Law School Preparation

Kate Aizpuru
Kate Aizpuru
Senior
Honors political science major
Honors Chinese minor
Edina, Minn.

I'm really excited to be joining the Harvard Law School Class of 2014, and Swarthmore's pre-law advising helped me achieve that goal. Before I took the LSAT, I met with Gigi (the adviser) to talk about what scores I should be aiming for to get into the best schools I could. After I received my score, we met again to talk about picking the schools I should apply to. Gigi looked over and gave me comments on several drafts of my personal statement, as well as my supplemental essays. She also answered questions I had about the application process.

I would advise students to focus on taking classes that they will enjoy and excel in. Law school admissions are much more numbers-based than undergraduate admissions, so attaining the highest GPA you can is important. As far as extracurricular activities are concerned, I would say: pursue extracurricular and summer activities that you are interested in and that you enjoy - if they are law-related, great, but if not, law schools won't hold it against you. These activities will provide you with a lot of material for your personal statement and other essays.

Prepare for the LSAT as much as you can, and if you're worried you might have to take it twice, try to take the first test in June so that you can retake in September and still apply early. Apply as early as you can (before Thanksgiving), because admissions are rolling. Build relationships with professors so that you will have strong letters of recommendation. And have other people look over your personal statement. The comments I got from the Pre-Law Advising Office and Career Services were insightful and helped me really improve my essay.