Top schools for public interest?

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Killingly
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Top schools for public interest?

Postby Killingly » Mon Jun 06, 2011 9:18 am

I'm looking for schools that have good public interest and LRAP programs within my probable range of acceptance. I have a 3.5 gpa (LSAC) and am confident that I'll score in the low-mid 170s for the lsat (I know, not a real score, but it's how I've been performing on preptests). Here's my list of schools that I know I'll be applying to:

NYU - reach, but I'm going to ED and I have a pretty good basis for a public interest scholarship (work experience/internship, etc.)
Penn - may also be a reach...
Northwestern
BU
BC
American - safety

Am I missing/overlooking any other obvious choices in my range? I also am most interested in staying on the East coast, but I'd consider elsewhere if there's a good school with a good program.

maximator
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Re: Top schools for public interest?

Postby maximator » Mon Jun 06, 2011 9:31 am

Georgetown has a pretty good LRAP.

09042014
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Re: Top schools for public interest?

Postby 09042014 » Mon Jun 06, 2011 9:37 am

Why aren't you applying to Michigan, Duke and Cornell?

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cinephile
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Re: Top schools for public interest?

Postby cinephile » Mon Jun 06, 2011 9:41 am

If you want DC, consider GWU.

09042014
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Re: Top schools for public interest?

Postby 09042014 » Mon Jun 06, 2011 9:48 am

Killingly wrote:I'm looking for schools that have good public interest and LRAP programs within my probable range of acceptance. I have a 3.5 gpa (LSAC) and am confident that I'll score in the low-mid 170s for the lsat (I know, not a real score, but it's how I've been performing on preptests). Here's my list of schools that I know I'll be applying to:

NYU - reach, but I'm going to ED and I have a pretty good basis for a public interest scholarship (work experience/internship, etc.)
Penn - may also be a reach...
Northwestern
BU
BC
American - safety

Am I missing/overlooking any other obvious choices in my range? I also am most interested in staying on the East coast, but I'd consider elsewhere if there's a good school with a good program.


Don't apply to American as a safety. First of all safety for law school is silly, the you know where you have a good shot of getting in, and there isn't any reason you can just try again next year.

Second of all, American doesn't take anyone who is above 167/3.1.

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Killingly
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Re: Top schools for public interest?

Postby Killingly » Mon Jun 06, 2011 9:56 am

Desert Fox wrote:
Killingly wrote:I'm looking for schools that have good public interest and LRAP programs within my probable range of acceptance. I have a 3.5 gpa (LSAC) and am confident that I'll score in the low-mid 170s for the lsat (I know, not a real score, but it's how I've been performing on preptests). Here's my list of schools that I know I'll be applying to:

NYU - reach, but I'm going to ED and I have a pretty good basis for a public interest scholarship (work experience/internship, etc.)
Penn - may also be a reach...
Northwestern
BU
BC
American - safety

Am I missing/overlooking any other obvious choices in my range? I also am most interested in staying on the East coast, but I'd consider elsewhere if there's a good school with a good program.


Don't apply to American as a safety. First of all safety for law school is silly, the you know where you have a good shot of getting in, and there isn't any reason you can just try again next year.

Second of all, American doesn't take anyone who is above 167/3.1.


They wouldn't take me just because of my relatively good numbers? Strange..

And I didn't think Cornell had that great of a LRAP. From what I've read, they're more likely to cover a very small portion of your debt, whereas other schools with the program would cover most/all provided your salary doesn't exceed a certain cap. I'm not crazy about Michigan, but I could consider Duke and Georgetown.

I really just want a good school that'll get me a decent public interest job and pay my debit if I play my cards right.

TheFactor
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Re: Top schools for public interest?

Postby TheFactor » Mon Jun 06, 2011 12:14 pm

Duke and Georgetown both have pretty good LRAPs and PI opportunities.

And don't bother applying to American with those numbers.

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Killingly
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Re: Top schools for public interest?

Postby Killingly » Mon Jun 06, 2011 1:57 pm

TheFactor wrote:Duke and Georgetown both have pretty good LRAPs and PI opportunities.

And don't bother applying to American with those numbers.


Okay, I think I'm going to scratch American from my list and add Duke and Georgetown.

If there are any other schools I'm missing from my radar, please let me know. Otherwise, thanks for the help everyone!

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Marionberry
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Re: Top schools for public interest?

Postby Marionberry » Mon Jun 06, 2011 8:39 pm

GULC placed 19% into govt/PI combined for the Class of 2009, which is considerably more than any other school in the Top 20. Also, their LRAP is great. If you know you want PI, and especially on the east coast, it's as good as probably any other school besides HYS and probably NYU. I don't know about Columbia, but it seems to be pretty heavy focused on private practice though I'm sure your options for PI would be great from there too.
Last edited by Marionberry on Mon Jun 06, 2011 8:46 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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2011Cycle
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Re: Top schools for public interest?

Postby 2011Cycle » Mon Jun 06, 2011 8:42 pm

Marionberry wrote:GULC placed 19% into govt/PI, which is considerably more than any other school in the Top 20. Also, their LRAP is great. If you know you want PI, and especially on the east coast, it's as good as probably any other school besides HYS and probably NYU.



is the 19% for 2010 and does it include the fellowships which the school provided to some of the students. For the record, I am not bashing GULC at all. In fact, seems several other schools did as well, including Fordham, Miami, and Dozo. Thanks

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Marionberry
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Re: Top schools for public interest?

Postby Marionberry » Mon Jun 06, 2011 8:50 pm

2011Cycle wrote:
Marionberry wrote:GULC placed 19% into govt/PI, which is considerably more than any other school in the Top 20. Also, their LRAP is great. If you know you want PI, and especially on the east coast, it's as good as probably any other school besides HYS and probably NYU.



is the 19% for 2010 and does it include the fellowships which the school provided to some of the students. For the record, I am not bashing GULC at all. In fact, seems several other schools did as well, including Fordham, Miami, and Dozo. Thanks


My bad, that's for Class of 2009. I corrected my previous post to reflect that. That number is for post-graduate employment, so I don't know what fellowships you're talking about. If you're talking about the temp jobs that were provided to some students in an attempt to pad employment rates, jobs with the law school would not be considered PI/Gov. It's true that other lower ranked schools tend to place comparable numbers, and higher, into PI/Gov but the nature of the jobs they are placing into is probably pretty different.

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2011Cycle
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Re: Top schools for public interest?

Postby 2011Cycle » Mon Jun 06, 2011 8:59 pm

Marionberry wrote:
2011Cycle wrote:
Marionberry wrote:GULC placed 19% into govt/PI, which is considerably more than any other school in the Top 20. Also, their LRAP is great. If you know you want PI, and especially on the east coast, it's as good as probably any other school besides HYS and probably NYU.



is the 19% for 2010 and does it include the fellowships which the school provided to some of the students. For the record, I am not bashing GULC at all. In fact, seems several other schools did as well, including Fordham, Miami, and Dozo. Thanks


My bad, that's for Class of 2009. I corrected my previous post to reflect that. That number is for post-graduate employment, so I don't know what fellowships you're talking about. If you're talking about the temp jobs that were provided to some students in an attempt to pad employment rates, jobs with the law school would not be considered PI/Gov. It's true that other lower ranked schools tend to place comparable numbers, and higher, into PI/Gov but the nature of the jobs they are placing into is probably pretty different.


Thanks. Unfortunately some of the schools have placed the fellowships they provided to graduated in the government and in some cases public interest columns. Having called several fo the schools I have received the breakouts, but the website data does not delineate.

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Marionberry
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Re: Top schools for public interest?

Postby Marionberry » Mon Jun 06, 2011 9:22 pm

2011Cycle wrote:Thanks. Unfortunately some of the schools have placed the fellowships they provided to graduated in the government and in some cases public interest columns. Having called several fo the schools I have received the breakouts, but the website data does not delineate.


Well, those jobs wouldn't meet Gtown's own criteria for PI/gov that they use for LRAP eligibility, so I'd be really surprised if they were counting them in those numbers. Also, their class is so big that students in those fellowships wouldn't put a big dent in their numbers percentage wise I wouldn't think. It's not outside the realm of possibility, but in this case I doubt that's happening.

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2011Cycle
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Re: Top schools for public interest?

Postby 2011Cycle » Mon Jun 06, 2011 9:24 pm

Marionberry wrote:
2011Cycle wrote:Thanks. Unfortunately some of the schools have placed the fellowships they provided to graduated in the government and in some cases public interest columns. Having called several fo the schools I have received the breakouts, but the website data does not delineate.


Well, those jobs wouldn't meet Gtown's own criteria for PI/gov that they use for LRAP eligibility, so I'd be really surprised if they were counting them in those numbers. Also, their class is so big that students in those fellowships wouldn't put a big dent in their numbers percentage wise I wouldn't think. It's not outside the realm of possibility, but in this case I doubt that's happening.


Thanks. Now if they would just let me in from the waitlist

jazzyjeff
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Re: Top schools for public interest?

Postby jazzyjeff » Thu Jul 28, 2011 11:41 am

Anyone have some information on a comparison between Duke, UVA, and Michigan for public interest? Including LRAP, faculty and staff support, likeminded students...thanks.

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scrowell
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Re: Top schools for public interest?

Postby scrowell » Thu Jul 28, 2011 12:32 pm

CUNY!

jazzyjeff
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Re: Top schools for public interest?

Postby jazzyjeff » Thu Jul 28, 2011 1:01 pm

Thanks.

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vanwinkle
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Re: Top schools for public interest?

Postby vanwinkle » Thu Jul 28, 2011 1:48 pm

1) You can't make a real list until you have your LSAT score. It doesn't matter how "confident" you are you'll break 170, until you do it, you don't know where you'll be able to go.

2) Folks are correct, American is a ridiculously bad safety for a T14 candidate. If you're really capable of doing that well on the LSAT, "retake and reapply" (or even just "wait and reapply") will be a better backup than "go to American".

3) If you're worried about debt, you should consider applying to schools that have a reputation for giving large scholarships to people with your numbers. Of course, you can't definitely know which schools these are unless you already have your numbers... But I can tell you for certain that American is a school known for not being generous with $$$. If you crack 170, you'll probably get offered more money at BC or BU than you would at American.

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Re: Top schools for public interest?

Postby jazzyjeff » Thu Jul 28, 2011 4:51 pm

jazzyjeff wrote:Anyone have some information on a comparison between Duke, UVA, and Michigan for public interest? Including LRAP, faculty and staff support, likeminded students...thanks.


bump

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chris0805
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Re: Top schools for public interest?

Postby chris0805 » Thu Jul 28, 2011 5:07 pm

jazzyjeff wrote:Anyone have some information on a comparison between Duke, UVA, and Michigan for public interest? Including LRAP, faculty and staff support, likeminded students...thanks.


I honestly think people put far too much emphasis on these factors (LRAP excluded) in the T14. Just about every T14 is going to have amazing faculty and clinics, a public interest center or some equivalent, and motivated left-leaning students. MANY students will be "like-minded," and many of those still will not to go into public interest. Some schools will have a student body that chooses public interest over higher paying options by a margin of at a rate of 10-20 percent (after clerkships end) and others will see more of a 5 -15 percent (again, after clerkships end). These differences are not, by themselves, worth choosing a school over.

I really think you need to think about YOUR specific PI interests, visit the schools, talk to professors (in person or via email), and get a sense of where you can best achieve your goals and where you feel the most comfortable. It might be which school has certain externships/clinics, it might be location, or it might be a specific professor or program. It might even just be the environment at the school and how it personally suits you. This idea that school X is categorically better for some monolithic concept of public interest is, in my opinion, incorrect. You need to be thinking both more specific in terms of topic and also more personal in terms of yourself, how you will fit in with that particular public interest community.

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Gecko of Doom
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Re: Top schools for public interest?

Postby Gecko of Doom » Thu Jul 28, 2011 9:39 pm

scrowell wrote:CUNY!

This persona continues to be amusing.

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chris0805
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Re: Top schools for public interest?

Postby chris0805 » Thu Jul 28, 2011 11:28 pm

Gecko of Doom wrote:
scrowell wrote:CUNY!

This persona continues to be amusing.


In fairness, CUNY is possibly the only school that can legitimately say their commitment to graduates going into PI is higher than other law schools. Outside of the CLS/NYU duo and Fordham, I might say CUNY is the best place to go if you're committed to working in public interest (though maybe only in NY). If I was committed to a career in public interest, I would MUCH rather pay 30K in tuition to CUNY than 130K to say, Cardozo or Brooklyn. Maybe that's just me, but I see a lot of CUNY grads in New York courts (where I work) and, after the T30 or so, I'm not sure* school rank helps you that much in PI.

*I could be way off, and I certainly don't decide who we hire yet (though I work in an office with grads from CLS/NYU/Fordham/St. Johns/Albany/NYLS/CUNY and probably some others).

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Gecko of Doom
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Re: Top schools for public interest?

Postby Gecko of Doom » Thu Jul 28, 2011 11:58 pm

chris0805 wrote:
Gecko of Doom wrote:
scrowell wrote:CUNY!

This persona continues to be amusing.


In fairness, CUNY is possibly the only school that can legitimately say their commitment to graduates going into PI is higher than other law schools. Outside of the CLS/NYU duo and Fordham, I might say CUNY is the best place to go if you're committed to working in public interest (though maybe only in NY). If I was committed to a career in public interest, I would MUCH rather pay 30K in tuition to CUNY than 130K to say, Cardozo or Brooklyn. Maybe that's just me, but I see a lot of CUNY grads in New York courts (where I work) and, after the T30 or so, I'm not sure* school rank helps you that much in PI.

*I could be way off, and I certainly don't decide who we hire yet (though I work in an office with grads from CLS/NYU/Fordham/St. Johns/Albany/NYLS/CUNY and probably some others).

Oh, certainly. I recognize that going to a reasonably-priced regional school can often be a great idea for those pursuing public interest (I seriously considered going to my dirt-cheap state school). I'm more referring to his pattern of posting in general.

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Bildungsroman
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Re: Top schools for public interest?

Postby Bildungsroman » Fri Jul 29, 2011 12:04 am

Killingly wrote:
And I didn't think Cornell had that great of a LRAP. From what I've read, they're more likely to cover a very small portion of your debt, whereas other schools with the program would cover most/all provided your salary doesn't exceed a certain cap. I'm not crazy about Michigan, but I could consider Duke and Georgetown.

Nah, Cornell has a good LRAP. They also don't dovetail it with IBR/PSLF, so rather than helping you make the minimum payment for the ten years until your debt is forgiven they will make payments towards a standard 10 year repayment plan, meaning if you go off their LRAP after x years you've eliminated a sizeable portion of your debt rather than being further behind than ever.

Disclosure: I'm not really interested in PI but I'm pretty sure I'm understanding Cornell's LRAP here.

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Re: Top schools for public interest?

Postby marburger06 » Fri Jul 29, 2011 11:29 am

Why has no one asked the OP what kind of publid interest work s/he wants to do? This makes a huge difference. OP, if you want the "cream of the crop" public interest jobs - ACLU, DOJ Honors, prestigious PD programs like DC's or Bronx Defenders - you should go to the highest ranked school that you can. Your increased chances of getting a job out of that school will be more worth it than the individual differences in LRAP programs (they all have LRAP; the quality of some is better than others, but combined with IBR you won't be starving on any of them).

The answer is much different if you want to work in a smaller non-profit, state government, or standard PD offices. Where your degree comes from doesn't matter as much in that situation, so you can be choosier with which schools have the best LRAP program.

In either case, wherever you end up, one of the most important things for getting these jobs is to show your commitment to whatever type of PI work you are pursuing. Look at schools where it's easier to extern or that have clinics with the subject that you're interested in. If the school doesn't have those things, start your own organization or make sure you do a ton of volunteer work on the side. Make connections with people in your desired field as early as possible, too.




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