Notre Dame ($$) / William and Mary ($$) / Fordham (sticker)

(Rankings, Profiles, Tuition, Student Life, . . . )

What would you do?

Notre Dame ($$)
William & Mary ($$)
Fordham (Sticker)
Other - please explain!
Total votes: 30

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Notre Dame ($$) / William and Mary ($$) / Fordham (sticker)

Postby danidancer » Sat Feb 27, 2010 8:30 pm

Alright, now that my cycle is wrapping up, here's my situation. So far I've been accepted at Notre Dame ($20K/year), William & Mary ($19,200/year), Boston University ($10K/year), WUSTL ($10K/year), as well as Fordham, George Washington, and Boston College (all far). Still waiting to hear from NYU and USC, but not holding my breath. I'm also riding five waitlists, three of them T14 (Columbia, Michigan, Georgetown PT, UCLA, and Vanderbilt) and was deferred at Cornell and Northwestern (most likely WLs?).

At this point (at least until schools start reaching to their WLs) I've pretty much narrowed my decision down to Notre Dame, William & Mary, or Fordham. I have strong NYC ties and would LOVE to return to NYC to practice, but I'm willing to compromise on location for stronger opportunities elsewhere, if necessary. I'm looking to go into biglaw or possibly pursuing a clerkship or government work.

William and Mary: by far the cheapest option of the three (the total cost of attendance will be about $8.5K/year cheaper than Notre Dame and over $40K/year cheaper than Fordham), and I really like Washington DC. BUT, I grew up in Hampton Roads and I'm not sure if I want to return to the area. The William and Mary degree is probably the most limiting, and while I would be OK working in DC, the prospect of potentially being shafted to Richmond or Hampton Roads is much less appealing. Also the scholarship comes with bigger strings than the ND scholly (I got the graduate fellowship, so there's a work requirement and GPA requirement).

Notre Dame: More expensive than William and Mary, but not overly so (and around half the cost of Fordham), and while the William and Mary offer has a GPA and work requirement, Notre Dame's is just contingent on maintaining good academic standing. I'm really interested in their London program, and the amazing new facilities are also a big draw. It would also be interesting to have a completely different experience than I had in undergrad (i.e. football school!). BUT, ITE I've heard that Notre Dame is hurting. I'd be willing to work in Chicago if necessary, but I'm not sure if that's even going to be possible now. There's also that whole Catholic/conservative thing. I'm Irish and grew up going to Catholic schools, but I'm a devout agnostic, liberal, tree-hugging vegetarian now, and I'm not sure how I'll mesh with the culture out there...

Fordham: Oh Fordham! I attended college in NYC and have been living here since graduation, so I have a very strong social network here as well as a lot of extended family in the area. I would absolutely love to stay here for law school and would especially love to practice here. Also, Fordham is my dad's alma mater, so it's always held a soft spot in my heart. The big issue for me though is the money. To put it bluntly, I'm poor, so I will need to finance law school entirely with loans. I'm also very debt averse and I'm not sure if I can justify taking out $200K in loans (especially ITE) just to stay in NYC, especially when I have other very generous options on the table.

I guess my next step is to try and negotiate more money from Notre Dame/any money from Fordham. My biggest issue is that I'm not really excited about any of these options. I'm definitely attending Notre Dame's admitted student day in March, and hoping to get to Fordham and William and Mary as well.

Thoughts? Words of wisdom?

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Richie Tenenbaum
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Re: Notre Dame ($$) / William and Mary ($$) / Fordham (sticker)

Postby Richie Tenenbaum » Sat Feb 27, 2010 8:36 pm

Trying to get some money of out Fordham would probably be the biggest priority, but since they don't have that much to give out that might not happen.

Not 100% sure about this, but will the construction for the new facilities for ND be done before you begin 1L? It might take another year or two for the construction to be finished up.

I would think it comes down to ND and Fordham. If you really want NYC, Fordham is your best bet but sticker is a bit frightening. If you would be happy with Chicago, I would go with ND if Fordham doesn't offer any money.
Last edited by Richie Tenenbaum on Sat Feb 27, 2010 8:58 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Notre Dame ($$) / William and Mary ($$) / Fordham (sticker)

Postby timertimer61 » Sat Feb 27, 2010 8:37 pm

i think that if you want NYC, then fordham would be best bet out of the choices you have.

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Re: Notre Dame ($$) / William and Mary ($$) / Fordham (sticker)

Postby scribelaw » Sat Feb 27, 2010 8:38 pm

Notre Dame seems like the best offer you have now.

You could probably try to negotiate some money from Fordham, but I think they are pretty stingy and it's going to be really expensive either way.

Notre Dame is struggling at OCI, but I think it has some advantages, national name recognition, devoted alumni base, etc. I think ND will give you the most flexibility in terms of markets. You'll have to do well, but that's going to be true across the T30.

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Re: Notre Dame ($$) / William and Mary ($$) / Fordham (sticker)

Postby holydonkey » Sat Feb 27, 2010 8:43 pm

You're riding like 7 waitlists. Too early for a decision, but I'd take the money at Notre Dame for right now. That being said, I'd be shocked if you didn't get off one of the T18 waitlists/holds. If you get in Columbia, Michigan, UCLA, Vanderbilt, Cornell, or Northwestern I'd go there.

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Re: Notre Dame ($$) / William and Mary ($$) / Fordham (sticker)

Postby badwithpseudonyms » Sat Feb 27, 2010 8:56 pm

As of now, ND gets my vote. But, as stated above, you have a lot of cycle left to play.

BTW, as far as I know, the new law library at ND is on track to finish up this summer. And they've been using the rest of the building all year. Each student will have their own carrel. It should be pretty nice.

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Re: Notre Dame ($$) / William and Mary ($$) / Fordham (sticker)

Postby danidancer » Sun Feb 28, 2010 3:00 am

Thanks, everyone! I think ND was how I was leaning as well, for the reasons you've all stated, but I still needed that little push. So far it seems to be the clear winner. There's still a little voice in my head that says "but NYC!" or "but W&M is SO cheap!" - but ND seems to be the best compromise, for now at least. I'd love to hear from those who voted for W&M or "other" as well!

As for the WLs, I'm hopeful something will come through from there as well, but I'm just not sure how long I can ride the WL for. I'm definitely in it through the April and probably June deposits, but I can't anticipate myself staying on past July 1, and definitely not to the end of the summer... I don't deal with uncertainty well.

I've also officially started my negotiations for money from all the schools I haven't gotten money from yet. Fingers crossed!

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