Best Bargain...or Best School?

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kdev1203
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Best Bargain...or Best School?

Postby kdev1203 » Tue Nov 13, 2012 9:28 pm

I'm a non-URM female with a 4.16/163. Yes, I know, reverse-splitters suck and I should have retaken. But here's the situation. I'm waiting to head back from Duke after applying Accelerated ED, but I just found out today that I got a full-ride to Tulsa. Obviously, if I get into Duke, I have to go, but if not, how seriously should I consider the Tulsa offer?

I think I'd like living in Oklahoma, and I certainly like the "free" quality. I know it's too early to tell (since I'm waiting on other offers), but what do y'all think? Should I take the bargain or go for the best school I get into, regardless of price? My initial impulse is that if I don't get into a T14, the only reasonable decision is to take the free deal.

Other schools I'm applying to RD:

Notre Dame
Washington and Lee
Penn State
Roger Williams
UVA
Lewis and Clark
Arizona
Wake Forest
Pitt
Denver

Any others I should consider? Thoughts? Comments?

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dextermorgan
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Re: Best Bargain...or Best School?

Postby dextermorgan » Tue Nov 13, 2012 9:32 pm

As someone who took the bargain: go to the best school (provided that school provides the employment prospects to support the debt).

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JamMasterJ
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Re: Best Bargain...or Best School?

Postby JamMasterJ » Tue Nov 13, 2012 9:34 pm

There are cases where best school is trumped by money at a lower school like Notre Dame/WUSTL/BU/BC over GULC/UT/Vandy/UCLA, but nothing like that sort of gap. Especially true when, if my inference from your post is correct, you don't even have ties to the market of said low ranked school.
As far as other advice, everyone's going to tell you to retake and you should. Absent that, ED UVA if you don't snag Duke.

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dextermorgan
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Re: Best Bargain...or Best School?

Postby dextermorgan » Tue Nov 13, 2012 9:39 pm

JamMasterJ wrote:There are cases where best school is trumped by money at a lower school like Notre Dame/WUSTL/BU/BC over GULC/UT/Vandy/UCLA, but nothing like that sort of gap. Especially true when, if my inference from your post is correct, you don't even have ties to the market of said low ranked school.
As far as other advice, everyone's going to tell you to retake and you should. Absent that, ED UVA if you don't snag Duke.

Yes, the real advice is to retake. Even if you have to delay a year, you can do amazing things with a 4.16 GPA. GPA is the one thing you can't change, so it screws a lot of people over.

kdev1203
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Re: Best Bargain...or Best School?

Postby kdev1203 » Tue Nov 13, 2012 9:50 pm

That's a really good point that I hadn't considered. I already have my LORs from my letter writers, and one more year wouldn't be the *worst* thing in the world if it meant I could pick up 5 more points and serious money from a place like ND...at least, I hope.

Another question - all of the schools ask "Have you applied here before?" Does this count against you if they reject you one year and then you reapply with the same app and a higher LSAT? How does that work?

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patrickd139
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Re: Best Bargain...or Best School?

Postby patrickd139 » Tue Nov 13, 2012 10:10 pm

dextermorgan wrote:As someone who took the bargain: retake and go to the best school (provided that school provides the employment prospects to support the debt).

FTFM

Lord Randolph McDuff
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Re: Best Bargain...or Best School?

Postby Lord Randolph McDuff » Tue Nov 13, 2012 10:18 pm

Tulsa used to only gives scholarships with horrible stipulations. Check that.

Depends on what want to do. If you want small-law, self-employment, small gov, go with less debt and maximize networking opportunities. Everything else go to a "good" school.

EDIT: Are you a flame? Your school list is the most random thing ever. DU but not CU, Tulsa but not OU? Other examples. Did you just pick these schools out of a hat? Who wakes up and decides to apply to Tulsa and Duke.

EDITx2: WTF is Roger Williams?
Last edited by Lord Randolph McDuff on Tue Nov 13, 2012 10:21 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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patrickd139
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Re: Best Bargain...or Best School?

Postby patrickd139 » Tue Nov 13, 2012 10:21 pm

Totally missed the Tulsa offer in the OP. Are you from Tulsa?

CanadianWolf
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Re: Best Bargain...or Best School?

Postby CanadianWolf » Tue Nov 13, 2012 10:46 pm

Even more important: Is one of your parents a federal judge in the area or a partner in a major law firm w/o a nepotism restriction & which hires from Tulsa Law in Tulsa ? If not, retake & aim much higher.

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patrickd139
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Re: Best Bargain...or Best School?

Postby patrickd139 » Tue Nov 13, 2012 10:48 pm

CanadianWolf wrote:Even more important: Is one of your parents a federal judge in the area or a partner in a major law firm w/o a nepotism restriction & which hires from Tulsa Law in Tulsa ? If not, retake & aim much higher.

:lol:

Dude. How am I supposed to up my post count if you give it all away like that?

kdev1203
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Re: Best Bargain...or Best School?

Postby kdev1203 » Tue Nov 13, 2012 11:13 pm

Lord Randolph McDuff wrote:
EDIT: Are you a flame? Your school list is the most random thing ever. DU but not CU, Tulsa but not OU? Other examples. Did you just pick these schools out of a hat? Who wakes up and decides to apply to Tulsa and Duke.

EDITx2: WTF is Roger Williams?


No, I'm not a flame. I applied to schools with fee waivers, and since I don't know where I ultimately want to land, I'm applying all over the country.

To answer a few other questions, no I'm not from Tulsa, and I have no connections to Tulsa.

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patrickd139
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Re: Best Bargain...or Best School?

Postby patrickd139 » Tue Nov 13, 2012 11:15 pm

kdev1203 wrote:
To answer a few other questions, no I'm not from Tulsa, and I have no connections to Tulsa.

Categorically recommend that you cross Tulsa off your list. Even with the full ride.

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JamMasterJ
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Re: Best Bargain...or Best School?

Postby JamMasterJ » Tue Nov 13, 2012 11:15 pm

kdev1203 wrote:That's a really good point that I hadn't considered. I already have my LORs from my letter writers, and one more year wouldn't be the *worst* thing in the world if it meant I could pick up 5 more points and serious money from a place like ND...at least, I hope.

Another question - all of the schools ask "Have you applied here before?" Does this count against you if they reject you one year and then you reapply with the same app and a higher LSAT? How does that work?

no one cares

timbs4339
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Re: Best Bargain...or Best School?

Postby timbs4339 » Tue Nov 13, 2012 11:26 pm

What kind of law do you want to practice?

kdev1203
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Re: Best Bargain...or Best School?

Postby kdev1203 » Tue Nov 13, 2012 11:32 pm

timbs4339 wrote:What kind of law do you want to practice?


I'm interested in healthcare law right now, but part of me is strangely attracted to criminal (I think it's from watching too much CourtTV). Realistically, I think the smartest decision looks like this:

1: Duke
2. ND*
3. W&L*
--------
PSU
Pitt (instate)
--------
The rest

*Depending on $$$, these can be reversed.

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dextermorgan
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Re: Best Bargain...or Best School?

Postby dextermorgan » Tue Nov 13, 2012 11:36 pm

timbs4339 wrote:What kind of lawWhere do you want to practice?

That's the real question.

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Pumpkin_Pie
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Re: Best Bargain...or Best School?

Postby Pumpkin_Pie » Wed Nov 14, 2012 12:45 am

Best choice = T14
Next best choice = Good, free regional where you want to practice

Have you read Don't Go to Law School (Unless)? Campos says the above two are the only sane options for law school students.

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MarcusAurelius
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Re: Best Bargain...or Best School?

Postby MarcusAurelius » Wed Nov 14, 2012 12:49 am

kdev1203 wrote:
Any others I should consider?


Rutgers–Camden

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JCFindley
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Re: Best Bargain...or Best School?

Postby JCFindley » Wed Nov 14, 2012 12:55 am

MarcusAurelius wrote:
kdev1203 wrote:
Any others I should consider?


Rutgers–Camden


And Temple for that matter.

BTW, Pitt > PSU as Pitt feeds well into Pitt. Temple and Rutgers Camden feed Philly. PSU feeds, um, the rest of PA, sort of.

There is a lot to be said for LS for free but NO to anything in the range of Tulsa.

BTW, search and find Romo's ties (regional school) thread. It is one thing I am VERY glad I learned here on TLS and it is not intuitive.

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Pumpkin_Pie
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Re: Best Bargain...or Best School?

Postby Pumpkin_Pie » Wed Nov 14, 2012 1:03 am

JCFindley wrote:There is a lot to be said for LS for free but NO to anything in the range of Tulsa.


I'm not familiar with Tulsa but it looks like it's clinging in the bottom of T2. I'm not doubting you but what do you mean by no to anything in that range?

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Lincoln
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Re: Best Bargain...or Best School?

Postby Lincoln » Wed Nov 14, 2012 1:12 am

Why would you apply to Duke and UVA but no other T14s? That would make sense only if you wanted to work in the South and had ties there. Also, why would you rank ND and W&L (not to mention PSU and Pitt) over UVA? Nothing about this makes any sense. You need to decide where you want to work and figure out which schools would get you there.

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glitter178
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Re: Best Bargain...or Best School?

Postby glitter178 » Wed Nov 14, 2012 1:45 am

Pumpkin_Pie wrote:Best choice = T14
Next best choice = Good, free regional where you want to practice

Have you read Don't Go to Law School (Unless)? Campos says the above two are the only sane options for law school students.


Best choice is T14 with scholly; T14 at sticker is still a huge gamble. At least if you graduate jobless from a regional school, you have limited debt. More importantly, you won't need to be Biglaw or bust to cover loan payments.

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JCFindley
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Re: Best Bargain...or Best School?

Postby JCFindley » Wed Nov 14, 2012 9:43 am

Pumpkin_Pie wrote:
JCFindley wrote:There is a lot to be said for LS for free but NO to anything in the range of Tulsa.


I'm not familiar with Tulsa but it looks like it's clinging in the bottom of T2. I'm not doubting you but what do you mean by no to anything in that range?


Actually, I used "range" incorrectly in the context here.

Really, once you are outside the T-14 (or really a little higher) USNR rankings do not really matter at all.

What does matter is the possibility of getting a job. To get a job what you really want is the top school that feeds the area YOU want to work but it goes beyond that too. Lets say you get into Alabama. Bama is a good LS IF you want to work in AL and to an extent if you want to work in NW FL, MS, GA or TN but it does dominate AL. That's great but you're from PA so you will have to overcome a LOT of regional bias to get a job in Alabama. It can be done BUT why put yourself behind the curve from the start? The same could be said of a lot of good regional law schools. Iowa, WI, UGA, UF, and so on.

Now, lets talk numerical rank for a minute. OK, say you want to work in NYC, which is NOT parochial at all and you get into St Johns. It is ranked 79 BUT NYC gets fed by the whole T14, (two of which are in NYC.) then Fordham, then Cardozo, then Brooklyn and NYLS. St Johns has to compete with its peers of Rutgers N and Hofstra and CUNY and SH.... StJ performs WELL below its 69 ranking in jobs. Now, I called Rutgers N its peer but it's really worlds better IF you have ties to NJ. While Rutgers is ranked in the 80s it IS the state flagship and best feeder for NJ. (along with SH for twice the price) While Rutgers N is lower ranked you do in fact have a shot of a job there IF you have ties and want to live in NJ.

The problem with Tulsa, and schools like it is they don't dominate the market they feed regardless of rank. (See OU and the Sooners for that.) There are MANY more schools like this around the country. You can find the opposite to be true as well in schools like Ole Miss and S. Carolina. TTTs BUT they are the state flagships and do OK in their dominant markets.

Paul Campos
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Re: Best Bargain...or Best School?

Postby Paul Campos » Wed Nov 14, 2012 12:07 pm

Law school applications are going to be down sharply again this cycle (this is based on info from three different top 50 schools in three different parts of the country).

This means:

(1) People should be very hesitant to go the ED route.

(2) The benefit of waiting until late in the cycle to apply is getting higher. (If you thought schools were desperate last spring just wait until you see what they'll be willing to do in April).

(3) If you're a reverse splitter and you don't retake you are out of your mind. Why would you be rushing to buy into a plunging market when you could apply with stronger credentials at a time (late in the cycle or next cycle) when you'd get more bang for your buck even without stronger numbers?

BigZuck
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Re: Best Bargain...or Best School?

Postby BigZuck » Wed Nov 14, 2012 1:18 pm

Paul Campos wrote:Law school applications are going to be down sharply again this cycle (this is based on info from three different top 50 schools in three different parts of the country).

This means:

(1) People should be very hesitant to go the ED route.

(2) The benefit of waiting until late in the cycle to apply is getting higher. (If you thought schools were desperate last spring just wait until you see what they'll be willing to do in April).

(3) If you're a reverse splitter and you don't retake you are out of your mind. Why would you be rushing to buy into a plunging market when you could apply with stronger credentials at a time (late in the cycle or next cycle) when you'd get more bang for your buck even without stronger numbers?


You really think we should just sit on our applications and apply later? If schools do start throwing out money like crazy at the end of the cycle couldn't early applicants just ask for more? You have me, as an early applicant, worried.




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