Columbia/NYU/UVA Full Price or UCLA/USC $$???

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

Which option is best?

Columbia
17
30%
NYU
2
4%
UVA
6
11%
UCLA $$
31
54%
USC $$
1
2%
 
Total votes: 57

coffeeaddict22
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Columbia/NYU/UVA Full Price or UCLA/USC $$???

Postby coffeeaddict22 » Fri May 12, 2017 1:18 pm

Would really appreciate any advice on this. Currently on a few waitlists and having a tough time deciding what the number one option here is. Just want to be prepared when I hear back.

Columbia - full price (currently waitlisted)
NYU - full price (currently waitlisted)
UVA - full price (currently waitlisted)
UCLA - half scholarship
USC - half scholarship

LSAT: 168 (taken the LSAT a couple of times, got a 168 on the past attempt, don't think retaking at this point and reapplying will be helpful)
GPA: 3.67

Will mostly be financing COA with loans and be paying for an apartment in either city
From the Midwest but been living in NYC for the past few years working at a biotech/pharma company with a nice support group of friends here
Would like to practice in NYC for a few years but also open to the West Coast or possibly working abroad eventually
Would like to work in big law for a few years in order to pay off the loans and then ideally go in house somewhere
Not entirely sure which area of law I'd like to focus on yet. Interested in corporate/finance/tech/biotech/sports

Might be interested in combining it with an MBA or transitioning over to the business side way down the road too... Semi-considering just doing an MBA if the opportunity cost on law school doesn't seem entirely worth it...

Any of these options seem like a no brainer? Is it worth paying for the big name (assuming I'd get off the waitlist)? Thanks in advance!
Last edited by coffeeaddict22 on Fri May 12, 2017 1:59 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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dietcoke1
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Re: Columbia/NYU/UVA Full Price or UCLA/USC $$???

Postby dietcoke1 » Fri May 12, 2017 1:36 pm

UCLA or USC. The no brainer here is to not go to any of these options at sticker price.

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Rigo
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Re: Columbia/NYU/UVA Full Price or UCLA/USC $$???

Postby Rigo » Fri May 12, 2017 2:18 pm

I don't like any of these prices.
Only a half ride for UCLA or USC still is a pretty hefty price tag. Especially for biglaw goals (let alone NYC biglaw goals).

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Gitaroo_Dude
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Re: Columbia/NYU/UVA Full Price or UCLA/USC $$???

Postby Gitaroo_Dude » Fri May 12, 2017 2:28 pm

Hmm, when did you send in your apps? I feel like your under-performing your numbers when it comes to money, at least with USC. Did you apply to Fordham? I don't really like UCLA or USC for you at that price, especially if you aren't fully committed to living in CA afterwards.

BigZuck
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Re: Columbia/NYU/UVA Full Price or UCLA/USC $$???

Postby BigZuck » Fri May 12, 2017 2:36 pm

I also don't like any of these prices. It also sounds like you don't actually want to be a lawyer. So I guess I'd say None of the Above?

Malarkey
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Re: Columbia/NYU/UVA Full Price or UCLA/USC $$???

Postby Malarkey » Fri May 12, 2017 2:53 pm

Did you get in anywhere else?

albanach
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Re: Columbia/NYU/UVA Full Price or UCLA/USC $$???

Postby albanach » Fri May 12, 2017 2:57 pm

Gitaroo_Dude wrote:Hmm, when did you send in your apps? I feel like your under-performing your numbers when it comes to money, at least with USC. Did you apply to Fordham? I don't really like UCLA or USC for you at that price, especially if you aren't fully committed to living in CA afterwards.


This. To know if reapplying makes sense, we need to know when you applied.

There also seems to be a growing lobby that most of the T13-15 are not worth sticker. That's really a judgment for the individual, as there's no shortage of folk attending these schools at that price and most aren't on here bemoaning that they did. Still, $300k is a lot of loans so you should be absolutely familiar with the consequences of that sort of debt. Until you get an offer, that's hypothetical but it's good to be giving it thought.

RedPurpleBlue
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Re: Columbia/NYU/UVA Full Price or UCLA/USC $$???

Postby RedPurpleBlue » Fri May 12, 2017 2:58 pm

coffeeaddict22 wrote:
Might be interested in combining it with an MBA or transitioning over to the business side way down the road too... Semi-considering just doing an MBA if the opportunity cost on law school doesn't seem entirely worth it...

Any of these options seem like a no brainer? Is it worth paying for the big name (assuming I'd get off the waitlist)? Thanks in advance!


The no brainer here is not going to law school if you want to transition to the business side. If you get a comparable GMAT to your LSAT and a couple years of decent work experience, you could go to a top MBA school. And, quite frankly, the GMAT is much easier than the LSAT, so you can probably even get into the upper 90 percentiles with a proper study regimen. You should only be going to law school if you want to be a lawyer. If I had to guess, you're one of the many types of people who we find on these boards who absolutely hate themselves, want to die, and regret going to law school by the time they graduate.

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Lavitz
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Re: Columbia/NYU/UVA Full Price or UCLA/USC $$???

Postby Lavitz » Fri May 12, 2017 3:07 pm

BigZuck wrote:I also don't like any of these prices. It also sounds like you don't actually want to be a lawyer. So I guess I'd say None of the Above?

This.

BigZuck
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Re: Columbia/NYU/UVA Full Price or UCLA/USC $$???

Postby BigZuck » Fri May 12, 2017 3:13 pm

albanach wrote:
Gitaroo_Dude wrote:Hmm, when did you send in your apps? I feel like your under-performing your numbers when it comes to money, at least with USC. Did you apply to Fordham? I don't really like UCLA or USC for you at that price, especially if you aren't fully committed to living in CA afterwards.


This. To know if reapplying makes sense, we need to know when you applied.

There also seems to be a growing lobby that most of the T13-15 are not worth sticker. That's really a judgment for the individual, as there's no shortage of folk attending these schools at that price and most aren't on here bemoaning that they did. Still, $300k is a lot of loans so you should be absolutely familiar with the consequences of that sort of debt. Until you get an offer, that's hypothetical but it's good to be giving it thought.

Bruh I went to a (T14? T15?) for less than 100K debt and I totes bemoan that.

300K is just insane.

Npret
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Re: Columbia/NYU/UVA Full Price or UCLA/USC $$???

Postby Npret » Fri May 12, 2017 3:22 pm

BigZuck wrote:
albanach wrote:
Gitaroo_Dude wrote:Hmm, when did you send in your apps? I feel like your under-performing your numbers when it comes to money, at least with USC. Did you apply to Fordham? I don't really like UCLA or USC for you at that price, especially if you aren't fully committed to living in CA afterwards.


This. To know if reapplying makes sense, we need to know when you applied.

There also seems to be a growing lobby that most of the T13-15 are not worth sticker. That's really a judgment for the individual, as there's no shortage of folk attending these schools at that price and most aren't on here bemoaning that they did. Still, $300k is a lot of loans so you should be absolutely familiar with the consequences of that sort of debt. Until you get an offer, that's hypothetical but it's good to be giving it thought.

Bruh I went to a (T14? T15?) for less than 100K debt and I totes bemoan that.

300K is just insane.


I think most people who pay sticker either aren't on TLS at all or they have family money. The people who debt finance sticker generally have unrealistic ideas of the legal profession.

coffeeaddict22
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Re: Columbia/NYU/UVA Full Price or UCLA/USC $$???

Postby coffeeaddict22 » Fri May 12, 2017 4:34 pm

Thanks so much for all the input so far!

Gitaroo_Dude wrote:Hmm, when did you send in your apps? I feel like your under-performing your numbers when it comes to money, at least with USC. Did you apply to Fordham? I don't really like UCLA or USC for you at that price, especially if you aren't fully committed to living in CA afterwards.
- Sent in the apps in early January. Going to see about possibly negotiating them down further.

coffeeaddict22
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Re: Columbia/NYU/UVA Full Price or UCLA/USC $$???

Postby coffeeaddict22 » Fri May 12, 2017 4:37 pm

Npret wrote:
BigZuck wrote:
albanach wrote:
Gitaroo_Dude wrote:Hmm, when did you send in your apps? I feel like your under-performing your numbers when it comes to money, at least with USC. Did you apply to Fordham? I don't really like UCLA or USC for you at that price, especially if you aren't fully committed to living in CA afterwards.


This. To know if reapplying makes sense, we need to know when you applied.

There also seems to be a growing lobby that most of the T13-15 are not worth sticker. That's really a judgment for the individual, as there's no shortage of folk attending these schools at that price and most aren't on here bemoaning that they did. Still, $300k is a lot of loans so you should be absolutely familiar with the consequences of that sort of debt. Until you get an offer, that's hypothetical but it's good to be giving it thought.

Bruh I went to a (T14? T15?) for less than 100K debt and I totes bemoan that.

300K is just insane.


I think most people who pay sticker either aren't on TLS at all or they have family money. The people who debt finance sticker generally have unrealistic ideas of the legal profession.


Didn't get in to any of the other schools I applied to. Decided not to apply to Fordham after speaking with Admissions there that the max they would give would be about half scholarship as well. Would still come out to about 100k and at that point UCLA/USC being ranked higher and with bigger school recognition seemed like a better option.

In regard to paying sticker for the bigger schools, hypothetically if you land one of the big law jobs for 160k/180k, isn't is possible to be able to pay it off in like 4 years or so if you really are dedicated?

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cron1834
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Re: Columbia/NYU/UVA Full Price or UCLA/USC $$???

Postby cron1834 » Fri May 12, 2017 4:38 pm

What happened at Cornell?

Anyway, reapply (early) or don't go is probably right.

coffeeaddict22
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Re: Columbia/NYU/UVA Full Price or UCLA/USC $$???

Postby coffeeaddict22 » Fri May 12, 2017 4:40 pm

cron1834 wrote:What happened at Cornell?

Anyway, reapply (early) or don't go is probably right.


Got a fee waiver and was rejected from Cornell, Duke, Michigan

Npret
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Re: Columbia/NYU/UVA Full Price or UCLA/USC $$???

Postby Npret » Fri May 12, 2017 4:46 pm

coffeeaddict22 wrote:
Npret wrote:
BigZuck wrote:
albanach wrote:
Gitaroo_Dude wrote:Hmm, when did you send in your apps? I feel like your under-performing your numbers when it comes to money, at least with USC. Did you apply to Fordham? I don't really like UCLA or USC for you at that price, especially if you aren't fully committed to living in CA afterwards.


This. To know if reapplying makes sense, we need to know when you applied.

There also seems to be a growing lobby that most of the T13-15 are not worth sticker. That's really a judgment for the individual, as there's no shortage of folk attending these schools at that price and most aren't on here bemoaning that they did. Still, $300k is a lot of loans so you should be absolutely familiar with the consequences of that sort of debt. Until you get an offer, that's hypothetical but it's good to be giving it thought.

Bruh I went to a (T14? T15?) for less than 100K debt and I totes bemoan that.

300K is just insane.


I think most people who pay sticker either aren't on TLS at all or they have family money. The people who debt finance sticker generally have unrealistic ideas of the legal profession.


Didn't get in to any of the other schools I applied to. Decided not to apply to Fordham after speaking with Admissions there that the max they would give would be about half scholarship as well. Would still come out to about 100k and at that point UCLA/USC being ranked higher and with bigger school recognition seemed like a better option.

In regard to paying sticker for the bigger schools, hypothetically if you land one of the big law jobs for 160k/180k, isn't is possible to be able to pay it off in like 4 years or so if you really are dedicated?

Does that sound like a good life plan to you? Don't you already have a job you can stay in another year?

What is the debt load for the California schools going to be at graduation?

coffeeaddict22
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Re: Columbia/NYU/UVA Full Price or UCLA/USC $$???

Postby coffeeaddict22 » Fri May 12, 2017 4:50 pm

Npret wrote:
coffeeaddict22 wrote:
Npret wrote:
BigZuck wrote:
albanach wrote:
Gitaroo_Dude wrote:Hmm, when did you send in your apps? I feel like your under-performing your numbers when it comes to money, at least with USC. Did you apply to Fordham? I don't really like UCLA or USC for you at that price, especially if you aren't fully committed to living in CA afterwards.


This. To know if reapplying makes sense, we need to know when you applied.

There also seems to be a growing lobby that most of the T13-15 are not worth sticker. That's really a judgment for the individual, as there's no shortage of folk attending these schools at that price and most aren't on here bemoaning that they did. Still, $300k is a lot of loans so you should be absolutely familiar with the consequences of that sort of debt. Until you get an offer, that's hypothetical but it's good to be giving it thought.

Bruh I went to a (T14? T15?) for less than 100K debt and I totes bemoan that.

300K is just insane.


I think most people who pay sticker either aren't on TLS at all or they have family money. The people who debt finance sticker generally have unrealistic ideas of the legal profession.


Didn't get in to any of the other schools I applied to. Decided not to apply to Fordham after speaking with Admissions there that the max they would give would be about half scholarship as well. Would still come out to about 100k and at that point UCLA/USC being ranked higher and with bigger school recognition seemed like a better option.

In regard to paying sticker for the bigger schools, hypothetically if you land one of the big law jobs for 160k/180k, isn't is possible to be able to pay it off in like 4 years or so if you really are dedicated?

Does that sound like a good life plan to you? Don't you already have a job you can stay in another year?

What is the debt load for the California schools going to be at graduation?


I currently have a job I could stay at making about 90-100k. I'm not opposed to working crazy hard for a few years in order to make the connections and put in the work to open up bigger and better doors in the future. Debt load assuming I can't negotiate down further would probably be about 100k (30k/year). If I could get them down to about 20k a year, it becomes pretty tempting

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Gitaroo_Dude
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Re: Columbia/NYU/UVA Full Price or UCLA/USC $$???

Postby Gitaroo_Dude » Fri May 12, 2017 4:53 pm

coffeeaddict22 wrote:Didn't get in to any of the other schools I applied to. Decided not to apply to Fordham after speaking with Admissions there that the max they would give would be about half scholarship as well. Would still come out to about 100k and at that point UCLA/USC being ranked higher and with bigger school recognition seemed like a better option.

In regard to paying sticker for the bigger schools, hypothetically if you land one of the big law jobs for 160k/180k, isn't is possible to be able to pay it off in like 4 years or so if you really are dedicated?


Hmm, how are you getting the 100k number for UCLA/USC? Generally, 50% off of out-of-state tuition at UCLA will still leave you with about $180k in loans to repay, and you'd have almost $200k in loans from USC. Are you getting some kind of familial support or something to arrive at that 100k figure?

And while I'm not too familiar with sticker repayments, I don't think there's anyway you can repay 300k in loans within 4 years on a big law salary. You're looking at $3k a month in payments just to stay on track for a 10 year repayment plan. I can't even imagine the monthly payments you'd have to make to pay it off within 4 years.

To be honest though, if you applied in January I don't think that would fully explain your scholarship offers. How committed are you to law school? I think the MBA route might be better for you at this point if you aren't fully committed to being a lawyer long term, because your current options don't seem like they're worth the opportunity cost if you're straddling the fence on this.
Last edited by Gitaroo_Dude on Fri May 12, 2017 4:54 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Rigo
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Re: Columbia/NYU/UVA Full Price or UCLA/USC $$???

Postby Rigo » Fri May 12, 2017 4:54 pm

75%+ scholarships have people in the hole over $100k so you're really underestimating if you don't have other funds (dipping far into savings or generous parents).

e: scooped by gitaroo

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Rigo
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Re: Columbia/NYU/UVA Full Price or UCLA/USC $$???

Postby Rigo » Fri May 12, 2017 4:57 pm

Why do you want to go to law school? If it's just to financially better yourself, don't. Much better paths for that (like MBA you're considering).

BigZuck
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Re: Columbia/NYU/UVA Full Price or UCLA/USC $$???

Postby BigZuck » Fri May 12, 2017 5:03 pm

coffeeaddict22 wrote:
Npret wrote:
coffeeaddict22 wrote:
Npret wrote:
BigZuck wrote:
albanach wrote:
Gitaroo_Dude wrote:Hmm, when did you send in your apps? I feel like your under-performing your numbers when it comes to money, at least with USC. Did you apply to Fordham? I don't really like UCLA or USC for you at that price, especially if you aren't fully committed to living in CA afterwards.


This. To know if reapplying makes sense, we need to know when you applied.

There also seems to be a growing lobby that most of the T13-15 are not worth sticker. That's really a judgment for the individual, as there's no shortage of folk attending these schools at that price and most aren't on here bemoaning that they did. Still, $300k is a lot of loans so you should be absolutely familiar with the consequences of that sort of debt. Until you get an offer, that's hypothetical but it's good to be giving it thought.

Bruh I went to a (T14? T15?) for less than 100K debt and I totes bemoan that.

300K is just insane.


I think most people who pay sticker either aren't on TLS at all or they have family money. The people who debt finance sticker generally have unrealistic ideas of the legal profession.


Didn't get in to any of the other schools I applied to. Decided not to apply to Fordham after speaking with Admissions there that the max they would give would be about half scholarship as well. Would still come out to about 100k and at that point UCLA/USC being ranked higher and with bigger school recognition seemed like a better option.

In regard to paying sticker for the bigger schools, hypothetically if you land one of the big law jobs for 160k/180k, isn't is possible to be able to pay it off in like 4 years or so if you really are dedicated?

Does that sound like a good life plan to you? Don't you already have a job you can stay in another year?

What is the debt load for the California schools going to be at graduation?


I currently have a job I could stay at making about 90-100k. I'm not opposed to working crazy hard for a few years in order to make the connections and put in the work to open up bigger and better doors in the future. Debt load assuming I can't negotiate down further would probably be about 100k (30k/year). If I could get them down to about 20k a year, it becomes pretty tempting

What kinds of connections do you envision first through fourth year big law attorneys making? I don't mean that to sound snarky, I'm honestly asking what you perceive the job to be like.

Also, grinding away in big law for 4 years paying 7K a month toward debt on a 10K a month take home would be a hell of a grind. I don't think that's realistic.

enoca
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Re: Columbia/NYU/UVA Full Price or UCLA/USC $$???

Postby enoca » Sat May 13, 2017 2:57 pm

coffeeaddict22 wrote:
LSAT: 168 (taken the LSAT a couple of times, got a 168 on the past attempt, don't think retaking at this point and reapplying will be helpful)
GPA: 3.67


This is wrong. I took the LSAT twice and got a 168 twice. I applied and only got options I didn't want. I studied hard but not crazily, retook, and got a 174. This cycle I'm in at the t6 with decent money, with a crappier GPA than you.

I am not special. If I can do it, you can do it. Retake if you really wanna be a lawyer.

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dm1683
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Re: Columbia/NYU/UVA Full Price or UCLA/USC $$???

Postby dm1683 » Sat May 13, 2017 5:16 pm

enoca wrote:
coffeeaddict22 wrote:
LSAT: 168 (taken the LSAT a couple of times, got a 168 on the past attempt, don't think retaking at this point and reapplying will be helpful)
GPA: 3.67


This is wrong. I took the LSAT twice and got a 168 twice. I applied and only got options I didn't want. I studied hard but not crazily, retook, and got a 174. This cycle I'm in at the t6 with decent money, with a crappier GPA than you.

I am not special. If I can do it, you can do it. Retake if you really wanna be a lawyer.

This, but OP you have a 90-100k job RIGHT NOW. Don't go to law school if you cant reasonably expect (>50% chance) of making more than that. And with UCLA and USC, you can't.
If you were a flowery liberal arts major from a no name school with no chance of getting a job that pays more than 35k (like me) then UCLA/USC/Fordham/ND would be worth it but you are in a good spot right now, at least from what you told us.

shadowfax
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Re: Columbia/NYU/UVA Full Price or UCLA/USC $$???

Postby shadowfax » Sat May 13, 2017 6:23 pm

cron1834 wrote:What happened at Cornell?

Anyway, reapply (early) or don't go is probably right.


This...Also the MBA portion of a JD/MBA is a completely separate application/process/interview (not sure this is universally true but it was at the schools I did it at). Have you taken the GRE?
Last edited by shadowfax on Sat May 13, 2017 6:30 pm, edited 1 time in total.

eck456
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Re: Columbia/NYU/UVA Full Price or UCLA/USC $$???

Postby eck456 » Sat May 13, 2017 6:29 pm

Yeah I have very very similar to your numbers, applied earlier and had a much better cycle both financially and in terms of acceptances. I would strongly advise reapplying early and maybe considering working with a consultant to figure out where maybe some things in your application could be improved.

ETA: hadn't read the whole thread, the fact that you didn't get in or get $ with Duke or Michigan with your work experience and numbers again emphasizes to me that you should reapply. Feel free to PM for details, but with those numbers (close to exactly) I was only straight rejected at SY two years in a row, and either acceptances (often w $) or WL to most of the rest of the T15 (if that's what we're calling it). Definitely not trying to brag, I just really think being thoughtful about a reapplication even if LSAT retake isn't for you could dramatically improve your debt load and ability to do what you want to do




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