Duke vs. UVA vs. Chicago

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fuzzypickles
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Duke vs. UVA vs. Chicago

Postby fuzzypickles » Fri Apr 06, 2012 9:24 pm

I know most people would say Chicago, and we would probably all agree that it's the best school of the three, but I think there are a lot of factors to consider. First, Duke is offering me 72k, UVA is offering 75k, and Chicago is offering 45k. Also, I visited Duke and loved it. I really like the small class size, the college town feel, the warm weather, and the overall atmosphere with the student body. I've also been a huge fan of Duke basketball, so I've been kinda biased there for a while. I didn't get a chance to visit UVA, but I talked to some people who did who said the campus was similar.

Visiting Chicago, though, was a different story. Obviously, its location is very different from Duke's and UVA's, but I didn't dislike it as much as I thought I would. The main thing I had a problem with was the students, both admitted and current. Many of the admitted students I talked to were way too eager to brag about how they got into Yale, Harvard, and Stanford. One even told me his exact LSAT score, gpa, and scholarship for Chicago. With the current students, a lot seemed really arrogant and full of themselves. When I told them the other schools I was looking at, most scoffed at the idea that I was even considering such inferior schools. Later in the weekend, I met some others who didn't seem so bad, so I may have just had some bad luck during my first couple days there. Overall, I felt like I fit in better with the Duke students (and I think UVA students are probably similar to Duke).

Chicago, though, does have its advantages. It has the smallest class size of the three and is ranked highest. Everyone at Chicago couldn't stop talking about how everyone is pretty much guaranteed a job at graduation, no matter what your grades are. I wonder, though, once you start talking about great schools like Duke, UVA, and Chicago, how many more opportunities can Chicago provide that Duke and UVA can't? (I don't plan on working in the Midwest.) Also, how much does class size really matter?

Sorry if this all sounds a little disjointed; I've had so much floating around in my head the past couple weeks. Given all these considerations, I think I'm currently leaning toward UVA. While I still want to visit just to confirm how I feel about it, I feel like it has all and more of the pros that Duke has (except basketball...) for virtually the same price. So now I want to hear all of your opinions on this complicated mess I've created. Thanks.

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Dany
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Re: Duke vs. UVA vs. Chicago

Postby Dany » Fri Apr 06, 2012 9:30 pm

I think the ~$30k in extra scholarship money at Duke/UVA is plenty to justify attending them over Chicago if you liked them better.
Last edited by Dany on Fri Apr 06, 2012 9:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Mal Reynolds
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Re: Duke vs. UVA vs. Chicago

Postby Mal Reynolds » Fri Apr 06, 2012 9:31 pm

Edited for creepiness.
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rayiner
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Re: Duke vs. UVA vs. Chicago

Postby rayiner » Fri Apr 06, 2012 9:32 pm

If you liked the school and the city, I'd put up with the people to go to Chicago. The placement difference between Duke and Chicago is not huge, but it's worth a lot more than $28k. If you consider that the difference between getting big law and striking out is say $1 million over your career, a 10% placement difference is worth about $100k.

bdubs
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Re: Duke vs. UVA vs. Chicago

Postby bdubs » Fri Apr 06, 2012 9:51 pm

fuzzypickles wrote:The main thing I had a problem with was the students, both admitted and current. Many of the admitted students I talked to were way too eager to brag about how they got into Yale, Harvard, and Stanford. One even told me his exact LSAT score, gpa, and scholarship for Chicago.


Remember that a substantial fraction of the people at ASWs are not going to end up going to the school. Some of the people I found most obnoxious at the NU ASW didn't end up coming to the school (thank god). Your experiences with current students are probably more telling, but I don't think it's as bad as you might think. ASW is about selling the school, the people who run ASW are the people who are most interested in selling everyone else on how great the school is.

Bottom line, take impressions from ASW with a grain of salt.

CanadianWolf
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Re: Duke vs. UVA vs. Chicago

Postby CanadianWolf » Fri Apr 06, 2012 9:58 pm

Interesting that you're not considering the full tuition scholarship from BYU which is your undergraduate school. Also interesting that you're leaning toward the only law school among Chicago, Duke & Virginia that you haven't visited.

Based on your post, Duke seems to be the best option for you. BYU second.

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funkyturds
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Re: Duke vs. UVA vs. Chicago

Postby funkyturds » Fri Apr 06, 2012 10:57 pm

my input: many of the chiller students at UChi don't give a fuck about admitted students or selling their school, so you get a self-selecting group talking to you for the most part.

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sach1282
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Re: Duke vs. UVA vs. Chicago

Postby sach1282 » Fri Apr 06, 2012 11:34 pm

My experience at the Duke ASW was so fun and the current students were so chill that it was actually a huge part of my decision. It also doesn't hurt that the school is in the middle of a giant old-growth forest that's incredibly gorgeous. One night there was a big group of current/admitted hanging out at this brewery and we won a $50 bar tab in the quiz bowl, lol. I can't rave enough about the current Duke students.

Just sent my seat deposit today! I can't wait for summer start.

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TaipeiMort
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Re: Duke vs. UVA vs. Chicago

Postby TaipeiMort » Sat Apr 07, 2012 1:33 am

fuzzypickles wrote:I know most people would say Chicago, and we would probably all agree that it's the best school of the three, but I think there are a lot of factors to consider. First, Duke is offering me 72k, UVA is offering 75k, and Chicago is offering 45k. Also, I visited Duke and loved it. I really like the small class size, the college town feel, the warm weather, and the overall atmosphere with the student body. I've also been a huge fan of Duke basketball, so I've been kinda biased there for a while. I didn't get a chance to visit UVA, but I talked to some people who did who said the campus was similar.

Visiting Chicago, though, was a different story. Obviously, its location is very different from Duke's and UVA's, but I didn't dislike it as much as I thought I would. The main thing I had a problem with was the students, both admitted and current. Many of the admitted students I talked to were way too eager to brag about how they got into Yale, Harvard, and Stanford. One even told me his exact LSAT score, gpa, and scholarship for Chicago. With the current students, a lot seemed really arrogant and full of themselves. When I told them the other schools I was looking at, most scoffed at the idea that I was even considering such inferior schools. Later in the weekend, I met some others who didn't seem so bad, so I may have just had some bad luck during my first couple days there. Overall, I felt like I fit in better with the Duke students (and I think UVA students are probably similar to Duke).

Chicago, though, does have its advantages. It has the smallest class size of the three and is ranked highest. Everyone at Chicago couldn't stop talking about how everyone is pretty much guaranteed a job at graduation, no matter what your grades are. I wonder, though, once you start talking about great schools like Duke, UVA, and Chicago, how many more opportunities can Chicago provide that Duke and UVA can't? (I don't plan on working in the Midwest.) Also, how much does class size really matter?

Sorry if this all sounds a little disjointed; I've had so much floating around in my head the past couple weeks. Given all these considerations, I think I'm currently leaning toward UVA. While I still want to visit just to confirm how I feel about it, I feel like it has all and more of the pros that Duke has (except basketball...) for virtually the same price. So now I want to hear all of your opinions on this complicated mess I've created. Thanks.


I think we spoke at Chicago's ASW. I'm just going to say that 1) UVA and Duke are both awesome schools that would def both be nicer and cheaper to live in than Chicago and offer a more relaxed, collegiate experience, 2) if you want NYC deals work or mid-law, I think the gamble may be justified, 3) if you want West Coast, Texas or another market where you have marginal ties, it will be much harder from UVA and even more so from Duke than Chicago, 4) the real plus of Chicago outside of jobs is the educational quality-- I have loved almost every class and the very small, skilled faculty IS the experience.

To reiterate, if you are going to school for the academic experience or to get a job outside of NYC-deals or Mid-law, Chicago would be a great choice. If you are going for the collegiate/happy/sunny experience, and would be happy with NYC deals or even DC if you do well, then I would go to Duke or UVA over Chicago with the extra $$ and not regret it at all.

fuzzypickles
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Re: Duke vs. UVA vs. Chicago

Postby fuzzypickles » Sat Apr 07, 2012 10:03 am

CanadianWolf wrote:Interesting that you're not considering the full tuition scholarship from BYU which is your undergraduate school. Also interesting that you're leaning toward the only law school among Chicago, Duke & Virginia that you haven't visited.

As much as I really do love BYU, it's time to move on. Provo has its own cultural bubble separated from the real world, and that charm can die really quickly. As far as leaning toward Virginia, I think it's also worth noting that I've been changing my mind pretty much on a daily basis. I just happened to be on one of my Virginia phases when I posted.

TaipeiMort wrote:3) if you want West Coast, Texas or another market where you have marginal ties, it will be much harder from UVA and even more so from Duke than Chicago

Looking at the employment data for all three schools, it's true that Chicago has the highest placement in the West, but I wonder how much of that is self-selection. On the data alone, it's also hard to tell exact placement in Texas, since different schools lump in different states in the same region as Texas for their employment stats.

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Nelson
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Re: Duke vs. UVA vs. Chicago

Postby Nelson » Sat Apr 07, 2012 10:38 am

It's worth asking Duke for more money if you're leaning that way.

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Emma.
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Re: Duke vs. UVA vs. Chicago

Postby Emma. » Sat Apr 07, 2012 10:46 am

funkyturds wrote:my input: many of the chiller students at UChi don't give a fuck about admitted students or selling their school, so you get a self-selecting group talking to you for the most part.


This is about right.

OP, I'm sorry you had a shitty experience with the current students you met. I think there were some great students who participated in ASW but every year it also ends up attracting people that do stupid shit like what you mentioned, even though the admissions department do their best to make it clear to everyone that it isn't acceptable to talk shit about other schools.

It isn't much assurance to hear it from a random person over the internet, but a good portion of the student body here are actually normal human beings. I think in my class especially, the normal relaxed kids are actually in the majority. If you didn't think you would be happy at Chicago you shouldn't come here, but I also want to point out that you shouldn't judge us based on the other admits, since we have several other admitted students events besides ASW and a lot of the kids at ASW end up at different schools. (Unfortunately It sounds like judging us based on your experience of the current students doesn't make us look much better though :? )

I would actually disagree with Dany that $30k from Duke makes up for the differences between the schools. If you want to end up working in the South then take Duke by all means. If you want to work anywhere else in the country then the job opportunities out of Chicago are going to be significantly different. It may have seemed like empty bragging after your other experiences, but the stuff people told you about job prospects sounds like it was probably (at least mostly) true.

duckmoney
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Re: Duke vs. UVA vs. Chicago

Postby duckmoney » Sat Apr 07, 2012 10:50 am

fuzzypickles wrote:
Visiting Chicago, though, was a different story. Obviously, its location is very different from Duke's and UVA's, but I didn't dislike it as much as I thought I would. The main thing I had a problem with was the students, both admitted and current. Many of the admitted students I talked to were way too eager to brag about how they got into Yale, Harvard, and Stanford. One even told me his exact LSAT score, gpa, and scholarship for Chicago. With the current students, a lot seemed really arrogant and full of themselves. When I told them the other schools I was looking at, most scoffed at the idea that I was even considering such inferior schools. Later in the weekend, I met some others who didn't seem so bad, so I may have just had some bad luck during my first couple days there. Overall, I felt like I fit in better with the Duke students (and I think UVA students are probably similar to Duke).


These pricks will end up going to HYS and won't enroll at Chicago. I wouldn't worry about them. Chicago has a strong culture of not discussing grades, admission stats, and scholarships. Out of the 20 or so Rubenstein scholars in my class, I only know who one of them is, and I think I found that out by accident.

fuzzypickles wrote:Looking at the employment data for all three schools, it's true that Chicago has the highest placement in the West, but I wonder how much of that is self-selection. On the data alone, it's also hard to tell exact placement in Texas, since different schools lump in different states in the same region as Texas for their employment stats.


Chicago is a bit more national of a school than Duke and UVA. Even with marginal ties, if you establish a compelling reason to want to live in a place (say, you have good reasons for liking the culture / climate and you spend your 1L summer though), you can often get a job there. I know several people with marginal or no ties to Texas who have SAs there. I'm not sure about the west coast but I would think it was similar.

EdgarWinter
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Re: Duke vs. UVA vs. Chicago

Postby EdgarWinter » Sat Apr 07, 2012 11:57 am

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acrossthelake
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Re: Duke vs. UVA vs. Chicago

Postby acrossthelake » Sat Apr 07, 2012 12:33 pm

I had a fairly negative experience with 2 people I met at my school's ASW, and a fairly neutral one with the rest. Since I was pretty much already set on it, I still went anyway, but it sure dampened my excitement to have had that negative experience. As it turns out, I really love the people I have met here as a student. I have a great group of friends and I'm really rather happy with my life socially. I think one of the two ended up going elsewhere, though I still see the other in the hallways. It would've been unfortunate if I had turned down this school because I happened to meet basically the least friendly person I've ever met here at ASW. It's something to keep in mind re: Chicago. From personal experience, I've never found admit days to really be all that useful, either as a current student when ASW was going on or from the other end.

envisciguy
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Re: Duke vs. UVA vs. Chicago

Postby envisciguy » Sat Apr 07, 2012 4:17 pm

I can't comment on Chicago at all since I didn't apply there, but I just recently decided between Duke and UVA with comparable scholarships. They're pretty similar in terms of the students and the college-town feel, but there is a different vibe at both that's hard to describe. Charlottesville has everything right off the campus grounds, while Durham is a little more spread out. The actual law school buildings and their locations relative to the rest of the campus are also different. I personally liked the vibe at UVA more, but you should definitely visit UVA and then go with whichever one you feel better about.

All of your three choices are great though and you really can't make a bad decision.

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cjcregg
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Re: Duke vs. UVA vs. Chicago

Postby cjcregg » Sat Apr 07, 2012 7:44 pm

I think I may have met you at Chicago's ASW...i'm not sure how many BYU admitted students there are. I was certainly put off by a few Chicago students I met, but overall most seemed fairly down-to-earth. I think it's likely you'll find a happier, more nurturing group at UVa and Duke. There's a lot of validity to what was posted earlier that those who feel Chicago students are beneath them will not end up at Chicago. It seems like most Chicago students appreciate that they are among equals as the sort of people who choose Chicago and the sort of people who get into Chicago probably overlap to describe a very small group of people.

rad lulz
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Re: Duke vs. UVA vs. Chicago

Postby rad lulz » Sat Apr 07, 2012 8:16 pm

Dany wrote:I think the ~$30k in extra scholarship money at Duke/UVA is plenty to justify attending them over Chicago if you liked them better.

tricks1234
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Re: Duke vs. UVA vs. Chicago

Postby tricks1234 » Sat Apr 07, 2012 9:00 pm

funkyturds wrote:my input: many of the chiller students at UChi don't give a fuck about admitted students or selling their school, so you get a self-selecting group talking to you for the most part.


this is so true. many of my friends live in the real city, way north of hyde park, and even the ones who live in hyde park would never consider going to the law school on a friday (upperclassmen don't have classes on friday). Be suspicious of any 2Ls/3Ls that you met at asw; they represent a small portion of the class.

yes, at chi you're going to have to put up with arrogant pricks, but keep two things in mind: 1) it's good practice for dealing with senior partners and probably, opposing counsel. 2) after 1L year you can totally avoid them outside the 10 hours/week you have law class 3) placement over uva and duke is worth it

don't let the pricks ruin your shot at the best law school you got into.

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NinerFan
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Re: Duke vs. UVA vs. Chicago

Postby NinerFan » Sat Apr 07, 2012 9:11 pm

tricks1234 wrote:
funkyturds wrote:my input: many of the chiller students at UChi don't give a fuck about admitted students or selling their school, so you get a self-selecting group talking to you for the most part.


this is so true. many of my friends live in the real city, way north of hyde park, and even the ones who live in hyde park would never consider going to the law school on a friday (upperclassmen don't have classes on friday). Be suspicious of any 2Ls/3Ls that you met at asw; they represent a small portion of the class.

yes, at chi you're going to have to put up with arrogant pricks, but keep two things in mind: 1) it's good practice for dealing with senior partners and probably, opposing counsel. 2) after 1L year you can totally avoid them outside the 10 hours/week you have law class 3) placement over uva and duke is worth it

don't let the pricks ruin your shot at the best law school you got into.


Be suspicious of any of the current 2L/3L students you meet at an ASW? Yikes. I guess random internet posters are much more trustworthy.

desertlaw
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Re: Duke vs. UVA vs. Chicago

Postby desertlaw » Sat Apr 07, 2012 9:45 pm

OP - BYU has a pretty strong contingent here at UVa. Not sure why, maybe it's a conservative self-selection thing, but there is a strong Mormon/BYU community here at UVa. I'm not part of it, but have friends that are. PM me if you have more questions about UVa. It's a great place and there are plenty of us from UVa headed to the west coast so don't let one of the posters worry you that West Coast is out of the picture.

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AntipodeanPhil
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Re: Duke vs. UVA vs. Chicago

Postby AntipodeanPhil » Sun Apr 08, 2012 2:33 am

fuzzypickles wrote:Many of the admitted students I talked to were way too eager to brag about how they got into Yale, Harvard, and Stanford. One even told me his exact LSAT score, gpa, and scholarship for Chicago. With the current students, a lot seemed really arrogant and full of themselves. When I told them the other schools I was looking at, most scoffed at the idea that I was even considering such inferior schools. Later in the weekend, I met some others who didn't seem so bad, so I may have just had some bad luck during my first couple days there. Overall, I felt like I fit in better with the Duke students (and I think UVA students are probably similar to Duke).

Curious. I didn't go there to brag, but the problem I had is that EVERY conversation with another admitted student involved that person asking me: "What other schools are you considering? Where are you leaning?" Because I've got into other good schools it probably seemed boastful. I got sick of that conversation quickly, but there seemed to be no way to avoid it.

That said, while I didn't like some of the admitted students, and came across a couple of complete social retards (one of whom wouldn't leave me alone), I liked the current students a lot more. Sure, they were all about how great Chicago was, but I didn't interpret that as boastful or arrogant - they just happen to believe that Chicago is a great school and want to convince you of that.

I would be anxious about basing any decision on your perception of the students, though. That is going to vary a lot depending on who you happen to meet. Like I said, I met a couple of complete douchebags, but I don't think either is going to Chicago.

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TaipeiMort
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Re: Duke vs. UVA vs. Chicago

Postby TaipeiMort » Sun Apr 08, 2012 2:40 pm

fuzzypickles wrote:Looking at the employment data for all three schools, it's true that Chicago has the highest placement in the West, but I wonder how much of that is self-selection. On the data alone, it's also hard to tell exact placement in Texas, since different schools lump in different states in the same region as Texas for their employment stats.


Once again, I'm not going to say that there aren't some pretty awesome reasons to go to Duke, and maybe a couple for UVA too, but Chicago is national in placement
and the other two are not. If you attend UVA or Duke expecting to get a job outside of NYC or the South, or maybe DC if you kill it, then you will be disappointed. If you go to Duke or UVA expecting to get a big law job from the median, then you will be disappointed. Apologies if Chicago students sounded prideful or boastful in suggesting that the market reality is that below median can get you a job anywhere from Chicago, and that Duke and UVA don't have similar reach. However, that is the reality. I received callbacks in 10+ markets from the median and my buds at tge bottom got great offers. We sacrifice nice weather and cheap COL for job security and educational quality and will be straightforward with you about this if you ask.

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NinerFan
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Re: Duke vs. UVA vs. Chicago

Postby NinerFan » Sun Apr 08, 2012 2:51 pm

Damn, I guess all those UVA and Duke grads that don't work in NYC, the South, and maybe DC are all mirages, or lying about their resumes.

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Bronck
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Re: Duke vs. UVA vs. Chicago

Postby Bronck » Sun Apr 08, 2012 3:06 pm

TaipeiMort wrote:
fuzzypickles wrote:Looking at the employment data for all three schools, it's true that Chicago has the highest placement in the West, but I wonder how much of that is self-selection. On the data alone, it's also hard to tell exact placement in Texas, since different schools lump in different states in the same region as Texas for their employment stats.


Once again, I'm not going to say that there aren't some pretty awesome reasons to go to Duke, and maybe a couple for UVA too, but Chicago is national in placement
and the other two are not. If you attend UVA or Duke expecting to get a job outside of NYC or the South, or maybe DC if you kill it, then you will be disappointed. If you go to Duke or UVA expecting to get a big law job from the median, then you will be disappointed. Apologies if Chicago students sounded prideful or boastful in suggesting that the market reality is that below median can get you a job anywhere from Chicago, and that Duke and UVA don't have similar reach. However, that is the reality. I received callbacks in 10+ markets from the median and my buds at tge bottom got great offers. We sacrifice nice weather and cheap COL for job security and educational quality and will be straightforward with you about this if you ask.


Lmao




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