Phoenix School of Law vs. Appalachian School of Law

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You Gotta Have Faith
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Re: Phoenix School of Law vs. Appalachian School of Law

Postby You Gotta Have Faith » Fri Jul 30, 2010 12:56 pm

RVP11 wrote:
You Gotta Have Faith wrote:
Matthies wrote:Because it's the only shot to go part-time in what America's sixth largest city?


This is mundane... and it doesn't really make much of a difference. But Phoenix is actually 5th largest now. It's technically an estimate until the current census is released; but last time around Philly was only a hair bigger and wasn't growing nearly like Phoenix.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_United_States_cities_by_population

Just thought... hey, why not point that out. It surprised me when someone told me Phoenix was so big.


Measuring by city population is misleading - measuring by metro area population is far more informative. Phoenix has around 4 million in the area, but is not even top 10 in metro area population.

Also keep in mind that Phoenix is a young city with very little big business for its size. And as a legal market it's not even top 20 in size and less than half the size of Philadelphia.

Phoenix, as a legal market, is more comparable to San Diego or Portland than to Dallas or Houston or Philadelphia.


This... I do not dispute. I was going solely on city population. Not calling it a comparably sized legal market (though it is growing a lot more). Just pointing out that it's big within the city limits.

Although, it has exhibited one of the biggest growths around as a percentage and will be a much larger force in the coming years: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Table_of_United_States_Metropolitan_Statistical_Areas
Of course, I guess southern cities in general are growing much faster than northern ones.

I guess it just depends on how you wanna measure it (is Tokyo bigger, or is Mexico City bigger?). But I suppose I'd agree with you that from a business/market standpoint, it may be better to just go for the metro area.

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Re: Phoenix School of Law vs. Appalachian School of Law

Postby 20160810 » Fri Jul 30, 2010 5:02 pm

You Gotta Have Faith wrote:
RVP11 wrote:
You Gotta Have Faith wrote:
Matthies wrote:Because it's the only shot to go part-time in what America's sixth largest city?


This is mundane... and it doesn't really make much of a difference. But Phoenix is actually 5th largest now. It's technically an estimate until the current census is released; but last time around Philly was only a hair bigger and wasn't growing nearly like Phoenix.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_United_States_cities_by_population

Just thought... hey, why not point that out. It surprised me when someone told me Phoenix was so big.


Measuring by city population is misleading - measuring by metro area population is far more informative. Phoenix has around 4 million in the area, but is not even top 10 in metro area population.

Also keep in mind that Phoenix is a young city with very little big business for its size. And as a legal market it's not even top 20 in size and less than half the size of Philadelphia.

Phoenix, as a legal market, is more comparable to San Diego or Portland than to Dallas or Houston or Philadelphia.


This... I do not dispute. I was going solely on city population. Not calling it a comparably sized legal market (though it is growing a lot more). Just pointing out that it's big within the city limits.

Although, it has exhibited one of the biggest growths around as a percentage and will be a much larger force in the coming years: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Table_of_United_States_Metropolitan_Statistical_Areas
Of course, I guess southern cities in general are growing much faster than northern ones.

I guess it just depends on how you wanna measure it (is Tokyo bigger, or is Mexico City bigger?). But I suppose I'd agree with you that from a business/market standpoint, it may be better to just go for the metro area.

Quite frankly, I find this method of delineation a bit silly as well. Why, for instance, did they decide to lump LA, Long Beach, and Santa Ana (three pretty different/distant places) into one MSA, whereas they split the Bay Area into SF/Oakland/Fremont and San Jose/Santa Clara/Sunnyvale. That makes little or no sense to me.

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You Gotta Have Faith
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Re: Phoenix School of Law vs. Appalachian School of Law

Postby You Gotta Have Faith » Fri Jul 30, 2010 5:16 pm

SoftBoiledLife wrote:Quite frankly, I find this method of delineation a bit silly as well. Why, for instance, did they decide to lump LA, Long Beach, and Santa Ana (three pretty different/distant places) into one MSA, whereas they split the Bay Area into SF/Oakland/Fremont and San Jose/Santa Clara/Sunnyvale. That makes little or no sense to me.


Since I've little knowledge about California, I have no comment. I'll just take your word for it :D

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Re: Phoenix School of Law vs. Appalachian School of Law

Postby BeautifulSW » Fri Jul 30, 2010 6:46 pm

The following comments are based only upon my personal observations after 25 years of practice in New Mexico. Please take them for whatever you think they are worth, maybe not much but do remember that we have quite a lot of contact with our neighbor to the West:

You really can't do the U.S. News rankings analysis when you are talking about Arizona, or New Mexico, either, for that matter. Government and small/mid-law in the desert Southwest just don't care that much about Stanford vs. Northwestern. They just don't, that's all.

Who you are matters a lot more, especially if you are native, a long term resident, or just more likely to commit. There is a SUBSTANTIAL bias in favor of the local product. There might also be an unspoken bias AGAINST the elite, East Coast schools. Westerners, as a group, have a visceral distrust of the East Coast Establishment.

A J.D. from UA or ASU carries a LOT of weight in the Rocky Mountain West. UC Boulder, too. But excluding these schools, I am inclined to believe that a Phoenix Law School degree will be viewed much more favorably in Phoenix than the rankings would suggest.
Last edited by BeautifulSW on Fri Jul 30, 2010 6:56 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: Phoenix School of Law vs. Appalachian School of Law

Postby BeautifulSW » Fri Jul 30, 2010 6:53 pm

Forgive me for prattling on just a bit:

UC Boulder has, and deserves, a reputation for being the best law school in the Rocky Mountain West. If a Harvard or Yale grad thinks that a Boulder grad offers no competition, he'd best think again.

This is just my own observation but the reader might do well to consider the number of lawyers I've HIRED into state government over the years.

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Re: Phoenix School of Law vs. Appalachian School of Law

Postby You Gotta Have Faith » Fri Jul 30, 2010 7:37 pm

BeautifulSW, I don't deny that you have some good points. It is indeed true that a weaker law degree in one location may be more powerful in another location.

However... the USNews has no way of measuring this really well without creating multiple sets of rankings. Like, "rankings for Chicago" (where UIUC would place quite high), "rankings for Denver" (where UC-Boulder would place quite high), etc. And I don't think anyone wants to look at dozens of sets of rankings. So they just do the best they can at providing an overall picture.

One who is serious about a particular location would do well to invest some effort into researching what things are like there (for example, if they would like to practice in the Mountain West). Some do, and others do not. So that's unfortunate at times.

Honestly, I think there is a little bit of both. Some firms (judges, companies, etc.) have a bias for the local product while others have a bigger bias for the place they perceive as being higher-ranked. In the end, there just isn't a perfect system for USNews to use. Thus, we get what we have, albeit imperfect.

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Re: Phoenix School of Law vs. Appalachian School of Law

Postby BG4444 » Fri Jul 30, 2010 9:35 pm

Thank you for the graph. I suppose if it is old then there would not be info for PSL. At this point it sounds like Appalachian is the lesser of the two choices between ASL and PSL.

I suppose now I am trying to figure out whether it is worth going to PSL based on my suggestion edited on the first post.

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Re: Phoenix School of Law vs. Appalachian School of Law

Postby RVP11 » Sat Jul 31, 2010 1:11 am

BeautifulSW wrote:The following comments are based only upon my personal observations after 25 years of practice in New Mexico. Please take them for whatever you think they are worth, maybe not much but do remember that we have quite a lot of contact with our neighbor to the West:

You really can't do the U.S. News rankings analysis when you are talking about Arizona, or New Mexico, either, for that matter. Government and small/mid-law in the desert Southwest just don't care that much about Stanford vs. Northwestern. They just don't, that's all.

Who you are matters a lot more, especially if you are native, a long term resident, or just more likely to commit. There is a SUBSTANTIAL bias in favor of the local product. There might also be an unspoken bias AGAINST the elite, East Coast schools. Westerners, as a group, have a visceral distrust of the East Coast Establishment.

A J.D. from UA or ASU carries a LOT of weight in the Rocky Mountain West. UC Boulder, too. But excluding these schools, I am inclined to believe that a Phoenix Law School degree will be viewed much more favorably in Phoenix than the rankings would suggest.


This post is a whole lot of wrong.

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Re: Phoenix School of Law vs. Appalachian School of Law

Postby sundevil77 » Mon Aug 02, 2010 1:30 pm

RVP11 wrote:
BeautifulSW wrote:The following comments are based only upon my personal observations after 25 years of practice in New Mexico. Please take them for whatever you think they are worth, maybe not much but do remember that we have quite a lot of contact with our neighbor to the West:

You really can't do the U.S. News rankings analysis when you are talking about Arizona, or New Mexico, either, for that matter. Government and small/mid-law in the desert Southwest just don't care that much about Stanford vs. Northwestern. They just don't, that's all.

Who you are matters a lot more, especially if you are native, a long term resident, or just more likely to commit. There is a SUBSTANTIAL bias in favor of the local product. There might also be an unspoken bias AGAINST the elite, East Coast schools. Westerners, as a group, have a visceral distrust of the East Coast Establishment.

A J.D. from UA or ASU carries a LOT of weight in the Rocky Mountain West. UC Boulder, too. But excluding these schools, I am inclined to believe that a Phoenix Law School degree will be viewed much more favorably in Phoenix than the rankings would suggest.


This post is a whole lot of wrong.


Some of this is true, but other parts are over exaggerated.

Based on a conversation with a Phoenix hiring partner...his exact words were that a large firm would "consider a new class of associates a failure if they did not lure anyone from an elite school." That firmly dismisses the "they don't care about Stanford or Northwestern" comment. These firms are not entirely devoid of caring about prestige. However, due to both self selection and loyalty to long-term residents and the local schools, they invariably hire grads from ASU and/or UA. This would be a major argument against OP going to PSL; he is not a long-term resident nor does he have an extensive local network.

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Re: Phoenix School of Law vs. Appalachian School of Law

Postby BeautifulSW » Mon Aug 02, 2010 3:37 pm

Yes. And in my original observation, I specifically excluded large law firms for that reason.

Incidently, though, although I still maintain that the rank of the school is less important when dealing with the kinds of Southwest employers I mention, one's class rank matters a lot.

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Re: Phoenix School of Law vs. Appalachian School of Law

Postby Matthies » Mon Aug 02, 2010 3:54 pm

BeautifulSW wrote:Yes. And in my original observation, I specifically excluded large law firms for that reason.

Incidently, though, although I still maintain that the rank of the school is less important when dealing with the kinds of Southwest employers I mention, one's class rank matters a lot.


Pretty much what BSW has said has been my experince as well here in CO. The Southwest is just, well, its own thing, it works diffrent than anywhere else i have lived/worked. Its very, very much based on who you know and your coatcts over anything else.

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Re: Phoenix School of Law vs. Appalachian School of Law

Postby savagecheater » Mon Aug 02, 2010 4:13 pm

Coming from either of those schools, you'd need to be top5-1% to get a job that would allow you to pay off the loans in a reasonable amount of time.

There's a 95-99% chance you won't be at that percentile of your class.

"Do ya feel lucky, punk?"

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Re: Phoenix School of Law vs. Appalachian School of Law

Postby sundevil77 » Mon Aug 02, 2010 6:14 pm

BeautifulSW wrote:Yes. And in my original observation, I specifically excluded large law firms for that reason.

Incidently, though, although I still maintain that the rank of the school is less important when dealing with the kinds of Southwest employers I mention, one's class rank matters a lot.


Whoops, RC Fail on my part. :oops:

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Re: Phoenix School of Law vs. Appalachian School of Law

Postby BeautifulSW » Mon Aug 02, 2010 10:45 pm

Not at all. Your anecdote is valuable and I'm glad you posted it.

I have nothing to sell here. I'm reaching retirement, six years maybe? and New Mexico is one of the few states with a solvent public retirement fund. I have no ulterior motive.

I post because I care about the profession and about the next generation of lawyers. Frankly, there seems to be an almost superstitious belief in "rankings". I just hope that the 90% of new lawyers who DON'T go to work for big law firms come to understand that the legal employment world is much more complex than they might believe from the posts they read here and in other fora. I also hope that the "rising 1Ls" (love the expression) will consider coming to places like Arizona and New Mexico to make their careers and their lives. Believe it or not, we need you.

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Re: Phoenix School of Law vs. Appalachian School of Law

Postby Veyron » Mon Aug 02, 2010 11:01 pm

BeautifulSW wrote:The following comments are based only upon my personal observations after 25 years of practice in New Mexico. Please take them for whatever you think they are worth, maybe not much but do remember that we have quite a lot of contact with our neighbor to the West:

You really can't do the U.S. News rankings analysis when you are talking about Arizona, or New Mexico, either, for that matter. Government and small/mid-law in the desert Southwest just don't care that much about Stanford vs. Northwestern. They just don't, that's all.

Who you are matters a lot more, especially if you are native, a long term resident, or just more likely to commit. There is a SUBSTANTIAL bias in favor of the local product. There might also be an unspoken bias AGAINST the elite, East Coast schools. Westerners, as a group, have a visceral distrust of the East Coast Establishment.

A J.D. from UA or ASU carries a LOT of weight in the Rocky Mountain West. UC Boulder, too. But excluding these schools, I am inclined to believe that a Phoenix Law School degree will be viewed much more favorably in Phoenix than the rankings would suggest.


For large firms in phoenix HYS > Rest of T-14 > ASU, U of A, BYU (Perhaps Texas and UCLA, never hear these schools being discussed > Most others.

As to what type of people go to Phoenix School of Law. Eithier, idiots st8 from UG who think that JD = Just Dollaz or people for whoom law is a 2nd career and already have legal connections and a possible specialization (think a nurse or accountant). The first category is fucked, the second often finds gainful employment, with luck in the 60k+ range.


PS: Arizona is not in the "south".

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Re: Phoenix School of Law vs. Appalachian School of Law

Postby nealric » Tue Aug 03, 2010 1:21 am

UC Boulder has, and deserves, a reputation for being the best law school in the Rocky Mountain West. If a Harvard or Yale grad thinks that a Boulder grad offers no competition, he'd best think again.

This is just my own observation but the reader might do well to consider the number of lawyers I've HIRED into state government over the years.


I can't imagine too many HYS people really want a state government job in the west in the first place.

RE Phoenix: I've only met one Phoenix student. He was one bad grade away from being kicked out and seemed to think this was a very common situation due to the curve. Overall, the school sounded academically atrocious. I suppose the school may be the right choice for a select few, but I can't imagine that being the case for someone not specifically tied to Phoenix.
Last edited by nealric on Tue Aug 03, 2010 1:22 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Phoenix School of Law vs. Appalachian School of Law

Postby 12AngryMen » Tue Aug 03, 2010 1:23 am

Cooley is better IMO

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Re: Phoenix School of Law vs. Appalachian School of Law

Postby Matthies » Tue Aug 03, 2010 10:42 am

Veyron wrote:
PS: Arizona is not in the "south".


is the Southwest, that's what they call AZ, NM, NV and for some reason CO/Utah

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Re: Phoenix School of Law vs. Appalachian School of Law

Postby jms1987 » Tue Aug 03, 2010 11:35 am

BeautifulSW wrote:Not at all. Your anecdote is valuable and I'm glad you posted it.

I have nothing to sell here. I'm reaching retirement, six years maybe? and New Mexico is one of the few states with a solvent public retirement fund. I have no ulterior motive.

I post because I care about the profession and about the next generation of lawyers. Frankly, there seems to be an almost superstitious belief in "rankings". I just hope that the 90% of new lawyers who DON'T go to work for big law firms come to understand that the legal employment world is much more complex than they might believe from the posts they read here and in other fora. I also hope that the "rising 1Ls" (love the expression) will consider coming to places like Arizona and New Mexico to make their careers and their lives. Believe it or not, we need you.


I'd really like to end up in the SW (or Southern California) whats the legal market like out there?

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Re: Phoenix School of Law vs. Appalachian School of Law

Postby BG4444 » Tue Aug 03, 2010 5:07 pm

Just out of curiosity & I know some people may have answered this, does anyone have an idea of what would be needed to transfer from PSL to ASU or another school of similar rank?

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Re: Phoenix School of Law vs. Appalachian School of Law

Postby lawschool2014 » Tue Aug 03, 2010 5:12 pm

BG4444 wrote:Just out of curiosity & I know some people may have answered this, does anyone have an idea of what would be needed to transfer from PSL to ASU or another school of similar rank?



I think there was a thread about someone who successfully transferred. He/She was top 30% of class, no law review and made it into ASU (not like its that great of an accomplishment, I mean its ASU)

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Re: Phoenix School of Law vs. Appalachian School of Law

Postby sundevil77 » Tue Aug 03, 2010 5:34 pm

lawschool2014 wrote:
BG4444 wrote:Just out of curiosity & I know some people may have answered this, does anyone have an idea of what would be needed to transfer from PSL to ASU or another school of similar rank?



I think there was a thread about someone who successfully transferred. He/She was top 30% of class, no law review and made it into ASU (not like its that great of an accomplishment, I mean its ASU)


In the ASU thread, a guy who was top 10% just made it off the waitlist. That would suggest you to be at least top 10% to have a reasonable shot of transferring. And to the above poster, I beg to differ. Going from a TTT like PSL to a T1 is a pretty good move. Just sayin'.

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Re: Phoenix School of Law vs. Appalachian School of Law

Postby Matthies » Tue Aug 03, 2010 5:49 pm

sundevil77 wrote:
lawschool2014 wrote:
BG4444 wrote:Just out of curiosity & I know some people may have answered this, does anyone have an idea of what would be needed to transfer from PSL to ASU or another school of similar rank?



I think there was a thread about someone who successfully transferred. He/She was top 30% of class, no law review and made it into ASU (not like its that great of an accomplishment, I mean its ASU)


In the ASU thread, a guy who was top 10% just made it off the waitlist. That would suggest you to be at least top 10% to have a reasonable shot of transferring. And to the above poster, I beg to differ. Going from a TTT like PSL to a T1 is a pretty good move. Just sayin'.


Also I tend to think PSL likley attarcks people who want/need to stay in Phoenix. I doubt that many that start there would apply to trasnfer to many schools other than ASU

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Re: Phoenix School of Law vs. Appalachian School of Law

Postby studebaker07 » Tue Aug 03, 2010 6:14 pm

BG4444 wrote:Just out of curiosity & I know some people may have answered this, does anyone have an idea of what would be needed to transfer from PSL to ASU or another school of similar rank?


I transferred this past year. I had a class rank of top-23% and I wrote-on to law review. However, I had REALLY good stats (158, 3.65) and should have been admitted to ASU when I first applied.

I got into many other schools (schools far better than PSL) but chose to stay in Phoenix for personal reasons. Retaking the LSAT was not an option for me.

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Re: Phoenix School of Law vs. Appalachian School of Law

Postby lawschool2014 » Tue Aug 03, 2010 6:32 pm

Both schools are truly terrible. It's very sad that vulnerable people are enticed into attending by the allure of Candys incessant emails. I scored a 165 on my LSAT the first (171 2nd) and I don't know what in Phx mind would make them think that I would attend such a craphole (even if it's free)




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