Fordham ($$$) vs UVA vs UChicago

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Gjnar32

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Fordham ($$$) vs UVA vs UChicago

Postby Gjnar32 » Wed Dec 19, 2018 2:14 pm

I recently received a very large scholarship to Fordham, which would allow me to graduate debt free. I was also accepted to UChicago and UVA, however, I am not anticipating scholarships. If I were to pay sticker at either UVA or UChicago, I would be looking at 130k in loans after considering family funds. I do not know what my end goal is in terms of what kind of law I want to practice and I am keeping my options very open. Which would you guys choose?

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UVA2B

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Re: Fordham ($$$) vs UVA vs UChicago

Postby UVA2B » Wed Dec 19, 2018 2:50 pm

Since you don’t know what kind of law, have you thought about where you want to practice? Is it NYC or do you want other markets open to you? What sort of salary are you hoping to have when you graduate and enter practice?

Fordham debt-free is a great option if you want to end up in NYC after graduation. But if you want to have geographic flexibility outside of NYC, it’s not as great an option.

If you want more flexibility and have higher salary expectations, you’ll want to pick between Chicago and UVA. If debt is exactly the same, feel free to pick which you personally prefer (assuming median where UVA and Chicago aren’t so different in their placement that makes one a lock over the other. I respect that others would disagree with this and I’m also slightly biased here, although I don’t think that makes me wrong). If one is cheaper than the other, probably save money. If you want to go into PI, consider their LRAP and pick the better LRAP (pretty sure Chicago wins here, but I could be wrong).

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Re: Fordham ($$$) vs UVA vs UChicago

Postby Npret » Wed Dec 19, 2018 3:02 pm

I always vote for debt free. You won’t be constrained by debt which is crucial.

It’s difficult to give you advice because you don’t know what you want. As a lifelong NYC resident, if you want to be in or around the city, it’s a very good option for no debt.

So unless I know more about what you want - I vote Fordham.

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Elston Gunn

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Re: Fordham ($$$) vs UVA vs UChicago

Postby Elston Gunn » Wed Dec 19, 2018 3:04 pm

If you’re open to/interested in Big Law, I think UChi at $130k is much better than Fordham for free, considering the bimodal distribution of salaries. $130k debt really isn’t that much when you’re making $190k starting.

OTOH, are your parents paying the same amount in the case if Fordham, or would it save them like $50k for retirement? Something worth considering as well.
Last edited by Elston Gunn on Wed Dec 19, 2018 3:06 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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UVA2B

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Re: Fordham ($$$) vs UVA vs UChicago

Postby UVA2B » Wed Dec 19, 2018 3:05 pm

Unsolicited follow up, but still relevant: I know nothing about your application and it’s possible your options could improve with a better app (LSAT, etc.). I’m not trying to directly inject that into your options here, but just saying that you paint with a broad brush with “family funds” and it’s possible you’re paying an insane amount of money for law school, but it’s just your parents paying it, which may or may not be recommended.

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VirginiaFan

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Re: Fordham ($$$) vs UVA vs UChicago

Postby VirginiaFan » Wed Dec 19, 2018 3:07 pm

Best option: retake
Second best option: try to leverage t14's for scholarship
Third best option: Chicago

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Re: Fordham ($$$) vs UVA vs UChicago

Postby Npret » Wed Dec 19, 2018 3:50 pm

VirginiaFan wrote:Best option: retake
Second best option: try to leverage t14's for scholarship
Third best option: Chicago


Why do you suggest a retake to someone who’s been accepted to Chicago? How much better do you think they can do?

Why do you pick Chicago - because it’s the highest ranked? At least give a reason.

Gjnar32

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Re: Fordham ($$$) vs UVA vs UChicago

Postby Gjnar32 » Wed Dec 19, 2018 4:19 pm

I do feel that I have maxed out my LSAT score, high 160's 4.0GPA. I am from the NYC area and I am not set on staying here as my siblings and parents have already moved or started making plans to move out of state, but I would not at all be opposed to living in the city during law school or post-graduation.


I guess I am just curious as to whether or not it is completely irrational to take on roughly 130k in debt for the sake of flexibility in career choice and location? This assuming Chicago and UVA give me 0$ in scholarship.

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Re: Fordham ($$$) vs UVA vs UChicago

Postby cavalier1138 » Wed Dec 19, 2018 4:27 pm

What are your actual numbers? If you're in at Chicago, there's a good chance you're competitive for money at the lower T13. So I don't think that Fordham is the school you want to hang your hat on just yet.

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Re: Fordham ($$$) vs UVA vs UChicago

Postby QContinuum » Wed Dec 19, 2018 4:56 pm

cavalier1138 wrote:What are your actual numbers? If you're in at Chicago, there's a good chance you're competitive for money at the lower T13. So I don't think that Fordham is the school you want to hang your hat on just yet.

cavalier's hit the nail on the head here, IMO. Check out MyLSN:
Image
Michigan, Virginia, Duke, Northwestern, and Cornell are likely to award OP $$$. I'd say attending one of those schools is TCR over Chicago, which is likely to award minimal if any $.

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UVA2B

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Re: Fordham ($$$) vs UVA vs UChicago

Postby UVA2B » Wed Dec 19, 2018 5:03 pm

Gjnar32 wrote:I do feel that I have maxed out my LSAT score, high 160's 4.0GPA. I am from the NYC area and I am not set on staying here as my siblings and parents have already moved or started making plans to move out of state, but I would not at all be opposed to living in the city during law school or post-graduation.


I guess I am just curious as to whether or not it is completely irrational to take on roughly 130k in debt for the sake of flexibility in career choice and location? This assuming Chicago and UVA give me 0$ in scholarship.


Depending what high 160s means, I wouldn't assume no tuition discounts at UVA, Chicago, or other T13. If you're a 168-169 LSAT, you should be looking at really good money from UVA and its peers, and possibly some decent money at Chicago. If you are a 166/4.0, then tuition discounts may be smaller.

It's not crazy to consider that kind of debt for the flexibility to figure out where you want to end up, but it should act as a bit of a wake up call. You should be thinking about those things. You should be considering the markets where you'd want to practice, the types of law you think might interest you, and what you imagine a career path would look like. Maybe it'll be entirely wrong, but it's not wrong to think about it now. With $130k in debt, assuming that's at graduation, you'll be paying ~$1400/month for a decade if you don't accelerate payment or rely on PAYE/LRAP/PSLF to pay it off. You're making choice that affect at least the next 13 years in terms of debt, and that should be weighed against how the choice affects the next ~40 years of a career. $130k isn't an insurmountable amount of debt, but's also not a sneeze and a minor inconvenience.

Edit: substantially scooped with data

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VirginiaFan

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Re: Fordham ($$$) vs UVA vs UChicago

Postby VirginiaFan » Thu Dec 20, 2018 1:32 am

Npret wrote:
VirginiaFan wrote:Best option: retake
Second best option: try to leverage t14's for scholarship
Third best option: Chicago


Why do you suggest a retake to someone who’s been accepted to Chicago? How much better do you think they can do?

Why do you pick Chicago - because it’s the highest ranked? At least give a reason.



For question 1, they should retake because the best option, a t14 for free, isn't yet available to them and it very easily could be. If OP was asking about a 150k scholarship at Cornell, I'd say take it and don't look back.

For why Chicago over UVA, it's because Chicago places slightly more people into biglaw. This adds some slight value to Chicago over UVA. If OP had been offered 40k at UVA, I'd say go to UVA.



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