Law school - International Students

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PowderedWater
Posts: 21
Joined: Mon Jun 18, 2012 8:50 pm

Law school - International Students

Postby PowderedWater » Sun Jul 01, 2012 9:41 pm

Hey there, this is my first post here at TLS. Hopefully I've posted in the right section of the forum - if not, feel free to call security to rough me up a bit. Thank you.

Anyhow, straight to the point; should I or should I not apply for law school in the United States?

I'm a Canadian citizen, attending Concordia University in Quebec (majoring in accounting with a minor in political science). Obviously not many people here have even heard of my school, but I think that may be besides the point. For pretty much all my life, I've been wanting to go into law school though the idea of practicing law here in my frenchy province doesn't really stick with me for numerous reasons. That said, I'm caught within the dilemma of going into either a law school in Ontario, or to south of the border.

I'm concerned with the following:

1) Even with a high GPA, high LSAT score and strong extracurricular activities, that the chances of being accepted into a T14 law school are minimal at best.

2) Even should I be accepted into law school, career opportunities are going to stink. I'm going to be at an extreme disadvantage, even if a work visa is relatively easy to obtain for a Canadian citizen.

3) Access to student loans and the like are going to be heavily restricted.

Just to clear things up further, I plan to apply (aside from the obvious H/Y/S) to NYU, Columbia, Chicago, Berkeley, Duke and Northwestern (I have only about one year of work experience in accounting though). If you know anything on the subject, please let me know.

Thanks again!

EDIT: Oh, and I'm very interested in pursuing BigLaw, like most users here.

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briviere
Posts: 53
Joined: Thu Dec 16, 2010 1:49 pm

Re: Law school - International Students

Postby briviere » Mon Jul 02, 2012 12:10 pm

Where do you want to practice? That should be the main deciding factor while considering your application strategy. If you want to practice in Canada, you'd be better going to a Canadian law school for a number of reasons; price being the most obvious of them (UofToronto, current #1 rank in Canada, costs around 27k/year and is the most expensive of Canadian schools). Also, should you wish to practice in Canada with an American degree you'll need to write between 3 and 7 NCAA examinations and the bar for your province, then you'll need to find articles (mandatory 10 month apprenticeship after 3L) before you'll be licensed.

That said, getting into a T14 is no easier or harder for a Canadian than it would be for a real 'mercin. I was accepted to a few T14 schools and have friends who will be 1Ls at S, CC, and N.

Should you go to a non-T14 you might run into problems getting a work visa. Namely, you'll have to prove that you offer a skillset not possess by real 'mercins in order to justify their visa offer. Might not be so easy in this market.

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PowderedWater
Posts: 21
Joined: Mon Jun 18, 2012 8:50 pm

Re: Law school - International Students

Postby PowderedWater » Mon Jul 02, 2012 12:57 pm

I'm not sure where I would like to practice yet, to be honest. I would imagine either Toronto (should I stay in Canada) or New York. I have to admit, the potential salary for American lawyers has me leaning towards the latter.

I'm glad to hear that I won't be at a strict disadvantage during the admission process. I'm curious though; what school did you choose to attend and why? And what T14 schools did you get accepted to, if you don't mind me asking? I'm just incredibly curious and have practically no one that I can talk to about the subject. :P

I wouldn't attend a non-T14 school though. I have a strict "Go big or go home" mentality here.

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sharktankdean
Posts: 663
Joined: Sat Jan 07, 2012 2:57 pm

Re: Law school - International Students

Postby sharktankdean » Mon Jul 02, 2012 1:38 pm

briviere wrote:Where do you want to practice? That should be the main deciding factor while considering your application strategy. If you want to practice in Canada, you'd be better going to a Canadian law school for a number of reasons; price being the most obvious of them (UofToronto, current #1 rank in Canada, costs around 27k/year and is the most expensive of Canadian schools). Also, should you wish to practice in Canada with an American degree you'll need to write between 3 and 7 NCAA examinations and the bar for your province, then you'll need to find articles (mandatory 10 month apprenticeship after 3L) before you'll be licensed.

That said, getting into a T14 is no easier or harder for a Canadian than it would be for a real 'mercin. I was accepted to a few T14 schools and have friends who will be 1Ls at S, CC, and N.

Should you go to a non-T14 you might run into problems getting a work visa. Namely, you'll have to prove that you offer a skillset not possess by real 'mercins in order to justify their visa offer. Might not be so easy in this market.



Came across this thread, I'm not international but the way this reads it seems like you are saying internationals at T-14 schools don't have to prove themselves/work harder in order to get a visa. I thought international students had to prove themselves regardless of what school they went to...maybe t-14 internationals will have it easier than non-t14 internationals, but they still have to go the extra mile.right?




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