University of Tennessee applying for fall 2012

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RaiderBlue17
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Re: University of Tennessee applying for fall 2012

Postby RaiderBlue17 » Tue Mar 13, 2012 8:45 pm

Id be second generation General but I also have Great offers from SLU and DU the new rankings have not really surprised me as I was less than impressed with utk and their placement office. But economy is tough all around so I know we need all available options to secure employment.

I BELIEVE that BC of the economy Handy kids are taking Nashville jobs and UTK grass are fighting uphill.

I'm visiting all of these schools so it will come down to potential employment and where id like to live.

Again nothing is wrong with UTK but dropping in ranking and the economy being bad has certainly hurt


Comoncents wrote:
RaiderBlue17 wrote:What school did you pass up commencement that's top 25 now?

Im in a simmilar boat with you in regards to W&L and UTK etc



Yep, thats it.
Why?
Are you thinking about passing up UTK, or the other school?
Did the rankings shake you?


Daniel

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Comoncents
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Re: University of Tennessee applying for fall 2012

Postby Comoncents » Tue Mar 13, 2012 8:51 pm

RaiderBlue17 wrote:Id be second generation General but I also have Great offers from SLU and DU the new rankings have not really surprised me as I was less than impressed with utk and their placement office. But economy is tough all around so I know we need all available options to secure employment.

I BELIEVE that BC of the economy Handy kids are taking Nashville jobs and UTK grass are fighting uphill.

I'm visiting all of these schools so it will come down to potential employment and where id like to live.

Again nothing is wrong with UTK but dropping in ranking and the economy being bad has certainly hurt


Comoncents wrote:
RaiderBlue17 wrote:What school did you pass up commencement that's top 25 now?

Im in a simmilar boat with you in regards to W&L and UTK etc



Yep, thats it.
Why?
Are you thinking about passing up UTK, or the other school?
Did the rankings shake you?


Daniel



Yeah, I see your point.

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Comoncents
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Re: University of Tennessee applying for fall 2012

Postby Comoncents » Tue Mar 13, 2012 8:56 pm

rt1987 wrote:I am not from Tennessee originally and took some time off after undergrad to figure out if law school was really the right place for me. I looked at a lot of schools (most in the South and Mid-Atlantic), and I really loved the atmosphere at UTK. It just felt right. I toured a few schools where students passing by in the hallways would just look down as they passed. At UTK everyone is pretty friendly, and that's important, especially considering you are going to spend three years with these people (not to mention they will be your future colleagues in the legal community). People here are very passionate about our community atmosphere. If I have missed a class, I have had no problems getting the notes from someone (or giving notes to a classmate that wasn't there). It's definitely competitive here (as I imagine it is competitive at every law school in the country), but not cutthroat at all. I love the people here and I'm really glad I came here.

Favorite thing: the people. It's a work hard/play hard atmosphere. People here study very hard during the weeks and play hard during the weekends. But I love the diversity here too. "Play hard" can mean a ton of things. Some people like to go hiking in the mountains. Others like to hit the undergrad bars near campus. Some like to go volunteer. Some go to Knoxville Ice Bears games on weekends. Point being, there are plenty of things to do, and this is a school that gives a great balance between a solid legal education and the opportunity to still enjoy yourself (as much as you can in law school, anyways).

Least favorite thing: parking? I don't know. There are a lot of things people complain about in law school, and I am just like other students in that fashion. But almost all of my complaints aren't law school specific, and I would complain about them regardless of which school I went to. At UTK, the parking is a pain in the ass sometimes (but as long as you are here before 9, it's not a big deal). There isn't too much interaction with the undergrads, and that can be a good or bad thing, depending on how you look at it.

One thing is Knoxville is a really unique place. People from small towns think it's huge; people from big cities think it's small. There is enough to do here (law school will keep you busy most of the time), but some people from places like New York, Atlanta, Nashville, etc. can find it boring. You will get mixed reviews from everyone. I think it's a great college city (it's not a 'college town' like Tuscaloosa or Chapel Hill, but Knoxville definitely revolves around UTK), but not a place I envision myself in the long run.

I will work on the pictures. Keep the questions coming (I will try and be as much help as I can).



Hey rt1987,

What do you think of the new rankings?


Daniel

rt1987
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Re: University of Tennessee applying for fall 2012

Postby rt1987 » Tue Mar 13, 2012 9:09 pm

Honestly, you have to realize a few things about the rankings:

1.) They don't really matter if you're not going to a T14 school. Yes, there are some exceptions outside of the T-14 that have great names nationally (like USC and Vanderbilt, etc.), but there isn't a huge difference when you get into the 30s, 40s, and below. How can someone objectively say that a school like Kentucky is significantly better than a school like Oklahoma when they have similar numbers regarding placement and admission (I just picked two schools randomly that have similar numbers and a difference in ranking)?

First, the measure that the rankings use is ridiculous, as a large component of the score is based on peer assessment and assessment from lawyers/judges (despite the fact that only 12% of judges/lawyers replied to the U.S. News survey). Second, the tactics used by schools to "game" the rankings is certainly misleading for those not familiar with the situation. Notice how U.S. News doesn't define "employed" and leaves it up to the schools to determine. What many schools won't tell you is that they hire their unemployed graduates to serve as academic assistants, recruiters, and other "jobs" to count them as "employed" for placement statistics. Furthermore, working at Burger King 9 months after graduation would be considered "employed" to many schools, and thus, that's how they report their statistics to the U.S. News.

Without more detailed information (such as information like that provided at lawschooltransparency.com), it's impossible to know how well students are doing in this economy.

http://www.usnews.com/education/best-gr ... l-rankings

Give it a careful read and then ask yourself if this is a fair and accurate system to rank law schools.

2.) If you're still naive enough to give great deference to the rankings, understand that this is a low for UTK. I personally don't care about the rankings, but if you're so inclined, UTK's ranking of the last four years: 59, 60, 56, and now 69. In comparison, Kentucky (a peer school) was ranked 55, 64, 71, 62 in the same span; that should give you an idea how volatile the rankings are (and in reality, how consistent UTK really is). Also, important to note, is that the American Bar Association decided that this year they were going to enforce new measures for reporting employment statistics. Not everyone made the change to these new standards, but UTK did. U.S. News did not factor in these new standards and thus the large disparities in placement statistics among schools.

http://law.wustl.edu/usnewsbackground/

3.) If there is one thing that you take from this post, understand that rankings really do not matter. At UTK, firms from Nashville know that Vanderbilt is a great school (and UTK doesn't really compete) but they don't look at the rankings every year and then decide which schools they are going to visit on campus and recruit from. This is why students, especially in today's economy, are highly encouraged to go to school in the state (or in an immediately adjacent state) in which they want to practice (T-14 notwithstanding). Firms and employers that have come here in the past will continue to come here, regardless of our ranking.

4.) Personally, I think UTK is a very transparent school, and I'm proud of that. Don't get me wrong, I am in no way excusing the really low 80.8% placement rate, but I am also glad that my school is giving you applicants the full picture. I don't think our career services office is trying to hide anything from you prospective students. We have great placement across the State of Tennessee and do well in surrounding areas. Outside of that, it gets a lot tougher. You would be a fool to come here and think you're going to land a big firm job in New York or Boston; it's just not going to happen. If you decide to pick a school ranked 15 spots higher than UTK in belief that it will give a significantly better chance to land NY/DC Biglaw, you're also mistaken (just as you would be wrong to believe that UTK will give you a way better chance than someone "15 spots below" UTK).

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h2oplyer7
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Re: University of Tennessee applying for fall 2012

Postby h2oplyer7 » Wed Mar 14, 2012 1:51 am

Thanks rt1987!

That was a very honest appraisal of the situation. I am bummed about the falling in rank, but I am not stressed about it. I am from California, and as much as I love this State I have always loved the South. I am excited to visit the campus and see what's up. Personally, I think that UTK is the best law school I have been accepted to so far. The people seem very nice, and from what I have read online the school has a solid reputation in the South. Of course, the school is completely free for me so that is an added plus.

Anyways, thanks again. I am very glad this blog exists.

RaiderBlue17
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Re: University of Tennessee applying for fall 2012

Postby RaiderBlue17 » Wed Mar 14, 2012 10:45 am

DUDE that's awesome... I mean free school in the region you want to work means it's a no brainer. UTK isn't free for me, tuition was estimated to be around 17K in-state and i was pretty much left out of scholarship talk... NO biggie.

Other offers are less expensive so im visiting them, some are more expensive so deciding where i want to work and how much I want to owe will be a FUN headache...

Cheers and again... congratulations a full ride is DA BOMB!

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Comoncents
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Re: University of Tennessee applying for fall 2012

Postby Comoncents » Wed Mar 14, 2012 2:50 pm

Got my loans taken care of, and ready to go. Got my UTK Email, fin aid, and deposit all done! Ready for the 30th!!!


Daniel

wightjm
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Re: University of Tennessee applying for fall 2012

Postby wightjm » Thu Mar 15, 2012 3:15 pm

My status date for UR switched to 3/12

And then a mailing was sent on 3/13 with a blank description.

I know they were doing phone call admissions, but my status still says Under Review. Anyone know if that is my rejection letter on the way?

abby3211
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Re: University of Tennessee applying for fall 2012

Postby abby3211 » Thu Mar 15, 2012 4:40 pm

wightjm wrote:My status date for UR switched to 3/12

And then a mailing was sent on 3/13 with a blank description.

I know they were doing phone call admissions, but my status still says Under Review. Anyone know if that is my rejection letter on the way?


I've already been admitted, but every time they mailed me something with a blank description it was a copy of their law magazine or something of the sort, so don't give up hope yet!

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texag1979
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Re: University of Tennessee applying for fall 2012

Postby texag1979 » Fri Mar 16, 2012 8:41 am

I'm a Tennessean now, geographically at least. See y'all in a couple weeks!

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Comoncents
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Re: University of Tennessee applying for fall 2012

Postby Comoncents » Fri Mar 16, 2012 8:44 am

texag1979 wrote:I'm a Tennessean now, geographically at least. See y'all in a couple weeks!


Congrats! Are you North, East, South or West?
We are looking exclusively West.


Have fun, and see you soon!


Daniel

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texag1979
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Re: University of Tennessee applying for fall 2012

Postby texag1979 » Fri Mar 16, 2012 9:32 am

Comoncents wrote:
texag1979 wrote:I'm a Tennessean now, geographically at least. See y'all in a couple weeks!


Congrats! Are you North, East, South or West?
We are looking exclusively West.


Have fun, and see you soon!


Daniel


We're near West Town Mall for at least the next three months while we house shop. Knoxville is georgeous this morning! When will you guys be heading out this way?

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cutecarmel
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Re: University of Tennessee applying for fall 2012

Postby cutecarmel » Fri Mar 16, 2012 1:47 pm

rt1987
Are you involved in any organizations? If so, which ones and how do you balance organization membership and your class work?

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Comoncents
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Re: University of Tennessee applying for fall 2012

Postby Comoncents » Fri Mar 16, 2012 9:04 pm

texag1979 wrote:
Comoncents wrote:
texag1979 wrote:I'm a Tennessean now, geographically at least. See y'all in a couple weeks!


Congrats! Are you North, East, South or West?
We are looking exclusively West.


Have fun, and see you soon!


Daniel


We're near West Town Mall for at least the next three months while we house shop. Knoxville is georgeous this morning! When will you guys be heading out this way?



Ahhh, awesome. We are taking our time. Looking at -


1. Eagle Pointe Townhomes –$865
Ball Camp Primary School

2. Forest Ridge Townhomes in Knoxville- $925
No school listed

3. Derby Run- $930
FARRAGUT

4. Windrush- $860
Rocky hill

5. The Reserve- $1000
Blue Grass

-

We have two kids, and made this list of places to look at and visit. We are looking to move from Virginia around the end of June.

abby3211
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Re: University of Tennessee applying for fall 2012

Postby abby3211 » Fri Mar 16, 2012 10:36 pm

Comoncents wrote:
texag1979 wrote:
Comoncents wrote:
texag1979 wrote:I'm a Tennessean now, geographically at least. See y'all in a couple weeks!


Congrats! Are you North, East, South or West?
We are looking exclusively West.


Have fun, and see you soon!


Daniel


We're near West Town Mall for at least the next three months while we house shop. Knoxville is georgeous this morning! When will you guys be heading out this way?



Ahhh, awesome. We are taking our time. Looking at -


1. Eagle Pointe Townhomes –$865
Ball Camp Primary School

2. Forest Ridge Townhomes in Knoxville- $925
No school listed

3. Derby Run- $930
FARRAGUT

4. Windrush- $860
Rocky hill

5. The Reserve- $1000
Blue Grass

-

We have two kids, and made this list of places to look at and visit. We are looking to move from Virginia around the end of June.


Don't know how old your children are, but if they're looking to play school sports any time soon, Farragut is the only one of those that has any sort of reputation. It's also a good school academically, but IDK about academics at the others to be able to compare.

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Comoncents
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Re: University of Tennessee applying for fall 2012

Postby Comoncents » Fri Mar 16, 2012 11:20 pm

We're near West Town Mall for at least the next three months while we house shop. Knoxville is georgeous this morning! When will you guys be heading out this way?[/quote]


Ahhh, awesome. We are taking our time. Looking at -


1. Eagle Pointe Townhomes –$865
Ball Camp Primary School

2. Forest Ridge Townhomes in Knoxville- $925
No school listed

3. Derby Run- $930
FARRAGUT

4. Windrush- $860
Rocky hill

5. The Reserve- $1000
Blue Grass

-

We have two kids, and made this list of places to look at and visit. We are looking to move from Virginia around the end of June.[/quote]

Don't know how old your children are, but if they're looking to play school sports any time soon, Farragut is the only one of those that has any sort of reputation. It's also a good school academically, but IDK about academics at the others to be able to compare.[/quote]


Thanks! We liked Derby Run a lot, and would the school seems great academically. My kids are 4 (boy) and 6 (girl). My son has high functioning autism, so that plays a large part in our decision. Thanks for the help!


Daniel

rt1987
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Re: University of Tennessee applying for fall 2012

Postby rt1987 » Sun Mar 18, 2012 1:07 am

cutecarmel wrote:rt1987
Are you involved in any organizations? If so, which ones and how do you balance organization membership and your class work?


The two biggest organizations here are SBA and PAD, here's a quick rundown of each:

Student Bar Association is probably the biggest one at the school. They rent out lockers in the locker room and also put on the major social events of the year (Halloween party and Barrister's Ball in the spring). SBA members are elected in school-wide elections in the spring and I think they are on the main council for basically the calendar year. SBA also throws a big back-to-school bash (Benchmark) and helps with a big fundraising auction for the public interest fund, and they run a year-round book exchange (definitely check this out before you buy your books).

Phi Alpha Delta is a nationwide law fraternity that is pretty big at UTK. They also put on a couple of events every semester and sponsor a mock trial team that competes every year in Washington, D.C. (the only mock trial team you can get on as a 1L by the way). They have a pretty high participation rate at the school and their social events are a lot of fun (last year they did a boat cruise in Knoxville and a trip to the horse track in Kentucky; this year they are doing a bar crawl).

There are also a bunch of other similar organizations (most of which are self-explanatory):
Black Law Students Association
Asian Law Students Association
ENLACE (Latino Law Students Association)
SELS (Sports and Entertainment Law Society)
BTLA (Business and Tax Law Association)
Immigration Law Society
Environmental Law Association
International Law Society
Lambda Law (Gay-Straight Alliance)
TACDL (Tennessee Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers)
Law Women
Law Men
Federalist Society
Pro Bono (includes a ton of opportunities to volunteer for things like Saturday Bar, Habitat for Humanity, and CASA)
Law Student Ambassadors (student recruiters)

In my experience, I would say that the strong majority of the above listed organizations are pretty minimal time commitments, maybe an hour per week. This first group deals more with social stuff than anything, and they are all great (whether they are raising money for a good cause like Law Women does or they're allowing students to get pro bono opportunities). These groups are terrific for meeting people (and to be honest these are the best ways to get involved as a 1L because this second group isn't an option for 1Ls). All of these aforementioned groups are reasonable in their time commitment requirements during your 1L year. Leadership positions will require more time, but it's still very reasonable. This next group is the more 'academic' type student organizations, and if you're interested specifically in one, let me know and I can get you more information.

Moot Court Board: every year the moot court board puts on a bunch of advocacy (trial) stuff, including Advocacy Idol (a 1L competition that consists of an examination of a witness and a closing/opening). They also do the Jenkins Mock Trial competition (for 2Ls and 3Ls to compete in a fake trial competition with real Knoxville Barristers as judges) and the Advocates Prize competition (for 2Ls and 3Ls to compete in, basically a brief writing and oral argument competition--the finals are always judged by someone big, two years ago it was Justice Clarence Thomas, last year it was a panel of Sixth Circuit Judges, next year it will be Justice Elena Kagan). You automatically make it by participating in the Advocates Prize competition; not a huge commitment to be on the board itself, leadership roles probably require an hour per week or so, except for coordinating the events, which takes a lot of time.

Moot Court Teams: we have a ton of moot court teams, including ones in Animal Law, Environmental Law, International Law, Trademark Law, Labor and Employment Law, Evidence, national Moot Court competitions, national Mock Trial competitions, mediation competitions, and more. These are great opportunities to get involved, especially if you're interested in litigation. They're only open to 2Ls and 3Ls, and require a ton of time in preparation (although they are almost always in the spring).

Tennessee Law Review: flagship law publication at UTK, unlike other schools, no one is allowed or barred from grading on--getting onto TLR is a strict write-on competition that takes place during the summer between your 1L and 2L years. You will have a bluebook exam and a case note to compete, and that is an extremely long process (and you only get one shot to make it). For 2Ls, it seems to be a pretty big time commitment that fluctuates in cycles (some weeks are really busy, some weeks have nothing to do) but probably averages out to be 20-25 hours in the fall and 5-10 in the spring (including a monthly meeting). Leadership positions (for 3Ls) requires a lot more time, but it completely depends on the position.

Transactions: business law journal, also only a write-on process that (I think) involves a bluebook exam and a case synopsis. This takes place during the summers after 1L and 2L, and is not limited to people on the business track or those interested in transactional work. I think this journal focuses a lot more on Tennessee law instead of national law, but I could be wrong. Time commitment seems to be a lot less than law review, probably 5-6 hours per semester (in addition to a monthly meeting).

Tennessee Journal of Law & Policy: relatively new journal that is very similar to Transactions, but focuses on policy and government. Same tryout as TLR (bluebook exam and case note), but the time commitment is a lot closer to that of Transactions.

Tennessee Journal of Race, Gender, and Social Justice: brand new online journal dealing with issues about race, gender, and social justice. I think they take 1Ls, but I have no idea about the candidacy process or the time commitment.

None of these organizations (in this second group) is exclusive, so you can do more than one, although you would probably be overloaded if you tried to do more than two or three. These are different from the first group in the sense that they give you a lot of great law-related experience; the journals train you to write and edit so you can become stronger in that sense, while the moot court and mock trial teams give you a better idea of the workload of a trial attorney. This second group is also a great way to distinguish yourself when looking for a job because employers value and recognize these a lot. The time balance between this group and class work is hard and difficult, but as long as you're organized and on top of things, it's very do-able. The time commitment varies from one to another, but I would absolutely recommend every one of these (in the second group) for all students to try and get experience with.

Hope that helps!

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cutecarmel
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Re: University of Tennessee applying for fall 2012

Postby cutecarmel » Sun Mar 18, 2012 6:48 pm

Wow. That is extremely helpful. Thank you very much.

wightjm
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Re: University of Tennessee applying for fall 2012

Postby wightjm » Mon Mar 19, 2012 11:39 pm

Waitlisted via snail mail. I am holding out. I want to be a Vol next year.

Stats for people in similar situation:

157 3.5 OOS

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Comoncents
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Re: University of Tennessee applying for fall 2012

Postby Comoncents » Wed Mar 21, 2012 2:58 pm

wightjm wrote:Waitlisted via snail mail. I am holding out. I want to be a Vol next year.

Stats for people in similar situation:

157 3.5 OOS


Good luck, I hope you get in soon.


Daniel

Hlstaggs
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Re: University of Tennessee applying for fall 2012

Postby Hlstaggs » Wed Mar 21, 2012 4:17 pm

Waitlisted by snail mail

153/ 3.29 in state
Sent in the continued interest form and will write a LOCI and update my resume.

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cutecarmel
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Re: University of Tennessee applying for fall 2012

Postby cutecarmel » Wed Mar 21, 2012 11:51 pm

Good luck to all of you who are waitlisted. Make sure that you send in LOCIs and try to make a campus visit to show that you are still interested. Hope to see you all this Fall!

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YankeeFan2
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Re: University of Tennessee applying for fall 2012

Postby YankeeFan2 » Thu Mar 22, 2012 5:58 pm

Waitlisted via status checker. Good luck to the rest of you!

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anb008
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Re: University of Tennessee applying for fall 2012

Postby anb008 » Thu Mar 22, 2012 6:40 pm

h2oplyer7 wrote:Thanks rt1987!

That was a very honest appraisal of the situation. I am bummed about the falling in rank, but I am not stressed about it. I am from California, and as much as I love this State I have always loved the South. I am excited to visit the campus and see what's up. Personally, I think that UTK is the best law school I have been accepted to so far. The people seem very nice, and from what I have read online the school has a solid reputation in the South. Of course, the school is completely free for me so that is an added plus.

Anyways, thanks again. I am very glad this blog exists.



I'm in the same boat. Born and raised in Cali, (did my undergrad in Iowa), but I'm ready for a change. Pretty excited.

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Comoncents
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Re: University of Tennessee applying for fall 2012

Postby Comoncents » Thu Mar 22, 2012 7:40 pm

cutecarmel wrote:Good luck to all of you who are waitlisted. Make sure that you send in LOCIs and try to make a campus visit to show that you are still interested. Hope to see you all this Fall!



Completely agree!




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