Healthcare Law and St. Louis University

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Spinozist21
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Healthcare Law and St. Louis University

Postby Spinozist21 » Fri Mar 26, 2010 11:28 am

Hello all. I am new to posting here but have been around for awhile reading.

I was hoping that some could clarify a couple things for me. I know that rankings do not mean everything, but I also know that there are schools that are regional and thus can affect future employment by attending them.

I guess my question is this: I have a real passion for medical ethics and healthcare law. Obviously St. Louis University is the highest rated healthcare law school. However, it is also considered a "regional" law school. If I go there for healthcare law does that mean that I will have difficulty getting a job nationally later on? Or because it is ranked #1 in healthcare law would that actually help me increase my access to the national job market in healthcare law.

Thanks in advance.

CanadianWolf
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Re: Healthcare Law and St. Louis University

Postby CanadianWolf » Fri Mar 26, 2010 12:24 pm

Your best resource for this question is the St. Louis University career placement office. However, if you have work experience and/or connections in this field, then you have another resource for employment opportunities info.

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Notor
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Re: Healthcare Law and St. Louis University

Postby Notor » Fri Mar 26, 2010 12:26 pm

Niche rankings don't matter.

ndpfn
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Re: Healthcare Law and St. Louis University

Postby ndpfn » Fri Mar 26, 2010 12:29 pm

SLU is a great choice if you want to work in St. Louis.

If you're not comfortable living/working there, then it would be wise to look elsewhere.

rando
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Re: Healthcare Law and St. Louis University

Postby rando » Fri Mar 26, 2010 12:39 pm

Notor wrote:Niche rankings don't matter.


Truth

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NayBoer
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Re: Healthcare Law and St. Louis University

Postby NayBoer » Fri Mar 26, 2010 1:56 pm

Ignore specialty rankings for the most part. They often don't reflect hiring practices.

WUSTL (if you get it) is better than SLU for STL, and far better for anywhere outside the area.

sluguy14
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Re: Healthcare Law and St. Louis University

Postby sluguy14 » Fri Mar 26, 2010 2:11 pm

Can anyone quantify or explain (examples?) the reasoning behind this dismissal of niche rankings? I ask because my girlfriend is also looking at SLU for health law (currently completing her MHA at SLU), with the idea that SLU's prominence in the field will give her national portability. I know she's talked with professors and outside attorneys who have backed up this assertion. I've been thinking about this quite a bit, and I don't think "TLS says it doesn't matter" will work in an argument. Can someone else weigh in?

And I wouldn't say that WUSTL is definitively better than SLU for the STL job market. If anything, I'd say the two schools are pretty much interchangeable. Again, this is coming from a lot of research and interviews.

rando
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Re: Healthcare Law and St. Louis University

Postby rando » Fri Mar 26, 2010 4:40 pm

sluguy14 wrote:Can anyone quantify or explain (examples?) the reasoning behind this dismissal of niche rankings? I ask because my girlfriend is also looking at SLU for health law (currently completing her MHA at SLU), with the idea that SLU's prominence in the field will give her national portability. I know she's talked with professors and outside attorneys who have backed up this assertion. I've been thinking about this quite a bit, and I don't think "TLS says it doesn't matter" will work in an argument. Can someone else weigh in?

And I wouldn't say that WUSTL is definitively better than SLU for the STL job market. If anything, I'd say the two schools are pretty much interchangeable. Again, this is coming from a lot of research and interviews.


Niche rankings don't matter because the way that law schools and hiring are set up doesn't lend itself to legal niches. There are no legal "majors" like undergrad etc. Very rarely schools are "known" for things but employers don't really care because as far as they are concerned, you aren't prepared to practice anyway. So considering law firms etc. are going to teach you to actually practice, they want the best, brightest, and most diligent. Since those people tend to go to better schools, they will dig much deeper in the applicant pool at a school like WUSTl than st. louis. I don't know why an attorney would tell you the two schools are interchangeable in St. Louis. This is disingenuous at best. I don't know anything about the st. louis market and I would bet my right hand on it. Of course the school is going to tout its health law program and hiring etc. That is what all schools will do.

td6624
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Re: Healthcare Law and St. Louis University

Postby td6624 » Fri Mar 26, 2010 4:50 pm

rando wrote:
sluguy14 wrote:Can anyone quantify or explain (examples?) the reasoning behind this dismissal of niche rankings? I ask because my girlfriend is also looking at SLU for health law (currently completing her MHA at SLU), with the idea that SLU's prominence in the field will give her national portability. I know she's talked with professors and outside attorneys who have backed up this assertion. I've been thinking about this quite a bit, and I don't think "TLS says it doesn't matter" will work in an argument. Can someone else weigh in?

And I wouldn't say that WUSTL is definitively better than SLU for the STL job market. If anything, I'd say the two schools are pretty much interchangeable. Again, this is coming from a lot of research and interviews.


Niche rankings don't matter because the way that law schools and hiring are set up doesn't lend itself to legal niches. There are no legal "majors" like undergrad etc. Very rarely schools are "known" for things but employers don't really care because as far as they are concerned, you aren't prepared to practice anyway. So considering law firms etc. are going to teach you to actually practice, they want the best, brightest, and most diligent. Since those people tend to go to better schools, they will dig much deeper in the applicant pool at a school like WUSTl than st. louis. I don't know why an attorney would tell you the two schools are interchangeable in St. Louis. This is disingenuous at best. I don't know anything about the st. louis market and I would bet my right hand on it. Of course the school is going to tout its health law program and hiring etc. That is what all schools will do.



...but what if you don't want to work as an associate at a big corporate law firm? I imagine there are jobs that require (or are better with) JDs and require some sort of background in health law. Right?

I've always been confused by the total rejection of niche ratings too. For some reason people seem to pay attention to IP rankings. But everything else is apparently worthless? Is this just a result of us being in an echo chamber?

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nealric
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Re: Healthcare Law and St. Louis University

Postby nealric » Fri Mar 26, 2010 4:52 pm

Your best resource for this question is the St. Louis University career placement office.

Image

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NayBoer
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Re: Healthcare Law and St. Louis University

Postby NayBoer » Fri Mar 26, 2010 7:43 pm

sluguy14 wrote:Can anyone quantify or explain (examples?) the reasoning behind this dismissal of niche rankings? I ask because my girlfriend is also looking at SLU for health law (currently completing her MHA at SLU), with the idea that SLU's prominence in the field will give her national portability. I know she's talked with professors and outside attorneys who have backed up this assertion. I've been thinking about this quite a bit, and I don't think "TLS says it doesn't matter" will work in an argument. Can someone else weigh in?

And I wouldn't say that WUSTL is definitively better than SLU for the STL job market. If anything, I'd say the two schools are pretty much interchangeable. Again, this is coming from a lot of research and interviews.
For Class of 2009, WUSTL was 24th on the NLJ list with 27.5% going to the top 250 firms. The 50th firm sent 13.2%; SLU did not make the top 50.
http://pdfserver.amlaw.com/nlj/law%20sc ... page12.pdf

Based on data several years before that, WUSTL sent roughly a quarter to NLJ 250 and SLU sent around 10%, comparable to Mizzou.
http://pdfserver.amlaw.com/nlj/composite.pdf (page 10)

If you want the top firms and top salaries to repay big loans, WUSTL is better. Not that SLU is horrible. Bryan Cave hires its fair share of people with SLU JDs. Doing a people search for both schools at Bryan Cave (it includes UG), the WUSTL list is longer than SLU. It also seemed as you click through that the SLU people were more likely to have honors than the WUSTL JDs. That's unscientific, but it fits with the NLJ250 data.

But WUSTL is most clearly a step up if you want flexibility. Per NALP, 78% of SLU grads stayed in the western Midwest (STL) and 13% stayed in the eastern Midwest (Chicago). So there really isn't a lot of movement and over 90% stayed in the Midwest. The comparable numbers for WUSTL are 25.5% and 16.5%, with 14% going Middle Atlantic (NYC), 17% South Atlantic (DC) and 7.5% Pacific (LA and SF). WUSTL just moves a lot more around the country than SLU.

The clerkship numbers are also better, 11% WUSTL and 5% SLU. This doesn't factor in the relative value of a clerkship (e.g. federal COA versus local district court or state court).

Maybe you could argue that for staying in STL the two schools give comparable opportunities (especially if you adjust for scholarships at SLU). But for access to biglaw and for national mobility, there really isn't competition.

Edit - since the geographic flexibility is what you're highlighting, here's the NALP link:
http://www.nalplawschoolsonline.org/ndl ... _quick.asp
Search for a school, scroll down to Areas of Practice. Regions defined by the Census Bureau.

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NayBoer
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Re: Healthcare Law and St. Louis University

Postby NayBoer » Fri Mar 26, 2010 7:48 pm

NayBoer wrote:Per NALP, 78% of SLU grads stayed in the western Midwest (STL) and 13% stayed in the eastern Midwest (Chicago).
And just to be clear, every region is a handful of states. So though it says 13% for Chicago's multi-state region, it's possible (likely?) that many or most of that 13% are just on the Illinois side of the STL metro area.

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SamSeaborn2016
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Re: Healthcare Law and St. Louis University

Postby SamSeaborn2016 » Fri Mar 26, 2010 7:52 pm

NayBoer wrote:
NayBoer wrote:Per NALP, 78% of SLU grads stayed in the western Midwest (STL) and 13% stayed in the eastern Midwest (Chicago).
And just to be clear, every region is a handful of states. So though it says 13% for Chicago's multi-state region, it's possible (likely?) that many or most of that 13% are just on the Illinois side of the STL metro area.


East STL is where dreams go to die. :lol:

sluguy14
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Re: Healthcare Law and St. Louis University

Postby sluguy14 » Fri Mar 26, 2010 11:53 pm

NayBoer wrote:
sluguy14 wrote:Can anyone quantify or explain (examples?) the reasoning behind this dismissal of niche rankings? I ask because my girlfriend is also looking at SLU for health law (currently completing her MHA at SLU), with the idea that SLU's prominence in the field will give her national portability. I know she's talked with professors and outside attorneys who have backed up this assertion. I've been thinking about this quite a bit, and I don't think "TLS says it doesn't matter" will work in an argument. Can someone else weigh in?

And I wouldn't say that WUSTL is definitively better than SLU for the STL job market. If anything, I'd say the two schools are pretty much interchangeable. Again, this is coming from a lot of research and interviews.


Maybe you could argue that for staying in STL the two schools give comparable opportunities (especially if you adjust for scholarships at SLU).


Yes, this is what I was arguing. I thought I made that pretty clear, but I apologize if I was ambiguous. I absolutely agree that WUSTL gives you far greater and more diverse opportunities than SLU. I assumed this was a given; as a national school, WUSTL is leagues ahead of SLU. Instead, I was referring to the schools as they apply specifically to the St. Louis market. And yes, multiple attorneys in the area have described them as largely interchangeable. In the end, the best advice I can give (again, for the STL market), is to go with the school that minimizes debt and offers you the best personal fit.


Edit: Rando- can you clarify further? I was under the impression that you could direct your studies along a particular concentration (in this case, health law). And with SLU's top ranking, it would seem that students would have the greatest field-specific education. Or perhaps this gives them a leg up should they (after a few years of practice) be in a position to work in-house at a hospital or medical center?

In all honesty- and I'm being very selfish here- I would love for my girlfriend to come with me to a school like UF or UNC instead of SLU. So I'm trying to form a compelling argument (or at least put forth legitimate questions and concerns) about the merits (or lack thereof) of SLU's health law program. In other words, I'm trying to cover all the angles and gather evidence.

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NayBoer
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Re: Healthcare Law and St. Louis University

Postby NayBoer » Sat Mar 27, 2010 11:47 am

sluguy14 wrote:Yes, this is what I was arguing. I thought I made that pretty clear, but I apologize if I was ambiguous. I absolutely agree that WUSTL gives you far greater and more diverse opportunities than SLU. I assumed this was a given; as a national school, WUSTL is leagues ahead of SLU. Instead, I was referring to the schools as they apply specifically to the St. Louis market. And yes, multiple attorneys in the area have described them as largely interchangeable. In the end, the best advice I can give (again, for the STL market), is to go with the school that minimizes debt and offers you the best personal fit.
Well, that last part may or may not be true. I suspect, from a cursory look at one of the most prominent STL-based firms, that it's not. But you and your girlfriend could browse the attorney listings (associates only, especially recent graduates) of the target firms to check. If the SLU JDs are much more likely to have latin honors than the WUSTL students, that would suggest that one needs a higher class rank from SLU to compete with WUSTL. If you need say top-third from SLU to compete with median at WUSTL, they aren't interchangeable. In the way that matters to students, they would be really different.

What's difficult about this experiment is we've already seen that only a quarter of WUSTL grads stay in the region, versus the lion's share of SLU grads. SLU's class is also ~25 students larger. So we'd expect to find more practicing SLU grads than WUSTL grads in the area. What we really want to know is what class rank your girlfriend would need to get the opportunities she wants.

But I was mostly focusing on this part:
sluguy14 wrote:I ask because my girlfriend is also looking at SLU for health law (currently completing her MHA at SLU), with the idea that SLU's prominence in the field will give her national portability.
SLU appears to not give national portability, despite its health law ranking.

I'm from St. Louis, so I don't have a bias against SLU or staying in STL. But I think it's important to stress to anybody reading the thread that the specialty rankings don't really translate into national reach. In many cases, practitioners in the field are unaware of their specialty's rankings.

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Re: Healthcare Law and St. Louis University

Postby Kobe_Teeth » Sat Mar 27, 2010 11:53 am

If you really do have this passion for bioethics and could go to WUSTL...go to WUSTL.

If you can't....buy a Pujols jersey because you're most likely sticking in StL for the first 10 years or more of your career.
I used to live near there...I like StL...its a good place to live.

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NayBoer
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Re: Healthcare Law and St. Louis University

Postby NayBoer » Sat Mar 27, 2010 12:05 pm

sluguy14 wrote:I was under the impression that you could direct your studies along a particular concentration (in this case, health law). And with SLU's top ranking, it would seem that students would have the greatest field-specific education. Or perhaps this gives them a leg up should they (after a few years of practice) be in a position to work in-house at a hospital or medical center?
Although coursework and clinics in a specialized area may help find work in a specialized practice, nobody should rely on them to get interviews or jobs. There's a reasonable chance that it will have no effect at all. Without some solid evidence (not testimony), I wouldn't advise going anywhere for a specialty concentration that you wouldn't go for a plain-vanilla JD.

CanadianWolf
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Re: Healthcare Law and St. Louis University

Postby CanadianWolf » Sat Mar 27, 2010 12:09 pm

Niche rankings are very important in several areas of legal specialization such as labor law, tax law, healthcare law & patent law.
The career placement offices of schools such as St. Louis University School of Law & Loyola University in Chicago probably have significant connections with law firms, government agencies & corporations that hire healthcare law specialists.
I doubt that the National Law Journal rankings are of much significance in this scenario.

rando
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Re: Healthcare Law and St. Louis University

Postby rando » Sat Mar 27, 2010 12:10 pm

sluguy14 wrote:

Edit: Rando- can you clarify further? I was under the impression that you could direct your studies along a particular concentration (in this case, health law). And with SLU's top ranking, it would seem that students would have the greatest field-specific education. Or perhaps this gives them a leg up should they (after a few years of practice) be in a position to work in-house at a hospital or medical center?



You can certainly direct your studies along a certain path. And you can do your best to highlight that in your job interviews. "I took Health Law, Bioethics, IP etc. etc." The problem is. To get the interviews you need school name & GPA. Most employers won't even look at your transcript let alone determine that you are health law focused.
What I meant was that health law isn't like a byline on your resume like UG major is and is largely irrelevant (not to you of course. Or what you may end up doing) but to employers hiring.

rando
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Re: Healthcare Law and St. Louis University

Postby rando » Sat Mar 27, 2010 12:11 pm

CanadianWolf wrote:Niche rankings are very important in several areas of legal specialization such as labor law, tax law, healthcare law & patent law.
The career placement offices of schools such as St. Louis University School of Law & Loyola University in Chicago probably have significant connections with law firms, government agencies & corporations that hire healthcare law specialists.
I doubt that the National Law Journal rankings are of much significance in this scenario.


Do you have any evidence to back this up. Everything I have ever seen or heard leans in the opposite direction. NLJ rankings are not the end all, but I have never heard of a niche ranking being touted as important (outside of a law school's own career office)

CanadianWolf
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Re: Healthcare Law and St. Louis University

Postby CanadianWolf » Sat Mar 27, 2010 12:14 pm

Then you haven't seen much.
Sorry to be so blunt, but I just viewed your profile & read that you are still in law school.
Rando: If you know any attorneys in specialty fields, especially tax law, patent law & labor law, I am confident that most, if not all, will agree with me.
OP: You will get your best info. from the SLU career services/placement office.
Last edited by CanadianWolf on Sat Mar 27, 2010 12:20 pm, edited 2 times in total.

rando
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Re: Healthcare Law and St. Louis University

Postby rando » Sat Mar 27, 2010 12:17 pm

CanadianWolf wrote:Then you haven't seen much.


Wow. good point. Well have fun convincing employers that niche rankings matter. Not my problem.

rando
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Re: Healthcare Law and St. Louis University

Postby rando » Sat Mar 27, 2010 12:18 pm

CanadianWolf wrote: Sorry to be so blunt, but I just viewed your profile & read that you are still in law school.


And I have been through the employment process. I know nothing about you. But I have probably been through the job search more recently than you. Unless in-house cares, nothing indicates that employers care about niche rankings.

CanadianWolf
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Re: Healthcare Law and St. Louis University

Postby CanadianWolf » Sat Mar 27, 2010 12:22 pm

Rando: You are entitled to your opinion. I disagree with you, however.
Have you ever interviewed for a position in any of these specialty areas?
As an Emory Law student just go to your placement office & ask about employers hiring for tax law firms as Emory offers an LLM in Taxation .
Another specialty area where where the top two "niche ranked" law schools do well in specialty practice placement is environmental law.
Last edited by CanadianWolf on Sat Mar 27, 2010 12:34 pm, edited 1 time in total.

rando
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Re: Healthcare Law and St. Louis University

Postby rando » Sat Mar 27, 2010 12:34 pm

CanadianWolf wrote:Rando: You are entitled to your opinion. I disagree with you, however.
Have you ever interviewed for a position in any of these specialty areas?
As an Emory Law student just go to your placement office & ask about employers hiring for tax law firms as Emory offers an LLM in Taxation .


It is fine to disagree. I have never even heard of anyone with such an opinion and you refuse to back it up with an even an argument as to how you are correct. And Emory does not offer an LLM in taxation. Further, you don't even need an LLM to go into a tax firm. Many Tax court judges don't even require LLM's for their clerks. And isn't an LLM a little off topic anyway?

Edit: No, I have not interviewed for a position in health law. I have interviewed for a position at a major athletic agency, however, and there was no indication of Sports Law niche rankings being a factor. But then again I don't know if that is one of the areas that is supposed to be subject to these rankings.




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