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Anon-e-miss

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How long do you need to be working full-time to have "WE" in the eyes of law schools?

Postby Anon-e-miss » Thu Jan 11, 2018 12:43 pm

thanks for the input
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pancakes3

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Re: How long do you need to be working full-time to have "WE" in the eyes of law schools?

Postby pancakes3 » Thu Jan 11, 2018 12:51 pm

get used to the idea of evaluating things on a sliding scale rather than binary.

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Re: How long do you need to be working full-time to have "WE" in the eyes of law schools?

Postby Anon-e-miss » Thu Jan 11, 2018 1:00 pm

pancakes3 wrote:get used to the idea of evaluating things on a sliding scale rather than binary.

I appreciate the comment, even though it slightly sidesteps the question. On your sliding scale, would my WE fall closer to being K-JD or someone who has a year or two of WE at a non-profit or research institution prior to LS? I'd appreciate any additional detail you could provide, thanks!
Last edited by Anon-e-miss on Fri Jan 26, 2018 8:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: How long do you need to be working full-time to have "WE" in the eyes of law schools?

Postby mcmand » Thu Jan 11, 2018 1:10 pm

I don't think it bumps you up or down. I think it's neutral. I think your LSAT and GPA will be the deciding factors, as will the range of applicants with higher or lower LSATs and GPAs applying to the same schools as you. If more people with higher LSAT scores apply to the school you want, you'll have a harder time getting in. If the opposite happens, it will be easier.

If you want better results when you apply, retake the LSAT.
Last edited by mcmand on Mon Jan 29, 2018 2:58 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: How long do you need to be working full-time to have "WE" in the eyes of law schools?

Postby Anon-e-miss » Thu Jan 11, 2018 1:21 pm

mcmand wrote:I don't think it bumps you up or down. I think it's neutral. I think your LSAT and GPA will be the deciding factors, as will the range of applicants with higher or lower LSATs and GPAs applying to the same schools as you. If more people with higher LSAT scores apply to the school you want, you'll have a harder time getting in. If the opposite happens, it will be easier.

If you want better results when you apply, retake the LSAT.

My numbers are in my profile. Tbh I slightly outperformed my PT average on my first take and do not intend to retake. I'm already above median for every school, so I don't think retaking is worth the time and risk at this point.

Do you think having this WE will at least give me an edge w/r/t K-JD candidates, especially for things like scholly money, where softs (like WE) might be considered? I realize that my WE pales in comparison to people with full-fledged careers or a Fulbright or similar endeavors. Is there anything that I can do at this point to make this WE appear (and actually be) as substantive as possible in the eyes of adcomms and future legal employers?
Last edited by Anon-e-miss on Fri Jan 26, 2018 8:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: How long do you need to be working full-time to have "WE" in the eyes of law schools?

Postby chargers21 » Thu Jan 11, 2018 1:46 pm

Admissions are based on numbers. Scholarships are based on numbers.

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Re: How long do you need to be working full-time to have "WE" in the eyes of law schools?

Postby mcmand » Thu Jan 11, 2018 1:48 pm

You could just post your numbers instead of making me click and look for them. You're the one asking for advice here.

I think you're overthinking this at this point. 174/3.8 is good. As you note, there isn't much room to do better and it's hard to make it happen. What you're essentially asking for is either one of two things: (1) writing tips on making your job sound fancier than it is, or (2) how to advance in your job to a higher level. I don't know how to help you with (2) because I don't know your job duties and you know better than we all do what your weaknesses on the job are. The only other thing I can say re (2) is that you're not going to be in a very amazing job right out of college under most circumstances. It takes hard work to move up in any career. If you want your resume to be more impressive, don't apply right away. Wait, and look for a new job or develop your current one into something more. Or apply for prestigious fellowships geared towards someone recently out of college. As to (1), make a first draft of a resume line about your job and share it and we can give tips.

As to the whole binary/sliding scale thing:
You're not K-JD because you're not K-JD. There is no magical category for people who took time off but are still considered K-JD. I actually disagree with pancakes in that this is binary, it's not a sliding scale. If you're not K-JD, then sure, you can impress adcomms with a more prestigious job as compared to a less prestigious job. That is indeed a sliding scale. But the K-JD designation is not on that scale - they're still two different categories in my mind. One lacks work experience outside of college and has a less complete understanding of the professional world. The other has that experience.

And as stated above, the difference it makes will be marginal. It's 99.9% about numbers.

There isn't a ton you can do now to be better equipped for law school. If you were going to get something like a Fulbright, it would have happened by now. You have the LSAT and GPA to get in, with scholarships. You didn't land i-banking or those other fancy gigs, so if you want something like that, it's going to take some networking and energy that might be better spent on the career you actually intend to do (assuming that you really do want it). If you're genuinely unsure about law school, then that opens up a whole new discussion.
Last edited by mcmand on Mon Jan 29, 2018 2:58 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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A. Nony Mouse

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Re: How long do you need to be working full-time to have "WE" in the eyes of law schools?

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Thu Jan 11, 2018 1:52 pm

chargers21 wrote:Admissions are based on numbers. Scholarships are based on numbers.

This is actually not true for all scholarships - many named scholarships (especially PI) seem to care about softs.

And OP, no, I don’t think you can magically elevate softs. Your work will be full time post-grad so it will count as WE; others just may have better work experience. The thing is that the best softs are generally done for their own sake, not for the purpose of getting into law school (and require more background/commitment than can really be developed in less than a year). But you will be fine and I’m sure you will have a great cycle; I wouldn’t worry about this.

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Re: How long do you need to be working full-time to have "WE" in the eyes of law schools?

Postby Mullens » Thu Jan 11, 2018 1:58 pm

Anon-e-miss wrote:
pancakes3 wrote:get used to the idea of evaluating things on a sliding scale rather than binary.

I appreciate the comment, even though it slightly sidesteps the question. On your sliding scale, would my WE fall closer to being K-JD or someone who has a year or two of WE at a non-profit or research institution prior to LS? I'd appreciate any additional detail you could provide, thanks!


Nope. Pancakes is right. It’s a sliding scale and you’ll have just under two years of work experience when you matriculate and just under one year when you apply. You’re overthinking this. The fact you’re not in school and are working full-time when you apply/matriculate makes you not a K-JD. if you want more WE before you apply then wait longer to apply.

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Re: How long do you need to be working full-time to have "WE" in the eyes of law schools?

Postby Anon-e-miss » Thu Jan 11, 2018 1:59 pm

chargers21 wrote:Admissions are based on numbers. Scholarships are based on numbers.

I lurk this site quite often and am aware that numbers are the key factor in admissions, which is why I've done the best I can to earn the numbers that give me a good shot at my target schools. However people with the same numbers receive different scholarships at the same schools, which is where I (perhaps inaccurately) assumed that things like WE and other softs came in to play. For example, there are people on LSN with nearly identical numbers, and one will get a Hammy while another gets a Butler. Granted, these are both great outcomes, but mustn't there be some marginal difference that leads to what is a hugely different outcome for these two individuals? Sorry if I come off as ignorant, but I figured that WE could be a marginal difference that is at play in such situations, which is why I am interested to be 'in the know' about how adcomms will view my WE. I appreciate your input.
Last edited by Anon-e-miss on Fri Jan 26, 2018 8:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: How long do you need to be working full-time to have "WE" in the eyes of law schools?

Postby Anon-e-miss » Thu Jan 11, 2018 2:05 pm

mcmand wrote:You could just post your numbers instead of making me click and look for them. You're the one asking for advice here.

I think you're overthinking this at this point. 174/3.8 is good. As you note, there isn't much room to do better and it's hard to make it happen. What you're essentially asking for is either one of two things: (1) writing tips on making your job sound fancier than it is, or (2) how to advance in your job to a higher level. I don't know how to help you with (2) because I don't know your job duties and you know better than we all do what your weaknesses on the job are. The only other thing I can say re (2) is that you're not going to be in a very amazing job right out of college under most circumstances. It takes hard work to move up in any career. If you want your resume to be more impressive, don't apply right away. Wait, and look for a new job or develop your current one into something more. Or apply for prestigious fellowships geared towards someone recently out of college. As to (1), make a first draft of a resume line about your job and share it and we can give tips.

As to the whole binary/sliding scale thing:
You're not K-JD because you're not K-JD. There is no magical category for people who took time off but are still considered K-JD. I actually disagree with pancakes in that this is binary, it's not a sliding scale. If you're not K-JD, then sure, you can impress adcomms with a more prestigious job as compared to a less prestigious job. That is indeed a sliding scale. But the K-JD designation is not on that scale - they're still two different categories in my mind. One lacks work experience outside of college and has a less complete understanding of the professional world. The other has that experience.

And as stated above, the difference it makes will be marginal. It's 99.9% about numbers.

There isn't a ton you can do now to be better equipped for law school. If you were going to get something like a Fulbright, it would have happened by now. You have the LSAT and GPA to get in, with scholarships. You didn't land i-banking or those other fancy gigs, so if you want something like that, it's going to take some networking and energy that might be better spent on the career you actually intend to do (assuming that you really do want it). If you're genuinely unsure about law school, then that opens up a whole new discussion.

Thank you for this lengthy and helpful post. I didn't include my numbers in the OP because I wanted to focus on WE independently of numbers, which I realize is a bit counter-intuitive.

I am less interested in (1) and (2) in this thread, and more interested in your comment (re: K-JD binary). I appreciate the input on that front. I'm not interested in ibanking work or other "prestigious" pre-law school gigs; I was using them as an example of the type of work that some people do prior to matriculating to law schools.

So, in short, I'm overthinking this whole WE thing, and my WE is basically enough to make me not have to deal with the K-JD skepticism in the eyes of adcomms, but not enough to jump off the page or make a difference in my probable outcomes?
Last edited by Anon-e-miss on Fri Jan 26, 2018 8:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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A. Nony Mouse

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Re: How long do you need to be working full-time to have "WE" in the eyes of law schools?

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Thu Jan 11, 2018 2:07 pm

Pretty much.

And keep in mind there are still plenty of k-jds with great outcomes; I wouldn’t get too hung up on the idea of skepticism. I’m not sure how much is actual skepticism and how much is just that statistically, k-jds are less mature/experienced and maturity/experience help people put together more compelling applications. If you are a mature k-JD who puts together a compelling application you’ll be fine.

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Re: How long do you need to be working full-time to have "WE" in the eyes of law schools?

Postby Anon-e-miss » Thu Jan 11, 2018 2:08 pm

A. Nony Mouse wrote:
chargers21 wrote:Admissions are based on numbers. Scholarships are based on numbers.

This is actually not true for all scholarships - many named scholarships (especially PI) seem to care about softs.

And OP, no, I don’t think you can magically elevate softs. Your work will be full time post-grad so it will count as WE; others just may have better work experience. The thing is that the best softs are generally done for their own sake, not for the purpose of getting into law school (and require more background/commitment than can really be developed in less than a year). But you will be fine and I’m sure you will have a great cycle; I wouldn’t worry about this.

Thanks for the input. My dream outcome is RTK at NYU. I plan to apply if given the opportunity with the realization that I will be up against people with way stronger, more developed backgrounds than my own, so I know it is a pipe dream at best.

Thanks again, I suppose that the downside of having your numbers and materials ready a year before you apply is that it gives ample time to overthink and criticize the marginal qualities of your own profile. :roll:
Last edited by Anon-e-miss on Fri Jan 26, 2018 8:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: How long do you need to be working full-time to have "WE" in the eyes of law schools?

Postby mcmand » Thu Jan 11, 2018 2:15 pm

Anon-e-miss wrote:So, in short, I'm overthinking this whole WE thing, and my WE is basically enough to make me not have to deal with the K-JD skepticism in the eyes of adcomms, but not enough to jump off the page or make a difference in my probable outcomes?


In so many words, yes.

If you want to jump off the page more based on other criteria, just keep doing good work at your job, and find something after hours to volunteer for that you're excited/passionate about doing, or develop a new hobby/thing that you can be good at. Being passionate about it will probably lead to you doing a good job and having something impressive to say about it. If it's politics, volunteer for someone's campaign in a local race. (The upcoming primaries and house races in the fall are great opportunities for that. But smaller races like city council, school board, etc. are also ways to really connect with the candidate and get more responsibility.) If it's something more service-oriented, look up non-profits in your area and see what kind of work they do and if they need volunteers. If it's a hobby, find a group that you can do it with - playing an instrument, D&D, whatever. Explore your interests.

These also will only have a marginal effect - it's still a numbers game. But the upside of doing this stuff is, assuming you like it, you'll probably get something else out of it besides a law school app boost, and that "something else" is absolutely more valuable to you in the long run. (this is basically nony's point that the best softs are ones done for their own sake.)
Last edited by mcmand on Mon Jan 29, 2018 2:56 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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