Should I mention that I have a child?

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justanotherone6

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Should I mention that I have a child?

Postby justanotherone6 » Sat Apr 21, 2018 8:28 pm

Greetings,

I will be applying to law school this fall. I have a 3.75 gpa and I’m taking the LSAT this summer (have been scoring 170-173 on practice tests).

I also have a one year old. I went back to class three days after giving birth and have made straight A's since I've been pregnant. I'm also a year younger than everyone else since I graduated high school a year early.

I’m wondering though if higher ranked law schools look down on having a child or if it may affect my chances at scholarships/acceptances (as they may think I won’t be dedicated). Should it be something I don’t disclose? Or do they not care?

DerKatze

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Re: Should I mention that I have a child?

Postby DerKatze » Tue May 01, 2018 5:31 pm

Don't mention it. Not only is there no reason to, denying you because you have a child could constitute gender-based discrimination.

BeeTeeZ

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Re: Should I mention that I have a child?

Postby BeeTeeZ » Thu May 03, 2018 3:15 pm

justanotherone6 wrote:Greetings,

I will be applying to law school this fall. I have a 3.75 gpa and I’m taking the LSAT this summer (have been scoring 170-173 on practice tests).

I also have a one year old. I went back to class three days after giving birth and have made straight A's since I've been pregnant. I'm also a year younger than everyone else since I graduated high school a year early.

I’m wondering though if higher ranked law schools look down on having a child or if it may affect my chances at scholarships/acceptances (as they may think I won’t be dedicated). Should it be something I don’t disclose? Or do they not care?


I don't think your ability to get pregnant is a skill that directly translates to law school performance, so I suggest leaving it off your application materials.

nixy

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Re: Should I mention that I have a child?

Postby nixy » Thu May 03, 2018 5:48 pm

I’m going to disagree in that if you think having your child is something that explains stuff about you and what you’ve done in your life, it would be perfectly fair game for a personal statement. To the extent it shows that you can handle a lot of competing responsibilities I think it would only help you. I don’t think schools will look down on it at all.

I wouldn’t just put it in somewhere like on your resume or the like - that would be weird (unless maybe it explains something like a gap in your education). But it’s reasonable material for a personal statement, if you want to go that route. You also don’t have to make your personal statement about being a parent, if you don’t want to.

Yulifus

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Re: Should I mention that I have a child?

Postby Yulifus » Thu May 03, 2018 6:20 pm

BeeTeeZ wrote:
justanotherone6 wrote:Greetings,

I will be applying to law school this fall. I have a 3.75 gpa and I’m taking the LSAT this summer (have been scoring 170-173 on practice tests).

I also have a one year old. I went back to class three days after giving birth and have made straight A's since I've been pregnant. I'm also a year younger than everyone else since I graduated high school a year early.

I’m wondering though if higher ranked law schools look down on having a child or if it may affect my chances at scholarships/acceptances (as they may think I won’t be dedicated). Should it be something I don’t disclose? Or do they not care?


I don't think your ability to get pregnant is a skill that directly translates to law school performance, so I suggest leaving it off your application materials.


Neither does your race or gender or origin. However, diversity matters.

Being a mother adds to the diversity of her application and may explain certain things about her past.

It should be up to the OP whether she wants to add it or not. If you're a single mother, it makes you a special interest group and law school admissions love their diversity.

Wipfelder

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Re: Should I mention that I have a child?

Postby Wipfelder » Fri May 04, 2018 10:11 am

justanotherone6 wrote:Greetings,

I will be applying to law school this fall. I have a 3.75 gpa and I’m taking the LSAT this summer (have been scoring 170-173 on practice tests).

I also have a one year old. I went back to class three days after giving birth and have made straight A's since I've been pregnant. I'm also a year younger than everyone else since I graduated high school a year early.

I’m wondering though if higher ranked law schools look down on having a child or if it may affect my chances at scholarships/acceptances (as they may think I won’t be dedicated). Should it be something I don’t disclose? Or do they not care?


I started at at T14 LS with a kid, it wasn't on my resume or anything, but it came up often in interviews and conversation. Having kids is awesome, and something many people can relate to. It could definitely be part of your personal statement, and probably should be considered when you're talking about "why law" and stuff like that. No one will think its weird or inappropriate, law school is actually a great time to be a parent because it isn't as demanding (as far as time flexibility) as a "real job".

Also, there probably isn't a strong correlation between "having a kid" and "relative academic performance". There probably is a stronger correlation between "having a kid" and "performing well at OCI". I suspect that when admissions people look at applicants like you, who, on average, tend to be more focused, organized, and grounded, they don't think "oh, they may fall below the curve", they think "this person is going to find a job, even if they don't have the best grades 1L year".

I talked about how having a kid made me change career paths and get focused on something I could do while still being a good parent. I think it resonated well (I was an extreme splitter with a sub 3.0 GPA, and received several T14 offers of admission). This is doubly true for OCI in my experience.

albanach

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Re: Should I mention that I have a child?

Postby albanach » Fri May 04, 2018 11:02 am

Wipfelder wrote:
I started at at T14 LS with a kid, it wasn't on my resume or anything, but it came up often in interviews and conversation. Having kids is awesome, and something many people can relate to. It could definitely be part of your personal statement, and probably should be considered when you're talking about "why law" and stuff like that. No one will think its weird or inappropriate, law school is actually a great time to be a parent because it isn't as demanding (as far as time flexibility) as a "real job".


I tend to agree. You don't make clear if you're operating as a single parent - if so, maintaining grades and managing your time and workload along with a kid is certainly something that can make a personal statement. Even if you have a partner, parenthood places demands on you which, as Wipfelder notes, others will relate to and appreciate.

Best of luck with your applications!



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