What are the best softs for getting into T14 schools?

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spiegel.j
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What are the best softs for getting into T14 schools?

Postby spiegel.j » Mon Dec 23, 2013 3:35 am

Hi I am sophomore in UG. My dream is to get into a T14 and I think I can get my grades to that level but idk what type of "softs" I should be doing to get there. I've worked the last 5 summers as a janitor to pay for college and I do a few clubs (debate, toastmasters). What kind of softs should I be looking for? Internships? Clubs? Volunteer work?

Also I know that LSAT/ GPA are above everything else so let's not make that our discussion lol.
Thank you!!!

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bjsesq
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Re: What are the best softs for getting into T14 schools?

Postby bjsesq » Mon Dec 23, 2013 4:16 am

I loathe it when people acknowledge the correct answer and then refuse to make it a part of the discussion. Nobody gives a shit about your softs, dude. Do well on the LSAT and have a good gpa. That's it.

daryldixon
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Re: What are the best softs for getting into T14 schools?

Postby daryldixon » Mon Dec 23, 2013 4:18 am

The janitor thing is probably a great PS topic and if you spin it right (overcoming adversity etc.) a great soft.

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isuperserial
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Re: What are the best softs for getting into T14 schools?

Postby isuperserial » Mon Dec 23, 2013 6:07 am

spiegel.j wrote:Hi I am sophomore in UG. My dream is to get into a T14 and I think I can get my grades to that level but idk what type of "softs" I should be doing to get there. I've worked the last 5 summers as a janitor to pay for college and I do a few clubs (debate, toastmasters). What kind of softs should I be looking for? Internships? Clubs? Volunteer work?

Also I know that LSAT/ GPA are above everything else so let's not make that our discussion lol.
Thank you!!!


Military, peace core, doctors without borders, landing on mars, curing cancer, using a particle accelerator to create a new element to cure your blood poisoning... these are the things that will make you outperform your numbers.

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HorseThief
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Re: What are the best softs for getting into T14 schools?

Postby HorseThief » Mon Dec 23, 2013 6:07 am

Clubs won't do you much good. Focus on internships, work exp, and volunteering. Just make sure it's BIG. Don't volunteer at the local animal shelter. Organize a fundraiser that doubles its annual income. Don't volunteer at the men's shelter. Start a company that utilizes the skills of the homeless to give them an income.

Everyone can join a club, but not everyone can pull off an ambitious project. Distinguish yourself.

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TheSpanishMain
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Re: What are the best softs for getting into T14 schools?

Postby TheSpanishMain » Mon Dec 23, 2013 10:49 am

Average softs like the ones you mentioned (joining clubs, having a part time job, etc) are a wash. They won't help you at all. On the flip side, not having any softs at all would probably cause you to underperform a bit. So if you apply in a few years with the softs you mentioned, you'll probably perform more or less exactly as your numbers indicate.

Don't join things just for the sake of joining them. No one is going to be impressed that you were a member of ten clubs if all that means is you went to the occasional meeting. Get involved with something that genuinely interests you and make substantive contributions. It may not help you outperform your numbers, but at least it'll help paint a more coherent, compelling picture as an applicant, as opposed to someone just joining random things in an attempt to accumulate softs.

I tend to think the virtually nothing that happens on an undergraduate campus qualifies as a great soft. (Note I said virtually, I'm sure there are exceptions.) If you look at LSN, the people who truly outperform their numbers all had interesting stuff post college: military service, professional and substantive work experience, international NGO stuff, etc.

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thesealocust
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Re: What are the best softs for getting into T14 schools?

Postby thesealocust » Mon Dec 23, 2013 10:54 am

LSAT & GPA

mr.hands
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Re: What are the best softs for getting into T14 schools?

Postby mr.hands » Mon Dec 23, 2013 11:16 am

no.one.cares

BigZuck
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Re: What are the best softs for getting into T14 schools?

Postby BigZuck » Mon Dec 23, 2013 11:26 am

daryldixon wrote:The janitor thing is probably a great PS topic and if you spin it right (overcoming adversity etc.) a great soft.


Lulz

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phillywc
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Re: What are the best softs for getting into T14 schools?

Postby phillywc » Mon Dec 23, 2013 12:58 pm

Olympic medalist

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jingosaur
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Re: What are the best softs for getting into T14 schools?

Postby jingosaur » Mon Dec 23, 2013 1:09 pm

daryldixon wrote:The janitor thing is probably a great PS topic and if you spin it right (overcoming adversity etc.) a great soft.


With a nice LSAT/GPA combination and a unique PS about being a janitor, I think you could really CLEAN UP during your cycle!!!!!!

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TheSpanishMain
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Re: What are the best softs for getting into T14 schools?

Postby TheSpanishMain » Mon Dec 23, 2013 1:24 pm

daryldixon wrote:The janitor thing is probably a great PS topic and if you spin it right (overcoming adversity etc.) a great soft.


Pushing a mop during the summers to defray the cost of undergrad is not the same thing as pushing a mop to support your four kids. The former is hardly evidence of "adversity", any more than the college student who rings a register at CVS or delivers pizza.

jingosaur wrote:
daryldixon wrote:The janitor thing is probably a great PS topic and if you spin it right (overcoming adversity etc.) a great soft.


With a nice LSAT/GPA combination and a unique PS about being a janitor, I think you could really CLEAN UP during your cycle!!!!!!



You'd wipe the floor with the competition!

melodically
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Re: What are the best softs for getting into T14 schools?

Postby melodically » Mon Dec 23, 2013 1:41 pm

OP - This board is pretty terrible, so you're not likely to get many thoughtful responses. That said, I wouldn't worry too much about pursuing certain softs for purposes of law school admissions. If you're going to get involved in something, do it because you're genuinely interested. Don't worry about how some law school adcomm might assess what you've done with your life. Live your life authentically, and then focus on getting a good LSAT score.

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jingosaur
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Re: What are the best softs for getting into T14 schools?

Postby jingosaur » Mon Dec 23, 2013 1:46 pm

melodically wrote:OP - This board is pretty terrible, so you're not likely to get many thoughtful responses. That said, I wouldn't worry too much about pursuing certain softs for purposes of law school admissions. If you're going to get involved in something, do it because you're genuinely interested. Don't worry about how some law school adcomm might assess what you've done with your life. Live your life authentically, and then focus on getting a good LSAT score.


I'll give a serious answer and I apologize for the awful pun (but not really). Do things that interest you. Pretty much what melodically says. Softs don't really help unless they're super interesting or if they're aligned with what you want to do with your law degree. If you're not entirely sure with what you want to do with a legal education yet, I would suggest getting some post-grad work experience to get a better idea of what you want to do.

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kershka
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Re: What are the best softs for getting into T14 schools?

Postby kershka » Mon Dec 23, 2013 1:49 pm

melodically wrote:OP - This board is pretty terrible, so you're not likely to get many thoughtful responses. That said, I wouldn't worry too much about pursuing certain softs for purposes of law school admissions. If you're going to get involved in something, do it because you're genuinely interested. Don't worry about how some law school adcomm might assess what you've done with your life. Live your life authentically, and then focus on getting a good LSAT score.


That's really the most important part. Mostly because enjoying your life and doing what you love is vital to your overall happiness but also because if you just join a bunch of organizations/internships/etc in the hopes of getting into a T14, they're going to realize that. Sincerity is key for PS and interviews.

But honestly, rock the LSAT, keep up a good GPA, and do something that you love with your free time and you are set for T14. In the mean time, enjoy UG! It's going to be one of the happiest times of your life so don't take it for granted!

BigZuck
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Re: What are the best softs for getting into T14 schools?

Postby BigZuck » Mon Dec 23, 2013 2:27 pm

melodically wrote:OP - This board is pretty terrible, so you're not likely to get many thoughtful responses.


Go on...

thesealocust's response was extremely thoughtful and insightful and got right to the heart of the matter. The thread could (and perhaps should) have ended right there.

Also, keep in mind that this is at least the second thread in the past couple of days asking the exact same question.

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TheSpanishMain
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Re: What are the best softs for getting into T14 schools?

Postby TheSpanishMain » Mon Dec 23, 2013 2:48 pm

melodically wrote:OP - This board is pretty terrible, so you're not likely to get many thoughtful responses.


There are plenty of thoughtful, accurate responses here and across the boards. Your advice was basically the same as what I had posted a few responses up. The fact that people are also joking (the horror!) does not make everything "pretty terrible."

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bjsesq
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Re: What are the best softs for getting into T14 schools?

Postby bjsesq » Mon Dec 23, 2013 2:53 pm

TheSpanishMain wrote:
melodically wrote:OP - This board is pretty terrible, so you're not likely to get many thoughtful responses.


There are plenty of thoughtful, accurate responses here and across the boards. Your advice was basically the same as what I had posted a few responses up. The fact that people are also joking (the horror!) does not make everything "pretty terrible."


But he said live "authentically." That, at the very least, makes him Ghandi.

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jingosaur
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Re: What are the best softs for getting into T14 schools?

Postby jingosaur » Mon Dec 23, 2013 2:53 pm

TheSpanishMain wrote:
melodically wrote:OP - This board is pretty terrible, so you're not likely to get many thoughtful responses.


There are plenty of thoughtful, accurate responses here and across the boards. Your advice was basically the same as what I had posted a few responses up. The fact that people are also joking (the horror!) does not make everything "pretty terrible."


I would also like to add that if I never stumbled into TLS, I would probably be choosing among some lower T14s as opposed to now, where I've been accepted to 2 T6 schools and will probably be accepted to 2-3 more.

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TheSpanishMain
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Re: What are the best softs for getting into T14 schools?

Postby TheSpanishMain » Mon Dec 23, 2013 3:06 pm

bjsesq wrote:
TheSpanishMain wrote:
melodically wrote:OP - This board is pretty terrible, so you're not likely to get many thoughtful responses.


There are plenty of thoughtful, accurate responses here and across the boards. Your advice was basically the same as what I had posted a few responses up. The fact that people are also joking (the horror!) does not make everything "pretty terrible."


But he said live "authentically." That, at the very least, makes him Ghandi.


You're right. His avatar looks more life affirming and transcendant than yours and mine combined.

californiauser
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Re: What are the best softs for getting into T14 schools?

Postby californiauser » Mon Dec 23, 2013 3:51 pm

Working as a janitor every summer in college will probably hurt you come the OCI/law school employment...go get internships you can talk about for 30 minutes in a job interview that let's your interviewer know you can be trusted with more responsibility than pushing around a wet mop for 4 hours a day.

spiegel.j
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Re: What are the best softs for getting into T14 schools?

Postby spiegel.j » Tue Dec 24, 2013 2:22 am

melodically wrote:OP - This board is pretty terrible, so you're not likely to get many thoughtful responses. That said, I wouldn't worry too much about pursuing certain softs for purposes of law school admissions. If you're going to get involved in something, do it because you're genuinely interested. Don't worry about how some law school adcomm might assess what you've done with your life. Live your life authentically, and then focus on getting a good LSAT score.


V helpful.... thanks everyone for thoughtful responses and for minimal trolling haha

pcthenls
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Re: What are the best softs for getting into T14 schools?

Postby pcthenls » Tue Dec 24, 2013 3:39 am

I have worked as a janitor (in Australia) and was a Peace Corps Volunteer. Not sure if it's my softs or the lack of competition but I applied with the same numbers in 2010 and didn't get into any T-14s (although at the time I only applied to four). This time I have already been accepted to three T-14s, which has been a really pleasant surprise. I do think having Peace Corps on your resume provides a significant bump (especially it seems at U Mich). However, I would never recommend the Peace Corps to someone who wanted to boost their resume. If you really want to dedicate a substantial amount of time to a community, a targeted cause, and gain an incredible experiential learning experience, then go for it!

Then again. Having a killer LSAT and GPA will also work admission wonders. Work experience definitely can't hurt anyone's application, and will probably make you a better student and future attorney.

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Crowing
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Re: What are the best softs for getting into T14 schools?

Postby Crowing » Tue Dec 24, 2013 1:23 pm

It's nice to have some different things on your resume to talk about during interviews. But hell I imagine janitors have some pretty cray cray stories. And definitely don't sweat the softs for admissions.

spiegel.j
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Re: What are the best softs for getting into T14 schools?

Postby spiegel.j » Tue Dec 24, 2013 4:53 pm

californiauser wrote:Working as a janitor every summer in college will probably hurt you come the OCI/law school employment...go get internships you can talk about for 30 minutes in a job interview that let's your interviewer know you can be trusted with more responsibility than[size=150] pushing around a wet mop for 4 hours a day[/size].


I will have you know that my janitorial duties extended far beyond just pushing around a wet mop. I was responsible for sweeping, dusting AND waxing. XD




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