SLU vs. Case Western

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PhantomBMAN
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SLU vs. Case Western

Postby PhantomBMAN » Tue Mar 31, 2015 1:20 pm

Hi there everybody!

I've been reading these forums for a while but recently decided to make an account. I wanted to hear peoples' thoughts on the merits of going to Case Western vs. SLU.

So a brief story of my status:

I'm a UC Santa Cruz grad who had a GPA of 3.35 (dropped because I was doing neurosci my first two years - planned on med school - but switched to psych/law my last two), and I got an LSAT of 155. While I'm fairly sure I could get a 160+ if I had more time and opportunity to study for it, and knowing how adamant many people are about retaking the LSAT here if the score is low, that's not in my cards right now.

I got accepted to SLU and Case, with SLU offering me a half-tuition scholarship, and Case offering none (but it's currently being reconsidered by them). My main passion is Healthcare law (combining my passion for medicine with my better skills in the legal realm), and so SLU has always been a good choice for me in my opinion.

I realize specialty rankings mean little, particularly in most discussions on these forums. Having said that, I've heard the Case Western is going through an administrative shift, that the students happen to be fair more conservative (I would say I'm a moderate-liberal sort), and their employment stats aren't all that better than SLU. Also their winters are completely shoddy, even more so than in St. Louis.

SLU on the other hand has a more sociable student network, their staff seem more personable, and I feel like they would likely be the school to better prepare me to be the kind of lawyer I want to be.

So I wanted to hear your thoughts on whether my reasoning makes sense, or if I'm missing something. I especially welcome thoughts from those who have gone or are going to both schools. Remember I have no intention of pursuing biglaw, business, criminal, or any of the other more impacted concentrations of the legal field; health law is my passion and is one of the few areas that is constantly growing in terms of employment and success.

Thanks guys!

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RareExports
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Re: SLU vs. Case Western

Postby RareExports » Tue Mar 31, 2015 1:35 pm

Do you want to live in St. Louis or Cleveland after graduation?

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rion91
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Re: SLU vs. Case Western

Postby rion91 » Tue Mar 31, 2015 1:37 pm

Why can't you retake? I thought I didn't want to, but I did end up doing a retake, applied the next cycle, and have had MUCH better results.

If you are absolutely set on these two schools, go where you want to practice: Cleveland or SL. Politics don't mean much in the grand scheme of things. Another test and you could have full rides at those places and money at a T25.

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Capitol_Idea
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Re: SLU vs. Case Western

Postby Capitol_Idea » Tue Mar 31, 2015 1:40 pm

Thought this said 'Slut v. Case Western' in which case Slut is the obvious choice.

Retake, retake, retake.

PhantomBMAN
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Re: SLU vs. Case Western

Postby PhantomBMAN » Tue Mar 31, 2015 1:50 pm

Yeah I've been hearing a lot of slut jokes for SLU hahahaha

So regarding retaking. Personally, I would love to retake it because I know I have the potential to get a higher LSAT. And in the grand scheme of things, it's more cost efficient and such to do so. However due to a litany of personal circumstances, that's just not in my cards right now, so I have to deal with what I've got going on. I'm from the California East Bay area, and I'm waiting on Hastings to reply while having been waitlisted to Washington and Lee.

In terms of area I'd like to practice, I actually would love to go back here to Cali when I'm done. I'm aware SLU has an even lower recognition status than Case Western, but I'm also aware that SLU grads have a better chance of being employed in their city than Case grads in Cleveland apparently.

As far as the probability of going back home to the East Bay and being a healthcare lawyer, I figured by making strong connections with the vast health law network from SLU and having a JD/MHA or MPH from the best Health law program in the country would allow me to find at least decent employment in that field. Then again, I may have to practice in St. Louis for a while before having the opportunity to move back home and taking the California Bar.

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TheSpanishMain
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Re: SLU vs. Case Western

Postby TheSpanishMain » Tue Mar 31, 2015 1:57 pm

Can you explain these circumstances? I genuinely can't think of any that would make waiting a year and retaking a bad idea, short of having a bomb strapped to your chest that will detonate unless you take on mountains of debt as soon as possible

PhantomBMAN
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Re: SLU vs. Case Western

Postby PhantomBMAN » Tue Mar 31, 2015 2:03 pm

They're family related. In general, I basically need to be in law school this upcoming fall or I end up dealing with that "bomb strapped to my chest" blowing up in my face. I just can't afford to take an additional year off deferring admission at this point. Believe me I know full well the cost/benefit of going to a school with the options I have now vs. spending more time preparing and retaking/reapplying to schools. It's not a decision I had to come to lightly.

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rion91
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Re: SLU vs. Case Western

Postby rion91 » Tue Mar 31, 2015 2:40 pm

Can you not accept, defer admission, then retake?

PhantomBMAN
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Re: SLU vs. Case Western

Postby PhantomBMAN » Tue Mar 31, 2015 2:45 pm

Again, I've considered it, but it's just not a possibility for now. I'm hoping that W&L take me off their waitlist too (but if Hastings somehow accepts me, I'll most likely go there regardless).

I know where you guys are coming from, believe me. But I prefer to focus the discussion on the cost/benefits of attending SLU vs Case for someone intending to go into Health Law.

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Fiero85
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Re: SLU vs. Case Western

Postby Fiero85 » Tue Mar 31, 2015 2:51 pm

"While I'm fairly sure I could get a 160+ if I had more time and opportunity to study for it, and knowing how adamant many people are about retaking the LSAT here if the score is low, that's not in my cards right now."

:cry:

This is a terrible progression. Stop it. Work minimum wage for a yr and retake if you must, it'll be worth tens of thousands in tax free income and reduced strife.

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RareExports
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Re: SLU vs. Case Western

Postby RareExports » Tue Mar 31, 2015 2:56 pm

PhantomBMAN wrote:Again, I've considered it, but it's just not a possibility for now. I'm hoping that W&L take me off their waitlist too (but if Hastings somehow accepts me, I'll most likely go there regardless).

I know where you guys are coming from, believe me. But I prefer to focus the discussion on the cost/benefits of attending SLU vs Case for someone intending to go into Health Law.

I don't think SLU at half tuition is necessarily a bad option (although I think there will be better choices if you retake), but I would absolutely not recommend Hastings off the waitlist at sticker.

BigZuck
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Re: SLU vs. Case Western

Postby BigZuck » Tue Mar 31, 2015 2:56 pm

Whatever kind of job you imagine/desire having in CA, I'm going to go ahead and give you a BigZuck guarantee that you will never get it if you attend any of the schools you mentioned in this thread.

If you want to be a lawyer in California, you really need to attend a T14 or UCLA/USC, or a different CA school for cheap. Nothing else really makes sense.

Tiddlywinks
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Re: SLU vs. Case Western

Postby Tiddlywinks » Tue Mar 31, 2015 2:58 pm

With Case's tutution being 48k a year alone... That's not even an option. Most people are gonna tell you to retake and both schools are only worth attending with real modest goals and on full rides. If you get in Hastings, that's gonna be at sticker and 200k+ attendance. Retaking sucks but you only go to law school once so might as well not jump the gun on crap options

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deadpanic
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Re: SLU vs. Case Western

Postby deadpanic » Tue Mar 31, 2015 3:04 pm

PhantomBMAN wrote:Again, I've considered it, but it's just not a possibility for now. I'm hoping that W&L take me off their waitlist too (but if Hastings somehow accepts me, I'll most likely go there regardless).

I know where you guys are coming from, believe me. But I prefer to focus the discussion on the cost/benefits of attending SLU vs Case for someone intending to go into Health Law.


Let me break it to you then. Most "health law" gigs are big law firms. Those firms are only going to hire the top few students at SLU or Case. Specialty rankings are largely irrelevant. You can go through and have tremendous health law professors, take courses almost exclusively focused on that, but at the end of the day, it doesn't really translate into more health law jobs. You are also not going to build some "health law network" I assure you.

You should not uproot your life to move across the country to St. Louis, Cleveland, or Lexington. I honestly think it would be a huge mistake that you will regret. Hastings would also be a disaster because it would cost you 6 figures in nondischargeable debt for horrible job prospects. It appears all these would actually be 100k+ in debt, which is not going to be a good time.

arturobelano
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Re: SLU vs. Case Western

Postby arturobelano » Tue Mar 31, 2015 6:59 pm

PhantomBMAN wrote:They're family related. In general, I basically need to be in law school this upcoming fall or I end up dealing with that "bomb strapped to my chest" blowing up in my face. I just can't afford to take an additional year off deferring admission at this point. Believe me I know full well the cost/benefit of going to a school with the options I have now vs. spending more time preparing and retaking/reapplying to schools. It's not a decision I had to come to lightly.


There is an infiniteismal probability that you exit law school in a better situation than you are now. The worst two situations I can think of are that a) your family is pissed that you got a psych degree and will not support you if you elect to avoid an "employable" degree for another year, and/or b) you already have a ton of student loans and they will only help you with these if you are continuing school in some form. You need to impress on your family that you will emerge MORE fucked if you attend either of the schools. You will, in all likelihood, emerge from either of these two schools underemployed or unemployed with significantly more student debt than you have right now. You will be worse off. It would be a wiser decision for you to apply for public sector housing, go on food stamps, and work a minimum wage job for a year than it would be for someone with these options and your background to go to law school. There are also TONS of programs like Americorps that hire college graduates (which you are) for shit money all across the states, so it's not like you're completely without options - but the ones that you have on the table aren't viable options. I'm dead serious.

Nomo
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Re: SLU vs. Case Western

Postby Nomo » Tue Mar 31, 2015 7:50 pm

You're talking about spending a bunch of money to go to a school in the midwest with the hope of going to California to practice healthcare law. This is a really bad idea.

If you have to get away from your family or something that's fine. But there are other ways. As someone else mentioned, why not join Americorps? Or wait tables somewhere? Or do anything other than law school.

allamerican73
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Re: SLU vs. Case Western

Postby allamerican73 » Wed Apr 01, 2015 11:34 am

PhantomBMAN wrote:Again, I've considered it, but it's just not a possibility for now. I'm hoping that W&L take me off their waitlist too (but if Hastings somehow accepts me, I'll most likely go there regardless).

I know where you guys are coming from, believe me. But I prefer to focus the discussion on the cost/benefits of attending SLU vs Case for someone intending to go into Health Law.


Do NOT go to SLU if you do not desire to live and work in St. Louis for many years after graduation. Similarly, do NOT go to Case if you do not desire to live in work in Cleveland for many years after graduation. These law schools are not Regional, they are City-specific. They are NOT portable to California (or even to other areas of the Midwest). Neither is W&L.

As other posters have stated, you may want to reconsider law school as a career option.

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rion91
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Re: SLU vs. Case Western

Postby rion91 » Wed Apr 01, 2015 11:49 am

allamerican73 wrote:Do NOT go to SLU if you do not desire to live and work in St. Louis for many many many many many many years after graduation.

ftfy


If you are ABSOLUTELY set on California, go to Hastings. We can't stop you, but that is your best chance at sticker.

Jay2716
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Re: SLU vs. Case Western

Postby Jay2716 » Wed Apr 01, 2015 12:29 pm

People from CA on law review at WUSTL can have a hard time landing work in CA. And many of those who do get back have one offer., so they can't be picky about practice group or area. You are picky about both (being health car law or bust makes you less employable, not more).

There is no way going to SLU (or Case Western) with California as the goal is a good idea.

Feel free to PM me if you want more specific anecdotes.

PhantomBMAN
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Re: SLU vs. Case Western

Postby PhantomBMAN » Wed Apr 01, 2015 4:02 pm

I've spoken with a few current health law students and healthcare lawyers working from public-BigLaw employment. The overall consensus appears to be that getting the JD/MHA that I planned on getting from SLU (or hell maybe even W&L if I get off their waitlist), working several years in the city, and then looking at my options in California is a reasonable course of action. Especially since I may actually end up loving St. Louis (or other city) for whatever reason and not wanting to move back to Cali.

The tone from a lot of responses here is rather grim; I can understand why from a certain perspective, but then it makes me wonder what the tone would be to someone going to GGU or USF and wanting to break into the Bay Area legal community. Even with full tuition, their debt would still be high due to cost of living and such.

As for most healthcare positions being BigLaw - that depends on what aspect of healthcare law I end up practicing, and to some extent what externships I end up taking part in. With 1200+ healthcare law alumni from SLU (if I do end up going there) to tap into, a good portion of which work in St. Louis and some working in the California cities, I wouldn't be quick to dismiss my chances of getting some sort of employment out of law school.

Getting a 90k+ paycheck will take a good amount of time though, and I'm fine with that.

BigZuck
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Re: SLU vs. Case Western

Postby BigZuck » Wed Apr 01, 2015 4:21 pm

Curious as to where the 1200+ health law alumni thing comes from. I'm a bit skeptical about that number.

I don't think asking current students is necessarily going to be all that helpful, especially if the school put them in front of you. Ditto boomer lawyers. Freshly minted grads from the school might be a decent source though.

People here would tell Golden Gate or USF students to run away screaming from those schools. Those are two of the very worst law schools in this country and should be shut down immediately.

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Fiero85
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Re: SLU vs. Case Western

Postby Fiero85 » Wed Apr 01, 2015 4:33 pm

PhantomBMAN wrote:Hi there everybody!

I've been reading these forums for a while but recently decided to make an account...

While I'm fairly sure I could get a 160+ if I had more time and opportunity to study for it...

I realize specialty rankings mean little...

(is leaning towards choosing SLU for 90-100k anyway)

So I wanted to hear your thoughts on whether my reasoning makes sense, or if I'm missing something...



It's like you know better but still are gonna take a huge career risk rather than sack up and retake the LSAT...

As an STL native, who is not a boomer or otherwise out of touch with the current job market like your survey members may be, I can assure you that going to SLU with your intentions at that price is a bad idea.

Hell, I'd be way more supportive if you were considering SLU for free, but even that isn't that great.

Read this (again and again, even if you already have), because you clearly missed the point:

http://www.lstscorereports.com/schools/slu/

If you still make this bad choice at least we warned you in good conscience. And before you call me a "hater" or whatever, I am a SLU undergrad alum and generally like SLU a lot. I just know how crappy the information and social pressures before law school can be, so I try to speak up on here when people are considering getting themselves stuck in an unnecessarily risky situation with real chances of very shitty outcomes. Just think about it some more, OP. At a minimum, do yourself a favor and earn a full scholarship to go there (a reasonable if not easy goal to be honest).

Sincerely, good luck.

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Clyde Frog
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Re: SLU vs. Case Western

Postby Clyde Frog » Wed Apr 01, 2015 4:35 pm

At Case your best possible outcome is finishing at the top of your class and with a lot of luck getting a job at Baker & Hostetler, which probably wont happen.



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JohannDeMann
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Re: SLU vs. Case Western

Postby JohannDeMann » Wed Apr 01, 2015 4:37 pm

Sounds like you prefer SLU - you should prolly go there.

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UOI4430
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Re: SLU vs. Case Western

Postby UOI4430 » Wed Apr 01, 2015 4:49 pm

Clyde Frog wrote:At Case your best possible outcome is finishing at the top of your class and with a lot of luck getting a job at Baker & Hostetler, which probably wont happen.




+1 "At least we're not Detroit"




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