Chicago v. NYU

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hopefullaw27
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Chicago v. NYU

Postby hopefullaw27 » Thu Jan 14, 2010 8:24 pm

I'm really lucky to have the chance to make this decision, but I am wondering what people's thoughts are. If I want to go into big law, I most definitely will go to NYU, however I don't want to limit my options in academia and in clerkships. New York is a better location for me as it's closer to my family, but I guess I'm not opposed to Chicago. I am concerned about Chicago's QOL as I hear it's "where fun goes to die." Thoughts are appreciated. Thanks!

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Veyron
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Re: Chicago v. NYU

Postby Veyron » Thu Jan 14, 2010 8:28 pm

Unless you are pretty sure you want to do clerkships + academia, NYU seems like the obvious choice. Actualy, even for clerkships the Chicago edge is slight. Am I missing something?

FWIW: I asked a Chicago educated lawyer how she liked it. Her response was basically along the lines of: Doors flew open to me and it was worth it in the long run but I hated it. Since NYU has similar door opening power, well...

jacko
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Re: Chicago v. NYU

Postby jacko » Thu Jan 14, 2010 8:51 pm

Veyron wrote:Unless you are pretty sure you want to do clerkships + academia, NYU seems like the obvious choice. Actualy, even for clerkships the Chicago edge is slight. Am I missing something?

FWIW: I asked a Chicago educated lawyer how she liked it. Her response was basically along the lines of: Doors flew open to me and it was worth it in the long run but I hated it. Since NYU has similar door opening power, well...


In Chicago's defense she may have hated her law school experience by virtue of it being law school.

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Veyron
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Re: Chicago v. NYU

Postby Veyron » Thu Jan 14, 2010 8:58 pm

[/quote]In Chicago's defense she may have hated her law school experience by virtue of it being law school.[/quote]

She was a transfer. She had grounds for comparison.

jacko
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Re: Chicago v. NYU

Postby jacko » Thu Jan 14, 2010 9:02 pm

Veyron wrote:
In Chicago's defense she may have hated her law school experience by virtue of it being law school.[/quote]

She was a transfer. She had grounds for comparison.[/quote]

I will say that Chicago's rigorous reputation is well know and it's not for everybody...

rookhawk
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Re: Chicago v. NYU

Postby rookhawk » Thu Jan 14, 2010 9:04 pm

+1
Last edited by rookhawk on Fri Jan 29, 2010 6:14 pm, edited 1 time in total.

flawyer
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Re: Chicago v. NYU

Postby flawyer » Thu Jan 14, 2010 9:05 pm

So, OP, what are you proposing that UChicago has over NYU?

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Veyron
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Re: Chicago v. NYU

Postby Veyron » Thu Jan 14, 2010 9:10 pm

Oh, if OP is doing JD/MBA, the story is completely different. However, if OP is going to be a lawyer (as opposed to a buisnessman or professor), there is no reason to go through the hell of Chicago if you got into a similarly ranked/better school... unless you like rigor... and cutting yourself.

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im_blue
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Re: Chicago v. NYU

Postby im_blue » Thu Jan 14, 2010 9:10 pm

You won't be limited by NYU for academia/clerkships, but the fact is that Chicago retains a measurable edge over NYU in those areas, probably due to its greater historical prestige in the eyes of professors and judges.

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The Brainalist
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Re: Chicago v. NYU

Postby The Brainalist » Thu Jan 14, 2010 9:12 pm

rookhawk wrote:Here's my business perspective:

NYU is known in my circles as "a fine school" and is certainly held in the T-14 regard that the school actually is.

HOWEVER

IF you turn out to not really care for law, or if you actually use your JD to propel you more into the executive/business world than into the biglaw world, University of Chicago yields a lot of additional benefits. In Europe, they revere Chicago higher than we do in America. (great for Intl biz) In the US business world you rank unbelievably high, particularly if you take any business classes as JD electives at Chicago. (For crying out loud, MILTON FRIEDMAN was a Chicago econ professor!)

In Illinois business terms (speaking of the MBA, not JD) they say a Northwestern/Kellogg MBA is the paper you must have to get a meeting with a Chicago/Booth grad.

Be aware that New Yorkers and New York have a unique reputation in America....good and bad. They are abrupt, hyperactive, efficient people as a stereotype. That is laudable for lawyers and it is viewed apprehensively in some business circles that aren't on the east coast. Chicago on the other hand, is all business but it still has a more calm, less aggressive persona being a midwestern institution with worldwide reach.

Just my take. Both outstanding schools.


I got this sense from a couple people, too. People who got business degrees are just incredibly impressed by Chicago. I met this guy who graduated from Yale b-school who couldn't shut up about it. Even TTTT UG friend of mine, who was working on a bachelor's in Business Administration was crazy about it.

All things being equal, I like that UChicago has this reputation across the board. It is at least a better argument than "lay prestige," because firms should like to hire people who would impress their business clients.

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The Brainalist
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Re: Chicago v. NYU

Postby The Brainalist » Thu Jan 14, 2010 9:22 pm

Veyron wrote:Oh, if OP is doing JD/MBA, the story is completely different. However, if OP is going to be a lawyer (as opposed to a buisnessman or professor), there is no reason to go through the hell of Chicago if you got into a similarly ranked/better school... unless you like rigor... and cutting yourself.


I presume the "rigor" isn't for its own sake, but because they think it makes you a better lawyer, clerk, or scholar. I'm not saying the school acheives those things, but I think a lot of people here can appreciate taking on a challenge because of intrinsic reward or because they think they'll be better for it.

twistedwrister
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Re: Chicago v. NYU

Postby twistedwrister » Thu Jan 14, 2010 9:25 pm

My 2 cents (disclaimer: I am a 2L at NYU)

If you want to practice in Chicago/the Midwest, I would probably choose Chicago. If you want to practice New York, go to NYU. The rest of the country is probably a wash (a top 10% student at Chicago will have more options than a top 20% student at NYU, and vice versa)

If you really think academia is route you might want to go, I think Chicago still has an edge. From Leiter's law school rankings:

"Per Capita" placement in law teaching, 2003-2007
Chicago: 29 placements (w/ a 200 student class size)
NYU: 33 placements (w/ a 450 student class size)

NYU is now placing a lot of emphasis on helping students get into academia, so whatever gap there is might close.

Chicago probably also has a slight edge when it comes to clerkships, but certainly not everywhere in the country. NYU does extremely will in the 2nd Circuit, and this year's clerkship numbers look really good. From the NYU Law website:

"New York University School of Law has a very successful judicial clerkship program. Each year more than 130 NYU School of Law graduates work as judicial clerks. Significantly, during the fall 2010 term, 45 NYU alumni will be clerking on the federal courts of appeals, including 7 on the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit and 10 on the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. In addition, 3 of the 10 clerks on the Delaware Court of Chancery, the nation’s preeminent forum for resolving business disputes, will be NYU graduates. NYU graduates have also clerked at the United States Supreme Court and at the International Court of Justice in the Hague."

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Veyron
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Re: Chicago v. NYU

Postby Veyron » Thu Jan 14, 2010 9:26 pm

Yes, but all other things being equal, you will be the same caliber of lawyer out of either school, its just that NYU doesn't put you through unnecessary hell (though I'm sure it puts you through necessary hell). I mean, who the fuck wants to be graded within 1 fucking point? It just seems brutal. Some people like that kind of stuff, OP doesn't seem like one of them.

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The Brainalist
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Re: Chicago v. NYU

Postby The Brainalist » Thu Jan 14, 2010 9:40 pm

Veyron wrote:Yes, but all other things being equal, you will be the same caliber of lawyer out of either school, its just that NYU doesn't put you through unnecessary hell (though I'm sure it puts you through necessary hell). I mean, who the fuck wants to be graded within 1 fucking point? It just seems brutal. Some people like that kind of stuff, OP doesn't seem like one of them.


It seems to me the same thing could be said about a lot of things. I mean, why choose Cal Tech when the Stanford curve is better? Why choose the Marines when you'll get just as much from the Airforce. It is more than just about what you end up doing afterwards. I tend to believe I get more out of being pushed beyond my comfort zone. I don't see how being pushed to work harder doesn't somehow benefit you. Sure, it may not be "necessary," but taking on more than you needed to, and succeeding, says a lot more about you, right?

Certainly, not everyone is cut out for it, but there is something cool about choosing trial by fire.

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Veyron
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Re: Chicago v. NYU

Postby Veyron » Thu Jan 14, 2010 10:12 pm

^ Hey, your position is perfectly valid. I am responding only to the expressed preference of the OP:

hopefullaw27 wrote:I am concerned about Chicago's QOL as I hear it's "where fun goes to die." Thoughts are appreciated. Thanks!

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kurama20
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Re: Chicago v. NYU

Postby kurama20 » Thu Jan 14, 2010 10:21 pm

FWIW OP NYU will not be stronger for NYC jobs than Chicago. However, you sound like you have a personal affection for NYU that you don't have for Chicago. If the money is similar you might as well go to the school that you like better.

freeflowfox
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Re: Chicago v. NYU

Postby freeflowfox » Thu Jan 14, 2010 10:30 pm

Will NYU really not be stronger than Chicago for NY Jobs?

According to Chicago's website, 30% goes to Chicago, 20% goes to NY, 20% West Coast. Is this purely self selection?

Anyone else got any opinions on this? I'm making a similar decision and it's really difficult to decide.

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kurama20
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Re: Chicago v. NYU

Postby kurama20 » Thu Jan 14, 2010 10:42 pm

freeflowfox wrote:Will NYU really not be stronger than Chicago for NY Jobs?

According to Chicago's website, 30% goes to Chicago, 20% goes to NY, 20% West Coast. Is this purely self selection?

Anyone else got any opinions on this? I'm making a similar decision and it's really difficult to decide.


Look at any of the NYC centric placement studies--Chicago beats NYU in ALL of them.

http://pdfserver.amlaw.com/nlj/20080414 ... trends.pdf

http://lawfirmaddict.blogspot.com/2006/ ... ement.html

http://lawfirmaddict.blogspot.com/2007/ ... ement.html

http://lawfirmaddict.blogspot.com/2006/ ... ement.html

The placement studies that these links show are flawed for looking at overall placement power because they are so heavily NYC focused (the selectivity one is the least NYC centric though) , however you actually want to work in NYC so they are fine for your purposes. That said though if you would be happier at NYU you might as well go there, bad grades at Chicago will quickly make these placement stats irrelevant.

pehaigllleises
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Re: Chicago v. NYU

Postby pehaigllleises » Fri Jan 15, 2010 12:33 am

I am a 1L at UChicago and I love my school to pieces. I lived in New York for 6 years prior to moving to Chicago.

-There is still fun to be had, I promise. I also promise that you adapt to the 10 degree difference in weather and wind.
-The schools are mostly fungible, but I really enjoy the benefits of going to a smaller school. The heads of the administrative offices are easily accessible and quick to respond. I haven't seen a shred of red tape yet.
-Because we're a smaller school, there are fewer of our graduates to go around, and in the interests of school diversity, firms can't cut back per capita on our graduates as much as they can cut back at a large school like NYU or Columbia.
-I'm relatively anti-social because I'm a bit older and engaged and do my own thing outside the school, and I still know almost everyone's name in the entire 1L class.
-A point of criticism: I don't know how NYU issues grades, but there's a lot to be said for a grading system that is NOT U Chicago's. I faired well, but I still think it's pointless to attempt to draw distinctions between 190 special snowflakes with a harsh grading system like we have.

Feel free to PM me if you have any specific questions.
Last edited by pehaigllleises on Fri Jan 15, 2010 12:39 am, edited 1 time in total.

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badfish
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Re: Chicago v. NYU

Postby badfish » Fri Jan 15, 2010 12:36 am

1L at NYU here, I had to make this decision last year and I chose NYU due to quality of life. At some point you've gotta let go of all of the analysis. Going to one school or another won't necessarily close or open any doors for you. Visit both and see where you like best.

jacko
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Re: Chicago v. NYU

Postby jacko » Fri Jan 15, 2010 12:51 am

pehaigllleises wrote:I am a 1L at UChicago and I love my school to pieces. I lived in New York for 6 years prior to moving to Chicago.

-There is still fun to be had, I promise. I also promise that you adapt to the 10 degree difference in weather and wind.
-The schools are mostly fungible, but I really enjoy the benefits of going to a smaller school. The heads of the administrative offices are easily accessible and quick to respond. I haven't seen a shred of red tape yet.
-Because we're a smaller school, there are fewer of our graduates to go around, and in the interests of school diversity, firms can't cut back per capita on our graduates as much as they can cut back at a large school like NYU or Columbia.
-I'm relatively anti-social because I'm a bit older and engaged and do my own thing outside the school, and I still know almost everyone's name in the entire 1L class.
-A point of criticism: I don't know how NYU issues grades, but there's a lot to be said for a grading system that is NOT U Chicago's. I faired well, but I still think it's pointless to attempt to draw distinctions between 190 special snowflakes with a harsh grading system like we have.

Feel free to PM me if you have any specific questions.


Chicago's grading system does seem to kind of suck, but at the same time not being able to distinguish between graduates like at Berkeley would be worse.

hiro86
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Re: Chicago v. NYU

Postby hiro86 » Fri Jan 15, 2010 1:15 am

I am confused, what makes Chicago's point grading system so much worse than a letter grade system? Also, I think a lot of Chicago students have said on TLS that the whole rigor thing is overstated and it is probably about the same as every other top law school.

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The Brainalist
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Re: Chicago v. NYU

Postby The Brainalist » Fri Jan 15, 2010 1:31 am

Veyron wrote:^ Hey, your position is perfectly valid. I am responding only to the expressed preference of the OP:

hopefullaw27 wrote:I am concerned about Chicago's QOL as I hear it's "where fun goes to die." Thoughts are appreciated. Thanks!


True, true.

pehaigllleises
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Re: Chicago v. NYU

Postby pehaigllleises » Fri Jan 15, 2010 1:43 am

I managed to get respectable grades, sleep 8 hours a night, get to the gym, cook food, work on planning a wedding, and keep up with 4-5 TV shows. If you chose to replace that with going out drinking or to trivia night, as I know many/most of my classmates do, then that's available too. The school itself is pretty social. The small school size forces it. We're all contained in one building. Most people know the names of most people in their entire class. We get free food most days at lunch and breakfast every Wednesday morning. There's only one social lounge to hang out in.

I think Chicago has its image of being the place where fun goes to die because it's cold here, the Law School's location is a bit remote, and I swear the sun did not come out for all of October. We're also really nerdy. I LOVE learning about the law, and I LOVE law school. Unfortunately, I also love talking about it when other people are probably sick of it. You get used to the weather, there's a bus that takes you downtown in 25 minutes and stops right outside the building where half of us live, and if you think you will have a love of all things academic at all times, it might be the right place for you.

I imagine the rigor is the same, but the grading system is just plain odd. The curve is very tight, though, which is insulating. High pass/pass/fail would induce FAR less meaningless anxiety.

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echoi
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Re: Chicago v. NYU

Postby echoi » Fri Jan 15, 2010 5:48 am

"where fun goes to die" refers to the undergraduates at UChicago, not the law school. Veyron's language is also a bit strong when describing the school...from what I've read on TLS and the talks I've had with some alums/current students, it seems like the school's reputation for rigor is overstated and mostly proliferated by people who don't even attend.

ITE, competition will be similarly tough wherever you go. That said, there are definitely different 'feels' to certain schools and I imagine those difference are most pronounced between schools like UChicago and NYU/UVA, so I would recommend you visit and attend the school that you feel fits you best.




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