Vandy with $$, or go for broke (at Penn)?

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

Penn or Vandy, or something else?

Penn (sticker)
25
61%
NU (sticker)
2
5%
Vandy (65K scholarship)
13
32%
UCLA (if they beat Vandy)
1
2%
 
Total votes: 41

pinkskirt
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Vandy with $$, or go for broke (at Penn)?

Postby pinkskirt » Mon Apr 02, 2012 6:19 pm

I am interested in academia, appellate law and the judiciary, in that order (wish me luck). I am leaning towards Penn over NU, simply because I have a blind prejudice against Chicago. Also because the COL in Philly is a little better. I am very tempted by Vandy because 1) I like the South; 2) the debt would be slightly less obscene; and 3) they have lately made a big, fairly successful push to support students interested in academia.

With undergraduate debt and no desire for biglaw (unless Mayer Brown’s appellate practice comes calling), I anticipate having no option but to utilize LRAP/IBR/PSLF. As far as I can tell, law profs are gvt/non-profit employees and therefore eligible for PSLF. If I strike out there, and with the ACLU and the DOJ, I will just become a head-start preschool teacher.

My undergraduate debt is private, so another pro for Vandy is that, attending the school with the lowest COL, I might actually succeed in the harebrained scheme of paying off my private loans with federal (PSLF eligible) loan dollars. Again, wish me luck.

So it’s really: Penn v. Vandy

TheDoof
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Re: Vandy with $$, or go for broke (at Penn)?

Postby TheDoof » Mon Apr 02, 2012 8:25 pm

Half a sure thing is better than twice of nothing.

HeavenWood
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Re: Vandy with $$, or go for broke (at Penn)?

Postby HeavenWood » Mon Apr 02, 2012 8:31 pm

pinkskirt wrote:I am interested in academia, appellate law and the judiciary, in that order (wish me luck). I am leaning towards Penn over NU, simply because I have a blind prejudice against Chicago. Also because the COL in Philly is a little better. I am very tempted by Vandy because 1) I like the South; 2) the debt would be slightly less obscene; and 3) they have lately made a big, fairly successful push to support students interested in academia.

With undergraduate debt and no desire for biglaw (unless Mayer Brown’s appellate practice comes calling), I anticipate having no option but to utilize LRAP/IBR/PSLF. As far as I can tell, law profs are gvt/non-profit employees and therefore eligible for PSLF. If I strike out there, and with the ACLU and the DOJ, I will just become a head-start preschool teacher.

My undergraduate debt is private, so another pro for Vandy is that, attending the school with the lowest COL, I might actually succeed in the harebrained scheme of paying off my private loans with federal (PSLF eligible) loan dollars. Again, wish me luck.

So it’s really: Penn v. Vandy

I wouldn't count on getting any of those things out of either school (although Penn/NU will leave you in a somewhat better position to do so).

Since you "can't stand" Chicago, compare LRAPs between Penn and Vandy applicable to your interests. Without a good LRAP, paying off either school without biglaw would be a struggle.

rad lulz
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Re: Vandy with $$, or go for broke (at Penn)?

Postby rad lulz » Mon Apr 02, 2012 8:46 pm

,
Last edited by rad lulz on Sun Apr 21, 2013 6:36 pm, edited 1 time in total.

rad lulz
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Re: Vandy with $$, or go for broke (at Penn)?

Postby rad lulz » Mon Apr 02, 2012 8:47 pm

Also, how much UG debt do you have?

pinkskirt
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Re: Vandy with $$, or go for broke (at Penn)?

Postby pinkskirt » Mon Apr 02, 2012 8:54 pm

TheDoof wrote:Half a sure thing is better than twice of nothing.


This is perfect. I feel like it answers my question; yet I still don't know where I should go to school.

HeavenWood wrote:compare LRAPs between Penn and Vandy applicable to your interests


And this is the key. To repay 170K (Vandy) or to repay 250K (Penn) appears equally impossible without biglaw or LRAP/IBR/PSLF. Thus, logically, I should attend Penn (better LRAP; slightly less miniscule chance at academia/fancy gvt work). But... doesn't everyone think that big number to the right is SCARY??

Law school triggers my fight or flight mechanism. This is real life.

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sunynp
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Re: Vandy with $$, or go for broke (at Penn)?

Postby sunynp » Mon Apr 02, 2012 8:58 pm

Both those numbers are scary. You are right to be scared. I'm feeling so debt averse right now that I vote go to neither. I think you need to seriously focus your goals.

And what are your numbers?

pinkskirt
Posts: 5
Joined: Tue Nov 22, 2011 8:46 pm

Re: Vandy with $$, or go for broke (at Penn)?

Postby pinkskirt » Mon Apr 02, 2012 10:17 pm

So, >30 and <40 undergrad debt. Mostly private. Costs me a tidy sum of 400/month.

LSAT 99th percentile; GPA 3.2 (yep, Penn was a surprise).

I guess my sampling of potential career options is kinda hilarious. The schizophrenic nature of my goals means: I basically just want to be a legal nerd somewhere, and I will do the best I can in LS and then take the best legal nerd job someone wants to give me. If that's law prof, then yay! If that's something I never expected, then... I'm like almost everyone else in the world. Just, which scenario will best realize my current set of (unlikely, ill-conceived, but given) goals?

shoeshine
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Re: Vandy with $$, or go for broke (at Penn)?

Postby shoeshine » Mon Apr 02, 2012 10:32 pm

rad lulz wrote:Bro you need to reexamine your career goals because they are an utter mess.

+ a million

HeavenWood
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Re: Vandy with $$, or go for broke (at Penn)?

Postby HeavenWood » Mon Apr 02, 2012 10:34 pm

pinkskirt wrote:So, >30 and <40 undergrad debt. Mostly private. Costs me a tidy sum of 400/month.

LSAT 99th percentile; GPA 3.2 (yep, Penn was a surprise).

I guess my sampling of potential career options is kinda hilarious. The schizophrenic nature of my goals means: I basically just want to be a legal nerd somewhere, and I will do the best I can in LS and then take the best legal nerd job someone wants to give me. If that's law prof, then yay! If that's something I never expected, then... I'm like almost everyone else in the world. Just, which scenario will best realize my current set of (unlikely, ill-conceived, but given) goals?

Penn or NU if you want to maximize your chances (however slim) at such preftigiouf legal work.

pinkskirt
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Re: Vandy with $$, or go for broke (at Penn)?

Postby pinkskirt » Mon Apr 02, 2012 11:02 pm

HeavenWood wrote:Penn or NU if you want to maximize your chances (however slim) at such preftigiouf legal work.


Yep. But the question that is gnawing at me is, will the extent to which Penn/NU maximize my chances actually make any difference in contrast to Vandy? Like, how if you buy 55 megamillion lottery tickets, the mathematicians will tell you that your odds don't actually go up. And if the mathematicians are right, wouldn't it make sense to do something a little more financially careful?

So the question becomes: Would Penn get me a whole lot more, or would Vandy be enough (since the chances are practically nil in any case)?

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bk1
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Re: Vandy with $$, or go for broke (at Penn)?

Postby bk1 » Mon Apr 02, 2012 11:05 pm

pinkskirt wrote:Yep. But the question that is gnawing at me is, will the extent to which Penn/NU maximize my chances actually make any difference in contrast to Vandy?

At your ridiculous stated goals? Probably not much.

At getting a job (biglaw) that can help you pay off your debt in a reasonable amount of time? Probably a decent amount.

HeavenWood
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Re: Vandy with $$, or go for broke (at Penn)?

Postby HeavenWood » Mon Apr 02, 2012 11:07 pm

bk1 wrote:
pinkskirt wrote:Yep. But the question that is gnawing at me is, will the extent to which Penn/NU maximize my chances actually make any difference in contrast to Vandy?

At your ridiculous stated goals? Probably not much.

At getting a job (biglaw) that can help you pay off your debt in a reasonable amount of time? Probably a decent amount.

TITCR

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Richie Tenenbaum
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Re: Vandy with $$, or go for broke (at Penn)?

Postby Richie Tenenbaum » Mon Apr 02, 2012 11:09 pm

pinkskirt wrote:
HeavenWood wrote:Penn or NU if you want to maximize your chances (however slim) at such preftigiouf legal work.


Yep. But the question that is gnawing at me is, will the extent to which Penn/NU maximize my chances actually make any difference in contrast to Vandy? Like, how if you buy 55 megamillion lottery tickets, the mathematicians will tell you that your odds don't actually go up. And if the mathematicians are right, wouldn't it make sense to do something a little more financially careful?

So the question becomes: Would Penn get me a whole lot more, or would Vandy be enough (since the chances are practically nil in any case)?


Your odds become better at Penn. If you are able to: be top ~5%, make LR, establish strong faculty ties, make ed. board, get your Note published, get a COA clerkship, get something good published, and then get a VAP (and work on publishing something else that's good)--then you actually are in pretty good shape coming from Penn. Vandy will make it harder to get a COA clerkship, to get a VAP, and to get a tenure track position after the VAP.

ETA: High grades at Penn will also give you a better shot at transferring to YH (maybe also try S?) after 1L.

But all of this warrants mentioning that none of this should be your main reason for choosing a school. Choose a school that you would be happy attending all 3 years and you would be happy with your job prospects if you ended up around median. Pipe dreams are nice to have, but don't make them your main goals (until at least you start accomplishing some of these steps).

pinkskirt
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Re: Vandy with $$, or go for broke (at Penn)?

Postby pinkskirt » Tue Apr 03, 2012 11:48 am

Thanks to everyone who has posted positive/constructive comments so far. As for the rest of you: May you attain only the most attainable of goals.

If we are finished parsing the proabability of dreams (and I really request that we be), I would love some specific feedback from people with knowledge and thoughts regarding borrowing sticker at a T-14. And, even more specifically, borrowing sticker at a T-14 with alternative - read non-biglaw - career goals.

Are you doing it? Do you regret it? Do you think it's worth it? Are you scared like me, and what is your battle plan?

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cogitoergosum
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Re: Vandy with $$, or go for broke (at Penn)?

Postby cogitoergosum » Tue Apr 03, 2012 4:24 pm

pinkskirt wrote:Thanks to everyone who has posted positive/constructive comments so far. As for the rest of you: May you attain only the most attainable of goals.

If we are finished parsing the proabability of dreams (and I really request that we be), I would love some specific feedback from people with knowledge and thoughts regarding borrowing sticker at a T-14. And, even more specifically, borrowing sticker at a T-14 with alternative - read non-biglaw - career goals.

Are you doing it? Do you regret it? Do you think it's worth it? Are you scared like me, and what is your battle plan?

Since the legal geek thing is far from a sure thing, and since loan repayments ARE a sure thing, and if indeed you are not interested in biglaw, then you should probably approach it like everyone else who's into PI - read researching LRAP programs - because LRAP is your likely hope of paying your loans.




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