Tag Archive: law school personal statement

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What to Include and Exclude on Your Law School Résumé

The résumé is usually the last part of a law school application that gets any serious attention. You’ve written the hell out of your law school personal statement and you’re pretty much positive you got some kick ass recommendations. Now, what the hell to do with your résumé? Glad you asked.

Let’s take a moment to think about your résumé in the context of your entire law school application. What information is already out there? There’s your law school personal statement, your transcript, and whatever it is you wrote on the application itself. Include as little information from those three items as possible on your résumé. I can give you two reasons to adopt this strategy.

First, those reviewing your law school application are trying to determine what type of lawyer you’ll be.

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What Law School Admissions Tasks Should You Be Doing?

Today on the LSAT blog: a guest post by Law School Expert Ann Levine, the former director of admissions for two ABA-approved law schools and the author of The Law School Admission Game: Play Like an Expert and The Law School Decision Game: A Playbook for Prospective Lawyers.

What? The summer is gone? Already?! You had all these grand plans. Despite your internship and your beach vacation and family reunion, you were going to take your LSAT prep course, add in a bit of tutoring, write your law school personal statement, and ask people for letters of recommendation. And now school is starting. Real life has returned. You’re asking yourself, “Geez, how far behind am I?”

After you take a deep breath (you’re going to be OK), read through this checklist of law school admissions tasks I’ve put together.

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These Law School Personal Statement Clichés are so Cliché

A while ago, I wrote an article listing some clichés to avoid on your personal statement. And yet I still read statements all the time that include these, and other, clichés.

To put it simply, do not include any cliché in your law school personal statement. If you can imagine it on a fortune cookie or greeting card, it has no place in your personal statement. No, you don’t get around this with the phrase, “I know it’s cliché, but…” Why not? Because that, itself, is a cliché.

Not all clichés are phrases repeated through the ages. Some are just topics that have been beaten to death, on top of not being that compelling to begin with. Let’s look at a few more.

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The Advantage of Military Service in Law School Admissions

“Keep your GPA up, and raise your LSAT score.”

That’s the advice most people ‘in the know’ will give you when asked how to improve your chances at getting into the law school of your dreams. And, for the most part, it’s true.

While the Letters of Recommendation, Personal Statement, and Résumé are all important factors in the admissions decision, they really don’t come into play unless you have the GPA and LSAT score to be considered in the first place.

Some law schools take a more holistic approach and will look at your application even if you don’t hit their numbers; these schools are usually just putting off rejecting you for a little while. It’s not that they don’t care about your background.

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Law School Application Work You Can Do During LSAT Prep

If you’re studying for the October LSAT and applying to law school this cycle, you’d be well advised to keep your applications in mind starting now. Ideally, you’ll have everything ready to go so that you can submit your law school applications as soon as your October LSAT score goes live. This means you should start giving some parts of your law school application attention now, before LSAT crunch time hits. Other things can wait until after the LSAT.

Request your letters of recommendation soon. It’s nice to your recommenders to give them ample time. Plus, if they’re in academia, let’s just say that that field doesn’t exactly have a reputation for efficiency. Asking for your law school letter of rec early also makes you look organized and on top of things, and makes clear to your recommenders that they’re the ones you really want writing your letters and not choices of last resort.

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Logical Reasonings / 11.23.11

A) Diversity in legal education. Dig it. National Law Journal.

B) The legal job market is in trouble? Wait’ll the press gets a hold of this. JD Journal.

C) Don’t forget how much of a role luck plays when a grad student is trying to land a job. Inside Higher Ed.

D) Here’s an interesting way to wish your law professor a happy Thanksgiving: Give the finger. Above the Law.

E) In case you need to reward yourself while cranking out those law school personal statements, here’s a site that shows you a pictures of cute kittens as you type away. Written? Kitten!.

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My Law School Personal Statement, Dissected

I applied to law school in October/November of 2006 with a 3.7/180 and the following law school personal statement. It was not even close to the strongest element of my application package.

I’ve annotated it in the many, many areas where I messed up. However, I didn’t really say anything in my law school personal statement. I ramble a bit about being lost in my academic career, then I start talking about law. You should be more concrete in your law school personal statement. Have a clear focus, theme, or passion.

If there’s anything good about this law school personal statement (although, screw you, you can’t argue with results!), it’s that I feel it encapsulates my personality fairly well. I’m funny, but I’m not as funny as I think. I like taking risks. I’m mostly fluff. I’ve got an almost-schizophrenic level of areas of interest.

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Top 5 Law School Personal Statement Mistakes

It’s crunch time, people. Many of you are awaiting patiently (drunkenly?) for your October LSAT results, and that’s put somewhat of a ticking clock on your law school personal statement.

You should all know by now that applying earlier means a better shot at the school of your choice. The Letters of Rec are out of your hands by now (at least, they should be). The applications take a few minutes each (thank you, CAS!). But the law school personal statement…now that can take a bit of time.

While you’re working on it, here are five common mistakes made on the law school personal statement that are easily avoidable.

Law School Personal Statement Mistake #1: Trying to do too much