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Diplock last won the day on May 8

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  1. Should I give up?

    I had a friend from undergrad, some years ago, get into Ottawa under regular admissions with a low 140's. But she was an extreme splitter - near perfect grades, many other things going for her also. It's a mistake to say it's impossible to get in with a 140's LSAT. But it's also not impossible to win a ballgame after giving up 14 runs to the other team. There's a point at which parsing the "not impossible" claims only becomes self-defeating, and I'd encourage absolutely anyone in your position to focus on what it will take to get a respectable LSAT, rather than look for examples where someone got by without one. Not that you're doing that, necessarily. Just saying.
  2. Should I give up?

    The joke isn't that you won't attend law school. I'm honestly well past any need to make that joke. And again, it's only the nastiness that circulates under the surface amongst pre-law wannabes that makes you believe anyone would even say that. I'm not trying to tear you down. I'm just trying to make you stop tearing other people down you incredible putz. No. The joke is that you're arguing mainly with practicing lawyers at this point, who finished law school quite some time ago. So don't worry about it. You may find us across the table from you during interviews (not that you'd know it) but you won't find us sitting next to you in class. Of course we won't know it either. It's not like we can hold your attitude on the Internet against you, anonymously. But you may want to consider. If it isn't working for you here, it won't work well in person either. Adjust accordingly. Or not.
  3. Should I give up?

    Okay, enough of this shit. In this thread alone, we've heard from a 0L who believes that poor grades are easier to explain than a poor LSAT, and who has, not coincidentally, poor grades and a strong LSAT. We've also heard from another 0L who believes that upwards trends are most important, and that schools consider graduate degrees part of an upwards trend, and this 0L has weaker grades with an upwards trend and an MA. Does anyone see the fucking problem here? I tend to stay out of these discussions because I don't feel I have sufficient perspective to speak with any authority on admissions. But the thing is, very few people actually do have that authority. There are some people who actually participate now, or in the past, in admissions decisions. There are also some people who have made such a study of these things that they can rhyme off this school's policies vs. that other school's policies without effort. Everyone else is just fucking guessing. But at very least, the 0Ls on this site whose guesses are obviously and unavoidably bound up in what they themselves need to believe should shut the hell up. Seriously. You're embarrassing yourselves. And not because you aren't entitled to an opinion. But because if you can't see the way your own biases are affecting your views of what law schools look for (hey - they look for me!!!) then it betrays a lack of reasoning skills far more dramatic than any low LSAT score ever could. In my opinion - which is still just one observer's opinion, but at least not biased as all fuck - the OPs grades are not bad at all and will benefit from how law schools drop worst grades, look at best three, last two, etc. OP might want to do some research and consider which schools will look best at his grades, but considering how they all have methods of filtering out unrepresentative bad years and bad grades, I believe he can straighten out the grades situation. The two poor LSATs are the problem. If the OP really can't get above a 140s, he's probably screwed. If he can get score more into the "reasonable" end of things - not crazy high, but at least high 150's or more - he'll be a reasonable candidate for the less competitive law schools. Whether or not he's capable of improving his LSAT on a third attempt is not something I'll opine on. But I certainly don't consider it a ridiculous possibility. This is the Internet. Everyone is entitled to an opinion, and if you make a reasonable amount of sense you'll be left alone to share it. But if you aren't even in law school yet, and you're sitting around in May still anxious about your own chances, you should really shut the hell up about everyone else. If you want to crap on other students and their aspirations to attend law school, and in a way that makes yourself feel better, go back to your fucking pre-law club. That's what it's for.
  4. Well, if that's true, you might be suggesting he's a pretty good lawyer after all.
  5. To 1Ls asking for feedback on their grades

    There may be a dual purpose here. But I've always understood the new system to be U of T's way of retaining the same curve to a B-average, but by representing it in an unusual way they highlight the fact that a U of T "B" is not the same as everyone else's B. At least according to them.
  6. I'm going to run a bit counter to the prevailing advice so far, which has been very optimistic. I figure if the OP is going to be direct enough to raise the issue at all, she's entitled to hear the truth as best I can present it. Not so long ago I was involved in interviewing for students. And there were some candidates who were just obviously socially dysfunctional. I don't know exactly what their issues might be. It isn't something you can ask in an interview. But I was part of a committee and as soon as the door was closed it was obvious they were out of any contention for the job. It wasn't me being a jerk. It was the entire committee. They were dead in the water on social skills (or lack thereof) alone. Now, there are definitely areas of law and positions in law that you could manage where social interaction is not at a premium. So I'm not suggesting you should decide against law on that reason alone. But in order to be realistic, I would have to agree that there are a lot of jobs and areas of practice where you'll pretty much completely disqualify yourself just by being excessively awkward. That's the reality. Now, that said, I have a couple of additional observations. First, you're going to have these problems in almost any job or professional setting. So if there are good reasons why you're interested in law (and I imagine there must be, or you wouldn't have got this far) then there's a valid argument that says you might as well struggle against your challenges while practicing law rather than struggle against your challenges while doing whatever the heck else you'd be doing instead of law. Second, I can only guess at what it might be like to function while autistic, but you might be surprised at the number of lawyers (myself included) who are not naturally extroverted or comfortable socializing in freeform settings. The thing is, speaking personally, I find it far easier to navigate a relationship with clients because I know exactly what that relationship is. It has boundaries and definitions. Friends and colleagues etc. are often harder. So if you are willing and able to approach your social interactions as work it really doesn't matter if you're good at making or keeping friends. And third, relating to the point above, it's absolutely important that you're able to work with clients and not freak them out. But you don't need to be social to the point of generating clients out of your personal networks. I mean great, if you can do that, but not being able to do that isn't what will keep you out of law. Many people can't do that well. So when you're talking about your awkwardness, let's define it properly. You can be a great lawyer and not have any friends at all. I probably know people like that. You just need to keep your clients happy. Anyway, I hope that's at least some sort of perspective. If you'd like more, feel free to follow up.
  7. What now? [not hired back]

    In addition to the above advice, since this has turned more into a general discussion about not being hired back, I'd like to add the following thought that may help. You wrote "I'd really rather not call up everyone I know and tell them how half a dozen people I spent 10 months killing myself for decided they're just not that into me...." Now I'm not trying to pick out words or find fault with how you've expressed yourself, but there's a fallacy at the centre of this statement that students fall into all the time. It's not necessarily about you at all. If there are ten articling students and nine got hired back then yeah, it's hard to escape the conclusion that whatever separated you from the ones who were kept is probably a real thing. But it sounds like you're in a small shop and without getting too specific about numbers, it's just wrong to internalize this decision and assume there's anything wrong with you or with the job you did. Students are conditioned by school and by the forms of competition you've engaged in to this point to imagine that grades, admissions, awards etc are all about your merit as a candidate. Jobs are often not about that at all. If your current employer just doesn't have work for another associate, they aren't going to hire you back regardless. Your salary comes out of their bottom line. No one gets a job in this industry because people like having them around - and quite honestly, people rarely lose jobs only because they are unlikable, if their continued presence is making money for the firm. So while it sounds like the information was conveyed badly, the decision itself may even be one that they regret. It's entirely possible they sat in a room at one point and said "hey, we'd keep this person in a different year, but right now it just doesn't make sense." Obviously it's not always black and white. If there were two articling students and one got hired back while you didn't, it becomes a question of perspective. Is it really about you that one person performed better than you did? Your ego wants to believe that you're in control of that, and you should be able to beat out someone else for the job that you want. But that other student's ego is saying the same thing. And you can't both be right. If you're in control of beating out that other person, then if they lose out on the job you've just agreed it wasn't in their control but rather in yours. It's a waste of time to dwell on this in nuance. The point is, even if there was some hire back and you didn't make the cut, it still isn't unavoidably a knock against your performance. It just means someone else was even better. Talk to the guy who gets drafted 22nd into the NBA about that. He's one of the best in the world. Does he take it personally each of the 21 times someone else gets drafted above him? Well, yeah, maybe. Some people are just that competitive. But it's not particularly rational to feel that way. Hope that helps at least a little. The sooner you can accept that you're not always going to win at everything, succeed at everything, and get everything you want, the sooner you can move on from this and take it with some grace, which will be important to what you need to do next. The biggest problem with law students is that most of us have succeeded so damn much in life that we lack coping skills when we finally don't get something we wanted. I'm not saying you should learn to like it. But consider the alternative a bit as a way of putting things in perspective. My clients basically take failure in life for granted. I wouldn't want to change places with them, even on my worst day. Good luck.
  8. Life After the Community Legal Clinic

    I share providence's take on this, though from a less optimistic viewpoint. When students are at this point, and scrambling for any articles that will get them called, hoping for a job that will allow you to immediately transition into exactly the jobs you've just struck out on is a long-shot. I mean, I agree. Getting any sort of litigation experience is the best case scenario at this point, if you're hoping that a firm might pick you up as a new call to litigate for them. But I'm telling you - this might be a good time to adjust your ambitions. It sounds like you're being pretty specific about the sort of law you want to practice and about the sort of place where you want to practice it. And it's fine to know what you want. But planning for only that, at this stage, is probably the wrong approach.
  9. Life After the Community Legal Clinic

    They haven't. Sometimes I check posting history for context. Also, it would have been too early in the 2019 cycle for that to be true, though by a small margin. And the idea that community legal aid clinics would be recruiting this early in the cycle is highly unlikely, for the same reasons I cited above. In summary, this is someone looking to article now, and not a year from now.
  10. Life After the Community Legal Clinic

    At this stage in looking for articles, anywhere you might consider will have doubtful hireback prospects. Look at it this way. Some employers hire articling students as a planned strategy towards filling anticipated employment gaps in the future. They are large enough to know they will need to hire for and replace vacancies in their associate ranks, or whatever in-house or government positions may exist within their structures. But those employers hire early in the recruiting cycle. Employers who are hiring for articling students now are hiring to fill work they just need done. And those jobs may at least potentially be interesting and/or fulfilling for you, if you find the right one. But you should expect to be on the market again after any articling job you find at this point. That's just the reality. Anything else represents extremely good luck.
  11. Simple tips to ace 1L

    By that logic, the best person to teach us how to succeed in law school would be someone who couldn't even get in.
  12. Simple tips to ace 1L

    "I did not do especially well in 1L, but I prefer to believe that the only difference between me and the students who did do well can be summarized in a few trite lines, and that the difference has nothing at all to do with ability, work ethic, or real knowledge of the material. By telling everyone this is true, I make it a little more true for myself. For authority, I cite the fact that I'm dating a professor in an unrelated field."
  13. Passive Income For Lawyers

    Allow me to translate for you. Any reference to "passive" income is bizarre, and a distraction. I don't even really know what that is. Your partners don't want you to focus on criminal law because (a) criminal law doesn't pay very well, and (b) any clients that you generate doing criminal defence typically won't bring other good business to your firm. People who are charged with crimes don't come back to you next year with their wills and estates, or with their business deals. Exceptions may occur, but overall criminal law provides terrible synergy with other areas of practice in a full service firm. That's one of the reasons that many practices do a lot of things but expressly exclude criminal law. This can be a good area of practice if you don't mind going it alone. But if you want to work for someone else, you have to respect that you can't reasonably do something where you earn less than everyone else, contribute less to the common pool, and still expect to get paid the same. I say that as a criminal lawyer. I'm set up well as I stand in my own practice, but it would be a bad fit with others. Honestly, to bring things down to basics, you need to decide if you want to stay within an established firm and try to pursue a career that way (working towards partnership, presumably) or if you want to practice criminal law and go your own way - perhaps with some ongoing relationship to the firm, if you get along well. You probably can't have both.
  14. I don't really object to questions of this sort, because whatever your ambitions may be, you're certainly entitled to ask about them. But the reason there's never going to be a real answer available is because you can determine what percentage of your class ends up in a certain kind of job, but you can't determine what percentage of your class ever wanted that job in the first place. If you assume there's some kind of absolute hierarchy in the legal marketplace and you're asking about the jobs that everyone wants you'll actually fool yourself into imagining it's harder to compete for the jobs than it really is. It's entirely possible the gold medalist in your class isn't competing against you at all, and that student wants to work for Marie Heinin instead. Heinin is certainly employing more than her share of gold medalists. So, you know, look at whatever numbers happen to satisfy your need for information. But try not to over-simplify too much. You'll end up with bad information, and insult many other very accomplished lawyers in the process.
  15. Advice for seeking articles in April / May of 3L

    I should add some context, and I'm certainly willing to go back to giving you the benefit of the doubt. But speaking as a sole practitioner, and someone who is similar to a sizable percentage of the potential articling principals you may find at this stage, I take exception to the way you've characterized the sort of compensation that a guy exactly like me would be able to offer to someone in your position. One or two people have already tried to correct your beliefs about the economics of law. Your reply, to paraphrase, was to suggest that I'm either too cheap, too interested in exploiting people, or insufficiently successful to employ a student. And as far as I can tell, thus far, you haven't re-evaluated that view. Here's what you don't learn in law school - even if you're paying attention. There's a strong push to create articling positions if you can, as a practitioner. Without positions being created on the bubble - where practitioners aren't sure there's a strong need for the student but they can at least justify it - there would be a far greater problem with securing enough positions for (even close to) everyone. It's fine you've decided you'd rather do the LPP than be "exploited." But most students feel otherwise. So we're all being encouraged to create articling positions and yes, to pay $30k or so for them, if we can. To have you come along and declare that we're all cheap, exploitative, incompetent in our practice, etc., when the entire profession is leaning otherwise, kind of suggests that you do value your opinion over learning the realities you have thus far managed to avoid acknowledging. The fact is, it's very hard for lawyers in most areas of law to get real value out of articling students. That is, to make it worth having them around in bare financial terms. Large firms that do hire back every year may take a loss on their articling programs but they view it as an investment in their future. Smaller employers where hire back isn't a real prospect anyway have no incentive to take a loss. And so we're simply not willing to pay you more than you're worth to our practice. Again, this has been done to death in other threads, but you're taking the first step into real marketplace economics now. No one is going to care how much your degree cost (I agree - law schools are going crazy and the debt you've probably assumed is unconscionable), what you consider "fair," or how your income compares to anyone else's. You'll command what your labour is actually worth. And honestly, newly minted law graduates just aren't worth as much as you think, starting out. The other stuff ... I'm still confused by. I'm not out to bust you. But you've referenced the work that happens in "general practices" and I've got to tell you, "general practice" law doesn't exist in major markets - or just about. There are large, full-service "business law" firms, but you are simply not competing for those jobs anymore. Every other kind of legal practice specializes. And in every one of those practices, the lawyers who work in those areas of law want to hire someone who has at least some kind of real, demonstrable interest. I actually disagree with advice earlier to apply for everything. I agree you probably need to widen as much as possible your definition of acceptable jobs. But you also need to define the starting place(s) from which you should widen. All you've done is list areas of law you're apparently "willing" to work in. What do you want? If you can't answer that question, we've got a real problem. Because no one out there - trust me, no one - is looking for an articling student who is "willing" to do the work they do. I'm serious. I wasn't trying to be a jerk. I have the strong feeling that whatever caused you to not look for articles sooner has also caused you to just ignore the employment market until recently. No one taught me this stuff. But I recall doing a lot of learning in 2L and 3L, and finding out a lot about what the legal marketplace is like. I feel like you lack a lot of basic information. You need to be open to learning more, and to reconsidering what you don't know. Or, you know, not.