1L below median GPA t20 looking for biglaw

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1L below median GPA t20 looking for biglaw

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jan 13, 2016 4:57 am

I'm at UCLA, I'm A male URM w a lot of litigation experience. Looking to break into biglaw but gpa is 3.1 and median is 3.3.
Please help. Willing to move to any state and do anything to get biglaw.

Any advice is welcomed.

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baal hadad

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Re: 1L below median GPA t20 looking for biglaw

Postby baal hadad » Wed Jan 13, 2016 9:30 am

What kind of urm

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buckiguy_sucks

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Re: 1L below median GPA t20 looking for biglaw

Postby buckiguy_sucks » Wed Jan 13, 2016 9:37 am

Step one would be to hustle second semester I would think and try to push that GPA up

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deepseapartners

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Re: 1L below median GPA t20 looking for biglaw

Postby deepseapartners » Wed Jan 13, 2016 9:58 am

buckiguy_sucks wrote:push that GPA up

It's not too late. Self evaluate, figure out where you went wrong, and correct it. One of my close friends was in a similar position at a lower T14 and, after a LOT of hard work second semester, he got his cumulative GPA above median. He then spent the summer hustling at networking events in his home area, and got at least one Biglaw offer before OCI even started.

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Re: 1L below median GPA t20 looking for biglaw

Postby gaddockteeg » Wed Jan 13, 2016 10:47 am

GPA is too low. Median (a little under is okay) is going to be the bare minimum here.

Raise your GPA is the only answer here. definitely not too late, you've 2.5 years to do it still.

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Re: 1L below median GPA t20 looking for biglaw

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jan 13, 2016 11:54 am

OP here
URM is mex.
I will try to raise my gpa(even though I studied literally 24/7). What do I do about OCI? Is there any higher places that are easier?

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Re: 1L below median GPA t20 looking for biglaw

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jan 13, 2016 12:12 pm

You should be gunning for 1L diversity positions like there's no tomorrow. I know URM's who got positions before they even had grades in major markets. A lot of diversity programs focus more on fit than on grades as long as your grades suggest you can do the work. 3.1 isn't that far below median and while you should definitely try to get to median, a 1L diversity position is the best case scenario because you'd be going into spring exams with a very high likelihood of having a postgrad offer (i.e. don't screw up either summer).

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Re: 1L below median GPA t20 looking for biglaw

Postby stickershocked » Wed Jan 13, 2016 12:13 pm

Make sure you have at least one interesting job this summer. Start making contacts now. Apply very broadly. Target satellite offices. Don't rely on OCI (i.e. also mass mail). If your personality is there, I think you should be fine. There are a lot of firms out there.

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Re: 1L below median GPA t20 looking for biglaw

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jan 13, 2016 12:29 pm

OP here
I have been applying to major firms for 1L diversity, but they are huge and they all require transcripts so far.
I will try to apply to them all, and I think my resume is good, but I'm afraid that my gpa will stop me.
Since I'm in California, is it better to apply there or NYC? Please let me know and I truly appreciate everyone s advice.

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baal hadad

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Re: 1L below median GPA t20 looking for biglaw

Postby baal hadad » Wed Jan 13, 2016 12:41 pm

Apply in both ca and nyc

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Re: 1L below median GPA t20 looking for biglaw

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jan 13, 2016 12:44 pm

Apply everywhere for 1L summer. Apply everywhere for 2L summer. Don't forget about Delaware.

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Re: 1L below median GPA t20 looking for biglaw

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jan 13, 2016 1:38 pm

Stop worrying about 1L summer hiring for biglaw diversity and focus on DA/USAO/State and Fed Judges/Research assistant/in house, etc. something for 1L summer. Get something, doesn't matter what. Biglaw 1L diversity hiring is small enough that it can still be selective with grades, even with URM, so you're unlikely to get it. Get a lot better grades second semester and get to at least median. If median is 3.3, and you have a 3.1, you can get it up there if you work hard and get good grades.

2L OCI, URM with at least median (preferably a little above), at UCLA, you'll have a decent shot at biglaw. You'll have better chances in NYC(b/c of much bigger class sizes and more firms) than LA/OC, but apply to both. Not guaranteed by any means, and your URM will do a lot of the carrying for you here, but you'll have a shot.

Anecdotal evidence: I know plenty of kids at my T20 school who were around median that got biglaw. Not all were URM by any means, but significant amount were. I would say that ~50-75% of these "median" kids went to NYC biglaw over in-state biglaw.

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Re: 1L below median GPA t20 looking for biglaw

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jan 13, 2016 1:42 pm

Anonymous User wrote:OP here
URM is mex.
I will try to raise my gpa(even though I studied literally 24/7). What do I do about OCI? Is there any higher places that are easier?

Btw Mexican is ehhh for firm urm purposes

Black would have been better

Doesn't mean you shouldn't apply tho

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Re: 1L below median GPA t20 looking for biglaw

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jan 13, 2016 4:26 pm

OP here.
Well it's not like I can change my race, it is what it is. I know it's a long shot, but thank u for the advice. This semester I will certainly try my very best to bring it up.
So NYC over CA even though my school is located in CA? Sounds good.
Are there any firms known for getting people around median? Please let me know. And thank you again.

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Re: 1L below median GPA t20 looking for biglaw

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jan 13, 2016 5:51 pm

Anonymous User wrote:OP here.
Well it's not like I can change my race, it is what it is. I know it's a long shot, but thank u for the advice. This semester I will certainly try my very best to bring it up.
So NYC over CA even though my school is located in CA? Sounds good.
Are there any firms known for getting people around median? Please let me know. And thank you again.


You have a long ways to go before worrying about specific firms. Focus on the task at hand and pull that GPA up. Worked harder than you've ever worked before and be prepared to get less sleep. You'll have plenty of time to research firms at the end of the semester.

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Re: 1L below median GPA t20 looking for biglaw

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jan 13, 2016 8:02 pm

Op here.

^thank you. I needed to hear that.

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Re: 1L below median GPA t20 looking for biglaw

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jan 13, 2016 8:21 pm

Just to give you some hope. I graduated from a T20 school in the bottom quartile. Non-urm. I raised my first semester gpa from a 2.1 to a 3.2 by the time I graduated. I almost dropped out after my first semester. I decided to stick it out and worked my butt off while networking and attending as many career fairs as I could. I ended up accepting a job offer through 3L hiring at a large boutique firm (150+ attorneys) in a major market. I actually had a big law offer in a secondary market that I turned down. After working nearly two years, I recently lateralled to a v50 firm in a different major market. I actually had several offers and call backs at other big law firms that I turned down.

So my take away is work on improving your grades, networking like a mad man, and selling your marketable qualities. Once you get your foot in the door at one firm and then gain the experience, more opportunities will open up.

I hope this helps and good luck! It can be done but you need to put in a lot of work.

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Re: 1L below median GPA t20 looking for biglaw

Postby NYC2012 » Wed Jan 13, 2016 8:45 pm

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Last edited by NYC2012 on Mon Dec 25, 2017 1:41 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: 1L below median GPA t20 looking for biglaw

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jan 13, 2016 9:38 pm

OP here.

This is how I studied. From 10am until 10:50pm every day including weekends. My study buddy who studied w/ me for the exact same hours along w/ me is sitting at a 3.9 gpa right now.
For example, for civil procedure, I did all the readings for cases, I read the Richard Freer book for civ pro, I did the Barbri lectures with Freer, and I did Q&A. I did one full practice exam, and examined two model answers. On exam day, the professor made an exam that was too much to cover, I didn't have enough time to address all issues, and my friend didn't either. I got a 3.0 and he got a 3.9. He even said he was surprised, on the exam we both addressed different issues, and a lot of the same ones. We both talked how we both had a lot more to talk about, but no time!

Aside from Civil procedure, I structured my exam answers as follows:

Claim
Prima facie
Element A
Side Pro
Side Con
Element B
Side Pro
Side Con

Until conclusion where I would put a policy argument if applicable.
I cited a lot of cases for every class, but even my highest grade in torts, was only a 3.4.

I never used LEEWS, but at this point, Im willing to do anything. I do have the hard work in me. I'm ok studying 24/7. But I don't know how to improve. I can memorize everything this time around, not sure if that will help, but I can get rid of outlines....
People often joked I lived in the library, and I did have breakfest, lunch and dinner there. I thought I knew the material extremely well, but idk, guess not.

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Re: 1L below median GPA t20 looking for biglaw

Postby NYC2012 » Wed Jan 13, 2016 10:07 pm

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Last edited by NYC2012 on Mon Dec 25, 2017 1:52 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Poldy

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Re: 1L below median GPA t20 looking for biglaw

Postby Poldy » Wed Jan 13, 2016 10:27 pm

You might just not be giving the professor what he's looking for. Knowing the material isn't everything, you have to tailor it to your specific professor. I'd do way more than one practice test if possible and look at as many sample answers as you can. For example, I didn't cite a single case in K or Crim and did well in both. Depending on your prof, spending countless hours learning the cases could be nothing but wasted time. I hesitate to give this as blanket advice but that was how it was with my professors. Outside of con law and a few very famous cases, I couldn't tell you the name of any of the cases we read.

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Re: 1L below median GPA t20 looking for biglaw

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Wed Jan 13, 2016 10:41 pm

It sounds like you absolutely knew the material well, but not how to take a law school exam. You could probably benefit from doing a lot more practice exams. It also sounds a little like your answers could be falling into the pattern of "I'm going to put in all the stuff I know about this area of the law" rather than "I'm going to only address issues raised by the fact pattern/apply the law to facts." (They may not - it's obviously hard to tell just from how you're structuring them - but it's a guess.) I would go talk to your professors and ask them to go over your exam with you so you can learn what you need to do better. As people have said, it's going to vary by professor, but there are usually types of exams that recur, so it's still helpful even for future classes with different professors.

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Re: 1L below median GPA t20 looking for biglaw

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Jan 14, 2016 12:32 am

OP here.

Nony I think you are correct. For the first exam, the question was asking about a specific party, so I didn't address a lot of the issues I saw as I thought that it was not related (1page worth of facts). My friend who aced the exam addressed it regardless.
Second exam on civil procedure I went too heavily into rules and very little facts from the actual prompt. Torts I'm not sure what went wrong.

I will definitely do more than one practice this time around. I will do all of them.

Only thing I can think of to do differently is to go more in depth into analysis. Does anyone else see a flaw in my approach from what I have said so far?

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Re: 1L below median GPA t20 looking for biglaw

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Jan 14, 2016 12:41 am

Anonymous User wrote:Stop worrying about 1L summer hiring for biglaw diversity and focus on DA/USAO/State and Fed Judges/Research assistant/in house, etc. something for 1L summer. Get something, doesn't matter what. Biglaw 1L diversity hiring is small enough that it can still be selective with grades, even with URM, so you're unlikely to get it. Get a lot better grades second semester and get to at least median. If median is 3.3, and you have a 3.1, you can get it up there if you work hard and get good grades.

2L OCI, URM with at least median (preferably a little above), at UCLA, you'll have a decent shot at biglaw. You'll have better chances in NYC(b/c of much bigger class sizes and more firms) than LA/OC, but apply to both. Not guaranteed by any means, and your URM will do a lot of the carrying for you here, but you'll have a shot.

Anecdotal evidence: I know plenty of kids at my T20 school who were around median that got biglaw. Not all were URM by any means, but significant amount were. I would say that ~50-75% of these "median" kids went to NYC biglaw over in-state biglaw.


Not OP but wondering if biglaw firms look at 1L summer with a DAs office differently since it's criminal or if it falls under the same umbrella of 1L summer jobs not really mattering as long as it is substantial?

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Re: 1L below median GPA t20 looking for biglaw

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Jan 14, 2016 12:46 am

^
OP here. From what I know, it makes no difference.



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