Need Advice Please

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pj233
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Joined: Fri Aug 07, 2009 7:26 pm

Need Advice Please

Postby pj233 » Fri May 20, 2011 12:18 am

Alright, so here is my situation. I am 31 years old and graduated from Metropolitan State University, Saint Paul, MN with a B.A. Individualized Studies degree in the summer of 2010. My undergrad gpa was a dismal 2.46 and when I calculated my lsdas gpa it calculates to a 1.99. Low GPA because of college coursework 8+ years ago. I have been working full time (bartending) and going to school part time throughout my undergraduate experience. I have a newborn son and will be getting married this fall. I recently took a cold diagnostic LSAT and scored 148. I scored particularly low on the games sections and did well on the questions I got to on the remaining sections. I have heard that the games section is the easiest to improve on and with practice the rest of the test can be mastered which gives me hope I can score a 160+ for the October LSAT. My question is whether it will matter considering my GPA and lack of professional experience. I am only considering law school if I can get into one of the four law schools in MN: University of Minnesota, William Mitchell, St Thomas or Hamline. What are my chances of getting into any of these schools, realize UofM is not gonna happen. Thanks for any advice anyone can give!

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dpk711
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Re: Need Advice Please

Postby dpk711 » Fri May 20, 2011 12:26 am

To be quite honest, I don't know if I can or anyone else for that matter can reliably estimate your chances at these schools. Not a lot of people have a sub-2.0 GPA and there are very few such applicants recorded on sites like LSN.com which makes it hard to estimate your chances. What I can tell you though is that William Mitchel, St. Thomas, and Hamline are schools you should generally avoid unless you have a job lined up. Also, any school that you can get in with a 148 is not worth going. Right now I would advise you to work on the LSAT -- get all three bibles and try to do as many PTs as you can (especially the ones numbered 40 and higher). Good luck.

pj233
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Joined: Fri Aug 07, 2009 7:26 pm

Re: Need Advice Please

Postby pj233 » Fri May 20, 2011 12:54 am

Thanks for the response dpk7111, I do realize 148 won't get me into any of these schools but wondering if a LSAT 160+ would get me in even though such a low gpa. Interested to know why you would avoid St Thomas, Hamline and especially William Mitchell unless you have a job lined up?

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memphisbelle
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Joined: Wed Apr 27, 2011 3:58 pm

Re: Need Advice Please

Postby memphisbelle » Fri May 20, 2011 11:25 am

Hi OP,

Study for the LSAT...you're going to need to kill it in order to get into a good school. The other poster meant that the job prospects coming out of those schools are not good. Unless you know that you will have a position waiting for you when you graduate, it wouldn't (in 99.9 percent of cases) be wise to take out extensive student loans to attend these schools. Take a look at the schools' websites to see their employment rates and their placement statistics. You can also read the profiles for the schools on here. If this is your dream, then go for it. Just be smart about the amount of debt you're willing to go into to achieve it. :)

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uzpakalis
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Re: Need Advice Please

Postby uzpakalis » Fri May 20, 2011 12:24 pm

if you get a 164+ you will get into a T2, possibly with scholly money (since you are somewhat distanced from your GPA).

pj233
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Joined: Fri Aug 07, 2009 7:26 pm

Re: Need Advice Please

Postby pj233 » Fri May 20, 2011 2:19 pm

uzpakalis wrote:if you get a 164+ you will get into a T2, possibly with scholly money (since you are somewhat distanced from your GPA).


Thanks for the info, 165+ is my LSAT goal, scholly money would be great!

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SemperLegal
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Re: Need Advice Please

Postby SemperLegal » Fri May 20, 2011 2:22 pm

I think 170+ should be your goal, unless you are loaded and law school is just a hobby.

High LSATs are rare and law schools may be willing to let a high GPA, median LSAT in just to balance you out.

pj233
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Joined: Fri Aug 07, 2009 7:26 pm

Re: Need Advice Please

Postby pj233 » Fri May 20, 2011 2:43 pm

SemperLegal wrote:I think 170+ should be your goal, unless you are loaded and law school is just a hobby.

High LSATs are rare and law schools may be willing to let a high GPA, median LSAT in just to balance you out.


Thanks for the advice, not loaded and law school definitely wouldn't be a hobby! Are you saying 170+ is what I would probably need for scholarship money at say William Mitchell or is that what I would need to get in just to offset my low GPA?

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SemperLegal
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Re: Need Advice Please

Postby SemperLegal » Fri May 20, 2011 4:07 pm

pj233 wrote:
SemperLegal wrote:I think 170+ should be your goal, unless you are loaded and law school is just a hobby.

High LSATs are rare and law schools may be willing to let a high GPA, median LSAT in just to balance you out.


Thanks for the advice, not loaded and law school definitely wouldn't be a hobby! Are you saying 170+ is what I would probably need for scholarship money at say William Mitchell or is that what I would need to get in just to offset my low GPA?


I think 170+ is what you need to look at options that will not make you regret your decision. In my opinion only, in order for law school to even be a debatable choice you likely need:

1. A full ride+stipend =<T2 (assuming you have no other major debt and have means to support your family).
2. Less than ~$35,000 of total debt with a fighting chance of finding employment (as in graduating from T1 or a high T2 with a strong regional base),
3. Less than ~$75,000 in total debt with a better than average chance of gaining worthwhile (either financially or personally) employment (T30ish).
.... (on till Yale being worth sticker with no assistance).

Anything below a 170 and I find it hard to imagine you fitting in one of the above.


Obviously my numbers are tentative, bordering on arbitrary, and are subject to a million variable (age, debt aversion, support network, interests, age, experience, savings, etc). I would be interested in if any TLS groupthink has better adjustments.

drleather
Posts: 69
Joined: Thu Feb 28, 2008 12:04 pm

Re: Need Advice Please

Postby drleather » Thu May 26, 2011 12:06 pm

Here is the link for Testmasters' Minneapolis courses: http://www.testmasters.net/lsat/Course/ ... urses.aspx.

It costs $1450.

Before you blush at that, consider this:

1) If it increases your LSAT score from what you would otherwise get by even a single point, it's likely worth more than that amount in potential scholarships;
2) In your shoes, you need to go all-out to get a top LSAT score;
3) If you are unwilling to shell out that relatively small amount to improve something as crucial as your LSAT score, then going to law school probably isn't as high a priority as you think it is.

I used TM back in 2007, and it helped me go from a 160 to a 167. I was in a similar boat as you: working full time and planning a wedding. The forced schedule gave me some structure that I found necessary.

Anyway, I highly recommend you try it. You don't have much wiggle room.

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gin
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Re: Need Advice Please

Postby gin » Thu May 26, 2011 1:43 pm

Watch out for GPA floors though. On LSAC's profile of schools, alot of schools show how many people from a certain LSAT and GPA range they take. I would look into that before you start investing money on bibles and prep-courses




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