When applying to law school, your LSAT score and GPA play a large role.
“GPA and LSAT aren’t everything, but most schools will begin their evaluation process by some-how sorting their applicant pools by academic profiles,” according to Kaplan Test Prep.
But admissions officers will also take into consideration “soft factors” such as your experience or personal story when considering if you’re right for admission.
Gabriel Kuris, founder of Top Law Coach and contributor for US News, recently outlined a few soft factors that may enable applicants to stand out, especially if their GPA or test scores aren’t as impressive.
Most law schools want to see at least one year of work experience. And while law-related work experience is preferred, Kuris says, other jobs can be valuable as well.
“The best kinds of work experience are law-related, but even jobs far from the courtroom – in science labs or film studios or corporate offices – can show skills relevant to legal practice,” Kuris writes. “Law schools value applicants who have handled competing responsibilities and worked on solving real-world problems.”
GROWTH THROUGH ADVERSITY
A powerful personal statement can help shed light on who you are outside of your test score or GPA. Additionally, growth through adversity can convey that you are mentally powerful enough to take on the challenges of law school.
“Mental qualities like discipline, resilience, flexibility, and a positive mindset can be even more important in the long run,” Kuris writes. “Over the course of three years, every law student will face stress, disappointment and self-doubt, and those who can take hardship in stride are best equipped to thrive.”
EXTRACURRICULARS THAT HIGHLIGHT CHARACTER
Extracurriculars are another way to bolster your candidacy. Admissions officers like to see applicants who are well-rounded – beyond their test scores and GPA.
“Campus leadership, varsity sports and law-related activities are not the only ways to stand out,” Kuris writes. “Applicants can show commitment and teamwork by actively participating in lower-profile activities like volunteering with local youth or taking part in social or religious organizations.”