Patent Law: USC($) vs UT($$) vs UW($$) vs Retake

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170orDie
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Patent Law: USC($) vs UT($$) vs UW($$) vs Retake

Postby 170orDie » Tue Apr 25, 2017 3:54 am

I have been posting here and there asking for advice on school decisions, and now that deposit time is here I am posting all my info to see what TLS thinks of my choices. I have a BS in CS and am planning on doing patent law, still undecided on pros or lit, but I think I am slightly leaning litigation.

My stats:
167/3.57 (I failed my username)

My offers:
USC: COA = 180k
UT: COA = 120k
UW: COA = 100k

I am hoping for BL in Seattle, but I would not mind LA/SF at all. I have no interest in staying in Texas. Also, I am currently seeking more money from USC and UW, it seems likely that I'll get some more from USC having spoken with the Dean himself at ASW, although I am not sure how much more.

As far as intangibles, I liked USC the best. I felt very comfortable there, the weather is great, I loved the campus. I just enjoyed the vibe of the school. That being said, vibe doesn't pay loan debt so... What are your thoughts on schools? I know at this point USC seems pretty much out, but I really fell in love with the school at ASW so I'm hoping the bridge the gap a little bit, and I told myself if COA is 150k, it might be worth it to take the plunge for the sake of my own preference. Is this naive?

My goals are to do BL for a few years then switch to in-house at a large company. I'd rank my future plans as such:
Seattle BL>LA/SF BL>>> Any BL>Seattle Law

Honestly, I only rank Seattle slightly ahead of LA/SF BL. But I do plan on eventually moving back to Seattle regardless of what I do. Be it after a few years of experience, or directly after law school.

All that being said, I have considered retaking the LSAT. On my 167, I missed 5 on the LG, and I consistently scored over 173 on PTs. I believe I have developed a debilitating case of test anxiety, which is odd because I've never experienced such a thing in my entire life prior to the LSAT... I do believe I have conquered this anxiety, however, I have already taken the LSAT 4 times, and 5th retake just seems disgusting. Is this even a viable option? Or should I move forward with the offers I currently have?

AJordan
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Re: Patent Law: USC($) vs UT($$) vs UW($$) vs Retake

Postby AJordan » Tue Apr 25, 2017 5:28 am

I hate to beat the broken record of TLS "retake" but it really applies here. UT at 100k is mediocre, imo, if you wanna stay in Texas. Since you don't want to be in Texas it doesn't make much sense. Anecdotal evidence on the Seattle market seems to paint a difficult picture of entry into biglaw. I think your best option is a retake into Boalt with money. Following that, decide on SoCal or Seattle and attend either USC/UCLA/UW for the least amount of money possible.

Actually, if you decided Texas isn't so bad you should probably retake anyway.

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CR7
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Re: Patent Law: USC($) vs UT($$) vs UW($$) vs Retake

Postby CR7 » Tue Apr 25, 2017 7:55 am

170orDie wrote:I have been posting here and there asking for advice on school decisions, and now that deposit time is here I am posting all my info to see what TLS thinks of my choices. I have a BS in CS and am planning on doing patent law, still undecided on pros or lit, but I think I am slightly leaning litigation.

My stats:
167/3.57 (I failed my username)

My offers:
USC: COA = 180k
UT: COA = 120k
UW: COA = 100k

I am hoping for BL in Seattle, but I would not mind LA/SF at all. I have no interest in staying in Texas. Also, I am currently seeking more money from USC and UW, it seems likely that I'll get some more from USC having spoken with the Dean himself at ASW, although I am not sure how much more.

As far as intangibles, I liked USC the best. I felt very comfortable there, the weather is great, I loved the campus. I just enjoyed the vibe of the school. That being said, vibe doesn't pay loan debt so... What are your thoughts on schools? I know at this point USC seems pretty much out, but I really fell in love with the school at ASW so I'm hoping the bridge the gap a little bit, and I told myself if COA is 150k, it might be worth it to take the plunge for the sake of my own preference. Is this naive?

My goals are to do BL for a few years then switch to in-house at a large company. I'd rank my future plans as such:
Seattle BL>LA/SF BL>>> Any BL>Seattle Law

Honestly, I only rank Seattle slightly ahead of LA/SF BL. But I do plan on eventually moving back to Seattle regardless of what I do. Be it after a few years of experience, or directly after law school.

All that being said, I have considered retaking the LSAT. On my 167, I missed 5 on the LG, and I consistently scored over 173 on PTs. I believe I have developed a debilitating case of test anxiety, which is odd because I've never experienced such a thing in my entire life prior to the LSAT... I do believe I have conquered this anxiety, however, I have already taken the LSAT 4 times, and 5th retake just seems disgusting. Is this even a viable option? Or should I move forward with the offers I currently have?


The USC option isn't bad...since you're interested in patent law, did you apply to any DC schools?

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UVA2B
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Re: Patent Law: USC($) vs UT($$) vs UW($$) vs Retake

Postby UVA2B » Tue Apr 25, 2017 8:37 am

Yeah, if you scored well below your PT average, you need to retake if only to not leave money on the table. You'll either have UW/USC for much cheaper or you'll get better options for your goals. Hunker down, figure out what went wrong on this go around, and kill it in the summer/fall. Good luck!

170orDie
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Re: Patent Law: USC($) vs UT($$) vs UW($$) vs Retake

Postby 170orDie » Tue Apr 25, 2017 2:15 pm

CR7 wrote:The USC option isn't bad...since you're interested in patent law, did you apply to any DC schools?


I'm WL at Gtown

170orDie
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Re: Patent Law: USC($) vs UT($$) vs UW($$) vs Retake

Postby 170orDie » Tue Apr 25, 2017 2:17 pm

UVA2B wrote:Yeah, if you scored well below your PT average, you need to retake if only to not leave money on the table. You'll either have UW/USC for much cheaper or you'll get better options for your goals. Hunker down, figure out what went wrong on this go around, and kill it in the summer/fall. Good luck!

Even though it'll be a 5th retake? I am confident that I scored below my ability, I've never even PT'd below 170 after I passed that threshold. However, it just seems like I'm beating a dead horse. Plus, I think it'd really disappoint my family and SO to go through another cycle of me studying.

ambrajdurbra131313
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Re: Patent Law: USC($) vs UT($$) vs UW($$) vs Retake

Postby ambrajdurbra131313 » Tue Apr 25, 2017 2:20 pm

From a current student: USC is cool, but I wouldn't recommend coming for anywhere near $180K of debt

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Roy McAvoy
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Re: Patent Law: USC($) vs UT($$) vs UW($$) vs Retake

Postby Roy McAvoy » Tue Apr 25, 2017 2:24 pm

Retake for Boalt or go to UW. Hardly anyone will get back to PNW from any of the Texas schools, even UT. USC is too expensive. Only issue with UW is it may make it tough to get back to SoCal after graduation - maybe not though, I'm not real familiar with the west coast markets.

170orDie
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Re: Patent Law: USC($) vs UT($$) vs UW($$) vs Retake

Postby 170orDie » Tue Apr 25, 2017 3:33 pm

ambrajdurbra131313 wrote:From a current student: USC is cool, but I wouldn't recommend coming for anywhere near $180K of debt


What do you think is a reasonable amount? How much are you attending for?

170orDie
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Re: Patent Law: USC($) vs UT($$) vs UW($$) vs Retake

Postby 170orDie » Tue Apr 25, 2017 3:34 pm

Roy McAvoy wrote:Retake for Boalt or go to UW. Hardly anyone will get back to PNW from any of the Texas schools, even UT. USC is too expensive. Only issue with UW is it may make it tough to get back to SoCal after graduation - maybe not though, I'm not real familiar with the west coast markets.


Berk was my number 1, butI got denied. But I see that it's honestly tough for anyone to get into Berk with my gpa. Even those in the 171-173 range get dinged.

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Roy McAvoy
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Re: Patent Law: USC($) vs UT($$) vs UW($$) vs Retake

Postby Roy McAvoy » Tue Apr 25, 2017 3:51 pm

170orDie wrote:
Roy McAvoy wrote:Retake for Boalt or go to UW. Hardly anyone will get back to PNW from any of the Texas schools, even UT. USC is too expensive. Only issue with UW is it may make it tough to get back to SoCal after graduation - maybe not though, I'm not real familiar with the west coast markets.


Berk was my number 1, butI got denied. But I see that it's honestly tough for anyone to get into Berk with my gpa. Even those in the 171-173 range get dinged.


I'd still retake. Getting to 169 or 170 should get you a good bit more money at USC (and/or UCLA too, idk) enough to make it a decent option. Patent law is going to be less your school than almost any other field of law, and will be based a lot more on undergrad grades, work experience, things like that. CS on the west coast should be fine, and that's a big part of why I recommend taking on as little debt as possible - your background can make up for a bit lower school.

Edit: I'm assuming that from USC/UCLA/Boalt you'd be able to get back to Seattle eventually, and it would be more difficult to get to Cali from UW. I could be 100% wrong, and you'll have to defer to others for that. So take this with a grain of salt.

ambrajdurbra131313
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Re: Patent Law: USC($) vs UT($$) vs UW($$) vs Retake

Postby ambrajdurbra131313 » Tue Apr 25, 2017 8:42 pm

170orDie wrote:
ambrajdurbra131313 wrote:From a current student: USC is cool, but I wouldn't recommend coming for anywhere near $180K of debt


What do you think is a reasonable amount? How much are you attending for?


I think it definitely depends how much debt you're comfortable with and how ride or die you are for Southern California. Its tough for me to say given how anti-debt I am but maybe $120K as the absolute max- again, I'm pry the wrong person to ask.

Fortunately, I negotiated up to a full ride- they went up a ton in negotiations so obviously exhaust those for each school.

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UVA2B
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Re: Patent Law: USC($) vs UT($$) vs UW($$) vs Retake

Postby UVA2B » Tue Apr 25, 2017 9:18 pm

170orDie wrote:
UVA2B wrote:Yeah, if you scored well below your PT average, you need to retake if only to not leave money on the table. You'll either have UW/USC for much cheaper or you'll get better options for your goals. Hunker down, figure out what went wrong on this go around, and kill it in the summer/fall. Good luck!

Even though it'll be a 5th retake? I am confident that I scored below my ability, I've never even PT'd below 170 after I passed that threshold. However, it just seems like I'm beating a dead horse. Plus, I think it'd really disappoint my family and SO to go through another cycle of me studying.


I know it sucks to wait, and your family who likely knows nothing about employment and cost and will encourage you to just go because you're going to get that super special patent law job makes it tougher, but if you were PTing in the 170s consistently, something screwed up on test day. I would dedicate my time more to figuring out what changed from your PT to test day instead of studying the test more. You've gotten to a good place studying the LSAT and something else is likely holding you back. If you can isolate what that is and fix it, you could literally improve your options and/or pay significantly less for what you ultimately should care most about: your future career.

170orDie
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Re: Patent Law: USC($) vs UT($$) vs UW($$) vs Retake

Postby 170orDie » Wed Apr 26, 2017 3:08 am

ambrajdurbra131313 wrote:
170orDie wrote:
ambrajdurbra131313 wrote:From a current student: USC is cool, but I wouldn't recommend coming for anywhere near $180K of debt


What do you think is a reasonable amount? How much are you attending for?


I think it definitely depends how much debt you're comfortable with and how ride or die you are for Southern California. Its tough for me to say given how anti-debt I am but maybe $120K as the absolute max- again, I'm pry the wrong person to ask.

Fortunately, I negotiated up to a full ride- they went up a ton in negotiations so obviously exhaust those for each school.


What were your numbers if you dont mind me asking? And what was their starting offer? I've been negotiating with them, and after an initial rejection, I just got a small 5k/yr bump. But not nearly enough to put me over for USC.

170orDie
Posts: 77
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Re: Patent Law: USC($) vs UT($$) vs UW($$) vs Retake

Postby 170orDie » Wed Apr 26, 2017 3:09 am

UVA2B wrote:
170orDie wrote:
UVA2B wrote:Yeah, if you scored well below your PT average, you need to retake if only to not leave money on the table. You'll either have UW/USC for much cheaper or you'll get better options for your goals. Hunker down, figure out what went wrong on this go around, and kill it in the summer/fall. Good luck!

Even though it'll be a 5th retake? I am confident that I scored below my ability, I've never even PT'd below 170 after I passed that threshold. However, it just seems like I'm beating a dead horse. Plus, I think it'd really disappoint my family and SO to go through another cycle of me studying.


I know it sucks to wait, and your family who likely knows nothing about employment and cost and will encourage you to just go because you're going to get that super special patent law job makes it tougher, but if you were PTing in the 170s consistently, something screwed up on test day. I would dedicate my time more to figuring out what changed from your PT to test day instead of studying the test more. You've gotten to a good place studying the LSAT and something else is likely holding you back. If you can isolate what that is and fix it, you could literally improve your options and/or pay significantly less for what you ultimately should care most about: your future career.


That's good advice. Im toying with the idea of taking the June test. Last day to register on-time is tomorrow. Which gives me about 1.5 months to study...

ambrajdurbra131313
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Re: Patent Law: USC($) vs UT($$) vs UW($$) vs Retake

Postby ambrajdurbra131313 » Wed Apr 26, 2017 10:19 am

170orDie wrote:
ambrajdurbra131313 wrote:
170orDie wrote:
ambrajdurbra131313 wrote:From a current student: USC is cool, but I wouldn't recommend coming for anywhere near $180K of debt


What do you think is a reasonable amount? How much are you attending for?


I think it definitely depends how much debt you're comfortable with and how ride or die you are for Southern California. Its tough for me to say given how anti-debt I am but maybe $120K as the absolute max- again, I'm pry the wrong person to ask.

Fortunately, I negotiated up to a full ride- they went up a ton in negotiations so obviously exhaust those for each school.


What were your numbers if you dont mind me asking? And what was their starting offer? I've been negotiating with them, and after an initial rejection, I just got a small 5k/yr bump. But not nearly enough to put me over for USC.


I was a 3.9-something/169 and got started at $120K; yeah, at your costs, I would pry retake (but idk much about UW)

Redfactor
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Re: Patent Law: USC($) vs UT($$) vs UW($$) vs Retake

Postby Redfactor » Wed Apr 26, 2017 11:01 am

Be ready for an uphill battle if you're seeking the Seattle market from any school other than UW. Without ties it's going to be extremely tough from any T-13, let alone from a regional school like USC where the Seattle firms likely don't even go to the OCI.

The market here is small, highly desired, and insular.

170orDie
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Re: Patent Law: USC($) vs UT($$) vs UW($$) vs Retake

Postby 170orDie » Wed Apr 26, 2017 2:08 pm

Redfactor wrote:Be ready for an uphill battle if you're seeking the Seattle market from any school other than UW. Without ties it's going to be extremely tough from any T-13, let alone from a regional school like USC where the Seattle firms likely don't even go to the OCI.

The market here is small, highly desired, and insular.


I have significant ties to the seattle area. Does that make a school like USC justifiable?

Redfactor
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Re: Patent Law: USC($) vs UT($$) vs UW($$) vs Retake

Postby Redfactor » Wed Apr 26, 2017 9:29 pm

170orDie wrote:
Redfactor wrote:Be ready for an uphill battle if you're seeking the Seattle market from any school other than UW. Without ties it's going to be extremely tough from any T-13, let alone from a regional school like USC where the Seattle firms likely don't even go to the OCI.

The market here is small, highly desired, and insular.


I have significant ties to the seattle area. Does that make a school like USC justifiable?


IMO, no, not really. With ties people from T13 have a puncher's chance. I think the fatal flaw would be that Seattle firms don't go to USC's OCI and would not make it a priority to have a presence on its campus. I think you'd have to do very well at USC to pique a Seattle BL firm's interest.

I will concede that while I work in Seattle and know some who are in Seattle biglaw, I went the public interest route, so take that for what it's worth.

What do you consider to be significant ties? I thought you were from Texas?

170orDie
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Re: Patent Law: USC($) vs UT($$) vs UW($$) vs Retake

Postby 170orDie » Thu Apr 27, 2017 7:37 pm

Redfactor wrote:
170orDie wrote:
Redfactor wrote:Be ready for an uphill battle if you're seeking the Seattle market from any school other than UW. Without ties it's going to be extremely tough from any T-13, let alone from a regional school like USC where the Seattle firms likely don't even go to the OCI.

The market here is small, highly desired, and insular.


I have significant ties to the seattle area. Does that make a school like USC justifiable?


IMO, no, not really. With ties people from T13 have a puncher's chance. I think the fatal flaw would be that Seattle firms don't go to USC's OCI and would not make it a priority to have a presence on its campus. I think you'd have to do very well at USC to pique a Seattle BL firm's interest.

I will concede that while I work in Seattle and know some who are in Seattle biglaw, I went the public interest route, so take that for what it's worth.

What do you consider to be significant ties? I thought you were from Texas?


Im from Seattle

Redfactor
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Re: Patent Law: USC($) vs UT($$) vs UW($$) vs Retake

Postby Redfactor » Fri Apr 28, 2017 11:15 am

Sorry; for some reason I thought you were from Texas.

From my perspective, you're in a tough spot. I don't feel qualified to give any nuanced advice. Neither option sounds like it covers all the bases for your stated goals.

The perspective I would seek out are T-13 Seattle natives who've gone through the OCI process to see how successful they were at landing Seattle biglaw or if they were forced to lateral in after a few years (which I've heard is the easier route).

FamilyLawEsq
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Re: Patent Law: USC($) vs UT($$) vs UW($$) vs Retake

Postby FamilyLawEsq » Fri Apr 28, 2017 11:59 am

UW for Seattle.




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