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  1. Related topic and issue, but a little narrower: anyone else planning on attending both the WUSTL and OSU recruitment weekends, which happen to occur back-to-back at the end of March? I'm trying to coordinate travel and would love to hear from others similarly situated. I'd also love to hear from potential classmates at either institution. FWIW, I'd also love to hear from the other schools to which I applied. HYPC, here's looking at you.
  2. Me, too. Very happy because my research interests (judicial politics/empirical legal studies) match up very well.
  3. Yes. Sometimes it identifies the particular person, othertimes it says "Professor at X University." If you click on that designation, it lists 10 or so people, among which includes the actual visitor. Two of my potential advisors were among that 10 person list. And yes, it does indicate I am looking for work. I think it's reasonable to both apply to graduate school and have backup plans but you can't tell either employers or schools that they might be the backup. I hope it isn't held against me.
  4. So some professors have started looking at my LinkedIn profile (a professional's networking site, like "adult" facebook). Good news: I'm in a pile of people warranting that kind of review. Bad news: I'm still looking for other jobs, in case the grad school season falls flat. Guess we'll see if those schools looking at my profile bite or don't.
  5. Let me clarify: there are plenty of legal jobs, few biglaw jobs. This is problematic if you are dependent on a $160k starting salary to repay loans. But because there are innumerable legal problems and high barrier to entry to practice (law school + bar exam), there's work to go around. To get a tenure track job it is an opaque blend of research, connections, fit, and timing. I'm still new to this myself, so I'm sorry I can't provide more guidance on this front.
  6. I'm a Top 5 law school graduate who is now seeking PoliSci PhD admission. Thoughts: 1) Apples and oranges. The LSAT requires no substantive knowledge; the GRE does. They're both time-sensitive. The LSAT is much more of the law school admissions decision than the GRE is, but both tests serve a gatekeeping function at some of the toughest schools. 2) Unqualified to comment 3) This site is as good as it gets. The "N" for PhD programs is much, much smaller than law schools, so it's much harder to see aggregated data; further, it's much more about fit than numbers. The same basic principles apply: at top PoliSci programs, do "well" on the GRE (shoot for 700+ on both V/Q; higher is better), have a great GPA, and draft a polished SoP that connects you to the faculty at the school to which you're applying. Then hope. 4) Unqualified to comment 5) Depends on what you want to do. School prestige carries furthest outside of academia ("worst," least selective program at Harvard will likely be more impressive to "industry" folks than a degree from the most selective program in a particular subfield if that's a lesser known school (e.g. Washington University in St. Louis); program prestige carries furthest in it. There are not enough academic jobs for all the newly-minted PhDs so job prospects are, like post-law school, tough. The difference: there's more than enough jobs for lawyers, there aren't enough tenured professorships to go around. YMMV. I loved law school and didn't hate my four years of biglaw as much as I thought. But the debt is constricting and if you don't think you want to be a lawyer, law school is probably not right for you. That said, if you don't want to become a TT academic and aren't willing to put the time and effort in to do so, a PhD might not be right, either. Best of luck.
  7. Sorry, it really was today only. Glad to not have to look at an SOP ever again (presuming, optimistically, that I get in someplace). Best of luck regardless.
  8. Very true, particularly at big firms. I spent more than half my time on discovery disputes (and about 15% on pro bono, leaving very little to substantive work for paying clients)--the very definition of mundane. The 90% pay cut is harsh; I can't believe my wife is on board with this crazy plan, but that's part of why I love her.
  9. Out of curiosity, GG, what has driven you from the law and what do you hope to find? Surprised at the number of JD/PhD applicants. Personally: biglaw paid the bills and repaid the loans but was unfulfilling. Academia has always been an interest, but I didn't see sufficient rigor or value in most legal scholarship and wanted to get training that would enable me to make an actual contribution to a field. I can, however, see myself teaching in a PoliSci department or at a law school (ideally at an institution with good programs in each).
  10. Particularly for dual degree applicants, there's no need to submit a second letter. Even if you were not a dual degree applicant, the letter may only hurt you at the furthest margins, and only to the extent it talks about longterm research interests if you are applying to schools that do not traditionally send graduates to academia. Truth be told, law school admissions is almost purely numbers. Being distinctive or interesting is helpful; fit is irrelevant. In other words, it's a very different process, but those differences don't translate into a need for very unique letters.
  11. Hello everyone. This seems like a good place to introduce myself after a few weeks of faithful lurking. I'm a JD seeking a Ph.D. to study law, courts, and judicial politics. My final applications are being submitted today and, while not enthused by the wait, I'm happy to stop sweating the SoP. GopherGrad, I'm a big proponent of humor, but I think you need to temper it with a statement in the essay itself defending the value of diversity as more popularly conceived. A PC reader might take your statement as a glib rejection of pluralism. Might be safer to play to the middle, or at least give the middle a nod while playing comic. That said, shortly into my SoP there is some droll lawyer humor. Guess we'll see how it plays.
  12. Anyone interested in swapping a 1000 words or so? It'd be great to get a fresh set of eyes before sending to the powers that be.
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