Am I too optimistic

Share Your Experiences, Read About Other Experiences. Please keep posts organized by school and expected year of graduation.
Foosters Galore
Posts: 305
Joined: Wed Dec 09, 2009 5:15 pm

Am I too optimistic

Postby Foosters Galore » Sun May 16, 2010 1:11 am

So here I am. I have a 2.75/169 and after applying to 12 schools I now am faced with 5 rejections, 5 waitlists, and two pending.

WLs

Pepperdine
San Diego
UC Davis
Santa Clara
Fordham

Pending

Cardozo (on that super special hold)
Chapman (applied in April after realizing I may not be accepted anywhere)

My application is somewhat unique in that my entire undergrad record is a mess, drops, withdrawals, multiple Fs, not a single extracurricular activity in my entire undergrad career. My PS is about me waking up two years ago (Im 27 now), unemployed in the midst of a serious addiction to alcohol and deciding to get sober, turn my life around, blah, blah , blah. Yay me.


With that being said, I really feel that I will get in off of some of these WLs. My coworkers and family look at me like Im the too-old kid who still believes in Santa when I tell them Im going to law school next year. Am I being naive? Ive written multiple LOCIs to Pepperdine, and at least one to all of the others. Should I start to face reality and come to terms with the fact that I wont be going to school next year? Every time I start to think this way, my head (and possibly my Ego) conjurs up that 169 and tells me "nah, everything's cool, your 97th percentile man"...)

I thought adcoms would like my story, I really did. It now seems it may have hurt me if anything (straight rejected from Loyola).

User avatar
bk1
Posts: 18407
Joined: Sun Mar 14, 2010 7:06 pm

Re: Am I too optimistic

Postby bk1 » Sun May 16, 2010 1:22 am

When did you apply? No offense, but is writing about alcoholism a risky PS that might backfire?

You are definitely not too old though.

Foosters Galore
Posts: 305
Joined: Wed Dec 09, 2009 5:15 pm

Re: Am I too optimistic

Postby Foosters Galore » Sun May 16, 2010 1:46 am

bk1 wrote:When did you apply? No offense, but is writing about alcoholism a risky PS that might backfire?

You are definitely not too old though.


Oh its certainly risky. I assumed, perhaps incorectly, that adcoms upon seeing my PS about fighting back from a place few return from and how my experiences have given me both a new perspective on life as well as a sense of motivation, etc., etc. would jump to admit me. I was obviously wrong. Although I do believe I can thank my PS for my WLs at Fordham and Davis as they have rejected similar numbers and the ones they have waitlisted with comparable #s at least have a strong resume. Seriously, I can not stress enough what a black hole my resume was up until two years ago. Even now, its nothing to look at. Bounced around from odd job to odd job. Not a servicable LOR in any of the jobs. To paraphrase the always profound Jason Kidd, " I have turned my life around 360 degrees."

I felt I had no other choice in PS topic. A PS about studying abroad, community service, would put me on equal footing with everyone else. And they more than likely didnt have large gaps of time in their lives when they were out of college or unemployed. I beleived I needed to stand out from the crowd. I knew a few would hate it, but I thought there may be a sympathetic one somewhere.

Oh, I applied early January.
Last edited by Foosters Galore on Sun May 16, 2010 1:54 am, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
bk1
Posts: 18407
Joined: Sun Mar 14, 2010 7:06 pm

Re: Am I too optimistic

Postby bk1 » Sun May 16, 2010 1:54 am

To be honest, I don't think your PS backfired considering the WL's and your numbers. I think the January application definitely hurt though.

I don't know about your chances on the WL, but if you are deadset on next year then I would say go to the best you can. If you are willing to reapp I think you could change your waitlists into an accept or two with at least applications in by November and possibly a retake of the LSAT (October).

User avatar
iceskater1620
Posts: 42
Joined: Sat Apr 03, 2010 5:09 pm

Re: Am I too optimistic

Postby iceskater1620 » Sun May 16, 2010 2:13 am

It does seem risky...but it seems to be a huge part of the person you are today. The school you are meant to be at will see that it has shaped you and won't view you negatively for it, I'm sure. Plus...the admissions people seem to be of relatively high intelligence and will probably realize alcoholism is an addiction and not a character flaw. Good luck! :)

User avatar
PDaddy
Posts: 2073
Joined: Sat Jan 16, 2010 4:40 am

Re: Am I too optimistic

Postby PDaddy » Sun May 16, 2010 3:02 am

My suggestion is to get some real world experience and consider a graduate degree. The grad degree won't knock down any doors for you on its own, but, coupled with a year or two of solid work experience, it could put your very solid LSAT score into better context. Right now, youre profile likely reads, "Lazy, one-time lucky student who has nothing better to do than go to law school". That's not going to excite adcoms.

What I wrote above was not meant to insult you, but to be honest. I am sure you are capable of much better work, otherwise you could not have scored 169 on the LSAT. You are a bright student who just needs to put it all together and demonstrate some commitment. You also need time to show that you have that addiction under control.

A new LSAT score is a cosmetic change that will yield marginal results because it doesn't address the other deficiencies in your profile, namely W.E. and community service/EC's.

Oh...and next time, apply in the fall. The spring apps alone probably cost you a few yeses. Starting law school at 29 or 30 could be a big advantage for you. The job market will likely be better, you'll have managed your addiction and gotten some good work experience. Hopefully, you will also take some additional classes or get an MA or MS, or do some post-bac work.

User avatar
TheCheerfulPessimist
Posts: 27
Joined: Sun Apr 04, 2010 5:20 am

Re: Am I too optimistic

Postby TheCheerfulPessimist » Sun May 16, 2010 3:43 am

You really should consider grad school if you aren't dead-set on law. Admissions seems to be a lot more lenient. A friend of mine got thrown in jail a few years back for some shady stuff but she changed her life around and now she's getting her MA at Columbia.

mhernton
Posts: 174
Joined: Sat Sep 26, 2009 12:07 pm

Re: Am I too optimistic

Postby mhernton » Sun May 16, 2010 4:09 am

Adcoms love stories like your, but you screwed yourself by applying in January. 80% or more of their acceptances have been sent out by that point in time. They can't take a risk on a guy with a 2.5 when they have some many other 169 candidates with higher GPAs. You would have been a shoe just about anywhere up to the top 20 if you had have applied by Nov. Now all of these schools have to wait for someone to say no, before they can say yes to you. Good Luck

rockstar4488
Posts: 198
Joined: Sat Dec 05, 2009 9:39 pm

Re: Am I too optimistic

Postby rockstar4488 » Sun May 16, 2010 10:56 am

I think if possible, you should address your weak GPA in your LOCI's. I think telling them that you're interested isnt quite enough. Chances are the 169 will help them more than the 2.75 will hurt them. But you're still likely a risky applicant to them and need to tell them directly why they should be willing to take a chance on you.

jetlagz28
Posts: 191
Joined: Tue Jan 20, 2009 11:56 pm

Re: Am I too optimistic

Postby jetlagz28 » Sun May 16, 2010 11:32 am

I would consider re applying early this fall. Your LSAT is good enough to counter your low GPA but you need a more optimistic personal statement.

Good luck with whatever you choose though!

yo!
Posts: 653
Joined: Tue Oct 14, 2008 11:11 pm

Re: Am I too optimistic

Postby yo! » Sun May 16, 2010 11:53 am

I honestly think that you can get off one of the WLs, maybe even Davis or Fordham. If not, I would suggest fine-tuning your PS for the next cycle. Maybe find a new recommender as well. I took a similar approach on my PS and wrote about being in the bottom 15% of my high school class and having no plans for higher education. I was able to demonstrate that I could actually handle the work though, since I maintained straight A's through my Junior and Senior years of college. IMO, writing about something that shaped you as a person is a risk worth taking. My GPA wasn't nearly as awful as yours, but I also didn't have a 169 LSAT.

Foosters Galore
Posts: 305
Joined: Wed Dec 09, 2009 5:15 pm

Re: Am I too optimistic

Postby Foosters Galore » Sun May 16, 2010 12:13 pm

First of all, I would like to thank everyone for the insight expressed above. I was honestly expecting a bunch of short sarcastic responses.

I should clarify my previous statement about my work. The way I worded it above may have made it seem as though I am still bouncing from job to job. This is not the case. When I got sober I moved to another state and got a job stocking shelves at a supermarket and have since been promoted twice as well as asked to enter the manager training program. In the two years I have worked there I have yet to be late or miss a day. The store manager wrote one of my lors. I thought this was important in my app as I hoped it would dispel the perceived "laziness" that a previous poster alluded to. Obviously, this work experience is not ideal but it is certainly real life experience and I felt made for an even more compelling story.
I realise I applied late, kicking myself now, but had know idea at the time how big of a deal it was. Took the dec lsat and I thought I was sitting pretty.

Once again, thanks for all the feedback.

rockstar4488
Posts: 198
Joined: Sat Dec 05, 2009 9:39 pm

Re: Am I too optimistic

Postby rockstar4488 » Sun May 16, 2010 12:42 pm

I know a lot of people are saying re-take/re-apply, but you're 27 and working at a job that will likely have no value to your career (I mean your law career). I think going to wherever you can get in is the right move. If you are interested in an elite school, you can transfer. 1L grades inevitably will say a lot more about your commitment to law school grades than any PS or LOCI.

Edit: Don't want to come off like I'm being elitist about honest work or your life turnaround. But applying with the same credentials next year leaves your application with the same flaws and the same questions about whether you are damaged goods or not.

Foosters Galore
Posts: 305
Joined: Wed Dec 09, 2009 5:15 pm

Re: Am I too optimistic

Postby Foosters Galore » Sun May 16, 2010 1:14 pm

rockstar4488 wrote:I know a lot of people are saying re-take/re-apply, but you're 27 and working at a job that will likely have no value to your career (I mean your law career). I think going to wherever you can get in is the right move. If you are interested in an elite school, you can transfer. 1L grades inevitably will say a lot more about your commitment to law school grades than any PS or LOCI.

Edit: Don't want to come off like I'm being elitist about honest work or your life turnaround. But applying with the same credentials next year leaves your application with the same flaws and the same questions about whether you are damaged goods or not.


No offense taken. Your added edit mirrors my thoughts exactly.

User avatar
bk1
Posts: 18407
Joined: Sun Mar 14, 2010 7:06 pm

Re: Am I too optimistic

Postby bk1 » Sun May 16, 2010 1:50 pm

rockstar4488 wrote:I know a lot of people are saying re-take/re-apply, but you're 27 and working at a job that will likely have no value to your career (I mean your law career). I think going to wherever you can get in is the right move. If you are interested in an elite school, you can transfer. 1L grades inevitably will say a lot more about your commitment to law school grades than any PS or LOCI.

Edit: Don't want to come off like I'm being elitist about honest work or your life turnaround. But applying with the same credentials next year leaves your application with the same flaws and the same questions about whether you are damaged goods or not.


The difference between 27 and 28 is not a big deal, though I understand if the OP wants to go to law school now and get over the boring current job. I think that reapplying early next cycle will give you greater chances. As has been noted, a lot of spots are gone by the time January rolls around and being one of the first apps that they look at does up your chances. I think you should try to get off the WL at Davis or Fordham and consider reapplying as I said earlier.

Another thing, transferring is a big black box and, as has been noted, a lot of transfers from lower ranked schools did not do well at their new schools (in terms of OCI). Reapplying is going to serve better in the long run than any sort of transfer idea.

Foosters Galore
Posts: 305
Joined: Wed Dec 09, 2009 5:15 pm

Re: Am I too optimistic

Postby Foosters Galore » Sun May 16, 2010 2:26 pm

bk1 wrote:
rockstar4488 wrote:I know a lot of people are saying re-take/re-apply, but you're 27 and working at a job that will likely have no value to your career (I mean your law career). I think going to wherever you can get in is the right move. If you are interested in an elite school, you can transfer. 1L grades inevitably will say a lot more about your commitment to law school grades than any PS or LOCI.

Edit: Don't want to come off like I'm being elitist about honest work or your life turnaround. But applying with the same credentials next year leaves your application with the same flaws and the same questions about whether you are damaged goods or not.


The difference between 27 and 28 is not a big deal, though I understand if the OP wants to go to law school now and get over the boring current job. I think that reapplying early next cycle will give you greater chances. As has been noted, a lot of spots are gone by the time January rolls around and being one of the first apps that they look at does up your chances. I think you should try to get off the WL at Davis or Fordham and consider reapplying as I said earlier.

Another thing, transferring is a big black box and, as has been noted, a lot of transfers from lower ranked schools did not do well at their new schools (in terms of OCI). Reapplying is going to serve better in the long run than any sort of transfer idea.



I certainly agree with you that applying early next cycle greatly improves my chances,and I'm not to high on the transferring idea for multiple reasons. However, I'm leaving my job in early july, and haven't the slightest idea what I would do until summer 2011. The thought of staying on at my current job or finding another similar job is not pleasant.

Overall, I guess I'm just trying to determine if I have a chance to get off these WLs or if I should prepare myself for the inevitable summer of silence.
Last edited by Foosters Galore on Sun May 16, 2010 2:29 pm, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
gdane
Posts: 12331
Joined: Sat Sep 26, 2009 2:41 pm

Re: Am I too optimistic

Postby gdane » Sun May 16, 2010 2:28 pm

Mr. Foosters, I think you did yourself a great disservice with your PS topic. "Overcoming adversity" stories are nice, but there is a fine line between being down and out and climbing up and being REALLY down and out. I personally think its amazing that you've gotten yourself back on track. There is nothing that I dislike more than people that dont improve their lives when they have the ability to. Nevertheless, you may have been better off leaving some details out as they may have done more harm than good. A PS is supposed to highlight positives about you and how those positives would benefit the law school you are applying to. Dont want to trash yourself too much.

I dont think you are being too optimistic at all. Send in LOCI's, visit if possible and just think happythoughts. You've made it this far and thats great. Also, scoring a 169 is a great feat. Congratulations.

Good luck!

09042014
Posts: 18282
Joined: Wed Oct 14, 2009 10:47 pm

Re: Am I too optimistic

Postby 09042014 » Sun May 16, 2010 2:38 pm

You picked a really terrible list of school to apply to with your numbers. Every school you are WL'd at, doesn't like low gpas.

Next time add: Wustl, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa and Minnesota.

User avatar
1ferret!
Posts: 280
Joined: Thu Oct 22, 2009 4:59 am

Re: Am I too optimistic

Postby 1ferret! » Sun May 16, 2010 6:07 pm

Desert Fox wrote:You picked a really terrible list of school to apply to with your numbers. Every school you are WL'd at, doesn't like low gpas.

Next time add: Wustl, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa and Minnesota.


Well, obviously he was heavy on the CA schools. Unfortunately, once you get down past 25-30 or so they all get fairly regional so you gotta apply where you wanna be. Point taken however, at least Pepperdine, San Diego, and Davis weigh the gpa heavily.
Just gotta be patient though, thats the nature of the waitlist, good thing is you are on them and have a shot as people withdraw. Worst scenario, wait till next year, be the first in line in submitting your application and you will probably be in with a couple of these. You may yet still have a shot at Chapman, but it is getting late in the cycle. Would suck to pay for a school that would likely have paid you had you applied earlier.

the lantern
Posts: 368
Joined: Mon May 18, 2009 8:47 am

Re: Am I too optimistic

Postby the lantern » Sun May 16, 2010 6:17 pm

bad year to apply (record number of applicants) + late application (if you're a splitter, especially an extreme on like yourself, your applications need to be in asap... I submitted mine in november)

best of luck, i bet you are a good candidate to get off of a waitlist

Foosters Galore
Posts: 305
Joined: Wed Dec 09, 2009 5:15 pm

Re: Am I too optimistic

Postby Foosters Galore » Mon May 17, 2010 2:22 pm

Thanks again for all the advice. I guess from here on out its just time to focus on those locis. And as the above poster said, "worst case scenario I try again next year.". All things considered, that's not a horrible situation to be in.




Return to “Law School Acceptances, Denials, and Waitlists”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: call-me-bubbles, Christinabruin, fountainja, Google Adsense [Bot] and 20 guests