Columbia, Berkeley, Michigan, animal, vegetable, mineral?

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gmreplay
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Columbia, Berkeley, Michigan, animal, vegetable, mineral?

Postby gmreplay » Thu Jan 27, 2011 1:38 pm

Thanks to all the advice I've gotten from this forum over the past year or so and the hard work I put in on the LSAT, I'm insanely happy to report that I just got into Columbia Law. I've also been admitted by Berkeley, and I'm waiting on letters from the other #4-10 schools. I'm from Michigan, and I was really planning on attending Michigan not only because I feel more affinity to the school than for any other, but also to be close to my family and friends. Now that I've been admitted to schools like Columbia and Berkeley, though, I'd feel remiss if I didn't consider my options there as well.

A couple of questions-
1. When do I find out about financial aid, and is there anything I need to do now that I've been admitted to ensure I apply for all available financial aid? I filled out some needaccess form but was told to hold off on sending it in till admission. What do I do with that?
2. I'm interested in civil rights and Constitutional law. Which school is best for these in terms of academics and placements?
3. Any other advice on where to attend?

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Helmholtz
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Re: Columbia, Berkeley, Michigan, animal, vegetable, mineral?

Postby Helmholtz » Thu Jan 27, 2011 1:43 pm

gmreplay wrote:3. Any other advice on where to attend?


The only scenarios in which I can see where Berkeley or Michigan would be a good choice is if 1) you got a large financial package from either of those schools ($60k+) and even then it might not be the best choice unless we're talking about the Darrow or 2) you got a decent financial package from Michigan ($30-60k) and you want to practice in Michigan after graduation (or I guess the same for Berkeley if you wanted to work in California after graduation).

edit: I guess scenario #3 might be one in which you visit Columbia and absolutely abhor the school, the students, the city, etc. and would be miserable going there for three years.

gmreplay
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Re: Columbia, Berkeley, Michigan, animal, vegetable, mineral?

Postby gmreplay » Thu Jan 27, 2011 2:13 pm

Helmholtz wrote:
gmreplay wrote:3. Any other advice on where to attend?


The only scenarios in which I can see where Berkeley or Michigan would be a good choice is if 1) you got a large financial package from either of those schools ($60k+) and even then it might not be the best choice unless we're talking about the Darrow or 2) you got a decent financial package from Michigan ($30-60k) and you want to practice in Michigan after graduation (or I guess the same for Berkeley if you wanted to work in California after graduation).

edit: I guess scenario #3 might be one in which you visit Columbia and absolutely abhor the school, the students, the city, etc. and would be miserable going there for three years.


My grandparents are in very poor health and probably won't make it through the next 3 years. I'm quite close to them and would feel terrible abandoning them. Is Columbia really that much better than Michigan? I'm also not a wealthy person, and I'm going to have a difficult time living in a place like NYC, much less paying for the school, so I have to take that into consideration too.

I don't plan on sticking to Michigan post graduation, so that's not a concern.

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Helmholtz
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Re: Columbia, Berkeley, Michigan, animal, vegetable, mineral?

Postby Helmholtz » Thu Jan 27, 2011 2:19 pm

gmreplay wrote:
Helmholtz wrote:
gmreplay wrote:3. Any other advice on where to attend?


The only scenarios in which I can see where Berkeley or Michigan would be a good choice is if 1) you got a large financial package from either of those schools ($60k+) and even then it might not be the best choice unless we're talking about the Darrow or 2) you got a decent financial package from Michigan ($30-60k) and you want to practice in Michigan after graduation (or I guess the same for Berkeley if you wanted to work in California after graduation).

edit: I guess scenario #3 might be one in which you visit Columbia and absolutely abhor the school, the students, the city, etc. and would be miserable going there for three years.


My grandparents are in very poor health and probably won't make it through the next 3 years. I'm quite close to them and would feel terrible abandoning them. Is Columbia really that much better than Michigan? I'm also not a wealthy person, and I'm going to have a difficult time living in a place like NYC, much less paying for the school, so I have to take that into consideration too.

I don't plan on sticking to Michigan post graduation, so that's not a concern.


Loans will cover tuition and living expenses. It might make a difference about what you want to do after you get out. If the answer is biglaw, I think that Columbia would almost certainly be the best choice.

I can't really judge personal reasons for you. I can make suggestions based on what you want to do after graduation or how much debt you want to go into, but not for the other stuff. Is forgoing the chance to go to a better school whose name will be on your resume for the rest of your life worth it to be close to your grandparents for the next few years? You'll have to answer that.

gmreplay
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Re: Columbia, Berkeley, Michigan, animal, vegetable, mineral?

Postby gmreplay » Thu Jan 27, 2011 2:22 pm

Is Biglaw where I want to be if I intend to work with civil rights and Constitutional issues?

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bk1
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Re: Columbia, Berkeley, Michigan, animal, vegetable, mineral?

Postby bk1 » Thu Jan 27, 2011 2:23 pm

gmreplay wrote:My grandparents are in very poor health and probably won't make it through the next 3 years. I'm quite close to them and would feel terrible abandoning them. Is Columbia really that much better than Michigan? I'm also not a wealthy person, and I'm going to have a difficult time living in a place like NYC, much less paying for the school, so I have to take that into consideration too.

I don't plan on sticking to Michigan post graduation, so that's not a concern.


1. Yes, Columbia is that much better than Michigan.

2. Everybody has a tough time paying for law school, that's why they all take out loans. The expectation is that you can get a biglaw job that will make paying it off reasonable or that you will get a job that is covered by your schools' LRAP. Also note that the total cost of Michigan isn't that much different from Columbia really and that you will be allowed to take out loans up to the full cost of attendance which covers living expenses and all that.

3. If your grandparents are close to Ann Arbor and in poor health I could see sticking to Michigan. How often would you want to see them? Would you necessarily have that much time to do that as often as you'd like on top of law school? If you went to Columbia would seeing them during your school breaks be enough or not enough? Etc.

But the bottom line is that the grandparents thing is a personal issue that none of us can weigh because we aren't you.

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Fresh
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Re: Columbia, Berkeley, Michigan, animal, vegetable, mineral?

Postby Fresh » Thu Jan 27, 2011 2:27 pm

gmreplay wrote:Is Biglaw where I want to be if I intend to work with civil rights and Constitutional issues?


Nope

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Patriot1208
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Re: Columbia, Berkeley, Michigan, animal, vegetable, mineral?

Postby Patriot1208 » Thu Jan 27, 2011 2:34 pm

Fresh wrote:
gmreplay wrote:Is Biglaw where I want to be if I intend to work with civil rights and Constitutional issues?


Nope

Well appellate litigation may suffice. I mean, op is being vague and there aren't jobs for new grads that just deal with conlaw. And civil rights jobs are generally harder to get than biglaw. Op doesn't seem to have really done any research on the topic.

gmreplay
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Re: Columbia, Berkeley, Michigan, animal, vegetable, mineral?

Postby gmreplay » Thu Jan 27, 2011 7:49 pm

Patriot1208 wrote:
Fresh wrote:
gmreplay wrote:Is Biglaw where I want to be if I intend to work with civil rights and Constitutional issues?


Nope

Well appellate litigation may suffice. I mean, op is being vague and there aren't jobs for new grads that just deal with conlaw. And civil rights jobs are generally harder to get than biglaw. Op doesn't seem to have really done any research on the topic.


Not a ton. Got a place to start?
PS: I'm being serious. I don't know where to start researching this.

gmreplay
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Re: Columbia, Berkeley, Michigan, animal, vegetable, mineral?

Postby gmreplay » Fri Jan 28, 2011 1:58 pm

Anybody? I'd love to do some more research on this but I genuinely don't know where to begin.

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Patriot1208
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Re: Columbia, Berkeley, Michigan, animal, vegetable, mineral?

Postby Patriot1208 » Fri Jan 28, 2011 2:06 pm

gmreplay wrote:Anybody? I'd love to do some more research on this but I genuinely don't know where to begin.


Start with the employment forum, look around, do some searches around the forums. Most of my knowledge either comes first hand from someone i've talked to or from TLS. I'm not really sure what else to tell you, hopefully someone a bit farther along in the process can help you out.

gmreplay
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Re: Columbia, Berkeley, Michigan, animal, vegetable, mineral?

Postby gmreplay » Fri Jan 28, 2011 6:47 pm

Damn. I was hoping there was a book or guide on the topic.

Can I get some more voices on Michigan vs Columbia?

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Helmholtz
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Re: Columbia, Berkeley, Michigan, animal, vegetable, mineral?

Postby Helmholtz » Fri Jan 28, 2011 6:51 pm

gmreplay wrote:Damn. I was hoping there was a book or guide on the topic.

Can I get some more voices on Michigan vs Columbia?


It's going to depend partly on what you want to do. It's not exactly like a bunch of people from either school are getting jobs in civil rights/constitutional law after graduation. I would tend to lean towards the best school then, and that's Columbia.

gmreplay
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Re: Columbia, Berkeley, Michigan, animal, vegetable, mineral?

Postby gmreplay » Fri Jan 28, 2011 7:03 pm

Helmholtz wrote:
gmreplay wrote:Damn. I was hoping there was a book or guide on the topic.

Can I get some more voices on Michigan vs Columbia?


It's going to depend partly on what you want to do. It's not exactly like a bunch of people from either school are getting jobs in civil rights/constitutional law after graduation. I would tend to lean towards the best school then, and that's Columbia.


That's where I'm at right now. I was considering doing a clerkship but I imagine either school would do well for that. I would also like to do an externship with the ACLU or a similarly civil rights oriented organization, but again I know that both schools would provide me with this option. It seems like the only information I can turn up on school specialties is hearsay that Columbia is good for tax law and corporate law.




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