Texas A&M?

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olemiss18
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Texas A&M?

Postby olemiss18 » Mon Sep 04, 2017 9:32 am

I've noticed that TLS has relatively no mentions of TAMU's not insignificant rise from Tier 4 garbage (due to the poor Texas Wesleyan rep) to Tier 2 decency in like 5 years. #92 on the most recent rankings isn't the most impressive thing and it doesn't say everything about what's going on with that law school, but hoping from unranked to #140ish to #111 to #92 is undoubtedly good news for them.

As an applicant who would like to work in a mid-sized firm in Dallas without the colossal SMU debt (and can't get into UT), would going to A&M on a full ride seem ridiculous? No one knows the future, but A&M is a powerhouse university system supporting a law school in a metro area that could afford another one jobs-wise, and I don't want to miss that train as it's coming by.

Thoughts?

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Future Ex-Engineer
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Re: Texas A&M?

Postby Future Ex-Engineer » Mon Sep 04, 2017 9:46 am

olemiss18 wrote:I've noticed that TLS has relatively no mentions of TAMU's not insignificant rise from Tier 4 garbage (due to the poor Texas Wesleyan rep) to Tier 2 decency in like 5 years. #92 on the most recent rankings isn't the most impressive thing and it doesn't say everything about what's going on with that law school, but hoping from unranked to #140ish to #111 to #92 is undoubtedly good news for them.

As an applicant who would like to work in a mid-sized firm in Dallas without the colossal SMU debt (and can't get into UT), would going to A&M on a full ride seem ridiculous? No one knows the future, but A&M is a powerhouse university system supporting a law school in a metro area that could afford another one jobs-wise, and I don't want to miss that train as it's coming by.

Thoughts?


That's because #92 is far from being a top law school.

On topic: no idea if that's a good idea for what you want or not, but that's why it isn't talked about here. Probably better luck talking about TAMU on reddit

cavalier1138
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Re: Texas A&M?

Postby cavalier1138 » Mon Sep 04, 2017 11:07 am

Over a third of the class not employed as lawyers doesn't strike me as a "powerhouse" in any sense of the word. Improving from worse to bad isn't a selling point.

And you can get in to UT or at least go debt-free at SMU. You're choosing not to.

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HenryHankPalmer
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Re: Texas A&M?

Postby HenryHankPalmer » Mon Sep 04, 2017 4:13 pm

A&M is simply a long way from being a respectable law school. They might have surpassed Tech in the rankings, but I think most employers would tell you that they think more of Tech than A&M. Furthermore, Fort Worth is not a big legal market, and UT and SMU have a stranglehold on Dallas. A&M Law has no alumni network, and no real reputation as a school. The Wesleyan grads resent the school for the "improved" rebranding, and the attorneys I know that went to A&M as undergrads resent the fact their beloved alma mater is now attached to what they feel to be an inferior school. Your best bet is to retake and shoot for SMU and UT.

rdawkins28
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Re: Texas A&M?

Postby rdawkins28 » Mon Sep 04, 2017 5:09 pm

PM me if you'd like to chat about A&M Law. I graduated from Tex Wes and have been practicing "shitlaw" and can tell you what to expect roughly. It ain't rosy by any stretch of the imagination, but it sure ain't all doom and gloom (just some).

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emkay625
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Re: Texas A&M?

Postby emkay625 » Mon Sep 04, 2017 7:05 pm

It gets talked about pretty much every year that the rankings come out.

But the reality is the employment prospects for A&M grads are pretty bleak, even now a few years after the name change. Rankings do not equal employment outcomes, especially in the lower tiers. Some people can do okay. Some people will be unemployed. But it's definitely a risk.

https://www.lstreports.com/schools/texasam/jobs/

We could provide better advice with more info, approx. GPA/LSAT, etc.

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kalvano
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Re: Texas A&M?

Postby kalvano » Mon Sep 04, 2017 11:34 pm

If you want to work at a mid-size firm in Dallas, go to SMU (or UT). But most Dallas firms aren't looking at A&M grads. Hell, half of them probably don't know it isn't Wesleyan anymore.

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poptart123
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Re: Texas A&M?

Postby poptart123 » Tue Sep 05, 2017 12:29 am

Check back in on A&M in 20 years. The university system is great and may make it a competitive law school one day, but it will likely be a long time. It still has the Texas Wesleyan reputation.

stiger28
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Re: Texas A&M?

Postby stiger28 » Mon Sep 18, 2017 5:50 pm

Hello olemiss18,

It does get talked about but a lot of people still aren't sure what to make of Texas A&M. I personally attend the law school on a full tuition scholarship, and I couldn't be happier with my decision so far. I'm going to talk about my experience compared to other Texas school since I'm assuming that's where you are looking to attend.

I have several years of work experience under my belt in the DFW area (wanted to leverage my network), and my spouse has a great career here, so I was only realistically going to attend law school at SMU or A&M. I am highly averse to taking on debt, and I am thankful (almost) every day that I didn't talk myself into going to a school where I'd walk out with fifty or a hundred grand worth of indentured servitude. I enjoy the culture here. It is somewhat unique; you'll have to visit to experience it yourself. I spent a lot of time looking at SMU and can honestly say that, for me personally, I never had a good feeling about the culture there. Particularly if you are a minority, nontraditional student, or not from a wealthy/educated background, I would seek out the opinions of the students not giving you tours. You have to be able to spend three, stressful years of your life there, keep that in mind, and then these people become your peers and part of your network when you graduate. Also the faculty at Texas A&M is very good overall, the school hired many highly-regarded scholars in their fields (see, e.g., http://leiterlawschool.typepad.com/leit ... dents.html), and most will go out of their way to help you if they can.

When it comes down to outcomes, I haven't graduated yet so I can't speak from personal experience, but I spent a LONG time looking at the numbers on lstreports.com. Past results are no guarantee, of course, but those are your best guide to what your odds will look like when you graduate. You will find that about 75% of SMU kids get FT, LT bar-passage-required jobs within 10 months, vs. 60% at TAMU (UH is around 60-65%, Tech is 60-70%, Baylor is 70-80%, UT is 75-80%, etc.). In my mind, those differences are simply not enough to justify an additional 25 grand or more in tuition per year (also important at the margins: SMU increases their tuition some $2,000 every year while A&M guarantees tuition for four years).

If you have your heart set on a large law firm, you more than likely will end up disappointed at A&M. On the other hand, if you have your heart set on a large firm, arguably you need to leave Texas for the East/West coasts or Chicago (I say arguably only for the sake of UT, but even there only a minority of students end up working for large firms). Outside of large firms, there is no reason you can't be just as competitive as anyone for most jobs (particularly if you are a vet, minority, can speak Spanish, or have substantive work experience). Network, demonstrate a sustained interest in an area or two of law, get internships and then do well in them, that's what everyone has to do no matter what school you attend. Go in with realistic expectations, don't think anyone owes you anything just because you went to law school, and limit your downside risk (in the form of mortgage sized loan payments)-- that's my main advice.

At Texas A&M, you will have better opportunities in Fort Worth, but Dallas is certainly an option (live somewhere in the middle if you want to try to intern/work in Dallas). Outside of that (with a possible exception of Bryan/College Station to some extent), you will need to blaze your own trail. I have spoken with alumni who work at several firms, the judiciary, and government agencies, so don't listen to the poster who says there is no alumni network. It is small however. Lawyers who went to Texas A&M as undergrads are also a good resource in some instances (anecdotally, I have met more who have greater affinity toward fellow Aggies than to their law schools).

Looking toward the future, I would venture to say that A&M's job outcomes are going to get better over the next few years. I say this for two main reasons: (1) There is reason to believe that bar passage rates will go up based on increasing 25% LSAT/GPAs of future graduating classes (failure obviously being a major obstacle to getting a bar-passage-required job), and (2) the future graduating classes are almost half the size of the prior classes. That is my unscientific, take-it-for-what-it's-worth $.02. I am a little concerned about competing with the UNT grads coming into the market now but I have no idea how that will ultimately impact A&M and SMU. I also think you can place some stock in the fact that Texas A&M wants to keep building up its institutional empire, it has the funds to do so, and it wanted to have a law school for a long time. It's not likely to just abandon it or let it stagnate.

Hope that helps, I wish you the best in your future education and career.
Last edited by stiger28 on Wed Sep 20, 2017 6:21 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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UVA2B
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Re: Texas A&M?

Postby UVA2B » Mon Sep 18, 2017 9:19 pm

stiger28 wrote:Hello olemiss18,

It does get talked about but a lot of people still aren't sure what to make of Texas A&M. I personally attend the law school on a full tuition scholarship, and I couldn't be happier with my decision so far. I'm going to talk about my experience compared to other Texas school since I'm assuming that's where you are looking to attend.

I have several years of work experience under my belt in the DFW area (wanted to leverage my network), and my spouse has a great career here, so I was only realistically going to attend law school at SMU or A&M. I am highly averse to taking on debt, and I am thankful (almost) every day I didn't talk myself into going to a school I'd walk out with fifty or a hundred grand worth of indentured servitude. I enjoy the culture here. It is somewhat unique; you'll have to visit to experience it yourself. I spent a lot of time looking at SMU and I can honestly say that, for me personally, I never had a good feeling about the culture there. particularly if you are a minority of any kind or just not from a wealthy background, I would seek out the opinions of the students not giving you tours. You have to be able to spend three, stressful years of your life there, keep that in mind, and then these people become your peers and part of your network when you graduate. The faculty at Texas A&M is fantastic overall and most will go out of their way to help you if they can.

When it comes down to outcomes, I haven't graduated yet so I can't speak from personal experience but I spent a LONG time looking at the numbers on lstreports.com. Past results are no guarantee but those are your best guide to what your odds will look like when you graduate. You will find that about 75% of SMU kids get FT, LT bar-passage-required jobs within 10 months, vs. 60% at TAMU (UH is around 60-65%, Tech is 60-70%, Baylor is 70-80%, UT is 75-80%, etc.). In my mind, those differences are simply not enough to justify an additional 25 grand or more in tuition per year (also important at the margins: SMU increases their tuition some $2,000 every year while A&M guarantees tuition for four years).

If you have your heart set on a large law firm, you more than likely will end up disappointed at A&M. On the other hand, if you have your heart set on a large firm, arguably you need to leave Texas for the East/West coasts or Chicago (I say arguably only for the sake of UT, but even there only a minority of students end up working for large firms). Outside of large firms, there is no reason you can't be just as competitive as anyone for most jobs (particularly if you are a vet, minority, can speak Spanish, or have substantive work experience). Network, demonstrate a sustained interest in an area or two of law, get internships and then do well in them, that's what everyone has to do no matter what school you attend. Go in with realistic expectations, don't think anyone owes you anything just because you went to law school, and limit your downside risk (in the form of mortgage sized loan payments)-- that's my main advice.

At Texas A&M, you will have better opportunities in Fort Worth but Dallas is certainly an option (live somewhere in the middle if you want to try to intern/work in Dallas). Outside of that (with a possible exception of Bryan/College Station to some extent), you will need to blaze your own trail. I have spoken with alumni who work at several firms, the judiciary, and government agencies, so don't listen to the poster who says there is no alumni network. It is small however. Lawyers who went to Texas A&M as undergrads are also a good resource in some instances (anecdotally, I have met more who have greater affinity toward fellow Aggies than to their law schools).

Looking toward the future, I would venture to say that A&M's job outcomes are going to get better over the next few years. I say this for two main reasons: (1) There is reason to believe that bar passage rates will go up based on increasing 25% LSAT/GPAs of future graduating classes (failure obviously being a major obstacle to getting a bar-passage-required job), and (2) the future graduating classes are almost half the size of the prior classes. That is my unscientific, take-it-for-what-it's-worth $.02. I am a little concerned about competing with UNT grads coming into the market now but I have no idea how that will ultimately impact A&M and SMU. I also think you can place some stock in the fact that Texas A&M wants to keep building up its institutional empire, it has the funds to do so, and it wanted to have a law school for a long time. It's not likely to somehow abandon it or let it stagnate.

Hope that helps, I wish you the best in your future education and career.


First post after joining in March? You should post more, because this was all very smart, well-reasoned analysis. Thanks for providing this type of perspective that isn't colored by unwarranted "T14 or bust" assumptions.

ETA: Because I was thinking about it, I just want to make sure it's clear that your comparison of percentages should also be taken with a grain of salt, because there are qualitative differences in types of outcomes at UT vs. TAMU (for example). You mostly cover that in your post, but people should connect the dots that 60% at TAMU vs. 80% at UT should also be understood that the outcomes at UT are qualitatively better in most/all instances in those percentages. This is a point of nuance, but it deserves repeating.

stiger28
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Re: Texas A&M?

Postby stiger28 » Wed Sep 20, 2017 6:14 pm

UVA2B wrote:First post after joining in March? You should post more, because this was all very smart, well-reasoned analysis. Thanks for providing this type of perspective that isn't colored by unwarranted "T14 or bust" assumptions.

ETA: Because I was thinking about it, I just want to make sure it's clear that your comparison of percentages should also be taken with a grain of salt, because there are qualitative differences in types of outcomes at UT vs. TAMU (for example). You mostly cover that in your post, but people should connect the dots that 60% at TAMU vs. 80% at UT should also be understood that the outcomes at UT are qualitatively better in most/all instances in those percentages. This is a point of nuance, but it deserves repeating.


Thank you, yeah I registered in March but I've been a lurker for a while. And yes, good point about job quality, you can see that pretty readily in the salary stats on LST (and also employed at graduation numbers). The percentages I cited go more towards the risk of the worst outcomes, which are surprisingly high even at many top tier schools.

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Roy McAvoy
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Re: Texas A&M?

Postby Roy McAvoy » Sat Sep 23, 2017 12:25 am

I’m at SMU, and would add that the attorneys I have run into (and worked for) from Wesleyan are the type of people who would have been successful no matter what the did or where they went. If you have other options but are choosing A&M for the price or location that’s fine. But if that’s the only option, you’re unlikely to be at the top of your class and have those opportunities available. It does seem to be gaining more respect in Dallas but I have no way of quantifying how much for you.

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KissMyAxe
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Re: Texas A&M?

Postby KissMyAxe » Sat Sep 23, 2017 9:08 am

UVA2B wrote:
stiger28 wrote:Hello olemiss18,

It does get talked about but a lot of people still aren't sure what to make of Texas A&M. I personally attend the law school on a full tuition scholarship, and I couldn't be happier with my decision so far. I'm going to talk about my experience compared to other Texas school since I'm assuming that's where you are looking to attend.

I have several years of work experience under my belt in the DFW area (wanted to leverage my network), and my spouse has a great career here, so I was only realistically going to attend law school at SMU or A&M. I am highly averse to taking on debt, and I am thankful (almost) every day I didn't talk myself into going to a school I'd walk out with fifty or a hundred grand worth of indentured servitude. I enjoy the culture here. It is somewhat unique; you'll have to visit to experience it yourself. I spent a lot of time looking at SMU and I can honestly say that, for me personally, I never had a good feeling about the culture there. particularly if you are a minority of any kind or just not from a wealthy background, I would seek out the opinions of the students not giving you tours. You have to be able to spend three, stressful years of your life there, keep that in mind, and then these people become your peers and part of your network when you graduate. The faculty at Texas A&M is fantastic overall and most will go out of their way to help you if they can.

When it comes down to outcomes, I haven't graduated yet so I can't speak from personal experience but I spent a LONG time looking at the numbers on lstreports.com. Past results are no guarantee but those are your best guide to what your odds will look like when you graduate. You will find that about 75% of SMU kids get FT, LT bar-passage-required jobs within 10 months, vs. 60% at TAMU (UH is around 60-65%, Tech is 60-70%, Baylor is 70-80%, UT is 75-80%, etc.). In my mind, those differences are simply not enough to justify an additional 25 grand or more in tuition per year (also important at the margins: SMU increases their tuition some $2,000 every year while A&M guarantees tuition for four years).

If you have your heart set on a large law firm, you more than likely will end up disappointed at A&M. On the other hand, if you have your heart set on a large firm, arguably you need to leave Texas for the East/West coasts or Chicago (I say arguably only for the sake of UT, but even there only a minority of students end up working for large firms). Outside of large firms, there is no reason you can't be just as competitive as anyone for most jobs (particularly if you are a vet, minority, can speak Spanish, or have substantive work experience). Network, demonstrate a sustained interest in an area or two of law, get internships and then do well in them, that's what everyone has to do no matter what school you attend. Go in with realistic expectations, don't think anyone owes you anything just because you went to law school, and limit your downside risk (in the form of mortgage sized loan payments)-- that's my main advice.

At Texas A&M, you will have better opportunities in Fort Worth but Dallas is certainly an option (live somewhere in the middle if you want to try to intern/work in Dallas). Outside of that (with a possible exception of Bryan/College Station to some extent), you will need to blaze your own trail. I have spoken with alumni who work at several firms, the judiciary, and government agencies, so don't listen to the poster who says there is no alumni network. It is small however. Lawyers who went to Texas A&M as undergrads are also a good resource in some instances (anecdotally, I have met more who have greater affinity toward fellow Aggies than to their law schools).

Looking toward the future, I would venture to say that A&M's job outcomes are going to get better over the next few years. I say this for two main reasons: (1) There is reason to believe that bar passage rates will go up based on increasing 25% LSAT/GPAs of future graduating classes (failure obviously being a major obstacle to getting a bar-passage-required job), and (2) the future graduating classes are almost half the size of the prior classes. That is my unscientific, take-it-for-what-it's-worth $.02. I am a little concerned about competing with UNT grads coming into the market now but I have no idea how that will ultimately impact A&M and SMU. I also think you can place some stock in the fact that Texas A&M wants to keep building up its institutional empire, it has the funds to do so, and it wanted to have a law school for a long time. It's not likely to somehow abandon it or let it stagnate.

Hope that helps, I wish you the best in your future education and career.


First post after joining in March? You should post more, because this was all very smart, well-reasoned analysis. Thanks for providing this type of perspective that isn't colored by unwarranted "T14 or bust" assumptions.

ETA: Because I was thinking about it, I just want to make sure it's clear that your comparison of percentages should also be taken with a grain of salt, because there are qualitative differences in types of outcomes at UT vs. TAMU (for example). You mostly cover that in your post, but people should connect the dots that 60% at TAMU vs. 80% at UT should also be understood that the outcomes at UT are qualitatively better in most/all instances in those percentages. This is a point of nuance, but it deserves repeating.


I know, right? I'm pretty damn impressed. We could definitely use more people with this perspective.

OP, you're very lucky. This is one of the best posts I've seen on this site in a long time. I think it's all accurate, with the caveat that UVA gives. I don't think you have to be a retake or bust kind of person, though it might make more sense to do so in your situation than it did in stiger's. Just understand the consequences (good and bad) of your decision.

rdawkins28
Posts: 133
Joined: Thu Jun 26, 2014 11:52 am

Re: Texas A&M?

Postby rdawkins28 » Sat Sep 23, 2017 2:22 pm

KissMyAxe wrote:
UVA2B wrote:
stiger28 wrote:Hello olemiss18,

It does get talked about but a lot of people still aren't sure what to make of Texas A&M. I personally attend the law school on a full tuition scholarship, and I couldn't be happier with my decision so far. I'm going to talk about my experience compared to other Texas school since I'm assuming that's where you are looking to attend.

I have several years of work experience under my belt in the DFW area (wanted to leverage my network), and my spouse has a great career here, so I was only realistically going to attend law school at SMU or A&M. I am highly averse to taking on debt, and I am thankful (almost) every day I didn't talk myself into going to a school I'd walk out with fifty or a hundred grand worth of indentured servitude. I enjoy the culture here. It is somewhat unique; you'll have to visit to experience it yourself. I spent a lot of time looking at SMU and I can honestly say that, for me personally, I never had a good feeling about the culture there. particularly if you are a minority of any kind or just not from a wealthy background, I would seek out the opinions of the students not giving you tours. You have to be able to spend three, stressful years of your life there, keep that in mind, and then these people become your peers and part of your network when you graduate. The faculty at Texas A&M is fantastic overall and most will go out of their way to help you if they can.

When it comes down to outcomes, I haven't graduated yet so I can't speak from personal experience but I spent a LONG time looking at the numbers on lstreports.com. Past results are no guarantee but those are your best guide to what your odds will look like when you graduate. You will find that about 75% of SMU kids get FT, LT bar-passage-required jobs within 10 months, vs. 60% at TAMU (UH is around 60-65%, Tech is 60-70%, Baylor is 70-80%, UT is 75-80%, etc.). In my mind, those differences are simply not enough to justify an additional 25 grand or more in tuition per year (also important at the margins: SMU increases their tuition some $2,000 every year while A&M guarantees tuition for four years).

If you have your heart set on a large law firm, you more than likely will end up disappointed at A&M. On the other hand, if you have your heart set on a large firm, arguably you need to leave Texas for the East/West coasts or Chicago (I say arguably only for the sake of UT, but even there only a minority of students end up working for large firms). Outside of large firms, there is no reason you can't be just as competitive as anyone for most jobs (particularly if you are a vet, minority, can speak Spanish, or have substantive work experience). Network, demonstrate a sustained interest in an area or two of law, get internships and then do well in them, that's what everyone has to do no matter what school you attend. Go in with realistic expectations, don't think anyone owes you anything just because you went to law school, and limit your downside risk (in the form of mortgage sized loan payments)-- that's my main advice.

At Texas A&M, you will have better opportunities in Fort Worth but Dallas is certainly an option (live somewhere in the middle if you want to try to intern/work in Dallas). Outside of that (with a possible exception of Bryan/College Station to some extent), you will need to blaze your own trail. I have spoken with alumni who work at several firms, the judiciary, and government agencies, so don't listen to the poster who says there is no alumni network. It is small however. Lawyers who went to Texas A&M as undergrads are also a good resource in some instances (anecdotally, I have met more who have greater affinity toward fellow Aggies than to their law schools).

Looking toward the future, I would venture to say that A&M's job outcomes are going to get better over the next few years. I say this for two main reasons: (1) There is reason to believe that bar passage rates will go up based on increasing 25% LSAT/GPAs of future graduating classes (failure obviously being a major obstacle to getting a bar-passage-required job), and (2) the future graduating classes are almost half the size of the prior classes. That is my unscientific, take-it-for-what-it's-worth $.02. I am a little concerned about competing with UNT grads coming into the market now but I have no idea how that will ultimately impact A&M and SMU. I also think you can place some stock in the fact that Texas A&M wants to keep building up its institutional empire, it has the funds to do so, and it wanted to have a law school for a long time. It's not likely to somehow abandon it or let it stagnate.

Hope that helps, I wish you the best in your future education and career.


First post after joining in March? You should post more, because this was all very smart, well-reasoned analysis. Thanks for providing this type of perspective that isn't colored by unwarranted "T14 or bust" assumptions.

ETA: Because I was thinking about it, I just want to make sure it's clear that your comparison of percentages should also be taken with a grain of salt, because there are qualitative differences in types of outcomes at UT vs. TAMU (for example). You mostly cover that in your post, but people should connect the dots that 60% at TAMU vs. 80% at UT should also be understood that the outcomes at UT are qualitatively better in most/all instances in those percentages. This is a point of nuance, but it deserves repeating.


I know, right? I'm pretty damn impressed. We could definitely use more people with this perspective.

OP, you're very lucky. This is one of the best posts I've seen on this site in a long time. I think it's all accurate, with the caveat that UVA gives. I don't think you have to be a retake or bust kind of person, though it might make more sense to do so in your situation than it did in stiger's. Just understand the consequences (good and bad) of your decision.


Alumnus here who still has a pulse on the A&M LS. Methinks stiger is a little bit over-optimistic. The quality of students is much higher than before. But the job opportunities are still low. Very few employers visit A&M. Heck, A&M is paying graduates who can't find jobs like $8 an hour if the graduates can find some lawyer to mentor them. Jobs are found despite the school, not because of it; i.e. family, friends, connections, networking, bravado to practice solo, etc.

It will be better, just very slowly.




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