12.19.2008 - Call from Texas! Excited about my first acceptance.
12.20.2008 - Purple Envelope from NYU waiting for me in the mail!!
12.22.2008 - Small Letter from Georgetown! It was postmarked for a week or two ago but was delayed because it got sent to my permanent address instead of my mailing address.
01.12.2009 - University of Texas informed me that I had been selected to receive the dean's scholarship. A little under 10k per year. The scholarship also allowed me to pay Texas resident tuition which is another 10 k per year so the scholarship is in the amount of 60k total.
01.25.2009 - Vanderbilt sent me a large white package with all of my acceptance information. They actually sent me my acceptance about a week past their deadline to apply for merit based scholarships, which was thoughtful of them. We'll see if they offer me anything anyways.
01.28.2009 - E-mail from Northwestern telling me that my decision was ready to be viewed through the status checker. The status checker said that Northwestern has decided to "hold" my application and subsequently asked me to send a letter of continued interest if I still want to be considered. Smells like Yield Protection to me. Still with NYU on the table and U of C being the only reason I'd submit myself to Chicago winters, I'll likely withdraw.
01.30.2009 - Email from Chicago. I'm really excited about this one. I'm always very impressed with a Chicago background. Plus their focus on economics is really attractive.
02.06.2009 - E-mail from Cornell inviting me to the class of 2012. This is my first ivy and I think the campus is absolutely gorgeous. Plus, it is closer to home than a lot of the other schools I'm looking at.
02.15.2009 - Email from Duke. Definitely interested in seeing what they have to offer me.
02.24.2009 - Georgetown emailed me to offer me no money. Looks like I won't be going to DC next year.
02.24.2009 - My mom called me to tell me Columbia sent me a letter putting me on reserve. I suppose I'll stick out the reserve list but I would take NYU over Columbia for NYC anyways so this isn't that much of a set back.
02.27.2009 - Email from Dean Tom Saying my application passed the initial administrative review and would now be undergoing faculty review. i should get my decision around March 20.
02.27.2009 - Email from Michigan asking me if I'll consider going on their waitlist. Although U of M is a great law school, Anne Coulter went there and she sucks really hard; I'll probably withdraw soon.
02.28.2009 - Rejected from Yale.
03.03.09 - Dean's Scholarship at Vandy. 20k per year, 60k total.
03.09.2009 - Waitlisted at UVA. They claimed a mixture of a larger number of residents, a more competitive cycle, and them over matriculating last cycle. All I read was, we couldn't do math last year, sorry. Withdrew a few days later.
03.19.2009 - Rejected at Berkeley after faculty review.
03.22.2009 - Came home to find a letter my parents forgot to send me. Apparently I had to tell Columbia to keep me on their reserve list my March 13. So I guess I've withdrawn from CLS.
03.28.2009 - Email from PENN asking me if I'd like to join their waitlist. I withdrew.
03.31.2009 - Rejected from Harvard.
04.17.2009 - Rejected from Stanford.
05.02.2009 - Withdrew from the remaining schools. I will be headed to NYU in the fall and I couldn't be more excited!!
I do have some tips for kids who are now applying so they can hopefully avoid some of the mistakes that I made.
1) If a school has a "Why School X?" optional essay, do yourself a favor and write it. I was wait-listed by several schools (Michigan, Penn, Virginia) where my LSAT above their 75th % and my GPA was well above their median. Not-So-Coincidentally, I did not write the optional "Why X?" essay for any of these schools. Take that for what you will.
2) Part of the reason why I didn't write a "Why School X?" essay for so many schools was the pressure to get my applications in by mid-November. If you take the LSAT in June, that is a completely realistic goal and one you should shoot for. However, if you take the LSAT in October, I would recommend taking the time to make sure your applications are perfect, as opposed to sending over an application that is missing things like optional essays. The advantage between submitting before December and before January seemed to be very minor (at least in this cycle).
3) Applications WILL take longer than you previously thought. Leave time for them. They will also drain you (especially if you are in school/working). I would recommend starting your application process (personal statements, letters of recommendation) well before you take your LSAT. Also keep a list of all of the required components of each school's application. I can't tell you how many times I had to call my undergraduate university to get them to send specified documents to different schools because I had just noticed that they had asked for something else in their application. Take your time, comb through the applications and KEEP A CHECK LIST.
4) Keep on top of your financial aid applications. The schools will NOT walk you through this process. Many don't even tell you that it has started. Call their financial aid offices and bother them to make sure you've sent in everything. If you don't, they will not call you or email you requesting that you complete their financial aid package, they're way too busy. Remember, the feat is not just getting in but finding out how you are going to finance it.
5) Finally, try not to have your heart set on any specific school and try to take the process as impersonally as you can. Law schools have to choose from many well qualified candidates and sometimes there just isn't a very good reason why School X accepted you and School Y rejected you. At the end of the day, your best is all you can do.
6) While I had a lot of help with my personal statement (which turned out quite good) my friend in nyc who runs a small review/editing service was the most instrumental! Her email address is: firstname.lastname@example.org.