Time sensitive: Cornell ($220k debt) vs. BU ($85k debt)

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Cornell ($220k+ debt) or BU ($85k debt)

Cornell
30
28%
BU
77
72%
 
Total votes: 107

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Ikki
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Re: Time sensitive: Cornell ($220k debt) vs. BU ($85k debt)

Postby Ikki » Thu Jun 09, 2011 10:12 pm




NYC Law wrote:UPDATE: We’ve heard from some sources who claim that the number of “missing” people — i.e., people who got Biglaw jobs but did not wish to be contacted — is significantly higher than what is reflected on the lists. For the class of 2011, one tipster claims the number of “missing” students is at least eight.

What does this all mean for Cornell rising 3Ls? A current Cornell student, in the class of 2011, opines:

I consider the Class of 2011 numbers as rough precursors to what the “employed at graduation” numbers will be. I know of (maybe) a dozen folks who are planning on government or non-profit work of some kind. If everyone at BigLaw right now is lucky enough to get offers, that would put us at about 45-50% employment

Let's say the class size is 215, adding the missing 8 puts 43% of students in biglaw. That's a pretty low number compared to class of 2010.

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Perch
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Re: Time sensitive: Cornell ($220k debt) vs. BU ($85k debt)

Postby Perch » Thu Jun 09, 2011 10:21 pm

So with all these factors saying Cornell isn't even placing as well as expected, why would people recommend BU in this situation? Sure it's less money, but if you can't get a job out of C (exaggerating, yes) then why go to BU? So you can be jobless with less debt according to the pessimistic view?

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Ikki
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Re: Time sensitive: Cornell ($220k debt) vs. BU ($85k debt)

Postby Ikki » Thu Jun 09, 2011 10:24 pm

Perch wrote:So with all these factors saying Cornell isn't even placing as well as expected, why would people recommend BU in this situation? Sure it's less money, but if you can't get a job out of C (exaggerating, yes) then why go to BU? So you can be jobless with less debt according to the pessimistic view?


So far, no one's showed that there's a correlation between Cornell's big law placement for this year, and BU's. Also, the OP said he would be fine staying in Boston, BU is a great school in that region.

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Grizz
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Re: Time sensitive: Cornell ($220k debt) vs. BU ($85k debt)

Postby Grizz » Thu Jun 09, 2011 10:26 pm

Perch wrote:So with all these factors saying Cornell isn't even placing as well as expected, why would people recommend BU in this situation? Sure it's less money, but if you can't get a job out of C (exaggerating, yes) then why go to BU? So you can be jobless with less debt according to the pessimistic view?


Thanks to bimodal distribution, you will probably be making $50kish if you don't get biglaw. $100k or bit more is probably manageable with that salary. $220k is not.

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Cupidity
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Re: Time sensitive: Cornell ($220k debt) vs. BU ($85k debt)

Postby Cupidity » Thu Jun 09, 2011 10:26 pm

Perch wrote:So with all these factors saying Cornell isn't even placing as well as expected, why would people recommend BU in this situation? Sure it's less money, but if you can't get a job out of C (exaggerating, yes) then why go to BU? So you can be jobless with less debt according to the pessimistic view?


Gambling man, play the odds. If Cornell places 50% and BU places 30%, you are paying $140,000 for 20% better odds at biglaw placement. In addition, with Cornell, even if you get biglaw placement, you have soooo much more debt to pay off, at interest that 220k is 300k if you are lucky, even in biglaw you could be paying it off for a much longer time.

Also, if you read my earlier post, we are expecting BU's placement to improve. We just matched last years OCI for total number of firms signed up, and they've been adding a few every day, so in the next three weeks it could be higher. Also, our off-campus session for NYC which had 18 firms last year is up to 32 and rising through July 1st.

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Re: Time sensitive: Cornell ($220k debt) vs. BU ($85k debt)

Postby Grizz » Thu Jun 09, 2011 10:30 pm

Cupidity wrote:
Perch wrote:So with all these factors saying Cornell isn't even placing as well as expected, why would people recommend BU in this situation? Sure it's less money, but if you can't get a job out of C (exaggerating, yes) then why go to BU? So you can be jobless with less debt according to the pessimistic view?


Gambling man, play the odds. If Cornell places 50% and BU places 30%, you are paying $140,000 for 20% better odds at biglaw placement. In addition, with Cornell, even if you get biglaw placement, you have soooo much more debt to pay off, at interest that 220k is 300k if you are lucky, even in biglaw you could be paying it off for a much longer time.

Also, if you read my earlier post, we are expecting BU's placement to improve. We just matched last years OCI for total number of firms signed up, and they've been adding a few every day, so in the next three weeks it could be higher. Also, our off-campus session for NYC which had 18 firms last year is up to 32 and rising through July 1st.


I think hiring is up across the board. We had 15% more firms than last year's OCI by I think late April, and registration isn't over. Good news all around.

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NYC Law
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Re: Time sensitive: Cornell ($220k debt) vs. BU ($85k debt)

Postby NYC Law » Thu Jun 09, 2011 10:42 pm

Cupidity can correct me if I'm wrong on this, but couldn't you say it's harder to get biglaw coming out of BU if you aren't from the area? I hear Boston firms aren't as eager to hire non-New Englanders, even if you went to law school there. At least with a NY oriented school like Cornell that doesn't come into play.

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Ikki
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Re: Time sensitive: Cornell ($220k debt) vs. BU ($85k debt)

Postby Ikki » Thu Jun 09, 2011 10:43 pm

NYC Law wrote:Cupidity can correct me if I'm wrong on this, but couldn't you say it's harder to get biglaw coming out of BU if you aren't from the area? I hear Boston firms aren't as eager to hire non-New Englanders, even if you went to law school there. At least with a NY oriented school like Cornell that doesn't come into play.


I didn't know this, if it's true, then I'm glad I chose Cornell over BU.

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Ikki
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Re: Time sensitive: Cornell ($220k debt) vs. BU ($85k debt)

Postby Ikki » Thu Jun 09, 2011 10:43 pm

rad law wrote:
Cupidity wrote:
Perch wrote:So with all these factors saying Cornell isn't even placing as well as expected, why would people recommend BU in this situation? Sure it's less money, but if you can't get a job out of C (exaggerating, yes) then why go to BU? So you can be jobless with less debt according to the pessimistic view?


Gambling man, play the odds. If Cornell places 50% and BU places 30%, you are paying $140,000 for 20% better odds at biglaw placement. In addition, with Cornell, even if you get biglaw placement, you have soooo much more debt to pay off, at interest that 220k is 300k if you are lucky, even in biglaw you could be paying it off for a much longer time.

Also, if you read my earlier post, we are expecting BU's placement to improve. We just matched last years OCI for total number of firms signed up, and they've been adding a few every day, so in the next three weeks it could be higher. Also, our off-campus session for NYC which had 18 firms last year is up to 32 and rising through July 1st.


I think hiring is up across the board. We had 15% more firms than last year's OCI by I think late April, and registration isn't over. Good news all around.


Except for Cornell... :?

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Cupidity
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Re: Time sensitive: Cornell ($220k debt) vs. BU ($85k debt)

Postby Cupidity » Thu Jun 09, 2011 10:44 pm

NYC Law wrote:Cupidity can correct me if I'm wrong on this, but couldn't you say it's harder to get biglaw coming out of BU if you aren't from the area? I hear Boston firms aren't as eager to hire non-New Englanders, even if you went to law school there. At least with a NY oriented school like Cornell that doesn't come into play.


I've never heard of anyone having that problem. Usually, spending 3 years and $XXX,XXX is sufficient to show that you are committed to an area.

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Ikki
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Re: Time sensitive: Cornell ($220k debt) vs. BU ($85k debt)

Postby Ikki » Thu Jun 09, 2011 10:45 pm

Cupidity wrote:
NYC Law wrote:Cupidity can correct me if I'm wrong on this, but couldn't you say it's harder to get biglaw coming out of BU if you aren't from the area? I hear Boston firms aren't as eager to hire non-New Englanders, even if you went to law school there. At least with a NY oriented school like Cornell that doesn't come into play.


I've never heard of anyone having that problem. Usually, spending 3 years and $XXX,XXX is sufficient to show that you are committed to an area.


That's what I thought, that is one of the reasons why choosing Cornell over BU was really hard. I received the same amount of aid at both schools, but BU is considerably cheaper.

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NYC Law
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Re: Time sensitive: Cornell ($220k debt) vs. BU ($85k debt)

Postby NYC Law » Thu Jun 09, 2011 10:46 pm

Cupidity wrote:
NYC Law wrote:Cupidity can correct me if I'm wrong on this, but couldn't you say it's harder to get biglaw coming out of BU if you aren't from the area? I hear Boston firms aren't as eager to hire non-New Englanders, even if you went to law school there. At least with a NY oriented school like Cornell that doesn't come into play.


I've never heard of anyone having that problem. Usually, spending 3 years and $XXX,XXX is sufficient to show that you are committed to an area.


Your buddy alumniguy said that happened to him (top 25% at BC, shut out at Bos firms but got NYC biglaw).
Figured it makes sense with other things I've heard about Boston firms.

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Cupidity
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Re: Time sensitive: Cornell ($220k debt) vs. BU ($85k debt)

Postby Cupidity » Thu Jun 09, 2011 10:46 pm

Cupidity wrote:
NYC Law wrote:Cupidity can correct me if I'm wrong on this, but couldn't you say it's harder to get biglaw coming out of BU if you aren't from the area? I hear Boston firms aren't as eager to hire non-New Englanders, even if you went to law school there. At least with a NY oriented school like Cornell that doesn't come into play.


I've never heard of anyone having that problem. Usually, spending 3 years and $XXX,XXX is sufficient to show that you are committed to an area.


Anecdotally, I have 6 good 2L friends, all are doing BigLaw in Boston this summer, and they are from: Michigan, Indiana, NYC, Maryland, New Hampshire, and CA. . . small sample size, but still?

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JamMasterJ
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Re: Time sensitive: Cornell ($220k debt) vs. BU ($85k debt)

Postby JamMasterJ » Thu Jun 09, 2011 10:51 pm

Does 220K include the 100K interest free?
Either way, I'd say BU, but if that is the case, it's a little closer

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Re: Time sensitive: Cornell ($220k debt) vs. BU ($85k debt)

Postby dr123 » Thu Jun 09, 2011 10:51 pm

NYC Law wrote:
Cupidity wrote:
NYC Law wrote:Cupidity can correct me if I'm wrong on this, but couldn't you say it's harder to get biglaw coming out of BU if you aren't from the area? I hear Boston firms aren't as eager to hire non-New Englanders, even if you went to law school there. At least with a NY oriented school like Cornell that doesn't come into play.


I've never heard of anyone having that problem. Usually, spending 3 years and $XXX,XXX is sufficient to show that you are committed to an area.


Your buddy alumniguy said that happened to him (top 25% at BC, shut out at Bos firms but got NYC biglaw).
Figured it makes sense with other things I've heard about Boston firms.


Could have been for a different reason. Its kind of humorous how people on this site are constantly giving "reasons" for why they got/didnt get jobs, when its really just speculation.

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Re: Time sensitive: Cornell ($220k debt) vs. BU ($85k debt)

Postby NYC Law » Thu Jun 09, 2011 10:52 pm

Cupidity wrote:
Cupidity wrote:
NYC Law wrote:Cupidity can correct me if I'm wrong on this, but couldn't you say it's harder to get biglaw coming out of BU if you aren't from the area? I hear Boston firms aren't as eager to hire non-New Englanders, even if you went to law school there. At least with a NY oriented school like Cornell that doesn't come into play.


I've never heard of anyone having that problem. Usually, spending 3 years and $XXX,XXX is sufficient to show that you are committed to an area.


Anecdotally, I have 6 good 2L friends, all are doing BigLaw in Boston this summer, and they are from: Michigan, Indiana, NYC, Maryland, New Hampshire, and CA. . . small sample size, but still?


Fair enough, I don't have any data or anything so it could just be complete BS, which is why I pre-empted by allowing you to correct me. I still think there's a chance it could slightly lower the big law chances for a non-northeasterner (even if by 1-3%).

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Cupidity
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Re: Time sensitive: Cornell ($220k debt) vs. BU ($85k debt)

Postby Cupidity » Thu Jun 09, 2011 10:55 pm

NYC Law wrote:
Cupidity wrote:
Cupidity wrote:
NYC Law wrote:Cupidity can correct me if I'm wrong on this, but couldn't you say it's harder to get biglaw coming out of BU if you aren't from the area? I hear Boston firms aren't as eager to hire non-New Englanders, even if you went to law school there. At least with a NY oriented school like Cornell that doesn't come into play.


I've never heard of anyone having that problem. Usually, spending 3 years and $XXX,XXX is sufficient to show that you are committed to an area.


Anecdotally, I have 6 good 2L friends, all are doing BigLaw in Boston this summer, and they are from: Michigan, Indiana, NYC, Maryland, New Hampshire, and CA. . . small sample size, but still?


Fair enough, I don't have any data or anything so it could just be complete BS, which is why I pre-empted by allowing you to correct me. I still think there's a chance it could slightly lower the big law chances for a non-northeasterner (even if by 1-3%).


What it could be is this, Boston firms, as you have mentioned, are somewhat self conscious, they don't like the idea that people are using them to lateral to DC or NYC. Since he ended up in NYC, he may have spent significant bids there. If they asked him the generic, "where else are you interviewing" question, and he responded, "Oh I'm interviewing at NYC, NYC, Boston, NYC, NYC, Boston and NYC," that could undermine his Boston credibility.

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Re: Time sensitive: Cornell ($220k debt) vs. BU ($85k debt)

Postby V811 » Thu Jun 09, 2011 11:06 pm

Given I want to live in LA, I would have chosen USC w/60k over Cornell for west coast placement, so I can easily see the argument for BU w/$85k over cornell sticker.

This is a really tough decision, curious as to what you decide

Lord Randolph McDuff
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Re: Time sensitive: Cornell ($220k debt) vs. BU ($85k debt)

Postby Lord Randolph McDuff » Thu Jun 09, 2011 11:24 pm

Doesn't seem like a close call but thats just me. Voted BU.

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Re: Time sensitive: Cornell ($220k debt) vs. BU ($85k debt)

Postby flexityflex86 » Fri Jun 10, 2011 1:05 am

I vote Cornell. 85k is also a decent sum of money, and will have trouble bringing OP back to NYC where as median at Cornell will likely get him a decent job. 14k extra a year in loan repayments won't matter if 1.) you have a job and 2.) are happy. Cornell is more likely to do both. If 85k has about a 20% chance of making you happy, 220k seems worth the 50% chance. In my opinion, cutting a Club Med vacation and some eating out each year for 10 years is worth it if you can live in your desired habitat where just day to day life will make you happy.

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Re: Time sensitive: Cornell ($220k debt) vs. BU ($85k debt)

Postby Helmholtz » Fri Jun 10, 2011 1:08 am

flexityflex86 wrote:I vote Cornell. 85k is also a decent sum of money, and will have trouble bringing OP back to NYC


What makes you think that OP is concerned about making it "back to NYC"?

I'd be happy living and working in Boston, NYC or Chicago post-graduation.

FutureInLaw
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Re: Time sensitive: Cornell ($220k debt) vs. BU ($85k debt)

Postby FutureInLaw » Fri Jun 10, 2011 9:26 am

Yeah, I'm not necessarily looking to go back to NYC. I grew up there, went to school in Boston, lived in LA. So, I'm pretty mobile. I'd be happy in any big city, really, incl. NYC, Boston, Chicago, SF, even LA.

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holybartender
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Re: Time sensitive: Cornell ($220k debt) vs. BU ($85k debt)

Postby holybartender » Fri Jun 10, 2011 9:27 am

The odds of you getting a job as an LA native who went to Boston in Chicago or SF is .. pretty low. Like, probably not even worth considering.

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Re: Time sensitive: Cornell ($220k debt) vs. BU ($85k debt)

Postby fingersxd » Fri Jun 10, 2011 10:31 am

I think OP was just making the point that he would be happy in any large urban area. Given the difference in cost, I voted BU. I think 135k is just way too much money to pay to attend Cornell instead. (I wonder if this even includes interest? If not, the cost difference is even more).

Assuming you aren't towards the very top of the class, you can still pay off 85k in debt not doing biglaw. Not so for 220k in debt.

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Re: Time sensitive: Cornell ($220k debt) vs. BU ($85k debt)

Postby alumniguy » Fri Jun 10, 2011 11:31 am

To clarify: I was top 1/3, not top 25%. It could have been an anomaly, but I think I literally had one first round interview with a Boston firm through OCI. Compared to about 8 first round interviews at the NYC job fair (which is a one day event), which led to several call backs and several offers. I admit I had no connections to Boston and had bounced around a bit from place to place after undergrad prior to law school. My point is that people with similar stats got several first round interviews and the career services office said that the process is relatively random and that they had seen this situation (i.e., several NYC offers and no Boston interviews) play out a few times before. Certainly plenty of students who didn't grow up in Boston/NE get interviews and offers, but it isn't unheard of to be passed over for no ties either. It is a bit of a crapshoot, which to be honest, most firms hiring regardless of city is a crapshoot.

Also, I've found that it was easier to get NYC than Boston coming from BC (and I assume from BU as well). If you can get a Boston biglaw job, then you are more likely than not also capable of getting a NYC biglaw job. I find the discussion regarding that fact that OP will consider Boston and that means he should attend BU to be worthless. Boston is a much smaller market and it simply doesn't have the number of summer associate positions that NYC has. At BU you have to make a concerted effort to participate in the NYC job fair (although a few NYC firms interview on campus as well - or so other BU posters have mentioned). If you don't go to the job fair, then you likely aren't getting a NYC job. This contrasts to most Boston firms that show up to BU's campus where you're competing with your entire class for the few first round interview spots. This is the primary reason why I think it is easier to land NYC than Boston - there is a certain number of top students who self-select out of traveling to the NYC job fair and this opens up spots for other students to a get a foot in the door.

Lastly, as one previous poster mentioned, Cornell is more highly regarded than BU. No doubt. But law school students don't really understand how this translates (or in my opinion doesn't) in real life. At the outset, we are talking about two great schools - one that is perceived to be better than the other, but we aren't talking about a massive difference is school/student quality akin to a T1 vs. T4 debate. Of course it is always *better* to say you graduated from a better law school. That isn't the issue and if it was the issue we wouldn't even be discussing this choice. The issue is what does OP want out of his legal career.

The first concern should be biglaw opportunities. Cornell places a higher percentage of students in biglaw and likely places its students into better "ranked" firms. However, the percentage isn't massive. We are talking roughly about 10% - 1 in 10 students. I concede that being top 1/3 vs. top 45-50% is a material difference, but we aren't talking long shot odds at either school. So, from a law student perspective Cornell gives better opportunities at getting into biglaw. Well, it also is significantly more expensive. Assuming OP doesn't get biglaw, what happens next? I think it is likely that the non-biglaw opportunities at both schools are fairly equal. Most students will likely find jobs for $70-100k. I'd much rather have only $75k of debt than $220k of debt making sub 6-figures. Finally, it should be noted that more BU stduents probably wont' find jobs, but we are talking bottom of the class. I don't think I would count on this happening.

A secondary concern should be post-biglaw life. If OP is thinking he wants biglaw for a few years (2-6 years) and then wants to lateral in house somewhere for a better QoL, then the extra *prestige* that Cornell may have certainly isn't worth the $100k+ extra debt. Presuming OP gets biglaw, it will be the firm and his/her experiences that determine his future. When you go to lateral interviews, there is little to no emphasis put on school and a whole lot of emphasis placed on your actual skills. It is the polar opposite of summer associate hiring. I assert that any difference in prestige is completely worthless for 95% of the post-biglaw jobs out there. There are some jobs - certain firms that would close lateral options to BU grads but not Cornell grads or perhaps academic positions - that school quality does play a factor. However, these are very, very, very limited in number.




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