Northwestern vs. Cornell?

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

where to go?

Northwestern $75,000 scholly
14
27%
Cornell $90,000 scholly
38
73%
 
Total votes: 52

symphonyy

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Northwestern vs. Cornell?

Postby symphonyy » Wed Apr 12, 2017 12:05 am

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Last edited by symphonyy on Fri Apr 21, 2017 10:01 pm, edited 4 times in total.

eminentdomain

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Re: Northwestern vs. Cornell?

Postby eminentdomain » Wed Apr 12, 2017 12:25 am

There is virtually no difference between NU and Cornell with respect to prestige/ranking.

Your options will not be limited to Chicago if you go to NU. NU sends a lot of grads to NYC each year and if you have the grades, you won't have trouble looking for jobs in other states.

Prior work experiences do help in hiring but your law school grades are the most important.

Is your goal Chicago Biglaw? If so, then NU>>>Cornell.
Given the fact that you are an international student though, it will be hard for you to get Chicago Biglaw and NYC will be your best bet. Cornell > NU in NYC and in that case NU is probably not worth 15k more IMO.

symphonyy

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Re: Northwestern vs. Cornell?

Postby symphonyy » Wed Apr 12, 2017 12:29 am

eminentdomain wrote:
Is your goal Chicago Biglaw? If so, then NU>>>Cornell.
Given the fact that you are an international student though, it will be hard for you to get Chicago Biglaw and NYC will be your best bet. Cornell > NU in NYC and in that case NU is probably not worth 15k more IMO.


Thank you for the reply!My goal is just Biglaw wherever. Why is it hard for an international student to get Chicago Biglaw?

eminentdomain

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Re: Northwestern vs. Cornell?

Postby eminentdomain » Wed Apr 12, 2017 12:34 am

symphonyy wrote:
eminentdomain wrote:
Is your goal Chicago Biglaw? If so, then NU>>>Cornell.
Given the fact that you are an international student though, it will be hard for you to get Chicago Biglaw and NYC will be your best bet. Cornell > NU in NYC and in that case NU is probably not worth 15k more IMO.


My goal is just Biglaw wherever. Why is it hard for an international student to get Chicago Biglaw?


Chicago firms care about ties and tend to be more conservative. With good grades you could get Chicago Biglaw but it's just a lot harder than NYC.

By the way, if you have the grades for Chicago Biglaw though, you probably won't have any trouble finding a job in NYC. NU's placement is decent in NYC and Chicago is a lot more fun than Ithaca IMO...

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tyrant_flycatcher

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Re: Northwestern vs. Cornell?

Postby tyrant_flycatcher » Wed Apr 12, 2017 12:40 am

eminentdomain wrote:There is virtually no difference between NU and Cornell with respect to prestige/ranking.


If OP does in fact look to return to his/her home country, this might not be the case.

eminentdomain

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Re: Northwestern vs. Cornell?

Postby eminentdomain » Wed Apr 12, 2017 12:42 am

tyrant_flycatcher wrote:
eminentdomain wrote:There is virtually no difference between NU and Cornell with respect to prestige/ranking.


If OP does in fact look to return to his/her home country, this might not be the case.


Yeah I missed that part. Go to the Ivy League school then. :D

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Re: Northwestern vs. Cornell?

Postby cheaptilts » Wed Apr 12, 2017 12:44 am

symphonyy wrote:
eminentdomain wrote:
Is your goal Chicago Biglaw? If so, then NU>>>Cornell.
Given the fact that you are an international student though, it will be hard for you to get Chicago Biglaw and NYC will be your best bet. Cornell > NU in NYC and in that case NU is probably not worth 15k more IMO.


Thank you for the reply!My goal is just Biglaw wherever. Why is it hard for an international student to get Chicago Biglaw?

As an international student, you'd almost certainly be relying on an H1-B visa to work in the United States. Biglaw firms are typically the only legal employers willing to incur the costs associated with hiring you. Thus, your aim should be to work at a biglaw firm (which you are correctly aiming for).

NYC has many more "biglaw" offices than Chicago. NY offices also extend more offers of employment than their Chi counterparts. Both of those facts should make you lean toward you targeting the NYC market. Cities like Chicago also tend to place at least some weight on a person's "ties" to the market. New York does not.

It's also true that non-NYC firms sometimes have policies that are less "H1-B friendly" than others. For example, some of the major D.C.- and Boston-headquartered biglaw firms refuse to (a) apply for the H1-B lottery on behalf of a student during the Spring of the student's 3L [basically denying the student a chance at "two bites" at the lottery apple"]; and (b) guarantee an opportunity to work at a foreign office in case the student strikes out from the lottery. Firms centered around the NY market often have much more experience with foreign workers and, in some cases, are more willing to work with them.

I would probably take Cornell here, but you wouldn't be foolish whatsoever to take NU. Also, "Ivy League" prestige is meaningless in the legal field.

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rpupkin

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Re: Northwestern vs. Cornell?

Postby rpupkin » Wed Apr 12, 2017 1:25 am

cheaptilts wrote:I would probably take Cornell here, but you wouldn't be foolish whatsoever to take NU. Also, "Ivy League" prestige is meaningless in the legal field.

Agree with all of this.

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Re: Northwestern vs. Cornell?

Postby symphonyy » Wed Apr 12, 2017 2:52 am

cheaptilts wrote:
symphonyy wrote:
eminentdomain wrote:
Is your goal Chicago Biglaw? If so, then NU>>>Cornell.
Given the fact that you are an international student though, it will be hard for you to get Chicago Biglaw and NYC will be your best bet. Cornell > NU in NYC and in that case NU is probably not worth 15k more IMO.


Thank you for the reply!My goal is just Biglaw wherever. Why is it hard for an international student to get Chicago Biglaw?

As an international student, you'd almost certainly be relying on an H1-B visa to work in the United States. Biglaw firms are typically the only legal employers willing to incur the costs associated with hiring you. Thus, your aim should be to work at a biglaw firm (which you are correctly aiming for).

NYC has many more "biglaw" offices than Chicago. NY offices also extend more offers of employment than their Chi counterparts. Both of those facts should make you lean toward you targeting the NYC market. Cities like Chicago also tend to place at least some weight on a person's "ties" to the market. New York does not.

It's also true that non-NYC firms sometimes have policies that are less "H1-B friendly" than others. For example, some of the major D.C.- and Boston-headquartered biglaw firms refuse to (a) apply for the H1-B lottery on behalf of a student during the Spring of the student's 3L [basically denying the student a chance at "two bites" at the lottery apple"]; and (b) guarantee an opportunity to work at a foreign office in case the student strikes out from the lottery. Firms centered around the NY market often have much more experience with foreign workers and, in some cases, are more willing to work with them.

I would probably take Cornell here, but you wouldn't be foolish whatsoever to take NU. Also, "Ivy League" prestige is meaningless in the legal field.


thank you for your input. it really helps a lot. one more question, if the scholarship amounts were the same, still Cornell? :(

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Lavitz

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Re: Northwestern vs. Cornell?

Postby Lavitz » Wed Apr 12, 2017 9:02 am

symphonyy wrote:What i like about Cornell: well its the Ivy League.. if it means anything. higher employment rate
Why i hesitate: NU is higher in ranking, pricey tuition, and im guessing most students will be younger than me so hard to socialize..?

Since nobody's addressed this yet, your concern with it being harder to socialize is unfounded. Your age won't be an issue unless you make it an issue. I started law school at Cornell at 25. Nobody cared. Even the people pushing 30 had no problems socializing. Besides, average starting age will be around 24.

Also, as others have said, the USNWR ranking is meaningless.

symphonyy

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Re: Northwestern vs. Cornell?

Postby symphonyy » Wed Apr 12, 2017 11:42 am

Lavitz wrote:
symphonyy wrote:What i like about Cornell: well its the Ivy League.. if it means anything. higher employment rate
Why i hesitate: NU is higher in ranking, pricey tuition, and im guessing most students will be younger than me so hard to socialize..?

Since nobody's addressed this yet, your concern with it being harder to socialize is unfounded. Your age won't be an issue unless you make it an issue. I started law school at Cornell at 25. Nobody cared. Even the people pushing 30 had no problems socializing. Besides, average starting age will be around 24.

Also, as others have said, the USNWR ranking is meaningless.


thanks for your input. are you happy with your choice at Cornell? i have talked to several NU alumni but none from Cornell, so i have a bit biased feelings about Cornell. Is it really a hell to live in Ithaca? and is it true that students at Cornell have nothing to do except to study really hard and contribute to competitive environment..?

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alpha kenny body

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Re: Northwestern vs. Cornell?

Postby alpha kenny body » Wed Apr 12, 2017 12:09 pm

symphonyy wrote:
Lavitz wrote:
symphonyy wrote:What i like about Cornell: well its the Ivy League.. if it means anything. higher employment rate
Why i hesitate: NU is higher in ranking, pricey tuition, and im guessing most students will be younger than me so hard to socialize..?

Since nobody's addressed this yet, your concern with it being harder to socialize is unfounded. Your age won't be an issue unless you make it an issue. I started law school at Cornell at 25. Nobody cared. Even the people pushing 30 had no problems socializing. Besides, average starting age will be around 24.

Also, as others have said, the USNWR ranking is meaningless.


thanks for your input. are you happy with your choice at Cornell? i have talked to several NU alumni but none from Cornell, so i have a bit biased feelings about Cornell. Is it really a hell to live in Ithaca? and is it true that students at Cornell have nothing to do except to study really hard and contribute to competitive environment..?

No and no

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Re: Northwestern vs. Cornell?

Postby Apsara » Wed Apr 12, 2017 12:24 pm

cheaptilts wrote:I would probably take Cornell here, but you wouldn't be foolish whatsoever to take NU. Also, "Ivy League" prestige is meaningless in the legal field.


I would have to disagree here given my own personal experience in finding employment during and after law school. The ivy name opened doors, and I was told so by those doing the hiring.

In addition, name recognition matters outside of the legal field. This is something every 0L should consider seeing that many attorneys don't stay at law firms or in the legal field for that matter.

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star fox

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Re: Northwestern vs. Cornell?

Postby star fox » Wed Apr 12, 2017 12:27 pm

fwiw, going to Northwestern is a "tie" to Chicago.

Things that are totally irrelevant
*Which one has the higher USNWR rank
*Which sport conference the University's sports teams compete in

If cost doesn't really matter, then I don't think this choice is not really that important.

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Lavitz

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Re: Northwestern vs. Cornell?

Postby Lavitz » Wed Apr 12, 2017 12:50 pm

symphonyy wrote:thanks for your input. are you happy with your choice at Cornell? i have talked to several NU alumni but none from Cornell, so i have a bit biased feelings about Cornell. Is it really a hell to live in Ithaca? and is it true that students at Cornell have nothing to do except to study really hard and contribute to competitive environment..?

To your first question: Yes. I have no regrets about choosing it over "higher-ranked" schools.

To your second question: Not really. The weather is the worst thing about it. The winter will be cold, and it rains / snows more than average. But I thought it was nice otherwise. Certainly wasn't hell.

To your third question: No. Most people do study hard, at least in 1L, but there's always time for fun. My social calendar was booked every weekend during the first half of each semester in 1L. I also wouldn't characterize the environment as competitive. If you freak out when you see people studying a lot, and try and out-study them, that's on you. There's no actual competitive behavior. Finally, this may be overkill, but here's a non-exhaustive list of things law students do in Ithaca other than study:
  • drinking at house parties, bar tabs, formal events, mixers, a beer pong tournament, etc.
  • wine tours
  • intramural soccer, volleyball, any other sport your classmates can get a team together for
  • there is a squash court in the law school
  • there is a bowling alley on North Campus
  • hiking, running, etc.
  • dragonboating on the lake
  • skiing
  • section potlucks
  • trivia nights
  • karaoke
  • horseback riding class, golf class, wines class
  • some law school version of this game
  • since you mentioned it, yes, there's a theater

symphonyy

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Re: Northwestern vs. Cornell?

Postby symphonyy » Wed Apr 12, 2017 1:11 pm

Lavitz wrote:
symphonyy wrote:thanks for your input. are you happy with your choice at Cornell? i have talked to several NU alumni but none from Cornell, so i have a bit biased feelings about Cornell. Is it really a hell to live in Ithaca? and is it true that students at Cornell have nothing to do except to study really hard and contribute to competitive environment..?

To your first question: Yes. I have no regrets about choosing it over "higher-ranked" schools.

To your second question: Not really. The weather is the worst thing about it. The winter will be cold, and it rains / snows more than average. But I thought it was nice otherwise. Certainly wasn't hell.

To your third question: No. Most people do study hard, at least in 1L, but there's always time for fun. My social calendar was booked every weekend during the first half of each semester in 1L. I also wouldn't characterize the environment as competitive. If you freak out when you see people studying a lot, and try and out-study them, that's on you. There's no actual competitive behavior. Finally, this may be overkill, but here's a non-exhaustive list of things law students do in Ithaca other than study:
  • drinking at house parties, bar tabs, formal events, mixers, a beer pong tournament, etc.
  • wine tours
  • intramural soccer, volleyball, any other sport your classmates can get a team together for
  • there is a squash court in the law school
  • there is a bowling alley on North Campus
  • hiking, running, etc.
  • dragonboating on the lake
  • skiing
  • section potlucks
  • trivia nights
  • karaoke
  • horseback riding class, golf class, wines class
  • some law school version of this game
  • since you mentioned it, yes, there's a theater


Whoa your reply definitely blew away all of the concerns I had. I guess I took in too much biased info and was weighing my options based on that.

I think I had already made up my mind and just wanted someone to confirm that my decision is right. And the poll so far seems to indicate I made a fairly reasonable decision.

Thank you so much! :)

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Re: Northwestern vs. Cornell?

Postby Malarkey » Wed Apr 12, 2017 1:15 pm

If it makes you feel any better, I'll be attending Cornell in the fall, I'm not overly competitive, I'm in my mid-twenties, and I plan on drinking beer and enjoying the outdoors in my free time.

I'd choose Cornell if I were you, but both are fine options. Cheers.

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luckyirish13

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Re: Northwestern vs. Cornell?

Postby luckyirish13 » Wed Apr 12, 2017 1:22 pm

Based on the fact that you're considering returning to your home country, I think Cornell probably stands a better chance of making a difference for you. I'm not certain what the international prestige is for American law schools, but I would assume there is a certain gravitas awarded to an Ivy League school, that wouldn't be there for Northwestern. (Correct me if I'm wrong) Being "Ivy League" isn't normally a consideration in the legal world if you're working in the States, but if you're returning home or going to another country, the equation changes, since you'll want your university to be recognizable. Also your scholarship to Cornell is better so that should make this easier.

Oh and no need to worry about the USNWR rankings for these two. They're basically the same in terms of rankings anyway.

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star fox

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Re: Northwestern vs. Cornell?

Postby star fox » Wed Apr 12, 2017 2:29 pm

luckyirish13 wrote:Based on the fact that you're considering returning to your home country, I think Cornell probably stands a better chance of making a difference for you. I'm not certain what the international prestige is for American law schools, but I would assume there is a certain gravitas awarded to an Ivy League school, that wouldn't be there for Northwestern. (Correct me if I'm wrong) Being "Ivy League" isn't normally a consideration in the legal world if you're working in the States, but if you're returning home or going to another country, the equation changes, since you'll want your university to be recognizable. Also your scholarship to Cornell is better so that should make this easier.

Oh and no need to worry about the USNWR rankings for these two. They're basically the same in terms of rankings anyway.

I really think this is a stretch.

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luckyirish13

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Re: Northwestern vs. Cornell?

Postby luckyirish13 » Wed Apr 12, 2017 2:44 pm

star fox wrote:
luckyirish13 wrote:Based on the fact that you're considering returning to your home country, I think Cornell probably stands a better chance of making a difference for you. I'm not certain what the international prestige is for American law schools, but I would assume there is a certain gravitas awarded to an Ivy League school, that wouldn't be there for Northwestern. (Correct me if I'm wrong) Being "Ivy League" isn't normally a consideration in the legal world if you're working in the States, but if you're returning home or going to another country, the equation changes, since you'll want your university to be recognizable. Also your scholarship to Cornell is better so that should make this easier.

Oh and no need to worry about the USNWR rankings for these two. They're basically the same in terms of rankings anyway.

I really think this is a stretch.
Maybe, but OP is trying to differentiate between two very closely ranked schools. He (or she I can't tell) hasn't listed a preference between Chicago or NYC, although he slightly expressed doubts about Chicago. He/she has a better scholarship at Cornell, which helps so his siblings don't have to bear a bigger financial burden. Northwestern is potentially better in terms of culture, although that's uncertain.

OP has an almost completely even decision. But he also said he is potentially considering moving back to his home country or another country. In most circumstances, we suggest that people go to a school in their target market, or in this case if OP's target market may be out of the country, then the question is, which school will set him up better for an overseas job? I think (and OP can confirm/deny this for himself) that Cornell has better name recognition overseas. Combined with the better scholarship, those would be the deciding factors for me if I was in his shoes.

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star fox

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Re: Northwestern vs. Cornell?

Postby star fox » Wed Apr 12, 2017 2:47 pm

Yes, I would go to the cheaper one.

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Re: Northwestern vs. Cornell?

Postby rpupkin » Wed Apr 12, 2017 2:49 pm

Apsara wrote:
cheaptilts wrote:I would probably take Cornell here, but you wouldn't be foolish whatsoever to take NU. Also, "Ivy League" prestige is meaningless in the legal field.

I would have to disagree here given my own personal experience in finding employment during and after law school. The ivy name opened doors, and I was told so by those doing the hiring.

Makes sense. That explains why so many legal employers prefer Cornell grads to Stanford grads.

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Re: Northwestern vs. Cornell?

Postby star fox » Wed Apr 12, 2017 2:52 pm

The Ivy name opens doors because the Ivy schools are all good schools. I think it's a stretch to go beyond that and say it's going to open more doors than other similarly well-regarded good schools simply because its sports teams play in a conference called the Ivy League. We're talking about lawyers that would be hiring you here, not just ordinary laypeople.

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Re: Northwestern vs. Cornell?

Postby symphonyy » Wed Apr 12, 2017 9:12 pm

I see so many valuable opinions here! Well I guess the issue here is whether Cornell has some sort of "name value" in my home country and Im gonna have to say yes, though not a definite yes. I am not so sure if its true for the professional field here but the people in general have never even heard of NU(except for the ones whove studied in the US). But again, like one of the posters on this thread mentioned, the ones who are gonna be hiring me are not the general public. So...yea.. :D

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Re: Northwestern vs. Cornell?

Postby symphonyy » Tue Apr 18, 2017 5:43 am

cheaptilts wrote:
symphonyy wrote:
eminentdomain wrote:
Is your goal Chicago Biglaw? If so, then NU>>>Cornell.
Given the fact that you are an international student though, it will be hard for you to get Chicago Biglaw and NYC will be your best bet. Cornell > NU in NYC and in that case NU is probably not worth 15k more IMO.


Thank you for the reply!My goal is just Biglaw wherever. Why is it hard for an international student to get Chicago Biglaw?

As an international student, you'd almost certainly be relying on an H1-B visa to work in the United States. Biglaw firms are typically the only legal employers willing to incur the costs associated with hiring you. Thus, your aim should be to work at a biglaw firm (which you are correctly aiming for).

NYC has many more "biglaw" offices than Chicago. NY offices also extend more offers of employment than their Chi counterparts. Both of those facts should make you lean toward you targeting the NYC market. Cities like Chicago also tend to place at least some weight on a person's "ties" to the market. New York does not.

It's also true that non-NYC firms sometimes have policies that are less "H1-B friendly" than others. For example, some of the major D.C.- and Boston-headquartered biglaw firms refuse to (a) apply for the H1-B lottery on behalf of a student during the Spring of the student's 3L [basically denying the student a chance at "two bites" at the lottery apple"]; and (b) guarantee an opportunity to work at a foreign office in case the student strikes out from the lottery. Firms centered around the NY market often have much more experience with foreign workers and, in some cases, are more willing to work with them.

I would probably take Cornell here, but you wouldn't be foolish whatsoever to take NU. Also, "Ivy League" prestige is meaningless in the legal field.


If I go to NU, I still have chance to work in the NYC right? But would the chance be lower than if I chose Cornell?



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