Need some sage TLS advice...

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MLONDER
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Need some sage TLS advice...

Postby MLONDER » Tue Nov 29, 2011 7:10 pm

I'm a long time lurker of these forums, and have taken everything I read on here to heart during the LSAT preparation/ law school application process over the past couple of years. Just wanted to write a quick thank you to all of the regular/long time posters who have put so much time and effort into making this website a great resource/wake up call for potential law students.

Now, in the midst of my cycle, I come to you with a question. I've just gotten acceptances from my Top 2 choices for Law School - The University of Kentucky and Moritz College of Law at Ohio State -and I wanted to take this forum's temperature as to what the better decision would be.

I am a South Carolina resident who has gotten into South Carolina Law but really has no desire to attend, nor really to remain in state. Charleston School of Law really is not even an option for me, for obvious reasons. So, both schools would be out of state for me.

It's still too early on to tell what my scholarship offers are going to be, but even at out of state sticker, OSU is about $15,000 higher a year, and the cost of living is a touch higher in Columbus than it is in Lexington. I realize that OSU is a bit higher in terms of prestige, but I have a feeling, based on my numbers, that I'll be expected to pay sticker or close to sticker there, while UK will likely offer a pretty sizable scholarship on top of the already lower tuition.

I like both schools equally in terms of campus, location, and intangibles, and I want to live and work somewhere in the midwest (Ohio, Indiana, Kentucky, or Michigan), so UK really seems like an equally, if not more wise investment for me than does OSU. I am strongly leaning towards attending, but I wanted to see what TLS thought before I decided on attending the "lower rated" school.
Last edited by MLONDER on Tue Nov 29, 2011 7:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Transferthrowaway
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Re: Need some sage TLS advice...

Postby Transferthrowaway » Tue Nov 29, 2011 7:15 pm

As someone from the south who now goes to school in the midwest, I beg you to reconsider leaving. :lol:
Last edited by Transferthrowaway on Tue Nov 29, 2011 7:24 pm, edited 1 time in total.

MLONDER
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Re: Need some sage TLS advice...

Postby MLONDER » Tue Nov 29, 2011 7:19 pm

Well, that's one of the other things I like about Lexington. I've been there many times, and it's definitely still "the south", but it's a suburb of Cincinnati so you're close to that bigger, midwestern city atmosphere (which I actually kind of like, weather not included).

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somewherewarm
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Re: Need some sage TLS advice...

Postby somewherewarm » Tue Nov 29, 2011 7:22 pm

What other schools are you still waiting to hear from? With numbers high enough to hear from Moritz this early, I'd imagine you'd be competitive to a few other Midwest schools that may give you a scholarship. Since it's still pretty early in the cycle it might be hard to make any definitive decisions yet (although you never said you were making any concrete choice at this time). To answer your question, as a resident of the Midwest myself, OSU would probably give you a better chance at working in the states you mentioned (except Kentucky) but that has to be weighed against the prospect of attending Ohio State at full tuition. Debt v. Job Prospects is something that comes down to your outlook.

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sach1282
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Re: Need some sage TLS advice...

Postby sach1282 » Tue Nov 29, 2011 7:25 pm

Check out the employment data on lawschooltransparency.com or the figures in this thread:

viewtopic.php?f=1&t=150681

OSU has a decent leg up on Kentucky in terms of any desirable job. But, like the above poster said, weigh it against the debt once you get scholarship offers.

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BaiAilian2013
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Re: Need some sage TLS advice...

Postby BaiAilian2013 » Tue Nov 29, 2011 7:36 pm

If you haven't, check whether either state allows you to get in-state tuition after one year (some do).

MLONDER
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Re: Need some sage TLS advice...

Postby MLONDER » Tue Nov 29, 2011 7:42 pm

Thanks a lot for the quick responses and the advice...I think I got a little bit trigger happy on posting the thread, because I'm pretty excited about everything. Obviously, I need to wait to hear about scholarship and everything, but I'm feeling good about Kentucky. It's the easier state to get residency in, according to this website, as well.

2014jd
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Re: Need some sage TLS advice...

Postby 2014jd » Tue Nov 29, 2011 7:44 pm

BaiAilian2013 wrote:If you haven't, check whether either state allows you to get in-state tuition after one year (some do).


I'm pretty sure OSU does, though it doesn't apply to me so I'm not sure how difficult it is.

OP, I agree with the above posters in that job prospects are probably going to be a little better out of OSU except for in Kentucky. But as mentioned above and you seem to know, debt is also a serious consideration.

Basically wanted to let you know that I, and a few other OSU students, are happy to answer any questions you may have about OSU over in this thread:
viewtopic.php?f=4&t=110011&start=50

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goldenflash19
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Re: Need some sage TLS advice...

Postby goldenflash19 » Tue Nov 29, 2011 9:41 pm

I give you a lot of credit, OP. I've been trapped in the Midwest my whole life and am counting down the moments until I commit to a school in a nice climate. Personally, I think the Midwest is definitely a place where the grass isn't greener (it's dead here IMO), but I think you'd be okay at either school.

OSU and UK are definitely the top dogs in both their respective states. I cannot picture anyone from T14 wanting to practice in Ohio or Kentucky, so top regional schools likely rule the markets in both states. If all things are truly equal between Ohio and Kentucky, then I'd recommend going to Kentucky and lessening the risk of attending law school by graduating with less debt. Job prospects should be strong in Lexington or even Louisville.

MLONDER
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Re: Need some sage TLS advice...

Postby MLONDER » Tue Nov 29, 2011 10:11 pm

I definitely get the feeling that it's a matter of where you're raised. To many, Charleston is a gorgeous, tourist's paradise. I've just grown exhausted of its "historic southern charm", to be honest. I love it here, I've loved my time here, but I just want to go SOMEWHERE with major sports teams, a decent music scene, and some skyscrapers. Though, I'm sure I will miss living by the beach.

I have midwestern roots, to be certain, so it's not a completely random decision. But, barring an unlikely acceptance to Emory with decent $$$, I just feel compelled to head out that way. Hopefully I won't regret it!

Thanks again for all of your input, I feel like this thread has been very productive in helping me along with my decision.

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Grizz
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Re: Need some sage TLS advice...

Postby Grizz » Tue Nov 29, 2011 11:00 pm

goldenflash19 wrote:I cannot picture anyone from T14 wanting to practice in Ohio or Kentucky, so top regional schools likely rule the markets in both states.

You'd be surprised bro. Welcome to the new economy.
MLONDER wrote:I have midwestern roots, to be certain, so it's not a completely random decision.

Without family or personal ties, you're gonna have a hell of a time finding a job in a region that's not your home. Firms tend to be suspicious of outsiders, and esp. even more so in this economy. Sometimes going to the local school isn't enough to swing it for ya. You will be at a disadvantage compared to homers. I dunno what "roots" you have, but it's something to consider heavily.

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romothesavior
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Re: Need some sage TLS advice...

Postby romothesavior » Wed Nov 30, 2011 4:39 am

Grizz wrote:
goldenflash19 wrote:I cannot picture anyone from T14 wanting to practice in Ohio or Kentucky, so top regional schools likely rule the markets in both states.

You'd be surprised bro. Welcome to the new economy.
MLONDER wrote:I have midwestern roots, to be certain, so it's not a completely random decision.

Without family or personal ties, you're gonna have a hell of a time finding a job in a region that's not your home. Firms tend to be suspicious of outsiders, and esp. even more so in this economy. Sometimes going to the local school isn't enough to swing it for ya. You will be at a disadvantage compared to homers. I dunno what "roots" you have, but it's something to consider heavily.

I agree.

I wouldn't do this absent 1) very strong ties and 2) a close to full ride to UK. Notice the "and" there.

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Gail
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Re: Need some sage TLS advice...

Postby Gail » Wed Nov 30, 2011 5:09 pm

You're a South Carolina resident.

You're not guaranteed a job, but South Carolina (it might be the most insular state in the contingent US) is so insular that your competition is really limited. I first thought that law school would be a way for me to leave the Midwest, I no longer believe that though. The common wisdom was once that you should go where you want to practice. Now you don't get that choice. Go where you can practice. In this economy that limits you to your state/immediate region.


My point is that you should reconsider S. Carolina. It may be full of hicks, but the coasts are beautiful and Charleston is nice. If you want o be a lawyer, you might just have to deal with living in a place that you don't necessarily want to be in. Figure out a gradual exit plan as you get experience.

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lifestooquick
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Re: Need some sage TLS advice...

Postby lifestooquick » Wed Nov 30, 2011 5:17 pm

I'm a current Ohio State 1L :) Between those two options I would, obviously, say Ohio State. One thing to remember about the cost of Ohio State as well is that it's not overly complicated to establish residency, so most people are in-state for their second and third years.

Only being a 1L, I can't speak too much to the employment prospects...other than the obvious that the higher ranking will help and that Ohio State is clearly recognized as the best law school in Ohio. I'm also not going down a normal path for 1L summer applications so I don't know how that's gonna go for people (I'm doing our DC summer program, which is really great for working/networking in DC if you want to end up out there at all).

I'd be happy to answer any other Ohio State questions you may have!

MLONDER
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Re: Need some sage TLS advice...

Postby MLONDER » Wed Nov 30, 2011 7:17 pm

My ties are close family in both Frankfort and Columbus. Also, I (well, my family) have a decent network in the suburbs of Charleston to the point that I can get back there if I really wanted, or had to.

Thanks for the cautionary words, I've done the research, I know how bad the economy currently is, and I know that it's very possible that I won't be making a living being a lawyer. I still, however, want to study the law, and I want to study it away from home. I also find the argument that firms are "suspicious of outsiders" to be a little untenable - a top 20% (which I am, in no way, shape, or form taking for granted that I will be) student from UK has been living and working in Lexington, likely has established residency in the state, and is coming out of the state school regardless of their state of origin.

Thanks again to everybody who responded to this thread, once I know a little bit more about my plans I may post again, but I really feel that this has been helpful. Incidentally, I've got an acceptance to Cincinnati, which is another viable midwestern option, and am waiting to hear back from Georgia, Emory, Georgia State, and Tennessee, so I may end up staying down south after all.

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Grizz
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Re: Need some sage TLS advice...

Postby Grizz » Wed Nov 30, 2011 7:53 pm

MLONDER wrote:I also find the argument that firms are "suspicious of outsiders" to be a little untenable - a top 20% (which I am, in no way, shape, or form taking for granted that I will be) student from UK has been living and working in Lexington, likely has established residency in the state, and is coming out of the state school regardless of their state of origin.

Me and Romo just finished 2L recruiting, so trust us when we say it. I've seen people with otherwise good grades struggle just because they weren't from the region. It's the "new economy." You may be okay in Ohio, but I wouldn't even touch UK.

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romothesavior
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Re: Need some sage TLS advice...

Postby romothesavior » Wed Nov 30, 2011 8:16 pm

Grizz wrote:
MLONDER wrote:I also find the argument that firms are "suspicious of outsiders" to be a little untenable - a top 20% (which I am, in no way, shape, or form taking for granted that I will be) student from UK has been living and working in Lexington, likely has established residency in the state, and is coming out of the state school regardless of their state of origin.

Me and Romo just finished 2L recruiting, so trust us when we say it. I've seen people with otherwise good grades struggle just because they weren't from the region. It's the "new economy." You may be okay in Ohio, but I wouldn't even touch UK.

+100.

OP, I came to St. Louis specifically to stay in the city. It was my entire purpose in choosing this school. I grew up 2-3 hours away, and have incredibly strong Midwestern ties. I finished with top 20% grades and got on law review, and I think I'm a decent interviewer and a very good networker.

Got offers in other cities, but I couldn't get a single big firm offer here (one at a plaintiff's firm, but that's it). Take my story FWIW, but this "law school is regional" mantra is based in reality. Every market is different, and St. Louis is probably one of the most insular in the country. But I'm telling you this because I know for a fact that going to school in a secondary market is not a huge advantage for staying there. You'll likely need something more (family, fiance, etc.). Grizz (and just about every other 2L/3L) will definitely agree with me on this.

I'm sure there are exceptions to any rule. But I can't imagine Kentucky being real open to outsiders, so it is a huge risk if you go there with minimal ties and hope to work there.

MLONDER
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Re: Need some sage TLS advice...

Postby MLONDER » Wed Nov 30, 2011 8:28 pm

Duly noted. I would be happy just to go to school there for 3 years, then come back home, where I do have really, really strong ties that I cannot overstate enough (have close family working as a magistrate judge, a former state Senator, and partner at a small firm, respectively).

My ties to both Kentucky and Ohio are such that I have family there, and my grandparents on either side can be considered "Kentuckians" or "Ohioans", so we'll see where that gets me. I know it's rough out there, and, while a lot of posters on here have the tendency to accuse you guys of being inconsiderate or mean, I actually appreciate the advice, but I'm not going to alter my plans because of the economy! I've always wanted to kind of get out in the world and forge my own legacy, and if the economy has really killed our ability to do that then so be it, but I guess I'd like to find out for myself.

Best of luck to everyone who's responded to this thread, hopefully we all manage to parlay whatever decision we've made into a successful career.

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romothesavior
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Re: Need some sage TLS advice...

Postby romothesavior » Wed Nov 30, 2011 8:32 pm

MLONDER wrote:Duly noted. I would be happy just to go to school there for 3 years, then come back home, where I do have really, really strong ties that I cannot overstate enough (have close family working as a magistrate judge, a former state Senator, and partner at a small firm, respectively).

I thought you said this???
MLONDER wrote:I am a South Carolina resident who has gotten into South Carolina Law but really has no desire to attend, nor really to remain in state.

Do you want to go back to South Carolina or not? If you wouldn't mind doing it, I'd strongly recommend trying to stay in South Carolina for law school. It would be cheap, and would give you by far the best chance of getting a job there. Going to law school in another area and trying to "settle down" is usually a bad idea, but all things being equal, being located in a particular area is helpful for networking and helps you brand yourself as a "local guy." What is it about South Carolina Law you don't like? It sounds like an ideal place to start your career.

And thanks for the well wishes, good luck to you too.

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Grizz
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Re: Need some sage TLS advice...

Postby Grizz » Wed Nov 30, 2011 8:44 pm

A buddy of mine at UGA who is a native South Carolinian and employers are viewing her w skepticism bc she went to school at UGA instead of USC.

CanadianWolf
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Re: Need some sage TLS advice...

Postby CanadianWolf » Wed Nov 30, 2011 8:49 pm

Based on your family ties & geographical preferences, both options seem reasonable. Louisville & Cincinnati are nice cities. Once all of your acceptances are in, then try to negotiate scholarship money from your top choices.

MLONDER
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Re: Need some sage TLS advice...

Postby MLONDER » Wed Nov 30, 2011 8:50 pm

Yeah, I did say that. I really don't want to stay in state, for personal reasons that I don't really need to vent about anonymously on the internet. But, I made my last post because, should I find myself left in the dust, with no job, and nowhere to turn, I feel confident in my ability to return to my hometown and do okay.

As insubstantial as this SHOULD be to the decision making process, I'm only human, and let's just say that going to SC Law would be a tough pill for me to swallow(albeit, a financially responsible one) because my undergraduate institution has a passionate and heated rivalry with the University of South Carolina. I'm also not exactly the world's biggest fan of Columbia!

CanadianWolf
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Re: Need some sage TLS advice...

Postby CanadianWolf » Wed Nov 30, 2011 8:51 pm

Well, Clemson Law is out of the question. :D

MLONDER
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Re: Need some sage TLS advice...

Postby MLONDER » Wed Nov 30, 2011 9:05 pm

Unfortunately. Maybe I'm just being irrational because of how the football series has gone during my time as a student but really, I'd just like to stay as far away from Columbia as possible. :mrgreen:

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cinephile
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Re: Need some sage TLS advice...

Postby cinephile » Wed Nov 30, 2011 9:06 pm

Is the legal market in Kentucky as strong as it is in Ohio? For some reason, I feel like you'd be better off in Ohio. Besides, with in-state tuition for 2L and 3L, OSU wouldn't be that expensive. And COL in Columbus isn't that bad.




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