Hamilton at Columbia vs. Yale/Harvard

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rundoxierun
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Re: Hamilton at Columbia vs. Yale/Harvard

Postby rundoxierun » Wed Feb 09, 2011 8:14 pm

rose711 wrote:I think that anyone who turns down a fullride at Columbia to pay to go to Harvard or Yale is making a mistake. If you think that you are guaranteed biglaw and lots of money to pay back loans from Harvard or Yale, you might be kidding yourself - no one has a guarantee.

I think this scholarship/debt question is virtually the same comparison as all the other threads - you will be making a better choice to take the scholarship and not go into debt.


It really depends on what kind of need-based grant you are getting. If it is sticker at Yale/Harvard then I agree. But if they are getting at least 20k/yr. from Yale/Harvard I think it is a lot less certain.

Obi-Wan Kenobi
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Re: Hamilton at Columbia vs. Yale/Harvard

Postby Obi-Wan Kenobi » Wed Feb 09, 2011 8:31 pm

Is there any reason to choose the Hamilton over YLS?

If you can't get Biglaw out of YLS, you aren't getting it out of CLS, and COAP essentially takes care of anyone at YLS who doesn't get/want Biglaw--right?

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jcunni5
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Re: Hamilton at Columbia vs. Yale/Harvard

Postby jcunni5 » Wed Feb 09, 2011 8:36 pm

Y > Hamilton > H

i think this is the objective answer, if you have personal reasons for wanting to be in NYC that could definitely bump up the hamilton

rundoxierun
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Re: Hamilton at Columbia vs. Yale/Harvard

Postby rundoxierun » Wed Feb 09, 2011 8:38 pm

jcunni5 wrote:Y > Hamilton > H

i think this is the objective answer, if you have personal reasons for wanting to be in NYC that could definitely bump up the hamilton


Lol.. I feel pretty safe in saying there absolutely is not an objective answer.

rundoxierun
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Re: Hamilton at Columbia vs. Yale/Harvard

Postby rundoxierun » Wed Feb 09, 2011 8:41 pm

Obi-Wan Kenobi wrote:Is there any reason to choose the Hamilton over YLS?

If you can't get Biglaw out of YLS, you aren't getting it out of CLS, and COAP essentially takes care of anyone at YLS who doesn't get/want Biglaw--right?


Yeah you will likely get Biglaw but there is a big difference between making 160k(around 93-98k post-tax) and paying ~2,000/month in loans for 10 years and paying ~800/month in loans for 10 years. There is still a reason to choose CLS over YLS if you know you are focused on biglaw.
Last edited by rundoxierun on Wed Feb 09, 2011 8:49 pm, edited 1 time in total.

JeNeRegretteRien
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Re: Hamilton at Columbia vs. Yale/Harvard

Postby JeNeRegretteRien » Wed Feb 09, 2011 8:44 pm

tkgrrett wrote:
jcunni5 wrote:Y > Hamilton > H

i think this is the objective answer, if you have personal reasons for wanting to be in NYC that could definitely bump up the hamilton


Lol.. I feel pretty safe in saying there absolutely is not an objective answer.


+1.

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Moxie
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Re: Hamilton at Columbia vs. Yale/Harvard

Postby Moxie » Wed Feb 09, 2011 8:46 pm

Obi-Wan Kenobi wrote:Is there any reason to choose the Hamilton over YLS?

If you can't get Biglaw out of YLS, you aren't getting it out of CLS, and COAP essentially takes care of anyone at YLS who doesn't get/want Biglaw--right?


Yes, but the lack of debt is even more helpful . . .

Obi-Wan Kenobi
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Re: Hamilton at Columbia vs. Yale/Harvard

Postby Obi-Wan Kenobi » Wed Feb 09, 2011 8:54 pm

tkgrrett wrote:
Obi-Wan Kenobi wrote:Is there any reason to choose the Hamilton over YLS?

If you can't get Biglaw out of YLS, you aren't getting it out of CLS, and COAP essentially takes care of anyone at YLS who doesn't get/want Biglaw--right?


Yeah you will likely get Biglaw but there is a big difference between making paying ~2,000/month in loans for 10 years and paying ~800/month in loans for 10 years. There is still a reason to choose CLS over YLS if you know you are focused on biglaw.


Fair enough. But an extra ~200k over the course of a ~35 year career doesn't amount to a whole lot (about $5,700 a year). So the short-term pain is negligible over the long haul. And that's assuming that a YLS degree has the same monetary value as a CLS degree, which probably isn't true. A median YLS grad will likely go to a better firm with better exit options than a median CLS grad, etc.

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dresden doll
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Re: Hamilton at Columbia vs. Yale/Harvard

Postby dresden doll » Wed Feb 09, 2011 8:55 pm

tkgrrett wrote:
Obi-Wan Kenobi wrote:Is there any reason to choose the Hamilton over YLS?

If you can't get Biglaw out of YLS, you aren't getting it out of CLS, and COAP essentially takes care of anyone at YLS who doesn't get/want Biglaw--right?


Yeah you will likely get Biglaw but there is a big difference between making 160k(around 93-98k post-tax) and paying ~2,000/month in loans for 10 years and paying ~800/month in loans for 10 years. There is still a reason to choose CLS over YLS if you know you are focused on biglaw.


While chances of an OCI strike out are notably smaller at YLS, I mostly concur with this post.

rundoxierun
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Re: Hamilton at Columbia vs. Yale/Harvard

Postby rundoxierun » Wed Feb 09, 2011 9:08 pm

Obi-Wan Kenobi wrote:
tkgrrett wrote:
Obi-Wan Kenobi wrote:Is there any reason to choose the Hamilton over YLS?

If you can't get Biglaw out of YLS, you aren't getting it out of CLS, and COAP essentially takes care of anyone at YLS who doesn't get/want Biglaw--right?


Yeah you will likely get Biglaw but there is a big difference between making paying ~2,000/month in loans for 10 years and paying ~800/month in loans for 10 years. There is still a reason to choose CLS over YLS if you know you are focused on biglaw.


Fair enough. But an extra ~200k over the course of a ~35 year career doesn't amount to a whole lot (about $5,700 a year). So the short-term pain is negligible over the long haul. And that's assuming that a YLS degree has the same monetary value as a CLS degree, which probably isn't true. A median YLS grad will likely go to a better firm with better exit options than a median CLS grad, etc.


This isnt how you do it. The value of that 200k over time isnt static. For example, 200k today is worth a lot more than 200k 35 years from now. You must take into account both inflation and the loss of opportunity to earn a return on the 200k among other things.

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Re: Hamilton at Columbia vs. Yale/Harvard

Postby Obi-Wan Kenobi » Wed Feb 09, 2011 9:26 pm

tkgrrett wrote:
Obi-Wan Kenobi wrote:
tkgrrett wrote:
Obi-Wan Kenobi wrote:Is there any reason to choose the Hamilton over YLS?

If you can't get Biglaw out of YLS, you aren't getting it out of CLS, and COAP essentially takes care of anyone at YLS who doesn't get/want Biglaw--right?


Yeah you will likely get Biglaw but there is a big difference between making paying ~2,000/month in loans for 10 years and paying ~800/month in loans for 10 years. There is still a reason to choose CLS over YLS if you know you are focused on biglaw.


Fair enough. But an extra ~200k over the course of a ~35 year career doesn't amount to a whole lot (about $5,700 a year). So the short-term pain is negligible over the long haul. And that's assuming that a YLS degree has the same monetary value as a CLS degree, which probably isn't true. A median YLS grad will likely go to a better firm with better exit options than a median CLS grad, etc.


This isnt how you do it. The value of that 200k over time isnt static. For example, 200k today is worth a lot more than 200k 35 years from now. You must take into account both inflation and the loss of opportunity to earn a return on the 200k among other things.


Hmmm..good point.

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Re: Hamilton at Columbia vs. Yale/Harvard

Postby JeNeRegretteRien » Wed Feb 09, 2011 9:42 pm

tkgrrett wrote:
Obi-Wan Kenobi wrote:
tkgrrett wrote:
Obi-Wan Kenobi wrote:Is there any reason to choose the Hamilton over YLS?

If you can't get Biglaw out of YLS, you aren't getting it out of CLS, and COAP essentially takes care of anyone at YLS who doesn't get/want Biglaw--right?


Yeah you will likely get Biglaw but there is a big difference between making paying ~2,000/month in loans for 10 years and paying ~800/month in loans for 10 years. There is still a reason to choose CLS over YLS if you know you are focused on biglaw.


Fair enough. But an extra ~200k over the course of a ~35 year career doesn't amount to a whole lot (about $5,700 a year). So the short-term pain is negligible over the long haul. And that's assuming that a YLS degree has the same monetary value as a CLS degree, which probably isn't true. A median YLS grad will likely go to a better firm with better exit options than a median CLS grad, etc.


This isnt how you do it. The value of that 200k over time isnt static. For example, 200k today is worth a lot more than 200k 35 years from now. You must take into account both inflation and the loss of opportunity to earn a return on the 200k among other things.


Yes and no.

I mean the $5,700/year math is wrong, but you also don't pay for all of the tuition now. You pay for it over time, plus interest, but minus inflation. Assume long-run inflation of 3%, assume a long-run risk-free rate of 6%, the total increase economic value attributable to your YLS/HLS degree need only cover principle plus the spread between the discount-rate and inflation (or 3%). But of course, direct monetary compensation is an incomplete metric (there is a difficult to quantify value that would be assigned to possible incremental satisfaction that may be attainable only by going to YLS/HLS). So there's no "correct" and complete way to Net-Present-Value this. What if going to CLS the OP becomes a partner at Cravath, but going to YLS the OP becomes SEC Commissioner? Impossible to value. Or maybe the OP just has a much better experience at one place vs. the other. So to your original point, tkgrrett, there's no meaningfully objective answer.

Suffice it to say, there's probably some option-value to going to YLS/HLS that varies from case to case, and that may offset the tuition costs. At this level, money is the easy but wrong/un-predictive metric for long-run outcome.

So as a heuristic, to illustrate that the money in this particular and extraordinary case is rounding error, realizing that it's $5,700/year in nominal terms is close enough.

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Re: Hamilton at Columbia vs. Yale/Harvard

Postby rose711 » Wed Feb 09, 2011 10:13 pm

Can you come up with concrete examples of how a free ride at CLS is significantly worse than paying sticker (or close to sticker) at Yale? My reason for the opposite, why CLS is better, is because you don't want 6 figures of debt following you around. Plus you are assuming a lot - you are assuming you will make enough to cover the debt and you are assuming you will have a 35 year (presumably high paying) career. How can you assume this will happen?
I think you are better off never having to take a job just because you have to have the money to pay your school debt. If you can avoid it, the cost of your education shouldn't dictate your choices.

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Re: Hamilton at Columbia vs. Yale/Harvard

Postby dresden doll » Wed Feb 09, 2011 10:22 pm

rose711 wrote:Can you come up with concrete examples of how a free ride at CLS is significantly worse than paying sticker (or close to sticker) at Yale? My reason for the opposite, why CLS is better, is because you don't want 6 figures of debt following you around. Plus you are assuming a lot - you are assuming you will make enough to cover the debt and you are assuming you will have a 35 year (presumably high paying) career. How can you assume this will happen?
I think you are better off never having to take a job just because you have to have the money to pay your school debt. If you can avoid it, the cost of your education shouldn't dictate your choices.


A Hamilton doesn't mean you'll graduate debt free. You still need to take out loans for COL, unless you've got savings to fall back on. In NYC, that means at least 60k worth of debt over the span of three years.

Assuming a person took Hamilton and wound up below median, they could well be screwed out of Biglaw (below median wasn't safe anywhere in CCN, this year or last). The converse doesn't at all hold true for Yale.

Now, would that person be truly screwed? Not really, since they'd still graduate with low debt. But they might well regret the Hamilton in the light of a strike out that almost certainly wouldn't happen at YLS.

I won't even address situations where people desire academia. A Hamilton is a mistake for such students in the light of exponentially better opportunities for academia out of YLS.

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Knock
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Re: Hamilton at Columbia vs. Yale/Harvard

Postby Knock » Wed Feb 09, 2011 10:25 pm

Not to derail this thread too much, but what do people think of the Rubenstein?

rundoxierun
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Re: Hamilton at Columbia vs. Yale/Harvard

Postby rundoxierun » Wed Feb 09, 2011 10:27 pm

rose711 wrote:Can you come up with concrete examples of how a free ride at CLS is significantly worse than paying sticker (or close to sticker) at Yale? My reason for the opposite, why CLS is better, is because you don't want 6 figures of debt following you around. Plus you are assuming a lot - you are assuming you will make enough to cover the debt and you are assuming you will have a 35 year (presumably high paying) career. How can you assume this will happen?
I think you are better off never having to take a job just because you have to have the money to pay your school debt. If you can avoid it, the cost of your education shouldn't dictate your choices.


I honest to god dont see very many ways HYS at sticker over Hamilton(and imo, any T-10 full ride) is likely to pay off financially. The only possibilities I can think of are that you are dead set on academia so much so that its worth the extra ~150k or if you come from a very-low SES background and you feel there is some inherent value for your community/value in you attending an elite school(of course, in this case you are unlikely to be paying sticker).

Recipients of these scholarships are relatively unlikely to strike out and could potentially use 2L earnings to reduce loans even further(something that isnt possible at HLS at least).

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Re: Hamilton at Columbia vs. Yale/Harvard

Postby rundoxierun » Wed Feb 09, 2011 10:30 pm

Knock wrote:Not to derail this thread too much, but what do people think of the Rubenstein?


Rubenstein would pretty much immediately end my cycle. Unless you get a HUGE grant at HYS or hate Chicago I think it is the best deal in the T-14 due to the COL difference between Chicago and the northeast. You could potentially leave school with like 30k in debt.

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dresden doll
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Re: Hamilton at Columbia vs. Yale/Harvard

Postby dresden doll » Wed Feb 09, 2011 10:30 pm

tkgrrett wrote:Recipients of these scholarships are relatively unlikely to strike out.


That's generally correct but still not something one would want to rely on. Between a 60+ percent chance at Biglaw at CLS and a near certainty at YLS, a truly Biglaw focused person could well prefer the latter.

Law school performance can never be predicted with certainty.

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Re: Hamilton at Columbia vs. Yale/Harvard

Postby JeNeRegretteRien » Wed Feb 09, 2011 10:31 pm

rose711 wrote:Can you come up with concrete examples of how a free ride at CLS is significantly worse than paying sticker (or close to sticker) at Yale? My reason for the opposite, why CLS is better, is because you don't want 6 figures of debt following you around. Plus you are assuming a lot - you are assuming you will make enough to cover the debt and you are assuming you will have a 35 year (presumably high paying) career. How can you assume this will happen?
I think you are better off never having to take a job just because you have to have the money to pay your school debt. If you can avoid it, the cost of your education shouldn't dictate your choices.


"If you can avoid it, the cost of your education shouldn't dictate your choices."

Exactly.

I don't think the claim is (or at least, it's not mine) that CLS+Hamilton is a worse choice. But rather, that there's no objectively correct, one size fits all answer that can be summed up in, say, an NPV or $ figure. It just depends on the person, their goals, and chance.

They're all extraordinary opportunities, and you can't go wrong. Particular individuals may be more/less risk/debt averse, but that's a subjective preference; it's economically close enough to be a wash, and one shouldn't feel compelled to take one offer over the other. Any of the choices are reasonable / justifiable.

rundoxierun
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Re: Hamilton at Columbia vs. Yale/Harvard

Postby rundoxierun » Wed Feb 09, 2011 10:35 pm

dresden doll wrote:
tkgrrett wrote:Recipients of these scholarships are relatively unlikely to strike out.


That's generally correct but still not something one would want to rely on. Between a 60+ percent chance at Biglaw at CLS and a near certainty at YLS, a truly Biglaw focused person could well prefer the latter.

Law school performance can never be predicted with certainty.


Of course it cant be predicted with certainty but if you are going to be giving percentage chances at Biglaw you need to correct for that fact that a Hamilton scholars chances are not the same as the randomly selected student (the overall percentage chance). Idk the exact value but Im pretty sure it is close to "near certainty" the same way you would think YLS is.

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Re: Hamilton at Columbia vs. Yale/Harvard

Postby dresden doll » Wed Feb 09, 2011 10:44 pm

tkgrrett wrote:Of course it cant be predicted with certainty but if you are going to be giving percentage chances at Biglaw you need to correct for that fact that a Hamilton scholars chances are not the same as the randomly selected student (the overall percentage chance). Idk the exact value but Im pretty sure it is close to "near certainty" the same way you would think YLS is.


I'm a CCN 2L. I also happen to know a bit about my friends' grades, LSAT/GPA combos and OCI results. Going off of that knowledge, I have little reason to credit the idea that percentage chances jump from 60+ to a virtual certainty merely because a person had numbers high enough to merit a full ride.

Some of the most successful people in my class were reverse splitters who I'm pretty sure are paying sticker to go here. Conversely, I can think of several examples that wound up below median with above 75 percentile stats.

My percentage chances (which, btw, are pretty damn accurate) may stand to be somewhat corrected for Hamilton recipients but I heavily doubt that they rise by a whooping 30 percent merely because the person nailed their LSAT and had awesome UG GPA.

rundoxierun
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Re: Hamilton at Columbia vs. Yale/Harvard

Postby rundoxierun » Wed Feb 09, 2011 10:51 pm

dresden doll wrote:
tkgrrett wrote:Of course it cant be predicted with certainty but if you are going to be giving percentage chances at Biglaw you need to correct for that fact that a Hamilton scholars chances are not the same as the randomly selected student (the overall percentage chance). Idk the exact value but Im pretty sure it is close to "near certainty" the same way you would think YLS is.


I'm a CCN 2L. I also happen to know a bit about my friends' grades, LSAT/GPA combos and OCI results. Going off of that knowledge, I have little reason to credit the idea that percentage chances jump from 60+ to a virtual certainty merely because a person had numbers high enough to merit a full ride.

Some of the most successful people in my class were reverse splitters who I'm pretty sure are paying sticker to go here. Conversely, I can think of several examples that wound up below median with above 75 percentile stats.

My percentage chances (which, btw, are pretty damn accurate) may stand to be somewhat corrected for Hamilton recipients but I heavily doubt that they rise by a whooping 30 percent merely because the person nailed their LSAT and had awesome UG GPA.


Ehh I think the use of "near certainty" is pretty vague here. I would consider 80%+ chance(given a recession) as near certainty for the purposes of choosing schools. Obviously not an actual near certainty but a very good chance given that we cant really accurately predict on an individual level.

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Re: Hamilton at Columbia vs. Yale/Harvard

Postby drylo » Thu Feb 10, 2011 10:52 am

I can't believe how many people are convinced that Y/H offer enough more value than Columbia to justify turning down the Hamilton for anything other than subjective reasons.

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Re: Hamilton at Columbia vs. Yale/Harvard

Postby tinman » Thu Feb 10, 2011 11:59 am

2L at Yale who made this decision a couple years ago. I honestly think most people would be crazy to turn down Yale for Columbia.

Some reasons:
Most people change careers multiple times. Yale will help you over Columbia for many of them.
If you go into big law and make partner, the difference in compensation is negligible.
If you go into big law and leave after 3-5 years (which I think is by far your most likely eventuality from both schools), you will have made out better in the short term from CLS, but your exit firm options will not be as good I think (harder to transition to government, academic, in-house jobs). Actually, I'm not sure this is true. From Yale is easy to get a V3 job (or a Susman, etc) where the bonuses are higher. Most people turn such jobs down. At the firm I'm working at this coming summer, which is good but doesn't pay above market or have wicked bonuses, at least two people turned down Wachtell. If all you care about is money, you can at least partially make up for the extra money you spent on Yale by taking a firm job with bigger bonuses.
If you our on financial aid at all (that is, unless you have a huge trust fund ... even if you have rich parents this is true, as long as you don't have 100 grand in your name), then if you decide to work a public interest job or ANY job paying less than 60K, then Yale makes sense financially. Not only will Yale pay your law school loans, they will also pay any need-based UNDERGRADUATE loans!
In addition, the difference in debt is probably not as much as you might imagine for most people (it's definitely not the 150K sticker price of the Hamilton). Most people come out of Yale ~100K in debt. At the Columbia with the Hamilton, you will still have to pay to live in NYC, which for many people will mean spending 50K. And that 50K in debt (plus any loans you have from undergrad) will not be covered by the sort of generous loan forgiveness program as at Yale.

And that's just the financial side. Don't forget that CLS is sort of miserable. People work there asses off. Sure, you are likely to get a good firm job if you work reasonably hard at CLS. But they give out firm jobs like candy at YLS. You can get all P's and still get a V10 firm job.
And our first semester has no grades at all, and people spend most of the time socializing. It's pretty awesome.
Also, you can do well here even if you would perhaps not do so great at CLS. Exhibit A: me. I'm not sure that I'm very good at issue spotting (only really taken one for a grade yet, but would have been forced to have taken at least 10 at CLS, I think). But that doesn't really matter here so much. I take classes that interest me, write papers, etc. and it's fine.
Making on to law review is not as competitive at Yale, and you can be on as many secondary journals as you want in addition to or instead of law review. l.

Yale is not all sunshine and roses. But if all you want to do is make a ton of money, it absolutely can be. Many people (myself included) put inordinate amount of pressure on themselves 2L year because they want to clerk for fancy judges, become professors, or secure some government post. Financially, by the sort of brute economic logic that most people are displaying in this thread, these choices are as stupid as taking YLS over the Hamilton. But these are the only things that are still hard from YLS. The vast, vast majority can walk into an awesome firm job here. But it's not the same with clerkships. So people still find a way to stress and push themselves to the limit. But it's much easier to clerk from here than from anywhere else.

One final thought ... if you really care only about money, here is what I suggest: come to Yale, but 1) RA for the undergrads for free housing, 2) TA undergrad classes every semester, earning thousands each time, with all the extra time you will have because you are at YLS and not CLS, or 3) work full time in NYC, D.C. or elsewhere (I have plenty of friends doing this) while at YLS. These really are real options here, and can offset your Hamilton sacrifice. Especially TAing gigs are super easy to get at YLS (I got one this semester but decided my time was better spent doing mindless unpaid journal work).

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Re: Hamilton at Columbia vs. Yale/Harvard

Postby jcn4 » Thu Feb 10, 2011 12:16 pm

tinman wrote: 3) work full time in NYC, D.C. or elsewhere (I have plenty of friends doing this) while at YLS.


I've never heard of this. Can you elaborate?




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