A great option: Applying as a Transfer Student

Frustrated that your LSAT and GPA performance will limit your opportunities? Here’s something to keep in mind – If you finish your 1L year with good grades, you can transfer into some amazing schools. (Schools don’t have to report your LSAT and GPA to the ABA, therefore it doesn’t count in rankings).

Some examples – this year I had someone from Golden Gate get into William and Mary, and just today I heard great news that one client who I helped with his JD applications and again with his transfer applications got into Georgetown (from Catholic)!

I also want to put in another plug for the ABA LSAC Official Guide to Law Schools – the only book any law school applicant absolutely must own. This year they added information about the number of transfer applicants accepted, and the number of people who transferred out.

I will post more goodies about transfers another day – but this should at least put the idea in your head that there are more possibilities than you initially considered.

Other Posts About Transferring Law Schools:

What Are My Chances of Transferring Law Schools?
5 Tips for Transferring Law Schools

233 thoughts on “A great option: Applying as a Transfer Student

  1. Erik W. on said:

    Ann is right. Not only did she help me with my acceptance to Catholic U last year, but she also helped me with my applications as a transfer student to GW and Georgetown (I was accepted to both). She is attentive, dedicated and genuinely cares for her clients. If you do well your first year, transferring is certainly a reality! I strongly encourage you to have Ann work with you on your applications. You have all the necessary tools; Ann helps you put them in place!

  2. Anonymous on said:

    Hi Ann – I just finished my 1L year at a 4th tier school and applied to transfer. I am debating between USF and Santa Clara. Do you have any recommendations? Location doesn’t matter to me…I just want to get the best possible education and maximize my career opps. I see that USF went down in the 2009 rankings… help!!

  3. Jeff on said:

    Hi Ann – I am considering a Tier 4 school and hoping to transfer after the first year. I see that 20 people transferred out of the school last year. Here is my question: is there any way I can learn where those people transferred to? Thank-you. Jeff

  4. Dear Ann – I never received a reply to my earlier question — but here is another: do you have a substantial amount (chapter?) of material on the subject of transfers in your book? Thanks, Jeff.

    • Hi Jeff, I promise I responded to your question; I have no idea why it didn’t post. Thanks for pointing it out. There is no way of knowing where people transferred except on self-reporting, incomplete sources like discussion boards. I do have a chapter on transferring and the chapters on essays and resumes, addenda, etc. are equally helpful as a transfer applicant. I look forward to your thoughts on the book. (A table of contents for the book is available for download at http://www.lawschoolexpertbook.com)

  5. Frank on said:

    Hi Ann, I completed an MBA last year and I’m now wanting to apply to law school. I just took the June LSAT and didn’t do as well as I wanted, but did ok with a 155. Obviously my score is too low to get into the schools that I want (Georgetown, Michigan, NYU). I live in the Orlando area and need to stay here for the next year. There are two T4 schools here. So is it possible to transfer from a T4 to a T1 (like Georgetown) or T2 school? Or would I be better off waiting a year and applying directly to a higher ranked school? Also, will my MBA have any significance in helping me get into law school or transferring or is it something that won’t even be looked at? Thanks in advance for your help!

    • Hi Frank. The MBA is a soft factor only… It’s not easy to transfer from Tier 4 to Tier, not very likely. Plus, you’d be betting that you’d be #1 in your class and that’s a pretty tough bet. If you lose, you’re stuck where you are. I would suggest retaking the LSAT in October (if you think you’re likely to improve your score) and apply to schools this fall. Unless your grades are terrible, you shouldn’t have to go T4 with a 155 (by the way).

  6. Hi ann, i attend NIU , and their curve is a B- is that good are bad in terms of transferring? also is it harder to transfer or apply as a visiting student?

    • J- very few people try to be visiting students. Schools really only use this in an emergency type situation where an applicant has a compelling reason to be in a certain city, and a job in that city is usually not compelling.

  7. Hi Ann,

    I am looking for a career change from international relations to law. My husband is in the military so we move around a lot. Currently we are in the Seattle area for 2-3 years – but my preference is to go to law school on the East Coast, right now Georgetown is my top pick.

    Currently I believe I am a strong applicant to any law school (B.A. – U of Michigan w/ 3.9GPA & MSc – London School of Economics w/ Honors. No LSAT score yet).

    We are unlikely to move back East until 2013/14. I am already 26yrs old, so I don’t want to be too old before starting law school/ initiating career change.

    So, my question is should I start law school here at U of Washington in Seattle and then try to transfer to Georgetown? Or wait until we move back east, thereby delaying the start of law school by 1-2 years, but applying directly to G-town and other east coast schools?


    • Maya,
      I generally think it’s a bad idea to start something with the plan of transferring because you never know what might happen and you might find yourself stuck in Seattle (not that that’s such a bad place) longer than you anticipate. But that’s a fine law school – no shame in a degree from there.

  8. benjamin on said:

    Dear Ann,
    I am a 1L at Cardozo and hope to have about a 3.1 GPA. I had LSATs at 155. I was wondering about the possibility of transferring to Fordham’s part-time program and also getting a part-time job as a paralegal. I currently have an internship in local government and could get a really excellent recommendation. Do you think transfer is possible, or is it just a pipe dream?

  9. benjamin on said:

    At Cardozo I’m roughly at the 50th percentile mark, a little bit better (top 49). I graduated from college cum laude and a 3.63 GPA and strong extracurriculars.

  10. Hi Benjamin, you should call Fordham and inquire with them about whether it’s possible to go from full time to part time. I have a feeling they will also tell you that your grades have to improve next semester to be considered. Good luck.

  11. Joshua on said:

    Hi Ann, I am in top 12 % from a T3 in California. I was curious if you had any advice for applying to New York schools. I am hoping to get into Fordham and may apply to Cardozo too. I received a CALI award for highest grade in legal writing and I have family that lives in NYC.

    • Hi Joshua,
      The key to transferring is to show in the PS that you have really good professional and personal reasons for transferring. The CALI award is AWESOME, and your faculty LOR will help a lot as well (especially in a subject as important as legal writing.). If you’re looking for more concrete, detailed feedback and advice you may want to check out the Law School Expert website.

  12. Hello,
    Does it help or hurt if I was previously accepted at a t-2 ( ranked about number 55) school but for various reasons went to a T-3/4 school (decided in part, not to leave town); I now want to transfer to the school I was orginally accepted which is in my home town.

    Thank you

    • Hi Don,
      It’s all about how you sell it. You don’t want to insult the school you turned down last year – you want to be humble and explain why you feel it’s the right school for you.

  13. Hi Ann,

    I’ve been accepted to two T-4 law schools– Golden Gate and CUNY. I’m debating between entering law school this Fall, or retaking the LSAT in October and reapplying to higher ranked schools for Fall 2012. I would hope to transfer to McGeorge, University of San Fran or Hastings (reach). I was rejected by all three for this Fall.

    BUT, I have an unattractive AND unrepresentative LSAT history.
    September 2009: 152 (studied only one month)
    December 2009: absent
    June 2010: canceled score
    December 2010: 155 (anxiety got the best of me)

    I have confirmed with LSAC that I am eligible to retake in October. I’m certain I know I can score better, as I was consistently PTing at 165 before my last LSAT attempt.

    I finished my undergrad in 2007 GPA is 3.09. My post-grad work is as a writer/producer for ethnic television news.

    Will my unattractive LSAT history overshadow any gains I make in retaking?
    Given my situation, what are your thoughts on transferring from a T-4 vs. retaking and reapplying?

    Thanks in advance for your advice.

    • Diana, if you can really hit a 160+ on the LSAT then wait and retake it. At least it would get you scholarships to schools like those you’ve been accepted to in addition to making you more competitive at the schools you would now hope to transfer to.

  14. Denise on said:

    Hi Ann, most of the precedent posts pretty answer many questions and concerns I have. I got accepted into a T4 school, and I was thinking to transfer to a ucla, usc, or davis after first year. I didn’t score high on my lsat 150, and I know with practice and study I can increase my score 160+. my question is do you recommend retaking the lsat again while your are still in you first yea? And if so, would 160+ lsat score and a top 10% rank at a T4 school give me a good chance to transfer to ucla, usc, or davis?

  15. Hi ann,
    i am currently at St Johns law, was 77 when i entered, now at 95. i finished top 5% and also recieved a CALI award for highest mark in Legal Writing. what are my chances for admission to NYU or Columbia. any advice. thanks so much

  16. Kelly on said:

    Hi Ann,

    I just finished 1L at Catholic and I have a 3.0, approximately top 50%. Do I have a shot as a transfer to American or GW law even thought I’m not top 15%? I know the deadline is next week, but was just wondering if it’s worth a shot. Thanks!

    • Kelly, you are not going to be able to transfer, nor should you want to. You need to work on bringing your grades up where you are – not being even lower in your class at a more competitive school.

  17. Mike on said:

    Hi Ann,
    Finished my 1L at Loyola New Orleans (T3), finished in the top 6% 3.58, LR, 2 highest grades, federal judicial internship for well known judge. Wondering if you could give me your thoughts on chances of transferring to DC –> GW, George Mason, and American? Thanks so much

  18. Kell on said:

    Hello Ann,
    I just finished my 1L at a T4 with a 2.63 GPA and awaiting class rank in a few days, LSAT was 155. Hoping to transfer to Stetson, because my family is relocating permanently to Florida. Do you think I have a fair chance with Stetson or should I just apply at FAMU or Barry?

  19. Dylan on said:

    I just finished my first year at a T4 school with a 2.94. My GPA was highly effected by a C- I received on an exam. I rank in the middle 50% of my class. I’m thinking of applying to transfer to several T3 schools. Do you have any idea what my chances are?


  20. Andrew F. on said:

    Hi Ann,

    I just finished my 1L year at a fourth tier school in Florida. My GPA is a 3.66 (the curve is insane) and I am ranked 20th out of 730. My LSAT was a 160 and my undergraduate GPA was a 3.83. In multiple classes of 75+ students only 2 or 3 A’s were given out which I usually received. I am originally from Los Angeles and would like to return there. I also would like to practice entertainment/media law. What do you think my chances are for UCLA, Loyola, Chapman? And would I be reaching for bigger schools like, Boalt, Stanford, Harvard, Columbia, NYU?

    Thank you,

    Andrew F.

    • Andrew, top 10 schools are taking the top people from the top 30-40 schools and they aren’t going to reach to fourth tier schools in most cases. Some of it depends where you are in school. I’ve helped clients transfer from Southwestern to USC, for example. But Loyola and Chapman are reasonable choices.

  21. Jacob on said:


    I just finished my 1L year at a t3/t4 and i’m approximately in the top 14% of the class. Additionally, CALI in legal writing, national moot court team, honors societies, dean’s list, and probably law review. People with similar rank last year transferred to Emory. What are your thoughts on getting into GW/George Mason?

    • That’s very smart that you asked around about where people transferred to who were ranked similarly. Most people don’t think to ask that. I’d say, go for it and give it a shot!~

  22. Korey on said:


    I will be starting at the University of San Francisco (USF) in the fall; however, USF was not my first choice. I did not do well on the LSAT (146) and I do not want to take it again. Therefore, I am thinking about transferring to a high ranked school in California (hopefully Boalt, UC Hastings, UCLA, or Loyola). How well exactly will I have to do this upcoming year to transfer into one of these schools? Furthermore, is the possibly of a transfer into one of these schools even feasible coming out of USF?

  23. Anoush on said:

    Hi Ann,

    I finished my 1L year with a 3.64 GPA and ranked 3/170 putting me in the Top 2%. I received a CALI award, Law Review, Moot Court, 1L Moot Court Finalist. I have already applied to the schools where I would like to transfer. What do you think my chances are at USC, UCLA, UC Hastings, and Berkeley. Thanks.

  24. Hi Ann,
    I finished top 30% at Whittier and applied Part time to Loyola and Southwestern, and full time to Hastings and Santa Clara. What do you think my chances are? Thanks.

  25. Sean King on said:

    Hi Ann,

    I was hoping you could give me some advice on transferring. I am currently entering my 1L year at the Michigan State University College of Law, but do not believe that it is the right fit for me in the long run. I was hoping to get into a school that offers a bigger market for corporate law, or has national recognition. With a 153 LSAT and 3.2 GPA, it is miraculous that I got into several top 100 schools, which I credit to the many soft factors/intangibles I had to offer. I would like to speak to you about some specific goals I can lay out for myself this ensuing year in order to achieve my aspirations. Thanks

  26. Hi Ann,

    I just got my fall grades for 1L at UIUC and I received a 3.66 which is top 10/15% of the class. Would it make sense for me to try and transfer given that I have a sizable scholarship where I am currently?

    What is the highest ranked school that would be realistic for transferring to?


    • Joe, The scholarship at a good school where you are a a big fish in a big pond – that’s tough to walk away from. I can’t comment on schools selection – you’d have to cast the net and see what you catch (sorry for the metaphors…. it’s early in the morning here and I’m still drinking my coffee).

  27. This is an amazing site, thank you so much for making this forum open to the public. I have a 2 questions: 1) when is the best time to start applying for a transfer (I just finished my first semester as a 1L at GA state (T2)); and 2) I was previously wait-listed at the school I want to transfer to (UGA a T1- but I believe not THAT great of a difference in ranking- not trying to jump up from a 99th ranked school to a top 15 school) but didn’t get in- will that help to remind them that I was wait-listed?
    Also my grades weren’t super stellar my first semester so is there any way when I call them to get them to tell me the reality of my chances of me getting in based on my first semester grades?

    One last thing- I feel like it’s a double edged sword trying to transfer because you have to ask professors to write recommendations to leave the school they represent for another school that is their rival, so what happens if you DON’T get into the school you are trying to transfer to and stay at the school you were trying to transfer from?- I feel like the professors and admin. would not look as kindly upon me and help me as much because they would know I wanted to transfer. Am I totally off-base here? Thanks!

    • Lily,
      You really hit the nail on the head with the double edged sword, actually. If you don’t end up transferring, there may be some backlash.
      However, if you were WL at UGA last year and you did well at GSU (top 20 percent or higher, preferably) then you may be able to pull this off. Why don’t you call and talk to UGA and ask them about their transfer standards?

  28. Hey Ann Levine,

    Im trying to transfer to Miami or Loyola Marymount from DePaul University Law (1L), i did okay my first semester (A, B+ and B) but one class grade killed me (c-). What do i need to do in order to help me reach my goal??

  29. Courtney on said:

    Hi Ann!

    First semester grades are in and I did not do so hot! I’ve been hoping to transfer from a Tier 3 school (Chicago-Kent) to a Tier 4 (NIU), primarily to save money.

    Do you feel that my grades would still need to be at the top of my class to transfer to a lower ranked school?

    Thanks, it’s clear you know what you’re talking about.

    • Courtney, I don’t know what “not so hot” means. You can try to transfer to NIU, and it might be good for you to be a bigger fish in a smaller pond and save money. However, NIU’s latest data shows they took NO transfers. Call their admission office and inquire.

  30. Courtney on said:

    Wow, thank you for the quick response and advice! I’ll be sure to contact them.

    We don’t get our class rank until after the spring semester, but my GPA is a dismal 2.7. I’m sure that puts me in the bottom half.

  31. Hey Ann Levine,

    Im trying to transfer to Miami or Loyola Marymount from DePaul University Law (1L), i did okay my first semester (A, B+ and B) but one class grade killed me (c-). all 3 schools are tier 2 schools. What do i need to do in order to help me reach my goal??

  32. H.Alshammasi on said:

    Hey Ann,

    I was just admitted to Hofstra Law. I will be going there next fall. I was wondering if it would be possible to transfer to schools such as Fordham or Cornell after my first year if i do well enough or if that’s just a farfetched dream?

  33. Lucia J. on said:

    Hi Ann,
    So I didn’t get accepted into any of the law schools I wanted to in the city I reside in. I was, however, accepted at Florida Coastal, a 4 tier school. If I decide to go there, what would my chances be of transferring to another school such as DePaul University/Kent in Chicago. I did horrible on the LSAT (143), and had a GPA of 3.3 while in college. Would it be better for me to retake the LSAT and go through the application process again or go for my first year and apply as a transfer student. I have been told by some that it would be smarter to go the first year so laws schools know my potential that way rather than look at my low LSAT. Any help and suggestions is greatly appreciated! Thank you!!

    • Lucia,
      It would be shortsighted to go to FL Coastal hoping to transfer. Wait and see if you can improve your LSAT and try to get into the Chicago area schools next year.

  34. Ann,

    I had a 143 and 149 on my LSAT’s and was accepted to Valparaiso and John Marshall Chicago. Which one is better and is it possible if I am at top of my class after one year to move up to a ranked school?

    Thank you for this site. Very informative.

  35. Shawn on said:


    I currently live in Michigan, but really want to make a permanent move to the south. I was recently accepted with a full scholarship to Faulkner University’s law school (T4). I’m very excited about the opportunity to move and begin law school with lowered cost, but Faulkner isn’t the school I really want to attend. My dream schools are University of Alabama, University of Georgia, and University of Florida. Are these schools out of reach for transfer if I was able to be top 5 in my class in my 1L year?

  36. josephine on said:

    Hello Ann,

    Reading these posts have me really discourage because I attend a T4. I just sent off my applications and I am waiting on my spring semester grades to get back. In fact my last final is tomorrow. My first semester, i did bad, getting mostly B’s and C’s and one C-, which really messed up my gpa. However, I feel confident about my spring semester grades, professors were more than happy to write me LORs, as I contributed and participated greatly. They were even surprised at my grades. Considering I already sent off apps, to UVa, Georgetown, UMd, Howard, and American. (lot of money!!!). What do you think is the best scenario of me getting in? Obviously grades will be an important factor, but considering the fact I did bad the first semester? I went to UVa, undergrad, graduated with a 3.0 and had terrible LSATs. Should I send off any more apps elsewhere?

  37. kaycee on said:

    Hello Ann,

    I started at a T4 school last fall. I did quite well w/ 15 credits (A,B,A-,A-,B) my gpa was 3.45 which placed me in the top 10/15%. I would like to transfer to a DC or NY school. GT, GW, Fordham, American. My Lsat score was 155 my college gpa was 2.5 & I am a URM. I am active in various student orgs.

    I would really like to transfer to a better school.

    Also, Is it easier to get into higher ranked schools if I enter as a part time student?

    Also I had to take a leave of absence in the spring due to family issues. Would this be seen in a detrimental light?
    I start my 2nd semester this fall. I am planning to transfer in during the spring term.

    -Eagerly awaiting your response.

  38. Hi Ann,

    I just completed my first year at Widener Law and am looking to transfer to the Charleston School of Law. I am anticipating a great LOR from a law professor, but I only have a C average from my Fall semester. Unfortunately the application to transfer is due this Friday but my Spring grades (which I know will be much better than Fall) won’t be posted for another week or two. Do you think I have a chance of getting into CSOL? Any tips? Thank you!

  39. Evan on said:


    I just finished my first year of law school at the University of Arizona. I am looking to transfer to the University of Utah because my wife just had a baby (a week before finals) and we want to be closer to family. I am right around the 50 percentile mark for my class. Utah is ranked slightly lower than Arizona but do you think there will be any issues with transferring? I am a JDMBA student and have been accepted to the University of Utah’s MBA program so all I need is a transfer to the law school. Let me know what you think.


  40. Jessica on said:

    Hi Ann,

    I got accepted into the part time program at SMU Dedman School of Law. My end goal is to work in Los Angeles. I was wondering what my chances were for transferring into UCLA or USC. I know that SMU is ranked the same as Loyola. Would it be a bad idea to transfer after my first year at SMU to Loyola then transfer again to UCLA? Loyola takes part time transfer after the first year. UCLA only accepts applicants that finish all their 1L requirements. Would it be a better idea to wait a year, retake my LSATs and reapply? I got a 159 on LSAT and have 3.45 GPA from the University of Houston. I currently work as a Compliance Analyst at a very large company. Thanks so much!

  41. Ashley on said:

    Hi Ann,

    I am currently at a T4 school. I know that transferring to a T1 is unlikely, but I finished my first year in the top 4 %, made law review, and received an internship at a large/int’l firm this summer. However, my undergrad GPA was very low and I received a 151 LSAT. I have already received an acceptance letter for transfer to Hawaii, a T2/T3 school. I would like to be in the VA/DC/NC area for family reasons. Do you think I have shot at Georgetown/ Duke/similarly ranked schools, or should I just save my money on the application fees? I would greatly appreciate any advice. Thanks!

  42. Cassandra on said:

    Hi Ann,

    I have to decide by tonight/tomorrow between FIU or St. Thomas, both located in Miami. I was offered a scholarship to both, so it would cost roughly the same amount for my first year. FIU is public so regardless of where I stand coming in as a 2 L tuition will be very low (after I gain residency). At st. Thomas I will have to be in the top 25%, which statistically I will (156 LSAT). FIU is tier 3, and moving up fast, St. Thomas is tier 4 and isn’t going anywhere. FIU is new, so small alum base, St. Thomas has a huge alum base in South Florida. Large chance that I will be int he top 10% for St. Thomas, FIU it’s a toss up since I am in their median for LSAT score. I may want to transfer to a better school after my first year, but afraid that since FIU is more competitive and has 1/2 the class size of st. Thomas I may be better off going to the lower ranked school. Is it possible to transfer from a tier 4 to a school like American? Or, is it possible to go to a third tier and get into a second tier with a large scholarship? (I was orginally accepted to UMiami but turned it down due to the large tuition). I’m lost! Please help!!

    • Cassandra, are you kidding me? You go to FIU. You go to FIU. You go to FIU.
      Miami would’ve been worth the cost (yes, I’m biased here) but FIU on scholarship with low tuition the second and third year is a NO-BRAINER. Transferring from St. Thomas is NOT EASY.
      I try not to make decisions for people, especially people who I only know through the blog, but this one – I had to weigh in on this one.

  43. Cassandra on said:

    Thank you so much!!!! I’ll be contacting you in the next few years to discuss hiring you for assistance with my pending transfer!

  44. Marissa on said:

    Hi Ann,
    I am currently at DU and in the process of transferring. I really want to only make the move to a different school of its worth it. I’m really hoping to get into UCLA. I just got my last, and disappointing final grade and I got a 3.58 on a 3.0 curve. The only rank information I can find is from 2005 and 2006 with people my gpa ending up being top 11th percent and 9th percent. My school doesn’t rank until August. Do you think I have a shot with my GPA and no official rank, since the GPA itself isn’t necessarily impressive?

  45. Hi Ann,

    Is it difficult to transfer from a law school ranked in the mid-20s to UCLA? I finished my first year in the top third of my class, which isn’t that great but I’m hoping the ranking of the school I am currently enrolled in will help. Thank you!

  46. shanna on said:

    Going to New England this fall (part time) but would like to transfer to Georgetown to be close to family. My LSAT score was horrible, what should I be doing 1L to put me in a better for transfering?

    • Shanna, it is going to be nearly impossible to transfer from a T4 school to Georgetown. I know you don’t want to hear that, but it’s important to have realistic expectations. To transfer anywhere, you need to be in the top 10% of your class – that’s the best thing you can do for yourself. Also, make friends with your professors for when you later need LORs.

  47. marissa on said:

    Hi Ann,
    I’m trying to transfer from DU (ranked in the 60s) to UCLA. I just wanted to update to see what you thought, I got my class ranking and am in the top 12%. Is it worth the application at all?


  48. Grigore on said:

    Hi, Ann,

    I have just completed my second year of law school in top 20% at a tier 3 law school (went there b/c didn’t get into the Ivies and am receiving virtually full scholarship). I am from an obscure country in Eastern Europe, immigrating seven year ago at 17. Did a scholars’ semester at Univ. of Oxford. Willing to re-do my second year (I would even start from the beginning). Applying to tranfer to HLS. Any words of wisdom and advice on the personal statement? Deadline this weekend. Just disappointed by lack of ambition and enthusiasm of students and the general milieu and seeking more in-depth study of international law. Thank you very much!

    • Grigore,
      You really want to transfer and throw away a year of free law school? Seems silly to me….
      Be a big fish in your current pond and network and pursue an LLM in Intl Law if you want….. there are so many options. Have you asked Harvard whether they would even consider you with 2 years behind you at law school?
      Besides, top 20% wouldn’t be enough to get you to Harvard as a transfer… this whole idea doesn’t seem really well thought out to me….

  49. Grigore on said:

    Dear Ms. Levine,

    I have just completed my second year of law school in top 20% at a tier 3 law school (went there b/c didn’t get into the Ivies and am receiving virtually full scholarship). I am from an obscure country in Eastern Europe, immigrating seven year ago at 17. Did a scholars’ semester at Univ. of Oxford. Willing to re-do my second year (I would even start from the beginning). Applying to tranfer to HLS. Any words of wisdom and advice on the personal statement? Deadline this weekend. Just disappointed by lack of ambition and enthusiasm of students and the general milieu and seeking more in-depth study of international law. Thank your time and advice.

  50. Grigore on said:

    Sorry about the duplicate. I just had a problem submitting the first entry. Please feel free to delete one of them.

  51. Rosie on said:

    Hi Ann,

    This year was my second round of applications. The first time, I had 9 rejections and one wait list that would have put me in the path of Hurricane Katrina. Lucked out there. I was an undergrad at an Ivy and everyone around me was only applying to T14s and I’d heard I could get into an Ivy with a 3.0 URM 160 and lots of activities. Alas, I was 2.99/155.

    This time around, my GPA is 2.88 (I completed 2 BAs, so the work I did in my 30s no longer gets factored in by LSAC, only my grades from 20 yeas ago when I was living at home and beaten regularly). I often didn’t have money for food at Ivy, but I squeaked out with a 3.0. I retook the LSAT twice, tanked in December due to someone keeping me up most of the night. Got a 157 in February. Rejected by Berkeley, Hastings and Pepperdine; wait-listed at USF.

    I think I could improve LSAT…the 155 was 4 points up after starting an LSAT class, but by the time I got the money for it, I could only get an accelerated class and couldn’t keep up with that with Ivy’s demanding course load. Again and again, $ has delayed this dream and now I’m in my 40s and trying again.

    I was offered a full scholarship at an unranked, provisionally-accredited school. After 13 rejections (22 if you count MA programs), it’s nice to be wanted. But it’s in my hometown where I have ZERO desire to settle down, but nowhere else to go without an income. They say they have good placement, though the truth is they are in the low 40%s (though one of the T1s that rejected me is only 7% higher!)…I don’t know if there is any chance of transfer or if I should try to retake the LSAT (if I miraculously had a peaceful place to study and/or could afford a class). Sixth time’s the charm!

    This has been really heart breaking, as I’m smart and have a lot to offer as an atty. It’s really money that has made it difficult for me to have study time/space/aid and pay application fees (applied late both times, no $). I am the only one on the non-URM side of my family to have completed college and the family is far from supportive, more like resentful. The family member I live with actively undermines my efforts (so I keptit secret as long as I could). If I had any income or anywhere else to go, I would, but of course times have been tough and I’m in one of the most economically-depressed areas in the country. I know the law isn’t as sure as it once was; recently saw the JD compared with an MFA! I have no interest in BigLaw, having done it as a secretary…I’m shooting for govt or non-profit, both for professional fulfillment and to take advantage of IBR to deal with my astronomical debt. CA seems to have mostly T1 or T3/T4 schools, maybe I didn’t aim for the right schools?

    • Rosie,
      You should be getting a scholarship to a lower ranked school. It would take the financial pressure off of you and let you achieve your goals. You might be applying to the wrong schools; you also might not be presenting yourself well in your application materials.

  52. Hi Ann,

    I have a very unique situation. I basically took credit by exams for 75% of my undergraduate degree earning 84 hours in about 6 months. I took an LSAT class with my boyfriend on a whim and scored a 158 on my LSAT. My transcripts currently show a 3.53 GPA, though LSAC won’t calculate my GPA for me because I don’t have enough letter grades (mostly pass/fails). I got into about 20 law schools for this fall including U of Miami, Depaul, Syracuse, Chapman, Southwestern, Hofstra, and I’m waitlisted at Cardozo, Brooklyn, and IIT Kent.

    I won’t officially be done with my bachelors degree until Dec. now because of things outside my control so I couldn’t start anywhere and didn’t defer anywhere either.

    I applied to Cooley and they’ve accepted me at their new FL campus without a bachelors degree with almost a full ride for the fall term. I was thinking about starting there and transferring after 1L at which point my bachelors degree will have been issued. What kind of schools would I be able to transfer to? Would they have to be similarly ranked like Barry or Nova or would I be able to transfer to schools I was originally accepted to?

    I can’t decide if I should reapply for next fall and wait to start school or just go to Cooley and transfer? I’m multilingual and am really just interested in immigration law, nothing flashy!

    Your input would be greatly appreciated!

    • Mahi! Don’t do it! Don’t make a good short term decision at the expense of attending a law school that is right for you. People who get into Miami, Brooklyn, Kent, are NOT attending Cooley….. Do not limit your future opportunities.

  53. Ann,

    I am looking into making my final decision regarding law school. I am considering between Baltimore law school because it is the one I got in near where I want to ultimately practice, Washington DC, and Stetson Law School, as it is in my state and will save me money.
    I have two questions, If I decided to stay in the school, both schools are a third tier, so does the location of the schools matter in terms of how employers in DC will look at the schools ?

    Secondly, I am strongly considering of transferring out of either school. Is it possible to go from a tier 3 to a tier 1? where would I have to be in terms of class rank?
    I am considering Colombia University all the way to American University.

    Thank you for your time.

  54. Thanks Ann. What schools in CA should I be aiming for with my numbers? I got waitlisted at USF, so perhaps if I applied earlier I’d get in? Maybe McGeorge? Dream schools would be Hastings or Berkeley, since they will make all 10 years of IBR payments!

  55. Hi, Ann!

    I’m currently a part-time 1L at Brooklyn. I have not taken any exams and don’t have any final grades, but I have had two graded assignments so far and I did very well on them.
    I absolutely love everything about Brooklyn Law School except for the fact that it’s sort of floating in the middle (in terms of reputation, prestige, employment success, etc.) of the NYC market.

    Ideally, I would have liked to apply to Columbia and NYU.
    I’m switching to full-time in January and I will earn a total of 27 credits this year.
    NYU and Columbia require “28-32 credits” to transfer. This means I am ineligible to transfer to either of those schools.

    However, I checked with the admissions office, and I can apply to Fordham.
    It seems like many people place such an emphasis on rank and lay prestige, but I can’t help but wonder if jumping ship from Brooklyn to Fordham is worth it. Also, I should mention that the academic scholarship I’m receiving at Brooklyn is barely going to make a dent in the overall price I pay for law school.

    Is transferring from a school like Brooklyn to a school like Fordham worth it?

    • Ann Levine on said:

      Hi Ami,
      I think you need to keep doing the best you can do at Brooklyn and then weigh your options if you are admitted to Fordham. After all, perhaps Brooklyn will increase your scholarship to keep you….

  56. Kristine on said:

    Hi, Ann!

    I am currently a 1L at a T3 in the DMV area. I currently have a 2.83–no class rank yet. I made a 150 on the LSAT and graduated undergrad with a 3.3. I was considering transferring to American (a school to which I have previous applied and had been wait listed) but after seeing my first semester grades am not sure if that is a realistic goal. Is it possible or more likely to transfer into schools that you’ve previously applied to?

    Your insight would be most appreciated.

    • Ann Levine on said:

      So long as last year’s application wasn’t embarrassing, it should only help that you’re seriously interested in attending and demonstrating this by reapplying.

  57. Christopher on said:

    Hello, Ann!

    I graduated from FSU with a 3.0 and a 158 LSAT on my third try. After my first semester at a T4 in Orlando, I’m ranked in the top 10% and booked a class. I was looking to transfer into T1, though I know it’s an uphill battle. If I stayed in the top 10% or ranked even higher in the top 5% would I even have a chance? And if I’m not accepted at any of the schools I want to go to, should I finish in the spring, drop out, pay my loan money, and retake the LSAT in two years or continue through? Thanks for all of your help!

  58. Hi Ann,

    I am currently a 1L at MC law and was wanting to transfer to South Texas, Texas Wesleyan, Tech,or UH. My fall grades average to 3.12 with mostly B’s and an A in legal writing. What are the odds of getting into a 4 tier school in Texas? Im originally from Houston and would like to transfer back (I was not accepted due to my low lsat, yet my undergrad gpa was high ( 3.77)).

    Do you think I have a chance if keep the same gpa?

  59. Hi Ann,

    I just finished my 1L first semester at American University. My GPA is 3.6. Looking at last year’s rankings, this places me in the top 15-20% of my class. I am hoping to transfer to either GW or Georgetown. First, do you think I’m a competitive applicant? If so, they both have early action programs. Should I take advantage of these programs, or should I apply at the end of the semester when my GPA could possibly be higher?

    Thank you,


  60. Nadine on said:

    Hi Ann,

    I am a 1L part time student at Fordham. I work full time during the day. I received 2 B’s and have not yet received my legal writing grade. I recently found out that my spouse was accepted to a medical fellowship in the DMV area. I want to know if I have a chance of getting into either GT or GW’s part time program despite my performance this semester.

    I also applied to both in 2009 under my maiden name but did not get in because of my 159 LSAT and UGPA 3.5 (engineering).

  61. Hi Ann,

    I just finished my 1L first semester at a T2 school and I was ranked in the top 50% of my class with a 2.94. I was wait listed at SMU Law and was invited to apply again as a transfer student. My parents both graduated from SMU and I would like to live and work in Dallas. Any chances?


    • Ann Levine on said:

      Nicole: Sure! This is a great year to transfer because law schools will need to make up the tuition dollars from a smaller first year class (where they are having to give more scholarships).

  62. Hi Ann,
    I have been waitlisted for three schools: Notre Dame, George Washington, and University of Washington. I am still interested in all three schools but am getting really worried since I have not gotten an acceptance from any school yet. I am still waiting on Fordham and UCI but not hopeful. I numbers are 3.6/165. I am thinking of applying to a few more safety schools like Boston College and Loyola Marymount. Should I change my personal statement? Perhaps that is where my application went wrong.. Also, is it very difficult to transfer from Loyola to a T14? Are there any other schools you would recommend I look into sending an application? Thanks!

    • Ann Levine on said:

      Congratulations on the waiting lists! Don’t despair – you have good stats for these schools. I can’t say whether something went wrong in your application without seeing it, and I can’t recommend schools on the blog format. (Those are things we offer consulting services for). But I don’t want you to lose patience yet – good things can happen!

  63. Matt S. on said:

    Dear Ann,

    Thank you so much for this site, and for everything you do. The school I attend doesn’t have the programs I believed they did when I chose to attend here. I would like to transfer to a school that does, but they are all up the rank scale a bit (GW, GULC, UVA, Vandy) or down by a lot (Syr, Pacific, NE). My stats:

    fall semester gpa: 3.0
    rank: ~50th percentile
    school: mid-30’s
    softs: URM, interesting story

    My question is this — Is it possible to transfer if I get into the top 1/3rd next semester? If so, which schools would be viable or what is the upward range I should limit it to? (w/in 10 spots, etc)

    Thanks again!

    • Ann Levine on said:

      Hi Matt,
      Sorry to hear that!
      I don’t know where you’re in school so it’s absolutely impossible for me to really answer (and I can’t respond to “chances” on the blog format or I’d have no time left for working : )
      But, if you get into the top 1/3 next semester it’s likely you would still have to transfer down….
      I think the other solution is this: Why does it matter that your school doesn’t have a certain program? Get the experience/knowledge some other way! Get a job or internship in that area, write for a blog in that area, do a law review article or help a professor with research in that area. There is more than one way to skin this cat!

      • Matt S. on said:


        Thank you for the reply. For what it is worth, I am at UIUC, but I think you make an excellent point about seeking the experience another way if necessary.

  64. Irina on said:

    Dear Ann,

    I am currently a 1L at Southwestern Law School and want to get into the technology industry, and Southwestern does not offer many courses in the field. Unfortunately, my first semester GPA is only 2.778 (top 60) and I am in my second semester.

    Do you think I have any chance of transferring to another school in the LA area?

    Thank you!

  65. Hi Ann,

    I’m thinking about transferring to University of Chicago but I have NO idea what my odds are like. I went to Northwestern for undergrad, 160 on LSAT with a pretty “meh” GPA. Finished up my first semester at a law school I liked a lot (DePaul), which has recently dropped SIGNIFICANTLY in the rankings. I’m started to get worried that not only is the school losing value/tier, but that the administration is being misleading and dishonest with its students, which is quite troubling. I have a 3.8 and am in the top 5% of my class here. What are my chances of transferring? If U of C is a pipe dream, would it make sense to apply to Kent, which is slightly higher in the rankings? I would really appreciate the advice!


    • Ann Levine on said:

      Hi Kate,
      I definitely understand your frustrations and fears – this sounds like a terrible situation. I think it’s worth applying to schools in addition to U of C, but you should absolutely try U of C with your outstanding grades as a 1L. I wish you all the best!

  66. Nicole on said:

    Hey Ann,

    I was admitted to Thomas Jefferson with a $72000 scholarship but I really don’t want to graduate from there. I don’t know if I should go and transfer to Loyola, Pepperdine, Southwestern, Chapman, UC Irvine and I know its long shot but UCLA or should I get my masters and then re-apply. I had a low undergrad GPA 2.75 (Mostly B’s a few C’s) from UCI in Criminal Law and low LSAT score 147. Both were because there was a lot of personal things going on (Both my mother and I were diagnosed with cancer and I lost both of my grandparents and my best friend committed suicide) I know I can do better on the LSAT because I can be more focused now. I don’t know if I should go get my masters and show that I am capable of getting excellent grades like I had while in community college (Mostly A’s and a few B’s) and retake the LSAT and reapply or do I skip the masters just retake the LSAT or do I go to Thomas Jefferson and transfer? I would really appreciate it if you could reply.

    • Ann Levine on said:

      Hi Nicole,
      If you don’t want to graduate from TJ, be very careful about starting law school there. The scholarship is awesome but you have to understand you may not be able to transfer. You went through a lot, but if you can focus now, I think you should put TJ on hold and try the LSAT again and see what you can do in terms of improving, and then apply next year. Maybe TJ will allow you to defer your admission and scholarship, so you might not be putting much at risk.

  67. Ann on said:

    Hi Ann,

    I’m an entering 1L at Fordham this fall. I have a 3.5 from a Public Ivy and did 165 on LSAT. What kind of GPA would I have to get to make me attractive to a T-14 school?


    • Ann Levine on said:

      Hi Ann who is a 0L at Fordham Law,
      If your class rank is in the top 10-15% I think schools will seriously consider you.

  68. Chris on said:

    Hi Ann,

    I have 160 undergrad. I am considering between Catholic and George mason right now. I want to go to school in DC at either a GW or a Catholic. I hate having the mindset of wanting to transfer, but which school would give me the best chance at eventually transferring the GW or Georgetown?

    Thank you

  69. hans on said:

    Hi Ann,

    Question: what do you think of my chances of transferring from a t4 to Berkeley, Stanford or NYU?

    undergrad GPA: 3.1 (2nd career, so over a decade ago)
    LSAT: 167
    1L GPA: 3.95
    Rank: top 1%, #2
    Worked for a federal district judge during first summer

    I have a full-ride where I am, so doesn’t seem worth the debt load to transfer unless it’s somewhere amazing that I actually would want to live.


    • Ann Levine on said:

      Hans, I don’t know which t4 you are attending and that does matter, but I think you need to try for your dream schools. Congrats on the hard work and great results this year.

  70. Chris on said:

    3.648 at Top 70 school. Top 4% of class. Any chances at T-14, especially Georgetown? In the way of background, I got my BA and MA from American University. Ended up with a 3.55 in undergrad and a 3.71 in grad school. LSAT 163.

  71. Kosta on said:

    I have a 3.51 at an upper t2 in NY. Ranked top 17%. I had mostly A’s and A-‘s, with 1 B in the first semester, and 1 B- in the second semester that dropped my gpa. Do schools take into consideration grades taken for each course, or just rank? I am still waiting on the results for LR. Should I even waste my time applying to a t1? t14? Would love CLS or NYU, but I think it is a big reach.

  72. Lara on said:

    Dear Ann,

    I am an incoming 1L at GW this fall and was wondering what type of stats a viable candidate for a top 14 would need. Some people have told me that if you do well enough to transfer up from GW, it would only be worth it to transfer to a top 10 law school. Do you think this is true? Additional background (undergrad: 3.4 from an Ivy, Lsat:166 ,no scholarship/aid). Would love to hear your advice, thank you so much.=)

    • Ann Levine on said:

      Lara, I think shooting for top 10 percent minimum. See how you like GW, see what you think job prospects are for what you want to do, see how your grades are, and then decide whether it would be worth it in your case. Since you have no scholarship to GW, that’s persuasive. However, maybe you could earn a scholarship for 2L and 3L!

  73. Manpreet on said:

    Hi Ann,

    I wish I had come across your made earlier. I did my 1L at University of Detroit Mercy and ranked in the 50th percentile with a cumulative GPA of 2.72.
    My undergrad GPA was 3.22 and LSAT score was 149.
    I recently moved to California due to my husbands job and applied to Golden Gate, Santa Clara, Hastings, Berkeley (I know that was a long shot) and I was rejected from all four. I am still waiting on a response from San Francisco and praying I get in.

    I was wondering-is it possible to email Santa Clara and Golden Gate and ask them to reconsider me as a visiting student due to my husbands job? Do you think that could work or is it a long shot?

    Please let me know ASAP. Thank YOu

  74. Ann,

    I have applied for transfer to the University of San Francisco Law. I am transferring out of Barry (t4) and would like to get your take on my chances of gaining admission. I finished with a 3.17 g.p.a., had no grades below a B-, and ranked 43 out of 300. Do you think it’s a stretch for me to be reaching for the second tier? I know it also depends on how many students transfer out of USF as well. Thanks!

  75. Dear Ann,
    I am currently a 1L at USF with $25000 scholarship per year . I just got the fall percentile, with a 3.4 gpa I’m currently ranked at 20%. If I maintain my ranking for spring semester what do you think my chances are if I want to transfer to Hastings? Do you think it is worth to transfer ? (since I don’t think Hastings will give me any scholarship) If I improve my grade to 10%, Do you think there is a shot for Boalt?

    Looking forward to your response!

    Thank you for your help!


    • Ann Levine on said:

      Edwin, Last year I had a client at USF transfer to Georgetown. A professor at USF told me they lose people to Boalt every year (but it’s likely to be people in the top 5%). Hastings may be a good bet, but an expensive one…. It’s also possible that USF would offer you more money to induce you to stay – see how second semester goes.

  76. BucketList on said:

    Hi Ann –

    I was curious of your opinion about transferring to Fordham, Brooklyn, Cardoza or CUNY. My preference is Fordham with Brooklyn a close second. I am 1L at Tier 4 school who may be transferring back to NY with my Company.

    Undergrad from a NY state school 12 years ago (2.6 LSAC GPA) with two grad degrees — grad degree in Econ and then an MBA from a top 50 program. LSAT 145 — Ran out of time in every section: poor prep. I am in the top 12% of my part time program — 3.32 GPA.

    I work full time. I have been very successful professionally and work in investment management (Director) for a major firm. Money is not a problem — I am doing this for personal joy and the love of learning.

    I need to attend a part time program but naturally, want to attend the best I can.

    Any advice would be helpful.

    • Ann Levine on said:

      BucketList, I don’t know where you are in school. Not all T4s are created the same, but with a first semester in the top 12 percent I think it’s worth making a run at a transfer application to these schools.

  77. Juan Howard on said:

    Hello, I just finished my first semester at Southwestern. I’m top 10% and have a 3.711. What are my chances of getting into Berkeley, UCLA, or USC? I would really want to go to a top 14 school but want to stay in California.

  78. Tasha Macklin on said:

    Hello Ann,
    I am currently a 1L at a 4 Tier school (Florida Coastal School of Law). I plan to transfer out to University of Florida. My last semester gpa was a 2.8. We are graded at a C curve which is one reason why I will like to leave. I am not sure what my ranking is since they told us that we will not get our ranking until after the second semester. What do you think my chances are? If it is possible,how much more do I need to bring up my grades?

    • Ann Levine on said:

      Tasha, I think you need to be in the top 25% of your class to be seriously considered, but inquire to see who UF may have taken from Florida Coastal last year. You may be able to find this out from word of mouth, but you can also try calling the admission cycle.

  79. Hey Anne,

    So I have 3.4 my first semester as a partime at WCL. I have LOR from a professor and two employers (both politicians US and State). I want to transfer to GW I’m applying in now. What are my odds? I’ve heard that the average of applicants is a B plus average (that came from a GW admission offer). Thoughts?


  80. Anne,

    I am looking to transfer to GW, Notre Dame, or Vandy (dream school). I am a student at a T45 with a 3.42, in the top third of my class (28th% to be exact), and received a book award. Is it worth a shot?

    Thank you!


  81. Megan on said:

    Hello Anne,

    I am looking to transfer to USC from Chapman. However, my law school GPA is not within the top 20% at my school, which is what USC says for transfer applicants. (Its more like top 40%) Should I even bother trying to transfer?


  82. Laila on said:

    Hello, I have a question about possibly transferring from a Tier 3 school to Georgetown. LSAT was very low (147), undergrad 3.8/4.0, and my first year will be around a 3.6 if not higher. Is it possible?

  83. Jessica on said:

    Hello Anne,

    I plan to attend HUSL this fall. I received an LSAT score of 148 (I do not want to retake it)and have an undergraduate cumulative GPA of 3.0. Will it be possible to transfer out to Georgetown and/or George Washington? Have similar profiles been successful?

    Thank you!

    • Ann Levine on said:

      Jessica, all that will matter are your grades/class rank during your 1L year (and if you do very well you can actually apply to GULC after your first semester’s grades are posted).

      • Jessica on said:

        Thank you Ann! What class rank/gpa would make me a viable candidate for GULC? I have secured my seat at HUSL and Chapman as well. In your opinion, which school will provide better opportunities to transfer out and (if I am not able to transfer out) in the legal profession? Which extracurricular activities should I be involved in to improve my odds?

        Thank you again.

  84. Cheryl on said:

    Dear Anne, I have a question about possibly transferring from St. Louis University law school/Brooklyn Law School to Fordham U. I did not do well in LSAT and I got 151. But I am accepted by St. Louis U Law and Brooklyn Law School. I want to transfer to Fordham after my 1L, because my fiancé is in NYC. Could you give me some suggestions about: (1) Which school I should attend this fall, SLU (ranked 93) or BLS (ranked 83)? (2) In order to transfer, how well should I do during my 1L in either SLU or BLS? top 30%? top 20%? top 10%?

    Thank you very much!

    • Ann Levine on said:

      Hi Cheryl,
      If you want to be in NYC, you should attend BLS – absolutely. If you want to transfer, the higher your rank, the better. There is no “aiming” for a certain rank – it doesn’t work that way. Just do the best you can. Good luck!

  85. Cameron on said:

    Hi Anne!

    I am dealing with a tough choice. I am currently at William and Mary on a pretty sizable scholarship and finished high enough to transfer into UVA. UVA was and still remains my dream school but I am ok with graduating from William and Mary. If I decided to enroll in UVA I would be giving up that big scholarship and ending my law school career with an extra $80k in debt. I’ve run the numbers and based off of what I want to do (“biglaw”) it would result in about a $900/month greater loan repayment. I have had people tell me the one thing that sticks with you your whole career is where your degree is from. The consensus right now is to go to UVA but I do worry that taking on the extra debt might be an irresponsible decision. Do you have any advice you can give or your unbiased opinion? I really want to do it but the extra debt makes me worry about whether it is worth it. Please help!



    • Ann Levine on said:

      This is a really big question, and very personal depending on your attitudes about income, money, job prospects….
      Will you have more access to BigLaw from UVA? That’s a big part of the question….

      • Cameron on said:

        I think there is better chance for BigLaw from UVA looking at their employment stats and the sheer number of employers coming on campus for interviews.

  86. Ricky on said:


    I am currently at a top 100 school as an evening student. This was the first year that the school went to year-round classes, so I never received any grades until after the full year was complete. My gpa is 2.71. I have nearly 10 years of health policy experience, so I want to transfer to George Washington University or American University this Fall. Do you think I have a shot?

    Thank you for any advice you can provide.


  87. Mariana on said:

    Hi Ann, I have been waitlisted at Southwestern with a 25th percentile LSAT and GPA for the school. I was called out to Los Angeles to participate in an interview back in May but have not heard back from them. I live on the east coast. Currently, their wait list is not ranked but my guess is they take the highest numbers first. Should I consider it a lost cause at this point? From speaking with current students there, it seems that some get admitted as late as August just before classes start, but I don’t think I have any way of knowing many students are still on the wait list or what my chances really are. I appreciate your time and would love to hire you for future applications (as it seems that I will need to re-apply).

  88. David on said:

    Hi Anne,

    I finished my first year at a tier 4 law school with a 3.42 ranked in the top 18%. I was previously waitlisted at BC, do you think this would improve a shot at transferring despite somewhat sub-standard grades/rank? What other options might I have?


    • Ann Levine on said:

      David, I am so sorry for the late response. I had technical difficulties while I was moving and couldn’t access the blog. Did you apply, and did you get in?

  89. Norbert on said:

    Hello, I need to make a big decision and I need to make it very soon. I went to the Univrsity of Miami and absolutely love Miami. I have many of my best friends there and I know I will be 100% happy there.

    My problem is that I got into St. Louis Law (93 ranking) and NOVA (tier 4). I cannot retake the LSAT, so that is not an option. Would your suggestion be to go to SLU in hopes to transfer to FIU (100 ranking). Or go to NOVA compromising SLU, a tier 2 school for a tier 4 school just outside Miami???

  90. Thomas W on said:

    Hi Anne,

    I recently finished my first year of Law School at Hofstra Law. I finished with a 3.53 Cumulative GPA with a Rank of 30/206 (top 15%). (side not i had 2 A+’s in the spring semester with a 3.59GPA). I am applying to transfer to NYU Law, Fordham Law, Cardozo Law & Brooklyn Law. My LSAT to get into Hofstra was a 153 and Undergrad GPA was 3.25. So I just want to know what you think my chances of getting into each one of those schools.

    • Ann Levine on said:

      Thomas, I am terribly sorry for the untimely response. How did your applications go? What were your results?

  91. Thomas W on said:

    Sorry just wanted to add I received the first year award for those two A+’s, made dean’s list, and made the dean’s scholar program. I also made it onto a journal.

  92. Brandon on said:

    Hi Anne,

    Finished my 1L at Brooklyn Law with a 3.388 and a rank at 35% (123/347). I came to BLS over Fordham, Cardozo, and BC because BLS offered me nearly a full ride, but it looks like my dreams of big law are completely shot. Is it worth transferring (if possible) to somewhere else in the NYC, DC, or Boston area? In fact, is it worth transferring at all?


    • Ann Levine on said:

      Hi Brandon, I’m sorry I am so behind on blog comments. Forgive me.
      Did you submit the transfer applications? How did it go and what did you decide?

  93. Marie on said:

    Hi Ann,

    I have a three year full scholarship to the University of District of Columbia School of Law (4th tier). I finished the year with a 3.5 cumulative, and know that I am in the top 20% (Dean’s Scholar), and believe I am in the top 10%. (They don’t rank but you hear what others get). I have applied to the University of Richmond, (2nd tier), with a tuition of $38k/year. Some background info: I plan on practicing law in Virginia, and want to be a tax/health care attorney. I am a 31 year old student with a Masters of Taxation degree from VCU, eligible to sit for the CPA, and over 5 years experience in corporate health care legal setting and corporate tax arena. I am trying to decide if it is worth it to incur the extra almost $80k in debt to go to a 2nd tier school or if I should just go to UDC and apply for an LLM program at UVA, or the new NYU executive tax online program later ($50k).

    I also will be earning money at UDC as a LexisNexis representative and a teaching assistant for civil procedure. :/ Help!? Please!

  94. Danny on said:

    Hello Ann. I am about to start at the University of San Diego as a 1L. It might seem strange that I’m even asking about transferring this early on, especially since I like this school and wouldn’t mind graduating here. But for many personal reasons, I’ve always wanted to live in Seattle. My undergrad GPA was 3.56 and my LSAT score was 163. Seattle University was too low in rank for me and I assumed I had no real shot at UW, so I didn’t apply there. Like I said, I have nothing against USD, but I’ve been regretting that I didn’t even apply to the University of Washington.

    I checked their site for info and they claim to take a holistic approach and have no cutoffs. But I’d still like to know if you have any estimate on what class rank I’d need to achieve to even be competitive at transferring after the 1L year? I emailed them as well, but in case they don’t give a clear answer, I’d like to hear your opinion.

    I told them my GPA and LSAT score too so they would know that I’m starting high in my class. I turned down slightly higher schools for many reasons and don’t want the rank of my school alone to hurt me. Thank you for assistance!

    • Ann Levine on said:

      Hi Danny,
      I’m shocked that you didn’t apply to the school you most wanted to attend. It’s not like you had a 143 LSAT and would’ve been clearly out of contention. But USD is in a beautiful location, so enjoy the sunshine this year, keep in touch with UDub and apply to transfer. Keep your eyes on your grades and touch base with me in January. As long as you’re in the top half of your class, you have to try to transfer – otherwise you will (once again) reject yourself from law school.
      Of course, you could always decide not to start law school now, and you could wait and apply to UDub this September and see what happens…..

  95. Hi Ann,

    To begin, I am very encouraged by some of prior clients testimonials.

    So here’s my situation – I am going begin law school at the University of Miami in a week.
    Credentials: 3.19 undergrad gpa. Worked at a law firm for a year after. 3.48 gpa for master’s degree at nyu. 153 lsat. URM.

    Back when I was practicing the lsat, I consistently scored north of 160 and my highest was 166. I am now sure I want to transfer out after my 1l. Ideally, I would like to transfer to Harvard, Columbia, NYU, or UCLA. Given that my lsat score has a strong potential of doing substantially better, would you recommend a retake for my transfer application?

    I’d appreciate any help you can offer.

    Thanks a bunch!

    • Ann Levine on said:

      Hi Ryan – First, you shouldn’t start at UM if you wouldn’t be happy graduating from there. Second, taking the LSAT as a transfer is a waste – it’s all about your first year grades and class rank.

  96. Hi Anne-

    I have applied as a visiting student to two prominent law schools in Texas for Spring 2015. One has a deadline of Nov. 1, and one has a deadline of Dec. 1.

    Texas is home, and most importantly, where I intend to take the bar and practice. My GPA is walking the line of a 3.0, but I do have a lot of legal experience, glowing recommendations from my deans and professors, and family in both towns connected to the legal communities and able to provide support.

    My question to you is have you ever known top law schools to extend early admission to Visiting students before the application deadline expires?

    Thank you so much!


  97. Hi Anne,

    I am a 1L at Widener Law, after first semester I have a 3.78 gpa, 2 CALI awards, and ranked 3. I am applying to transfer to Georgetown, Penn, Temple and NYU, was wondering what my chances would be.

    Thank you!

  98. Hi Anne,

    I am a 1L and finished my first semester at T4 Widener with 3.78 gpa, 2 CALI awards and ranked 3rd which equates to top 2-3%. I am applying to transfer to Penn, Georgetown, NYU, maybe GW and Temple. I am wondering what my realistic chances would be at those top 14 schools? Also, what would be the odds of G-town EA w/ these grades?

    Thank you!

  99. Ashley Williams on said:

    Hi Ann, I’m in the top 1% at Elon (Virtually Unranked). What do you think my chances are at perhaps Northwestern or any other schools *MUCH* higher than Elon? Originally chose Elon because of low GPA/LSAT due to mom having breast cancer and other factors.

  100. Hi Ann,

    I finished my first semester of 1L with a 3.1 at a 4th Tier school. I am also interning at the Attorney General’s office this summer in my state. I want to move back home, and I applied to transfer early action at Brooklyn Law School, what do you think my chances are? I am going to apply to other schools in NYC (same tier or T3) once my spring grades are in just to get back home, is that achievable if I hypothetically stay with a 3.1-3.2 gpa?


  101. Hi Ann, I am an 1L in a Tier 4 school and got a GPA 3.5 (rank 21%). I also got CALI for property. I am thinking about transferring to a law school in NYC. Ann, which law school do you think I have most chances of success to transfer into? My goal is Cardozo Law.

  102. This is a little off topic but after one has successfully transferred and graduate from that school and begin their job search, would it be wrong to calculate and represent one GPA combining all law school grades (like LSAC does with UGPA when initially applying to law school). This would make sense to me and would seem fair.


  103. Blair Smith on said:

    Hi Ann,

    I just finished my 1L year at Pepperdine (ranked #52) with a 3.4 GPA. I believe this will put me around the top 25% of my class. Do you think I have a chance of being accepted to UCLA law as a transfer student or is that not a good enough GPA/rank to usually be considered?
    Thank you for the input!

    • Hi Blair,
      I’d prefer to see you in the top 10 or top 15 to transfer to UCLA, but you can call the school and ask and perhaps they will tell you where Pepperdine students have placed in the past. You can also check the ABA 509 report to see how many people they took from Pepperdine and Loyola to get a sense of where they probably were in the class.

  104. I just started my 2L year at Touro Law in NY and am considering transferring to either Brooklyn Law or St. Johns. I am a part time evening student, and both schools accept part time students after their 2L year as well. I currently have a 3.3GPA and am around top 30% of my class. I already spoke to both schools about the grades they typically accept from transfer students and it is highly likely I will be accepted to either. Would it be worth transferring out of Touro to go to either of these schools instead? They both have a much larger Alumni base and bar passage rate, which I believe will help make the job search easier after graduating. Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated.

  105. jolieden on said:

    Hi Ann,

    i just moved in usa and my dream is to apply at Columbia or Nyu.
    i went to law school in France and i got a 2.9 GPA for my bachelor and a 3.94 GPA for my master, 170 for the lsat . Do you think i have a chance of being accepted ?

  106. sadio briceno on said:

    hi Ann,

    i just moved in USA and my dream is to study at Columbia University ,

    i already have a bachelor degree in law with a 2,9 gpa and a master with 3,94 from France And 170 for the lsat.

    could you tell me my chance of being accepted by columbia ?

  107. Hi Ann,

    I was wondering if it was worth going to UDC-Clarke School of Law and then transferring to Georgetown. I scored a 172 on my LSAT and have a 2.6 Undergrad GPA. I am considering going to UDC due to tuition being around $10,000 for my first year and after seeing the tuition rates of other schools in the area, I would be saving close to $30,000 in the first year to transfer out. I am wondering if this is even a realistic goal and if a school like Georgetown would consider me if I was to be top of my class at UDC.

    • John, you should never start at a law school you wouldn’t be happy graduating from. If it’s ok with you, I’d like to use your comment to answer in an entire blog post. So stay tuned…

  108. Tamara D. on said:

    Hi Ann,

    I go to a T25, just got first semester grades back and was in the bottom 20% (3.0, B+ curve). If I show significant improvement next semester and apply to transfer, will schools consider the improvement? Or have I already made my bed? Thank you.

  109. Harrison on said:


    I finished my first semester at a law school ranked in the 80’s. I have a 3.7 GPA and I’m ranked in the top 10% of the class.

    Do I have a chance at UVA or William and Mary?

    I have strong ties to both schools, and I worked in law enforcement for two years in Virginia before law school.

  110. Anne,

    I am currently a 1L at Thomas Jefferson and my first semester grades put me in the top 15% of my class with a 3.3 GPA. MY LSATs were under 150. I have great letters of rec and many extracurriculars. I recently applied to Early Decision to Brooklyn Law but was quickly denied even though I was well within their ABA 1L transfer GPA disclosed stats. I was wondering is it still worth transferring to a T2 or should I focus on T3?

  111. Elise on said:


    I need some advice. I’ve gotten accepted to Toledo (Tier 3) and was offered a scholarship. I was also offered admission into Dayton (tier 4) and was offered almost full scholarship. I want to be in Texas and would like to transfer to University of Houston (t-50) in my second year Which school is a better choice, does it matter what school I go to if I plan to transfer? Toledo is a better school but Dayton will potentially save me a lot of money first year. What do you recommend?

  112. Grace on said:


    I just finished my 1L year at Charleston School of Law (ranked #198) with a 3.197 GPA, 1 CALI Award, and finished in the top 30%. I had a 3.9 UGPA but 145 LSAT. I would like to transfer to the University of Miami (ranked #60) who had over 30 transfers last year that averaged a GPA of 3.05 or Florida International University (ranker #103) who had over 20 transfers last year that averaged 3.15. Do you think I have a good shot or unlikely?

  113. Astrid on said:


    Need your advice, pls help. undergrads GPA: 3.34 LSAT Score: 151. CUNY admitted.
    I want to transfer from CUNY (T3) to Fordham. what would be the odds of Fordham EA w/ these grades?
    I am wondering what my realistic chances would be at those top 20 schools like Georgetown or NYU?

  114. Hatira Ekber on said:

    Hi Ann, I am in tier 4 law school and just finished the first semester with 3.6 GPA and one Cali award. My lsat score is 140, very low undergrad GPA. Do I have chance to transfer to CUNY or Brooklyn law assuming I did similar in second semester? Both of them denied me for admission as first year students. How about Cardozo? they wait-listed me as first year students. Thanks.

  115. Hi Ann,
    I would like your input on transferring from La Verne University of Law School (currently RNP, but easily a Tier 4 school) to the University of Utah. The U is my dream school (ranked in the top of the Tier 1) because I live in Utah (graduated from the U) and have a wife and a daughter here (they would stay in Utah while I spent my first year out of state). I have family near La Verne so for financial reasons I could afford to attend there. I have a lower UGPA 2.78 and a low LSAT 146. I do have several years experience working as a paralegal and feel I will do well in Law School (I have a low GPA from my first year and a half of college). I’m confident that I can be top 20% in that school after my first year. I am in my 30’s so I don’t really want to wait another year to retake the LSAT and apply the next cycle. I know making the jump from a Tier 4 all the way to a Tier 1 is extremely difficult, but am I being realistic in my goal with those two specific schools?
    Thank you!

  116. Hi Ann,

    I was wondering what your suggestions would be in regards to trying to get into a T14 school or even a top 20 school such as GULC, UofT Austin, Vanderbilt. Ideally, I would love to get into a school such as UCLA or U of C. I unfortunately had a low GPA of 3.2 from my undergrad and a low Lsat of 154 which I believe was due to having to constantly leave for restroom breaks due to being too hydrated and since we had no breaks between the exams and I didn’t get to finish the last two pages of the last 4 parts therefore randomly filled them in. I have finished a masters as well and have decided to go to UNM Law this fall since I applied to law schools late and UNM was one of the few schools that accepted me. I was planning to focus on my grades to get as close as possible to being above 3.75 then apply to top 20 programs and ideally, I would seek out programs that offer need based grants or scholarships available to transfers as well, if there are any. What suggestions would you have?

    • Hi. I think I answered this personally for you in an email but for the sake of my readers will just put this here: it’s all going to come down to your performance in your first year of law school. If you think you can do better on the LSAT, you may want to consider not starting law school this fall, and instead retaking the LSAT and trying again, applying earlier in the cycle this time around.

  117. i graduated syracuse university with a 2.83. my lsat was 134. im currently at thomas cooley law and looking to transfer to brooklyn law school. my gpa at cooley for 18 credits is 2.08. what do you think my chances are?

  118. Michael on said:

    Hi Ann,

    I just finished my 1L year at Nova (rank not published) and I want to transfer; some of the schools I’ve been eyeing are FIU(100) , Fordham ( or Emory. My LSAT was 147 and my GPA was a 3.2, but now my 1L GPA is 3.32 and my rank after first semester was 31/191 (top 16%). I did significantly better this spring semester than my fall semester so I’m expecting my rank to jump into the teens, at least, placing my either in the top 10% of my class or a little above that. I also have an internship with a United States Attorney’s Office for the summer. What do you think are my chances?

  119. Hi Ann,

    I am at a t4 school ranked 2/314 with a 3.85 (2.67 median) GPA at semester. My LSAT was a 155 and my undergrad GPA was a 2.8. I know extracurriculars don’t normally matter but I won an Olympic gold medal so I’m hoping that will make a difference. What are my chances to transfer to a T14 or below? What are my chances at a SA with a big firm?

  120. Hi Ann,

    I’m in UMiami. What are the chances that Columbia or NYU would take me if I transfered to them?
    What I am asing is; is it possible to transfer from a T2 to a T14?


  121. Kingsley on said:

    Hey Ann! I was admitted by Santa Clara. I am thinking about transfer to Stanford or Berkeley. Do you think it is possible to to it?

  122. Andrew on said:

    Hi Ann,
    I finished my BS from UNC (chemistry) with a 2.8 and finished my PhD (chemistry) with a 3.96, many publications, leadership positions and currently work at a top 30 law firm in patent law. I am retaking the LSAT (first score was 154) and applying to NYC part time programs. Do you think it’s reasonable to attend a lower ranked school and transfer to Fordham? Or even possible to get in to Fordham straight away?

    • Hi Andrew,
      Your PhD and work experience will carry you far, and if you can bring that LSAT up a few points, you’ll be a contender at Fordham, particularly in the part time program. Please let me know if I can be of further help.

  123. Teresa on said:

    Hi Ann: I’m currently ranked top 20% at Cooley and would like to transfer to MSU. I am originally from this area and have no interest in moving. I received my undergrad from MSU and would like to go back for law school. I chose to go to Cooley because I decided to continue working full-time, received an honors scholarship to go, and am a care taker of an elder at home. In the interest of no debt, this was the most appealing choice for me at the time but I am ready to move on. What do you think MSU’s considerations will be?

  124. Richie on said:

    Hi Ann: I finished my 1L year at T4 school in So. Cal., I am top 23% w/ a 3.121 gpa. I wanted to transfer into the top 100, to a school like USD, Loyola, or Pepperdine. I got 3 CALI awards for the highest grade and had my legal writing and contracts professors write me letters of recommendation. I am involved in org.’s and am doing a clinic this summer. I already sent my applications in…do you think I have shot?

  125. Hello,

    I am about halfway through my first semester at a T2 school (Miami). I had a mid-160s LSAT and a low GPA coming in. I would like to do entertainment law, and would like to begin my professional career in Nashville, and have significant personal reasons to want to make the move as well. As such, ideally I would transfer to Vanderbilt after this year. Miami has a very good E&S law program, but obviously Vandy is Vandy. Is there anything I should be doing now to maximize my chances at acceptance in the Spring in terms of extracurriculars, etc? Avg. Transfer GPA is around 3.3 but not sure how tiers, etc. play into that. Thanks for your help.

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