where do you draw the line with this economy?

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lawschoolftw
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where do you draw the line with this economy?

Postby lawschoolftw » Thu Jan 14, 2010 1:36 pm

Ok guys so I'm not really looking for specific advice. More of a general where do you personally think your going to draw the line as far as putting yourself in debt for law school. I'm just curious for other people's opinions. For example, I got into American University but with no money, while I was offered almost a full ride to Hofstra. For me right now I can't see it being worth taking on the debt at American because job prospects just aren't good enough to take on 180k worth of debt. I realize that they're better than at Hofstra but not enough fo rme to take on that debt. I think right now i'm at the point where if I get into a T14, (I applied to three all being long shots but since im an URM theres a reasonable shot I think atleat at one) then I can see taking on the debt but beyond that I might have to go to the best school with the most money. What are you guys thinking?

dakatz
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Re: where do you draw the line with this economy?

Postby dakatz » Thu Jan 14, 2010 1:42 pm

I would never pay sticker at anything less than a T10 school. I have heard from countless people how horrible and crushing such huge debt can be, and how it will dictate and control so many aspects of your life. Right now, people in the top half of their classes at T14 schools are coming out with no jobs, so its not even a certain gamble at the best of the best, so how could it possibly be justified to pay sticker at a less than stellar school? Personally, I think the best idea is to go to the highest ranked school that offers you decent money. Sure, many of us have T14 dreams, but if a T30 schools offers a near full scholarship, I'd say thats something to strongly look into. In the OP's case, I don't think the different between Hofstra and American is so monumental as to justify 180K in debt.

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Helmholtz
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Re: where do you draw the line with this economy?

Postby Helmholtz » Thu Jan 14, 2010 1:43 pm

T9 for sticker.

Amelie
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Re: where do you draw the line with this economy?

Postby Amelie » Thu Jan 14, 2010 1:44 pm

I'm at the point now where I'll only pay sticker for HYS. With $$ offers from Michigan and UVA, full price at any other school is out of the question.

09042014
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Re: where do you draw the line with this economy?

Postby 09042014 » Thu Jan 14, 2010 1:48 pm

I'm a splitter so I'm probably not getting a full ride anywhere worth paying cost of living.

I think it really depends on the schools and market you are looking at. I could probably get 1/3-1/2 off tuition at UIUC, but I think full price Northwestern is a much better bet. 100K at UIUC but needing to be top 10% is crazy risky. 40% at Northwestern but for 200K is still risky but less IMO.

I don't think I'd attend anything lower than Hastings/Davis. Though I might have taken a full ride at ChiKent, or Depaul and lived with my parent emerging entirely debt free.

EDIT: I didn't really answer the question.

T10+ Northwestern but only because I'm pretty much set on Chicago, and because I have a BS in electrical engineering which means attending a lower ranked school and applying to patent prosecution firms is a viable option. For many people I think full price at Duke, or Cornell is worth it.
Last edited by 09042014 on Thu Jan 14, 2010 1:52 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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LawandOrder
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Re: where do you draw the line with this economy?

Postby LawandOrder » Thu Jan 14, 2010 1:50 pm

I've already drawn the line and chosen not to go.

jerjon2
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Re: where do you draw the line with this economy?

Postby jerjon2 » Thu Jan 14, 2010 1:58 pm

Desert Fox wrote:I'm a splitter so I'm probably not getting a full ride anywhere worth paying cost of living.

I think it really depends on the schools and market you are looking at. I could probably get 1/3-1/2 off tuition at UIUC, but I think full price Northwestern is a much better bet. 100K at UIUC but needing to be top 10% is crazy risky. 40% at Northwestern but for 200K is still risky but less IMO.

I don't think I'd attend anything lower than Hastings/Davis. Though I might have taken a full ride at ChiKent, or Depaul and lived with my parent emerging entirely debt free.

EDIT: I didn't really answer the question.

T10+ Northwestern but only because I'm pretty much set on Chicago, and because I have a BS in electrical engineering which means attending a lower ranked school and applying to patent prosecution firms is a viable option. For many people I think full price at Duke, or Cornell is worth it.


I think you would be alright a little below median since your EE background is from UIUC. You just might be stuck starting out in patent prosecution which I don't know if or not you want. (I know I don't)

09042014
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Re: where do you draw the line with this economy?

Postby 09042014 » Thu Jan 14, 2010 2:08 pm

jerjon2 wrote:
Desert Fox wrote:I'm a splitter so I'm probably not getting a full ride anywhere worth paying cost of living.

I think it really depends on the schools and market you are looking at. I could probably get 1/3-1/2 off tuition at UIUC, but I think full price Northwestern is a much better bet. 100K at UIUC but needing to be top 10% is crazy risky. 40% at Northwestern but for 200K is still risky but less IMO.

I don't think I'd attend anything lower than Hastings/Davis. Though I might have taken a full ride at ChiKent, or Depaul and lived with my parent emerging entirely debt free.

EDIT: I didn't really answer the question.

T10+ Northwestern but only because I'm pretty much set on Chicago, and because I have a BS in electrical engineering which means attending a lower ranked school and applying to patent prosecution firms is a viable option. For many people I think full price at Duke, or Cornell is worth it.


I think you would be alright a little below median since your EE background is from UIUC. You just might be stuck starting out in patent prosecution which I don't know if or not you want. (I know I don't)


I'm pretty sure I wouldn't choose patent prosecution, but its sure as hell better than shit law. And I may end up liking it, but I'm going to gun for biglaw patent litigation.

With the way the economy is going I have no idea even what it takes to get hired to do patent prosecution. I've heard from different sources differing things that patent firms look for. Some said my engineering GPA will be bad, others think UIUC undergrad makes me golden no matter was law school I go to, others say its mostly about law school, but less competitive. That all can't be true, so I'm guessing it varies from firm to firm.

I figured Northwestern is significantly better for regular big law, significantly better for patent litigation, and at least no worse for patent prosecution.

jarofsoup
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Re: where do you draw the line with this economy?

Postby jarofsoup » Thu Jan 14, 2010 2:13 pm

Its a big gamble. American is a better school so you could make more money if the economy recovers by the time you have your JD.

I would go to American if I were you and bank on the economy recovering. Maybe go to there part time program and work so you can pay down some of your debt while in school.

In the end I would say tour both schools, meet the faculty and then do what feels best. Don't fixate on the sticker price to much.

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thickfreakness
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Re: where do you draw the line with this economy?

Postby thickfreakness » Thu Jan 14, 2010 2:40 pm

Unless I get a pretty good scholarship offer from a T14 or Vanderbilt, I'm sticking with a full ride to a T30 school.

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S de Garmeaux
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Re: where do you draw the line with this economy?

Postby S de Garmeaux » Thu Jan 14, 2010 2:42 pm

T-16 Sticker (of which ill get into 0)

T-1 (lower end, probably) Decent Scholarship (wake)

T-2 2/3-Full ride, depending

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Rocketman11
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Re: where do you draw the line with this economy?

Postby Rocketman11 » Thu Jan 14, 2010 2:47 pm

LawandOrder wrote:I've already drawn the line and chosen not to go.


+1

If you want to talk about cost/benefit of your degree ITE, TCR is to find another career.

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JMBrown32
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Re: where do you draw the line with this economy?

Postby JMBrown32 » Thu Jan 14, 2010 4:59 pm

personally, I would only pay sticker at T6 or maybe T10. I'd go anywhere in the T40 or so as long as tuition was below 20k/yr and the school was in a region I liked. After that, I'd only go with a full ride.

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Rocketman11
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Re: where do you draw the line with this economy?

Postby Rocketman11 » Thu Jan 14, 2010 5:06 pm

JMBrown32 wrote:personally, I would only pay sticker at T6 or maybe T10. I'd go anywhere in the T40 or so as long as tuition was below 20k/yr and the school was in a region I liked. After that, I'd only go with a full ride.


20k/yr plus COL will likely still put you well over 100K debt. just throwing that out there!

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FunkyJD
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Re: where do you draw the line with this economy?

Postby FunkyJD » Thu Jan 14, 2010 5:07 pm

The only degree I'd pay sticker for is an MD.

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Doritos
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Re: where do you draw the line with this economy?

Postby Doritos » Thu Jan 14, 2010 5:12 pm

I think its been said before but I have have feeling that these responses have something to do with the types of schools the poster of the response can get into. I know in my case earlier in the cycle when I thought a T14 was a pipe dream that I would never have and was hoping to get into Ohio State I would have said heck yeah Ohio State fa stickaaaa!! But now that I'm in at Virginia I say T15-20ish. It's funny how your perspective changes after some acceptances or scholarship offers.

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thickfreakness
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Re: where do you draw the line with this economy?

Postby thickfreakness » Thu Jan 14, 2010 5:25 pm

Doritos wrote:I think its been said before but I have have feeling that these responses have something to do with the types of schools the poster of the response can get into. I know in my case earlier in the cycle when I thought a T14 was a pipe dream that I would never have and was hoping to get into Ohio State I would have said heck yeah Ohio State fa stickaaaa!! But now that I'm in at Virginia I say T15-20ish. It's funny how your perspective changes after some acceptances or scholarship offers.



This is definitely correct, IMO. I went through last cycle and with different numbers and my perspective has changed quite a ton this time around.

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JMBrown32
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Re: where do you draw the line with this economy?

Postby JMBrown32 » Thu Jan 14, 2010 5:30 pm

Rocketman11 wrote:
JMBrown32 wrote:personally, I would only pay sticker at T6 or maybe T10. I'd go anywhere in the T40 or so as long as tuition was below 20k/yr and the school was in a region I liked. After that, I'd only go with a full ride.


20k/yr plus COL will likely still put you well over 100K debt. just throwing that out there!


True. And I've considered this. But I genuinely want to practice law unlike many recent applicants who seem to be going out of a lack of anything else to do ITE, so I'm ok taking close to six figures in debt (I'll likely get some COL support from my parents) to get a J.D. from a respectable school in a decent area. I'm willing pay 15-20k/yr to attend Emory, W&M, W&L, and a handful of other schools which seem to do ok wrt placement, but that's just me.

sfdreaming09
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Re: where do you draw the line with this economy?

Postby sfdreaming09 » Thu Jan 14, 2010 5:32 pm

Im going to HYS (only gotten into H so far…still waiting on the other 2), but I think I would pay sticker for anything inside the T14 + UCLA, USC (b/c they are in the region that I want to practice in).

I know debt is a HUGE deal, but I still think people on TLS make it out to be a bigger deal than it really is. I mean, if you pay your loans back on a 30-year plan, you’re monthly payments aren’t going to be terribly high—even if your paying sticker.

No1ustad
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Re: where do you draw the line with this economy?

Postby No1ustad » Thu Jan 14, 2010 6:25 pm

FunkyJD wrote:The only degree I'd pay sticker for is an MD.

that's dumb. DDS is comparatively profitable to an MD.

Z3RO
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Re: where do you draw the line with this economy?

Postby Z3RO » Sat Jan 16, 2010 2:47 am

dakatz wrote:I would never pay sticker at anything less than a T10 school.


TITCR. Job prospects at other schools make the risk unacceptable. Of course, I can commiserate with somebody paying sticker at Cornell or UCLA, but it's not a decision I would make...

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RVP11
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Re: where do you draw the line with this economy?

Postby RVP11 » Sat Jan 16, 2010 2:49 am

sfdreaming09 wrote:I know debt is a HUGE deal, but I still think people on TLS make it out to be a bigger deal than it really is. I mean, if you pay your loans back on a 30-year plan, you’re monthly payments aren’t going to be terribly high—even if your paying sticker.


That HLS admission looks like it might be wasted on you.

Z3RO
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Re: where do you draw the line with this economy?

Postby Z3RO » Sat Jan 16, 2010 2:50 am

JSUVA2012 wrote:
sfdreaming09 wrote:I know debt is a HUGE deal, but I still think people on TLS make it out to be a bigger deal than it really is. I mean, if you pay your loans back on a 30-year plan, you’re monthly payments aren’t going to be terribly high—even if your paying sticker.


That HLS admission looks like it might be wasted on you.

you're = your

Flanker1067
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Re: where do you draw the line with this economy?

Postby Flanker1067 » Sat Jan 16, 2010 2:53 am

JSUVA2012 wrote:
sfdreaming09 wrote:I know debt is a HUGE deal, but I still think people on TLS make it out to be a bigger deal than it really is. I mean, if you pay your loans back on a 30-year plan, you’re monthly payments aren’t going to be terribly high—even if your paying sticker.


That HLS admission looks like it might be wasted on you.


+1

Jockin Jay-Z
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Re: where do you draw the line with this economy?

Postby Jockin Jay-Z » Sat Jan 16, 2010 3:07 am

$200,000 can buy you half of a very decent house in a lot of places in this country.

To the OP, I think the advantage of American over Hofstra is nowhere near enough to justify the monetary difference. Not at all.

People with my numbers got into Cornell at a very high clip last year, according to LSN. (Who knows what the 44% rise in applications means?) But I don't think they really got anything meaningful in grants. At the same time, people with same numbers got scholarships of more than $100k from WUSTL. I don't see a way of justifying going to Cornell over WUSTL when the price difference is over 100k. Yet, I'm sure plenty of people had both as options with that financial scenario and chose the T14, banking on high salaries later.

I may be debt averse. But I don't want to be 50 and still paying off my law school debt. Hell, I don't want to be paying off my mortgage by that time.

That said, I may end up passing up several scholarships and paying sticker. Gah.




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