Thread for those considering WUSTL with $$$ over T-14

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punkyg0608
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Re: Thread for those considering WUSTL with $$$ over T-14

Postby punkyg0608 » Mon Feb 13, 2012 3:00 pm

STLMizzou wrote:
punkyg0608 wrote:
6thbackstreetboy wrote:I'm almost positive I'm going to take 129,000@WUSTL over 45,000@Michigan. I don't want biglaw, and I have no real preference on location. Graduating with 0 debt would be amazing compared to over 100k at Michigan. For me, it doesn't seem worth it...


I'm in the exact same situation, and I think it's going to come down to these two options unless my negotiations with UIUC are successful. Obviously I have no idea about your financial situation but keep in mind that cost of living at WUSTL is a predicted $20,000 per year. So for me, debt is unavoidable. The question really is how much debt. Then again, you have to add on the $20,000 a year to Michigan too. It's really impossible to go to law school for free unless you get a stipend.



Who has predicted WUSTL COL at $20,000 a year? Have they ever been to St. Louis?


Sorry, what I meant was cost of attendance. Cost of living is prdicted $12,000, which I still think is a bit high. My source is http://www.top-law-schools.com/washingt ... chool.html

STLMizzou
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Re: Thread for those considering WUSTL with $$$ over T-14

Postby STLMizzou » Mon Feb 13, 2012 3:01 pm

Unagi wrote:How much is the actual COL at WUSTL?


I mean, I can tell you right now I lived in downtown Clayton in a really nice/ big three bedroom house with back yard, each our own bathroom, and a nice neighborhood, and I paid ~ $600 a month in rent including all utilities, cable, internet, etc.

Factor in the easy $3-4,000 you can make during the summers working for 12-15 an hour, and I wouldn’t say you need more than 12,000 to live quite comfortably.

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Unagi
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Re: Thread for those considering WUSTL with $$$ over T-14

Postby Unagi » Wed Feb 15, 2012 11:58 am

For the ones that got a lot of money - but not full tuition, are you guys going to try to negotiate with WUSTL using a T14 acceptance?

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Re: Thread for those considering WUSTL with $$$ over T-14

Postby checkster » Wed Feb 15, 2012 12:22 pm

STLMizzou wrote:
punkyg0608 wrote:
6thbackstreetboy wrote:I'm almost positive I'm going to take 129,000@WUSTL over 45,000@Michigan. I don't want biglaw, and I have no real preference on location. Graduating with 0 debt would be amazing compared to over 100k at Michigan. For me, it doesn't seem worth it...


I'm in the exact same situation, and I think it's going to come down to these two options unless my negotiations with UIUC are successful. Obviously I have no idea about your financial situation but keep in mind that cost of living at WUSTL is a predicted $20,000 per year. So for me, debt is unavoidable. The question really is how much debt. Then again, you have to add on the $20,000 a year to Michigan too. It's really impossible to go to law school for free unless you get a stipend.



Who has predicted WUSTL COL at $20,000 a year? Have they ever been to St. Louis?


20k is ridiculous. There are a tons of areas you can live in for a lot less than that. Granted, some of the areas around campus are pretty sketch, but there are some solid options.

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Re: Thread for those considering WUSTL with $$$ over T-14

Postby bk1 » Wed Feb 15, 2012 12:44 pm

Chose NU at sticker over 105k from WUSTL (and the same amount from GW) last year.

My issue with WUSTL is that its placement is diffuse. It isn't particularly great for Chicago and I have no desire to live in the midwest in any place other than Chicago. I think this creates an issue for those who aren't from the midwest as it's not like you can just fall back to working in STL/KC/Indy/etc when you don't have ties to the midwest. I wanted to get back to CA but didn't have the GPA for a worthwhile CA school. I think if you're going to take a T14 at sticker, or close to it, you have to be okay with doing biglaw in NYC. In the end, for me, it was that CA > Chicago > NYC >>>> rando midwest city, so NU at sticker made sense over WUSTL with around 100k debt.

I'm not sure I agree with Helm's opinion that T14 at sticker is a slam dunk over WUSTL at 100k debt. Yes, T14 students have significantly better opportunities than WUSTL students, but there are 2 problems: (1) those opportunities are centered in NYC which is a place that many people dislike, and (2) those T14 students that it doesn't work out for, which is a nonmarginal amount, it really doesn't work out for since they have 200k+ worth of debt and likely won't be able to escape debt outside of 2 decades in IBR. T14 at sticker has worked out for me so far, but it is definitely the far riskier choice to take.

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Re: Thread for those considering WUSTL with $$$ over T-14

Postby sach1282 » Wed Feb 15, 2012 1:47 pm

I was offered 54k at Michigan and subsequently withdrew from WUSTL before a decision. I loved St. Louis as a city, but two things killed it for me.

1) The diffuse placement, as others have mentioned. I'm from western New York so there was no midwest safety to fall back on.

2) There's no mandatory curve at WUSTL. This puts a lot more luck in already an already luck-heavy game.

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Re: Thread for those considering WUSTL with $$$ over T-14

Postby ucbkenn » Wed Feb 15, 2012 3:00 pm

Unagi wrote:For the ones that got a lot of money - but not full tuition, are you guys going to try to negotiate with WUSTL using a T14 acceptance?


This

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Re: Thread for those considering WUSTL with $$$ over T-14

Postby ucbkenn » Wed Feb 15, 2012 3:02 pm

84k at WUSTL. Sticker at UT and Virginia.

1) Anyone think that UT/Virginia might negotiate?
2) Thoughts on this situation?

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T00L
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Re: Thread for those considering WUSTL with $$$ over T-14

Postby T00L » Wed Feb 15, 2012 3:08 pm

Unagi wrote:For the ones that got a lot of money - but not full tuition, are you guys going to try to negotiate with WUSTL using a T14 acceptance?


This question appeals to my interests.

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Helmholtz
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Re: Thread for those considering WUSTL with $$$ over T-14

Postby Helmholtz » Wed Feb 15, 2012 3:15 pm

In my experience, they throw a lot of money at people they know are going to get T14 acceptances. I think it's unlikely for them to promise somebody unlikely to get a T14 acceptance a $50k+ scholarship. From what I've seen, they're pretty inflexible and won't really be swayed by T14 acceptances (even if a T14 offers scholarship money). Maybe somebody has a countering story, but this has been my experience (I had a $50k+ scholarship from a T10 and they wouldn't budge).

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westinghouse60
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Re: Thread for those considering WUSTL with $$$ over T-14

Postby westinghouse60 » Wed Feb 15, 2012 8:02 pm

Great thread idea.

84k at WUSTL, in at Cornell with nothing (still waiting on a lot of T14s though), hoping Ill get something from Vandy too.

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Re: Thread for those considering WUSTL with $$$ over T-14

Postby hoos89 » Wed Feb 15, 2012 8:09 pm

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Re: Thread for those considering WUSTL with $$$ over T-14

Postby 6thbackstreetboy » Wed Feb 15, 2012 9:27 pm

Ok so...question. I'm still trying to wrap my head around "ties". Everyone says go to WUSTL only if you are ok working in St. Louis or the midwest. I also hear you need ties to the midwest to get hired in those jobs. If I have no ties whatsoever to the midwest, does this leave me in a situation where I can only work in the midwest, but can't get a job there? I have ties to a certain state in the mountain west that I don't really want to go back to and southern California. Would it be more likely, if I go to WUSTL, that I end up working in the midwest, even without ties, or on the west coast where I didn't go to law school, but have ties? I don't really want biglaw, just in terms of overall prospects.

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Re: Thread for those considering WUSTL with $$$ over T-14

Postby recusatio » Wed Feb 15, 2012 9:53 pm

6thbackstreetboy wrote:Ok so...question. I'm still trying to wrap my head around "ties". Everyone says go to WUSTL only if you are ok working in St. Louis or the midwest. I also hear you need ties to the midwest to get hired in those jobs. If I have no ties whatsoever to the midwest, does this leave me in a situation where I can only work in the midwest, but can't get a job there? I have ties to a certain state in the mountain west that I don't really want to go back to and southern California. Would it be more likely, if I go to WUSTL, that I end up working in the midwest, even without ties, or on the west coast where I didn't go to law school, but have ties? I don't really want biglaw, just in terms of overall prospects.


I have a similar problem. I have ties to the mountain west, but I don't want to stay here. I visited WUSTL and I like the school and city, and I want to take the $114k scholarship at WUSTL. I would be happy to stay in the midwest, but I'm worried firms will have a hard time believing that. It seems my only other options are to pay sticker at schools that feed into NYC or LA. I don't want to do that.

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Re: Thread for those considering WUSTL with $$$ over T-14

Postby Helmholtz » Wed Feb 15, 2012 10:00 pm

6thbackstreetboy wrote:Ok so...question. I'm still trying to wrap my head around "ties". Everyone says go to WUSTL only if you are ok working in St. Louis or the midwest. I also hear you need ties to the midwest to get hired in those jobs. If I have no ties whatsoever to the midwest, does this leave me in a situation where I can only work in the midwest, but can't get a job there? I have ties to a certain state in the mountain west that I don't really want to go back to and southern California. Would it be more likely, if I go to WUSTL, that I end up working in the midwest, even without ties, or on the west coast where I didn't go to law school, but have ties? I don't really want biglaw, just in terms of overall prospects.


Yeah, the problem is that a lot of firms will assume that you can't get a job in a big market, so you're settling for the Midwest, and you'll flee the first chance a spot opens up in your truly desired market. I know a couple nonTLSers who go to WUSTL and they said that this is even a problem with St. Louis firms. Not really that surprising though. A lot of people are of the mentality that the higher the school's rank the better, and will go to WUSTL merely because it's the highest ranked school they got into, with no intention of actually staying in the Midwest post-grad. I'm sure that plenty of Midwest firms have seen a lot of people like this over the years (even if they play the job-market game of "falling in love with the Midwest and wanting to stay here"). It's hard to blame them for being skeptical.

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Re: Thread for those considering WUSTL with $$$ over T-14

Postby Helmholtz » Wed Feb 15, 2012 10:02 pm

hoos89 wrote:
Helmholtz wrote:In my experience, they throw a lot of money at people they know are going to get T14 acceptances. I think it's unlikely for them to promise somebody unlikely to get a T14 acceptance a $50k+ scholarship. From what I've seen, they're pretty inflexible and won't really be swayed by T14 acceptances (even if a T14 offers scholarship money). Maybe somebody has a countering story, but this has been my experience (I had a $50k+ scholarship from a T10 and they wouldn't budge).


I got $60k and my GPA makes it incredibly unlikely that I will get into a T14


Ah, well, I guess I mean $61k+ then. :wink:

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Re: Thread for those considering WUSTL with $$$ over T-14

Postby hoos89 » Wed Feb 15, 2012 10:04 pm

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Re: Thread for those considering WUSTL with $$$ over T-14

Postby 09042014 » Wed Feb 15, 2012 10:47 pm

hoos89 wrote:
Helmholtz wrote:
hoos89 wrote:
I got $60k and my GPA makes it incredibly unlikely that I will get into a T14


Ah, well, I guess I mean $61k+ then. :wink:


Yeah I think $60k is their "don't go to minnesota or gw" scholly


It's a mixture of don't go Minn, IUB, UIUC, Iowa because they all give ~20k, also, it's a don't go to NW.

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Re: Thread for those considering WUSTL with $$$ over T-14

Postby ebw1080 » Wed Feb 15, 2012 11:21 pm

I made this decision last year and am now a 1L at WUSTL. 84K scholarship v. Cornell/GW/BU at sticker.

Disclaimer- I am unabashedly advocating for WUSTL and do not consider myself impartial. The fact is, I want people to take these scholarships like I did and drive up WUSTL's reputation. That being said, I think a lot of the following considerations are salient for anybody making this decision.

The legal market, as many of you know, is over-saturated. Jobs are tough to come by for graduates of ANY SCHOOL right now, with the exception of HLS. That being said, avoiding a massive pile of debt is a huge consideration. People who equate T14 and its debt with a ticket to a big firm job or their choice of employment at graduation are kidding themselves.

Wash U (nobody calls it WUSTL except on forums...) has been gaining in prestige* for years- largely because the statistical quality of students entering. Their strategy to gain such students is obvious- offer large scholarships predominantly to people who have high LSAT scores- the most important metric used for US News in their school rankings. Many people, like myself and many of my 2014 classmates take these scholarships, and their financial certainty over boat loads of debt at T14 schools.

One of the "negatives" for Wash U is its location. Coming from NY and going to college near DC, this was somewhat of a concern for me. Saint Louis is neither of those cities and never will be. However, it is a fine place to go to law school and concerns that people have about never leaving the midwest are unfounded. Graduates here get jobs out of the Midwest every year. The fact that most people do not work out of the midwest is largely due to self-selection. People who go to Wash U are often from the Midwest and WANT to stay in the Midwest, something previously unfathomable to a lot of east coasters (and presumably west-coast people, etc) like myself. And no doubt the inertia is towards staying in the midwest. (Networking opportunities, OCI, etc)

This doesn't mean that it is impossible to go out of the midwest. Requires being somewhat proactive, but very doable. I was able to get a job on DC working for the US Attorney's office this summer. I know a bunch of other people who are also working in DC. I am not equating a 1L summer job with permanent employment prospects. What I am saying is that if you build connections in your target market, you can get there in the long-run. (More than wishful thinking for my personal situation, anecdotaly I know several Wash U grads who have done this)

Oh, and another note on location: Saint Louis is purported to have a high crime rate. That's true. But the crime is fairly well concentrated in areas of the city that Wash U students neither attend class, live, or socialize.

Hope this was helpful.

*Prestige as measured by US News. That is a far from perfect barometer.

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Re: Thread for those considering WUSTL with $$$ over T-14

Postby sach1282 » Thu Feb 16, 2012 9:39 am

About the crime rate: when I was in St. Louis I heard that the higher crime rate was just because the city calculates population differently than most others.

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Re: Thread for those considering WUSTL with $$$ over T-14

Postby STLMizzou » Thu Feb 16, 2012 10:52 am

sach1282 wrote:About the crime rate: when I was in St. Louis I heard that the higher crime rate was just because the city calculates population differently than most others.


This correct. It has to do with St. Louis having a different city/county structure than most major US metro areas. Lived in St. Louis my whole life. Never had so much as a car break in. Stay off the state streets and know nothing good has ever happened on the east side after 2 AM and you will be fine.

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Re: Thread for those considering WUSTL with $$$ over T-14

Postby romothesavior » Thu Feb 16, 2012 11:09 am

There are so many different scenarios and options ITT that it is hard to really comment on them, but if anyone has a question about WUSTL or your specific situation, you can PM me or ask in the "WUSTL 2L Taking Questions" thread. As much as I love it here, I try my hardest on TLS to not be a WUSTL homer. I've told as many people to go elsewhere as I have to come here. The decision to take on big debt or take the scholarship depends as much on the person, their goals, and their geographic preferences as it does the schools in question.

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Re: Thread for those considering WUSTL with $$$ over T-14

Postby checkster » Thu Feb 16, 2012 2:00 pm

As someone who actually wants to stay in the MO area, I can't say enough about how good WUSTLs rep is around here. In a state with 2 major cities and several other big areas, WashU is in a class of its own. Missouri is an interesting state because there are 4 law schools but none of there are terrible. MU and SLU are ranked around each other and do fairly because of their reputation in the state. UMKC is at the bottom but its still not a TTTT by any means, and it places lots of kids around KC or around the state. But if you like Missouri, WashU is a total trump card. Great school.

That being said...nobody who isn't from MO thinks they will like this state, so its irrelevant. :P

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Re: Thread for those considering WUSTL with $$$ over T-14

Postby romothesavior » Thu Feb 16, 2012 3:00 pm

I love WUSTL. The professors, administration, campus, and even students are great. I have friends at law schools around the country, and few can speak as glowingly about their school as I do about mine. Even the city is an enjoyable place to spend three years. I have good friend's from Boston, NYC, Chicago, Florida, Texas, etc. and almost everyone I know has enjoyed it. Is it a major city with tons to do? No. Does it have beaches or mountains or any of that? No. But it has a decent night life, professional sports, good food, and some cool things to do (Mardi Gras this Saturday... woot). It is a fine place to spend three years, and the law school community itself is top notch.

But (and here is the big catch)... you are sacrificing a lot in terms of job prospects by taking WUSTL over a T14. You are sacrificing mobility, and cutting your firm prospects big time. At even the lower T14, most students who want firm work land in good firms. Here, the number is closer to 1/3 (some don't want big firms, some clerk, some are non NLJ firms and such). But that is a big difference.

WUSTL with a huge scholarship is a pretty good option. I had a smaller scholarship than most of you ITT and I'm looking to be out of debt in 3-5 years. If you can accomplish your goals from WUSTL with little to no debt, you'll be in awesome shape. And if you graduate and miss out on the big firms, you'll still likely get a job of some sort (though it won't be at OCI and will probably be a lot of legwork, maybe even post bar exam). Its not like WUSTL full ride is a bad option. Just realize how much you are giving up in terms of job prospects, because it is quite substantial.

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Re: Thread for those considering WUSTL with $$$ over T-14

Postby Crowing » Thu Feb 16, 2012 3:14 pm

I've spent the last 15 years of my life in Missouri, and I actually really like St. Louis. The city itself isn't great, but it's tiny anyway and most of the people in St. Louis are out in the county. Being so large, the county is sorta divided socioeconomically as well. I'd say in terms of affluence it runs something like West>>>>>South>North. I left out East because we don't consider there to be such a thing as "East St. Louis County" (for that would be the city). I used to work and do research at Wash U, and the area around the campus is fairly tame. There was a rash of bike thefts on campus while I was there but that was about it for crime. But a few blocks in the wrong direction will take you into some more shady areas. The main reason St. Louis gets a bad rap for crime though is because of East St. Louis, the area across the Mississippi River that is one of the (if not the) most dangerous areas in the U.S. But seriously, you should have no reason to ever go over there unless you're just passing through during the daytime in your vehicle.

The one thing that concerns me about going to Wash U (I'm a 0L myself) is that I've heard from a few lawyers here in Missouri that Wash U doesn't necessarily have superior placement power even in its home state. There seems to be a perception here that a lot of Wash U students aren't committed to settling down in Missouri, and therefore students from Missouri-Columbia and St. Louis U who are perceived to be loyal to MO have an advantage in that respect. I don't know how true this really is though; it's just what I've heard from a few people in the profession.




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