Patrick Bateman wrote:acw1213 wrote:I'm in a sticky situation.
I bombed the LSAT so I'm at a T3/T4 school. However, I've done all the "right" things: good grades (top 10%), moot court, probably law review, judicial internship, etc...
At this point I think I've got a pretty good shot at getting into some T1 schools that I could have only dreamed of when first applying. However, I don't want to "lose" all those (above) things that I've worked for. Does the military care as much about the rank of the school or what you've done while in school? I've seen people selected from Harvard and from Cooley so I know they look at the whole range, but, with the market continuing to decline I'm guessing they can afford to take from the "better" schools.
I'm paying sticker right now (I know...fml) but hoping to get some scholarship offers once official rank comes out. What should I do - stay or go??
My recommendation would be to apply for transfer admission and make an educated decision this summer. As a whole, at least at the lowly O-3 level, the AF JAG Corps does not seem to give a crap about your law school pedigree (in respect to career progression - I cannot speak about influence on the accessions process). That said, the JAG Corps represents an awfully small part of law practice and the vast majority of folks are not going to be doing 20+ years in uniform. In making this decision you need to honestly assess the over/under of being selected for JAG, not a foregone conclusion these days, and then the odds of staying active duty, with all that entails. Should you not be picked up for JAG or decide after a few years that you want to go reserves and do civilian practice, your degree pedigree may matter a great deal more.
Apply to those dream T1 schools and figure things out then. You can either transfer and pick up the bright and shinny diploma, along with the debt, or leverage your transfer acceptances against your current school to get more scholarship money out of them.
I'd agree with Bateman here too.
I'm from one of those not so good schools you might have seen on that list when you saw Harvard and Cooley. I was nowhere near the top 10% (more like top 50%) and had none of the extracurriculars you mentioned. I got in because I killed it in my interview and because my application and recommendations conveyed loads of leadership intangibles. The school you attend does NOT matter. Being in the top 10 % and doing ALL of those extra-curriculars does not necessarily matter. Still, the selection rate is still 5-6% so having those things definitely increases you chances. Even if you do not do as well as top 10% at these other schools, you will still earn a better degree and there are other ways to bolster your JAG app. At least apply and see where you get in. IMO, if it is not in the top 30 to 40 law schools, stick with the good thing you have going for you.