Georgetown/Cornell/Northwestern

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whambamthankyoumaam
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Georgetown/Cornell/Northwestern

Postby whambamthankyoumaam » Thu Oct 31, 2013 2:22 am

How do people decide between these three? As a splitter, there are my target schools and in the awesome scenario that I get to choose, I have no idea where I'd go.

I'm leaning towards Georgetown right now because I love DC, but I'm open to the other options.

I was wondering if any of you know about the academics/employments side of it, but more importantly the student life side (that's the kind of stuff it's harder to find information on)
Last edited by whambamthankyoumaam on Fri Dec 13, 2013 2:39 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Redfactor
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Re: Georgetown/Cornell/Northwestern

Postby Redfactor » Thu Oct 31, 2013 2:34 am

lawschooltransparency.com

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cotiger
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Re: Georgetown/Cornell/Northwestern

Postby cotiger » Thu Oct 31, 2013 8:55 am

http://www.lstscorereports.com/?school=northwestern
http://www.lstscorereports.com/?school=cornell
http://www.lstscorereports.com/?school=gulc

Northwestern and Cornell tend to place 55-60% of their grads in highly sought after firm jobs or federal clerkships (ie the jobs that will allow you to pay back big debts). Georgetown is more like 40-45%.

Northwestern and Cornell can be verrry generous with money, depending on your scores. Georgetown tends to be stingier.

Northwestern's student body tends to be a little older, and the school prizes work experience. Close connections with the business school. Georgetown is going to have more political/government types (which might explain their poor performance in biglaw, to a certain extent).

Georgetown is massive. 544 people in the 1L class of 2016. Cornell and Northwestern are much smaller, at 195 and 232, respectively.

Northwestern is in the best part of Chicago. Georgetown is in a lame part of DC (though right next to the supreme court). Cornell is in the middle of nowhere.

TLS conventional wisdom is going to say to go to whichever of Cornell or Northwestern gives you the most money.

We would need stats to give you better suggestions.

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jk148706
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Re: Georgetown/Cornell/Northwestern

Postby jk148706 » Thu Oct 31, 2013 9:36 am

Schools I (hope) to be deciding among as well. And I think NU is my top choice. However, I don't have stats that guarantee admission to any if these schools. I would be happy with any of them.

kckool7
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Re: Georgetown/Cornell/Northwestern

Postby kckool7 » Sat Nov 02, 2013 7:22 pm

Georgetown's relatively depressed Big Law stats vs. NW/C can be largely (though maybe not entirely) explained through self-selection. The public score on LST for Georgetown is high for a reason, a lot of students who decided to go to GULC decide to pursue jobs in government. We even have an entire 2nd career services office, OPICS, dedicated exclusively to public interest and government jobs. Many of those jobs (including basically any federal one) are good ones with much better hours and long term security than Big Law offers. Combined with Georgetown's generous LRAP program (covers salaries up to 70k) these options can be very attractive. There are certainly GULC kids near the bottom of the class who are struggling, but by and large, the performance in the job market seems to be fine.

EDIT: The large class size is both a benefit and a curse. The negatives have been outlined ad nauseum, but the benefit is a massive alumni network.

-GULC Student

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jbagelboy
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Re: Georgetown/Cornell/Northwestern

Postby jbagelboy » Sat Nov 02, 2013 7:28 pm

Cotiger provided a nice summary which I would second, but I should add that Cornell is actually not very friendly to splitters, unlike NU and GULC, so I wouldn't count on it having the same admissions standards as the other two. Cornell is more likely to be open to 166-167 than it is to 3.1 or 3.2 (if thats the kind of splitter you are).

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cotiger
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Re: Georgetown/Cornell/Northwestern

Postby cotiger » Sun Nov 03, 2013 2:23 am

kckool7 wrote:Georgetown's relatively depressed Big Law stats vs. NW/C can be largely (though maybe not entirely) explained through self-selection. The public score on LST for Georgetown is high for a reason, a lot of students who decided to go to GULC decide to pursue jobs in government. We even have an entire 2nd career services office, OPICS, dedicated exclusively to public interest and government jobs. Many of those jobs (including basically any federal one) are good ones with much better hours and long term security than Big Law offers. Combined with Georgetown's generous LRAP program (covers salaries up to 70k) these options can be very attractive. There are certainly GULC kids near the bottom of the class who are struggling, but by and large, the performance in the job market seems to be fine.

EDIT: The large class size is both a benefit and a curse. The negatives have been outlined ad nauseum, but the benefit is a massive alumni network.

-GULC Student


The problem with this line of thinking is that self-selection isn't unique to GULC. Absolutely, more people go to GULC with the intention of going into government than perhaps at any other school. That being said, I can completely imagine 5-10% of the classes at Cornell and Northwestern wanting a similar job. On top of that, the whole point of NU is their close relationship with business, so their super high percentage of grads going in to business should also count. And so on.

The thing is, we can't tell what percentage of those Gov/PI jobs or those Business/Industry jobs are desired employment. On the other hand, biglaw+fedclerk jobs are absolutely desirable and difficult to obtain. But if we're going to include a wider range of options, we might as well just use the general LST employment score (percent of grads getting LT/FT JD required jobs). In that metric, Georgetown also falters.

Cornell: 94, 76, 85 -> 3 yr avg: 85
Northwestern: 87, 77, 76 -> 3 yr avg: 80
Georgetown: 81, 62, 73 -> 3 yr avg: 72

"But wait!" Georgetown says, "The government positions our grads go into are less likely to require a JD, but that doesn't mean that our school doesn't get them that awesome job. Include our JD advantage jobs." "Not so fast!" replies Northwestern, "We too have a very unique student body that goes on to do things in the business world that most other schools don't. Our JD advantage should count too!" Cornell looks on in silence, having no special snowflakes among their graduates.

Including LT/FT JD advantage (only tracked the last two years) changes the employment stats to..

Northwestern: 85, 85 -> avg: 85
Cornell: 76, 85 -> avg: 81
Georgetown: 72, 85 -> avg: 79

Even calculating the employment stats in the way that is absolutely most favorable to GULC, they still come in at the bottom. I'm sure that there are wonderful opportunities available to the top of the class at GULC, and the overall employment situation might not as bad as it's made out to be on TLS, but the idea that GULC's statistics are bad because of some unique self-selection effect is demonstrably false.

Lastly, looking at unambiguously negative outcomes (ST, PT, non-professional, or unemployed) shows major problems at GULC.

Northwestern: 11, 13, 12 -> 3 yr avg: 12
Cornell: 6, 20, 13 -> 3 yr avg: 13
Georgetown: 16, 23, 13 -> 3 yr avg: 17

17% is not just some "kids near the bottom of the class who are struggling." That's inching towards 1/5 of the class with disastrous (not just undesirable) outcomes. If above-median grades avoid that fate, that would mean that fully 1/3 of the below-median students at GULC have terrible outcomes. That's not as bad as many schools, sure. But there is a reason why TLS tends to hold Georgetown in lower standing than the other members of the T14.

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jordan15
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Re: Georgetown/Cornell/Northwestern

Postby jordan15 » Sun Nov 03, 2013 5:50 am

cotiger wrote:
kckool7 wrote:Georgetown's relatively depressed Big Law stats vs. NW/C can be largely (though maybe not entirely) explained through self-selection. The public score on LST for Georgetown is high for a reason, a lot of students who decided to go to GULC decide to pursue jobs in government. We even have an entire 2nd career services office, OPICS, dedicated exclusively to public interest and government jobs. Many of those jobs (including basically any federal one) are good ones with much better hours and long term security than Big Law offers. Combined with Georgetown's generous LRAP program (covers salaries up to 70k) these options can be very attractive. There are certainly GULC kids near the bottom of the class who are struggling, but by and large, the performance in the job market seems to be fine.

EDIT: The large class size is both a benefit and a curse. The negatives have been outlined ad nauseum, but the benefit is a massive alumni network.

-GULC Student


The problem with this line of thinking is that self-selection isn't unique to GULC. Absolutely, more people go to GULC with the intention of going into government than perhaps at any other school. That being said, I can completely imagine 5-10% of the classes at Cornell and Northwestern wanting a similar job. On top of that, the whole point of NU is their close relationship with business, so their super high percentage of grads going in to business should also count. And so on.

The thing is, we can't tell what percentage of those Gov/PI jobs or those Business/Industry jobs are desired employment. On the other hand, biglaw+fedclerk jobs are absolutely desirable and difficult to obtain. But if we're going to include a wider range of options, we might as well just use the general LST employment score (percent of grads getting LT/FT JD required jobs). In that metric, Georgetown also falters.

Cornell: 94, 76, 85 -> 3 yr avg: 85
Northwestern: 87, 77, 76 -> 3 yr avg: 80
Georgetown: 81, 62, 73 -> 3 yr avg: 72

"But wait!" Georgetown says, "The government positions our grads go into are less likely to require a JD, but that doesn't mean that our school doesn't get them that awesome job. Include our JD advantage jobs." "Not so fast!" replies Northwestern, "We too have a very unique student body that goes on to do things in the business world that most other schools don't. Our JD advantage should count too!" Cornell looks on in silence, having no special snowflakes among their graduates.

Including LT/FT JD advantage (only tracked the last two years) changes the employment stats to..

Northwestern: 85, 85 -> avg: 85
Cornell: 76, 85 -> avg: 81
Georgetown: 72, 85 -> avg: 79

Even calculating the employment stats in the way that is absolutely most favorable to GULC, they still come in at the bottom. I'm sure that there are wonderful opportunities available to the top of the class at GULC, and the overall employment situation might not as bad as it's made out to be on TLS, but the idea that GULC's statistics are bad because of some unique self-selection effect is demonstrably false.

Lastly, looking at unambiguously negative outcomes (ST, PT, non-professional, or unemployed) shows major problems at GULC.

Northwestern: 11, 13, 12 -> 3 yr avg: 12
Cornell: 6, 20, 13 -> 3 yr avg: 13
Georgetown: 16, 23, 13 -> 3 yr avg: 17

17% is not just some "kids near the bottom of the class who are struggling." That's inching towards 1/5 of the class with disastrous (not just undesirable) outcomes. If above-median grades avoid that fate, that would mean that fully 1/3 of the below-median students at GULC have terrible outcomes. That's not as bad as many schools, sure. But there is a reason why TLS tends to hold Georgetown in lower standing than the other members of the T14.


Meh, all of those certainly show GULC to be on the bottom but it's a very small (not negligible, just small) difference between GULC and Cornell/NU. I really don't think the difference between the three is enough to say that GULC is categorically not worth going to and the other two are in the same way you would compare Fordham to NU or HYS to UCLA.

I think that when the employment outcomes differ by just a little, environment will be a huge factor and will affect your grades enough to affect your employment. In this case, because OP might be better off at GULC because he'll be stable and comfortable in the environment. Just consider doing your first semester in your current apartment, comfortable in the city (including pubic transit) and with an established social network vs stressed out because you don't know your way around, broke from the expensive move, possibly in unacceptable housing that you arranged online, possibly lonely, getting allergies from a new climate, etc. These are all pretty big deals and could make a huge impact on your 1L grades.

To answer OP's question in abstract, I think major factors would be living in the middle of an incredibly dense and expensive city (NU and GULC) vs living in a lovely but very small and isolated college town (Cornell), as well as GULC's class size which most would think of as a negative. Also, if you know for certain you want to work in DC or Chicago then you're probably better off attending their respective schools because I think it's harder to break into those markets from the other lower T14s.

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cotiger
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Re: Georgetown/Cornell/Northwestern

Postby cotiger » Sun Nov 03, 2013 10:21 am

jordan15 wrote:Meh, all of those certainly show GULC to be on the bottom but it's a very small (not negligible, just small) difference between GULC and Cornell/NU. I really don't think the difference between the three is enough to say that GULC is categorically not worth going to and the other two are in the same way you would compare Fordham to NU or HYS to UCLA.

I think that when the employment outcomes differ by just a little, environment will be a huge factor and will affect your grades enough to affect your employment. In this case, because OP might be better off at GULC because he'll be stable and comfortable in the environment. Just consider doing your first semester in your current apartment, comfortable in the city (including pubic transit) and with an established social network vs stressed out because you don't know your way around, broke from the expensive move, possibly in unacceptable housing that you arranged online, possibly lonely, getting allergies from a new climate, etc. These are all pretty big deals and could make a huge impact on your 1L grades.

To answer OP's question in abstract, I think major factors would be living in the middle of an incredibly dense and expensive city (NU and GULC) vs living in a lovely but very small and isolated college town (Cornell), as well as GULC's class size which most would think of as a negative. Also, if you know for certain you want to work in DC or Chicago then you're probably better off attending their respective schools because I think it's harder to break into those markets from the other lower T14s.


I'm not saying that GULC is categorically not worth going to if these are OP's hypothetical options, especially considering his current residence/possible future desired residence are in DC. Just that OP shouldn't be under the impression that GULC offered the same overall employment options as other T14 schools.

I honestly don't think that the differences are that small. The numbers that I gave are inherently sketchier because we don't know if those jobs are desired. And even being most charitable to GULC (which in reality is probably not the case), they still come out on bottom.

72 employment score vs 80/85 is IMO absolutely large. Over the last three years, almost twice the percentage of GULC grads haven't gotten lawyer jobs as Cornell grads (28% vs 15%). And GULC only comes that close because we include school-funded jobs. If we take those out, GULC drops to 69 while NU/C stay the same at 80/85.

Taking the school-funded out of JD advantage reduces GULC to 72 vs NU/C staying the same at 85/81 over the last two years. Again, almost twice the percentage of GULC grads were unable to find JD required or advantaged work on their own than NU grads over the last two years (28% vs 15%).

As it is, I think the difference between 12/13 and 17 underemployment is pretty big (50% more at GULC). But if you add school-funded jobs, the gap changes to 22 for GULC vs 12/13 for NU/Cornell. That's again approaching twice the likelihood of a negative outcome.

You're right that the difference is not large enough that there's the automatic decision such as Fordham v NU or HYS v UCLA. But, it's definitely large enough that you need to have a reeeally good reason for wanting to go there to pick it over other schools in the lower T14.

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Balthy
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Re: Georgetown/Cornell/Northwestern

Postby Balthy » Sun Nov 03, 2013 12:36 pm

This may not be relevant to OP, but I read on another thread that NU is not worth going to without work exp. (assuming you get in) since it would be very difficult competing with the rest of the class who have WE at OCI. Basically that you'll stand out like a sore thumb. Can anyone chime in on this? Would it really be a problem?

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cotiger
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Re: Georgetown/Cornell/Northwestern

Postby cotiger » Sun Nov 03, 2013 5:41 pm

superdingle2000 wrote:This may not be relevant to OP, but I read on another thread that NU is not worth going to without work exp. (assuming you get in) since it would be very difficult competing with the rest of the class who have WE at OCI. Basically that you'll stand out like a sore thumb. Can anyone chime in on this? Would it really be a problem?


That's a reason why NU gets knocked down a bit in my personal preference rankings. They do a much better job at filling their classes with the types of people that firms want to hire. While from an admissions standpoint, this should probably be what schools aim for, from the perspective of an applicant without the type of WE that would be beneficial at OCI, it makes me nervous.

I can't help but think that a much higher percentage of NU's employment is derived from experience brought into law school rather than value-added at NU. In the absolute low point of legal hiring (C/O 2011), every T14's biglaw+fedclerk numbers took a hit except for Northwestern (and Yale :roll: ), and Northwestern was the only T14 not to see their numbers increase in the better hiring environment of C/O 2012. It makes me suspect that firms want those people with good WE from NU no matter what, but aren't much interested in the others (and thus don't increase hiring in better markets).

That's why I personally put a school like Duke, with similar employment and admissions numbers, ahead of NU. Because they're taking on-average less-attractive candidates and producing the same results.

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jordan15
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Re: Georgetown/Cornell/Northwestern

Postby jordan15 » Sun Nov 03, 2013 6:46 pm

superdingle2000 wrote:This may not be relevant to OP, but I read on another thread that NU is not worth going to without work exp. (assuming you get in) since it would be very difficult competing with the rest of the class who have WE at OCI. Basically that you'll stand out like a sore thumb. Can anyone chime in on this? Would it really be a problem?


I read somewhere on here from an NU student that the whole WE is a little overblown. It's true that 90% of the class are at least a year out of UG but that doesn't mean that 90% have "real" WE- a lot spent a year traveling, bumming around at moms, working retail/fast food, non prestigious volunteering, etc. It's not like everyone has 5 years of IB + biglaw paralegal. And I think the general consensus is that even a resume of retail/fast food and unprestigious volunteering during UG and for 1 year afterwards does show employers at OCI that you can function in a work environment and thus, is helpful over the true K-JDs.

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Re: Georgetown/Cornell/Northwestern

Postby kckool7 » Mon Nov 04, 2013 6:40 pm

cotiger wrote:
Northwestern: 11, 13, 12 -> 3 yr avg: 12
Cornell: 6, 20, 13 -> 3 yr avg: 13
Georgetown: 16, 23, 13 -> 3 yr avg: 17

17% is not just some "kids near the bottom of the class who are struggling." That's inching towards 1/5 of the class with disastrous (not just undesirable) outcomes. If above-median grades avoid that fate, that would mean that fully 1/3 of the below-median students at GULC have terrible outcomes. That's not as bad as many schools, sure. But there is a reason why TLS tends to hold Georgetown in lower standing than the other members of the T14.

Not disagreeing necessarily with the rest of your analysis, which seems pretty on point and convincing. But this last part seems pretty silly. Look at the ridiculous variance in that number set. It suggests that the data collection is inaccurate more than anything else. Cornell really suddenly had 3+ times as many bad outcomes just one year later, absent a major macro shift in the legal market? Georgetown bounces from 23 to 13, for no clear reason? Also, there's the fact that last year, all three schools put up the same number there. I think the NU work experience argument is pretty salient too. Cornell likely has marginally to slightly significantly better job prospects overall. But you also just spent 5% of your life living in Ithaca, NY instead of Washington, DC, which I don't think is a completely irrelevant factor if the difference in the jobs data is pretty small. And I think it might be.

EDIT: And comparing the legitimate interest in FedGov jobs between Cornell and Georgetown students is crazy. It's not close at all, in fact if that type of job is your first choice, I'd venture that there's nearly no chance you go to Cornell. (Most admitted students to both places have their choice of either, assuming they applied to both.) Cornell put 10 students into DC last year. Georgetown put 256. It's a very different culture. Georgetown grads aren't going into fedgov and PI because they don't have other options, they're going into them because that's why they went to law school. Same reason that Cornell grads are going into biglaw.

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cotiger
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Re: Georgetown/Cornell/Northwestern

Postby cotiger » Mon Nov 04, 2013 8:22 pm

kckool7 wrote:Look at the ridiculous variance in that number set. It suggests that the data collection is inaccurate more than anything else. Cornell really suddenly had 3+ times as many bad outcomes just one year later, absent a major macro shift in the legal market? Georgetown bounces from 23 to 13, for no clear reason? Also, there's the fact that last year, all three schools put up the same number there.


There actually was. C/O 2011 just got reamed across the board as biglaw just stopped hiring. Northwestern's steadiness is actually the outlier. Cornell was also the biggest loser in the crash, going from near the top of employment the year before to near the bottom. In the post where I talked about NU, I noted that every school except NU (and Yale) suffered during the crash, and every school except NU rebounded the following year as firms began hiring again. GULC's shifts are not "for no clear reason."

The data is the official data collected by the ABA, with these schools' grads' response rates over 99% (though slightly lower during the big crash year). So no data collection issues. The LST underemployment score is the percentage of grads who are unemployed or in short-term or part-time work.

Here are the worst three T14 for underemployment over the last three years.
2010: UVA 11.8 > Duke 12.2 > GULC 16.2
2011: Northwestern 12.5 > Cornell 19.9 > GULC 22.7
2012: Duke 11.6 > GULC 12.8 > Cornell 13.2

The thing about that 2012 stat, though, is that GULC had 10% in LTFT school-funded jobs (and thus, not included in the underemployment score). In 2010? Only 1%. Maybe all of those brand new fellowships are super legit, but something makes me skeptical.. Duke, NU, and Cornell, for comparison, each placed a single grad in school-funded LTFT jobs in 2012 (so, less than half of one percent).

kckool7 wrote:EDIT: And comparing the legitimate interest in FedGov jobs between Cornell and Georgetown students is crazy. It's not close at all, in fact if that type of job is your first choice, I'd venture that there's nearly no chance you go to Cornell. (Most admitted students to both places have their choice of either, assuming they applied to both.) Cornell put 10 students into DC last year. Georgetown put 256. It's a very different culture. Georgetown grads aren't going into fedgov and PI because they don't have other options, they're going into them because that's why they went to law school. Same reason that Cornell grads are going into biglaw.


I absolutely did not say that if you want to go to DC you'd be better off going to Cornell. You're not. GULC is no question better if you are only happy with working in DC.

I was comparing the overall placement power between the schools. I also did not say that GULC Gov/PI was out of desperation. In fact, I clearly said that some of the difference between the biglaw+clerkship numbers between GULC and the rest of the T14 could be explained by self-selection.

I did say that the Gov/PI category was inherently iffier in terms of the consistent quality of employment than the biglaw/clerkship category. "Good" firm vs "bad" firm = still making 160k. COA vs District court = still super sought after position. Gov/PI includes incredibly diverse outcomes, not all of which are what the prospective Gov/PI person actually wants. Because of that, merely adding it at face-value to the biglaw/clerkship stat is not totally kosher in terms of figuring out the likelihood that everyone got the kind (read: quality) of job that they desired.

And despite that qualification, GULC still came in last in terms of getting graduates jobs that they want. Look, there are absolutely reasons to go to GULC, and GULC can offer you opportunities that other T14 outside of YHS cannot. HOWEVER, overall you're much more likely to get screwed at GULC than the other T14. Again, it's worth going to if you have a specific reason for wanting to. But people who are just aiming for a generic T14 should probably stay away.




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