Spivey Consulting Q&A with Adcoms from Yale, Harvard, Penn, Chicago etc.

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benwyatt
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Postby benwyatt » Sun Oct 18, 2015 11:12 pm

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KarenButtenbaum
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Re: Q&A with former Harvard, Penn, Chicago, Vandy Admissions officers

Postby KarenButtenbaum » Mon Oct 19, 2015 10:30 am

mustwemean wrote:I have a question. After graduating from undergrad in 2012, I had started to prepare applications at the end of 2012. For various reasons I postponed my applications. However, at that time, I did manage to get two letters of recommendation from undergrad professors.

Is there any reason why I couldn't/shouldn't use these for applications for this cycle? Are there any disadvantages? In the interim, I've just been working and haven't attended graduate school. These two professors still seem best able to speak to my academic ability. And I doubt, if I asked them to write another letter, they would write anything different.

Thanks in advance for any advice.


I think it is totally fine to use these letters of rec. Academic letters are very much wanted and appreciated, so this fits the bill. It never mattered to me if the letters were written a few years ago. But I would advise supplementing them with a more recent letter from an employer.

Cheers,
KB

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KarenButtenbaum
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Re: Q&A with former Harvard, Penn, Chicago, Vandy Admissions officers

Postby KarenButtenbaum » Mon Oct 19, 2015 10:32 am

byeby40 wrote:Thank you for offering us this opportunity!

I was fortunate to be able to publish a piece of writing with my advisor in undergrad. I listed this publication on my resume. Should I submit an addendum with a few sentences describing what the piece of writing was?

I saw that Harvard's application has a section to describe a piece of published work, but none of the other schools I am applying to has this section.


It should absolutely be on your resume, but I don't think it is necessary to describe the work outside of the resume. It won't hurt if you do, but I just don't think it is necessary.

Cheers,
KB

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KarenButtenbaum
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Re: Q&A with former Harvard, Penn, Chicago, Vandy Admissions officers

Postby KarenButtenbaum » Mon Oct 19, 2015 10:40 am

benwyatt wrote:
masterz wrote:Hi Mike and Karen,

I have couple of questions regarding deferment. I was accepted to a school for 15-16 cycle, for work reasons I've deferred to 16-17 cycle. In the school's deferment letter it says "I acknowledge that deferments at the School are binding and conditioned upon not pursuing admissions, holding deferral, or attending another law school prior to matriculating."

My questions are:

1. If I do apply elsewhere, will the school that accepted me know through LSAC?
2. If they know about it, what will happen to my acceptance? Will they rescind their offer of admission? Will they inform other schools about what happens?

Thank you very much!

Do. Not. Do. This.
They will find out and when they do, they will notify the other school and you will lose your acceptances at both.


Agree with this advice - Don't apply to other schools while holding a deferral elsewhere. Not only would you be blatantly violating the agreement that you entered into, but you would be faced with another hurdle when you apply to other schools: Most schools will ask a question something along the lines of 'Have you ever attended law school or are you currently holding a deferral at another law school that prohibits you from applying elsewhere?" And you should never lie on an application.
They will find out and the punishment will vary but can include rescission and a misconduct charge (which will go in your permanent LSAC file).
If you really want to apply elsewhere, contact the school where you are holding a deferral and either withdraw and reapply or ask them for permission to apply elsewhere (they will likely say no but you can always ask).

Cheers,
KB

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gamerish
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Postby gamerish » Mon Oct 19, 2015 8:53 pm

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paradigmshift
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Re: Q&A with former Harvard, Penn, Chicago, Vandy Admissions officers

Postby paradigmshift » Mon Oct 19, 2015 8:57 pm

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Billy Madison
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Re: Q&A with former Harvard, Penn, Chicago, Vandy Admissions officers

Postby Billy Madison » Mon Oct 19, 2015 9:29 pm

Karen/Mike/Dean Meeker,

I recently opened the Notre Dame application and noticed that the C&F section requires disclosure of school discipline that only included probation, suspension, expulsion, or dismissal. This seems unlike most schools that include an "any disciplinary action" clause. Would one be correct to assume that minor disciplinary actions that fall short of the specified punishments requiring disclosure (write an essay, meet with the dorm director, etc) do not need to be disclosed in the application? Thank you!
Last edited by Billy Madison on Thu Oct 22, 2015 9:57 am, edited 1 time in total.

cam89
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Re: Q&A with former Harvard, Penn, Chicago, Vandy Admissions officers

Postby cam89 » Wed Oct 21, 2015 10:45 pm

Hi all,
I plan on submitting a "why Columbia" essay. However, I just wanted to verify that the prompt allows for one. This is the prompt from their app
"Optional: Candidates may add brief supplementary statements they believe will enable the Admissions Committee to make a fully informed decision on the application. The Committee especially welcomes addenda that allow it to understand the contribution the applicant's background (e.g., socioeconomic status, ethnic, religious, sexual orientation) would add to the Columbia Law School community."
Two questions: 1) Does this prompt invite a "why Columbia" essay?
2) Can you write other abilities/talents that you will bring to the Columbia Law School community, or do they specifically want to know how you will make it more diverse (similar to the examples they provide)?

Thanks so much!

Zwiff
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Re: Q&A with former Harvard, Penn, Chicago, Vandy Admissions officers

Postby Zwiff » Thu Oct 22, 2015 10:20 am

In writing submissions, is it acceptable to write "1L," "2L," and "3L" when talking about those future years?

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KarenButtenbaum
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Re: Q&A with former Harvard, Penn, Chicago, Vandy Admissions officers

Postby KarenButtenbaum » Thu Oct 22, 2015 10:33 am

gamerish wrote:I was hoping to get some more concrete clarification on this from Karen/Mike/Dean Meeker if it's not too much trouble:

gamerish wrote:Hi, everyone. I've asked in various parts of the forum but I haven't been able to get any answers to this question so I figured I'd pose it to the experts:

I've started filling out all my applications and I've noticed that, unlike the rest of the T14, Harvard, Yale, Duke, and Michigan do not have options to identify as Puerto Rican and/or Mexican-American and was curious if that was because these schools do not give such consideration during admissions, if they do give such consideration but instead rely on identification of ethnic background from the LSAT/your LSAC account or if one is supposed to write an appropriate diversity statement if one wants to be considered as such.

Thanks.


Also, I'm currently writing two separate personal statements because I've not yet decided which one I prefer. One is more of why law and the other describes a medical condition that I faced (and have since overcome). My concern is that, if I choose to do the former, I won't have any explanation of a pretty huge (several years) gap in my resume and extracurriculars. If I do go with the why law statement, should I submit a brief addenda clarifying the impact my condition had on my ability to participate in such activities and that I am now no longer limited in such a manner? Thanks.


I can imagine that the decision for schools to have sub-categories for each ethnicity is based on several factors, but a dominating factor is just a practical matter of what categories the school's student database supports. In other words, the fact that they offer a sub-category or not should not be seen as an indication of how they factor it into a decision.
But you certainly can write a diversity statement about it!
For the PS, you may want to have someone else (a family member, friend etc.) read them to check for tone and get some feedback on which one describes you better and feels more like you -- but also leaves the reader with a positive impression of you.
There is nothing wrong with submitting an addendum to explain something, but the personal statement is not usually the place to explain. You want the PS to leave the reader with a positive impression.

Cheers,
KB

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KarenButtenbaum
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Re: Q&A with former Harvard, Penn, Chicago, Vandy Admissions officers

Postby KarenButtenbaum » Thu Oct 22, 2015 10:44 am

paradigmshift wrote:hey mike and karen, thanks so much for answering all of these questions. i've read through a lot of what has been posted and so far it has been really helpful! this is my first time posting here on TLS and I think I have a fairly unique C&F situation/question (i've seen countless run ins with the law and their respective C&F scenarios addressed in forums, but nothing quite like mine). If you can answer my two questions that have been troubling me for quite some time now, i'll be forever indebted to you!!

1) how do you think my situation will affect how adcomms in the top 6 schools view me as an applicant
2) how should i go about addressing it in my application

Since i'm required to disclose this to the schools that I'm applying to, i chose to focus on it a decent amount in my personal statement, and without getting into too much more detail, i think the statement itself turned out really well. in regards to my second question, do you think that putting this situation front and center in my personal statement, owning up to it, and telling the adcomm how it changed my life/me as a person is beneficial/mitigating at all, or should I write a completely different personal statement and just attach an addendum? this situation has really been puzzling me for a while now and any input would be really helpful!

thanks in advance!


I've deleted the identifying characteristics from your post, and you might want to do the same from the original -- just to keep it a little more anonymous in case you say something silly on here in the future..

In general, I would not advise to focus your PS on a C+F issue because you want to give a positive impression of yourself, and there may be other aspects that you would rather highlight. But at the same time, I think leaning from a mistake is a fine topic in a PS.
In your case, you can say all of what you need to say in an addendum, so in some ways you are giving up an opportunity to discuss another aspect of you by highlighting this in your PS. But it is obviously your call in the end.
One poor decision or misunderstanding is not generally going to have a negative implications with your application. How you describe it and talk about it will matter -- a lot. You will run into many people in law school with one thing on their record, but you won't see many (there are some, but not many) with a pattern of poor behavior.

Cheers,
KB

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KarenButtenbaum
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Re: Q&A with former Harvard, Penn, Chicago, Vandy Admissions officers

Postby KarenButtenbaum » Thu Oct 22, 2015 10:47 am

gunton224 wrote:Karen/Mike/Dean Meeker,

I recently opened the Notre Dame application and noticed that the C&F section requires disclosure of school discipline that only included probation, suspension, expulsion, or dismissal. This seems unlike most schools that include an "any disciplinary action" clause. Would one be correct to assume that minor disciplinary actions that fall short of the specified punishments requiring disclosure (write an essay, meet with the dorm director, etc) do not need to be disclosed in the application? Thank you!


I think your interpretation is correct. They don't want to know about a slap on the wrist.
But if you are ever in doubt, you should disclose because chances are it will have no negative implications in the decision, but answering it incorrectly is a big no-no.

Cheers,
KB

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Billy Madison
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Re: Q&A with former Harvard, Penn, Chicago, Vandy Admissions officers

Postby Billy Madison » Thu Oct 22, 2015 10:49 am

Karen, thank you so much for your response!

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KarenButtenbaum
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Re: Q&A with former Harvard, Penn, Chicago, Vandy Admissions officers

Postby KarenButtenbaum » Thu Oct 22, 2015 10:50 am

cam89 wrote:Hi all,
I plan on submitting a "why Columbia" essay. However, I just wanted to verify that the prompt allows for one. This is the prompt from their app
"Optional: Candidates may add brief supplementary statements they believe will enable the Admissions Committee to make a fully informed decision on the application. The Committee especially welcomes addenda that allow it to understand the contribution the applicant's background (e.g., socioeconomic status, ethnic, religious, sexual orientation) would add to the Columbia Law School community."
Two questions: 1) Does this prompt invite a "why Columbia" essay?
2) Can you write other abilities/talents that you will bring to the Columbia Law School community, or do they specifically want to know how you will make it more diverse (similar to the examples they provide)?

Thanks so much!


That looks like a diversity statement prompt to me, so I would answer it in those terms.

You can certainly submit a Why Columbia statement, but this prompt is not exactly asking for that.

Cheers,
KB

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KarenButtenbaum
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Re: Q&A with former Harvard, Penn, Chicago, Vandy Admissions officers

Postby KarenButtenbaum » Thu Oct 22, 2015 10:51 am

Zwiff wrote:In writing submissions, is it acceptable to write "1L," "2L," and "3L" when talking about those future years?


Yes, everyone who is reading your application will know what that means. But this raises a larger question for me: are you spelling out what you want to do each year??

Cheers,
KB

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MikeSpivey
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Re: Q&A with former Harvard, Penn, Chicago, Vandy Admissions officers

Postby MikeSpivey » Thu Oct 22, 2015 11:02 am

If anyone wants to help us a small bit, can you tell us which blog platform you like best? Many thanks!

http://spiveyconsulting.tumblr.com/

https://www.waterforpeople.org/stories#waterforpeople

sd1111
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Re: Q&A with former Harvard, Penn, Chicago, Vandy Admissions officers

Postby sd1111 » Thu Oct 22, 2015 11:09 am

Short questions regarding the international transcripts. Thanks for your time and answers in advance.

I graduated from a foreign law school and my international transcripts has been evaluated as AA (above average). Further,I have a relatively high GPA for my LL.M degree in an top 30 American law school and I also graduated with honour (for outstanding performance at international law). I wonder how would the admission office evaluate my international academic performance? Will them evaluate the LL.M academic performance as well? I scored 172 for the LSAT, would my foreign undergraduate transcripts evaluation make me impossible to go to a T6?

Millions thanks.
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Nagster5
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Re: Q&A with former Harvard, Penn, Chicago, Vandy Admissions officers

Postby Nagster5 » Thu Oct 22, 2015 11:20 am

MikeSpivey wrote:If anyone wants to help us a small bit, can you tell us which blog platform you like best? Many thanks!

http://spiveyconsulting.tumblr.com/

https://www.waterforpeople.org/stories#waterforpeople


Well the second one refuses to run on my browser (Old IE is mandatory at work).

sd1111
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Re: Q&A with former Harvard, Penn, Chicago, Vandy Admissions officers

Postby sd1111 » Thu Oct 22, 2015 11:47 am

MikeSpivey wrote:If anyone wants to help us a small bit, can you tell us which blog platform you like best? Many thanks!

http://spiveyconsulting.tumblr.com/

https://www.waterforpeople.org/stories#waterforpeople


I would like to choose the first one.

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SirArthurDayne
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Postby SirArthurDayne » Thu Oct 22, 2015 11:48 am

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KarenButtenbaum
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Re: Q&A with former Harvard, Penn, Chicago, Vandy Admissions officers

Postby KarenButtenbaum » Thu Oct 22, 2015 11:52 am

SirArthurDayne wrote:
sd1111 wrote:
MikeSpivey wrote:If anyone wants to help us a small bit, can you tell us which blog platform you like best? Many thanks!

http://spiveyconsulting.tumblr.com/

https://www.waterforpeople.org/stories#waterforpeople


I would like to choose the first one.


Same


What if the second one had that adorable fox on it?

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PlanetExpress
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Re: Q&A with former Harvard, Penn, Chicago, Vandy Admissions officers

Postby PlanetExpress » Thu Oct 22, 2015 12:01 pm

KarenButtenbaum wrote:
SirArthurDayne wrote:
sd1111 wrote:
MikeSpivey wrote:If anyone wants to help us a small bit, can you tell us which blog platform you like best? Many thanks!

http://spiveyconsulting.tumblr.com/

https://www.waterforpeople.org/stories#waterforpeople


I would like to choose the first one.


Same


What if the second one had that adorable fox on it?


I like the second one more and think it'd look even better with the fox. I just have this preconception that Tumblr is more appropriate personal blogging and less appropriate for businesses that want to have an online presence.

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TheProdigal
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Re: Q&A with former Harvard, Penn, Chicago, Vandy Admissions officers

Postby TheProdigal » Thu Oct 22, 2015 12:25 pm

PlanetExpress wrote:
KarenButtenbaum wrote:
SirArthurDayne wrote:
sd1111 wrote:
MikeSpivey wrote:If anyone wants to help us a small bit, can you tell us which blog platform you like best? Many thanks!

http://spiveyconsulting.tumblr.com/

https://www.waterforpeople.org/stories#waterforpeople


I would like to choose the first one.


Same


What if the second one had that adorable fox on it?


I like the second one more and think it'd look even better with the fox. I just have this preconception that Tumblr is more appropriate personal blogging and less appropriate for businesses that want to have an online presence.

Seconded. Added benefit of not having to scroll past entire posts if looking for an earlier one.

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mornincounselor
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Postby mornincounselor » Thu Oct 22, 2015 1:11 pm

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cam89
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Re: Q&A with former Harvard, Penn, Chicago, Vandy Admissions officers

Postby cam89 » Thu Oct 22, 2015 3:03 pm

KarenButtenbaum wrote:
cam89 wrote:Hi all,
I plan on submitting a "why Columbia" essay. However, I just wanted to verify that the prompt allows for one. This is the prompt from their app
"Optional: Candidates may add brief supplementary statements they believe will enable the Admissions Committee to make a fully informed decision on the application. The Committee especially welcomes addenda that allow it to understand the contribution the applicant's background (e.g., socioeconomic status, ethnic, religious, sexual orientation) would add to the Columbia Law School community."
Two questions: 1) Does this prompt invite a "why Columbia" essay?
2) Can you write other abilities/talents that you will bring to the Columbia Law School community, or do they specifically want to know how you will make it more diverse (similar to the examples they provide)?

Thanks so much!


That looks like a diversity statement prompt to me, so I would answer it in those terms.

You can certainly submit a Why Columbia statement, but this prompt is not exactly asking for that.

Cheers,
KB


Thanks so much, Karen.
If this isn't what the prompt is asking for, then how can I attach a "why Columbia" essay- it isn't what they are asking for? I am confused because everyone always talks about why x essays but I haven't seen it on Columbia's or Penn's application.

Thanks


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