Transfer from a Tier 2 with a shabby GPA...advice?

A forum for those current students who are or may be transferring from one school to another. Post any questions, advice, or other transfer related comments here.
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Transfer from a Tier 2 with a shabby GPA...advice?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jan 13, 2015 1:42 pm

I am currently a student at a Tier 2 school (50-100) in the Philadelphia area, and for a variety of reasons, I have been miserable here and would really, really like to transfer. I have been so miserable that I have considering transferring to inferior schools. My grades were looking pretty good until just a few moments ago I received my final grade, a B in Contracts. I now have a 3.31 GPA, highlighted by an A in legal writing.

I would like to practice in the NY/NJ/PA area and was looking into other schools before receiving the devastating final grade. I was looking at Notre Dame, and according to the ABA 509 report, my GPA is within the range of accepted transfer students, and the school accepted students from worse schools than mine. Based on my research here T14 is out of the question.

I have strong softs, but I'm not sure how much that will matter for transfers.

Edit: GPA changed to 3.354. Not sure how but it sounds better than 3.31. Sounds like this may be top 30-40%.
Last edited by Anonymous User on Tue Jan 20, 2015 11:06 pm, edited 3 times in total.

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BVest
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Re: Transfer from a Tier 2 with a shabby GPA...advice?

Postby BVest » Tue Jan 13, 2015 2:35 pm

Don't be fooled by the GPA on the 509s. It's useless without more information because different schools have different curves/medians. To give advice, people here are going to want to know ranking/percentile.

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Re: Transfer from a Tier 2 with a shabby GPA...advice?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jan 13, 2015 5:46 pm

BVest wrote:Don't be fooled by the GPA on the 509s. It's useless without more information because different schools have different curves/medians. To give advice, people here are going to want to know ranking/percentile.


Good call. Unfortunately I do not have that information yet. I suspect to be within the top half of the class

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Meow Meowsworth
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Re: Transfer from a Tier 2 with a shabby GPA...advice?

Postby Meow Meowsworth » Tue Jan 13, 2015 8:25 pm

Notre Dame doesn't seem like a good option given your goal of staying in the PA/NJ/NY area. You'd pay sticker for 2 years, which is $51k a year in tuition + cost of living, so that's $140k+ of debt before accounting for interest. Notre Dame isn't a bad school, but it's not worth that much. Notre Dame places 25-30% of graduates into big law jobs each year, but your chances would be much lower than that given that you'd be a transfer student from a T2 with grades that likely wouldn't get you a big law job at the school you're transferring from. That being said, this kind of depends on your current situation. Do you have a scholarship at your current school, and if so, how much are you paying per year right now? From what I can see, a 3.31 will put you within the top 40% at Temple and probably very slightly below median, at least based on the graduating class statistics, at Villanova. With the further drop in applicants this cycle, you might have a small shot at Notre Dame with those stats, but it seems unlikely.

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Re: Transfer from a Tier 2 with a shabby GPA...advice?

Postby S. Goodman » Tue Jan 13, 2015 9:48 pm

BVest wrote:Don't be fooled by the GPA on the 509s. It's useless without more information because different schools have different curves/medians. To give advice, people here are going to want to know ranking/percentile.



This. I had almost the same GPA as you at a T2, and that was considered top 25%. I got into every transfer school I applied to. Applied and got into one T15, ended up going with a T25 because it was considerably cheaper. So depending on your actual ranking, it seems like you still have a decent shot, try to bring it up some more in the second semester though of course.

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Re: Transfer from a Tier 2 with a shabby GPA...advice?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jan 13, 2015 10:46 pm

Meow Meowsworth wrote:Notre Dame doesn't seem like a good option given your goal of staying in the PA/NJ/NY area. You'd pay sticker for 2 years, which is $51k a year in tuition + cost of living, so that's $140k+ of debt before accounting for interest. Notre Dame isn't a bad school, but it's not worth that much. Notre Dame places 25-30% of graduates into big law jobs each year, but your chances would be much lower than that given that you'd be a transfer student from a T2 with grades that likely wouldn't get you a big law job at the school you're transferring from. That being said, this kind of depends on your current situation. Do you have a scholarship at your current school, and if so, how much are you paying per year right now? From what I can see, a 3.31 will put you within the top 40% at Temple and probably very slightly below median, at least based on the graduating class statistics, at Villanova. With the further drop in applicants this cycle, you might have a small shot at Notre Dame with those stats, but it seems unlikely.


I have played around with ND's Career Placement map (available here: http://law.nd.edu/careers/career-map/) and am not extremely concerned about NDLS' placement in PA/NJ/NY area. ND's employment in NY is exponentially better than my current school and I have undergrad ties in Philly.

I do have a small scholarship at my current school but I doubt there is potential for it to grow. I have often contemplated the potential debt at ND vs my current school several times. I am not yet sure if advantages that ND would afford over my school would be worth the transfer.


S. Goodman wrote:
BVest wrote:Don't be fooled by the GPA on the 509s. It's useless without more information because different schools have different curves/medians. To give advice, people here are going to want to know ranking/percentile.



This. I had almost the same GPA as you at a T2, and that was considered top 25%. I got into every transfer school I applied to. Applied and got into one T15, ended up going with a T25 because it was considerably cheaper. So depending on your actual ranking, it seems like you still have a decent shot, try to bring it up some more in the second semester though of course.


Thank you for sharing your experience. This sounds a little more hopeful. I have spoken with others who have said similar things, but of course dependent on improving my grades this semester or at the very least maintaining the GPA. I recently read the Spivey Consultant's entry that this may be a good year to transfer -- I'll hope it rings true.



I will still give it a shot. ND's transfer application opens in April and students are admitted on a rolling basis. Would it be better for me to wait for spring grades? Also, I was previously waitlisted to NDLS -- how much will that factor into a potential decision?

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Re: Transfer from a Tier 2 with a shabby GPA...advice?

Postby BigZuck » Tue Jan 13, 2015 11:01 pm

I would be very concerned with ND's placement into those areas

A big chunk of that placement comes from big law for the top of the class. Big law is foreclosed to you based on your grades. That means you'll have to do small firm/local government work, things like that. In order to get those jobs you usually have to hustle, and it's hard to hustle on the east coast when you are stuck in middle of nowhere Indiana.

It's not impossible but you'll put yourself way behind the 8 ball by transferring away from your desired market.

Also, how do you plan on paying off all that debt?

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Meow Meowsworth
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Re: Transfer from a Tier 2 with a shabby GPA...advice?

Postby Meow Meowsworth » Tue Jan 13, 2015 11:26 pm

BigZuck wrote:I would be very concerned with ND's placement into those areas

A big chunk of that placement comes from big law for the top of the class. Big law is foreclosed to you based on your grades. That means you'll have to do small firm/local government work, things like that. In order to get those jobs you usually have to hustle, and it's hard to hustle on the east coast when you are stuck in middle of nowhere Indiana.

It's not impossible but you'll put yourself way behind the 8 ball by transferring away from your desired market.

Also, how do you plan on paying off all that debt?


Just wanted to say that BigZuck covered everything I was going to say in response to your reply to my post.




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