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providence

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providence last won the day on January 27

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  1. providence

    Second guessing myself.

    A caution: everyone wants to do well academically and most people will by definition end up being average (B student-ish.) So don't rely on that alone. If you do well, great, but no one knows how they will do until after exams, which is why it's a good idea to start volunteering and doing extra-curriculars early on so you are not just relying on potential grades. (Plus there are other benefits to that.)
  2. Again, there are no entrance scholarships for scoring a high LSAT. There are entrance scholarships for the combination of LSAT and GPA needed for admission, which for some people with a very high GPA may mean they don't need as a high of an LSAT (depending how you define a high LSAT - it would still need to be decent, but not necessarily in the 170s.) Many scholarships will also consider letters of reference, personal statements etc. There are also scholarships available not from law schools but from various organizations and businesses for membership in various groups and other unique factors. They aren't all academic. If getting scholarships is your goal, it really isn't about the LSAT. And many schools also have bursaries, which are need-based rather than based on your scores. If your goal is getting money for school, then it definitely isn't about the LSAT specifically, though obviously a high LSAT always helps. Edit: here's a partial list of scholarships available - you can have more than one of these at a time if you are selected. https://www.law.utoronto.ca/utfl_file/count/documents/financial_aid/ScholarshipsforDiverseStudents.pdf
  3. providence

    Second guessing myself.

    I would add that if you're going to be deliberately non-social and introverted, there is probably more onus on you to be a top student. You can't be an average B-student, not network, moot, join any clubs etc and stand out in the interview process. If you are near the top of the class, getting papers published, winning academic awards and doing research with professors, then you can be "John, that weird shy guy who is brilliant and a total tax/bankruptcy/securities nerd." The B-student path of "Jill, who is decently smart and is so engaging and funny and will charm the clients and be a joy to be around" will be closed to you. So I would say if you're not going to network, join clubs, talk in class and so on, thereby developing and practicing your social skills, you will need to be confident in your academic success.
  4. providence

    Second guessing myself.

    There were a variety of personalities in my law school. There are a variety of personalities in practice. The profession is generally pretty forgiving of personal oddities as long as you are competent - it respects peoples' knowledge and skill to get the job done. So yes, an introvert can succeed as a lawyer and no, you do not need to change your personality (if you even can!) That being said: you will likely have to have conversations of more than 5 minutes in the interview process. To get into areas like tax law, you'll likely need to go through the OCI process which involves various interviews, receptions, dinners etc. You may need to have conversations with professors so that they get to know you well enough to be your references. You may want to go to receptions or reach out to lawyers at firms prior to the formal OCI process to get to know people at firms where you may want to work or to figure out which firms you want to apply to. As to the other things you mentioned: you don't HAVE to go to social clubs or networks in law school. These are an important and fun part of the law school experience for many people, but they are not mandatory. However, you generally need to have things on your resume showing that you have been involved and engaged in your community in law school and in the wider community. You might be able to do things that are less "social" like do research for profs or for Pro Bono Students Canada, but getting those positions will likely involve interviews and having meetings with the profs or your supervisor. Practice also often does involve at least some level of networking, to greater or lesser degree depending on your area of practice and type of firm, etc. I doubt most people can get away from doing at least some networking, and this does start in law school. People don't network for the sake of it - they do it because it is an important way to build your practice and reputation. I wasn't big on class discussion in law school either and mostly chose not to participate in it. It's not mandatory and you can easily get by not doing it. I only spoke in class when the prof called on me or, very rarely, I was moved to ask or share something briefly. I think if you don't talk in class, you will need to make sure you go to your profs' office hours and talk to them there so they can get to know you and be a reference for you. I did that and ended up very close with several profs who gave me good recommendations even though I was quiet in class. As to public speaking, I think that most law schools have some mandatory component of some kind of a moot, some classes will have mandatory presentations etc so I doubt you can completely get away from having to speak before others, but it won't be a routine thing and you can avoid it in upper years if you don't take those classes. If you go into solicitor areas of practice, you can certainly be a lawyer who does not have to do much public speaking. Your age is a non-issue. There will be others your age and older. I would imagine that a shift manager learns lots of useful skills in scheduling, organizing, managing different personalities etc. Those are the skills you will sell in interviews. The law firms where I had interviews all really valued real-world work experience. Some students, both your age and younger, will have lots of amazing things on their resumes, but lots won't. Some of the younger students will have spent most of their lives in school and those with wealthier parents may not even have worked at all. So having a few years of work experience with "regular" people is an asset.
  5. providence

    Here is My Situation... (3.01, 3.5, 149)

    Agreed... but the process isn't really the application process to law school. That should be fairly straightforward if you've done your job properly. The process is your undergraduate studies and becoming a good learner and student during that time, and then your law studies and articling, as all part of the process of becoming a lawyer. The LSAT is supposed to be a very small and short part of that. 6 LSATs and 4 years of application to law school is way beyond any process you should be "in love with." There is no prize for beating your head against a wall.
  6. providence

    Gap year ideas?

    I think taking time between undergrad and law school is so important in becoming a more well-rounded person, which tends to make you a better law student and eventual lawyer. I am basing this on my experience as well as observations I made of classmates in law school. More of the K-JDs seemed to be more stressed out about grades and job applications and such and to base their entire identity on their performance in school, and also tended to have less interesting things about themselves to share in interviews (in general. Of course not all K-JDs were like this.) I think volunteering, learning more about people including the people you may serve later, and learning more about yourself and what you have to offer the world beyond academics, and having interesting things to put on your resume, is a GREAT idea. There is no need at all to rush to law school right after undergrad. I also think that you may surprise yourself in being able to afford to travel. I also assumed that I couldn’t afford it and found out later that there were all kinds of really cheap ways to do it. If you can possibly make it work, do it - you will not regret it. I wish I had been braver in that area.
  7. providence

    Changing Articling

    Bad choice of words. I meant they might not agree to it (as in the mutual termination option) - obviously the student can still leave against their wishes.
  8. providence

    Reading ahead

    I don't know if it's "harmful", but it is pretty useless and won't make any difference to their outcomes in law school. When I was in law school, most people who read ahead realized pretty early on it had been a waste of their time. It was "harmful" to the few who didn't realize this and continued to act and think as if they had a leg up on the rest of us, thus failing to realize what they didn't know until after exams. Sure, if someone actually thinks reading old law textbooks or case law is enjoyable and more beneficial to them than reading other things for pleasure and expanding their horizons, or otherwise engaging in their personal development, and they won't burn out later from doing this, more power to them.
  9. Some Canadian law schools do give large entrance scholarships, but they are generally based on GPA, LSAT and other factors, not just LSAT. Are you saying you already have 164 and want to try to get 172? Because it is possible you could put in a lot of time studying and not get 172. The LSAT doesn't work like that. 172 is a high score and some people will never reach it. Plus if you applied this year it's too late to try to get a higher LSAT score - are you saying you want to wait a year to see what happens? Or do you not have an LSAT score at all yet? Without knowing what your baseline score is, this is just speculation. You can't predict or plan getting either a high LSAT or an entrance scholarship. An entrance scholarship is a nice bonus if offered to you. Do what you can to get the best LSAT score you think you can get and go from there. Edit: you should take a practice test under timed conditions and see how you do, if you haven't started studying yet. You might be someone who has a natural aptitude for the LSAT and can get a high score without studying much, or you might get a very low score and have no choice about trying to study more to see if you can bring it up to an acceptable range you'll need for admission.
  10. providence

    Here is My Situation... (3.01, 3.5, 149)

    I think that Oxford, Cambridge etc also accept people out of high school but they have higher entrance standards generally and don't admit random Canadians who already have degrees they haven't done well in, nor do they market themselves to that population.
  11. providence

    Burnout in the profession

    I'm glad you're happy and found a way to relate positively to what you're doing. It sounds like you'll make a fantastic addition to the profession. I would disagree that appellate advocacy is more about the "internal consistency of the jurisprudence" than the "impact on the litigants' lives", though. There are many appeals I have worked on, such as mandatory minimum challenges, that are very much about the impact on the lives of not only the litigants, but a large number of others as well. Appellate advocacy gets a bad rap for being cerebral but whenever I do it, I appreciate how it can bring about much broader change than a trial decision can. For me, the beauty of learning/reading jurisprudence is that you can and do use it to figure out actual creative solutions for real peoples' real problems. You can feel for people all you want but without a good grasp of the law, you can't do anything for them. I understand what you're saying about how for you, it didn't all come together in a meaningful way until you actually started interacting with the clients and that's great to hear! But from another perspective, I didn't think law school was "sterile" or "academic" because I was already thinking ahead to the practical uses of what I was learning, and I think it is possible to do that.
  12. providence

    Here is My Situation... (3.01, 3.5, 149)

    3 people is not many. And you don't know their GPAs or other circumstances (and if you didn't see their LSAT score and acceptance letter, whether they actually told you the truth.) Just as a random example, I picked Queens https://law.queensu.ca/programs/jd/class-stats Average access LSAT is 160. Is there the odd 140-something in there? Maybe but there can't be too many with that average. And I would think that most 146s getting in have much better GPAs than you but struggled with the LSAT, maybe for reasons related to their access claim. That's why I asked what your access claim was - not because I wanted the full personal details but because I was asking whether it is related to your poor performance in school and on the LSAT and in what way ie. do you have a learning disability that you feel affected your marks vs are you saying you are a visible minority single parent (for example) and asking for mercy? My point being that if there are factors that are preventing you from achieving in your GPA and the LSAT, they may hold you back from success in law school or law practice and that is not your fault. Many people are held back from being able to succeed at something for genetic reasons. And because the UK doesn't take the LSAT, going there to circumvent that requirement is looked down upon by some in the legal profession which makes it much harder to succeed as a lawyer once you go there. You are a perfect example of that. Going to the UK doesn't magically put you on the same footing with the people who managed to get 160. You have to go into this with your eyes wide open - it is not about fulfilling some kind of dream in your head of going to law school. Can you afford maybe a decade of financial struggle, stress and uncertainty to end up taking what you can get in law? What kind of lawyer do you want to be anyway and why and is that realistic if you go to the UK? Really wanting it has nothing to do with it. There are many things in life I have wanted very, very badly with every inch of my being... and never got, because it was not meant to be, because I was not ready, because I did not have what was needed at the time. You learn more from failing sometimes than you do from succeeding. Are you trying to convince us that you can get in to a Canadian school, or convince yourself? Or are you trying to convince yourself, or us, that going to the UK is a good option? I'm not sure what you are really looking for here. Do you really think law schools look at a 131 to a 149 increase as impressive? 6 times and you're still in the bottom half of test-takers. That is way different from the poster who got 153 the first time and 164 the second time, for example. I would think many law schools would be concerned that writing 6 times certainly does show dedication to getting in.... and even with all that dedication, not one score anywhere close to what is usually competitive. Re: holistic factors and access - you yourself said that you were told that the more subjective parts of your application (PS/ECs/LORs) were slightly above average - not outstanding. People with lower stats would need those things to carry the day and it doesn't sound like yours do. With mediocre softs, grades and LSAT, what is there to recommend you to a law school? The Dual JD is a huge rip-off also, but is a much better option than the UK if choosing between the two, because it is at least in Canada. Is money a concern for you or do you have wealthy family willing to pay for you to go to UK or the Dual JD? Do you have connections to people who are committed to employing you? If you have money and connections, fine, go to the UK I guess.
  13. providence

    Here is My Situation... (3.01, 3.5, 149)

    I understand, but sadly, you just may not have the aptitude for law. Not everyone does and there is no shame in that. There are lots of other worthwhile things you can do with your life. Without too many details, what do you mean by "access?" What kind of disadvantage are we talking about? What do you mean, someone like you? It will cost a lot of money, take probably more time than the people who study here to even be qualified to article, and then you will likely have a much longer job search than people who study here and very well may not be able to find decent (or any) articles for some time.
  14. providence

    Here is My Situation... (3.01, 3.5, 149)

    What are your chances in Canada, or in the UK? You know your chances in Canada since you have applied twice and written the LSAT 6 times - so you know your stats make it an uphill battle. There is lots on here about how going to the UK when you can't get in in Canada and then trying to come back is no picnic and generally a bad idea. Edit: you will likely struggle in law school and struggle to find a law job. Best plan is to find something else you can do and do better.
  15. providence

    Burnout in the profession

    I think it also depends on your situation before law school. If you left a decent job like engineering, banking or teaching for law school, and then struggled to land a law job, I can see how that would be very frustrating. Also I could see you second-guessing yourself if you had other options of, say, doing an MBA or a masters in STEM or something. However, if you were already broke before law school with no prospect of that changing unless you went to law school, I would think law school might be less stressful.
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