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Penn vs GW vs UNH

Posted: Tue Apr 23, 2013 4:15 pm
by iplawgoal2016
Hi all,

I could use some advice. I am finishing a PhD in biomedical engineering @ a top tier engineering school, have a B.S. in chemistry, and am planning a career in IP/patent law. I was offered admission at American, BU, Cardozo, Fordham, George Mason, George Washington, U Houston, John Marshall, UNH, Suffolk, and UPenn. Waitlisted @ Georgetown, Duke, NYU, Michigan, and Columbia.

From that list, I have narrowed to three:
1. UPenn @ sticker (which I am leaning towards) (COA: $231.5k)
2. GW part time @ sticker (COA: $241.8k)
3. UNH w/full tuition scholarship ($120k over 3 years) (COA: $48k)

I applied for a patent examiner position at the USPTO (with the goal of working full time and doing part time law in the evening @ GW), but given what I've heard recently about changes to how sequester is affecting them, I'm not optimistic that their hiring will continue. I will be financing my education with loans. I'm from the Midwest, and am not tied to any place geographically, although eventually I might like to be in the Chicago area to be closer to home (but this is not critical). My goal (wish/dream/prayer?) after law school is to land a biglaw job at a primarily patent law firm for awhile. My GPA was a 3.94, and my LSAT was 162. Not great, but not bad for the level of studying I did. I considered retaking it, but decided to stick it out. One other thing - my husband will be moving with me, and he will need to find a job as a high school / middle school science teacher.

From everything I've read, it seems like my best bet would be to tough out the loans and go to UPenn @ full price. They do have the largest % of grads going into biglaw, which seems promising. Even if I didn't work as an examiner, I could probably still find a science-related day job in DC, and not have to take out everything in loans. But that's a big if, particularly in the current funding environment. And that full tuition scholarship is just hard to turn down. . . relatively debt free is nice, job or no job, and their employment stats aren't bad. Plus they have an excellent IP reputation (top ten for the last ten years, I think currently ranked top 5?).

I would appreciate any thoughts or advice!

Re: Penn vs GW vs UNH

Posted: Tue Apr 23, 2013 4:21 pm
by jarofsoup
Penn, unless you get into NYU or Columbia. UNH is not worth passing up those opportunities for free. So much about law school is brand and Penn is currently a very strong one.

GWU would be ok, you could part-time it at the patent office, but not worth passing up U Penn. You are also patent so your chance of getting a job at OCI, granted you get decent grades at Penn will be pretty dam good. Do not go to UNH its cheap, but it is regional and there is not much of a region there.

Re: Penn vs GW vs UNH

Posted: Tue Apr 23, 2013 4:22 pm
by Nelson
You need to retake the LSAT for better scholarships.

But if you won't then Penn is the obvious choice. Your husband may struggle getting a teaching job in the Philly market though.

Re: Penn vs GW vs UNH

Posted: Tue Apr 23, 2013 5:57 pm
by WokeUpInACar
Penn is not a bad option but you clearly have not reached your potential on the LSAT. With your excellent credentials I have no doubt that you could break 170 after significant study. This would afford you with MUCH better options. You'd have a very solid shot at a full ride almost anywhere you'd want to go outside of HYS. Retaking could end up saving you hundreds of thousands in debt and is absolutely worth it.

Re: Penn vs GW vs UNH

Posted: Tue Apr 23, 2013 7:58 pm
by Doorkeeper
1) Retake the LSAT. Seriously. I'm sure you could do much better than a 162. It just takes time to study. Even bumping your score up 5 points will open up a number of scholarship offers from T14 schools. You could easily be graduating with $50-70k less in debt.

2) If you're insistent that you won't retake, then Penn.

Re: Penn vs GW vs UNH

Posted: Sun Apr 28, 2013 1:18 pm
by Agent
Hi. I probably won't look at this thread again, but I'd be glad to chat if you're interested, so please don't hesitate to PM me. Quick thoughts:

iplawgoal2016 wrote:1. UPenn @ sticker (which I am leaning towards) (COA: $231.5k)
2. GW part time @ sticker (COA: $241.8k)
3. UNH w/full tuition scholarship ($120k over 3 years) (COA: $48k)

I'd like more info, but knowing the basics that you provided, I recommend that you avoid each of these options.


iplawgoal2016 wrote:I applied for a patent examiner position at the USPTO (with the goal of working full time and doing part time law in the evening @ GW), but given what I've heard recently about changes to how sequester is affecting them, I'm not optimistic that their hiring will continue.

I do not think an examiner gig is in the cards for you. At least not anytime soon. Sorry. I think you stand a better chance of landing a student associate or tech spec gig.

Re: Penn vs GW vs UNH

Posted: Sun Apr 28, 2013 2:26 pm
by K Rock
Please retake.

Re: Penn vs GW vs UNH

Posted: Sun Apr 28, 2013 2:33 pm
by Big Dog
Retake is the only choice here.

Re: Penn vs GW vs UNH

Posted: Sun Apr 28, 2013 5:06 pm
by PRgradBYU
Retake>>Penn>>>>>>GW>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>UNH

Re: Penn vs GW vs UNH

Posted: Sun Apr 28, 2013 6:07 pm
by Kalinda
PRgradBYU wrote:Retake>>Penn>>>>>>GW>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>UNH


This exactly.

ETA: My SO took Penn at nearly sticker and was kicking himself (he will be at a V10).