Coastal Law Announces Third Webinar Series for Prospective Law Students

The law school application process can be challenging.  Florida Coastal School of Law hopes to make the transition into law school as smooth as possible with its webinars designed for prospective law students. Now in its third series, the webinars are designed to assist prospective students at every stage of the law school process from submitting an application to succeeding in your first year of law school.

The webinars will take place twice a month and will be held every other Monday starting on November 2, 2015. Webinars will go live at noon, EST. Attendees can interact live through a chat screen, video, or by phone in real time using our interactive webinar platform.

There is no cost to join the webinars and each session is recorded for later viewing on Coastal Law’s YouTube channel.

For questions, email Megan Mattson at msmattson@fcsl.edu.

Webinars for Prospective Law Students

11/2 12:00 to 1:00 p.m. EST

Topic: Which LSAT Test Prep is Best?

RSVP at anymeeting.com/PIID=EC51D883834D3B

Wondering which LSAT test prep is best for you? With different options available to law school hopefuls, this webinar will help you find the right program for your learning style and schedule.  Attendees will hear from representatives of Focus Approach, Kaplan Test Prep, and Flagler College.  Presenters will share more information about their programs to help you make the right choice.  RSVP to reserve your space.


11/16 12:00 to 1:00 p.m. EST

Topic: What’s Next After the Law School Fair: Beginning the Application Process

RSVP at anymeeting.com/PIID=EC51D883834D3F

Did you attend a law school fair and now wonder what to do next?  In this webinar, we’ll walk you through the next steps when applying to law schools.  From researching schools to putting together an application to choosing the right law school for you, we’ll share tips and answers your questions.  Presenters include Coastal Law’s Admissions counselors.  RSVP to reserve your space.


11/30 12:00 to 1:00 p.m. EST

Topic: Military and Veteran Support in Law School

RSVP at anymeeting.com/PIID=EC51D883834D30

Coastal Law is proud to welcome military and veteran students to our law school.  In addition to a growing military and veteran on-campus community that includes students, staff, and faculty, we provide various on-campus support resources and opportunities.  We also offer cost of living assistance for our military and veteran students.  Join us for this webinar with presenters that include a Veterans Affairs representative, a Coastal Law professor, current students, a Coastal Law alum, and a current JAG member.  RSVP to reserve your space.


12/14 12:00 to 1:00 p.m. EST

Topic: Building Your Resume in Law School

RSVP at anymeeting.com/PIID=EC51D883834C3B

Between law school clinics, legal externships, honors organizations and pro bono work, law students have a lot of choices to building their resumes during law school.  Join us for this webinar where presenters will share how to get the hands-on experience law students need to help them stand out among their peers.  This webinar will include faculty and students who will share their own perspectives on the various options available to you.  RSVP to reserve your space.

 

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Coastal Law Admissions Spotlight: Megan Schade

Since I was a little girl I always told my parents that I was going to grow up and become an attorney.  I also thought that I could be a school teacher and deliver pizza at the same time.  As children, we always have aspirations for when we grow up.  As we progress through the years we change our perspective of what growing up means.   I have gone to college, graduated from law school, was a first-time bar passer, and currently hold my first “adult” job; yet I still find myself thinking “What will I do when I grow up?”  I think that we all reflect on this daily and the little steps we take along the way are what mold us into the person we are and the dreams we have for our life.

My name is Megan Schade and I am an admissions counselor here at Florida Coastal School of Law.  I moved to Florida almost five years ago when I started my journey in law school.  I grew up in Youngstown, Ohio and attended Miami University for my undergraduate degree.  I majored in Business Management and Organization in hopes of opening my own law firm or owning my own business someday.  For me deciding what to do before law school was a struggle.  I knew I wanted to get a law degree and help others, but I needed a foundation in order to achieve that dream.  Miami University was a great experience for me and provided me with the knowledge, understanding, hard-work ethic, and passion to be successful in law school.  It was the time that I became independent, confident, and began focusing on what I wanted to do and how I was going to accomplish those goals for myself.

I moved to Jacksonville, Florida to attend Coastal Law because they provided me with the opportunity in pursue my dream.  We all have struggles along the way, but it’s our passion, perseverance, and determination that make us the best that we can be.  I was excited for this new adventure, yet nervous for what I had just signed up for.  Law school was going to be hard, it was going to be a challenge and I was going to have to think in a way that I had never done so before.  I was also in a new city where I knew no one, but had to adapt quickly so that it would not impact my studies.

My three years at Coastal Law were filled with happiness, joy, tears, determination, hard-work, setbacks, but most importantly a new family and a place to call home.  The environment on our campus is second to none.  From the administrators, to the faculty, to our staff, students and alumni we are there to support each other every step of the way.  While some days are harder than others you have the support system needed to achieve your dream.

I hope that you decide to learn more about Coastal Law and think about joining our family.  It will be one of the most rewarding experiences of your life.

Like I said, I feel like I am still growing up and learning new things every day and contemplate “What will do when I grow up?”  I am now an attorney as I told my parents I would become when I was younger, but I am so much more than that.  I have become a person who stands up for others and works with others to achieve their dream.  I would not be an admissions counselor if that did not become a part of who I am.

I hope this allows you to see that we can all reach our dreams, but the end might not be what we first thought.  Be open to new ideas, new opportunities, challenges and setbacks; because they make you who you are and teach you how to grow and achieve what you have set for yourself.

I hope you enjoyed learning a little bit about me and I would be happy to learn more about you and discuss the opportunity to become a part of the Coastal Law family.

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Finding a Home in Jacksonville to Attend Coastal Law

 

Finding a place to live in a new city can be exiting, but also a bit frustrating at times.  Here at Coastal Law we try to provide an easy transition to life here in Jacksonville.  Below are some things to think about before you begin your housing search.

 

  1. Do I want a roommate? Before you even begin the process of finding somewhere to live you want to consider this important question.  Are you a quiet person and appreciate your own space?  Do you to prefer to study at home as opposed to the library? Do you want to share the cost of rent with someone else?  Determining whether you want to live alone or with a roommate should be something you consider right at the beginning.  You want to consider this possibility right away in case the options you prefer are not in your original budget plan.

 

  1. What is my budget? Determine how much you want to spend each month on rent. Do you want a smaller apartment because you will not be spending much time there, or do you plan to study in your apartment? Would you prefer to spend more money on rent or on premium internet and cable? You need to set a budget for yourself and determine the range you are willing to spend before you even start your research, so that you can pick those options that are in your price range.  This is also important in determining your entire budget for law school. (A blog of Financing Your Legal Education coming soon!)

 

  1. What kind of environment am I looking for? Do you want a small quiet community, or do you want a community that provides a lot of activities to its residents? Do you have any pets?  Do you potentially want a place near a dog park?  Do you want to be in an area with children?  Do you want to have multiple outdoor pools or are you more concerned with a nice gym on site?  Think about the type of environment you want to live in and what that means in regards to your study habits and interaction with other residents in your complex.  You may also consider a condo, townhouse or home that might better fit your needs.

 

  1. What area of Jacksonville do I want to live in? Most students live in the Southside area which is where Coastal Law is situated, but there are many other areas of Jacksonville to consider.  The Downtown area is about fifteen minutes away, which also consists of many smaller areas around the river downtown.  Some of these areas are San Marco, Riverside, and Avondale.  They are areas that have many small parks, shops, bars and restaurants all within walking distance of housing options.  We also have students who decide to live out towards Jacksonville Beach which is about a half hour from campus.  The only concern with living out towards the beach is the traffic each day during rush hour.  Determining the area of Jacksonville you want to be in relates to the type of environment you are looking for.  Take the time to look into each area and consider which would be best for the day to day lifestyle you are looking for.  I mentioned rush hour above and that can also be important in making your housing decisions.

 

  1. When do I plan on moving in? Determining when you want to move is very important in determining what will be available at that time. We recommend that you move at the beginning of August for our fall admits, so that you can become comfortable with the area prior to the beginning of orientation and classes.  Knowing when you want to move will help you plan for the moving time and availability at those housing options that are your top choice.

 

Hopefully this will help you begin your search for housing if you have not started already.

 

Coastal Law works with Jacksonville Rental Finders, which is a local agency that helps our students free of charge with their housing needs.  Please feel free to reach out to them directly through their website or by phone (904) 565-9040.  We can also release your information to them if you would like by filling out this form.

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Creating A Competitive Coastal Law Application

How do you put together a competitive law school application? We share some great step-by-step tips for prospective law students.

Tips for Assembling a Competitive Application

Components of an application

  • Application
  • CAS report – Includes: Letters of Recommendation, Transcripts, Writing Sample, LSAT score
  • Personal Statement
  • Resume
  • Addendum(s) – Optional

Application

  • Be sure to answer all questions thoroughly and accurately. If you are ever in doubt as to what a question means, do not hesitate to reach out to Admissions for clarification. The Admissions staff is always here to help.

CAS Report

  • Send all undergraduate transcripts to LSAC.
  • You will create your writing sample during the LSAT. The Admissions Committee reviews the writing sample to gauge writing skills and analytical ability.
  • Letters of Recommendation are sent directly to LSAC.
    • Tips for Letters of Recommendation:
      • If you are a recent graduate, try to obtain at least one letter from a professor. They can speak to your scholastic ability and work ethic.
      • If you are not a recent graduate, you may ask an employer or someone who can speak about your work ethic.
      • Do not ask family or friends to write you a letter.
      • Make sure the person you ask knows you well and supports your decision to attend law school.
      • Provide the recommender with your resume and personal statement so they may gain further insight into why you want to attend law school and why you will be a valuable addition to the classroom.
      • Make sure to ask the recommender is they will be able to provide you with a positive/strong recommendation.

Personal Statement

  • This statement allows the reviewer to gain insight into whom you are beyond your potential for academic excellence and why you might be a strong addition to the incoming class.
  • The personal statement is also reviewed for writing ability and attention to detail.
  • The personal statement may also be used to gain insight into an applicant’s motivation and interest in law school.
  • Keep in mind what you are trying to communicate to the reviewer.
  • When brainstorming topics, ponder the following questions:
    • What abilities, skills, or talents do you have that will help you become an outstanding law student and lawyer?
    • Why do you want to earn a law degree?
    • What life experiences or people have inspired and helped you become the person you are today?
    • What are your professional goals?
  • Be authentic.
  • Proofread! Proofread! Proofread!

Resume

  • Some tips for writing your law school resume include:
  • Physical appearance: Make your resume easy to read. Use a template, good spacing, and a standard font (such as Times New Roman). Do not include photos or designs, avoid different colors. Remember, you want to make it look professional.
  • Education: Focus on college not high school. You can mention any honors, awards, or student organizations you were involved with during your time of attendance.
  • Work Experience:  This section is where you will list and elaborate on any jobs or internships you have had. You can include both paid and unpaid work experience.
  • Bottom of Page: This is where you can list any extra-curricular activities; community service, publications, sports, etc. This gives the reader more insight into who you are and what you have to offer.
  • Proofread: Your resume must be error free. Read it out loud to yourself and ask at least one other person to review it as well. Remember, spell check doesn’t catch every error.
  • Length: Your resume should be one page. Focus only on the positive aspects of your previous career, education, and volunteer work.

Addendum(s)

  • These supplemental statements can be used to address any concerns you believe the Admissions Committee may have about your application. For example: academic probation, character and fitness issues, gap in time on your resume, low LSAT score, etc.
  • You may also provide a supplemental statement to inform the Committee of any information that was not provided in the required portion of the application such as, diverse professional or personal life experiences.

For more detailed tips, check out our webinar on Tips for Assembling a Competitive Application.

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LSAT Program: Coastal Law Channel Program

 

Florida Coastal School of Law now offers prospective law students the unique opportunity to receive LSAT preparation through its Coastal Law Channel Program. This intensive on-demand program is taught by licensed attorneys using a curriculum that has helped students succeed on the LSAT exam for the last 20 years.

Students who enroll for the Fall term will be prepared for the February or June 2016 LSAT exam. Additionally, prospective students who qualify for the Channel Program and earn at least a 143 LSAT score will receive a scholarship to attend Coastal Law along with guaranteed admission into the Fall 2016 term. This one-time scholarship matches the Channel Program’s cost of $995.

Classes start next Tuesday, apply and register now!

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sllr7F6vJgI&w=450&h=253]

Channel Program Application: https://coastallaw.wufoo.com/forms/s1qfopwe12ehisz/

Registration: www.focusapproach.com

Price: $995

Program Details:

  • 60 hours of on-demand LSAT preparation
  • 12 hours of on-demand legal writing instruction designed to give pre-law students a competitive advantage in their first-year, mandatory legal writing class
  • Class term: November 24 – February 6
  • Release dates: Every Tuesday from November 24 to February 2

Required Materials: Available from the Law School Admissions Council (www.lsac.org)

  • 10 Actual, Official LSAT PREPTESTS, with Comparative Reading Comprehension (Exams 52-61)
  • 10 Actual, Official LSAT PREPTESTS, Volume V (Exams 62-71)
  • The Official LSAT PREPTESTS 72-76

For more information:

LSAT Program
Peter Gormanly, Esq.
peterg@focusapproach.com
(914) 763-0128

Legal Writing Program
Megan Mattson, Esq.
msmattson@fcsl.edu
(904) 256-1264

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Connecting With Coastal Alumni

Stay Connected: Ways to Network with Our Alumni Base

The Florida Coastal School of Law Alumni Association represents more than 5,000 graduates of Coastal Law.  Coastal law has produced alumni whose contributions have enhanced the legal communities of not only Jacksonville but throughout the United States and across the world.

All students who graduate from Coastal Law become members of the Alumni Association, with no dues or fees needed to join.

The Alumni Association has 13 Alumni Chapters across the country that provide a local presence and opportunities for alumni to network with each other and with prospective, accepted, and current students.

As an alumnus myself, I know how important it is to stay connected. Here are a few ways to engage with our alums.

Alumni Event Calendar:

The Alumni Association offers alumni the opportunity to network and socialize, assist with admissions, mentor and speak to students as well as sponsor and help plan events. Stay up to date with alumni events as there could be an event in your area soon! Click here to see our Alumni Event Calendar.

Alumni Admissions Referral Scholarship

The Florida Coastal Alumni Admissions Referral Scholarship is a one-time $2,000 scholarship awarded each semester to incoming full or part-time students who have been recommended by a Florida Coastal alumnus. Students should request a recommendation at least two weeks before the deadline to allow the alum giving you a recommendation enough time to write and submit a recommendation for you. Alumni may submit recommendations until August 26 for students entering in the Fall 2015 class.

 

“Like” The Alumni Association Facebook Page

 

Join the Florida Coastal Alumni Association Facebook page where you can find exclusive alumni news and updates. Join this page today and click here for a list of Alumni Chapter Facebook groups for you to join and connect with alumni in your region.

 

It is never too early to start networking. I encourage students to take the time to get to know our graduates and ask them questions. Whether it is about the coastal experience or practicing in a certain area of law or region, Coastal alums are a valuable resource.

 

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Common Mistakes Made in Law School Applications

No Decision Yet?

What’s Holding Your Law School Application Back From The Committee? There are some common mistakes students make in their law school application. Here are the tips to avoid them.

As the Admissions Processor for Florida Coastal School of Law, one of my responsibilities is to make sure that each application we receive is completed with all required documentation before sending it on to the committee for review.  With that being said, I would like to take this opportunity to share with you some of the most common reasons your application may come back with an incomplete status.

 

  • Character and Fitness Questions: Please read all of these questions carefully and provide all the information asked for.  Especially question #4 pertaining to academic warning, probation, or suspension.  Remember…if you answer “Yes” to any of these questions, an explanation is required.
  • Waiting on CAS Report: Please check your LSAC account to make sure the required documents arrive in a timely manner.  If the documents have not been received within 2 weeks, you should contact your undergraduate institutions and/or recommenders again.  LSAC will not release your CAS report until everything is received.
  • Letters of Recommendation: Often times, your recommenders push writing the letter to a later time and end up forgetting to do it.
  • Transcripts: Make sure you notify all undergraduate institutions you have attended to send LSAC your official transcripts.   These are required to calculate your cumulative GPA.
  • Law School Transcript and Letter of Standing: If you previously attended law school these two items are also required.
  • Hold LSAT: If you are registered to take the LSAT, FCSL will automatically hold your application until we receive the new score.  You can, however, request that we review your file with your current LSAT score.

 

What are some of the questions you have regarding the law school application? Leave a question in the comments below.

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Time Management

time management Dreamstime.comThe first of the Academic Workshop Series, Time Management will focus on reviewing and assessing studying habits from the previous semester and learning more efficient and successful studying skills. Also this workshop will focus time management strategies to help students organize their study schedules.

Join the Center for Student Advising (CSA) on Tuesday, September 8th from 12:30 pm – 1:30 pm in Room 465. Lunch will be provided. RSVP on Symplicity or to CSA@fcsl.edu.

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NEW OCI: U.S. Army JAG Corps

The U.S. Army JAG Corps (Ft. Belvoir, Virginia) will be on–campus October 6, 2015 to interview 2Ls for summer internship program and candidates for active duty appointment. Submit your application by 11:59 p.m. on Tuesday, September 22, 2015 via Symplicity.

 

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OCI: The Schwartz Law Group, P.A.

The Schwartz Law Group, P.A. (Jacksonville, Florida) will be on-campus on September 16, 2015 to interview 2Ls for a Law Clerk position. The position will  include research and drafting for a general practice law firm. The application deadline is 11:59 p.m. on Wednesday, September 2, 2015.

 

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