Advice on Taking a Gap Year

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Versailles1919
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Advice on Taking a Gap Year

Postby Versailles1919 » Tue Jun 06, 2017 4:03 pm

I am torn on whether or not I want to take a Gap Year. My current stats are 155 and 4.07. I am taking the LSAT again in September, but if I took a Gap year I could potentially take the exam a 3rd time if I don't like that score (my goal is 165+ because I was practicing low 160s). I also have 2 more semesters of college, so I am hoping after they are completed I will have a 4.1+. Applying this Ocotober, I will not have these 2 extra semesters added to my LSDAS gpa. I also currently have a well-paying job (a manager-like position) and it would give me an opportunity to build a savings for potentially going away to school.

However, I have always been a student who has his future planned out. I even took this past February exam my junior year of college to apply early for the 2017-2018 cycle. Do you think I should really study hard and just get my lsat to 165+ and save money? Or since I am not doing any significant internships or volunteer trips should I just go to law school?

Any advice would be great!

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airwrecka
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Re: Advice on Taking a Gap Year

Postby airwrecka » Tue Jun 06, 2017 4:16 pm

Definitely take the gap year. There seem to be only pros to taking the time off, and no cons that I can see.

It's not like you have to go save the world in your year off. Just working, saving money, and working to improve your LSAT are all great things to be doing. I took a gap year before applying last fall, and I wasn't doing anything spectacular, but my cycle went great. Also, I didn't even attempt to study for the LSAT until my gap year started, and I'm so glad I did it that way because for me, I would not have put in nearly the same effort studying if I had also been dealing with school at the same time.

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Future Ex-Engineer
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Re: Advice on Taking a Gap Year

Postby Future Ex-Engineer » Tue Jun 06, 2017 4:35 pm

Versailles1919 wrote:
However, I have always been a student who has his future planned out. I even took this past February exam my junior year of college to apply early for the 2017-2018 cycle. Do you think I should really study hard and just get my lsat to 165+ and save money? Or since I am not doing any significant internships or volunteer trips should I just go to law school?



You may plan early/often, but that doesn't mean you plan well. Taking in Feb was a waste (esp if you scored 155) and it doesn't let you apply any earlier than the June test (apps don't open until September for decent schools). Absolutely take the gap year. For starters, you shouldn't be going unless you can hit 168+. With a >4.0 GPA, anything less than 168 is just throwing away a full ride at a T14 (possibly shouldn't go with less than 170). Also, a year off will help you figure out what you actually want to do. Maybe it is LS, maybe it isn't. You'd rather know before you make than investment rather than after.

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Versailles1919
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Re: Advice on Taking a Gap Year

Postby Versailles1919 » Tue Jun 06, 2017 5:05 pm

Future Ex-Engineer wrote:
Versailles1919 wrote:
However, I have always been a student who has his future planned out. I even took this past February exam my junior year of college to apply early for the 2017-2018 cycle. Do you think I should really study hard and just get my lsat to 165+ and save money? Or since I am not doing any significant internships or volunteer trips should I just go to law school?



You may plan early/often, but that doesn't mean you plan well. Taking in Feb was a waste (esp if you scored 155) and it doesn't let you apply any earlier than the June test (apps don't open until September for decent schools). Absolutely take the gap year. For starters, you shouldn't be going unless you can hit 168+. With a >4.0 GPA, anything less than 168 is just throwing away a full ride at a T14 (possibly shouldn't go with less than 170). Also, a year off will help you figure out what you actually want to do. Maybe it is LS, maybe it isn't. You'd rather know before you make than investment rather than after.


I was hitting between 161-163 before I sat for my February exam. Also, with the way that my course load was structured, it was the best exam to take for this year. Unfortunately, I unexpectedly got that score. And I know I definitely want to go to law school. I couldn't imagine doing anything else. I think the only difficulty is pinning down a field (even though I largely lean towards environmental law). But I appreciate the advice, I really do hope to be hitting 168+ before sitting for the next exam.

quigleyest
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Re: Advice on Taking a Gap Year

Postby quigleyest » Tue Jun 06, 2017 5:06 pm

Versailles1919 wrote:I am torn on whether or not I want to take a Gap Year. My current stats are 155 and 4.07. I am taking the LSAT again in September, but if I took a Gap year I could potentially take the exam a 3rd time if I don't like that score (my goal is 165+ because I was practicing low 160s). I also have 2 more semesters of college, so I am hoping after they are completed I will have a 4.1+. Applying this Ocotober, I will not have these 2 extra semesters added to my LSDAS gpa. I also currently have a well-paying job (a manager-like position) and it would give me an opportunity to build a savings for potentially going away to school.

However, I have always been a student who has his future planned out. I even took this past February exam my junior year of college to apply early for the 2017-2018 cycle. Do you think I should really study hard and just get my lsat to 165+ and save money? Or since I am not doing any significant internships or volunteer trips should I just go to law school?

Any advice would be great!


Well-paying job sounds fantastic. An increased LSAT score could represent many ten's of thousands, or over 100k in savings in law school tuition. Currently finishing my 3rd gap year, attending CCN on scholarship next year with a much lower GPA than you have. Best of luck

mcmand
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Re: Advice on Taking a Gap Year

Postby mcmand » Tue Jun 06, 2017 5:18 pm

Versailles1919 wrote:However, I have always been a student who has his future planned out. I even took this past February exam my junior year of college to apply early for the 2017-2018 cycle. Do you think I should really study hard and just get my lsat to 165+ and save money? Or since I am not doing any significant internships or volunteer trips should I just go to law school?


I am really concerned about the bolded quote above. Is your primary reason for law school the fact that you don't have a plan right now and that is upsetting you? Do you feel a compulsion to just have a plan for each step of the way for the next several years?
Last edited by mcmand on Tue Jun 06, 2017 5:25 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Lavitz
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Re: Advice on Taking a Gap Year

Postby Lavitz » Tue Jun 06, 2017 5:21 pm

This is a no-brainer. Take the gap year and keep retaking the LSAT.

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Versailles1919
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Re: Advice on Taking a Gap Year

Postby Versailles1919 » Tue Jun 06, 2017 6:05 pm

mcmand wrote:
Versailles1919 wrote:However, I have always been a student who has his future planned out. I even took this past February exam my junior year of college to apply early for the 2017-2018 cycle. Do you think I should really study hard and just get my lsat to 165+ and save money? Or since I am not doing any significant internships or volunteer trips should I just go to law school?


I am really concerned about the bolded quote above. Is your primary reason for law school the fact that you don't have a plan right now and that is upsetting you? Do you feel a compulsion to just have a plan for each step of the way for the next several years?


By my future planned out, I mean my path to law school. Law school wasn't an after thought, I've always wanted to be a lawyer. Specifically by that statement, I just mean it will be strange for me to take a gap year and not continue schooling. Don't be alarmed! :D

mcmand
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Re: Advice on Taking a Gap Year

Postby mcmand » Wed Jun 07, 2017 12:27 pm

Versailles1919 wrote:
mcmand wrote:
Versailles1919 wrote:However, I have always been a student who has his future planned out. I even took this past February exam my junior year of college to apply early for the 2017-2018 cycle. Do you think I should really study hard and just get my lsat to 165+ and save money? Or since I am not doing any significant internships or volunteer trips should I just go to law school?


I am really concerned about the bolded quote above. Is your primary reason for law school the fact that you don't have a plan right now and that is upsetting you? Do you feel a compulsion to just have a plan for each step of the way for the next several years?


By my future planned out, I mean my path to law school. Law school wasn't an after thought, I've always wanted to be a lawyer. Specifically by that statement, I just mean it will be strange for me to take a gap year and not continue schooling. Don't be alarmed! :D


OK, good. I was worried for a minute about you making life-altering decisions.

Gap years are still good. Don't hesitate to take more than one. You may find a cool job you like doing while you're waiting, and saving money is always nice. I waited 4 years and I probably could have waited longer and developed my career and skills a bit more than I had.

I saw in another thread you're URM (LGBTQ), as am I. Feel free to PM me if you have questions/concerns about finding your way through the process or law school.

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Experiment626
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Re: Advice on Taking a Gap Year

Postby Experiment626 » Tue Jun 13, 2017 7:08 pm

I encourage the gap year, I'm non-trad and trying to do LS part time. Meeting with admissions officers at the schools that I'm targeting, they expressed that it was nice to see people take some time between UG and LS because it shows they really thought about it and are sure they want to do it versus the undergrad who just doesn't know what to do and LS sounds like a good idea. It's not required but based on what you've said I don't see any negatives with taking the year, saving money, getting some work experience, and getting your LSAT score as high as possible.

mcmand wrote:I saw in another thread you're URM (LGBTQ), as am I. Feel free to PM me if you have questions/concerns about finding your way through the process or law school.


Are you saying LGBTQ qualifies as URM or they're a URM and LGBTQ? Everything I looked at in that forum pointed to it not being URM when I was researching for myself.

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rpupkin
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Re: Advice on Taking a Gap Year

Postby rpupkin » Tue Jun 13, 2017 7:21 pm

Take at least two or three years off before law school. Folks with a few years of experience before law school generally enjoy law school more, have an easier time getting a job, and end up better lawyers.

pml87
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Re: Advice on Taking a Gap Year

Postby pml87 » Thu Jun 15, 2017 6:06 pm

rpupkin wrote:Take at least two or three years off before law school. Folks with a few years of experience before law school generally enjoy law school more, have an easier time getting a job, and end up better lawyers.


Agreed on older students having an easier time getting a job. Make me wish I had taken a gap year to work in a real job :(




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