UC Davis vs Santa Clara ($$)

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JSwear
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UC Davis vs Santa Clara ($$)

Postby JSwear » Fri May 03, 2013 12:43 pm

2.92/165, have been working family law office in Sonoma County since undergrad graduation last March.
I want to practice in Northern California (San Jose would be about as far South) doing some flavor of civil litigation but am pretty flexible.
I have very strong connections in Sonoma county and some in San Francisco.
I have narrowed my choices to UC Davis and Santa Clara.
Costs:
Tuition- UCD = 49k, SCU = 45k
COL- UCD 17k, SCU 23k.

totals: UCD= 66k, SCU=68k

Scholarships:
SCU offer- 20,500/year renewable if in top 25%
UCD- None


Any thoughts?

TheNextAmendment
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Re: UC Davis vs Santa Clara ($$)

Postby TheNextAmendment » Fri May 03, 2013 12:50 pm

JSwear wrote:Scholarships:
SCU offer- 20,500/year renewable if in top 25%


No. I dont like that.

SFSpartan
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Re: UC Davis vs Santa Clara ($$)

Postby SFSpartan » Fri May 03, 2013 12:58 pm

Are you guaranteed employment at your family's firm? If so, Santa Clara isn't an awful option. If nepotism doesn't guarantee you employment (or if your family doesn't actually have a firm), then neither of these are good options. Santa Clara has awful stips, and Davis isn't work that kind of debt based on their employment numbers.

Bottom line: Retake and reapply.

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hephaestus
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Re: UC Davis vs Santa Clara ($$)

Postby hephaestus » Fri May 03, 2013 1:02 pm

This is a pretty clear case for retaking or not going to law school. While your GPA is low, a few more points will open up splitter friendly schools (many Midwest schools are), though that may not be reasonable since you want to practice in CA. Do well enough and you could have a chance at T14s that take low GPAs: NU, UVA and GULC will take students with low GPAs but a stellar LSAT.

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Doorkeeper
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Re: UC Davis vs Santa Clara ($$)

Postby Doorkeeper » Fri May 03, 2013 1:10 pm

Both of these options are horrible - way too expensive and that scholarship stipulation is ridiculously horrible (top 25% is absurd).

You should retake the LSAT. If you can get up to a 170 on the LSAT then you will be competitive at much better schools (Georgetown, Northwestern, UCLA) and would receive scholarships from Davis or Hastings or somewhere else in CA.

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jbagelboy
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Re: UC Davis vs Santa Clara ($$)

Postby jbagelboy » Fri May 03, 2013 1:40 pm

I'm actually going to deviate here and say that with your GPA that low, I don't know how many more options a higher LSAT would net you that would actually be in line with your goals. UMN, a T20 school, will take you with a 167. But other then that you are still looking at davis-level T30 alternatives, albeit with more scholarship money. you are below the floor for T14 (unless URM).

Remember OP doesn't want to practice biglaw or get a prestigious PI position. It sounds like they are fine doing local cali civil litigation and small law. In that case, any T50 CA school will do the trick. Your problem is that if you loan out money for these schools you will never be able to repay it. You need to find a decent enough school that the types of small firms you are interested in will take you, but that will also offer you a full ride or close to it.

I'll freely admit this isn't my area of expertise, or the expertise of TLS wisdom in general (which is basically T14 w/ $ or don't go). Have you considered USD? USF? Pepperdine? if I were you I would reapply (and go for an October retake since it can't hurt) and target these schools with the hopes of getting a full ride, then maintain your old networks throughout LS and you can go work for a small firm in a particular interest if that makes you happy.

if you really, really want biglaw, then yea, get a 175, more WE, write a shitload of gpa addenda and gun for ED northwestern with all that you've got.

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bass08
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Re: UC Davis vs Santa Clara ($$)

Postby bass08 » Fri May 03, 2013 4:10 pm

Your LSAT isn't bad and if you could improve you'd definitely be able to get some better schools. The problem is that you're targeting the CA market, and almost all law schools in CA outside of Boalt/SLS/UCLA and to a lesser extent USC all have shit placement and are way too expensive.

I disagree with the poster immediately above me. With application cycles getting less and less competitive, a retake will be more than worth your while. At the very least, you'll be able to get more money at schools in California if that's where you have to stay. Your numbers are honestly more suited for a school outside of CA, but if you can get it up to even a 168 you'd have a ton of better options, including many top 50 schools with $$ with MUCH better placement than Davis/SCU. Your low GPA won't be nearly as much of a hindrance as it would've been 3-4 years ago, and you can make up for it much more with just a few more LSAT points.

The problem is that California's legal market is completely horribly terrible, so if you don't have a job absolutely guaranteed, I would retake.

Santa Clara's scholarship has ridiculous stips and you should not go there.

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jbagelboy
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Re: UC Davis vs Santa Clara ($$)

Postby jbagelboy » Fri May 03, 2013 5:10 pm

bass08 wrote:I disagree with the poster immediately above me. With application cycles getting less and less competitive, a retake will be more than worth your while. At the very least, you'll be able to get more money at schools in California if that's where you have to stay. Your numbers are honestly more suited for a school outside of CA, but if you can get it up to even a 168 you'd have a ton of better options, including many top 50 schools with $$ with MUCH better placement than Davis/SCU. Your low GPA won't be nearly as much of a hindrance as it would've been 3-4 years ago, and you can make up for it much more with just a few more LSAT points.

The problem is that California's legal market is completely horribly terrible, so if you don't have a job absolutely guaranteed, I would retake.



OP can do what he wants: if he wants to retake, I'm all for it. I'm not saying the retake won't open up more schools. I think you misread the OP's concept. If he wants to do local civil litigation, family law, ect., he doesn't need to go to a school with good "placement" power into biglaw firms. I think the OP would know that with these options, there's no biglaw in play here, and they made this thread with a different intent. Again, I cannot advise much on this intent since I don't know as much about the details of small law markets -- the emphasis should be on going to a local school with very low debt and maintaining contacts.

What OP needs to do moreover is reapply with the goal of getting near full tuition scholarships from different law schools. If they want to retake along with that, all the better.

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bass08
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Re: UC Davis vs Santa Clara ($$)

Postby bass08 » Fri May 03, 2013 5:28 pm

jbagelboy wrote:
bass08 wrote:I disagree with the poster immediately above me. With application cycles getting less and less competitive, a retake will be more than worth your while. At the very least, you'll be able to get more money at schools in California if that's where you have to stay. Your numbers are honestly more suited for a school outside of CA, but if you can get it up to even a 168 you'd have a ton of better options, including many top 50 schools with $$ with MUCH better placement than Davis/SCU. Your low GPA won't be nearly as much of a hindrance as it would've been 3-4 years ago, and you can make up for it much more with just a few more LSAT points.

The problem is that California's legal market is completely horribly terrible, so if you don't have a job absolutely guaranteed, I would retake.



OP can do what he wants: if he wants to retake, I'm all for it. I'm not saying the retake won't open up more schools. I think you misread the OP's concept. If he wants to do local civil litigation, family law, ect., he doesn't need to go to a school with good "placement" power into biglaw firms. I think the OP would know that with these options, there's no biglaw in play here, and they made this thread with a different intent. Again, I cannot advise much on this intent since I don't know as much about the details of small law markets -- the emphasis should be on going to a local school with very low debt and maintaining contacts.

What OP needs to do moreover is reapply with the goal of getting near full tuition scholarships from different law schools. If they want to retake along with that, all the better.


I never mentioned Biglaw in my post. Placement means placement in bar passage required legal jobs. I mention placement because it is relevant if he isn't guaranteed a job. Even if he is guaranteed a job, these schools at these prices are not good options.

JSwear
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Re: UC Davis vs Santa Clara ($$)

Postby JSwear » Fri May 03, 2013 8:51 pm

Thank you all for your comments

My SCU scholarship was just increased to 30k/yr top 50% to renew.

And to an earlier posted...I'm working in a firm specializing in Family Law litigation, not my family's firm

Thank you again.

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hephaestus
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Re: UC Davis vs Santa Clara ($$)

Postby hephaestus » Fri May 03, 2013 8:55 pm

JSwear wrote:Thank you all for your comments

My SCU scholarship was just increased to 30k/yr top 50% to renew.

And to an earlier posted...I'm working in a firm specializing in Family Law litigation, not my family's firm

Thank you again.

How is your firm re: hiring you back? They seem to run a continuum between "of course we will consider you if you get good grades" to a contract to hire you after school.

JSwear
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Re: UC Davis vs Santa Clara ($$)

Postby JSwear » Wed May 08, 2013 4:35 pm

We're a very small office and they would be interested in hiring me back after I gained some experience but straight out of school it's not an option.

timbs4339
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Re: UC Davis vs Santa Clara ($$)

Postby timbs4339 » Thu May 09, 2013 12:50 am

JSwear wrote:We're a very small office and they would be interested in hiring me back after I gained some experience but straight out of school it's not an option.


Then you have a serious problem. With accrued interest and tuition hikes, you're looking at mid-100s level debt from SCU, which is too much. If you can get the scholly to 40K, then I'd take SCU and drop out if you don't hit top 50%. Did you try to get Davis to match?

kdog1147
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Re: UC Davis vs Santa Clara ($$)

Postby kdog1147 » Fri May 10, 2013 9:48 am

Did you get any need based aid from Davis? When I got in they didn't offer me merit but 14K in need based. It seems like most of the money they offer is need instead of merit.

JSwear
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Re: UC Davis vs Santa Clara ($$)

Postby JSwear » Wed May 15, 2013 3:26 pm

Davis will let me know by the end of the week on both. They apparently didn't start considering need or merit based aid until I got off the wait-list but I'll know then and possibly petition for more.

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KD35
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Re: UC Davis vs Santa Clara ($$)

Postby KD35 » Wed May 15, 2013 3:31 pm

Do not rely on UCD to give you merit based $$$. They traditionally are one of the worst schools regarding merit based aid. Santa Clara should be willing to change stipulations, try and leverage with them that you want to go there but have a compelling offer from UCD, and the stips are scaring you away since no one can be guaranteed that they will be in the top 25% in law school. My two cents.




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