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SciLaw

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  1. My response on this related thread may be of interest. Additional advice if you do the master's route - pick one with a co-op option. Another thing to consider is that in your area of interest, you have to weigh the career prospects of a smaller number of positions specific to foreign affairs/trade vs. the legal job market; the thread linked above considers policy positions in general. Last thing, you will likely get some good advice on here, but you should also speak to grads of both the law schools and the programs you're considering, in addition to speaking to those programs' administrations, to get a better idea of job prospects and placement rates.
  2. I'm in a bit of a predicament and would appreciate the advice of the LS community. For context, I live in Ottawa, currently work in Ottawa, have family nearby + a partner in Ottawa (who is now unable to relocate), and I want to article/practice in Ottawa. Unfortunately I was rejected by Ottawa this cycle, but I was accepted at Alberta. My intent has always been to do 1L full time and then drop down to half-time for various economic, personal and employment reasons (my employer in Ottawa would also support this). So my options are: (1) I accept Alberta and apply for a transfer to Ottawa after 1L (risky) or (2) I decline Alberta's offer, rewrite the LSAT, and reapply to Ottawa next year as a mature student (for which I may or may not qualify as I will have 4.5 years of consecutive non-academic experience upon applying + 1.5 years of full time professional work experience during grad school--their website notes 5 consecutive years). Stats for Ottawa are 3.01/153 Stats for Alberta are 3.93/150 (avg) My EC's are average, but my work experience is very niche/law related through which I've done some exceptional things (I recognize this is subjective). Any advice would be appreciated.
  3. Accepted today. Unsure if it was index or holistic; also unsure if I'm going to accept the offer. L2 - 3.93 (unconfirmed) LSAT - 150 (average) Very strong work experience, average/good ECs, two grad degrees.
  4. Myself and many others I'm sure. Acceptances went out last year until mid to late May, followed by waitlists and rejections. L2 3.93 and Avg LSAT 150 (238.43 index using 22.5) - I expect to hear something in May. It's a waiting game until then.
  5. If you're overly concerned, call OLSAS and ask. Anecdotally, when I applied I checked off the box to rewrite the LSAT in Jan; I realized later I would not have enough time to study sufficiently due to work so I went in and changed this after November 1st/after my application was already submitted. I received the same message and I took it as OLSAS needing time to update my file and provide an update to the schools. It would not make sense that if you're able to make certain changes on OLSAS after submitting an application (age, address, gender, LSAT test dates, but not PS, ECs etc.) that an an entire re-submission would be necessary (for which a submission can't and wouldn't be accepted after Nov 1). Again, call if you want confirmation, but I think you're looking into this too much. I see it as OLSAS's was of saying 'we see you've updated your info and will update our files and let schools know, and in the meantime you cannot make other changes until this has been completed'.
  6. I have an identical cGPA, slightly higher L2 and slightly higher LSAT. I planned to actually devote legitimate time to study for the LSAT this past year but my work obligations didn't allow that to happen. I applied again this year, but realize the odds are not in my favour and in all likelihood will need to hit at least 157+ and apply again. A higher LSAT is only respective to your second highest LSAT. From past posts, what score did you have when you were waitlisted at uOttawa last year and why would it be any different this year without a significant increase? I believe I have a legitimate access claim for my first two years, but my LSAT score is still a significant weakness. Regardless, as others have pointed out, the impact of an access claim on your chances is hard to assess unless you are the individual reviewing your file. I don't have a lot of expertise in the area, but it sounds like you are prepared to go take on $150k+ in debt only to come back (in all likelihood) to a non-law job that you could get with a <$10k master's degree, just because you want "law school"--why? For the prestige, because it seems like the only option at this point, or because you want to be a lawyer? It should only be the last. What if you go to the UK, spend a lot of time and money and years from now realize you won't become licensed in Canada? If you're okay with this, then it is your decision. I'm sorry to sounds rude but you've asked for advice and people are giving you honest, frank advice and you're either trying to refute it or are ignoring it. You need a higher LSAT to have a reasonable chance at being accepted in Canada. The more I work with lawyers on a day to day basis designing regulations, the more I realize that the skills the LSAT tests do have merit. Reading comprehension, paired with logic (and more logic) and a complex interplay of a number of factors (analytical reasoning) are foundations in legal reasoning. If you're committed to law school, and committed enough to spend an exorbitant amount of money in the UK, why are you hesitant to pay $1000-$2000 for LSAT (private tutor) prep? In the meantime find a law-related job and build your application while you study differently. At the end of the day it is your decision in what you want to pursue in life, but you have to be honest and realistic with yourself.
  7. I don't have stats nearly as good as yours so for me there is a big "if" I get in--but I'm in a similar situation, great job, pay, benefits etc. I've been contemplating posting something similar, so I'm interested to see what others have to say, but here is what I've gathered so far. I think it will depend on how much money you are willing to forgo (opportunity cost) in order to be fulfilled (or the chance of possibly being fulfilled because there are a lot of uncertainties). It would also make a big difference if you can minimize lost wages. I'm going to try and request an 8 month leave to do 1L, would ask about any education funds available through my employer, and would see if the school would let me do part-time studies thereafter. This would minimize my lost wages and overall opportunity costs substantially. To this point, it may also depend on whether you go to a school with reasonable tuition, how much they offer in scholarships, and how much money you could make during summers to minimize debt. I'm also in a position where I could leverage my current experience for some decent legal job prospects and higher earnings later on in life. So there is a chance it could pay off in the long run (but again, there are a lot of uncertainties).
  8. I can't speak to other schools' policies, but some (e.g., uOttawa) require 5+ years of work experience since completing (read as any) full-time post-secondary studies at the time of application. I completed my undergrad in 2012, but based on my grad studies won't eligible to apply as a mature student at uOttawa until 2020 for entrance in 2021. When I last looked into it, each school had a variable nuance like this, so you may qualify for some but not others; some may be strictly based on age, others may be based on time since post-secondary education, and a few may take both into account. You'll have to read the fine print on each schools' website. From the uOttawa website: In order to qualify as a mature student, at the time of application, a person: must have five or more years of work or other non-academic experience since completing secondary school studies; and the period of non-academic experience may include part-time, but not full time, post-secondary studies.
  9. @easttowest Do you know if there is any advantage (scrutiny-wise) between the two categories? I've applied access and am one year out from being able to apply mature as well (as I was enrolled "full-time" in grad studies while working my first few years full-time, so it delayed that 5 year out of school period). I'm not asking to try and cheat the system in any way--just trying to assess whether I have a better shot this year or next with the mature box checked off.
  10. This is the issue though - a 10% cut benefits all (including those who are very well off and can absolutely afford the tuition), while reducing grant money for low- to mid-income students. Rich kids save $, the lower-middle class gets less $. Equal but not equality. I knew individuals whose parents were happy to send them to university because tuition of $6,000 was much cheaper than their private school tuition of $20,000. You're telling me they need a 10% reduction? Laughable. If you're concerned about tuition prices, why not simply freeze increases for a few years so they decrease relative to inflation? This would also give schools time to adjust. Maybe leave low and middle income grant funding alone. Better outcomes, smarter policy.
  11. Fair point - I agree more with this. The problem is government policy never seems to be developed in a truly tailored and thoughtful fashion. Too many overbroad polices and policy failures in general to count.
  12. Reverting back to the old model will also deter mature students from returning to school (less funding), and all previous income prior to their first year of studies will significantly limit grants (even if the entirety of their previous income was spent on debt, children, etc.). The other thing that's being lost here are changes to tuition tax credits. When OSAP was revamped to provide more in up front grants ('16/'17), they eliminated tuition tax credits. Now reverting back to the old funding model, there has been no mention of reintroducing these credits. So under the radar, the Ford government didn't just go back a few years to a previous funding model, they found a way to reduce education funding to levels well below the the 2015 model. These credits were very helpful to repay education debt upon entering the workforce. Now you will have less upfront funding, less means to pay the debt down, and less time to pay it back in (no more grace period for payments and provincial interest). Next thing you know Ontario will try and charge prime +8% of their portion of student loans (maybe even with a corporate tax cut for all private lenders just because). You shouldn't be gauging students, especially lower income students in an effort to balance the budget. All while increasing their own spending limits, lining the pockets of developers, and getting rid of revenue generating programs like the cap and trade that generally redistributed corporate income and credit revenues into social programs.
  13. If this were the case it would not only defer low-income individuals from pursuing professional programs like law and medicine, there would be a number of other policy implications as well. Higher accrued debt for anyone not making a 6 figure salary out of school would lead to being completely (if not already) priced out of the housing market (once again lining the pockets of landlords and housing corporations). All education funds are a societal investment, even the MBA students who may spin out new businesses and/or a high paying job themselves drive up the tax base. More education is also generally correlated with better health outcomes. Why limit grants to generally lower-cost non-professional programs; grants should be income-based regardless of the program.
  14. I was under the impression that once established, graduate and professional programs are capped at a 5% increase per year (implemented by the previous Liberal government only over the last few years). As an applicant, I'm just hoping that this doesn't cause schools to create/increase any uncapped/additional fees to close the funding gap. It would also be extremely unfortunate if OSAP was revamped (again) to better correlate with the decrease in tuition, which would have a compounding negative impact on students in professional programs. Hard to say though without any real details having been released.
  15. 0L applicant but I can shed some light on your situation based on my experience financing professional grad degrees. Ideally you want to max out the available OSAP before dipping into any personal line of credit through a bank (this way you leverage OSAP grant money that you don't have to pay back after, and in the case you don't land a job immediately after graduation/are under a certain income threshold, you don't have to make payments on the loan portion even after the 6 month grace period). So, as the other posters have mentioned, you can either: 1) Pay off your OSAP now and when you apply for your new OSAP you don't have to claim the $18,000 in assets resulting in a higher likelihood of reaching the funding maximum (of around just under $14,000 for 2 semesters 50% loan 50% grant, unless this has changed again or is different for law) and could potentially receive more in financial-need bursaries, or 2) Keep your money and use it to pay your upcoming tuition or living expenses, but you run the risk of getting less from OSAP and other financial-need bursaries (as bursary applications ask for savings amounts as well). You will also accumulate $600-$700 in interest over the next 8 months before the interests freezes again once you're in school. There are other obviously additional considerations involved in either scenario, but if you have any other specific questions related to OSAP or lines of credit there are a number of useful threads on here or you can PM me.
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