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Everything posted by providence

  1. You can’t “plan to transfer out of the program.” It is not up to you if another school or program accepts you. That will depend on your grades, and you can’t “plan” to get good grades. It also depends on how many spots the other schools/programs have and how many others are applying and what their stats are. You can’t count on transferring. You should only accept a school/program if you are comfortable with finishing your degree there.
  2. I have no idea what debt levels most students have but for sure at least some have undergrad debt. Law school debt is generally much greater and much more if a concern though. To me, public interest jobs are with non-profits, NGOs, organizations, foundations etc but I guess if you define it more broadly, it could include government. I wouldn’t include most boutiques unless they do pro-bono work or take legal aid on the side as serving private fee-paying clients isn’t really public interest. Some boutiques who do a lot of public inquiries and the like might qualify.
  3. Decent-paying relative to paying debt and living a reasonable standard of living in a big city. edit: there just really aren’t very many “public interest” law jobs anywhere in Canada, period. There are some free internships etc.
  4. That too, but I meant more that there isn’t exactly a list of decent-paying “public interest” for new law grads, taking “public interest” to mean working for organizations or non-profits that serve the collective needs of disadvantaged clients. Lots of students may want jobs like that but only a handful, if that, will get them. When they realize there are no such jobs, some will definitely try biglaw.
  5. Depending how they define that, they may be disappointed, because there aren't a large number of jobs available in that field. If they mean poverty law more generally, sure.
  6. 80% is pretty meaningless without knowing how many Dal grads actually apply to Toronto. If it's only 5 or 10 vs. 50 or 60 people, that would be good to know. If it is only a smaller amount, is it the strongest students self-selecting in? I also have an issue with the 18% of Windsor students stat. Unless you know how many Windsor students applied, and how many got offers and rejected them, it doesn't tell you anything about your chances of success.
  7. Canadian law schools don't usually care about grad degrees (I think there may be one or two that do?) because everyone knows about the grade inflation in most masters' programs, and, as @ProfReader said, doing well in a masters' doesn't do much to predict success in law school. Aside, if someone has a 2.7 UGPA, I'd question the quality of any grad program that accepted them in the first place. I wouldn't agree that getting a B in a foreign law school makes anyone a "shoe-in" for a transfer. There are a limited number of transfer seats in Canadian law schools, and many of them are taken up by people transferring from other Canadian schools. I'm positive that the number of foreign transfers accepted is way less than the numbers that apply.
  8. Law isn't the rest of the "labour market." As you have been told, it is jurisdictional, and studying law in another country isn't meeting the requirements to practice it in Canada, and clearly many of the lawyers here are suspicious that the NCAs are not a sufficient correction of that issue. You asked, well why is there an exception for schools like Harvard then? and the answer is simply that the prestige to the firm of hiring a Harvard grad outweighs the disadvantages. And the prestige comes from it being well-known that Harvard requires a very high LSAT and GPA and Harvard grads have their pick of employment in the US so if they want to come to Canada, it is not from any desperation or last resort and if they choose your firm, that speaks well to the firm. You got your answers, but now you're arguing with them because you disagree with what you were told. You may just need to actually start law school, start working as a lawyer and be part of the hiring process before it makes sense to you. As has been pointed out to you, most NCA applicants who didn't go to Cambridge or Harvard apply to small firms for work. Lawyers in small firms are very busy. We don't have hiring committees, recruiters or HR departments. We have to do a lot of our own admin and our business development as well as legal work. We are not going to be running around trying to figure out what someone's degree means when we have plenty of equally good people in front of us whose qualifications we can easily figure out. I just tried to figure out what qualifications a Canadian needs to get into UCL and I couldn't get a straight answer - the web page was talking about all kinds of exams that mean nothing to me. Most lawyers are not going to be motivated to go through all that. Of course it's not "fair", but who says life is fair? The legal profession still has problems with racism against visible minorities and indigenous people, retention of women etc. If we haven't solved discrimination for factors people can't control, what makes you think it's a high priority to solve problems faced by people who voluntarily choose a path that they know or should know will disadvantage them?
  9. I think she was just trying to justify her choice, because I remember 10 years ago and no, people didn't think any better of Bond than they do now.
  10. I don't hear Michigan called "U of M" that much - there are so many "Ms" in the US. It gets called "Michigan"(as opposed to "Michigan State") or "Ann Arbor" usually.
  11. Well, sometimes they bring their dirtiness with other countries here ie. SNC-Lavalin. And now with Mark Norman too, I am not sure Canada does respect the rule of law here either.
  12. ...would be more positive if Western countries had treated others according to the rule of law, but they didn’t/don’t....
  13. I would say it’s the opposite - you should come into law school already having critical thinking skills, which the LSAT etc test, and law school teaches you thinking skills specific to being a lawyer.
  14. Oxford, Cambridge, Harvard, Yale etc do not have a stigma. The "stigma" is for the lesser-known schools. We don't know that UCL, whatever that is, is a good school or not - I don't know what that even stands for, (University of the City of London? University of something Law?) but I know what "TRU" and "U of S" and "Oz" and "Dal"mean. There is no issue with people going to UK schools hoping to work in the Magic Circle, or people going to T14s hoping to work on Wall St. (However from what I hear getting a Magic Circle job in the UK isn't so much based on how you do in law school as your social class, connections etc and it is very difficult to get in to those firms.) The issue is people coming back to Canada having not gotten a Canadian education, and in the case of those from the UK, having grades that are incomprehensible to most Canadians.
  15. Yeah, for union side firms, generally your union/political/labour affiliation, experience and ideology will be an important part of getting hired. Edit: @Deadpool I was wondering about the timing issue too....
  16. Grades do trump all, and ECs are the icing on the cake. But there is a difference between highly impressive, top of the class grades, and above average or average grades. I knew a few people in law school with B-B+-range grades (according to them) who had trouble getting jobs and it was widely assumed to be because of their personalities, lack of interests, etc leading them to bomb interviews. If grades were all that counted, there would be no need for interviews or "fit." There are also people who spend too much time on ECs and their grades suffer. Focusing completely on grades to the complete exclusion of law school ECs, and then getting above average, decent but not stellar grades, is never going to be an ideal strategy. Running a business is good, and you'll need to find ways to be interesting, fun, personable etc in your interviews.
  17. I didn't mean showing interest in a "practice area" as in crim/family etc, or in the case of a big firm, tax or securities or M&A, but more why are you interested in a solicitor practice in a big firm vs social justice stuff, for example. I know that when I interviewed for big firms, they questioned that sometimes. I take your point though that it's not as much of a concern with a bigger firm. BUT... OP might not get a job with a big firm. Not everyone does. So ECs may come in handy for the jobs OP will have to look for if they strike out with OCIs.
  18. You may not, but if you are interested, you should still apply. Knowing grade requirements is good just so that you manage your expectations. Don't be disappointed if you don't get into any of those places, or get bitter and assume it's because of your race/gender/school etc, and have a backup of other places to apply. But your grades aren't so bad that you're definitely out of the running and if you have other things going for you, that helps, so apply!
  19. What I'm getting at is that in order to maximize his/her chances of getting decent articles, which I imagine is important to OP given his/her personal circumstances, OP probably does need to get more involved in ECs, which may mean coming up with other solutions for the family members' care. It would be tragic if OP invested so much time and money into school, did decently well but ended up with low-paying or no articles and very limited career prospects because they couldn't make that extra sacrifice to get involved at law school. Also you only go to law school once and OP is missing out on a lot of the fun.
  20. No, don't write about the family members' illnesses in your cover letter, and don't bring it up in your interviews. Partly for the reason @theycancallyouhoju gave, but also because you don't want to give anyone a reason to discriminate against you unfairly. I never wrote on a cover letter that I went through law school as a single mother. I had to work hard, sacrifice and was more resilient, but pointing that out came with the risk that they would write me off and not want to hire a single mother because they might be worried that I couldn't put the work in. I disagree with hoju that the point of most peoples' ECs is to be "impressive". For getting an articling position, the point of law-related ECs is to demonstrate interest in and aptitude for the practice area you're applying to. Above-average grades aren't enough, when lots of people have those as well as ECs, and you're competing with them. So it is a bit of a concern not to have any. You will have to demonstrate interest in other ways - course selection for next year, going to one-time events over the summer, etc. which may not be as compelling. The point of non-law-related ECs is to show that you are interesting and give interviewers things to talk to you about other than grades. So you need to make sure those talking points are on your resume - if you have read interesting books, or watch hockey, or like to cook - even if it's rather generic and everyone has the same thing, it at least gives interviewers things to discuss with you and gives you a chance to be interesting. However, the bigger concern for me is that if you're that involved in your family's care to the point that you couldn't get the most out of your legal education by not volunteering or doing any ECs at all, are you going to be able to keep up with the grind of articling where you will not have time to "micromanage" multiple peoples' medical care? It seems counterproductive to make all these sacrifices for law school but then miss out on most of the experience and you may need to look at changing that next year and finding alternatives for those family members.
  21. I think there's a difference in reading Getting to Maybe after 1L and before it, though. 0Ls shouldn't even be trying to figure out how to write law exams - they haven't started law school yet and there is no point. Re: free time to read and paint in law school - we had a big thread on this but the gist of it was that you should still have time for things like that.
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