Leave of Absence During College

(Applications Advice, Letters of Recommendation . . . )
BigMoose
Posts: 14
Joined: Thu Nov 16, 2017 2:22 am

Leave of Absence During College

Postby BigMoose » Thu Nov 16, 2017 2:26 am

Would a law school be able to find out, or bother trying to find out, why an applicant took a leave of absence during undergrad?

cavalier1138
Posts: 4619
Joined: Fri Mar 25, 2016 8:01 pm

Re: Leave of Absence During College

Postby cavalier1138 » Thu Nov 16, 2017 6:41 am

Most schools specifically ask about any gaps in your education, so you're required to disclose. Even if the school doesn't follow up to verify your story, the bar will. Save yourself a headache and just tell the truth.

User avatar
icechicken
Posts: 231
Joined: Tue Jul 11, 2017 9:09 pm

Re: Leave of Absence During College

Postby icechicken » Thu Nov 16, 2017 1:05 pm

cavalier1138 wrote:Most schools specifically ask about any gaps in your education, so you're required to disclose. Even if the school doesn't follow up to verify your story, the bar will. Save yourself a headache and just tell the truth.


Eh, if it was a voluntary leave of absence, and the reason you did it might be a red flag (e.g. you simply burned out for no particular reason, or you wanted to follow your SO to some other city), it might be better not to say, or to package it in terms of "I wanted to try other things for a while".

On the other hand, if it was a mandatory leave of absence triggered by school policy, one should definitely explain exactly what happened.

User avatar
mtf612
Posts: 216
Joined: Thu May 19, 2016 1:56 am

Re: Leave of Absence During College

Postby mtf612 » Thu Nov 16, 2017 10:50 pm

icechicken wrote:
cavalier1138 wrote:Most schools specifically ask about any gaps in your education, so you're required to disclose. Even if the school doesn't follow up to verify your story, the bar will. Save yourself a headache and just tell the truth.


Eh, if it was a voluntary leave of absence, and the reason you did it might be a red flag (e.g. you simply burned out for no particular reason, or you wanted to follow your SO to some other city), it might be better not to say, or to package it in terms of "I wanted to try other things for a while".

On the other hand, if it was a mandatory leave of absence triggered by school policy, one should definitely explain exactly what happened.


Absolutely agreed. I took a voluntary leave of absence during my first semester of college. I explained in an addendum that I wasn't prepared for college, discussed what I did during the year I took off, and showed how when I came back I was an 'A' student.
There is no reason to try to hide a leave of absence if it was voluntary, you'd be at way more risk than potential reward

BigMoose
Posts: 14
Joined: Thu Nov 16, 2017 2:22 am

Re: Leave of Absence During College

Postby BigMoose » Fri Nov 17, 2017 1:32 pm

Thanks for the responses. I know I have to disclose a leave of absence, but I'd rather say something vague and unverifiable as an explanation for a leave of absence (along the lines of "My grandma got sick") than say I had anxiety and needed a one-semester break. So my question really is, does a law school have the ability to call me out and, after investigating with the undergrad institution, say,"You're grandma wasn't sick! You're a panicky nutjob!"?
And even if they do have that ability, do they bother to exercise it? Or do they just take a candidate at his/her word? Thanks.

User avatar
UVA2B
Posts: 3086
Joined: Sun May 22, 2016 10:48 pm

Re: Leave of Absence During College

Postby UVA2B » Fri Nov 17, 2017 1:44 pm

BigMoose wrote:Thanks for the responses. I know I have to disclose a leave of absence, but I'd rather say something vague and unverifiable as an explanation for a leave of absence (along the lines of "My grandma got sick") than say I had anxiety and needed a one-semester break. So my question really is, does a law school have the ability to call me out and, after investigating with the undergrad institution, say,"You're grandma wasn't sick! You're a panicky nutjob!"?
And even if they do have that ability, do they bother to exercise it? Or do they just take a candidate at his/her word? Thanks.


Don't lie about your situation. Keep the facts as vague as you like without being dishonest. Just state that you needed to take a leave of absence for personal reasons that no longer impact you personally or academically. They won't bat an eye at that.

cavalier1138
Posts: 4619
Joined: Fri Mar 25, 2016 8:01 pm

Re: Leave of Absence During College

Postby cavalier1138 » Fri Nov 17, 2017 1:51 pm

Pro tip for law school and legal practice: don't lie.

BigMoose
Posts: 14
Joined: Thu Nov 16, 2017 2:22 am

Re: Leave of Absence During College

Postby BigMoose » Wed Nov 22, 2017 10:12 am

cavalier1138 wrote:Pro tip for law school and legal practice: don't lie.

Too true. Thanks for the advice.




Return to “Law School Admissions Forum”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: CMac86, OakBrook2021 and 6 guests