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

Special forum where professionals are encouraged to help law school applicants, students, and graduates.

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MikeSpivey
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officer

Postby MikeSpivey » Wed Jul 03, 2013 4:42 pm

For WL folks I have a new feature on my twitter account where I announce the week's WL activity from low (meaning not much movement off WL), moderate, intense, and big-bucks/no-whammies (meaning people are getting $$$ off the WL).

https://twitter.com/SpiveyConsult

This is more of a pain to compile than it may seem so I hope it helps.

californiauser
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officer

Postby californiauser » Wed Jul 03, 2013 10:14 pm

I have a question regarding URM applicants. If someone checks the white and black boxes (for ethnicity), would that person be viewed the same as someone who checks only black?

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nothingtosee
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officer

Postby nothingtosee » Wed Jul 03, 2013 10:28 pm

MikeSpivey wrote:June 2013 LSAT curve

http://i.imgur.com/spcpRL5.png

Do you have info number of 170's, 172's, etc?

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MikeSpivey
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officer

Postby MikeSpivey » Wed Jul 03, 2013 11:09 pm

I'm not sure what you mean by information but the percentiles are based in averages of the PRIOR three years so they won't tell you anything on this test.

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MikeSpivey
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officer

Postby MikeSpivey » Wed Jul 03, 2013 11:11 pm

californiauser wrote:I have a question regarding URM applicants. If someone checks the white and black boxes (for ethnicity), would that person be viewed the same as someone who checks only black?


Hard to say school by school but I think you would get a good deal of emails asking you to clarify.

nugnoy
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officer

Postby nugnoy » Thu Jul 04, 2013 12:56 am

MikeSpivey wrote:Everyone:

If it is helpful, I will do an online admissions chat. I guess next week this is a bad one for me and likely everyone with the 4th coming up. I learned years ago as an assistant dean with 1000 students that this is crazy to ask...BUT...which day works best for everyone.

Also, if this is just a patently undesirable, idea let me know too.

Thanks,

Mike


Evening in PST works best for me. But if you're east coaster that might be night for you.

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MikeSpivey
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officer

Postby MikeSpivey » Thu Jul 04, 2013 9:16 am

nugnoy wrote:
MikeSpivey wrote:Everyone:

If it is helpful, I will do an online admissions chat. I guess next week this is a bad one for me and likely everyone with the 4th coming up. I learned years ago as an assistant dean with 1000 students that this is crazy to ask...BUT...which day works best for everyone.

Also, if this is just a patently undesirable, idea let me know too.

Thanks,

Mike


Evening in PST works best for me. But if you're east coaster that might be night for you.


Thanks for the feedback, nugnoy. Anyone else?

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MikeSpivey
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officer

Postby MikeSpivey » Sat Jul 06, 2013 12:32 pm

za51 wrote:
MikeSpivey wrote:za, I am pretty sure I've answered those questions here so search through and let me know if you don't find it and I'll attack it. Cool?


Hey thanks for your response. I just went through the thread twice; are you referring to the plumber question, patent agent question, and "How Law Grads Can Improve Hiring" article? So to check if I understand: you said in the plumber question that many people have legal experience (so, extrapolating from this: it's not that much of a differentiating factor for admissions?). And in the patent agent question you said that such legal experience will certainly help with hiring but have a minor impact on admissions? Am I reading that correctly?

So does this mean it won't really matter for admissions whether I paralegal in top biglaw or volunteer at a public-interest, not-for-profit law association? But will law school admissions officers find it a little ironic if I say I want PI in my PS and do biglaw assistant work? Or will they understand the motivations for paralegaling in biglaw (money, depth of work)? Similarly, if I apply for PI positions during/after law school, will my biglaw paralegal work raise doubts? Or vice-versa; if I decide on private-sector work, will PI volunteer raise doubts?

Again, thanks for your help!


Zaid. It won;t be a huge bump to have paralegal experience in Biglaw in the initial admissions cycle, correct. However, and this bears note, once you get deep into WL season it can make all the difference in the world. In other words, let's pretend for a second you are a splitter (most are for some schools, incidentally...think about it...) or even below both medians slightly. Once the numbers of a class start getting locked in, the valuation of other factors start coming into play. If the admissions office works closely with the CSO, or the broad strategic agenda of the school, they will realize this experience makes you more employable and will elevate it. Early on though, it is more about numbers and having a buttoned up application.

Does this help?

Mike

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xylocarp
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officer

Postby xylocarp » Sat Jul 06, 2013 7:32 pm

MikeSpivey wrote:For WL folks I have a new feature on my twitter account where I announce the week's WL activity from low (meaning not much movement off WL), moderate, intense, and big-bucks/no-whammies (meaning people are getting $$$ off the WL).

https://twitter.com/SpiveyConsult

This is more of a pain to compile than it may seem so I hope it helps.

I haven't applied yet, but this is awesome. If I were on a waitlist at one of my top schools, I would be checking this constantly, since sometimes it's hard to gauge what's actually happening on the large scale just from TLS posts.

za51
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officer

Postby za51 » Sat Jul 06, 2013 7:37 pm

A
Last edited by za51 on Mon Oct 28, 2013 8:05 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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MikeSpivey
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officer

Postby MikeSpivey » Sun Jul 07, 2013 9:44 am

Thanks for the thanks, everyone.

I think next Wednesday or Thursday night we will be doing to online Q&A and that I should be freed up a bit more to speak my mind and opinion on schools, etc during it. Hope to see everyone there details to follow soon.

Hero2013
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officer

Postby Hero2013 » Sun Jul 07, 2013 2:04 pm

Hey Mike,

Thanks for being so awesome! Quick question for you. How important are factors such as knowing how to speak more than one language (I can speak 3) and being an immigrant that moving to the US as a kid. I'm not an URM but I have a great GPA (3.9) and Im shooting for a 170 on the lsat. I have plenty of time to study. How much will those other factors help me get into a top 5 school like Harvard or UChicago.

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MikeSpivey
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officer

Postby MikeSpivey » Sun Jul 07, 2013 2:23 pm

Hero2013 wrote:Hey Mike,

Thanks for being so awesome! Quick question for you. How important are factors such as knowing how to speak more than one language (I can speak 3) and being an immigrant that moving to the US as a kid. I'm not an URM but I have a great GPA (3.9) and Im shooting for a 170 on the lsat. I have plenty of time to study. How much will those other factors help me get into a top 5 school like Harvard or UChicago.


Given all of that, I think you are in a really good way if you score in the 170's, or even your target of 170. If you are WL'd at a top 5, the fact you are an immigrant and speak 3 languages should really start to stand out. You will want to highlight this as part of your continued interest in law schools.

whatshouldido3
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officer

Postby whatshouldido3 » Sun Jul 07, 2013 3:42 pm

Thank you for the generous advice you have provided the TLS community. I have a question that I haven't seen you address yet. I have been out of UG for 2 years and I will be sending in my applications this Fall. I have a some decent internships from my UG days (multiple political and legal internships) but a spotty job history for the two years I have been off. I have basically been traveling and moving around a lot, and making money when I can/relying on parental help. I have had a couple of jobs where I have paid taxes (retail etc.) but a lot of the things I have done since UG have been under the table work such as mowing lawns and landscaping for neighbors, painting houses, and random craigslist gigs that paid in cash. How should I handle this on applications... on one hand I don't want it to look like I have done absolutely nothing but travel around on my parents money, but on the other hand if I list these things I have done for work I don't want to eventually deal with Bar C&F issues based on working under the table. How should I handle this?

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MikeSpivey
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officer

Postby MikeSpivey » Mon Jul 08, 2013 12:04 pm

Here is a new blog article (even comes with a picture), "Majoring in Minor Things" @

http://spiveyconsulting.com/blog/majoring-in-minor-things/

I hope it is at least minorly helpful.

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MikeSpivey
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officer

Postby MikeSpivey » Mon Jul 08, 2013 2:15 pm

The first admissions Q&A will be this Thursday, July 11th at 8pm EST. The link to the chat is bookmarked at my blog:

http://spiveyconsulting.com/blog/

Invite whomever you want, it's going to be a wild time. Indeed, you could turn a drinking game into how many times I say "well I can't speak for that individual school...but"

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NYC2012
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officer

Postby NYC2012 » Mon Jul 08, 2013 9:34 pm

MikeSpivey wrote:The first admissions Q&A will be this Thursday, July 11th at 8pm EST. The link to the chat is bookmarked at my blog:

http://spiveyconsulting.com/blog/

Invite whomever you want, it's going to be a wild time. Indeed, you could turn a drinking game into how many times I say "well I can't speak for that individual school...but"


Will we be able to watch it afterward at some point? For those of us who might be stuck at work till 9/10 PM as per usual :cry:

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MikeSpivey
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officer

Postby MikeSpivey » Mon Jul 08, 2013 10:24 pm

NYC2012 wrote:
MikeSpivey wrote:The first admissions Q&A will be this Thursday, July 11th at 8pm EST. The link to the chat is bookmarked at my blog:

http://spiveyconsulting.com/blog/

Invite whomever you want, it's going to be a wild time. Indeed, you could turn a drinking game into how many times I say "well I can't speak for that individual school...but"


Will we be able to watch it afterward at some point? For those of us who might be stuck at work till 9/10 PM as per usual :cry:


NYC I don't think I can do that for a variety of reasons but, I will do another well before applications can be turned in to law schools, and I will do it over a weekend. How does that sound?

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mvonh001
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officer

Postby mvonh001 » Mon Jul 08, 2013 10:34 pm

How looked down upon is a prior DUI arrest (pled guilty and took a divergence program to reduce it to a reckless driving) and Blank prescription arrest (Charge dropped - The prescription wasnt a real dr or anything looking real, it was a prop for school, but when i was arrested for DUI they found it in my car)

What should I do about this situation?

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MikeSpivey
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officer

Postby MikeSpivey » Tue Jul 09, 2013 11:20 am

Here you go folks, the first June test-taker volume rumors @

https://twitter.com/SpiveyConsult

(yes, this is also an unabashed attempt to get more twitter followers. Follow me, dammit! My intern tells me it is important even though she can't follow up and explain why_

nugnoy
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officer

Postby nugnoy » Tue Jul 09, 2013 3:33 pm

June test-taker volume rumors


I totally stopped reading at "volume" and was confused and disappointed 5 seconds later lol

Looking forward to the chat!

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MikeSpivey
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officer

Postby MikeSpivey » Tue Jul 09, 2013 3:43 pm

nugnoy wrote:
June test-taker volume rumors


I totally stopped reading at "volume" and was confused and disappointed 5 seconds later lol

Looking forward to the chat!


They are from a good source so hopefully more than just rumors. I just have not seen the numbers personally so I didn't feel comfrtable without the disclaimer.

See you on Thursday night!

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nothingtosee
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officer

Postby nothingtosee » Tue Jul 09, 2013 3:56 pm

Mike,

Do you have a guess as to why the last cycle had considerable drops in three administrations, but a much more moderate drop in the June administration?

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MikeSpivey
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officer

Postby MikeSpivey » Tue Jul 09, 2013 6:45 pm

nothingtosee wrote:Mike,

Do you have a guess as to why the last cycle had considerable drops in three administrations, but a much more moderate drop in the June administration?


Nothingtosee, I think it as simple as reaching the floor. There will always be a set point of people who have always aspired to be lawyers, and another number (albeit that ebbs and flows more) that apply to law school because they don't have jobs out of undergraduate.

Applications are down roughly 50% over the last 3 years, which I believe is the biggest 3 year decrease since this data has been measured. It has to stabilize and indeed bounce back a little at some point and it very well might be this year because, again, we may have reached that bottom point where the market does not significantly impact applicants. Anyone's guess is as good as the next on this until the data actually comes out of course.

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MikeSpivey
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officer

Postby MikeSpivey » Wed Jul 10, 2013 9:20 am

whatshouldido3 wrote:Thank you for the generous advice you have provided the TLS community. I have a question that I haven't seen you address yet. I have been out of UG for 2 years and I will be sending in my applications this Fall. I have a some decent internships from my UG days (multiple political and legal internships) but a spotty job history for the two years I have been off. I have basically been traveling and moving around a lot, and making money when I can/relying on parental help. I have had a couple of jobs where I have paid taxes (retail etc.) but a lot of the things I have done since UG have been under the table work such as mowing lawns and landscaping for neighbors, painting houses, and random craigslist gigs that paid in cash. How should I handle this on applications... on one hand I don't want it to look like I have done absolutely nothing but travel around on my parents money, but on the other hand if I list these things I have done for work I don't want to eventually deal with Bar C&F issues based on working under the table. How should I handle this?


The spotty job history would come into play more on the hiring end (they will notice the gaps in your resume) than on the admissions front. Heck, you might have a story from traveling that could turn into an awesome personal statement topic -- I've seen such examples hundreds of times. Even the blue collar, make money when you can life isn't so bad on the admissions front as I bet you could use it to differentiate yourself from the masses. I can not imagine any of this having an impact on your BAr C&F application, it is amazing how few people actually disqualify for the bar for C&F reasons. That said, I am not a Bar consultant so you might want to bounce that off of an expert.


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