UNT Law

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eastdallas1
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UNT Law

Postby eastdallas1 » Mon Jul 18, 2011 10:49 am

Ok, I really need some objective answers to this post not just a bunch of catty comments about UNT sucking and no grad will ever get a job out of UNT Law. I am currently on the waitlist at SMU for this coming fall (2011). I am not sure if I am going to get off the waitlist at this point but it is possible. My dilemma is that I am in my early 30s with a family and I have worked for 9 years as a paralegal in 3 very good Texas firms. I have tons of connections in the legal field and great recommendations for future law jobs in Dallas, Austin and Houston and even New Orleans. I even have two job offers from family members one that has his own firm and one that is a senior partner in a top firm. I am trying to figure out if I should just forget SMU and wait until 2012 and apply to UNT Law in downtown Dallas and get out of there with a tiny fraction of the amount of debt I would have at SMU (if I can ever get in). I can't move away if that is going to be someone's answer - just go to ______ outside Dallas won't work. I have to work at my current job while in law school at night. I am not going to Wesleyan- it's not feasible for me to drive to Ft. Worth at night. My question is: Is it reasonable to to go to a new 3rd tier law school with a much lower price tag if I know I have a job no matter where I go that will pay the same no matter what? Is there a reason to get an expensive law degree at a top school if you would take a job from previous connections? Is there any drawback you can think of for going to UNT Law in my situation? Thanks for not just slamming UNT for no good reason other than to be snobby. :D BTW my numbers are 155 and 3.0 from a top 25 undergrad 10 years ago.

CanadianWolf
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Re: UNT Law

Postby CanadianWolf » Mon Jul 18, 2011 10:54 am

Is UNT accredited by the ABA ? UNT law in Dallas is scheduled to open Fall, 2013.
Last edited by CanadianWolf on Mon Jul 18, 2011 10:57 am, edited 1 time in total.

Chippy
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Re: UNT Law

Postby Chippy » Mon Jul 18, 2011 10:56 am

If have sure, definite connections then go. But just choose the cheapest possible school out there.

CanadianWolf
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Re: UNT Law

Postby CanadianWolf » Mon Jul 18, 2011 10:57 am

It might be a bit lonely, however, since the school opens in Fall, 2013.

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reepS
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Re: UNT Law

Postby reepS » Mon Jul 18, 2011 11:04 am

CanadianWolf wrote:Is UNT accredited by the ABA ? UNT law in Dallas is scheduled to open Fall, 2013.



It's not opening until 2012, so I don't think it is yet. Doesn't it have to enroll a class then receive provisional accreditation, then get full accreditation?

CanadianWolf
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Re: UNT Law

Postby CanadianWolf » Mon Jul 18, 2011 11:07 am

Website states 2013. Has the date been moved up to 2012 ? The UNT campus newspaper states August, 2012, but the UNT Dallas Law website shows Fall, 2013 as the opening date.

Redfactor
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Re: UNT Law

Postby Redfactor » Mon Jul 18, 2011 1:18 pm

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Last edited by Redfactor on Wed Aug 28, 2013 12:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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kalvano
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Re: UNT Law

Postby kalvano » Mon Jul 18, 2011 3:40 pm

OP, SMU is really the place to be if you want to be in Dallas, since UT isn't an option. However, if you're unwilling to wait, or aren't sure about getting in, then depending on what you want to do, UNT *might* be a good option. It's hard to say because it hasn't even opened yet, but I think it will do better than Wesleyan does. UNT has pretty good name recognition in the D/FW area, certainly better than Wesleyan. I think UNT will do pretty well in Dallas. It won't get the fancy firm jobs, but I think it will place fairly well in small firms and PI jobs.

That being said, I'm not sure UNT will be offering a PT program. And SMU gives PT'ers full access to everything to the FT students get, and does no differentiate on degrees between PT and FT.

If you must stay in Dallas, try for SMU. Re-take the LSAT and get just a few points higher. 3-4 more points would almost certainly get you in PT, probably with a little money. Also, SMU is very slow, so don't lose hope for this cycle. However, if SMU simply isn't going to happen, I think UNT might not be a bad choice if it's feasible in your situation.



Redfactor wrote:I would go to SMU. Here's why:

You have a guaranteed job at a top Dallas law firm. 160k.



Horseshit.

Redfactor
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Re: UNT Law

Postby Redfactor » Mon Jul 18, 2011 5:31 pm

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Last edited by Redfactor on Wed Aug 28, 2013 12:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Stanford4Me
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Re: UNT Law

Postby Stanford4Me » Mon Jul 18, 2011 5:47 pm

People who trash UNT aren't doing it becasue they're snobby, they're doing it because it will be a TTT that contributes to the atrocious number of unemployed LS grads. HTH.

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kalvano
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Re: UNT Law

Postby kalvano » Mon Jul 18, 2011 5:49 pm

"Top firm" is a vague description. It could mean anywhere from $100K to $160K.

And there is no guarantee that, when it comes time to put up, that job will actually exist.

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Stanford4Me
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Re: UNT Law

Postby Stanford4Me » Mon Jul 18, 2011 5:50 pm

kalvano wrote:And there is no guarantee that, when it comes time to put up, that job will actually exist.

This is what I was thinking, but I didn't want to be overly pessimistic. Also, depending on the size of this "top firm" is it feasible that one partner can convince the entire hiring committee to hire a graduate from a newly (or provisionally) accreddited TTTT? Not to mention, we have no idea what OP's grades will be like.

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brose
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Re: UNT Law

Postby brose » Mon Jul 18, 2011 5:52 pm

kalvano wrote:
And there is no guarantee that, when it comes time to put up, that job will actually exist.


People seem to forget this.

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kalvano
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Re: UNT Law

Postby kalvano » Mon Jul 18, 2011 7:51 pm

Basically, OP, do everything within your power to go to SMU. But if you can't, and UNT is free or damn near, it wouldn't necessarily be an awful option.

eastdallas1
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Re: UNT Law

Postby eastdallas1 » Tue Jul 19, 2011 1:15 am

I am fully aware of when the school opens - I guess I should have made that clear in my post - and yes it will be accredited when it opens. I would put off enrolling for two years in order to save money in the long run. I make $130K as a senior paralegal. Shocker - yes - spare me the obvious holy sh*it comments please. The job will be there - two for sure job offers from family members and if I don't want to work for them then I can use the friend and work contacts to get a job. Basically there is NO way short of a depression or the apocalypse that I won't have a job upon graduation - again not to be cocky but I am fully ingrained in the Texas legal profession. Now, with this info - is there any reason beyond blatant snobbery to go to SMU? I am mildly worried that the law school won't open in time in 2013. Yes I agree that it is Horsesh*t that you have a guaranteed $160 job right out of SMU.

eastdallas1
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Re: UNT Law

Postby eastdallas1 » Tue Jul 19, 2011 1:36 am

eastdallas1 wrote:I am fully aware of when the school opens - I guess I should have made that clear in my post - and yes it will be accredited when it opens. I would put off enrolling for two years in order to save money in the long run. I make $130K as a senior paralegal. Shocker - yes - spare me the obvious holy sh*it comments please. The job will be there - two for sure job offers from family members and if I don't want to work for them then I can use the friend and work contacts to get a job. Basically there is NO way short of a depression or the apocalypse that I won't have a job upon graduation - again not to be cocky but I am fully ingrained in the Texas legal profession. Now, with this info - is there any reason beyond blatant snobbery to go to SMU? I am mildly worried that the law school won't open in time in 2013. Yes I agree that it is Horsesh*t that you have a guaranteed $160 job right out of SMU.



PS - the part about getting the hiring committee to listen to one partner - I just have to pass the Bar are I will be hired there as an associate. The family member is the equity partner but I am friends with the hiring committee too.

Redfactor
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Re: UNT Law

Postby Redfactor » Tue Jul 19, 2011 1:37 am

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Last edited by Redfactor on Wed Aug 28, 2013 12:08 pm, edited 1 time in total.

eastdallas1
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Re: UNT Law

Postby eastdallas1 » Tue Jul 19, 2011 1:51 am

Redfactor wrote:
eastdallas1 wrote:I am fully aware of when the school opens - I guess I should have made that clear in my post - and yes it will be accredited when it opens. I would put off enrolling for two years in order to save money in the long run. I make $130K as a senior paralegal. Shocker - yes - spare me the obvious holy sh*it comments please. The job will be there - two for sure job offers from family members and if I don't want to work for them then I can use the friend and work contacts to get a job. Basically there is NO way short of a depression or the apocalypse that I won't have a job upon graduation - again not to be cocky but I am fully ingrained in the Texas legal profession. Now, with this info - is there any reason beyond blatant snobbery to go to SMU? I am mildly worried that the law school won't open in time in 2013. Yes I agree that it is Horsesh*t that you have a guaranteed $160 job right out of SMU.


At either of those schools, 130k is much better than the majority of their graduates get (or will get). But, you're an adult and seem capable of doing your own finances.

If you're not going to need OCI, career services, or alumni networking - just need a JD in order to practice, then I see no reason (besides timeline) to spend the extra money on SMU. Well, maybe the existence of a PT program.

As for the salaries, it's not like I'm making this up. Check out NALP.


I know plenty of SMU grads that are still unemployed or underemployed 2 years after graduation. Most of them that have jobs start about $70K. Those stats on NALP are not always reflected in real life and I have heard are skewed by some odd hiring practices initiated by SMU. I am sure there are some SMU grads that make $160K right off the bat - but I have not come across any. I am trying to be really realistic about the so-called magical powers that SMU Law thinks it has over the Dallas job market. I just don't want to afford $115K I guess. I am thinking UNT will be about $7K / year. I think any urban law school like this would be daft to not have a PT program - I will make sure before I bail on SMU that they will have a PT though.

nouseforaname123
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Re: UNT Law

Postby nouseforaname123 » Tue Jul 19, 2011 10:44 am

Most law students try to build the strongest possible resume in order to maximize their employment options post-graduation. OP is going against the grain by putting all of his/her eggs in a couple of baskets.

OP's plan depnds on the following:

1. Job is waiting for OP regardless of school rank/performance.
2. People promising OP job will still be in a position of power in 2016 (tbf, OP implies one firm is owned by a family member).
3. UNT will have affordable tuition.
4. UNT will open in 2013.
5. UNT will have a PT program.

Lots of sh!t can wrong with this master plan.

eastdallas1 wrote:I am fully ingrained in the Texas legal profession.

eastdallas1 wrote:Those stats on NALP are not always reflected in real life and I have heard are skewed by some odd hiring practices initiated by SMU.

eastdallas1 wrote: I am sure there are some SMU grads that make $160K right off the bat - but I have not come across any.


Maybe I'm just a skeptical asshole, but something isn't adding up here.

How is it even possible for *SMU* to skew NALP data?

I am not suggesting SMU is a job prospect powerhouse but I'm struggling to comprehend how somebody who is "fully ingrained in the Texas legal profession" hasn't "come across" any of the SMU grads hired at firms like V&E, F&J, H&B, K&LG, AG, AK, etc....

FTR, I am one of the biggest proponents of attending a lower ranked school to save on cost. Worst case scenario, OP is out the cost of tuition and continues in his/her paralegal position. Go to UNT as long as you can live with the worst scenario.

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Stanford4Me
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Re: UNT Law

Postby Stanford4Me » Tue Jul 19, 2011 11:35 am

Good luck, OP. Maybe we'll cross paths in the near future.

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JamMasterJ
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Re: UNT Law

Postby JamMasterJ » Tue Jul 19, 2011 11:39 am

Stanford4Me wrote:People who trash UNT aren't doing it becasue they're snobby, they're doing it because it will be a TTTT that contributes to the atrocious number of unemployed LS grads. HTH.

FTFY

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Grond
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Re: UNT Law

Postby Grond » Tue Jul 19, 2011 11:46 am

I'm not sure if it matters or if it makes it worse, but it won't be UNT, it will be UNT-Dallas. You know, a start-up law school from a start-up university.

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JamMasterJ
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Re: UNT Law

Postby JamMasterJ » Tue Jul 19, 2011 2:40 pm

Grond wrote:I'm not sure if it matters or if it makes it worse, but it won't be UNT, it will be UNT-Dallas. You know, a start-up law school from a start-up university.

A real college or an imaginary one from Friday Night Lights?

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kalvano
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Re: UNT Law

Postby kalvano » Tue Jul 19, 2011 4:58 pm

Grond wrote:I'm not sure if it matters or if it makes it worse, but it won't be UNT, it will be UNT-Dallas. You know, a start-up law school from a start-up university.



Uh, UNT has been around for about 122 years. Hardly a start-up school. UNT-Dallas is simply a Dallas location for the Denton-located school.

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Stanford4Me
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Re: UNT Law

Postby Stanford4Me » Tue Jul 19, 2011 5:07 pm

kalvano wrote:
Grond wrote:I'm not sure if it matters or if it makes it worse, but it won't be UNT, it will be UNT-Dallas. You know, a start-up law school from a start-up university.



Uh, UNT has been around for about 122 years. Hardly a start-up school. UNT-Dallas is simply a Dallas location for the Denton-located school.

:?




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