GPA:3.4 LSAT:173 Solid W/E, weak extracurriculars

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dabigchina
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GPA:3.4 LSAT:173 Solid W/E, weak extracurriculars

Postby dabigchina » Mon Jan 13, 2014 2:33 am

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Last edited by dabigchina on Sat Aug 23, 2014 6:35 pm, edited 1 time in total.

tiltedwindmill
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Re: GPA:3.4 LSAT:173 Solid W/E, weak extracurriculars

Postby tiltedwindmill » Mon Jan 13, 2014 2:37 am

dabigchina wrote:Hi TLS,

After lurking for a couple of months I think I'm ready for you guys to pass judgement on my chances.

LSAT 173
GPA 3.4 from top 20 uni

Applying next cycle, will have 3 years of W/E under my belt at time of application. practicing and licensed CPA working at Big4 in tax. I have a couple of partners and senior managers who would be able to write me solid letters. Unfortuantely, I probably won't be able to get an academic letter of recommendation (didn't kiss enough ass in UG and it's been 3 long years).

I don't have much in the way volunteering, service, etc because I'm always working (see Big4 accounting).

looking at MyLSN it looks like I have a decent shot at everything below NYU with the exception of Duke and Cal.

HOWEVER, even though parents will be paying for tuition 100%, I would really sleep better at night if I got some $$$.

What are my chances? Should I retake LSAT for $$$? The 173 was my first attempt after about a year of studying on and off and it was my average score during PT's for the last 5 months or so, so I feel like it is an accurate gauge of my skill. What would happen if my score were lower this time?

Thanks guys and apologies if I fucked something up in the formatting department.


I would say NU based on your high LSAT and work experience but you should probably blanket the T14 save HYSB.

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dabigchina
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Re: GPA:3.4 LSAT:173 Solid W/E, weak extracurriculars

Postby dabigchina » Mon Jan 13, 2014 2:39 am

tiltedwindmill wrote:I would say NU based on your high LSAT and work experience but you should probably blanket the T14 save HYSB.


Thanks, what are your thoughts on $$$?

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Re: GPA:3.4 LSAT:173 Solid W/E, weak extracurriculars

Postby tiltedwindmill » Mon Jan 13, 2014 2:43 am

dabigchina wrote:
tiltedwindmill wrote:I would say NU based on your high LSAT and work experience but you should probably blanket the T14 save HYSB.


Thanks, what are your thoughts on $$$?


Since you are a splitter for most if not all schools worth attending (assuming you want the option of big law) it is hard to say.

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Re: GPA:3.4 LSAT:173 Solid W/E, weak extracurriculars

Postby tiltedwindmill » Mon Jan 13, 2014 3:01 am

You could, just based on a cursory reading of mylsn, look for a small bit of love from (15k a year) from Columbia and NYU, maybe 20 from Michigan and 25-35 from UVA. Though these figures are based off a very small sample of data.

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dabigchina
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Re: GPA:3.4 LSAT:173 Solid W/E, weak extracurriculars

Postby dabigchina » Mon Jan 13, 2014 3:05 am

tiltedwindmill wrote:You could, just based on a cursory reading of mylsn, look for a small bit of love from (15k a year) from Columbia and NYU, maybe 20 from Michigan and 25-35 from UVA. Though these figures are based off a very small sample of data.


There's one guy who had the same exact numbers as me. He had a pretty decent cycle money wise but I'm hesitant to rely on a single data point.

At this point I'm just wondering if

1. Not having an academic letter of recommendation is gonna torpedo my chances.
2. Should I ED NU and grab that full scholly they've been throwing around (assuming it's around next year). Is there some caveat I'm missing for that program? It seems to good to be true that NU is letting a bunch of splitters go to school for free.

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Re: GPA:3.4 LSAT:173 Solid W/E, weak extracurriculars

Postby runthetrap » Mon Jan 13, 2014 4:23 am

dabigchina wrote:At this point I'm just wondering if

1. Not having an academic letter of recommendation is gonna torpedo my chances.
2. Should I ED NU and grab that full scholly they've been throwing around (assuming it's around next year). Is there some caveat I'm missing for that program? It seems to good to be true that NU is letting a bunch of splitters go to school for free.


1. highly likely, if not definitely. sorry
2. i don't know what your career aspirations are, but you could v likely swing more highly ranked schools. what makes you think EDing at NU is going to get them to give you a full ride though?

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Clearly
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Re: GPA:3.4 LSAT:173 Solid W/E, weak extracurriculars

Postby Clearly » Mon Jan 13, 2014 4:26 am

runthetrap wrote:
dabigchina wrote:At this point I'm just wondering if

1. Not having an academic letter of recommendation is gonna torpedo my chances.
2. Should I ED NU and grab that full scholly they've been throwing around (assuming it's around next year). Is there some caveat I'm missing for that program? It seems to good to be true that NU is letting a bunch of splitters go to school for free.


1. highly likely, if not definitely. sorry
2. i don't know what your career aspirations are, but you could v likely swing more highly ranked schools. what makes you think EDing at NU is going to get them to give you a full ride though?

Northwestern ED comes with a full ride. It's generally considered to poach hysccn applicants, so I don't think it's a good idea here. You'd get deferred, then admitted RD is my guess. It's not for splitters.

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Re: GPA:3.4 LSAT:173 Solid W/E, weak extracurriculars

Postby dabigchina » Mon Jan 13, 2014 4:28 am

runthetrap wrote:
dabigchina wrote:At this point I'm just wondering if

1. Not having an academic letter of recommendation is gonna torpedo my chances.
2. Should I ED NU and grab that full scholly they've been throwing around (assuming it's around next year). Is there some caveat I'm missing for that program? It seems to good to be true that NU is letting a bunch of splitters go to school for free.


1. highly likely, if not definitely. sorry
2. i don't know what your career aspirations are, but you could v likely swing more highly ranked schools. what makes you think EDing at NU is going to get them to give you a full ride though?


Not sure I'm parsing you here. Not having a letter of rec is going torpedo my chances at T14 but I can swing a school higher than NU?

I'd be targeting biglaw in the bay area.
Last edited by dabigchina on Mon Jan 13, 2014 4:38 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: GPA:3.4 LSAT:173 Solid W/E, weak extracurriculars

Postby dabigchina » Mon Jan 13, 2014 4:30 am

Clearly wrote:
runthetrap wrote:
dabigchina wrote:At this point I'm just wondering if

1. Not having an academic letter of recommendation is gonna torpedo my chances.
2. Should I ED NU and grab that full scholly they've been throwing around (assuming it's around next year). Is there some caveat I'm missing for that program? It seems to good to be true that NU is letting a bunch of splitters go to school for free.


1. highly likely, if not definitely. sorry
2. i don't know what your career aspirations are, but you could v likely swing more highly ranked schools. what makes you think EDing at NU is going to get them to give you a full ride though?

Northwestern ED comes with a full ride. It's generally considered to poach hysccn applicants, so I don't think it's a good idea here. You'd get deferred, then admitted RD is my guess. It's not for splitters.


Got it. Should I ED anywhere? Any specific school I should really target? I was kinda planning to apply early but RD everywhere to maximize $$$. For your info it would be highly preferable for me to wind up somewhere in the Bay Area for personal reasons (significant ties).

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Clearly
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Re: GPA:3.4 LSAT:173 Solid W/E, weak extracurriculars

Postby Clearly » Mon Jan 13, 2014 5:05 am

dabigchina wrote:
Clearly wrote:
runthetrap wrote:
dabigchina wrote:At this point I'm just wondering if

1. Not having an academic letter of recommendation is gonna torpedo my chances.
2. Should I ED NU and grab that full scholly they've been throwing around (assuming it's around next year). Is there some caveat I'm missing for that program? It seems to good to be true that NU is letting a bunch of splitters go to school for free.


1. highly likely, if not definitely. sorry
2. i don't know what your career aspirations are, but you could v likely swing more highly ranked schools. what makes you think EDing at NU is going to get them to give you a full ride though?

Northwestern ED comes with a full ride. It's generally considered to poach hysccn applicants, so I don't think it's a good idea here. You'd get deferred, then admitted RD is my guess. It's not for splitters.


Got it. Should I ED anywhere? Any specific school I should really target? I was kinda planning to apply early but RD everywhere to maximize $$$. For your info it would be highly preferable for me to wind up somewhere in the Bay Area for personal reasons (significant ties).

The bay area during school, or schools that place well in the bay area after school? What are your career goals?

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Re: GPA:3.4 LSAT:173 Solid W/E, weak extracurriculars

Postby dabigchina » Mon Jan 13, 2014 5:13 am

Schools that place well in Bay Area biglaw after school. Bay Area during school would be amazing but I know my stats aren't going to get me in anywhere other than Hastings. My thinking is if I don't get into T-14 with some decent money I probably won't even go.

I was hoping for maybe 15-20k per year from MVP on down. Is this totally not feasible at all given my stats? would retaking and getting a 175 increase my chances at money significantly enough to make it worthwhile?

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Re: GPA:3.4 LSAT:173 Solid W/E, weak extracurriculars

Postby runthetrap » Mon Jan 13, 2014 5:26 am

dabigchina wrote:Not sure I'm parsing you here. Not having a letter of rec is going torpedo my chances at T14 but I can swing a school higher than NU?

sorry, that was unclear. being a few years out of undergrad & having zero academic recs will damage your chances a lot. you should really try to get a professor to write you a rec, even if (s)he isn't going to rave about what an amazing student you were.

i assumed that you, not wanting to torpedo your chances, would do something to prevent said torpedoing

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Re: GPA:3.4 LSAT:173 Solid W/E, weak extracurriculars

Postby dabigchina » Mon Jan 13, 2014 5:29 am

runthetrap wrote:
dabigchina wrote:Not sure I'm parsing you here. Not having a letter of rec is going torpedo my chances at T14 but I can swing a school higher than NU?

sorry, that was unclear. being a few years out of undergrad & having zero academic recs will damage your chances a lot. you should really try to get a professor to write you a rec, even if (s)he isn't going to rave about what an amazing student you were.

i assumed that you, not wanting to torpedo your chances, would do something to prevent said torpedoing


how do i go about this? do I just mass email all my professors? my school was pretty big and i have a feeling none of them remember me at all given that it's been 6 years since i've had some of their classes. given my GPA i'm afraid that a lot of them won't have much to say about me.

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Re: GPA:3.4 LSAT:173 Solid W/E, weak extracurriculars

Postby TheSpanishMain » Mon Jan 13, 2014 7:39 am

I think "torpedo" is a bit strong. In this era of declining apps, a 170s LSAT is a very hot commodity. Most schools aren't going to dismiss you out of hand for not having an academic LOR, particularly when they see that you've been out of school for a few years.

By all means, try to get one if at all possible, even though it's going to be a super generic "This guy did well in my class and got an A" type letter since no one is going to remember you at this point. All that said, I don't think this is going to be life or death for you the way the LSAT is life or death.

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Re: GPA:3.4 LSAT:173 Solid W/E, weak extracurriculars

Postby Ramius » Mon Jan 13, 2014 8:12 am

runthetrap wrote:
dabigchina wrote:Not sure I'm parsing you here. Not having a letter of rec is going torpedo my chances at T14 but I can swing a school higher than NU?

sorry, that was unclear. being a few years out of undergrad & having zero academic recs will damage your chances a lot. you should really try to get a professor to write you a rec, even if (s)he isn't going to rave about what an amazing student you were.

i assumed that you, not wanting to torpedo your chances, would do something to prevent said torpedoing


This isn't true. You don't NEED an academic LOR necessarily. What you need are people who can speak knowledgably about your academic abilities and you'll be just fine.

It's rare that an LOR will make or break an app to begin with, so just make sure your recommenders know to include things about your intellectual capability and the LORs won't hurt you a bit.

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Re: GPA:3.4 LSAT:173 Solid W/E, weak extracurriculars

Postby runthetrap » Mon Jan 13, 2014 8:22 am

matthewsean85 wrote:You don't NEED an academic LOR necessarily. What you need are people who can speak knowledgably about your academic abilities and you'll be just fine.

i do agree that you don't NEED an academic LOR. however, i still think it will hurt your application (in light of the fact that you haven't been out of school for a long time). having someone you've worked for write that you are bright, etc absolutely will not carry the same weight as a professor who can attest to your ACADEMIC ability. you are applying to be a future law student, and there is no one better than people who are in academia to vouch for your academic potential.

eta: it is also true that 173 is a great score, and your lack of an academic rec won't put you out of the running. but it may raise a red flag about your ability to succeed in law school.

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Re: GPA:3.4 LSAT:173 Solid W/E, weak extracurriculars

Postby TheSpanishMain » Mon Jan 13, 2014 9:19 am

I think scoring in the top 1% of LSAT takers will be adequate assurance that OP has the potential to succeed in law school. Most LORs are pretty boilerplate anyway. I agree that it's better to have an academic one than not, but with some solid LORs from employers, he'll be fine.

The vast majority of the time, LORs don't matter. Your transcripts and LSAT speak to your record and potential way more than a professor writing "Yeah, this guy does good research."

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Re: GPA:3.4 LSAT:173 Solid W/E, weak extracurriculars

Postby Ramius » Mon Jan 13, 2014 9:27 am

I guess it depends on your definition of it "hurting you." Do I think having a professor who knows you intimately, knows your academic potential and thinks highly of your academic skill would look marginally better for an application than having a boss, professional advisor, etc. who can only speak to your professionalism, intellectual prowess on the job and other qualities? Sure, why not. But it does partially depend on how you're framing your entire application. I was also 5+ years out of school, so maybe there is some confirmation bias here, but my entire application did not center on my ability to outperform (or even perform as well as) other applicants in the classroom. I focused more heavily on my professional competencies, which, while not directly related to a law school classroom, has been shown to help immensely in job seeking, which law schools are looking at more and more lately with the shrinking job market.

I guess my overall point is the OP shouldn't beat themselves up on this issue cause it'll ultimately have little impact their cycle if they framed their application properly. You stressed to me that they is applying based on their performance in a classroom, while I will counter that by focusing his application more on other qualities that will also help in the classroom (maturity, work ethic, real world experience), they can do nearly as good a job to convince an ADCOM of their ability to perform in the classroom.

OP, don't sweat the non-academic LOR issue too much. If your best LORs are from professional sources, just make sure they focus on your most positive attributes and use it as another dimension to your overall coherent application. Sending one unified message about you as a great candidate will do far more than having a piecemeal application trying to show you as the perfect candidate.

ETA: Also remember that it seems likely the OP doesn't have an academic professor who can really attest to their abilities in a classroom based on the OP, so if you're comparing a blah LOR from a professor and a quality LOR from a boss, the boss wins IMHO.

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Re: GPA:3.4 LSAT:173 Solid W/E, weak extracurriculars

Postby NYstate » Mon Jan 13, 2014 9:50 am

Don't some schools require an academic LOR? Ask this question in the former admission officers thread. I am not sure an LSAT score means you don't need someone attesting to your academic ability. I'm fairly sure almost every other applicant will have an academic reference.

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Re: GPA:3.4 LSAT:173 Solid W/E, weak extracurriculars

Postby dabigchina » Mon Jan 13, 2014 2:10 pm

matthewsean85 wrote:I guess it depends on your definition of it "hurting you." Do I think having a professor who knows you intimately, knows your academic potential and thinks highly of your academic skill would look marginally better for an application than having a boss, professional advisor, etc. who can only speak to your professionalism, intellectual prowess on the job and other qualities? Sure, why not. But it does partially depend on how you're framing your entire application. I was also 5+ years out of school, so maybe there is some confirmation bias here, but my entire application did not center on my ability to outperform (or even perform as well as) other applicants in the classroom. I focused more heavily on my professional competencies, which, while not directly related to a law school classroom, has been shown to help immensely in job seeking, which law schools are looking at more and more lately with the shrinking job market.

I guess my overall point is the OP shouldn't beat themselves up on this issue cause it'll ultimately have little impact their cycle if they framed their application properly. You stressed to me that they is applying based on their performance in a classroom, while I will counter that by focusing his application more on other qualities that will also help in the classroom (maturity, work ethic, real world experience), they can do nearly as good a job to convince an ADCOM of their ability to perform in the classroom.

OP, don't sweat the non-academic LOR issue too much. If your best LORs are from professional sources, just make sure they focus on your most positive attributes and use it as another dimension to your overall coherent application. Sending one unified message about you as a great candidate will do far more than having a piecemeal application trying to show you as the perfect candidate.

ETA: Also remember that it seems likely the OP doesn't have an academic professor who can really attest to their abilities in a classroom based on the OP, so if you're comparing a blah LOR from a professor and a quality LOR from a boss, the boss wins IMHO.
TheSpanishMain wrote:I think "torpedo" is a bit strong. In this era of declining apps, a 170s LSAT is a very hot commodity. Most schools aren't going to dismiss you out of hand for not having an academic LOR, particularly when they see that you've been out of school for a few years.

By all means, try to get one if at all possible, even though it's going to be a super generic "This guy did well in my class and got an A" type letter since no one is going to remember you at this point. All that said, I don't think this is going to be life or death for you the way the LSAT is life or death.


Thanks for putting my mind at ease guys. So should I try to get an academic LOR even if it turns out to be extremely generic vs a pretty strong one from work? Do I just email the professors who I got good grades wiht?

Also does anyone want to give a shot at predicting how much money I can expect to get from NYU down?

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Re: GPA:3.4 LSAT:173 Solid W/E, weak extracurriculars

Postby TheSpanishMain » Mon Jan 13, 2014 2:13 pm

dabigchina wrote:Thanks for putting my mind at ease guys. So should I try to get an academic LOR even if it turns out to be extremely generic vs a pretty strong one from work? Do I just email the professors who I got good grades wiht?

Also does anyone want to give a shot at predicting how much money I can expect to get from NYU down?


I think you should try to get both. I'm not saying you shouldn't get an academic LOR if at all possible, I'm just saying that if you don't have one it's probably not a death sentence.

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Ramius
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Re: GPA:3.4 LSAT:173 Solid W/E, weak extracurriculars

Postby Ramius » Mon Jan 13, 2014 2:33 pm

TheSpanishMain wrote:
dabigchina wrote:Thanks for putting my mind at ease guys. So should I try to get an academic LOR even if it turns out to be extremely generic vs a pretty strong one from work? Do I just email the professors who I got good grades wiht?

Also does anyone want to give a shot at predicting how much money I can expect to get from NYU down?


I think you should try to get both. I'm not saying you shouldn't get an academic LOR if at all possible, I'm just saying that if you don't have one it's probably not a death sentence.

+1

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Re: GPA:3.4 LSAT:173 Solid W/E, weak extracurriculars

Postby Crowing » Mon Jan 13, 2014 5:12 pm

dabigchina wrote:I was hoping for maybe 15-20k per year from MVP on down. Is this totally not feasible at all given my stats? would retaking and getting a 175 increase my chances at money significantly enough to make it worthwhile?


It's feasible imo. I got around that much from lower T-14 with slightly better stats but I didn't have your good WE.

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dabigchina
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Re: GPA:3.4 LSAT:173 Solid W/E, weak extracurriculars

Postby dabigchina » Mon Jan 13, 2014 10:53 pm

Thanks guys. So to sum it all up, RD everything in T-14 -HYSB, in with money MVP down?




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