2013 5:04 pm

You're a sophomore. Get a life.

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teachmehowtoraji
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Re: Am I on the right track? What should i be doing?

Postby teachmehowtoraji » Tue Jan 15, 2013 5:18 pm

rad lulz wrote:You're a sophomore. Get a life.


:lol:

caruiz93
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Re: Am I on the right track? What should i be doing?

Postby caruiz93 » Tue Jan 15, 2013 7:58 pm

rad lulz wrote:You're a sophomore. Get a life.


haha i probably should. Im just not trying to make the same mistakes i did in high school so that i can aim for something higher when i apply to law school. Also, i don't come from a family with a lot of education so i don't have any direct advice. i have to look for outside advice to know what i should be doing.

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bizzybone1313
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Re: Am I on the right track? What should i be doing?

Postby bizzybone1313 » Tue Jan 15, 2013 8:03 pm

It is much, much easier to obtain a high GPA than to score high on the LSAT. Focus all your energy on obtaining the highest GPA possible. Forget all that other stuff. High GPA + high LSAT= elite law school.

Edit: Quit your job and take out loans to pay for school. You will make that money back in the form of scholarships from law schools because of the higher GPA and the higher earning potential from your elite law degree.

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RhymesLikeDimes
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Re: Am I on the right track? What should i be doing?

Postby RhymesLikeDimes » Tue Jan 15, 2013 8:17 pm

bizzybone1313 wrote:It is much, much easier to obtain a high GPA than to score high on the LSAT. Focus all your energy on obtaining the highest GPA possible. Forget all that other stuff. High GPA + high LSAT= elite law school.


True, but at the same time, a high LSAT is worth a lot more than a high GPA.

caruiz93
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Re: Am I on the right track? What should i be doing?

Postby caruiz93 » Tue Jan 15, 2013 9:32 pm

francesfarmer wrote:Get your GPA as high as possible. Your school counselors don't know what they are talking about.

When you do study for the LSAT, do it right! But don't worry about that now. Just focus on your GPA.



I plan on studying all of this summer intensely by myself because i don't have the money for a class or a tutor and then take the lsat starting my junior year so i have time to improve my score. Does self studying actually help?

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suralin
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Re: Am I on the right track? What should i be doing?

Postby suralin » Tue Jan 15, 2013 10:42 pm

caruiz93 wrote:
francesfarmer wrote:Get your GPA as high as possible. Your school counselors don't know what they are talking about.

When you do study for the LSAT, do it right! But don't worry about that now. Just focus on your GPA.



I plan on studying all of this summer intensely by myself because i don't have the money for a class or a tutor and then take the lsat starting my junior year so i have time to improve my score. Does self studying actually help?


Yes, yes, and yes. Take a diagnostic, study with a book like Manhattan or Powerscore, drill weaknesses, PT, review PTs extensively, PT some more, and profit. But worry about your GPA more for now; for example, you can take community college courses to raise your GPA for law school, even if it doesn't count for your college's GPA/transcript.

Roger_Mogilny
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Re: Am I on the right track? What should i be doing?

Postby Roger_Mogilny » Wed Jan 16, 2013 3:58 pm

rad lulz wrote:You're a sophomore. Get a life.



This really bothers me and I see it a lot here. Sure, he's a sophomore and he has a long way to go and maybe he's even a little ignorant on the subjects at hand but there's no need for shit like this. Having goals are great, keep at it OP. You're doing awesome. Good for you for getting your act together. FYI I started studying for the LSAT right around the time that you intend on starting (late sophomore year), and I scored a 180. Follow TLS1776's guide. Its gold.

Cheers to the people who provided positive feedback and encouragement.

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Rahviveh
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Re: Am I on the right track? What should i be doing?

Postby Rahviveh » Wed Jan 16, 2013 4:04 pm

Roger_Mogilny wrote:
rad lulz wrote:You're a sophomore. Get a life.



This really bothers me and I see it a lot here. Sure, he's a sophomore and he has a long way to go and maybe he's even a little ignorant on the subjects at hand but there's no need for shit like this. Having goals are great, keep at it OP. You're doing awesome. Good for you for getting your act together. FYI I started studying for the LSAT right around the time that you intend on starting (late sophomore year), and I scored a 180. Follow TLS1776's guide. Its gold.

Cheers to the people who provided positive feedback and encouragement.


+1

I had a "life" in college and regret every day that I didn't do more planning and preparation for post-graduation. I wish I had found a TLS-equivalent website for undergrad. It is what it is. Good luck OP.

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h_jane_w
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Re: Am I on the right track? What should i be doing?

Postby h_jane_w » Wed Jan 16, 2013 4:40 pm

Yea somebody up there said quit your job and I agree. Forget about extracurriculars (I mean do a couple but nothing too serious). Work the bare minimum that you can. Focus on making your GPA as high as possible. I'm an MA URM and got into T7 with a 165, but my UG was a T30.

Adcoms won't care if you're "involved in the community." This will not matter at all.

GPA. LSAT. There is nothing else.

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h_jane_w
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Re: Am I on the right track? What should i be doing?

Postby h_jane_w » Wed Jan 16, 2013 4:41 pm

rad lulz wrote:You're a sophomore. Get a life.


Yea I started studying for the LSAT as a sophomore.

KingsCup
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Re: Am I on the right track? What should i be doing?

Postby KingsCup » Wed Jan 16, 2013 6:31 pm

You obviously are going to get different responses from different people who are going to tell you to do or not do what they did. If you want to go to a T14, you need a good LSAT and to keep your GPA high. For some of the lower ranked schools, you don't need both of those things to the same degree. Don't stress out too much because, like you pointed out, you're still only a sophomore.

On this board you have people who tried really hard and got a great GPA and a great LSAT and go to top schools. But there are also people such as myself, who had an incredible UG experience, got a shitty GPA, but studied for the LSAT and was able to do fairly well, and now am possibly going to a top25 school. Take from this what you will, but there are multiple ways to get to law school.

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Rahviveh
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Re: Am I on the right track? What should i be doing?

Postby Rahviveh » Wed Jan 16, 2013 6:47 pm

bgoodrick wrote:You obviously are going to get different responses from different people who are going to tell you to do or not do what they did. If you want to go to a T14, you need a good LSAT and to keep your GPA high. For some of the lower ranked schools, you don't need both of those things to the same degree. Don't stress out too much because, like you pointed out, you're still only a sophomore.

On this board you have people who tried really hard and got a great GPA and a great LSAT and go to top schools. But there are also people such as myself, who had an incredible UG experience, got a shitty GPA, but studied for the LSAT and was able to do fairly well, and now am possibly going to a top25 school. Take from this what you will, but there are multiple ways to get to law school.


The one way everyone is suggesting is that you maximize GPA/LSAT as much as possible. What are these other ways you're aware of?

And there's plenty of free time in college to have fun AND do well in school, and later to study for the LSAT. You will just have to cut out some EC's.

caruiz93
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Re: Am I on the right track? What should i be doing?

Postby caruiz93 » Thu Jan 17, 2013 11:19 am

h_jane_w wrote:Yea somebody up there said quit your job and I agree. Forget about extracurriculars (I mean do a couple but nothing too serious). Work the bare minimum that you can. Focus on making your GPA as high as possible. I'm an MA URM and got into T7 with a 165, but my UG was a T30.

Adcoms won't care if you're "involved in the community." This will not matter at all.

GPA. LSAT. There is nothing else.
bizzybone1313 wrote:It is much, much easier to obtain a high GPA than to score high on the LSAT. Focus all your energy on obtaining the highest GPA possible. Forget all that other stuff. High GPA + high LSAT= elite law school.

Edit: Quit your job and take out loans to pay for school. You will make that money back in the form of scholarships from law schools because of the higher GPA and the higher earning potential from your elite law degree.



I refuse to to be in debt after undergrad, so quitting my job isn't an option. I come from a low income family, and i have absolutely nothing to fall back on so being in debt just isn't something I'm willing to do. Ive managed a 3.75 so far while working around 40 hours my first semester and then compromised and cut back to closer to 30 hours. so i feel like i can balance both. I am not obsessed with getting into a T14 although that would be nice. Id rather for to a decent decent school with a full ride than go to a T14 and incur massive debt. i know that the argument will be that i will make it up quickly and with no problem with the opportunities that graduating from a T14 will give me, but i prefer having peace of mind.

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andres
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Re: Am I on the right track? What should i be doing?

Postby andres » Thu Jan 17, 2013 11:29 am

URM + 3.8 GPA + 160 LSAT = you will be in good shape

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cinephile
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Re: Am I on the right track? What should i be doing?

Postby cinephile » Thu Jan 17, 2013 11:43 am

caruiz93 wrote:
h_jane_w wrote:Yea somebody up there said quit your job and I agree. Forget about extracurriculars (I mean do a couple but nothing too serious). Work the bare minimum that you can. Focus on making your GPA as high as possible. I'm an MA URM and got into T7 with a 165, but my UG was a T30.

Adcoms won't care if you're "involved in the community." This will not matter at all.

GPA. LSAT. There is nothing else.
bizzybone1313 wrote:It is much, much easier to obtain a high GPA than to score high on the LSAT. Focus all your energy on obtaining the highest GPA possible. Forget all that other stuff. High GPA + high LSAT= elite law school.

Edit: Quit your job and take out loans to pay for school. You will make that money back in the form of scholarships from law schools because of the higher GPA and the higher earning potential from your elite law degree.



I refuse to to be in debt after undergrad, so quitting my job isn't an option. I come from a low income family, and i have absolutely nothing to fall back on so being in debt just isn't something I'm willing to do. Ive managed a 3.75 so far while working around 40 hours my first semester and then compromised and cut back to closer to 30 hours. so i feel like i can balance both. I am not obsessed with getting into a T14 although that would be nice. Id rather for to a decent decent school with a full ride than go to a T14 and incur massive debt. i know that the argument will be that i will make it up quickly and with no problem with the opportunities that graduating from a T14 will give me, but i prefer having peace of mind.


You are making a wise decision to keep working. Graduating debt free opens up your options. Besides, the LSAT is way more important that GPA anyway.

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h_jane_w
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Re: Am I on the right track? What should i be doing?

Postby h_jane_w » Thu Jan 17, 2013 11:58 am

caruiz93 wrote:
h_jane_w wrote:Yea somebody up there said quit your job and I agree. Forget about extracurriculars (I mean do a couple but nothing too serious). Work the bare minimum that you can. Focus on making your GPA as high as possible. I'm an MA URM and got into T7 with a 165, but my UG was a T30.

Adcoms won't care if you're "involved in the community." This will not matter at all.

GPA. LSAT. There is nothing else.
bizzybone1313 wrote:It is much, much easier to obtain a high GPA than to score high on the LSAT. Focus all your energy on obtaining the highest GPA possible. Forget all that other stuff. High GPA + high LSAT= elite law school.

Edit: Quit your job and take out loans to pay for school. You will make that money back in the form of scholarships from law schools because of the higher GPA and the higher earning potential from your elite law degree.



I refuse to to be in debt after undergrad, so quitting my job isn't an option. I come from a low income family, and i have absolutely nothing to fall back on so being in debt just isn't something I'm willing to do. Ive managed a 3.75 so far while working around 40 hours my first semester and then compromised and cut back to closer to 30 hours. so i feel like i can balance both. I am not obsessed with getting into a T14 although that would be nice. Id rather for to a decent decent school with a full ride than go to a T14 and incur massive debt. i know that the argument will be that i will make it up quickly and with no problem with the opportunities that graduating from a T14 will give me, but i prefer having peace of mind.


This is actually really smart. And I did say work the bare min. that you CAN, don't forgot the possibility of getting into a T14 WITH money though, especially as a URM. The fact that you've managed a 3.7 GPA WHILE working is very impressive. If you can get a high LSAT score, you might be in very good shape.
Rooting for you!

caruiz93
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Re: Am I on the right track? What should i be doing?

Postby caruiz93 » Fri Jan 18, 2013 11:25 am

Thanks for the advice and encouragement! I'm planning to take the lsat for the first time early my junior year. Does it hurt to take it so early? Will law schools look negatively upon someone who took it many times until they got a good score?

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francesfarmer
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Re: Am I on the right track? What should i be doing?

Postby francesfarmer » Fri Jan 18, 2013 11:29 am

caruiz93 wrote:Thanks for the advice and encouragement! I'm planning to take the lsat for the first time early my junior year. Does it hurt to take it so early? Will law schools look negatively upon someone who took it many times until they got a good score?

So you're planning on going straight through to law school after undergrad?

Personally I think you should take some time off and get a job and save up some money and like, live and stuff. It seems like you've been working your ass off for a long time!

caruiz93
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Re: Am I on the right track? What should i be doing?

Postby caruiz93 » Fri Jan 18, 2013 11:56 am

francesfarmer wrote:
caruiz93 wrote:Thanks for the advice and encouragement! I'm planning to take the lsat for the first time early my junior year. Does it hurt to take it so early? Will law schools look negatively upon someone who took it many times until they got a good score?

So you're planning on going straight through to law school after undergrad?

Personally I think you should take some time off and get a job and save up some money and like, live and stuff. It seems like you've been working your ass off for a long time!



Yeah the plan is to go right after undergrad. Well, i played around in high school way too much. Im trying to make up for it in college and i enjoy it.

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francesfarmer
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Re: Am I on the right track? What should i be doing?

Postby francesfarmer » Fri Jan 18, 2013 12:11 pm

caruiz93 wrote:
francesfarmer wrote:
caruiz93 wrote:Thanks for the advice and encouragement! I'm planning to take the lsat for the first time early my junior year. Does it hurt to take it so early? Will law schools look negatively upon someone who took it many times until they got a good score?

So you're planning on going straight through to law school after undergrad?

Personally I think you should take some time off and get a job and save up some money and like, live and stuff. It seems like you've been working your ass off for a long time!



Yeah the plan is to go right after undergrad. Well, i played around in high school way too much. Im trying to make up for it in college and i enjoy it.

You could save up money though! Just saying. Best decision I ever made was waiting.




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