Oregon ($), Lewis and Clark, Arizona

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

which one

Oregon
9
41%
L&C
4
18%
Arizona
6
27%
Colorado
3
14%
 
Total votes: 22

PotLuck
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Oregon ($), Lewis and Clark, Arizona

Postby PotLuck » Wed Apr 17, 2013 3:36 pm

I am currently in the works of retaking the LSAT in June but I was curious of my options so far. 3.13/163

The firm I work for in California is giving me a scholarship for COL for 3 years so long as I stay in good academic standing and work for them for summers and at least 3 years after I graduate (not sure of salary but typical new hires start in the $90k range).

These are my options:

Oregon (COA = $80k)
Lewis and Clark (sticker, ~$95k)
Arizona (Sticker, ~$150k)
Colorado (Sticker, ~$170k)

Prices are based off of LST with interest. It is likely cheaper than I listed but I posted worst case scenario.

Given this, I was thinking about the long term and the possibility of leaving after 3-4 years at this firm to go into a different direction (potentially PI?). My preferences for location would be pretty much anywhere in the PNW, Cali, Colorado, Arizona.

I don't care about rankings at all. I'm looking for a good place to study for 3 years with decent employment prospects. Other attorneys at the firm went to a weird array of law schools ranging from Harvard to Western State. I REALLY love Oregon (Eugene is amazing) but their LST is pretty bad. I'm not sure why it is so bad when I've been told the university as a whole has an incredible alumni network. Lewis and Clark was a nice option but honestly I think I'd rather go to Oregon over L&C. I understand L&C has a little better employment prospects. I also recently got into Arizona which has pretty decent numbers employment wise. I have always been a fan of the school and for some reason everyone at my firm thinks it is equal to UCLA (which we know is not true).

Overall the partners don't seem to care where I go of the 4 so ignoring the retake (since I'm already doing that), if you HAD to pick one of my options which would you choose?
Last edited by PotLuck on Fri May 24, 2013 6:23 pm, edited 1 time in total.

llachans
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Re: Oregon ($), Lewis and Clark, Arizona

Postby llachans » Wed Apr 17, 2013 3:46 pm

Honestly, none of your options are very good. Have you tried negotiating with any of the schools? I applied to UO & L&C in my cycle and tried to negotiate with both schools. I talked L&C into giving me more money but UO refused to. Maybe try and get more out of them though. Also, do you have any ties to Oregon? The legal market is extremely insular and UO's employment stats are god-awful.

[Edit: This is advice for a more generic situation. I'm not sure whether your law firm deal factors into my advice differently or not. Hopefully other posters will weigh in.]

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nickb285
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Re: Oregon ($), Lewis and Clark, Arizona

Postby nickb285 » Wed Apr 17, 2013 3:52 pm

First, glad to see you're retaking. I had a 3.17, but with a 169 I got $17k/year L&C, full ride 1L/$12k 2L and 3L at Colorado, and set tuition amount of $12k/year at Arizona. So if you can bump that score up a little you'll be golden.

That said, however, I wouldn't pay what you're looking at for those schools. The job market in the PNW is pretty terrible at the moment, even more so than most. AZ and CO are about normal for state schools, which means that they are worth going to but only with a significant scholarship. For $150k worth of loans, you're looking at about $28k/year in pre-tax salary that will be devoted solely to making the monthly payment on a 10-year repayment plan. Now, you're in a better place than most, because of the job offer, but anything can happen in three years--the firm could go under, they could run out of money to hire new associates, etc. By all means take advantage of what they're offering you, but you should make a decision as though you won't have that job waiting for you when you graduate. Will they extend the offer and scholarship if you defer a year?

Aside from that, go to the place you want to work most. That way if the offer does fall through you're not stuck in a market you're not interested in. Just know that if the firm's job offer falls through for some reason, you'll likely be stuck in that state for at least the first 5-10 years after graduating. In any case, try to negotiate scholarship money with all of them before you make a decision.

If the firm isn't willing to extend the offer to next year, and if your retake goes poorly and you can't negotiate any scholarship money, I would say go to Oregon for the low COA and drop out if the firm cancels its offer.

PotLuck
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Re: Oregon ($), Lewis and Clark, Arizona

Postby PotLuck » Wed Apr 17, 2013 5:00 pm

nickb285 wrote:First, glad to see you're retaking. I had a 3.17, but with a 169 I got $17k/year L&C, full ride 1L/$12k 2L and 3L at Colorado, and set tuition amount of $12k/year at Arizona. So if you can bump that score up a little you'll be golden.

That said, however, I wouldn't pay what you're looking at for those schools. The job market in the PNW is pretty terrible at the moment, even more so than most. AZ and CO are about normal for state schools, which means that they are worth going to but only with a significant scholarship. For $150k worth of loans, you're looking at about $28k/year in pre-tax salary that will be devoted solely to making the monthly payment on a 10-year repayment plan. Now, you're in a better place than most, because of the job offer, but anything can happen in three years--the firm could go under, they could run out of money to hire new associates, etc. By all means take advantage of what they're offering you, but you should make a decision as though you won't have that job waiting for you when you graduate. Will they extend the offer and scholarship if you defer a year?

Aside from that, go to the place you want to work most. That way if the offer does fall through you're not stuck in a market you're not interested in. Just know that if the firm's job offer falls through for some reason, you'll likely be stuck in that state for at least the first 5-10 years after graduating. In any case, try to negotiate scholarship money with all of them before you make a decision.

If the firm isn't willing to extend the offer to next year, and if your retake goes poorly and you can't negotiate any scholarship money, I would say go to Oregon for the low COA and drop out if the firm cancels its offer.


Yeah, I'm definitely going to retake. I spoke with Oregon and they said most of the scholarship money may be gone by then. They already offered me $10k/yr no stips. Arizona said they would consider a June LSAT but I'm worried that it would be the same problem.

As for my firm, they are going to give me a check every August for the entire year. They have been around for a long time and I honestly don't think the well will dry up soon for them so I have faith that the scholarship will continue. However, I definitely see your point as nothing really is permanent in this game. They have done this with 3 other associates that work here and they have been some of the best lawyers according to the partners.

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nickb285
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Re: Oregon ($), Lewis and Clark, Arizona

Postby nickb285 » Wed Apr 17, 2013 5:25 pm

They can find more money if it's worth it to them. If you crush the LSAT, I suspect you'll be surprised at how much funding is available from at least one of them--next year if not this year.

That's a pretty fantastic offer, you're seriously lucky there. Still, you have to look out for number one. If you do well on the LSAT and could get significantly more money/offers from better schools next cycle, it'd be worth sitting down with them and seeing if you can delay for a year and keep working at your current position. If the offer is predicated on going this year, check out LSN and see what sorts of scholarships you could expect with the new LSAT score, and figure out if needing to pay your own living expenses would be worth it or not.

PotLuck
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Re: Oregon ($), Lewis and Clark, Arizona

Postby PotLuck » Wed Apr 17, 2013 6:48 pm

Yeah that's probably true. I thought schools in the PNW were very stingy with money. I am very lucky, my firm is pretty awesome but it is definitely a place where you pull your weight. They have been successful with this program in the past in terms of getting outstanding lawyers in return so they will probably keep it going until it doesn't make sense for them any more.

PotLuck
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Re: Oregon ($), Lewis and Clark, Arizona

Postby PotLuck » Thu Apr 18, 2013 1:37 pm

Just found out that they are expecting me to enter this year... Makes this decision even harder. I am going to retake and hope for scholarship money I guess. If I get a substantially better score would it be way too late to apply other places?

Also, though it doesn't help my numbers one bit, I am a 28yr old non-trad.

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nickb285
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Re: Oregon ($), Lewis and Clark, Arizona

Postby nickb285 » Thu Apr 18, 2013 1:48 pm

You mean apply other places to enter this fall? Yes, it would be way too late. Put down deposits at all of them and see what you get with a better LSAT.

And unless you spent the time between undergrad and now in the military, as an Olympic athlete, or curing cancer, being 28 and working at a law firm does not make you "non-trad," nor will there be any kind of boost.

PotLuck
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Re: Oregon ($), Lewis and Clark, Arizona

Postby PotLuck » Thu Apr 18, 2013 2:23 pm

I spent my time being cured of cancer if that helps. :P

I have deposits at all for now. That was definitely not cheap.

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nickb285
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Re: Oregon ($), Lewis and Clark, Arizona

Postby nickb285 » Thu Apr 18, 2013 2:31 pm

PotLuck wrote:I spent my time being cured of cancer if that helps. :P


So close...

Yeah, stuff like that is great PS material but US News doesn't rank schools on the number of cancer survivors so adcomms don't care. On a personal note though congrats; I've got some cancer victims/survivors in my family and I know how tough that shit can be.

PotLuck wrote:I have deposits at all for now. That was definitely not cheap.


Yeah, it blows, but if it means that you can play them off each other for scholarships it'll be a good investment.

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dr123
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Re: Oregon ($), Lewis and Clark, Arizona

Postby dr123 » Thu Apr 18, 2013 2:38 pm

Just go to Oregon if you have a guaranteed job. LST doesnt really matter if you for sure have a job.

PotLuck
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Re: Oregon ($), Lewis and Clark, Arizona

Postby PotLuck » Thu Apr 18, 2013 2:41 pm

nickb285 wrote:
Yeah, it blows, but if it means that you can play them off each other for scholarships it'll be a good investment.


This is a good point.

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nickb285
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Re: Oregon ($), Lewis and Clark, Arizona

Postby nickb285 » Thu Apr 18, 2013 2:42 pm

dr123 wrote:Just go to Oregon if you have a guaranteed job. LST doesnt really matter if you for sure have a job.


Nothing is guaranteed. OP is probably set but it doesn't hurt to hedge your bets when it comes to debt. Besides, even with a mostly guaranteed job, the less you have to pay back in loans the better.

Aside from that I agree;

If the firm isn't willing to extend the offer to next year, and if your retake goes poorly and you can't negotiate any scholarship money, I would say go to Oregon for the low COA and drop out if the firm cancels its offer.

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dr123
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Re: Oregon ($), Lewis and Clark, Arizona

Postby dr123 » Thu Apr 18, 2013 3:09 pm

nickb285 wrote:
dr123 wrote:Just go to Oregon if you have a guaranteed job. LST doesnt really matter if you for sure have a job.


Nothing is guaranteed. OP is probably set but it doesn't hurt to hedge your bets when it comes to debt. Besides, even with a mostly guaranteed job, the less you have to pay back in loans the better.

Aside from that I agree;

If the firm isn't willing to extend the offer to next year, and if your retake goes poorly and you can't negotiate any scholarship money, I would say go to Oregon for the low COA and drop out if the firm cancels its offer.


Generally, I would agree. However, If OP's employer is making an investment in him, they are going to want a return on that investment. This scenario is as close as a sure thing as you're going to get. Much moreso than all the people who come on here w/ "guaranteed employment" through acquantices/family members. I highly doubt his employer will pay for his COL and then no offer him when he's about to graduate. A more likely scenario would be getting fired after a year or two of practicing.

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nickb285
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Re: Oregon ($), Lewis and Clark, Arizona

Postby nickb285 » Thu Apr 18, 2013 3:45 pm

Fair enough. Still doesn't hurt to try for more money though--going to Oregon is a much better idea if you have a guaranteed job, but going to Oregon for less money when you have a guaranteed job is an even better idea than that.

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sanjola
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Re: Oregon ($), Lewis and Clark, Arizona

Postby sanjola » Thu Apr 18, 2013 11:25 pm

I'm just curious as to why you didn't apply to any schools in CA? Do you want to experience living in a different state for 3 years before you settle down in CA?

PotLuck
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Re: Oregon ($), Lewis and Clark, Arizona

Postby PotLuck » Sat Apr 20, 2013 3:23 pm

I applied to some schools in CA. I was WL at Davis and Hastings. I didn't really care for Loyola, USD, or UCI too much tbh. I did want to get out of state for a few years but this wasn't the most important reason I guess. I dont think Id go to Davis or Hastings now that I think about it.

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romothesavior
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Re: Oregon ($), Lewis and Clark, Arizona

Postby romothesavior » Sun Apr 21, 2013 9:38 pm

Question: if you have a pretty much guaranteed offer and they're going to pay for COL, why take on debt at all? Why not go somewhere on a full-ride?

PotLuck
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Re: Oregon ($), Lewis and Clark, Arizona

Postby PotLuck » Mon Apr 22, 2013 1:29 am

Do you mean go to a TTTT for $$$?? I didn't really think it made sense in the long term aspects?

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romothesavior
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Re: Oregon ($), Lewis and Clark, Arizona

Postby romothesavior » Mon Apr 22, 2013 10:44 am

PotLuck wrote:Do you mean go to a TTTT for $$$?? I didn't really think it made sense in the long term aspects?

Not necessarily a total TTTT school, but you should be trying to go for as cheap as possible. You have a guaranteed job making ~90k after graduation, and they're paying for your COL. Why on earth would you go into debt anyways? Yes, a better school may help you somewhat if you decide to move, but the name of your degree is the most valuable when it comes to landing your first job. None of the schools you're looking at are going to wow anybody when it comes time to lateral or go in-house. If I can be frank, I think you're going about this all wrong and you're looking at a mountain of unnecessary debt for no real upside.

PotLuck
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Re: Oregon ($), Lewis and Clark, Arizona

Postby PotLuck » Mon Apr 22, 2013 12:12 pm

That is more than likely true. I am just getting worried because it sounds like they are expecting me to enter this year as everything is signed and ready to go for the CoL scholly. I definitely blew it by not asking to defer it a year for the retake but now I'm kind of stuck where I am. I am in review at Pacific McGeorge so I guess depending on what they come back with that could be a viable option with some serious cash?

I definitely don't want to go to a school with the intention of transferring, but as I see it, if I were to lose the CoL scholly for any reason my first year I would probably drop out and hope that my grades are good enough to switch schools.

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romothesavior
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Re: Oregon ($), Lewis and Clark, Arizona

Postby romothesavior » Mon Apr 22, 2013 2:15 pm

Yeah this is an unfortunate situation really. I think you should have been gunning to go for as cheap as possible, and I still think you should take your cheapest possible option. Do everything you can to minimize debt. I would even suggest McGeorge if its the cheapest. Often taking on debt for a better school is the right decision; this is not one of those times.

PotLuck
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Re: Oregon ($), Lewis and Clark, Arizona

Postby PotLuck » Mon Apr 22, 2013 2:49 pm

romothesavior wrote:Yeah this is an unfortunate situation really. I think you should have been gunning to go for as cheap as possible, and I still think you should take your cheapest possible option. Do everything you can to minimize debt. I would even suggest McGeorge if its the cheapest. Often taking on debt for a better school is the right decision; this is not one of those times.


Well said sir, I will definitely evaluate and entertain high $$$ offers from Mcgeorge.

PotLuck
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Re: Oregon ($), Lewis and Clark, Arizona

Postby PotLuck » Fri May 24, 2013 5:59 pm

Hey Guys,

Reviving this thread. Lewis and Clark gave me some more money bringing my COA to $95k. Is this worth it at all over Oregon?

I still don't understand why Oregon has such poor employment numbers. It's driving me crazy. I always thought they had one of the best alumni networks in the nation.




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