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Chances at HLS and others (URM/327 GRE/Veteran

Posted: Tue Sep 01, 2020 4:21 pm
by intinlw
Friends,

Thanks in advance for your input.
My stats are as follows:
URM (AA Male); children of immigrants
UG GPA 3.75 (CS)
I have not taken the LSAT, however I recently took the GRE with 165V/162Q (have not received official score for AWA, I would imagine 5.0); ETS score calculator equates it to 169 LSAT.
Current business school student at a top ranked business school.
Military veteran; ~10 years in special operations (think Navy SEAL/Army SF)
What are my chances at the following schools: HLS, Yale, Columbia, NYU, UChicago, and Penn?
Thanks again.

Re: Chances at HLS and others (URM/327 GRE/Veteran

Posted: Tue Sep 01, 2020 5:15 pm
by cavalier1138
Are you planning on taking the LSAT?

GRE scores are tough to make predictions for because the ETS conversion does not provide you with anything resembling an accurate equivalent LSAT score.

Re: Chances at HLS and others (URM/327 GRE/Veteran

Posted: Tue Sep 01, 2020 5:55 pm
by intinlw
Thanks for the reply. As of right now I am not planning on taking the LSAT, however I may retake the GRE.

Re: Chances at HLS and others (URM/327 GRE/Veteran

Posted: Tue Sep 01, 2020 6:06 pm
by The Lsat Airbender
Might as well apply, since your candidacy is appealing in a lot of ways, but I agree with Cav that you'd be much better off with the LSAT.

Also, if have a top MBA, law school will probably reduce your earning potential, so that's something to think about.

Re: Chances at HLS and others (URM/327 GRE/Veteran

Posted: Thu Sep 03, 2020 10:46 pm
by 007sean
First, you military background and service will jump off the page and make you instantly sui generis and appealing. Your MBA likewise will add enormously to your appeal. Your GRE is perfectly fine, especially coupled with your GPA, MBA and service. People on this site are in my view overly “ hostile ” to the GRE.
While all things being equal, LSAT is the path of least resistance, given your strong GRE and overall strength of your candidacy, I see no reason to take the LSAT.
Finally — I have been a partner in top law firms for several decades, this notion that the MBA will reduce your earning potential is ludicrous. To the contrary, it will make you attractive both for leading corporate law firms as well major investment banks and and private equity outfits, not to mention in house corporate department. Employers will admire and salivate over your service record, knowing they are getting a mature candidate who can write a book about operating under pressure and working in teams.
So — I salute you and go for it full speed ahead.

Re: Chances at HLS and others (URM/327 GRE/Veteran

Posted: Thu Sep 03, 2020 11:07 pm
by 007sean
Where is your undergraduate degree from ?
As to the schools: Yale is always an enigma. Your service record, maturity and MBA will be very appealing to them. They like older folks with unusual experiences. But chances for all folks are insanely low, irrespective of accomplishments. Harvard admits a lot of GRE candidates (!) and likewise will love your MBA and service record. Penn and NYU seem very likely to me. Not sure about Columbia and UChicago — they seem very score driven, but I may be wrong.

Re: Chances at HLS and others (URM/327 GRE/Veteran

Posted: Thu Sep 03, 2020 11:09 pm
by 007sean
Last point: if you do really well at a “lesser” law school, your employment prospects — especially with MBA and service record — will equal or exceed your prospects with a mediocre or low end performance in an elite school. This is a key point.

Re: Chances at HLS and others (URM/327 GRE/Veteran

Posted: Thu Sep 03, 2020 11:38 pm
by The Lsat Airbender
007sean wrote:
Thu Sep 03, 2020 11:09 pm
Last point: if you do really well at a “lesser” law school, your employment prospects — especially with MBA and service record — will equal or exceed your prospects with a mediocre or low end performance in an elite school. This is a key point.
Eh, this is only true to some extent. For most goals, I'd rather be median at HLS than top-10% at Boston College. More importantly, it's impossible to know a priori if one will do "really well" in law school.

Re: Chances at HLS and others (URM/327 GRE/Veteran

Posted: Fri Sep 04, 2020 7:57 am
by cavalier1138
The Lsat Airbender wrote:
Thu Sep 03, 2020 11:38 pm
007sean wrote:
Thu Sep 03, 2020 11:09 pm
Last point: if you do really well at a “lesser” law school, your employment prospects — especially with MBA and service record — will equal or exceed your prospects with a mediocre or low end performance in an elite school. This is a key point.
Eh, this is only true to some extent. For most goals, I'd rather be median at HLS than top-10% at Boston College. More importantly, it's impossible to know a priori if one will do "really well" in law school.
This.

Advising someone to take a lower-ranked school and "just do really well" is ridiculous. You cannot predict law school performance, and you do not get a second shot at 1L.

Re: Chances at HLS and others (URM/327 GRE/Veteran

Posted: Fri Sep 04, 2020 8:23 am
by 007sean
Listen — i did not advise him to take a lower ranked school. I am saying that If he cannot get into an elite school, he can more than make up for it by going to a lesser school. There is more way than one to make it happen. I have been at it for almost thirty year at elite Wall Street and west coats firms, and chaired recruiting committees. Moreover , as moderator, you should develop some manners and learn how to disagree in a polite and respectful way. I am on this site to give folks some real world feedback. I do not need waste time here if you are going to rudely dismiss my views.

Re: Chances at HLS and others (URM/327 GRE/Veteran

Posted: Fri Sep 04, 2020 8:26 am
by 007sean
it all depends on how well you do in the elite school. Bottom 25% is always a challenge. I agree on your Harvard / BU example.

Re: Chances at HLS and others (URM/327 GRE/Veteran

Posted: Fri Sep 04, 2020 8:27 am
by nixy
My question to you is, if you’ve been a partner for 30 years, what is your basis for commenting on current admissions trends?

Re: Chances at HLS and others (URM/327 GRE/Veteran

Posted: Fri Sep 04, 2020 8:37 am
by cavalier1138
007sean wrote:
Fri Sep 04, 2020 8:23 am
Listen — i did not advise him to take a lower ranked school. I am saying that If he cannot get into an elite school, he can more than make up for it by going to a lesser school. There is more way than one to make it happen. I have been at it for almost thirty year at elite Wall Street and west coats firms, and chaired recruiting committees. Moreover , as moderator, you should develop some manners and learn how to disagree in a polite and respectful way. I am on this site to give folks some real world feedback. I do not need waste time here if you are going to rudely dismiss my views.
My moderation of the site doesn't preclude me from calling out absurd and dangerous advice.

And I echo nixy's question. Why would your 30 years of experience as a partner give you any insight into the current law school admissions process? When you applied to law school, it was an entirely different environment, from admissions to hiring.

Re: Chances at HLS and others (URM/327 GRE/Veteran

Posted: Fri Sep 04, 2020 8:37 am
by 007sean
When you are heavily involved in recruiting, you must be informed. It’s salient information. Moreover, my son recently went through the process. As to previous topic.
I can tell you with certainty that elite firms would take a say Cardozo Law Review member over the bottom 25% at a Columbia or NYU. Have a look at where partners at the major NY firms went to law school. You will see lots of Fordham, Cardozo, Brooklyn Law etc.
It helps a lot to come across as mature, ambitious and with a sense of humor.

Re: Chances at HLS and others (URM/327 GRE/Veteran

Posted: Fri Sep 04, 2020 8:47 am
by intinlw
OP here...thanks for the input.
I find it a helpful exercise to solicit these insights and differing perspectives.
I'm planning on applying this fall and will likely retake the GRE before doing so.

Re: Chances at HLS and others (URM/327 GRE/Veteran

Posted: Fri Sep 04, 2020 8:48 am
by nixy
007sean wrote:
Fri Sep 04, 2020 8:37 am
When you are heavily involved in recruiting, you must be informed. It’s salient information. Moreover, my son recently went through the process. As to previous topic.
I can tell you with certainty that elite firms would take a say Cardozo Law Review member over the bottom 25% at a Columbia or NYU. Have a look at where partners at the major NY firms went to law school. You will see lots of Fordham, Cardozo, Brooklyn Law etc.
It helps a lot to come across as mature, ambitious and with a sense of humor.
Why is it good for a mod to come across as ambitious?

Re: Chances at HLS and others (URM/327 GRE/Veteran

Posted: Fri Sep 04, 2020 8:51 am
by 007sean
Incidentally — and perhaps remarkably — when I went through this it was a substantially similar environment in most ways. It was still about GPA and scores, but with the ability to compensate with idiosyncratic extras. If anything, firms these days (pre -Covid) are a lot less obsessed with only recruiting at elite firms. Don’t get me wrong, that still is the preference. But there are simply not enough good elite school candidates even for top firms nationwide and internationally to just recruit from the top law schools Of course, the “lesser” the school the higher is the requisite performance.
OK. Time to return to my day job. Hope my input is helpful. Good luck to all.

Re: Chances at HLS and others (URM/327 GRE/Veteran

Posted: Fri Sep 04, 2020 8:51 am
by intinlw
Also may be worth mentioning...I plan on using GI Bill/VA educational benefits to cover the cost of attendance and will likely not need funding from the school. I'm not sure if that has any impact on decisions.

Re: Chances at HLS and others (URM/327 GRE/Veteran

Posted: Fri Sep 04, 2020 9:34 am
by nixy
intinlw wrote:
Fri Sep 04, 2020 8:51 am
Also may be worth mentioning...I plan on using GI Bill/VA educational benefits to cover the cost of attendance and will likely not need funding from the school. I'm not sure if that has any impact on decisions.
I don't think it will really affect where you get in, but it certainly gives you a lovely flexibility to pick any school that accepts you, and not to have to weigh scholarships as a factor.

Re: Chances at HLS and others (URM/327 GRE/Veteran

Posted: Fri Sep 04, 2020 9:47 am
by churchillswit
Nixy -- JOB candidates should come across ambitious mature and with a sense of humor -- although it certainly would not hurt a moderator either ...

Re: Chances at HLS and others (URM/327 GRE/Veteran

Posted: Fri Sep 04, 2020 12:41 pm
by nixy
Ah, I misread. I understand that for job applicants (of course, they have to have the school and grades to get an interview before they have the chance to show their maturity, ambition, and humor).

I don’t think ambition is remotely relevant for a moderator, which is why I asked.

Re: Chances at HLS and others (URM/327 GRE/Veteran

Posted: Fri Sep 04, 2020 6:47 pm
by The Lsat Airbender
Any remotely ambitious moderator would simply buy their own law-school forum.

Re: Chances at HLS and others (URM/327 GRE/Veteran

Posted: Fri Sep 04, 2020 11:32 pm
by 007sean
What you all should really be asking is whether big law practice is still worth it and how it has changed Over the past decade.

Re: Chances at HLS and others (URM/327 GRE/Veteran

Posted: Fri Sep 04, 2020 11:35 pm
by 007sean
What you all should really be asking is whether big law practice is still worth it and how it has changed Over the past decade.

Re: Chances at HLS and others (URM/327 GRE/Veteran)

Posted: Sun Sep 27, 2020 5:44 pm
by intinlw
Just retook the GRE...scored marginally better (seemingly) this time around.
My score was 328 (164V/164Q).
I think I am going to apply with that and see how it goes.
Any additional thoughts? Perhaps it would make more sense to apply with the original score since I scored slightly higher on the verbal section (165V vs 164V).
I appreciate the input!