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heavyindebt

Is having a full-time career advantageous?

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Hi,

I know some U.S law schools favour those applicants with at least two years of full-time job experience after their undergrad, rather than accept students straight out of college. 

My question; are there some Canadian law schools that look for and give an edge to mature professional applicants?

I am considering of joining Canadian armed forces (not for an advantage for law school admission , but originally interested in becoming an officer for long).

Would military veterans have an edge over those with no professional career?

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13 minutes ago, heavyindebt said:

I know some U.S law schools favour those applicants with at least two years of full-time job experience after their undergrad, rather than accept students straight out of college. 

I've literally never heard this. MBA yes. Not law school.

Do a forum search for the mature admissions. Often times these are as, if not more, competitive than regular category.

Military experience shouldn't impact your admissions, but I've definitely seen it give a leg up to some candidates for certain law jobs.

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Canadian schools typically give the most weight to GPA and LSAT. The holistic schools will factor in work and extracurricular experience but these experiences are unlikely to outweigh your stats. Unlike the US, neither work experience nor military experience are privileged in admissions considerations and mature applicants with professional experience do not necessarily have an edge. Bottom line is that stats are king and experience will not save you if you have weak stats.

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Your question is somewhat complex. 

You said a "professional mature applicant". There are 2 things you are asking, a "professional" applicant and a "mature applicant".

Generally, when you start speaking "professional", you assume that someone has been professionally trained or holds a professional designation achieved through academics. Statistically speaking (while some students may disagree with this), the more prestigious schools tend to accept individuals from more professional backgrounds. For example, last year, of U of T's graduates (one of the most prestigious schools) 21.88% of their graduates already held a professional degree (i.e. MBA, Medical Doctor, Registered Nurse, Social Worker, etc.) vs 22.5% that had a general undergrad. That's a pretty high representation of "professionally prepared" students. While the general belief is that law schools don't give priority based on your background, to me, this suggests that holding a professional designation does in fact give you an edge.(You can review this full report here: https://s3.amazonaws.com/tld-documents.llnassets.com/0010000/10102/law students' society of ontario - just or bust report.pdf). Alternatively, it could just mean that professionals tend to get sick of their first profession more frequently and seek change, which I think is party true, too.

In terms of the mature aspect of your question, as psychometronic pointed out, holistic schools would generally favor you more than purely academic driven institutions (such as Os and UofT) in terms of work experience. But this also depends based on how you frame your experience (in your case, being in the military) in your personal statement. For example, saying "Being an officer in the military taught me .. (insert generic statement here)". Being in the military is generally not considered a professional designation. You would not be categorized in the professional stream of the above mentioned statistic. Instead, you would simply be viewed as a "mature" applicant and would be judged as such. Unless, however, you were a professional engineer or something in the military and held a degree or masters in said profession. But simply being in the military would not put you in the "professional" category that law schools consider. 

My advice though would be to do it if it makes you happy! It definitely is not going to hurt your application and if it makes you happy while doing it, who really cares? Plus the military offers enticing education tuition assistance if you stay with them. 

Edited by steversteves
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