Poll: Public Interest Law Choice?

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

Which School?

Boston U (waiting on scholarship)
0
No votes
University of Illionis (with 11k Scholarship)
0
No votes
Notre Dame (20k Scholarship)
0
No votes
Washington and Lee (20k Scholarship)
0
No votes
U Maryland (4k Scholarship)
0
No votes
American (20k scholarship)
0
No votes
Penn State (15k Scholarship)
1
100%
 
Total votes: 1

tallgaloot
Posts: 77
Joined: Mon Jan 02, 2012 2:34 pm

Poll: Public Interest Law Choice?

Postby tallgaloot » Fri Mar 16, 2012 6:45 pm

Edited (again) for new offer) I'm looking at starting this fall at law school, looking towards a career in public interest law. Specifically looking at helping children's and families in poverty as child/poverty advocate. Whether this happens at a nonprofit, a government agency, or somewhere else has yet to be seen. I have no desire for "Big Law." I've been accepted to a few schools (and rejected from a good number of others).
What are your thoughts on my choices keeping these things in mind.
1. I want to go to the BEST school possible.
2. Since making money is not my biggest concern, a school with a good LRAP would be a good fit.
3. If possible, I'd like to stay close to the east coast (NJ/PA) as I have an ill mother. Would probably prefer to practice somewhere in the northeast -> preferably from New York to the Washington DC area (or anywhere in between). Currently I am located in PA.
4. I want the school with the best track record/program in public interest.
5. I wouldn't mind a judicial clerkship after graduation.
6. I want to work hard and have a job soon after graduating.

Now- Here's my current offers:
Boston U (waiting on scholarship)
University of Illionis (with 11k Scholarship)
Notre Dame (20k Scholarship)
Washington and Lee (20k Scholarship)
U Maryland (4k Scholarship)
American (20k scholarship)
Penn State (15k Scholarship)

I appreciate your help. If I could hear some of your thoughts on your vote, that would be terrific as well.

For what it's worth I have visited W&L and Notre Dame and am leaning heavily towards Notre Dame, although I will be visiting BU next week.
Last edited by tallgaloot on Fri Apr 06, 2012 9:40 pm, edited 4 times in total.

bdole2
Posts: 271
Joined: Sat Nov 13, 2010 5:58 pm

Re: Poll: Public Interest Law Choice?

Postby bdole2 » Fri Mar 16, 2012 6:57 pm

tallgaloot wrote: (And you'll notice "Retake or don't go" isn't a current option... :) )


Why not?

tallgaloot
Posts: 77
Joined: Mon Jan 02, 2012 2:34 pm

Re: Poll: Public Interest Law Choice?

Postby tallgaloot » Fri Mar 16, 2012 7:00 pm

bdole2 wrote:
tallgaloot wrote: (And you'll notice "Retake or don't go" isn't a current option... :) )


Why not?

My LSAT score was a good indicator of my skill on it. I practiced for months and the score was an average of my last ten practice exams. So, I'm fine with it. Could I do slightly better? Perhaps. Could I do slightly worse? Perhaps. The reason I put it there is because I've already made peace with my LSAT score, don't want ot get into a debate about taking it again, waiting a year, etc, etc. which goes on ont hese forums and really just want to hear people's opinions on the merits of these selected schools.

tallgaloot
Posts: 77
Joined: Mon Jan 02, 2012 2:34 pm

Re: Poll: Public Interest Law Choice?

Postby tallgaloot » Fri Mar 16, 2012 7:02 pm

BTW- If I could hear some of the reasons for your choices, that would be terrific. THanks.

tallgaloot
Posts: 77
Joined: Mon Jan 02, 2012 2:34 pm

Re: Poll: Public Interest Law Choice?

Postby tallgaloot » Fri Mar 16, 2012 7:06 pm

Sorry, forgot to mention. I live in Pennsylvania right now, my parents are in NJ. I would like to end up back somewhere from Pennsylvania to Washington DC area.

Excellent117
Posts: 194
Joined: Fri Dec 23, 2011 4:44 pm

Re: Poll: Public Interest Law Choice?

Postby Excellent117 » Fri Mar 16, 2012 10:24 pm

What are the stips on each scholarship?

User avatar
cinephile
Posts: 3469
Joined: Sun Jul 18, 2010 3:50 pm

Re: Poll: Public Interest Law Choice?

Postby cinephile » Fri Mar 16, 2012 10:37 pm

tallgaloot wrote:Sorry, forgot to mention. I live in Pennsylvania right now, my parents are in NJ. I would like to end up back somewhere from Pennsylvania to Washington DC area.


So is Penn State in-state for you? How much would it cost?

User avatar
goldenflash19
Posts: 477
Joined: Wed Sep 21, 2011 11:15 pm

Re: Poll: Public Interest Law Choice?

Postby goldenflash19 » Fri Mar 16, 2012 10:43 pm

Of the options you listed, I voted W&L because of the money and the fact it's not in the midwest like the other T1 scholly schools in the poll. PSU instate isn't terrible, either.

Did you apply to Rutgers, though? It would keep you close to your family, and it's super easy to get instate. If not, a year off, early application, and potential retake/improved score could be an option. If you nail the retake, your options would only be better, and you could always fall back on Rutgers if you don't.

tallgaloot
Posts: 77
Joined: Mon Jan 02, 2012 2:34 pm

Re: Poll: Public Interest Law Choice?

Postby tallgaloot » Sat Mar 17, 2012 12:15 pm

Penn State has no in-state tuition break. :(
I am leaning heavily towards Notre Dame because they seem to have a better Public Interest Law focus than W&L.

tallgaloot
Posts: 77
Joined: Mon Jan 02, 2012 2:34 pm

Re: Poll: Public Interest Law Choice?

Postby tallgaloot » Sat Mar 17, 2012 12:29 pm

goldenflash19 wrote:
Did you apply to Rutgers, though? It would keep you close to your family, and it's super easy to get instate. If not, a year off, early application, and potential retake/improved score could be an option. If you nail the retake, your options would only be better, and you could always fall back on Rutgers if you don't.


I did not apply to Rutgers as they are in transition, being bought/transferred to Rowan and the future's a little unclear for the school.

User avatar
Doorkeeper
Posts: 4872
Joined: Thu Jan 12, 2012 11:25 pm

Re: Poll: Public Interest Law Choice?

Postby Doorkeeper » Sat Mar 17, 2012 2:37 pm

None of these, unless one has a generous LRAP program.

tallgaloot
Posts: 77
Joined: Mon Jan 02, 2012 2:34 pm

Re: Poll: Public Interest Law Choice?

Postby tallgaloot » Sat Mar 17, 2012 2:39 pm

Doorkeeper wrote:None of these, unless one has a generous LRAP program.


How useful.

User avatar
ConfidenceMan2
Posts: 79
Joined: Tue Nov 01, 2011 8:04 am

Re: Poll: Public Interest Law Choice?

Postby ConfidenceMan2 » Sat Mar 17, 2012 2:48 pm

tallgaloot wrote:
Doorkeeper wrote:None of these, unless one has a generous LRAP program.


How useful.


Snark aside, this is actually good advice masked as an uncharitable comment.

If you're sure that public interest is your thing, then you absolutely should be focused on minimizing your debt, and if attending a school without substantial scholarship, LRAP's are what you should be checking into.

There are probably better lists out there, but just a quick search yielded this: http://www.equaljusticeworks.org/resour ... hool-lraps which has links to the LRAP pages on schools' respective websites.

Just from quickly glancing at these, looks like Notre Dame's is decent, but not great, while W&L's sounds VERY vague (to the point that I personally would be scared to trust their commitment to it, but someone more in the know there might have a different take).

You should also be looking specifically to see what % of students at these schools do public interest and try to gauge what kinds of resources these schools have in terms of public interest placement.

tallgaloot
Posts: 77
Joined: Mon Jan 02, 2012 2:34 pm

Re: Poll: Public Interest Law Choice?

Postby tallgaloot » Sat Mar 17, 2012 2:52 pm

ConfidenceMan2 wrote:
tallgaloot wrote:
Doorkeeper wrote:None of these, unless one has a generous LRAP program.


How useful.


Snark aside, this is actually good advice masked as an uncharitable comment.

If you're sure that public interest is your thing, then you absolutely should be focused on minimizing your debt, and if attending a school without substantial scholarship, LRAP's are what you should be checking into.

There are probably better lists out there, but just a quick search yielded this: http://www.equaljusticeworks.org/resour ... hool-lraps which has links to the LRAP pages on schools' respective websites.

Just from quickly glancing at these, looks like Notre Dame's is decent, but not great.

You should also be looking specifically to see what % of students at these schools do public interest and try to gauge what kinds of resources these schools have in terms of public interest placement.

I appreciate your point on this. A LRAP is definitely going to play into my decision. Notre Dame's does look better than W&L's from what I can tell. W&L seems kind of mum about what their program exactly pays out. As far as my previous comment- I just get tired of people coming on here telling everybody it's T14 or don't go. Everybody's goals and mission are different and some comments like that aren't helpful.

User avatar
ConfidenceMan2
Posts: 79
Joined: Tue Nov 01, 2011 8:04 am

Re: Poll: Public Interest Law Choice?

Postby ConfidenceMan2 » Sat Mar 17, 2012 3:06 pm

tallgaloot wrote:
ConfidenceMan2 wrote:
tallgaloot wrote:
Doorkeeper wrote:None of these, unless one has a generous LRAP program.


How useful.


Snark aside, this is actually good advice masked as an uncharitable comment.

If you're sure that public interest is your thing, then you absolutely should be focused on minimizing your debt, and if attending a school without substantial scholarship, LRAP's are what you should be checking into.

There are probably better lists out there, but just a quick search yielded this: http://www.equaljusticeworks.org/resour ... hool-lraps which has links to the LRAP pages on schools' respective websites.

Just from quickly glancing at these, looks like Notre Dame's is decent, but not great.

You should also be looking specifically to see what % of students at these schools do public interest and try to gauge what kinds of resources these schools have in terms of public interest placement.

I appreciate your point on this. A LRAP is definitely going to play into my decision. Notre Dame's does look better than W&L's from what I can tell. W&L seems kind of mum about what their program exactly pays out. As far as my previous comment- I just get tired of people coming on here telling everybody it's T14 or don't go. Everybody's goals and mission are different and some comments like that aren't helpful.


I've been browsing these schools' websites, and it looks like in addition to ND, you should look hard at American. Their public interest numbers are about the same as ND's and their LRAP looks legit (to me, though I'm sure you know that this is something you should really research before jumping into, given the financial ramifications).

Another Q: is that 20k figure for 3 years or is it 20k/year? Because to me 20k/year at ND given your interests (and if you can bear to live in the Midwest for 3 years) would make the most sense. If it's over 3 years, then the answer is less clear, and I might make a case for American in your case.

Good luck whatever you choose.

tallgaloot
Posts: 77
Joined: Mon Jan 02, 2012 2:34 pm

Re: Poll: Public Interest Law Choice?

Postby tallgaloot » Sat Mar 17, 2012 3:37 pm

ConfidenceMan2 wrote:I've been browsing these schools' websites, and it looks like in addition to ND, you should look hard at American. Their public interest numbers are about the same as ND's and their LRAP looks legit (to me, though I'm sure you know that this is something you should really research before jumping into, given the financial ramifications).

Another Q: is that 20k figure for 3 years or is it 20k/year? Because to me 20k/year at ND given your interests (and if you can bear to live in the Midwest for 3 years) would make the most sense. If it's over 3 years, then the answer is less clear, and I might make a case for American in your case.

Good luck whatever you choose.

Yes, 20k a year. I am leaning toward ND, although the votes on this page toward W&L have given me a moment's consideration. I am planning a visit to both of the schools in the next few weeks. Perhaps that will give me the final umph. And to be honest I'm not sure I would enjoy how small W&L is, despite that being their major selling point.




Return to “Choosing a Law School”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Bing [Bot] and 4 guests