Thinking about adding a major

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jms1987
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Thinking about adding a major

Postby jms1987 » Sat Apr 24, 2010 7:09 pm

I have been contemplating adding a major to my existing poli sci major for a month or so now and just would like to ask if any of you think its a worthwhile idea.

I'm currently stuck with a soul-crushing 2.5 GPA, thanks to my second semester going terrible for me. (2 C's, one A., and one F from a pass/fail class) When this semester ends, I will have around 56 credit hours (1st and 2nd semester were done with only 12 credit hours) I honestly don't have a great excuse for that, except for I took almost 2 years off after high school to work full time, so adjusting to studying again was rough at first and my study habits sucked. (not a party person at all, just didn't keep up well enough)

I have yet to take the LSAT as well, so that is only adding to the stress of my bad GPA. I'm unsure of how many more hours I would take if I added the major as of now too. I really want to graduate in 2012, since I was 21 when I started college and will be around 25 when I am done. BigLaw is my main goal with either academia or politics later in life, so getting into law school and finishing before I'm 30 is highly important.

Any advice would be highly appreciated.

270910
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Re: Thinking about adding a major

Postby 270910 » Sat Apr 24, 2010 7:14 pm

I'm just going to skip over the text of your post and tell you that nothing matters except your GPA as calculated by the LSDAS prior to obtaining your first undergraduate degree.

After that, your uGPA + LSAT will do 90-95% of the work in your application unless you are an underrepresented minority.

Literally nothing else matters. That is all the information you need to know.

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KibblesAndVick
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Re: Thinking about adding a major

Postby KibblesAndVick » Sat Apr 24, 2010 7:22 pm

I think you should add another major. As you noted, doing so will allow you to add extra credits and raise your GPA. Sadly, grade trends and excuses mean next to nothing in law school admissions. They care about your GPA at face value and adding a major will give you an opportunity to raise it. With a 2.5 and 56 credits you're going to have a damn hard time getting above median at the T14. However, you could easily get above 3.0 which can be something of a "magic number". If you end up above 3.0 and do well enough on the LSAT you will be in decent shape.

Additionally, Political Science is a pretty weak major (I have a degree in it). Coupling it with History, Economics, Spanish, or anything else would make you better rounded and, depending on what you coupled it with, more employable if you end up deciding against law school.

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im_blue
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Re: Thinking about adding a major

Postby im_blue » Sat Apr 24, 2010 7:32 pm

A second major will do nothing for you. Focus the rest of your college career on taking the easiest classes you can find and raising your GPA to a respectable level. If you get a 3.5 the rest of the way (64 credits), you'll be just over a 3.0.

jms1987
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Re: Thinking about adding a major

Postby jms1987 » Sat Apr 24, 2010 7:33 pm

^ Thanks for the reply. I know GPA excuses are weak, I would never try and use it as one on my essay or as an addendum. Poli sci being weak and generic is another reason i want to add either economics or history as my second major. I really, really, want either Penn, Chicago, or Michigan (all will be VERY hard for me to get into, no misconceptions here) I have one relative who recently graduated Michigan and loved it there, I know he was on law review and now works biglaw in Chicago.

edit- My school doesn't use 4.33 A+ scale, only 4.0 A so raising it might be a bit harder

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Borhas
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Re: Thinking about adding a major

Postby Borhas » Sat Apr 24, 2010 7:35 pm

I added a major so that I could stay an extra year and boost my GPA

my GPA went up from 3.18 to 3.38... I think it was a fairly decent plan

270910
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Re: Thinking about adding a major

Postby 270910 » Sat Apr 24, 2010 8:01 pm

jms1987 wrote:
edit- My school doesn't use 4.33 A+ scale, only 4.0 A so raising it might be a bit harder


FYI: No school uses a 4.33 'scale'. Some schools award them, but it's still extraordinary rare and designed to represent better-than-the-best quality work. Doesn't change your situation, but people on the forum often have a chip on their shoulder with respect to A+s without realizing that even at schools that award them it is absurdly difficult to obtain them. It's not like everyone has a .33 higher GPA at those schools :P

jms1987
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Re: Thinking about adding a major

Postby jms1987 » Sat Apr 24, 2010 8:05 pm

disco_barred wrote:
jms1987 wrote:
edit- My school doesn't use 4.33 A+ scale, only 4.0 A so raising it might be a bit harder


FYI: No school uses a 4.33 'scale'. Some schools award them, but it's still extraordinary rare and designed to represent better-than-the-best quality work. Doesn't change your situation, but people on the forum often have a chip on their shoulder with respect to A+s without realizing that even at schools that award them it is absurdly difficult to obtain them. It's not like everyone has a .33 higher GPA at those schools :P


Ahh, I see now. Thanks

jms1987
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Re: Thinking about adding a major

Postby jms1987 » Sun Apr 25, 2010 2:55 pm

One other I need to mention but don't really want to is my transferring around.

My first semester was done at Northern Kentucky University (a mistake since I had to OOST prices)
I left there after one semester and went to a CC since I had no idea at the time what I wanted to do.
After that semester, I went to lee University, where I have spent the last year. Unfortunately, my financial situation is not good right now (and neither is my parents) so I will have to move back to Ohio next semester AGAIN.

Will an addendum explain this when it comes time to apply to LS?

270910
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Re: Thinking about adding a major

Postby 270910 » Sun Apr 25, 2010 3:23 pm

jms1987 wrote:One other I need to mention but don't really want to is my transferring around.

My first semester was done at Northern Kentucky University (a mistake since I had to OOST prices)
I left there after one semester and went to a CC since I had no idea at the time what I wanted to do.
After that semester, I went to lee University, where I have spent the last year. Unfortunately, my financial situation is not good right now (and neither is my parents) so I will have to move back to Ohio next semester AGAIN.

Will an addendum explain this when it comes time to apply to LS?


It won't matter. You should explain it, because it will give you slightly more credibility, but a single point on the LSAT will be worth more than all of the beautifully written addenda in the world.

jms1987
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Re: Thinking about adding a major

Postby jms1987 » Fri Jun 04, 2010 3:42 pm

I'm bumping this because I am slightly confused and frazzled about the semester to quarter conversion for credit hours. The past credits I earned (totalling 56ish iirc) were all semester ones, and according to conversion charts that equals 84 quarter hours. My current #'s are:

1 F from a pass/fail :(
9 B's
2 A's
7 C's

How will this equal out when converted to quarter credits? The same or adjusted? Its a dumb question, but I'm just lost for some reason :?

sumus romani
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Re: Thinking about adding a major

Postby sumus romani » Fri Jun 04, 2010 3:53 pm

I'm not even going to ask why you were willing to pay out of state tuition at Northern Kentucky University when you could have in-state tuition at one of the many fine ohio state schools--it just makes no sense. But the past is behind you.

Don't worry about switching schools: worry about GPA. Your GPA, if not significantly improved, will virtually exclude you in and of itself from going to a top law school. It is true that a very high LSAT, plus a few years of work experience could possibly get you in to a school in the range of 10-14 with your 2.5. But you need to do what it takes to get that GPA up if you are to have more than a prayer. Add a major only if it will increase your GPA compared to what it otherwise would be.

xyzzzzzzzz
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Re: Thinking about adding a major

Postby xyzzzzzzzz » Fri Jun 04, 2010 3:57 pm

If I were you, I would pay the money to LSAC to start processing your transcripts, so you have an idea where you stand. If not calculate it yourself. http://www.lawschoolpredictor.com/?page_id=45 Then I would add another major. For most schools it means taking on another 30-40 credit hours. This will give you a chance to bump your GPA.Economics is going to give you something to fall back on, which really can't always be said for a ps degree.For the schools you mentioned, the 25th percentile gpa is about 3.5. Aim for something near that, and you might be okay if get a high enough LSAT score. Also, there's northwestern if you break 170.

jms1987
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Re: Thinking about adding a major

Postby jms1987 » Fri Jun 04, 2010 4:06 pm

sumus romani wrote:I'm not even going to ask why you were willing to pay out of state tuition at Northern Kentucky University when you could have in-state tuition at one of the many fine ohio state schools--it just makes no sense. But the past is behind you.

Don't worry about switching schools: worry about GPA. Your GPA, if not significantly improved, will virtually exclude you in and of itself from going to a top law school. It is true that a very high LSAT, plus a few years of work experience could possibly get you in to a school in the range of 10-14 with your 2.5. But you need to do what it takes to get that GPA up if you are to have more than a prayer. Add a major only if it will increase your GPA compared to what it otherwise would be.


Yeah I still have no clue why I started there..but yeah its behind me. If I can start pulling all A's higher B's, I should be ok GPA-wise but I'm still really frustrated and stressed.

All the transferring makes me feel like a male Sarah Palin :(

jms1987
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Re: Thinking about adding a major

Postby jms1987 » Sat Jun 05, 2010 9:30 pm

Bump, any other advice? I'm most likely adding history as a second major and will probably take the easiest classes possible so my GPA can be raised w/o too much extra work. Will LSAC look unfavorably on this?

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lostjake
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Re: Thinking about adding a major

Postby lostjake » Sat Jun 05, 2010 9:36 pm

Drop out of school and become an electrician or some other in demand trade. You're probably not going to be going to a good law school, and then you'll have a worthless poly sci and worthless history degree and lots of debt. Then you'll probably think its a good idea to go to a lower T1/T2, graduate and not have a job and soul crushing debt. Even if you get into MVP only the top 30% or so are getting job offers right now. The odds are very very very stacked against you. I know this is a law school forum and everyone wants to go, but seriously, as a life choice, you should think very carefully about what you're doing.

jms1987
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Re: Thinking about adding a major

Postby jms1987 » Sat Jun 05, 2010 9:52 pm

No matter what I end up doing for LS, I am NOT dropping out of undergrad. I will graduate with only 13k in loans and have job connection with the family business if all else fails. I am very aware of the economy and debt issues, I have 5 years before I would in the position to be graduating from LS (if I go that is, a lot can change in 2 years) Hopefully things will be better, not worse in 4-5 years.

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MrKappus
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Re: Thinking about adding a major

Postby MrKappus » Sat Jun 05, 2010 10:01 pm

disco_barred wrote:Literally nothing else matters.


Grossly exaggerative.

jms1987
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Re: Thinking about adding a major

Postby jms1987 » Sun Jun 06, 2010 4:47 pm

Anybody else have something to add apart from "drop out of school"?

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daesonesb
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Re: Thinking about adding a major

Postby daesonesb » Sun Jun 06, 2010 4:53 pm

what sort of major do you think you could get A's in?

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Regionality
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Re: Thinking about adding a major

Postby Regionality » Sun Jun 06, 2010 5:42 pm

Add a major if you will be interested enough in your classes to get grades that will raise your GPA. Law schools don't care if you triple majored and triple minored or had one measly major in theater...they mostly view you as a GPA and an LSAT, and within your GPA they care a little (very little) about how good your undergrad school was and whether you took ridiculously hard classes like engineering...that's pretty much it.

But yes, add a major, why not.

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lostjake
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Re: Thinking about adding a major

Postby lostjake » Sun Jun 06, 2010 5:44 pm

daesonesb wrote:what sort of major do you think you could get A's in?


Considering the OP has a 2.5 in poly sci from a TTT... breathing?

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Regionality
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Re: Thinking about adding a major

Postby Regionality » Sun Jun 06, 2010 5:46 pm

lostjake wrote:
daesonesb wrote:what sort of major do you think you could get A's in?


Considering the OP has a 2.5 in poly sci from a TTT... breathing?


Rude.

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daesonesb
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Re: Thinking about adding a major

Postby daesonesb » Sun Jun 06, 2010 5:48 pm

Regionality wrote:
lostjake wrote:
daesonesb wrote:what sort of major do you think you could get A's in?


Considering the OP has a 2.5 in poly sci from a TTT... breathing?


Rude.


It's a valid question. It wouldn't be worth it to tack another major on, fork out ~10k for another year of school, and then only have your GPA go up .1

This needs to be a major OP can get straight A's in.

09042014
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Re: Thinking about adding a major

Postby 09042014 » Sun Jun 06, 2010 5:49 pm

lostjake wrote:Drop out of school and become an electrician or some other in demand trade. You're probably not going to be going to a good law school, and then you'll have a worthless poly sci and worthless history degree and lots of debt. Then you'll probably think its a good idea to go to a lower T1/T2, graduate and not have a job and soul crushing debt. Even if you get into MVP only the top 30% or so are getting job offers right now. The odds are very very very stacked against you. I know this is a law school forum and everyone wants to go, but seriously, as a life choice, you should think very carefully about what you're doing.


Not electrician, too hard. Carpentry or something.




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