Columbia vs Vandy ($)

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Columbia sticker vs. Vandy scholly

Columbia @ Sticker (COA: 200k)
123
76%
Vandy w/ 65k (COA: 100k)
39
24%
 
Total votes: 162

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lastch2
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Columbia vs Vandy ($)

Postby lastch2 » Mon Apr 04, 2011 2:52 am

hey all, so I am grappling with the 100,000 dollar question.
-I have no particularly prestigious career ambitions that would require a CLS education, but i like the fact that my future options are pretty open relative to vandy.
-I do want to end up in the south and prefer southern living to NYC, but after visiting really liked the morningside heights area and fell in love with the CLS campus and prefer their academic environment to the vandy vibe i got
-my main concern is the ability to find a 6-figure, stable job...which seems plausible at both schools
-i have a SO that is worried about affording NYC, however has better job opportunities in NY
-my main fear in vandy is finding that i will want to pursue something that requires an ivy j.d.
-my main fear in CLS is crippling debt and the extreme culture shock for myself and SO (we will be married shortly before law school starts and i'm naively hoping for a smooth transition)

i go back and forth over and over again and cannot make a decision i feel 100% comfortable with. no friends/family have any experience with law school therefore they give well-meaning but overall useless advice. i would really appreciate some insight TLS, so far y'all have led me to success at other law school related ventures. Thanks! :D

stylishlaw
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Re: Columbia vs Vandy ($)

Postby stylishlaw » Mon Apr 04, 2011 3:06 am

Do you have ties to the south? If you're from the area it would be easier to end up there from Columbia. It would take work and initiative however, since CLS mainly places in NYC.

For me, the question would be whether the difference in placement between the two schools exceeds the $65K difference. Personally, I want to work in NYC so I would pick Columbia there. I would reconsider at 75k+ from Vandy.

However, since you want to work in the South I would probably go with Vandy for the money. The cost of living difference between the two schools makes Columbia more like $250,000 over the three years relative to the ~$180,000 it costs to attend Vandy. If both schools will let you get to your career goal in a similar fashion then you should probably take the cheaper school.

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Grizz
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Re: Columbia vs Vandy ($)

Postby Grizz » Mon Apr 04, 2011 3:08 am

Where do you have ties?

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lastch2
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Re: Columbia vs Vandy ($)

Postby lastch2 » Mon Apr 04, 2011 3:16 am

I have ties in GA and KY..grew up in GA and have family there, went to school and worked in KY.

dukey
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Re: Columbia vs Vandy ($)

Postby dukey » Mon Apr 04, 2011 4:29 am

lastch2 wrote:-I have no particularly prestigious career ambitions that would require a CLS education, but i like the fact that my future options are pretty open relative to vandy.
-my main fear in vandy is finding that i will want to pursue something that requires an ivy j.d.
-my main concern is the ability to find a 6-figure, stable job...which seems plausible at both schocols

There is a significant difference in Vandy vs. CLS for career options, and this comment speaks particularly to the third point above.

lastch2 wrote:-I do want to end up in the south and prefer southern living to NYC, but after visiting really liked the morningside heights area and fell in love with the CLS campus and prefer their academic environment to the vandy vibe i got

In addition to Columbia's clear national presence, because of your southern ties, you will be totally able to get a job there. however, going to Vandy will really limit your ability to go NYC and many other locations.


100k at a higher ranked school would be reasonable (e.g. Virginia, Duke, GT, etc.), but Vandy is a significant drop. I would recommend that you attend Columbia. And congrats - certainly no easy feat to attain admission.

Edit: I mentioned Virginia, Duke, and GT not because I'm trolling other schools, but because they are located near the region OP is interested in.

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lastch2
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Re: Columbia vs Vandy ($)

Postby lastch2 » Mon Apr 04, 2011 5:52 am

dukey wrote:
lastch2 wrote:-I have no particularly prestigious career ambitions that would require a CLS education, but i like the fact that my future options are pretty open relative to vandy.
-my main fear in vandy is finding that i will want to pursue something that requires an ivy j.d.
-my main concern is the ability to find a 6-figure, stable job...which seems plausible at both schocols

There is a significant difference in Vandy vs. CLS for career options, and this comment speaks particularly to the third point above.

lastch2 wrote:-I do want to end up in the south and prefer southern living to NYC, but after visiting really liked the morningside heights area and fell in love with the CLS campus and prefer their academic environment to the vandy vibe i got

In addition to Columbia's clear national presence, because of your southern ties, you will be totally able to get a job there. however, going to Vandy will really limit your ability to go NYC and many other locations.


100k at a higher ranked school would be reasonable (e.g. Virginia, Duke, GT, etc.), but Vandy is a significant drop. I would recommend that you attend Columbia. And congrats - certainly no easy feat to attain admission.

Edit: I mentioned Virginia, Duke, and GT not because I'm trolling other schools, but because they are located near the region OP is interested in.


i haven't *technically* given up hope on duke. they were/are my number 1 choice and are very aware of that. I am interested in the general consensus for 6 figure jobs from vandy. given the stats it seemed plausible to me, but maybe others know something i dont??

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thecilent
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Re: Columbia vs Vandy ($)

Postby thecilent » Mon Apr 04, 2011 8:29 am

Damn iPhone.
Last edited by thecilent on Mon Apr 04, 2011 10:53 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Grizz
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Re: Columbia vs Vandy ($)

Postby Grizz » Mon Apr 04, 2011 10:45 am

dukey wrote: however, going to Vandy will really limit your ability to go NYC and many other locations.


Not as much as you'd think; it's the 2nd most popular location for Vandy grads after TN.

I could see this going either way depending on your debt tolerance. Columbia definitely gives you a better chance at $100k+ jobs, but even if you're making $160k in NYC, $200k is a large sum.

See if you get some money from other schools. These can't be your only two choice.

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lastch2
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Re: Columbia vs Vandy ($)

Postby lastch2 » Mon Apr 04, 2011 10:01 pm

See if you get some money from other schools. These can't be your only two choice.


i got money from emory and wake forest and that's it. nothing from ut or gulc, so while these are not my only options, they're really the only 2 options i'm considering based on money and job security. i feel like there really is no "right" answer, however i'm wondering if there's a wrong one...which worries me. :|

stylishlaw
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Re: Columbia vs Vandy ($)

Postby stylishlaw » Mon Apr 04, 2011 10:19 pm

I chose to go to Duke for undergrad amidst some other acceptances, one of which was a full ride + stipend to my state school.

I had an amazing time, but if I knew I was going to apply to law school and become a lawyer I would have taken the money and gone to a state school instead. Why? Because either path would have led me to apply to law school to become a lawyer, but the path I didn't pick would have been $250,000 cheaper and less competitive. I didn't know at the time I wanted to do law and was young at the time so I let the prestige cloud my judgment.

Taking the prestige is good if you want access to a career path where prestige is paramount or if you don't have a solid idea of what you want to do since it maximizes your available options. But you aren't interested in academia or becoming a judge. You want to work for a firm in the south, which is readily attainable from Vanderbilt. It's not like going to Vandy seriously reduces your chances of doing BigLaw in the south. I would argue that the chances of that happening are about even at both schools (imo, digging deeper into the class at Columbia = southern placement and rep of Vandy)

Take the money, buy your wife something nice.

FiveSermon
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Re: Columbia vs Vandy ($)

Postby FiveSermon » Mon Apr 04, 2011 10:25 pm

You want to end up in the south. Vandy is the clear winner here. Maybe you can negotiate even more $ out of them with that CLS acceptance.

imchuckbass58
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Re: Columbia vs Vandy ($)

Postby imchuckbass58 » Mon Apr 04, 2011 10:28 pm

lastch2 wrote:hey all, so I am grappling with the 100,000 dollar question.
-I have no particularly prestigious career ambitions that would require a CLS education, but i like the fact that my future options are pretty open relative to vandy.

-my main concern is the ability to find a 6-figure, stable job...which seems plausible at both schools


Well which one is it, because these statements are at odds to each other. Vandy is a great school and certainly offers its graduates decent placement. But your chance of landing a 6-figure job is significantly better at CLS, some would say by leaps and bounds.

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thecilent
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Re: Columbia vs Vandy ($)

Postby thecilent » Mon Apr 04, 2011 10:30 pm

imchuckbass58 wrote:
lastch2 wrote:hey all, so I am grappling with the 100,000 dollar question.
-I have no particularly prestigious career ambitions that would require a CLS education, but i like the fact that my future options are pretty open relative to vandy.

-my main concern is the ability to find a 6-figure, stable job...which seems plausible at both schools


Well which one is it, because these statements are at odds to each other. Vandy is a great school and certainly offers its graduates decent placement. But your chance of landing a 6-figure job is significantly better at CLS, some would say by leaps and bounds.

Yeah thank god someone pointed this out. Op you make no sense

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Grizz
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Re: Columbia vs Vandy ($)

Postby Grizz » Mon Apr 04, 2011 10:48 pm

lastch2 wrote:
See if you get some money from other schools. These can't be your only two choice.


i got money from emory and wake forest and that's it. nothing from ut or gulc, so while these are not my only options, they're really the only 2 options i'm considering based on money and job security. i feel like there really is no "right" answer, however i'm wondering if there's a wrong one...which worries me. :|


Since you seem to be pretty intent on working for yourself, balance whether the increased chances of a 6 figure job is worth $100k. This is a fairly personal decision I would think.

rundoxierun
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Re: Columbia vs Vandy ($)

Postby rundoxierun » Mon Apr 04, 2011 10:52 pm

FWIW, I know multiple Columbia grads who came back down south and got cushy gigs. Im not sure Vandy will have that much, if any, of a placement advantage outside of the city of Nashville.

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lastch2
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Re: Columbia vs Vandy ($)

Postby lastch2 » Tue Apr 05, 2011 12:35 am

imchuckbass58 wrote:
lastch2 wrote:hey all, so I am grappling with the 100,000 dollar question.
-I have no particularly prestigious career ambitions that would require a CLS education, but i like the fact that my future options are pretty open relative to vandy.

-my main concern is the ability to find a 6-figure, stable job...which seems plausible at both schools


Well which one is it, because these statements are at odds to each other. Vandy is a great school and certainly offers its graduates decent placement. But your chance of landing a 6-figure job is significantly better at CLS, some would say by leaps and bounds.


my definition of prestige is not a 6 figure stable salary, sorry should have clarified that. by prestigious i mean clerking for the scotus, working in a high power d.c. job, becoming a federal judge, bridging into academia. generally things that require an ivy education. job stability =/= prestigious although some may diagree ITE.

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2things2
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Re: Columbia vs Vandy ($)

Postby 2things2 » Tue Apr 05, 2011 1:36 am

rad law wrote:
dukey wrote: however, going to Vandy will really limit your ability to go NYC and many other locations.


Not as much as you'd think; it's the 2nd most popular location for Vandy grads after TN.

I feel like so many schools can say this, and so many do, but it doesn't really mean much of anything. It could be 99% of Vandy grads work in Tennessee and .5% end up in NYC, with the remaing .5% all over the place. Maryland claims the same thing about NYC being second only to Maryland (not including D.C.), but I would imagine a vassssttttt majority of Maryland grads end up in Maryland. New York City is a giant city -- a few graduates from any school are bound to end up there. Just because its the second most popular location doesn't mean you can just up and go to NYC.

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drylo
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Re: Columbia vs Vandy ($)

Postby drylo » Tue Apr 05, 2011 2:02 am

2things2 wrote:
rad law wrote:
dukey wrote: however, going to Vandy will really limit your ability to go NYC and many other locations.


Not as much as you'd think; it's the 2nd most popular location for Vandy grads after TN.

I feel like so many schools can say this, and so many do, but it doesn't really mean much of anything. It could be 99% of Vandy grads work in Tennessee and .5% end up in NYC, with the remaing .5% all over the place.


It could be (I guess). Except it isn't. So, good point.

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drylo
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Re: Columbia vs Vandy ($)

Postby drylo » Tue Apr 05, 2011 2:04 am

lastch2 wrote:i feel like there really is no "right" answer, however i'm wondering if there's a wrong one...which worries me. :|


I'd say no right or wrong answer. Just depends on what you're more comfortable with.

FiveSermon
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Re: Columbia vs Vandy ($)

Postby FiveSermon » Tue Apr 05, 2011 2:20 am

2things2 wrote:
rad law wrote:
dukey wrote: however, going to Vandy will really limit your ability to go NYC and many other locations.


Not as much as you'd think; it's the 2nd most popular location for Vandy grads after TN.

I feel like so many schools can say this, and so many do, but it doesn't really mean much of anything. It could be 99% of Vandy grads work in Tennessee and .5% end up in NYC, with the remaing .5% all over the place. Maryland claims the same thing about NYC being second only to Maryland (not including D.C.), but I would imagine a vassssttttt majority of Maryland grads end up in Maryland. New York City is a giant city -- a few graduates from any school are bound to end up there. Just because its the second most popular location doesn't mean you can just up and go to NYC.


Yeah I would like to know just how many Vandy grads go to NYC biglaw firms. I've been hearing lots of Vandy students saying Vandy has NYC as their #2 market but this doesn't really help in revealing much unless I know at least a rough percentage of Vandy students who do end up getting NYC biglaw. NYC is the biggest market in America that I wouldn't be surprised if lots of schools with relatively mediocre NYC placement had NYC as their 2nd largest market.

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Grizz
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Re: Columbia vs Vandy ($)

Postby Grizz » Tue Apr 05, 2011 2:49 am

FiveSermon wrote:
2things2 wrote:
rad law wrote:
dukey wrote: however, going to Vandy will really limit your ability to go NYC and many other locations.


Not as much as you'd think; it's the 2nd most popular location for Vandy grads after TN.

I feel like so many schools can say this, and so many do, but it doesn't really mean much of anything. It could be 99% of Vandy grads work in Tennessee and .5% end up in NYC, with the remaing .5% all over the place. Maryland claims the same thing about NYC being second only to Maryland (not including D.C.), but I would imagine a vassssttttt majority of Maryland grads end up in Maryland. New York City is a giant city -- a few graduates from any school are bound to end up there. Just because its the second most popular location doesn't mean you can just up and go to NYC.


Yeah I would like to know just how many Vandy grads go to NYC biglaw firms. I've been hearing lots of Vandy students saying Vandy has NYC as their #2 market but this doesn't really help in revealing much unless I know at least a rough percentage of Vandy students who do end up getting NYC biglaw. NYC is the biggest market in America that I wouldn't be surprised if lots of schools with relatively mediocre NYC placement had NYC as their 2nd largest market.


Fair. The employment list for 2010 is public. It doesn't look like a lot, when you consider the amount of people who want to work in NYC, it's pretty damn good.

FiveSermon
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Re: Columbia vs Vandy ($)

Postby FiveSermon » Tue Apr 05, 2011 2:58 am

Fair. The employment list for 2010 is public. It doesn't look like a lot, when you consider the amount of people who want to work in NYC, it's pretty damn good.


Do you have any idea where I could find it?

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Grizz
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Re: Columbia vs Vandy ($)

Postby Grizz » Tue Apr 05, 2011 3:10 am

FiveSermon wrote:
Fair. The employment list for 2010 is public. It doesn't look like a lot, when you consider the amount of people who want to work in NYC, it's pretty damn good.


Do you have any idea where I could find it?


Try the Vandy website or just ask them to send you one.

dukey
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Re: Columbia vs Vandy ($)

Postby dukey » Tue Apr 05, 2011 10:33 am

rad law wrote:
dukey wrote: however, going to Vandy will really limit your ability to go NYC and many other locations.


Not as much as you'd think; it's the 2nd most popular location for Vandy grads after TN.


Sorry, I should have been more clear. Columbia gives you a much better chance at NYC biglaw in general and hence, a 6 figure salary. Columbia also gives you a better shot at better firms, which have better exit options than what you'd get at Vandy.

Grads @ Vandy can prolly go to NYC, but would likely access < prestigious, < $ jobs.

duckmoney
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Re: Columbia vs Vandy ($)

Postby duckmoney » Tue Apr 05, 2011 10:39 am

Columbia is worth sticker here. The money at Vandy is tempting, but if you want to work in the South and have ties there then if you go to Columbia you will have your pick of the best firms there. From Vandy you will be competing against everyone else from Vandy / Emory / Schools in the home market as well as Duke and UVA grads who will outshine you just based on their name.

Columbia will set you apart. You will be able to repay the debt.




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