How to get into HLS


Harvy
HLS doesn't only want future academics. Looking at the class profile of 2007/08 for the HLS LLM (you can find it online) they have diverse legal interests and career objectives. I am sure the same diversity will be reflected in the 2009/10 class. Similarly the age range of previous LLMs is varied and just because your friend is straight out of uni that isn't necessarily a disadvantage.


Alright. a "diverse" student body means that a certain number of slots out of the 150 total are preassigned according to student profiles. For exemple, 50 slots would be for private practice, 50 for professors, and 50 for "others" (politics, government service, son of a donator, etc.).
In this case, any given candidate isn't competing for 1 of the 150 slots. You're actually competing for 1 of as many spots that HLS assigns to your profile/career objectives. To achieve a "diverse" student body, spots assigned per profile have to be roughly the same even though one profile may have many more applicants than the next one.
And since there are many more students interested in private practice, you have higher chances of being admitted if you claim you want to become a professor.

Now that's the quantitative approach.

The qualitative approach also leads to similar conclusions:
1. If you're fresh out of school, saying you want to go into academics is beneficial because it'll excuse you for not having several years of work experience.
The only ones that would beat your profile are candidates who have already been teaching for years in their country, but these candidates aren't common.
In contrast, if you're interested in private practice, you'll be benchmarked against accomplished lawyers with years of work experience in the most prestigious law firms.

2. If you have been working in private practice for years, saying you want to become a teacher is also beneficial. It provides you with an excellent reason for wanting to do an LLM at Harvard compared to other candidates who one way or another are basically saying "I got my degree from an average school and/or I'm not satisfied with my current salary so I want to have the h-bomb on my resume to get a better job".
<blockquote>HLS doesn't only want future academics. Looking at the class profile of 2007/08 for the HLS LLM (you can find it online) they have diverse legal interests and career objectives. I am sure the same diversity will be reflected in the 2009/10 class. Similarly the age range of previous LLMs is varied and just because your friend is straight out of uni that isn't necessarily a disadvantage.</blockquote>

Alright. a "diverse" student body means that a certain number of slots out of the 150 total are preassigned according to student profiles. For exemple, 50 slots would be for private practice, 50 for professors, and 50 for "others" (politics, government service, son of a donator, etc.).
In this case, any given candidate isn't competing for 1 of the 150 slots. You're actually competing for 1 of as many spots that HLS assigns to your profile/career objectives. To achieve a "diverse" student body, spots assigned per profile have to be roughly the same even though one profile may have many more applicants than the next one.
And since there are many more students interested in private practice, you have higher chances of being admitted if you claim you want to become a professor.

Now that's the quantitative approach.

The qualitative approach also leads to similar conclusions:
1. If you're fresh out of school, saying you want to go into academics is beneficial because it'll excuse you for not having several years of work experience.
The only ones that would beat your profile are candidates who have already been teaching for years in their country, but these candidates aren't common.
In contrast, if you're interested in private practice, you'll be benchmarked against accomplished lawyers with years of work experience in the most prestigious law firms.

2. If you have been working in private practice for years, saying you want to become a teacher is also beneficial. It provides you with an excellent reason for wanting to do an LLM at Harvard compared to other candidates who one way or another are basically saying "I got my degree from an average school and/or I'm not satisfied with my current salary so I want to have the h-bomb on my resume to get a better job".
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yasminm
"The only ones that would beat your profile are candidates who have already been teaching for years in their country, but these candidates aren't common". Actually, quite to the contrary, such candidates are exceedingly common in both YLS and HLS, though, for obvious reasons, more so the former than the latter. Any attempt to game the system is wholly circuitous because it assumes the very data you then assert as the conclusion. In any event, even if we accept the spurious data you assert, the argument is still a non-starter, if only because if we accept that 50 places are reserved for academics, and everyone has your mindset (since according to you, many of those who gain entry "game" the system), then 1000 of the 1500 applicants would attempt to apply as "future academics" (even though none of them, in reality, care at all about being academics) thus, constraining their own application to be considered for one of the 50 spots reserved for "future academics", whilst the other 500 applicants end up having better chances since they can then compete for the remaining 100 slots.

Of course, you can now come back to say, "wait, I mean only 400 applicants would game the system by declaring themselves to be academics", but it doesn't further the debate because all the numbers you have to use would be neither here nor there. Any number I assert is as convincing as any number you assert (i.e. neither number is at all convincing or musters any level of confidence). Because of that, moving forward, and I mean this with the greatest respect, you might want to consider what the next step is rather to dwell so much on whether there is a science to beating the system. Your friend may have got in via her attempt to game the system, she may also have gone in for other reasons - the process is so idiosyncractic that you just never quite know. You shouldn't miss the woods for the trees: as you mentioned, you were probably close to the cut; as such, the next step is not to lie your way in by assuming a science that for obvious reason does not exist but to work on the perceived less-stellar elements in your CV so that HLS is bound to accept your application next year. To be sure, this involves an element of crystal-ball gazing as well, but given that it is internal and asks the question of "what can I improve on?" and not "what is a sure-fire way to beat the LLM admissions system?", I assume that it would be considerably more productive than trying to come up with a science to an often painful and nerve-wrecking process that so many have undergone but that no one, to date, fully understands.
"The only ones that would beat your profile are candidates who have already been teaching for years in their country, but these candidates aren't common". Actually, quite to the contrary, such candidates are exceedingly common in both YLS and HLS, though, for obvious reasons, more so the former than the latter. Any attempt to game the system is wholly circuitous because it assumes the very data you then assert as the conclusion. In any event, even if we accept the spurious data you assert, the argument is still a non-starter, if only because if we accept that 50 places are reserved for academics, and everyone has your mindset (since according to you, many of those who gain entry "game" the system), then 1000 of the 1500 applicants would attempt to apply as "future academics" (even though none of them, in reality, care at all about being academics) thus, constraining their own application to be considered for one of the 50 spots reserved for "future academics", whilst the other 500 applicants end up having better chances since they can then compete for the remaining 100 slots.

Of course, you can now come back to say, "wait, I mean only 400 applicants would game the system by declaring themselves to be academics", but it doesn't further the debate because all the numbers you have to use would be neither here nor there. Any number I assert is as convincing as any number you assert (i.e. neither number is at all convincing or musters any level of confidence). Because of that, moving forward, and I mean this with the greatest respect, you might want to consider what the next step is rather to dwell so much on whether there is a science to beating the system. Your friend may have got in via her attempt to game the system, she may also have gone in for other reasons - the process is so idiosyncractic that you just never quite know. You shouldn't miss the woods for the trees: as you mentioned, you were probably close to the cut; as such, the next step is not to lie your way in by assuming a science that for obvious reason does not exist but to work on the perceived less-stellar elements in your CV so that HLS is bound to accept your application next year. To be sure, this involves an element of crystal-ball gazing as well, but given that it is internal and asks the question of "what can I improve on?" and not "what is a sure-fire way to beat the LLM admissions system?", I assume that it would be considerably more productive than trying to come up with a science to an often painful and nerve-wrecking process that so many have undergone but that no one, to date, fully understands.
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Gregor2009
This thread is lame.

Why would you ever lie to get into Harvard? You wouldn't feel the sense of achievement and you would have this lie hanging over your head / memory all your life and you will feel like a fraud!

But this is my opinion, maybe other people aren't as moral so they don't really feel anything!


G
This thread is lame.

Why would you ever lie to get into Harvard? You wouldn't feel the sense of achievement and you would have this lie hanging over your head / memory all your life and you will feel like a fraud!

But this is my opinion, maybe other people aren't as moral so they don't really feel anything!


G
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