UConn vs. American U

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Lotus24
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UConn vs. American U

Postby Lotus24 » Sun Apr 24, 2011 9:41 pm

UConn has offered me a scholarship for in-state tuition the first year and then I could apply for Connecticut residency the 2nd and 3rd years. There's no scholarship money with American right now, but I could apply for some restricted scholarships my 2nd and 3rd years(not sure for how much).

Rankings are roughly the same, latest U.S. News and World Report lists UConn as having a low employment rate at graduation-only 59%??? Seems much higher in the TLS profile. I currently live in D.C. and am interested in human rights and international law, which American has plenty opportunities for me to get involved in. Currently leaning towards UConn though because of cost effectiveness and smaller class sizes, also Hartford is closer to NYC where my older parents live. Wondering how much of a difference American's international and human rights program will make in the end...is it worth almost $100k?? But also nervous about missing out on opportunities in the event I go to Hartford...so torn!

also, I still haven't heard back from Fordham. Is it safe to assume at this point it'll be a rejection or a waitlist? Got a rejection letter from Columbia yesterday.

Thanks for any help!!

mettasutta
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Re: UConn vs. American U

Postby mettasutta » Sun Apr 24, 2011 9:51 pm

Easily UConn, for the in-state tuition, lower cost of living, and proximity to family. American is most definitely not worth the extra $100K in debt. Plus, the DC market is hella saturated, whereas UConn is basically the only game in town. Are you absolutely OK with living and working in Connecticut?

Also, it's the general consensus on TLS that specialty rankings (i.e. int'l law, environmental law, etc.) are mostly worthless.

Lotus24
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Re: UConn vs. American U

Postby Lotus24 » Sun Apr 24, 2011 9:58 pm

oh and one last thing...after graduation, not sure if I would want to be in Conn, NYC, or DC. Working in Connecticut wouldn't be my first choice-but I've talked to some grads from UConn who work in NY, Maine, and haven't had an issue. Do you think the in-state thing will be too limiting?

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MrPapagiorgio
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Re: UConn vs. American U

Postby MrPapagiorgio » Sun Apr 24, 2011 9:59 pm

mettasutta wrote:UConn is basically the only game in town. Are you absolutely OK with living and working in Connecticut?

Is this necessarily true? I know that CT only has three law schools (2 if you don't count Yale b/c I doubt most Yale grads stay in CT), but doesn't CT draw from other Northeast schools as well? And isn't the Northeast saturated as it is?

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thexfactor
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Re: UConn vs. American U

Postby thexfactor » Sun Apr 24, 2011 10:01 pm

something is wrong, I hear columbia and american U in the same sentence......

how are your stats?

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red_alertz
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Re: UConn vs. American U

Postby red_alertz » Sun Apr 24, 2011 10:08 pm

American if u want DC and want to try out public interest, plus it is ailttle higher ranked, both r great though

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snapdragon
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Re: UConn vs. American U

Postby snapdragon » Sun Apr 24, 2011 10:11 pm

Lotus, I would go for UConn at instate over American any day. But I'd caution you that you need to be OK with working in CT to go to UConn, since that is the main market that UConn places in. From what I have heard, if you do VERY well, there is a chance at Boston/NY and maybe DC, but the fact is, the majority of graduates find positions in CT and New England. I am going there next year hoping that I do well enough to get a job in Boston or Portland (Maine) but I'm absolutely good with focusing my job search in CT.

IMO, there are very few circumstances in which American is worth $100k more than UConn. Both are schools in saturated markets with a lot of competition. You will need to do well at either to thrive. However, unless you are independently wealthy, I personally think that the lower price of UConn (seriously, $100k less debt is a HUGE DEAL) plus the market of CT vs. DC makes UConn a clear choice over American here.

Lotus24
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Re: UConn vs. American U

Postby Lotus24 » Sun Apr 24, 2011 10:12 pm

yea, columbia sent me a fee waiver supposedly based solely on my lsat score, which was a 160. kind of a joke. pretty sure it was just a URM recruiting thing. I'm not disappointed/bitter about not getting in, just annoyed they even sent me anything to begin with. they weren't on my original list, obv because my numbers aren't up there.

undergrad gpa was a 3.4, but I'm 5 years out of undergrad with strong nonprofit work experience and great recs. duke also sent me a waiver and waitlisted me. i've already put columbia behind me, am more concerned about whether i have a shot at fordham. and if i don't, which of my two current choices is the best.

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thexfactor
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Re: UConn vs. American U

Postby thexfactor » Sun Apr 24, 2011 10:17 pm

since you are URM, i would apply early next year and retake lsat. You are on the cusp of the t14. A few more pts and you might get CCN. Depending on what your GPA is, you might have a shot at the lower t14.

Lotus24
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Re: UConn vs. American U

Postby Lotus24 » Sun Apr 24, 2011 10:46 pm

I guess that's my main thing now...how sure of working in Connecticut do I have to be?? I'm not absolutely opposed but I will probably want to head back to NYC or maybe DC after graduation. I am definitely leaning UConn because I think it's a better value for the money and I've heard good things about it but I don't want to be married to Connecticut for the rest of my life.

ran12
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Re: UConn vs. American U

Postby ran12 » Sun Apr 24, 2011 10:53 pm

UConn would be the better choice. American is overrated and doesn't get the type of respect people think it does in DC. While you're concerned about being stuck in CT, you can always work in CT for a while then go to NY or DC. CT isn't the worst place to be anyway.

If you really want to start law school, go to UConn. I realize peoples' arguments about you being URM and retaking might benefit you but you can't predict what could happen; both with your score and the admissions climate in the next cycle.

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snapdragon
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Re: UConn vs. American U

Postby snapdragon » Mon Apr 25, 2011 7:13 am

Lotus - check out this link: --LinkRemoved--

One thing I do appreciate is that UConn seems to provide (self-produced) pretty straightforward employment info. This report looks like it aggregates full & part time students.

65.7% of employed grads are working in CT, 14% in NY (state, so not necessarily just NYC) and 7% in Boston. So you have to realize that, if you are employed at graduation, there is almost a 2/3s chance you will be employed in the state of CT.

From what the student I spoke with said, you can get work in Boston or NYC, but it's pretty much contingent on being ranked w/in the top 10% and on law review and then a pinch of luck added to that (i.e. top 10% + LR certainly does not guarantee an NYC or Boston firm job, just puts it in within the realm of possibility). This was a 2L with a summer associate spot at a big firm in Boston, who was very careful to caution me that their experience was not typical.

I still think UConn is a much better choice than American at full price if you want to start school this year. However, it does seem that you potentially have a lot to gain from a retake/reapply, so I hope you consider that option as well.

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reasonable_man
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Re: UConn vs. American U

Postby reasonable_man » Mon Apr 25, 2011 9:14 am

You will never practice "international human rights law." You will never draft a habeus petition for the release of a South American blue tusked elephant being wrongfully held by a tribe that just so happens to subscribers to an arcane international treaty that requires said elephant’s release. You will never argue a case before the Hague and you will most certainly never practice with an attorney that has done any of these things. Attending American or UConn will allow you to obtain a job (if you are lucky), in a small to mid-sized firm earning anywhere from 40 to 70k to start. You will not do “meaningful” work. You will work on run of the mill low end corporate transactions or practice in some area of litigation ranging from pure shit law to some manner of commercial litigation. That said, UConn and American are no different in what opportunities they will offer (other than geography of said opportunities). With that in mind, I’d go with UConn and save a ton of cash.

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gwuorbust
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Re: UConn vs. American U

Postby gwuorbust » Mon Apr 25, 2011 9:16 am

if you are really that eager to give away 200k I'll scribble JD on a piece of paper 3 years from now and I'll write "THE American School of Law." employment prospects will be about the same.

and am interested in human rights and international law


are you also interested in unicorn law ?

mettasutta
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Re: UConn vs. American U

Postby mettasutta » Mon Apr 25, 2011 9:33 am

MrPapagiorgio wrote:
mettasutta wrote:UConn is basically the only game in town. Are you absolutely OK with living and working in Connecticut?

Is this necessarily true? I know that CT only has three law schools (2 if you don't count Yale b/c I doubt most Yale grads stay in CT), but doesn't CT draw from other Northeast schools as well? And isn't the Northeast saturated as it is?


Well, in CT other than Yale there's Quinnipiac which is Tier 3, which I'm sure UConn has a leg up over. And with regards to saturation, I'm sure that New England is not more saturated than DC. If GW/GULC grads are struggling, I can't imagine how rough American grads have it.

What kind of URM are you? AA URMs have gotten into Columbia with your GPA and a 163ish. A couple more points could pay off massively. Hispanic URMS typically get a much smaller boost though.

reasonable_man and gwuorbust: You can explain to OP the reality of his or her job prospects without being dickish (read: snapdragon's post)

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gwuorbust
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Re: UConn vs. American U

Postby gwuorbust » Mon Apr 25, 2011 9:56 am

mettasutta wrote:
reasonable_man and gwuorbust: You can explain to OP the reality of his or her job prospects without being dickish (read: snapdragon's post)


shall do tn after my property final. I've got a lot to say about American.

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reasonable_man
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Re: UConn vs. American U

Postby reasonable_man » Mon Apr 25, 2011 10:02 am

mettasutta wrote:
MrPapagiorgio wrote:
mettasutta wrote:UConn is basically the only game in town. Are you absolutely OK with living and working in Connecticut?

Is this necessarily true? I know that CT only has three law schools (2 if you don't count Yale b/c I doubt most Yale grads stay in CT), but doesn't CT draw from other Northeast schools as well? And isn't the Northeast saturated as it is?


Well, in CT other than Yale there's Quinnipiac which is Tier 3, which I'm sure UConn has a leg up over. And with regards to saturation, I'm sure that New England is not more saturated than DC. If GW/GULC grads are struggling, I can't imagine how rough American grads have it.

What kind of URM are you? AA URMs have gotten into Columbia with your GPA and a 163ish. A couple more points could pay off massively. Hispanic URMS typically get a much smaller boost though.

reasonable_man and gwuorbust: You can explain to OP the reality of his or her job prospects without being dickish (read: snapdragon's post)


But the kids love it.

Lotus24
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Re: UConn vs. American U

Postby Lotus24 » Mon Apr 25, 2011 10:26 am

thanks snapdragon and mettasuta. I definitely agree that American is overrated and I know that I likely won't be practicing "International human rights". Some profs at American were actually really open about how elusive that is at their ASD, which I appreciated. I think what I'm focusing more on now is that the ABA site shows that most American grads take the bar in either MD, VA, or NY. Is it more important to save money now or to feel more comfortable that I'll have a good chance at a job in NYC or DC afterwards? Only 14% of Uconn grads last year went to NYC and I don't want to feel like I HAVE to do top 10% to have a chance at NYC.

I'm half Latino and female. I really don't think I can wait another year to apply. I'm already 5 years out of undergrad and I'm not interested in "Biglaw". I want to make a good living, but don't need to be guaranteed an outrageous salary at graduation. I also am a fairly inconsistent test taker, and am worried that I could easily do a few points better, but just as easily score the same or lower, and then I'd be a year behind. I'm trying to do public interest, but would be open to some international arbitration or transaction work for my first few years out to make some more $. I actually know a lawyer in the D.C. area who practices at an international arbitration firm and I think his work is really interesting.

If I went to American, I could pay the first year with savings that my grandfather left me. The idea then would be to apply for some restricted scholarships and take out loans for half the tuition for each of the following years, and my parents would help out with the other half (or whatever these scholarships that I would hope to get wouldn't cover).

I'm dealing with a lot of factors right now, as many of us are. I have older parents in New York, so I want to be sure I could work there after graduation in some capacity if I can't be close to them the next 3 years. I also have a boyfriend in D.C. that would be willing to try long distance but I don't think anybody(me, my boyfriend, or my parents) will be ok in 3 years if I can't at least have a chance at an NYC job.

thanks for listening....

Lotus24
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Re: UConn vs. American U

Postby Lotus24 » Mon Apr 25, 2011 10:34 am

And, like I mentioned, I'm still waiting on Fordham, which would nullify this decision because it's in NYC. But considering I still haven't heard from them, I'm not feeling very optimistic.

The other idea would be to write a LOCI to Duke, which I'll probably do, but I know the chances of getting off the waitlist there are slim to none.

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gwuorbust
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Re: UConn vs. American U

Postby gwuorbust » Mon Apr 25, 2011 11:01 am

1. you want NYC and American/UNCONN don't place well into NYC. but you still want to go to one. lol wut???

2. you present no compelling reason why you can't take a year off, get a better LSAT score, go to a better school in NY (Fordham, NYU, Columbia).

3. As a Latino you do not need that much of a higher score to get admissions and $$$$ thrown at you.

4. American does have terrible placement. top 10% will get biglaw. bottom 50% are screwed (to different degrees, but yes, they are). GULC > UVA > GW > W&M/W&L > American/GMU. + the thousands of other lawl graduates trying to get into DC. Basically, everyone wants into DC and American is pretty much at the bottom of the ladder. I can post an in-depth evisceration of American later if that is necessary.

5. You say you want Public Interest. This may change once you are in law school and you realize that "public interest" isn't nearly as glamorous as it sounds. even so, if you are going to a better school with less debt you have more options to help "change the world" then you will going to a lower school acquiring debt and spending your limited savings.

Ultimate conclusion: enrolling in either school would be a poor decision. retake and reapply.

mettasutta
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Re: UConn vs. American U

Postby mettasutta » Mon Apr 25, 2011 11:06 am

Lotus24 wrote:And, like I mentioned, I'm still waiting on Fordham, which would nullify this decision because it's in NYC. But considering I still haven't heard from them, I'm not feeling very optimistic.

The other idea would be to write a LOCI to Duke, which I'll probably do, but I know the chances of getting off the waitlist there are slim to none.


A Latina got into Fordham this cycle with numbers similar to yours: http://lawschoolnumbers.com/palmtrees3/jd.
I wouldn't lose all hope. They are notoriously stingy with merit aid, though.

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romothesavior
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Re: UConn vs. American U

Postby romothesavior » Mon Apr 25, 2011 11:14 am

Do not go to American at sticker. 200k+ of debt from that school is NOT worth it.

UConn would be an okay choice for you. It sounds like you could go there and graduate with low debt. But are you from the area? Maybe not such a great move if you are moving across the country and trying to set up shop in Connecticut. But it is a LOT better play for you than going to American at sticker.

I agree with thexfactor... perhaps consider re-taking. You're on the cusp of the T14 and even just a couple of points would give you some T20-30 schools with money. You've already taken some time off, so I wouldn't let one more year affect you. A 165+ would put you in at a ton of T14 schools, and even a 162-163 would get you into some of the better NE T30s, likely with money. That's a real big game-changer, and potentially a real career and life changer. Your job prospects will just be a lot better from these types of schools.

But if I had to choose between these two options, then UConn by a landslide.

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paratactical
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Re: UConn vs. American U

Postby paratactical » Mon Apr 25, 2011 11:17 am

romothesavior wrote:Do not go to American at sticker. 200k+ of debt from that school is NOT worth it.

UConn would be an okay choice for you. It sounds like you could go there and graduate with low debt. But are you from the area? Maybe not such a great move if you are moving across the country and trying to set up shop in Connecticut. But it is a LOT better play for you than going to American at sticker.

I agree with thexfactor... perhaps consider re-taking. You're on the cusp of the T14 and even just a couple of points would give you some T20-30 schools with money. You've already taken some time off, so I wouldn't let one more year affect you. A 165+ would put you in at a ton of T14 schools, and even a 162-163 would get you into some of the better NE T30s, likely with money. That's a real big game-changer, and potentially a real career and life changer. Your job prospects will just be a lot better from these types of schools.

But if I had to choose between these two options, then UConn by a landslide.

+1

I would really consider taking another year, as much as that sucks, and really investing in your LSAT prep (get a tutor, take a class, something, anything to get that 165+). It's a pain in the ass and can mess with your plans, I know, but it would put you in a much better choice than what you're looking at now. Especially because you're looking at staying in CT for a good while without any real promise of getting back to NYC or DC at any point in the future. It's a big gamble if living in NYC/DC is a serious hope for you.

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romothesavior
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Re: UConn vs. American U

Postby romothesavior » Mon Apr 25, 2011 11:18 am

reasonable_man wrote:
mettasutta wrote:reasonable_man and gwuorbust: You can explain to OP the reality of his or her job prospects without being dickish (read: snapdragon's post)


But the kids love it.

TBF, I laughed.

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snapdragon
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Re: UConn vs. American U

Postby snapdragon » Mon Apr 25, 2011 11:32 am

Lotus24 wrote:I think what I'm focusing more on now is that the ABA site shows that most American grads take the bar in either MD, VA, or NY. Is it more important to save money now or to feel more comfortable that I'll have a good chance at a job in NYC or DC afterwards? Only 14% of Uconn grads last year went to NYC and I don't want to feel like I HAVE to do top 10% to have a chance at NYC.


You're really looking at two different things here:

American grads are taking the bar in NY. This does NOT mean they have jobs in NYC.

14% of UConn grads are employed in the state of NY (after 94% reporting). This also does NOT mean that 14% of UConn grads went to NYC. It means probably around 14% of UConn grads have reported jobs in the state of NY. I'd guess at least some of those are people working in places like White Plains, maybe even upstate, or in places like Brewster/Poughkeepsie etc.

What I'm getting at here, is neither of these things tell you how many graduates from these schools are actually working in NYC. They're not good indicators upon which to make a decision.

I don't mean to sound like we're all piling on you. I'm also 5 years out of UG, so I understand the hesitation at waiting another year. You also sound pretty fun and I'd love to have you as a classmate at UConn. But really, neither of these schools has a realistic chance at getting you a job in NYC, if that is your target market. You'd have to be top 10% at either to even have a shot, and, as we all know, there's a 90% chance that won't happen. I would say, from my small font of knowledge, that Fordham would be better, even at sticker, than UConn at a discount (if NYC is your target market). For NYC, Fordham is certainly a better choice than American if both are sticker.

I'm sorry to be giving you what seems like tons of negative information. The positive aspect is that I think you do have a legit shot at Fordham, which is far better than UConn or American for NYC & a great shot at some top schools with $$ if you improve your score on a retake. And, if you decide that you could be happy with the kind of options that reasonable_man describes in CT, UConn at in-state rate is not a terrible idea either. I'd just hate to see you choose either because of their "strength" in NYC (or even DC).




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