Hard decisions ahead... Help!

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flgatorguy
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Hard decisions ahead... Help!

Postby flgatorguy » Sun Apr 22, 2012 9:14 pm

Short background info:

Graduated from University of Florida in 2010 with dual degree in Finance and History. GPA of 3.82, according to LSAC.
LSAT score of 162 with a month of studying (Powerscore prep course)
Applied late (March) to law schools in T20-50 range.

As of today I have received acceptances and schollys to PennState and Temple. And was accepted to UF Law with no merit money. Waitlisted everywhere else I applied (BU, BC, Emory, UGA, etc)

I don't feel like I'm a mediocre student, but I feel like I only have mediocre choices in front of me. Should I be content with being a double-gator? Or do I take another year off, study 4-5months for October LSAT, apply early, and hope for the best?

My only problem with a retake/reapply option is that what if I can't raise my score and I'm in the same spot (or worse) come next year. Thanks in advance for the help guys.

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moonman157
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Re: Hard decisions ahead... Help!

Postby moonman157 » Sun Apr 22, 2012 9:24 pm

Definitely retake. You have a great GPA, don't waste it. If you want to stay in Florida, retake and get lots of $$$ from Florida and go there. Otherwise, a higher score will definitely get you into some much better schools (as will applying earlier).

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JoeMo
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Re: Hard decisions ahead... Help!

Postby JoeMo » Sun Apr 22, 2012 9:26 pm

moonman157 wrote:Definitely retake. You have a great GPA, don't waste it. If you want to stay in Florida, retake and get lots of $$$ from Florida and go there. Otherwise, a higher score will definitely get you into some much better schools (as will applying earlier).


This.

Edit: The automatic response would've been retake but since you're already considering taking the year off then you will find yourself well served by that decision.
Last edited by JoeMo on Sun Apr 22, 2012 9:26 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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El_Gallo
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Re: Hard decisions ahead... Help!

Postby El_Gallo » Sun Apr 22, 2012 9:26 pm

flgatorguy wrote:My only problem with a retake/reapply option is that what if I can't raise my score and I'm in the same spot (or worse) come next year. Thanks in advance for the help guys.


I can't tell you to take a year off or not. You should be your own best indicator on whether on not you can improve on the LSAT. However, I don't think there is much of a chance of you doing worse next cycle if you plan to sit out and retake. Consider the following:

- If you improve your LSAT, you will undoubtedly have much better options.
-If your LSAT score comes back the same or even drops a point or two, it will have virtually no effect on your cycle.
-Applying early may give you an ever so slight admissions boost.
-Getting a little work experience never hurt anyone's application.
-There is the slim chance that the number of LSAT takers will continue to drop and law schools will lax their admissions standards slightly.

Just some things to consider. Best of luck with your decision.

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Br3v
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Re: Hard decisions ahead... Help!

Postby Br3v » Sun Apr 22, 2012 10:37 pm

moonman157 wrote:Definitely retake. You have a great GPA, don't waste it. If you want to stay in Florida, retake and get lots of $$$ from Florida and go there. Otherwise, a higher score will definitely get you into some much better schools (as will applying earlier).

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coldshoulder
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Re: Hard decisions ahead... Help!

Postby coldshoulder » Sun Apr 22, 2012 10:42 pm

El_Gallo wrote:-Applying early may give you an ever so slight admissions boost.


The difference between applying in March and applying in September is enormous, especially for scholarship money. Don't discount how much of an impact it will have on your cycle.

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top30man
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Re: Hard decisions ahead... Help!

Postby top30man » Sun Apr 22, 2012 10:54 pm

coldshoulder wrote:
El_Gallo wrote:-Applying early may give you an ever so slight admissions boost.


The difference between applying in March and applying in September is enormous, especially for scholarship money. Don't discount how much of an impact it will have on your cycle.

Yes. Especially given how late OP applied.

flgatorguy
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Re: Hard decisions ahead... Help!

Postby flgatorguy » Mon Apr 23, 2012 12:26 pm

I appreciate the input guys. The consensus, as I suspected, is the retake/reapply option. Judging from other TLS forums, a high GPA and an average LSAT always elicits the "retake" response. A couple of follow-ups, I heard from UF today that they'll be giving me a 5,000 a year scholly. Not great, but it's something.

Further, does anyone have advice on accepting at UF and then transferring after my first year? I'm trying to weigh the risk and reward of that scenario compared to retake/reapply. I know this is hard to answer but what do you think, is it more difficult to raise my LSAT 10ish points or work hard to be top 5% in my first year and transfer?

The prospect of taking another year off is unappealing, at best, but I only have one chance at this whole law school thing so I don't want to screw it up!

Again, thanks in advance.

enzo66
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Re: Hard decisions ahead... Help!

Postby enzo66 » Mon Apr 23, 2012 12:42 pm

flgatorguy wrote:I appreciate the input guys. The consensus, as I suspected, is the retake/reapply option. Judging from other TLS forums, a high GPA and an average LSAT always elicits the "retake" response. A couple of follow-ups, I heard from UF today that they'll be giving me a 5,000 a year scholly. Not great, but it's something.

Further, does anyone have advice on accepting at UF and then transferring after my first year? I'm trying to weigh the risk and reward of that scenario compared to retake/reapply. I know this is hard to answer but what do you think, is it more difficult to raise my LSAT 10ish points or work hard to be top 5% in my first year and transfer?

The prospect of taking another year off is unappealing, at best, but I only have one chance at this whole law school thing so I don't want to screw it up!

Again, thanks in advance.


Don't screw this up by going to UF and then planning to transfer. Given your performance after only a month of studying for the LSAT, more diligent efforts on your part to raise your score will be much easier and less risky than banking on the fact that you'll be in the top 5%.

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coldshoulder
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Re: Hard decisions ahead... Help!

Postby coldshoulder » Mon Apr 23, 2012 12:53 pm

Agreed. Going to law school with the goal of being top 5% (or higher, think top 5 students) and the intention of transferring is extremely risky. You're much better off spending a significant amount of time prepping for the LSAT. In fact, it's almost May, get off TLS and start studying for June! :D

flgatorguy
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Re: Hard decisions ahead... Help!

Postby flgatorguy » Mon Apr 30, 2012 12:24 pm

@coldshoulder - I think June is a little too soon, I want to make sure I raise my score in one lump sum rather than bit by bit and I think October LSAT is a better decision.

As a follow-up to my previous posts, I received an acceptance letter to University of Georgia today off of the waitlist. I would be paying out of state @ sticker, but I was happy to get in to a higher ranked school than UF. I seem to be below their median LSAT score so I was surprised to get in.

Any thoughts on attending UGA, at least I'm getting a little closer to T30?? Though I still hope that I'll hear back from Emory, BC, or BU.

Thanks!

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moonman157
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Re: Hard decisions ahead... Help!

Postby moonman157 » Mon Apr 30, 2012 12:36 pm

flgatorguy wrote:@coldshoulder - I think June is a little too soon, I want to make sure I raise my score in one lump sum rather than bit by bit and I think October LSAT is a better decision.

As a follow-up to my previous posts, I received an acceptance letter to University of Georgia today off of the waitlist. I would be paying out of state @ sticker, but I was happy to get in to a higher ranked school than UF. I seem to be below their median LSAT score so I was surprised to get in.

Any thoughts on attending UGA, at least I'm getting a little closer to T30?? Though I still hope that I'll hear back from Emory, BC, or BU.

Thanks!


Outside of certain groupings or tiers (T14, T1, T2, etc) rankings don't matter too much. Florida will give you job prospects in Florida. UGA will give you prospects in Georgia. That one is ranked higher than the other by a few spots doesn't really matter (It's not like you're choosing between UF and FIU). So if you're deciding between the two, go where you would rather work. From what I've read on these threads, both the GA and FL markets are struggling right now, so my advice would be the same as before: definitely retake. It won't hurt your chances if you get a lower score, but you have a great GPA and by bringing up your score to the upper 160s and even breaking 170, you'll be looking at T14 or scholarship money from the schools you're looking to pay sticker at right now.

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Dale
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Re: Hard decisions ahead... Help!

Postby Dale » Mon Apr 30, 2012 1:04 pm

Given your high GPA and moderate LSAT score I am surprised you haven’t landed something in the high Tier-1 range. I know others with scores like yours who recevied acceptances into bottom rung T-14 schools with an ED. You might even have a slim shot at PBV. . . they are sometimes splitter friendly.

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Micdiddy
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Re: Hard decisions ahead... Help!

Postby Micdiddy » Mon Apr 30, 2012 2:19 pm

You said yourself you do not want to go to a mediocre school, and with that GPA it is extraordinarily likely you can go to a t6 school if you just improve your LSAT score.
Retake in October, shoot for a mid 170 (I think that jump is pretty do-able with the right amount of effort) and you'll have a platter of t14 schools to choose from.




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