Case Western v. DePaul

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derkaiser99
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Case Western v. DePaul

Postby derkaiser99 » Tue Jun 14, 2011 10:33 am

Hey, I would appreciate any advice anyone is willing to give about choosing between these two schools. I got admitted off the waitlist at both, so both are sticker.

I am from Chicagoland and would like to work here over Cleveland in the future, but I want to study international/business law and I feel like Case Western would be better in that area. I feel like if I wanted to work in Chicago right after law school I could establish a good network at DePaul, but if I wanted to try to work for a larger, multi-national firm I feel like I should probably go to Case Western because they are ranked higher and higher for international law. Also, I am not sure what kind of employment prospects I would have in Chicago if I went to Case Western.

If anybody can help I would greatly appreciate it. THANK YOU

Kobe_Teeth
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Re: Case Western v. DePaul

Postby Kobe_Teeth » Tue Jun 14, 2011 10:38 am

Pick the school that is in the area you want to work.

Don't pick schools based on specialties.

I would all but guarantee that If you looked at Chicago firms they have may more DePaul grads working for them than they do Case Western grads - even in Int'l Law.

derkaiser99
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Re: Case Western v. DePaul

Postby derkaiser99 » Tue Jun 14, 2011 10:49 am

hey, thanks for the response. Yeah, I have looked at some Chicago-based firms, like Kirkland Ellis, etc. and it seems like they each have like 20+ DePaul grads and like >10 Case Western grads...now that you mention it, picking schools based on a single speciality does seem like a bad idea, and I am not really confortable travelling across the midwest to attend another T2. Thanks for the advice

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mrtoren
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Re: Case Western v. DePaul

Postby mrtoren » Tue Jun 14, 2011 11:04 am

First things first, you're not going to go into international law. Get past that. Even T14 grads find it hard to break into the field..regardless of how badly you want it. So on to business law. DePaul is a decent school, lower middle of the pack. Generally its UChicago, NU, UofI, Loyola/Chicago-Kent, DePaul, JMLS, SIU/NIU. I would be hesitant to recommend going at full sticker price. $40k in tuition plus another $20k in living, books, misc is suicide. Case is about the same at $42k in tuition plus $18k in living, books, misc. These are not numbers on a sheet on paper...this is actual money, its real debt. You're looking at $180k + ~$68k in interest at the end for a grand total of roughly $250k on a ten year loan. With no desire to entire into public service/interest, debt relief programs will do little to help you. Say you landed a job at a top firm, paying top dollar, that would still be tough to pay off.

You're ending any prospect of a family, a house, pretty much any hint of life by attending either.
Last edited by mrtoren on Tue Jun 14, 2011 11:08 am, edited 1 time in total.

derkaiser99
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Re: Case Western v. DePaul

Postby derkaiser99 » Tue Jun 14, 2011 11:04 am

I still haven't counted out Case Western though, and if anyone has any insight I would still really love to hear it

charlesjd
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Re: Case Western v. DePaul

Postby charlesjd » Tue Jun 14, 2011 11:06 am

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Last edited by charlesjd on Tue Jun 14, 2011 11:36 am, edited 3 times in total.

derkaiser99
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Re: Case Western v. DePaul

Postby derkaiser99 » Tue Jun 14, 2011 11:08 am

thanks mrtoren. what would you recommend in my case? I am pretty set on law school but the other schools I had scholarships at, McGeorge and Hofstra, I already turned down (they were >$10,000 as it was). I am even considering going a fourth year and getting an MBA at either school, but recently I feel like the debt would not be worth it. do you agree? is DePaul really suicide for me?

derkaiser99
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Re: Case Western v. DePaul

Postby derkaiser99 » Tue Jun 14, 2011 11:10 am

thanks charlesjd. that has been my feeling for much of the time, but my Chicago family and friends won't let me forget about DePaul. do you think if I change my mind in three years and want to come back to Chicago I can do that if I go to Case?

charlesjd
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Re: Case Western v. DePaul

Postby charlesjd » Tue Jun 14, 2011 11:14 am

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Last edited by charlesjd on Tue Jun 14, 2011 11:36 am, edited 2 times in total.

mikeditkaisgod
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Re: Case Western v. DePaul

Postby mikeditkaisgod » Tue Jun 14, 2011 11:17 am

charlesjd wrote:
derkaiser99 wrote:thanks charlesjd. that has been my feeling for much of the time, but my Chicago family and friends won't let me forget about DePaul. do you think if I change my mind in three years and want to come back to Chicago I can do that if I go to Case?


Yes, recent NALP stats said Chicago was in the top 4 cities it places in. I believe it goes: (1) cleveland; (2) NYC; (3) Chicago; and (4) DC -- LA might be there too. Don't quote me, it is on the NALP law school site for Case.

I know a bunch of people doing stuff in Chicago who are from Case. The name carries -- and at worst you get a good job in Cleveland and go to chicago someday. Cleveland is nothing special, but not the worst place. People make it seem like your stuck wherever you go, but the attorneys i have spoken to move around a lot, have changed firms 4-5 times in different cities, etc., and still have made partner


OP.... No offense, but I personally think that this is terrible advice.

charlesjd
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Re: Case Western v. DePaul

Postby charlesjd » Tue Jun 14, 2011 11:18 am

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Last edited by charlesjd on Tue Jun 14, 2011 11:22 am, edited 2 times in total.

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TommyK
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Re: Case Western v. DePaul

Postby TommyK » Tue Jun 14, 2011 11:19 am

charlesjd wrote:
derkaiser99 wrote:thanks charlesjd. that has been my feeling for much of the time, but my Chicago family and friends won't let me forget about DePaul. do you think if I change my mind in three years and want to come back to Chicago I can do that if I go to Case?


Yes, recent NALP stats said Chicago was in the top 4 cities it places in. I believe it goes: (1) cleveland; (2) NYC; (3) Chicago; and (4) DC -- LA might be there too. Don't quote me, it is on the NALP law school site for Case.

I know a bunch of people doing stuff in Chicago who are from Case. The name carries -- and at worst you get a good job in Cleveland and go to chicago someday. Cleveland is nothing special, but not the worst place. People make it seem like your stuck wherever you go, but the attorneys i have spoken to move around a lot, have changed firms 4-5 times in different cities, etc., and still have made partner


bolded is definitely not worst case scenario. Give serious re-consideration whether either school is worth the incredible debt.

mikeditkaisgod
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Re: Case Western v. DePaul

Postby mikeditkaisgod » Tue Jun 14, 2011 11:24 am

charlesjd wrote:
mikeditkaisgod wrote:
charlesjd wrote:
derkaiser99 wrote:thanks charlesjd. that has been my feeling for much of the time, but my Chicago family and friends won't let me forget about DePaul. do you think if I change my mind in three years and want to come back to Chicago I can do that if I go to Case?


Yes, recent NALP stats said Chicago was in the top 4 cities it places in. I believe it goes: (1) cleveland; (2) NYC; (3) Chicago; and (4) DC -- LA might be there too. Don't quote me, it is on the NALP law school site for Case.

I know a bunch of people doing stuff in Chicago who are from Case. The name carries -- and at worst you get a good job in Cleveland and go to chicago someday. Cleveland is nothing special, but not the worst place. People make it seem like your stuck wherever you go, but the attorneys i have spoken to move around a lot, have changed firms 4-5 times in different cities, etc., and still have made partner


OP.... No offense, but I personally think that this is terrible advice.


Based on what?


The fact that you used Case's employment statistics to give advice to the OP. Most, if not all schools fudge employment stats to make their own schools look better. Just look at the TLS Case page, only 60 some percent of 2008 grads reported their salary. Where's the other 40%? Most likely either jobless or making a salary that they don't wish to report. Making a salary that they don't want to report or are perhaps embarassed about likely means that they are struggling to pay off their loans, especially if they paid sticker price (which is what the OP is facing).

mikeditkaisgod
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Re: Case Western v. DePaul

Postby mikeditkaisgod » Tue Jun 14, 2011 11:26 am

I also don't want to come off as sounding like Case is a terrible school or that I'm "anti-Case" trolling. I just want to make the OP aware that paying sticker price for Case is risky at best.

derkaiser99
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Re: Case Western v. DePaul

Postby derkaiser99 » Tue Jun 14, 2011 11:36 am

thanks again everyone for the advice. so about the debt, I have thought about it at length. At Loyola U Chicago I was a history/econ 3.55/156 LSAT. While I really have no idea how challenging law school will actually be, I am willing to put forth the effort to at least stay above median rank, which I think I can achieve. If I graduate around that or above, do you think it is reasonable to plan to make $80,000 to $100,000 coming out of law school from either of these schools? I think if I can make that or above coming out, and pretty much live like I'm in college (cheaply) for five years or so, I think I could really make a dent in the debt, and then possibly refinance for a longer time frame after that if I want to get married, etc. Does anyone think this is a reasonable expectation?

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cinephile
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Re: Case Western v. DePaul

Postby cinephile » Tue Jun 14, 2011 11:54 am

I think it's very risky to take either of these schools at sticker (but more so DePaul as there are many higher ranked schools that feed into Chicago). On top of that, it's not safe to assume you'll be above median because your classmates are just like you and all are trying their hardest. I suppose you could manage to that and land a decent job, but do you really want to live like a college student and put off marriage/a home/kids for some time just because you can't afford it? What I mean to say is that I think taking a year off to study and retake the LSAT would probably be the best investment in your future.

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mrtoren
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Re: Case Western v. DePaul

Postby mrtoren » Tue Jun 14, 2011 11:56 am

derkaiser99 wrote:thanks mrtoren. what would you recommend in my case? I am pretty set on law school but the other schools I had scholarships at, McGeorge and Hofstra, I already turned down (they were >$10,000 as it was). I am even considering going a fourth year and getting an MBA at either school, but recently I feel like the debt would not be worth it. do you agree? is DePaul really suicide for me?

Honestly, I hate saying it because I wouldn't want to hear it either, but you should wait until next cycle. Either improve your numbers to get scholarship money or find a new list of schools and areas. Without scholarship money, chop almost all private law schools off the block. They're just not worth it at sticker and the state schools are better in many states. States like Illinois/California/New York are overloaded with law schools and lawyers. Look outside of the box. For instance, I wanted to stay in Chicago for a long time. My family is here, my friends, I know everything about the area. However my numbers are barely good enough to get into DePaul/Loyola/Kent. Definitely no scholarships. I started to see where I could maximize my debt-to-job-ratio and settled on Newark, NJ. Rutgers is only $24k in tuition, maybe another $13k in living. It has excellent job prospects, beating Loyola/Depaul/Kent for employment at graduation according to USNWR. The graduates are also earning higher median salaries in the private sector, again according to the tampered data. Its in an area that has its own strong legal market, but also attracts firms from surrounding areas like NYC and PA.

Its a gamble, but you have to maximum your chances to succeed.

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mpj_3050
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Re: Case Western v. DePaul

Postby mpj_3050 » Tue Jun 14, 2011 12:07 pm

I got 15k at Case and regarded it as suicidal so you really, really need to rethink your choices.

Gun to my head - I would say Case at sticker b/c Cleveland has a lower cost of living.

Seriously though, these are massive debt levels.

derkaiser99
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Re: Case Western v. DePaul

Postby derkaiser99 » Tue Jun 14, 2011 12:13 pm

again, thanks for the advice. It's just if I 'take a year off,' as they say, I really don't know what I would do. I already have some debt from Loyola so I would need to start paying that off. I suppose I could try to find a job in the Chicagoland area doing something for a year, but I don't know if I can do something right now that will allow me to make enough to do that and save for law school. I also feel like if I don't do law school now I never will. urrrgh I don't know

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cinephile
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Re: Case Western v. DePaul

Postby cinephile » Tue Jun 14, 2011 12:19 pm

Do you have a summer job you could extend through next year? It really doesn't matter what you do next year, wait tables, do anything really. Saving for law school would be nice, but if you're repaying loans that might not be possible. The most important part of taking a year off is to boost your LSAT score. Or, as mrtoren said, look into state schools. If there's another state school you'd be interested in, why not move and establish residency? You mentioned feeling like if you don't do law school now you never will -- from my experience that hasn't been the case. I'm four years out of undergrad and found that having some time to explore other things really solidified my career goals.

derkaiser99
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Re: Case Western v. DePaul

Postby derkaiser99 » Tue Jun 14, 2011 12:32 pm

That makes sense to me. It just seems to me also that I'm going to be in pretty high levels of debt either way and that I'd rather just bit the bullet, and incur all of that debt sooner because I can then start paying it off sooner. I also did take the LSAT twice 154/156, so I really don't have that much faith in studying for a year to get a higher score. I just feel like if I scrapped the law school idea this year I'll be breaking from my plan, and especially because I got into two law schools I would regardless seriously consider, I hate to throw that away.

mikeditkaisgod
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Re: Case Western v. DePaul

Postby mikeditkaisgod » Tue Jun 14, 2011 12:49 pm

derkaiser99 wrote:That makes sense to me. It just seems to me also that I'm going to be in pretty high levels of debt either way and that I'd rather just bit the bullet, and incur all of that debt sooner because I can then start paying it off sooner. I also did take the LSAT twice 154/156, so I really don't have that much faith in studying for a year to get a higher score. I just feel like if I scrapped the law school idea this year I'll be breaking from my plan, and especially because I got into two law schools I would regardless seriously consider, I hate to throw that away.


You need to revise your LSAT study habits then. If you're serious about retaking (which is definitely your best option), head over to the LSAT prep board. There are countless threads that give great advice on how to maximize your LSAT potential.

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ChiCity22
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Re: Case Western v. DePaul

Postby ChiCity22 » Tue Jun 14, 2011 1:03 pm

I'm not one of those guys who auto-responds retake on every thread. But in you're situation I'd def retake. I took a year off to retake and even though I only marginally increased my score I'm glad I did it just for the peace of mind knowing I put the work in. Its not hard to get decent scholarship money at DePaul or Loyola, that would help you keep you're debt down. I might be headed to DePaul with 50k of debt over 3 years and even that is a scary proposition for me, this is real money you have to pay back. Another thing you have to consider is that you most likely will get a job with an income of 40-50k in the legal field, if you break down the career numbers barely half of the graduating class has full-time work that required a JD. Be honest with yourself when you're making this decision.

derkaiser99
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Re: Case Western v. DePaul

Postby derkaiser99 » Tue Jun 14, 2011 1:13 pm

thanks ChiCity22, mikeditkaisagod, cinephile, and mpj_3050. I really do appreciate the advice even though I'm sufficiently scared now

Z3RO
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Re: Case Western v. DePaul

Postby Z3RO » Tue Jun 14, 2011 1:26 pm

derkaiser99 wrote:That makes sense to me. It just seems to me also that I'm going to be in pretty high levels of debt either way and that I'd rather just bit the bullet, and incur all of that debt sooner because I can then start paying it off sooner. I also did take the LSAT twice 154/156, so I really don't have that much faith in studying for a year to get a higher score. I just feel like if I scrapped the law school idea this year I'll be breaking from my plan, and especially because I got into two law schools I would regardless seriously consider, I hate to throw that away.


I hate to be one of these "not worth sticker" people, because they enhance my already pervasive nightmares, but I don't know that either school is worth sticker here. It's not like Case gives you a 50/50 shot at making 80-100k. Honestly the odds of making less than 80k at graduation are pretty good in my estimation.

Harvard has a calculator that tells you how much you'll make after taxes and loan payments at different income levels. I'm planning on paying sticker, and I have a bit of undergraduate debt.

It told me that if I come out of school making less than 80k, and assuming no LRAP, I would be making less (after taxes and loans) than I am making now. Seriously.

Might want to plug your numbers into this thing to get an idea of what you're really looking at. Spending a year working is a great plan. It gives you a chance to make a bit of money, some experience, a bit more time being young and having SOME freedom before the golden handcuffs close shut. Finally, you might be lucky enough to improve your LSAT score or find something else you'd rather do with your life that doesn't cost the same as a house to just try out.

And at the end of the day, if you are just going into it for the money and hope to snag an 80k/year job, just get a 19/hr job now without the debt.

*Edit*
Forgot to include link to calculator. duh.

http://www.law.harvard.edu/apps/sfs/cal ... home-calc/




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