Legitimate Grade/App Question

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emlaw123

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Legitimate Grade/App Question

Postby emlaw123 » Fri Jul 13, 2018 5:50 am

Hello,

I have a serious question about my law school grades. I finished with a GPA of 3.1. (Classes curved to 3.3)
After my 1L year, I was in the top third of the class, but struck out on OCIs. Then, in September of 2L year, (sorry for getting personal), but my brother, who I was extremely close with, took his own life. I did all I could to work through the pain of it, but my grades 2L and 3L year just took a major hit. I did what I could, but I just never really recovered from everything (I still am processing it).

I will be starting a state trial level clerkship in August after graduating from a T25 school. I would love to try clerking again, but to move up to a state appellate level, SSC, or obviously federal district clerkship. However, I would also be thrilled to find a job at a firm (any size firm, really), but I would be very disappointed to end up in a firm that lacks respect among its peers and would be difficult to lateral away from.

I was very active in law school, was an articles editor on LR (did not get anything published, though), was on two different boards of active groups, participated in moot court, and had externships with the state AG office and one with the University Title IX office.

When it comes to applying to higher level clerkships, or any job, really, is it completely wrong to use any type of addendum explaining the fall off of my grades? I obviously don't want anyone to think I am using that tragedy as any kind of excuse; however, it legitimately was the reason for a horrible depression and a complete inability to diligently work and study as hard as I could. However, I know even putting that into any kind of letter is incredibly personal and probably something most would not want to even know.

I have asked a few people, career services, etc., and I have received different answers from everyone. I would be very happy to hear what you all thought. I know my path will not be easy as I am sure most of my applications will get tossed without much of a look, but any advice or suggestions would be extremely helpful.

Thanks very much.

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Re: Legitimate Grade/App Question

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Jul 13, 2018 8:48 am

Very sorry to hear about your loss— I can’t imagine how hard that must be. One thought that occurs to me is that, I know in federal clerkships at least, it’s not uncommon to have professors call to put in a good word for an applicant. Could you apply to higher-level clerkships without saying anything and have a trusted professor call to leave a recommendation in which (among other things) he/she explains your circumstances?

Best of luck and congrats having the first clerkship lined up.

emlaw123

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Joined: Tue Nov 01, 2016 4:08 pm

Re: Legitimate Grade/App Question

Postby emlaw123 » Sun Jul 15, 2018 3:24 pm

Thanks. I know it's an awkward question, but if others had any suggestions I would really appreciate it.



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