Cardozo vs. American

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liclaire

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Cardozo vs. American

Postby liclaire » Sat Nov 02, 2019 8:33 pm

Hey basketofbread! I'm deciding between cardozo and american. Was wondering if you could pm me about your experience at cardozo? I've heard mixed things about it. Is it competitive/hard to be a good gpa? any input would be GREATLY appreciated! Thanks so much!

liclaire

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Re: Preparing to Bomb at Carbozo

Postby liclaire » Sat Nov 02, 2019 8:45 pm

FourtyFour wrote:.

Hey FourtyFour! I'm thinking about going to Cardozo and i want to do big law. My undergrad grades suck really bad but my lsat is pretty good so that's why I got into Cardozo (i think). Was wondering what path you ended up taking? are you in big law? Feel free to pm me if you want. Everyone on TLS says cardozo is a horrible school for big law, so I'm genuinly curious/worried. Thanks!

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Re: Cardozo vs. American

Postby Wubbles » Sun Nov 03, 2019 2:08 am

It's not that TLS says it's horrible for biglaw that matters, the data says that for us. You are statistically more likely to be unemployed than in biglaw 9 months after graduation from Cardozo. If you're going for free it's not the worst if you are content with the more likely outcome of a much lower paying job in NYC.

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Re: Cardozo vs. American

Postby cavalier1138 » Sun Nov 03, 2019 11:12 am

liclaire wrote:Is it competitive/hard to be a good gpa?


Depends on what qualifies as a "good GPA" for you. If a "good GPA" is a top-10% GPA (which is basically what you need for biglaw out of Cardozo), then yes, it's very hard.

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Re: Cardozo vs. American

Postby LSATWiz.com » Sun Nov 03, 2019 1:09 pm

cavalier1138 wrote:
liclaire wrote:Is it competitive/hard to be a good gpa?


Depends on what qualifies as a "good GPA" for you. If a "good GPA" is a top-10% GPA (which is basically what you need for biglaw out of Cardozo), then yes, it's very hard.

I also think it's important to note that top 10% is more of a necessary condition than a sufficient one. Just because 10% of the class gets big law doesn't mean it is the top 10%. There will be some minorities, former division-1 athletes, beautiful women, and well-connected people in the top 25% or top third who are likely going to be chosen over people in the top 10%.

As for the question of the odds of being in the top 10%, I don't think it is necessarily 10% but it's also no where near 50%. Many people go into law school aiming to be in the top 10%, but many don't and treat it more like college. There are also a lot of people who exert minimal effort on the LSAT, but intend to work their butts off in law school who don't work their butts off. It's very hard to just turn on work ethic and working 12-hours a day every day is an abnormal work ethic in that most people are incapable of doing it much like how most people would be incapable of spending 3-hours in the gym every day even if they had time to. However, many law students and lawyers have abnormal work ethics. OP studying for 12 hours a day every day will certainly give them a big leg up, but far more than 10% of the class will be doing this.

To some extent, LSAT is also predictive of LS grades but far more analogous to a Vegas betting line than anything guaranteed. One difficulty with Cardozo is you have a lot of people just missing the cut for Columbia/NYU taking full rides at Cardozo over paying close to sticker at Fordham and the top 10% tends to be dominated by those who come in with full rides. As a splitter, OP may well be favored to be in the top 50% going in, but it would be a mistake to say they have a 10% chance of being in the top 10% as the 10% or so of the class with full rides have better than a top 10% chance of being in the top 10%, which means the vast majority of those without a full ride have less than a 10% chance. This isn't to say that it is possible to predict law school grades, but that it is not a straight crapshoot.

In addition, planning on top 10% is very difficult simply because it means there is little to no room for error, including errors outside of one's control. While being in the top half is likely not a matter of luck, getting all A's requires luck because you're betting on not getting sick, being able to get a good night's sick, not having personal drama come up, etc. before every exam. We all have off days and the plan of go in and be top 10% requires events happening or not happening that OP has no control over.

Finally, there are going to be a lot of students who get how to take law school exams and a lot of who do not. If OP gets them, his odds of being in the top half are nearly guaranteed and in truth, nearly guaranteed irrespective of how much black letter law he or she actually knows. If you're good at taking law school exams, it is nearly impossible to do poorly on one, but there's no way to know if OP will be naturally adept at taking them because it's a pretty random skill.

Because OP's goals are big law and because a recession is expected (I read it's something like 60% likely), I think Cardozo/American for big law is a terrible decision. It could be a defendable position if OP did not care whether he or she got big law and just wanted to practice law, but for the specific goal of big law the only defensible position is to attend a t-14.

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Re: Cardozo vs. American

Postby Johnnybgoode92 » Sun Nov 03, 2019 1:27 pm

LSATWiz.com wrote:
cavalier1138 wrote:
liclaire wrote:Is it competitive/hard to be a good gpa?


Depends on what qualifies as a "good GPA" for you. If a "good GPA" is a top-10% GPA (which is basically what you need for biglaw out of Cardozo), then yes, it's very hard.

I also think it's important to note that top 10% is more of a necessary condition than a sufficient one. Just because 10% of the class gets big law doesn't mean it is the top 10%. There will be some minorities, former division-1 athletes, beautiful women, and well-connected people in the top 25% or top third who are likely going to be chosen over people in the top 10%.

As for the question of the odds of being in the top 10%, I don't think it is necessarily 10% but it's also no where near 50%. Many people go into law school aiming to be in the top 10%, but many don't and treat it more like college. There are also a lot of people who exert minimal effort on the LSAT, but intend to work their butts off in law school who don't work their butts off. It's very hard to just turn on work ethic and working 12-hours a day every day is an abnormal work ethic in that most people are incapable of doing it much like how most people would be incapable of spending 3-hours in the gym every day even if they had time to. However, many law students and lawyers have abnormal work ethics. OP studying for 12 hours a day every day will certainly give them a big leg up, but far more than 10% of the class will be doing this.

To some extent, LSAT is also predictive of LS grades but far more analogous to a Vegas betting line than anything guaranteed. One difficulty with Cardozo is you have a lot of people just missing the cut for Columbia/NYU taking full rides at Cardozo over paying close to sticker at Fordham and the top 10% tends to be dominated by those who come in with full rides. As a splitter, OP may well be favored to be in the top 50% going in, but it would be a mistake to say they have a 10% chance of being in the top 10% as the 10% or so of the class with full rides have better than a top 10% chance of being in the top 10%, which means the vast majority of those without a full ride have less than a 10% chance. This isn't to say that it is possible to predict law school grades, but that it is not a straight crapshoot.

In addition, planning on top 10% is very difficult simply because it means there is little to no room for error, including errors outside of one's control. While being in the top half is likely not a matter of luck, getting all A's requires luck because you're betting on not getting sick, being able to get a good night's sick, not having personal drama come up, etc. before every exam. We all have off days and the plan of go in and be top 10% requires events happening or not happening that OP has no control over.

Finally, there are going to be a lot of students who get how to take law school exams and a lot of who do not. If OP gets them, his odds of being in the top half are nearly guaranteed and in truth, nearly guaranteed irrespective of how much black letter law he or she actually knows. If you're good at taking law school exams, it is nearly impossible to do poorly on one, but there's no way to know if OP will be naturally adept at taking them because it's a pretty random skill.

Because OP's goals are big law and because a recession is expected (I read it's something like 60% likely), I think Cardozo/American for big law is a terrible decision. It could be a defendable position if OP did not care whether he or she got big law and just wanted to practice law, but for the specific goal of big law the only defensible position is to attend a t-14.


This is the correct response. I’d like to add that law school grading is often compared to a black box. You cannot predict how well you did with any precision once an exam is finished. Professors value different types of answers, and some are suspected of hardly spending the time to thoroughly scrutinize what students turn in. One professor’s lapse of judgment that lands you a C on a B+ quality answer can make or break your goals.

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Re: Cardozo vs. American

Postby LSATWiz.com » Sun Nov 03, 2019 2:51 pm

Johnnybgoode92 wrote:
LSATWiz.com wrote:
cavalier1138 wrote:
liclaire wrote:Is it competitive/hard to be a good gpa?


Depends on what qualifies as a "good GPA" for you. If a "good GPA" is a top-10% GPA (which is basically what you need for biglaw out of Cardozo), then yes, it's very hard.

I also think it's important to note that top 10% is more of a necessary condition than a sufficient one. Just because 10% of the class gets big law doesn't mean it is the top 10%. There will be some minorities, former division-1 athletes, beautiful women, and well-connected people in the top 25% or top third who are likely going to be chosen over people in the top 10%.

As for the question of the odds of being in the top 10%, I don't think it is necessarily 10% but it's also no where near 50%. Many people go into law school aiming to be in the top 10%, but many don't and treat it more like college. There are also a lot of people who exert minimal effort on the LSAT, but intend to work their butts off in law school who don't work their butts off. It's very hard to just turn on work ethic and working 12-hours a day every day is an abnormal work ethic in that most people are incapable of doing it much like how most people would be incapable of spending 3-hours in the gym every day even if they had time to. However, many law students and lawyers have abnormal work ethics. OP studying for 12 hours a day every day will certainly give them a big leg up, but far more than 10% of the class will be doing this.

To some extent, LSAT is also predictive of LS grades but far more analogous to a Vegas betting line than anything guaranteed. One difficulty with Cardozo is you have a lot of people just missing the cut for Columbia/NYU taking full rides at Cardozo over paying close to sticker at Fordham and the top 10% tends to be dominated by those who come in with full rides. As a splitter, OP may well be favored to be in the top 50% going in, but it would be a mistake to say they have a 10% chance of being in the top 10% as the 10% or so of the class with full rides have better than a top 10% chance of being in the top 10%, which means the vast majority of those without a full ride have less than a 10% chance. This isn't to say that it is possible to predict law school grades, but that it is not a straight crapshoot.

In addition, planning on top 10% is very difficult simply because it means there is little to no room for error, including errors outside of one's control. While being in the top half is likely not a matter of luck, getting all A's requires luck because you're betting on not getting sick, being able to get a good night's sick, not having personal drama come up, etc. before every exam. We all have off days and the plan of go in and be top 10% requires events happening or not happening that OP has no control over.

Finally, there are going to be a lot of students who get how to take law school exams and a lot of who do not. If OP gets them, his odds of being in the top half are nearly guaranteed and in truth, nearly guaranteed irrespective of how much black letter law he or she actually knows. If you're good at taking law school exams, it is nearly impossible to do poorly on one, but there's no way to know if OP will be naturally adept at taking them because it's a pretty random skill.

Because OP's goals are big law and because a recession is expected (I read it's something like 60% likely), I think Cardozo/American for big law is a terrible decision. It could be a defendable position if OP did not care whether he or she got big law and just wanted to practice law, but for the specific goal of big law the only defensible position is to attend a t-14.


This is the correct response. I’d like to add that law school grading is often compared to a black box. You cannot predict how well you did with any precision once an exam is finished. Professors value different types of answers, and some are suspected of hardly spending the time to thoroughly scrutinize what students turn in. One professor’s lapse of judgment that lands you a C on a B+ quality answer can make or break your goals.

Agreed but I don't think it's necessarily a black box. The valedictorian of my law school would probably have gotten straight A's under any metric. I remember reading one of his exams when we were waiting for 1L grades as a way of predicting how we did, and assuming I would fail because his was like a work of art. Writing great exams requires being great at legal writing and/or issue-spotting and analyzing many arguments in a very short period of time. Some people tend to be better at one or the other which is where the randomness comes in.

I was probably a below average legal writer and dramatically above average racehorser as a 1L so I'd be able to set the curve on racehorse exams but was very much capped on exams given by professors that valued great writing. I do think there was objectivity behind it. My writing was objectively not as good as others, and I would have objectively hit on more issues than others. None of this really would have changed regardless of how much I practiced or studied. In hindsight, it was always going to be the case. The issue, like you mentioned, is it's impossible to predict going in. However, it is predetermined to a large degree.

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Re: Cardozo vs. American

Postby nixy » Sun Nov 03, 2019 4:03 pm

I don't think "black box" means completely arbitrary - just that there's no way the exam writer can know what's going to result.

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Re: Cardozo vs. American

Postby LSATWiz.com » Mon Nov 04, 2019 9:49 pm

nixy wrote:I don't think "black box" means completely arbitrary - just that there's no way the exam writer can know what's going to result.

That's true. In hindsight, and this is something you wouldn't necessarily think going into law school where most are obsessed with appearing brilliant is that the ability to think in clear, simple terms is arguably the single most valuable skill you can have.

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Re: Cardozo vs. American

Postby objctnyrhnr » Wed Nov 06, 2019 5:30 pm

With a goal of Biglaw, particularly with the economic situation that you’ll likely be graduating into, even going to Fordham is probably a bad idea. And Fordham is much better than either of these schools.

Retake. Sorry.

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Re: Cardozo vs. American

Postby BobLoblaw18 » Thu Nov 07, 2019 2:23 am

Retake

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Re: Cardozo vs. American

Postby nealric » Thu Nov 07, 2019 12:22 pm

To echo others, neither school is likely to get you where you want to go. A 170+ LSAT could give you a fighting chance at the T14 (even with a low GPA).

Retaking is a much easier option that gunning to be top 10% at one of those schools. It may sound pedantic to say it, but there is a 90% chance you will not be in the top 10%.

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Re: Cardozo vs. American

Postby The Lsat Airbender » Thu Nov 07, 2019 2:27 pm

nixy wrote:I don't think "black box" means completely arbitrary - just that there's no way the exam writer can know what's going to result.


Yeah, "black box" means there's a more-or-less consistent, rational process but we don't know the details. It's the obverse of, say, roulette, where we know how it works but can't predict what will happen. It might as well be as unpredictable as roulette from a 0L perspective because you don't know what your professors will be like or how good you'll be at law-school exams. LSAT/GPA are a clue, sorta.

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Re: Cardozo vs. American

Postby JOThompson » Fri Nov 15, 2019 7:39 pm

I was accepted to both with $$. I didn't choose either, but I would have picked American. I visited both in-person and far preferred the vibe of American. It was competitive but still collegial. This may be anecdotal, but I know far more American grads in desirable markets than Cardozo ones. Perhaps that's because Cardozo grads want to stay in New York, but I suspect that American has a broader or better alumni network and superior job placement outside its region.

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Re: Cardozo vs. American

Postby QContinuum » Mon Nov 18, 2019 12:51 pm

JOThompson wrote:I was accepted to both with $$. I didn't choose either, but I would have picked American. I visited both in-person and far preferred the vibe of American. It was competitive but still collegial. This may be anecdotal, but I know far more American grads in desirable markets than Cardozo ones. Perhaps that's because Cardozo grads want to stay in New York, but I suspect that American has a broader or better alumni network and superior job placement outside its region.

"Vibe" is a defensible tie-breaker when all else is equal (same COA, same market, same placement power) - say, for students choosing between Columbia and NYU. But as between T2 law schools in different markets, the key is which market the applicant wants to work in after graduation. Everything else pales. T2 law schools place locally, and no one should attend any T2 expecting "superior job placement outside its region".



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