Columbia v. GTown ($) v. Mich ($) v. UMN ($$$)

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

Which should I choose?

Columbia ($276,000)
36
40%
UMN ($70,000)
40
44%
Georgetown ($208,000)
2
2%
Michigan ($206,000)
13
14%
 
Total votes: 91

User avatar
you'rethemannowdawg
Posts: 211
Joined: Thu Jan 03, 2013 1:36 pm

Columbia v. GTown ($) v. Mich ($) v. UMN ($$$)

Postby you'rethemannowdawg » Mon Apr 22, 2013 6:33 pm

.
Last edited by you'rethemannowdawg on Fri Aug 16, 2013 5:59 pm, edited 2 times in total.

User avatar
cahwc12
Posts: 941
Joined: Mon Jul 02, 2012 4:49 pm

Re: Columbia v. GTown v. Mich ($) v. UMN ($$$)

Postby cahwc12 » Mon Apr 22, 2013 6:42 pm

Is this really the best your numbers got you? That's super disappointing (at least to me, since I also have a 3.4). Have you tried muscling UMN into a full ride with your T14 offers? I feel like that's probably not their best offer...

I'd go UMN or bust, but I'm surprised they didn't offer you more. Columbia is a possible contender, but I just can't imagine $300k debt is going to get you much better opportunities in Minnesota.

User avatar
you'rethemannowdawg
Posts: 211
Joined: Thu Jan 03, 2013 1:36 pm

Re: Columbia v. GTown v. Mich ($) v. UMN ($$$)

Postby you'rethemannowdawg » Mon Apr 22, 2013 6:47 pm

cahwc12 wrote:Is this really the best your numbers got you? That's super disappointing (at least to me, since I also have a 3.4). Have you tried muscling UMN into a full ride with your T14 offers? I feel like that's probably not their best offer...

I'd go UMN or bust, but I'm surprised they didn't offer you more. Columbia is a possible contender, but I just can't imagine $300k debt is going to get you much better opportunities in Minnesota.


Yeah, I emailed UMN but haven't heard back yet, so at this point I'm going to assume that's their final.

Also, you might be confusing me with KingFish. My degree GPA was 3.4, but my LSAC GPA was 3.27.

But, don't lose hope! I also got 32k/yr from Wash U, 25k/yr from UCLA, and 27k/yr +5 from Vandy. I've ruled all those out for various reasons.

User avatar
Tekrul
Posts: 493
Joined: Wed Apr 10, 2013 8:17 pm

Re: Columbia v. GTown v. Mich ($) v. UMN ($$$)

Postby Tekrul » Mon Apr 22, 2013 7:03 pm

I'm voting Columbia, I guess.

If you can stand the biglaw, then, imo, you can see it as just working for 5 years to get to a debt level that UMN would leave you at, and THEN start to work on your bigfed/Twin Cities settling down goals. Columbia, in this case, would be an 8 year commitment but you'll end up at the same place/debt with the added bonus of prestige, and stronger springboard into your other goals.

Or UMN will get you started on that longer term project of settling down in Twin Cities sooner, start working there, maybe buying a home/building equity, etc.

I guess it comes down to your appetite for risk.

User avatar
bizzybone1313
Posts: 996
Joined: Wed Jul 11, 2012 4:31 pm

Re: Columbia v. GTown v. Mich ($) v. UMN ($$$)

Postby bizzybone1313 » Mon Apr 22, 2013 7:04 pm

I would try to play Columbia's acceptance off Michigan and try to get $15 or $20K more from Michigan. You busted your ass for the high LSAT, so you could have a shot at the T-14.

For me, I would attend either Michigan or Columbia, so you can have national portability for the future. You might not want to stay all of your life in Minnesota. I, for example, might want to go work somewhere else besides Texas one day, so I am going to have to bite the bullet and probably attend a T-14 rather than UT-Austin.

Did you file Columbia's financial aid paperwork yet? Columbia is a superb outcome with you having such a low GPA. If I was in your shoes and Columbia gave me some $, I would attend no matter what. Maybe you will be lucky and be from a humble background and receive aid.

I would scour the internet, join Facebook groups and in general just try to find out as much as possible about Minnesota before committing to the school. Will you be stuck in Minnesota the rest of your life if you attend there? I would try to definitively find out the answer to this question.

What happens to the people that finish in the bottom third of their class at Minnesota? I have a friend that finished real low in his class at UT and ended up as a ADA in Manhattan. It is a pretty sweet gig I would say. He is going to run for office one day, so this will look good on his political resume. However, I think his outcome was not the norm. I have a read a lot of negative/bad outcomes coming from people attending T-20/T-25 schools. So I would think very deeply about the decision you are about to make.

User avatar
you'rethemannowdawg
Posts: 211
Joined: Thu Jan 03, 2013 1:36 pm

Re: Columbia v. GTown v. Mich ($) v. UMN ($$$)

Postby you'rethemannowdawg » Mon Apr 22, 2013 7:28 pm

bizzybone1313 wrote:I would try to play Columbia's acceptance off Michigan and try to get $15 or $20K more from Michigan. You busted your ass for the high LSAT, so you could have a shot at the T-14.

For me, I would attend either Michigan or Columbia, so you can have national portability for the future. You might not want to stay all of your life in Minnesota. I, for example, might want to go work somewhere else besides Texas one day, so I am going to have to bite the bullet and probably attend a T-14 rather than UT-Austin.

Did you file Columbia's financial aid paperwork yet? Columbia is a superb outcome with you having such a low GPA. If I was in your shoes and Columbia gave me some $, I would attend no matter what. Maybe you will be lucky and be from a humble background and receive aid.

I would scour the internet, join Facebook groups and in general just try to find out as much as possible about Minnesota before committing to the school. Will you be stuck in Minnesota the rest of your life if you attend there? I would try to definitively find out the answer to this question.

What happens to the people that finish in the bottom third of their class at Minnesota? I have a friend that finished real low in his class at UT and ended up as a ADA in Manhattan. It is a pretty sweet gig I would say. He is going to run for office one day, so this will look good on his political resume. However, I think his outcome was not the norm. I have a read a lot of negative/bad outcomes coming from people attending T-20/T-25 schools. So I would think very deeply about the decision you are about to make.


I did file the paperwork, haven't heard back. I agree, if they offered any aid it would make my decision a lot easier. However, I'm probably in that limbo where my parents make too much money to qualify for need-based but not enough to shell out 200k for law school.

User avatar
bizzybone1313
Posts: 996
Joined: Wed Jul 11, 2012 4:31 pm

Re: Columbia v. GTown ($) v. Mich ($) v. UMN ($$$)

Postby bizzybone1313 » Tue Apr 23, 2013 2:41 am

OP, I hope you get a lot more advice. You are getting fucked. TLS writes 5-7 pages for people that cry over their Y vs H decisions, so I don't know why they aren't dispensing advice your way. You are in a very tough spot.

You have the local regional of UMN where you want to settle down vs. the solid mid-level choice of Michigan with $ vs. the ridiculously presitigious Columbia. Your thread deserves those 5-7 pages of remarks, because almost no one has a more difficult decision to make than you.

User avatar
Winston1984
Posts: 1789
Joined: Sun Mar 17, 2013 12:02 pm

Re: Columbia v. GTown ($) v. Mich ($) v. UMN ($$$)

Postby Winston1984 » Tue Apr 23, 2013 2:56 am

If you know you want to be in Minnesota, it is hard to turn down UMN. Columbia is the only other viable option IMO, but I just don't know if it's worth the money for your goals. Tough call, but if I was in your shoes I would take Columbia. It gives you national portability and opens up doors that UMN just can't. You might change your mind about wanting to stay in Minnesota, and if you attend UMN you don't have much of a choice. You can always come back to Minnesota after 3-5 years of NYC biglaw.

User avatar
ph5354a
Posts: 1599
Joined: Thu Nov 01, 2012 7:40 pm

Re: Columbia v. GTown ($) v. Mich ($) v. UMN ($$$)

Postby ph5354a » Tue Apr 23, 2013 7:42 am

My two cents is that it comes down to how sure you are about staying in MN. If you have some doubts or you are willing to work the first five years in NYC big law regardless, then Columbia is a safe choice. If you think you'll just want go back to MN right after school, then I don't really see the point of Columbia.

User avatar
ColtsFan88
Posts: 1432
Joined: Thu Oct 13, 2011 5:05 pm

Re: Columbia v. GTown ($) v. Mich ($) v. UMN ($$$)

Postby ColtsFan88 » Tue Apr 23, 2013 8:16 am

I wanted to do BigFed as well. I went to Gtown at sticker. I do not want to discourage you, and take this with a grain of salt as I am just finishing up 1L so I haven't been here long, but it seems really hard to get a BigFed job. I hustled my ass off, applied to 10-15 agencies here in DC, had a few "informational interviews" with some people at those agencies over lunch and stuff. I never even got a real interview to any of the agencies. I've heard that they all went to Y or H students but that could just be what people here say.

On the other hand, because I had so much trouble finding government work in DC, I started networking (albeit pretty late) with people in Indy (home market), mostly firms with family friends. People seem impressed by a Gtown degree and I'm hopeing that carries over into next summer's employment. I wouldn't really mind going back home and working at a firm if BigFed didnt work out.

So take that for what its worth. If it matters I was above median first semester, prolly top 40-45 or so. Not great but not bad, I really thought I wouldve gotten AN interview from one of those places at least.

User avatar
cahwc12
Posts: 941
Joined: Mon Jul 02, 2012 4:49 pm

Re: Columbia v. GTown v. Mich ($) v. UMN ($$$)

Postby cahwc12 » Tue Apr 23, 2013 8:19 am

you'rethemannowdawg wrote:
cahwc12 wrote:Is this really the best your numbers got you? That's super disappointing (at least to me, since I also have a 3.4). Have you tried muscling UMN into a full ride with your T14 offers? I feel like that's probably not their best offer...

I'd go UMN or bust, but I'm surprised they didn't offer you more. Columbia is a possible contender, but I just can't imagine $300k debt is going to get you much better opportunities in Minnesota.


Yeah, I emailed UMN but haven't heard back yet, so at this point I'm going to assume that's their final.

Also, you might be confusing me with KingFish. My degree GPA was 3.4, but my LSAC GPA was 3.27.

But, don't lose hope! I also got 32k/yr from Wash U, 25k/yr from UCLA, and 27k/yr +5 from Vandy. I've ruled all those out for various reasons.


Ah, I read your degree GPA as your LSAC GPA on your LSN link. I don't think Minn's offer leaves you with an unreasonable amount of debt given your ties. You've probably also got better than face odds to get a job given that a lot of UMN students aren't actually from the area.

I don't think you can go wrong with either UMN or Columbia here, but I would think long and hard before resigning yourself to $300k debt to work a job for hopefully five years that has a very high burnout rate and tends toward indentured servitude.

Also even though your salary will be higher in NYC, your starting salary in Minn will probably be worth more. For a 3.27 I think that's a good outcome, but I wouldn't be surprised if Minn upped the ante if you wait a little longer. What's the longest you can wait before you have to make a decision on either Columbia or UMN? (Also I agree with others that you should probably just withdraw from the GULC and UMich).

BigZuck
Posts: 10872
Joined: Tue Sep 04, 2012 9:53 am

Re: Columbia v. GTown ($) v. Mich ($) v. UMN ($$$)

Postby BigZuck » Tue Apr 23, 2013 8:45 am

Not loving any of these options but such is the fate of a splitter I guess.

Of these, I guess UMinn if you want to work in Minnesota (and by this I mean give up any notion of big law or big anything- their placement just isn't all that good) or if you want big anything then go to Columbia.

NU, Cornell, or Duke with money aren't options here?

User avatar
you'rethemannowdawg
Posts: 211
Joined: Thu Jan 03, 2013 1:36 pm

Re: Columbia v. GTown ($) v. Mich ($) v. UMN ($$$)

Postby you'rethemannowdawg » Tue Apr 23, 2013 9:41 am

BigZuck wrote:Not loving any of these options but such is the fate of a splitter I guess.

Of these, I guess UMinn if you want to work in Minnesota (and by this I mean give up any notion of big law or big anything- their placement just isn't all that good) or if you want big anything then go to Columbia.

NU, Cornell, or Duke with money aren't options here?


I think my cycle proves how random splitter cycles can be. NU offered no money, I suspect that I didn't take the scholarship essays seriously enough. I contacted them again with my other offers but they said they couldn't get back to me until after their deposit deadline. Rejected at Duke and withdrew from Cornell.

WL at NYU and Chicago. If I got in off the WL at Chicago it would probably be my first choice.

BigZuck
Posts: 10872
Joined: Tue Sep 04, 2012 9:53 am

Re: Columbia v. GTown ($) v. Mich ($) v. UMN ($$$)

Postby BigZuck » Tue Apr 23, 2013 9:48 am

you'rethemannowdawg wrote:
BigZuck wrote:Not loving any of these options but such is the fate of a splitter I guess.

Of these, I guess UMinn if you want to work in Minnesota (and by this I mean give up any notion of big law or big anything- their placement just isn't all that good) or if you want big anything then go to Columbia.

NU, Cornell, or Duke with money aren't options here?


I think my cycle proves how random splitter cycles can be. NU offered no money, I suspect that I didn't take the scholarship essays seriously enough. I contacted them again with my other offers but they said they couldn't get back to me until after their deposit deadline. Rejected at Duke and withdrew from Cornell.

WL at NYU and Chicago. If I got in off the WL at Chicago it would probably be my first choice.


Sorry to hear that. Well, I think it's Minnesota or Columbia. I do acknowledge the 70K difference between Columbia and Michigan but once you hit 200K+ of debt I think you should probably just maximize your chance of getting a high paying job and that would be at Columbia.

User avatar
UVAIce
Posts: 442
Joined: Tue Jul 10, 2012 3:10 pm

Re: Columbia v. GTown ($) v. Mich ($) v. UMN ($$$)

Postby UVAIce » Tue Apr 23, 2013 10:15 am

I will throw this in, as a Minnesotan the law firms in the Twin Cities do not pay enough to support the debt load from Columbia. Understand that you'll most likely have to work in NYC or another high paying market before you potentially come back.

If you have any questions about the Minnesota legal market throw me a PM and we can chat. I'll be working at a firm in the Twin cities as a 1L from UVA.

rad lulz
Posts: 9844
Joined: Sun Feb 19, 2012 10:53 pm

Re: Columbia v. GTown ($) v. Mich ($) v. UMN ($$$)

Postby rad lulz » Tue Apr 23, 2013 10:17 am

BigZuck wrote:
you'rethemannowdawg wrote:
BigZuck wrote:Not loving any of these options but such is the fate of a splitter I guess.

Of these, I guess UMinn if you want to work in Minnesota (and by this I mean give up any notion of big law or big anything- their placement just isn't all that good) or if you want big anything then go to Columbia.

NU, Cornell, or Duke with money aren't options here?


I think my cycle proves how random splitter cycles can be. NU offered no money, I suspect that I didn't take the scholarship essays seriously enough. I contacted them again with my other offers but they said they couldn't get back to me until after their deposit deadline. Rejected at Duke and withdrew from Cornell.

WL at NYU and Chicago. If I got in off the WL at Chicago it would probably be my first choice.


Sorry to hear that. Well, I think it's Minnesota or Columbia. I do acknowledge the 70K difference between Columbia and Michigan but once you hit 200K+ of debt I think you should probably just maximize your chance of getting a high paying job and that would be at Columbia.

My thoughts exactly.

dixiecupdrinking
Posts: 3142
Joined: Sun Oct 26, 2008 2:39 pm

Re: Columbia v. GTown ($) v. Mich ($) v. UMN ($$$)

Postby dixiecupdrinking » Tue Apr 23, 2013 10:19 am

I'd go to Minnesota. $275,000 of non-dischargeable debt can completely ruin your life. These days, going to a school like Columbia without any aid is reserved for the wealthy and those who favor risk to an irrational degree. Even if everything breaks right for you, those loans are a massive psychological burden that you'll be carrying around for a decade. It sucks but that's the current landscape; we are living in a plutocratic age.

User avatar
you'rethemannowdawg
Posts: 211
Joined: Thu Jan 03, 2013 1:36 pm

Re: Columbia v. GTown ($) v. Mich ($) v. UMN ($$$)

Postby you'rethemannowdawg » Tue Apr 23, 2013 12:08 pm

Is there any advantage in going to Columbia over Michigan for Chicago biglaw? Or is Columbia's advantage only in NYC? Also wondering if the Columbia degree would be better down the line than MN degree for BigFed or State AG's office or if it doesn't matter.

BigZuck
Posts: 10872
Joined: Tue Sep 04, 2012 9:53 am

Re: Columbia v. GTown ($) v. Mich ($) v. UMN ($$$)

Postby BigZuck » Tue Apr 23, 2013 12:18 pm

you'rethemannowdawg wrote:Is there any advantage in going to Columbia over Michigan for Chicago biglaw? Or is Columbia's advantage only in NYC? Also wondering if the Columbia degree would be better down the line than MN degree for BigFed or State AG's office or if it doesn't matter.


I am a know-nothing 0L so take this all with the appropriate grains of salt but I think you maybe be chasing unicorns with the job goals for the most part. Also if you're K-JD or rather young you might not even know what exactly you're hoping to get or you might change your mind at some point in the near future. Apologizes if that is wrong, I really don't know anything about you or your background.

To me without really knowing you I think it's about minimizing debt and going to the school which will give you a shot at getting some sort of legal job in the region you want to practice in OR going to the school that maximizes the chance at getting a high paying job to pay off BIG DEBT.

tortuga
Posts: 11
Joined: Sun Feb 10, 2013 7:27 pm

Re: Columbia v. GTown ($) v. Mich ($) v. UMN ($$$)

Postby tortuga » Tue Apr 23, 2013 12:19 pm

.
Last edited by tortuga on Fri May 17, 2013 11:34 pm, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
twenty
Posts: 3153
Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2012 1:17 pm

Re: Columbia v. GTown ($) v. Mich ($) v. UMN ($$$)

Postby twenty » Tue Apr 23, 2013 12:36 pm

tortuga wrote:Columbia students have a better chance at a positive outcome than students at any other law school in the country.


This is only marginally true. The difference between Columbia and, say, Penn only starts to illustrate itself once you for sure have Biglaw. From Columbia you'd likely have an increased shot at a top five firm, whereas Penn you should be prepared for any biglaw slot. Once you're below median, however, neither school gives any considerable advantage over the other.

I think the amount of debt between Columbia and Michigan is too large to justify Columbia at sticker. I'd say go for Michigan.

tortuga
Posts: 11
Joined: Sun Feb 10, 2013 7:27 pm

Re: Columbia v. GTown ($) v. Mich ($) v. UMN ($$$)

Postby tortuga » Tue Apr 23, 2013 12:56 pm

twentypercentmore wrote:
tortuga wrote:Columbia students have a better chance at a positive outcome than students at any other law school in the country.


This is only marginally true. The difference between Columbia and, say, Penn only starts to illustrate itself once you for sure have Biglaw. From Columbia you'd likely have an increased shot at a top five firm, whereas Penn you should be prepared for any biglaw slot. Once you're below median, however, neither school gives any considerable advantage over the other.

I think the amount of debt between Columbia and Michigan is too large to justify Columbia at sticker. I'd say go for Michigan.


The point wasn't to say how awesome Columbia was, but to suggest how ridiculous it is to portray a "school like Columbia" as being a riskier bet than other options. I would have said the same thing about Penn for the record.

Btw, wasn't suggesting that OP should necessarily pick Columbia.

BigZuck
Posts: 10872
Joined: Tue Sep 04, 2012 9:53 am

Re: Columbia v. GTown ($) v. Mich ($) v. UMN ($$$)

Postby BigZuck » Tue Apr 23, 2013 1:03 pm

tortuga wrote:
dixiecupdrinking wrote:I'd go to Minnesota. $275,000 of non-dischargeable debt can completely ruin your life. These days, going to a school like Columbia without any aid is reserved for the wealthy and those who favor risk to an irrational degree. Even if everything breaks right for you, those loans are a massive psychological burden that you'll be carrying around for a decade. It sucks but that's the current landscape; we are living in a plutocratic age.


I don't get this. Columbia students have a better chance at a positive outcome than students at any other law school in the country. For most applicants (with a few exceptions), if you'd be willing to pay sticker at H/Y/S, you should be willing to pay sticker at Columbia (and Chicago for that matter). If you don't think any school is worth sticker, that's a different matter, but to characterize "a school like Columbia" as being riskier than others is absurd.


Columbia students have a better chance at a positive outcome than HYS students?

tortuga
Posts: 11
Joined: Sun Feb 10, 2013 7:27 pm

Re: Columbia v. GTown ($) v. Mich ($) v. UMN ($$$)

Postby tortuga » Tue Apr 23, 2013 1:11 pm

BigZuck wrote:
tortuga wrote:
dixiecupdrinking wrote:I'd go to Minnesota. $275,000 of non-dischargeable debt can completely ruin your life. These days, going to a school like Columbia without any aid is reserved for the wealthy and those who favor risk to an irrational degree. Even if everything breaks right for you, those loans are a massive psychological burden that you'll be carrying around for a decade. It sucks but that's the current landscape; we are living in a plutocratic age.


I don't get this. Columbia students have a better chance at a positive outcome than students at any other law school in the country. For most applicants (with a few exceptions), if you'd be willing to pay sticker at H/Y/S, you should be willing to pay sticker at Columbia (and Chicago for that matter). If you don't think any school is worth sticker, that's a different matter, but to characterize "a school like Columbia" as being riskier than others is absurd.


Columbia students have a better chance at a positive outcome than HYS students?


Should have said as good based on biglaw placement and clerkship data combined.

BigZuck
Posts: 10872
Joined: Tue Sep 04, 2012 9:53 am

Re: Columbia v. GTown ($) v. Mich ($) v. UMN ($$$)

Postby BigZuck » Tue Apr 23, 2013 1:16 pm

tortuga wrote:
BigZuck wrote:
tortuga wrote:
dixiecupdrinking wrote:I'd go to Minnesota. $275,000 of non-dischargeable debt can completely ruin your life. These days, going to a school like Columbia without any aid is reserved for the wealthy and those who favor risk to an irrational degree. Even if everything breaks right for you, those loans are a massive psychological burden that you'll be carrying around for a decade. It sucks but that's the current landscape; we are living in a plutocratic age.


I don't get this. Columbia students have a better chance at a positive outcome than students at any other law school in the country. For most applicants (with a few exceptions), if you'd be willing to pay sticker at H/Y/S, you should be willing to pay sticker at Columbia (and Chicago for that matter). If you don't think any school is worth sticker, that's a different matter, but to characterize "a school like Columbia" as being riskier than others is absurd.


Columbia students have a better chance at a positive outcome than HYS students?


Should have said as good based on biglaw placement and clerkship data combined.


So placement=placement ability?




Return to “Choosing a Law School”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests