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After Grades Considering Dropping out

Posted: Fri Jan 12, 2018 7:05 pm
by Gus Fring
i'm in a 1L at a T10 and I now have a 2.9 GPA. I got all B's and 1 B- this is demoralizing. All the studying and prepping I did and I still failed miserably. 2 and half more years of getting my ego crushed doesn't seem appealing. I couldnt even muster 1 median grade, I'm not fit to be a lawyer.

Re: After Grades Considering Dropping out

Posted: Fri Jan 12, 2018 7:26 pm
by CardozoLaw09
You're at a T10 and have an entire semester left. Figure out what went wrong and make improvements. Re-evaluate your options after receiving back spring semester grades.

Re: After Grades Considering Dropping out

Posted: Fri Jan 12, 2018 7:57 pm
by A. Nony Mouse
Keep in mind you're graded on a curve. Getting a lower score than your classmates doesn't remotely mean that you're not fit to be a lawyer, it means that on a given day, for whatever reason, your classmates performed slightly better on an artificial exercise of brand new skills than you did. It is not any kind of objective assessment of your lawyering ability (which is also not something born in you, but something that everyone has to learn). You have plenty of opportunity to improve.

Re: After Grades Considering Dropping out

Posted: Fri Jan 12, 2018 7:57 pm
by Justtrying2help
How much debt do you have?

Re: After Grades Considering Dropping out

Posted: Fri Jan 12, 2018 8:10 pm
by mcmand
A. Nony Mouse wrote:Keep in mind you're graded on a curve. Getting a lower score than your classmates doesn't remotely mean that you're not fit to be a lawyer, it means that on a given day, for whatever reason, your classmates performed slightly better on an artificial exercise of brand new skills than you did. It is not any kind of objective assessment of your lawyering ability (which is also not something born in you, but something that everyone has to learn). You have plenty of opportunity to improve.


This. OP, you're at a good law school, and depending on your curve, you're probably a little below median. You did not "fail miserably." You are competent and able to do this.

Dropping out is not worth it unless the circumstances are truly exceptional. Nothing you have said so far indicates exceptionalism. You're not at a crappy law school, you hopefully have some scholarships to mitigate the cost, you will find reasonable employment (depending on your goals) upon graduation, and in all likelihood you will become a lawyer. Just today, I talked to a 1L who got a C at a non-T-10 school. It will be fine for that 1L, and it will be fine for you.

It's OK to feel disappointed. Let yourself feel it. But don't beat yourself up while you're down. Take the weekend to feel your feelings and then start evaluating where to adjust your strategy and your approach to learning the material and preparing for the exam. There are resources on here and there are likely resources at your school. Don't let one setback that, frankly, is not the most egregious setback in terms of grades out there, compel you to make a decision that will leave you with regret and a foreclosed career path.

Re: After Grades Considering Dropping out

Posted: Fri Jan 12, 2018 9:52 pm
by runinthefront
Gus Fring wrote:I couldnt even muster 1 median grade, I'm not fit to be a lawyer.

This may end up proving true, but you can't possibly tell this based on one semester of grades. Switch up the gameplan this semester and reevaluate in the summer. Don't drop out before you try again.

Re: After Grades Considering Dropping out

Posted: Fri Jan 12, 2018 9:59 pm
by mcmand
runinthefront wrote:
Gus Fring wrote:I couldnt even muster 1 median grade, I'm not fit to be a lawyer.

This may end up proving true, but you can't possibly tell this based on one semester of grades. Switch up the gameplan this semester and reevaluate in the summer. Don't drop out before you try again.


Why would you say this could end up proving true? Straight B's and a B- are not indications of a lack of fitness to be a lawyer. Don't reaffirm OP's negative thoughts that aren't actually reflective of reality.

Re: After Grades Considering Dropping out

Posted: Fri Jan 12, 2018 10:01 pm
by A. Nony Mouse
I mean, there are plenty of people with like 4.0s who aren't cut out to be lawyers, really. The OP doesn't know yet if he'll be a good lawyer but if he's not it won't be because of his grades.

Re: After Grades Considering Dropping out

Posted: Fri Jan 12, 2018 10:02 pm
by runinthefront
mcmand wrote:
runinthefront wrote:
Gus Fring wrote:I couldnt even muster 1 median grade, I'm not fit to be a lawyer.

This may end up proving true, but you can't possibly tell this based on one semester of grades. Switch up the gameplan this semester and reevaluate in the summer. Don't drop out before you try again.


Why would you say this could end up proving true? Straight B's and a B- are not indications of a lack of fitness to be a lawyer. Don't reaffirm OP's negative thoughts that aren't actually reflective of reality.

Because (1) OP may not be able to raise OP's grades, and (2) OP may not be fit to be a lawyer and may be better at other things,

but one semester of law grades, and especially the grades from the first semester of 1L year, doesn't shed light on the likelihood of either possibility, so there's no reason to accept either possibility as true at this time. I don't disagree that grades don't correspond to fitness to practice.

Re: After Grades Considering Dropping out

Posted: Sat Jan 13, 2018 12:01 pm
by anonymous117
The only reason you should drop out is if you are no longer interested in being a lawyer or studying law, but your grades shouldn’t determine that.

1L is tough. First semester is especially so. Everyone knows that, including future employers. As someone mentioned, you’re graded on a curve, and you shouldn’t let that define you. I have friends who got all B’s first semester and went on to make law review or get jobs at V10 firms, and that’s because they saw this as an opportunity to improve and learn how to talk about their experience.

I would recommend reaching out to every one of your professors from last semester and asking if you can review your exam with them. They can give you a sense of what you were doing wrong. After each meeting, jot down what they said so you remember it. Then, I would go to your academic advisor or some other trusted mentor and make a gameplan for how to improve and what to do differently. This isn’t the end of the world, and if you put in the work and make a big improvement, that’ll speak more about you to employers than poor first semester grades will.

Re: After Grades Considering Dropping out

Posted: Sat Jan 13, 2018 12:11 pm
by Teoeo
I had similar grades in 1L at GW, and I now happily work in a bigfed job. It is doable, as long as you plan well and know what you want.

Re: After Grades Considering Dropping out

Posted: Mon Jan 15, 2018 10:13 pm
by Civilservant
You are living in the bubble of law students who are narcissistic about every little accomplishment that comes to them. Your life isn't over. The first year is a grind, and you will come out the other end of it. Study hard, be humble, and good things will happen.

Re: After Grades Considering Dropping out

Posted: Wed Jan 17, 2018 11:52 am
by Gus Fring
the top exam in crim law was an 89 and I got an 80. I feel better about my own intellect but worse about the law school grading curve.

Re: After Grades Considering Dropping out

Posted: Wed Jan 17, 2018 12:09 pm
by jacketyellow
I usually tell people to drop out, but in your case, I wouldn't. You're at a T10; find out what you did wrong, and just fix it. You can do it. You'll get a job.

I graduated from a T20 with a 3.0, and I'm sitting here at a biglaw firm right now. Surely your chances are better than mine.

Re: After Grades Considering Dropping out

Posted: Wed Jan 17, 2018 12:19 pm
by Gus Fring
my torts exam hit all the same points as his sample answers. Law School's grading system seem to be arbitrary and based on the professors idiosyncrasy's

Re: After Grades Considering Dropping out

Posted: Wed Jan 17, 2018 12:21 pm
by pancakes3
Gus Fring wrote:my torts exam hit all the same points as his sample answers. Law School's grading system seem to be arbitrary and based on the professors idiosyncrasy's


Yes and no.

Re: After Grades Considering Dropping out

Posted: Wed Jan 17, 2018 12:27 pm
by A. Nony Mouse
Gus Fring wrote:my torts exam hit all the same points as his sample answers. Law School's grading system seem to be arbitrary and based on the professors idiosyncrasy's

But you don’t know what everyone else’s exams look like. So grades are unpredictable, but not necessarily arbitrary. You might have hit the same points but not done the same level of analysis. Also torts has a notoriously tight curve because it’s not very hard (so potentially more arbitrary in what the prof decides to use to distinguish between good/bad grades). Also part of your job over the semester is to figure out what the prof’s idiosyncrasies are.

Re: After Grades Considering Dropping out

Posted: Wed Jan 17, 2018 1:55 pm
by Desert Fox
1) Legal grades are arbitrary because they reward a few skills to the exclusive of nearly all others.

2) Drop the fuck out. You aren't a "tad" below median, you are almost certainly bottom 20%, maybe bottom 10%.

3) law sucks anyway. I hope you can get your tutiion for next semester back.

Re: After Grades Considering Dropping out

Posted: Wed Jan 17, 2018 2:38 pm
by runinthefront
Desert Fox wrote:1) Legal grades are arbitrary because they reward a few skills to the exclusive of nearly all others.

2) Drop the fuck out. You aren't a "tad" below median, you are almost certainly bottom 20%, maybe bottom 10%.

3) law sucks anyway. I hope you can get your tutiion for next semester back.

A 3.1 at most T13s still has a decent shot at landing a biglaw job (which is a job that OP has never said was the goal, anyway). To achieve a 3.1, OP would only need a 3.3, which is totally doable. And that's just to have a decnt shot at a biglaw job. Dropping out isn't the answer--at least right now.

Re: After Grades Considering Dropping out

Posted: Wed Jan 17, 2018 4:12 pm
by mcmand
Gus Fring wrote:the top exam in crim law was an 89 and I got an 80. I feel better about my own intellect but worse about the law school grading curve.


See? You're fine. It's ridiculous but that's the deal. Figure out those differences between your exam and the top one and see how you can bridge the gap. Even an 82 could move you up the curve significantly.

Re: After Grades Considering Dropping out

Posted: Fri Jan 19, 2018 11:45 am
by jbagelboy
If you’re borrowing money on interest to stay in school, I’d drop out. If you have a scholarship or other sources of funding that cover all or most of your expenses, then stick it out another semester.

Re: After Grades Considering Dropping out

Posted: Fri Jan 19, 2018 12:02 pm
by emkay625
My reaction is not as gloom and doom as other people ITT. My thoughts:

1. Try to raise your grades this semester. You cannot do this by doing the exact same things you did last semester, though. There are a ton of great guides on this forum. Read them, and figure out what they suggest that is different from whatever you did last semester. Do those things.

2. If you're not in a study group, I suggest joining one. Do so expressly for the purpose of comparing practice exams. Take practice exams as much as you can, swap answers with people in your study group, and look at the additional points/arguments they make on their exam that you didn't make on yours. Make sure you make those on the actual exam.

3. You are at a T10 school. Bid strategically at OCI and you could be fine, even if you stay below median second semester.

If it were me, I would not drop out. I would stick through second semester and through OCI.

Re: After Grades Considering Dropping out

Posted: Fri Jan 19, 2018 12:09 pm
by TasmanianToucan
Gus Fring wrote:This is the first time in my life I've given full effort in school without successful results.

This is probably why your first semester result feels so devastating. You're having to confront an adverse result for the first time, and it sucks. Pick yourself up and get back to it. Go to see your professors, find out what you did wrong, and endeavor to improve. You'll be fine.