How I Got a Full Ride to Law School




Let's get real; the road to law school is HARD. College is hard, the LSAT is torturous and applications can drive you insane... not to mention the waiting game and choosing process. I can say personally that I highly underestimated how difficult it could be to make my way from Undergraduate Freshman to admitted law student. Most things I put my mind to in life I accomplished easily and with flying colors. This was a challenge I did not expect but one I am also proud to say I accomplished. 

I was lucky to have a wonderful undergrad advisor who guided me through the process as much as he could. I will never forget the end of my first semester of college when he told me that if I kept up my work ethic, I would end up getting a full ride to law school and have my choice of schools. I laughed and called him crazy at the time but in my head I decided I would settle for no less and try my absolute hardest in the process. 

Flash forward 4 years and here I am, sitting here writing a blog about law school while admitted to a great school with a full ride scholarship redeemable all 3 years as long as I stay in good academic standing. Want to know how I did it? 
1. Understanding Your Goals 
Before you get any further in the process, you must set some goals and know your plan. Pick some law schools to shoot for and find our what GPA and LSAT scores have been accepted there. This is your base point for undergrad; this is the map of what you need in order to get into those schools. For getting a full ride, add several points to each of those numbers and that is what it will take at a basic and skeletal level. 

2. Good GPA
If you are even considering applying to law school, you must make your GPA a priority. From the first day of undergrad, I made my grades a non-negotiable priority. I knew they had to stay high and my GPA needed to be great to make law school a reality. I completed a double major in law and history while maintaining a high enough GPA to make the Dean's List every semester and to graduate Magna Cum Laude. I had to say no to a lot of parties and I got really used to saying, "Sorry, I have to study" even though all I wanted to do was go shopping or out to dinner but if you want to get full rides to any law school, you must make high grades a priority. 

3. Solid LSAT Score
The LSAT is awful. I am just getting that right out there on the table. However, it is part of the process and must be completed successfully. My biggest tips for the LSAT is start studying way earlier than you think you should. I set aside a whole summer ( I was taking the October LSAT) to study. I made myself study 1 hour every day for the whole summer and fall until the test. It sucked. I had to stick to it even on vacation and it exhausted my mind. It was a miserable way to spend a summer but it was temporary pain for long-term gain. Once the new semester started in August, I kept up my hour per day and added one full timed practice test per week until the test. I graded these tests as a gauge for where my score was, what sections I needed to work on and how far I needed to go to be at the score I needed. It was grueling on top of regular classes and working part time but it was a means to an end. Thanks to my work and studying, I felt prepared on test day and it was not as bad as I anticipated. A few weeks later I heard that I had gotten 1 point higher than the score I needed for my target schools and I have never been more relieved in my life. 

4. Good Relationship with Undergrad Staff
Having a good relationship with your undergrad professors is vital in my opinion. Most of my professors were lawyers and their insight and knowledge was so helpful in preparing and completing the process. It was comforting to have people to go talk to and gain advice from as well as having good people to ask for letters of recommendation when the application time came. Your professors, especially any with a law degree, are fantastic resources and you should get to know them well so you can use that resource. 

5. Being Involved
Get. Involved. In. Your. University. Law schools want to see people who have put themselves out there and gotten involved in college. Find a leadership position, play on an intermural, join some clubs. I was President of Law Society, a member of a few other clubs, I rode on two equestrian teams and worked part time. This helped to round out my resume. 

6. Prioritizing 
Grades, LSAT, involvements, applications. These need to be prioritized at the top of the list. Law school needs to be a priority. 

7. Apply Early 
Start your applications early. get the personal statement done, edited and triple checked by multiple people. Ask for letters of recommendation early, they tend to procrastinate. Start the applications as soon as they are available. Schools run out of money so the earlier you apply, the better chance you have of getting a large or full scholarship. It also makes you look like a go getter which is always a plus. 

7. Tunnel Vision
If you are shooting for a full ride, you need to have tunnel vision. Are you in college to get to law school or to party? If the answer is the later, you need to reorganize your priorities or you will end up far from a full ride scholarship. 


Keep your eyes on the goal and do what needs to be done to make it a reality. You can do it. If I can get a full ride to law school, you can to. Just keep your head down, do the homework, crush the LSAT and keep your priorities straight.








10 comments

  1. As a grad student in art history, I think this advice is really solid for anyone who wants to get into a funded grad program! I did a lot of the same things, except swap out the GRE for the LSAT. Prioritization and starting early are so, so important. (And I love that you studied in London -- I did my first MA there! I miss it so much.)

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    1. Definitely good habits for any higher education! and welcome fellow London-lover!!! It is the greatest city!

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  2. Hey I just updated my Other Law School Blogs page on my site and featured your blog :) http://bit.ly/2a1gNNc

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    1. Omg you just made my day! You were my biggest law school blogging inspiration so that is an honor :) thank you!!!

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  3. I'd love to hear more about this! Yes, you have to have a good GPA and LSAT. But did you apply to programs that were less competitive so that you'd get a full ride? Did you do anything to apply for different scholarships?

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    1. I applied to a number of schools within two parameters: close to home (within 3 hours) and in an area where my then fiance/now husband could find a Biology related job. There were 9 schools that fit the bill. I applied to all and received scholarship to all including 3 full tuition scholarships. Of the full tuition scholarships, I chose the highest ranked school in the same town where my husband had also found a great job. I chose a school where I could have access to faculty, internship opportunities and a good bar passage and job placement rate and a big alumni presence in my home town; the things I found to be most important in my legal education.

      As for additional scholarship, I was content with my full tuition scholarship and did not have time to seek additional opportunities due to my wedding and new house/moving this summer. I am sure there are opportunities out there but I did not seek them.

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  4. Hi! I've seen your blog a couple times but sadly, didn't get around to exploring it until now. I love this post because my approach was completely fly by my pants and hope for the best. A full ride scholarship wasn't even on my radar until they started popping up in my acceptance letters!

    We should collaborate on a follow up or guest post someday and compare and contrast our approaches. I wasn't even sure about law school until right before I graduated, I applied late (December), I wasn't involved with anything in undergrad and when I tried to take a LSAT prep course, they canceled and refunded everyones money. Yours is undoubtedly the safest and smartest way though!

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    1. Hi :) Thank you so much for stopping by and checking out my blog. I have previously read your's and found in very informative about law school.

      I feel like most people I know who are attending Law School have either take my approach or your approach; I feel like there is not a lot of in between. In my opinion, whatever gets you in is good!

      I would love to do a collaboration or guest post about this because it is a juxtaposition of two very different ways of getting in. It would be even more interesting to compare how equally successful I am sure we both are despite the difference in application styles. We should email about more details :)

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    2. Hi :) Thank you so much for stopping by and checking out my blog. I have previously read your's and found in very informative about law school.

      I feel like most people I know who are attending Law School have either take my approach or your approach; I feel like there is not a lot of in between. In my opinion, whatever gets you in is good!

      I would love to do a collaboration or guest post about this because it is a juxtaposition of two very different ways of getting in. It would be even more interesting to compare how equally successful I am sure we both are despite the difference in application styles. We should email about more details :)

      Delete
  5. Hi,
    I was wandering when you have to take the LSAT? I have been interested in being a lawyer since 4th grade (I am in 9th now) and would like to get as much of a headstart as possible.

    Thanks

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