GW ($17k/year) vs. Texas ($25k/year) v. Alabama (-$2k/year)

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DesperateNWaiting
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GW ($17k/year) vs. Texas ($25k/year) v. Alabama (-$2k/year)

Postby DesperateNWaiting » Fri May 04, 2012 10:15 pm

The title says it all, really.

My options are as follows:

George Washington (20) will cost $17,000/year, $51,000 total tuition; total cost around $80,0000
University of Texas at Austin (16) - $25,000/year, $75,000 total tuition; total cost around $100,000
University of Alabama (29) - Tuition covered, another $2,000 in spending money a year; total cost $0.00

I was born and raised in Alabama, and as such as really wanting to "spread my wings" and get out of the state. That being said, a free ride is really tempting. I am kind of afraid that I might get stapled to the Southeast if I choose Bama, but who knows, maybe not.

I am really interested in big law and corporate defense, but I have a side passion of politics. I can see myself in any of the three cities, really. The way I see it, if I really want to pursue some political career, DC is the place to be.

I'm really going back and forth in my head, mainly trying to decide between GW and Austin; I was hoping that the Internet gurus on TLS could weigh in:
Should I take the money at Bama and run?
Should I take out $70,000-$90,000 in student loans for "better opportunities?"

Obviously my choice is going to depend on my own circumstances, blah blah blah, but please weigh in.

Thanks guys!
Last edited by DesperateNWaiting on Fri May 04, 2012 10:30 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Dany
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Re: GW ($17k/year) vs. Texas ($25k/year) v. Alabama (-$2k/year)

Postby Dany » Fri May 04, 2012 10:22 pm

I'm a bit confused by the numbers in your OP - can you give us total debt upon graduation for each school?

DesperateNWaiting
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Re: GW ($17k/year) vs. Texas ($25k/year) v. Alabama (-$2k/year)

Postby DesperateNWaiting » Fri May 04, 2012 10:28 pm

Dany wrote:I'm a bit confused by the numbers in your OP - can you give us total debt upon graduation for each school?


I've edited the original post to reflect total cost; hopefully it's a bit more clear.

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Dany
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Re: GW ($17k/year) vs. Texas ($25k/year) v. Alabama (-$2k/year)

Postby Dany » Fri May 04, 2012 10:42 pm

Interesting. I went to undergrad at Alabama and am from the south, and really wanted (as you do) to "spread my wings" and get out. I love where I live now (Chicago), but I'm terrified of the debt I'm racking up and sometimes wish I had taken a cheaper option closer to home (which unfortunately wasn't an option for me). Anyway, if you think you could be happy practicing in Alabama, I would take Alabama with no debt. And if pursuing politics in Alabama is an option, Alabama Law will be best for that.

de5igual
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Re: GW ($17k/year) vs. Texas ($25k/year) v. Alabama (-$2k/year)

Postby de5igual » Fri May 04, 2012 10:46 pm

are there stips on the bama scholly? if not, it sounds like a great price for a good regional player.

if you want to get into politics, don't go to law school. being in DC helps, but taking out $$ for law school there doesn't. that said, taking either UT or Bama at that price isn't the worst thing that could happen, but Bama for free seems like a sounder decision.

DesperateNWaiting
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Re: GW ($17k/year) vs. Texas ($25k/year) v. Alabama (-$2k/year)

Postby DesperateNWaiting » Fri May 04, 2012 10:50 pm

The only stipulations are that I have to be in the top 40% of the class--nothing I'm actually worried about.

I wouldn't put too much weight on my statement about politics; all I meant was that if I ever decided to go down a political path, I would have made some connections in DC if I went to GW.

At the end of the day, I really just want to be financially stable and make good money. Of course the better I do I any school, the more my opportunities open up, but I don't want to totally lose out on New York and D.C markets because I went to Bama.

Of course I want a good legal education, but at the end of the day, I just want to make a lot of money doing something I love.

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Dany
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Re: GW ($17k/year) vs. Texas ($25k/year) v. Alabama (-$2k/year)

Postby Dany » Fri May 04, 2012 10:54 pm

DesperateNWaiting wrote:The only stipulations are that I have to be in the top 40% of the class--nothing I'm actually worried about.

You absolutely should be worried about that.

de5igual
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Re: GW ($17k/year) vs. Texas ($25k/year) v. Alabama (-$2k/year)

Postby de5igual » Fri May 04, 2012 10:59 pm

Dany wrote:
DesperateNWaiting wrote:The only stipulations are that I have to be in the top 40% of the class--nothing I'm actually worried about.

You absolutely should be worried about that.


this.

JasonR
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Re: GW ($17k/year) vs. Texas ($25k/year) v. Alabama (-$2k/year)

Postby JasonR » Fri May 04, 2012 11:03 pm

f0bolous wrote:
Dany wrote:
DesperateNWaiting wrote:The only stipulations are that I have to be in the top 40% of the class--nothing I'm actually worried about.

You absolutely should be worried about that.


this.


+1000

Go to Texas.
Last edited by JasonR on Fri May 04, 2012 11:04 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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MrPapagiorgio
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Re: GW ($17k/year) vs. Texas ($25k/year) v. Alabama (-$2k/year)

Postby MrPapagiorgio » Fri May 04, 2012 11:03 pm

Dany wrote:
DesperateNWaiting wrote:The only stipulations are that I have to be in the top 40% of the class--nothing I'm actually worried about.

You absolutely should be worried about that.

This.

I know a guy at my school who is on full scholarship and ended up with a 2.4 after the first semester. Don't assume that prior success in college and on the LSAT will lead to success in law school--it's a different game with both the kind of answers that get As and the curve, which is always a bitch.

CanadianWolf
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Re: GW ($17k/year) vs. Texas ($25k/year) v. Alabama (-$2k/year)

Postby CanadianWolf » Fri May 04, 2012 11:19 pm

Three interesting options.

Texas is the top choice due to superior placement & a very healthy, growing economy.

GWU would be top choice if focusing on IP law, however.

Alabama is offering a great deal that is tough to pass up. Try to get the top 40% stipulation reduced or removed.

P.S. They have "politics" in Texas too.

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BmoreOrLess
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Re: GW ($17k/year) vs. Texas ($25k/year) v. Alabama (-$2k/year)

Postby BmoreOrLess » Sat May 05, 2012 11:07 am

DesperateNWaiting wrote:The only stipulations are that I have to be in the top 40% of the class--nothing I'm actually worried about.

I wouldn't put too much weight on my statement about politics; all I meant was that if I ever decided to go down a political path, I would have made some connections in DC if I went to GW.

At the end of the day, I really just want to be financially stable and make good money. Of course the better I do I any school, the more my opportunities open up, but I don't want to totally lose out on New York and D.C markets because I went to Bama.

Of course I want a good legal education, but at the end of the day, I just want to make a lot of money doing something I love.


Before you decide on alabama, negotiate those stips off. They are incredibly easy to negotiate with. I went from a $23.5k scholly with a top 40% stip to a full ride with a 3.0 stip (their median is 3.2 and per their recomended grade distributionsat least 73% of a given class gets a 3.0). I did all this negotiating solely with a UGA acceptance. With your situation they will be more than receptive to negotiation.

Real Madrid
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Re: GW ($17k/year) vs. Texas ($25k/year) v. Alabama (-$2k/year)

Postby Real Madrid » Sat May 05, 2012 11:30 am

DesperateNWaiting wrote:The only stipulations are that I have to be in the top 40% of the class--nothing I'm actually worried about.

I wouldn't put too much weight on my statement about politics; all I meant was that if I ever decided to go down a political path, I would have made some connections in DC if I went to GW.

At the end of the day, I really just want to be financially stable and make good money. Of course the better I do I any school, the more my opportunities open up, but I don't want to totally lose out on New York and D.C markets because I went to Bama.

Of course I want a good legal education, but at the end of the day, I just want to make a lot of money doing something I love.


I'm not sure law is the career for you. Alabama is not going to get you big law in NY or DC and it will be very difficult to get it from either GW or Texas.

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MrPapagiorgio
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Re: GW ($17k/year) vs. Texas ($25k/year) v. Alabama (-$2k/year)

Postby MrPapagiorgio » Sat May 05, 2012 1:03 pm

Real Madrid wrote:
DesperateNWaiting wrote:The only stipulations are that I have to be in the top 40% of the class--nothing I'm actually worried about.

I wouldn't put too much weight on my statement about politics; all I meant was that if I ever decided to go down a political path, I would have made some connections in DC if I went to GW.

At the end of the day, I really just want to be financially stable and make good money. Of course the better I do I any school, the more my opportunities open up, but I don't want to totally lose out on New York and D.C markets because I went to Bama.

Of course I want a good legal education, but at the end of the day, I just want to make a lot of money doing something I love.


I'm not sure law is the career for you. Alabama is not going to get you big law in NY or DC and it will be very difficult to get it from either GW or Texas.

Considering the cost of living in Texas, he could arguably live just as financially comfortable as NYC on 160K, if not more. I'm not familiar with Texas biglaw salaries, but with the reduced cost of living, I'd imagine it's very,very manageable, even on starting associate salaries.

Real Madrid
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Re: GW ($17k/year) vs. Texas ($25k/year) v. Alabama (-$2k/year)

Postby Real Madrid » Sat May 05, 2012 1:05 pm

MrPapagiorgio wrote:
Real Madrid wrote:
DesperateNWaiting wrote:The only stipulations are that I have to be in the top 40% of the class--nothing I'm actually worried about.

I wouldn't put too much weight on my statement about politics; all I meant was that if I ever decided to go down a political path, I would have made some connections in DC if I went to GW.

At the end of the day, I really just want to be financially stable and make good money. Of course the better I do I any school, the more my opportunities open up, but I don't want to totally lose out on New York and D.C markets because I went to Bama.

Of course I want a good legal education, but at the end of the day, I just want to make a lot of money doing something I love.


I'm not sure law is the career for you. Alabama is not going to get you big law in NY or DC and it will be very difficult to get it from either GW or Texas.

Considering the cost of living in Texas, he could arguably live just as financially comfortable as NYC on 160K, if not more. I'm not familiar with Texas biglaw salaries, but with the reduced cost of living, I'd imagine it's very,very manageable, even on starting associate salaries.



No doubt. I was just responding to OP's specific mention of NY and DC.

RTRtarheel
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Re: GW ($17k/year) vs. Texas ($25k/year) v. Alabama (-$2k/year)

Postby RTRtarheel » Sun May 06, 2012 4:18 pm

I'd like to echo what has already been said...If you are seriously considering Bama get the stips taken away. It likely wouldn't be a problem in your case (everyone assumes it won't be), but there is downside to getting them reduced/removed.

My advice would be to consider how comfortable you are with debt and make your decision based on where you think you'll be happiest. I took the safer route with no debt at Alabama.




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