Northwestern Full Ride vs Chance at Harvard

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What should I do?

NU Early Decision
59
66%
Go RD and take a chance on HYS
31
34%
 
Total votes: 90

keg411
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Re: Northwestern Full Ride vs Chance at Harvard

Postby keg411 » Mon Jan 16, 2012 10:48 am

If you want to take the risk on Harvard, just keep in mind that it sounds like you would probably qualify for a shot at the AnBryce at NYU (which I think is also a full ride or at least close):
http://www.law.nyu.edu/admissions/jdadm ... /index.htm

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basilseal
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Re: Northwestern Full Ride vs Chance at Harvard

Postby basilseal » Mon Jan 16, 2012 10:50 am

I was in this situation and went with NU. As I'm still a 0L I obviously can't speak to the wisdom of the decision yet but, for what it's worth, I'm incredibly happy I did so. I'm from the Midwest as well and as Chicago biglaw is my eventual goal (and I would much rather get to Chicago sooner rather than spend three years elsewhere) I "took the money and ran." It's really nice to not live with the idea of massive debt hanging over my head. Like, really nice.

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Tiago Splitter
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Re: Northwestern Full Ride vs Chance at Harvard

Postby Tiago Splitter » Mon Jan 16, 2012 11:51 am

JoeFish wrote:Take the money and run. Pretty sweet problem to have, making that decision. But I wouldn't turn down full tuition at any T10 school for a 50% chance of getting into Harvard. I'm pretty big on cost-benefit analyses, and a 100% shot of going to NU for COL multiplied by your prospects from there is better, I'd think, than 50%*cost of attending Harvard*prospects from there.


Any cost benefit analysis has to include more than just 150K at NU and sticker at Harvard. OP is very likely to get 75-90K from UVA and big money from Michigan if accepted. The OP is also in contention for FULL RIDE offers at several other schools ranked higher than Northwestern. HYS need-based aid must also be accounted for.

What's more, someone with a 175/3.85 is likely to get a huge scholarship offer from Northwestern applying via regular decision. We don't know exactly how things will break down with the new ED scholly program, but if you demonstrate your NU interest in your app, they'll still try to lure you with $$$. ED to NU is not a smart decision here.

lawlcat4179
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Re: Northwestern Full Ride vs Chance at Harvard

Postby lawlcat4179 » Mon Jan 16, 2012 12:06 pm

Tiago Splitter wrote:
basilseal wrote:I was in this situation and went with NU. As I'm still a 0L I obviously can't speak to the wisdom of the decision yet but, for what it's worth, I'm incredibly happy I did so. I'm from the Midwest as well and as Chicago biglaw is my eventual goal (and I would much rather get to Chicago sooner rather than spend three years elsewhere) I "took the money and ran." It's really nice to not live with the idea of massive debt hanging over my head. Like, really nice.


As strong as your numbers are they don't compare with the OPs.

JoeFish wrote:Take the money and run. Pretty sweet problem to have, making that decision. But I wouldn't turn down full tuition at any T10 school for a 50% chance of getting into Harvard. I'm pretty big on cost-benefit analyses, and a 100% shot of going to NU for COL multiplied by your prospects from there is better, I'd think, than 50%*cost of attending Harvard*prospects from there.


Any cost benefit analysis has to include more than just 150K at NU and sticker at Harvard. OP is very likely to get 75-90K from UVA and big money from Michigan if accepted. The OP is also in contention for FULL RIDE offers at several other schools ranked higher than Northwestern. HYS need-based aid must also be accounted for.

What's more, someone with a 175/3.85 is likely to get a huge scholarship offer from Northwestern applying via regular decision. We don't know exactly how things will break down with the new ED scholly program, but if you demonstrate your NU interest in your app, they'll still try to lure you with $$$. ED to NU is not a smart decision here.


This is the question I'm really interested in. If I still have the numbers and show the interest, I'm thinking I may have a shot at a full ride anyway via RD. I guess I'm going to have to watch how this cycle plays out to see if this is a viable option. In general the only things I would take over NU full ride (in order of preference) would be t6 full ride, harvard full ride, near full ride at t6 (90k+). Numbers wise I'm very borderline to even be considered for those offers, but nonetheless I'll see how things look in a couple months. With apps going down its hard to predict. Plus if apps go down again next year (a very real possibility), then t6 full ride becomes a little more likely.

I do agree that applying ED sounds like a bad idea. I've talked with my fiance about how if my lsat was a 2 points lower it would be a no brainer, same with if it was two points higher. As it stands I find myself in a weird limbo zone (albeit a very good limbo zone).

CanadianWolf
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Re: Northwestern Full Ride vs Chance at Harvard

Postby CanadianWolf » Mon Jan 16, 2012 12:09 pm

It remains to be seen whether or not Northwestern continues to offer huge scholarships to RD admits since starting the full tuition scholarship program for all ED admits this cycle. Law schools often run out of scholarship money during their RD rounds; some offer scholarships to those willing to defer for a year.

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basilseal
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Re: Northwestern Full Ride vs Chance at Harvard

Postby basilseal » Mon Jan 16, 2012 12:34 pm

Should have posted my numbers to make that clear, Tiago. I suppose it also depends on which schools take the highest LSAT and which average them, in lawlcat's case.

snehpets
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Re: Northwestern Full Ride vs Chance at Harvard

Postby snehpets » Mon Jan 16, 2012 12:51 pm

CanadianWolf wrote:Yes, but you misread my poorly worded advice. My suggestion is to apply ED to NU & hope for an acceptance since this is the first year of NU's scholarship program for all ED acceptees.

P.S. It's nice to see someone who is so easily amused. :lol:


Ah, makes sense. Also, not sure if i came off as a douche with the lol, I was just being silly/was amused at how often people (myself included) miss a huge part of the OP because it confuse one post with another bc they're all so similar)/trying to convey that I wasn't trying to be obnoxious in pointing out that aspect of OP's situation. If I did seem like an asshole I promise it was unintentional! :)

lawyerwannabe
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Re: Northwestern Full Ride vs Chance at Harvard

Postby lawyerwannabe » Mon Jan 16, 2012 12:52 pm

Tiago Splitter wrote:
JoeFish wrote:Take the money and run. Pretty sweet problem to have, making that decision. But I wouldn't turn down full tuition at any T10 school for a 50% chance of getting into Harvard. I'm pretty big on cost-benefit analyses, and a 100% shot of going to NU for COL multiplied by your prospects from there is better, I'd think, than 50%*cost of attending Harvard*prospects from there.


Any cost benefit analysis has to include more than just 150K at NU and sticker at Harvard. OP is very likely to get 75-90K from UVA and big money from Michigan if accepted. The OP is also in contention for FULL RIDE offers at several other schools ranked higher than Northwestern. HYS need-based aid must also be accounted for.

What's more, someone with a 175/3.85 is likely to get a huge scholarship offer from Northwestern applying via regular decision. We don't know exactly how things will break down with the new ED scholly program, but if you demonstrate your NU interest in your app, they'll still try to lure you with $$$. ED to NU is not a smart decision here.


LOL @ the prospects from UVA (as compared to NU) being worth $75k+.

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soj
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Re: Northwestern Full Ride vs Chance at Harvard

Postby soj » Mon Jan 16, 2012 12:53 pm

Go on LSN and search for past applicants with similar numbers (3.8-3.9 173-177). Take a look at the past few years or so. How did their cycles turn out? This should give you a better idea of your chances at T-14 money. I wouldn't worry too much about your weak UG and softs.

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Tiago Splitter
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Re: Northwestern Full Ride vs Chance at Harvard

Postby Tiago Splitter » Mon Jan 16, 2012 12:55 pm

lawyerwannabe wrote:
Tiago Splitter wrote:
JoeFish wrote:Take the money and run. Pretty sweet problem to have, making that decision. But I wouldn't turn down full tuition at any T10 school for a 50% chance of getting into Harvard. I'm pretty big on cost-benefit analyses, and a 100% shot of going to NU for COL multiplied by your prospects from there is better, I'd think, than 50%*cost of attending Harvard*prospects from there.


Any cost benefit analysis has to include more than just 150K at NU and sticker at Harvard. OP is very likely to get 75-90K from UVA and big money from Michigan if accepted. The OP is also in contention for FULL RIDE offers at several other schools ranked higher than Northwestern. HYS need-based aid must also be accounted for.

What's more, someone with a 175/3.85 is likely to get a huge scholarship offer from Northwestern applying via regular decision. We don't know exactly how things will break down with the new ED scholly program, but if you demonstrate your NU interest in your app, they'll still try to lure you with $$$. ED to NU is not a smart decision here.


LOL @ the prospects from UVA (as compared to NU) being worth $75k+.


Really? That's what you got out of that?

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Tiago Splitter
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Re: Northwestern Full Ride vs Chance at Harvard

Postby Tiago Splitter » Mon Jan 16, 2012 12:56 pm

basilseal wrote:Should have posted my numbers to make that clear, Tiago. I suppose it also depends on which schools take the highest LSAT and which average them, in lawlcat's case.


No worries I went back and looked at your numbers and forgot just how good they were.

By the way OP, a free ride to Northwestern is an awesome outcome for anyone. If you have your heart set on the school then go for it. But if you are willing to ultimately go somewhere else then I think you should apply across the T-14 without using the ED anywhere. I think at the end of the day you'll have a fantastic cycle either way.
Last edited by Tiago Splitter on Mon Jan 16, 2012 12:58 pm, edited 1 time in total.

lawyerwannabe
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Re: Northwestern Full Ride vs Chance at Harvard

Postby lawyerwannabe » Mon Jan 16, 2012 12:58 pm

Were you not suggesting that OP should possibly forego a ED full-ride to NU just to see if he could get less money from a peer school (e.g. UVA and Michigan)?

So yes, that is what I got out of your post.

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bk1
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Re: Northwestern Full Ride vs Chance at Harvard

Postby bk1 » Mon Jan 16, 2012 1:00 pm

lawyerwannabe wrote:Were you not suggesting that OP should possibly forego a ED full-ride to NU just to see if he could get less money from a peer school (e.g. UVA and Michigan)?

So yes, that is what I got out of your post.


Are you fucking dense?

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Re: Northwestern Full Ride vs Chance at Harvard

Postby snehpets » Mon Jan 16, 2012 1:00 pm

lawyerwannabe wrote:Were you not suggesting that OP should possibly forego a ED full-ride to NU just to see if he could get less money from a peer school (e.g. UVA and Michigan)?

So yes, that is what I got out of your post.


Yeah, that is what he seems to have been suggesting, but he was suggesting it bc it gave her not only a good (hypothetical) scholarship at a peer school but ALSO the shot she wants at Harvard, which she wouldn't get if accepted at NU early decision.
Last edited by snehpets on Mon Jan 16, 2012 1:01 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Tiago Splitter
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Re: Northwestern Full Ride vs Chance at Harvard

Postby Tiago Splitter » Mon Jan 16, 2012 1:01 pm

lawyerwannabe wrote:Were you not suggesting that OP should possibly forego a ED full-ride to NU just to see if he could get less money from a peer school (e.g. UVA and Michigan)?


No.

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Re: Northwestern Full Ride vs Chance at Harvard

Postby lawyerwannabe » Mon Jan 16, 2012 1:03 pm

bk1 wrote:
lawyerwannabe wrote:Were you not suggesting that OP should possibly forego a ED full-ride to NU just to see if he could get less money from a peer school (e.g. UVA and Michigan)?

So yes, that is what I got out of your post.


Are you fucking dense?


I don't get how my reading is "dense". I see that he was saying that it allowed him more flexibility and opportunity to see if he could get into HYS and possibly scholarships from similarly ranked or higher ranked schools. But looking at LSN, the big scholarship money is far, far from certain at CCN schools, full-rides are dicey at peer schools (like UVA and Michigan) and the retakes definitely hurt his chances at HYS. Thus, for this opportunity, OP would forego a for sure full-ride to a T10 school (for a chance to get into slightly higher ranked - but peer schools nonetheless - with less money than he would receive from NU). I guess it depends on if OP would be willing to take that risk considering NU may no longer be offering full-rides to non-ED applicants (or far fewer at least).

You also need to simmer.

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Tiago Splitter
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Re: Northwestern Full Ride vs Chance at Harvard

Postby Tiago Splitter » Mon Jan 16, 2012 1:19 pm

lawyerwannabe wrote:But looking at LSN, the big scholarship money is far, far from certain at CCN schools, full-rides are dicey at peer schools (like UVA and Michigan) and the retakes definitely hurt his chances at HYS.



Keep in mind that many people don't post scholarship info on LSN. I'd agree that at any one school, the odds of coming across a better option than the NU full ride are okay at best. But when you factor in the acceptance and scholarship possibilities across the T6 for someone with these numbers I think the NU full ride sells things short.

OP, take a look at this list and see how you feel:

http://search.lawschoolnumbers.com/user ... Cycle=1011

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bk1
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Re: Northwestern Full Ride vs Chance at Harvard

Postby bk1 » Mon Jan 16, 2012 1:47 pm

lawyerwannabe wrote:I don't get how my reading is "dense". I see that he was saying that it allowed him more flexibility and opportunity to see if he could get into HYS and possibly scholarships from similarly ranked or higher ranked schools. But looking at LSN, the big scholarship money is far, far from certain at CCN schools, full-rides are dicey at peer schools (like UVA and Michigan) and the retakes definitely hurt his chances at HYS. Thus, for this opportunity, OP would forego a for sure full-ride to a T10 school (for a chance to get into slightly higher ranked - but peer schools nonetheless - with less money than he would receive from NU). I guess it depends on if OP would be willing to take that risk considering NU may no longer be offering full-rides to non-ED applicants (or far fewer at least).


That is an accurate reading. Your post literally interpreted him as saying that he was ditching NU ED just to get less money from peer schools (which is obviously not the point).

An additional point is that M and V are cheaper than NU (the former 2 have CoA's of 68k and the latter has a CoA of 75k). Meaning that even with less money at M and V the gap between that and an NU full ride isn't as large as it would at first seem.

lawlcat4179
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Re: Northwestern Full Ride vs Chance at Harvard

Postby lawlcat4179 » Mon Jan 16, 2012 2:07 pm

Tiago Splitter wrote:
lawyerwannabe wrote:But looking at LSN, the big scholarship money is far, far from certain at CCN schools, full-rides are dicey at peer schools (like UVA and Michigan) and the retakes definitely hurt his chances at HYS.



Keep in mind that many people don't post scholarship info on LSN. I'd agree that at any one school, the odds of coming across a better option than the NU full ride are okay at best. But when you factor in the acceptance and scholarship possibilities across the T6 for someone with these numbers I think the NU full ride sells things short.

OP, take a look at this list and see how you feel:

http://search.lawschoolnumbers.com/user ... Cycle=1011


Many of those results look pretty darn good. Hard to tell when only some post scholarship info, but it seems like based on the numbers it may be worth it, especially considering apps are down this year, probably down even more next year also.

Its one of those decisions where I feel like in the end i'll probably just wind up flipping a coin. I keep trying to figure out which one is marginally better, but unless I'm not factoring in something accurately, it seems to be pretty even either way.

Just ran the cost of living calculator online and 160k in NY is equal to 296k in Chicago. Shouldn't this be factored in when looking at these schools? NU would feed into a market that, adjusted for COL, pays double what the market that UVA,Duke, Columbia, NYU, etc feed into. Plus its closer to my family.

One of my problems taking the chance with RD is if my best offer is say, 90k at columbia, i would wind up taking it. I'm looking at 65k in tuition at Columbia, plus 40k in my share of living expenses (fiance could afford half in NY, probably all in Chicago). This would wind up making Columbia cost 105k more than NU. The ultimate end point out of Columbia would be to work in a job that pays 1/2 what the chicago job would pay (adjusted for COL), with 105k more in debt. If I went to NU I could make effectively double in my first year, and not have any debt at all.

So, if my goal is to be as wealthy as possible, it seems NU is the best option (mainly because of chicago COL). Columbia just doesn't seem to open up as many doors as Harvard to make it worth it to me.

Plus there's something to be said about not having the stress of that much debt around your shoulders. Law school would be stressful enough as it is, let alone having an extra 105k bogging you down. If I struck out and was unemployed, I'd rather be sitting with an NU JD and no debt than with a Columbia JD and 105k in debt.

While writing I think I just convinced myself that I should apply to NU and be incredibly grateful if I get accepted. If they don't offer me the full ride, choose from what I hope will some pretty good consolation prizes.

Thanks for helping me figure things out. Last year I was torn between WUSTL and UMich, at least this time the difference in job prospects won't be quite so gigantic.

Of course, I welcome any and all considerations I may have missed...

lawlcat4179
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Re: Northwestern Full Ride vs Chance at Harvard

Postby lawlcat4179 » Mon Jan 16, 2012 2:10 pm

bk1 wrote:
lawyerwannabe wrote:I don't get how my reading is "dense". I see that he was saying that it allowed him more flexibility and opportunity to see if he could get into HYS and possibly scholarships from similarly ranked or higher ranked schools. But looking at LSN, the big scholarship money is far, far from certain at CCN schools, full-rides are dicey at peer schools (like UVA and Michigan) and the retakes definitely hurt his chances at HYS. Thus, for this opportunity, OP would forego a for sure full-ride to a T10 school (for a chance to get into slightly higher ranked - but peer schools nonetheless - with less money than he would receive from NU). I guess it depends on if OP would be willing to take that risk considering NU may no longer be offering full-rides to non-ED applicants (or far fewer at least).


That is an accurate reading. Your post literally interpreted him as saying that he was ditching NU ED just to get less money from peer schools (which is obviously not the point).

An additional point is that M and V are cheaper than NU (the former 2 have CoA's of 68k and the latter has a CoA of 75k). Meaning that even with less money at M and V the gap between that and an NU full ride isn't as large as it would at first seem.


I'm not sure you're taking into account all the factors with M and V though. They are both located in the middle of nowhere. The fact that you'd have to relocate during each summer could add as much as 10-15k to the total debt load, negating any slight advantage they may have at first glance.

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Re: Northwestern Full Ride vs Chance at Harvard

Postby DoubleChecks » Tue Jan 17, 2012 3:04 pm

lawyerwannabe wrote:
bk1 wrote:
lawyerwannabe wrote:Were you not suggesting that OP should possibly forego a ED full-ride to NU just to see if he could get less money from a peer school (e.g. UVA and Michigan)?

So yes, that is what I got out of your post.


Are you fucking dense?


I don't get how my reading is "dense". I see that he was saying that it allowed him more flexibility and opportunity to see if he could get into HYS and possibly scholarships from similarly ranked or higher ranked schools. But looking at LSN, the big scholarship money is far, far from certain at CCN schools, full-rides are dicey at peer schools (like UVA and Michigan) and the retakes definitely hurt his chances at HYS. Thus, for this opportunity, OP would forego a for sure full-ride to a T10 school (for a chance to get into slightly higher ranked - but peer schools nonetheless - with less money than he would receive from NU). I guess it depends on if OP would be willing to take that risk considering NU may no longer be offering full-rides to non-ED applicants (or far fewer at least).

You also need to simmer.


Right...providing a viable option to the OP, who may very well have different values than you, sounds pretty legitimate. I've read your posts (and the others' replies) and let it simmer...it only seemed more silly with time.

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Re: Northwestern Full Ride vs Chance at Harvard

Postby lawyerwannabe » Wed Jan 18, 2012 11:58 am

DoubleChecks wrote:
lawyerwannabe wrote:
bk1 wrote:
lawyerwannabe wrote:Were you not suggesting that OP should possibly forego a ED full-ride to NU just to see if he could get less money from a peer school (e.g. UVA and Michigan)?

So yes, that is what I got out of your post.


Are you fucking dense?


I don't get how my reading is "dense". I see that he was saying that it allowed him more flexibility and opportunity to see if he could get into HYS and possibly scholarships from similarly ranked or higher ranked schools. But looking at LSN, the big scholarship money is far, far from certain at CCN schools, full-rides are dicey at peer schools (like UVA and Michigan) and the retakes definitely hurt his chances at HYS. Thus, for this opportunity, OP would forego a for sure full-ride to a T10 school (for a chance to get into slightly higher ranked - but peer schools nonetheless - with less money than he would receive from NU). I guess it depends on if OP would be willing to take that risk considering NU may no longer be offering full-rides to non-ED applicants (or far fewer at least).

You also need to simmer.


Right...providing a viable option to the OP, who may very well have different values than you, sounds pretty legitimate. I've read your posts (and the others' replies) and let it simmer...it only seemed more silly with time.


His question was "Should I forego what is most likely a full-ride to NU for a chance at Harvard?" My post has nothing to do with my values. It direct relates to the question OP posed originally. Clearly, he is having a hard time deciding just what his own answer to this difficult question would be.

My paraphrase of what a different poster said pretty much summarized, IMO based on what I have read and seen on here and LSN, what his options would be if he did not apply ED to NU.

He maybe would be granted admissions into HLS (his GPA is below median and he has two retakes) but I would see his end of the cycle looking more like choosing between less money than a full-ride from peer schools to NU (MVPDNC) and some money from CCN. You coming in here and touting the "different people have different values" spiel is the only thing that is silly.

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Re: Northwestern Full Ride vs Chance at Harvard

Postby Kikero » Wed Jan 25, 2012 4:31 pm

I'd go with Northwestern (which is probably why I'll be going there), but make sure you check that Early Decision page again in the Fall before you apply. I notice that it specifically says students who are accepted in December 2011 and begin in 2012 will be given that scholarship. It's possible that won't be the same for 2012-2013, and the ED would be a lot less attractive without a full tuition scholarship.

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Corwin
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Re: Northwestern Full Ride vs Chance at Harvard

Postby Corwin » Fri Jan 27, 2012 10:43 am

The following would be strong reasons to pass on NU ED:
  • You want to maximize your chances for competitive clerkships.
  • You you want to maximize your chances at DC.
  • You might want academia.

I would spend some time thinking about what it is you want out of your law degree during the next decade. Are you just trying to go to a T14 with a scholarship, do well and get big law? Or are you interested in throwing your hat in the ring for COA, extremely selective firms/boutiques, and/or academia? I think they're both valid goals.

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Re: Northwestern Full Ride vs Chance at Harvard

Postby DoubleChecks » Fri Jan 27, 2012 12:00 pm

lawyerwannabe wrote:His question was "Should I forego what is most likely a full-ride to NU for a chance at Harvard?" My post has nothing to do with my values. It direct relates to the question OP posed originally. Clearly, he is having a hard time deciding just what his own answer to this difficult question would be.

My paraphrase of what a different poster said pretty much summarized, IMO based on what I have read and seen on here and LSN, what his options would be if he did not apply ED to NU.

He maybe would be granted admissions into HLS (his GPA is below median and he has two retakes) but I would see his end of the cycle looking more like choosing between less money than a full-ride from peer schools to NU (MVPDNC) and some money from CCN. You coming in here and touting the "different people have different values" spiel is the only thing that is silly.


Different value here is the different risk premiums you place on those chances. You may think a 10% chance is not worth it, OP may think that is totally worth it. Just another viable option.




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