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harveyspecter993

What's the Hardest Clinic to Get Into at Osgoode?

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I would say the Advanced Business Law workshop with Davies and Parkdale Intensive Program. I know someone working in New York right now who really tried for Parkdale and couldn't get it. They probably receive the most applicants out of all the clinical programs. 

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All my info is just anecdotal, but I would agree about the business law workshops with Davies (i applied and didn't get it, and also generally have heard that they're popular). Idk that i would agree about Parkdale since I remember last year there were further calls for applications going out in the summer saying that spots weren't all filled by the applicants in the winter. I think that volunteering at Parkdale once a week with the commissioning clinic is maybe competitive, but doing the intensive where you work there for the entire semester i think is a bit less so since a lot of people maybe don't want to give up their entire semester of courses.

I also think that the one where you do an international human rights placement is competitive but i forget what it's called.

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It depends 😉. Are you the type of candidate they are looking for, with demonstrated interests in that field and good grades? If not any will be hard to secure, they are nearly all extremely competitive.

That being said, I hope exclusivity of positions or “prestige” aren’t part of your criteria for selecting an intensive/clinical. Pursue those that you are passionate about or would like to experience in practice. It would be extremely shitty to take a position just for the challenge or difficulty of it when someone who actually gives a shit about the program and people it services could excel at it. Good grades in school ≠ excelling in the field, especially for public interest and moreso if your heart isn’t in it.

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CLASP ranks somewhere up there, as well. Parkdale traditionally gets a few extra applicants but it does seem like that changed a tad last year. 

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I can't remember what the reason was, but Parkdale received fewer applications last year than in previous years. Normally, it is one of the most competitive clinics to get into with far more applicants than spots available. Quite a few of the clerks/medalists and top of the class students in my year did Parkdale. 

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We did actually get an email from the Parkdale intensive back in March, i.e. after the clinic recruit, informing students that they still had unfilled spots so I actually got the sense that it wasn't a very popular clinic, for whatever reason. 

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Posted (edited)
55 minutes ago, harveyspecter993 said:

We did actually get an email from the Parkdale intensive back in March, i.e. after the clinic recruit, informing students that they still had unfilled spots so I actually got the sense that it wasn't a very popular clinic, for whatever reason. 

The clinic is facing a lot of uncertainty now with losing its lease and massive cuts by legal aid ontario. I'm surprised that they're still taking students given the layoffs I heard happening. 

Edited by Simbaa

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4 hours ago, Simbaa said:

The clinic is facing a lot of uncertainty now with losing its lease and massive cuts by legal aid ontario. I'm surprised that they're still taking students given the layoffs I heard happening. 

This all happened after the last recruit. I'm curious about what happens in January when the next set of applicants come in

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Davies ABLWs are essentially entirely grades based, and take a ton of JD/MBA students too. For that reason, it’s probably the toughest stats-based one to get into. 

That said, there’s different versions of hard. I’d rather apply to a grades-based clinic than do a substantive interview a la the criminal law intensive. 

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On 6/26/2019 at 10:47 AM, Simbaa said:

The clinic is facing a lot of uncertainty now with losing its lease and massive cuts by legal aid ontario. I'm surprised that they're still taking students given the layoffs I heard happening. 

THIS! 

Parkdale has historically been highly competitive... as are many of the other clinics at Osgoode. Apply to the clinics that you actually have interest in. 

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On 6/25/2019 at 9:46 PM, TrqTTs said:

It would be extremely shitty to take a position just for the challenge or difficulty of it when someone who actually gives a shit about the program and people it services could excel at it.

Why do you assume that a person who gives a shit about the program will be more conscientious than the person being offered the position? If the PWGAS showed the greatest potential, then they would have been offered the position in the first place, no?

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On 6/28/2019 at 8:51 AM, Pete said:

Why do you assume that a person who gives a shit about the program will be more conscientious than the person being offered the position? If the PWGAS showed the greatest potential, then they would have been offered the position in the first place, no?

I never said anything about conscientiousness, only dedication and competence. Ask any Sr division leader at CLASP if they can tell the difference between the DL’s who apply and work there out of genuine interest and passion, and those that are simply there to build their resumes. Then ask them how much more effectively the clinic could have helped those individuals who go there seeking assistance with their real world issues (facing deportation, losing custody of their children, jail sentences and criminal records for first offenses, whatever people in admin do [lol], Etc.) if they had more of the former. 

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Posted (edited)
On 6/28/2019 at 8:51 AM, Pete said:

Why do you assume that a person who gives a shit about the program will be more conscientious than the person being offered the position? If the PWGAS showed the greatest potential, then they would have been offered the position in the first place, no?

While I have no idea what a PWGAS is, I'll say this. If we're talking about poverty law, then that's different than other fields. And that's because poverty law is different than other fields.

Many impoverished clients have serious mental illnesses. Most are in crisis. The fact that a student was really good at spotting issues on their torts exam won't help anybody, if he/she can't get through the client interview. Sometimes those interviews are with semi-intoxicated individuals who won't answer your questions about their charges or their eviction, because they're busy yelling about the landlord is in a conspiracy with the police, their worker, and possibly the premier's office.

Dedication matters here. When you're dealing with very high needs clients over and over, the dedicated student will get the information that the supervising lawyer needs, and will seek to build a working client relationship, even when that seems impossible. The one who's mostly hoping that this will impress OCI recruiters? Maybe, but I'm not so sure. 

Edited by realpseudonym
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There are obviously a lot of issues surrounding hiring circumstances. But let me try to pose a hypothetical that isolates the point I thought @TrqTTs had raised in their initial post:

Person A is the most qualified person for the position, in terms of grades, interpersonal manner/attitude, relevant work experience, etc., but wouldn't stop to piss on clinic X's client demographic if it were on fire: they give 0 fucks. Person B is less qualified than person A, as evinced by the fact that person A was offered the position and person B was not. It would be extremely shitty for person A to take the job 'for the challenge' when person B could provide better services because they care more. 

 

My question is: what supports the assumption that just because they care more, person B will suddenly become more competent/dedicated to their work than person A, even though by all metrics person A has outshone person B in both competence and dedication? 

 

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, harveyspecter993 said:

I'm surprised to see CLASP discussed here because I know at least one person with a C who got an offer.

Yeah, CLASP doesn't really consider grades heavily when looking at applications. They do look over them, but your experience, CV and interview play in much more. A "C" doesn't mean that you'll be a bad fit for legal aid work or that you'll be a bad advocate - bit different if your transcript is all Cs. I know of multiple scenarios where students with higher grades were passed over for students with a better overall profile (including ones with Cs). 

In terms of sheer number of applications, CLASP is usually very competitive and gets most of the students they want.

Edited by ZineZ

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, ZineZ said:

Yeah, CLASP doesn't really consider grades heavily when looking at applications. They do look over them, but your experience, CV and interview play in much more. A "C" doesn't mean that you'll be a bad fit for legal aid work or that you'll be a bad advocate - bit different if your transcript is all Cs. I know of multiple scenarios where students with higher grades were passed over for students with a better overall profile (including ones with Cs). 

In terms of sheer number of applications, CLASP is usually very competitive and gets most of the students they want.

+1

I know a number of A students currently at Bay Street/New York firms that did not get CLASP, Parkdale, and other intensives. Some folks here are placing a heavy emphasis on grades for clinics that are focused on social justice and poverty law work. You have to interview for many of these clinics. I can assure you that many of the students (at least in my year) who went to work on Bay did not have the personality, drive, focus, or "fit" for clinics like CLASP. Their A's are meaningless when they have to do intakes with new clients with mental health issues. I imagine the criminal intensives to be the same as well. 

To rephrase the OP's question, I think they need to differentiate between clinics that are the hardest to get into based on volume of applicants, demonstrated interest, and "fit," and clinics that are grades heavy only (which I think only the Davies business workshops are). I know people who did the investor protection clinic, IP intensive, and business clinic with more than one C. They also look for demonstrated interest and you can be a JD/MBA with numerous C's and they'll take you in a heartbeat. 

Students with B averages and more than one C grade land permanent jobs in full-service firms and government. Why would they not land a clinical program in law school provided that they have a good application and interview skills?

20-25% of Osgoode students have to get a C/C+ in any given course with D's being discretionary up to 5%. Does this mean that a quarter of the student body would not have the chance to gain volunteering experiences, clinics, RA work, etc. in law school? What else are they paying the school 26k/year for?

Edited by Deadpool
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