Common Bad Decisions in Choosing Law Schools

(Rankings, Profiles, Tuition, Student Life, . . . )
JAGX
Posts: 13
Joined: Sat Feb 05, 2011 5:03 pm

Re: Common Bad Decisions in Choosing Law Schools

Postby JAGX » Thu Jul 21, 2011 12:01 pm

Please talk sense into me.

I was all settles on going to the University at Buffalo for around 65k for 3 years, then George Washington Admitted me at a tag of 220k for 3 years, and certain people are telling me to go for GW... it sounds nice but I don't know...

User avatar
Aberzombie1892
Posts: 1907
Joined: Sun Mar 29, 2009 10:56 am

Re: Common Bad Decisions in Choosing Law Schools

Postby Aberzombie1892 » Thu Jul 21, 2011 12:22 pm

legalresearch wrote:
Aberzombie1892 wrote:
legalresearch wrote:
Aberzombie1892 wrote:Eh...if you want to practice in New Orleans, Tulane>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>LSU.

But for Baton Rouge, LSU is perfectly fine.

Granted, I wouldn't recommend Tulane at sticker, but I feel that way about all schools outside HYS.


Tulane is great school, but the cost of attendance at half tuition be:
$122,334!!!
Tuition: $21,072
Room: $12,320
Books:$1,500
Expenses:$5,886
Per Year: $40,778

Tulane is placing only 11.51% into big law. So there's nearly a 90% chance that one will be cashing in. I think it would be hard to justify that much debt for Tulane. Another downer is that they dont play any big six conference sports and dont have this


Eh...Big Law isn't the only type of job that pays more than $60,000 right out of law school, so claiming that there is a 90% chance of essential failure is far from accurate. The law school transparency page is pretty accurate from the people I have spoken to at the school (recent grads, C/O 2010/2011). In fact, according to LST, Tulane's salaries are about $20,000 more than the equivalent from LSU at the median.

As to Tulane's 3 year COA of $180,000, over 80% of Tulane's students are on scholarship. So..it's not like people are paying $150k+ for a Tulane degree.

P.S. Don't get me wrong, LSU is a good bargain and is known for its' female population. Tulane's undergrads are gorgeous too, trust me. Also, my prior post wasn't to insult LSU - it's just that the OP claimed that LSU is "as good as" Tulane for all of Louisiana, which isn't true (for New Orleans).


That calculation ($122,334) COA was with a half tuition $$$ factored in. Also, the argument is that it would be a bad decision to attend Tulane at sticker against attending LSU with much lower in state tuition for a legal career within the state of louisiana, which would probably not include a big law job.


Well I never disagreed with Tulane not being with sticker. However, if you want to work in New Orleans, Tulane is worth far more than LSU. How much more, I can't say. But if someone wants to work in Baton Rouge and Shreveport, LSU all the way.

dabbadon8
Posts: 767
Joined: Tue May 11, 2010 2:17 am

Re: Common Bad Decisions in Choosing Law Schools

Postby dabbadon8 » Thu Jul 21, 2011 1:30 pm

More common bad decisions.

-Choosing among peer schools for rank rather then fit/money. Seems especially common in the MVPDNCB range and the T20-50 range.
-This may sound a little silly but: People actually being honest with themselves about what is important to them. For example, I honestly care more about how comfortable the chairs are in the library then a school's available courses. I rather not be able to take courses in some niche I am not aware I like (esp. since I am trying to get biglaw and every school has corporate classes and lit clinics), then have to spend day after day studying in a library that sucks.

User avatar
MobyDick
Posts: 51
Joined: Sun Jul 17, 2011 4:58 pm

Re: Common Bad Decisions in Choosing Law Schools

Postby MobyDick » Thu Jul 21, 2011 1:37 pm

dabbadon8 wrote:More common bad decisions.

-Choosing among peer schools for rank rather then fit/money. Seems especially common in the MVPDNCB range and the T20-50 range.
-This may sound a little silly but: People actually being honest with themselves about what is important to them. For example, I honestly care more about how comfortable the chairs are in the library then a school's available courses. I rather not be able to take courses in some niche I am not aware I like (esp. since I am trying to get biglaw and every school has corporate classes and lit clinics), then have to spend day after day studying in a library that sucks.


And you'd rather use "then" THAN "than."

dabbadon8
Posts: 767
Joined: Tue May 11, 2010 2:17 am

Re: Common Bad Decisions in Choosing Law Schools

Postby dabbadon8 » Thu Jul 21, 2011 1:43 pm

MobyDick wrote:
dabbadon8 wrote:More common bad decisions.

-Choosing among peer schools for rank rather then fit/money. Seems especially common in the MVPDNCB range and the T20-50 range.
-This may sound a little silly but: People actually being honest with themselves about what is important to them. For example, I honestly care more about how comfortable the chairs are in the library then a school's available courses. I rather not be able to take courses in some niche I am not aware I like (esp. since I am trying to get biglaw and every school has corporate classes and lit clinics), then have to spend day after day studying in a library that sucks.


And you'd rather use "then" THAN "than."


Glad you used your 2nd post for that.

http://www.collegehumor.com/video/6060107/grammar-nazis

czelede
Posts: 689
Joined: Tue Jun 08, 2010 1:54 pm

Re: Common Bad Decisions in Choosing Law Schools

Postby czelede » Thu Jul 21, 2011 2:06 pm

Putting too much stock into what TLS says - more of the rank vs fit thing. I think it's hard not to get caught up in the "go as high as you can go" numbers game here but at the end of the day, it's three years of your life and only you can determine where you want to spend it.

framboozer
Posts: 213
Joined: Wed Nov 24, 2010 12:38 pm

Re: Common Bad Decisions in Choosing Law Schools

Postby framboozer » Thu Jul 21, 2011 4:17 pm

The more I survey my peers through stalkerbook, the more I realize how it can be that there are so many law school grads in ridiculous amounts of debt with no job prospects.

This late in the cycle, I know where my peers who I was discussing law school with a year ago are going this fall. Curiously, not a single person is going to Temple or Villanova, though I am from the Philadelphia area. A few are going to Widener. Those are the people who didn't think they needed to study for the LSAT, slacked off in undergrad, and didn't do an ounce of research. Their questionable life decision has been confirmed by all their clueless friends offering them endless congratulations on Facebook. I wish I could tell them what they're getting into, but it's not my place.

The rest are going to the most random places imaginable, none in the Philadelphia area, even though this is where they are from and went to undergrad. So where are they going? Some T3/T4's in New England, Widener, W&M, Cardozo, Brooklyn, Georgia, Mississippi, Duquesne, Pittsburgh, Boston College, John Marshall, etc. None of these appear to be with scholarship or at least with a significant scholarship, based on what they were choosing between. One person's decision came down to W&M at sticker or a full ride at St. John's. Why would you ever be choosing between those 2? It boggles my mind. I can't speak for all of them, but I really doubt that all of them planning to work in the target markets of those schools after law school and just went to the "best school" that accepted them.

I really think that most of them took the U.S. News rankings waaaaay too seriously.

For those who didn't read, the moral of the story is don't go to a random school in a random location that you don't plan on working in and do more research than a casual glance at the USNWR rankings.

User avatar
kapital98
Posts: 1188
Joined: Sun Jan 09, 2011 9:58 pm

Re: Common Bad Decisions in Choosing Law Schools

Postby kapital98 » Thu Jul 21, 2011 5:30 pm

framboozer wrote:For those who didn't read, the moral of the story is don't go to a random school in a random location that you don't plan on working in and do more research than a casual glance at the USNWR rankings.


But they're special and will work really hard to get in the top 10% and then be able to work wherever they want :lol:

On a more serious note:

Don't go to a law school because your undergraduate girlfriend/boyfriend is going to live there. That's just asking for you to wind up living in a city you don't want to live in, missing out on better schools, and having them break up with you right before 1L finals. There are numerous horror stories on TLS about people with really good first semester grades and then, after being dumped right before finals, taking a nosedive and doing poorly at OCI.

This is different if you are married, have significant ties to the area, etc...

User avatar
PDaddy
Posts: 2073
Joined: Sat Jan 16, 2010 4:40 am

Re: Common Bad Decisions in Choosing Law Schools

Postby PDaddy » Thu Jul 21, 2011 5:51 pm

legalresearch wrote:
Aberzombie1892 wrote:Eh...if you want to practice in New Orleans, Tulane>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>LSU.

But for Baton Rouge, LSU is perfectly fine.

Granted, I wouldn't recommend Tulane at sticker, but I feel that way about all schools outside HYS.


Tulane is great school, but the cost of attendance at half tuition be:
$122,334!!!
Tuition: $21,072
Room: $12,320
Books:$1,500
Expenses:$5,886
Per Year: $40,778

Tulane is placing only 11.51% into big law. So there's nearly a 90% chance that one will be not cashing in. I think it would be hard to justify that much debt for Tulane. Another downer is that they dont play any big six conference sports and dont have this --ImageRemoved--


I don't know why you posted the pic; I don't see one super-hot chick in that bunch. A couple are really cute and the rest are pretty average. Nice bodies for all, though.

User avatar
FeelTheHeat
Posts: 5203
Joined: Tue Jan 18, 2011 2:32 am

Re: Common Bad Decisions in Choosing Law Schools

Postby FeelTheHeat » Thu Jul 21, 2011 5:56 pm

PDaddy wrote:
legalresearch wrote:--ImageRemoved--


I don't know why you posted the pic; I don't see one super-hot chick in that bunch. A couple are really cute and the rest are pretty average. Nice bodies for all, though.


--ImageRemoved--

User avatar
PDaddy
Posts: 2073
Joined: Sat Jan 16, 2010 4:40 am

Re: Common Bad Decisions in Choosing Law Schools

Postby PDaddy » Thu Jul 21, 2011 6:05 pm

framboozer

Your friends did ok. Some of the schools you listed are actually quite good, and they compare favorably with Temple and Villanova. True, the NY market is saturated, but W&M, Cardozo, Brooklyn, Georgia, Pittsburgh, Boston College are all schools respectable law students would attend.

Georgia's dominance in its own market - it holds up well in Atlanta against Vanderbilt, Emory, GA. St., Duke, etc - justifies your friend's choice well if he/she desires Atlanta employment.

In a better economy, B.C., Cardozo and Brooklyn grads do well in the NY area, and B.C. certainly competes well in Boston. W&M places well in the D.C./VA and NY areas, and it's not a stretch for grads from W&M to work in Philly. However, I will concede that a full scholly at St. John's, in today's market, is a better deal than sticker at almost any first-tier school outside of the top-20.

framboozer
Posts: 213
Joined: Wed Nov 24, 2010 12:38 pm

Re: Common Bad Decisions in Choosing Law Schools

Postby framboozer » Thu Jul 21, 2011 9:06 pm

PDaddy, I think I misrepresented what I was trying to say. Schools like W&M and BC are solid schools, but I can safely say that many of those people's goals include working in the Philly area, which is why I was trying to indicate that it's foolish to go to W&M at sticker if that's your goal. In contrast, Temple is only 18K/year. I was basically saying that it's different from undergrad. This isn't the time to try out a school in a different part of the country for the experience, or because it's the best school you got into. I can say that at least the people I know going to Widener, Duquesne, Pitt, W&M, Mississippi want to work in Philly, and with a cheap option like Temple or the option of $$ at Villanova , I don't get why they would want to pay sticker elsewhere. Obv, the people going to Duquesne and Widener (and maybe Ole Miss) have fewer options, but they're a different case entirely. It was just shocking to see no one go for the Philly schools. I think people are reluctant to go to Temple if they can get into a T30 school, because the undergrad is lacking in prestige and they think W&M and BC have more.

User avatar
northwood
Posts: 4872
Joined: Fri May 14, 2010 7:29 pm

Re: Common Bad Decisions in Choosing Law Schools

Postby northwood » Thu Jul 21, 2011 9:53 pm

i always thought it was pretty much a big part of the deal to figure out where you want to work- before you figure out what schools to apply to. Especially if you wanted to work in a specific city that had at least 1 law school. Just doesnt make much sense to go to school in a city or region you dont want to live and work in. ( or go to a school that is close- by close less than a days drive doing 65 mph to your target market)

User avatar
ndirish2010
Posts: 2950
Joined: Mon Dec 14, 2009 4:41 pm

Re: Common Bad Decisions in Choosing Law Schools

Postby ndirish2010 » Thu Jul 21, 2011 9:56 pm

dabbadon8 wrote:More common bad decisions.

-Choosing among peer schools for rank rather then fit/money. Seems especially common in the MVPDNCB range and the T20-50 range.
-This may sound a little silly but: People actually being honest with themselves about what is important to them. For example, I honestly care more about how comfortable the chairs are in the library then a school's available courses. I rather not be able to take courses in some niche I am not aware I like (esp. since I am trying to get biglaw and every school has corporate classes and lit clinics), then have to spend day after day studying in a library that sucks.


Sorry, but the T20 and the bottom of T1 are not peers at all.

Z3RO
Posts: 526
Joined: Thu Sep 03, 2009 11:57 am

Re: Common Bad Decisions in Choosing Law Schools

Postby Z3RO » Thu Jul 21, 2011 10:07 pm

ndirish2010 wrote:
dabbadon8 wrote:More common bad decisions.

-Choosing among peer schools for rank rather then fit/money. Seems especially common in the MVPDNCB range and the T20-50 range.
-This may sound a little silly but: People actually being honest with themselves about what is important to them. For example, I honestly care more about how comfortable the chairs are in the library then a school's available courses. I rather not be able to take courses in some niche I am not aware I like (esp. since I am trying to get biglaw and every school has corporate classes and lit clinics), then have to spend day after day studying in a library that sucks.


Sorry, but the T20 and the bottom of T1 are not peers at all.

I agree with Notre Dame on this one. Maybe I'm elitist.

dabbadon8
Posts: 767
Joined: Tue May 11, 2010 2:17 am

Re: Common Bad Decisions in Choosing Law Schools

Postby dabbadon8 » Thu Jul 21, 2011 10:18 pm

ndirish2010 wrote:
dabbadon8 wrote:More common bad decisions.

-Choosing among peer schools for rank rather then fit/money. Seems especially common in the MVPDNCB range and the T20-50 range.
-This may sound a little silly but: People actually being honest with themselves about what is important to them. For example, I honestly care more about how comfortable the chairs are in the library then a school's available courses. I rather not be able to take courses in some niche I am not aware I like (esp. since I am trying to get biglaw and every school has corporate classes and lit clinics), then have to spend day after day studying in a library that sucks.


Sorry, but the T20 and the bottom of T1 are not peers at all.


I meant that more in the sense that they are all strong regional schools and people often choose one over another for ranking rather than where they want to practice. For example picking UIUC(t20) over UF for florida(bottom of T1).

User avatar
ndirish2010
Posts: 2950
Joined: Mon Dec 14, 2009 4:41 pm

Re: Common Bad Decisions in Choosing Law Schools

Postby ndirish2010 » Thu Jul 21, 2011 10:22 pm

dabbadon8 wrote:
ndirish2010 wrote:
dabbadon8 wrote:More common bad decisions.

-Choosing among peer schools for rank rather then fit/money. Seems especially common in the MVPDNCB range and the T20-50 range.
-This may sound a little silly but: People actually being honest with themselves about what is important to them. For example, I honestly care more about how comfortable the chairs are in the library then a school's available courses. I rather not be able to take courses in some niche I am not aware I like (esp. since I am trying to get biglaw and every school has corporate classes and lit clinics), then have to spend day after day studying in a library that sucks.


Sorry, but the T20 and the bottom of T1 are not peers at all.


I meant that more in the sense that they are all strong regional schools and people often choose one over another for ranking rather than where they want to practice. For example picking UIUC(t20) over UF for florida(bottom of T1).


I would argue that people put too much emphasis on location. In that situation, go to UIUC and learn to like the midwest.

dabbadon8
Posts: 767
Joined: Tue May 11, 2010 2:17 am

Re: Common Bad Decisions in Choosing Law Schools

Postby dabbadon8 » Thu Jul 21, 2011 10:29 pm

ndirish2010 wrote:
dabbadon8 wrote:
ndirish2010 wrote:
dabbadon8 wrote:More common bad decisions.

-Choosing among peer schools for rank rather then fit/money. Seems especially common in the MVPDNCB range and the T20-50 range.
-This may sound a little silly but: People actually being honest with themselves about what is important to them. For example, I honestly care more about how comfortable the chairs are in the library then a school's available courses. I rather not be able to take courses in some niche I am not aware I like (esp. since I am trying to get biglaw and every school has corporate classes and lit clinics), then have to spend day after day studying in a library that sucks.


Sorry, but the T20 and the bottom of T1 are not peers at all.


I meant that more in the sense that they are all strong regional schools and people often choose one over another for ranking rather than where they want to practice. For example picking UIUC(t20) over UF for florida(bottom of T1).


I would argue that people put too much emphasis on location. In that situation, go to UIUC and learn to like the midwest.


Ha, well I agree in the sense of national schools, if you get better job prospects suck it up for 3 years. Though for the regional schools where you are probably going to end up living in the region most of your life... might matter a good bit to your happiness.

User avatar
ndirish2010
Posts: 2950
Joined: Mon Dec 14, 2009 4:41 pm

Re: Common Bad Decisions in Choosing Law Schools

Postby ndirish2010 » Thu Jul 21, 2011 10:59 pm

I meant that more in the sense that they are all strong regional schools and people often choose one over another for ranking rather than where they want to practice. For example picking UIUC(t20) over UF for florida(bottom of T1).


I would argue that people put too much emphasis on location. In that situation, go to UIUC and learn to like the midwest.[/quote]

Ha, well I agree in the sense of national schools, if you get better job prospects suck it up for 3 years. Though for the regional schools where you are probably going to end up living in the region most of your life... might matter a good bit to your happiness.[/quote]

There are nice places everywhere. Really, there are. I agree with a lot of general TLS wisdom, but one thing I don't agree with is this notion that there are only four legitimate places to live (NYC, Chicago, DC, LA) and everyplace else is "in the middle of bumblefuck nowhere."

User avatar
NoleinNY
Posts: 1031
Joined: Mon Sep 14, 2009 4:58 pm

Re: Common Bad Decisions in Choosing Law Schools

Postby NoleinNY » Fri Jul 22, 2011 12:10 pm

dabbadon8 wrote:More common bad decisions.

-Choosing among peer schools for rank rather then fit/money. Seems especially common in the MVPDNCB range and the T20-50 range.
-This may sound a little silly but: People actually being honest with themselves about what is important to them. For example, I honestly care more about how comfortable the chairs are in the library then a school's available courses. I rather not be able to take courses in some niche I am not aware I like (esp. since I am trying to get biglaw and every school has corporate classes and lit clinics), then have to spend day after day studying in a library that sucks.


It's always ridiculous when you see this: I'm stuck between Pepperdine and Loyola. I like Loyola but PU is marginally higher ranked..." or this.

A caveat to this, though, is when people choose schools for a little bit of money despite being far inferior for their market (and not getting any true savings. For example, in Florida, I've seen a number of people reason "I'll go to Miami/Stetson/Nova/FIU/STU over FSU/UF sticker because I got scholly money with a %stip."




Return to “Choosing a Law School”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: carasrook and 2 guests