Harvard Law v. Stanford Law

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

Where should I go?

Harvard Law School
195
46%
Stanford Law School
231
54%
 
Total votes: 426

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Haribo
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Re: Harvard Law v. Stanford Law

Postby Haribo » Tue Jul 22, 2008 11:23 pm

I think it really depends on what you want to do. I would choose Harvard because I'm comfortable in Boston, feel it has a more international focus and supports and encourages study abroad programs (including a joint JD/LLM with Cambridge University!), feel it offers a wider variety of clinics, programs, and classes (including ones in my areas of interest), and has an atmosphere that I think I'd prefer (including the dreaded graded classes.)

Also, maybe I'm naive, but I don't really think Harvard has a larger class size for monetary reasons. I think they have the resources to educate that many people, and I don't see how an elite law school offering people more educational opportunities is a bad thing. It means Harvard can support a wider range of clinics and programs (compare their offerings to Yale's, for example) and can hire more professors and offer more research opportunities. I think these are good things.

boston101
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Re: Harvard Law v. Stanford Law

Postby boston101 » Tue Jul 22, 2008 11:27 pm

malena wrote:I think it really depends on what you want to do. I would choose Harvard because I'm comfortable in Boston, feel it has a more international focus and supports and encourages study abroad programs (including a joint JD/LLM with Cambridge University!), feel it offers a wider variety of clinics, programs, and classes (including ones in my areas of interest), and has an atmosphere that I think I'd prefer (including the dreaded graded classes.)

Also, maybe I'm naive, but I don't really think Harvard has a larger class size for monetary reasons. I think they have the resources to educate that many people, and I don't see how an elite law school offering people more educational opportunities is a bad thing. It means Harvard can support a wider range of clinics and programs (compare their offerings to Yale's, for example) and can hire more professors and offer more research opportunities. I think these are good things.


rabbit, that was a really interesting post. you brought up alot of SLS's strong points.
The HLS housing is yuck but there is some great housing (non-HLS affliated) thats great.

malena wrote:I think it really depends on what you want to do. I would choose Harvard because I'm comfortable in Boston, feel it has a more international focus and supports and encourages study abroad programs (including a joint JD/LLM with Cambridge University!), feel it offers a wider variety of clinics, programs, and classes (including ones in my areas of interest), and has an atmosphere that I think I'd prefer (including the dreaded graded classes.)

Also, maybe I'm naive, but I don't really think Harvard has a larger class size for monetary reasons. I think they have the resources to educate that many people, and I don't see how an elite law school offering people more educational opportunities is a bad thing. It means Harvard can support a wider range of clinics and programs (compare their offerings to Yale's, for example) and can hire more professors and offer more research opportunities. I think these are good things.


malena, I think its great they educate that many lawyers. But, Harvard isnt know for trying to help "the people," uless forced to for PR reasons. So, Im sure theres some ulterior motive (s) for having such a large class. But, thats fine by me. LET ME IN! :P

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underdawg
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Re: Harvard Law v. Stanford Law

Postby underdawg » Wed Jul 23, 2008 12:50 am

bigben wrote:
underdawg wrote:
bigben wrote:I don't see how the large class size is about money. Assuming that it is would be akin to assuming that Y/S choose to have a small class size because they are obsessively paranoid about their prestige/ranking, or that they are excessively elitist. More students equals more professors to pay. With as much money as the school has (I think the ugrad endowment is like 30 billion) do you think they would go to such lengths for a few extra tuition dollars? Look at it this way, Harvard is giving 3 times as many people the wonderful opportunity to go to an elite of the elite law school. How does that make the school worse? As an institution, I like this better than Stanford sniveling in the corner YP'ing people.

Or maybe it's because Harvard has $10 billion more than either school.


What is because of that?

Also, I have no idea why you think it's reasonable to assume that people choose Harvard for such immature reasons. Name-drop-ability is proximate to employment opportunities, especially outside of traditional entry level legal jobs.

Harvard has more money to hire more professors and stuff maybe? I dunno, I actually meant "maybe" there as in I'm not exactly sure, but I think their endowment probably has something to do with it.

As for the second thing, it's because I see the posts here. People flip the shit out about what random ass people think of the school they go to. Not employers...we're talking about the friend of a friend or the milkman not knowing just how AWESOME their school is.

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ari20dal7
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Re: Harvard Law v. Stanford Law

Postby ari20dal7 » Wed Jul 23, 2008 12:52 am

Well, I think the PSU vs. UPenn issue has changed TLS forever.

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SteelersandGators
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Re: Harvard Law v. Stanford Law

Postby SteelersandGators » Wed Jul 23, 2008 12:54 am

ari20dal7 wrote:Well, I think the PSU vs. UPenn issue has changed TLS forever.


hopefully Bobina doesn't find this thread

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Re: Harvard Law v. Stanford Law

Postby boston101 » Wed Jul 23, 2008 1:01 am

underdawg wrote:
boston101 wrote:UD, you seemed to be obsessed with this idea of certain schools (HLS, CLS) being havens for prestige whores. I disagree. But, if they are, they are. Just because someone is proud of their school's rank, doesnt say all that much about their personality.

I just would like people to choose a school for more substantial reasons than wanting to be able to name-drop their law school in conversations. I'm not saying someone should turn down Harvard for a lesser school. I'm not even talking about school rank, just school name. Heck, I'm appalled when people turn down Yale for Harvard simply because of Harvard's name (there, of course, are many actually valid reasons to turn down Yale).

And my oversweeping generalization makes sense to me. If there is someone choosing between Harvard and Stanford and (s)he is one of those people that find a way to name-drop their schools in completely unrelated conversations, which school is (s)he going to choose? Hahvard. And yes, I think I can make a few accurate guesses about the rest of that person's personality from that one snippet...



Eh, to each her own. I dont really bother judging people on the reasons behind their educational decisions. I think its an especially tough thing to do when one is attending a T14 because no matter how many "great" programs the school offers, name played some role in the choice, whether or not the person admits it. Also, as a result, a large majority of people in the top programs are prestige whores (maybe a few less at a place like SLS or Boalt...but not by alot) and theyre going to be your friends and part of your networking so get used to it.

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underdawg
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Re: Harvard Law v. Stanford Law

Postby underdawg » Wed Jul 23, 2008 1:12 am

There is a difference between caring about the name because of the opportunities it affords you and caring about the name because you want some prestige in your everyday social, non-professional life.

I doubt anyone is going to Virginia, for example (great school but it's not going to impress the average joe on the street in New York City because it's a public school) is going there because the name of the school gives them a bonar.
Last edited by underdawg on Wed Jul 23, 2008 1:13 am, edited 1 time in total.

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sutochan
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Re: Harvard Law v. Stanford Law

Postby sutochan » Wed Jul 23, 2008 1:12 am

underdawg wrote:
Gators08 wrote:
underdawg wrote:Most people picking Harvard have no reason besides "Uhhh....it's Harvard!" :roll:


And unless the person choosing has a personally compelling reason to choose Stanford instead that is a perfect reason.

What sets the schools apart? The fact that Harvard is Harvard and Stanford isn't.

Riiiiight...

I'm pretty sure the average person at Stanford will be cooler than the average person at Harvard because the prestige whores all chose Harvard.

Location is a valid reason.


Let's not lose sight of the fact that we are talking about choosing between Stanford and Harvard here... do you honestly think that Stanford's name isn't also a factor that draws applicants? Accusing those who choose Harvard at least in part because of its brand of being "prestige whores" and less "cool" than those who choose Stanford is disingenuous at best. Are you kidding? I imagine that most of the students admitted to Harvard, Yale, and Stanford gave up the opportunity to go to some other outstanding T-14 law school (perhaps with a fat scholarship) to benefit from the prestige of their respective institution, whatever its source. The same goes for all of the kids in your class who will have picked NYU over UChicago at least in part because it is #5 rather than #7 (Prestige whores at NYU?)

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underdawg
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Re: Harvard Law v. Stanford Law

Postby underdawg » Wed Jul 23, 2008 1:14 am

sutochan wrote:Let's not lose sight of the fact that we are talking about choosing between Stanford and Harvard here... do you honestly think that Stanford's name isn't also a factor that draws applicants? Accusing those who choose Harvard at least in part because of its brand of being "prestige whores" and less "cool" than those who choose Stanford is disingenuous at best. Are you kidding? I imagine that most of the students admitted to Harvard, Yale, and Stanford gave up the opportunity to go to some other outstanding T-14 law school (perhaps with a fat scholarship) to benefit from the prestige of their respective institution, whatever its source. The same goes for all of the kids in your class who will have picked NYU over UChicago at least in part because it is #5 rather than #7 (Prestige whores at NYU?)

Have you seen anyone saying to choose Stanford with as stupid of a reason as "Stanford is Stanford" in this thread? Are YOU kidding? We all know Harvard and Stanford are eternally locked at #2 so why are you even talking about rankings?

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sutochan
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Re: Harvard Law v. Stanford Law

Postby sutochan » Wed Jul 23, 2008 1:26 am

bigben wrote:I can't comment on the personal factors such as the money and the family but I would choose Harvard without a doubt.

I'm not into all that hippie stuff like no grades, etc. What's the point?

As it has been mentioned, the class size issue can be argued either way, I personally like the large class argument better. Remember, the size of your section isn't going to be much different. The rankings are also skewed against schools with large class sizes, so Harvard could be seen as the stronger school in a way. Schools with smaller class sizes have an easier time keeping their rankings high. Obviously, Yale would not be as selective as it is if they were taking 500 people. People are claiming that Harvard people would be snobbier, but to me the small class size communicates a certain snobby elitism. Obviously, Stanford has an outstanding reputation, but could it support the number of graduates that Harvard does at the same level as it currently supports its 170?

While we're on the subject of reputation, Harvard and Stanford probably offer similar entry-level opportunities in the legal market, but Harvard outweighs Stanford when it comes to opening doors in any other line of work, in case anything else strikes your fancy down the road. There are a lot of things you can do in this world. This factor would be fairly significant to me personally.

OP: Stanford will win this poll easily, but don't put much stock in that. It has a perception of being younger and more hip, which will get this audience every time.

YoungFogey wrote:
boston101 wrote:I think Harvard has a huge class because it can. Unlike GULC, the Harvard name is hard to dilute. Maybe its because Harvard grads spread out so far (so theyre not all staying in Cambridge and NYC competing for those jobs). So, why not make as much money as possible by taking a big class?


It's a pet peeve of mine with both schools, precisely because I think it is about money. I think both schools could shave down their class sizes and maintain their educational opportunities. I think larger classes can offer more breadth. However, I do think there is the point of being greedy, and I think both schools cross into it. I think, especially for Harvard, they do it because they can, not because it makes them better.



I don't see how the large class size is about money. Assuming that it is would be akin to assuming that Y/S choose to have a small class size because they are obsessively paranoid about their prestige/ranking, or that they are excessively elitist. More students equals more professors to pay. With as much money as the school has (I think the ugrad endowment is like 30 billion) do you think they would go to such lengths for a few extra tuition dollars? Look at it this way, Harvard is giving 3 times as many people the wonderful opportunity to go to an elite of the elite law school. How does that make the school worse? As an institution, I like this better than Stanford sniveling in the corner YP'ing people.


I expect that it is Harvard's large class size that has given it so much lay prestige. HLS grads are everywhere, and many are quite successful. To the average joe who doesn't know or care about class sizes and selectivity, alumni outcomes are the easiest way to gauge prestige, and in terms of sheer numbers Harvard grads dominate pretty much every law-related field, from legal academia to politics. Wouldn't you want to be a part of that network?

Also, I think the argument that being a member of a smaller class somehow makes you a more precious commodity is ridiculous. All things being equal, would an employer choose a Stanford grad over a Harvard grad simply because people with Stanford degrees don't come around as often?

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sutochan
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Re: Harvard Law v. Stanford Law

Postby sutochan » Wed Jul 23, 2008 1:33 am

underdawg wrote:
sutochan wrote:Let's not lose sight of the fact that we are talking about choosing between Stanford and Harvard here... do you honestly think that Stanford's name isn't also a factor that draws applicants? Accusing those who choose Harvard at least in part because of its brand of being "prestige whores" and less "cool" than those who choose Stanford is disingenuous at best. Are you kidding? I imagine that most of the students admitted to Harvard, Yale, and Stanford gave up the opportunity to go to some other outstanding T-14 law school (perhaps with a fat scholarship) to benefit from the prestige of their respective institution, whatever its source. The same goes for all of the kids in your class who will have picked NYU over UChicago at least in part because it is #5 rather than #7 (Prestige whores at NYU?)

Have you seen anyone saying to choose Stanford with as stupid of a reason as "Stanford is Stanford" in this thread? Are YOU kidding? We all know Harvard and Stanford are eternally locked at #2 so why are you even talking about rankings?


I haven't seen someone choose Stanford over Harvard because "Stanford is Stanford," if that is what you are asking. That's irrelevant though, because in the "Harvard is Harvard" world, "Stanford is Stanford" is a non-reason for making that choice... because it's not Harvard.

I will concede that those who choose Stanford over Harvard certainly don't appear to be the sort of douchy "prestige whores" that you despise, but maybe they are, and Harvard just isn't their cup of tea. On the other hand, a good percentage of Stanford admits aren't admitted to Harvard... maybe they decided to go to Stanford over Columbia because "Stanford is Stanford... and Columbia isn't." I have seen threads like that, and no one knocks them for their decision.

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Re: Harvard Law v. Stanford Law

Postby underdawg » Wed Jul 23, 2008 1:41 am

Why would I criticize someone for taking Stanford over Columbia based on what I have said in this thread?

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sutochan
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Re: Harvard Law v. Stanford Law

Postby sutochan » Wed Jul 23, 2008 1:44 am

underdawg wrote:Why would I criticize someone for taking Stanford over Columbia based on what I have said in this thread?


So if someone's choice is incompatible with your stated preferences, and prestige has something to do with it, then they must be "prestige whores?"

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underdawg
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Re: Harvard Law v. Stanford Law

Postby underdawg » Wed Jul 23, 2008 1:45 am

Do you not see the difference between the two pairs? (Harvard v. Stanford and CLS v. Stanford)

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Re: Harvard Law v. Stanford Law

Postby boston101 » Wed Jul 23, 2008 2:03 am

sutochan wrote:
underdawg wrote:Why would I criticize someone for taking Stanford over Columbia based on what I have said in this thread?


So if someone's choice is incompatible with your stated preferences, and prestige has something to do with it, then they must be "prestige whores?"


Ah, I think you got it.

I just dont buy the SLS people are so much cooler because I know people at both SLS and HLS.
About the UVA example- UVA people dont impress lay people, but they might impress those somewhat in the know and they probably like that. Most UVA people (and those outside the T3) didnt have the chance to decide between their school and Harvard. For all we know, they would have chosen Harvard. Actually, I know of a few UVA people waiting on the HLS waitlist.

And whats the big difference between Boalt and Stanford? PRESTIGE.

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Re: Harvard Law v. Stanford Law

Postby underdawg » Wed Jul 23, 2008 2:07 am

You've got to be kidding me.

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Re: Harvard Law v. Stanford Law

Postby playhero » Wed Jul 23, 2008 2:08 am

boston101 wrote:I just dont buy the SLS people are so much cooler because I know people at both SLS and HLS.

Well then you are just ill informed, west coast is the best coast!

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Re: Harvard Law v. Stanford Law

Postby boston101 » Wed Jul 23, 2008 2:10 am

underdawg wrote:You've got to be kidding me.


Im not. But I am really curious about the reasons you so quickly label and demean HLS people as prestige whores. I thought you yourself applied to HLS. I could be mistaken....

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Re: Harvard Law v. Stanford Law

Postby boston101 » Wed Jul 23, 2008 2:11 am

playhero wrote:
boston101 wrote:I just dont buy the SLS people are so much cooler because I know people at both SLS and HLS.

Well then you are just ill informed, west coast is the best coast!


west coast people in general seem more laid-back. Alot of people going to SLS are not originally from cali, or even the west coast. The four people that I know who just graduated were from MidWest and FL.

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Re: Harvard Law v. Stanford Law

Postby nipplehead » Wed Jul 23, 2008 2:12 am

boston101 wrote:About the UVA example- UVA people dont impress lay people, but they might impress those somewhat in the know and they probably like that. Most UVA people (and those outside the T3) didnt have the chance to decide between their school and Harvard. For all we know, they would have chosen Harvard. Actually, I know of a few UVA people waiting on the HLS waitlist.


but a lot of UVA people turned down Columbia for UVA, and Columbia has wayyyyyyyyyyyyyy more lay prestige than Virginia.

in fairness, Harvard was my #1 choice going into this cycle, and i was WLed by them. but if i got off the WL, i'd stay with UVA. it impressed me considerably more, despite its lack of name recognition.
Last edited by nipplehead on Wed Jul 23, 2008 2:18 am, edited 1 time in total.

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underdawg
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Re: Harvard Law v. Stanford Law

Postby underdawg » Wed Jul 23, 2008 2:13 am

boston101 wrote:I just dont buy the SLS people are so much cooler because I know people at both SLS and HLS.

When did I say they were soooo much cooler?

About the UVA example- UVA people dont impress lay people, but they might impress those somewhat in the know and they probably like that.

How is this being a prestige whore? Impressing people in the know is called getting a job. Quite different from telling your friend's dad that you go to UPenn and not Penn State. What does the later do for your career? Nothing, it's just ego stroking.

Most UVA people (and those outside the T3) didnt have the chance to decide between their school and Harvard. For all we know, they would have chosen Harvard. Actually, I know of a few UVA people waiting on the HLS waitlist.

Yes, I would encourage them to go to Harvard because Harvard opens doors that Virginia (or any other non-HYS) can't. Why do you think I am encouraging people to go to lower-ranked schools? Stanford and Harvard open up the same doors in the legal field (except maybe academia, but no one has even brought that up yet.

And whats the big difference between Boalt and Stanford? PRESTIGE.

And opportunities. Firms go deeper into Stanford classes than Boalt. Stanford people have their choice of clerkships. etc. etc.

I am ONLY criticizing those people who are choosing Harvard over Stanford (or Yale) SOLELY on the name of Harvard to help them in their NON-PROFESSIONAL lives (i.e. impressing random people, being a pompous schmuck, etc). Holy crapola.

I never did this multiple quote thing before, so you betta recognize!
Last edited by underdawg on Wed Jul 23, 2008 2:17 am, edited 1 time in total.

boston101
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Re: Harvard Law v. Stanford Law

Postby boston101 » Wed Jul 23, 2008 2:16 am

nipplehead wrote:
boston101 wrote:About the UVA example- UVA people dont impress lay people, but they might impress those somewhat in the know and they probably like that. Most UVA people (and those outside the T3) didnt have the chance to decide between their school and Harvard. For all we know, they would have chosen Harvard. Actually, I know of a few UVA people waiting on the HLS waitlist./quote]

but a lot of UVA people turned down Columbia for UVA, and Columbia has wayyyyyyyyyyyyyy more lay prestige than Virginia.

in fairness, Harvard was my #1 choice going into this cycle, and i was WLed by them. but if i got off the WL, i'd stay with UVA. it impressed me considerably more, despite its lack of name recognition.



and alot of CLS people got into UVA. So, we'd really have to look at numbers to see how that worked. Plus, CLS prestige/name recognition doesnt hold a candle to HLS. I think UVA v. HLS is the most interesting example.
But, UVA in general seems to be an interesting example because, from what ive heard, it really does have a palpable laid-back feel.

Part of my gripe with ud, is that when I discussed how I had chosen CLS over NYU and that piece of had to do with name recognition (more of it had to do with the lawyers I talked to...remember, public perception takes time to catch up to rankings) I was immediately labeled a "prestige whore" and I think hes doing that to HLS people. I think its bs.

boston101
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Re: Harvard Law v. Stanford Law

Postby boston101 » Wed Jul 23, 2008 2:18 am

When I said "in the know" I meant people that know about law schools, not people doing the hiring. For example, the people on TLS.
I HIGHLY doubt people, including OP, choose HLS SOLELY based on name. Harvard opens so many doors and I think thats what everyone is most attracted to.

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Re: Harvard Law v. Stanford Law

Postby underdawg » Wed Jul 23, 2008 2:20 am

When did I ever talk about the OP? And what doors does Harvard open that Stanford and Yale don't (in the legal world)?

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nipplehead
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Re: Harvard Law v. Stanford Law

Postby nipplehead » Wed Jul 23, 2008 2:21 am

boston101 wrote:
nipplehead wrote:
boston101 wrote:About the UVA example- UVA people dont impress lay people, but they might impress those somewhat in the know and they probably like that. Most UVA people (and those outside the T3) didnt have the chance to decide between their school and Harvard. For all we know, they would have chosen Harvard. Actually, I know of a few UVA people waiting on the HLS waitlist./quote]

but a lot of UVA people turned down Columbia for UVA, and Columbia has wayyyyyyyyyyyyyy more lay prestige than Virginia.

in fairness, Harvard was my #1 choice going into this cycle, and i was WLed by them. but if i got off the WL, i'd stay with UVA. it impressed me considerably more, despite its lack of name recognition.



and alot of CLS people got into UVA. So, we'd really have to look at numbers to see how that worked.


that doesn't really matter, though. if we're talking about UVA students that currently attend UVA, the number of students at CLS who got into UVA is meaningless. what matters is how many UVA students turned down CLS, a far more prestigious school, for UVA.

anyways, regardless, i think what UD is trying to say is this: on these boards, and thus perhaps in general, it seems a lot of people say, in response to H vs S, "go to Harvard, it's Harvard. duh." well, they're equally ranked, they have equal opportunities, etc. the only reason these people are recommending that course of action is because they want the extra prestige, which is completely silly. choose a substantial reason for the school, not the perceived lay prestige.




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