Colorado vs. Utah

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Colorado vs. Utah

Colorado (COA approx $65k)
6
46%
Utah (COA approx $56k-$85k)
7
54%
 
Total votes: 13

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nickb285
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Colorado vs. Utah

Postby nickb285 » Tue Apr 02, 2013 11:41 am

Alright, I'm coming down to my last decision. Want to attend school in the Mountain West, as I'm hoping to work in Salt Lake City (although I could live with working elsewhere in the region). Don't want biglaw; my dream job would be public-interest environmental law, but I'm realistic about how rare those jobs are, and I'd be okay with pretty much anything except biglaw, doc review, or criminal defense. Waitlisted at Georgetown, Vandy, and UW, so if those come into the mix things may change, but it's not super likely--my grades are crap, and I'm unlikely to get enough money at any of those places to make them worth it.

On the plus side, I've been living like a student ever since I moved out of my parents' house freshman year, and I don't mind continuing to do so as long as I have a decently interesting job (no kids, no mortgage), and with a low COL in SLC, $30k/year gross plus enough to cover my monthly loan payments is sufficient for me (in the worst-case scenario listed below, this would require a pre-tax salary of about $47k/year). Parents are paying part of living expenses, though I'll still be loan-funding some.

Colorado has offered me full tuition the first year, and $12k 2L/3L. Assuming I can get in-state tuition after 1L, my total COA will be about $65k (if I can't, it'll be around $83k, but it sounds like residency is pretty much guaranteed in Colorado).

Utah has offered me $14k/year renewable; unfortunately it has a GPA stip of 3.35 (approx. top 40%, judging from prior years) that the school refuses to negotiate. This is offset somewhat by in-state tuition and the fact that if worse comes to worst I could live with my parents after losing the scholarship, reducing my COL to effectively zero (although this does not factor into the above numbers). If I keep the scholly for all three years, my COA will be about $56k; if I keep it for 2L but lose it for 3L, COA will be about $70k; and if I lose it after 1L COA will be about $85k.

Concerns:
--Neither school has great 2012 job numbers, but Utah has been pretty consistently higher than Colorado for the last few years.
--COL is slightly higher in Boulder/Denver and I don't have the option of moving home if need be. This also means that if I get a job in Denver, higher COL may offset the benefit of potentially lower debt.
--I went to Utah for undergrad and I'm concerned that having the same UG and law school will arouse concern among employers; on the other hand, it may show a dedication to working in Utah.
--Utah seems to have more flexibility when it comes to clinical programs and externships, which is pretty important to me, since I want to have as much hands-on experience as possible coming out of school.
--I have more connections in Utah, but Denver is a bigger market than Salt Lake.

Thoughts?

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WokeUpInACar
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Re: Colorado vs. Utah

Postby WokeUpInACar » Tue Apr 02, 2013 12:16 pm

Utah is the right call here given your connections IMO, but I'd strongly consider dropping out if you lose the scholarship.

BigZuck
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Re: Colorado vs. Utah

Postby BigZuck » Tue Apr 02, 2013 12:19 pm

WokeUpInACar wrote:Utah is the right call here given your connections IMO, but I'd strongly consider dropping out if you lose the scholarship.

mrwarre85
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Re: Colorado vs. Utah

Postby mrwarre85 » Tue Apr 02, 2013 1:09 pm

Where do you want to work?

If Salt Lake, go to UTAH.

mrwarre85
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Re: Colorado vs. Utah

Postby mrwarre85 » Tue Apr 02, 2013 1:28 pm

nickb285 wrote:--Utah seems to have more flexibility when it comes to clinical programs and externships, which is pretty important to me, since I want to have as much hands-on experience as possible coming out of school.


Also curious about this. I just graduated from CU and you can get as much hands-on experience as you want here.

Still, where do you want to work? If Salt Lake, you go to UTAH. You'll probably lose your scholarship and hate living with your parents, but if you want to work in Utah go to the local school. Law school can be fun, but it isn't the time for a vacation.

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nickb285
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Re: Colorado vs. Utah

Postby nickb285 » Tue Apr 02, 2013 1:36 pm

mrwarre85 wrote:Also curious about this. I just graduated from CU and you can get as much hands-on experience as you want here.

Still, where do you want to work? If Salt Lake, you go to UTAH. You'll probably lose your scholarship and hate living with your parents, but if you want to work in Utah go to the local school. Law school can be fun, but it isn't the time for a vacation.


Talking with the people in charge of clinical programs and externships at each school, it sounds like Utah has more open slots available for clinics (particularly if you want to do more than one) than Colorado does, and externship hours are limited to seven at Colorado, 18 at Utah. Perhaps Utah's just better at selling it, but that's the impression I got.

Salt Lake is my first choice, but really I'm open to anywhere in the Mountain West.

mrwarre85
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Re: Colorado vs. Utah

Postby mrwarre85 » Tue Apr 02, 2013 1:49 pm

nickb285 wrote:
mrwarre85 wrote:Also curious about this. I just graduated from CU and you can get as much hands-on experience as you want here.

Still, where do you want to work? If Salt Lake, you go to UTAH. You'll probably lose your scholarship and hate living with your parents, but if you want to work in Utah go to the local school. Law school can be fun, but it isn't the time for a vacation.


Talking with the people in charge of clinical programs and externships at each school, it sounds like Utah has more open slots available for clinics (particularly if you want to do more than one) than Colorado does, and externship hours are limited to seven at Colorado, 18 at Utah. Perhaps Utah's just better at selling it, but that's the impression I got.

Salt Lake is my first choice, but really I'm open to anywhere in the Mountain West.


Ahh. Yeah you can do two clinics at CU, easy, but you are correct about the limit for externships. There were rumblings that was changing when I left (just graduated three months ago). Who knows.

It sounds like CU will be cheaper because there are no stips on the scholarships here and in-state is automatic after 1L. Also there is no difference in employment between the two schools, they're peers. One school places in Colorado and the other in Utah. So if your first choice is SLC, then go to Utah.

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nickb285
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Re: Colorado vs. Utah

Postby nickb285 » Wed Apr 03, 2013 1:18 pm

Gonna give this a bump and see what happens.

UtahPhi
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Re: Colorado vs. Utah

Postby UtahPhi » Wed Apr 03, 2013 1:27 pm

If you want to work in SLC and do environmental work, then Utah is the obvious choice. Clinical opportunities take higher priority here than they do at other places. Also, the practical opportunities to work in environmental law as a student, are nearly unmatched at the U.

Plus, you may get some time in the new building.

BigZuck
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Re: Colorado vs. Utah

Postby BigZuck » Wed Apr 03, 2013 1:30 pm

BigZuck wrote:
WokeUpInACar wrote:Utah is the right call here given your connections IMO, but I'd strongly consider dropping out if you lose the scholarship.

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WisemanAEKDB
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Re: Colorado vs. Utah

Postby WisemanAEKDB » Wed Apr 03, 2013 1:43 pm

Same scholarship (Utah). Same worries. I asked about 6 different students at ASD if they were on scholarship and every single one of them said they were paying sticker so they had no clue. They are definitely unwilling to remove the stip, but he insisted that no one ever really loses their scholarship. I figured with the employment statistics, I'd cut my losses after 1L if I couldn't get my crap together.

It's either that, or pay sticker -$20k/yr OOS at Davis, or sticker at UW for me. Personally, I'm not thinking Utah is a bad choice. I might be contented with taking their offer. I would recommend the same for you.

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patrickd139
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Re: Colorado vs. Utah

Postby patrickd139 » Wed Apr 03, 2013 1:46 pm

BigZuck wrote:
BigZuck wrote:
WokeUpInACar wrote:Utah is the right call here given your connections IMO, but I'd strongly consider dropping out if you lose the scholarship.

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dr123
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Re: Colorado vs. Utah

Postby dr123 » Wed Apr 03, 2013 1:51 pm

Seems like this really comes down to SLC v. Denver, more than anything.

UtahPhi
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Re: Colorado vs. Utah

Postby UtahPhi » Wed Apr 03, 2013 1:57 pm

WisemanAEKDB wrote:Same scholarship (Utah). Same worries. I asked about 6 different students at ASD if they were on scholarship and every single one of them said they were paying sticker so they had no clue. They are definitely unwilling to remove the stip, but he insisted that no one ever really loses their scholarship. I figured with the employment statistics, I'd cut my losses after 1L if I couldn't get my crap together.

It's either that, or pay sticker -$20k/yr OOS at Davis, or sticker at UW for me. Personally, I'm not thinking Utah is a bad choice. I might be contented with taking their offer. I would recommend the same for you.


I'm on scholly at the U and I've made it through my 2L year. Anecdotal evidence, but most everyone I know who came in with a scholarship has kept it. Even if you did happen to lose your scholarship, there are a fair amount of scholarship options available that aren't heavily grade-based.

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Eberry
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Re: Colorado vs. Utah

Postby Eberry » Wed Apr 03, 2013 2:30 pm

patrickd139 wrote:
BigZuck wrote:
BigZuck wrote:
WokeUpInACar wrote:Utah is the right call here given your connections IMO, but I'd strongly consider dropping out if you lose the scholarship.

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nickb285
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Re: Colorado vs. Utah

Postby nickb285 » Wed Apr 03, 2013 2:35 pm

Eberry wrote:
patrickd139 wrote:
BigZuck wrote:
WokeUpInACar wrote:Utah is the right call here given your connections IMO, but I'd strongly consider dropping out if you lose the scholarship.


I'm sensing a theme here.

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nickb285
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Re: Colorado vs. Utah

Postby nickb285 » Wed Apr 03, 2013 2:40 pm

UtahPhi wrote:I'm on scholly at the U and I've made it through my 2L year. Anecdotal evidence, but most everyone I know who came in with a scholarship has kept it. Even if you did happen to lose your scholarship, there are a fair amount of scholarship options available that aren't heavily grade-based.


I saw that they had a lot of other scholarships available, but I wasn't sure whether they were going to be a pain in the ass to get. Glad they're less grade-based, it would kind of suck if there were a GPA stip for the scholarship and for every other type of aid money.

CO 2016 is supposed to get their third year in the new building.

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Rahviveh
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Re: Colorado vs. Utah

Postby Rahviveh » Wed Apr 03, 2013 2:41 pm

UtahPhi wrote:
WisemanAEKDB wrote:Same scholarship (Utah). Same worries. I asked about 6 different students at ASD if they were on scholarship and every single one of them said they were paying sticker so they had no clue. They are definitely unwilling to remove the stip, but he insisted that no one ever really loses their scholarship. I figured with the employment statistics, I'd cut my losses after 1L if I couldn't get my crap together.

It's either that, or pay sticker -$20k/yr OOS at Davis, or sticker at UW for me. Personally, I'm not thinking Utah is a bad choice. I might be contented with taking their offer. I would recommend the same for you.


I'm on scholly at the U and I've made it through my 2L year. Anecdotal evidence, but most everyone I know who came in with a scholarship has kept it. Even if you did happen to lose your scholarship, there are a fair amount of scholarship options available that aren't heavily grade-based.


No need to speculate, schools are required to post retention rates on their website:

--LinkRemoved--

So about a 20% reduction rate in the last three years. Sounds about right for a top 40% stip, but its a small sample.

Lord Randolph McDuff
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Re: Colorado vs. Utah

Postby Lord Randolph McDuff » Wed Apr 03, 2013 3:17 pm

At least with the UBE you could take one bar exam and practice in both states, along with pretty much the whole mountain west.




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