Weird line in Cornell scholarship letter

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dresden doll
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Re: Weird line in Cornell scholarship letter

Postby dresden doll » Sun May 09, 2010 9:37 pm

shepdawg wrote:
pegleg wrote:Was that expressly stated in your scholarship letter?

"In the event that I transfer or withdraw from California Western, or do not take the California Bar as stated above, I understand that the scholarship will revert to a loan, retroactive to the date I enrolled, and I must repay the loan in full plus interest."


Wow. Would never attend a school that did such a thing. That's really crappy.

sharpnsmooth
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Re: Weird line in Cornell scholarship letter

Postby sharpnsmooth » Mon May 10, 2010 12:03 am

dresden doll wrote:
shepdawg wrote:
pegleg wrote:Was that expressly stated in your scholarship letter?

"In the event that I transfer or withdraw from California Western, or do not take the California Bar as stated above, I understand that the scholarship will revert to a loan, retroactive to the date I enrolled, and I must repay the loan in full plus interest."


Wow. Would never attend a school that did such a thing. That's really crappy.


+1

i understand why giving that student a scholarship vs. another would be a waste, because odds are you won't donate to the school you didn't graduate from, but maybe they should just be very selective in who they give the scholarships to, and assess their devotion to the school.

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creamedcats
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Re: Weird line in Cornell scholarship letter

Postby creamedcats » Mon May 10, 2010 12:33 am

dresden doll wrote:
shepdawg wrote:
pegleg wrote:Was that expressly stated in your scholarship letter?

"In the event that I transfer or withdraw from California Western, or do not take the California Bar as stated above, I understand that the scholarship will revert to a loan, retroactive to the date I enrolled, and I must repay the loan in full plus interest."


Wow. Would never attend a school that did such a thing. That's really crappy.


That's pretty bad. If one of the purposes of the scholarship is to attract qualified (LSAT/GPA/URM) students and up the profile, they're profiting and you're getting nothing. The only situation I can see this being acceptable is if it's a specifically targeted PI/regional scholarship of some sort...and even then, UGH. Probably conditioned that way because of very limited funds and a need to build an alumni network, I don't know...

Case has a line about having to participate in fundraising activities including interviews, emails and phone calls, but apparently they don't actually require it of very many recipients. I can't say I care about that - I almost expect it. Most of the schools I applied to had students recruited to answer questions for me. As long as they don't stuff answers in my mouth, who cares? It's a lot of money. If there was a 'no transfer' or 'must take Ohio bar exam' or something like that in my scholarship, it would be an absolute deal breaker. In fact, the word 'loan' would be. I don't see that as an entitlement - I am happy to give my time and effort to inform people about the same opportunities that were given to me - I see it as plain old reality...

This is as someone whose undergrad scholarship was revoked because I had the gall to win a major award that had me leave the country for a year for study, thus violating the 'must be CONSECUTIVELY ENROLLED IN A XXXX UNIVERSITY PROGRAM for four years' clause. I begged and pleaded, especially since my university had no remotely comparable program of its own in that area of study...no dice. What exactly did they lose? Nothing. But they had an opening to recover dollars, and they took it. Don't ever give anyone that opening.

Pearalegal
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Re: Weird line in Cornell scholarship letter

Postby Pearalegal » Mon May 10, 2010 12:37 am

The thread made me realize how much of a business law schools are, and it made me sad.

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lt0826
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Re: Weird line in Cornell scholarship letter

Postby lt0826 » Mon May 10, 2010 12:57 am

goodolgil wrote:I think "moral obligation" is a little strong.


I think it is a moral obligation if your circumstance allows it without hardship. I have given back what I can to my UG (granted no where near what they gave me in grants) because I appreciate the opportunity I was given and I wouldn't have been able to take advantage of such an amazing school without those grants. I feel I have a moral obligation to help other students in the future benefit as well. No one can force you to donate. But they can only provide you with $$ because others have donated.

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SaintClarence27
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Re: Weird line in Cornell scholarship letter

Postby SaintClarence27 » Mon May 10, 2010 8:09 am

lt0826 wrote:
goodolgil wrote:I think "moral obligation" is a little strong.


I think it is a moral obligation if your circumstance allows it without hardship. I have given back what I can to my UG (granted no where near what they gave me in grants) because I appreciate the opportunity I was given and I wouldn't have been able to take advantage of such an amazing school without those grants. I feel I have a moral obligation to help other students in the future benefit as well. No one can force you to donate. But they can only provide you with $$ because others have donated.


I think it can be argued that it's a moral obligation, sure. That's fine.

It's something else entirely (see: tacky, crude, entitled) for them to just state it like that.

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shepdawg
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Re: Weird line in Cornell scholarship letter

Postby shepdawg » Mon May 10, 2010 12:47 pm

dresden doll wrote:Wow. Would never attend a school that did such a thing. That's really crappy.

My problem is that it's actually my best offer.

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Always Credited
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Re: Weird line in Cornell scholarship letter

Postby Always Credited » Mon May 10, 2010 1:07 pm

I'll never donate to any school, ever. They are businesses. Each action they take will, ultimately, make them more money (or so they hope). The scholarships they give are to HELP THEM in the long run, not to help you.

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Billy Blanks
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Re: Weird line in Cornell scholarship letter

Postby Billy Blanks » Mon May 10, 2010 1:10 pm

SaintClarence27 wrote:
lt0826 wrote:
goodolgil wrote:I think "moral obligation" is a little strong.


I think it is a moral obligation if your circumstance allows it without hardship. I have given back what I can to my UG (granted no where near what they gave me in grants) because I appreciate the opportunity I was given and I wouldn't have been able to take advantage of such an amazing school without those grants. I feel I have a moral obligation to help other students in the future benefit as well. No one can force you to donate. But they can only provide you with $$ because others have donated.


I think it can be argued that it's a moral obligation, sure. That's fine.

It's something else entirely (see: tacky, crude, entitled) for them to just state it like that.


I'm still very skeptical that there is, in fact, an obligation. You can invoke a contrapositive and say, "had these funds not been available, I would not have matriculated here," but then you'd have to establish why matriculating at that particular school is good/desirible AND why it is something that others would find good/desirible. After that you would have to parse through several other contrapositives which are impossible to actually answer ("would I have a similar income if I had not attended my school?" "would the option to study law/work at this business/pursue the goals I'm currently pursuing be available if I had not attended my school?"). You see where this going.

If, after all of this intellectual work, you discover that your school was benefitial in a unique way that can be replicated for others and that your scholarship was the determining factor that made your education possible and that this will hold true for someone in the future if you donate (which, by the way, isn't that common since small-donations go into the general operating fund), then you may actually have an obligation to repay your funds.

Taking a scholarhip to go to Cornell rather than taking a scholarship to go to Michigan seems to fail several of the above tests and precludes an obligation from obtaining. That's just my analysis though, and if anyone cares to rebut I'd love to go further down this path.

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Re: Weird line in Cornell scholarship letter

Postby rundoxierun » Mon May 10, 2010 1:10 pm

Always Credited wrote:I'll never donate to any school, ever. They are businesses. Each action they take will, ultimately, make them more money (or so they hope). The scholarships they give are to HELP THEM in the long run, not to help you.


Umm.. thats not how it works at all. The scholarships help you as well by pulling in top talent from around the world and building the school a reputation. Harvard didnt become Harvard off of tuition money.

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Always Credited
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Re: Weird line in Cornell scholarship letter

Postby Always Credited » Mon May 10, 2010 1:13 pm

tkgrrett wrote:
Always Credited wrote:I'll never donate to any school, ever. They are businesses. Each action they take will, ultimately, make them more money (or so they hope). The scholarships they give are to HELP THEM in the long run, not to help you.


Umm.. thats not how it works at all. The scholarships help you as well by pulling in top talent from around the world and building the school a reputation. Harvard didnt become Harvard off of tuition money.


What?

rundoxierun
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Re: Weird line in Cornell scholarship letter

Postby rundoxierun » Mon May 10, 2010 1:20 pm

Always Credited wrote:
tkgrrett wrote:
Always Credited wrote:I'll never donate to any school, ever. They are businesses. Each action they take will, ultimately, make them more money (or so they hope). The scholarships they give are to HELP THEM in the long run, not to help you.


Umm.. thats not how it works at all. The scholarships help you as well by pulling in top talent from around the world and building the school a reputation. Harvard didnt become Harvard off of tuition money.


What?


Think of it as a type of reciprocal parasitism(mutualism I think). They are sucking money from you but you gain some benefit from their health. Schools do not operate financially the same as business(although you can argue they should). For almost all non-profit schools, tuition does not cover their operating expenses alone.

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Always Credited
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Re: Weird line in Cornell scholarship letter

Postby Always Credited » Mon May 10, 2010 1:27 pm

tkgrrett wrote:
Always Credited wrote:
tkgrrett wrote:
Always Credited wrote:I'll never donate to any school, ever. They are businesses. Each action they take will, ultimately, make them more money (or so they hope). The scholarships they give are to HELP THEM in the long run, not to help you.


Umm.. thats not how it works at all. The scholarships help you as well by pulling in top talent from around the world and building the school a reputation. Harvard didnt become Harvard off of tuition money.


What?


Think of it as a type of reciprocal parasitism(mutualism I think). They are sucking money from you but you gain some benefit from their health. Schools do not operate financially the same as business(although you can argue they should). For almost all non-profit schools, tuition does not cover their operating expenses alone.


Law Schools aren't non-profit schools. Unless we count the People's College of Law, which is an extreme exception.

It isn't "parasitism" in any way - its a simple transaction. I pay money for a degree (and assuming I fulfill the necessary requirements of education), I receive the degree for the price paid. Done and done. The money paid has NOTHING to do with the prestige of the school - that has to do with my admission or rejection to the institution.

Schools give scholarship money because its the only tangible way to attract candidates to their school away from objectively better schools. Its an incentive to enter into the money for degree transaction, on which the schools make a profit.

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SaintClarence27
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Re: Weird line in Cornell scholarship letter

Postby SaintClarence27 » Mon May 10, 2010 1:50 pm

Always Credited wrote:Law Schools aren't non-profit schools. Unless we count the People's College of Law, which is an extreme exception.

It isn't "parasitism" in any way - its a simple transaction. I pay money for a degree (and assuming I fulfill the necessary requirements of education), I receive the degree for the price paid. Done and done. The money paid has NOTHING to do with the prestige of the school - that has to do with my admission or rejection to the institution.

Schools give scholarship money because its the only tangible way to attract candidates to their school away from objectively better schools. Its an incentive to enter into the money for degree transaction, on which the schools make a profit.


I'd feel a lot better donating to a public school than a private one for the above reason. It may be arbitrary, but I'd prefer to increase a public school's endowment, knowing that the tuition is lower. I would also prefer to make a targeted donation towards either scholarships or clinics.

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askhos
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Re: Weird line in Cornell scholarship letter

Postby askhos » Mon May 10, 2010 1:55 pm

I think anyone would have a moral obligation to pay the school back in some respect if you are successful and donating wouldn't cause an undue hardship on you. Your success would in very large part be determined by the opportunities the school you attended gave you.

that said, I also think Cornell has a moral obligation not to solicit donations from prospective students.

rundoxierun
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Re: Weird line in Cornell scholarship letter

Postby rundoxierun » Mon May 10, 2010 1:56 pm

Always Credited wrote:
Always Credited wrote:
tkgrrett wrote:
Always Credited wrote:I'll never donate to any school, ever. They are businesses. Each action they take will, ultimately, make them more money (or so they hope). The scholarships they give are to HELP THEM in the long run, not to help you.


What?


Think of it as a type of reciprocal parasitism(mutualism I think). They are sucking money from you but you gain some benefit from their health. Schools do not operate financially the same as business(although you can argue they should). For almost all non-profit schools, tuition does not cover their operating expenses alone.


Law Schools aren't non-profit schools. Unless we count the People's College of Law, which is an extreme exception.

It isn't "parasitism" in any way - its a simple transaction. I pay money for a degree (and assuming I fulfill the necessary requirements of education), I receive the degree for the price paid. Done and done. The money paid has NOTHING to do with the prestige of the school - that has to do with my admission or rejection to the institution.

Schools give scholarship money because its the only tangible way to attract candidates to their school away from objectively better schools. Its an incentive to enter into the money for degree transaction, on which the schools make a profit.


Law Schools are non-profits under the law. This allows them to operate differently than legally for-profit entities. A school is NOT a simple transaction in the sense of buying a candy bar. Law school is an investment and the school has an ability to affect the value of that investment. This creates a mutualistic relationship. You benefit by them doing well and they benefit by their alumni doing well. The money they receive from alumni allows them to build buildings, hire professors, give scholarships, etc. The money for this is NOT all raised from tuition. If the alumni of one school decide to all stop giving money while other school's alumni continue to do so, the first school will plummet in the rankings, student quality will plummet, and next thing you know your school is a TTTT. Obviously an extreme example but the point is the same. Schools are not normal businesses and getting a law degree is not a normal transaction.

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Re: Weird line in Cornell scholarship letter

Postby Duragon » Mon May 10, 2010 2:19 pm

Thank you for buying a car from Big Mitch Toyota. I'm glad that I was able to offer you a discount from our sticker price. Please note that this discount is given with the understanding that there is a moral obligation to repay Big Mitch if the car I'm selling you performs as advertised.

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Always Credited
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Re: Weird line in Cornell scholarship letter

Postby Always Credited » Mon May 10, 2010 2:26 pm

Hey, thanks for using Century 21 as your real estate agency last Spring! We notice that after you bought the home from us, you flipped it and re-sold it for a substantial profit.

Since you really couldn't have made that profit if we didn't sell you the home in the first place, you have a moral obligation to give Century 21 some of the money you made. Thanks!

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askhos
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Re: Weird line in Cornell scholarship letter

Postby askhos » Mon May 10, 2010 2:45 pm

Like tkgrrett said, it's a different type of transaction. You're not going to law school to make a profit on something you purchase, you're going there as an investment to increase your earning potential.

A lot of people might use their assets like property as an investment, and that's fine, but that's not what their intent is. That's why we have laws like the Capital Gains tax for real estate. Houses are meant to be lived in once they are purchased, not solely for equity.

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SaintClarence27
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Re: Weird line in Cornell scholarship letter

Postby SaintClarence27 » Mon May 10, 2010 2:49 pm

askhos wrote:Like tkgrrett said, it's a different type of transaction. You're not going to law school to make a profit on something you purchase, you're going there as an investment to increase your earning potential.


Dear SaintClarence,

Thank you for your recent lease of the Broadway Storefront. It is our contention that this will vastly increase your earning potential. Should this promise end up a reality, note that you have a moral obligation to pay back XY leasing company at least some of your profits, in addition to the payments specified in the signed lease.

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askhos
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Re: Weird line in Cornell scholarship letter

Postby askhos » Mon May 10, 2010 2:55 pm

SaintClarence27 wrote:
askhos wrote:Like tkgrrett said, it's a different type of transaction. You're not going to law school to make a profit on something you purchase, you're going there as an investment to increase your earning potential.


Dear SaintClarence,

Thank you for your recent lease of the Broadway Storefront. It is our contention that this will vastly increase your earning potential. Should this promise end up a reality, note that you have a moral obligation to pay back XY leasing company at least some of your profits, in addition to the payments specified in the signed lease.


At the same time, the leasing company is in the business of making a profit, unlike the non-profit law school. That matters too.

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SaintClarence27
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Re: Weird line in Cornell scholarship letter

Postby SaintClarence27 » Mon May 10, 2010 3:02 pm

askhos wrote:
SaintClarence27 wrote:
askhos wrote:Like tkgrrett said, it's a different type of transaction. You're not going to law school to make a profit on something you purchase, you're going there as an investment to increase your earning potential.


Dear SaintClarence,

Thank you for your recent lease of the Broadway Storefront. It is our contention that this will vastly increase your earning potential. Should this promise end up a reality, note that you have a moral obligation to pay back XY leasing company at least some of your profits, in addition to the payments specified in the signed lease.


At the same time, the leasing company is in the business of making a profit, unlike the non-profit law school. That matters too.


Fine, pretend that the lease was underwritten by HUD. It matters not - law schools, despite their designation, are for profit in a lot of ways.

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You Gotta Have Faith
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Re: Weird line in Cornell scholarship letter

Postby You Gotta Have Faith » Mon May 10, 2010 3:05 pm

Pearalegal wrote:The thread made me realize how much of a business law schools are, and it made me sad.


+1

I mean, I guess I sort of already knew that most of them are. But this just amplified it.

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askhos
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Re: Weird line in Cornell scholarship letter

Postby askhos » Mon May 10, 2010 3:07 pm

SaintClarence27 wrote:Fine, pretend that the lease was underwritten by HUD. It matters not - law schools, despite their designation, are for profit in a lot of ways.


If it was HUD, you're already giving back via taxes. I would think there's a moral argument to pay taxes too, not just legal ones.

I think the disagreement we're having is that you believe that in the end, there is a transaction of money taking place and someone or some institution is getting richer from it, so it doesn't matter whether we characterize it as "for-profit" or "non-profit" or whatever else. I think the difference does matter.

I don't want to misstate your position though, so don't let me put words in your mouth.

Duragon
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Re: Weird line in Cornell scholarship letter

Postby Duragon » Mon May 10, 2010 3:12 pm

askhos wrote:
SaintClarence27 wrote:
askhos wrote:Like tkgrrett said, it's a different type of transaction. You're not going to law school to make a profit on something you purchase, you're going there as an investment to increase your earning potential.


Dear SaintClarence,

Thank you for your recent lease of the Broadway Storefront. It is our contention that this will vastly increase your earning potential. Should this promise end up a reality, note that you have a moral obligation to pay back XY leasing company at least some of your profits, in addition to the payments specified in the signed lease.


At the same time, the leasing company is in the business of making a profit, unlike the non-profit law school. That matters too.


What significance are you attaching to the non-profit designation? I'm not sure why you would not still think of law schools as businesses, with many of the same demands and motives as a traditional for-profit business. In my mind, law schools are service providers. A scholarship is a discount on that service, from which the law school and the law student benefit.

How does a law school's non-profit designation legitimize an expectation that a mutually beneficial purchase discount will be reimbursed by the customer?




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