Application List - 3.76/171

Not sure where your numbers will get you? Dying to know where you stand? Come have your palms read by your fellow posters!
BigZuck
Posts: 10872
Joined: Tue Sep 04, 2012 9:53 am

Re: Application List - 3.76/171

Postby BigZuck » Sat Oct 05, 2013 5:46 pm

Arcticlynx wrote:Crowing & Lincoln I will send PM's with details. I figure the more input I can get on this decision the better - it's kind of a big life choice after all. :)

I'm was not planning to apply to Yale because I don't think I have a chance at admission (although a re-take could potentially change that). I wasn't planning to apply to Harvard because Harvard's law program doesn't really fit me, and I'm not sure that I would fit in.


I can't think of a person who Harvard's program wouldn't fit, can you elaborate?

I'm actually not really sure how a law program could really be all that different from school to school with the possible exception of a quarter versus a semester system. Seems like the same stuff from school to school, although Harvard is a huge school and therefore might have more class offerings which I think could only be a benefit if someone was looking for something specific.

Also, it's Harvard bro. Harvard.

Arcticlynx
Posts: 71
Joined: Wed Feb 20, 2013 4:36 pm

Re: Application List - 3.76/171

Postby Arcticlynx » Sat Oct 05, 2013 7:28 pm

Bigzuck, you may have pointed out a hole in my logic and I’m not going to try and defend a statement that may potentially be false.
Last edited by Arcticlynx on Mon Oct 14, 2013 12:17 am, edited 3 times in total.

User avatar
A. Nony Mouse
Posts: 22845
Joined: Tue Sep 25, 2012 11:51 am

Re: Application List - 3.76/171

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Sat Oct 05, 2013 7:40 pm

Just wanted to add that while I am a fan of the lower T1 :P law school is very unlike the rest of academia in that specializations are essentially meaningless. For instance, you mentioned an interest in international environmental law, and included some schools that bill themselves as being focused on environmental law - but it is entirely unnecessary to go to a school with a heavy academic emphasis on environmental law to get a job in that field once you're done. The academic strengths/specialties of the faculty are really irrelevant to the education you get - any courses that you should take to succeed in environmental or intellectual law will be available at essentially every law school around. Certificates/specializations are unnecessary. Thus, it's generally better to go to the school with the better employment prospects and overall resources, rather than one with any kind of specialty in a given area. Even if you want to go into legal academia, going to HYS is much more beneficial than going to a school that claims to "specialize" in something but doesn't offer the other strengths that HYS offers.

So really, a law school's academic program is meaningless - you don't have to look for somewhere to "fit in" academically. I do think a school's culture can make a significant difference in your experience so it's worth checking that out at individual schools, but that's not really about the courses they offer and should be secondary to other deciding factors (employment score, scholarships).

Arcticlynx
Posts: 71
Joined: Wed Feb 20, 2013 4:36 pm

Re: Application List - 3.76/171

Postby Arcticlynx » Sat Oct 05, 2013 8:05 pm

^ That is completely counter-intuitive to me, from a science perspective it's all about the academic program or specialization within the program and the school doesn't really matter. But I posted this topic for the reason of discovering this kind of stuff. Anyone else have a comment on the value of a school's overall reputation vs. its reputation within a specialization?

Thanks, for the advice... and I'm not challenging it, just asking if there is any more detail because I've been basing a good portion of my decision on specialization.

User avatar
MoMettaMonk
Posts: 513
Joined: Thu Jul 04, 2013 3:29 pm

Re: Application List - 3.76/171

Postby MoMettaMonk » Sat Oct 05, 2013 8:13 pm

Arcticlynx wrote:^ That is completely counter-intuitive to me, from a science perspective it's all about the academic program or specialization within the program and the school doesn't really matter. But I posted this topic for the reason of discovering this kind of stuff. Anyone else have a comment on the value of a school's overall reputation vs. its reputation within a specialization?

Thanks, for the advice... and I'm not challenging it, just asking if there is any more detail because I've been basing a good portion of my decision on specialization.


I could see a professed specialization coming into play if you're choosing from peer schools in regions that you know you want to work and that offer you similar scholarship amounts. But your primary concern with law schools should be maximizing your employment prospects and minimizing your debt. Once you've done that, then focus on specializations.

And yes it is totally the opposite of what I've heard about every other graduate degree.

User avatar
A. Nony Mouse
Posts: 22845
Joined: Tue Sep 25, 2012 11:51 am

Re: Application List - 3.76/171

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Sat Oct 05, 2013 9:00 pm

It does feel counter-intuitive depending on your background - I went to law school after a Ph.D., and it was hard to get out of that academic specialization mindset. But I promise you specialization doesn't matter - law school is nothing like the rest of academia. Law is such a generalist degree, almost nothing about the content of your degree matters. The experiences you get during law school (internships/jobs) are much more determinative of the kind of job you'll go into. (And your grades, of course.)

As MoMettaMonk suggested, it might matter on the margins when choosing between peer schools - for instance, if you're deciding between Harvard and Stanford, Stanford might be better for IP (that's my vague sense based on reading TLS because I know not of HYS in real life). But you need to get to that point before you worry.

Also, location matters more than specialization - if you want to work in California, go to school in California; if you want to work in the midwest, go to school in the midwest; etc. This is especially the case when you get outside the T-14. For instance, you still have Colorado and Lewis & Clark on your list - both tout strong environmental law programs (and I'm sure they're genuinely good programs), but Colorado will place best in the mountain west and L&C in the PNW. Neither will place readily in, say, the south or the northeast. (Speaking in generalities, based on the odds - certainly some people will get jobs across the country from where they go to law school, but it can be much much tougher.) Even when you're looking at the T-14, geography can matter, so Michigan likely places better in the midwest than California, and Cornell better on the east coast than in the south, that kind of thing.

But it sounds like you will have many good options.

BigZuck
Posts: 10872
Joined: Tue Sep 04, 2012 9:53 am

Re: Application List - 3.76/171

Postby BigZuck » Sat Oct 05, 2013 11:17 pm

OP- if you go to Lewis and Clark with those numbers I will cry. Do not make me cry.

Also, Mouse's advice is all credited. She is a mod. Listen to her.

Arcticlynx
Posts: 71
Joined: Wed Feb 20, 2013 4:36 pm

Re: Application List - 3.76/171

Postby Arcticlynx » Sun Oct 06, 2013 3:32 pm

I'm sending long/detailed PM's to people who are willing to give me more personalized suggestions. So let me know if you would be willing to give me additional criticisms and insight that go beyond considerations of LSAT score and GPA. Thank you all so much for the advice.

User avatar
thewaves
Posts: 384
Joined: Sun May 12, 2013 7:26 pm

Re: Application List - 3.76/171

Postby thewaves » Sun Oct 06, 2013 4:48 pm

Don't know if I can be of any help but just wanted to say congrats on the Fulbright and Goldwater, those are impressive!

User avatar
A. Nony Mouse
Posts: 22845
Joined: Tue Sep 25, 2012 11:51 am

Re: Application List - 3.76/171

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Sun Oct 06, 2013 4:52 pm

Feel free to PM if you like. I am not a mod because I have any special insight, though!

User avatar
pupshaw
Posts: 504
Joined: Tue Feb 15, 2011 10:08 pm

Re: Application List - 3.76/171

Postby pupshaw » Sun Oct 06, 2013 8:08 pm

1. Nony is 100% spot-on about academic specialization in law school. You absolutely should not pick a school based on some special program, although there can be meaningful differences at the margins between similarly situated schools.

2. HLS has 560+ people in every 1L class. Any conception you have of what all of those people are like is most assuredly a misconception. Feel free to PM me for specifics about the school, and about your specific areas of interest at the school.




Return to “What are my chances?”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Google Adsense [Bot], Yahoo [Bot] and 7 guests