Athletics and Recreation

How I Got Into A Top Law School

How I Got Into A Top Law School

one of the questions I get all the time is how do you get into law school everyone has a different route but today I thought I'd tell the story of how I got into one of the best law schools in the country hey legal eagles D James Stone here teaching you how to think like a lawyer so you can crush law school now before you can crush law school you have to get into law school now I have been a practicing litigator for over 10 years now but before that I had to go to law school just like everybody else and so here is my story I knew from a very early age that I wanted to be a lawyer there was a brief period of time when I thought I wanted to be a policeman but when I learned that police officers are not allowed to carry machine guns I didn't really want to become a policeman after all there was a short period of time when I wanted to be an architect but that didn't last too long mainly because I started to see lawyers on TV I was really into the TV show law and order now this is back in a day with the original Law & Order series not the SVU or any of the offshoots when they would split up the episode into half that was for police and then half for lawyers and I always thought the latter half of the episode that focused only on the lawyers was always the best part and I knew I wanted to be a lawyer like I saw on TV there was only one problem my parents put a hard limit on how much TV I could watch I think I was only able to watch 30 minutes of recreational TV but I was able to watch an unlimited amount of educational TV so in one of my first acts of pure legal argument I convinced my parents that because I wanted to be a lawyer really law and order was educational TV and I should be allowed to watch as much law and order as I wanted for some reason this argument carried the day and my parents agreed and this is back in the day when TBS or TNT one of those cable channels would just show law and order basically non-stop I mean these were almost during the daytime the law-and-order channel and so I had a chance to watch quite a bit of law and order and that provided the goal for what I wanted to do with my career I think my parents assumed two things based on my arguments number one I think they assumed that if I was willing to make these kind of arguments that I was really interested in the law and so what could it do and number two that they figured I was pretty good at arguing so that led into high school where I did mock trial in high school I was really mad because my freshman year they would not let freshmen compete on the mock trial team so I had to wait until my sophomore year graduated from high school went to college and I chose the college that I went to because they had one of the best collegiate Mock Trial teams in the entire country and in fact while I was on the college team we won the national championship twice in a row in college I majored in Poli Sci mainly because I was interested in but it really seemed like so many lawyers had also majored in political science so I figured if other lawyers majored in Poli Sci it probably couldn't hurt a lot of people ask what majors they should take in college they see the same thing that lots of lawyers take Poli Sci I would say that the Poli Sci degree was really interesting for me because it was interesting I put a lot of effort into it and so I got good grades but it definitely didn't really help in terms of preparing for law school itself just because you know about government doesn't mean that you know what the laws are or and it certainly doesn't mean that you're able to think like a lawyer just because you know some of the history of governance and maybe even some political theory so Wow I really enjoyed my Poli Sci degree I don't really think it helped me all that much in law school but frankly no major really helps you that much in law school really what you should do is just the major that you are most interested in so that you can get good grades because law schools look at your grades and that helps decide what law school you can go to now that being said I did take a number of electives that did end up being helpful for law school one of which was a business class that was taught by my Mock Trial coach my Mock Trial coach was not only a professor at the undergraduate level but he was also a professor at the the Business School and he happened to teach business law classes these were mainly for business students but undergrads could take it and while it wasn't a great survey of all the different types of substantive law that are out there that you learned in law school it did provide a framework for what we call a Civil Procedure in law school in law school you have six core classes one of which is called sim Pro and that's the process of filing a lawsuit and how to file motions and basically everything that leads up to going to trial in a law suit and so that gave me a framework for that specific class in Civil Procedure so I'm really happy that I took that that business law class I did pretty well in general in undergrad I graduated summa laude Phi Beta Kappa and was was able to graduate with honors from UCLA undergrad now I knew that when I graduated I immediately wanted to go to law school I couldn't afford to do a gap year and to travel the world and I knew that I didn't want to enter the workforce because that would just be a waste of time because I really wanted to be an attorney so I didn't want to mess around I wanted to go straight into law school so basically from the entire time that I graduated from college for the entire summer and a good portion of the fall I studied for the LSAT and I think I might have started studying for the LSAT during the school year to get a head start the LSAT is to law schools what the SAT is for college it's it's your law school entrance exam it really is the single most important thing that you can do to get into a good law school is to get a really high LSAT score and the LSAT is scored from zero to 180 so if you get a perfect score on the LSAT you get a 180 the LSAT is scored I think using a normal distribution so really only the top you know 0.1 or 0.5 percent get a 180 if you get a 170 that means you're in the 99th percentile and if you get a 160 or so you're about in the 90th percentile and tens of thousands of college students take the LSAT every year so I had taken a couple of practice tests practice LSAT just to see how I scored and I scored really low just with no studying whatsoever so I knew that I needed to take a prep course in order to boost my score to get into a good law school there are several good options out there right now I highly recommend live courses the the ones that force you to go into the class and force you to study as opposed to the ones that are self-directed because you know it's it's so important that you really have to squeeze out every point you can and I just didn't trust myself to study on my own at least to learn the strategies I took a course with a company called test master that was based out of California I think they've expanded nationally now I took their live class and I was actually instructed by one of the instructors who would go on to form the competitor to test masters called blueprint and I think those instructors were just phenomenally the original test masters instructors and also the ones that defected and went off to to blueprint I think they are really phenomenal so I always recommend those two companies and especially their live courses they are they're really pricey I mean on the order of 1,500 to 2,000 dollars but the instruction that you get is is just really and it's an investment in your future you can't get into a good law school without a really stellar LSAT score so I think it's it's just a worthwhile investment it's expensive but I think you just have to do it after I took the live class with test masters I then basically buckled down with my college roommate and we practiced taking L SATs every day for about two and a half months I mean we just we studied all day every day and by the end of the summer we had taken every single publicly available LSAT that had been published so that was on the order of hundreds of L SATs and both he and I were were scoring in the 99th percentile he averaged I think 174 and I average of 172 so I went into the LSAT feeling very confident unfortunately the day I took the LSAT still can't really explain it but I scored significantly lower than I had in practice I scored in the mid-16th still pisses me off to this day but the score was high enough that I could apply to most of the schools that I wanted to apply to and have a reasonably good shot at getting into a few of them so I applied to pretty much every school in the top 20 and some of the schools that were outside of the top 20 but were regionally very good I I knew for personal reasons that I wanted to stay in Los Angeles so I was really really looking to get into UCLA I was also looking at USC I also looked at Loyola and Pepperdine I considered some East Coast schools some Northern California schools and I basically just applied everywhere in the top 20 s hoping that a few of them would stick against the wall and that summer I I got into a few and I was wait-listed at a few I got wait-listed at Cornell Duke and UCLA I got into Loyola and pepper so I knew I could stay in Los Angeles if I wanted to my study partner my roommate scored a 172 on his exam or might have been 170 so he was safely within the 99th percentile of the LSAT and he got into Stanford through early admission so good for him but I played the waitlist game for most of the summer and for personal reasons I wanted to stay in LA so I was really hoping to get into UCLA and USC now that being said since I was an undergrad UCLA Bruin I was really really reluctant about going to USC nothing against the school it's it's a fine school it's just that UCLA Bruins hate USC Trojans and vice-versa so I decided I would even though I got into USC I was still playing the wait list game over the summer hoping that I could get in off the waitlist into UCLA so eventually a few weeks before school started I was looking for apartments close to the USC campus I had resigned myself to going to USC in downtown LA and I actually signed a lease in Hollywood I figured that was a reasonably close neighborhood to downtown LA and it was the day that I signed the lease for an apartment in Hollywood that I got the call from UCLA admissions letting me know that I got in off of the waitlist I did a few tactics to get in off of the waitlist so I was pestering the the UCLA admissions department probably more than I should have but my efforts paid off I got into UCLA and that's where I decided to go I graduated from UCLA law stayed in the LA area and became a practicing attorney in LA now the story of how I did well in law school will have to wait for another day but if you want to hear more about my experience in law school and my experience as a practicing litigator check out this quick playlist I put there includes a bunch of legal war stories and so just click on that playlist and I'll see you in the next video

Reader Comments

  1. Hello, does anyone know a quick way to pass the logic games section? On my first try I scored 5/23 basically only by guessing, but a 16/25 average on the others. Just want above a 150 to attend a local school. Cheers!

  2. Shoutout to Loyola. They have night law classes and are the main reason I am getting a law degree while being a father with a a full time job

  3. Something about him says he's a fraud. And it's hard to accept he's a professional if he's mostly doing YouTube reactions instead of using YouTube for advice videos. Reminds me of a wolf in sheep's clothing.

  4. I took a practice lsat at my university with no prep at all and scored 142. Meh. I plan on taking it next year in the fall, a year and a half from now. So I got plenty of time to practice. I want to practice family law(mainly due to personal life experience) and run for office one day.

  5. At what age did u decide, I'm 14 and I wanna be 1 am I too early or late or am I at the perfect age

  6. In my country (NZ) you start doing your law degree as soon as you enter university. It seems very strange how in America if you want to be a lawyer you first have to spend 4 years getting a degree in something completely irrelevant. It seems like an absurd waste of time, why be forced to wait so long?

  7. Funny thing about law is not knowing the law but enforcing the law. I am sick and tired of Congress and the President of the USA saying what they cannot enforce but allowed criminal misconducts and false filings to be enforced. Also a fraudulent name on my home to be enforced. No one wants to hear that crap……

  8. california is one of the most expensive places to live in, on earth
    can anyone explain to me, why people are so adamant on staying there?

  9. Hi Legal Eagle, I've been interested in law since undergrad, but I decided to go a different route for my masters and entered the work force before deciding on going to law school. This may be a small question with regards to all the age questions you get but I will be 27 or 28 when I enter law school. Will that preclude me from any big law careers (at least during my first few years while I gain experience practicing law). I really appreciate your input!

  10. I think I could have been a good lawyer, in another universe where I was 100 times smarter and 1000 times less lazy.

  11. 2:49 he hit the microphone and looked it ovfur, small but shows even a lawyer is still human. :v

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