I responded to one of Charlotte Law's phishing e-mails a while back and had this interesting conversation. I wanted to see how far they'd go to rationalize Charlotte Law as a good decision for someone with high numbers and way better options. I learned that attending Duke over Charlotte for around the same price was probably a bad decision. My favorite part is where, when explaining the costs of each school, she doesn't include cost of living in the COA for Charlotte, but does for Duke, and then points at that as a huge price difference that makes CSoL the better choice. Also, there's that 82% employment rate. I mean, you just can't trust websites like LST, can you? I couldn't do any more after that.
Charlotte School of Law wrote:
I hope you are doing well. I just wanted to follow up on the email I sent a couple of weeks ago regarding Charlotte School of Law. As a reminder, based on your 17[X] LSAT score and 3.3[X] GPA you may qualify for a $25,000 scholarship per academic year.
I also wanted to inform you that Charlotte School of Law is excited to introduce our May Advantage program, which is a unique program that offers students an opportunity to jump start their legal education by entering law school in May. You can read more about this opportunity at the following link: http://www.charlottelaw.edu/MayAdvantage
To apply please visit LSAC at http://www.lsac.org
. There is no application fee and no fee waiver is required.
Do you have any questions?
Charlotte School of Law
2145 Suttle Avenue
Charlotte, North Carolina 28208
I hadn't considered Charlotte School of Law -- thank you for bringing the school to my attention. That's quite a scholarship offer. In your opinion, do you think I should accept the scholarship and attend CSoL, considering that I have a 17[X] LSAT? If so, why?
Charlotte School of Law wrote:
Choosing the right law school is extremely important, so I am happy to tell you a little bit about Charlotte School of Law. Charlotte in general is a great place for anyone to make a start. It is one of the fastest growing cities in the south, with some of the largest and most successful business calling it home. Charlotte School of Law is in a great position for networking opportunities. The school has great ties with the district attorney's as well as the public defender's offices, with several students currently employed in both capacities. The school has several different student body organizations, which also host numerous networking opportunities with companies such as Bank of America, Wells Fargo, and the Charlotte Bobcats. This gives students who are not interested in pursing a line of criminal work great opportunities to network as well.
Charlotte School of Law offers full time day as well as part-time day and evening classes. The school offers summer classes as well as intercessions over winter and spring break. This will allow for an earlier completion of your law school career if you so pleased. One of the great benefits about being a relatively new law school is that our classes are taught by professors who all have strong ties to this community, as well as in the ones they may have practiced. There are so many great programs to take advantage of to compliment your JD; such as the criminal or civil advocacy certificate, mediation certificate, or even our joint JD/MBA program. All three certificate programs have separate course requirements to for fill at no additional cost to the student.
Charlotte School of Law offers a competitive learning environment. Our trial and moot court teams compete on the national level. The school has some of the greatest technology in our courtroom, classrooms, and library. Charlotte School of Law has the largest law library in the area. You will enjoy access to both law researching data bases in Lexis Nexus and Westlaw. Most students really appreciate the professor's open door policy and regular open office hours. Charlotte School of Law will be relocating for the Fall 2013 term do to the growth in numbers to the Uptown Charlotte area, which will provide for even more wonderful opportunities for the student body. The Charlotte School of Law is a student centered learning institution with bar passage and job placement as it's number one priority for its students. At Charlotte School of Law you will be more then just a LSAT score.
Please contact me with any additional questions or concerns.
Thank you for getting back to me! Charlotte sounds like a great place! While researching CSoL, though, I learned that only 34% of graduates were employed in long term, J.D. required jobs nine months after graduation. Even after deducting the $25,000 scholarship offer, attending CSoL would put me close to $150,000 in debt. That seems very risky. Would you mind explaining why -- from a financial perspective -- I should consider attending CSoL over another North Carolina school like Duke that my 99th percentile LSAT score can get me into? Duke would cost about as much as CSoL, but 82% of their graduates were employed in long term, J.D. required jobs nine months after graduation. Do you think it would be a better financial decision to choose CSoL, given my options?
Thank you again for taking the time to give me more information -- this is a difficult decision!
Charlotte School of Law wrote:
Thank you for your email.
I did click on the clicks you provided in your email and I'm not sure where that site obtains it data. Be careful when obtaining information online and be sure the sources are reputable.
Charlotte School of Law has an 82.47% job placement rate. This data was taken from December 2010 to August 2011. We are working on obtain the new data to include our May and December graduates.
Our NC bar passage rate was 67.3%. The average for the entire state of NC was 80.63%
Schools like Duke, Harvard, and Yale all carry a reputation with their name. I can't say that Duke or Yale or Harvard is going to give you a better education than Charlotte Law nor will I saw Charlotte Law is going to be the better choice. That is a decision you have to make on your own. What I will do is provide you with accurate information and answer any questions you have accordingly.
When considering statistical data, it is important to understand what actually goes into the statistics. For example, if Duke has 24 students sit for the bar and all 24 pass on the first time, they can boast that they have a bar passage rate of 100%. If Charlotte Law has 250 students, for example, take the exam and only 180 pass on the first time, our rate will be about 72%. We typically have more students than Duke sit for the bar, so generally their rate will differ significantly.
When looking at job placement rates, keep in mind that not all students graduate and go on to practice law. Some students attend law school to have a degree to fall back on and never sit for a bar.
There are a lot of factors and variables that can affect statistical data.
In regards to your scholarship and debt question, Duke's tuition is about $72,621 per year (see http://law.duke.edu/admis/tuition/
). Our tuition is currently, $38,606 per year (http://www.charlottelaw.edu/admissions/tuition
). I'm not sure if Duke offered you a scholarship, but already their cost of attendance is $34,015 more than ours. If you receive a $25,000 scholarship with us, and please note than it is an estimate of eligibility, then you would have about $13,606 remaining for the cost of tuition. Assuming you would need to borrow addition funds for the remainder of tuition as well as living expenses, that amount may depend on your financial need. If you obtain the $20,500 from the Stafford loan, your financial need for Grad PLUS becomes significantly smaller. So, hypothetically speaking, if you had to borrow, let's say $10,000 for your Grad PLUS loan, that would be an estimated $30,000 over the entire law school education. Plus the Stafford loan, which would be an estimated total of $90,000 borrowed over the course of your 3-year education.
$90,000 is still a lot. I will admit as much. However, unless Duke is offering you enough to make up a huge difference, you will probably end up with more than the $90,000 I just estimated.
So, if you really want to make an informed financial decision, my recommendation to you would be to create a chart or spreadsheet. Include the true cost of attendance as well as any bills you may need covered. Compare the two and include any real life factors, such as gas and oil changes, etc., and see what is a better fit for you.
If there is anything else I can do to assist you, please do not hesitate to ask.