Help me choose; BC worth it over Northeastern et al.?

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lawof11

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Help me choose; BC worth it over Northeastern et al.?

Postby lawof11 » Wed Mar 22, 2017 4:33 pm

-The schools you are considering

Boston College vs. Northeastern vs. (to a lesser extent) Wake Forest, Illinois, Minnesota

-The total Cost of Attendance (COA) of each. COA = cost of tuition + fees + books + cost of living (COL) + accumulated interest - scholarships. Here is a helpful calculator.

Boston College ($60,000 scholarship) - $157,662
Northeastern ($96,000 scholarship) - $112,224
U of I ($120,000 scholarship) - $82,573
Wake ($112,500 scholarship) - $92,007
Minnesota ($66,000 scholarship) - $146,635
BU (waitlisted currently)


-How you will be financing your COA, i.e. loans, family, or savings


Partially by loan (depending on interest rates), but the majority is going to come from a unexpected inheritance I received, ~$190,000. (Believe me, I'm not privileged, this only came following the death of my father).

Having said that, since I can pay a lot of my expenses out of pocket, I am fortunate to be able to reduce risk and minimize a situation where I ended up with “significantly life impacting debt.” However, seeing all that money disappear for my education is also tough, and there is a significant opportunity cost from taking away my ability to benefit from having that money invested. I am wondering if the difference between BC and NE in career outcomes, given my situation, justifies the price differential. I also have $60,000 in undergrad debt. So technically, that $190,000 would be a net $130,000.

-Where you are from and where you want to work, and other places where you have significant ties (if any)

From Rochester (Western), NY and I have always dreamed of living and working in Boston. That's the goal. I have ties to the Boston area as well. Theoretically I would consider going to school and working elsewhere if I would be idiotic for passing up the other offers from U of I, or Wake. I know I would in all likelihood not end up in Boston. Minnesota is pretty much out--doesn't seem worth it for the cost at all.

-Your general career goals

BigLaw would be the nice for a few years, I suppose, but I'm not a "BigLaw or Bust" type at all either. I feel like my decision is mostly coming down between BC and NE. I guess I want career freedom, but within the city of Boston. I don't mind Mid-Firm (70-80k salary). I honestly would love to do some kind of tort or product liability litigation. But again, I am not completely decided yet.

Since I am pretty sure I want to be in Boston, so just wondering if BC is worth the COA price tag I face. Northeastern is a little bit of a strange apple because of its no grades thing, but it’s a respected school in the area. I wouldn’t want to be earning $50,000 a year with a degree from there, but with a lessened debt burden, I also wouldn’t be pressurized to get a job earning $130,000++. I’ve looked and scowered and almost all the information that’s publicly available, and will chew on it some more. But I am just wondering if I could get some feedback from the community.

I'm 26 years old and will be 27 in October.

-Your LSAT/GPA numbers
- 164 / 3.10

-How many times you have taken the LSAT - 3x

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Dr. Nefario

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Re: Help me choose; BC worth it over Northeastern et al.?

Postby Dr. Nefario » Wed Mar 22, 2017 4:45 pm

Based your goal of being in Boston, the only decision you should be making in between BC and NE. Therein is the tricky part. If you truly are comfortable with taking on the debt or using your inheritance for school, then NE should not be a consideration. A six figure tag for a school with roughly a 60% employment rate is awful. Not to mention the BigLaw percentage in the single digits.

For most people BC at 150K would be an automatic no as well, but I would say that if law is truly what you want, BC will give you the best options. Their Biglaw score is good enough that you will have a shot, but it will still take reaching approximately the top 1/3 of the class after 1L. Most people here will admit that 150K for only 1/3 a shot at Biglaw is a risky play, but I'd say take out the loans, save your inheritance and if you get biglaw, you can pay back those loans with your inheritance.

ETA: probably not a hugely popular opinion, but I'm not as risk-averse as most.

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trebekismyhero

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Re: Help me choose; BC worth it over Northeastern et al.?

Postby trebekismyhero » Wed Mar 22, 2017 4:46 pm

BC and Illinois are the only two where big law is even a decent chance, so I guess good thing you're not "big law or bust."

Illinois and Wake are the only two that are close to making financial sense. That is too much money for BC since you're not likely to get big law from there. From Northeastern you will almost certainly end up making $50k a year so that is too much for it.

If you really want to be in Boston, get a job there, work for a year or two and then retake the LSAT

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lawof11

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Re: Help me choose; BC worth it over Northeastern et al.?

Postby lawof11 » Wed Mar 22, 2017 6:31 pm

trebekismyhero wrote:BC and Illinois are the only two where big law is even a decent chance, so I guess good thing you're not "big law or bust."

Illinois and Wake are the only two that are close to making financial sense. That is too much money for BC since you're not likely to get big law from there. From Northeastern you will almost certainly end up making $50k a year so that is too much for it.

If you really want to be in Boston, get a job there, work for a year or two and then retake the LSAT


Alrighty, this seems a little needlessly condescending, but thanks.

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lawof11

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Re: Help me choose; BC worth it over Northeastern et al.?

Postby lawof11 » Wed Mar 22, 2017 6:31 pm

Dr. Nefario wrote:Based your goal of being in Boston, the only decision you should be making in between BC and NE. Therein is the tricky part. If you truly are comfortable with taking on the debt or using your inheritance for school, then NE should not be a consideration. A six figure tag for a school with roughly a 60% employment rate is awful. Not to mention the BigLaw percentage in the single digits.

For most people BC at 150K would be an automatic no as well, but I would say that if law is truly what you want, BC will give you the best options. Their Biglaw score is good enough that you will have a shot, but it will still take reaching approximately the top 1/3 of the class after 1L. Most people here will admit that 150K for only 1/3 a shot at Biglaw is a risky play, but I'd say take out the loans, save your inheritance and if you get biglaw, you can pay back those loans with your inheritance.

ETA: probably not a hugely popular opinion, but I'm not as risk-averse as most.


Fair enough, thanks.

Lawschool305

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Re: Help me choose; BC worth it over Northeastern et al.?

Postby Lawschool305 » Wed Mar 22, 2017 6:43 pm

Personally I would not attend for these options, but if you are set on going to law school this year and Boston is the goal I think BC would be a no brainer over Northeastern if the difference is 45k. The extra job opportunities and BC alumni network is worth the monetary difference if a retake is not an option.



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