WWYD? Final Countdown Decision

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

Where would you put a deposit?

UW ($150-160k debt)
14
28%
UCI ($80-100k debt w/ strong LRAP)
3
6%
Temple ($75-90k debt)
1
2%
PSU UP ($60-70k debt)
1
2%
PSU Carlisle (45-60k debt)
4
8%
Ride out WL @ T10s (200-280k debt)
27
54%
 
Total votes: 50

superhopefulwoo
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WWYD? Final Countdown Decision

Postby superhopefulwoo » Mon Apr 15, 2013 9:49 pm

Retaking and waiting a year* will cost me about 20-30k in debt due to severe employment and housing situation including a family illness and foreclosure. Please keep this in mind when considering!

Here are my personal strongest considerations based on factors of location, debt, and desire to attend. All debt includes COL + Tuition after merit aid. Without further ado... Where would you put a deposit?

UW (Seattle, WA)Always was and still is my number one choice - I don't think T10 schools would add much value compared to UW because I would absolutely want to stay in Seattle and their reputation is stellar in the region. It is my undergrad - I love Seattle and the school. I have a decent UG network, friends in the area, and I am very familiar with the area. However, I am looking at $150-170k of debt.

LST Breakdown: 66.9% FT, LT JD Req & +11% for JD Advantage

*Retake would not affect UW's scholarship offer because they are notorious for giving out little money so it seems I need to be grateful for whatever I have been offered - my current $ is guaranteed for all three years*

UCI (Irvine, CA)
After visiting, it seemed like a good area to study because there's really nothing to do in the area. I know no one from California other than a few friends though. This is the only location I am a little weary of because of my lack of networks. I would be looking at $80-100k of debt, but they do have a very strong new LRAP available. I am not set on PI though, so if I can't get BigLaw as an alternative, this is probably not great. Plus, like most people, the newness is attractive but also concerning because no one can guarantee a strong outcome for the school with just one year of stats.

LST Breakdown: 82.1% FT, LT JD Req & +1.8% for JD Advantage

*My merit aid offer is conditional on a 2.0 minimum performance and good academic standing*

Temple (Philadelphia, PA)
I have strong roots, friendships, and a network here. The LRAP is weak, and the debt load is approximately $75-90k. The biggest concern is the campus is supposed to be incredibly dangerous past a couple blocks, and I plan to live in the library so the idea of facing danger every night after studying sounds terrible. Of course, I could choose to study at home, but that sounds less appealing. Also, their employment numbers aren't exactly outstanding... but it does place well in Philadelphia where I'd want to stay (for PA), and as a reigonal, is well respected.

LST Breakdown: 52% FT, LT JD Req & +11.2% for JD Advantage

*Merit aid is conditional I BELIEVE on a 2.0 minimum basis. I will have to double check, but I believe the admissions staff mentioned this a couple of times*

Penn State (Carlisle or UP, PA)
The school is very nice in it's own right. Dickinson had a good reputation for PSU is benefitting from that in combintation with their strong funds. The main campus is almost 4 hours away from Philly, and the alternative campus (Carlisle) is about 2 hours away from campus (but also closer to D.C.) I am torn on which campus I would attend if I were to go because UP is so far from Philly (where I'd like to visit once or month or something - the toll is over $20!!) Carlisle is not central, which doesn't sound great, but it seems like a tight knit smaller community/class which fares well for connecting to the professors on campus - plus the housing is insanely cheap there. Also, it gets points for the proximity to Philly (only $7 for the toll). They are 'separating' the two campuses from the year after this incoming class so it was clarified that this would NOT affect c/o 2016. It was a bit concerning that my friend who is currently there said he'd pick Temple if he were to choose again. The expected debt load is $45-60k at Carlisle and $60-70k at UP. Obviously, it is financially very strong.

LST Breakdown: 56.2% FT, LT JD Req & +6.2% for JD Advantage

*Merit aid offer is 3.0 minimum which is apparently about top 60-70% according to admissions*

I am very interested in PI or Government work in general. I do really want to do a Federal or State Clerkship, but I understand the all of the schools provide me a *don't hold your breath* shot at it except Irvine (but it is again, not necessarily a reliable statistic because it may not continue to stay strong). I am pretty open to most career outcomes except, totally broke AND with lots of debt.

DISCLAIMER: I am EXPECTING to not have movement beyond the regional areas for the schools I've chosen and would be happy to stay in each area. I understand the potential upsetting employment prospects based on the breakdown for each school's employment outcomes.
Last edited by superhopefulwoo on Thu Apr 18, 2013 4:26 pm, edited 4 times in total.

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Doorkeeper
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Re: WWYD? Final Countdown Decision

Postby Doorkeeper » Mon Apr 15, 2013 10:02 pm

Honestly? I wouldn't deposit at any of these choices. I would ride the WLs at T10 schools and retake/reapply if I didn't get in.

superhopefulwoo
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Re: WWYD? Final Countdown Decision

Postby superhopefulwoo » Mon Apr 15, 2013 10:07 pm

Doorkeeper wrote:Honestly? I wouldn't deposit at any of these choices. I would ride the WLs at T10 schools and retake/reapply if I didn't get in.


Even if I know I want to live in those regions? They are the strongest regional schools in each market... and I'd obviously pay sticker at all the T10s.

Edit: Well, I guess UCI is the odd man out though - it is neither the strongest regional in Cali nor would I necessarily want to live there (I'd have to find out during law school)

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Doorkeeper
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Re: WWYD? Final Countdown Decision

Postby Doorkeeper » Mon Apr 15, 2013 10:11 pm

superhopefulwoo wrote:
Doorkeeper wrote:Honestly? I wouldn't deposit at any of these choices. I would ride the WLs at T10 schools and retake/reapply if I didn't get in.

Even if I know I want to live in those regions? They are the strongest regional schools in each market... and I'd obviously pay sticker at all the T10s.

Edit: Well, I guess UCI is the odd man out though - it is neither the strongest regional in Cali nor would I necessarily want to live there (I'd have to find out during law school)

UWashington is way too expensive for its placement stats. Irvine doesn't make sense given your goals. Temple at $90k is very very worrisome with a 52% employment score. I have low regards for Penn State, but it's the only one that would make much financial sense. This being said, if you're getting WL at T10s, then having to settle for Penn State when you can just retake/reapply doesn't seem like the right move to me.

PRgradBYU
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Re: WWYD? Final Countdown Decision

Postby PRgradBYU » Mon Apr 15, 2013 10:19 pm

superhopefulwoo wrote:Edit: Well, I guess UCI is the odd man out though - it is neither the strongest regional in Cali nor would I necessarily want to live there (I'd have to find out during law school)


Horrible, horrible idea... you've gotta retake.

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hephaestus
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Re: WWYD? Final Countdown Decision

Postby hephaestus » Mon Apr 15, 2013 10:23 pm

It's really straining it to call PSU top in the region. Pitt rules Pittsburgh and Nova/Temple are the top regional in Philly. Maybe PSU was a thing when Harrisburg was more vibrant (eg when Reed smith and a few other big firms still had a Harrisburg office). However, it's really no longer the case.

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WokeUpInACar
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Re: WWYD? Final Countdown Decision

Postby WokeUpInACar » Mon Apr 15, 2013 10:26 pm

You absolutely positively must retake the LSAT. Here are a few recent success stories of people who retook.
darkgrayclouds wrote:Last year I faced a tough decision. Attend a T6 school with a very small scholarship, or sit out a year, retake the LSAT, and shoot for better outcomes. This is what resulted:

2011-2012 Cycle: 163 LSAT
http://lawschoolnumbers.com/mishap

2012-2013 Cycle: 163/165/176 LSAT
lawschoolnumbers.com/try%20again

I hope this can help someone who is struggling with the same situation that I faced last year. Retaking the LSAT was one of the best decision I ever made.

CaptainLeela wrote:Hi! In 2011 I was staring down the barrel of going to Temple and/or riding out a bunch of waitlists or reapplying.

Now, I'm trying to decide between Duke & Michigan. Or maybe Northwestern or Penn if I get lucky off of holds/waitlists. Guess how fucking happy I am that I found TLS and people talked to me about waiting a few years?! SO FUCKING HAPPY!

Please feel free to PM me, but seriously, that's an enormous waste, as others have said. I've been in those exact shoes and waiting was 1000% the right decision. I don't have enough good things to say about reapplying.

CaptainLeela wrote:I think for a lot of people it's the idea of deviating off a "path" they've set for themselves is terrifying. And they've told people! Erh mah gerd, what will the masses think?! You see a lot of "I have to go now" on here, but I've never seen a single situation where I thought that was true.

Did it suck telling people I wasn't actually going to law school? Yes. Did people give me a hard time about it...with varying degrees of humor...? Absolutely. Do I enjoy having spent 2 more years of my life as a cocktail waitress/shitlaw paralegal? Of course not.

But at the end of the day, you have to look at cost benefit of your choices. I have 2 mediocre years and some mild social discomfort as a trade off for enormous career gains. Temple was never ever going to take me where I want to go or where I am capable of going, which was unacceptable to me. So I took a deep breath, kept working, reapplied, and now have awesome options. At the end of the day, if you don't have the maturity to see that trade-off, I'm not sure you're ready for law school anyway.

igelchen wrote:Took LSAT #1 summer before senior year of undergrad. "studied" over the summer with kaplan book. Went into LSAT not knowing that there were two sections of LR or an experimental section. Got 161. Applied to u chicago ED because I did not know better. Got rejected.

Applied to every paralegal position on usajobs. Got one. Had a wonderful 2 years in DC. In second year, coughed up cash for powerscore class. Studied like hell for 3 months. Got 177. Applied to t14 minus chicago out of spite for rejecting me. Got in everywhere but yale.

Finishing up 1L at HLS, and could not be happier. :D

good luck!
Last edited by WokeUpInACar on Mon Apr 15, 2013 10:26 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Bronck
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Re: WWYD? Final Countdown Decision

Postby Bronck » Mon Apr 15, 2013 10:26 pm

I would retake and reapply since none of the options are particularly appealing at that cost. UW would probably be the worst decision from this list.

superhopefulwoo
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Re: WWYD? Final Countdown Decision

Postby superhopefulwoo » Mon Apr 15, 2013 10:43 pm

Bronck wrote:I would retake and reapply since none of the options are particularly appealing at that cost. UW would probably be the worst decision from this list.


Is it generally agreed that attending UW in general is a bad idea unless you get the PI full ride scholarship? Because I don't think I know ANYONE who is getting less than 100k in debt from there.

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Bronck
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Re: WWYD? Final Countdown Decision

Postby Bronck » Mon Apr 15, 2013 10:51 pm

superhopefulwoo wrote:
Bronck wrote:I would retake and reapply since none of the options are particularly appealing at that cost. UW would probably be the worst decision from this list.


Is it generally agreed that attending UW in general is a bad idea unless you get the PI full ride scholarship? Because I don't think I know ANYONE who is getting less than 100k in debt from there.


I have a 2L friend there and he said it's a bit of a bloodbath. I know I wouldn't be willing to shell out 100k+ for UW even if I wanted to work in Seattle -- the market is just too small.

superhopefulwoo
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Re: WWYD? Final Countdown Decision

Postby superhopefulwoo » Tue Apr 16, 2013 12:03 am

Bronck wrote:
superhopefulwoo wrote:
Bronck wrote:I would retake and reapply since none of the options are particularly appealing at that cost. UW would probably be the worst decision from this list.


Is it generally agreed that attending UW in general is a bad idea unless you get the PI full ride scholarship? Because I don't think I know ANYONE who is getting less than 100k in debt from there.


I have a 2L friend there and he said it's a bit of a bloodbath. I know I wouldn't be willing to shell out 100k+ for UW even if I wanted to work in Seattle -- the market is just too small.


That is really unfortunate, because I absolutely loved Seattle, know people there, and my heart wants me to go. But I am trying to battle my emotions and choose something that won't leave me homeless and unable to afford children/family for at least 10 years :/

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WokeUpInACar
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Re: WWYD? Final Countdown Decision

Postby WokeUpInACar » Tue Apr 16, 2013 12:07 am

superhopefulwoo wrote:
Bronck wrote:
superhopefulwoo wrote:
Bronck wrote:I would retake and reapply since none of the options are particularly appealing at that cost. UW would probably be the worst decision from this list.


Is it generally agreed that attending UW in general is a bad idea unless you get the PI full ride scholarship? Because I don't think I know ANYONE who is getting less than 100k in debt from there.


I have a 2L friend there and he said it's a bit of a bloodbath. I know I wouldn't be willing to shell out 100k+ for UW even if I wanted to work in Seattle -- the market is just too small.


That is really unfortunate, because I absolutely loved Seattle, know people there, and my heart wants me to go. But I am trying to battle my emotions and choose something that won't leave me homeless and unable to afford children/family for at least 10 years :/

The good news is, if you bust your ass studying for the LSAT and get into some t14 schools, you actually have a shot at getting back there!

superhopefulwoo
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Re: WWYD? Final Countdown Decision

Postby superhopefulwoo » Tue Apr 16, 2013 12:09 am

WokeUpInACar wrote:
superhopefulwoo wrote:
Bronck wrote:
superhopefulwoo wrote:
Is it generally agreed that attending UW in general is a bad idea unless you get the PI full ride scholarship? Because I don't think I know ANYONE who is getting less than 100k in debt from there.


I have a 2L friend there and he said it's a bit of a bloodbath. I know I wouldn't be willing to shell out 100k+ for UW even if I wanted to work in Seattle -- the market is just too small.


That is really unfortunate, because I absolutely loved Seattle, know people there, and my heart wants me to go. But I am trying to battle my emotions and choose something that won't leave me homeless and unable to afford children/family for at least 10 years :/

The good news is, if you bust your ass studying for the LSAT and get into some t14 schools, you actually have a shot at getting back there!


But just to clarify... Duke and/or GT is not worth sticker, right?

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WokeUpInACar
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Re: WWYD? Final Countdown Decision

Postby WokeUpInACar » Tue Apr 16, 2013 12:13 am

superhopefulwoo wrote:But just to clarify... Duke and/or GT is not worth sticker, right?

GT? Definitely not. Duke? Probably not, but it wouldn't be completely unreasonable. However many 169/3.7s got $60k+ scholarships this cycle so you wouldn't need a drastic increase for it to be a viable option!

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Bronck
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Re: WWYD? Final Countdown Decision

Postby Bronck » Tue Apr 16, 2013 12:17 am

WokeUpInACar wrote:The good news is, if you bust your ass studying for the LSAT and get into some t14 schools, you actually have a shot at getting back there!


Agreed. T14 trying to get back to Seattle > UW, in my opinion.

Just anecdotal but: I have a friend at CLS who snagged Perkins Coie 1L SA; and I have a friend at UVA who had significant Seattle ties and is doing a 2L SA at a solid firm there.

superhopefulwoo
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Re: WWYD? Final Countdown Decision

Postby superhopefulwoo » Tue Apr 16, 2013 3:29 am

Bronck wrote:
WokeUpInACar wrote:The good news is, if you bust your ass studying for the LSAT and get into some t14 schools, you actually have a shot at getting back there!


Agreed. T14 trying to get back to Seattle > UW, in my opinion.

Just anecdotal but: I have a friend at CLS who snagged Perkins Coie 1L SA; and I have a friend at UVA who had significant Seattle ties and is doing a 2L SA at a solid firm there.


But wouldn't it be harder to get into gov't in Seattle from far away?

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jbagelboy
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Re: WWYD? Final Countdown Decision

Postby jbagelboy » Tue Apr 16, 2013 2:51 pm

Wow. UW is soooo expensive. But its the only school that you seem to actually like and want to attend. Unless someone elses is paying for it to minimize the debt, I would urge you to consider an alternative -- that is, reapply.

superhopefulwoo
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Re: WWYD? Final Countdown Decision

Postby superhopefulwoo » Tue Apr 16, 2013 4:27 pm

jbagelboy wrote:Wow. UW is soooo expensive. But its the only school that you seem to actually like and want to attend. Unless someone elses is paying for it to minimize the debt, I would urge you to consider an alternative -- that is, reapply.

I do have an investment that could cover about 20k of the total COA and an extra 5k I could free up so I could minimize the debt to 125-130k. If I could effectively minimize my rent I could even bring it down to 115k. This is after a bit of struggle though. I do know I could potentially have my col covered by my SO if he moves with me so it could reduce my debt to about 90k if that happens.

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romothesavior
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Re: WWYD? Final Countdown Decision

Postby romothesavior » Tue Apr 16, 2013 7:09 pm

Definitely retake.

superhopefulwoo
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Re: WWYD? Final Countdown Decision

Postby superhopefulwoo » Wed Apr 17, 2013 1:24 pm

Would any people who voted for attending UW explain their reasoning? I'm curious since half the people think its the worst idea ever and some people seem to think its the best option.

empyreanrrv
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Re: WWYD? Final Countdown Decision

Postby empyreanrrv » Wed Apr 17, 2013 1:35 pm

I voted for it after you said you can bring your total debt down to 90k. 90k is much different from 150-170k. It is still not a good option, but not a disastrous one at that point either. If it is where you want to be and you wouldn't be happy anywhere else, then it makes sense to go. Retaking and trying to get more money, or into a T14 would be the better option.

superhopefulwoo
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Re: WWYD? Final Countdown Decision

Postby superhopefulwoo » Thu Apr 18, 2013 4:10 pm

empyreanrrv wrote:I voted for it after you said you can bring your total debt down to 90k. 90k is much different from 150-170k. It is still not a good option, but not a disastrous one at that point either. If it is where you want to be and you wouldn't be happy anywhere else, then it makes sense to go. Retaking and trying to get more money, or into a T14 would be the better option.



While T-10 is nice and a retake *might* get me a scholarship so I'll at least try, my family's home is being foreclosed this year. And my job barely supports my COL as is so having to pay rent next year will force me to be in debt as it is. Thus, retaking and waiting is actually a pretty awful option when considering the numbers since I will be homeless and with a job that can barely support rent. So people on here seem to agree that 150k at UW is comparable to 200k+ in debt at a T-10? I get it, but I kind of don't... the employment prospect jumps maybe 10-15% more at most of these schools and that's if you don't think people purposely chose a JD Advantage job.

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Re: WWYD? Final Countdown Decision

Postby empyreanrrv » Thu Apr 18, 2013 4:51 pm

It isn't so much about FTLT employment as it is about getting a job that can pay off that debt. When you get up to ~150k+ you need biglaw or your 50k a year job will never hit that principal and you'll die with debt. T14s are around ~50% biglaw, and UW is, generously, 15%. Both 150k and 200k are going to need biglaw, so it makes sense to pay 50k for an additional 35% chance to be able to pay off your debt.

superhopefulwoo
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Re: WWYD? Final Countdown Decision

Postby superhopefulwoo » Thu Apr 18, 2013 5:06 pm

empyreanrrv wrote:It isn't so much about FTLT employment as it is about getting a job that can pay off that debt. When you get up to ~150k+ you need biglaw or your 50k a year job will never hit that principal and you'll die with debt. T14s are around ~50% biglaw, and UW is, generously, 15%. Both 150k and 200k are going to need biglaw, so it makes sense to pay 50k for an additional 35% chance to be able to pay off your debt.



That definitely makes sense when you explain it that way. Thank you. I may end up taking my cheaper options anyway and see if I can ride out a T-10 at Duke or Columbia... we'll see!




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