Duke $$ vs. Mich $$ vs. NU $$$ vs. UT $$$ (NYU/Berk?)

(Rankings, Profiles, Tuition, Student Life, . . . )

Which school?

Duke- COA: $50,000
9
26%
Michigan- COA: $15,000
4
12%
Northwestern- COA: $0
17
50%
UT- COA: $0
4
12%
 
Total votes: 34

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Mavs592
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Duke $$ vs. Mich $$ vs. NU $$$ vs. UT $$$ (NYU/Berk?)

Postby Mavs592 » Tue Apr 21, 2015 10:54 pm

Edited
Last edited by Mavs592 on Thu Jun 11, 2015 2:52 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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ILoveYou
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Re: Duke $$ vs. Mich $$ vs. NU $$$ vs. UT $$$ (NYU/Berk?)

Postby ILoveYou » Tue Apr 21, 2015 11:13 pm

My instinct on this is take NU for free, but if the $50k is an interest free loan from your parents, and they aren't going to miss the money, Duke may be too attractive to pass up, especially if you're fine with the prospect of doing biglaw for a few years. Since you're geographically flexible and pretty into Texas/the South, I think your options coming out of Duke are going to be significantly better/more varied than either Mich or NU. Tough choice.

If you wanna talk a little more about goals, I (and others) might be able to help you more. What type of PI are you interested in?

I think you're safe writing off Berk and NYU with your current options. Neither is likely to offer you enough money to make passing up one of these worth it. Congrats on a great cycle.


E: Somehow I totally overlooked the fully at UT, which since you're interested in Texas seems pretty attractive, but I still see Duke as worth $50k more, especially if it's interest free.

BigZuck
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Re: Duke $$ vs. Mich $$ vs. NU $$$ vs. UT $$$ (NYU/Berk?)

Postby BigZuck » Tue Apr 21, 2015 11:27 pm

I'd take Duke for 50K more than UT unless you really, really wanted to be a prosecutor in a rural TX county or something.

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cannibal ox
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Re: Duke $$ vs. Mich $$ vs. NU $$$ vs. UT $$$ (NYU/Berk?)

Postby cannibal ox » Tue Apr 21, 2015 11:43 pm

How strong are your Texas ties (grew up in Texas vs once visited your grandma in Texas)? I'd take the non UT options here, and I'm a UT student.

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BiglawAssociate
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Re: Duke $$ vs. Mich $$ vs. NU $$$ vs. UT $$$ (NYU/Berk?)

Postby BiglawAssociate » Wed Apr 22, 2015 12:02 am

I'd do NU for free......PI is mainly about networking/connections and being able to volunteer for free post-graduation to get a paid job

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Mavs592
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Re: Duke $$ vs. Mich $$ vs. NU $$$ vs. UT $$$ (NYU/Berk?)

Postby Mavs592 » Wed Apr 22, 2015 9:53 am

ILoveYou, I'm interested in working with juveniles/minors, not sure in what type of capacity yet.

Cannibal ox, I did my undergrad in Texas and have some family/friends still there.

Does NU have decent placement in Texas or is Duke the obvious choice for that?

BigZuck
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Re: Duke $$ vs. Mich $$ vs. NU $$$ vs. UT $$$ (NYU/Berk?)

Postby BigZuck » Wed Apr 22, 2015 9:58 am

General sense I get is southern t14s are somewhat better for TX, but a lot of that could be self-selection.

Honestly I'm kinda leaning UT if you really want PI

If you want big law do a T14

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moejoe193
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Re: Duke $$ vs. Mich $$ vs. NU $$$ vs. UT $$$ (NYU/Berk?)

Postby moejoe193 » Wed Apr 22, 2015 10:00 am

All of these are really good options, and you wouldn't go wrong with choosing any of them.

My personal ranking: NU>Duke>UT>Michigan

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ymmv
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Re: Duke $$ vs. Mich $$ vs. NU $$$ vs. UT $$$ (NYU/Berk?)

Postby ymmv » Wed Apr 22, 2015 10:01 am

Mavs592 wrote:ILoveYou, I'm interested in working with juveniles/minors, not sure in what type of capacity yet.

Cannibal ox, I did my undergrad in Texas and have some family/friends still there.

Does NU have decent placement in Texas or is Duke the obvious choice for that?


Very hard to say in either case since most students at these schools do not target Texas. Conventional wisdom with the T14 is that ties, mailing, and hustling are much more important for secondary market placement than perceived proximity. But ties generally have to be pretty strong to have a decent shot - either "I am from here" or "my spouse works here" level of ties, not "I have a lot of friends from Texas."

CanadianWolf
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Re: Duke $$ vs. Mich $$ vs. NU $$$ vs. UT $$$ (NYU/Berk?)

Postby CanadianWolf » Wed Apr 22, 2015 10:13 am

Since you want to live & work in Texas after law school, all four options seem reasonable.

This may just come down to personal preference. If you attend Texas & want public interest work, you should be able to get involved with a clinic &/or volunteering while in law school to explore, get experience & to establish connections. Certainly Northwestern is a great option at zero cost. Duke at $50,000 should be a sound investment; Michigan as well.

It may simply come down to personal preference. Where do you want to spend the next four years?
Last edited by CanadianWolf on Wed Apr 22, 2015 10:37 am, edited 1 time in total.

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AreJay711
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Re: Duke $$ vs. Mich $$ vs. NU $$$ vs. UT $$$ (NYU/Berk?)

Postby AreJay711 » Wed Apr 22, 2015 10:15 am

Mavs592 wrote:I want to go into public interest, but I know many people go into big law after law school, and I am not opposed to this.


You're probably going to do biglaw. Every single person I know who was up in the air about it went biglaw (or midlaw in tertiary market). Even the super-shitlib-near-marxists. So any public interest connection at Michigan generally or UT in Texas shouldn't influence your decision. Northwestern is the right choice.

I did an SA at one of the big three Texas firms. We had a people come from all over. I actually had no ties to Texas other than the ones I built my 1L summer and got the gig (from Michigan). So, don't consider Duke just because it's in the South. When your interviewers ask why you chose NU, just tell them it was the best school you could go to for free and they'll understand.

Mavs592 wrote:3.8ish/ 170ish


I should have waited a few years for law school :(

FloridaCoastalorbust
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Re: Duke $$ vs. Mich $$ vs. NU $$$ vs. UT $$$ (NYU/Berk?)

Postby FloridaCoastalorbust » Wed Apr 22, 2015 10:17 am

You've got really good options and a tough decision.

I'd put UT last, because you have ties there and its lower employment figures.

Given the limited information I would probably take Duke. 50k should be pretty easy to pay back. I believe it is better than UM/NU, which for me are tied for second place, because a) better employment figures (biglaw is slightly better than UM/NU, and just behind PI than UM) and b) it can get you back to TX easier if you're below median than if you were at NU/UM

I think the only poor decision would be UT. The other three are basically the same.

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ILoveYou
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Re: Duke $$ vs. Mich $$ vs. NU $$$ vs. UT $$$ (NYU/Berk?)

Postby ILoveYou » Wed Apr 22, 2015 11:56 am

Mavs592 wrote:ILoveYou, I'm interested in working with juveniles/minors, not sure in what type of capacity yet.

Cannibal ox, I did my undergrad in Texas and have some family/friends still there.

Does NU have decent placement in Texas or is Duke the obvious choice for that?



I'm going to get firmly behind NU here since it's free. NU actually has some pretty cool clinical opportunities you would probably be interested in. They've got the Center for Wrongful Conviction of Youth which seems most up your alley, but several other PI options that would likely be a good fit, including a Children and Family Justice Center (which I admittedly know next to nothing about). NU can definitely place you into Texas with decent ties, and since it's free, it really sounds like your best bet. Still couldn't argue with Duke at that price tag, though.

BigZuck
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Re: Duke $$ vs. Mich $$ vs. NU $$$ vs. UT $$$ (NYU/Berk?)

Postby BigZuck » Wed Apr 22, 2015 12:17 pm

The OP's ties are weaker than I thought.

I think what AJ is saying is sensible, but I think his characterization of how easy it is to sell TX ties is overstated. Not saying he's lying or anything, that probably is how it worked out for him. But it contrasts with my own experience.

That being said, anecdotes gonna anecdote.

I think if the OP is set on PI in TX, UT is the easy choice. But, I also agree with AJ in that the OP probably isn't going to do PI. The OP will be big law gunning like all the other big law gunning drones. So, that removes UT from consideration because there are much better schools for big law goals at the same price.

I think NU is the obvious choice for big law here, although the debt level is so low at each that if you REALLY have a strong preference for one of the other two, you could take it and not feel too bad.

The too long; didn't read of it all is this:

PI in TX? Definitely UT

But you probably won't do PI, you'll do big law. So, go to NU unless you really prefer one of the other schools for some reason.

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Mavs592
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Re: Duke $$ vs. Mich $$ vs. NU $$$ vs. UT $$$ (NYU/Berk?)

Postby Mavs592 » Wed Apr 22, 2015 2:12 pm

Thanks for the opinions, everyone!

I figured that doing undergrad in a major TX city and having family still there was good enough ties, but I guess it's not as good as having lived there for a longer, more extended period of time, having a SO there, etc. :shock:

It's not 100% necessary that I end up there, though.

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BVest
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Re: Duke $$ vs. Mich $$ vs. NU $$$ vs. UT $$$ (NYU/Berk?)

Postby BVest » Wed Apr 22, 2015 4:05 pm

BigZuck wrote:PI in TX? Definitely UT


This. If you're truly set on doing PI in Texas, UT is the best option, even with the NU full ride.

State/Local PI, unlike firm hiring, is heavily focused on networking, and the Texas PI community is very tight-knit. If you want to do PI in Texas, you need to be in Texas for law school, doing internships and clinics, doing pro bono hours, going to local conferences, and getting to know the clinical faculty (who come out of the various local/statewide PI organizations, often having worked at more than one of them).

[Spouse of longtime PI attorney]


ETA: As far as ties go, they're not everything and many employers are analyzing your ties to assure themselves that they're not investing in your first year or two out (your least productive years) only to have you head home to be closer to family or otherwise move along. I know plenty of people in the Texas PI community whose only ties were a Texas law school. Having attended undergrad here (especially if you have a reason that you chose Texas, such as your family ties) followed by LS would be sufficient enough for most employers.

jess1234
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Re: Duke $$ vs. Mich $$ vs. NU $$$ vs. UT $$$ (NYU/Berk?)

Postby jess1234 » Fri Apr 24, 2015 11:51 am

They all sound like good choices to me. I might lean towards NW. I don't know if Duke is worth 50k more... have you visited any?

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Mavs592
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Re: Duke $$ vs. Mich $$ vs. NU $$$ vs. UT $$$ (NYU/Berk?)

Postby Mavs592 » Sat Apr 25, 2015 4:33 pm

Nope, I haven't visited any, unfortunately.

And I'm leaning Northwestern too but still weighing my options in these next few days :shock:




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