UMN (20k) vs St. John's (Full-tuition)

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

Where should I go?

University of Minnesota
17
55%
St. John's University
3
10%
Brooklyn Law School
0
No votes
Cardozo
0
No votes
University of San Diego
0
No votes
U.C. Hastings
1
3%
Boston University, if admitted with a comparable scholarship
7
23%
Notre Dame, if admitted with a comparable scholarship
3
10%
 
Total votes: 31

nireca
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UMN (20k) vs St. John's (Full-tuition)

Postby nireca » Thu Mar 17, 2011 7:25 pm

I am still waiting to hear from a few schools but right now these are the two main contenders. The UMN scholarship requires that I maintain a 2.5 GPA and the STJ scholarship requires that I stay in the top 40% of the class.

Assuming I would be able to keep the scholarships, the debt after three years would be about $67k at STJ and about $95k at UMN, after factoring in the cost of living. Also, the $95k at UMN assumes that I would remain a nonresident for all three years. If I were able to obtain residency after the first year then the total debt drops to about $81k.

Right now I am leaning towards UMN as I feel that the quality of the school justifies the extra $14-28k in cost, especially if I can obtain residency after the first or second year. I realize that obtaining residency in Minnesota is in no way guaranteed but I am willing to take whatever steps are necessary in order to improve my chances, i.e. moving to Minnesota a few months before school starts and getting a job, getting a Minnesota driver's license, registering to vote, etc..

So what do you guys think? Does the quality of UMN justify the extra cost? Also, I've read that UMN grades on the curve so I am wondering how that affects the feasibility of maintaining a 2.5 GPA.

Aside from UMN and STJ, I am also in at BLS with $31k, Dozo with $25k, USD with $30k, and Hastings with no word yet on scholarship. I am a California resident so Hastings could become a contender if they decide to offer a decent scholarship. Still waiting to hear from Davis, Boston University, and Notre Dame.

Not exactly sure what type of law I want to do but I have experience with health care law so that is something I am seriously considering pursuing. This makes BU and UMN especially attractive since they both have excellent health law programs (respectively #2 and #10 in the nation by the USNWR Specialty Rankings).

Sorry for the long-winded post but I wanted to provide as much context as possible. Looking forward to the replies.

fakemoney
Posts: 346
Joined: Mon Oct 06, 2008 11:07 am

Re: UMN (20k) vs St. John's (Full-tuition)

Postby fakemoney » Thu Mar 17, 2011 7:42 pm

Regional preference?

nireca
Posts: 66
Joined: Wed Jun 09, 2010 8:18 pm

Re: UMN (20k) vs St. John's (Full-tuition)

Postby nireca » Thu Mar 17, 2011 7:47 pm

Slight preference to be working in NY or CA but really not all that concerned about where I end up so long as I have a solid job.

fakemoney
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Re: UMN (20k) vs St. John's (Full-tuition)

Postby fakemoney » Thu Mar 17, 2011 7:51 pm

If it's only a slight preference and you think you could be happy in Minny/St. Paul, I think UMN is the slam-dunk choice over SJU, USD, BLS, and Cardozo. The fact that you're interested in health law further strengthens UMN's appeal, as its bio-ethics program is considered one of the school's strong suits.

But obviously Davis, ND, and BU are strong contenders depending on what they offer. If their offers are comparable, then just go by regional preference/whichever school you like best.

Edit: By the way, I heard the 2.5 GPA is relatively easy to maintain -- and even if you don't get it, you can negotiate to keep the scholarship. It's not cut-throat like many T2 scholarships with strict rankings requirements.

Sandro
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Re: UMN (20k) vs St. John's (Full-tuition)

Postby Sandro » Thu Mar 17, 2011 8:25 pm

UMN I think said like 70% ish get above a 2.5, and you can petition to keep it if you dont (not sure if that would work).

midwestrocks
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Re: UMN (20k) vs St. John's (Full-tuition)

Postby midwestrocks » Fri Mar 18, 2011 11:08 am

I hear UMN has a relatively easy curve so I don't think it should be that hard to maintain the 2.5 (at least I hope not lol, they gave 20k/year with the same stipulation).

How regional is Minnesota by the way? I don't mean nationally, but do they place well in Milwaukee and Chicago? I wouldn't mind staying in the twin cities but would prefer to have options throughout the upper midwest.

nireca
Posts: 66
Joined: Wed Jun 09, 2010 8:18 pm

Re: UMN (20k) vs St. John's (Full-tuition)

Postby nireca » Mon Mar 21, 2011 3:34 pm

bump. anybody know how UMN fairs with BigLaw in the surrounding regions? Does the school's reputation carry beyond MN or should I be content to live in the area if I decide to go there?

HeavenWood
Posts: 2915
Joined: Wed Jul 28, 2010 6:42 pm

Re: UMN (20k) vs St. John's (Full-tuition)

Postby HeavenWood » Mon Mar 21, 2011 4:11 pm

UMN if you don't mind the possibility of living in Minnesota long-term.

Sandro
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Re: UMN (20k) vs St. John's (Full-tuition)

Postby Sandro » Mon Mar 21, 2011 4:23 pm

HeavenWood wrote:UMN if you don't mind the possibility of living in Minnesota long-term.


Define long term.

HeavenWood
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Re: UMN (20k) vs St. John's (Full-tuition)

Postby HeavenWood » Mon Mar 21, 2011 5:26 pm

Sandro wrote:
HeavenWood wrote:UMN if you don't mind the possibility of living in Minnesota long-term.


Define long term.


UMN primarily places in Minnesota, no? I would imagine it would be tough to break out of the upper Midwest without strong ties to another region.

nireca
Posts: 66
Joined: Wed Jun 09, 2010 8:18 pm

Re: UMN (20k) vs St. John's (Full-tuition)

Postby nireca » Mon Mar 21, 2011 5:33 pm

HeavenWood wrote:
Sandro wrote:
HeavenWood wrote:UMN if you don't mind the possibility of living in Minnesota long-term.


Define long term.


UMN primarily places in Minnesota, no? I would imagine it would be tough to break out of the upper Midwest without strong ties to another region.


This is what I am trying to figure out right now. If anybody has any knowledge about how UMN fairs outside of Minnesota it would be most welcome.

EDIT: In particular, I'd be interested in knowing how UMN fairs in the SF market. Is the school's reputation strong enough that it would give me an edge over Hastings grads in the SF area or would I be better off just going to Hastings if SF market is where I want to end up working?

fakemoney
Posts: 346
Joined: Mon Oct 06, 2008 11:07 am

Re: UMN (20k) vs St. John's (Full-tuition)

Postby fakemoney » Mon Mar 21, 2011 6:04 pm

I don't know jack about UC Hastings, but all the UC schools are at least somewhat reputable locally (right?), so if you want to stay in San Fran I think the consensus on here will be that you should go there provided they give you some $

Either way, I don't think UMN would be wise if you really want California.

Sandro
Posts: 2526
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Re: UMN (20k) vs St. John's (Full-tuition)

Postby Sandro » Mon Mar 21, 2011 6:57 pm

HeavenWood wrote:
Sandro wrote:
HeavenWood wrote:UMN if you don't mind the possibility of living in Minnesota long-term.


Define long term.


UMN primarily places in Minnesota, no? I would imagine it would be tough to break out of the upper Midwest without strong ties to another region.


So you're stuck in Minnesota FOREVER if you go to UMN, is what you are saying. 8)

HeavenWood
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Re: UMN (20k) vs St. John's (Full-tuition)

Postby HeavenWood » Mon Mar 21, 2011 8:02 pm

Sandro wrote:
HeavenWood wrote:
Sandro wrote:
HeavenWood wrote:UMN if you don't mind the possibility of living in Minnesota long-term.


Define long term.


UMN primarily places in Minnesota, no? I would imagine it would be tough to break out of the upper Midwest without strong ties to another region.


So you're stuck in Minnesota FOREVER if you go to UMN, is what you are saying. 8)


I don't see where one can equate "tough to break out of the upper Midwest" with "you're stuck in Minnesota FOREVER," but ok...

lsapplicant
Posts: 11
Joined: Fri Dec 17, 2010 5:50 pm

Re: UMN (20k) vs St. John's (Full-tuition)

Postby lsapplicant » Thu Apr 21, 2011 8:30 am

BUMP

I'm actually in the exact predicament. UMN or St. Johns, except I'm more partial to NY since I grew up there, and might want to return after I graduate. If anyone can provide more insight on this topic, that would be greatly appreciate.

fakemoney
Posts: 346
Joined: Mon Oct 06, 2008 11:07 am

Re: UMN (20k) vs St. John's (Full-tuition)

Postby fakemoney » Thu Apr 21, 2011 10:02 am

...
Last edited by fakemoney on Wed Aug 03, 2011 3:53 pm, edited 1 time in total.

alumniguy
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Re: UMN (20k) vs St. John's (Full-tuition)

Postby alumniguy » Thu Apr 21, 2011 10:03 am

UMN is the clear winner here. It is a vastly more respected law school - it is what I would describe as a regional school. St. Johns on the other hand is a local school - we're talking NY or bust. The 2.5 stipulation at MN should be no problem and I venture to guess that it will NOT be difficult in the least to be above a 2.5. Top 40% at St. Johns will likely be much more difficult (and much harder to ensure). My experience is that it is relatively easy to ensure that one will be in the top 66% of the class, the top 50% is a little more difficult and the top 40%/33% is pretty impossible to gauge as a 0L. The differences separating the 50th percentile from the 40th percentile will be much smaller than the 50th percentile to the 60th percentile.

Take a look at MN career services website - I believe they send a healthy contingent of grads to CA every year. There is likely a decent amount of self-selection involved, but getting to CA will be easier from MN than St. Johns. With that said, you need to be willing to stay in the Midwest should you not find a job.

Slevin Kelevra 2011
Posts: 271
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Re: UMN (20k) vs St. John's (Full-tuition)

Postby Slevin Kelevra 2011 » Thu Apr 21, 2011 10:54 am

Go to a school in the region you want to work after graduation. Only go to MN if you want to work in Minnesota/upper midwest. Only go to St. J's if you want NY. Apply to similarly ranked schools in the 20-30 range in the region where you want to work after graduation.

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ndirish2010
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Re: UMN (20k) vs St. John's (Full-tuition)

Postby ndirish2010 » Thu Apr 21, 2011 11:11 am

Slevin Kelevra 2011 wrote:Go to a school in the region you want to work after graduation. Only go to MN if you want to work in Minnesota/upper midwest. Only go to St. J's if you want NY. Apply to similarly ranked schools in the 20-30 range in the region where you want to work after graduation.


Disagree- It is far better to have some job, anywhere, than to have a SJU degree and no job in NY.

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Lawst
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Re: UMN (20k) vs St. John's (Full-tuition)

Postby Lawst » Fri Apr 22, 2011 6:09 pm

ndirish2010 wrote:
Slevin Kelevra 2011 wrote:Go to a school in the region you want to work after graduation. Only go to MN if you want to work in Minnesota/upper midwest. Only go to St. J's if you want NY. Apply to similarly ranked schools in the 20-30 range in the region where you want to work after graduation.


Disagree- It is far better to have some job, anywhere, than to have a SJU degree and no job in NY.


Exactly - New York is a crowded market and SJU lags behind a lot of schools. And it's beyond regional, as in Queens/Long Island. When I visited it struck me as a commuter school and I was not terribly impressed. And this is from someone who's going to go to law school in Jersey - yes, I'd rather go to Newark than the far reaches of Queens.
As someone who grew up in the Upper Midwest, I would never advise anyone to willingly relocate themselves there. :mrgreen: However, if your field is specialized enough, say health care law, you may find it easier to export your talents to another region, and thus not be quite so locked into the Midwest as some other grads. Or, you may like it. Crazier things have happened.
If you end up being set on NYC, I'd pick 'dozo over the full ride at SJU, but it sounds like you're open to any region.

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bk1
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Re: UMN (20k) vs St. John's (Full-tuition)

Postby bk1 » Fri Apr 22, 2011 6:23 pm

You won't be able to establish residency in MN (you need at least 12 months of living there prior to the start of school among other things).

95k debt at UMN is pretty good. While UMN doesn't have the same NLJ250 stats that other schools have, if you look at the percentage of people who make at or close to 6 figures, it is about as good as the other top regionals. That being said, there is a high probability you will find work in MN right after graduation. If you can stomach staying in MN for the next 5 or more years (including school and then working there for at least a few years), then take UMN.




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