Sticker vs Scholarship Vandy Wake ASU

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

Vanderbilt vs Wake vs Arizona State

Vanderbilt (sticker; not doing big law post-graduate)
28
60%
Wake Forest ($20k/yr; top 2/3 requirement; no big law)
15
32%
Arizona State ($15k/yr; no big law)
4
9%
 
Total votes: 47

vikspeed
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Sticker vs Scholarship Vandy Wake ASU

Postby vikspeed » Thu Apr 29, 2010 1:24 pm

I know there are some forums on this, but I just thought I'd get an opinion in light of my polls. I polled Vandy at sticker vs $20k/yr scholarship at Wake Forest and came out with an overwhelming majority for Vandy. I can now add $15k/yr option at Arizona State. I'm just wondering how many would still choose Vandy if I was not planning on taking a big law job after graduating? I haven't worked big law, but 70-80 hr weeks of slavery doesn't sound too intriguing. Debt obviously makes such a job more imperative. From what I can tell, the LRAP at Vandy isn't on par with some of the better programs.

fwaam
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Re: Sticker vs Scholarship Vandy Wake ASU

Postby fwaam » Thu Apr 29, 2010 8:49 pm

Any location preferences? I know the Wake degree is more portable than its ranking would suggest (and Vandy the most portable of the three), but if you really want to be in Arizona, ASU is your best bet. If you want to be on the east coast, not so much.

Also, what do you want to do? Not biglaw... okay. Midlaw? Government? PI? In-house? Clerkship?

And it wouldn't hurt for you to tell us what the terms of Vandy's LRAP are. I think most people are voting for it because it's clearly better in the rankings, opens door for more prestigious jobs and is more portable than the other two, but if you want to go into government and Vandy only helps out people who make less than $40,000 a year, or who commit to 5 years of nonprofit work or some other condition that knocks out 99% of graduates, it would be a poor choice for you.

de5igual
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Re: Sticker vs Scholarship Vandy Wake ASU

Postby de5igual » Thu Apr 29, 2010 11:13 pm

fwaam wrote:if you want to go into government and Vandy only helps out people who make less than $40,000 a year, or who commit to 5 years of nonprofit work or some other condition that knocks out 99% of graduates, it would be a poor choice for you.


ibr makes debt irrelevant for people going into p.i. / govt

vikspeed
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Re: Sticker vs Scholarship Vandy Wake ASU

Postby vikspeed » Sat May 01, 2010 1:48 am

fwaam wrote:Any location preferences? I know the Wake degree is more portable than its ranking would suggest (and Vandy the most portable of the three), but if you really want to be in Arizona, ASU is your best bet. If you want to be on the east coast, not so much.

Also, what do you want to do? Not biglaw... okay. Midlaw? Government? PI? In-house? Clerkship?

And it wouldn't hurt for you to tell us what the terms of Vandy's LRAP are. I think most people are voting for it because it's clearly better in the rankings, opens door for more prestigious jobs and is more portable than the other two, but if you want to go into government and Vandy only helps out people who make less than $40,000 a year, or who commit to 5 years of nonprofit work or some other condition that knocks out 99% of graduates, it would be a poor choice for you.
j

First off, Vandy's LRAP pays 20-50% of loan repayment obligations for up to 10 yrs. Anything above $50k is not eligible.
(So basically not very good)

However, now that the government has taken over all loans that would make all my potential loans federal. Therefore, they would qualify for IBR and forgiveness after 10 yrs. (correct me if I'm wrong)

I am interested in government/PI work, but truly, I am open to exploring. I honestly don't know for sure what area I would want to practice/work in at this time. I just think in my mind that it wouldn't be big law and probably not a clerkship. I actually don't know much about midlaw or in-house. At this point, areas of interest include: sports and entertainment law, family law, public interest law, jurisprudence, and law and human behavior (in no particular order). I really want a program that allows for a lot of interdisciplinary study.

fwaam
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Re: Sticker vs Scholarship Vandy Wake ASU

Postby fwaam » Sat May 01, 2010 3:40 pm

f0bolous wrote:
fwaam wrote:if you want to go into government and Vandy only helps out people who make less than $40,000 a year, or who commit to 5 years of nonprofit work or some other condition that knocks out 99% of graduates, it would be a poor choice for you.


ibr makes debt irrelevant for people going into p.i. / govt


Blatantly not true. Anyone considering those paths needs to read the fine print.

IBR requires you to put your loans on a 25-year repayment term, and then contribute 10% of your income over that time. If your loans are still not paid off after 25 years, then the government will pay them for you.

Let's say you have $120,000 in debt over a 25-year term. Your monthly payments would be $833 at a 6.8% interest rate (which from what I've seen is low; maybe half your loans would actually be at that rate, the other half higher). Let's say you're working as a public defender and start out earning $40,000 per year. My calculations (admittedly, I'm not a professional in the field, but just as an example) are that you would actually have to pay $333 per month at that salary (keep in mind you're only making $3,333/month, and that's before taxes). For 25 years. So, if you went to law school right from UG, that means until you're 50. And of course, your income will increase over that time, for cost-of-living if nothing else, and so the amount you're expected to pay will increase.

IBR helps, but your debt is hardly "irrelevant."

Now, if you worked as a public defender for 10 years, the government might forgive your debt after that time, but keep in mind that very few people do that. (The 10 year forgiveness is only for "qualifying public service jobs." Otherwise, it's 25 years.) Also, many of the changes recently made to student loans only affect loans taken out after 2014, which excludes nearly everyone on this board.

OP, I really think you need to look at Wake and Arizona, decide which area you like best, and go with that. You're not into biglaw, and a $50,000 income cap basically sucks unle.s you're deadset on nonprofit or public defender work; the vast majority of government and small firm jobs will have you making at least that by the end of the first couple years (if not to begin with). The schools you're looking at are still good schools, and it's not like you're turning down a T14.

de5igual
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Re: Sticker vs Scholarship Vandy Wake ASU

Postby de5igual » Sat May 01, 2010 5:02 pm

fwaam wrote:
f0bolous wrote:
fwaam wrote:if you want to go into government and Vandy only helps out people who make less than $40,000 a year, or who commit to 5 years of nonprofit work or some other condition that knocks out 99% of graduates, it would be a poor choice for you.


ibr makes debt irrelevant for people going into p.i. / govt


Blatantly not true. Anyone considering those paths needs to read the fine print.

IBR requires you to put your loans on a 25-year repayment term, and then contribute 10% of your income over that time. If your loans are still not paid off after 25 years, then the government will pay them for you.

Let's say you have $120,000 in debt over a 25-year term. Your monthly payments would be $833 at a 6.8% interest rate (which from what I've seen is low; maybe half your loans would actually be at that rate, the other half higher). Let's say you're working as a public defender and start out earning $40,000 per year. My calculations (admittedly, I'm not a professional in the field, but just as an example) are that you would actually have to pay $333 per month at that salary (keep in mind you're only making $3,333/month, and that's before taxes). For 25 years. So, if you went to law school right from UG, that means until you're 50. And of course, your income will increase over that time, for cost-of-living if nothing else, and so the amount you're expected to pay will increase.

IBR helps, but your debt is hardly "irrelevant."

Now, if you worked as a public defender for 10 years, the government might forgive your debt after that time, but keep in mind that very few people do that. (The 10 year forgiveness is only for "qualifying public service jobs." Otherwise, it's 25 years.) Also, many of the changes recently made to student loans only affect loans taken out after 2014, which excludes nearly everyone on this board.

OP, I really think you need to look at Wake and Arizona, decide which area you like best, and go with that. You're not into biglaw, and a $50,000 income cap basically sucks unle.s you're deadset on nonprofit or public defender work; the vast majority of government and small firm jobs will have you making at least that by the end of the first couple years (if not to begin with). The schools you're looking at are still good schools, and it's not like you're turning down a T14.


"qualifying public service jobs" are very broad. if OP strikes out at any legal job and works as a postal clerk, he would still qualify for the 10 year IBR

fwaam
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Re: Sticker vs Scholarship Vandy Wake ASU

Postby fwaam » Sat May 01, 2010 5:19 pm

f0bolous wrote:"qualifying public service jobs" are very broad. if OP strikes out at any legal job and works as a postal clerk, he would still qualify for the 10 year IBR


Sure, but the OP got into Vandy, and got good offers from a couple other well-regarded schools. He's unlikely to have to work as a postal clerk. But if he goes to Vandy, he is likely to have to figure out how to make $1200+/month payments on a $60,000 salary, and to receive minimal help through IBR/LRAP, and to seriously consider selling his life away to biglaw in order to pay down the debt. Maybe IBR or LRAP would serve OP well, but it sounds like Vandy's LRAP helps very few people, and there's a huge amount of fine print with IBR that he needs to check into before blindly depending on it. Thus, based on the financial aid packages and OP's stated interests, I'd recommend either Wake or ASU, depending on location preferences. But if the OP gets the facts and still prefers Vandy, that could work out well too.

vikspeed
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Re: Sticker vs Scholarship Vandy Wake ASU

Postby vikspeed » Sat May 01, 2010 6:37 pm

Good points. Right now, I'm leaning towards scholarship over sticker because I don't know for sure what I want to do when I get out. Even if I knew I wanted to do public interest work, what if I decided to work litigation, for instance, after a few years? I'm thinking right now that enormous debt limits me to either IBR/LRAP or big law. What if I chose the path of neither? It would be a lot easier if I knew what area I wanted to practice in for sure. Also, I guess it doesn't help that I come from a financial management background. I'm all about risk but only after I've done my due diligence. I'm not going to lie. I like some of Vanderbilt's interdisciplinary offerings, e.g. law and human behavior, business certification, etc. However, sticker seems like a big pill to swallow, and I hate feeling bound.

vikspeed
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Re: Sticker vs Scholarship Vandy Wake ASU

Postby vikspeed » Sun May 02, 2010 11:15 pm

Any more thoughts?

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ozarkhack
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Re: Sticker vs Scholarship Vandy Wake ASU

Postby ozarkhack » Sun May 02, 2010 11:28 pm

Above math and info about IBR is way off.

With a $40K job and $120K in debt, your payment would be $295/month. Try for yourself here.

And ...
f0bolous wrote:Also, many of the changes recently made to student loans only affect loans taken out after 2014, which excludes nearly everyone on this board.


True, but misleading

The changes to IBR & 10-year forgiveness are minimal (biggest one is that IBR will cap begin capping annual IBR payments at 10% of difference between your income and 150% of federal poverty level; the cap now is at 15% of the difference). So you would benefit from IBR, on all Direct Loans (subsudized, unsub and Grad PLUS) upon graduation.

That said, there are many potential drawbacks of going IBR. If you are dedicated to PI/govt, however, they are not as pronounced. The biggest problem with IBR -- you're not hitting any principal for a very long time, which metastasizes your debt -- does not matter if you work in pi/govt for 10 years. Study up on it, OP, to make sure it would work for you. (Family size/spouse/etc. can also alter the IBR equation.)

What could also matter is whether Vandy's LRAP ties into IBR. From what I've read about it, it's not entirely clear. But if Vandy does pay part of your IBR-adjusted loan payment, you'd be getting a very, very good deal (granted, one you can enjoy at only below $50K salary).
Last edited by ozarkhack on Sun May 02, 2010 11:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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beesknees
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Re: Sticker vs Scholarship Vandy Wake ASU

Postby beesknees » Sun May 02, 2010 11:30 pm

If you're not thrilled with the prospect of biglaw, you'd probably be miserable doing it and, honestly, how would you pay off your $200k debt from Vandy any other way? Their LRAP is not very good AT ALL... income capped at $49k/year, and if you are in that tier, they're only paying 20% of your law school debt payments. So unless your overall debt is pretty low, you won't be able to utilize the program without going into IBR (which is also not a great option).

Disclosure: I'm attending Vandy, but I'm attending with a scholly. I truly believe that paying sticker for schools outside HYS is a tough pill to swallow without rich parents, large personal savings, etc. I got accepted to a T10 and turned it down at sticker. Ask yourself why you want Vandy and how it could help you achieve your goals. If you can't answer that specifically, I would seriously pause before taking out $200k in debt.

However, if your parents are bank rolling you or you are, for any other reason less concerned with debt, then Vandy is a great school that has truly performed on par with the lower T14 in terms of top firm placement and clerkship placement... but then again, it doesn't sound like you're all that interested in either of those things. I could see someone who really really wants biglaw or a clerkship taking on that debt to go to Vandy which will give them a decent shot at it. But if you're just not that into that sort of thing, why would you pay so much for it?

Lawyerwannabe18
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Re: Sticker vs Scholarship Vandy Wake ASU

Postby Lawyerwannabe18 » Sun May 02, 2010 11:30 pm

Tell ASU you want a full ride and go there.

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romothesavior
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Re: Sticker vs Scholarship Vandy Wake ASU

Postby romothesavior » Sun May 02, 2010 11:41 pm

What is the difference between 50k, 100k, and 200k in debt if you are going to do PI? In all three cases, you will never pay off the total thanks to IBR. So wouldn't it be best to just take the extra debt (which is not debt you will actually repay), and then go to the best school you can in to optimize your job opportunities?

Also, fwam's math is way off. You will not be making $1200 repayments if you go into PI. Also, public defender is FAR from the only PI career path out there. Many jobs qualify as PI. Fwam is like the anti-credited response on this one.

Go to Vanderbilt.

vikspeed
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Re: Sticker vs Scholarship Vandy Wake ASU

Postby vikspeed » Sat May 08, 2010 2:39 pm

Still, overwhelmingly Vandy without biglaw. Hmm...that seems interesting to me.

de5igual
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Re: Sticker vs Scholarship Vandy Wake ASU

Postby de5igual » Mon May 10, 2010 9:43 am

vikspeed wrote:Still, overwhelmingly Vandy without biglaw. Hmm...that seems interesting to me.


1) Vandy will open more doors
2) If you go into any public sector job (it doesn't even have to be law related) or a non-profit, debt will be irrelevant because you will be making the same payments for 10 years

I don't know why this is so astonishing or puzzling for you

keg411
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Re: Sticker vs Scholarship Vandy Wake ASU

Postby keg411 » Mon May 10, 2010 1:46 pm

vikspeed wrote:Still, overwhelmingly Vandy without biglaw. Hmm...that seems interesting to me.


Vandy is winning because you have yet to specify where you want to live/work.
Where are you from? If either NC or Arizona, pick the one where you are currently located.
Where do you want to practice after school? Wake and ASU will confine you to a region (NC/AZ). Vandy will give you a bit more portability (mostly in the south).
If where you want to live/work is not one of these locations, you should NOT go to school and reapply to where you do want to live/work (or go the school there that you have been accepted to not on this list).

Those are probably the most important factors you should look at. Outside of the T13, law is mostly regional and you will likely be practicing in the area where you go to school.

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sundevil77
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Re: Sticker vs Scholarship Vandy Wake ASU

Postby sundevil77 » Mon May 10, 2010 2:00 pm

vikspeed wrote:Still, overwhelmingly Vandy without biglaw. Hmm...that seems interesting to me.


Not so interesting if you remember the name of this website...Top Law Schools. 92% of the time people will tell you to go to the best school you can get into regardless of debt. However, those people aren't you, and they don't know possess the same utility calculus. I know a fairly smart kid that just decided to go to UCLA at sticker, in spite of tuition increases. I think he's an idiot. But it's his decision, not mine. I chose to take a full-ride in a market I like, rather than $$ at some T14s. Some people might think I'm an idiot. In reality it's a personal choice and only you know what is best for you. Don't let the groupthink mentality of TLS sway your decision.

vikspeed
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Re: Sticker vs Scholarship Vandy Wake ASU

Postby vikspeed » Thu May 13, 2010 1:02 am

keg411 wrote:
vikspeed wrote:Still, overwhelmingly Vandy without biglaw. Hmm...that seems interesting to me.


Vandy is winning because you have yet to specify where you want to live/work.
Where are you from? If either NC or Arizona, pick the one where you are currently located.
Where do you want to practice after school? Wake and ASU will confine you to a region (NC/AZ). Vandy will give you a bit more portability (mostly in the south).
If where you want to live/work is not one of these locations, you should NOT go to school and reapply to where you do want to live/work (or go the school there that you have been accepted to not on this list).

Those are probably the most important factors you should look at. Outside of the T13, law is mostly regional and you will likely be practicing in the area where you go to school.


I'm actually from TN (about 45 minutes from the Vandy campus). However, I've lived in AZ before and really enjoyed it. I currently live in OK, and to be honest, location is not that big of a deal to me. I like living in/visiting new places. I've never really been to NC but have heard great things. I've looked more into the classes and programs of all three, and after review, it seems it would be between Wake and Vandy.




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