Only Have 1 LOR - Will I be Okay?!?

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Squintz805
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Only Have 1 LOR - Will I be Okay?!?

Postby Squintz805 » Thu Nov 07, 2013 3:57 pm

I graduated June 2012. I've tried reaching out to every Professor that is worth pursuing for a LOR and have come up empty handed. I asked my current manager for one as well and he didnt bite.

So, the plus side is that I do have 1 LoR from my intercollegiate cross country coach, and it seems this is going to be the only one I can get. I'm applying to alot of law schools that are between t20-t80.

My question is -- will my chances of being accepted be inhibited by the fact I only have 1 LoR and it is not a professor. Mind you, this LoR is extremely personal, well-written, and pretty much amazing in every single way.

For what it is worth: I have a 3.48/160

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TheSpanishMain
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Re: Only Have 1 LOR - Will I be Okay?!?

Postby TheSpanishMain » Thu Nov 07, 2013 4:34 pm

Um...these other people you asked, they just said "no"? Did they say why?

But yes, I imagine 1 LOR from a non-academic source is going to hurt you somewhat. If I were an admissions guy, I would also have concerns about someone who is currently working (assuming it's a professional job) and didn't submit one from his/her boss.

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Danger Zone
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Re: Only Have 1 LOR - Will I be Okay?!?

Postby Danger Zone » Thu Nov 07, 2013 4:36 pm

Are you an awful person?

You need to find a second. It's required for a lot of schools.

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WaltGrace83
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Re: Only Have 1 LOR - Will I be Okay?!?

Postby WaltGrace83 » Thu Nov 07, 2013 4:36 pm

Squintz805 wrote:I graduated June 2012. I've tried reaching out to every Professor that is worth pursuing for a LOR and have come up empty handed. I asked my current manager for one as well and he didnt bite.

So, the plus side is that I do have 1 LoR from my intercollegiate cross country coach, and it seems this is going to be the only one I can get. I'm applying to alot of law schools that are between t20-t80.

My question is -- will my chances of being accepted be inhibited by the fact I only have 1 LoR and it is not a professor. Mind you, this LoR is extremely personal, well-written, and pretty much amazing in every single way.

For what it is worth: I have a 3.48/160


1) People are going to tell you to retake. Have you taken all three chances at the LSAT yet?

2) I think this may not only be a huge red flag to law schools but may also be against the "rules" of the admission to most, if not all, schools. I do believe most REQUIRE at least two. For the schools you applying to, TCR is that LORs dont really matter so you might as well just get SOMETHING from SOMEONE. I am sure you have some kind of supervisor that can help you out. Why didn't this supervisor "bite?"

amb89
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Re: Only Have 1 LOR - Will I be Okay?!?

Postby amb89 » Thu Nov 07, 2013 4:58 pm

I went through the same thing. I have 1 because all my coursework was online for 4 years, aside from a 1-3 face to face

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McAvoy
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Re: Only Have 1 LOR - Will I be Okay?!?

Postby McAvoy » Thu Nov 07, 2013 5:19 pm

TheSpanishMain wrote:Um...these other people you asked, they just said "no"? Did they say why?

But yes, I imagine 1 LOR from a non-academic source is going to hurt you somewhat. If I were an admissions guy, I would also have concerns about someone who is currently working (assuming it's a professional job) and didn't submit one from his/her boss.


Why would you have that concern? I'm in a professional job and will not be submitting one. If it's a good job and you can get academic references, why would you want your employer to know you're pursing this path? They'll likely immediately begin plans to replace you, and you'll lose your fallback option if you end up wanting to sit out a cycle, and if you change your mind altogether, you can probably never come back from it.

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Squintz805
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Re: Only Have 1 LOR - Will I be Okay?!?

Postby Squintz805 » Thu Nov 07, 2013 5:36 pm

Lost Contact with all my Previous Professors. I dont want to use it as an excuse, but at my school - classes were usually 70-200 students per professor with TA's scattered in. I was not set on going to grad/law school during my undergrad, so creating close relationships with professors for LoR's wasn't something I put much thought into (which is to my demise). If your gonna lecture me on what I should have done during my undergrad - your wasting mine and your time.

And this is what I'm afraid of. If i was on the admissions board I'd be a little skeptical not seeing 2 LoR's and 0 Academic Ones. So, should I maybe go to my community college to get a professor LoR? That would seem a bit weak as to an LoR.

I've emailed my previous professors that I got good grades in requesting their help with a LoR. None have said no to me, its more of they just haven't responded (its a busy time with the holidays coming up and the school year starting).

How would you guys recommend I go about with a follow-up. Its very possible some of these professors just haven't even seen my email I originally sent them. Should I call and leave a voicemail? Should I send another email? I'm located quite a bit away's from my undergrad campus and driving is a bit of a stretch with work.


I've taken the LSAT once, I got a 160, and I'm happy with it. I know I can probably do better if I take again, but is it really worth retaking for only a 2-3 point bump, and that isn't even guaranteed. I don't even know why me asking for LoR advice would even call for me retaking the LSAT!? lol

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Cicero76
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Re: Only Have 1 LOR - Will I be Okay?!?

Postby Cicero76 » Thu Nov 07, 2013 5:44 pm

Will only having one LOR hurt?


Yes.

At least get an employer or something. How did you not make an impression on two professors in four years? Yikes.

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mellow
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Re: Only Have 1 LOR - Will I be Okay?!?

Postby mellow » Thu Nov 07, 2013 6:50 pm

Having a LOR from a TA or community college professor is preferable to having none from an academic source. Having a LOR from a TA who knows you well and speaks highly of you is preferable to a LOR from a professor who's indifferent.

Also, I would try to talk to your professors in person if at all possible. Driving longer and farther than what's convenient for you is nothing compared to potentially have a bad LOR or none at all.

drevo
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Re: Only Have 1 LOR - Will I be Okay?!?

Postby drevo » Thu Nov 07, 2013 7:02 pm

Squintz805 wrote:
I've taken the LSAT once, I got a 160, and I'm happy with it. I know I can probably do better if I take again, but is it really worth retaking for only a 2-3 point bump, and that isn't even guaranteed. I don't even know why me asking for LoR advice would even call for me retaking the LSAT!? lol


Yes it's worth it. Your numbers won't get you to a place with good job prospects not to mention any $$. And why it came up is because you are clearly thinking of leaving a seemingly stable job to attend a lower tier law school during a time when only 50% of law grads become lawyers and even less than that earn enough to payback 6 figures of debt.

You should thank those people for trying to help you not become an unemployed "lawyer" with huge debt.

Ti Malice
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Re: Only Have 1 LOR - Will I be Okay?!?

Postby Ti Malice » Thu Nov 07, 2013 10:44 pm

If you live anywhere near your alma mater, there's no reason at all that you should be emailing these LOR requests.

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WaltGrace83
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Re: Only Have 1 LOR - Will I be Okay?!?

Postby WaltGrace83 » Fri Nov 08, 2013 10:00 am

Squintz805 wrote:I've taken the LSAT once, I got a 160, and I'm happy with it. I know I can probably do better if I take again, but is it really worth retaking for only a 2-3 point bump, and that isn't even guaranteed. I don't even know why me asking for LoR advice would even call for me retaking the LSAT!? lol



Listen to yourself! As I told my friend the other day who got a 163 and wants WUSTL...."about 4 more points will be the difference between you not getting in and you getting a full ride"

For you, getting another 10 questions or so right on the exam will be the difference between you getting into "meh" schools to getting into very good schools - granted you will probably be paying sticker for T15-T30 with that GPA (though maybe I'm wrong?). Don't settle. It is not worth it. Do you want to be the guy that takes 5, 10, 20+ years to pay off debt or the guy that studied a little extra for 3-6 months and doesn't have to worry nearly as much about that?

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TheSpanishMain
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Re: Only Have 1 LOR - Will I be Okay?!?

Postby TheSpanishMain » Fri Nov 08, 2013 11:22 am

WaltGrace83 wrote:
Squintz805 wrote:I've taken the LSAT once, I got a 160, and I'm happy with it. I know I can probably do better if I take again, but is it really worth retaking for only a 2-3 point bump, and that isn't even guaranteed. I don't even know why me asking for LoR advice would even call for me retaking the LSAT!? lol



granted you will probably be paying sticker for T15-T30 with that GPA (though maybe I'm wrong?).


Nope. Getting into the high 160s would mean significant $ in the T15-30 range with that GPA. Not full rides, probably, but deep discounts. All the more reason to retake.

NanaP
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Re: Only Have 1 LOR - Will I be Okay?!?

Postby NanaP » Fri Nov 08, 2013 11:39 am

TheSpanishMain wrote:If I were an admissions guy, I would also have concerns about someone who is currently working (assuming it's a professional job) and didn't submit one from his/her boss.



This is incorrect, why would you want your boss to know that you're applying to law school almost a year out? You'll likely get fired. The first mistake he made was asking his boss, no wonder he/she said no. Unless you have a good relationship with your boss and/or they know your plans for law school already, I would advise never to ask a boss, but you could maybe ask someone (manager level) at work who you work closely with and maybe ask to keep it confidential. That's what I did...

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UnicornHunter
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Re: Only Have 1 LOR - Will I be Okay?!?

Postby UnicornHunter » Fri Nov 08, 2013 12:23 pm

Personally, I wouldn't apply to law school this cycle. It does not, to be completely honest, seem like you approached this admissions cycle fully prepared if you're just now asking for LORs. A retake could be worth hundreds of thousands of dollars. However, if you absolutely must apply, you will need that second letter, as most schools won't even look at your application until you get one. Here's what I would do:


A. E-mail your profs again (assuming you can't drive to them.) Include in your e-mail: a date you need the LOR submitted by, ideally at least a month after the date you send the e-mail. 2) a brief summary of what class(es) you took from them 3) an update on how you've been doing since you graduated 4) an explanation of why you want to go to law school and 5) your best writing sample from their class.

B. After one week, if you don't hear from a prof, call.

C. Send a (nice) follow-up e-mail two weeks before your end date.

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TheSpanishMain
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Re: Only Have 1 LOR - Will I be Okay?!?

Postby TheSpanishMain » Fri Nov 08, 2013 2:52 pm

NanaP wrote:
TheSpanishMain wrote:If I were an admissions guy, I would also have concerns about someone who is currently working (assuming it's a professional job) and didn't submit one from his/her boss.



This is incorrect, why would you want your boss to know that you're applying to law school almost a year out? You'll likely get fired.


Yes, good point. What I should have said is that someone with substantive work experience should have A professional reference in my opinion, not necessarily from your current boss.

062914123
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Re: Only Have 1 LOR - Will I be Okay?!?

Postby 062914123 » Fri Nov 08, 2013 3:24 pm

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Last edited by 062914123 on Thu Jul 03, 2014 4:08 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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TheSpanishMain
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Re: Only Have 1 LOR - Will I be Okay?!?

Postby TheSpanishMain » Fri Nov 08, 2013 3:47 pm

bee wrote:
TheSpanishMain wrote:
NanaP wrote:
TheSpanishMain wrote:If I were an admissions guy, I would also have concerns about someone who is currently working (assuming it's a professional job) and didn't submit one from his/her boss.



This is incorrect, why would you want your boss to know that you're applying to law school almost a year out? You'll likely get fired.


Yes, good point. What I should have said is that someone with substantive work experience should have A professional reference in my opinion, not necessarily from your current boss.

i have actually asked admissions officers and consultants about this (since i've been working professionally for 2 years now) and they said that my 2 academic references are perfectly acceptable. none of my colleagues know that im applying to law school this cycle, and i wanted to keep it that way.


No, I get the "I don't want people to know I'm on my way out" thing. I'm talking about someone with 5+ years of work experience. In my case, I have an LOR from an old boss at a job I've since left, so there's no harm in him knowing I plan on going to law school.




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