Wash U vs. Texas

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

Which school?

Wash U
2
10%
Texas
18
90%
 
Total votes: 20

johnsont4
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Wash U vs. Texas

Postby johnsont4 » Tue Jun 23, 2015 1:46 pm

-Wash U vs. University of Texas

-Tuition: Wash U - $32K TOTAL , Texas - $66K TOTAL
-Financing through: The military, scholarships, loans
-Where you are from/where you want to work: From Colorado, lived in Boston for the last three years / in the military so location doesn't matter
-General career goals: JAG (intern over the summers, accepted and signed on for full time when I graduate for min of 4 years)
-LSAT/GPA numbers: 167/3.1
-How many times taken the LSAT: 1

I guess at this point it is about lamer things like the city and school culture to me, and how much $34k should matter. I am committed to the military for four years after graduation, and it pays enough that I am not overly panicked about the debt situation. It's probably dumb to ask other people under these circumstances but because of the circumstances I don't really know how to do decide other than the money.

I visited Wash U and really like the campus, but I have not visited Texas (found out I got in today off the waitlist). I seem to hear really awesome things about Austin, and because I will only have a partial say in where I live after school I wonder if I should take that into consideration more. Any thoughts on superficial differences or all the things I could buy with the $34K difference would be great.

The base salary I will have the year following graduation will be $77K, with a nontaxable housing allowance added depending on where I live (for example, Boston would be $37K per year for a single person vs. Oklahoma would be $19K per year for a single person), which does not have to be used exclusively for housing.

Thanks!
Last edited by johnsont4 on Tue Jun 23, 2015 2:16 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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RareExports
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Re: Wash U vs. Texas

Postby RareExports » Tue Jun 23, 2015 1:51 pm

I don't think Texas is worth 34k more per year than Wash U, but I also don't think Wash U (or UT) for that matter would give you a very strong chance at JAG (though admittedly I don't know much about JAG). 96k plus interest is a lot to pay for Wash U. With a 3.1, I'm not sure how much good retaking would do either (likely just get you into some lower T14s at sticker), although if you can score 170+ you're looking at a lot more money at Wash U.

Are you okay being 110k or so in debt with a non-JAG job that pays 50k a year? If so, Wash U. If not, I would retake or not pick either.

Traynor Brah
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Re: Wash U vs. Texas

Postby Traynor Brah » Tue Jun 23, 2015 1:55 pm

I don't think there is any question that UT is worth 35K more than WUSTL. Its boost in placement power and quality of life during law school is well worth the difference, in my opinion.

Oh. I read that to be total cost of attendance, not tuition. Neither is worth that much, but if you're going to go--which I would not advise--UT is the better choice.
Last edited by Traynor Brah on Tue Jun 23, 2015 1:57 pm, edited 1 time in total.

johnsont4
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Re: Wash U vs. Texas

Postby johnsont4 » Tue Jun 23, 2015 1:56 pm

Sorry if I wasn't clear, I am already accepted into JAG and have signed a minimum four year commitment with them following graduation (at which point it will be up to me to extend or not unless something terrible happens)

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Clemenceau
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Re: Wash U vs. Texas

Postby Clemenceau » Tue Jun 23, 2015 1:56 pm

RareExports wrote:I don't think Texas is worth 34k more per year than Wash U, but I also don't think Wash U (or UT) for that matter would give you a very strong chance at JAG (though admittedly I don't know much about JAG). 96k plus interest is a lot to pay for Wash U. With a 3.1, I'm not sure how much good retaking would do either (likely just get you into some lower T14s at sticker), although if you can score 170+ you're looking at a lot more money at Wash U.

Are you okay being 110k or so in debt with a non-JAG job that pays 50k a year? If so, Wash U. If not, I would retake or not pick either.


Wait, are those figures per year? I think he meant total over three years, I hope.

abl
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Re: Wash U vs. Texas

Postby abl » Tue Jun 23, 2015 1:58 pm

What's your total cost of attendance for each? As in, how much debt will you specifically have to take out and repay for Wash U vs Texas?

And what are you looking to get out of the school? Like, what do you want to do post-JAG? Or do you want to do JAG your whole life potentially? The prestige difference between WashU and Texas isn't enormous and given that you already have your job for the four years post-graduation lined up (after which point, the difference between WashU and Texas will be a relatively minor factor in whatever jobs you seek), I don't see any reason not to save yourself some money and attend WashU.

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AreJay711
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Re: Wash U vs. Texas

Postby AreJay711 » Tue Jun 23, 2015 2:01 pm

I would pay $10k more a year to be in Austin, but as you say, it's hard to say whether you would be willing to do the same and I don't know anything about UT. I do think liking where you go to school is way underrated on these boards. With PAYE and the public service forgiveness in 10 years, the money difference might not turn out to be that big.

abl
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Re: Wash U vs. Texas

Postby abl » Tue Jun 23, 2015 2:05 pm

abl wrote:What's your total cost of attendance for each? As in, how much debt will you specifically have to take out and repay for Wash U vs Texas?

And what are you looking to get out of the school? Like, what do you want to do post-JAG? Or do you want to do JAG your whole life potentially? The prestige difference between WashU and Texas isn't enormous and given that you already have your job for the four years post-graduation lined up (after which point, the difference between WashU and Texas will be a relatively minor factor in whatever jobs you seek), I don't see any reason not to save yourself some money and attend WashU.


Also, how much do JAG positions pay? This is relevant for understanding whether or how loan repayment programs might come into play for you (and what the marginal value of an additional $[x] in debt saved might be).

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RareExports
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Re: Wash U vs. Texas

Postby RareExports » Tue Jun 23, 2015 2:07 pm

I was just assuming UT tuition + cost of living expenses for 3 years off of the waitlist is not 66k. If the total difference is only 34k then I'd say probably UT.

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trebekismyhero
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Re: Wash U vs. Texas

Postby trebekismyhero » Tue Jun 23, 2015 2:43 pm

RareExports wrote:I was just assuming UT tuition + cost of living expenses for 3 years off of the waitlist is not 66k. If the total difference is only 34k then I'd say probably UT.


He's military though so GI bill covers most of his expenses I assume. At 34k I would rather live in Austin than St. Louis personally.

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chuckbass
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Re: Wash U vs. Texas

Postby chuckbass » Tue Jun 23, 2015 3:04 pm

WUSTL is great but STL and Missourah are shitholes and I'd totally spend the extra money to spend 3 years in Austin.

Also congrats on being so set up, that will make law school infinitely more enjoyable.

FirmBiz
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Re: Wash U vs. Texas

Postby FirmBiz » Tue Jun 23, 2015 3:17 pm

UT and when you get out of school you will have less tax money taken out of your check

abl
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Re: Wash U vs. Texas

Postby abl » Tue Jun 23, 2015 3:31 pm

scottidsntknow wrote:WUSTL is great but STL and Missourah are shitholes and I'd totally spend the extra money to spend 3 years in Austin.

Also congrats on being so set up, that will make law school infinitely more enjoyable.


Eh, I prefer STL to Austin and Missouri / Texas are a wash. It's going to be a matter of personal preference -- both places have a fair amount to offer. It's not like the OP is deciding between SF and Newark.

I do agree that location preference doesn't get talked about enough on TLS. Where you go to law school can make a fairly big impact on your happiness. (which not only has inherent value--duh--but will likely impact how well you'll do in law school).

cbro
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Re: Wash U vs. Texas

Postby cbro » Tue Jun 23, 2015 3:40 pm

I'm a 0L who will be attending WUSTL and I am also interested in JAG. If you would like to PM me for more information feel free. If you choose WUSTL we could be seeing a lot of each other.

cbro
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Re: Wash U vs. Texas

Postby cbro » Tue Jun 23, 2015 3:45 pm

Having said that, does your prior military experience factor into the 77K/yr right out of school you mentioned in the opening post? As far as my understanding goes basic pay for JAG is substantially less (~60K) right after graduation, not including the housing/food allowances

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usn26
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Re: Wash U vs. Texas

Postby usn26 » Tue Jun 23, 2015 3:49 pm

Are you on an excess leave thing or a funded program? And have you already established residency in a state without income taxes?

The money is a big difference, but it's really not all that much in the grand scheme, and even more manageable if you're still drawing a salary and/or could pick up tax benefits (that could save you money for the rest of your military career). Personally, I wouldn't drop that kind of money for a slight upgrade, but if you had strong feelings about TX I don't see anything wrong with that either. I can see the appeal of spending 3 years in Austin, picking up the tax benefits, and going to the big rah-rah school if that's your thing.

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usn26
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Re: Wash U vs. Texas

Postby usn26 » Tue Jun 23, 2015 3:52 pm

cbro wrote:Having said that, does your prior military experience factor into the 77K/yr right out of school you mentioned in the opening post? As far as my understanding goes basic pay for JAG is substantially less (~60K) right after graduation, not including the housing/food allowances


Wondered this as well. I'm assuming you're a prior O so you'll join the JAG as an O3 @4+ years in rather than an O2@0y.

abl
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Re: Wash U vs. Texas

Postby abl » Tue Jun 23, 2015 4:00 pm

usn26 wrote:Are you on an excess leave thing or a funded program? And have you already established residency in a state without income taxes?

The money is a big difference, but it's really not all that much in the grand scheme, and even more manageable if you're still drawing a salary and/or could pick up tax benefits (that could save you money for the rest of your military career). Personally, I wouldn't drop that kind of money for a slight upgrade, but if you had strong feelings about TX I don't see anything wrong with that either. I can see the appeal of spending 3 years in Austin, picking up the tax benefits, and going to the big rah-rah school if that's your thing.


Agreed. ~$30k is a real amount of money, but it's relatively negligible big picture. It's definitely small enough that if you fall in love with Austin/Texas, want to go to law school where it's warm, etc, I wouldn't let the money stop you from attending. Then again, I wouldn't just throw away that money on what is a pretty small difference in prestige.* UT and Wash U are in the essentially same tier of schools -- they are both excellent regional law schools with some national reach. UT is one of the better schools in this tier and WashU is probably one of the worse schools -- but comparing UT to WashU is kind of like comparing Chicago to NYU. And, in fact, because WashU and TX are predominantly regional and in different regions, unlike Chicago and NYU, you'll virtually never be compared to folks from the one school if you go to the other. Either you'll end up applying for jobs in the region that the law school is located--in which case going to that law school is a big plus--or you'll apply for jobs elsewhere--in which case it's extraordinarily unlikely to matter which of the two you attended.

*If the OP had more standard goals, this evaluation might be different. But because the OP has a job lined up for at least the four years following law school, we're really just talking about the two schools' general prestige--ie, the placement power of folks from these schools four years out of law school.

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Mack.Hambleton
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Re: Wash U vs. Texas

Postby Mack.Hambleton » Tue Jun 23, 2015 7:08 pm

Austin is objectively better than St. Louis

Objectively

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chuckbass
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Re: Wash U vs. Texas

Postby chuckbass » Tue Jun 23, 2015 7:12 pm

Mack.Hambleton wrote:Austin is objectively better than St. Louis

Objectively

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TheSpanishMain
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Re: Wash U vs. Texas

Postby TheSpanishMain » Tue Jun 23, 2015 7:55 pm

cbro wrote:Having said that, does your prior military experience factor into the 77K/yr right out of school you mentioned in the opening post? As far as my understanding goes basic pay for JAG is substantially less (~60K) right after graduation, not including the housing/food allowances


Housing allowances (BAH) is a substantial part of your salary though. Usually around $1500-$2000 a month depending on the area.

OP, are you a FLEP? My understanding is that with the FLEP you can't spend any of your own money on tuition.

90LawSchool
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Re: Wash U vs. Texas

Postby 90LawSchool » Tue Jun 23, 2015 7:56 pm

Recent Texas law grad here. In my opinion (and talking to people who were at Wash U), Texas is clearly the way to go. Better national placement, better regional job market, better location during the three years in law school. Of course I am a bit biased but Texas is a phenomenal regional school with decent national placement. Wash U is a good regional school without the national presence (or access to large job markets in Houston, Dallas, Austin, San Antonio).

Just my .02. If you have specific questions about Texas, just PM me.

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TheSpanishMain
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Re: Wash U vs. Texas

Postby TheSpanishMain » Tue Jun 23, 2015 8:29 pm

Also everyone entry level hiring isn't really a factor here, he's locked into/guaranteed JAG from either school

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MG95
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Re: Wash U vs. Texas

Postby MG95 » Wed Jun 24, 2015 4:30 pm

.
Last edited by MG95 on Mon Aug 17, 2015 4:52 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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chuckbass
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Re: Wash U vs. Texas

Postby chuckbass » Wed Jun 24, 2015 4:33 pm

M_n_M wrote:Texas and it isn't even close. My friends who graduated from Wash U have complained about job prospects since I was a 1L, and I doubt it has improved much since then. UT people kill it in Texas, and I'm sure you could get into JAG if you stayed top 50% of your class.

Again with people not seeing that OP has guaranteed employment...




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