$75K Chicago, $75K Columbia, ?? Berkeley

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

Poll

UChicago ($75K)
13
46%
Columbia ($75K)
12
43%
Berkeley (Total amount unknown)
3
11%
 
Total votes: 28

jungminnee
Posts: 91
Joined: Fri Jun 17, 2011 1:44 pm

$75K Chicago, $75K Columbia, ?? Berkeley

Postby jungminnee » Mon Apr 16, 2012 12:34 pm

Any input would be appreciated!

I've already withdrawn from other schools I've been admitted to, so it comes down to these 3 choices. For Berkeley, they've given me a need-based grant of ~$20K and haven't notified me about any matching scholarships or whatnot. I'm a K-JD, currently going to school in Philly, but originally from SoCal. As of now, I'd love to practice in Cali, but I do want to keep my options open. I'm not sure how much going to Berkeley would lower possibilities of working in the east coast...

Not all that interested in big law - maybe a couple years out of law school to deal with the debt, but definitely not a long term career goal.

Unfortunately, I haven't been able to visit any of the schools' ASW due to time/$ conflicts, so I can't say I have much of a "feel" for the schools =/

It's mid-April and I would love to make a solid decision soon. Thanks in advance for any insight!

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Doorkeeper
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Joined: Thu Jan 12, 2012 11:25 pm

Re: $75K Chicago, $75K Columbia, ?? Berkeley

Postby Doorkeeper » Mon Apr 16, 2012 12:38 pm

I think you can throw away Berkeley unless they match scholarships.

Since Chicago and Columbia are peer schools with national reach at a similar price tag, your decision comes down to the more fine grain questions. Considering that you didn't visit, I think that makes the question a lot harder.

Can you give more info on what you might want to do coming out of law school? Where, geographically, you want to work? What type of community and atmosphere you're looking for in a law school?
Last edited by Doorkeeper on Mon Apr 16, 2012 1:06 pm, edited 1 time in total.

dissonance1848
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Joined: Fri Aug 20, 2010 4:42 pm

Re: $75K Chicago, $75K Columbia, ?? Berkeley

Postby dissonance1848 » Mon Apr 16, 2012 12:40 pm

Where do you want to be? If NYC, do CLS. If Chicago, then U of C. If Cali, then Berkeley.

senorhosh
Posts: 470
Joined: Tue Dec 28, 2010 4:45 am

Re: $75K Chicago, $75K Columbia, ?? Berkeley

Postby senorhosh » Mon Apr 16, 2012 12:43 pm

I chose Columbia but now that I think about it, I want to change my answer to Chicago.

I think Boalt is out. Since you want Cali but you might want East Coast, I think it's better for you to go east. You already have ties in Cali since you grew up there, and I think both Columbia and Chicago place better in Biglaw than Boalt (assuming that's what you want). If you go to Boalt, you'll have a harder time breaking into the east coast.

I chose (or I would choose) Chi because if you want Chicago market, you'd have an easier time (or so I hear), whereas breaking NYU market won't make much of a difference whether you go Columbia or Chicago.

Either way, I bet the differences are marginal. I don't think you have much to lose wherever you go.

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cjcregg
Posts: 68
Joined: Wed Mar 21, 2012 3:37 pm

Re: $75K Chicago, $75K Columbia, ?? Berkeley

Postby cjcregg » Mon Apr 16, 2012 12:45 pm

I wouldn't throw out Berkeley. Wait and see what sort of money you can get. I predict they'll at least match 75k if you send them your other offers. Not having grades is a definite perk.

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Tiago Splitter
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Joined: Tue Jun 28, 2011 1:20 am

Re: $75K Chicago, $75K Columbia, ?? Berkeley

Postby Tiago Splitter » Mon Apr 16, 2012 12:47 pm

Chicago since its cheaper than Columbia with the same scholly. But you should do two things:

1) Negotiate with Chicago and Columbia to see if one will up the offer.

2) Bust out a credit card and visit.

jungminnee
Posts: 91
Joined: Fri Jun 17, 2011 1:44 pm

Re: $75K Chicago, $75K Columbia, ?? Berkeley

Postby jungminnee » Mon Apr 16, 2012 12:49 pm

As of now, I would want to practice in Cali.

However, I was just wondering if the school I attend would be that much of a barrier in going into different geographic areas? (Considering that my preferences may change within the next 3 years) Since I want to practice in Cali, it seems Berkeley should be my choice, but does Berkeley significantly lower the opportunities of practicing elsewhere?

I'm not exactly set on what I want to practice, but as of now I'm thinking government-related work.

Thanks again!

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Emma.
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Joined: Sun Oct 05, 2008 7:57 pm

Re: $75K Chicago, $75K Columbia, ?? Berkeley

Postby Emma. » Mon Apr 16, 2012 11:03 pm

jungminnee wrote:As of now, I would want to practice in Cali.

However, I was just wondering if the school I attend would be that much of a barrier in going into different geographic areas? (Considering that my preferences may change within the next 3 years) Since I want to practice in Cali, it seems Berkeley should be my choice, but does Berkeley significantly lower the opportunities of practicing elsewhere?

I'm not exactly set on what I want to practice, but as of now I'm thinking government-related work.

Thanks again!


I voted UChi based on the new LRAP and the fact that kids in my class did really well in Cali at OCI last fall.

With your ties to the area you shouldn't have any trouble getting back to Cali from Chi (though that is likely true from CLS also) if you decide you want firm work, but if you stick with govt work you have UChi's killer LRAP to back that up. That said, I don't know too much about the type of gov't work you want, or how easy it is to get those jobs coming out of Boalt.

chasgoose
Posts: 715
Joined: Fri Jan 07, 2011 10:18 pm

Re: $75K Chicago, $75K Columbia, ?? Berkeley

Postby chasgoose » Tue Apr 17, 2012 12:34 am

All things equal and knowing nothing about you, I would say CLS. The COL is obviously higher, but Chicago isn't for everyone. I recently visited a friend there and was thanking my lucky stars that I didn't end up there. The campus is weirdly isolated (i.e. nothing but U Chicago buildings immediately around you, no commercial stuff) and most of the housing is a mile or two away from the law school (there is a bus, but having a car wouldn't be a terrible idea). Even though Hyde Park is near a large city, there doesn't seem as much to do there as there usually is in a college neighborhood like Ann Arbor/Charlottesville or a big city like NYC. Furthermore, the quarter system makes for a much more intense law school experience with the extra exams for all three years (even if they ease you into things during 1L). I wouldn't say yes to Chicago without visiting to make sure that you can deal with its environment. For the right person, Chicago would be a great place, but there is much more potential for it to be a bad fit than there is at CLS which is more of a one-size-fits-all law school.

If Chicago doesn't put you off then I would probably switch my vote.




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