FlanAl wrote:I have a bit of trouble believing that the CSO is telling firms that our median is 3.35 when it is really 3.5 or above. Or we just have great career services? Maybe OCI goes so well because 85% of us are above median?
It's Cornell's way of keeping up with its peers. Basically all of the other T14s pad GPAs in other ways but I'm not sure why Cornell doesn't just follow their systems. Most of the other T14s either (1) include LLMs on the curve (and the LLMs basically uniformally and without fail eat up the bottom of the curve thus inflating the JD rank) or (2) do not enforce curves in classes under 40 people (such that JDs can basically ensure that they opt for classes that will award solely As).
I doubt the mean is 3.5. I was a 3L when they made the grade change and, at least at that time, many professors didn't act on the leniency of the new curve. Plus, to be fair, the new curve allows you to go under a 3.35 mean. And I don't think Cornell is explicitly saying that the median is 3.35, it's just saying that 3.35 is the aspirational median (and the one which at least some professors continue to enforce). 3.35 is probably an inaccurate, but fairly close estimate.
ETA: For frame of reference, my year (2011) top 30% was a 3.52, I think. The year before me top 30% was a 3.48.