Michigan v. Duke v. UCLA v. USC

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

Dat deposit?

Michigan
23
34%
Duke
28
42%
UCLA
9
13%
USC
6
9%
Jones for waitlist option
1
1%
 
Total votes: 67

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J_stack
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Michigan v. Duke v. UCLA v. USC

Postby J_stack » Fri Apr 12, 2013 10:16 pm

California resident, went to USC for undergrad. I have the following options:
(numbers in bold are my expected debt at graduation. I have savings + a fixed parental contribution)

Michigan 12k/year 60K
Duke 16k/year 60K
UCLA 30k/year 10K
USC 40k/year 0K

I really could picture myself at all of these schools. Visited Michigan for ASW and saw UCLA today. I don't know much about Duke since I was accepted after I could attend their ASW. I'm fairly debt averse, and used to nice weather. I'm not opposed to dealing with Michigan's weather, but it's not something I would look forward to. I have a cat and a boyfriend in LA that I would miss if I moved, but I'm willing to do it for the right school.

Michigan so far seems like my favorite set up for 1L year; I love the Lawyers Club renovations and I like the idea of not having to cook or clean, and live 50 feet away from my classes. I'm pretty sick of the housing situation around USC, so if I went there I'd have to look for something a little further from campus and commute. I love the west side so thats a plus for UCLA. Also, my parents are in so cal and my only brother lives in Michigan. My dad's a Michigan law alum.

Career wise (and in a perfect world), I would like a clerkship, but I realize those odds. Then I'd like to work for a private firm to pay off any debt I might have, and if possible, get into academia (I realize those odds as well). Won't be torn up about it if it doesn't happen though. Ideally, I'd like to end up back in California, specifically the Bay Area, but I'll settle for So Cal as well. I'm not opposed to a few years somewhere else, though. So I have kind of fluid goals.

Wild Card:
Waitlisted at Berkely, in the 1st quartile.
Waitlisted at Chicago, and had an interveiw pre-waitlist.
Waitlisted at NYU
Waitlisted at Harvard, and have a post-waitlist JS1 scheduled for next week.

Aside from NYU, I think I would go to any of these and pay sticker (which would leave me with debt around 100K) Thoughts?? I'm like a fish out of water here on these options and I'd love to hear everyone's input. I'll have to deposit at one of these four and then ride out for the chance of getting of a waitlist or maybe even a stellar June LSAT, but I don't love the idea of waiting for another cycle. So all opinions are welcome.

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Doorkeeper
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Re: Michigan v. Duke v. UCLA v. USC

Postby Doorkeeper » Fri Apr 12, 2013 10:21 pm

This thread is pretty useless if you have a JS1 in a week. Good luck on Harvard.

Also, if you seriously want academia, then none of your current options are good and it's useless until you hear from Harvard (maybe Chicago or NYU).

This being said, if you really just want biglaw and everything else just sounds nice, then Duke for $60k sounds great. Do that.

Waitlist rankings:
1. Harvard.
2. Chicago.
3. Berkeley = Duke.

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J_stack
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Re: Michigan v. Duke v. UCLA v. USC

Postby J_stack » Fri Apr 12, 2013 10:33 pm

Yeah, when I say I want academia, I mean I want it if I get into Chicago or Harvard. At the others I'd just want to go the clerkship --> big law route.

And haha, really? Even if I get off the Harvard waitlist, I think it will be after the May 1st deposit deadlines, so I still have to decide on one of these four.

Also I wish I had had the chance to go to Duke's ASW... tickets are like $700 for the next few weeks :/
Last edited by J_stack on Sun Apr 14, 2013 2:22 am, edited 1 time in total.

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TripTrip
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Re: Michigan v. Duke v. UCLA v. USC

Postby TripTrip » Sat Apr 13, 2013 3:16 pm

Doorkeeper wrote:This thread is pretty useless if you have a JS1 in a week. Good luck on Harvard.
The number of us post-WL JS1ers is looking a little high. I'm tempted to stop calling it a JS1 and start calling it a WLI.

I think Mich and Duke are generally worth $50k more than UCLA, but if you know for sure you want to live in Cali that might be a more deciding factor.

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J_stack
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Re: Michigan v. Duke v. UCLA v. USC

Postby J_stack » Sun Apr 14, 2013 2:24 am

TripTrip wrote:I think Mich and Duke are generally worth $50k more than UCLA, but if you know for sure you want to live in Cali that might be a more deciding factor.


What if I want SF rather than So Cal? Hard to tell from the data whether UCLA grads can make it up there as easily.

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TripTrip
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Re: Michigan v. Duke v. UCLA v. USC

Postby TripTrip » Sun Apr 14, 2013 2:27 am

J_stack wrote:
TripTrip wrote:I think Mich and Duke are generally worth $50k more than UCLA, but if you know for sure you want to live in Cali that might be a more deciding factor.


What if I want SF rather than So Cal? Hard to tell from the data whether UCLA grads can make it up there as easily.

Then I'm inclined to just say Duke. They do place 12% of their grads in Cali from NC, after all.

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Lasers
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Re: Michigan v. Duke v. UCLA v. USC

Postby Lasers » Sun Apr 14, 2013 5:44 am

i would say you should go to duke over michigan due to its smaller class size and better placement numbers.

if you really, really prefer a CA option for law school, go to usc. ucla should be cut out right away since it's a peer to usc but costs $10k more.

my opinion:
1. duke
2. michigan
3. usc
4. ucla

also, i hate poll results from people who don't post. i swear, most of them just vote based on us news rankings when the deciding factors should instead be cost, geographic preference and employment placement statistics.

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J_stack
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Re: Michigan v. Duke v. UCLA v. USC

Postby J_stack » Sun Apr 14, 2013 7:37 pm

Lasers wrote:i would say you should go to duke over michigan due to its smaller class size and better placement numbers.

if you really, really prefer a CA option for law school, go to usc. ucla should be cut out right away since it's a peer to usc but costs $10k more.

my opinion:
1. duke
2. michigan
3. usc
4. ucla

also, i hate poll results from people who don't post. i swear, most of them just vote based on us news rankings when the deciding factors should instead be cost, geographic preference and employment placement statistics.


I feel the same about USC v. UCLA. Even though I'm in-state (it knocks the difference down to something more like 6k), I don't see a point in paying 18k extra for the same odds at employment.

Duke v. Michigan, however, I'm less sold on. I see the employment numbers argument; Duke does have strong clerkship and firm numbers, but Michigan also has 16% self selecting into PI whereas Duke has 9%. It seems to me like a few percentage points are negligible, and the decision comes down to personal preference. So at this point, it's hard for me to pick Duke when I haven't seen it. I'll consider biting the bullet for a plane ticket.

Anyone have any solid arguemnts for or against Michigan v Duke?

WahooLaw24
Posts: 256
Joined: Tue Feb 26, 2013 9:35 pm

Re: Michigan v. Duke v. UCLA v. USC

Postby WahooLaw24 » Sun Apr 14, 2013 7:58 pm

J_stack wrote:
Lasers wrote:i would say you should go to duke over michigan due to its smaller class size and better placement numbers.

if you really, really prefer a CA option for law school, go to usc. ucla should be cut out right away since it's a peer to usc but costs $10k more.

my opinion:
1. duke
2. michigan
3. usc
4. ucla

also, i hate poll results from people who don't post. i swear, most of them just vote based on us news rankings when the deciding factors should instead be cost, geographic preference and employment placement statistics.


I feel the same about USC v. UCLA. Even though I'm in-state (it knocks the difference down to something more like 6k), I don't see a point in paying 18k extra for the same odds at employment.

Duke v. Michigan, however, I'm less sold on. I see the employment numbers argument; Duke does have strong clerkship and firm numbers, but Michigan also has 16% self selecting into PI whereas Duke has 9%. It seems to me like a few percentage points are negligible, and the decision comes down to personal preference. So at this point, it's hard for me to pick Duke when I haven't seen it. I'll consider biting the bullet for a plane ticket.

Anyone have any solid arguemnts for or against Michigan v Duke?


Go visit Duke. Since between your savings and your parents you're apparently able to cover about $150K over the next 3 years, I think it would be foolish not to spend a few hundred to get on a plane and see one of the two places you'll likely wind up spending those 3 years.

js25
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Re: Michigan v. Duke v. UCLA v. USC

Postby js25 » Mon Apr 15, 2013 7:08 pm

I'm sure you've thought about this already but... Michigan winters suck.

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J_stack
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Re: Michigan v. Duke v. UCLA v. USC

Postby J_stack » Mon Apr 15, 2013 7:44 pm

js25 wrote:I'm sure you've thought about this already but... Michigan winters suck.


Yeah, I've never experienced a real winter either. But in a perverse way I kind of want to see what it'd be like. 3 years isn't long.

Also re: visitng Duke, I don't want to dish out for it becuase I don't think visitng will sway me one way or the other. I really, really liked AA, Michigan's buildings, people, living situation, etc. I google street viewed Durham and tbh, it's looks boring, I'd need to lug my car out there, etc. The only argument that would sway me at this point is objective, and if it turns out to be personal preference, it might be Michigan for me.

framboozer
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Re: Michigan v. Duke v. UCLA v. USC

Postby framboozer » Mon Apr 15, 2013 8:00 pm

J_stack wrote:
js25 wrote:I'm sure you've thought about this already but... Michigan winters suck.


Yeah, I've never experienced a real winter either. But in a perverse way I kind of want to see what it'd be like. 3 years isn't long.

Also re: visitng Duke, I don't want to dish out for it becuase I don't think visitng will sway me one way or the other. I really, really liked AA, Michigan's buildings, people, living situation, etc. I google street viewed Durham and tbh, it's looks boring, I'd need to lug my car out there, etc. The only argument that would sway me at this point is objective, and if it turns out to be personal preference, it might be Michigan for me.


Durham itself isn't exactly the draw for Duke, unless you're a foodie, in which case Durham will surprise you. It did just get named the south's Tastiest Town by Southern Living. In any case there is definitely a very active student life that you won't be able to see through google streetview. You really would need to bring your car though. Getting around without a car would be a struggle. I mean you could live close enough to school to walk for sure, but everything else would suck. But the weather is lovely. You will get winter, but it's a temperate winter.

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jbagelboy
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Re: Michigan v. Duke v. UCLA v. USC

Postby jbagelboy » Mon Apr 15, 2013 8:04 pm

Voted Duke (didnt want to be one of those "voters w/o post"). But I would go to your alma mater if your relationship is very important, more important than solid employment prospects, and based on your COA figures, it would save your parents a bunch of money.

Congrats on the JS1. Really shows how unpredictable these cycles can be!

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megagnarley
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Re: Michigan v. Duke v. UCLA v. USC

Postby megagnarley » Mon Apr 15, 2013 9:48 pm

I'm in the exact same situation just looking at more debt.

Unless you are married/engaged, I would toss out the SO factor and go to Mich or Duke if you want biglaw.

Don't be silly. Fly out and visit Duke this week and then go to whichever one feels better between Duke and Mich. This is exactly what I'm doing.

Duke has better raw placement numbers but a smaller Gov/PI contingent and a way worse LRAP so it is honestly a wash in my book.

You can't go wrong either way.

born4law
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Re: Michigan v. Duke v. UCLA v. USC

Postby born4law » Thu May 09, 2013 1:58 pm

Very interested to know what OP has decided. I'm stuck on Michigan vs. Duke right now! It's seriously a wash and comes down to personal preference.

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Dr. Dre
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Re: Michigan v. Duke v. UCLA v. USC

Postby Dr. Dre » Thu May 09, 2013 7:23 pm

UCLA/USC shouldn't even be considered here.

zman
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Re: Michigan v. Duke v. UCLA v. USC

Postby zman » Thu May 09, 2013 7:51 pm

Dr. Dre wrote:UCLA/USC shouldn't even be considered here.



sure they should be.. I mean they are not UCI :lol:

born4law
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Re: Michigan v. Duke v. UCLA v. USC

Postby born4law » Thu May 09, 2013 7:57 pm

Whatever OP decided, I just picked Michigan (for largely the same reasons he/she had cited). Stoked about AA! Truly excited about going.




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