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Everything posted by savvytoo

  1. I echo much of what @lawschoolhopeful6 said, but I'll chime in. Currently a 1L. I actually took a gap year out of necessity. My cGPA was relatively poor but my L2 was decent, so I banked on schools which heavily weighed L2 and therefore had to take a year off if I wanted schools to consider the grades from my final year. Turned out to be a great decision for me. It allowed me to take a slower approach to the LSAT and really find the study strategy which worked best for me. I also believe it was beneficial to my application in general, as I didn't have a ton EC's. To top if off, it was great work experience where I had the chance to work with a lot of lawyers in the field and it's now an area of law I wish to practice. Overall, making money after undergrad turned out to be a huge bonus for me. If you need some time to maximize your LSAT score, it's not a bad route to take. It also gave me a chance to travel a bit, which may not be as feasible once you're in law school due to finances and scheduling.
  2. Never too late to start. I didn't really become extensively involved in anything extra-curricular until about third year of undergrad. The best extra-curricular experiences I had during undergrad were summer research opportunities for faculty members. I was also involved with my undergrad's moot team and was an exec on some clubs. Some people have noted on here that exec positions aren't exactly noteworthy positions and to some extent they're probably right. That said, it looks better than nothing. You're in second year now and have plenty of time. Whatever you choose to participate in just make sure you don't let it sacrifice high grades.
  3. How badly do you want to become a lawyer? I see that one of the main reasons you're interested in law school is the intellectual stimulation and challenge of the law - do you think that getting the PhD would provide you with this same fulfillment? You've also mentioned that the job market is less forgiving than forgiving for Canadian PhD's. Seeing as you've obtained degrees from well-know UK based institutions, what are your prospects like if you were to study internationally once again in a renowned program (if that is a possibility)? I'm also unsure as to how PhD's from Canadian institutions are comparatively at a disadvantage, but then again I haven't done any research in that department. There's no real correct answer to your question. It's going to come down to the monetary cost-benefit analysis together with the potential fulfillment you'd personally get with each of these career paths. These are things only you can decide.
  4. 159. If you have any other questions about my application profile feel free to send me a PM.
  5. I can't speak to how adcoms will view a failed grade on your transcript. However, I had a relatively poor first year as well. The majority of my first year grades were fine except for having a 50 in a class during my first semester. I took the same strategy you've proposed by giving myself a year after undergrad to work and focus on the LSAT. My OLSAS cGPA was around a 3.2 while my L2/B2 was approximately 3.65. Anecdotally I ended up getting into Queen's and was waitlisted at Osgoode and Western, so based on what your plan is and where you're currently at I don't think a poor grade in first year would solely prevent you from being accepted somewhere. Someone else here may be able to fill you in on how a failed course on your transcript looks to an admissions committee. You could always try reaching out to admissions offices directly. Just keep the grades as high as possible and focus on the LSAT as these things are still within your control. Try to make the failed course look like as much of an outlier on your application as possible.
  6. Calgary is more holistic. Your LSAT seems around their median and your L2 GPA is a bit lower than their median. Wouldn't rule anything out for UofC however your "low-to-average" EC's could work against you. I was rejected by them for this reason, based on the feedback they gave me. As for the Ontario schools, I had a 3.2 cGPA, approximately 3.65 B2/L2, and average ECs (at best). I was accepted to Queen's and waitlisted at Western. Didn't apply to Lakehead. Accepted my offer before I heard back from uOttawa. From my understanding they value a high cGPA and I'm not exactly sure how they would value a 3.48, although I do think the 160 LSAT is to your benefit. Take a peek in the accepted threads for these schools to get an idea of where you may lie, but understand that there's no guarantee. Edit: oops, didn't see the bit about the L2 and B2 being the same.
  7. Thanks for the input! Just wanted to see whether or not grey was a suitable colour for business formal events or if it's not formal enough.
  8. Starting 1L in September. I already own a grey suit but I'm a bit unsure how this would stand out at business formal events. Based on this I'm thinking about getting another one in either navy or charcoal, but is a nice grey versatile enough to work into a rotation when it comes to networking events or other events that require business formal dress?
  9. Fwiw I got into queens with a lower CGPA, slightly higher L2 and a 159 LSAT. Was also waitlisted at Western and Oz, dinged from UofT. Didn’t wait to hear back from the others I applied to.
  10. I majored in History and had a great undergraduate experience overall. The program and faculty in the History department at my undergrad institution helped me foster some of the key skills that I've heard will be helpful in my law school endeavors (I haven't actually started 1L yet). That said, my positive experience during undergrad is most attributed to being passionate about studying History. It's a four year experience so the most important thing is to make sure you enjoy what you study and not want to bash your head through drywall three years from now because you committed to a major you hate as you thought it would give you the best chance at law school. You can major in anything you want, doesn't necessarily have to be law or policy related, for example. I agree with @Aschenbach that you probably shouldn't sink too much thought into law school yet. Do keep it in the back of your mind and maybe even use it as some extra motivation to keep the grades high when you're feeling particularly unmotivated towards some classes, but don't obsess over it. Also, don't take the LSAT until you're fully committed to applying to law school.
  11. I went through the Scotiabank rep at the Kingston location and got 135k at prime with two of their premium credit cards and ScotiaOne account with no monthly payments. Initial offer was prime plus 0.5% but was able to negotiate this down. I'd say contact the local rep in Kingston via email as they're the ones that deal with these types of loans often. You have to sign for the loan and the cards in person but they can send the documents over to your local branch. I was advised by some users on this forum to not budge on the prime rate and I suggest you try and do the same. Feel free to PM me if you have any other specific questions and I'll try to help out.
  12. I'm just going to a quick comment in case there is any misinterpretation from the comment I've quoted above. The interest is still applied monthly to the amount you've used from your LOC, you just don't have to pay it yourself. It's automatically applied to the current balance of your credit line every month. The only real advantage is that there is no risk of delinquent payments, as the payments are made automatically. It's possible that certain Scotiabank clients don't have interest added and that I am wrong, but Scotiabank certainly didn't budge on it in my case. If some people did have this in their package, it's most definitely not standard. Are you sure this is the case for you? @TheSaskConnection
  13. I believe their initial offer depends on the school you tell them you'll be attending. I was offered Prime + 0.5 initially and they mentioned that was standard for that particular law school. That said, I negotiated it down to Prime successfully relatively easily, so it's a good idea to take the advice not to settle for Prime. @Maple22 They did ask me for a written Prime offer from another bank so that they could match it, but I ended up sitting down with the branch manager and convinced him to lower it for me without any other offers.
  14. I'm in the same position as you right now, looking for housing in Queen's for an Aug 1 or Sept 1 lease. $1000/mo for rent and utilities hasn't seemed realistic based on my research so far. I was in that price range as well before I started looking but I've come to accept that I will most likely have to pay more. I suggest you do the same. I've reached out to some property management companies in Kingston regarding September 1st leases and they've all said that places for that timeline would list around June/July since these companies require 60 days notice from previous tenants.
  15. The deadline for the Law Admissions Bursary was sometime back in February, but they still accept and review applications. You'll just have to fill out the form and email it to the awards office. Your application status should show up on your SOLUS account within a couple of business days and the turnaround time for a decision is somewhere between 2-3 weeks. Queen's also has a general bursary application which opens up in September. My guess is that the awarded amount will most likely be applied to 2nd semester, as that was the process at my undergraduate institution.
  16. I'm beginning law school this coming September and I'm a relatively debt-averse person. How much debt do most students graduate with? Do people often tackle their line of credit a little bit when working summer positions and articling? Or do potential moving expenses, subletting, and other expenses prevent students from lowering their debt while in school? For context, I'mg going into school with no savings and no backup funding from parents. However, I've taken a year off between undergrad and law school and used that time, along with some extra money I've run into, to pay off my undergrad debt. I'm just curious what my expected debt levels will be upon graduation and what I can do along the way to minimize it.
  17. For what it's worth, I was in the same position you were during undergrad and understand your feelings in this matter. Approaching the application process with borderline stats can be a pretty daunting and stressful process, especially considering the fact that your life may be in limbo for upwards of 6 months while you wait to hear back from some of these schools. I was preparing myself to be rejected from many schools this cycle. I applied with an approximate 3.2 cGPA, 3.65 L2, and a 159 highest LSAT score. I was accepted to Queen's earlier this month and couldn't be happier as it was a top choice for me. With your GPA projections, you should be competitive at some schools with a decent LSAT score. I was surprised to be accepted to Queen's as it was considering it states on their admissions website that they prefer applicants with at least a 3.3 cGPA. I do believe I am probably a bit of an outlier in this regard for the incoming class, so don't necessarily take my words for gospel. I believe it was probably some of the soft aspects of my application or reference letters which put me over the edge. Point being - don't forget to apply with a well-rounded application and not put ALL of your energy into maintaining a high GPA, but definitely find a way to manage them to be where you need to be. On a final note, a 154 diagnostic LSAT puts you in a really good position to score at least a 160 before next cycle rolls around. I tried a bunch of study materials and methods, some of which worked for me and some which did not. Find what's right for you and what most helps strengthen any particular weaknesses you may have and you will do well enough on the test. Go in with the mindset of scoring as high as possible and don't stop at 160 when you get there, every extra point could open more doors for you.
  18. Sorry I just saw this. Yes, I applied in the general category.
  19. Thanks so much for the advice. I'll take all of this into account and will PM you if any other questions come up. I'm hoping I can get the same package you've detailed in your post. No interest payments until 1 year after articling with 135k and solid credit options would be amazing. Awesome they offered it to you without negotiation so here's hoping I don't have to hassle too much.
  20. I'm looking for some tips on how I should negotiate the best offer on my PSLOC. I've been accepted to Queen's so far and will more than likely be attending so I'm also looking for some info on how much funding financial institutions will offer based on going to Queen's. I'm currently with RBC and would like to stay with them if they can match a really good offer. I'm thinking of seeing what Scotiabank will offer me because I've heard they offer really good packages and taking it back to RBC to see if they can match it. From what I understand, it's common for Scotia to offer the prime rate with a generous grace period articling is completed. I've also heard these packages come with perks? What kind of perks should I be expecting/negotiating for? Will RBC match these if I come to them with an offer from Scotia first? Also, are they pulling full credit reports or are they soft checks? This would prevent me from shopping around too much for the best option.
  21. I was accepted to Queens yesterday and I literally had a 50 in my first year. This, plus another couple of poor grades in my first year brought my cGPA way down by the time I graduated. I had a false start to university, it happens and I touched on it in my personal statement. You'll be fine, just keep the grades up as high as possible to keep your options open and as stated above pair it with a decent LSAT score. Participate in extracurriculars as well during your time in undergrad to round out any weak spots when it comes to the hard numbers. I'm more curious about what BA program requires you to take Linear Algebra courses, lol
  22. Accepted today. cGPA 3.13 L2 3.65 LSAT 159 (highest)
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