Deathmatch: Wake v. UConn

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

UConn or Wake

UConn (estimated COA $115k)
35
48%
Wake (estimated COA $105k)
38
52%
 
Total votes: 73

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snapdragon
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Deathmatch: Wake v. UConn

Postby snapdragon » Mon Mar 21, 2011 1:28 pm

Ok, it is time for the final decision. My thoughts have changed somewhat since the last post I made on this subject. After doing some thinking, discussing and outlining, I have decided that I really want the possibility of a job in New England after law school. With that said, my pros and cons are as below:

Wake

Pros:

Seems to have better overall employment stats. I'm not really interested in Biglaw, but Wake seems to have a snowball's chance in hell whereas UConn has essentially none.
Cheaper - WAY lower COL
Something "different" from my whole life in CT
Has a clinical program I particularly like (Child Advocacy)

Cons:

Student body seemed like a good deal of conservative prep school kids which is a minus for me. I'm a fairly liberal non-religious sort, and don't know if that would be a good fit in the south. I also don't wear shorts.
Not really sure I want to live in NC (not sure that I don't either).
Concerned as to whether the degree has any mobility to New England.
Winston-Salem was not so great.
I have no connections, friends, relatives or well wishers in the state of NC to the best of my knowledge.

UConn

Pros:

Liked the feel I got from the school and student body
Although Hartford sucks, West Hartford is very closer and West Hartford > W-S, IMO.
More direct placement in New England
I have family friends who are attorneys (both in private practice & gvt) throughout the state
Could possibly live rent-free 3L year (moving back home an hour away from campus. My parents are barely ever there, as they have another home where my dad now lives full time and my mom spends weekends).
I'd have the emotional support of my friends, long term bf and family throughout law school.

Cons:

More expensive (emailed them for negotiations)
I'm concerned about their general employment stats. I'd rather be employed in NC than unemployed in CT, this much I know.
Really would have liked the opportunity to get out of CT for a few years (however, I've realized that the option of coming back is more important to me than leaving).
Facilities / staff are a little less nice than Wake's.
I'd like to think the ranking doesn't mean anything, but ranked 56th vs. Wake's 39th.

Decision needs to be made by one week from today. Any further input, thoughts, comments, derision, ideas, crude drawings or other replies are welcome. I re-posted this because having the ability to come back to New England means a lot more to me than I thought it would, and I liked UConn's campus/vibe a lot more than I thought I would. General advice from attorneys I've asked has been "Wake Forest for the South, UConn for New England".

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YankeesFan
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Re: Deathmatch: Wake v. UConn

Postby YankeesFan » Mon Mar 21, 2011 1:41 pm

I just sent in my deposit today and I was faced with a comparative decision making process (between Wake and Seton Hall)

snapdragon wrote:Student body seemed like a good deal of conservative prep school kids which is a minus for me. I'm a fairly liberal non-religious sort, and don't know if that would be a good fit in the south. I also don't wear shorts.


I am born and bred NYCer and I was worried about the South as well. Although I wear fratty clothes all the time I am also liberal but after talking to students there seems to be a great deal of openness and acceptance in the law school student body.

As per mobility, I talked to many attorneys from DC to NY and California and all of them have heard of Wake Forest. While UConn also has name recognition, Wake seems to be thought of much more highly (maybe because UConn's undergrad is not as well respected as Wake's). Everyone I talked to said I would have no problem finding a job in their respective region with a Wake degree.

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FuManChusco
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Re: Deathmatch: Wake v. UConn

Postby FuManChusco » Mon Mar 21, 2011 2:13 pm

if you really want to go back to NE, then I wouldn't go to Wake for 10k less. 115k for UConn is a little risky though. If you're absolutely attending in the fall and must pick one of these two options, then take UConn, but think long and hard about that debt.

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snapdragon
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Re: Deathmatch: Wake v. UConn

Postby snapdragon » Mon Mar 21, 2011 2:16 pm

FuManChusco wrote:if you really want to go back to NE, then I wouldn't go to Wake. 115k for UConn is a little risky though. If you're absolutely attending in the fall and must pick one of these two options, then take UConn, but think long and hard about that debt.


I know, the debt from UConn does worry me. I'm hoping for some kind of scholarship, and even without, I think I can cut it down by living at home for a year, rent-free. I considered doing so all three years but I think an hour+ commute to school every day isn't a great idea for 1L and probably not 2L (also I'm not sure if my parents would be OK with that. They're open to one year, though) Unfortunately UConn doesn't offer renewable scholarships, so there's no chance of a huge reduction.

Would you say Wake at $105k is a better option than UConn at $115k, New England preference aside?

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FuManChusco
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Re: Deathmatch: Wake v. UConn

Postby FuManChusco » Mon Mar 21, 2011 2:22 pm

snapdragon wrote:
FuManChusco wrote:if you really want to go back to NE, then I wouldn't go to Wake. 115k for UConn is a little risky though. If you're absolutely attending in the fall and must pick one of these two options, then take UConn, but think long and hard about that debt.


I know, the debt from UConn does worry me. I'm hoping for some kind of scholarship, and even without, I think I can cut it down by living at home for a year, rent-free. I considered doing so all three years but I think an hour+ commute to school every day isn't a great idea for 1L and probably not 2L (also I'm not sure if my parents would be OK with that. They're open to one year, though) Unfortunately UConn doesn't offer renewable scholarships, so there's no chance of a huge reduction.

Would you say Wake at $105k is a better option than UConn at $115k, New England preference aside?


yeah, it would definitely be nice if you could get that under 100k. I do think Wake is a better value, but you're deciding between regional schools, so I don't think you can put your NE preference aside. If you won't be happy in NC after graduation, then I don't think you can go to Wake.

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snapdragon
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Re: Deathmatch: Wake v. UConn

Postby snapdragon » Mon Mar 21, 2011 2:38 pm

Could some of the pro-Wake people please chime in? You're at an 83% advantage so far.. I'd be interested to hear if anyone has any positive knowledge about a Wake degree's portability.

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brose
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Re: Deathmatch: Wake v. UConn

Postby brose » Mon Mar 21, 2011 4:51 pm

I would take Wake... their employment stats are better as you said and if you're going to have debt, I'd rather be employed. Then again, A large factor here is your employability/stability: if you can thrive in your education while living amongst people you don't really identify with and having a support network that is states away, going to Wake won't help your employability. My gut tells me that you want to go to Wake but are finding reasons to stay home so I say branch out and be tough.

Edit: and, if you feel like your connections within the state could bring you back to NE, I wouldn't worry about the "portability" of the degree.

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DeeCee
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Re: Deathmatch: Wake v. UConn

Postby DeeCee » Mon Mar 21, 2011 4:59 pm

I live in NC. I was set on going to UG at Wake until I took a tour my senior year of high school. I did not like Winston-Salem, and the undergrad is quite the bubble as far as exposure to anything else. I also did not like how uppity the school was, how every school I visited except for Wake reviewed financial aid (I'm assuming they believe most of their students are affluent) and how on my tour the parents were extremely rude and made a huge deal that there was no starbucks on campus. I also think they charge a lot tuition-wise and if you haven't already, you should visit to make sure you like the atmosphere.

Overall, I would say Wake will give you much better job prospects, especially if you are thinking about working below the Mason-Dixon line. It is a very respected school in NC and in the south. But, UConn could be more of a personal fit for you, and you know you like the area. I know one of my primary criteria is personal fit (I am liberal and there are only a few places in NC I care to live, such as the triangle area). I'm going to UNC this fall and I did not apply to Wake because of the way I felt about their UG.

Hope that helps, and I know a lot of people love Wake, so just keep in mind this is my perspective and not meant to offend.
Last edited by DeeCee on Mon Mar 21, 2011 5:11 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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northwood
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Re: Deathmatch: Wake v. UConn

Postby northwood » Mon Mar 21, 2011 5:08 pm

I voted Uconn.
You post says that you like the area better, and want to practice in New England. With your support system, and your networking allready there, this would make it possible. Wake is fine if you want NC- but it doesnt seem that you do. Uconn will meet these goals of yours. I honestly believe that personal fit and visits is very important. You dont seem dead set on the south, so going to wake ill make more difficult for you to get back North. Plus the location of the school seems to better fit your criteria. The rankings dont mean much in this instance, because of the geographic difference. But both schools are still respectably ranked. I think a close support system is something to consider, and with the added stressor of being far away from home- it could make an allready stressful first semester worse. Best of luck! and congrats to getting into two great schools! A ten grand difference isn that bad at all

P.S listen to your heart, and your conscience. Itll help you make the best choice for you!

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snapdragon
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Re: Deathmatch: Wake v. UConn

Postby snapdragon » Mon Mar 21, 2011 5:15 pm

Thanks guys :) Dee, for your insider's perspective on NC (an area which is utterly foreign to me!), brose for the "be tough" comment since I worry that UConn is the easy/safe bet and that's why I like it, and north for the reminder that rankings aren't everything.

Right now though, UConn is the emotional choice and Wake is the practical choice. Which kind of cracks me up, because when I started this process, I was hoping like hell for an affordable option outside of UConn, and it turns out I really like it!

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androstan
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Re: Deathmatch: Wake v. UConn

Postby androstan » Mon Mar 21, 2011 5:16 pm

Hey Snappy!

I said UConn because of your regional preference.

I went to North Carolina State for undergrad. I was born and raised in NC. My best friend at NCSU, for a while, was gay. I'm nonreligious, and was openly so, all through high school and undergrad. My parents are very religious. Does the state lean right? Yeah. There are a few more churches per square mile. Don't let that deter you. My wife has been nonreligious and liberal all her life, came down to NC for school, met her future husband, and basically stayed down here (Baltimore is a far cry from NH).

Wake's employment stats may be a little better overall, but most of that benefit will be lost if you're trying to get back to Conn.

At UC you'll be able to stay in closer contact with your friend/family support network, build on that, and hit the ground running when you graduate. In the case of this kind of family/friend support, I doubt they care much about the name of your LS (unless it's something like Cooley), but being near them for 3 years will matter a good deal. It shows commitment to the area, to them, etc.

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DeeCee
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Re: Deathmatch: Wake v. UConn

Postby DeeCee » Mon Mar 21, 2011 5:44 pm

androstan wrote:Hey Snappy!

I said UConn because of your regional preference.

I went to North Carolina State for undergrad. I was born and raised in NC. My best friend at NCSU, for a while, was gay. I'm nonreligious, and was openly so, all through high school and undergrad. My parents are very religious. Does the state lean right? Yeah. There are a few more churches per square mile. Don't let that deter you. My wife has been nonreligious and liberal all her life, came down to NC for school, met her future husband, and basically stayed down here (Baltimore is a far cry from NH).

Wake's employment stats may be a little better overall, but most of that benefit will be lost if you're trying to get back to Conn.

At UC you'll be able to stay in closer contact with your friend/family support network, build on that, and hit the ground running when you graduate. In the case of this kind of family/friend support, I doubt they care much about the name of your LS (unless it's something like Cooley), but being near them for 3 years will matter a good deal. It shows commitment to the area, to them, etc.


Also, NC State = triangle area = one of the most liberal regions in the state. And, I agree with everything androstan is saying. NC is a nice place where you can find your niche. It's a pretty cool state that has a little of everything. However, UConn will probably fit your needs better.

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jdemmitt
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Re: Deathmatch: Wake v. UConn

Postby jdemmitt » Mon Mar 21, 2011 6:10 pm

Go Wake. I might be there and I am awesome. Also, no snow. Snow is a bitch.

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DeeCee
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Re: Deathmatch: Wake v. UConn

Postby DeeCee » Mon Mar 21, 2011 6:12 pm

jdemmitt wrote:Go Wake. I might be there and I am awesome. Also, no snow. Snow is a bitch.


This year W-S had a bit of snow......however, it is nothing like up north.

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Heartford
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Re: Deathmatch: Wake v. UConn

Postby Heartford » Mon Mar 21, 2011 6:23 pm

I vote UConn, not because it's my school, but because you said you have ties to attorneys in the area. These connections are VASTLY more important than the relative difference in either ranking or price. You want a job? Choose the school where people who actually care about you will be able to hook you up. If that school were Wake, I would be encouraging you even more strongly to go there.

You said you were thinking of Wake as the practical choice, but just keep in mind that "who you know" trumps all rank and prestige, at least outside of the T10.

Also keep in mind that UConn has always been exceedingly transparent about employment statistics, listing not only percentages of hires before and after graduation, but also which fields are represented and, perhaps most importantly, the number of graduates who responded to each portion of the poll, and the percentage of the class represented. Sure, it's entirely possible to fudge numbers even with such transparent reporting, but UConn definitely makes a greater bona fide effort to report these statistics than many schools, and our ranking is negatively affected by it.

I'm not saying that Wake fudges their numbers- I've never even looked at their stats- just reminding you to keep in mind that the numbers might not be as good or as bad as they seem. Good luck.

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NCtoDC
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Re: Deathmatch: Wake v. UConn

Postby NCtoDC » Mon Mar 21, 2011 7:41 pm

I think that you should choose Wake. As you know I have been in the same "cultural" situation as you, having moved from NC to CT in the past. I think you will adapt to NC just fine. If you go to Wake, it will allow you to experience a new part of the country and way of life. You may like it or you may not...but having connections in CT is great because that always gives you an out from NC. I don't think they will abandon you if you choose Wake over UCONN in terms of support. You should stay in touch with them...possibly try to do your summers in CT. In terms of possibly staying in NC after graduation, which I know you are unsure of...Asheville is a very liberal city (its very New England like; including snow!).

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snapdragon
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Re: Deathmatch: Wake v. UConn

Postby snapdragon » Mon Mar 21, 2011 7:44 pm

Andro! I was hoping you'd show up here (is it def GW?)

Heartford, if you were in the property class last week where the lights kept going out, I was sitting in btw ;) I went and re-read UConn's employment stats - I am definitely impressed by the transparency! My tour guide mentioned that almost everyone on law review clerks for a year before going into private practice, which I thought was interesting.

I'm really laughing that we're at a dead tie. Glad to see I'm not crazy for struggling with this one. My assignment to myself tomorrow is to call an attorney friend of my parents' who works by me and see if she'd be up for a little mentoring chat/advice session. My mom made the excellent point that I can be a bit timid, and my network is worthless if I don't use it, so I guess there's no time like the present! I'm also going to call a Wake alum that reached out to me and set up a call for later this week to try and get a feel on that situation.

After that, I'm going to try three glasses of wine and a dartboard.

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androstan
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Re: Deathmatch: Wake v. UConn

Postby androstan » Mon Mar 21, 2011 8:03 pm

snapdragon wrote:Andro! I was hoping you'd show up here (is it def GW?)

Heartford, if you were in the property class last week where the lights kept going out, I was sitting in btw ;) I went and re-read UConn's employment stats - I am definitely impressed by the transparency! My tour guide mentioned that almost everyone on law review clerks for a year before going into private practice, which I thought was interesting.

I'm really laughing that we're at a dead tie. Glad to see I'm not crazy for struggling with this one. My assignment to myself tomorrow is to call an attorney friend of my parents' who works by me and see if she'd be up for a little mentoring chat/advice session. My mom made the excellent point that I can be a bit timid, and my network is worthless if I don't use it, so I guess there's no time like the present! I'm also going to call a Wake alum that reached out to me and set up a call for later this week to try and get a feel on that situation.

After that, I'm going to try three glasses of wine and a dartboard.


I'll know if it's GW or UNH on Wednesday!

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Heartford
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Re: Deathmatch: Wake v. UConn

Postby Heartford » Mon Mar 21, 2011 8:18 pm

I was in that class. That was a weird day. That professor was our Dean, and co-author of the famous Getting to Maybe book, just in you were wondering. :)

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northwood
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Re: Deathmatch: Wake v. UConn

Postby northwood » Mon Mar 21, 2011 9:33 pm

snapdragon wrote:After that, I'm going to try three glasses of wine and a dartboard.



Snaps- I like your style! :D :D :D :D

keg411
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Re: Deathmatch: Wake v. UConn

Postby keg411 » Mon Mar 21, 2011 10:26 pm

In-state and you can't get UConn under $100k? Seriously, you need to do whatever you can to get them to knock about $20k off sticker and then go there.

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Magnolia
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Re: Deathmatch: Wake v. UConn

Postby Magnolia » Mon Mar 21, 2011 11:11 pm

DeeCee wrote:Also, NC State = triangle area = one of the most liberal regions in the state.

I grew up in the triangle and had the exact opposite experience. Outside of the immediate NC State/UNC/Duke campus areas, the triangle is just as conservative as the rest of the state. I hated every second and moved to the NE as soon as I could. I could see it maybe being a great place if you find a niche, but not everyone does.

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DeeCee
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Re: Deathmatch: Wake v. UConn

Postby DeeCee » Tue Mar 22, 2011 1:18 am

Magnolia wrote:
DeeCee wrote:Also, NC State = triangle area = one of the most liberal regions in the state.

I grew up in the triangle and had the exact opposite experience. Outside of the immediate NC State/UNC/Duke campus areas, the triangle is just as conservative as the rest of the state. I hated every second and moved to the NE as soon as I could. I could see it maybe being a great place if you find a niche, but not everyone does.


Oh I didn't know that.....I was hoping to get further up north for LS but with in-state tuition at UNC, I just can't pass it up. I've lived on opposite sides of the state (beach and mtns) and had very conservative experiences in my hometown, and liberal ones at my current grad school. But, when I have visited CH I always felt it was a little hub of liberalness compared to other places in the state.

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snapdragon
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Re: Deathmatch: Wake v. UConn

Postby snapdragon » Tue Mar 22, 2011 7:16 am

keg411 wrote:In-state and you can't get UConn under $100k? Seriously, you need to do whatever you can to get them to knock about $20k off sticker and then go there.


Estimated COA in-state is $38k/year ($20k tuition) :( And they don't do renewable schollies - I'm hoping for something, but at most, it'd knock $20k total off. Also, if I do live with my parents for a year, it may knock off another $10kish (depending on whether they decide to feed me or not).

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androstan
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Re: Deathmatch: Wake v. UConn

Postby androstan » Tue Mar 22, 2011 9:52 am

snapdragon wrote:
keg411 wrote:In-state and you can't get UConn under $100k? Seriously, you need to do whatever you can to get them to knock about $20k off sticker and then go there.


Estimated COA in-state is $38k/year ($20k tuition) :( And they don't do renewable schollies - I'm hoping for something, but at most, it'd knock $20k total off. Also, if I do live with my parents for a year, it may knock off another $10kish (depending on whether they decide to feed me or not).


Although I voted UConn I intentionally said good things about NC so you could make your own decision about what's really important to you. My wife had a little bit of culture shock coming from NH but she got used to it pretty quickly. If the culture is the main thing deterring you, I would say go to Wake. Wake gave you a really good deal.

I'm just not sure Wake can offer you better employment opportunities than a respectable school in your preferred market, near a strong support network.




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