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sansmj

Advice on what to do? Accept or re-apply?

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I wrote my lsat in November and scored a 158. I wasn’t surprised by the score, as it was what I was scoring on my practice tests. I knew going into it I would have to write the January lsat as well. After coming out of the test in November, I immediately found out my grandma passed away from injuries she sustained in an accident. Trying to study for my January lsat since then has been really difficult. To say we were extremely close would be an understatement, and her death was not something I could have seen coming. I wrote my January lsat yesterday and I don’t believe I did well on it. I was scoring between 162-165 on my prep tests, and come the day of the test I couldn’t focus and honestly it just brought me back to the day she passed away. 

I’m hoping for some advice on what to do. I’m assuming I scored as badly as I did in November, if not worse. My cGPA and L2 aren’t great, so I needed a higher lsat score to compensate for this. My cGPA is a 3.35 and my L2 is a 3.56. I had a strong personal statement in my opinion, and excellent EC’s and references.I was accepted into Lakehead earlier this month, however it isn’t my first choice. I know if I don’t get into any other schools I can fall back on it, but I’m not sure if I should do that, or re-apply next year in hopes of getting into one of my top schools. I feel like with my stats, my chances of getting into the other schools I've applied to are slim to none. It comes down to not wasting another year by re-applying and being closer to getting a JD, or taking a year off and risking re-applying and potentially not getting in.

I know it’s early on and I haven’t even gotten my score back, but I’m trying to be realistic. I guess what I want to know is what you think is the better option, and whether you think I’d have a shot at Windsor, Ottawa, or Western given my current stats. Any advice is appreciated, thanks in advance. 

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3.56 is very specific, how did you calculate your L2 GPA?

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^
There's no point in wasting a year if you have an acceptance to Lakehead Law. It's not like you need to firm accept right now, so just be patient to see what the luck of the draw gets you - and then if anything, get started on that JD.

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I don't know what your top schools are, but with 3.35 and 3.56 and 158, you are very lucky to have an acceptance at all, let alone in January. I would accept Lakehead, or if you get into another school you prefer, accept that. I don't see a point to either stressing yourself out writing the LSAT a third time (and who knows, maybe the second time wasn't as bad as you thought) or waiting another year to see if you get into another school and maybe ending up with nothing. 

Very sorry about your grandmother - may she rest in peace. 

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14 minutes ago, shea said:

3.56 is very specific, how did you calculate your L2 GPA?

You can input your grades on lawapplicants.ca and it gives you your cGPA, B3, and L2. I'm not sure how accurate they are, but their calculation for my cGPA is the same as my OLSAS calculated cGPA. 

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OP,  you may have a shot at Windsor though it is hard to predict.

You also still have a chance to apply to USask if you want(deadline is Feb. 1st, I believe).

Good luck!

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1 hour ago, sansmj said:

I wrote my lsat in November and scored a 158. I wasn’t surprised by the score, as it was what I was scoring on my practice tests. I knew going into it I would have to write the January lsat as well. After coming out of the test in November, I immediately found out my grandma passed away from injuries she sustained in an accident. Trying to study for my January lsat since then has been really difficult. To say we were extremely close would be an understatement, and her death was not something I could have seen coming. I wrote my January lsat yesterday and I don’t believe I did well on it. I was scoring between 162-165 on my prep tests, and come the day of the test I couldn’t focus and honestly it just brought me back to the day she passed away. 

I’m hoping for some advice on what to do. I’m assuming I scored as badly as I did in November, if not worse. My cGPA and L2 aren’t great, so I needed a higher lsat score to compensate for this. My cGPA is a 3.35 and my L2 is a 3.56. I had a strong personal statement in my opinion, and excellent EC’s and references.I was accepted into Lakehead earlier this month, however it isn’t my first choice. I know if I don’t get into any other schools I can fall back on it, but I’m not sure if I should do that, or re-apply next year in hopes of getting into one of my top schools. I feel like with my stats, my chances of getting into the other schools I've applied to are slim to none. It comes down to not wasting another year by re-applying and being closer to getting a JD, or taking a year off and risking re-applying and potentially not getting in.

I know it’s early on and I haven’t even gotten my score back, but I’m trying to be realistic. I guess what I want to know is what you think is the better option, and whether you think I’d have a shot at Windsor, Ottawa, or Western given my current stats. Any advice is appreciated, thanks in advance. 

You can provisionally accept Lake Head now. You can wait for other schools till first week of July

Just make sure you provisionally accept Lake Head  before the deadline and pay the deposit.

 

 

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It’s still early in the cycle. I’d wait and see. If you’re forced to pull the trigger at the end of the day it’s an Ontario law school which also lets you graduate w/o having to do articling which is an upside. There’s also always the possibility you can transfer in 2L although it’s tough. 

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You may have a shot at Windsor, though they're hard to predict. I think you should hang on a minute: wait for your Jan LSAT, wait to see if you get more acceptances. If you do, great! If not, you applied to Lakehead for a reason, right? As a back up and it'll look like you need to rely on your back up plan. 

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IMO, go to lakehead. No point in waiting till next year to see if you get into one of your top schools. Regardless your getting a J.D, work hard at lakehead, and everything should be fine. Best of luck. 

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13 hours ago, providence said:

I don't know what your top schools are, but with 3.35 and 3.56 and 158, you are very lucky to have an acceptance at all, let alone in January. I would accept Lakehead, or if you get into another school you prefer, accept that. I don't see a point to either stressing yourself out writing the LSAT a third time (and who knows, maybe the second time wasn't as bad as you thought) or waiting another year to see if you get into another school and maybe ending up with nothing. 

I have pretty similar stats: 3.37 cGPA / 3.5 L2 but my LSAT is 167. So far I have been accepted to Queen's, Western, Windsor and Lakehead. Only writing this to point out that a high LSAT score could open doors if sansmj was dead set against going to Lakehead and believed he/she could achieve a higher LSAT score given another year to practice and write under better circumstances.

With that said, I was fully prepared to accept Lakehead if no other offers had come in (they were my first) rather than waiting another year to reapply. I suppose it depends on your situation, whether you can handle waiting another year,  can see some benefits such as working and saving up, or how much you hate the idea of living in Thunder Bay.

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Wait, what's your objective with law school? Where do you want to live? I'm a little surprised with the advice in this thread to accept Lakehead. Except in specific instances, I think that's a pretty poor choice of law school to attend. 

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3 hours ago, hemingway17 said:

I have pretty similar stats: 3.37 cGPA / 3.5 L2 but my LSAT is 167. So far I have been accepted to Queen's, Western, Windsor and Lakehead. Only writing this to point out that a high LSAT score could open doors if sansmj was dead set against going to Lakehead and believed he/she could achieve a higher LSAT score given another year to practice and write under better circumstances.

With that said, I was fully prepared to accept Lakehead if no other offers had come in (they were my first) rather than waiting another year to reapply. I suppose it depends on your situation, whether you can handle waiting another year,  can see some benefits such as working and saving up, or how much you hate the idea of living in Thunder Bay.

But how many times did it take you to get 167? Writing the LSAT three times or more seems very expensive and stressful for the sake of maybe getting into a different school. Some people will never be able to score 167 and others can do it only with herculean effort. I agree a higher LSAT will open doors but it is not that simple to get one and most people don't get one just by studying more and really wanting it. 

I would agree though that if the thought of going to Lakehead is really that terrible, then it would be better not to accept and decide if it is worth trying to improve your score or other aspects of your application, or choose another path. 

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2 hours ago, jwms said:

Wait, what's your objective with law school? Where do you want to live? I'm a little surprised with the advice in this thread to accept Lakehead. Except in specific instances, I think that's a pretty poor choice of law school to attend.  

The advice stems from the assumption that Lakehead is the only school OP will get an acceptance from.

Why would it be a poor choice? And what are the "specific instances"?

While I'd agree with you that it would be a bad choice if they're aiming for Bay Street, I don't see any downside to going there if they want anything other than Bay Street (except for other niche areas, possibly). It's still a JD.

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7 minutes ago, providence said:

But how many times did it take you to get 167? Writing the LSAT three times or more seems very expensive and stressful for the sake of maybe getting into a different school. Some people will never be able to score 167 and others can do it only with herculean effort. I agree a higher LSAT will open doors but it is not that simple to get one and most people don't get one just by studying more and really wanting it. 

I would agree though that if the thought of going to Lakehead is really that terrible, then it would be better not to accept and decide if it is worth trying to improve your score or other aspects of your application, or choose another path. 

Fair point, it was my first write. As I said my post was really just to show that a higher lsat (if achievable) would likely result in more success next cycle.

Other than that I agree with most of what you said, although I don't think this person is lucky to have an acceptance. I think those stats are pretty competitive for Lakehead, Windsor and quite a few out of province schools, based purely on what I have seen on the accepted threads.

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8 minutes ago, thedraper said:

The advice stems from the assumption that Lakehead is the only school OP will get an acceptance from.

Why would it be a poor choice? And what are the "specific instances"?

While I'd agree with you that it would be a bad choice if they're aiming for Bay Street, I don't see any downside to going there if they want anything other than Bay Street (except for other niche areas, possibly). It's still a JD.

My end goal isn't corporate law, and neither is Bay Street. I believe I'd like to pursue something in health law, or IP and pharmaceutical patenting. However, I'd like to learn more about other areas of law and explore other options. I know Lakehead more so specializes in natural resource law and Aboriginal law, so it may not be the best option for this. I live an hour outside of Toronto, so I'm hoping to work within the GTA. I've looked at health law firms in the GTA and quite a few lawyers have degrees from Western, but I'm assuming they've been there for a while so I'm not sure how a degree from Lakehead would fare considering it's so new and thus not as common. 

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22 minutes ago, sansmj said:

My end goal isn't corporate law, and neither is Bay Street. I believe I'd like to pursue something in health law, or IP and pharmaceutical patenting. However, I'd like to learn more about other areas of law and explore other options. I know Lakehead more so specializes in natural resource law and Aboriginal law, so it may not be the best option for this. I live an hour outside of Toronto, so I'm hoping to work within the GTA. I've looked at health law firms in the GTA and quite a few lawyers have degrees from Western, but I'm assuming they've been there for a while so I'm not sure how a degree from Lakehead would fare considering it's so new and thus not as common.  

You applied to Ottawa right? From what i can tell by reviewing their program it seems it might be a good fit for you.

You may have a shot at Ottawa, I got in this cycle with a157, although my GPA was higher.

That being said, I don't think Bora Laskin is a bad choice for you. I have many friends there and they enjoy it. They want to practice in small towns so they are not too worried about employment. If you want to live and work in the GTA, I'm not sure how small health law firms will view your JD. Like you said, it's still kind of a new school.

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6 hours ago, thedraper said:

The advice stems from the assumption that Lakehead is the only school OP will get an acceptance from.

Why would it be a poor choice? And what are the "specific instances"?

While I'd agree with you that it would be a bad choice if they're aiming for Bay Street, I don't see any downside to going there if they want anything other than Bay Street (except for other niche areas, possibly). It's still a JD.

People typically go to law school with an objective, and so providing advice to a law school applicant without knowing that objective is peculiar to me.

What is the tuition at Lakehead? And what are the likely practice areas after graduating, and how much will those practice areas pay? This seems to be a pretty fundamental question to assess whether one should attend Lakehead. 

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