It’s a magical time of year in law school admissions. Acceptance letters (and, sadly, rejection letters) are rolling in. Seat deposit deadlines loom. And soon-to-be law students are looking for apartments for the upcoming school year (because dorms are for undergrads).
And you’re still waiting to hear if you can get in off of the waitlist of your top choice.
You’re in good company. Very few people will run the table with acceptances (or rejections). And a waitlist means that you applied intelligently — you hit a law school that might be interested in you, but you’re on the cusp. You weren’t overqualified, yet you weren’t underqualified, either. You threaded the needle. Good for you.
Too bad it feels horrible. Like hearing a significant other say, “We need to talk.” While it might take more than a love note to win your girlfriend back, that’s essentially all it takes to woo a law school.
It’s time to write a Letter of Continued Interest (LOCI).
An effective LOCI will do three things.
First, it will let the law school know that you are absolutely interested in attending. When considering the waitlist, a law school is much more likely to admit someone they know will enroll. To them, letting someone in off the waitlist only to have them go somewhere else is a horrible, horrible rejection (they did, after all, think they might be too good for you). So don’t lie and say “I’ll definitely enroll if you let me in!” if you don’t mean it, but definitely be effusive about going there.
Second, and similar to the first, it will give you a chance to let the law school know exactly why you’re interested in them. It’s one thing to shout your love at them in a LOCI; it’s quite another to extol their virtues. Browse their website, find out the programs of which they’re particularly proud, and relate your experience to those programs. Talk about the area in which the school is located, especially if you have ties to it. Do anything you can to convince the school that they’re your one true law school love.
Third, it will let the law school know what you’ve been up to since they waitlisted you. Hopefully, this doesn’t involve a lot of Call of Duty. If you’ve started a new job, been promoted, learned a new language, traveled a bit, etc., let them know. They like to see that you keep yourself busy, and if you were just on the cusp, something you say may just push you into the Accepted pile.
So get writing those LOCIs, keep your fingers crossed, and definitely put down some seat deposits elsewhere. Because a LOCI can increase your chances at your top choice, but it’s always a good idea to have a backup plan.