What do law schools care about?

(Please Ask Questions and Answer Questions)
rutonyu
Posts: 4
Joined: Thu Aug 27, 2015 1:03 am

What do law schools care about?

Postby rutonyu » Thu Jul 28, 2016 5:53 am

Hi guys! I am currently an upcoming sophomore at Rutgers University, Business School - New Brunswick. I am currently studying supply chain and am interested in studying corporate or international law after graduating. I was just curious whether law schools took school name/reputation into consideration when judging applicants. Or is it honestly just the numbers (our GPAs and LSAT scores)? Also, do they care about internship/job experience? I am currently interning at the United Nations and have 2 other government-related internships under my belt as well. Would they even see this and/or care? Or is it just a numbers game where GPA and LSAT scores pretty much determine where you go? Thank you in advance. :D

lawadmin
Posts: 53
Joined: Sat Aug 22, 2015 10:41 am

Re: What do law schools care about?

Postby lawadmin » Thu Jul 28, 2016 6:13 am

rutonyu wrote:Hi guys! I am currently an upcoming sophomore at Rutgers University, Business School - New Brunswick. I am currently studying supply chain and am interested in studying corporate or international law after graduating. I was just curious whether law schools took school name/reputation into consideration when judging applicants. Or is it honestly just the numbers (our GPAs and LSAT scores)? Also, do they care about internship/job experience? I am currently interning at the United Nations and have 2 other government-related internships under my belt as well. Would they even see this and/or care? Or is it just a numbers game where GPA and LSAT scores pretty much determine where you go? Thank you in advance. :D


For the vast majority of schools, you are your LSAT score and your LSAC GPA. The latter is important, as it can be dramatically different from what you think your GPA is. Be sure to look into that. The one important caveat would be for applicants who qualify for URM (under-represented minority) status, there is an additional boost.

The name of your undergraduate institution, short of an MIT/Princeton-level undergraduate degree, is largely meaningless. Schools don't have to report where you got your Bachelors. They have to report what your GPA was. A 4.0 from directional state is infinitely more valuable than a 3.2 from a strong liberal arts school.

The two things that people tend to overestimate the most are their interview skills and their softs. Softs like working at the UN, being in the student government, working on capitol hill/law firm are nice but don't "move the needle" on your application the way many 0Ls think they do. If you're a K-JD, they may however help you paint a richer picture of your experience and perhaps if you apply to programs with a focus on international law, you can play the experience(s) up in your personal statement.

Assuming you're law school or bust (which isn't a good mindset), you need to do two things over the next three years:
1. Do whatever it takes to get the highest possible GPA. It can mean the differences in tens of thousands of dollars (or more!). Figure out which classes have generous grading policies, don't slack off, don't settle for Bs, etc. If you're not law school or bust, ignore this and take the classes you think you need if you don't end up going to law school as a hedge.
2. When you eventually decide you want to take the LSAT, treat it like a full-time job. No factor will be more important than the LSAT. Don't settle for a score. Take it until you've maxed out your attempts or have the score you need for your specific legal career goals.

After that, most here will tell you to get some work experience. Definitely not a dealbreaker, but something that would be helpful for personal growth, financial independence, interviewing, etc.

Best of luck!

rutonyu
Posts: 4
Joined: Thu Aug 27, 2015 1:03 am

Re: What do law schools care about?

Postby rutonyu » Thu Jul 28, 2016 6:17 am

@lawadmin: Thank you so much for that. Will definitely look into that LSAC GPA as I was not aware of that. Also, I am not law school or bust but really appreciate your advice. Supply Chain is my backup as I have decided I will only go to a law school that is ranked highly. Thank you. :D

User avatar
Blueprint Mithun
Posts: 456
Joined: Mon Sep 14, 2015 1:54 pm

Re: What do law schools care about?

Postby Blueprint Mithun » Tue Aug 09, 2016 12:20 pm

rutonyu wrote:Hi guys! I am currently an upcoming sophomore at Rutgers University, Business School - New Brunswick. I am currently studying supply chain and am interested in studying corporate or international law after graduating. I was just curious whether law schools took school name/reputation into consideration when judging applicants. Or is it honestly just the numbers (our GPAs and LSAT scores)? Also, do they care about internship/job experience? I am currently interning at the United Nations and have 2 other government-related internships under my belt as well. Would they even see this and/or care? Or is it just a numbers game where GPA and LSAT scores pretty much determine where you go? Thank you in advance. :D



GPA and LSAT are the two major factors in determining your value as an applicant. If those two are high, then the sky's the limit. All other factors - internships, undergrad school, your major, resume - are softs. They will see these things, and they might collectively boost your application and make you stand out from another applicant with similar numbers, but they won't shift the tide in your favor if your numbers are way off. So focus on keeping your grades up, and take LSAT prep extremely seriously once you decide to start that process.

User avatar
gsy987
Posts: 182
Joined: Mon Oct 26, 2015 8:38 pm

Re: What do law schools care about?

Postby gsy987 » Tue Aug 09, 2016 1:41 pm

rutonyu wrote:Hi guys! I am currently an upcoming sophomore at Rutgers University, Business School - New Brunswick.


This is the key part of your post. Get good grades, that'll be the number 1 thing they care about that you can do right now. If you can get something near a 4.0, that'll open up a lot more doors. I wouldn't even start worrying about the LSAT yet, you can probably tackle that around your senior year (if you decide you still want to go to law school.




Return to “Law School FAQ”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Yahoo [Bot] and 2 guests