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xnsch

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About xnsch

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    YLS

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  1. @Neo_Institutionalist This post was super helpful and I appreciate all of the insight. For sure I know why it's important to talk about *why* i am interested in the PhD route and I didn't mean to sidestep that by any means. My largest motivating factor is the desire to pursue a career as a teacher research oriented institution as you alluded to. I'd love to specifically go into the legal academia field and PhD's are incredibly common and often demanded by even lower tier law schools of their faculty. Having the fortunate opportunity to attend YLS, which places the largest number of legal academics in the country, I figure that there is little reason not to try to pursue a PhD as well if academia is my passion because I would at least have the comfort of knowing that of all the law schools that I could go to, this one is the one that gives me the highest likelihood of actually being able to make it into academia. So I feel like not pursuing a PhD may be a waste of that opportunity and potentially shut me out from being able to pursue law teaching and research in the future. But again I'm definitely having lots of conversations with professors, people in the field, etc. right now. This is really my information gathering phase and I haven't made a firm decision one way or the other, but I figure I need to know whether the path is even realistic before jumping in. I think given what you've said that the area I need to most work on if I'm serious about pursuing this is proving my research abilities and also in strategizing on what professors would be the best to get recommendations from. I have my thesis advisor that I'm likely going to be having more conversations with in the near future to see if I can secure that, I have an econ professor from undergrad that has already written recommendations on the order of "best student I've ever hard" (I find it hard to be true, but he's very kind and likes me a lot) so there's the potential I could leverage that as well, and I'm hoping that maybe a YLS professor could round that out. I'll definitely message you if I have any questions. By far your post has been the most helpful so far! Thanks so much!
  2. So I've got kind of a unique situation and posted a very similar question over in the Economics subform, however I am also exploring PhD programs in PoliSci/IR and would like to get similar feedback on those. I'm currently a JD student at Yale Law School but I very much would like to be able to transition into academia at some point, perhaps sooner than later. While I initiated my legal education with a major focus on public policy and government work, I feel like graduate studies in a social science field would be beneficial in a number of ways including allowing me to keep the door open to teaching later on, something I'm intensely interested in doing and, given the fact that I'm already at YLS which places the most number of new law profs nationwide feel it would be good to take advantage of that and set myself on a course that would allow me to teach easily. However, aside from teaching and academia, I feel like it may still be worthwhile for a career path involving international law and foreign policy at places like the State Dept. In any case, I've decided that I'd like to at least explore the option of doing graduate studies in International Relations (which I majored in undergrad along with Economics) after I complete law school. But given that this is an entirely new idea to me that I haven't really explored much in the past, I don't know much about how the process works and right now just want to get feelers as to how an applicant with a background like mine would even be viewed and potentially what I should start thinking about right now if I want to apply in a few years. Not necessarily looking for feedback on whether this is even a worthwhile endeavor for a JD student...those conversations I will be having with professors I know who know my background and goals better, including a professor I have who did basically this exact same thing (PhD after JD). For now I'm just curious about whether I'd even be able to get into a program to make this worthwhile Background on me-- - JD student at YLS - Majored in Political Science and Economics in undergrad, graduated with a 4.0 and almost all A+'s in my Econ classes. I have decent relationships with my political science professors but only one professor that really knows me and my work well (she was my senior thesis advisor, and my senior thesis was in IR and political psychology). Neither my PoliSci nor Econ degrees were hugely quantitative so I worry about not having a quant background that may be looked for. I did get through multivariable calc in college and did excellent in my courses, but other than my senior thesis I didn't do other independent research. In addition, I went to a UC and, with large class sizes and professors that don't make teaching a priority, even though I did really well I feel like I may not have the requisites that a grad program would look for. I would have the opportunity to produce even more major research projects at YLS, however I'm not sure if a PhD program would really care about this type of work. - Haven't taken the GRE yet but i'm typically very good at standardized tests, I got 99th percentile on the LSAT, so I'm confident I could knock that out How would schools view an application from a JD student interested in teaching (perhaps, law teaching)? Does it help at all coming from YLS? Will publishing while in law school help? And how much of an impact will not having research experience in undergrad outside of a senior thesis hurt? Appreciate the feedback
  3. See my response above. I'm sure that for practicing law a PhD would be overkill. I'm primarily looking at the PhD as part of my desire to one day enter academia in law/econ. Its benefits for policy and practice are ancillary to that. I'm not sure if I would practice first before applying to a program. I think I probably would do something like clerk and potentially do some type of practice beforehand, but I'm not 100% on that yet
  4. Good question. I actually would be very interested in academia, research, and teaching. The skillset made available for practice is honestly a really small factor, if it were just for wanting more skills for litigation I would think of a master's program like what you mentioned and I have previously looked at things like the HKS MPP/MPA programs but I'm really not sure those are the right fit for me because while they are quant heavy I feel like they're not at the level that would open up a spot in academia or give me enough of what I need if I wanted to do serious research in economics/law. However I have not yet fully shut the door on doing something like an econ MA (Yale actually offers a terminal MA in econ for YLS students only). But those discussions about what type of program would best fit me are ones I'm going to be having with professors in the near future, I just wanted to get an idea at if I decide that a PhD program would be the route for me what that process would look like and how they would view me as an applicant, whether I'd even be remotely competitive, etc. Appreciate the response!
  5. So I've got kind of a unique situation. I'm currently a JD student at Yale Law School but I very much would like to be able to transition into academia at some point, perhaps sooner than later. While I initiated my legal education with a major focus on public policy and government work, I feel like graduate studies in a social science field would be beneficial in a number of ways including opening the door for me to transition into academia at some point as well as giving me the social science skillset that I think is becoming more and more important in technocratic policy decision-making and litigation. Most lawyers don't have this training and I think that's a definite detriment to the practice today when technology, data-driven analyses, and more complex social issues are at the forefront. In any case, I've decided that I'd like to at least explore the option of doing graduate studies in Economics (which I majored in undergrad) after I complete law school. But given that this is an entirely new idea to me that I haven't really explored much in the past, I don't know much about how the process works and right now just want to get feelers as to how an applicant with a background like mine would even be viewed and potentially what I should start thinking about right now if I want to apply in a few years. Background on me-- - JD student at YLS - Majored in Political Science and Economics in undergrad, graduated with a 4.0 and almost all A+'s in my Econ classes. However, I only have a really strong relationship with one economics professor at my school, my senior thesis was in International Relations, not economics, and I haven't really done Econ research (independently or with a professor). I also worry that my undergrad education in Econ was less than stellar. I went to a UC and, with large class sizes and professors that don't make teaching a priority, even though I did really well I feel like I may not have the requisites that a grad program would look for. Most of my classes were theory based and the only really heavy quantitative class I had was Econometrics (which I excelled in, but still) and my thesis in PoliSci was mostly qualitative. - I have done other major research projects such as my senior thesis and I have the opportunity to produce even more major research projects at YLS, however I'm not sure if an Econ program would really care about this type of work. - Haven't taken the GRE yet but i'm typically very good at standardized tests, I got 99th percentile on the LSAT, so I'm confident I could knock that out How would schools like Stanford, Berkeley, or UCLA view my application? Does it help at all coming from YLS? Will publishing while in law school help (what if I attempt to use quantitative methods)? And how much of an impact will not having econ research experience in undergrad hurt? Appreciate the feedback
  6. I do want jobs that require a JD. I definitely want to clerk after graduating and I think that even if I do get into pure policy jobs later on (I'm not sure exactly where in the government I'd like to end up, some pure legal jobs are really interesting to me but also some pure policy jobs) my Yale JD will be just fine to get me into the door anywhere. I don't think at this point I need to do any consideration on that point. YLS is actually the cheapest law school I've got into and their loan repayment assistance program is super generous as well so I'm really not worried about any of that at all. I think this advice would make more sense for others who are thinking about applying to law schools in the future or those who aren't going to YLS which is a hugely public service-oriented law school with most students wanting to work in some kind of public interest sector. I think that the MPP for me is less about needing it as much as it is that I think I would enjoy the skills that are learned with it. I sat in on a class today actually on my visit to campus and it was fantastic. I like that the core curriculum has such a focus on things like economics and also that there are great IR classes available to take. So I think for me it's mostly an intellectual interest and an interest in the skills that the policy degree confers. The issue is balancing whether or not that is worth the cost... (although I must say, today's visit definitely made me much more excited about applying given how much fun it was) I think in the end I will apply to HKS once I start my 1L year anyway just to see if it's even possible for me to get in. I guess the key will be whether I can craft my application in such a way as to emphasize the importance of the degree in conjunction with my law degree and whether or not that will end up outweighing my lack of professional experience.
  7. Hi there, So I'm in the process of deciding what to do moving forward and whether I still want to try applying for the MPP program at HKS. To give a bit of background, I'm just out of undergrad (graduating in May) and applied to law schools this cycle with the intention/hope that I'd land at HLS and would be able to apply to their joint degree program to do an MPP with HKS while I was there. It would be pretty easy since I'd be able to use my LSAT score and just have to write my essays. However, that was before I got into Yale Law. Now, I'm almost 100% going to be attending YLS and am unsure about what I should do moving forward based on a few factors including (1) my likelihood of success at getting into the HKS MPP program from Yale and (2) whether the program is really useful to me at this point and adds enough value for the cost. I'd love to get some insight on these First, I'm deferring my admission this year and will be enrolling at Yale in the Fall of 2018. I was pretty much always planning on doing this no matter what law school I got into, primarily for personal reasons of needing a bit of time to rest before heading right into law school and also to earn a bit of money on the side to help cover personal costs during 1L year. Now, this also gives me the opportunity to take the GRE and write my essays for the HKS MPP program if I decide to apply. I'm not really worried about either of those components (I self-studied for the LSAT and scored in the 99th percentile and from what I've heard the GRE is no LSAT. I'm also pretty confident in my ability to craft some great essays). However, my biggest concern is the fact that, having just come out of undergrad, I don't have much professional experience that I've heard is really necessary for HKS. On the plus side, I think that I have more and more substantial experience than most in my position (and all of it has been in government, in the office of a Congressman who I've gotten really close to and has given me substantial projects to work on) but it still doesn't compare to a person who may have been working in policy for a few years out of undergrad. My Congressman is also an HKS alumni and said he would personally write a recommendation for me, but I'm not sure if any of this is enough to overcome that experience gap. If it's not, there's not really much I can see myself doing about it because while I may get a policy-related job during my gap year, that would be the extent of the experience I could use while applying and once I'm in and through law school, I highly doubt I would ever find the time or desire to go back to school (particularly coming from Yale, I just want to get out there and do the work I'm passionate about already). So, unfortunately this is the only time where I really see myself having the opportunity to go to HKS. Do you think that applying my 1L year at Yale would help my chances of admission given the prestige of YLS? Or am I screwed because of my lack of a career at 23? Second, I'm trying to assess the cost-benefit of doing the HKS concurrent program with YLS even if I were to apply and get in. On the one hand, many of the people I've worked with personally in the policy realm have done MPPs at HKS and have told me a great deal about the program and it is definitely something I'm intensely interested because of my desire to work in domestic policy. I feel like there's a lot of skills that I could pick up by taking on the MPP program that I might not otherwise get with just plain law school (particularly in things like economics and foreign policy analysis which I'm very interested in). However, doing the program would take an extra year and likely tens of thousands of dollars of increased debt (although, I was awarded the maximum need-based financial aid at both HLS and YLS so I have high hopes that I could at least get a good amount of whatever aid HKS offers). And while I think the program would be personally beneficial in the skills it could teach me, I'm skeptical about whether it would really help me in any way in my actual career. I highly doubt there is any job out there that the addition of an HKS MPP would get me that my YLS JD would not already qualify me for. I think the most compelling part of HKS would be the access to the Harvard alumni network which is stronger than that of Yale due to its sheer size and something I definitely am going to be bummed that I'm missing out on now that I won't be going to HLS. Anyway, I hope this is the right forum for this question. Because I'm so government and policy career -oriented and because my question is HKS-specific I thought this would be the place to post. I'd love to hear any feedback anyone has. Thanks so much!
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