Yale v. Stanford for Fed Gov't / Academia

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jerrymander
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Yale v. Stanford for Fed Gov't / Academia

Postby jerrymander » Thu Mar 31, 2011 2:55 am

Background information: probable career path is fed clerkship --> DOJ, would also like to keep legal academia as an option. All my family is in Bay Area, and being close to family is important to me, even if only for three years of law school.

Most folks say that Yale is the hands down winner for this scenario. But by how much? If I end up top 1/3 of my class at SLS, can't I pretty much achieve all of my career goals? Yale dominates for teaching placements, but I have to suspect this is partly due to self selection, and that if I get on Stanford Law Rev and publish, I should be fine coming out of SLS for teaching placement.

I can see why Yale wins in a vacuum, but given my desire to be near family, it seems that SLS is the smarter choice, and that I should still have same career opportunities. Am I missing something? Any input from current / former students is much appreciated.

Thanks!

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glewz
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Re: Yale v. Stanford for Fed Gov't / Academia

Postby glewz » Thu Mar 31, 2011 2:58 am

jerrymander wrote:Background information: probable career path is fed clerkship --> DOJ, would also like to keep legal academia as an option. All my family is in Bay Area, and being close to family is important to me, even if only for three years of law school.

Most folks say that Yale is the hands down winner for this scenario. But by how much? If I end up top 1/3 of my class at SLS, can't I pretty much achieve all of my career goals? Yale dominates for teaching placements, but I have to suspect this is partly due to self selection, and that if I get on Stanford Law Rev and publish, I should be fine coming out of SLS for teaching placement.

I can see why Yale wins in a vacuum, but given my desire to be near family, it seems that SLS is the smarter choice, and that I should still have same career opportunities. Am I missing something? Any input from current / former students is much appreciated.

Thanks!


No, you're not missing anything. Go to the place where you will enjoy 3 years of law school.

But before you make a decision, you should first visit Yale. When I did (visited both S & Y), I thought it was amazing.

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bk1
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Re: Yale v. Stanford for Fed Gov't / Academia

Postby bk1 » Thu Mar 31, 2011 3:06 am

Since you can't guarantee yourself top 1/3 nor law review, and you have a 50% chance of ending up below median, I say go Yale since you want clerkship/academia.

I don't think it is merely self selection explaining Yale's high percentage of A3 clerks considering how coveted these clerkships are.

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Patriot1208
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Re: Yale v. Stanford for Fed Gov't / Academia

Postby Patriot1208 » Thu Mar 31, 2011 9:16 am

Also, doesn't yale not grade you at all your first semester? That would be my main attraction.

jerrymander
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Re: Yale v. Stanford for Fed Gov't / Academia

Postby jerrymander » Thu Mar 31, 2011 2:09 pm

bk1 wrote:Since you can't guarantee yourself top 1/3 nor law review, and you have a 50% chance of ending up below median, I say go Yale since you want clerkship/academia.

I don't think it is merely self selection explaining Yale's high percentage of A3 clerks considering how coveted these clerkships are.


do people generally agree this with?

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Knock
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Re: Yale v. Stanford for Fed Gov't / Academia

Postby Knock » Thu Mar 31, 2011 2:11 pm

Yale

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ScrabbleChamp
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Re: Yale v. Stanford for Fed Gov't / Academia

Postby ScrabbleChamp » Thu Mar 31, 2011 2:13 pm

Stanford wins, hands down, for QOL and weather.

/thread

HamDel
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Re: Yale v. Stanford for Fed Gov't / Academia

Postby HamDel » Thu Mar 31, 2011 2:13 pm

GO TO YALE.

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tgir
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Re: Yale v. Stanford for Fed Gov't / Academia

Postby tgir » Thu Mar 31, 2011 2:18 pm

FWIW, Stanford's and Yale's A3 clerkship numbers have moved closer together in recent years--of course, this seems to be mainly because some portion of the Yale class is seeking PI instead of clerkships straight out of school.

As for DOJ, my impression has been that both schools are more than sufficient to put you in contention. After that, it's grades and luck doing the rest.

BillsFan9907
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Re: Yale v. Stanford for Fed Gov't / Academia

Postby BillsFan9907 » Fri Apr 01, 2011 10:41 am

Explain that again?
Last edited by BillsFan9907 on Tue Dec 23, 2014 5:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.

rundoxierun
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Re: Yale v. Stanford for Fed Gov't / Academia

Postby rundoxierun » Fri Apr 01, 2011 10:43 am

jerrymander wrote:
bk1 wrote:Since you can't guarantee yourself top 1/3 nor law review, and you have a 50% chance of ending up below median, I say go Yale since you want clerkship/academia.

I don't think it is merely self selection explaining Yale's high percentage of A3 clerks considering how coveted these clerkships are.


do people generally agree this with?


No. Given your situation I really dont see much reason for you to be considering Yale. Doing so would be risk aversion to the point of ridiculousness.

There are no guarantees in life. You could miss out on clerkships from either school but both meet the threshold of you giving you a great shot of landing one if you so desire.

kalessebo
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Re: Yale v. Stanford for Fed Gov't / Academia

Postby kalessebo » Sat Apr 02, 2011 9:10 pm

Seoulless wrote:For academia you would really need to consider a J.S.D. to be the most competitive for the best positions.

Keep in mind that for Yale, you can only enter their J.S.D. program if you have an LL.M from Yale.

http://www.law.yale.edu/admissions/JSD.htm

So getting your JD from Yale would not be sufficient for getting into their J.S.D. program, though it would almost certainly guarantee you a spot in their small LL.M program.


Ignore this. Fewer than half of successful candidates for tenure track legal teaching jobs have any graduate degree. Fewer than 10% have a JSD. JSDs are generally for people who got their first law degree abroad and want to teach in the U.S.

As for the self-selection thing, that cant be all of it. More than half of Yale people who apply end up with a teaching job. The comparable number for Stanford is around a quarter, I think (don't quote me, but i think Leiter ran the numbers a few years ago).

Finally, on the ultimate choice, I don't think it's crazy to be risk averse, especially when QOL at YLS (save the weather) is arguably higher than anywhere else. I'm happy to elaborate via PM if you want.

Edited for clarity.

The Real Jack McCoy
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Re: Yale v. Stanford for Fed Gov't / Academia

Postby The Real Jack McCoy » Sun Apr 03, 2011 12:09 am

kalessebo wrote:
Seoulless wrote:For academia you would really need to consider a J.S.D. to be the most competitive for the best positions.

Keep in mind that for Yale, you can only enter their J.S.D. program if you have an LL.M from Yale.

http://www.law.yale.edu/admissions/JSD.htm

So getting your JD from Yale would not be sufficient for getting into their J.S.D. program, though it would almost certainly guarantee you a spot in their small LL.M program.


Ignore this. Fewer than half of successful candidates for tenure track legal teaching jobs have any graduate degree. Fewer than 10% have a JSD. JSDs are generally for people who got their first law degree abroad and want to teach in the U.S.

As for the self-selection thing, that cant be all of it. More than half of Yale people who apply end up with a teaching job. The comparable number for Stanford is around a quarter, I think (don't quote me, but i think Leiter ran the numbers a few years ago).

Finally, on the ultimate choice, I don't think it's crazy to be risk averse, especially when QOL at YLS (save the weather) is arguably higher than anywhere else. I'm happy to elaborate via PM if you want.

Edited for clarity.


Most of this post is credited, but I've bolded a statement I doubt is true. The only numbers in the public domain I know of are these, and they contradict the claim:

http://www.concurringopinions.com/archi ... iring.html

At least for these two years, Stanford's yield rate was equivalent to Yale's for academic hiring. As an aside, in the last two years, Stanford placed 17 students into academia (5% of its class/year), similar to the 06-08 numbers.

Yale places a remarkable percentage of its class (self-selection? Yale culture? impact of its clerkship success?), but Stanford grads going on the market seem to do quite well.

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dr123
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Re: Yale v. Stanford for Fed Gov't / Academia

Postby dr123 » Sun Apr 03, 2011 12:14 am

bk1 wrote:Since you can't guarantee yourself top 1/3 nor law review, and you have a 50% chance of ending up below median, I say go Yale since you want clerkship/academia.

I don't think it is merely self selection explaining Yale's high percentage of A3 clerks considering how coveted these clerkships are.


eh, I could be wrong but I dont think you are getting a tenure track position below median from anywhere.

The Real Jack McCoy
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Re: Yale v. Stanford for Fed Gov't / Academia

Postby The Real Jack McCoy » Sun Apr 03, 2011 12:21 am

Ignore this. Fewer than half of successful candidates for tenure track legal teaching jobs have any graduate degree. Fewer than 10% have a JSD. JSDs are generally for people who got their first law degree abroad and want to teach in the U.S.

As for the self-selection thing, that cant be all of it. More than half of Yale people who apply end up with a teaching job. The comparable number for Stanford is around a quarter, I think (don't quote me, but i think Leiter ran the numbers a few years ago).

Finally, on the ultimate choice, I don't think it's crazy to be risk averse, especially when QOL at YLS (save the weather) is arguably higher than anywhere else. I'm happy to elaborate via PM if you want.

Edited for clarity.


One last thing:

522/875 candidates had a graduate degree of some kind -- LLM, SJD/JSD, PhD, MA, MS, or MD -- for the 08-09 hiring season. If you go through the historical data, it is also clear the numbers are rising. Source:

--LinkRemoved--

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ntugwater
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Re: Yale v. Stanford for Fed Gov't / Academia

Postby ntugwater » Sun Apr 03, 2011 12:42 am

Stanford.

Even without your ties to the bay area, it's still worth it so that you can actually enjoy the next 3 years and be surrounded by a group of not-miserable people in good weather.

notanumber
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Re: Yale v. Stanford for Fed Gov't / Academia

Postby notanumber » Sun Apr 03, 2011 1:37 am

I'll step away from my usual YLS trolling and argue that YLS and SLS have placement rates that are similar enough to make other factors more important. Family is one of those factors. Spending time with your family while your parents are still mobile and healthy is an incredible blessing and is far more important than the tiny difference in placement rates

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rocon7383
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Re: Yale v. Stanford for Fed Gov't / Academia

Postby rocon7383 » Sun Apr 03, 2011 1:57 am

wanna trade cycles?

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BioEBear2010
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Re: Yale v. Stanford for Fed Gov't / Academia

Postby BioEBear2010 » Sun Apr 03, 2011 1:59 am

notanumber wrote:I'll step away from my usual YLS trolling and argue that YLS and SLS have placement rates that are similar enough to make other factors more important. Family is one of those factors. Spending time with your family while your parents are still mobile and healthy is an incredible blessing and is far more important than the tiny difference in placement rates

Always so wise, notanumber. And as someone whose decision leaned heavily on that point last cycle, I must say I concur.

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thecilent
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Re: Yale v. Stanford for Fed Gov't / Academia

Postby thecilent » Sun Apr 03, 2011 2:05 am

ntugwater wrote:Stanford.

Even without your ties to the bay area, it's still worth it so that you can actually enjoy the next 3 years and be surrounded by a group of not-miserable people in good weather.

Yeah bc the students at YALE are so miserable. What are you talking about

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bk1
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Re: Yale v. Stanford for Fed Gov't / Academia

Postby bk1 » Sun Apr 03, 2011 4:10 am

dr123 wrote:
bk1 wrote:Since you can't guarantee yourself top 1/3 nor law review, and you have a 50% chance of ending up below median, I say go Yale since you want clerkship/academia.

I don't think it is merely self selection explaining Yale's high percentage of A3 clerks considering how coveted these clerkships are.


eh, I could be wrong but I dont think you are getting a tenure track position below median from anywhere.


Not what I was implying.

kalessebo
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Re: Yale v. Stanford for Fed Gov't / Academia

Postby kalessebo » Sun Apr 03, 2011 6:59 pm

Ignore this. Fewer than half of successful candidates for tenure track legal teaching jobs have any graduate degree. Fewer than 10% have a JSD. JSDs are generally for people who got their first law degree abroad and want to teach in the U.S.

As for the self-selection thing, that cant be all of it. More than half of Yale people who apply end up with a teaching job. The comparable number for Stanford is around a quarter, I think (don't quote me, but i think Leiter ran the numbers a few years ago).

Finally, on the ultimate choice, I don't think it's crazy to be risk averse, especially when QOL at YLS (save the weather) is arguably higher than anywhere else. I'm happy to elaborate via PM if you want.

Edited for clarity.


Most of this post is credited, but I've bolded a statement I doubt is true. The only numbers in the public domain I know of are these, and they contradict the claim:

http://www.concurringopinions.com/archi ... iring.html

At least for these two years, Stanford's yield rate was equivalent to Yale's for academic hiring. As an aside, in the last two years, Stanford placed 17 students into academia (5% of its class/year), similar to the 06-08 numbers.

Yale places a remarkable percentage of its class (self-selection? Yale culture? impact of its clerkship success?), but Stanford grads going on the market seem to do quite well.


You're totally right. In my haste to debunk the entirely uninformed claims I quoted, I pulled some numbers from memory, which is never a good thing. I was thinking of this--http://www.leiterrankings.com/jobs/2008job_teaching.shtml--which is clearly not the "success rate" I was going for.

In the interest of saving face (mostly for YLS), consider this: http://leiterrankings.com/new/2011_LawTeachers.shtml. It doesn't quite get at the self-selection thing perfectly, but it does suggest that YLS folks are way more successful at getting the "top" jobs than graduates from any other school. There's no reason to think YLS grads are more likely to want good jobs than Stanford grads, right?

But we're (I'm?) quibbling now. I'd say the data show that YLS is slightly better for academia (with the self-selection caveat--though you might think that only the very best SLS people apply since it's so tough to get a job, whereas more of the YLS class applies, thus dragging down the numbers), but the difference is small enough that other factors should certainly come into play. Just don't not visit both places.

JeremyPaul
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Re: Yale v. Stanford for Fed Gov't / Academia

Postby JeremyPaul » Mon Apr 04, 2011 12:58 am

this is a fantastic thread, especially the links to the placement stats. thanks!

if you're still open to more feedback, i'd also like to chime in about the importance of a dual degree for those seeking law professorships right of school without any legal work experience. what convinced me of this is the growth over time in dual degree hires, especially at top schools that prioritize research-oriented faculty. it's hard to develop a serious research agenda in only three years.

however, for someone who wants to do legal academia AFTER a stint at the DOJ, then a dual degree seems pretty unimportant. in that position, it's about leveraging a prestigious and accomplished career more than a prestigious degree. and SLS and YLS would pretty much be equivalent.

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tinman
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Re: Yale v. Stanford for Fed Gov't / Academia

Postby tinman » Mon Apr 04, 2011 2:26 am

I think going to Yale over Stanford makes a huge difference in academia, more than I even thought when I was making the decision a couple of years ago.

Publishing is the name of the game. But law students make the decisions about what gets published.

I think the most important factors that students use in deciding to extend you an offer for publication are:
1) the rank of the law school you are teaching at
2) the rank of the law school you attended
3) whether any other journals have offered to published your Article (it's a competitive process is law publishing)
4) whether you Article is actually any good
5) other things: where you clerked, whether you have a Ph.D., work experience, etc.

I think I actually may have ranked 4) too high.

Yale not only maximizing your #2, it also, as data is other posts of this tread shows, helps you maximize #1.


Another thing: Yale is set up to train future academics. Don't underestimate the importance of this. I just finished reading one of my friend's Notes tonight that he is submitting to the Yale Law Journal. I think it will be accepted. And I think if he were at any other school, he would never have time to write. He has already had one other piece accepted for publication. He's a smart guy. But there are smart guys at all the top schools. Smart guys at Yale start publishing while at Yale.

SLS trains you to be a better corporate lawyer, I think.

But if you are interested in being an academic, I think you are crazy to turn down Yale.

Kretzy
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Re: Yale v. Stanford for Fed Gov't / Academia

Postby Kretzy » Mon Apr 04, 2011 2:34 am

tinman wrote:Another thing: Yale is set up to train future academics. Don't underestimate the importance of this. I just finished reading one of my friend's Notes tonight that he is submitting to the Yale Law Journal. I think it will be accepted. And I think if he were at any other school, he would never have time to write. He has already had one other piece accepted for publication. He's a smart guy. But there are smart guys at all the top schools. Smart guys at Yale start publishing while at Yale.

SLS trains you to be a better corporate lawyer, I think.

But if you are interested in being an academic, I think you are crazy to turn down Yale.


I am an admitted an unabashed lover of SLS, but Tinman isn't off too much here. I think SLS trains you to be a better lawyer than YLS does, but that YLS does offer built-in advantages for academia that Stanford may not (notably, the two required papers, and the sheer number of folks hoping to do academia).

As someone with absolutely NO interest in academia, I will say something about SLS: not many folks here want it. Some profs here make a baseball comparison: At YLS, you're the Yankees. You've got a ton of good players, all jostling to be the best. At SLS, folks wanting academia are more unique; you're like the best player on the Rays (a great team, but without the crazy #1 brand name). With us being 40 students smaller now, but with similar resources and a ton of faculty who want to help you publish, that's not something to be discounted.

I do believe SLS will train you to be a better early associate at a firm, due to our practical focus. YLS gives you a better shot at academia, in general (though I do believe the numbers show Stanford closing the gap in terms of percentages of students seeking academic jobs who get them). Visit both, get a feel, and figure out which environment will make you better at what you want to do. Then make whichever non-wrong choice you'll make. Both are awesome.




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