T-14 vs. Big Money at lesser schools

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elgrancombo
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T-14 vs. Big Money at lesser schools

Postby elgrancombo » Fri Jul 29, 2011 3:36 pm

This might be a question best answered by people currently in law school or recent grads. All things considered, would it be a wiser choice to pay sticker (or attend with only small scholarships) for a T-14 school or to take big scholarships to go to schools outside the T-14?

I was wondering about this because I have heard about people passing on Cornell (one of my top choices) to attend Fordham with substantial scholarships. Fordham is a good school and I know it overachieves in the New York market but 25% (Fordham) vs. 58% (Cornell) NLJ 250 placement for 2010 grads seems pretty conclusive. Also, wouldn't shots at clerkships and decent PI jobs likely go to students at Cornell over all but the top percentages at Fordham?

Still, are there schools in the T-14 that paying sticker (or close to it) for would be unwise when presented with substantial $ at schools ranked below it? I have heard some horror stories about GULC's prospects. I'm just not convinced going outside the T-14 if avoidable makes much sense in our economy. The whole T-50 is probably stocked with highly intelligent and driven aspiring attorneys, so I know making LR, being close to the top is never a certainty. Just wanted people more knowledgeable to give their 2 cents.

Real Madrid
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Re: T-14 vs. Big Money at lesser schools

Postby Real Madrid » Fri Jul 29, 2011 3:44 pm

It really just depends on the situation. For instance, paying sticker to go to Cornell would seem unwise if given a huge scholarship (i.e. half or more) to attend UCLA or Texas, unless you were really not interested in working in California or Texas at all.

I would think Cornell at sticker v. Fordham with huge money would depend entirely on whether someone was only interested in NYC. If so, Fordham might not be a bad move. If you'd ever like to live/work somewhere else, Cornell - as a T14 - clearly offers much, much more portability.

scammedhard
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Re: T-14 vs. Big Money at lesser schools

Postby scammedhard » Fri Jul 29, 2011 3:45 pm

It all depends on what you want to do with the JD and, of course, where.

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Corwin
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Re: T-14 vs. Big Money at lesser schools

Postby Corwin » Fri Jul 29, 2011 4:08 pm

  • Either way you'll need to be top 50% in order to service your debt (unless you dip really low for a full ride).
  • If you want to minimize the cost of failing you go T25 with $$.
  • If you want to maximize the benefit of succeeding you go T14 at sticker.
  • If you want biglaw you go T14.
  • If you want to be geographically mobile you go T14.
  • If you want to clerk you go T14.
  • If you absolutely could never work in biglaw you go T25 /w $$, unless you are willing to LARP it for 20 years.
  • If you have great money in a strong market school and you would never want to move, you go to the T25. Forham, WUSTL, and BU/BC come to mind.

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WhatSarahSaid
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Re: T-14 vs. Big Money at lesser schools

Postby WhatSarahSaid » Fri Jul 29, 2011 6:46 pm

Corwin wrote:
  • If you absolutely could never work in biglaw you go T25 /w $$, unless you are willing to LARP it for 20 years.


/shudder

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Tom Joad
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Re: T-14 vs. Big Money at lesser schools

Postby Tom Joad » Fri Jul 29, 2011 6:54 pm

I am having the same feelings. I had the chance to talk to a senior in house tax attorney at a major major company and he spoke glowingly about all of the T14, but at the same time he said turning down a near full ride to Texas or Vanderbilt or WUSTL would not necessarily be smart, as he said they are all great schools too.

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JoeFish
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Re: T-14 vs. Big Money at lesser schools

Postby JoeFish » Sat Jul 30, 2011 12:24 am

I think Corwin's response is TCR. It's all situational. If you're Big Law or Bust, or absolutely have your heart set on working in a geographic region you cannot, for whatever reason, go to LS in, do the T14. Otherwise, take the money.

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Grizz
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Re: T-14 vs. Big Money at lesser schools

Postby Grizz » Sat Jul 30, 2011 12:57 am

Impossible to say without knowin money and schools.

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Rock-N-Roll
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Re: T-14 vs. Big Money at lesser schools

Postby Rock-N-Roll » Sat Jul 30, 2011 1:55 am

rad law wrote:Impossible to say without knowin money and schools.


This + what kind of law you want to practice + where you want to work.

And FWIW, while the T14 designation is convenient for forum discussions, it isn't based on holy scriptures. I think this is especially relevant when comparing schools like C and G to U/T/V, where just because C and G are T14 shouldn't automatically mean they are in an altogether different class.

terriers
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Re: T-14 vs. Big Money at lesser schools

Postby terriers » Sun Jul 31, 2011 6:15 pm

First post, thought I'd just reply on this thread instead of opening a new one. I'm curious about differentiation within the T14, I know H, Y, S are in a class by themselves, but I'm figuring on applying to 8-14 and hope I get a bit lucky somewhere (3.4 GPA, 171 LSAT).

I'll have enough from my current job to pay off roughly the first 1 or 1.5 years, but I'm still hesitant about going, even if I get into a Michigan/Duke/Georgetown/Cornell. My impression from reading outside articles/posts on here is that you'd have to be absolutely insane to go anywhere outside of the top-50, especially if you're paying sticker. But I'm wondering about job prospects for the lower half of the T14. I'm betting I could finish in the top quarter of my class pretty comfortably (had a 3.8 my last 2 years of undergrad when I finally got serious).

I'm kind of at the point where I see law school as pretty much one of my only options left. I majored in IR for undergrad and IR grad-school students are one of the few groups getting killed worse than law school students. I manage a data entry team now, but my current company probably won't exist in 10 years (market is disappearing) and the job itself is pretty boring anyways.

My impression is that the legal profession as changing, but I think there will always be a demand for lawyers. Even if that demand isn't nearly as strong as it's been the last few decades, I still feel like there should be room some lawyers and at this point, I'd be more than happy to make 90-100K for the rest of my life and actually do something that's somewhat interesting.

I've been searching in vain for real employment stats when it comes to the T14, but does anybody have any anecdotes or personal experience with it?

Real Madrid
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Re: T-14 vs. Big Money at lesser schools

Postby Real Madrid » Sun Jul 31, 2011 6:18 pm

terriers wrote:First post, thought I'd just reply on this thread instead of opening a new one. I'm curious about differentiation within the T14, I know H, Y, S are in a class by themselves, but I'm figuring on applying to 8-14 and hope I get a bit lucky somewhere (3.4 GPA, 171 LSAT).

I'll have enough from my current job to pay off roughly the first 1 or 1.5 years, but I'm still hesitant about going, even if I get into a Michigan/Duke/Georgetown/Cornell. My impression from reading outside articles/posts on here is that you'd have to be absolutely insane to go anywhere outside of the top-50, especially if you're paying sticker. But I'm wondering about job prospects for the lower half of the T14. I'm betting I could finish in the top quarter of my class pretty comfortably (had a 3.8 my last 2 years of undergrad when I finally got serious).

I'm kind of at the point where I see law school as pretty much one of my only options left. I majored in IR for undergrad and IR grad-school students are one of the few groups getting killed worse than law school students. I manage a data entry team now, but my current company probably won't exist in 10 years (market is disappearing) and the job itself is pretty boring anyways.

My impression is that the legal profession as changing, but I think there will always be a demand for lawyers. Even if that demand isn't nearly as strong as it's been the last few decades, I still feel like there should be room some lawyers and at this point, I'd be more than happy to make 90-100K for the rest of my life and actually do something that's somewhat interesting.

I've been searching in vain for real employment stats when it comes to the T14, but does anybody have any anecdotes or personal experience with it?


Duck.





Oh, and visit http://www.lawschooltransparency.com/

terriers
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Re: T-14 vs. Big Money at lesser schools

Postby terriers » Sun Jul 31, 2011 6:39 pm

Real Madrid wrote:
terriers wrote:First post, thought I'd just reply on this thread instead of opening a new one. I'm curious about differentiation within the T14, I know H, Y, S are in a class by themselves, but I'm figuring on applying to 8-14 and hope I get a bit lucky somewhere (3.4 GPA, 171 LSAT).

I'll have enough from my current job to pay off roughly the first 1 or 1.5 years, but I'm still hesitant about going, even if I get into a Michigan/Duke/Georgetown/Cornell. My impression from reading outside articles/posts on here is that you'd have to be absolutely insane to go anywhere outside of the top-50, especially if you're paying sticker. But I'm wondering about job prospects for the lower half of the T14. I'm betting I could finish in the top quarter of my class pretty comfortably (had a 3.8 my last 2 years of undergrad when I finally got serious).

I'm kind of at the point where I see law school as pretty much one of my only options left. I majored in IR for undergrad and IR grad-school students are one of the few groups getting killed worse than law school students. I manage a data entry team now, but my current company probably won't exist in 10 years (market is disappearing) and the job itself is pretty boring anyways.

My impression is that the legal profession as changing, but I think there will always be a demand for lawyers. Even if that demand isn't nearly as strong as it's been the last few decades, I still feel like there should be room some lawyers and at this point, I'd be more than happy to make 90-100K for the rest of my life and actually do something that's somewhat interesting.

I've been searching in vain for real employment stats when it comes to the T14, but does anybody have any anecdotes or personal experience with it?


Duck.





Oh, and visit http://www.lawschooltransparency.com/


Please kill me for it, I realize I know next-to-nothing about law school itself, too obsessed with just getting in to a T14 right now. Thanks for the link, site seems a little rosy compared some of the other things I've seen seeing.

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Errzii
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Re: T-14 vs. Big Money at lesser schools

Postby Errzii » Sun Jul 31, 2011 6:52 pm

As others have already pointed out the answer depends on other considerations. Although I don't think it's prudent to make any decision that relies on you being in the top x% of your class. IMO it is a dangerous mentality to assume that you can simply work hard and easily place into the top 10% of your class and secure employment.

flexityflex86
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Re: T-14 vs. Big Money at lesser schools

Postby flexityflex86 » Sun Jul 31, 2011 7:01 pm

This is the age old question. A lot of people said smart stuff, but if you get 100k to Texas/UCLA then you probably got a bunch to a top 14 as well. Obviously Texas with 100k is much better than Cornell sticker, but this never happens.

Fordham is also not so nice with money because all of the married people in NYC and non-mobile people who can't get into Columia/NYU go there. No one who gets nothing to Cornell gets 100k to Fordham so it's likely Cornell vs. A full ride to Cardozo. This is a tough question, and in my mind 3 years of COL at Cardozo is around 75k if you do it cheap so the top 14 at 200k is worth it as your odds of paying off 200k from Cornell are greater than your odds of paying off 75k from Cardozo.

terriers
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Re: T-14 vs. Big Money at lesser schools

Postby terriers » Sun Jul 31, 2011 9:39 pm

From what I've read, Cornell is the one T14 I'd have serious questions on going to, for a number of reasons.

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Patriot1208
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Re: T-14 vs. Big Money at lesser schools

Postby Patriot1208 » Sun Jul 31, 2011 10:07 pm

terriers wrote:From what I've read, Cornell is the one T14 I'd have serious questions on going to, for a number of reasons.

then you have read enough about GeorgeTTTown.

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rayiner
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Re: T-14 vs. Big Money at lesser schools

Postby rayiner » Sun Jul 31, 2011 10:09 pm

terriers wrote:First post, thought I'd just reply on this thread instead of opening a new one. I'm curious about differentiation within the T14, I know H, Y, S are in a class by themselves, but I'm figuring on applying to 8-14 and hope I get a bit lucky somewhere (3.4 GPA, 171 LSAT).

I'll have enough from my current job to pay off roughly the first 1 or 1.5 years, but I'm still hesitant about going, even if I get into a Michigan/Duke/Georgetown/Cornell. My impression from reading outside articles/posts on here is that you'd have to be absolutely insane to go anywhere outside of the top-50, especially if you're paying sticker. But I'm wondering about job prospects for the lower half of the T14. I'm betting I could finish in the top quarter of my class pretty comfortably (had a 3.8 my last 2 years of undergrad when I finally got serious).

I'm kind of at the point where I see law school as pretty much one of my only options left. I majored in IR for undergrad and IR grad-school students are one of the few groups getting killed worse than law school students. I manage a data entry team now, but my current company probably won't exist in 10 years (market is disappearing) and the job itself is pretty boring anyways.

My impression is that the legal profession as changing, but I think there will always be a demand for lawyers. Even if that demand isn't nearly as strong as it's been the last few decades, I still feel like there should be room some lawyers and at this point, I'd be more than happy to make 90-100K for the rest of my life and actually do something that's somewhat interesting.

I've been searching in vain for real employment stats when it comes to the T14, but does anybody have any anecdotes or personal experience with it?


Half your class at a T14 will have had a 3.8 over all 4 years.

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Blessedassurance
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Re: T-14 vs. Big Money at lesser schools

Postby Blessedassurance » Sun Jul 31, 2011 10:22 pm

I'm betting I could finish in the top quarter of my class pretty comfortably (had a 3.8 my last 2 years of undergrad when I finally got serious).


Take that money and go to Vegas. Less work, shorter time, better odds, free drink etc.

flexityflex86
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Re: T-14 vs. Big Money at lesser schools

Postby flexityflex86 » Sun Jul 31, 2011 10:56 pm

Blessedassurance wrote:
I'm betting I could finish in the top quarter of my class pretty comfortably (had a 3.8 my last 2 years of undergrad when I finally got serious).


Take that money and go to Vegas. Less work, shorter time, better odds, free drink etc.

Do you really have 1:4 odds in Vegas.

At least in LS you can control your identity to a larger extent.

flexityflex86
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Re: T-14 vs. Big Money at lesser schools

Postby flexityflex86 » Sun Jul 31, 2011 10:58 pm

rayiner wrote:
terriers wrote:First post, thought I'd just reply on this thread instead of opening a new one. I'm curious about differentiation within the T14, I know H, Y, S are in a class by themselves, but I'm figuring on applying to 8-14 and hope I get a bit lucky somewhere (3.4 GPA, 171 LSAT).

I'll have enough from my current job to pay off roughly the first 1 or 1.5 years, but I'm still hesitant about going, even if I get into a Michigan/Duke/Georgetown/Cornell. My impression from reading outside articles/posts on here is that you'd have to be absolutely insane to go anywhere outside of the top-50, especially if you're paying sticker. But I'm wondering about job prospects for the lower half of the T14. I'm betting I could finish in the top quarter of my class pretty comfortably (had a 3.8 my last 2 years of undergrad when I finally got serious).

I'm kind of at the point where I see law school as pretty much one of my only options left. I majored in IR for undergrad and IR grad-school students are one of the few groups getting killed worse than law school students. I manage a data entry team now, but my current company probably won't exist in 10 years (market is disappearing) and the job itself is pretty boring anyways.

My impression is that the legal profession as changing, but I think there will always be a demand for lawyers. Even if that demand isn't nearly as strong as it's been the last few decades, I still feel like there should be room some lawyers and at this point, I'd be more than happy to make 90-100K for the rest of my life and actually do something that's somewhat interesting.

I've been searching in vain for real employment stats when it comes to the T14, but does anybody have any anecdotes or personal experience with it?


Half your class at a T14 will have had a 3.8 over all 4 years.

Is UG GPA at alll important in LS?

What about all the splitters with work experience who took the LSAT after UG?

If I'm at a top 14, and have wayyyyyy below a 3.8, does that mean odds are I finish below median?

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Deuce
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Re: T-14 vs. Big Money at lesser schools

Postby Deuce » Sun Jul 31, 2011 10:58 pm

WhatSarahSaid wrote:
Corwin wrote:
  • If you absolutely could never work in biglaw you go T25 /w $$, unless you are willing to LARP it for 20 years.



LIGHTNING BOLT

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soj
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Re: T-14 vs. Big Money at lesser schools

Postby soj » Sun Jul 31, 2011 11:03 pm

terriers wrote:I'm betting I could finish in the top quarter of my class pretty comfortably

It's not even an issue for you, is it?

flexityflex86
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Re: T-14 vs. Big Money at lesser schools

Postby flexityflex86 » Sun Jul 31, 2011 11:05 pm

soj wrote:
terriers wrote:I'm betting I could finish in the top quarter of my class pretty comfortably

It's not even an issue for you, is it?

Even if he finishes median at a top 14, if he has good intangibles it'll still be worth it at sticker unless he had a 50k+ job with real growth potential.

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Blessedassurance
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Re: T-14 vs. Big Money at lesser schools

Postby Blessedassurance » Mon Aug 01, 2011 12:01 am

flexityflex86 wrote: Even if he finishes median at a top 14, if he has good intangibles it'll still be worth it at sticker unless he had a 50k+ job with real growth potential.


I don't know if this is just careless wording on your part, but why do you say "even if he ends up at median at a T14..." as if that is not a real possibility? You make it seem like it'd be an anomaly. Do you think people who end up at median or below are not smart or maybe they just didn't work hard or study enough?

Maybe I'm reading too much into your wording.

flexityflex86
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Re: T-14 vs. Big Money at lesser schools

Postby flexityflex86 » Mon Aug 01, 2011 12:05 am

Blessedassurance wrote:
flexityflex86 wrote: Even if he finishes median at a top 14, if he has good intangibles it'll still be worth it at sticker unless he had a 50k+ job with real growth potential.


I don't know if this is just careless wording on your part, but why do you say "even if he ends up at median at a T14..." as if that is not a real possibility? You make it seem like it'd be an anomaly. Do you think people who end up at median or below are not smart or maybe they just didn't work hard or study enough?

Maybe I'm reading too much into your wording.

You are - what I'm saying is that if OP gets a good enough score on the LSAT on his own (no insane tutor) to get into these schools, and does his best, it seems logical to if we're setting over/under predict he'd be 50th percentile.

I didn't take that as a sure bet. It just seems to be what is fair to randomly predict. If a baseball team had all players that were exactly average starters, they can always have somebody totally mature and take off or someone get hurt and sink, but Vegas would put them at .500.

My point was if OP did this, it wouldn't make it a bad move. The "even" meant median at sticker.




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