While you shouldn’t give up your waitlist dreams quite yet, in the next week it will become apparent whether those dreams will come to fruition. This is often a time when people consider whether to attend law school this year at the school they’ve sent their deposit to, or whether they want to wait and try again (applying earlier in the admission cycle this time).
After spending time as a law school applicant, you may have gotten wiser about how to apply. You might’ve found this blog (or other informative resources) only after submitting your applications for this year, and this may have caused you to realize that you could’ve played your cards better during the Fall 2010 cycle. This is a completely normal reaction, and if you applied in January or February (of a very popular application cycle) it might be a good idea to regroup, re-strategize, and reapply.
I am often asked whether it’s a bad idea to reapply to schools (1) you were rejected from; and also (2) where you were accepted. The answer is, it’s never a bad idea to reapply. The key is to make sure you improve your materials without completing changing how you present yourself because the schools will have the previous year’s application. You want to update whatever is possible to update, re-evaluate the quality of your personal statement, resume, letters of rec, addenda, and optional essays, and apply early. Showing interest in the same school shows likelihood of attending if admitted, and that’s a good thing. You should address reasons for reapplying in your personal statement or in an addendum, and if you were admitted and decided not to attend you should tell the school why you decided not to attend law school the previous year and why your interest remains strong.
Many people who plan to reapply to law school plan to retake the LSAT and/or show improved grades during their senior year. In this case, your schools list will probably change (hopefully for the better) so there’s not a lot of downside to reapplying so long as you plan to do it in a timely manner.
Oh – and my US News “Get In: Law School” Blog column starts tomorrow and will post every Monday, so keep an eye out there for tons of tips and advice throughout the Fall 2011 admission cycle.Please let me know if you have any questions or comments.