Hello everyone, below I am chronicling my application cycle and hope that the experience will be beneficial to anyone considering applying, and especially those of us with less than stellar numbers. Drop me a line or leave a comment, I enjoy chatting with others whom are applying.
I, like many applicants, have a low LSAT and UGPA. What I have are an array of soft factors that I can only hope will somehow help me get accepted somewhere.
Masters of Criminal Justice with a 3.7 GPA, 5 years work experience in a civil lit firm. 2 internships; one with a local newspaper (Poli Sci & English double major), and one with the mayor of a local town (grad level).
Aside from that, I felt my personal statement and recommendation letters were as strong as they could be (former State Attorney General/visiting professor, senior partner at my job, and former LS Dean). My statement explained my average grades due to the severe financial situation my family sustained through my undergraduate studies. Essentially I worked full time and at night for four years to help keep our house. Only twice did it ever create a conflict with my studies.
Thus far, I've been rejected by 3 schools and its starting to make me panic. The rejection from Cooley woke me up. As my designated safe school, it made me re-evaluate my application cycle. I will be applying to at least 10 more schools including: NCC, Florida A/M, Southern U Baton Rouge, Whittier, and possibly an unaccredited depending on what happens over the next month. I have also met with a Naval Recruiting Officer to discuss possible law options through the military.
Otherwise, I wish everyone much luck this cycle and hope everyone gets in somewhere!
Rejected from W&L which I somewhat expected. I was considering PSU and NYLS, but have decided it is doubtful and will be applying to FAMU and NCC this weekend instead.
Rejected from Akron. At this point, hoping for Widener and Nova Southeastern.
I'm ruling out unaccredited after all, not a good idea. Today I received information packages from Baylor and Regent, and also went complete at Baylor today. The package from Regent was strange because I was already rejected about a week ago and the mail from them arrived today. Applying to St. Marys in San Antonio soon. Otherwise I'm finished applying.
Rejected at Phoenix. Hoping for Widener more than before. Working on NCC and St. Mary's San Antonio for this week. Considering sitting in Feb for 2011...(sigh)
Rejected at U Tulsa. Not a major surprise, didn't plan to go there, yet another option extinguished. Also, received 3 other envelopes yesterday; Seton Hall said the reviewing process was beginning, and fee waiver from Rutgers Newark. Unexpected, but at least not bad news.
Rejected today from Stetson and St. Thomas. The latter was one of my three top choices; the other 2 being Widener and Nova. I'm starting to feel the heat considering I have little chance at many of the other schools I have applied to.
I got wait listed at Charlotte Law. I know its only WL, but I feel extremely happy, especially after the crushing rejections seemed as though they would never end. I'm still optimistic for more WLs, preferably acceptance somewhere, but this WL really made my day. For anyone out there who may be reading this, DO NOT GIVE UP HOPE!
Rejections from NYLS and Florida Coastal. I can't say I'm surprised by NYLS, but I hoped for WL at Coastal at least. I see, according to the numbers here, NCC is rejecting apps similar to my own. I'll be re-evaluating a few more as I'm nearly out of time to apply. Still high hopes for Widner and Nova.
I have applied to so many schools that I'm losing track. I forgot I applied to Mississippi Law. Apparently, the online status has changed from "in review" to "decision mailed". In my experience thus far, the rejections and waitlisting were stated online as rejected or waitlisted. The case with Mississippi is an anomaly, it could be acceptance. I am excited, letter should arrive tomorrow!
12/29/2009: Double Knock Out Punch
As illustrated on my graph here, I received dual rejections today from TSU and Mississippi. I was very hopeful for the latter considering a delay of over 2 weeks between the decision online and the letter. It appears my options are thinning and I'm expecting the remainder of my answers over the next 3 weeks.
1/11/2010: Down in Flames
I can't say I didn't predict it, but I received 3 rejections. Loyola Chicago, Creighton, and Franklin Pierce. FP is one of the few this cycle I thought I had a shot at, one of my LORs was written by a contributing alumni, so I had high hopes. To top it off, I'm being harassed by some tools on this very website.
1/22/2010: ACCEPTED, MOVING TO FTL!
My day began with a rejection from Appalachian. Also, Elon Law reports a decision made.
At long last, I have been accepted at Nova...sort of. I am invited to the AAMPLE, conditional/"try out" program. I'm not thrilled at the concept of trying out for LS, but realistically, I'm fighting my way to acceptance on WLs. Second, its expensive, but also a small price to pay to see whether I can handle the work.
I'm going to go for it, if any other Acceptances come along, I'll be thrilled, but as it stands right now, this is my best shot.
The real quandary is how I'm going to pack up and move to Fort Lauderdale for a month.
2/8/2010: ACCEPTED, WL, best day ever!
Today has been a whirlwind of good fortune. I found out you can contest your decision at Ave Maria, and I did, and now I'm on the wait list.
Hours later, after the thrill of another WL wore off, I found that Cooley has invited me into their conditional as well. Theirs' is only $100, including food! I'm definitely going for it as I can still do AAMPLE as well. It feels great to have yet another option, or two, added to the list!
2/10/2010: 3 More conditional invitations!
I just received invitations to Charlotte, Phoenix, and Fla Coastal AAMPLE programs. I changed my statuses to ACCEPTED, it was the closest I could determine. I have no idea what I'll do now. I actually, finally have, too many options. I understand the three schools are all owned by the same corporation and they're essentially selling the reported 90 seats to each school. A bit twisted, but I guess this is what I get for my scores.
My hardest choice now is to pick 1 of the 4 conditionals I've been invited to as they're all at the same time. I'm rather divided between Nova and Charlotte. Job-wise I'd say Charlotte may be the best choice, but location, in proximity to my current location, Nova wins. Coastal I don't think I'll bother, but Phoenix is a possibility as I think there are only 2 schools in Arizona.
I'm absolutely thrilled that I've been offered so many unexpected options. If anyone can give me some opinions of these 4 conditionals against one another, that'd be helpful!
3/3/2010: In at Widener
I got invited to Widener's conditional. It looks decent, less than half the cost of the other AAMPLE programs. Nothing set in stone as I still await my final decisions in the coming weeks, but definitely a nice feeling.
3/23/2010: 3 to go
I got a rejection from Fla International, oddly, the letter included a petition for reconsideration, so I promptly sent that back to them.
The remaining 3 schools have been dragging their feet, I applied early or in the least, its been 12 weeks that the schools have had my application. I was hoping to make my decision this Friday and I still plan to, I guess these last 3 will come in when they do.
Not a bad cycle, not the greatest.
3/29/2010: The end is near
I see Valpo Law has sent a decision letter. No telling what it may hold, but I'm feeling positive. Of the last 3, what I see on the graphs here on LSN, I have the best shot at Valpo over the other 2.
Aside from that, I'll be heading to Widener's conditional, as of right now, through the summer.
4/1/2010: Cycle complete more than less
Got rejected from Valpo. I'm especially frustrated with this one. The recruiting director called me about 2 months ago and demanded I apply, she even commented I had the type of background they seek for admission.
Lies! All Lies! No less, this is the end of my cycle, I have no shot at Rutgers Camden and Dayton has been unresponsive to my many calls and follow ups. I start Cooley's conditional on Monday.
And that's the end of that.
4/29/2010: Going to Law School
I got in to Cooley through the conditional. I am absolutely going to law school without question. I'm also attending Widener's conditional and still waiting on Dayton, as I may until I die. I am incredibly relieved to know that in a few months I will be on my way to becoming an attorney.
The feeling of the constant waiting was awful, if not for the matter of getting into law school, but questions that I didn't consider such as not renewing the lease in a few months, quitting my job to go to school, that type of decision making was once so far down the line, and is now 3-4 months away.
6/27/2010: Final week of Widener Conditional
It's been a while since an update. I was finally rejected at Dayton, no surprise, though it did take nearly 9 months to get a reply.
Widener's conditional is over this week. It was not as difficult as the Cooley experience, but over the course of 6 weeks, it seemed to take forever. After finals this week, I get my decision by the end of July, and there lies my decision. Otherwise, I will be moving to Michigan.
I was not admitted to Widener. A depressing end to a fantastically expensive investment of time and resources. After the experience, I will say that I doubt I would accept another conditional program.
The plan now is to retake the LSAT in October, hope I improve a few points, and see what my prospects are at that time. Otherwise, I stand to begin at Cooley in January, though I may defer a semester or two depending on what I decide in the next few weeks.
This cycle is 100% finished and the semester begins in mere weeks. While I am the eternal optimist, the chance of my 2 wait-lists suddenly calling me in the next 2 weeks seems rather far-fetched.
8/12/2010: Moving on
To reiterate, after my experiences, I recommend strongly to avoid the conditional programs. As I have learned, or rather, been reminded, I neglected the "fine print" of the agreement for admission to Cooley.
While there were stipulations to attending Widener through the conditional, Cooley really complicates the ordeal. It's a combination of being restricted to 9 credits per semester for a year, mandatory non-credit courses, and the nightmares of transferring, such as "special transfer fees" and an exit exam that are making me doubt this school as a beneficial opportunity. Not to mention the 25% discount on tuition if you have a 145 or higher...which I don't, but I'm making a point.
While I still have some time to weigh this decision, it is probable that in the event I accept the Cooley shenanigans, I will be deferring entrance. I am sitting for the LSAT in October, am studying feverishly already, and obviously need to improve.