ITT: Practicing attorneys tell you your top choice is bad

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nouseforaname123
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Re: ITT: Practicing attorneys tell you your top choice is bad

Postby nouseforaname123 » Mon Apr 21, 2014 9:38 pm

bound wrote:
deadpanic wrote:
bound wrote:Goal(s): Texas Biglaw > Literally anywhere else in the country
Regional Ties: Dallas, Tucson, Bay Area
School(s): SMU 130K - This is the absolute most debt that I would be in. This figure is assuming I never work a day, take out loans in the full amount, and my family doesn't contribute a dime. All of this is unlikely, but I wanted to know my absolute worst case scenario.
Other pertinent information: No undergrad debt. WE after college in a firm. I want to work in Dallas long term. I do have other schools I'm considering but I wanted to hear input about this school specifically. SMU is appealing because of it's location, and that I have family/ties who graduated from the school and now work in Dallas at big firms. I have tried negotiating with them about my scholarship amount, but they won't budge and I guess historically they don't negotiate at all. It's bothersome because I have full rides at a number of other schools ranked higher than SMU, but of course those schools aren't in Dallas.


I don't know if I would take out 130k for UTexas and definitely not that much for SMU.

How much higher ranked are we talking for the other schools with full rides? And have you got into Texas?

I know you want to be in Dallas but I think you are approaching it wrong as Dallas or bust due to family/friends--you might have to move elsewhere for law school to give you the best opportunity on getting back to Dallas at the job you want that allows you repay your debt. You have to look at it as 130k and, IMO, that is a completely unreasonable amount for SMU. It may work out and you land big law, but the odds are against you. I wouldn't take that gamble.


Thanks for the response! And you hit everything that I've been hesitant about in regards to SMU. As much as I would like to think that connections would get me where I want to be, I do recognize there's a good chance it won't happen. I also know I can't bank on being at the top of my class. Both of which make me nervous.


I was waitlisted at UT, unfortunately. I don't exactly know why other than I'm out of state and I applied late. I have full rides from all of the other reputable Texas schools other than SMU. I also have full rides from asu and uofa. Half tuition at WUSTL and UCLA. Still waiting on from vandy and cornell. Id probably pick vandy if they got back to me with the right price...probably anything 75K+


Do you have a named scholarship to Houston? I am big time pro-SMU. I have zero regrets about how things worked out for me coming out of SMU. SMU simply isn't worth $100k in debt if you have a full ride to Houston under a named scholarship. You'll be a strong contender for a 1L SA, which means you will have a good shot st biglaw. Go to Houston, save the money, lateral to Dallas after a couple years of practice with a lot of money in your bank account.

rad lulz
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Re: ITT: Practicing attorneys tell you your top choice is bad

Postby rad lulz » Mon Apr 21, 2014 10:08 pm

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Last edited by rad lulz on Thu Sep 01, 2016 7:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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bound
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Re: ITT: Practicing attorneys tell you your top choice is bad

Postby bound » Mon Apr 21, 2014 10:19 pm

rad lulz wrote:
bound wrote:Goal(s): Texas Biglaw > Literally anywhere else in the country
Regional Ties: Dallas, Tucson, Bay Area
School(s): SMU 130K - This is the absolute most debt that I would be in. This figure is assuming I never work a day, take out loans in the full amount, and my family doesn't contribute a dime. All of this is unlikely, but I wanted to know my absolute worst case scenario.
Other pertinent information: No undergrad debt. WE after college in a firm. I want to work in Dallas long term. I do have other schools I'm considering but I wanted to hear input about this school specifically. SMU is appealing because of it's location, and that I have family/ties who graduated from the school and now work in Dallas at big firms. I have tried negotiating with them about my scholarship amount, but they won't budge and I guess historically they don't negotiate at all. It's bothersome because I have full rides at a number of other schools ranked higher than SMU, but of course those schools aren't in Dallas.

That price? Those goals? Nope.



Haha I appreciate the harsh truth. What are your recommendations for obtaining Texas big law? UT or bust? Is using a Vandy degree to get back to Texas as difficult as I'd imagine? I have thought about sitting out another year to obtain Texas residency, and as a result having a much higher chance of being admitted to UT.

rad lulz
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Re: ITT: Practicing attorneys tell you your top choice is bad

Postby rad lulz » Mon Apr 21, 2014 10:26 pm

bound wrote:
rad lulz wrote:
bound wrote:Goal(s): Texas Biglaw > Literally anywhere else in the country
Regional Ties: Dallas, Tucson, Bay Area
School(s): SMU 130K - This is the absolute most debt that I would be in. This figure is assuming I never work a day, take out loans in the full amount, and my family doesn't contribute a dime. All of this is unlikely, but I wanted to know my absolute worst case scenario.
Other pertinent information: No undergrad debt. WE after college in a firm. I want to work in Dallas long term. I do have other schools I'm considering but I wanted to hear input about this school specifically. SMU is appealing because of it's location, and that I have family/ties who graduated from the school and now work in Dallas at big firms. I have tried negotiating with them about my scholarship amount, but they won't budge and I guess historically they don't negotiate at all. It's bothersome because I have full rides at a number of other schools ranked higher than SMU, but of course those schools aren't in Dallas.

That price? Those goals? Nope.



Haha I appreciate the harsh truth. What are your recommendations for obtaining Texas big law? UT or bust? Is using a Vandy degree to get back to Texas as difficult as I'd imagine? I have thought about sitting out another year to obtain Texas residency, and as a result having a much higher chance of being admitted to UT.

Ya do UT for cheap or T14

pcv123
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Re: ITT: Practicing attorneys tell you your top choice is bad

Postby pcv123 » Wed Apr 23, 2014 2:32 am

Goals: Biglaw/government
Regional Ties: Florida
Schools: W&L COL. Minn 118k. WUSTL 140k. Lewis and Clark COL.
Other pertinent information: No undergraduate debt. Currently serving as a Peace Corps Volunteer with a bullshit liberal arts degree, so opportunity cost is low. I also have about 20k saved, and parents may help some.

Nomo
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Re: ITT: Practicing attorneys tell you your top choice is bad

Postby Nomo » Wed Apr 23, 2014 2:48 pm

pcv123 wrote:Goals: Biglaw/government
Regional Ties: Florida
Schools: W&L COL. Minn 118k. WUSTL 140k. Lewis and Clark COL.
Other pertinent information: No undergraduate debt. Currently serving as a Peace Corps Volunteer with a bullshit liberal arts degree, so opportunity cost is low. I also have about 20k saved, and parents may help some.


None of the above. You've got a tiny chance at biglaw from any of these. The debt is too high to pursue government work, and government work is hard to find anyways. The chance of being unemployed is serious from each of these schools.

Do you get the same federal preference that veterans get after completing peace corps? If so, I would say your chances at federal government work improve, but I still don't like your options. A better school or something cheaper is what you really need. I wouldn't go at this point if I was you.

Nomo
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Re: ITT: Practicing attorneys tell you your top choice is bad

Postby Nomo » Wed Apr 23, 2014 2:51 pm

rad lulz wrote:
bound wrote:
rad lulz wrote:
bound wrote:Goal(s): Texas Biglaw > Literally anywhere else in the country
Regional Ties: Dallas, Tucson, Bay Area
School(s): SMU 130K - This is the absolute most debt that I would be in. This figure is assuming I never work a day, take out loans in the full amount, and my family doesn't contribute a dime. All of this is unlikely, but I wanted to know my absolute worst case scenario.
Other pertinent information: No undergrad debt. WE after college in a firm. I want to work in Dallas long term. I do have other schools I'm considering but I wanted to hear input about this school specifically. SMU is appealing because of it's location, and that I have family/ties who graduated from the school and now work in Dallas at big firms. I have tried negotiating with them about my scholarship amount, but they won't budge and I guess historically they don't negotiate at all. It's bothersome because I have full rides at a number of other schools ranked higher than SMU, but of course those schools aren't in Dallas.

That price? Those goals? Nope.



Haha I appreciate the harsh truth. What are your recommendations for obtaining Texas big law? UT or bust? Is using a Vandy degree to get back to Texas as difficult as I'd imagine? I have thought about sitting out another year to obtain Texas residency, and as a result having a much higher chance of being admitted to UT.

Ya do UT for cheap or T14


Agreed UT for 100k or lower T14 for around 130k (I know these numbers are a bit arbitrary). Vanderbilt for 100k might be acceptable, I'm not sure. But, how much money do you really want to borrow for a less than 50% shot at your goal.

Nomo
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Re: ITT: Practicing attorneys tell you your top choice is bad

Postby Nomo » Wed Apr 23, 2014 2:55 pm

presh wrote:
sl5uw13 wrote:
deadpanic wrote:
sl5uw13 wrote:Goal(s): Biglaw in Richmond VA
Regional Ties: Richmond, Tidewater area
School(s): UVA 80k total COA
Other pertinent information: 25k undergrad loans, parents will probably help a little with COL, unmarketable liberal arts degree with low hourly wage job, soo opportunity cost is super low.


UVA for 80k and wanting to work in VA? Enjoy Charlottesville.


Thanks! I waffle back and forth over this though because it's still a significant amount of money and I keep reading the threads that are like stupid 0Ls don't know what they're getting into and shouldn't go to law school etc. On the other hand, I dont have much room for advancement at my current job and can't do a whole lot with my degree and should I get biglaw I could probably knock out my debt in 1-2 years living in Richmond with a roommate and having parental help.


I agree with deadpanic. That is a decent choice. Go for it, even if you end up in midlaw, that debt should be serviceable.


I'm all for UVA at 80k . . . but midlaw isn't realistic. Michigan lists the employment outcomes of every graduate on its website. Count the number of people in midlaw. I bet you can't find 10 out (of 370 graduates). I would be shocked if UVA is any different. Midlaw is not a backup plan; its an exit option for 5th years in biglaw.

Ngoblue2014
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Re: ITT: Practicing attorneys tell you your top choice is bad

Postby Ngoblue2014 » Fri Apr 25, 2014 4:06 pm

Ties to NYC, Boston, Chicago, all of Michigan really.

BC: 30k/yr COA: 115k
Emory: 24k/yr COA: 148k
UNC Chapel Hill: 14k/yr (plus instate) COA: 70k
GW: So far Sticker. COA: 240k

Goals: Big Law (i know not likely but BC is 29% according to LST, so not terrible) open my own practice, politics

Financing: Grandfather purchased college fund in mid 90's, more than enough for each school, parents covering living expenses.

Expected Debt: None.

Best of my "final 4?"

(Sort of still considering BU, Wash U, preferred these 4 without question though)

wlee1220
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Re: ITT: Practicing attorneys tell you your top choice is bad

Postby wlee1220 » Sun Apr 27, 2014 7:59 pm

Goal(s): Either Public Health Related PI; Labor and Employment Related PI, Biglaw. Would prefer to be in Atlanta, but am ok with Philly and South Jersey
Regional Ties: Philly, Southern NJ, Atlanta
School(s): Vandy @ 130K, Rutgers-C @ 75K, Temple @ 80K
Other pertinent information: Aunt just recently sold property and willing to give me some money to contribute to COA so figures may be less, 5K left on undergrad loans (hope to have those paid off before school starts), riding waitlists at Penn and Duke

Nomo
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Re: ITT: Practicing attorneys tell you your top choice is bad

Postby Nomo » Sun Apr 27, 2014 11:51 pm

Ngoblue2014 wrote:Ties to NYC, Boston, Chicago, all of Michigan really.

BC: 30k/yr COA: 115k
Emory: 24k/yr COA: 148k
UNC Chapel Hill: 14k/yr (plus instate) COA: 70k
GW: So far Sticker. COA: 240k

Goals: Big Law (i know not likely but BC is 29% according to LST, so not terrible) open my own practice, politics

Financing: Grandfather purchased college fund in mid 90's, more than enough for each school, parents covering living expenses.

Expected Debt: None.

Best of my "final 4?"

(Sort of still considering BU, Wash U, preferred these 4 without question though)


I would pick a school in the place where you want to practice/enter politics.

Nomo
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Re: ITT: Practicing attorneys tell you your top choice is bad

Postby Nomo » Sun Apr 27, 2014 11:54 pm

wlee1220 wrote:Goal(s): Either Public Health Related PI; Labor and Employment Related PI, Biglaw. Would prefer to be in Atlanta, but am ok with Philly and South Jersey
Regional Ties: Philly, Southern NJ, Atlanta
School(s): Vandy @ 130K, Rutgers-C @ 75K, Temple @ 80K
Other pertinent information: Aunt just recently sold property and willing to give me some money to contribute to COA so figures may be less, 5K left on undergrad loans (hope to have those paid off before school starts), riding waitlists at Penn and Duke


I really don't like any of these options for your goals. I wouldn't go to law school . . . and paying sticker (or near sticker) off a waitlist wouldn't be better.

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njdevils2626
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Re: ITT: Practicing attorneys tell you your top choice is bad

Postby njdevils2626 » Mon Apr 28, 2014 12:00 am

Ties: None, I'm Canadian

Goals: BigLaw, though In-House intrigues me as well. I'd be open to any position at a firm/company which I can be proud of while earning a quality income.

Options: WUSTL w/ $120,000 scholarship. Will likely incur no debt as I am lucky enough to have parental contribution to school.
University of British Columbia - Waiting to hear back (applied in Discretionary category due to heart attack suffered in undergrad, should hear back in the next 2 weeks or so). Likely no debt either.

Assuming I get into UBC (which I understand is far from guaranteed), I was wondering if anyone would have any insight into the two options here. Thank you in advance

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logicspeaks
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Re: ITT: Practicing attorneys tell you your top choice is bad

Postby logicspeaks » Mon Apr 28, 2014 12:07 am

Just going to throw this out there for the time being since I'm getting really close to deposit deadlines.

Goal(s): PI (civil rights/liberties, poverty, housing), PD, Govt, or possibly plaintiff side work. All said I am NOT interested in Biglaw and want to work in CA unless I have amazing opportunities elsewhere
Regional Ties: All in SoCal
School(s): USC @ $120k, Texas @ $54k
Other pertinent information: $20k in UG loans, still waiting on UCLA (they are aware of my USC and Texas offers) waitlisted at Harvard, Columbia, and NYU possibly because I applied very late. I'm thinking about applying again next year but I'm not sure if a T10 school is really necessary given my goals.

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prezidentv8
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Re: ITT: Practicing attorneys tell you your top choice is bad

Postby prezidentv8 » Mon Apr 28, 2014 12:10 am

logicspeaks wrote:NOT interested in Biglaw


USC @ $120k, Texas @ $54k


$20k in UG loans


Not USC.

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logicspeaks
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Re: ITT: Practicing attorneys tell you your top choice is bad

Postby logicspeaks » Mon Apr 28, 2014 12:14 am

prezidentv8 wrote:
logicspeaks wrote:NOT interested in Biglaw


USC @ $120k, Texas @ $54k


$20k in UG loans


Not USC.

How low should my COA be before attending USC/UCLA is a good idea? I'm also expecting to utilize LRAP wherever I go.

Yanky91
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Re: ITT: Practicing attorneys tell you your top choice is bad

Postby Yanky91 » Mon Apr 28, 2014 12:22 am

Goal(s): To be employed as a lawyer in a midsize to large firm, or have a federal/state clerkship, within 9 months after graduating.
Regional Ties: MD, VA, D.C. (but I am open to moving. The only real ties are family in D.C. and MD)
School(s): UIUC full ride, Wake basically full ride (I paid seat deposits at both).
Other pertinent information: I will pay with fed loans. I didn't get a good vibe from Wake (I don't know how much that matters). I liked UIUC. Chicago is a good legal market (for those who don't know haha). Wake's employment numbers got hammered this year, and I think it is pretty scary.

Nomo
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Re: ITT: Practicing attorneys tell you your top choice is bad

Postby Nomo » Mon Apr 28, 2014 2:08 pm

njdevils2626 wrote:Ties: None, I'm Canadian

Goals: BigLaw, though In-House intrigues me as well. I'd be open to any position at a firm/company which I can be proud of while earning a quality income.

Options: WUSTL w/ $120,000 scholarship. Will likely incur no debt as I am lucky enough to have parental contribution to school.
University of British Columbia - Waiting to hear back (applied in Discretionary category due to heart attack suffered in undergrad, should hear back in the next 2 weeks or so). Likely no debt either.

Assuming I get into UBC (which I understand is far from guaranteed), I was wondering if anyone would have any insight into the two options here. Thank you in advance


I can't speak to UBC. WUSTL with a 120k scholarship and parents rich enough to cover the rest is normally great. However, before attending you should define your goals a little better. Biglaw from WUSTL is an unlikely outcome. Midlaw isn't happening. Going straight to in-house is also very unlikely. The majority of WUSTL students get jobs with firms you've never heard of paying 50-60k in the state they are from (which is often Missouri or Illinois). Many of those lawyers will eventually make 100k, but not all. And of course many WUSTL grads struggle to find employment at all. The LST score reports and data back this up.

Nomo
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Re: ITT: Practicing attorneys tell you your top choice is bad

Postby Nomo » Mon Apr 28, 2014 2:11 pm

logicspeaks wrote:Just going to throw this out there for the time being since I'm getting really close to deposit deadlines.

Goal(s): PI (civil rights/liberties, poverty, housing), PD, Govt, or possibly plaintiff side work. All said I am NOT interested in Biglaw and want to work in CA unless I have amazing opportunities elsewhere
Regional Ties: All in SoCal
School(s): USC @ $120k, Texas @ $54k
Other pertinent information: $20k in UG loans, still waiting on UCLA (they are aware of my USC and Texas offers) waitlisted at Harvard, Columbia, and NYU possibly because I applied very late. I'm thinking about applying again next year but I'm not sure if a T10 school is really necessary given my goals.


Texas at 54k is the winner. Its an easy call given your goals. Reapplying for Harvard, Columbia, or NYU only makes sense if you want to work in major impact litigation cases. PS: working on major impact litigation cases sounds awesome, but it is often more similar to biglaw than other PI law - at least in the sense that things move slowly, there is a shit ton of discovery, very few trials, etc.

Nomo
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Re: ITT: Practicing attorneys tell you your top choice is bad

Postby Nomo » Mon Apr 28, 2014 2:14 pm

Yanky91 wrote:Goal(s): To be employed as a lawyer in a midsize to large firm, or have a federal/state clerkship, within 9 months after graduating.
Regional Ties: MD, VA, D.C. (but I am open to moving. The only real ties are family in D.C. and MD)
School(s): UIUC full ride, Wake basically full ride (I paid seat deposits at both).
Other pertinent information: I will pay with fed loans. I didn't get a good vibe from Wake (I don't know how much that matters). I liked UIUC. Chicago is a good legal market (for those who don't know haha). Wake's employment numbers got hammered this year, and I think it is pretty scary.


UIUC. But, why exactly do you want a clerkship. Is it just to make sure you get a better mid/biglaw firm. Because clerkships are tough (though some state clerkships are much easier). Either way, you're not likely to be working at a big or mid sized firm coming from UIUC or Wake Forest. So just make sure you feel good about your backup plans.

prelaw14
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Re: ITT: Practicing attorneys tell you your top choice is bad

Postby prelaw14 » Mon Apr 28, 2014 2:29 pm

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Last edited by prelaw14 on Tue Mar 29, 2016 6:06 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Blindmelon
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Re: ITT: Practicing attorneys tell you your top choice is bad

Postby Blindmelon » Mon Apr 28, 2014 3:07 pm

prelaw14 wrote:Goals: LA Biglaw
Ties: LA, San Francisco
Schools Considering: USC and Vanderbilt (both full tuition scholarships)
Also: SO is a 2L at Vandy


Seriously? USC - with a full-ride thats actually a great deal.

prelaw14
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Re: ITT: Practicing attorneys tell you your top choice is bad

Postby prelaw14 » Mon Apr 28, 2014 3:19 pm

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Last edited by prelaw14 on Tue Mar 29, 2016 6:06 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Yanky91
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Re: ITT: Practicing attorneys tell you your top choice is bad

Postby Yanky91 » Mon Apr 28, 2014 4:17 pm

Nomo wrote:
Yanky91 wrote:Goal(s): To be employed as a lawyer in a midsize to large firm, or have a federal/state clerkship, within 9 months after graduating.
Regional Ties: MD, VA, D.C. (but I am open to moving. The only real ties are family in D.C. and MD)
School(s): UIUC full ride, Wake basically full ride (I paid seat deposits at both).
Other pertinent information: I will pay with fed loans. I didn't get a good vibe from Wake (I don't know how much that matters). I liked UIUC. Chicago is a good legal market (for those who don't know haha). Wake's employment numbers got hammered this year, and I think it is pretty scary.


UIUC. But, why exactly do you want a clerkship. Is it just to make sure you get a better mid/biglaw firm. Because clerkships are tough (though some state clerkships are much easier). Either way, you're not likely to be working at a big or mid sized firm coming from UIUC or Wake Forest. So just make sure you feel good about your backup plans.


Yeah, a clerkship would be a good move to further my career, and the lifestyle and pay is pretty good. I think I have a pretty good shot at mid/big law out of UIUC no? 25% is not that bad....

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JCougar
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Re: ITT: Practicing attorneys tell you your top choice is bad

Postby JCougar » Mon Apr 28, 2014 4:32 pm

logicspeaks wrote:
prezidentv8 wrote:
logicspeaks wrote:NOT interested in Biglaw


USC @ $120k, Texas @ $54k


$20k in UG loans


Not USC.

How low should my COA be before attending USC/UCLA is a good idea? I'm also expecting to utilize LRAP wherever I go.


There are very few legit jobs that actually qualify for LRAP out there. That may change in three years when government and legal aid budgets improve, but that's a big assumption.

Unless you get into HYSCCNB for PI, taking out a ton of debt and relying on LRAP is really like playing Russian Roulette with your legal career...with at least three bullets in the chamber. It's very hard to get LRAP-eligible jobs, and it's crushing to pay off six figures of debt from a plaintiff/union-side salary. If you can't get into HYSCCNB for PI, I would just 1) minimize your debt as much as possible, and 2) go to a school in the area you want to practice and gun for state-level legal aid/PD/plaintiff's side shitlaw.




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