UChicago or NYU?

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knickerbocker
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UChicago or NYU?

Postby knickerbocker » Fri Apr 20, 2012 5:24 pm

I know this topic has been discussed elsewhere, but I'd like people's advice given my particular circumstances. I'm in at both schools, and I'm very excited because they're both great. But now I've got to choose, and that's hard to do.
I'm a born and bred New Yorker, and I definitely want to spend my life here. If I go to Chicago, I'll be away from family and friends, which will be tough. More importantly, my SO is in New York, and being apart will be hard. That's the biggest drawback to Chicago (being away from SO). Also, Hyde Park isn't great, and I don't even know how to drive, although I can learn over the summer. I do love that UChicago is a much smaller school; that's a big plus.
What do people think? Advice from current NYU and Chicago students would be particularly appreciated. Any New Yorkers at UChicago? Would love to hear from you what it's like to live there.
Thank you.

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gaud
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Re: UChicago or NYU?

Postby gaud » Fri Apr 20, 2012 5:26 pm

Sounds like it should be NYU

PigBodine
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Re: UChicago or NYU?

Postby PigBodine » Fri Apr 20, 2012 5:29 pm

If you want to stay in New York, NYU, and it's not even close.

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franklyscarlet
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Re: UChicago or NYU?

Postby franklyscarlet » Fri Apr 20, 2012 5:30 pm

You seem to have decided already- NYU. There's barely a single positive listed for chi in your OP.

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Davidbentley
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Re: UChicago or NYU?

Postby Davidbentley » Fri Apr 20, 2012 5:40 pm

UChi. Step outside of your comfort zone.

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franklyscarlet
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Re: UChicago or NYU?

Postby franklyscarlet » Fri Apr 20, 2012 5:43 pm

Davidbentley wrote:UChi. Step outside of your comfort zone.


...why? This seems arbitrary.

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Davidbentley
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Re: UChicago or NYU?

Postby Davidbentley » Fri Apr 20, 2012 5:47 pm

franklyscarlet wrote:
Davidbentley wrote:UChi. Step outside of your comfort zone.


...why? This seems arbitrary.


Yes.

dixiecupdrinking
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Re: UChicago or NYU?

Postby dixiecupdrinking » Fri Apr 20, 2012 5:51 pm

Do you have some reservations about NYU you aren't expressing here? The way you presented the decision it sounds like a no-brainer so there must be something else going on.

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bk1
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Re: UChicago or NYU?

Postby bk1 » Fri Apr 20, 2012 5:52 pm

franklyscarlet wrote:You seem to have decided already- NYU. There's barely a single positive listed for chi in your OP.

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The Rover
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Re: UChicago or NYU?

Postby The Rover » Fri Apr 20, 2012 6:01 pm

knickerbocker wrote: If I go to Chicago, I'll be away from family and friends distractions

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knickerbocker
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Re: UChicago or NYU?

Postby knickerbocker » Fri Apr 20, 2012 6:08 pm

Well, my reservations about NYU are largely about its size. NYU is almost three times bigger. Moreover, I've heard it's easier to get jobs at firms in New York from UChicago because there's less competition. Finally, I like Chicago's intellectual environment, and I think it would be a good fit for that reason. Finally, (not sure if this is true) I think UChicago has a special cache that NYU doesn't (nothing to do with rankings; just Chicago's particular reputation).

dixiecupdrinking
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Re: UChicago or NYU?

Postby dixiecupdrinking » Fri Apr 20, 2012 6:36 pm

Eh. NYU does feel like a big school. (I go there.) I bet your classes, especially 1L year, will be bigger at NYU. You probably won't know everyone, or even close to everyone, you see in the hallways and around school. That might not be your cup of tea and that's understandable.

I can't speak to the academic environment at Chicago, obviously. I doubt it offers much substantively that you can't get at NYU. Business-oriented upper-level courses at NYU tend to be taught by libertarian-ish professors with Chicago-worthy credentials, if that's your thing. There is probably a wider range of philosophies among the faculty at NYU (though I also assume the law-and-econ, libertarian Chicago stereotype far from universally describes their faculty, either). I think that the faculty who are involved in civil rights-oriented areas of the law are fantastic at NYU and I would suspect that is a strength over Chicago, both because the size allows for a broader faculty and because it's more consistent with the institutional focus. I have heard that Chicago students tend to be more whole-heartedly engaged in the study of capital-L Law and I think that's probably accurate, overall. NYU students, in my experience, tend to have a very pragmatic orientation toward law and on the whole would probably rather spend their time interning somewhere than going to lectures, being deeply involved with journals, etc. Also, people have very varied lives outside of law school, which I think comes with going to a school in the middle of the city. Of course, these are broad stroke generalizations and there are plenty of people all across the spectrum (probably at both schools, though more strikingly so at NYU due, again, to the size).

As far as jobs in NYC... some people will tell you it's "easier" from Chicago because of the smaller class size. I don't know how they can possibly know that and it frankly sounds like post hoc rationalization to me. What is certain is that NYU is as good as just about anyone at placing students in NYC firms if that's what you want. I don't think there is any valid reason, from your prospective position, to think that Chicago will give you better job prospects in New York. That is NYU's bread and butter. The Chicago "reputation" might have some slight theoretical edge to some class of people. I'm not sure how even to begin to quantify that, let alone what if anything it gets you in the real world.

Anyway feel free to PM me if you want to ask anything else about NYU.

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knickerbocker
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Re: UChicago or NYU?

Postby knickerbocker » Tue Apr 24, 2012 7:58 pm

Some people have told me that one reason to pick NYU over Chicago is that NYU's legal research and writing class isn't graded while Chicago's is.
Why is that so important? Does that really add a lot of stress to the 1L Chicago experience?

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bk1
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Re: UChicago or NYU?

Postby bk1 » Tue Apr 24, 2012 8:01 pm

knickerbocker wrote:Some people have told me that one reason to pick NYU over Chicago is that NYU's legal research and writing class isn't graded while Chicago's is.
Why is that so important? Does that really add a lot of stress to the 1L Chicago experience?

P/F legal writing is so much easier because you only have to put in enough work to pass (which is low). On the other hand, if it's graded you have an incentive to try and get an A (or whatever random ass number UChi's grading scheme uses) which requires a lot more effort. I think whether legal writing is P/F isn't that big a deal. Yeah it's less stress, but it should only matter if everything is roughly equal (which it almost never is).

QuasiAmbitious
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Re: UChicago or NYU?

Postby QuasiAmbitious » Tue Apr 24, 2012 8:11 pm

Don't want to hijack this thread, but I'm pretty much in the same situation as the OP. I want NYC biglaw for sure.

At UChicago: I'd graduate with about 80-90k in loans at most.
At NYU: I'd graduate with about 135-145k in loans.

Didn't visit Chicago but loved NYU. All else being equal, I'd prefer NYU for a number of reasons, but I'm worried that the gap between the two price tags is too big to ignore =(.
Last edited by QuasiAmbitious on Tue Apr 24, 2012 8:13 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Detrox
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Re: UChicago or NYU?

Postby Detrox » Tue Apr 24, 2012 8:11 pm

bk1 wrote:
knickerbocker wrote:Some people have told me that one reason to pick NYU over Chicago is that NYU's legal research and writing class isn't graded while Chicago's is.
Why is that so important? Does that really add a lot of stress to the 1L Chicago experience?

P/F legal writing is so much easier because you only have to put in enough work to pass (which is low). On the other hand, if it's graded you have an incentive to try and get an A (or whatever random ass number UChi's grading scheme uses) which requires a lot more effort. I think whether legal writing is P/F isn't that big a deal. Yeah it's less stress, but it should only matter if everything is roughly equal (which it almost never is).


Having your gpa lowered by a low grade in legal writing when you've done well in all the substantive courses would suck. You can debate how much/little it will affect your clerkship applications or even job hunt, but if you have the choice why take the risk?

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bk1
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Re: UChicago or NYU?

Postby bk1 » Tue Apr 24, 2012 8:14 pm

QuasiAmbitious wrote:Don't want to hijack this thread, but I'm pretty much in the same situation as the OP. I want NYC biglaw for sure.

At UChicago: I'd graduate with about 80-90k in loans at most.
At NYU: I'd graduate with about 135-145k in loans.

Didn't visit Chicago but loved NYU. All else being equal, I'd prefer NYU for a number of reasons, but I'm worried that the gap between the two price tags is too big =(.


Take UChi. UChi is still a great school for NYC biglaw and it doesn't make a ton sense to pay 50-60k more for a peer school.

QuasiAmbitious
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Re: UChicago or NYU?

Postby QuasiAmbitious » Tue Apr 24, 2012 8:19 pm

bk1 wrote:
QuasiAmbitious wrote:Don't want to hijack this thread, but I'm pretty much in the same situation as the OP. I want NYC biglaw for sure.

At UChicago: I'd graduate with about 80-90k in loans at most.
At NYU: I'd graduate with about 135-145k in loans.

Didn't visit Chicago but loved NYU. All else being equal, I'd prefer NYU for a number of reasons, but I'm worried that the gap between the two price tags is too big =(.


Take UChi. UChi is still a great school for NYC biglaw and it doesn't make a ton sense to pay 50-60k more for a peer school.


Would I be better placed at NYU for a V10 job, or no?

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bk1
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Re: UChicago or NYU?

Postby bk1 » Tue Apr 24, 2012 8:28 pm

QuasiAmbitious wrote:Would I be better placed at NYU for a V10 job, or no?


Maybe, but that's not a good reason to pay 50-60k more for NYU since you likely won't get a V10 from either school.

dixiecupdrinking
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Re: UChicago or NYU?

Postby dixiecupdrinking » Tue Apr 24, 2012 8:46 pm

I'd take the money at Chicago. Can you visit? I would try to go out there. But at the end of the day it probably doesn't even matter much. Unless you just positively despised the school, the city of Chicago, and the entire middle of the country, I don't think there's much reason to do NYU at those numbers. But, what the money's worth to you is ultimately a personal decision.

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knickerbocker
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Re: UChicago or NYU?

Postby knickerbocker » Tue Apr 24, 2012 8:50 pm

Wait, why do people assume that the lower grade would be in LRW? Maybe LRW will boost my grades, no?

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bk1
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Re: UChicago or NYU?

Postby bk1 » Tue Apr 24, 2012 8:52 pm

knickerbocker wrote:Wait, why do people assume that the lower grade would be in LRW? Maybe LRW will boost my grades, no?


Well assuming that it gives everyone a roughly equal chance, why do more work when everyone has an equal chance of winning and losing? You're just ending up in the same situation for more work.

And just to head off anybody who thinks they will be a legal writing superstar: legal writing papers tend to be very similar to each other that there really is little differentiation between the best and worst papers.

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Doorkeeper
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Re: UChicago or NYU?

Postby Doorkeeper » Tue Apr 24, 2012 9:26 pm

I'm in the same position (I'm in at Columbia but not really considering it and waiting on Harvard). I'm torn between UChi's small class size, academic/theoretical orientation, and increased courseload availability outside of the law school, and NYU's better faculty, stronger focus in my subject area, and better recent non-biglaw placement rates. NYU is also pouring huge amounts of resources into a few administrative issues that are important to me and the student body definitely seemed more relaxed and welcoming. Probably going to choose NYU, but it's a tough call and I only have a day to choose.

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booboo
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Re: UChicago or NYU?

Postby booboo » Tue Apr 24, 2012 9:37 pm

Doorkeeper wrote:I'm in the same position (I'm in at Columbia but not really considering it and waiting on Harvard). I'm torn between UChi's small class size, academic/theoretical orientation, and increased courseload availability outside of the law school, and NYU's better faculty, stronger focus in my subject area, and better recent non-biglaw placement rates. NYU is also pouring huge amounts of resources into a few administrative issues that are important to me and the student body definitely seemed more relaxed and welcoming. Probably going to choose NYU, but it's a tough call and I only have a day to choose.


Every top school is academic/theoretical. NYU is undoubtedly so.

kaiser
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Re: UChicago or NYU?

Postby kaiser » Tue Apr 24, 2012 9:38 pm

You are from NY, want to be in NY, and have a SO in NY. Seems like a fairly easy choice. The schools are very much peers. And if you want NYC biglaw, its yours for the taking at NYU.




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