Is Santa Clara Worth it for IP Law?

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dolphinsareevil
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Is Santa Clara Worth it for IP Law?

Postby dolphinsareevil » Fri Mar 13, 2015 5:22 am

Hey guys, I'm from the Santa Clara area and applied to only California schools. I've always heard Santa Clara Law has a great IP program and since I want to practice in this area, it was one of my top choices.

I got in yesterday with a substantial scholarship (maybe even full price if I play my cards right), BUT the scholarship will be renewed yearly ONLY if I'm top 15% of my class. I'm trying to get through law school with a minimal loan so this is a big deal for me.

Looking at the rankings though, SCU sucks. it barely even makes the top 100. I need advice from someone in the area who knows whether a J.D. from SCU is worth it.

Also, I have an undergrad degree in Finance so if I want I can just go the finance route and get a CFA.

Thoughts? NEED HELP ASAP

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antiworldly
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Re: Is Santa Clara Worth it for IP Law?

Postby antiworldly » Fri Mar 13, 2015 8:17 am

Here's my two cents, 0L so take it for what it's worth.

First, why IP? You said you've got a degree in finance which is not patent bar eligible, which restricts you to IP litigation. You're still at a significant disadvantage there compared to applicants who are patent bar eligible. I'm not saying you can't do it, but you're starting at a significant disadvantage.

The scholarship is dangerous. If you look at SCU's required disclosures on conditional scholarships ( found at http://www.abarequireddisclosures.org) you'll see why. They seem to aim to eliminate about half of their conditional scholarships per class year. Law school is graded on a curve and you'll be with people who are at about the same academic level you are. Even if you did well in undergrad, everyone else did too and only 15% of people can make the cut to be in the top 15%, and a lot of that is chance. Did the prof. not like how you stated your argument in your final paper? Wave goodbye to that scholarship. It's brutal, but that's why you should be extraordinarily wary of conditional scholarships. It's safe to assume with a cutoff like that you'll only keep it for one year. Can you afford the price with that factored in?

Finally, the US News reports mean basically nothing for schools like SCU with your goals. The USN ranks schools nationally, and SCU doesn't have a national reach and you don't need it to because you want to stay local. See http://abovethelaw.com/2015/03/who-should-and-should-not-pay-attention-to-the-u-s-news-law-school-rankings/ . It's a regional school, and if that'll get you where you want to go, that's good. That's a big if, however. Check out http://www.lstscorereports.com/schools/santaclara/jobs/2013/. 22.7% of graduates were unemployed, only 50% were in traditional bar passage required lawyer jobs. That's a truly risky proposition.

My advice: weigh your options carefully. Take some time off of school, work in a law office for a year or two, take the LSAT again and try to get that score up. If you do, look at going to a stronger regional school. If you don't, you should be able to use the experience to get your foot in the door when you graduate or have determine that law isn't for you and go the CFA route. Good luck!

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romothesavior
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Re: Is Santa Clara Worth it for IP Law?

Postby romothesavior » Fri Mar 13, 2015 9:23 am

With ties and a full ride, maybe. But top 15% stipulations? That's as TTTT as I've ever heard.

BigZuck
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Re: Is Santa Clara Worth it for IP Law?

Postby BigZuck » Fri Mar 13, 2015 9:24 am

What do you mean by IP law?

The quality of education will be pretty much the same at most schools in the country. I bet the IP classes are probably pretty similar in quality between Stanford, Berkeley, Hastings, and Santa Clara. A lot of Santa Clara's placement (from what I have heard at least) is silicon valley types who have been paid to get a JD by their current company. These people often have advanced degrees in things like engineering, biology, etc. And then beyond that there might be a little cheese for people who get amazing law school grades and then there are large swaths of the class left un or underemployed.

Given that you can't predict how well you will do in law school going in and you would likely have to do extremely well at a school like Santa Clara to get anything approximating a high paying job (or maybe even any job), I don't think it's a school worth attending.

If you can't go to Stanford, Berkeley, UCLA, USC (and maaaaybe Davis and Irvine although I think that's stretching it) then you probably shouldn't go to law school in California in my opinion.

timbs4339
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Re: Is Santa Clara Worth it for IP Law?

Postby timbs4339 » Fri Mar 13, 2015 10:24 am

Yeah, you say you want IP law- but the IP bump only applies to people with STEM degrees because they can sit for the patent bar and do patent pros. With your finance degree, you're competing for soft-IP jobs with everyone else and thus normal hiring rules apply. Also, the IP litigation field is going through some serious changes right now that may result in a severe contraction in the demand for IP litigators.

And that is without a doubt the worst scholly stip I have ever seen. At least they are relatively up front about it.

Do not go to SCU. Shoot for a T14 or USC/UCLA with a large scholarship. Honestly I know the CFA route is harder in the short-term but you'll be working while studying and the payoff is much greater with much less debt.

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TheSpanishMain
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Re: Is Santa Clara Worth it for IP Law?

Postby TheSpanishMain » Fri Mar 13, 2015 11:33 am

Top 15% is a hilariously harsh stipulation

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rpupkin
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Re: Is Santa Clara Worth it for IP Law?

Postby rpupkin » Fri Mar 13, 2015 11:40 am

BigZuck wrote:What do you mean by IP law?

The quality of education will be pretty much the same at most schools in the country. I bet the IP classes are probably pretty similar in quality between Stanford, Berkeley, Hastings, and Santa Clara. A lot of Santa Clara's placement (from what I have heard at least) is silicon valley types who have been paid to get a JD by their current company. These people often have advanced degrees in things like engineering, biology, etc. And then beyond that there might be a little cheese for people who get amazing law school grades and then there are large swaths of the class left un or underemployed.

Given that you can't predict how well you will do in law school going in and you would likely have to do extremely well at a school like Santa Clara to get anything approximating a high paying job (or maybe even any job), I don't think it's a school worth attending.

If you can't go to Stanford, Berkeley, UCLA, USC (and maaaaybe Davis and Irvine although I think that's stretching it) then you probably shouldn't go to law school in California in my opinion.

This is all correct. If you are patent-bar eligible, and if your current employer or the law school is paying a substantial portion of your tuition, and if you know you want to do patent prosecution after you graduate, then Santa Clara is fine. Outside of those narrow circumstances, though, it's generally not a school worth attending.

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jingosaur
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Re: Is Santa Clara Worth it for IP Law?

Postby jingosaur » Fri Mar 13, 2015 12:33 pm

What's your LSAT and GPA?

You have a very high chance of losing that scholarship. Santa Clara stips have previously been 3.0 or top 50% (I forget which one) and about half have lost the scholarship. I'm assuming they move to top 15% because they decided to stop section stacking maybe?

I would say don't do it. Maybe worth it with a full ride and no stips.

Nomo
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Re: Is Santa Clara Worth it for IP Law?

Postby Nomo » Fri Mar 13, 2015 12:39 pm

Absolutely not worth it.

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ExBiglawAssociate
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Re: Is Santa Clara Worth it for IP Law?

Postby ExBiglawAssociate » Fri Mar 13, 2015 2:42 pm

No. Do not do this.

Shirosham
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Re: Is Santa Clara Worth it for IP Law?

Postby Shirosham » Fri Mar 13, 2015 2:53 pm

Like the others say, top 15% No. Lose that scholarship and you're paying Bay Area COL too.

Is it a Named scholarship? The one I got from them last cycle was a maintain a 3.0.

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rickgrimes69
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Re: Is Santa Clara Worth it for IP Law?

Postby rickgrimes69 » Sat Mar 14, 2015 6:10 pm

Even for free, Santa Clara isn't worth three years of your life. Add that TTTTT (yes, 5 T's) stip and this is a no-brainer.

dolphinsareevil
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Re: Is Santa Clara Worth it for IP Law?

Postby dolphinsareevil » Sun Mar 15, 2015 9:11 pm

UPDATE: So I talked to someone from admissions and they've changed the stipulation to maintaining a 3.0.

You guys are right though, it is extremely risky and might not be worth it. I'm trying to see if I can keep that scholarship but be part time so that I don't have to take on a debt to cover up tuition and also work a little to get experience.

If they say no, I'm taking a year off and working full-time. No shortage of firms hiring finance students in the Bay Area :)

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downbeat14
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Re: Is Santa Clara Worth it for IP Law?

Postby downbeat14 » Sun Mar 15, 2015 9:32 pm

.
Last edited by downbeat14 on Tue Apr 28, 2015 10:03 pm, edited 1 time in total.

brianiac
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Re: Is Santa Clara Worth it for IP Law?

Postby brianiac » Mon Mar 16, 2015 12:41 am

Santa Clara is a good school for IP, no doubt about it. In the IP rankings it's actually tied with GW, one of the very top IP schools in the country.

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reasonable person
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Re: Is Santa Clara Worth it for IP Law?

Postby reasonable person » Mon Mar 16, 2015 12:43 am

No.

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downbeat14
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Re: Is Santa Clara Worth it for IP Law?

Postby downbeat14 » Mon Mar 16, 2015 12:57 am

.
Last edited by downbeat14 on Tue Apr 28, 2015 10:06 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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rickgrimes69
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Re: Is Santa Clara Worth it for IP Law?

Postby rickgrimes69 » Mon Mar 16, 2015 1:13 am

brianiac wrote:Santa Clara is a good school for IP, no doubt about it. In the IP rankings it's actually tied with GW, one of the very top IP schools in the country.


Even though we just met, I feel like I've known you forever.

Never change <3

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Worker and Parasite
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Re: Is Santa Clara Worth it for IP Law?

Postby Worker and Parasite » Mon Mar 16, 2015 4:23 am

dolphinsareevil wrote:UPDATE: So I talked to someone from admissions and they've changed the stipulation to maintaining a 3.0.


what does this mean though? Does that mean top 1/2 stipulation?

collegebum1989
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Re: Is Santa Clara Worth it for IP Law?

Postby collegebum1989 » Mon Mar 16, 2015 8:33 am

Specialty rankings are meaningless. Without a patent bar eligible background, you won't get any patent type of positions even if you tried. Even if you did, it's still not gauranteed unless you have a EE/CS Degree.

Conditional scholarships are also a scam because law school grades are unpredictable. Therefore, you could very well lose your scholarship and locked into paying sticker at a school with TTTT employment statistics regardless of its "IP ranking", which will be meaningless for firm recruitment.

Not worth it.

WhiskeynCoke
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Re: Is Santa Clara Worth it for IP Law?

Postby WhiskeynCoke » Tue Mar 17, 2015 2:35 am

dolphinsareevil wrote:Hey guys, I'm from the Santa Clara area and applied to only California schools. I've always heard Santa Clara Law has a great IP program and since I want to practice in this area, it was one of my top choices.

I got in yesterday with a substantial scholarship (maybe even full price if I play my cards right), BUT the scholarship will be renewed yearly ONLY if I'm top 15% of my class. I'm trying to get through law school with a minimal loan so this is a big deal for me.

Looking at the rankings though, SCU sucks. it barely even makes the top 100. I need advice from someone in the area who knows whether a J.D. from SCU is worth it.

Also, I have an undergrad degree in Finance so if I want I can just go the finance route and get a CFA.

Thoughts? NEED HELP ASAP


OP, for the love of god, don't do this. Santa Clara has terrible job placement in a market that is incredibly over saturated and utterly dominated by S/B grads, as well as all the HYCCN types returning home.

Further, SC's employment stats are artificially inflated because, as another poster explained, many SV companies will send their engineers to SC so they can prosecute patents. These people have advanced STEM degrees (patent bar eligible) and had a job lined up before even starting 1L.

You do NOT have an IP background. Finance is attractive to firms generally, but only if big law employers actually recruit students from your school. At SC, this is not the case. Some stupid specialty ranking means absolutely nothing. The people who decide whether to hire you don't read that shit. Also, that 15% stip is completely absurd.

Get SC to give you a full ride with no stipulations and get used to the idea that you probably won't get big law or don't go. Otherwise, retake and shoot for T14.

siddhishah
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Re: Is Santa Clara Worth it for IP Law?

Postby siddhishah » Mon May 18, 2015 3:51 pm

I have similar concern. I have BS/BSE/MS in Computer science and Engineering. I got into Santa clara Law/ GW Law and local school Arizona state law. I am kind of scared to rent out house, leave my job,etc to move to bay area or DC. Do you think if I did law from Arizona state, I will not have many job options? If I have to move out, do you suggest GW or Santa Clara?

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Calbears123
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Re: Is Santa Clara Worth it for IP Law?

Postby Calbears123 » Mon May 18, 2015 3:59 pm

Top 15% stipend is hilariously harsh but you should check what the mandatory curve is, some of these TTTT schools curve in the 2.8 range so a 3.0 could possibly still be top 20%

NorCalLaw
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Re: Is Santa Clara Worth it for IP Law?

Postby NorCalLaw » Tue May 19, 2015 7:20 pm

Top 15% stip is troll-level nonsense. It does conveniently correlate to the class rank you'd need in your first year there to not be essentially required to drop out.

Also, their strong patent program is actually bad news for you. Hard science kids and former engineers push up the school's employment numbers, but you don't qualify for any of those jobs. If you were an EE or compsci person then maybe the conversation would be worth having.

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Hand
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Re: Is Santa Clara Worth it for IP Law?

Postby Hand » Tue May 19, 2015 7:28 pm

NorCalLaw wrote:Top 15% stip is troll-level nonsense. It does conveniently correlate to the class rank you'd need in your first year there to not be essentially required to drop out.

Also, their strong patent program is actually bad news for you. Hard science kids and former engineers push up the school's employment numbers, but you don't qualify for any of those jobs. If you were an EE or compsci person then maybe the conversation would be worth having.


and even with that, SCU manages to place a whopping 1/3rd of their sstudents in FT/LT legal positions




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