NU vs. Cornell vs. Duke

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

NU (45k) vs. Duke (67.5k) vs. Cornell (75k)

Northwestern
19
26%
Duke
24
33%
Cornell
30
41%
 
Total votes: 73

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cactuarX3
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NU vs. Cornell vs. Duke

Postby cactuarX3 » Tue Apr 03, 2012 1:47 am

Fellow TLS junkies,

I think I'm at the point in my cycle where I'm going to have to start narrowing down my options (if not making a decision altogether). Barring a miracle at H/S, my choices are:

Duke (with $67.5k merit aid)
Northwestern (with $45k)
Cornell (with $75k)

THE GOAL: Biglaw in either NYC, Chicago or Bay Area. No preference on any of those 3 locations. Socal is a distant 4th.

Pros and cons for each according to my personal preferences:

Northwestern
Pros: Older, more experienced student body (i'm an older student as well); focus on practical education (based on their Plan 2008); downtown Chicago location
Cons: Shittier social scene due to older student body (supposedly); higher COL

Duke
Pros: Lower COL; possibly better social scene?
Cons: need a car; don't like Durham that much

Cornell
Pros: Lower COL; more scholarship money; biglaw powerhouse for NYC
Cons: Ithaca is TERRIBLE

Any advice/feedback is greatly appreciated as always.

t14fanboy
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Re: NU vs. Cornell vs. Duke

Postby t14fanboy » Tue Apr 03, 2012 1:57 am

All 3 can get you to NY, but only NU seems to give you the edge in Chicago. So since it gives you 2/4 markets you listed and paying 20-30k more isn't earth-shattering, NU.

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buckilaw
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Re: NU vs. Cornell vs. Duke

Postby buckilaw » Tue Apr 03, 2012 2:16 am

I want to say NU after looking at your pros and cons. But the difference in $ is hard to get over. If you can get a bit more $ from NU then NU hands down.

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cactuarX3
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Re: NU vs. Cornell vs. Duke

Postby cactuarX3 » Tue Apr 03, 2012 4:24 am

Sadly, I tried negotiating with NU but no luck so far....

CanadianWolf
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Re: NU vs. Cornell vs. Duke

Postby CanadianWolf » Tue Apr 03, 2012 7:02 am

Northwestern for reasonable chances at both Chicago & NYC biglaw. If you think Ithaca is terrible, then the additional $30,000 in scholarship money over three years is not enough to give up Northwestern.

P.S. Many find Ithaca to be much nicer than Durham.

dixiecupdrinking
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Re: NU vs. Cornell vs. Duke

Postby dixiecupdrinking » Tue Apr 03, 2012 7:50 am

No need to go to Cornell over Duke if you don't like it there. I think any NYC biglaw advantage it seems to have over Duke is mostly smoke and mirrors.

NU is a tougher call but honestly, I'd probably go there if these were my options. I think your concerns about the social life are ill-founded. Trust me, people still go out at 24-25 years old.

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Doorkeeper
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Re: NU vs. Cornell vs. Duke

Postby Doorkeeper » Tue Apr 03, 2012 9:52 am

With these money amounts, this choice should be between Duke and Cornell. Otherwise, use the scholarships from these schools to negotiate with Northwestern and see if they can bump their scholarship up to 50-60k. Then go there.

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franklyscarlet
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Re: NU vs. Cornell vs. Duke

Postby franklyscarlet » Tue Apr 03, 2012 9:53 am

I think the social scene at NU should be awesome. Mostly because of the TLSers heading that way next year :-D

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flem
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Re: NU vs. Cornell vs. Duke

Postby flem » Tue Apr 03, 2012 9:54 am

cactuarX3 wrote:Pros: possibly better social scene?


QF having never met anyone from Duke.

If it was me I'd do NU.

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beachbum
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Re: NU vs. Cornell vs. Duke

Postby beachbum » Tue Apr 03, 2012 10:02 am

flem wrote:
cactuarX3 wrote:Pros: possibly better social scene?


QF having never met anyone from Duke.

If it was me I'd do NU.


QF having never met anyone from Duke Law.

woeisme
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Re: NU vs. Cornell vs. Duke

Postby woeisme » Tue Apr 03, 2012 10:06 am

Tough choice between essentially peer schools. I'd follow the money and go to Cornell, unless you felt Chicago biglaw was preferable to NYC biglaw, in which case NU might be more attractive. I don't see the real argument for Duke here, unless you just liked it a lot more than the others.

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Lincoln
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Re: NU vs. Cornell vs. Duke

Postby Lincoln » Tue Apr 03, 2012 10:13 am

Have you visited Ithaca? I actually really like it here, but to each his/her own. If you really do hate it, don't come, but with a bigger scholly and (I would argue) better BIgLaw opportunities, Cornell is the better choice. Cornell won't lock you out of any of the markets you mention, and does better in NYC.

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Samara
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Re: NU vs. Cornell vs. Duke

Postby Samara » Tue Apr 03, 2012 10:27 am

I always laugh when people say that the social scene is supposedly lesser because NU students are older. The median age at NU is 26 which is only two years older than most schools. I didn't realize I stopped being able to have fun when I turned 25 last summer. Besides, you're in the middle of the third-largest city in America. I don't think you will want for social opportunities.

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cactuarX3
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Re: NU vs. Cornell vs. Duke

Postby cactuarX3 » Tue Apr 03, 2012 12:41 pm

franklyscarlet wrote:I think the social scene at NU should be awesome. Mostly because of the TLSers heading that way next year :-D


True that. Okay, probably the few stores I've heard are unfounded then. I've already tried negotiating $$$ with them, but they definitely won't budge. Has anyone had any luck doing this with NU?

Renzo
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Re: NU vs. Cornell vs. Duke

Postby Renzo » Tue Apr 03, 2012 12:45 pm

I'd scratch Duke off the list, even though I really liked it when I was deciding between schools. NU v. Cornell is a tougher call, but I'd pick NU.

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bk1
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Re: NU vs. Cornell vs. Duke

Postby bk1 » Tue Apr 03, 2012 12:47 pm

Cost differences between them don't seem huge. I'd pick your preference including your preference for a little less debt.

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rayiner
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Re: NU vs. Cornell vs. Duke

Postby rayiner » Tue Apr 03, 2012 12:48 pm

Samara wrote:I always laugh when people say that the social scene is supposedly lesser because NU students are older. The median age at NU is 26 which is only two years older than most schools. I didn't realize I stopped being able to have fun when I turned 25 last summer. Besides, you're in the middle of the third-largest city in America. I don't think you will want for social opportunities.


The social scene here is different. You're in a big city with a bunch of people who spent a few years working and making grown-up money. I think it skews a lot more to the nice restaurant/nice lounge than in Ann Arbor, Durham, Ithaca, or Charlottesville.

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Samara
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Re: NU vs. Cornell vs. Duke

Postby Samara » Tue Apr 03, 2012 12:53 pm

rayiner wrote:
Samara wrote:I always laugh when people say that the social scene is supposedly lesser because NU students are older. The median age at NU is 26 which is only two years older than most schools. I didn't realize I stopped being able to have fun when I turned 25 last summer. Besides, you're in the middle of the third-largest city in America. I don't think you will want for social opportunities.


The social scene here is different. You're in a big city with a bunch of people who spent a few years working and making grown-up money. I think it skews a lot more to the nice restaurant/nice lounge than in Ann Arbor, Durham, Ithaca, or Charlottesville.

Yeah, I don't expect there to be a bunch of beer pong-fueled frat parties, but aren't people over that scene by the time they graduate from UG? Maybe I am old...

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cactuarX3
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Re: NU vs. Cornell vs. Duke

Postby cactuarX3 » Tue Apr 03, 2012 12:54 pm

Great advice everyone, thanks! Basically, I wanted to be able to pay one year COA with merit aid, one year through my own savings, and finance the last year through loans (or 2L SA income if I'm lucky). With Cornell/Duke, I can do that, but with NU, it seems like I only get maybe 2/3rds of a year COA. Should this $15-$30k difference really impact my decision at all?

Renzo
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Re: NU vs. Cornell vs. Duke

Postby Renzo » Tue Apr 03, 2012 12:55 pm

Samara wrote:
rayiner wrote:
Samara wrote:I always laugh when people say that the social scene is supposedly lesser because NU students are older. The median age at NU is 26 which is only two years older than most schools. I didn't realize I stopped being able to have fun when I turned 25 last summer. Besides, you're in the middle of the third-largest city in America. I don't think you will want for social opportunities.


The social scene here is different. You're in a big city with a bunch of people who spent a few years working and making grown-up money. I think it skews a lot more to the nice restaurant/nice lounge than in Ann Arbor, Durham, Ithaca, or Charlottesville.

Yeah, I don't expect there to be a bunch of beer pong-fueled frat parties, but aren't people over that scene by the time they graduate from UG? Maybe I am old...


You (and I) are old. I am always fucking astounded when my some of my classmates choose to go play beer-pong, given the infinity of drinking/social opportunities that exist in NYC.

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cactuarX3
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Re: NU vs. Cornell vs. Duke

Postby cactuarX3 » Tue Apr 03, 2012 1:00 pm

Samara wrote:
rayiner wrote:
Samara wrote:I always laugh when people say that the social scene is supposedly lesser because NU students are older. The median age at NU is 26 which is only two years older than most schools. I didn't realize I stopped being able to have fun when I turned 25 last summer. Besides, you're in the middle of the third-largest city in America. I don't think you will want for social opportunities.


The social scene here is different. You're in a big city with a bunch of people who spent a few years working and making grown-up money. I think it skews a lot more to the nice restaurant/nice lounge than in Ann Arbor, Durham, Ithaca, or Charlottesville.

Yeah, I don't expect there to be a bunch of beer pong-fueled frat parties, but aren't people over that scene by the time they graduate from UG? Maybe I am old...


Oh I'm definitely not looking for the "UG experience" again. Hell, I'm probably going to be on the older end of students come this fall but I had just heard that there might be a large % of students who are the married/long-term relationship type of people who don't want to/don't have time to hang out with anyone else (not saying any of you guys are like that). Seems like that's probably not true though.

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kennethellenparcell
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Re: NU vs. Cornell vs. Duke

Postby kennethellenparcell » Tue Apr 03, 2012 1:09 pm

cactuarX3 wrote:
Samara wrote:
rayiner wrote:
Samara wrote:I always laugh when people say that the social scene is supposedly lesser because NU students are older. The median age at NU is 26 which is only two years older than most schools. I didn't realize I stopped being able to have fun when I turned 25 last summer. Besides, you're in the middle of the third-largest city in America. I don't think you will want for social opportunities.


The social scene here is different. You're in a big city with a bunch of people who spent a few years working and making grown-up money. I think it skews a lot more to the nice restaurant/nice lounge than in Ann Arbor, Durham, Ithaca, or Charlottesville.

Yeah, I don't expect there to be a bunch of beer pong-fueled frat parties, but aren't people over that scene by the time they graduate from UG? Maybe I am old...


Oh I'm definitely not looking for the "UG experience" again. Hell, I'm probably going to be on the older end of students come this fall but I had just heard that there might be a large % of students who are the married/long-term relationship type of people who don't want to/don't have time to hang out with anyone else (not saying any of you guys are like that). Seems like that's probably not true though.


Really? Because judging from the # of times I've gotten that diverse admitted students/students with spouses lunch invitation e-mail from NU - it seems like there may be a dearth of these types. :D I've seen somewhere (maybe on these boards??) that NU is maybe 20% committed/married students. Also, this 0L is not among that group, not 25 yet, and pretty sure that NU is where I'm going.

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rayiner
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Re: NU vs. Cornell vs. Duke

Postby rayiner » Tue Apr 03, 2012 1:16 pm

Samara wrote:
rayiner wrote:
Samara wrote:I always laugh when people say that the social scene is supposedly lesser because NU students are older. The median age at NU is 26 which is only two years older than most schools. I didn't realize I stopped being able to have fun when I turned 25 last summer. Besides, you're in the middle of the third-largest city in America. I don't think you will want for social opportunities.


The social scene here is different. You're in a big city with a bunch of people who spent a few years working and making grown-up money. I think it skews a lot more to the nice restaurant/nice lounge than in Ann Arbor, Durham, Ithaca, or Charlottesville.

Yeah, I don't expect there to be a bunch of beer pong-fueled frat parties, but aren't people over that scene by the time they graduate from UG? Maybe I am old...


I mean, don't get me wrong, there are beer pong-fueled frat parties. Some people are into that. But there is also a lot more hanging out at lounges and stuff. I just think that the difference between 40% straight out of UG and 5% straight out of UG tends to skew the social scene strongly to the latter. And then there is the fact that C-ville, Ithaca, etc, don't really have as much for the restaurant/lounge crowd as Chicago.

Oh I'm definitely not looking for the "UG experience" again. Hell, I'm probably going to be on the older end of students come this fall but I had just heard that there might be a large % of students who are the married/long-term relationship type of people who don't want to/don't have time to hang out with anyone else (not saying any of you guys are like that). Seems like that's probably not true though.


There are a lot more married/LTR people. That 2 year difference is during a period when a lot of people settle into serious relationships. It's not that those people aren't fun, and they're in the minority, but it's noticeable when say 10% of the people in your class are married.

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crumpetsandtea
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Re: NU vs. Cornell vs. Duke

Postby crumpetsandtea » Tue Apr 03, 2012 1:43 pm

cactuarX3 wrote:Northwestern
Pros: Older, more experienced student body (i'm an older student as well); focus on practical education (based on their Plan 2008); downtown Chicago location
Cons: Shittier social scene due to older student body (supposedly); higher COL

I will be at NU, we can hang out.

/decision.

:lol: JK JK, seriously though, from what I've seen/heard about NU, there really aren't many issues RE: the social scene. I think it's more of a you-create-your-own social scene since we don't, for example, have a huge LS frat house like Ann Arbor does. But as long as you know how to call a friend up or show up to bar review, I doubt that the social scene is that bad. I mean, you'll be living in Chicago!

Also, there's plenty of younger people with WE - I mean, I'm only 22, for example, and I'm sure there's a bunch of other people in similar situations (22/23 year olds with a year of WE at NU).

Anyway, I do think NU is a good choice for you because of your ranking of Chicago & NYC as your markets of choice.

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whitman
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Re: NU vs. Cornell vs. Duke

Postby whitman » Tue Apr 03, 2012 2:08 pm

Just FYI, Cornell and Northwestern and ridiculously expensive to begin with. Most people are probably voting Cornell based on the higher scholarship number. However, Duke is the cheapest of the lot here.

I vote Duke.




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