BU ($) vs. BC ($$)

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BU ($) vs. BC ($$)

BU (25k/yr) - edit
23
37%
BC (25kyr)
40
63%
 
Total votes: 63

BCLS
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Re: BU ($) vs. BC ($$)

Postby BCLS » Wed May 11, 2011 6:58 pm

Blindmelon wrote:alumniguy, you're sounding oddly more like Informative or smalllaw every day - biggest BC trolls who just change their names and keep posting sigh. You back old buddy?

Whoever it is has made some valid points.

aliarrow
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Re: BU ($) vs. BC ($$)

Postby aliarrow » Wed May 11, 2011 7:04 pm

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bk1
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Re: BU ($) vs. BC ($$)

Postby bk1 » Wed May 11, 2011 7:05 pm

Relevant to this thread: viewtopic.php?f=10&t=155233

aliarrow
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Re: BU ($) vs. BC ($$)

Postby aliarrow » Wed May 11, 2011 7:10 pm

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fingersxd
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Re: BU ($) vs. BC ($$)

Postby fingersxd » Wed May 11, 2011 9:52 pm

Would have to agree here. Well reasoned arguments weren't really informative's style. Like it or not, alumniguy does make a valid argument. The real question at the end of the day is -- does it matter if BU does or doesn't game the rankings more than other schools? I'm not so sure it does. And any student relying entirely on USNWR hasn't really done his homework anyway. That said, I agree it should force schools to be more accurate in their reporting.

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Re: BU ($) vs. BC ($$)

Postby Blindmelon » Thu May 12, 2011 11:29 am

fingersxd wrote:Would have to agree here. Well reasoned arguments weren't really informative's style. Like it or not, alumniguy does make a valid argument. The real question at the end of the day is -- does it matter if BU does or doesn't game the rankings more than other schools? I'm not so sure it does. And any student relying entirely on USNWR hasn't really done his homework anyway. That said, I agree it should force schools to be more accurate in their reporting.


This is fair.

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Re: BU ($) vs. BC ($$)

Postby alumniguy » Thu May 12, 2011 1:10 pm

Blindmelon wrote:alumniguy, you're sounding oddly more like Informative or smalllaw every day - biggest BC trolls who just change their names and keep posting sigh. You back old buddy?


I don't even know who these posters are, although after hanging around this board for a few months, I certainly know that the slevin poster was pretty much a BC troll.

I do think I bring up some valid points re that Leiter study. Regardless, as I've stated pretty much all along (in every thread that I've posted in), BC and BU are pretty much as close to parity as you can get. This is even more so when you start comparing them to other schools.

fingersxd wrote:Would have to agree here. Well reasoned arguments weren't really informative's style. Like it or not, alumniguy does make a valid argument. The real question at the end of the day is -- does it matter if BU does or doesn't game the rankings more than other schools? I'm not so sure it does. And any student relying entirely on USNWR hasn't really done his homework anyway. That said, I agree it should force schools to be more accurate in their reporting.


I guess it only matters to the extent that students are choosing BU (or any other school for that matter, including BC) based on the fact that schools appear to do fairly well in securing their graduates jobs w/n 9 months of graduation. If the reality is that 16% of BU students are actually working in a temporary position created by BU, then I would argue that it does matter.

Again, I have not a shred of evidence to suggest that BU games the rankings more than any other school. It just *seems* like that is the case.

* * *

On an aside, I know that the year I graduated BC sought out small Boston firms to create "clerk" type positions and that there were several of these positions available to graduating 3Ls without jobs. Essentially, the graduating 3L would be paid by the firm for a 6 month position and whether the position turned into full-time employment would be addressed at the end of the 6 months. A friend of mine took on these clerk positions and it ultimately turned into a full-time position (at which that person is still employed 3 years later). Anecdotal? Yes.

Were these positions created with the student's best interest being first? Probably not. I'm guessing it was originally conceived as a way to pump up employment statistics. At the end of the day though, it appears it actually did lead to some full-time employment. So I guess it could be viewed as a win-win.

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Re: BU ($) vs. BC ($$)

Postby alumniguy » Thu May 12, 2011 1:20 pm

Also, is it possible for a current BU student to ask their career services office what exactly the graduates listed in "academia" are doing. 16% of 250 students (less than the actual number of BU graduates but close enough) is 40 students. I would imagine that they could provide some examples of these types of employment.

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Re: BU ($) vs. BC ($$)

Postby aliarrow » Thu May 12, 2011 1:44 pm

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Re: BU ($) vs. BC ($$)

Postby alumniguy » Thu May 12, 2011 2:07 pm

aliarrow wrote:
alumniguy wrote:Also, is it possible for a current BU student to ask their career services office what exactly the graduates listed in "academia" are doing. 16% of 250 students (less than the actual number of BU graduates but close enough) is 40 students. I would imagine that they could provide some examples of these types of employment.


I really don't think that's necessary.
At the ASD they even had a recent grad who was working in the financial aid office because she was deferred.
There's no way 40 students are becoming professors, maybe 2-3 tops.


I guess the reason why I am curious is that I would imagine that it would be difficult to absorb that many students in various administrative positions around the school and thus, there may be some type of unadvertised program that BU has implemented to help jobless graduates.

Moreover, I'd love to hear how the career services office explains the situation. Do they admit they are counting such students employed in these part-time administrative positions as employed or is there an alternative explanation that hasn't been discussed yet? One just can't tell without actually asking the question.

I am just curious that is all.

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Re: BU ($) vs. BC ($$)

Postby aliarrow » Thu May 12, 2011 2:10 pm

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Re: BU ($) vs. BC ($$)

Postby alumniguy » Thu May 12, 2011 2:40 pm

At least BU is being somewhat up front about it (IMHO the upfront thing to do would be to exclude those students as being employed); however, I don't understand the connection between the "unusually low" public interest and government numbers. Are we to read the two as being connected? Seems like a dubious assertion if that is what was intended. I would imagine that the majority of students would rather work in a full-time JD position at a public interest group over a paid university fellowship, but I could be wrong.

So it appears that for the class of 2009, BC likely had somewhat better placement than BU, at the very least at the margins (i.e., non biglaw opportunities). I'm fully ready to give BU the benefit of the doubt on this one given that anyone in the class of 2009 who didn't have a job lined up before their 3L year likely didn't find work given the terrible state of the legal industry at the time of graduation. I don't imagine things will get much better for class of 2010 - in fact, I wouldn't be surprised to see the numbers get even worse for both schools.

Either way, the point is that fudging numbers like this allows BU to report that it has an employment rate of 94.4% for the class of 2009, even though 16% of the class isn't really working in a true job. All of a sudden their employment numbers drop to 78.4%. Thus, it appears to be on par with BC when in fact BC has a better placement rate. For an apples to apples comparison (or as close as one can get), BC's employment was 94.3% including "academia" positions and 89.4% excluding academia (which was reported as 4.9%).

A 10% difference is a material difference.

We can quibble about types of other jobs as well (as blindmelon indicated). It is just much more difficult to actually have any concrete information to back up such claims.

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Re: BU ($) vs. BC ($$)

Postby aliarrow » Thu May 12, 2011 2:51 pm

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alumniguy
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Re: BU ($) vs. BC ($$)

Postby alumniguy » Thu May 12, 2011 2:58 pm

aliarrow wrote:
alumniguy wrote:At least BU is being somewhat up front about it (IMHO the upfront thing to do would be to exclude those students as being employed); however, I don't understand the connection between the "unusually low" public interest and government numbers. Are we to read the two as being connected? Seems like a dubious assertion if that is what was intended. I would imagine that the majority of students would rather work in a full-time JD position at a public interest group over a paid university fellowship, but I could be wrong.

So it appears that for the class of 2009, BC likely had somewhat better placement than BU, at the very least at the margins (i.e., non biglaw opportunities). I'm fully ready to give BU the benefit of the doubt on this one given that anyone in the class of 2009 who didn't have a job lined up before their 3L year likely didn't find work given the terrible state of the legal industry at the time of graduation. I don't imagine things will get much better for class of 2010 - in fact, I wouldn't be surprised to see the numbers get even worse for both schools.

Either way, the point is that fudging numbers like this allows BU to report that it has an employment rate of 94.4% for the class of 2009, even though 16% of the class isn't really working in a true job. All of a sudden their employment numbers drop to 78.4%. Thus, it appears to be on par with BC when in fact BC has a better placement rate. For an apples to apples comparison (or as close as one can get), BC's employment was 94.3% including "academia" positions and 89.4% excluding academia (which was reported as 4.9%).

A 10% difference is a material difference.

We can quibble about types of other jobs as well (as blindmelon indicated). It is just much more difficult to actually have any concrete information to back up such claims.


Well according to US News, 73.1% of the class of 09 was employed in a full-time JD required position, whereas 81.5% of BC's 09 class was. Not quite a 10 point difference, but pretty close (and a substantive gap).

I know I sound like a BC troll, but those are just facts - and I do really like BU. But accurate information trumps personal preferences and affection, and I think 73.1% is still a pretty solid # ITE.


Ah, I don't have the USNews numbers, so apologies for that. I was basing my 10% number by simply lopping off the academia % (not the most accurate of methods, but I was trying to illustrate a point). Does USNews use the JD required or just the employed number? I assumed just the employed number.

I agree, both schools did admirably in the recession.

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Re: BU ($) vs. BC ($$)

Postby aliarrow » Thu May 12, 2011 3:07 pm

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Re: BU ($) vs. BC ($$)

Postby Naked Dude » Thu May 12, 2011 10:08 pm

Slevin Kelevra 2011 wrote:
dakatz wrote:BU will be cutting class size pretty soon, and a new additional building will hopefully begin construction soon, though the timeframe isn't set in stone. These factors should combine to boost BU's ranking up a bit, hopefully into the teens within a few years. Can't speak for BC's ranking trend.

No you don't need a car for BU, and the COL is going to probably end up being the same. As for the placement stats, they are nearly identical, with BC ahead by a hair. Don't the homer play up the difference too much. When it comes to hiring and placement stats, the schools are essentially identical, though BC has a deeper and more connected alumni network in Boston, which BU doesn't match.



BU can't cut its class size again, regardless of what you think. It was a 30-40 school in the 1990s and early 2000s until it cut its class size down to compete with BC. Now it has one of the smaller programs in the country. It has no plans in dropping its class size.

BU should construct a new building. It won't be any time soon given that they just did a restoration on the current building, so the new building won't be coming in the next few years. That is good though, as I would hate to be a student at that time. Construction can really put a strain on your study environment. While BU doesn't really have a library (more of a dark basement w/ books), you want to have a comfortable study environment during law school. Construction of a new building could take three years.


Well certainly BU can cut it's class size, but, with a rank of #22, it reaches diminishing returns (need them warm bodies payin dolla bills). Actually, they did cut their class size this year (and for the next couple years) by 30-40 students, but that's temporary.

If BU can expand its library size and build some nice new facilities, I don't see any reason why it can't overtake Minnesota and WUSTL. Maybe GW.

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Re: BU ($) vs. BC ($$)

Postby Naked Dude » Thu May 12, 2011 10:19 pm

alumniguy wrote:
dakatz wrote:Sorry, I don't "flame". Next year's class size will be 30 less than the one before. I got this directly from the mouth of someone who works in admissions. Went to a presentation on the new building. Got to see the floorplans, artist renditions, etc. Looks really beautiful, and includes a full renovation of the existing tower. While it isn't set in stone yet, the plan it to get the construction started during the next school year, as to ensure that the class of 2014 gets one year in the building, though they won't publicly talk about this until it is certain.


Again, to me this is useless information. It is second hand. BU knows that if it dramatically cuts its class size that it is a good thing to talk about. Why hasn't it publicly stated this? If it has, then I would think OP should consider this as a good thing (it will further reduce the student/faculty rate). Wouldn't you think that BU would want to highlight the fact that it will be providing a more intimate learning environment? The same thing goes for the construction of the new building. Assuming that they are going to be starting construction next school year, I would imagine that BU would have made a public announcement to the that effect. I don't know if they've done so or not, but I would imagine that more people would be talking about this if they had done so.

At this point, both are still aspirational unless they've confirmed that they plan to do so.


They plan to unveil all this at the upcoming World Wide Law School Developers Conference in July. Just wait for the formal announcement.

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Re: BU ($) vs. BC ($$)

Postby Naked Dude » Thu May 12, 2011 10:21 pm

alumniguy wrote:
aliarrow wrote:They announced the size of the reduction, it should be about 20-30 students (for the c/o 2014). That plus the relative strength and quick recovery of BU's two major placement markets (Boston and NYC) bodes pretty well for the school. It wouldn't surprise me if it makes its way into the teens within the next year or two.

I agree BC could be doing more to keep up. The school has more name recognition and seems to have a slightly more established alumni base... If the adcomms decided to game the rankings as hard as BU (not that its a bad thing that BU does), they could probably surpass BU again.


Interesting. That class size would make it comparable to BC's class size. BU has been ranked in the teens before (19 I believe once or twice). While certainly an improvement, I think they'd need to get themselves into the UCLA/USC/Vandy trifecta to really change people's minds on their program. Moving up to compete with Minnesota, WUSTL and GW isn't going to change the playing field at all (in my opinion of course) as they are already competitive with these schools.

I do think that BU tends to game the rankings more than BC (and most other schools for that matter). BU always seem to have higher employed at graduation rates than its competitors and this is just surprising given all other employment statistics that are available. I also think they are overwhelmingly interested solely in LSAT/GPA and don't look much at other soft factors. BC seems to have also become more interested in LSAT/GPA as of late, which unfortunately is a necessary evil in the days of USNews rankings. Regardless, BU has clearly had success in the past with altering their program to move up the rankings and it seems like they have decided to try to improve their reputation even further. Barring a dramatic changes (e.g., lowering class size to under 200), I just don't see how they can move up into the next tier of quality though.


They are already competitive with Minnesota and WUSTL. If you look at placement, BU is a better bet than either. This just isn't reflected in U.S. News, which is just one metric.

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Re: BU ($) vs. BC ($$)

Postby Naked Dude » Thu May 12, 2011 10:23 pm

aliarrow wrote:
alumniguy wrote:
aliarrow wrote:They announced the size of the reduction, it should be about 20-30 students (for the c/o 2014). That plus the relative strength and quick recovery of BU's two major placement markets (Boston and NYC) bodes pretty well for the school. It wouldn't surprise me if it makes its way into the teens within the next year or two.

I agree BC could be doing more to keep up. The school has more name recognition and seems to have a slightly more established alumni base... If the adcomms decided to game the rankings as hard as BU (not that its a bad thing that BU does), they could probably surpass BU again.


Interesting. That class size would make it comparable to BC's class size. BU has been ranked in the teens before (19 I believe once or twice). While certainly an improvement, I think they'd need to get themselves into the UCLA/USC/Vandy trifecta to really change people's minds on their program. Moving up to compete with Minnesota, WUSTL and GW isn't going to change the playing field at all (in my opinion of course) as they are already competitive with these schools.

I do think that BU tends to game the rankings more than BC (and most other schools for that matter). BU always seem to have higher employed at graduation rates than its competitors and this is just surprising given all other employment statistics that are available. I also think they are overwhelmingly interested solely in LSAT/GPA and don't look much at other soft factors. BC seems to have also become more interested in LSAT/GPA as of late, which unfortunately is a necessary evil in the days of USNews rankings. Regardless, BU has clearly had success in the past with altering their program to move up the rankings and it seems like they have decided to try to improve their reputation even further. Barring a dramatic changes (e.g., lowering class size to under 200), I just don't see how they can move up into the next tier of quality though.


The one thing that really turned me off to BU is the apparent employment gaming they do. They place 17% into "Academia" (a high number for even the T6) which corresponds almost perfectly to the % of grads they report as having only part-time employment, so I'm fairly certain 99% of the 17% employed in Academia are just working for the school in admissions, financial aid, or the CDO.


How that makes BU different from every other law school, I don't know

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Re: BU ($) vs. BC ($$)

Postby alumniguy » Fri May 13, 2011 9:38 am

Naked Dude wrote:How that makes BU different from every other law school, I don't know


Have you been reading the thread Naked Dude? No other comparable school has the gall to claim a 17% academia employment number. Clearly, BU had problems placing its grads from the class of 2009 and rather than take the potential USNews hit, they basically *created* temporary positions so they could claim these students as employed. I'm sure the school had the students' best intentions in mind when creating these positions [rolls eyes].

Normally, I would agree that all schools (or I should say most since I doubt that YHS do) fudge employment statistics to a degree. However, here BU has engaged in extreme fudging that appears to have gone unrecognized and hasn't been discussed on this forum to date. So yes, it is different. It warrants a discussion. It's shocking that you or anyone else can't acknowledge this simple fact.

I went to BC, however, I would have chosen BU over any other comparably ranked school - GW, MN, WUSTL, Fordham, Emory, etc. But let's agree to call a spade a spade.

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Re: BU ($) vs. BC ($$)

Postby orm518 » Fri May 13, 2011 10:58 am

To jump back to the construction debate:

I'm an UG Alum and got this email today with info about the BU Law construction. This is the first really public (if you can call an internal publication that) announcement, although as someone mentioned earlier there was a presentation to BUSL students.

http://www.bu.edu/bostonia/web/law/

The University has agreed to underwrite the bulk of the renovation and construction project—$141 million—but is asking donors to contribute $20 million to fund the rest by May 2012, when officials hope that groundbreaking on the new wing will start.

...The new west wing, to sit atop what is now a courtyard and underground heating plant, will house most of LAW’s classrooms, new study space, and a new library to complement the existing Pappas Law Library. Construction of the wing is expected to take two years, and the rest of the tower will be renovated over the next 15 months, says Cornell L. Stinson, LAW assistant dean for development and alumni relations.

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Re: BU ($) vs. BC ($$)

Postby fingersxd » Fri May 13, 2011 11:17 am

I wasn't at ASD so I never sa the plans for this. Can anyone comment? I'm trying to picture where exactly the wing is going to be built and what it's going to look like.

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Perch
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Re: BU ($) vs. BC ($$)

Postby Perch » Fri May 13, 2011 12:52 pm

fingersxd wrote:I wasn't at ASD so I never sa the plans for this. Can anyone comment? I'm trying to picture where exactly the wing is going to be built and what it's going to look like.


while you're there, like construction.

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Re: BU ($) vs. BC ($$)

Postby fingersxd » Mon May 16, 2011 12:08 pm

Perch wrote:
fingersxd wrote:I wasn't at ASD so I never sa the plans for this. Can anyone comment? I'm trying to picture where exactly the wing is going to be built and what it's going to look like.


while you're there, like construction.


Do you think the construction will be a serious distraction? Can't say I've ever gone to school in a construction zone before!

P.S. - BU matched and both are now at 25k. Does this change the opinion of anyone who was on the fence, or is the bottom line to just go wherever "feels right"? (I should note that the very reason I started this thread was b/c I've visted each school 2x and don't have a strong leaning either way w/both having their positives and negatives).

Slevin Kelevra 2011
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Re: BU ($) vs. BC ($$)

Postby Slevin Kelevra 2011 » Mon May 16, 2011 12:27 pm

I don't think any of this stuff about BU gaiming the rankings matters. The OP is choosing between BU and BC.

BC has the better placement statistics into biglaw, the better placement statistics into clerkships, a more national reach and is the cheaper option. Other than US News, I am not sure I understand why there would even be a debate over this.




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