Northwestern (120k) vs. Penn (45k)

(Rankings, Profiles, Tuition, Student Life, . . . )
tipler4213
Posts: 634
Joined: Thu May 29, 2008 11:16 am

Northwestern (120k) vs. Penn (45k)

Postby tipler4213 » Wed Mar 23, 2011 9:37 am

Although I am trying to negotiate scholarships as we speak, I thought I would get the ball rolling on this since I don't have long to decide. Northwestern used to be among my top choices, but for a variety of reasons, I have really zeroed in on Penn over the last few months. My initial offer from Penn, although good, did not blow me away, whereas Northwestern just floored me. I am negotiating as we speak.

My ideal career is DHS, CIA, DoJ Honors programs, but I could also be satisified with BigLaw. If possible, I would like a Art III clerkship, but would likely choose not to clerk if it was for a lesser position.

So, which would you choose as they stand now? What if Penn upped their offer to 80k, 90k, etc--meaning at what threshold would you switch to Penn?

(Yes, I know my goals are ridiculous, but I am happy with my alternatives should I fail)

User avatar
tome
Posts: 275
Joined: Thu Jul 03, 2008 6:17 pm

Re: Northwestern (120k) vs. Penn (45k)

Postby tome » Wed Mar 23, 2011 10:35 am

I am bised as I go to and really enjoy Northwestern. That being said, the job opportunities are pretty similar at both schools. Once you are choosing between schools of this caliber, the main thing determining what opportunities are open to you is you. So you might as well bank the cash in case you are a horrendous failure at law school. No matter which school you go to that is not something you can come back from.

Congrats on the offers. Both are excellent choices, and you are probably going to be in a great position no matter which you choose.

CanadianWolf
Posts: 10439
Joined: Wed Mar 24, 2010 4:54 pm

Re: Northwestern (120k) vs. Penn (45k)

Postby CanadianWolf » Wed Mar 23, 2011 10:59 am

Do you really need to ask ?

P.S. I would switch to Penn if they upped their offer to $125,000.

User avatar
Patriot1208
Posts: 7044
Joined: Tue May 18, 2010 11:28 am

Re: Northwestern (120k) vs. Penn (45k)

Postby Patriot1208 » Wed Mar 23, 2011 11:02 am

with job prospects being so similar It just doesn't make sense to pay that much more for penn.

CanadianWolf
Posts: 10439
Joined: Wed Mar 24, 2010 4:54 pm

Re: Northwestern (120k) vs. Penn (45k)

Postby CanadianWolf » Wed Mar 23, 2011 11:08 am

Have you visited both law schools ?

P.S. In rethinking my earlier response, I would take Penn if they upped their offer to $125,000, moved the law school to Lake Shore Drive in Chicago & offered an unlimited supply of USNews magazines showing Penn's higher rank.

tipler4213
Posts: 634
Joined: Thu May 29, 2008 11:16 am

Re: Northwestern (120k) vs. Penn (45k)

Postby tipler4213 » Wed Mar 23, 2011 11:11 am

CanadianWolf wrote:Have you visited both law schools ?

P.S. In rethinking my earlier response, I would take Penn if they upped their offer to $125,000, moved the law school to Lake Shore Drive in Chicago & offered an unlimited supply of USNews magazines showing Penn's higher rank.


Haha, yes, I have visited both and loved them. Its not a rankings thing. It is a financee, government/clerkship connections, and access to DC that drive me Penn preference. Just a big chunk of change to justify.

whymeohgodno
Posts: 2508
Joined: Mon Jul 19, 2010 8:15 pm

Re: Northwestern (120k) vs. Penn (45k)

Postby whymeohgodno » Wed Mar 23, 2011 11:14 am

Unless there is something big I'm missing here it should be NU by a mile. Both offer similar job prospects and unless you REALLY want to end up in NYC, NU should be the easy choice with all that $$

User avatar
BarbellDreams
Posts: 2256
Joined: Thu Mar 19, 2009 6:10 pm

Re: Northwestern (120k) vs. Penn (45k)

Postby BarbellDreams » Wed Mar 23, 2011 11:57 am

I think Nu is clearly the choice here.

arthur
Posts: 31
Joined: Mon Oct 05, 2009 1:23 pm

Re: Northwestern (120k) vs. Penn (45k)

Postby arthur » Wed Mar 23, 2011 1:35 pm

how come everyone's saying that NU and Penn have similar job prospects? is that really true? Doesnt Penn carry more weight for big firms?

tipler4213
Posts: 634
Joined: Thu May 29, 2008 11:16 am

Re: Northwestern (120k) vs. Penn (45k)

Postby tipler4213 » Wed Mar 23, 2011 1:40 pm

One of my concerns is not getting the job, but where it is: I want to be in DC preferably (NYC/Boston as fallbacks). Ideally in government. I have concerns about NU filtering solely into Chicago BigLaw, which wouldn't be ideal.

tipler4213
Posts: 634
Joined: Thu May 29, 2008 11:16 am

Re: Northwestern (120k) vs. Penn (45k)

Postby tipler4213 » Thu Mar 24, 2011 1:05 pm

I am bumping this up based on one additional piece of info--COA. NU is about $7,000 per year more, meaning the difference is only around $50k (still huge).

So, how much of that 50k difference would Penn have to make up to be able to justify attendance based on preference, g/f, etc?

User avatar
taxnstuff
Posts: 134
Joined: Tue Mar 15, 2011 12:39 am

Re: Northwestern (120k) vs. Penn (45k)

Postby taxnstuff » Thu Mar 24, 2011 1:09 pm

You'll have the degree for life. The debt coming out of those schools with a job won't be too bad to repay assuming you aren't financially incapable. I would go to Penn if you really want to graduate from there.

User avatar
Patriot1208
Posts: 7044
Joined: Tue May 18, 2010 11:28 am

Re: Northwestern (120k) vs. Penn (45k)

Postby Patriot1208 » Thu Mar 24, 2011 1:10 pm

taxnstuff wrote:You'll have the degree for life. The debt coming out of those schools with a job won't be too bad to repay assuming you aren't financially incapable. I would go to Penn if you really want to graduate from there.

I'm assuming you are new here and not aware of the job market.

User avatar
rayiner
Posts: 6184
Joined: Thu Dec 11, 2008 11:43 am

Re: Northwestern (120k) vs. Penn (45k)

Postby rayiner » Thu Mar 24, 2011 1:49 pm

tipler4213 wrote:One of my concerns is not getting the job, but where it is: I want to be in DC preferably (NYC/Boston as fallbacks). Ideally in government. I have concerns about NU filtering solely into Chicago BigLaw, which wouldn't be ideal.


Northwestern is by no means a "solely Chicago" school, it places quite broadly:

--ImageRemoved--

The numbers for the NE will likely be even bigger for C/O 2010-C/O 2012 as these classes are more geographically diverse to begin with and as a result of the recession people focused more on the NYC market.

As for placement power: at either school, your biggest differentiator will be class rank. This is especially true for DC, where the only schools that will really carry the day on name alone are HYS. I think Penn does have an edge in NYC, and so if that's important to you, keep that in mind. That being said, NU is not bad in NYC. Some firms (DPW, S&C, STB) seem to treat all the non-CCN T14 the same, while others (WLRK, Debevoise, PW) seem to give a boost to Penn (and Cornell).

User avatar
taxnstuff
Posts: 134
Joined: Tue Mar 15, 2011 12:39 am

Re: Northwestern (120k) vs. Penn (45k)

Postby taxnstuff » Thu Mar 24, 2011 1:58 pm

After reading the OP you have very high goals in terms of jobs, so yes I am probably underestimating the job market for what you are pursuing. After working so hard to get into a school that you want I just think it would be a shame to compromise.

Also I am an accountant so the job market does not scare me as much. Its nice having a golden ticket to employment as a safety net.

tipler4213
Posts: 634
Joined: Thu May 29, 2008 11:16 am

Re: Northwestern (120k) vs. Penn (45k)

Postby tipler4213 » Thu Mar 24, 2011 4:24 pm

taxnstuff wrote:After reading the OP you have very high goals in terms of jobs, so yes I am probably underestimating the job market for what you are pursuing. After working so hard to get into a school that you want I just think it would be a shame to compromise.

Also I am an accountant so the job market does not scare me as much. Its nice having a golden ticket to employment as a safety net.


Can you use your math skills to tell me how much of the $50k gap Penn needs to cover before I can justify the decision?

User avatar
rayiner
Posts: 6184
Joined: Thu Dec 11, 2008 11:43 am

Re: Northwestern (120k) vs. Penn (45k)

Postby rayiner » Thu Mar 24, 2011 5:13 pm

tipler4213 wrote:
taxnstuff wrote:After reading the OP you have very high goals in terms of jobs, so yes I am probably underestimating the job market for what you are pursuing. After working so hard to get into a school that you want I just think it would be a shame to compromise.

Also I am an accountant so the job market does not scare me as much. Its nice having a golden ticket to employment as a safety net.


Can you use your math skills to tell me how much of the $50k gap Penn needs to cover before I can justify the decision?


It's not a math question, it's a personal question. How much do you value the things that Penn gives you?

Haha, yes, I have visited both and loved them. Its not a rankings thing. It is a financee, government/clerkship connections, and access to DC that drive me Penn preference. Just a big chunk of change to justify.


Where is your fiancee? If she's much closer to Penn, that'd be worth $50k IMHO. Government/clerkship connections aren't appreciably different between the two schools, and DC is snooty enough that the only names that are going to impress firms start with "H", "Y", or "S".

tipler4213
Posts: 634
Joined: Thu May 29, 2008 11:16 am

Re: Northwestern (120k) vs. Penn (45k)

Postby tipler4213 » Thu Mar 24, 2011 5:15 pm

rayiner wrote:
tipler4213 wrote:
taxnstuff wrote:After reading the OP you have very high goals in terms of jobs, so yes I am probably underestimating the job market for what you are pursuing. After working so hard to get into a school that you want I just think it would be a shame to compromise.

Also I am an accountant so the job market does not scare me as much. Its nice having a golden ticket to employment as a safety net.


Can you use your math skills to tell me how much of the $50k gap Penn needs to cover before I can justify the decision?


It's not a math question, it's a personal question. How much do you value the things that Penn gives you?

Haha, yes, I have visited both and loved them. Its not a rankings thing. It is a financee, government/clerkship connections, and access to DC that drive me Penn preference. Just a big chunk of change to justify.


Where is your fiancee? If she's much closer to Penn, that'd be worth $50k IMHO. Government/clerkship connections aren't appreciably different between the two schools, and DC is snooty enough that the only names that are going to impress firms start with "H", "Y", or "S".


Its not that she is already there. It is that she applied to Penn (and some other) graduate schools in accordance with where I thought I may be attending. Unfortunately, she did not apply to any in Chicago. Meaning, she would have to basically do nothing for a year (get a crappy job) and then apply. She is willing, because she understands the importance of my law school education. However, she does not really like the idea of Chicago and has gotten excited about Penn-0

So really, it is just the school that makes the most collective sense for us if money isn't considered.

User avatar
rayiner
Posts: 6184
Joined: Thu Dec 11, 2008 11:43 am

Re: Northwestern (120k) vs. Penn (45k)

Postby rayiner » Thu Mar 24, 2011 5:19 pm

tipler4213 wrote:
rayiner wrote:
tipler4213 wrote:
taxnstuff wrote:After reading the OP you have very high goals in terms of jobs, so yes I am probably underestimating the job market for what you are pursuing. After working so hard to get into a school that you want I just think it would be a shame to compromise.

Also I am an accountant so the job market does not scare me as much. Its nice having a golden ticket to employment as a safety net.


Can you use your math skills to tell me how much of the $50k gap Penn needs to cover before I can justify the decision?


It's not a math question, it's a personal question. How much do you value the things that Penn gives you?

Haha, yes, I have visited both and loved them. Its not a rankings thing. It is a financee, government/clerkship connections, and access to DC that drive me Penn preference. Just a big chunk of change to justify.


Where is your fiancee? If she's much closer to Penn, that'd be worth $50k IMHO. Government/clerkship connections aren't appreciably different between the two schools, and DC is snooty enough that the only names that are going to impress firms start with "H", "Y", or "S".


Its not that she is already there. It is that she applied to Penn (and some other) graduate schools in accordance with where I thought I may be attending. Unfortunately, she did not apply to any in Chicago. Meaning, she would have to basically do nothing for a year (get a crappy job) and then apply. She is willing, because she understands the importance of my law school education. However, she does not really like the idea of Chicago and has gotten excited about Penn-0

So really, it is just the school that makes the most collective sense for us if money isn't considered.


Then out of consideration for your fiancee go to Penn. In the grand scheme of life $50k isn't a big deal if there are any countervailing factors.

Do certainly negotiate with Penn to get them to give you more. I'd bet you can talk them up to $75k.

Also, tell your fiance that Chicago is >>> Philadelphia. Jesus, not even a contest.

tipler4213
Posts: 634
Joined: Thu May 29, 2008 11:16 am

Re: Northwestern (120k) vs. Penn (45k)

Postby tipler4213 » Thu Mar 24, 2011 5:27 pm

I am trying to negotiate more with Penn. I sent them an e-mail request yesterday, and they said they would review it with the deadlines in mind. Hopefully, they will budge a bit. I feel like I have a good relationship with the finaid and admissions folks based on a previous visit.

I kind of agree about the cities, but she is scared of the cold and wind (right on lake Michigan). Yes, I know, Philly is cold but not nearly as cold as Chi. I do want to accomodate her, because she would rather be in the South but has graciously agreed to follow me to the frigid lands of t14 law schools.

User avatar
src42
Posts: 287
Joined: Mon Nov 01, 2010 10:26 am

Re: Northwestern (120k) vs. Penn (45k)

Postby src42 » Thu Mar 24, 2011 5:44 pm

Spouses make things so much harder. We should get rid of them.

(Kidding, obviously)

User avatar
beidoun
Posts: 196
Joined: Tue Jan 26, 2010 11:27 am

Re: Northwestern (120k) vs. Penn (45k)

Postby beidoun » Thu Mar 24, 2011 5:52 pm

If she would be going to penn with you, you could cut your COL if you split the rent/utilities with her and so on. So the difference between the two schools gets smaller.

tipler4213
Posts: 634
Joined: Thu May 29, 2008 11:16 am

Re: Northwestern (120k) vs. Penn (45k)

Postby tipler4213 » Thu Mar 24, 2011 6:19 pm

Haha agreed--although she would likely come live with me in Chicago too.




Return to “Choosing a Law School”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests