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The 16-Year-Old Who Applied to 9 Law Schools and Got Into All of Them

The Cut - July 22, 2019

This spring, Haley Taylor Schlitz applied to nine law schools and got into all of them. She’s also 16. Currently finishing her senior year at Texas Woman’s University, where she studies education, Schlitz will start law school at Southern Methodist University next month. She lives in Dallas with her mom, an ER doctor, her dad, who works in marketing, and her younger siblings, who are also academically advanced for their ages. (Her younger brother, 13, is currently a college freshman, and her 11-year-old sister just started high school.) Here’s how she gets it done.

On bad grades:

The one lesson I learned early in my college experience is to engage my professors early on and make sure I’m not surprised by a bad grade. That happened to me my first year of college and I realized afterward that if I had just gone to office hours and talked with my professor throughout the semester, I could have avoided the issues that set me up for a bad grade. I am well-organized now and I always make sure I reach out to my professor at the beginning of class so I can have good communication and make sure I understand what is expected on tests and papers.

On loving the LSAT:

I guess I’m weird, but I really like the LSAT. It was a fun test for me. It was like the show Brain Games. Of course I took it seriously because it’s really important, but the questions they asked and the methods we were taught were actually really fun. It was entertaining to have that intellectual discussion about the questions in the workbook. I used Princeton Review and I absolutely loved it. It worked for me.

I was nervous when I first walked in to take the LSAT, but when I started the test, I felt more confident in myself. I was also super nervous right before I got the results. I try to prepare — maybe over-prepare sometimes — to ensure that I can tell myself that I can do it.

On her goals as a lawyer:

I want to go into educational policy. I’m really passionate about that because I wonder how many students have been overlooked just because they didn’t get into the gifted and talented program like I didn’t. I wonder how many students accept no as an answer, and then don’t really see the opportunities. I would love to show them the other options they have besides the no the public school might have given them.

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