Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

A forum for applicants and admitted students to ask law students and graduates about law school and the practice of law.
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ph14
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby ph14 » Wed Oct 26, 2011 10:44 pm

delusional wrote:
ph14 wrote:
delusional wrote:Any opinions on two credit 1L electives as opposed to three or four credit ones?


Interested in this as well. What about 1 credit 1L electives?

Are there any? I don't remember seeing any on the list.


Nvm...you're correct.

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unc0mm0n1
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby unc0mm0n1 » Wed Oct 26, 2011 11:20 pm

smittytron3k wrote:If you want Feldman you need to rank it number 1. I guess you guys only have like 4 options now (we had 6 or 7 last year--there was an antitrust class with Elhague and an "intellectual history of globalization" class with Duncan Kennedy in addition to the 4 offerings you have). Most people I know who had Brewster liked her. I know nothing about the Public International Law professors except that Gabriella Blum does really cool work on terrorism/security issues and she's probably a good person to get to know if that's up your alley. I know nothing at all about the China Law class.


We only have 4 different class titles but 7 different classes, and each are a little different.

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DoubleChecks
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby DoubleChecks » Wed Oct 26, 2011 11:42 pm

delusional wrote:Any opinions on two credit 1L electives as opposed to three or four credit ones?


1L elective credit hours don't carry over, so unless you really want a 4 credit class for whatever reason, feel free to take a 2 or 3 credit elective.

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ph14
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby ph14 » Wed Oct 26, 2011 11:51 pm

DoubleChecks wrote:
delusional wrote:Any opinions on two credit 1L electives as opposed to three or four credit ones?


1L elective credit hours don't carry over, so unless you really want a 4 credit class for whatever reason, feel free to take a 2 or 3 credit elective.


Any recommendations on the elective?

delusional
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby delusional » Sat Oct 29, 2011 9:30 pm

.

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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby acrossthelake » Sun Oct 30, 2011 7:09 pm

ph14 wrote:
delusional wrote:Any opinions on two credit 1L electives as opposed to three or four credit ones?


Interested in this as well. What about 1 credit 1L electives?


I found somewhere on the registrar website that said that the 1L elective must be 2-4 credits to count.

delusional
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby delusional » Tue Nov 01, 2011 8:11 pm

What can 2 and 3Ls share about 1L electives? I really don't see much that pulls me. There's a corporate course, which seems alright, but I don't meet the prereqs. There's a few well known professors but those either have tough reputations or 2 seats for 1Ls. Should I cop out and do a 2 credit seminar like "Law and Medieval Farm Practices", or go for a four credit full blown 80 seat class?
Who are some lesser known professors who you think are worth seeking out for good mentoring or experience type stuff, who might be giving these classes?

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DoubleChecks
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby DoubleChecks » Tue Nov 01, 2011 9:43 pm

delusional wrote:What can 2 and 3Ls share about 1L electives? I really don't see much that pulls me. There's a corporate course, which seems alright, but I don't meet the prereqs. There's a few well known professors but those either have tough reputations or 2 seats for 1Ls. Should I cop out and do a 2 credit seminar like "Law and Medieval Farm Practices", or go for a four credit full blown 80 seat class?
Who are some lesser known professors who you think are worth seeking out for good mentoring or experience type stuff, who might be giving these classes?


there are a lot of courses (though ive heard this upcoming spring semester has electives that aren't as interesting as prior yrs), so sometimes hard to comment in general. if you want to, you can do a full blown 4 credit, but that depends on what your 'law school strategy' or even 'life strategy' is hahaha. some friends chose corporations (which you can take) for their 1L elective and enjoyed it -- gets a pre-req out early so you can do other related courses 2L yr fall.

that being said, most chose 2-3 credits. it is an opportunity, imo, to get either 1) an easier H and/or 2) a lighter course load to boost your grades up before EIP. of course, i am also a full subscriber to the notion that at HLS, grades dont matter too much in relation to hiring for most firms (unless you're at either extremes, i.e. top 10% or bottom 10%), so hey, a class for self-edification wouldn't be too bad either if you're up for the extra work.

2 credit seminars are of course the best for getting to know a professor better.

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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby unc0mm0n1 » Wed Nov 02, 2011 12:37 am

DoubleChecks wrote:
delusional wrote:What can 2 and 3Ls share about 1L electives? I really don't see much that pulls me. There's a corporate course, which seems alright, but I don't meet the prereqs. There's a few well known professors but those either have tough reputations or 2 seats for 1Ls. Should I cop out and do a 2 credit seminar like "Law and Medieval Farm Practices", or go for a four credit full blown 80 seat class?
Who are some lesser known professors who you think are worth seeking out for good mentoring or experience type stuff, who might be giving these classes?


there are a lot of courses (though ive heard this upcoming spring semester has electives that aren't as interesting as prior yrs), so sometimes hard to comment in general. if you want to, you can do a full blown 4 credit, but that depends on what your 'law school strategy' or even 'life strategy' is hahaha. some friends chose corporations (which you can take) for their 1L elective and enjoyed it -- gets a pre-req out early so you can do other related courses 2L yr fall.

that being said, most chose 2-3 credits. it is an opportunity, imo, to get either 1) an easier H and/or 2) a lighter course load to boost your grades up before EIP. of course, i am also a full subscriber to the notion that at HLS, grades dont matter too much in relation to hiring for most firms (unless you're at either extremes, i.e. top 10% or bottom 10%), so hey, a class for self-edification wouldn't be too bad either if you're up for the extra work.

2 credit seminars are of course the best for getting to know a professor better.


What have you heard about the Negotiation workshop. I've heard it was amazing and I'm excited I was selected but 8 1/2 hrs a week classroom time (plus some mandatory weekends) seems pretty daunting.

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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby jim-green » Wed Nov 02, 2011 1:37 pm

This may be silly because I am sure everyone at HLS gets a good law firm job, but for science majors who want to do patent law, do a lot of patent law firms from DC recruit on campus? And what have the placements been like for patent law?

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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby DoubleChecks » Wed Nov 02, 2011 1:59 pm

unc0mm0n1 wrote:
DoubleChecks wrote:
delusional wrote:What can 2 and 3Ls share about 1L electives? I really don't see much that pulls me. There's a corporate course, which seems alright, but I don't meet the prereqs. There's a few well known professors but those either have tough reputations or 2 seats for 1Ls. Should I cop out and do a 2 credit seminar like "Law and Medieval Farm Practices", or go for a four credit full blown 80 seat class?
Who are some lesser known professors who you think are worth seeking out for good mentoring or experience type stuff, who might be giving these classes?


there are a lot of courses (though ive heard this upcoming spring semester has electives that aren't as interesting as prior yrs), so sometimes hard to comment in general. if you want to, you can do a full blown 4 credit, but that depends on what your 'law school strategy' or even 'life strategy' is hahaha. some friends chose corporations (which you can take) for their 1L elective and enjoyed it -- gets a pre-req out early so you can do other related courses 2L yr fall.

that being said, most chose 2-3 credits. it is an opportunity, imo, to get either 1) an easier H and/or 2) a lighter course load to boost your grades up before EIP. of course, i am also a full subscriber to the notion that at HLS, grades dont matter too much in relation to hiring for most firms (unless you're at either extremes, i.e. top 10% or bottom 10%), so hey, a class for self-edification wouldn't be too bad either if you're up for the extra work.

2 credit seminars are of course the best for getting to know a professor better.


What have you heard about the Negotiation workshop. I've heard it was amazing and I'm excited I was selected but 8 1/2 hrs a week classroom time (plus some mandatory weekends) seems pretty daunting.


I have heard what you pretty much said. It is definitely work-intensive although interesting. I am taking it this upcoming winter. If you are interested in negotiation, it is pretty much a necessity. Nevertheless, it is a lot of work (not necessarily hard but rather time consuming), esp. for 1L spring. Up to you -- not impossible, I do have friends who took it then and survived perfectly fine haha.

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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby DoubleChecks » Wed Nov 02, 2011 2:00 pm

jim-green wrote:This may be silly because I am sure everyone at HLS gets a good law firm job, but for science majors who want to do patent law, do a lot of patent law firms from DC recruit on campus? And what have the placements been like for patent law?


I am not IP specific, but I do know that there are at least a few major firms that hire specifically IP or rather have their own separate interview slot for IP (think Jones Day IP). Even if they dont, I think that is something you can clarify in almost any biglaw EIP interview (I imagine). If you mean specific IP boutiques or something, sorry I know nothing about that. A few friends of mine are sort of IP focused (though not 100% set on it) and I heard no gripes from them.

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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby jim-green » Wed Nov 02, 2011 4:21 pm

DoubleChecks wrote:I am not IP specific, but I do know that there are at least a few major firms that hire specifically IP or rather have their own separate interview slot for IP (think Jones Day IP). Even if they dont, I think that is something you can clarify in almost any biglaw EIP interview (I imagine). If you mean specific IP boutiques or something, sorry I know nothing about that. A few friends of mine are sort of IP focused (though not 100% set on it) and I heard no gripes from them.
Thanks, what is EIP?

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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby snailio » Wed Nov 02, 2011 4:41 pm

jim-green wrote:
DoubleChecks wrote:I am not IP specific, but I do know that there are at least a few major firms that hire specifically IP or rather have their own separate interview slot for IP (think Jones Day IP). Even if they dont, I think that is something you can clarify in almost any biglaw EIP interview (I imagine). If you mean specific IP boutiques or something, sorry I know nothing about that. A few friends of mine are sort of IP focused (though not 100% set on it) and I heard no gripes from them.
Thanks, what is EIP?




Early Interview Program

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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby englawyer » Thu Nov 10, 2011 4:26 pm

jim-green wrote:
DoubleChecks wrote:I am not IP specific, but I do know that there are at least a few major firms that hire specifically IP or rather have their own separate interview slot for IP (think Jones Day IP). Even if they dont, I think that is something you can clarify in almost any biglaw EIP interview (I imagine). If you mean specific IP boutiques or something, sorry I know nothing about that. A few friends of mine are sort of IP focused (though not 100% set on it) and I heard no gripes from them.
Thanks, what is EIP?


what Washington Firms are you interested in? Interestingly, Finnegan didn't participate in EIP which is a great DC choice. DoubleChecks is right that there are some IP-only interview schedules that are less competitive for the major firms (Kirkland, Jones Day, Weil, etc).

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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby vanwinkle » Thu Nov 10, 2011 4:31 pm

jim-green wrote:
DoubleChecks wrote:I am not IP specific, but I do know that there are at least a few major firms that hire specifically IP or rather have their own separate interview slot for IP (think Jones Day IP). Even if they dont, I think that is something you can clarify in almost any biglaw EIP interview (I imagine). If you mean specific IP boutiques or something, sorry I know nothing about that. A few friends of mine are sort of IP focused (though not 100% set on it) and I heard no gripes from them.
Thanks, what is EIP?

EIP (Early Interview Program) is what Harvard calls its main OCI week at the start of 2L. It's the week where all the BigLaw firms (and a few PI/BigFed orgs) come. There's a later OCI program called FIP (Fall Interview Program) that generally features smaller firms and PI orgs.

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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby annyong » Tue Nov 22, 2011 9:25 am

So I thought I'd revive this thread since a batch of KB2s went out yesterday :D I've read through the thread and really appreciate the advice so far - but for those of us who may be struggling to make a decision in the future, what settled you on Harvard and are you glad you chose it? I'm also wondering about the large class size - advantage/disadvantage/nonfactor? Thanks so much!

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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby DoubleChecks » Tue Nov 22, 2011 10:12 am

annyong wrote:So I thought I'd revive this thread since a batch of KB2s went out yesterday :D I've read through the thread and really appreciate the advice so far - but for those of us who may be struggling to make a decision in the future, what settled you on Harvard and are you glad you chose it? I'm also wondering about the large class size - advantage/disadvantage/nonfactor? Thanks so much!


I think it'll really come down to personal choice reasons. Some obvious decisions one might have to make might be HLS vs. CLS w/ $$$. Depends on how risk averse you are, how much debt you're willing to take on (or rather the size of the scholarship), and what your goals are. If they are to snag any biglaw job in NYC and that's it, the CLS $$$ option starts looking really good (though you'll probably have to work a bit harder your 1L year :P).

SLS vs. HLS is a big geographical decision. imo, makes little sense to go with SLS if you are only aiming for the east coast. Generally, YLS vs. HLS comes out in favor of YLS, esp. if one is interested in academia...but the intangible benefits of the H-bomb are not to be underestimated. To be frank, I have been amazed at how far the lay prestige of the H-bomb gets you. It is something that lingers on past your law school years and into the rest of your life, imo. People assume (correctly or incorrectly) that you are smarter, more qualified, etc. tbf, in the legal world YLS would hold probably just as much weight if not more, but Yale is nothing compared to Harvard outside of the legal profession. In a world where 60% of CEOs are 6 ft or taller, I'll take any intangible benefit I can get! :P

Of course, lay prestige was not the main reason I chose HLS -- it was just a nice perk. I chose it for (as I alluded to in the first sentence) personal reasons. I am rom TX and want to go back to TX 100%...but I wanted to spend my law school yrs out. HLS gives me the easiest access back to TX. Also, while HLS obviously does great in legal academia, I have no interest in it, so it was primarily biglaw in TX that I cared about. For that, HLS seems to be arguably the best choice for me (esp. factoring intangibles).

The class sizes have been great imo. Your 1L yr you are just in your section of 80, and you get to know them really well. It isn't until a bit second semester of 1L yr or 2L yr really do you start meeting a bunch of other people from other sections or years. So you sort of get the best of both worlds, and a tad more is in your control on how many people you want to get to know (just section mates or join clubs, etc. during 1L yr). Sorry for rambling on so long.

TL;DR: decision often depends on personal preferences; Harvard name = a lot of lay prestige that carries on throughout life; large class size broken into smaller sections, seems like a plus to me

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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby delusional » Tue Nov 22, 2011 9:36 pm

annyong wrote:So I thought I'd revive this thread since a batch of KB2s went out yesterday :D I've read through the thread and really appreciate the advice so far - but for those of us who may be struggling to make a decision in the future, what settled you on Harvard and are you glad you chose it? I'm also wondering about the large class size - advantage/disadvantage/nonfactor? Thanks so much!

I chose Harvard over Columbia and Penn, mainly because Harvard's need based aid was as good as I got in merit from other places.

That said, I have not looked back for a second, even regarding everything else. My professors are all good. But I think that what I really like about Harvard is that it is the best of big and small. The section is 80 people or so, and that's a decent size to have as a social group. But if that doesn't work, there's still a world out there of other students to meet and socialize with. Meanwhile, there are enough extracurriculars for 1600 students, so you can choose the ones you like - it's not like they bring in two speakers and that's all for the week, and if you are not interested in breast cancer and the law, you're SOL. You can just go to the other room, and hear a lecture on the Constitution and prostate cancer.

Beyond comparing, it is great on its own merit. The students are great, the schedule is okay, the lack of formal grades does seem to mellow everyone, etc. Everyone has different alternative options, but I cannot envision a scenario where Harvard would be a blatantly wrong choice for anyone, unless they are allergic to pure awesomeness.

And you just wait until Caspersen opens.

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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby nixxers » Wed Nov 23, 2011 1:25 am

I picked HLS over a Darrow (and minor schollies elsewhere). Sometimes I think about the crushing debt and feel sad but for the most part I haven't looked back. The people and opportunities you will be exposed to at this school are incredible. Come visit and see how you like it. Maybe it's just my section but I imagined a school filled with gunners and insufferable douches and instead found a friendly, helpful, fun and humble friends. also, don't underestimate the power of HP/P/LP grading.

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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby ignatiusr » Wed Nov 23, 2011 10:09 am

nixxers wrote:I picked HLS over a Darrow (and minor schollies elsewhere). Sometimes I think about the crushing debt and feel sad but for the most part I haven't looked back. The people and opportunities you will be exposed to at this school are incredible. Come visit and see how you like it. Maybe it's just my section but I imagined a school filled with gunners and insufferable douches and instead found a friendly, helpful, fun and humble friends. also, don't underestimate the power of HP/P/LP grading.


I'm still curious about the implications of the grading system. Since the numerical value assigned to H/P/LP is apparently identical to A/B/C, what is the true benefit? Is it primarily psychological, or are professors more likely to give an H than they would be to give an A?

Also- apologies if this information is readily available elsewhere, but I couldn't find it after a quick search- does the grading system affect the way that class rankings are released/structured?

delusional
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby delusional » Wed Nov 23, 2011 10:46 am

ignatiusr wrote:
nixxers wrote:I picked HLS over a Darrow (and minor schollies elsewhere). Sometimes I think about the crushing debt and feel sad but for the most part I haven't looked back. The people and opportunities you will be exposed to at this school are incredible. Come visit and see how you like it. Maybe it's just my section but I imagined a school filled with gunners and insufferable douches and instead found a friendly, helpful, fun and humble friends. also, don't underestimate the power of HP/P/LP grading.


I'm still curious about the implications of the grading system. Since the numerical value assigned to H/P/LP is apparently identical to A/B/C, what is the true benefit? Is it primarily psychological, or are professors more likely to give an H than they would be to give an A?

Also- apologies if this information is readily available elsewhere, but I couldn't find it after a quick search- does the grading system affect the way that class rankings are released/structured?

I don't know what other schools' curves are like, but I think it's different because there are no gradations. You're either an H or you're everybody else. When the curve was last published, it was 37% H.

The downside is that on something like LRW, you can put in ten hours of work and get from a bottom-level P to the absolute best P in your class - one more comma and it would have been H, but that is literally no return on your investment.

Rumor has it that LPs are discretionary. I have even had a 3L tell me that she never heard of anyone getting an LP. I don't think that's true, but the consensus is that you really have to mail it in to get an LP. Also, I think they don't publish medians or class rank.

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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby ph14 » Wed Nov 23, 2011 12:59 pm

delusional wrote:
ignatiusr wrote:
nixxers wrote:I picked HLS over a Darrow (and minor schollies elsewhere). Sometimes I think about the crushing debt and feel sad but for the most part I haven't looked back. The people and opportunities you will be exposed to at this school are incredible. Come visit and see how you like it. Maybe it's just my section but I imagined a school filled with gunners and insufferable douches and instead found a friendly, helpful, fun and humble friends. also, don't underestimate the power of HP/P/LP grading.


I'm still curious about the implications of the grading system. Since the numerical value assigned to H/P/LP is apparently identical to A/B/C, what is the true benefit? Is it primarily psychological, or are professors more likely to give an H than they would be to give an A?

Also- apologies if this information is readily available elsewhere, but I couldn't find it after a quick search- does the grading system affect the way that class rankings are released/structured?

I don't know what other schools' curves are like, but I think it's different because there are no gradations. You're either an H or you're everybody else. When the curve was last published, it was 37% H.

The downside is that on something like LRW, you can put in ten hours of work and get from a bottom-level P to the absolute best P in your class - one more comma and it would have been H, but that is literally no return on your investment.

Rumor has it that LPs are discretionary. I have even had a 3L tell me that she never heard of anyone getting an LP. I don't think that's true, but the consensus is that you really have to mail it in to get an LP. Also, I think they don't publish medians or class rank.


I thought the curve was a secret? Also, while LPs may be discretionary, some professors choose to follow the curve and give out the recommended percentage.

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DoubleChecks
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby DoubleChecks » Wed Nov 23, 2011 1:01 pm

delusional wrote:
ignatiusr wrote:
nixxers wrote:I picked HLS over a Darrow (and minor schollies elsewhere). Sometimes I think about the crushing debt and feel sad but for the most part I haven't looked back. The people and opportunities you will be exposed to at this school are incredible. Come visit and see how you like it. Maybe it's just my section but I imagined a school filled with gunners and insufferable douches and instead found a friendly, helpful, fun and humble friends. also, don't underestimate the power of HP/P/LP grading.


I'm still curious about the implications of the grading system. Since the numerical value assigned to H/P/LP is apparently identical to A/B/C, what is the true benefit? Is it primarily psychological, or are professors more likely to give an H than they would be to give an A?

Also- apologies if this information is readily available elsewhere, but I couldn't find it after a quick search- does the grading system affect the way that class rankings are released/structured?

I don't know what other schools' curves are like, but I think it's different because there are no gradations. You're either an H or you're everybody else. When the curve was last published, it was 37% H.

The downside is that on something like LRW, you can put in ten hours of work and get from a bottom-level P to the absolute best P in your class - one more comma and it would have been H, but that is literally no return on your investment.

Rumor has it that LPs are discretionary. I have even had a 3L tell me that she never heard of anyone getting an LP. I don't think that's true, but the consensus is that you really have to mail it in to get an LP. Also, I think they don't publish medians or class rank.


37% H's is about right. Rest get Ps. A couple of people per class MAY get discretionary Dean Scholar's as well. LPs are discretionary, but they weren't 2 yrs ago (or less so, ~8% were given out then and people complained). Now they are rarer...but there are DEFINITELY a number of students walking around with LPs (I know some). That being said, they are pretty rare, esp. now...with most profs either handing out none or a couple per class. Generally, they seem to have gone to people who were just really unprepared for the final for one reason or another (i.e. leaving whole sections blank, personal circumstances, etc.).

Supposedly the DS/H/P/LPs all come with GPA points that we don't really see -- I don't think employers do either. So that really only matters for the calculation of honors and the like when you graduate and stuff. For the most part, about a third get Hs, rest get Ps. That is the overall idea, so low stress, ESPECIALLY once coupled with how biglaw hiring actually seems to work at HLS. Save the most selective firms at OCI, your grades don't really matter unless you are on either extreme. Multiple LPs and you stand out in a bad way, really grades and you stand out again for the opposite reason. W&C, Wachtell, etc. may have "grade cutoffs"...but all the others (even some V5s) do not really. Your professionalism and interviewing skills matter much more. Everyone I know a bit below median, at median, above median, etc. all had pretty similar results at OCI. In fact, the best person I know was median grades (maybe a bit below?) who snagged a ridiculous amount of cbs due to interviewing skeelz.

imo, at HLS, you'll try to get the H in every class, succeed some of the time, get Ps the rest, and still get that job you want (excluding those aiming for the top 2% :P).

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DoubleChecks
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby DoubleChecks » Wed Nov 23, 2011 1:02 pm

ph14 wrote:I thought the curve was a secret? Also, while LPs may be discretionary, some professors choose to follow the curve and give out the recommended percentage.

Not a secret per se, just not public knowledge. Pretty much anyone on campus would tell you (even OCS I think) that about a third get H's (36-37%) and rest get Ps. Discretionary LPs and DS's possible, depending on professor. These curves tend to only hold for 1L classes and some of the larger ones later on...small electives tend to be more H-heavy.




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