I'm looking to hear from people who have attended Harvard for the LLM, or are familiar with the process, to discern my chances. I am an Australian at a top13-20 university in the world.
I'm in a unique situation. My main reason for wanting to complete my LLM at Harvard is because there is a specific professor of law who I want to be supervised under. I believe I have the knowledge and originality to further his work, work that I identify with on an authentic level (that is, from my own life experiences, I have come to think much like him). I have spent two years of my undergraduate completing two honours thesis, one in law, and one in political theory, both on this professor's work.
In terms of grades, I have finished with a high 2:1 in law (approximately 2 grades off of 1:1) and a 1:1 in politics. As previously stated, I will complete two honours thesis, approximately 15,000 words each, on this professor's works. I will be coming straight out of university.
In terms of career ambitions, my goal is essentially to bring my vision, which is similarly aligned with his work, into fruition for all people. Working in the law may only be a stepping stone, the end goal really is government and policy work.
In the end, I believe my life story really connects with this professor's work. I only came to discover him through my law professor who believed I thought much like him. He will be one of my letters of recommendation. I did not get to the same mode of thought he did through reading every history book under the sun (no time!), but through my life experiences.
My downfall is that I don't have a 1:1 in law, and the end goal really is in politics, not law. I do not fit with traditional legal thought per se, nor does he - his work transcends many fields, law is only a part of it, even though it is called 'Legal Theory'. This professor however really only works in the Law faculty. I would say a lot of people have better grades than me, but I do not believe they would beat me in originality. I've always been aware that the conventions of university law studies, in discovering predetermined answers to questions, do not assist in originality, vision, imagination and willpower (the anathemas to 'logic and reason'). I don't state this as an excuse but a mere critical insight into the law or education system itself, which actually connects with his work (legal theory), and what I have felt like I had to "deal with" in my time at university.
The only extra-curricular work relevant is that I hold numerous scholarships in community service and leadership.
Ultimately, I ask, how much does aligning with a professor's work favour me?
Any insight would be great. I have always heard it is only the best lawyers with at least 1:1 grades, and career experience that get into the Harvard LLM. I do not wish to look at any other universities.
[Edited by dzz on Jun 25, 2019]