Schools and prograns for health law/policy

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AronJW
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Schools and prograns for health law/policy

Postby AronJW » Sun Nov 29, 2009 12:20 am

So my career goals are definitely geared toward Health Care Law and Policy. My school choice has become rather complicated.

I want to pursue a dual degree, probably a JD/MPH or JD/MHA. I have a lot of health care experience, and a pretty impressive resume but a mediocre LSAT.

3.74 GPA, dual bachelor's degree cum laude, bilingual (English and Spanish) 161 LSAT, tons of WE (40 hrs+ throughout UG.)

My choices are as follows:

Arizona (In state tuition, JD/MPH program offered for first time in 2010)
Arizona State (In state tuition, probable scholarships, Health law concentration but no dual degree option)
Colorado (love the location, offers a JD/MHA in Philosophy, where I can focus on Bioethics)
UC Davis (health law concentration, but no dual degree)
UCLA (among my top choices, but quite a reach. Not holding my breath)
Maryland (nationally prominent health law program and JD/MPH, but probably double the cost of AZ)
Washington (pretty much same as Maryland but with a much better Law school)
Stanford (super reach, but their JD/MS program is absolutely perfect for me)

Arizona remains my top choice because it is in my home state, and still offers the program I want. However there are schools that offer better programs in other states. (Washington, Maryland, Stanford, UCLA) but even if I do get in, they are far more expensive.

So what are everybody's thoughts? I'd appreciate any advice I can get.

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Learning Hand
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Re: Schools and prograns for health law/policy

Postby Learning Hand » Sun Nov 29, 2009 12:23 am

Minnesota has a program. Too cold for you?
Last edited by Learning Hand on Sun Nov 29, 2009 12:24 am, edited 1 time in total.

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truthchase
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Re: Schools and prograns for health law/policy

Postby truthchase » Sun Nov 29, 2009 12:24 am

Loyola University Chicago - Always ranked top very well (usually top five) in health law and commits an abundance of resources to its health law center.

http://www.luc.edu/healthlaw/degrees/index.html


http://grad-schools.usnews.rankingsandr ... thcare-law
Last edited by truthchase on Sun Nov 29, 2009 12:28 am, edited 1 time in total.

AronJW
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Re: Schools and prograns for health law/policy

Postby AronJW » Sun Nov 29, 2009 12:26 am

I have looked at both Minnesota and Loyola. Generally speaking, unless I go to a T14, I would prefer to stay in the West.

Chicago is a really cool city, but don't see myself going there.

Minnesota is just to cold. I wouldn't survive.

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truthchase
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Re: Schools and prograns for health law/policy

Postby truthchase » Sun Nov 29, 2009 12:29 am

I hear that, but if finances are an issue for you, Loyola Chicago offers great scholarship opportunities for health law students.

AronJW
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Re: Schools and prograns for health law/policy

Postby AronJW » Sun Nov 29, 2009 12:31 am

Thanks. I'm definitely gonna check it out. Too bad Loyola LA isn't as good in this particular area.

viking138
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Re: Schools and prograns for health law/policy

Postby viking138 » Sun Nov 29, 2009 12:39 am

Have you thought about just doing a MPH? That might lead to better employment prospects than the schools you are likely to get into with the 161, despite what I'm sure is an outstanding work and extracurricular record.

Beyond just the employment prospects, if you were able to get into a top MPH program you could probably get a job that would give you a lot more input into health policy than your likely schools.

Just my $0.02 but I would definitely recommend considering the MPH. Unless it's specifically health law you want to work in, a MPH from a better school will give you much greater opportunities in health policy than the JD from a lower-tier law school.

AronJW
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Re: Schools and prograns for health law/policy

Postby AronJW » Sun Nov 29, 2009 12:56 am

Skipping the JD is something that I've considered. Most of the people I work with recommend that I forget law school, but few doctors have much respect for attorneys. At this point, I'm going to stick with the Law School plan, but focusing primarily on the MPH or MHA is something that I may well do, especially if I don't get into any of the better schools to which I'm applying. Unfortunately, there don't seem to be many good jobs going to people with only an MPH or MHA, however prospects look good for those who combine it with another professional degree (MD, JD, PharmD, etc). We'll just have to see what happens.

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bilbobaggins
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Re: Schools and prograns for health law/policy

Postby bilbobaggins » Sun Nov 29, 2009 1:00 am

You should probably look for one that includes Spelling Policy, too.

viking138
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Re: Schools and prograns for health law/policy

Postby viking138 » Sun Nov 29, 2009 1:05 am

I think an important consideration should also be the debt you'll incur with most of those JD programs as well. Absent significant merit aid or something, most of those programs cost $150k+ only for the JD. Please correct me if I'm wrong but I believe that most health policy jobs aren't very well-paid (at least not on the level that is needed to pay off so much debt). Additionally, a lot of schools have pretty insignificant loan repayment options for those going into public interest (i.e. health) or require that you actually be practicing law.

At any rate, good luck!!!

AronJW
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Re: Schools and prograns for health law/policy

Postby AronJW » Sun Nov 29, 2009 1:22 am

Debt is most definitely a factor for me. That's what makes UA so likely for me. ASU would be even cheaper, but without the dual degree program, I doubt I'd pick it over UA. The cost of Washington and Maryland are scary, and Stanford or UCLA are terrifying (but they are both serious reaches, so I'm not terribly concerned at the moment.)

roadkilllaw
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Re: Schools and prograns for health law/policy

Postby roadkilllaw » Sun Nov 29, 2009 1:27 am

How about UW?

viking138
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Re: Schools and prograns for health law/policy

Postby viking138 » Sun Nov 29, 2009 1:28 am

AronJW wrote:Debt is most definitely a factor for me. That's what makes UA so likely for me. ASU would be even cheaper, but without the dual degree program, I doubt I'd pick it over UA. The cost of Washington and Maryland are scary, and Stanford or UCLA are terrifying (but they are both serious reaches, so I'm not terribly concerned at the moment.)


If Washington is University of Washington, they have a top-top medical school and if any of that prestige rubs off on their MS programs I would highly recommend you go there if you're accepted. Also, it places very well in the Pacific Northwest which is a hub of healthcare activity so there could be some great opportunities for you there. And it's in Seattle, so it gets my vote -- I love that city!

AronJW
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Re: Schools and prograns for health law/policy

Postby AronJW » Sun Nov 29, 2009 1:33 am

Yes Washington is UW. The only thing that keeps this school from being top of my list is cost. They don't consider education a viable reason for residency, so there is no chance for in-state tuition. This means that overall, it would likely cost double what the same program at Arizona would cost. However their law school is top 30, and their MPH and MHA programs are each in the top 5 of their respective rankings, so it's a tough choice.

I also have a bunch of friends in Seattle, so no matter how you cut it, this school is a serious consideration for me (if I get accepted, that is...)

viking138
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Re: Schools and prograns for health law/policy

Postby viking138 » Sun Nov 29, 2009 1:38 am

AronJW wrote:Yes Washington is UW. The only thing that keeps this school from being top of my list is cost. They don't consider education a viable reason for residency, so there is no chance for in-state tuition. This means that overall, it would likely cost double what the same program at Arizona would cost. However their law school is top 30, and their MPH and MHA programs are each in the top 5 of their respective rankings, so it's a tough choice.

I also have a bunch of friends in Seattle, so no matter how you cut it, this school is a serious consideration for me (if I get accepted, that is...)



The opportunities you would get out of UW should more than compensate for the cost (which I realize is considerable). Also remember, thought, that cost of living isn't terrible in Washington like it is in a lot of areas where law schools are.

Your LSAT is low for them (below median I believe) and your GPA is around median so you should be a consider at University of Washington (per lawschoolpredictor.com). I really think it would be the best school for your purposes. But again, I'm biased for Seattle :)

AronJW
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Re: Schools and prograns for health law/policy

Postby AronJW » Sun Nov 29, 2009 1:49 am

Yes, my LSAT is a little low for them. GPA is above median, which should help a little. From what I've been told, Washington gives special attention to students interested in health law since the program is one of the University's best attributes. I think that my work experience could potentially be the thing that pushes me over the top at UW.

The more is discuss it and weigh pros and cons, the more UW seems like the choice to make. I guess it all just depends on admission.

viking138
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Re: Schools and prograns for health law/policy

Postby viking138 » Sun Nov 29, 2009 1:51 am

AronJW wrote:Yes, my LSAT is a little low for them. GPA is above median, which should help a little. From what I've been told, Washington gives special attention to students interested in health law since the program is one of the University's best attributes. I think that my work experience could potentially be the thing that pushes me over the top at UW.

The more is discuss it and weigh pros and cons, the more UW seems like the choice to make. I guess it all just depends on admission.


Good luck! If you're waitlisted, make sure you write a Letter of Continuing Interest highlighting your work experience and interest in the program. Also visit if possible, after you're waitlisted.


Hopefully this won't be necessary though!

AronJW
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Re: Schools and prograns for health law/policy

Postby AronJW » Sun Nov 29, 2009 2:18 am

Thanks for the tips, I'll definitely keep all of that in mind.

Any other schools that I should be considering that I haven't touched on? I know my LSAT will keep me out of most of the best Law Schools, but I think I'll be competitive at pretty much any MPH, MHA or similar program, so finding a school with both is difficult. And then comes the question of whether the prestige of the law school or the master's program is really the more important factor. Generally, I would think that school prestige matters more for JDs than the masters', but who knows.

yabbadabbado
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Re: Schools and prograns for health law/policy

Postby yabbadabbado » Sun Nov 29, 2009 3:37 am

If your goal is to do policy work, forget the JD. You'd be better off doing a straight MPH or an MPP/MPA or a combo of the two maybe. Even if you could get into a top law school, the JD would probably still be a bad idea if you want to focus on policy work.

Most policy jobs pay around $50K, btw. Doing a Masters + JD = 200,000K, easily. Plus the JD doesn't really help for policy jobs.

AronJW
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Re: Schools and prograns for health law/policy

Postby AronJW » Sun Nov 29, 2009 4:21 am

Policy isn't my only interest. I would also be happy in a hospital, law firm, or health care agency. (My current CEO is a JD). I just know that in my current position, I have enjoyed working on policy issues and working with ethics committees, both of which are common places and fields for attorneys.

I have found several jobs that I'd find interesting, ranging from policy analysts to health care administrators that are seeking applicants with a JD. At this point, I think it's still worth pursuing, but I don't leave out the possibility that I will change that decision here in the future (perhaps even in the near future). Regardless of what I do with Law School, the MPH/MHA is something I will definitely be pursuing. The only things that changes is that if I don't go to law school concurrently with the master's program, I will need to take the GRE, because the LSAT is sufficient only for applicants to joint degrees.

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jcl2
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Re: Schools and prograns for health law/policy

Postby jcl2 » Mon Nov 30, 2009 6:12 pm

AronJW wrote:Yes Washington is UW. The only thing that keeps this school from being top of my list is cost. They don't consider education a viable reason for residency, so there is no chance for in-state tuition. This means that overall, it would likely cost double what the same program at Arizona would cost. However their law school is top 30, and their MPH and MHA programs are each in the top 5 of their respective rankings, so it's a tough choice.

I also have a bunch of friends in Seattle, so no matter how you cut it, this school is a serious consideration for me (if I get accepted, that is...)


Actually if you are a graduate/professional student you can get residency after one year. The education not being grounds for residency thing only applies to UG. I know this because I did a masters program at a state university in Washington and all of the out of state students were able to get in-state status for their second years. In-fact the department required it for funded students.

yabbadabbado
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Re: Schools and prograns for health law/policy

Postby yabbadabbado » Mon Nov 30, 2009 6:33 pm

If you can knock the GRE out of the park, it's possible to get full funding or close to it at some MPH programs. I would at least study for the GRE (study for real, prep course, etc) and see what kind of options you have on the MPH front.

A 161 LSAT isn't going to give you a lot of great options unless you are URM. You'll end up paying way too much for the schools you mentioned that would actually accept you.

yabbadabbado
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Re: Schools and prograns for health law/policy

Postby yabbadabbado » Mon Nov 30, 2009 6:35 pm

Actually if you are a graduate/professional student you can get residency after one year. The education not being grounds for residency thing only applies to UG. I know this because I did a masters program at a state university in Washington and all of the out of state students were able to get in-state status for their second years. In-fact the department required it for funded students.


Always double check residency policies very carefully. I've seen them change from year to year and differ from university to university even within the same state. Also, look at the actual cost of in-state tuition. Since law school tuition has gone up so drastically over the last several years, even in-state might not give you much of a tuition break depending on the school.

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jcl2
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Re: Schools and prograns for health law/policy

Postby jcl2 » Mon Nov 30, 2009 8:15 pm

yabbadabbado wrote:
Actually if you are a graduate/professional student you can get residency after one year. The education not being grounds for residency thing only applies to UG. I know this because I did a masters program at a state university in Washington and all of the out of state students were able to get in-state status for their second years. In-fact the department required it for funded students.


Always double check residency policies very carefully. I've seen them change from year to year and differ from university to university even within the same state. Also, look at the actual cost of in-state tuition. Since law school tuition has gone up so drastically over the last several years, even in-state might not give you much of a tuition break depending on the school.


I guess it is a fee waiver for graduate and professional students. Here is the link from UW's website: http://www.washington.edu/students/reg/residency/graduateProfessional.html

So you have to apply for residency, and if you fail to overcome the presumption that you are in Washington primarily for educational purposes the school will provide you a waiver for the difference in tuition.

AronJW
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Re: Schools and prograns for health law/policy

Postby AronJW » Mon Nov 30, 2009 10:34 pm

Well the possibility of gaining resident tuition in WA makes that an even more desirable option. I will definitely be considering that as a top option if I get accepted.

I was really hoping to avoid taking the GRE if possible. I know at Arizona, if accepted to both programs, the LSAT is sufficient. From what I've been told, this is pretty standard as long as the concurrent degree program is an established route for the given school. I hardly studied at all for the LSAT...hence the 161... So I know I could do a lot better than the 161 would indicate.

Thanks for all the help, this has all been very valuable.




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