Tulane vs American vs Fordham

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OliveSnook
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Tulane vs American vs Fordham

Postby OliveSnook » Mon Mar 19, 2012 12:29 pm

I think this is just fear mongering from other applicants/the media, but I've heard that going to a second tier school significantly hurts your chances at getting a job. Hence my question about Tulane vs. American vs. Fordham:

Tulane was originally my top choice. I'm from the South and have been looking forward to moving back. I'm getting 7,500 a year but Tulane is still exceptionally expensive. They have also recently slipped into the second tier. I know I shouldn't worry right away, but taking on a debt like that is terrifying.

Fordham has a great reputation in New York. But I applied part-time in an attempt to keep my borrowing to a minimum.

Then there's American. I haven't heard anything horrible or remarkable about this school.

Does anyone have any advice? Between the schools, I'm guessing everyone's going to favor Fordham. Should I want to attend a lower ranked school full time over a higher ranked school part time? Does a drop to 51 really mean anything for Tulane's reputation?

I've been attending all of the ASWs, but I would rather get some advice from people who aren't trying to sell their school.
Are there any Alums or other applicants going through a similar decision that can shed some light? I'd really appreciate it...

tennisking88
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Re: Tulane vs American vs Fordham

Postby tennisking88 » Mon Mar 19, 2012 12:48 pm

OliveSnook wrote:I'm from the South and have been looking forward to moving back.


1. You will most likely not get to the South with a degree from Fordham. If you want to move back South, Fordham is the incorrect choice.

2. The rankings are meaningless. Absolutely meaningless. The same employers that were at Tulane's OCI last year will be there again this year. Employers do not give a shit if a school ranked 47 one year is suddenly 51 the next. Tulane could just as easily go back to 47 next year. The "Second tier" is not set in stone, and depending on your definition of what "second tier" is, Tulane has neither moved in or out of it. I personally think Tulane is a fine school/bottom 1st tier because it's very well regarded in the South and has a pretty good ties w/ the NOLA legal market, however struggling it is.

3. Do not go to American for anywhere even close to sticker price. Do not go if you don't want to be in the DC area. I wouldn't even go with a 1/2 scholarship.

4. Do you work in NY? Do you already have a job? If not, take two things into account: 1) PT is only cheaper if you find a paying job. 2) Even if you find that job, you're still gonna have to work AND go to law school. Which blows a lot.

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pugilistjd
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Re: Tulane vs American vs Fordham

Postby pugilistjd » Mon Mar 19, 2012 1:22 pm

I'm planning on leaving DC for Tulane with close to the same amount of money/yr as you, but I have some ties to LA. I honestly don't think I would've chosen Tulane if I lacked ties or didn't want to stay in LA after graduation. American competes with George Mason, GW, and Georgetown as well as W&M, W&L, and the entire T14. Its a blood bath and I know plenty of out-of-work American JDs. Out of the three, Fordham will give you the best job prospects, but you would most likely have to stay in NYC after graduation. I've also thought about working during law school because I worked full-time all through undergrad and reeeeeeally like having a paying job (weird, right?). Most alum and current students have told me this is probably a bad idea, but I guess it depends on the person.

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dingbat
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Re: Tulane vs American vs Fordham

Postby dingbat » Mon Mar 19, 2012 1:25 pm

Go to Tulane.
Neither Fordham nor American are particularly portable

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PDaddy
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Re: Tulane vs American vs Fordham

Postby PDaddy » Mon Mar 19, 2012 1:42 pm

Tulane is the same school it was a month ago...three years ago (when it was #44) and 10 years ago, when it was always considered a solid consensus top-40 school. The same courses are offered (taught by the same professors), it has the same clinics and externships, and same employers will still recruit there. Old reputations die hard, and no school changes innately because of its ranking. And it's still in NOLA!

The three of those schools are relatively even, but you should consider your goal. If you want NY Biglaw and can get $$$ from Fordham, go to Fordham (though Tulane could also get you there). Fordham is not very portable. If you want D.C. government and can get $$$ from American, go to American (though Tulane can also place you there). If you want to stay flexible and have national opportunities, go to Tulane. Tulane places grads in LA, TX, CA, GA, and even WA, in addition to placing grads in NY and D.C.

As far as the USNWR rankings? They are becoming the biggest joke this side of the Charlotte Bobcats (and Jordan's NBA executive career) and Vanilla Ice. But if the rankings are your guide, consider that many people think Tulane is long underranked and should be a top-30 school based on its education profile and portability. Law School 100 and Lieter's rankings are likely much more solid.

With Tulane giving you $$$, there's no question that it's the best choice.

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hookem7
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Re: Tulane vs American vs Fordham

Postby hookem7 » Mon Mar 19, 2012 3:29 pm

Tulane is also pretty respected in Houston, if you are interested in breaking a sweat just by walking outside during the summer and the self-loathing that comes from being the reigning fattest city (but also it's the nations 4th largest city cuz of that Texas Black Gold)

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thexfactor
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Re: Tulane vs American vs Fordham

Postby thexfactor » Mon Mar 19, 2012 4:20 pm

Can you retake? if you can break 160 and have a decent gpa you can get into a T14 or vandy which will give you much better career prospects.

If not, I would go with Fordham because it has the best law placement out of the 3 schools you listed. I dont think tulane/American places above 10% in biglaw.

OliveSnook
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Re: Tulane vs American vs Fordham

Postby OliveSnook » Mon Mar 19, 2012 5:00 pm

Thank you everyone! I feel a lot better about making a decision now.

@thexfactor I broke 160, I have a decent GPA, strong softs and I'm a URM. I was rejected from Boston so I don't have much hope for getting into a T14 school without breaking 170. Still waiting to hear back from Columbia and Penn though, so you might still be right.

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thexfactor
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Re: Tulane vs American vs Fordham

Postby thexfactor » Mon Mar 19, 2012 6:27 pm

if you can sit out a year, I would blanket every school from U Chicago to USC. IMO i think it is worth it to sit out a year if you dont get T14/vandy/usc/ucla/texas.

rad lulz
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Re: Tulane vs American vs Fordham

Postby rad lulz » Mon Mar 19, 2012 10:27 pm

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