T7 Chances? 3.5/170, URM, HYPS undergrad transfer

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simbadrip

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T7 Chances? 3.5/170, URM, HYPS undergrad transfer

Post by simbadrip » Sun Aug 16, 2020 6:59 pm

Undergrad: HYPS ‘19
GPA: 3.5
LSAT: 170
URM and First-Gen
Undergrad transfer (transferred after freshman year at a noname school to HYPS)
Work experience: 1 year work experience in product management at (Facebook/Apple/Google/Microsoft)
Miscellaneous info: I was admitted to a top 3 MBA program via deferred 2+2 admission as a senior but I’m much more interested in pursuing a JD as I’d like to work in the public sector. I applied to B-school because I wasn’t/am not confident in my stats for law school and know that I do not want to remain in big tech for very long.

I have solid public service softs/extracurriculars from undergrad, great recs, solid personal story. Hoping to work in public sector/BigFed (white collar crime; SEC-type).

I’d really love to be able to pursue a JD at Columbia, NYU, or Penn (to be in/close to the city), but I’m worried that my stats, esp. my GPA, will hold me back. Do I have a decent shot at these three/the T7? If not, how can I boost my chances? Should I work toward a promotion before applying, so that I can have additional work experience?Should I retake the LSAT? Or should I plan to set my sights lower?

I know this sub talks a lot about the boost that URM students receive but is that boost enough to compensate for my lower GPA? Thank you for your time.

The Lsat Airbender

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Re: T7 Chances? 3.5/170, URM, HYPS undergrad transfer

Post by The Lsat Airbender » Sun Aug 16, 2020 8:32 pm

URM/170/FAANG work experience/otherwise decent softs is a very strong pitch. Your GPA is probably too soft for Yale or Stanford, but you have an outside shot at Harvard and great chances everywhere else in the T14 (including for big scholarships).

jbcony31

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Re: T7 Chances? 3.5/170, URM, HYPS undergrad transfer

Post by jbcony31 » Sun Aug 16, 2020 9:04 pm

You probably have a decent chance to get in at Columbia and NYU. I would consider applying to Cornell, BU, and BC as well, if you want to be in that region. Also, Georgetown, Michigan, and Northwestern, if you want to get into a top school. I think your chances of getting into the latter six are good!

Sackboy

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Re: T7 Chances? 3.5/170, URM, HYPS undergrad transfer

Post by Sackboy » Tue Aug 18, 2020 12:22 am

You should apply to the entire T14. You're likely out at YS. You could get into H, but it's iffy. You're very competitive from Chicago downwards. If you're very debt adverse, also add in some T20 schools + others with very high biglaw/federal clerkship placement (BU, Fordham, etc.). If you're not debt adverse, just stick to the T14.

Make sure you apply for fee waivers. You will get them for almost every, if not every, school. You might end up being able to apply to all 14 schools for $300 or less, so why wouldn't you? This number of schools might sound overwhelming, so you might be tempted to skip some. Do NOT skip applying to any of the T14 schools. Every T14 school is a bargaining chip, and scholarships can and SHOULD be negotiated for outside of HYS (they only do needs-based aid, so there is no negotiating). You may never want to go to Duke but if Duke offers you $120,000 and Penn is saying "we can only give you $45,000" you're really going to wish you had some leverage to negotiate with. At the end of the day, you might end up at Penn with $75,000, or better. You'll have saved yourself $30,000 plus some interest for probably the extra 2-3 hours it took to apply to Duke. Even the fanciest partners can't bill out at $10,000/hr.!

Do NOT fixate on being around NYC. Every single T14 school can get you back there for each summer and for employment after school. You're investing in a 35-40 year career. Don't cut corners just because it'd require you to spend three 8-month stints outside of the city/northeast.

Law school admissions is 47.5% GPA, 47.5% LSAT, and 5% other. The only thing you can do to help your application at this point is to retake the LSAT. Your GPA is set in stone. As for promotions, none of the law schools will care. Don't focus on the 5%. If you're going to do anything, focus on getting a higher LSAT.

The Lsat Airbender

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Re: T7 Chances? 3.5/170, URM, HYPS undergrad transfer

Post by The Lsat Airbender » Tue Aug 18, 2020 2:11 am

Sackboy wrote:
Tue Aug 18, 2020 12:22 am
Do NOT fixate on being around NYC. Every single T14 school can get you back there for each summer and for employment after school. You're investing in a 35-40 year career. Don't cut corners just because it'd require you to spend three 8-month stints outside of the city/northeast.
Agree with this, although OP could probably skip Cornell and not lose too much sleep over it (they're picky about GPA and therefore highly unlikely to make a competitive offer).

Being in X Location during law school is generally overrated. If you do law school right, you'll generally be too busy to make frequent trips outside your immediate neighborhood (i.e., don't expect to spend much time in NYC while attending Penn).

Wanting to be in a certain kind of setting is reasonable, especially if you have a concrete reason--personally, I'm gay, and I wanted to be in a decent-sized city so as to have a decent-sized dating pool. And some people have insurmountable personal/financial factors that tie them down to a certain metro area.

But, assuming you face this choice, please don't spend tens of thousands of dollars to be in New York instead of Berkeley or Chicago or DC. You'd be mortgaging your future for what? Snapchat geotags?

Sackboy

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Re: T7 Chances? 3.5/170, URM, HYPS undergrad transfer

Post by Sackboy » Tue Aug 18, 2020 2:52 am

The Lsat Airbender wrote:
Tue Aug 18, 2020 2:11 am

Agree with this, although OP could probably skip Cornell and not lose too much sleep over it (they're picky about GPA and therefore highly unlikely to make a competitive offer).

Being in X Location during law school is generally overrated. If you do law school right, you'll generally be too busy to make frequent trips outside your immediate neighborhood (i.e., don't expect to spend much time in NYC while attending Penn).

Wanting to be in a certain kind of setting is reasonable, especially if you have a concrete reason--personally, I'm gay, and I wanted to be in a decent-sized city so as to have a decent-sized dating pool. And some people have insurmountable personal/financial factors that tie them down to a certain metro area.

But, assuming you face this choice, please don't spend tens of thousands of dollars to be in New York instead of Berkeley or Chicago or DC. You'd be mortgaging your future for what? Snapchat geotags?
I agree with your expansion on the geography point.

I disagree re: Cornell. OP can very likely get a fee waiver from Cornell. If that's the case, there is only upside to applying. Worst case scenario with a fee waiver is that OP spends like $12 (or however much sending the CAS report, or whatever it's called, costs) and gets rejected. Best case scenario is Cornell offers $$$ and helps bump up a higher ranked school from $-->$$ or $$-->$$$.

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