On the Pre-Law blog, you'll find news and updates about law schools, the application process, the legal job market and other topics of interest to pre-law students and alums. Check back often for new content, or click on the link to subscribe to the RSS feed. Blog content is also posted to the UMass Pre-Law Facebook page.
On Thursday, March 31st, we will host UMass alumni attorneys Nicholas Triano and Joshua Grey, who will speak about their careers in Patent and Intellectual Property Law. Attorney Triano graduated from UMass in 1983 with degrees in Biochemistry and Chemistry. After several years as a bench chemist, he went on to Suffolk U. Law School, and is now a Senior Associate at Mintz Levin Cohn Ferris Glovsky & Popeo in Boston, specializing in Patent Law. Attorney Grey received his B.A. in History from UMass in 1997, and his law degree from Northwestern in 2001. He is an associate at Bulkley Richardson & Gelinas in Springfield, specializing in Intellectual Property and Real Estate. This is an excellent opportunity to speak with attorneys currently practicing in an exciting and expanding area of the law, find out how they chose this field, and what their day-to-day work is like. Thursday, March 3... read more »
Q: All my applications are in. I sent in my financial aid applications and my FAFSA too. Is there anything I can do while I’m waiting to hear? Should I follow up with a phone call to the admissions offices? What does it mean that some of my friends have heard from law schools and I still haven’t?A: This may be the toughest period of time in a very difficult process. The bottom line is that things are largely out of your control right now. You may hear right away or you may be left hanging until late March or early April. And then it can get even worse: you could be placed on hold or waitlisted at one or more schools, meaning you won’t find out until as late as some time in the summer.... read more »
Q: I don’t expect to qualify for any need-based scholarships. Do I still need to fill out the financial aid applications?A: Yes. It’s a pain, but unless you’ve got your full law school tuition squirreled away somewhere, you need to fill out the FAFSA and the law schools’ financial aid applications. The financial aid applications are used to determine your eligibility for loans—the school you attend certifies you for a certain amount of borrowing. If you don’t fill out and submit the forms, you aren’t certified and therefore cannot apply for educational loans. In addition, many schools require financial aid applications and the FAFSA in order to be considered for merit-based scholarships as well. Financial aid applications and the FAFSA are due by March 1, 2005.read more »
Once your applications are in – including your letters of recommendation, Dean’s letters (if necessary) and transcripts, you get to relax a bit. You will want to check in with each law school to make sure that they have your complete application, if you haven’t already heard from them to that effect. After January 1st, it’s time to apply for financial aid. You will need your (and, in some cases, your parents’) tax forms completed in order to fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). You should complete this as soon as possible after January 1st, in addition to any school-specific applications.read more »
Q: I’m signed up to take the October LSAT, but I’m not feeling ready. I don’t think I would do as well as if I took it in December. Will it really hurt my chances of getting into law school if I don’t take the test until December? A: It is definitely preferable that you take the test when you feel ready for it than that you take it at a specific time. If you reasonably believe your score would be several points higher if you put the test off until December, you should put it off. That said, given the fact that the December test date is right before finals, I am concerned that even by December you will not have adequate time to prepare. My recommendation would be that you put aside a chunk of time each week... read more »