Stanford sticker vs. UTexas full-ride w/ two days to decide

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IzziesGal
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Re: Stanford sticker vs. UTexas full-ride w/ two days to decide

Postby IzziesGal » Mon Jul 04, 2011 1:38 pm

I was in a Boalt at sticker (w/ high cost of living) vs. Rutgers with huge scholarship (and super low cost of living) situation and I went with Boalt at sticker. I am currently an SA in a big law firm and have had a lot of incredible opportunities thrown my way by virtue of attending Boalt. I cannot say that I would be in this position now had I attended Rutgers.

So....Stanford wins, hands down. Biglaw, LRAP, USAO, Article III clerkships, academia...these are all legitimate reasons to assume the debt. Trust me - it may hurt your wallet at first, but you will not regret it later. I have never once regretted my decision to attend Boalt.

Edit: Actually took the time to scan through some of OP's posts, and it seems like she has no interest in Stanford. Looks like her mind is already set on UT.

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glewz
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Re: Stanford sticker vs. UTexas full-ride w/ two days to decide

Postby glewz » Mon Jul 04, 2011 2:43 pm

evilsushi1 wrote:
abl wrote:

If that career turns out to be biglaw, you are assured of biglaw and $150k debt is pretty easy to do when you're making $160k+/year.


I'm not really sure this is relevant since the OP has stated she does not want to be forced into biglaw. Even if it is, based on 2008 information from the SLS website, the members of the class of 2008 that chose to work in the West (AK, AZ, CO, ID, HI, MT, NM, NV, OR, UT, WA, WY) made between $80,000-$120,000 with the median being $120,000. I'm not sure if this means that the biglaw firms pay $40k less than their counterparts in other parts of the country or if all the graduates who went to work in the West chose small/mid-size firms. Maybe it's a wash after factoring in cost of living but we're probably not looking at $160k. As an SLS student I'm sure you have access to better and more recent data, so feel free to correct me...


"West" only accounts for 5% of the geo distribution? They don't correspond perfectly, but here's a more complete picture of what's on the site.

Mid-Atlantic (NY, NJ, PA) 20%
Southeast (DC, DE,FL, GA, MD, NC, SC, VA, WV) 20%
West (AK, AZ, CO, ID, HI, MT, NM, NV, OR, UT, WA, WY) 5%
California 43%

Northeast Law Firms $160,000-$185,000 $160,000
West/Southwest Law Firms $80,000-$120,000 $120,000
Southwest/Midwest Law Firms $145,000-$160,000 $160,000
California Law Firms $85,000-$168,000 $160,000

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sunynp
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Re: Stanford sticker vs. UTexas full-ride w/ two days to decide

Postby sunynp » Mon Jul 04, 2011 2:50 pm

Bottom line: OP only cares about not having debt. She isn't interested in the opportunities Stanford offers if she has to risk paying back debt. So she probably isn't the best candidate for Stanford anyway. Hope a good person gets her spot off the waitlist and she can happily go to Texas.

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mfeller2
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Re: Stanford sticker vs. UTexas full-ride w/ two days to decide

Postby mfeller2 » Mon Jul 04, 2011 2:56 pm

UT hands down. Sounds like quality of life is very important to you (I'm the same way and that's why I'll be attending UT), and in my opinion, the prestige isn't worth the 150K. If you were dead set on Biglaw I'd suggest otherwise.

evilsushi1
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Re: Stanford sticker vs. UTexas full-ride w/ two days to decide

Postby evilsushi1 » Mon Jul 04, 2011 8:47 pm

sunynp wrote:Hope a good person gets her spot off the waitlist and she can happily go to Texas.


Yeah, I know someone who is on the waitlist and has been watching this thread. He/she wants badly to attend Stanford and is slowly dying inside. Probably just one of many.

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glewz
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Re: Stanford sticker vs. UTexas full-ride w/ two days to decide

Postby glewz » Mon Jul 04, 2011 9:36 pm

evilsushi1 wrote:
sunynp wrote:Hope a good person gets her spot off the waitlist and she can happily go to Texas.


Yeah, I know someone who is on the waitlist and has been watching this thread. He/she wants badly to attend Stanford and is slowly dying inside. Probably just one of many.

I'm thinking that person is sunynp :)

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ebeth
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Re: Stanford sticker vs. UTexas full-ride w/ two days to decide

Postby ebeth » Mon Jul 04, 2011 11:58 pm

OP, I'm getting some conflicting vibes from you. You say that you're leaning towards Stanford, yet your substantive comments comparing the two schools/settings show a preference for UT. Nobody here wants to convince you to do something you don't want to do. You have all the information, and now you just need to (wo)man up and make the decision that's right for you personally. It sounds trite to say this, but seriously, go with your gut. Which decision will be easier to live with now, three years from now, and throughout your professional career?

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Re: Stanford sticker vs. UTexas full-ride w/ two days to decide

Postby fingersxd » Tue Jul 05, 2011 10:05 am

Stanford is the better school and will open many more doors. Due to its excellent LRAP and job placement for ANY position (PI, Govt, BigLaw, Clerkship, etc.) the additional debt is far from insurmountable.

That said, UT is no slouch (particularly in the Southwest) and coming out of school essentially debt-free is also very appealing.

If you are going to be absolutely miserable at Stanford and have so little confidence in your ability to be even a median student there, then by all means go to UT. Just realize that you are going to a professional school and the decision should really be based on what is best for your career (read: SLS).

At the end of the day, the decision is yours alone and I'm not sure there is a "wrong" choice here.

09042014
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Re: Stanford sticker vs. UTexas full-ride w/ two days to decide

Postby 09042014 » Tue Jul 05, 2011 10:07 am

Don't bother with her. She doesn't want input, she wants you to pick what she already picked herself.

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ndirish2010
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Re: Stanford sticker vs. UTexas full-ride w/ two days to decide

Postby ndirish2010 » Tue Jul 05, 2011 10:14 am

Seriously, I haven't read this thread, just looked at the title for three days...this is one of the harder decisions I've seen on this forum in a long time. I would probably go with Stanford, but a full ride at Texas is damn hard to turn down.

gourmet23
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Re: Stanford sticker vs. UTexas full-ride w/ two days to decide

Postby gourmet23 » Tue Jul 05, 2011 10:26 am

Though it may be a bit late, here are my two cents:

In most cases I would advise for Stanford without a doubt but in yours I actually think Texas wins. There are a few key areas to analyze here:

1) Money. Clearly this is Texas. Even with the LRAP you will not be in the same free ride situation. I think it is important to remember that you need to do PI for a full 10 years (last I checked anyway) to have the debt fully forgiven. Otherwise, you have only minimum payments being made and interest accruing. Unfortunately, many people decide at some point during that time to go to the private sector (had a kid, bought a house, etc.) and then they are in a worse position than when they graduated. You should seriously think about whether you can make a long-term commitment to PI before relying on the LRAP.

2) Exit opportunities. Here I think it is a toss up. If you were looking to go into BigLaw and/or wanted to be in a more popular market, Stanford would definitely win this one, but as it is with your connections and the less popular target market, I don't think it will make much difference coming from UT or from Stanford. It is important to remember that both schools enjoy excellent reputations and that UT is actually on the up-and-up, having cracked the T14 for the first time this year. In my opinion this clearly differentiate's the OP's situation from that of the poster deciding between Boalt and Rutgers (ranked 84 this year). There is a difference in prestige, but that difference is not sufficient to substantially alter your career options in a less crowded legal job market.
a) Difficulty of obtaining PI jobs. This issue was mentioned by many previous posters. Though I am not currently at either UT or Stanford, nor am I pursuing PI, I can speak to the struggles of some of my HLS classmates. I do think it is fair to say that it is very difficult to get PI jobs and even more so if you are not at the top of the class. I think this is likely to be the case everywhere, but defer to those with first hand experience in those schools on this.
b) Difficulty of academic work. Here I do think there will be a difference between the two schools. There is a reason for the prestige factor associates with HYS and that is in part because they attract the top candidates - those selected by trained and experienced admissions committees, who feel they will excel. That being said, you too were selected by those admissions committees, at both Harvard and Stanford, so it is likely that you too can keep up with the work if you apply yourself. I don't think you have reason to believe that you will do poorly at either school nor should you feel intimidated; however, if you do feel intimidated by the Stanford students and this will impact your work, that could adversely affect your career opportunities. You need to decide to what extent this will be the case.
c) Grade transparency. This is the only category in which Stanford wins. Stanford's grading system does tend to favor the more average student more so than UT's does. If the OP is unable to stay at the top of the class at UT then this could be an advantage for Stanford.

3) Quality of Life and Culture. Here, again UT wins given what I have read from the OP. In terms of living situation, Austin is clearly preferable for the OP, especially because she can have her large dog in an apartment relatively close to campus. Stanford's campus is somewhat insular and though there are some students who live in SF or in other nearby towns, the majority stay in on campus housing. It might be problematic socially to live far away and if you are already intimidated by the students, the distance could exacerbate that feeling. In terms of culture, I think again that UT wins for this particular OP. The cultures at Harvard and Stanford are not all that different and if Harvard's culture was a problem, then Stanford's likely will be as well.

All in all, you have two excellent options and either way will likely achieve your career goals, so go with the school where you will be happier and more comfortable. Only you can make that decision.

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ResolutePear
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Re: Stanford sticker vs. UTexas full-ride w/ two days to decide

Postby ResolutePear » Tue Jul 05, 2011 10:35 am

Desert Fox wrote:Don't bother with her. She doesn't want input, she wants you to pick what she already picked herself.


At least she didn't have her SO pick for her.

fingersxd
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Re: Stanford sticker vs. UTexas full-ride w/ two days to decide

Postby fingersxd » Tue Jul 05, 2011 10:37 am

Desert Fox wrote:Don't bother with her. She doesn't want input, she wants you to pick what she already picked herself.


I can't even tell what that is! At first I thought it was UT but then she was "leaning towards Stanford."

Oh well, best of luck to you either way OP.

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Re: Stanford sticker vs. UTexas full-ride w/ two days to decide

Postby 09042014 » Tue Jul 05, 2011 10:38 am

ResolutePear wrote:
Desert Fox wrote:Don't bother with her. She doesn't want input, she wants you to pick what she already picked herself.


At least she didn't have her SO pick for her.


In a round about way she did. IIRC she has a BF in Chicago and she turned down NU full ride just to get away from him.

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ResolutePear
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Re: Stanford sticker vs. UTexas full-ride w/ two days to decide

Postby ResolutePear » Tue Jul 05, 2011 10:46 am

Desert Fox wrote:
ResolutePear wrote:
Desert Fox wrote:Don't bother with her. She doesn't want input, she wants you to pick what she already picked herself.


At least she didn't have her SO pick for her.


In a round about way she did. IIRC she has a BF in Chicago and she turned down NU full ride just to get away from him.


:lol:

juliachild-ish
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Re: Stanford sticker vs. UTexas full-ride w/ two days to decide

Postby juliachild-ish » Tue Jul 05, 2011 11:13 am

ResolutePear wrote:
Desert Fox wrote:
ResolutePear wrote:
Desert Fox wrote:Don't bother with her. She doesn't want input, she wants you to pick what she already picked herself.


At least she didn't have her SO pick for her.


In a round about way she did. IIRC she has a BF in Chicago and she turned down NU full ride just to get away from him.


:lol:


It really wasn't about getting away from him so much as getting away from Chicago, just FYI...

sonervous88
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Re: Stanford sticker vs. UTexas full-ride w/ two days to decide

Postby sonervous88 » Tue Jul 05, 2011 11:15 am

juliachild-ish wrote:So I just got in at Stanford off the waitlist--had been planning to attend Texas on a full-ride. Stanford didn't offer me any money, and the COL in Palo Alto is ridiculous compared to Austin (I have a dog, so I can't live on campus). I'm looking at about $35k in debt from Texas and about $150k in debt from Stanford (my dad will be helping me some).

I was really psyched about living in Austin, but a few months ago I really wanted to get into Stanford. Now I'm not sure, and am balking at the cost and not getting to live in Austin. I want to go back to AZ (homestate) or somewhere else in the southwest and preferably work in local government or possibly a NGO--I would be okay with a smaller firm, but absolutely do not want BigLaw.

It's very hard to justify turning down Stanford. I turned down Harvard for UT earlier in the cycle, but that mostly had to do with quality of life issues at Harvard, and it seems like the students at Stanford are much more friendly and happy than students at Harvard, so I'm not sure that argument still stands. But I'm worried that I may just end up in the same job from either school, only with a lot more debt coming out of Stanford. And to be honest, I'm kind of intimidated by my potential future classmates at Stanford.

Thoughts?


HEY! CONGRATULATIONS!!! no idea what i would do in your situation but i just saw your thread.

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Re: Stanford sticker vs. UTexas full-ride w/ two days to decide

Postby juliachild-ish » Tue Jul 05, 2011 11:17 am

So, I decided to go with Stanford! Sorry to all those still on the waitlist, but I have it on good authority that another spot will be opening up in a few days.

Thanks to all those who had helpful input, not so much thanks to everyone else. It was a hard decision, but at least I'll know exactly what I'm missing out on at UT--I would always have wondered what opportunities I could have had at Stanford, and that might have driven me crazy. Now let's just hope the debt doesn't come back to bite me...

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ResolutePear
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Re: Stanford sticker vs. UTexas full-ride w/ two days to decide

Postby ResolutePear » Tue Jul 05, 2011 11:24 am

juliachild-ish wrote:So, I decided to go with Stanford! Sorry to all those still on the waitlist, but I have it on good authority that another spot will be opening up in a few days.

Thanks to all those who had helpful input, not so much thanks to everyone else. It was a hard decision, but at least I'll know exactly what I'm missing out on at UT--I would always have wondered what opportunities I could have had at Stanford, and that might have driven me crazy. Now let's just hope the debt doesn't come back to bite me...


When you're successful and have kids, tell them; tell them that a pear on an internet forum had some part in convincing you.

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Re: Stanford sticker vs. UTexas full-ride w/ two days to decide

Postby fingersxd » Tue Jul 05, 2011 11:45 am

juliachild-ish wrote:So, I decided to go with Stanford! Sorry to all those still on the waitlist, but I have it on good authority that another spot will be opening up in a few days.

Thanks to all those who had helpful input, not so much thanks to everyone else. It was a hard decision, but at least I'll know exactly what I'm missing out on at UT--I would always have wondered what opportunities I could have had at Stanford, and that might have driven me crazy. Now let's just hope the debt doesn't come back to bite me...


You made the right choice.

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albusdumbledore
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Re: Stanford sticker vs. UTexas full-ride w/ two days to decide

Postby albusdumbledore » Tue Jul 05, 2011 11:47 am

fingersxd wrote:
juliachild-ish wrote:So, I decided to go with Stanford! Sorry to all those still on the waitlist, but I have it on good authority that another spot will be opening up in a few days.

Thanks to all those who had helpful input, not so much thanks to everyone else. It was a hard decision, but at least I'll know exactly what I'm missing out on at UT--I would always have wondered what opportunities I could have had at Stanford, and that might have driven me crazy. Now let's just hope the debt doesn't come back to bite me...


You made the right choice.


There wasn't a wrong choice.

fingersxd
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Re: Stanford sticker vs. UTexas full-ride w/ two days to decide

Postby fingersxd » Tue Jul 05, 2011 11:48 am

albusdumbledore wrote:
fingersxd wrote:
juliachild-ish wrote:So, I decided to go with Stanford! Sorry to all those still on the waitlist, but I have it on good authority that another spot will be opening up in a few days.

Thanks to all those who had helpful input, not so much thanks to everyone else. It was a hard decision, but at least I'll know exactly what I'm missing out on at UT--I would always have wondered what opportunities I could have had at Stanford, and that might have driven me crazy. Now let's just hope the debt doesn't come back to bite me...


You made the right choice.


There wasn't a wrong choice.


Edit: You made the "better" choice.

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ResolutePear
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Re: Stanford sticker vs. UTexas full-ride w/ two days to decide

Postby ResolutePear » Tue Jul 05, 2011 11:50 am

albusdumbledore wrote:
fingersxd wrote:
juliachild-ish wrote:So, I decided to go with Stanford! Sorry to all those still on the waitlist, but I have it on good authority that another spot will be opening up in a few days.

Thanks to all those who had helpful input, not so much thanks to everyone else. It was a hard decision, but at least I'll know exactly what I'm missing out on at UT--I would always have wondered what opportunities I could have had at Stanford, and that might have driven me crazy. Now let's just hope the debt doesn't come back to bite me...


You made the right choice.


There wasn't a wrong choice.


There was a left choice.

http://instantrimshot.com/classic/?sound=rimshot

z3201
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Re: Stanford sticker vs. UTexas full-ride w/ two days to decide

Postby z3201 » Tue Jul 05, 2011 9:44 pm

juliachild-ish wrote:So, I decided to go with Stanford! Sorry to all those still on the waitlist, but I have it on good authority that another spot will be opening up in a few days.

Thanks to all those who had helpful input, not so much thanks to everyone else. It was a hard decision, but at least I'll know exactly what I'm missing out on at UT--I would always have wondered what opportunities I could have had at Stanford, and that might have driven me crazy. Now let's just hope the debt doesn't come back to bite me...


CONGRATS!!!!!

See you in August :)

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sunynp
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Re: Stanford sticker vs. UTexas full-ride w/ two days to decide

Postby sunynp » Tue Jul 05, 2011 9:53 pm

You would have been a fool to turn down Stanford (given all the advantages and the chance to pay down debt with LRAP). I am glad you are going there.

And I'm not on the Stanford waitlist! But I can see how people might think that given my comments. I was very frustrated with OP for making what I thought were short-sighted decisions for her career. Debt is important to avoid, but I think OP will have many more opportunities at Stanford.

I am very happy for you OP.
Last edited by sunynp on Tue Jul 05, 2011 10:07 pm, edited 2 times in total.




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