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Penn State -- Two-campus pros & cons?

Posted: Fri Feb 19, 2010 11:44 pm
by BasketCaseBrief
I remember that Penn State law has two campuses, one in Carlisle, and the other at University Park, pretty far distance apart. Has anyone actually been to both areas and can give some info on advantages and disadvantages to both law campuses?

Re: Penn State -- Two-campus pros & cons?

Posted: Sat Feb 20, 2010 5:16 pm
by Lonagan
I've been to the one at the main Penn State campus. The building is outstanding. I was not able to go to the one in Carlisle because they had not yet moved in to the building. I assume that building will be nice as well. They are definitely investing in their facilities.

Re: Penn State -- Two-campus pros & cons?

Posted: Sat Feb 20, 2010 6:01 pm
by arundodonax
I visited the Carlisle location and it is quite nice.

This being said, I still have serious reservations about the distance learning for 2L and 3L. Admissions has been trying very hard to dispel the idea that it hampers learning, but for me, in person teaching is the way to go.

Quite honestly, the two campus setup just doesn't make sense. I don't see any point in having a school split between two locations, 1.5 hours from each other, alleging to have the exact same opportunities. To me it seems fiscally and educationally inefficient. Rutgers Camden and Rutgers Newark operate independently, in two separate markets, with measured success, but Penn State's establishment of two locations just to keep a Dickinson campus is concerning.

Re: Penn State -- Two-campus pros & cons?

Posted: Mon Mar 01, 2010 8:51 pm
by Snowdrifter
Do any current PSU DSL students have any input on this matter? I would like to know, as well.

Re: Penn State -- Two-campus pros & cons?

Posted: Mon Mar 01, 2010 9:07 pm
by LawHorn
I am a 1L at the UP campus. I was hesitant about the two campus system prior to attending as well. All of the 2L and 3L students say that taking a class via video conferencing is not bad at all. I have done several student organization meetings through the video conference/distant learning system and it is pretty impressive. The technology is high tech; however, I still think I will take classes taught exclusively at UP, which is definitely doable. Just check beforehand to see what professors and programs are at which location. As far as the campuses are concerned:

UP - more places to go out, excellent building, general college feel bc of the undergrad campus (sports), joint degree options (international affairs, business school opportunities), more students

Carlisle - close to Harrisburg (employment opportunities, government positions), very small town and no big undergrad to offset it, the new facilities are very nice

I think it comes down to whether you want to work for PA government. Also, if you are the type that likes to blow off steam and go out sometimes, I would recommend UP.

Overall I have been impressed with the faculty, students, and the school's financial commitment to continue rising in the ranking.

Re: Penn State -- Two-campus pros & cons?

Posted: Mon Mar 01, 2010 9:57 pm
by Snowdrifter
LawHorn wrote:I am a 1L at the UP campus. I was hesitant about the two campus system prior to attending as well. All of the 2L and 3L students say that taking a class via video conferencing is not bad at all. I have done several student organization meetings through the video conference/distant learning system and it is pretty impressive. The technology is high tech; however, I still think I will take classes taught exclusively at UP, which is definitely doable. Just check beforehand to see what professors and programs are at which location. As far as the campuses are concerned:

UP - more places to go out, excellent building, general college feel bc of the undergrad campus (sports), joint degree options (international affairs, business school opportunities), more students

Carlisle - close to Harrisburg (employment opportunities, government positions), very small town and no big undergrad to offset it, the new facilities are very nice

I think it comes down to whether you want to work for PA government. Also, if you are the type that likes to blow off steam and go out sometimes, I would recommend UP.

Overall I have been impressed with the faculty, students, and the school's financial commitment to continue rising in the ranking.


Well I actually intend to work in DC, possibly in human rights advocacy. Given that Carlisle is several hours closer, do you notice that the proximity confers any extra advantage?

I observed that the School of International Affairs is located in the Lewis Katz Building, so the UP campus is probably a no-brainer for people that want a joint degree.

Also, I was looking at course descriptions and such, but didn't see any data that broke availability down by campus. Do you have the links you are referring to?

Thanks in advance for your feedback, LawHorn. :)

Re: Penn State -- Two-campus pros & cons?

Posted: Mon Mar 01, 2010 10:14 pm
by SoxyPirate
arundodonax wrote:
This being said, I still have serious reservations about the distance learning for 2L and 3L. Admissions has been trying very hard to dispel the idea that it hampers learning, but for me, in person teaching is the way to go.


Funny thing is, they actually have experience with this and you...well...you just have reservations.

I haven't talked to a single student at Penn State that finds the video-conferencing as a disadvantage. Once you've seen the technology involved, it's not that hard to understand. This isn't the "live" analog to putting a dvd in and watching a law school class. This is, in every important way, the exact same experience as physically being in front of a professor in a classroom of peers.

Quite honestly, the two campus setup just doesn't make sense. I don't see any point in having a school split between two locations, 1.5 hours from each other, alleging to have the exact same opportunities. To me it seems fiscally and educationally inefficient. Rutgers Camden and Rutgers Newark operate independently, in two separate markets, with measured success, but Penn State's establishment of two locations just to keep a Dickinson campus is concerning.


Who the hell are you?

Re: Penn State -- Two-campus pros & cons?

Posted: Mon Mar 01, 2010 10:20 pm
by nick637
This thread is great. I'm currently trying to decide between the two campuses and leaning towards Carlisle. Does anyone know if the Carlisle campus has a gym?

Re: Penn State -- Two-campus pros & cons?

Posted: Mon Mar 01, 2010 10:37 pm
by SoxyPirate
LawHorn wrote:UP - more places to go out...
Carlisle - close to Harrisburg (employment opportunities, government positions)


Well, that seems a bit inconsistent, doesn't it?

Carlisle is part of the Harrisburg Metropolitan area, which has a population of about 650,000. There are so many more things to do and places to go in and around Harrisburg than there are in State College. More restaurants, bars, clubs, shopping centers, movie theaters, etc.

I don't see how that's even debatable. It's about 20 minutes from the parking lot of the Carlisle campus to the Harrisburg waterfront. So how are there "more places to go out" at UP?

There's a reason why some of our classmates leave Happy Valley for Harrisburg/Pittsburgh/Philly/NY on the weekends.

Re: Penn State -- Two-campus pros & cons?

Posted: Mon Mar 01, 2010 10:39 pm
by SoxyPirate
nick637 wrote:This thread is great. I'm currently trying to decide between the two campuses and leaning towards Carlisle. Does anyone know if the Carlisle campus has a gym?


It seems like students in Carlisle either use the facilities of Dickinson college or a local gym that the school contracted with, or something like that. Either way, it's not the school's gym.

Re: Penn State -- Two-campus pros & cons?

Posted: Wed Mar 03, 2010 2:36 pm
by LawHorn
I should rephrase... If you enjoy drinking, not paying for 20 minute cabrides, hanging out with people around your age, and athletics in your offtime, UP is for you. Also, I wasn't aware that movie theaters were exclusive to Harrisburg. I don't know of anyone at UP that is considering a transfer to Carlisle. I am not trying to get in a pissing match about the two campuses. Just tryign to offer my opinion. You are obviously sensitive to the issue...



SoxyPirate wrote:
LawHorn wrote:UP - more places to go out...
Carlisle - close to Harrisburg (employment opportunities, government positions)


Well, that seems a bit inconsistent, doesn't it?

Carlisle is part of the Harrisburg Metropolitan area, which has a population of about 650,000. There are so many more things to do and places to go in and around Harrisburg than there are in State College. More restaurants, bars, clubs, shopping centers, movie theaters, etc.

I don't see how that's even debatable. It's about 20 minutes from the parking lot of the Carlisle campus to the Harrisburg waterfront. So how are there "more places to go out" at UP?

There's a reason why some of our classmates leave Happy Valley for Harrisburg/Pittsburgh/Philly/NY on the weekends.

Re: Penn State -- Two-campus pros & cons?

Posted: Wed Mar 03, 2010 9:45 pm
by SoxyPirate
LawHorn wrote:I should rephrase... If you enjoy drinking, not paying for 20 minute cabrides, hanging out with people around your age, and athletics in your offtime, UP is for you. Also, I wasn't aware that movie theaters were exclusive to Harrisburg. I don't know of anyone at UP that is considering a transfer to Carlisle. I am not trying to get in a pissing match about the two campuses. Just tryign to offer my opinion. You are obviously sensitive to the issue...


I'm really not. Sorry to give that impression, G.

Re: Penn State -- Two-campus pros & cons?

Posted: Fri Mar 05, 2010 12:08 am
by ahk!
I'm planning on visiting towards the end of this month. Would anyone be able to shed some light on transportation and housing? If I go to PSU - will I have to buy a car (at either campus)? And where do most of the law students live?

Thanks for your time guys.