NYU Public Interest as good as it seems?

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neyaae
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NYU Public Interest as good as it seems?

Postby neyaae » Fri Apr 08, 2011 12:42 pm

I went to the NYU ASW and was pretty blown away by the public interest opportunities that they have, and was seduced by everything they said about having such a good PI program, better than other schools. Now I'm back home and wondering how much is true and how much is them woo-ing me? I am choosing between NYU and MVP or WUSTL with full scholarship. I don't know yet about financial aid from NYU, but have decent offers from V and P and less decent from M. I'm thinking I might go to NYU at sticker because of their PI program and their LRAP, which seems pretty good, and also location. Am I letting them blind me? Are they really that much better for PI? Would they consider matching offers from MVP, or are they not considered peer schools?

edit: I'm interested in international human rights law and possibly immigration and am fully committed to PI.

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chris0805
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Re: NYU Public Interest as good as it seems?

Postby chris0805 » Fri Apr 08, 2011 1:07 pm

neyaae wrote:I went to the NYU ASW and was pretty blown away by the public interest opportunities that they have, and was seduced by everything they said about having such a good PI program, better than other schools. Now I'm back home and wondering how much is true and how much is them woo-ing me? I am choosing between NYU and MVP or WUSTL with full scholarship. I don't know yet about financial aid from NYU, but have decent offers from V and P and less decent from M. I'm thinking I might go to NYU at sticker because of their PI program and their LRAP, which seems pretty good, and also location. Am I letting them blind me? Are they really that much better for PI? Would they consider matching offers from MVP, or are they not considered peer schools?

edit: I'm interested in international human rights law and possibly immigration and am fully committed to PI.


I think it's definitely overstated (Bias alert: I'm a PI CLS alum), but I also think that you're area of interest is the one place where CLS/NYU are significantly better than just about everywhere. New York and DC are where most human rights organizations are located and the two schools definitely take advantage of that community.

I took CLS at close to sticker over UVA with a sizable scholarship and it was an extremely difficult decision. I'm happy with my choice, but UVA also has a great human rights clinic (assuming Denna Hurwitz is still there) and is not THAT far from DC. You'd be crazy to not at least consider it. I'd be hesitant about taking WUSTL, especially when planning to take advantage of the LRAP.

TL;DR version: I'd lean towards NYU, but it's a tough and very personal decision.

neyaae
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Re: NYU Public Interest as good as it seems?

Postby neyaae » Fri Apr 08, 2011 1:25 pm

What scout GULC? I wad admitted to their global law scholars program. No word yet on scholarships. I like the gls but I get the feeling I could get the same benefit from NYU.

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sgtgrumbles
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Re: NYU Public Interest as good as it seems?

Postby sgtgrumbles » Fri Apr 08, 2011 2:44 pm

I don't mean to divert this thread too much, but I'd love to hear from any current students or recent alumni from NYU or other schools who are paying sticker - or close to it - to do PI. The LRAP programs seem good enough at many top schools that you can effectively go for free, or at least NYU's and Chicago's seem to allow this for most reasonable salary scenarios. Still, I get the chills when I think about taking out such a large amount of debt.

dixiecupdrinking
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Re: NYU Public Interest as good as it seems?

Postby dixiecupdrinking » Fri Apr 08, 2011 3:20 pm

If you're definitely, 100% committed to public interest, then LRAPs should really be your concern, not scholarship money. If you do LRAP qualifying work for ten years, your loan payments will have literally nothing to do with how much debt you took out (assuming you're borrowing in the $100k+ range that most people are in). They will have everything to do with your salary and with how good the LRAP is at your school.

I don't know much about people's individual financial circumstances, but I do know a number of people at NYU who are definitely taking out significant loans and intend to rely on LRAP to pay them back (i.e., they already know they're opting out of EIW interviews in the fall). It is definitely a feasible route to take. At the same time, I think the more common type of person is the one who leans toward public interest work, and all things equal would choose to do it, but isn't 100% committed to any particular career track. Those people generally seem to expect to work in firms for a few years to pay down debt. Ten years is just a long time to have that much debt hanging over your head, if you aren't totally committed to a certain practice area.

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chris0805
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Re: NYU Public Interest as good as it seems?

Postby chris0805 » Fri Apr 08, 2011 4:19 pm

sgtgrumbles wrote:I don't mean to divert this thread too much, but I'd love to hear from any current students or recent alumni from NYU or other schools who are paying sticker - or close to it - to do PI. The LRAP programs seem good enough at many top schools that you can effectively go for free, or at least NYU's and Chicago's seem to allow this for most reasonable salary scenarios. Still, I get the chills when I think about taking out such a large amount of debt.


I've made four debt payments since I graduated and consolidated my loans and I have a chunk of LRAP money in a bank account to pay those loans. It works tremendously well and I'm paying a very small amount of my loans and would pay none if I wasn't paid as well as I am (I mean, comparatively well... for a PI lawyer).

Still, the loans give me chills when I think about them even now, even as the program is working. It can feel restricting too, knowing that you do in fact have to remain as a lawyer for 10 years or defer your loans or pay them without LRAP. There will be no quarter life crisis (a little late for me anyway) where I pursue semi-pro rugby or surf all day and tend bar. I'm a lawyer now, no escape routes. Then again, that's also a good thing. :lol: And I do genuinely love my job too. :D

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chris0805
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Re: NYU Public Interest as good as it seems?

Postby chris0805 » Fri Apr 08, 2011 4:37 pm

neyaae wrote:What scout GULC? I wad admitted to their global law scholars program. No word yet on scholarships. I like the gls but I get the feeling I could get the same benefit from NYU.


I don't know the GULC program that well, but I generally don't put too much stock in "we have this program that will help you be with professors and students with similar interests." Personally, I think if there's a good human rights clinic at the school (CLS, NYU, UVA, etc.) and it's not absolutely impossible to get into the clinic, you'll find your niche with professors and the human rights community there. I don't think you need a program for that.

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sgtgrumbles
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Re: NYU Public Interest as good as it seems?

Postby sgtgrumbles » Mon Apr 11, 2011 10:40 am

Chris, you've been really helpful in public interest threads. It's great to see someone contentedly and successfully doing PI work out of a top school. Thanks for being honest about your nervousness, too. Even for those of us who never want to work for a firm, committing to a low-paying job and ten years of overhanging debt is frightening, LRAP or not.

I'd love to hear from any other current PI lawyers who can address life under LRAP.

adt231
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Re: NYU Public Interest as good as it seems?

Postby adt231 » Mon Apr 11, 2011 12:44 pm

sgtgrumbles wrote:Chris, you've been really helpful in public interest threads. It's great to see someone contentedly and successfully doing PI work out of a top school. Thanks for being honest about your nervousness, too. Even for those of us who never want to work for a firm, committing to a low-paying job and ten years of overhanging debt is frightening, LRAP or not.

I'd love to hear from any other current PI lawyers who can address life under LRAP.


+1

afLSAT
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Re: NYU Public Interest as good as it seems?

Postby afLSAT » Mon Apr 11, 2011 5:28 pm

+10000

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worldtraveler
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Re: NYU Public Interest as good as it seems?

Postby worldtraveler » Mon Apr 11, 2011 6:40 pm

I am paying (close) to sticker and I'm doing PI. I'm also doing a joint degree so I will have 4 years of loans. It's a little scary, but it's what I want to do and taking a scholarship at a lower ranked school would not get me the same opportunities.

I will say what I've said about a million times in other threads: You do not have time to do everything in law school. Having 5 clinics, 10 clubs, and 3 journals that interest you will do little for you because you will have time to do a fraction of everything that's available. Just because one school has more PI opportunities doesn't mean it's the right fit for you. LRAP should be a big concern, location and fit of the school, ranking, and classes and professors specifically aligned with what you want to do (those professors must be accessible, too). Going to a traditional PI-heavy school can also just mean more competition to get into clinics and things like that.

Also a not on LRAP. DO NOT just look at what salary the LRAP covers. Look at what types of employment it covers as it varies widely. I cringe when I see people comparing them just on the salaries they cover.

neyaae
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Re: NYU Public Interest as good as it seems?

Postby neyaae » Tue Apr 12, 2011 8:06 pm

so you can do LRAP when you go back for another degree? I might want to get a masters at some point before my 10 years are up.




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