This January is shaping up to the be the best January in M&A work since 2007, which means biglaw hiring could start to grind up again. For right now, though, you've got the perfect chance to reevaluate what you really want out of life. 55K is, reasonably, what you can expect from a starting salary out of UIUC (balancing between whatever shot at biglaw and whatever shot at unemployment), and you'll have the debt. Do you really think being a lawyer is going to be that much more interesting, or fantastic, than being a consultant? if you really think it is, go ahead. If you aren't sure, its a much safer bet to take the job and work a year or two.
Whatever opportunities you gain in a rebooted economy probably outweigh whatever loss in scholarship you might suffer (though I don't see why you would suffer one at all).