My journey to law school

This could be a really long blog considering I started college in 1985 and finally finished in 2016, however; I will give you all the condensed version……

  1. Went to college in the 80’s, took a couple awesome law classes but decided to drop out once I met my future husband, got married and had 3 great kids. Met friends along the way that became lawyers, 3 female lawyers specifically and that information always stayed with me.  (The lesson of just dropping my classes has not been wasted on me as I had to get a 3.87 GPA just to get my overall GPA up to 2.98.)
  2. I helped my husband run his business plus a few others along the way.  I became a realtor for over 15 years.  Became a children’s book author with my husband and a grief speaker and writer as well.
  3. Decided I wasn’t enjoying real estate much anymore and wanted to look into other options.  I made an appointment with a counselor at my local university to see just how many credits I needed to finish that degree I started so long ago. My counselor was fantastic.  If you are considering going back to school and  don’t like your adviser for any reason switch!  She made all the difference in the world for me, she fought on my behalf with the Dean of the school and made my transition back so much better than I could have hoped for!
  4. Amazingly I was told I only needed 10 more classes to finish my bachelor’s degree.  Why had I waited for so long???
  5.  Got a 4.0 my first semester back and then had to take a horrible, terrible accounting class.  I was surrounded by triple majors and had no idea what the professor was talking about in the first class.  I hadn’t had accounting for over 29 years.  I freaked a little, actually quite a lot because I knew how much work I had to do to get that GPA up and this class was going to kill any opportunity for that.  Fortunately I went back to a counselor, changed my degree with 2 concentrations and reduced my total classes needed by 3!  Whew, that was a bullet dodged!
  6. Made friends with 2 of my professors- a political science teacher that was amazing–the Department of Defense came to town to hear her speak and a former lawyer and politician who taught a great state government class.  I am very thankful that I struck up these relationships because once I decided to go into law school I needed to have letters of recommendation from educators.  I couldn’t have picked better teachers for these letters!
  7.  Registered for the LSAT. Bought some books on line, a few at Barnes and Nobles and studied as much as anyone can for the LSAT.
  8. Went to the 2 local law schools within my state to interview them and have them interview me. I was the oldest student at the tour of one school and I am pretty sure that I was nearly as old or older than the professor I listened to at the other school.  The joy of being older is that when I was listening to the professor speak about land easements, etc I knew what they were talking about.  Fortunately for me one is 30 minutes from my house and one is 50 minutes.  One private and the other a state school.  Both schools had their pros and cons and I would have been happy with either one!!
  9. Took the LSAT, got my score.  Not happy…..went to a LSAT course at a local college and couldn’t stand the teacher.  I had never been in a class with a teacher that was so condescending and seemingly unaware of how to teach.  I knew facts she didn’t know and when I asked her a question about them she didn’t know the answers.  I left the class completely freaked out and angry.  I immediately got in touch with my contact with the class and switched over to a live-online class.  This was a much better match for me and the teachers were 100% better than my first one!
  10. Finished my bachelor’s degree after only 31 years.  Made the Dean’s list my 2 semesters back.  If you ask me what my degree is I honestly do not know what it is, I do know I have a concentration in Political Science and Psychology but when asked I can never remember what it is officially.  I didn’t care in the end what my degree was, it could have been basket weaving for all I cared, I just needed to get done!
  11. Took LSAT a second time only to get the same score again.  What the ##$#%^^$^?  I wrote a letter to both schools–an addendum to be added to my file stating why I should be accepted even with a GPA that I couldn’t possibly get any higher and an LSAT score that was not at the level I wanted or that they required.
  12. Went online for FAFSA.  Spent a lot of time digging up tax returns and keeping my fingers crossed that the government would deem me acceptable for loans.
  13.  At the same time got accepted to one of the two schools I applied to.  Wow.  Excited yet uncertain.  So…. planned on taking the LSAT a third time to get scholarship money and maybe into the second school I applied to (which was about half the cost of the one I was accepted into).  My LSAT score was good enough to get into one of the law schools, not the second BUT not good enough to get money.
  14. Studied the LSAT magic of tests for 2 1/2 months-about 5 hours 5 days a week.  Basically it came down to me taking timed test, after timed test, after timed test.  Going onto the website for the online LSAT class I still had access to and reading all the explanations of every question I got wrong.  Exhausting mentally and physically.  There is one thing that I liked about the LSAT though–every paragraph or study written is a real article.  The instructors with the LSAT class tell you not to learn anything on the way, “do not learn anything when reading the material.” Well, for me learning along the way helped me to respect the LSAT test and read with a different mission.  I learned that airplanes used to recycle their air every hour in the 80’s but now only do it every 30 minutes. No wonder we all get sick when we fly. I learned about flagellum and bacteria again after so many years of being out of school.  Stupid trivia comes out of my brain from all the reading I did on the LSAT and for that I respect the test and the test makers just a little.  I did discover also that as far as the LSAT games go, the test makers want you to get the right answers, they give you all the information you need and you just have to dig it out.  Sometimes you just  have to dig really, really hard!
  15. Took the LSAT a third time.  This one seemed a lot easier than the second test which was extremely difficult in the games sections especially.  Perhaps the 2 1/2 months of studying made it seem easier.
  16. As of this writing I am still accepted into the first law school and I have paid my deposit.  I haven’t received my LSAT score yet but even if I don’t do as amazing as I think I did I will be in law school this fall.  The government deemed me acceptable and is giving me money (that I will be paying back until I die).  If I did as good as I am hoping on the LSAT then that amount will be less because of scholarships.  In the end what matters and what makes me most excited is that I will be in law school this fall.  I will be in class with 100-some 24 year old’s and maybe a few 30 and 40 year old’s. And oh yah, I will be in class with a few professors that I am older than too.

I have probably bored you quite a bit but I write this to inspire anyone who is thinking of changing a career, a life, a journey.  My road map is long but not impossible for anyone else to journey along with too!!  Take a chance, make that appointment with that adviser, you may be surprised at how little you need to do to change your path.  You may discover that you have a completely different path than you thought.  I may be rambling here a bit.  My final statement—GO FOR IT, YOU AREN’T DEAD YET!

 

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