Timeline for applications

If you just took the June LSAT, congrats!  You’ve done well with planning for your upcoming law school applications by getting the test done early in the cycle. After taking some well-deserved time to relax, what should you do next? Here is what the next few months should look like.

Time is on your side! But don’t let the summer slip away when you could be done with your applications by the time the fall arrives.  If you haven’t set a timeline for yourself, we are here to help!

June – If you have not already done so, think about who should write your letters of recommendation (see our blog on the subject at: http://spiveyconsulting.com/blog/letters-of-recommendation/ ) and start the process for requesting them.

June through August – Request transcripts from all schools you have attended. If you transferred from one school to another or took a course or two at a community college during one summer, those need to be sent in too.  Don’t forget to send in your study abroad transcripts – those can take some time to process.

June/July – Take a close look at your resume. You may already have one that you’ve used for other purposes, so your resume for law school applications may not need much updating.  Add a section at the end for interests/skills to give it some personality. Reviewing your resume and thinking about your past accomplishments may spark some thoughts on your personal statement.

Now through July – Start jotting down thoughts on your personal statement topic.  Keep an open mind and take a look at our previous blogs on the subject.  Remember, it doesn’t have to be “Why Law,” but it should address the question “Why You?” In other words, what can you say to the file readers that will make you compelling, memorable, and put the thought in their head that “we would love to have this person at our school!” This list of ideas could also include topics for a diversity statement if applicable.  Keep in mind, though, that the diversity statement is truly an optional statement and it won’t look bad if you don’t include one.  There are certainly times where your diverse background and experience can elevate your application — but do not force it. Your econ major or left-handedness does not provide for a good diversity statement.

August – Have a first draft or outline of your personal statement ready for feedback at the beginning of the month so you can fine tune it before the summer ends. Two recent blogs on Personal Statements can be found here: http://spiveyconsulting.com/blog/the-3-essential-features-of-a-great-personal-statement/

and here:

**August and September **– Applications become available at many law schools, so you might get a few additional questions/essays to work on.

**August/September/October **– Start filling out those apps!  Make sure all of your information is in the application form itself – double check and then have someone else check again to make sure everything is accurate. Read each and every word out loud to make sure you are using the right case, tense, grammar, and word.  Go over each application individually and carefully, as they are all going to be slightly different. For example, some will ask for all Character & Fitness Issues including minor traffic tickets, while for other schools you will only have to list convictions. More schools are also asking for “optional” essays, and you will want to answer at least one of the options. A popular theme, whether it is asked outright or veiled within a more ambiguous question, is “why our law school?”  Additional essays may be limited to a very small number or words (e.g. 250) or center around your future plans. Your application is going to take considerable time. Plan on at least 3- 5 hours per school, excluding the documents you have already written!

**September – October **– Submit!

**November-December **– This is a great time to visit law schools, ESPECIALLY when your application is complete. On many occasions we have seen applicants get an admit letter the day they visit, or a few days after. Sync up your schedule with theirs and let them know you are coming. We are big fans of a law school visit!

…and a small plug:

We want to help! Indeed,  this is what we thrive on. We are also much more in demand this cycle than the past two. We are going to cap our number of clients at around 200 for the 2014-2015 admissions cycle. Call or email us to get started!