LOR - Who should I pick?

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tbq1988
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Joined: Tue Jun 25, 2013 7:57 pm

LOR - Who should I pick?

Postby tbq1988 » Tue Jun 25, 2013 8:12 pm

Hello all! I have a quandary I am currently facing regarding LORs. I graduated in May 2011 so I will be out of school for three years by the time I attend law school. After graduating, I immediately began working at a prosecutor's office as a legal assistant and have worked there the last two years. I am hoping to base my application on my volunteer work and desire to go into public interest work when I graduate from law school. This is perhaps cliche, but I am hoping my work experience gives some credence to my desire.

1. Is it alright to only have one academic LOR? I have spoken with one of my former professors and he has thankfully agreed to write a LOR for me but I do not have anyone else in mind who could write about my academic abilities. Even the professor I spoke with did not specifically remember me but after showing him how I performed in his class he was more than willing to write something.

2. Is it advisable to ask one or two of the attorneys I work with to write a LOR?

3. I have been heavily involved in volunteer work in my community. Would it be alright to ask one of the organizers to write a LOR? Some of the volunteer work involved significant leadership positions and I am hoping to highlight this in my application.

Thanks for you input!

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

Re: LOR - Who should I pick?

Postby bp shinners » Wed Jun 26, 2013 11:53 am

tbq1988 wrote:1. Is it alright to only have one academic LOR? I have spoken with one of my former professors and he has thankfully agreed to write a LOR for me but I do not have anyone else in mind who could write about my academic abilities. Even the professor I spoke with did not specifically remember me but after showing him how I performed in his class he was more than willing to write something.


Alright? I guess. Recommended? No. You'd need at least 5 years out before I'd even strongly consider submitting only a single academic letter.

2. Is it advisable to ask one or two of the attorneys I work with to write a LOR?


I'd ask one of them. If you get two to write them, you're 1 academic letter short. Also, they'll probably be extremely similar.

3. I have been heavily involved in volunteer work in my community. Would it be alright to ask one of the organizers to write a LOR? Some of the volunteer work involved significant leadership positions and I am hoping to highlight this in my application.


Go for it. I would still get the second academic letter. Send the two academic letters in, and either the work or volunteer letters as a third. If you're writing about your desire to go into public interest work, I'd recommend the volunteer organizer as your third. Then, send in the attorney letter to any school that holds/waitlists you.

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ManOfTheMinute
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Re: LOR - Who should I pick?

Postby ManOfTheMinute » Wed Jun 26, 2013 12:01 pm

Depends on your numbers/target schools. HYS would not hear of it...

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ariadne328
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Re: LOR - Who should I pick?

Postby ariadne328 » Wed Jun 26, 2013 12:09 pm

bp shinners wrote:Go for it. I would still get the second academic letter. Send the two academic letters in, and either the work or volunteer letters as a third. If you're writing about your desire to go into public interest work, I'd recommend the volunteer organizer as your third. Then, send in the attorney letter to any school that holds/waitlists you.

This. You need two academic LOR's. There must be a class with another Professor you did well in. Just do the same thing you did with the Professor you have already asked, remind them how well you did in their class etc., and get a second academic LOR. I like the thought to save the attorney LOR if you need something for a WL.

tbq1988
Posts: 13
Joined: Tue Jun 25, 2013 7:57 pm

Re: LOR - Who should I pick?

Postby tbq1988 » Wed Jun 26, 2013 12:40 pm

I did well in pretty much all of my classes (GPA = 3.9x). I am shooting for HYS so I am mostly concerned with how they will perceive my LORs. What I am hearing is that a mediocre (they don't know me personally) LOR from a prof is better than a strong LOR from either of my other two options. If this is the case, I will send out an email to another professor and see if I can get them to sit down and talk with me about law school and writing a LOR for me. Thanks for your help!

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ariadne328
Posts: 140
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Re: LOR - Who should I pick?

Postby ariadne328 » Wed Jun 26, 2013 12:49 pm

tbq1988 wrote:I did well in pretty much all of my classes (GPA = 3.9x). I am shooting for HYS so I am mostly concerned with how they will perceive my LORs. What I am hearing is that a mediocre (they don't know me personally) LOR from a prof is better than a strong LOR from either of my other two options. If this is the case, I will send out an email to another professor and see if I can get them to sit down and talk with me about law school and writing a LOR for me. Thanks for your help!

As an academic institution, they want to hear about your academic performance. Someone else should weigh in on the HYS situation, but basically everyone else will be looking at your numbers, which it sounds like you have, and maybe your softs (work experience, volunteer work) and the LOR's will play a major backseat as long as they aren't explicitly bad.




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