"Should I stay or should I go?"

(Rankings, Profiles, Tuition, Student Life, . . . )

Which school should I choose?

Washington (St. Louis) $18,000/yr
35
43%
UC Hastings $21,500/yr
23
28%
Illinois $11,300/yr
3
4%
Michigan State Full Tuition
3
4%
Pepperdine $15,000/yr
4
5%
Washington and Lee $15,500/yr
10
12%
Miami $22,000/yr
3
4%
 
Total votes: 81

bwi208
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"Should I stay or should I go?"

Postby bwi208 » Mon Feb 27, 2012 7:40 pm

Alright, so I've got a little dilemma on my hands and I'd appreciate any feedback:

What do I choose?
My top two choices are Washington University in St Louis and UC Hastings.

Washington offered $18,000 and Hastings offered $10,000 so far on top of whatever else they will send out sometime next month.
I plan on visiting both in March. What scares me about Washington is the midwest in general (I'm a Cali boy) and what scares me about Hastings is the 49% employment at graduation as compared to Washington's 88%. Any suggestions?
Last edited by bwi208 on Mon Jul 09, 2012 2:03 am, edited 16 times in total.

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Bronck
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Re: UC Hastings or Washington University (St. Louis)

Postby Bronck » Mon Feb 27, 2012 7:56 pm

Where do you want to work?

This thread's central message is relevant to your interests: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=178938

bwi208
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Re: UC Hastings or Washington University (St. Louis)

Postby bwi208 » Mon Feb 27, 2012 8:11 pm

I would like to practice in California, but wouldn't mind getting a better job in the midwest if given the opportunity. I'm assuming Washington's name hold a lot of weight throughout the midwest, so the opportunities would be there.

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drdolittle
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Re: UC Hastings or Washington University (St. Louis)

Postby drdolittle » Mon Feb 27, 2012 8:24 pm

Hastings for CA, maybe West Coast. Wash U, Illinois, Indiana, etc. for Midwest. For all these schools, just research where alumni tend to end up, especially of late, and that will give you a sense of your possibilities. For example, you'll find that Indiana has very few recent grads in CA (at least practicing law that I could find when I looked two years ago), which surprised me initially but then again should not have. These are all fairly regional schools and your best expectation should be to end up with a job and long-term career in the region where these schools are located.

You'll also find looking through TLS and other sources that it's generally well accepted that schools inflate/misrepresent their employment stats, so take all employment claims with a grain of salt. Hastings does not appear to do this (or not as much as others), which has hurt it's USNWR ranking in recent years. But anyway, in CA going to a school ranked below Hastings/Davis in the absence of a nearly full tuition scholarship w/o stipulations is incredibly risky. And as far as I know all the lower ranked CA schools like SCU, USF, USD, Pepp, Loyola... only offer $ with GPA stips. Arguably Hastings/Davis are very risky too, but if you want CA and can't get into UCLA/USC or one of the top 10 or so national schools and want to attend law school regardless, you might just have to accept the risk and hope for the best.

bwi208
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Re: UC Hastings or Washington University (St. Louis)

Postby bwi208 » Mon Feb 27, 2012 8:38 pm

drdolittle wrote:Hastings for CA, maybe West Coast. Wash U, Illinois, Indiana, etc. for Midwest. For all these schools, just research where alumni tend to end up, especially of late, and that will give you a sense of your possibilities. For example, you'll find that Indiana has very few recent grads in CA (at least practicing law that I could find when I looked two years ago), which surprised me initially but then again should not have. These are all fairly regional schools and your best expectation should be to end up with a job and long-term career in the region where these schools are located.

You'll also find looking through TLS and other sources that it's generally well accepted that schools inflate/misrepresent their employment stats, so take all employment claims with a grain of salt. Hastings does not appear to do this (or not as much as others), which has hurt it's USNWR ranking in recent years. But anyway, in CA going to a school ranked below Hastings/Davis in the absence of a nearly full tuition scholarship w/o stipulations is incredibly risky. And as far as I know all the lower ranked CA schools like SCU, USF, USD, Pepp, Loyola... only offer $ with GPA stips. Arguably Hastings/Davis are very risky too, but if you want CA and can't get into UCLA/USC or one of the top 10 or so national schools and want to attend law school regardless, you might just have to accept the risk and hope for the best.


Thanks for your insight. I figured the lower CA schools should be crossed off my list entirely. I'm also not sure how far I can reach with Washington, so that's why I'll be visiting, asking questions and checking out the area. I guess it's tough out here if you don't crack T-14 but I thought T-20 might mean something.

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kapital98
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Re: UC Hastings or Washington University (St. Louis)

Postby kapital98 » Mon Feb 27, 2012 8:55 pm

Hastings. However, try to use the other scholarship offers to negotiate for a higher scholarship at Hastings. They tend to be stingy but you don't know if you don't ask.

Also, why didn't you apply to Davis or Irvine? Is there a particular region in CA that you want to work in? There seems to be a roughly equal divide between Southern and Northern California schools. If you go to Hastings you'll have to really network to get a job outside of Northern California.

bwi208
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Re: UC Hastings or Washington University (St. Louis)

Postby bwi208 » Mon Feb 27, 2012 9:08 pm

kapital98 wrote:Hastings. However, try to use the other scholarship offers to negotiate for a higher scholarship at Hastings. They tend to be stingy but you don't know if you don't ask.

Also, why didn't you apply to Davis or Irvine? Is there a particular region in CA that you want to work in? There seems to be a roughly equal divide between Southern and Northern California schools. If you go to Hastings you'll have to really network to get a job outside of Northern California.


I'm from So. Cal, but I don't have a preference. I didn't apply to Davis or Irvine because I thought my chances were slim to none. Also, I've already been in contact with Hastings and that's why I have the initial $10,000 without any financial packages being awarded to this point. Idk if any further negotiation would work.

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thexfactor
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Re: UC Hastings or Washington University (St. Louis)

Postby thexfactor » Mon Feb 27, 2012 10:08 pm

bwi208 wrote:I would like to practice in California, but wouldn't mind getting a better job in the midwest if given the opportunity. I'm assuming Washington's name hold a lot of weight throughout the midwest, so the opportunities would be there.


LOL
If you aren't from the midwaste, your chance of getting a biglaw job in the midwest is very small. You need ties to the area. STL and other midwestern firms are very wary of transplants.....

WE DONT WELCOME YOUR KIND HURR IN THE MIDWASTE.... :mrgreen:

My advice is to retake and get some better options.

bwi208
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Re: UC Hastings or Washington University (St. Louis)

Postby bwi208 » Mon Feb 27, 2012 10:28 pm

thexfactor wrote:
bwi208 wrote:I would like to practice in California, but wouldn't mind getting a better job in the midwest if given the opportunity. I'm assuming Washington's name hold a lot of weight throughout the midwest, so the opportunities would be there.


LOL
If you aren't from the midwaste, your chance of getting a biglaw job in the midwest is very small. You need ties to the area. STL and other midwestern firms are very wary of transplants.....

WE DONT WELCOME YOUR KIND HURR IN THE MIDWASTE.... :mrgreen:

My advice is to retake and get some better options.


I guess I should've mentioned that biglaw jobs don't concern me because I'm thinking about public interest, but thanks for your unwelcoming response.

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romothesavior
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Re: "Should I stay or should I go?"

Postby romothesavior » Tue Feb 28, 2012 12:45 pm

I think at the prices listed, all of these schools are very risky.

Also, thexfactor is right. Cracking the Midwest is tough if you aren't from here. We do have a solid brand in the Midwest, but it isn't as strong as it should be. Might be a little easier for a non-firm person, but PI and government aren't hiring in big numbers anywhere right now. Without big money from WUSTL, I don't think it should be in the running. If you could get a PI job and 10-year IBR, then it would be a fine option, but that is a huge gamble ITE.

What are your numbers? And what kind of PI work do you want to do? I think a retake may be in your best interests.

rad lulz
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Re: "Should I stay or should I go?"

Postby rad lulz » Tue Feb 28, 2012 1:13 pm

romothesavior wrote:I think at the prices listed, all of these schools are very risky.

Also, thexfactor is right. Cracking the Midwest is tough if you aren't from here. We do have a solid brand in the Midwest, but it isn't as strong as it should be. Might be a little easier for a non-firm person, but PI and government aren't hiring in big numbers anywhere right now. Without big money from WUSTL, I don't think it should be in the running. If you could get a PI job and 10-year IBR, then it would be a fine option, but that is a huge gamble ITE.

What are your numbers? And what kind of PI work do you want to do? I think a retake may be in your best interests.

Credited

bwi208
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Re: "Should I stay or should I go?"

Postby bwi208 » Tue Feb 28, 2012 1:24 pm

.
Last edited by bwi208 on Tue Feb 28, 2012 1:25 pm, edited 1 time in total.

bwi208
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Re: "Should I stay or should I go?"

Postby bwi208 » Tue Feb 28, 2012 1:25 pm

rad lulz wrote:
romothesavior wrote:I think at the prices listed, all of these schools are very risky.

Also, thexfactor is right. Cracking the Midwest is tough if you aren't from here. We do have a solid brand in the Midwest, but it isn't as strong as it should be. Might be a little easier for a non-firm person, but PI and government aren't hiring in big numbers anywhere right now. Without big money from WUSTL, I don't think it should be in the running. If you could get a PI job and 10-year IBR, then it would be a fine option, but that is a huge gamble ITE.

What are your numbers? And what kind of PI work do you want to do? I think a retake may be in your best interests.

Credited


I'll have around a 3.5 by graduation this Spring and got a 156 on my first attempt back in October. I only studied for the LSAT over summer and don't know how much better I'd do if I put another few months behind it. I haven't touched the stuff since and would only have this coming to summer to prepare for the October one. I'm a first generation URM. Taking a year off hasn't appealed to me. I'm happy with the opportunities I have, although I realize the money risk. That's why I've negotiated and applied for scholarships not affiliated with the school. I'm not completely positive what area of public interest I'd like to practice in. Anything from juvenile justice to racial discrimination and civil rights appeals to me and I'm comfortable with not being completely decided at this point.

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romothesavior
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Re: "Should I stay or should I go?"

Postby romothesavior » Tue Feb 28, 2012 1:32 pm

If you're a URM, a handful of points will get you a full ride at a lot of these schools on your list. Take a year off and focus hard on a retake. Look at it this way: a retake and a year off could be the equivalent of a $100,000+ job if you just get a few more points on the LSAT. Sounds well worth it to me.

stolli
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Re: "Should I stay or should I go?"

Postby stolli » Tue Feb 28, 2012 4:36 pm

anecdotal reports from biglaw lawyers in California that I have spoken to say that WUSTL is getting more name recognition on the west coast then in previous years. (I am @ WUSTL and SOCAL is my target region).

bwi208
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Re: "Should I stay or should I go?"

Postby bwi208 » Tue Feb 28, 2012 7:05 pm

stolli wrote:anecdotal reports from biglaw lawyers in California that I have spoken to say that WUSTL is getting more name recognition on the west coast then in previous years. (I am @ WUSTL and SOCAL is my target region).


Good to hear. What actions have you taken to network on the west coast?

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drdolittle
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Re: "Should I stay or should I go?"

Postby drdolittle » Tue Feb 28, 2012 11:31 pm

romothesavior wrote:If you're a URM, a handful of points will get you a full ride at a lot of these schools on your list. Take a year off and focus hard on a retake. Look at it this way: a retake and a year off could be the equivalent of a $100,000+ job if you just get a few more points on the LSAT. Sounds well worth it to me.

This ^ is probably your best course of action unless for some reason you absolutely have to start school this year (in lieu of the possible $100,000+/year job equivalent romo mentioned). You could definitely raise your first attempt score significantly in the next several months with practice and although this would entail mind numbing work, the time invested will pay off both financially and in terms of career options. E.g., if you were to crack 160, you might even have Cal, UCLA, etc. as options. Keep in mind though that URM admission predictions are less accurate so even if say lawschoolpredictor has you as a 'deny' for a school you may actually have a decent shot.

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hoos89
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Re: "Should I stay or should I go?"

Postby hoos89 » Tue Feb 28, 2012 11:56 pm

/
Last edited by hoos89 on Fri Jul 04, 2014 12:20 pm, edited 1 time in total.

keg411
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Re: "Should I stay or should I go?"

Postby keg411 » Wed Feb 29, 2012 12:01 am

Re-take. If you go up a few points, you could go from paying close to sticker to getting decent $$ at Hastings, Davis and Irvine. Seriously, just do it once -- even if you don't go up that much and just get some more money, it can help. You would maybe even have a shot at USC/UCLA with a 160-ish if you're getting Hastings with a 156.

Also: don't got to WUSTL.

83947368
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Re: "Should I stay or should I go?"

Postby 83947368 » Wed Feb 29, 2012 12:27 am

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Last edited by 83947368 on Wed Jul 25, 2012 2:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.

stolli
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Re: "Should I stay or should I go?"

Postby stolli » Wed Feb 29, 2012 4:31 pm

I emailed every single wustl law alumni that practices in LA that is listed in the Martindale database (like 60 lol). pretty helpful bunch

bwi208 wrote:
stolli wrote:anecdotal reports from biglaw lawyers in California that I have spoken to say that WUSTL is getting more name recognition on the west coast then in previous years. (I am @ WUSTL and SOCAL is my target region).


Good to hear. What actions have you taken to network on the west coast?

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traehekat
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Re: "Should I stay or should I go?"

Postby traehekat » Wed Feb 29, 2012 8:22 pm

bwi208 wrote:Taking a year off hasn't appealed to me. I'm happy with the opportunities I have, although I realize the money risk.


If you decide not to retake then you do NOT by any means understand the monetary risk. End of story. Notice how the majority of people telling you to retake are 2nd/3rd year law students who actually know better, not 0Ls. It is so unbelievably in your best interest to retake that it is actually silly there would even be a debate about it.

bwi208
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Re: "Should I stay or should I go?"

Postby bwi208 » Wed Feb 29, 2012 10:07 pm

Posting on this site was a mistake. Skeptics will always have something to say no matter what the situation is. Somebody could have a full ride to Harvard and someone would say,"you know the risk involved in that scholarship? You think you can stay in the top third of your class." While these things are rationale, I believe one will drive themselves crazy with "what ifs." I think confidence and drive should hold some weight, but egh that's just me. But then again what was I thinking posting amongst out future's arrogant, know all lawyers

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traehekat
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Re: "Should I stay or should I go?"

Postby traehekat » Wed Feb 29, 2012 10:45 pm

I love how 0Ls solicit advice from people who have been through what they are attempting to do and then become upset when the advice isn't what they wanted to hear.

Enjoy WUSTL, congrats on the acceptance.

bwi208
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Re: "Should I stay or should I go?"

Postby bwi208 » Wed Feb 29, 2012 10:49 pm

stolli wrote:I emailed every single wustl law alumni that practices in LA that is listed in the Martindale database (like 60 lol). pretty helpful bunch


thanks stolli sound like it's feasible then :D
Last edited by bwi208 on Wed Feb 29, 2012 11:25 pm, edited 1 time in total.




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