GW ($) vs FSU ($$) vs Retake(-$)

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GW ($) vs FSU ($$) vs Retake(-$)

Postby grillcheeseplz » Thu Apr 20, 2017 2:38 pm

2.8 GPA 165 LSAT

My options right now stand at GW with $30,000 or FSU with $13,500

The goal is BigLaw BigFed opportunities but also BigLaw Miami market is the most ideal. I realize neither of these schools put me in a good position to get into Miami BigLaw but just so there's context to what my goals are. Know some associates in Miami BigLaw and do have the Fl ties (i.e. grew up in Florida and Florida UG)

approx. COA
GW - 150K (100K tuition + books etc. 50K living)
FSU - 45K (21K tuition + 24K living)

I have FL ties so got that going and still waiting on UF but difference between them and FSU feels negligible

Retaking June LSAT to see if I can Scholly negotiate more with GW in which case I would probably go but unless I'm breaking 170 (which I see the potential 165 was with some minimal/sporadic studying) or more don't see my prospects going much higher maybe GULC but even then is it worth sticker over 30K at GWU?

Basically my GPA stuck me in a hole but t30 with 1/2 tuition doesn't seem like it'll be much better and if I weren't able to crack Miami BigLaw i'd be much happier in DC or NY Biglaw than I would in midsize or so firm in Florida.

As an addition still waiting to hear from Fordham, UF, Vandy, and Waitlisted at UMN but probably gonna get off WL today unless some reason not too considering I'm not to keen on living or working in Min and dont feel they're as somewhat portable as a GW degree is despite ranking.

Anyways what do you guys figure the best option is? GWU? UF/FSU?

Is it really worth it to wait a whole cycle as a splitter? Weighing in the opportunity cost of missing out on a year of potential income (spitballing that it would be higher than a year of working whatever I would do for the year off), the unpredictability of being a splitter, and the good old a bird in the hand is worth 2 in a bush.

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Re: GW ($) vs FSU ($$) vs Retake(-$)

Postby RParadela » Thu Apr 20, 2017 2:50 pm

There's no way I'd go to GW at that price. Fsu is okay at that price, but you're going to have give up your BigLaw goals. If you don't get BigLaw, which you most likely won't, what do you want to do in law?


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Re: GW ($) vs FSU ($$) vs Retake(-$)

Postby ponderingmeerkat » Thu Apr 20, 2017 3:03 pm

Even inside Florida, Miami is its own unique and insular market. Are you of Cuban decent? Fluent in Spanish? Personal/lifelong friends with the owners of Versailles?

I'm personal family friends with a 25ish% T10-grad who went to highschool in Miami, speaks four languages including Spanish, targeted Miami hard and still couldn't land Miami biglaw. That person is now working V20 NYC biglaw (and had zero problems getting that job as you might imagine).

Point being, your Florida ties are great if you're interested in practicing in Florida (anywhere in Florida) but I wouldn't set my sights on "Miami or bust" because that's not just going to happen...even with a top-10% finish at FSU. That said, if you could stomach the idea of Orlando/Tampa/Jacksonville midlaw or Florida PD/ADA, I don't think $45K for FSU is terrible. I'd avoid GW like the plague especially at that price point.
Last edited by ponderingmeerkat on Fri Jan 26, 2018 8:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: GW ($) vs FSU ($$) vs Retake(-$)

Postby clarion » Fri Apr 21, 2017 3:41 pm

I agree with the above. I'm a south FL ties T-14er who had a 1L summer in Miami who couldn't land Miami big law with median grades. I literally had never lived outside FL until law school, and never had lived outside south Florida until undergrad. Still not enough.

ANECDOTES: That said, I have a couple friends (from undergrad/high school) who went to FL/T-20 law schools, including UMiami who were able to clutch out Miami mid-law. But, for example, one slaughtered the curve, while another comes from a very wealthy and well-connected family. So my points are this: 1) ties to FL, while valuable, are far more common than people are led to believe, relative to the number of jobs that exist in that horrible market. 2) if you go to FSU and get fantastic grades and/or have great connections to exploit, you might be able to clutch out mid-law in Miami.

Where I fully agree with above commenters is that you ought to just go ahead and write off big law. I know one person who got Miami big law, and he graduated magna from my T14 and also had Miami ties. Not only that, I believe he actually summered in the firm's NYC office and was only transferred to the Miami office for after graduation. (Can't say if that was easy or difficult for him to pull off).

Tbh, I'm not sure where that leaves you. You said you'd rather be in DC/NYC than FL if you couldn't do big law, but 150k for GW is pretty steep and FSU won't likely get you to DC/NYC. (No shade: I went to FSU for undergrad so I have no hostility toward it lol). FSU seems like the best of your current options, though UF could be great as well. But I do believe you'll have to adjust your goals to mid-law, which honestly pays plenty considering FL COL, or PD/ADA kind of stuff. Good luck!

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