Berkeley over Columbia, both at sticker?

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lola_wants
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Berkeley over Columbia, both at sticker?

Postby lola_wants » Wed Apr 13, 2011 10:51 pm

Posting on behalf of a friend. My instinct is that, even though he liked Berkeley better and saw himself being happier there, he's really sacrificing job placement/a safety net by making this decision, particularly given that he doesn't know what kind of law or where he wants to practice. He had a weird cycle and came out with literally these two (great!) acceptances. Tough call. Thoughts? Career suicide or a wise, self-aware decision?

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BackToTheOldHouse
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Re: Berkeley over Columbia, both at sticker?

Postby BackToTheOldHouse » Wed Apr 13, 2011 11:01 pm

lola_wants wrote:Posting on behalf of a friend. My instinct is that, even though he liked Berkeley better and saw himself being happier there, he's really sacrificing job placement/a safety net by making this decision, particularly given that he doesn't know what kind of law or where he wants to practice. He had a weird cycle and came out with literally these two (great!) acceptances. Tough call. Thoughts? Career suicide or a wise, self-aware decision?

Wise, self-aware decision. :mrgreen:

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bk1
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Re: Berkeley over Columbia, both at sticker?

Postby bk1 » Wed Apr 13, 2011 11:04 pm

I mean there's a difference between these two, but he wouldn't be insane to take Boalt over CLS.

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OutCold
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Re: Berkeley over Columbia, both at sticker?

Postby OutCold » Wed Apr 13, 2011 11:05 pm

Definitely not career suicide. Berkeley is a top 10 law school, and the second best law school on the west coast. Yes, your friend will be at a disadvantage if he's shooting for east coast big law (relative to Columbia) but west coast placement is second only to Stanford really. If Berkeley is where he really wants to be, that's where he should go. Either way, his choices (and job prospects) are great.

chasgoose
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Re: Berkeley over Columbia, both at sticker?

Postby chasgoose » Thu Apr 14, 2011 1:18 am

As someone who is most likely turning down CLS for NYU, I understand the negative feelings towards Columbia, but I also have 25k helping push me where things feel better. Columbia will be slightly better for job prospects, but that difference will most likely only reveal itself if your friend is at the median, if they are higher ranked in their class then the advantage Columbia offers over Berkeley is less. The reason, however, that I am not completely convinced that Berkeley is the choice is that it is more expensive than CLS at sticker. Even in-state they are the same price and OOS tuition at Berkeley is pushing 55k. Also, Berkeley's tuition is going to rise at a faster rate than CLS will. Essentially paying sticker at both (even understanding that it's easy to become in-state after 1L year) CLS will probably be about 10-15k cheaper than Berkeley. Given the fact that CLS is better for job prospects (even if only slightly) that makes it harder to turn down. I mean the thing is that most law schools are going to be awful and soul-crushing, CLS does a really terrible job of pitching itself at its ASW so that it turns people off, but I don't think its probably as bad as it seems. Unless there is a really good reason going to Berkeley over CLS at sticker is kind of hard to justify...

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IzziesGal
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Re: Berkeley over Columbia, both at sticker?

Postby IzziesGal » Thu Apr 14, 2011 1:22 am

I have a friend who transferred out of Columbia to Boalt. Also know several who chose Boalt over Columbia. The differences aren't as extreme as people make them out to be.

Edit: not to be offensive, but all too often, people on here don't know what they're talking about. Yes, Boalt is expensive. What people don't pay attention to is the financial aid program and substantial need based grants. I know many people ( myself included) who are receiving grants in the 20k-30k range each year. it's very easy for 0Ls to comment on price when they haven't gotten into Boalt and thus probably haven't done their homework as to what it actually costs and what financial assistance is available. If you guys want information, please reach out to current students. We are more than happy to help in any way possible.

Sorry for the terrible editing job - I'm on my iPad.

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bk1
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Re: Berkeley over Columbia, both at sticker?

Postby bk1 » Thu Apr 14, 2011 2:26 am

IzziesGal wrote:I have a friend who transferred out of Columbia to Boalt. Also know several who chose Boalt over Columbia. The differences aren't as extreme as people make them out to be.

Edit: not to be offensive, but all too often, people on here don't know what they're talking about. Yes, Boalt is expensive. What people don't pay attention to is the financial aid program and substantial need based grants. I know many people ( myself included) who are receiving grants in the 20k-30k range each year. it's very easy for 0Ls to comment on price when they haven't gotten into Boalt and thus probably haven't done their homework as to what it actually costs and what financial assistance is available. If you guys want information, please reach out to current students. We are more than happy to help in any way possible.

Sorry for the terrible editing job - I'm on my iPad.


While this is all well good, it means absolutely nothing if OP's friend isn't actually getting those grants/scholarships.

plurilingue
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Re: Berkeley over Columbia, both at sticker?

Postby plurilingue » Thu Apr 14, 2011 2:31 am

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Last edited by plurilingue on Fri May 03, 2013 3:33 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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bk1
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Re: Berkeley over Columbia, both at sticker?

Postby bk1 » Thu Apr 14, 2011 2:32 am

plurilingue wrote:I would be quite surprised to see the UC system raise fees for their professional degrees beyond what the elite privates are charging. When the budget crunch forced tuition increases, the UC Regents (correctly) chose to realign professional degree tuition with the elite privates rather than force the same increases on undergraduates. Even Berkeley knows, however, that it would be shooting itself in the foot if it were to charge more than rival schools, like Stanford, Columbia, and Penn.


But it does charge more than other schools to OOSers.

plurilingue
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Re: Berkeley over Columbia, both at sticker?

Postby plurilingue » Thu Apr 14, 2011 2:35 am

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Last edited by plurilingue on Fri Jul 10, 2015 3:12 pm, edited 1 time in total.

lola_wants
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Re: Berkeley over Columbia, both at sticker?

Postby lola_wants » Thu Apr 14, 2011 11:36 am

Thanks, all, for the input! Just checked, and he has had some financial aid weirdness (truly weird and don't want to out him!), so has not yet received details of his finaid package, so unfortunately, that can't be a deciding factor.

I definitely am sympathetic to both views. It is true that sometimes ASWs can be misleading; I love NYU, but not for the reasons I thought I would at ASW. It's also true that he doesn't know where in the country he wants to practice, so maybe Columbia makes more sense on that level. But most people I've talked IRL to don't really think of CCN as different from MVPB...anyway, thanks for the additional thoughts, all, and I'd love to hear from any Berkeley students who chose it over Columbia.

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DubPoker
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Re: Berkeley over Columbia, both at sticker?

Postby DubPoker » Thu Apr 14, 2011 11:42 am

Is there no way to leverage a Berkeley Scholarship with a Columbia acceptance? is that not TCR?

I'm not T-14 material, but based on my experience/interaction with T-30 schools, you can leverage scholly's with acceptances to better schools even if they are in a different region.

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coldshoulder
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Re: Berkeley over Columbia, both at sticker?

Postby coldshoulder » Thu Apr 14, 2011 11:44 am

I think this is really just west coast vs. east coast. Both are amazing schools, and job prospects will be great on either side. If he's happy at Boalt and loves Cali, why the hell not?

09042014
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Re: Berkeley over Columbia, both at sticker?

Postby 09042014 » Thu Apr 14, 2011 11:45 am

Not a terrible choice if you want to work in NorCal.

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thecilent
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Re: Berkeley over Columbia, both at sticker?

Postby thecilent » Thu Apr 14, 2011 11:48 am

coldshoulder wrote:I think this is really just west coast vs. east coast. Both are amazing schools, and job prospects will be great on either side. If he's happy at Boalt and loves Cali, why the hell not?

Yeah this clearly comes down to whether he wants cali or nyc. Simple.

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IzziesGal
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Re: Berkeley over Columbia, both at sticker?

Postby IzziesGal » Thu Apr 14, 2011 11:28 pm

coldshoulder wrote:I think this is really just west coast vs. east coast. Both are amazing schools, and job prospects will be great on either side. If he's happy at Boalt and loves Cali, why the hell not?


And it's not even an East Coast v. West Coast thing. There are a TON of us heading to NY and DC this summer from Boalt. And there are Columbia grads working out here in law firms, etc. I don't think the difference between the two schools is big enough, honestly. The only real difference I see is that perhaps most of Columbia students go into big law (this is just my speculation) whereas at Boalt, it's split between PI/PS and big law. Those of us who wanted big law, got it. But again, it's a smaller percentage of each class that really wants big law, since a lot of Boalties are PI/PS focused.

cornellbeez
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Re: Berkeley over Columbia, both at sticker?

Postby cornellbeez » Fri Apr 15, 2011 12:53 am

IzziesGal wrote: Those of us who wanted big law, got it.


:roll: We shouldn't delude 0Ls. The market is still brutal, and apparently even 1/3 of Harvard struck out last year. (Not to mention, people who bid on California, including LA, had an especially difficult time unless they had really good grades or were IP-focused.)

luckdragon
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Re: Berkeley over Columbia, both at sticker?

Postby luckdragon » Fri Apr 15, 2011 9:41 am

I would've chosen Berkeley over Columbia, but I'm that rare person who doesn't like New York.

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Re: Berkeley over Columbia, both at sticker?

Postby luckdragon » Fri Apr 15, 2011 9:42 am

cornellbeez wrote:
IzziesGal wrote: Those of us who wanted big law, got it.


:roll: We shouldn't delude 0Ls. The market is still brutal, and apparently even 1/3 of Harvard struck out last year. (Not to mention, people who bid on California, including LA, had an especially difficult time unless they had really good grades or were IP-focused.)


Ok I have a hard time believing this. Not to derail the thread, but please tell me this isn't true.

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UnitarySpace
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Re: Berkeley over Columbia, both at sticker?

Postby UnitarySpace » Fri Apr 15, 2011 9:54 am

luckdragon wrote:
cornellbeez wrote:
IzziesGal wrote: Those of us who wanted big law, got it.


:roll: We shouldn't delude 0Ls. The market is still brutal, and apparently even 1/3 of Harvard struck out last year. (Not to mention, people who bid on California, including LA, had an especially difficult time unless they had really good grades or were IP-focused.)


Ok I have a hard time believing this. Not to derail the thread, but please tell me this isn't true.


Depending on how you crunch the numbers it might be closer to 1/4 than 1/3 (but the range seems right). And to be "last year" means 2009 OCI, not the 2010 OCI which was probably significantly better.

On a side note, people need to supply hard numbers for boalt oci.

Edited to emphasize significantly.
Last edited by UnitarySpace on Fri Apr 15, 2011 10:03 am, edited 1 time in total.

Dayrsilver
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Re: Berkeley over Columbia, both at sticker?

Postby Dayrsilver » Fri Apr 15, 2011 10:00 am

I don't usually post on TLS, but I have to make this same choice today and would appreciate advice as well. Employment data for Berkeley would add much needed clarity.

cornellbeez
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Re: Berkeley over Columbia, both at sticker?

Postby cornellbeez » Fri Apr 15, 2011 5:11 pm

luckdragon wrote:
cornellbeez wrote:
IzziesGal wrote: Those of us who wanted big law, got it.


:roll: We shouldn't delude 0Ls. The market is still brutal, and apparently even 1/3 of Harvard struck out last year. (Not to mention, people who bid on California, including LA, had an especially difficult time unless they had really good grades or were IP-focused.)


Ok I have a hard time believing this. Not to derail the thread, but please tell me this isn't true.


You can search for the data on TLS. A Harvard student posted it somewhere on here. Estimates were around 30% did not get a job at OCI. (I think Columbia and NYU fared similarly as Harvard. There's hard data for those schools, too, on TLS.) I don't know if or really believe that this year's OCI was "significantly" better, but it was better, at least for NY. California was still brutal. (I don't really keep up to date with this kind of stuff, but I do know a few NY based firms have recently closed their SF offices and some NY based firms don't recruit summers for their CA offices.) However, most non v-10 firms have permanently slashed class sizes significantly compared to a couple years ago, and IMO, I think it's going to stay this way for a long time. (And by slashing class sizes, I mean they are now 1/5 - 1/3 the size they were a couple years ago.)

boalt2l
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Re: Berkeley over Columbia, both at sticker?

Postby boalt2l » Fri Apr 15, 2011 10:06 pm

IzziesGal wrote:
coldshoulder wrote:I think this is really just west coast vs. east coast. Both are amazing schools, and job prospects will be great on either side. If he's happy at Boalt and loves Cali, why the hell not?


And it's not even an East Coast v. West Coast thing. There are a TON of us heading to NY and DC this summer from Boalt. And there are Columbia grads working out here in law firms, etc. I don't think the difference between the two schools is big enough, honestly. The only real difference I see is that perhaps most of Columbia students go into big law (this is just my speculation) whereas at Boalt, it's split between PI/PS and big law. Those of us who wanted big law, got it. But again, it's a smaller percentage of each class that really wants big law, since a lot of Boalties are PI/PS focused.


This is absolutely not true and I am truly embarrassed that fellow students are giving false information to potential admits. I could have gone to either school, and honestly I would still have picked Boalt easily. To say that those who wanted Biglaw got it is so false its absurd. Lots of us, including myself are doing PI/PS and will be relying on LRAP not because its what we wanted, but because we are not snobby to turn down any work that does not leave a blank resume. I was well above median at OCI, Now in top 25% easily and I have no paid job and wanted Biglaw. I know plenty of others who went into OCI with Law Review or Top 25% grades and got absolutely nothing.

What I can say, is everyone including myself ended up getting some kind of work, albeit unpaid which I would consider awesome and prestigious. I want everyone to come to Boalt and do think it really holds its own with other law schools, this has been two of the best years of my life. Still, it really irks me when my classmates post patently false and deceptive information to incoming admits. Boalt is an awesome place, but I'm sick of 0Ls getting a deluded picture that whatever opportunity they want will be attainable to all students. We can all be enthusiastic about our school, but can we please stop lying to admits about our job prospects?

Thank You

cornellbeez
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Re: Berkeley over Columbia, both at sticker?

Postby cornellbeez » Sat Apr 16, 2011 1:27 am

Might as well be honest and spit it out - Columbia's biglaw placement is much better. I wouldn't be surprised if CLS placed twice as much percentage wise into biglaw this OCI. The most recent hard data states that CLS placed 70% into biglaw. Factors include more firms recruiting at Columbia, more people bidding on NY, firms having better relationships with Columbia, etc. Based on what I know about summer classes at various NY firms, Columbia and NYU students are favored. If you care about maximizing your potential for getting biglaw and have no preference for location, go to CLS.

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worldtraveler
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Re: Berkeley over Columbia, both at sticker?

Postby worldtraveler » Sat Apr 16, 2011 1:41 am

What did your friend like about Berkeley? I find it hard to give advice without more info.

Also, your friend must have SOME idea of what he/she would like to do, right? A lot of this thread is about debating big law but if your friend is more interested in other types of work, then that should be taken into consideration.




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