Addendum due to work "abuse" i guess...???

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d0rklord
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Addendum due to work "abuse" i guess...???

Postby d0rklord » Tue Jul 23, 2013 11:26 am

I attended college a total of 3 academic years (graduated early).

My GPA the first 2 years was pretty amazing, all A's and B's not a single C...

My final year.. my grades plummeted, lots of C, C-s a couple Ds...

It wasn't because the course work got harder or any of that, it's because I was working full time in a HELL HOLE.

I was sexually harassed, cursed at, had things thrown at me, you name it. Honestly those 2 years of my life were kind of a blur... Often times I was so mentally beaten down after work, I didn't make it to class...

I was wondering if it was worth writing an addendum to my application to explain my drop in GPA? Or if it would seem unbelievable? Looking back, I hardly believe it happened! Or that I dealt with it as long as I did! I was just naive and 19... I know better now!

Also, how do you go about writing it? How detailed, professional, personal etc. should you be?

Thanks :)

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CyanIdes Of March
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Re: Addendum due to work "abuse" i guess...???

Postby CyanIdes Of March » Tue Jul 23, 2013 11:38 am

First question they are going to ask is: Why didn't you quit? So what was your reason for staying and not finding another job?

I had a similar experience, but when enough was enough I left and found a better job.

d0rklord
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Re: Addendum due to work "abuse" i guess...???

Postby d0rklord » Tue Jul 23, 2013 11:59 am

CyanIdes Of March wrote:First question they are going to ask is: Why didn't you quit? So what was your reason for staying and not finding another job?

I had a similar experience, but when enough was enough I left and found a better job.


I was there about 2 years from the time I was 19 to 21. It was my first "full time" job, ever. I was young, naive and still in school so my options were limited (or seemed limited, at least).

You know, after watching shows like The Office (kidding, not but really) I assumed hating your life at work was normal... I think I was too naive to realize what actions I could have taken against my employer, but at that time I was too worried about losing a steady stream of income...

The job I'm discussion was my first taste of a "law" job, and it TOTALLY deterred me from EVER wanting to go to law school... Which is why it's taken my so long after undergrad to get my act together and begin the application process.

I got another job at a law firm (where I am now) and my god it is light and day! I LOVE working here, I love the people, the challenges, etc... and honestly, prior to working here I had no idea what I'd do with my life, but now I'm hell bent on going to law school!

It wasn't really an option to look for a new job (he NEVER EVER let us have time off, even for REAL emergencies, so interviewing wasn't an option). I couldn't interview nights/weekends because I was taking a full course load every semester and summer (I took 25 units was semester, and 19 units one summer, EEK!)

My mother is a single mom (my dad is in the picture, but after we turned 18 the financially contributions ended, which is fine) and is foreign with little to no education, so she doesn't make a lot of money. One of my brothers was too young to work at the time, and the one who was, has autism, so I was the only one who could really help with the finances...

But once I graduated college and had enough money saved, I got the fuck out of there! I took about a 5 month sabbatical after I graduated just to mentally heal from it all...

Honestly, it might sound stupid, but I didn't even realize I had dealt with the abuse and torment so long! I realized I had been there two years and was SHOCKED!

-------------

I have another Q....

3 people that used to work at that law firm, now work at the firm I work at... Would it be beneficial (or just plain overkill) if they signed an affidavit of sorts to confirm my statements?

Thanks again, sorry for the rant!

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nickb285
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Re: Addendum due to work "abuse" i guess...???

Postby nickb285 » Tue Jul 23, 2013 12:11 pm

I sympathize, but if you write an addendum and you don't have any objective support (e.g. a successful sexual harassment suit or something like that), it's going to sound like you're a) making excuses and b) talking shit on a previous employer, neither of which looks good.

d0rklord
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Re: Addendum due to work "abuse" i guess...???

Postby d0rklord » Tue Jul 23, 2013 12:17 pm

nickb285 wrote:I sympathize, but if you write an addendum and you don't have any objective support (e.g. a successful sexual harassment suit or something like that), it's going to sound like you're a) making excuses and b) talking shit on a previous employer, neither of which looks good.


See this is what I'm afraid of... :(

So it's better to not explain? It just looks kind of... odd that I was able to handle insane course loads and get all A's and B's then did a 180 the last year...

But I don't want them to think I'm some whiny bitch, either...

Which is why I'm wondering if a signed affidavit from 3 other employees, would justify it, a bit more... give it more weight...

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nickb285
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Re: Addendum due to work "abuse" i guess...???

Postby nickb285 » Tue Jul 23, 2013 12:56 pm

d0rklord wrote:
nickb285 wrote:I sympathize, but if you write an addendum and you don't have any objective support (e.g. a successful sexual harassment suit or something like that), it's going to sound like you're a) making excuses and b) talking shit on a previous employer, neither of which looks good.


See this is what I'm afraid of... :(

So it's better to not explain? It just looks kind of... odd that I was able to handle insane course loads and get all A's and B's then did a 180 the last year...

But I don't want them to think I'm some whiny bitch, either...

Which is why I'm wondering if a signed affidavit from 3 other employees, would justify it, a bit more... give it more weight...


No. For one, that's overkill and is going to make you come off as odd. For another, it doesn't really prove anything--lots of people work shitty, stressful jobs and hate their employers. The fact that you could find a few other people at your shitty, stressful job who hated it won't make it seem any more like an extenuating circumstance.

Yeah, it's not great to have those grades, but you are by no means the first person to have one off semester. Unless there was a provable extenuating circumstance (medical or trauma, generally), you're better off just killing the LSAT. If they ask, feel free to explain that you were working an extremely stressful job in an unpleasant environment, and leave it at that. Most likely though it won't make a difference, and writing an addendum or doing a weird affidavit thing isn't going to magically make your low grades disappear, and it could hurt your application. Leave it be.

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BaiAilian2013
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Re: Addendum due to work "abuse" i guess...???

Postby BaiAilian2013 » Tue Jul 23, 2013 1:16 pm

I dunno, to me, being sexually harassed and having things thrown at you goes beyond normal shittiness. I think I would take an addendum like that seriously. Also, with a year full of Cs, your overall GPA must be honestly pretty bad, so I can understand the desire to explain it.

Actually, I think another consideration is that with an obvious trend like that, someone seeing your transcript as a whole may be wondering wtf happened and why you didn't write an addendum (the obvious explanation being that it was something like drugs or a stigmatizing mental illness). But then, who knows whether they actually look at your transcript versus just have some peon calculate the overall GPA and look at that.

Personally, between the family need for income, the boss making it impossible to look for a new job, and an admission on your part that staying at the job was a product of naivete/ignorance, I think this comes down in favor of an addendum.

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nickb285
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Re: Addendum due to work "abuse" i guess...???

Postby nickb285 » Tue Jul 23, 2013 1:30 pm

BaiAilian2013 wrote:I dunno, to me, being sexually harassed and having things thrown at you goes beyond normal shittiness.


It does, and I don't discount that OP had a damned hard time with it. But the problem is that you have no idea who's going to be reviewing your application. It could be a woman who had a similar experience and sympathizes deeply and gives you sort of a bump for it. But it could be a douchey guy who wonders why bitches are always whining about getting sexually harassed, or a boomer who wonders why OP didn't just BOOTSTRAP her way to a better job, or someone whose first question is exactly what CyanIdes said above, or someone who's super-sensitive to people complaining about former employers. Even in the instances where addenda are legit, it's not like they add points to your LSAT or GPA, and I think that without an outside confirmation of the shittiness (having other people who thought the place was awful doesn't count), this addendum would be more likely to hurt than it would to help.

RodneyRuxin
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Re: Addendum due to work "abuse" i guess...???

Postby RodneyRuxin » Tue Jul 23, 2013 1:56 pm

nickb285 wrote:
BaiAilian2013 wrote:I dunno, to me, being sexually harassed and having things thrown at you goes beyond normal shittiness.


It does, and I don't discount that OP had a damned hard time with it. But the problem is that you have no idea who's going to be reviewing your application. It could be a woman who had a similar experience and sympathizes deeply and gives you sort of a bump for it. But it could be a douchey guy who wonders why bitches are always whining about getting sexually harassed, or a boomer who wonders why OP didn't just BOOTSTRAP her way to a better job, or someone whose first question is exactly what CyanIdes said above, or someone who's super-sensitive to people complaining about former employers. Even in the instances where addenda are legit, it's not like they add points to your LSAT or GPA, and I think that without an outside confirmation of the shittiness (having other people who thought the place was awful doesn't count), this addendum would be more likely to hurt than it would to help.


unlikely that it'll be a "douchey guy" or a "boomer." In my experience most admissions committees would sympathize and give a slight bump. It could also be written to demonstrate strength, perseverance, and maturity. I wouldn't say I think writing one is the best idea (it would have to be done right to help and not hurt), but let's throw a tally on the board for maybe.

d0rklord
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Re: Addendum due to work "abuse" i guess...???

Postby d0rklord » Tue Jul 23, 2013 5:01 pm

I mean, looking back, I laugh at myself for letting a job get in the way of my academia and mental health...

But being so young (not an excuse, but a reason) I didn't turn to my parents and my friends all said "work always sucks."

I should have absolutely gotten my ass out of there, but...

I was making twice what minimum wage was at the time, and I had zero "marketable" skills, having only worked in retail/food from the age of 17-19... I just felt "lucky" (stupid I know) to have gotten a shot at any job...

Only to find out now, that I'm being paid TWICE what I was making there, and that bastard was not only smoking weed everyday (yes, as an ATTORNEY) and having sexual relations with employees, but he was getting us to work on the cheap!

This is something I've been debating for a long time, whether to write an addendum or not...

As for my GPA...

I had about a 3.4-3.5, before my last (3rd) year... My final LSAC GPA is a 3.07.... :(

I don't want them to give me a "bump" per se... I just don't want the admissions committee to think I went on a drug or sex binge and don't give a shit about my application, because I truly do!

Doing well on the LSAT is definitely a priority... But i'm more just worried they'll think I couldn't handle the pressure that year or the academics etc... When in reality the course work wasn't hard... I just was totally spaced out and "dark" those two years... I don't even remember most of them to be honest, blocked it out for the most part...

And yes, everyone has shitty jobs, but having your boss make allusions to sleeping with you (when he's like 50, and I'm 19!!!) and having the associate ATTORNEY that he's sleeping with call you a "whore" and "slut" frequently because she thinks you're trying to "steal him away" and slam doors and throw files... is a totally different ball park... There were honestly more days than I could count where I contemplated getting into a car accident just to miss work... LOL. It was just a "funny" thought, but... it did cross my damn mind.

-----------------

I've heard from people that since I've left it's only gotten worse. He's sleeping with a secretary now and they've been known to do lines of cocaine in his office... Among smoking weed, EVERYDAY. She has crying tantrums, works the "night" shift, changes the written work of attorneys without their permission etc. This last tidbit is just a little humor for you readers on TLS, since this particular part doesn't apply to my addendum... :P

EDIT: oh yeah.. and our alarm code was 6969 -_________-

Thanks for reading ;)

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Rory19
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Re: Addendum due to work "abuse" i guess...???

Postby Rory19 » Tue Jul 23, 2013 7:08 pm

Definitely write an addendum and I actually don't think it would be overkill to have one of the former employees you referenced write a letter of support.

I wrote an addendum in my own application cycle and had an administrator at my school write a supporting letter on my behalf. IMO it helped substantiate my claims. I just merged my own addendum with the letter into a two page pdf and attached it as one addendum document.




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