Why X essays?

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swong1267

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Why X essays?

Postby swong1267 » Tue Oct 23, 2018 9:16 pm

How important are the why X essays? I'm wondering about t14 specifically, applying with a 178/3.7, and I'm particularly curious if why X would help with financial aid/scholarships. I found a post from 2017 saying not to worry about YP for top 6, though I'm not even sure if I'm in YP territory, so does that mean for the rest of t14 why X is important?

I'm also curious about the opportunity cost -- the rest of my application is ready to go, so even if the why X is important, is it more important than submitting my app earlier?

I'm talking specifically about the why X essay, since my statement somewhat addresses the diversity statement.

Thanks for any advice!!

QContinuum

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Re: Why X essays?

Postby QContinuum » Tue Oct 23, 2018 10:24 pm

People differ on how much of a difference these essays make. My general sense is that if you can't think of a compelling argument for a particular school, then it may be better to omit the Why X instead of submitting a weak essay. That said, you still have time; anything submitted before November is super-early, and I can't imagine you'd be at a disadvantage if you submit before December. Why not take some extra time to think things through, and maybe write a few Why Xs for any schools you're particularly drawn to?

Per MyLSN, it looks like the only schools where you'd really have to worry about YP would be Penn, UVA, Northwestern, and Cornell. So there's a strong argument for writing Why Xs for those four schools, assuming you intend to apply to them. (And I would definitely apply to them; with your stats, you ought to blanket the T13 to maximize your options and merit aid.)
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swong1267

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Re: Why X essays?

Postby swong1267 » Tue Oct 23, 2018 11:45 pm

Wow, thanks so much for the thorough response! Will definitely take some time to think about it (I do have a Why Penn reason that I should highlight).

Out of curiosity, why t13 and not t14?

QContinuum

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Re: Why X essays?

Postby QContinuum » Wed Oct 24, 2018 12:11 am

Happy to help!

Gtown in recent years has placed more in line with the T20 than the rest of the "traditional" T14. IIRC, its recent placement into BigLaw and federal clerkships (as a percentage of its class) has lagged behind Vandy. Make no mistake, Georgetown's still a very strong school - it still places better than the other T20s, aside from Vandy - but it's hard to justify characterizing it as a cut above the T20 when it's outplaced by Vandy.

For reference, Cornell's most recent BL/FC % is 77%. (Duke's is 81%, to grab another "lower T13" to place Cornell's % in context.) Vandy's is 67%. Gtown's is 59%. The gap isn't trivial.

swong1267

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Re: Why X essays?

Postby swong1267 » Thu Oct 25, 2018 1:09 am

Ahh, I see. Thanks!! :)



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