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Forum locked This topic is locked, you cannot edit posts or make further replies.  [ 9 posts ] 
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 Post subject: Rutgers $$ or Fordham P/T?
PostPosted: Fri Mar 14, 2008 12:27 am 

Joined: Sat Jan 12, 2008 3:49 am
Archived Posts: 10
So I got accepted to Rutgers Newark with an $8,000 a year scholarship and I got into the Fordham P/T program. The reason I am balking at the Fordham opportunity is the cost. It costs $60k to attend Fordham every year, and I need loans for everything, and with my scholarship, it would likely cost $25k to attend Rutgers every year. I'm indifferent about practicing in NY, I could just as easily practice in NJ, because I live in northern NJ. If I am not certain I want to go into Biglaw, should I go to Rutgers so I can graduate with a reasonable debt load, or would I be crazy to turn Fordham (P/T evenings) down?


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 Post subject: Re: Rutgers $$ or Fordham P/T?
PostPosted: Fri Mar 14, 2008 12:32 am 

Joined: Mon Dec 17, 2007 11:05 pm
Archived Posts: 1609
You wouldn't be 'crazy' to turn fordham down, but I think you have to evaluate what you want out of your career. If you even have an inkling that 160k sounds mighty nice in the future, go to fordham. If you simply plan to join a small practice in nj, or open up your own shop doing wills & trusts (michael clayton pun) then go to rutgers. Just realize that the options you have with rutgers will be much less than what you can get out of fordham.


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 Post subject: Re: Rutgers $$ or Fordham P/T?
PostPosted: Fri Mar 14, 2008 1:06 am 

Joined: Tue Oct 02, 2007 4:43 am
Archived Posts: 250
I vote Rutgers.

Here's why:

* Fordham is 60K a year now - this will likely go up each year and if you are completely doing this with loans, thats well over $200K is loans over four years! A quarter of a million on law school loans for Fordham sounds crazy, esp. if you can get out of Rutgers for half to a third of that amount. Even a top firm salary is going to make paying back Fordham loans a huge pain.

* Being a PT student means you'll have to get a job. Not only bc you'll need the money but firms are gonna wanna see your resume and what you did during law school as a PT student. That, and you would have to keep your grades up while working, nevermind the social life implications.

* Even if you transferred to full time, you would have to sacrifice your summers to graduate on time, which would impact your job prospects.

* You could go to Rutgers for cheap and transfer to a better school after 1L if you really wanted. Or you could kick ass and probably qualify for more scholarships and merit aid at Rutgers.

* You are not just bound to the NJ market despite what people might think. I live in DC and know successful lawyers who work for Congress and Homeland Security and prominent institutes from Rutgers, Seton Hall and other NJ schools. They work reasonable hours, own homes and manage their debt loads fine.

My 2 cents.


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 Post subject: Re: Rutgers $$ or Fordham P/T?
PostPosted: Fri Mar 14, 2008 1:44 am 

Joined: Wed Feb 27, 2008 3:10 am
Archived Posts: 188
Rutgers $$$ for the same reasons given above.


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 Post subject: Re: Rutgers $$ or Fordham P/T?
PostPosted: Fri Mar 14, 2008 9:26 am 

Joined: Sun Aug 12, 2007 11:02 pm
Archived Posts: 81
Agreed. Why start out your career trying to dig your way out of debt? I admit, I'm preparing for a similar predicament and my this is how I'm reasoning. If I can get out with the least amount of debt possible then I'm already ahead. I think people here tend to exaggerate the inability of non T-14 grads to get good jobs or work in other states.


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 Post subject: Re: Rutgers $$ or Fordham P/T?
PostPosted: Fri Mar 14, 2008 9:44 am 

Joined: Sun Feb 03, 2008 11:34 am
Archived Posts: 326
I agree. Rutgers seems like the better choice. Fordham would be better if you were considering big law, but you are not. Take the costs into account and this becomes a relatively cut and dry decision.


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 Post subject: Re: Rutgers $$ or Fordham P/T?
PostPosted: Sat Mar 15, 2008 1:06 am 

Joined: Sat Jan 12, 2008 3:49 am
Archived Posts: 10
Outlawed wrote:
I agree. Rutgers seems like the better choice. Fordham would be better if you were considering big law, but you are not. Take the costs into account and this becomes a relatively cut and dry decision.


Well I'm not positive I do not want to enter Biglaw, it just does not appeal to me right now. Is there a way to make pretty good money 5-10 years out of school ($150k+), other than Biglaw? My thinking is that I would be locked into gunning for a Biglaw job if I went to Fordham because of the massive debt load I would be under. My dad's a lawyer and is heavily leaning towards Fordham, mainly because of the prestige and opportunities he says I would miss out on if I went to Rutgers. If I were to make top 10% at Rutgers, would I really be at a huge disadvantage when compared to Fordham grads?


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 Post subject: Re: Rutgers $$ or Fordham P/T?
PostPosted: Sat Mar 15, 2008 5:13 pm 

Joined: Tue Oct 02, 2007 4:43 am
Archived Posts: 250
I think you have to ask yourself what is the cost/time difference between 3 years at Rutgers and 4 years at Fordham and see if a Fordham education is worth that.

For example, lets say Fordham is $60k a year to attend, times four years = $240k. If you worked all that time, lets say you were able to cover your living expenses and that gave you a total debt load of $180K. Maybe if you gunned it, landed a biglaw summer job and saved up a lot of money from an SA gig, it'd be like $160-170K.

Now, lets say it costs $40K a year at Rutgers. Minus your scholarship, that'd be a 75K in debt over three years. If you got a mediocre summer gig at a small firm and was able to save $5K over your 2L summer, thats a grand total of $70K in debt.

So then the cost difference is about $100K and an extra year of your life. What you need to ask yourself is would going to Fordham part time offer doors tha would make this difference worth it?

To put this in perspective, your minimum debt payments over 10 years would be about $700 a month at Rutgers vs. $1600-1800 a month.

So would a Fordham education give you an extra $1000 value each month? Unless you are gunning at the top 20 percent of your class at the very least, I'd have to say probably not.

To answer your question, with a Fordham education you absolutely would have to gun it for a Biglaw job - no question. Theres no other way to pay back that debt. Which means you would have to finish at the top of your class and work during the school year to keep up your resume.

I think if the prestige thing still bothers you, you should look into transferring after your 1L.


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 Post subject: Re: Rutgers $$ or Fordham P/T?
PostPosted: Sat Apr 12, 2008 1:30 am 

Joined: Tue Mar 18, 2008 2:08 pm
Archived Posts: 39
I am struggling with this same choice between Fordham P/T and Rutgers Full-time. So to the original poster, I would like to know what you have decided to do and why? Though some of the facts/figures on here aren't exactly accurate.

First of all, it is not 60,000 a year for Fordham either full or part. For full-time, it is 35,000/year and for part-time it is 26,000/year. I do not add in the room/board, misc expenses because I find that those are always overestimated from my actual expenses. But still if you want to add in books and some expenses, I would say it comes to 40,000/year full and 30,000/year part at Fordham

Second, you can always transfer from the part-time program to full-time after your first year, so you can still graduate in 3 years.

Personally, I am leaning towards Fordham because I think it opens up more opportunities.


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