UC Law Schools vs. Loyola/USD and Washington and Lee

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Beachbum89
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UC Law Schools vs. Loyola/USD and Washington and Lee

Postby Beachbum89 » Thu Mar 08, 2012 5:35 am

So my cycle is pretty much over (I'm still waiting on a decision from USC and if I get in I will attend) and I've narrowed my acceptances down to the following schools:

-UC Irvine ($8k per year)
-UC Davis ($13k per year)
-UC Hastings (No offer yet)
-Loyola (32k per year, top 50% stipulation)
-University of San Diego ($34k per year, 2.0 stipulation)
-Washington and Lee ($40k per year)

I'm a Southern California native and ideally would like to practice in LA, Orange County, or San Diego after I graduate. I'm not set on big law by any means. I'd be very happy working for a mid-sized firm in one of the areas I've listed. I'm interested in corporate and business law although I don't think that makes any of these schools more or less attractive than the others. Anyway, I've visited or will be visiting all of these schools in the near future. Finances are important. I will be receiving some help from my parents but it will be limited given that my three younger siblings are all in college.

Many of my relatives are lawyers (including my father) and I've received varying degrees of advice from them. My uncle, a Loyola graduate who practices in LA, said I'd be crazy to choose USD or Loyola over any of the UC Law Schools I've been accepted to. My dad has told me these are all good options and that as long as I do really well at USD/Loyola they'd open up just as many doors as UCI, Davis, or Hastings would but that he agrees with my uncle in principle (that the UC's are all significantly better law schools). Washington and Lee is an interesting one. I love the small town, small student body, and their new third year program and a full scholarship makes it attractive too....I'm just worried it'll make my eventual job search here in California much more difficult.

So what do people think? I'm definitely considering USD as I love San Diego, the USD campus, and the big scholarship will certainly make things easier. However, I keep thinking that all of the UC's are much better options and that there is potentially a lot of upside to going to UCI and being one of the first few classes from there. The only issue is that the UC's are an absolute ripoff and will likely only get more expensive given that state finances are in shambles. Hopefully I get into USC and don't even have to make this decision but at this point I'd say USD, UCI, and UC Davis are my top three choices with W&L continuing to be an option as well. Any thoughts?

nelaw2010
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Re: UC Law Schools vs. Loyola/USD and Washington and Lee

Postby nelaw2010 » Thu Mar 08, 2012 6:04 am

I got into a lot of the same schools last year.

UC Hastings --> no $
UC Davis --> WL
UCI --> 50k
Loyola --> 50k (top 1/3 stip)
USD --> 60k, then went to 92k (grant, no stips)

I went with USD. It was a tough choice b/w USD and UCI (one that I may regret). However, it was the best decision overall for me.

I visited UCI and loved it. The energy there is amazing. However, USD has turned out to be amazing too. All the professors are top notch. It makes sense that they attract great professors, since people actually want to live and work in San Diego.

I really don't think you can go wrong with either UCI or USD. If you want to be in the LA market, I say go to USC, or Loyola (Loyola seems to have a great rep if you want to be a litigator).

It really does matter where you want to live. USC and UCI will give you the most mobility in SoCal. Loyola for LA, and USD for San Diego/OC.

HTH.

Beachbum89
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Re: UC Law Schools vs. Loyola/USD and Washington and Lee

Postby Beachbum89 » Sat Mar 10, 2012 10:54 pm

Thanks for the input and glad you're enjoying USD! Any others?

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bk1
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Re: UC Law Schools vs. Loyola/USD and Washington and Lee

Postby bk1 » Sat Mar 10, 2012 11:22 pm

The UC's just don't look cheap enough. Even Davis is going to be almost 170k debt once you factor in interest piling up over 3 years. I wouldn't take Hastings/Davis/Irvine unless you could get your initial debt from one of them to 100k or less.

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padawanphil
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Re: UC Law Schools vs. Loyola/USD and Washington and Lee

Postby padawanphil » Sun Mar 11, 2012 12:30 am

I have almost the exact same list as you (schollys and everything) and I'm still waiting on USC. I'm seriously considering San Diego right now simply because of the money and I'm not set on doing biglaw, but it's definitely tough to turn down much higher ranked schools. I'll be following this thread to see what you decide. Who knows, we could end up classmates.

Beachbum89
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Re: UC Law Schools vs. Loyola/USD and Washington and Lee

Postby Beachbum89 » Sun Mar 11, 2012 3:23 am

bk1 wrote:The UC's just don't look cheap enough. Even Davis is going to be almost 170k debt once you factor in interest piling up over 3 years. I wouldn't take Hastings/Davis/Irvine unless you could get your initial debt from one of them to 100k or less.


If the UC's were the same price they were even three years ago (around $30k) per year this would be a very easy decision. It's a shame the state can't effectively manage its finances without increasing taxes and tuition exponentially.

padawanphil wrote:I have almost the exact same list as you (schollys and everything) and I'm still waiting on USC. I'm seriously considering San Diego right now simply because of the money and I'm not set on doing biglaw, but it's definitely tough to turn down much higher ranked schools. I'll be following this thread to see what you decide. Who knows, we could end up classmates.


I've been impressed with USD. I drove down for a tour and class visit a few weeks ago and enjoyed it. The law school is a bit dated but the campus as a whole is gorgeous. It seemed much more laid back (it felt more like undergrad where as the other schools felt a lot different than undergrad) than all the other schools I've visited. And yeah we could definitely end up being classmates next year!

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20160810
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Re: UC Law Schools vs. Loyola/USD and Washington and Lee

Postby 20160810 » Sun Mar 11, 2012 5:02 am

My $0.02: Go to Davis or retake, but keep in mind that even at Davis if you're paying that much you're going to need to very seriously consider dropping out after 1L if your grades aren't good (top half, at a minimum).

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coldpixies
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Re: UC Law Schools vs. Loyola/USD and Washington and Lee

Postby coldpixies » Sun Mar 11, 2012 6:00 am

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DC_Patent_Law
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Re: UC Law Schools vs. Loyola/USD and Washington and Lee

Postby DC_Patent_Law » Mon Mar 12, 2012 3:14 pm

+1
I'm trying to decide between USD and Loyola. I think after the top-20 maybe the rankings don't matter quite as much and more about the market you want to be in. I do want to experience LA though. I'm planning on visiting both schools at the end of march. I'm guessing the feel of both schools will be indicative of whether I fit in. I've heard so much about USD's campus. I really want to see what its all about.

coldpixies wrote:
Beachbum89 wrote:
bk1 wrote:The UC's just don't look cheap enough. Even Davis is going to be almost 170k debt once you factor in interest piling up over 3 years. I wouldn't take Hastings/Davis/Irvine unless you could get your initial debt from one of them to 100k or less.


If the UC's were the same price they were even three years ago (around $30k) per year this would be a very easy decision. It's a shame the state can't effectively manage its finances without increasing taxes and tuition exponentially.

padawanphil wrote:I have almost the exact same list as you (schollys and everything) and I'm still waiting on USC. I'm seriously considering San Diego right now simply because of the money and I'm not set on doing biglaw, but it's definitely tough to turn down much higher ranked schools. I'll be following this thread to see what you decide. Who knows, we could end up classmates.


I've been impressed with USD. I drove down for a tour and class visit a few weeks ago and enjoyed it. The law school is a bit dated but the campus as a whole is gorgeous. It seemed much more laid back (it felt more like undergrad where as the other schools felt a lot different than undergrad) than all the other schools I've visited. And yeah we could definitely end up being classmates next year!


+1 USD was the first school that accepted me and as I got more and more offers, it kind of floated to the back of my mind, but when I went down to visit, I couldn't help but be blown away at how gorgeous the campus was (and SD as a whole. La Jolla is unreal). That said, I still don't think I'm going to end up there; SD is far too small of a legal community and the risk of not finding a job, much less one that'll help pay back loans, scares me.

rad lulz
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Re: UC Law Schools vs. Loyola/USD and Washington and Lee

Postby rad lulz » Mon Mar 12, 2012 3:18 pm

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Last edited by rad lulz on Sun Apr 21, 2013 4:54 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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FlanAl
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Re: UC Law Schools vs. Loyola/USD and Washington and Lee

Postby FlanAl » Mon Mar 12, 2012 3:33 pm

Lots of family in law? how solid are the connections? If you can be pretty much guaranteed some kind of job out of school in California, I'd say go for W&L. It has the potential to open up another market for you and will give you an interesting 3 years in a small town etc.. AND you said a full ride so NO DEBT which will be pretty solid. I'd also say Loyola could be pretty solid considering what your one uncle had to say (maybe he could put you in touch with other alums). I know no one wants to rely on their dad for a job or whatever, but if you can go to school for no debt and have a guaranteed job at the end, that is pretty cool.

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smittelman6
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Re: UC Law Schools vs. Loyola/USD and Washington and Lee

Postby smittelman6 » Tue Mar 13, 2012 1:09 am

Beachbum89 wrote:I've been impressed with USD. I drove down for a tour and class visit a few weeks ago and enjoyed it. The law school is a bit dated but the campus as a whole is gorgeous. It seemed much more laid back (it felt more like undergrad where as the other schools felt a lot different than undergrad) than all the other schools I've visited. And yeah we could definitely end up being classmates next year!


The CA schools I chose between last year were Hastings (no $), Loyola (28/yr top third stip), and USD (30/yr top third stip). I chose USD and am totally happy. RE: above, just an FYI they are redoing a LOT of Warren (the law building) this summer, according to one of my profs. Apparently they are going to make it look much more modern, update a lot of the technology, etc. FWIW, I haven't had any technology issues or anything like that to begin with, but it's nice that they're doing it and that the interior should look a little more modern.

As far as jobs/etc. goes, I think the regional thing is a huge deal and should be kept in mind. This is somewhat anecdotal of course since I am a 1L, but from what I have experienced so far USD has a ton of connections in San Diego. There is a lot of SD loyalty, especially from our alums. I got my summer job (working for a superior court judge) through a networking event where I met a few judges who were USD alums. If you want to live in SD, that's something to consider.

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smittelman6
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Re: UC Law Schools vs. Loyola/USD and Washington and Lee

Postby smittelman6 » Tue Mar 13, 2012 1:24 am

also, this is a handy little thing someone sent me last year... you can update the city, number of schools, etc to suit your needs. not necessarily life-changing, but certainly interesting.

http://californiabar.globl.org/report.p ... 0&g=2&pp=5

Beachbum89
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Re: UC Law Schools vs. Loyola/USD and Washington and Lee

Postby Beachbum89 » Fri Mar 16, 2012 4:12 am

FlanAl wrote:Lots of family in law? how solid are the connections? If you can be pretty much guaranteed some kind of job out of school in California, I'd say go for W&L. It has the potential to open up another market for you and will give you an interesting 3 years in a small town etc.. AND you said a full ride so NO DEBT which will be pretty solid. I'd also say Loyola could be pretty solid considering what your one uncle had to say (maybe he could put you in touch with other alums). I know no one wants to rely on their dad for a job or whatever, but if you can go to school for no debt and have a guaranteed job at the end, that is pretty cool.


My connections are pretty solid and would definitely at least get me interviews at a lot of big firms in Southern California.

And I took the LSAT once, kinda wish that I retook it, but I'm happy with my current acceptances so have no plans to retake. I just got back from visiting UC Hastings and UC Davis. UC Hastings was better than I was expecting but I had a hard time seeing myself spending three years there. I loved UC Davis and the town and could absolutely see myself being happy there. So right now I'm pretty confident that I've narrowed it down to UCI and UC Davis.

Both are appealing for different reasons. UCI is a brand new school and there's potentially a lot of upside to going there. On the other hand, I just finished my undergrad at UCI and love Davis and would like a change. Any thoughts on Irvine vs. Davis?

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coldpixies
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Re: UC Law Schools vs. Loyola/USD and Washington and Lee

Postby coldpixies » Fri Mar 16, 2012 4:31 am

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Last edited by coldpixies on Fri Aug 30, 2013 9:18 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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splitbrain
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Re: UC Law Schools vs. Loyola/USD and Washington and Lee

Postby splitbrain » Fri Mar 16, 2012 1:35 pm

smittelman6 wrote:also, this is a handy little thing someone sent me last year... you can update the city, number of schools, etc to suit your needs. not necessarily life-changing, but certainly interesting.

http://californiabar.globl.org/report.p ... 0&g=2&pp=5

I am going to kill sooooo much time at work with this thing. Thank you so much!




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