Help Making a Decision a/b NYU Please

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abitaman6363
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Help Making a Decision a/b NYU Please

Postby abitaman6363 » Tue Apr 06, 2010 6:18 pm

Hi! I never thought I'd write one of these, however, I am in a bit of a bind and would love some input.

I am currently 24 and want to study international law. My numbers are 4.0 GPA (from Honors College at large public university in the south) and 173 LSAT (took twice; made mid-160s first time around).

I was accepted to several schools with sizeable scholarships last spring (Georgetown, Duke, Michigan, Texas, UVA) but ultimately deferred NYU and was thus locked into that school. I deferred to complete a volunteer project I began on the Pakistan-Afghan border for a small girls' school (http://www.shadowgirlsacademy.org). Unfortunately, I was forced to reapply for NYU's financial aid this year and have not received much aid.

With the sticker price at $210,000 for three years, NYU offered me only $25,000 total for the Dean's scholarship (10k+10k+5k). I have about $20,000 saved up for law school. My estimated Stafford loans are $60,000.

So essentially I have $30,000 in scholarship + expected Stafford loans annually, which leaves $40,000 for me to pay year. I am far, far from wealthy and thus do not know how to make up the difference.

I am not sure if I should forgo law school for yet another year, which I would like to not do if possible. I am already 24, would like to begin a family not long after graduating law school, and would like to not wait much longer if possible.

However, if I postponed law school, I could drop my deferral to NYU and reapply to law schools next year, thereby accepting a more financially feasible school. The loss, of course, will probably be in prestige and future salary.

So my questions to those who can help are 1) Do students really go into law schools facing this much debt and make it out okay? 2) Besides Stafford Loans, where else do I look to make up the additional $40,000-a-year? 3) What would you do in my situation?

Thank you for your time! I really appreciate your help, and good luck with all of your own endeavors!

toaster2
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Re: Help Making a Decision a/b NYU Please

Postby toaster2 » Tue Apr 06, 2010 6:23 pm

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Last edited by toaster2 on Tue May 25, 2010 1:44 am, edited 1 time in total.

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scribelaw
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Re: Help Making a Decision a/b NYU Please

Postby scribelaw » Tue Apr 06, 2010 6:24 pm

You can borrow GradPlus loans from the federal government for up to the full cost of attendance.

You have HYS numbers, though. Did you apply to those last year?

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vanwinkle
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Re: Help Making a Decision a/b NYU Please

Postby vanwinkle » Tue Apr 06, 2010 6:25 pm

You should be eligible for GradPLUS loans up to the difference between what you have and tuition+COA. Talk to NYU's financial aid department about whether you qualify for GradPLUS loans.

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abitaman6363
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Re: Help Making a Decision a/b NYU Please

Postby abitaman6363 » Tue Apr 06, 2010 6:29 pm

scribelaw wrote:You can borrow GradPlus loans from the federal government for up to the full cost of attendance.

You have HYS numbers, though. Did you apply to those last year?


Thanks for the response Scribelaw. I did apply to Yale and Harvard and was waitlisted multiple times and ultimately rejected from both. I "thought" my LSAT and high GPA plus extensive travels, volunteer work, and solid p.s would give me a shot. Perhaps my initial, subpar LSAT score held me back.

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abitaman6363
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Re: Help Making a Decision a/b NYU Please

Postby abitaman6363 » Tue Apr 06, 2010 6:31 pm

vanwinkle wrote:You should be eligible for GradPLUS loans up to the difference between what you have and tuition+COA. Talk to NYU's financial aid department about whether you qualify for GradPLUS loans.


Is it fairly typical going into NYU or peer schools with this level of loans (approx $60,00/year or $180,000 total)?

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scribelaw
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Re: Help Making a Decision a/b NYU Please

Postby scribelaw » Tue Apr 06, 2010 6:34 pm

abitaman6363 wrote:
vanwinkle wrote:You should be eligible for GradPLUS loans up to the difference between what you have and tuition+COA. Talk to NYU's financial aid department about whether you qualify for GradPLUS loans.


Is it fairly typical going into NYU or peer schools with this level of loans (approx $60,00/year or $180,000 total)?


Yes. Most people at CCN will graduate with $150,000 to $210,000 in debt.

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abitaman6363
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Re: Help Making a Decision a/b NYU Please

Postby abitaman6363 » Tue Apr 06, 2010 6:57 pm

scribelaw wrote:
abitaman6363 wrote:
vanwinkle wrote:You should be eligible for GradPLUS loans up to the difference between what you have and tuition+COA. Talk to NYU's financial aid department about whether you qualify for GradPLUS loans.


Is it fairly typical going into NYU or peer schools with this level of loans (approx $60,00/year or $180,000 total)?


Yes. Most people at CCN will graduate with $150,000 to $210,000 in debt.


I know this is buried in the forums somewhere, but how long would you say it takes, on average, to pay back these loans if you go the private route after graduating? I heard a lot of firms offer first year signing bonuses to help lessen this heavy financial burden. What percentage of the graduating class do you think gets these heavenly bonuses from CCN?

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ravens20
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Re: Help Making a Decision a/b NYU Please

Postby ravens20 » Tue Apr 06, 2010 7:15 pm

abitaman6363 wrote:
scribelaw wrote:
abitaman6363 wrote:
vanwinkle wrote:You should be eligible for GradPLUS loans up to the difference between what you have and tuition+COA. Talk to NYU's financial aid department about whether you qualify for GradPLUS loans.


Is it fairly typical going into NYU or peer schools with this level of loans (approx $60,00/year or $180,000 total)?


Yes. Most people at CCN will graduate with $150,000 to $210,000 in debt.


I know this is buried in the forums somewhere, but how long would you say it takes, on average, to pay back these loans if you go the private route after graduating? I heard a lot of firms offer first year signing bonuses to help lessen this heavy financial burden. What percentage of the graduating class do you think gets these heavenly bonuses from CCN?


If you make biglaw, which you can reasonably do with median grades at CCN, you are looking at about $160,000 plus signing bonuses (not to mention $30,000 your 2L summer). This number rises over the next several years although you should keep in mind two things: first, the work is very demanding in terms of time commitment and many people quit within the first few years and second, at about the 7 year mark, firms will generally either make associates partners or gently nudge them out the door (so you can't count on raking in biglaw money forever). Of course at this point, one can attempt to transition into a smaller firm, do consulting, etc.

But biglaw isn't the only route available to debt-burdened graduates at top law schools. If you are interested in public interest (including government work), the best law schools will gradually pay off your debt in exchange for a commitment to public service work (LRAP programs). In addition, according to the IBR, all federal loans are forgiven after 10 years of public interest work. So a student with massive law school debt can go the public interest route and, depending on the strength of the LRAP program at his/her school, can basically not worry about not making enough to pay it off.

So don't worry. People are going to NYU and other peer schools at full tuition. Why? Because the opportunities available to most graduates outweigh the considerable cost.
Last edited by ravens20 on Tue Apr 06, 2010 11:06 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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abitaman6363
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Re: Help Making a Decision a/b NYU Please

Postby abitaman6363 » Tue Apr 06, 2010 11:05 pm

ravens20 wrote:
If you make biglaw, which you can reasonably do with median grades at CCN, you are looking at about $160,000 plus signing bonuses (not to mention $30,000 your 2L summer). This number rises over the next several years although you should keep in mind two things: first, the work is very demanding in terms of time commitment and several people quit within the first few years and second, at about the 7 year mark, firms will generally either make associates partners or gently nudge them out the door (so you can't count on raking in biglaw money forever). Of course at this point, one can attempt to transition into a smaller firm, do consulting, etc.

But biglaw isn't the only route available to debt-burdened graduates at top law schools. If you are interested in public interest (including government work), the best law schools will gradually pay off your debt in exchange for a commitment to public service work (LRAP programs). In addition, according to the IBR, all federal loans are forgiven after 10 years of public interest work. So a student with massive law school debt can go the public interest route and, depending on the strength of the LRAP program at his/her school, can basically not worry about not making enough to pay it off.

So don't worry. People are going to NYU and other peer schools at full tuition. Why? Because the opportunities available to most graduates outweigh the considerable cost.


Thank you all for the help! Guess I realized even I am susceptible to a little law school freak out once in awhile. Was worried about this for the last several days and all of the advice is truly settling. Thanks again!




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