Hamilton at CLS but not in at HYS: does this happen?

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ValeVale

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Re: Hamilton at CLS but not in at HYS: does this happen?

Postby ValeVale » Thu Jan 31, 2019 10:03 am

QContinuum wrote:
Splurgles23 wrote:
QuentonCassidy wrote:if you are a top student at H (and thus in the position of reaching some of the "unicorn" outcomes that people tend to think YSH give some leg-up for) you would have been a top student at C and would be in essentially the same position to reach the top outcomes, but without 120k in debt (or more without max aid). If you are a median student at H, then you would probs be a median student at C, and once again have access to the same outcomes but without the debt.

The bolded is false, especially for clerkships, but also for downstream considerations like small firms, and to a lesser extent, academia. A median student at H has better outcome possibilities AT THE MARGIN than a median student at Columbia. And the margin is often what matters in cases like this.

I disagree. I would actually argue that for tip-top students at H, there are better possibilities at the margin than for tip-top students at C. Whether that margin is worth an extra $120k+ in loans (assuming "normal" max need-based aid, i.e., no medical conditions or children) is questionable (I personally don't think it's worth that much, esp. since no 0L going in ought to assume they'd be at the tip-top of the class), but there probably is a margin.

But the median student at H is going to be getting a generically good BigLaw outcome - i.e., some V50 firm - which is exactly what a median student at C is gonna get. H isn't Y, where median students can slide into A3 clerkships with aplomb. Employers don't really care about Y grades because everyone looks the same save those at the tip-top. They do care about H grades.

And if you're bottom 10% at H, you're going to be in for a bit of a bumpy ride. I've heard opinions from H students that it'd actually be better to be bottom 10% at C than bottom 10% at H (due to H's gigantic class).


This is a wildly inaccurate post and I hope people don’t rely on this when making a decision.

I was median at H after 1L, K-JD. I received offers from all the NY firms I interviewed with, including multiple V10s (yes, Cravath included). I applied for district court clerkships with 5 judges in a fairly large city, and was asked to interview four days after applying. I got the first clerkship I interviewed for.

All of my friends that wanted a clerkship got one. Applying takes effort and work and so some of my friends that decided 3L they wanted to clerk had to wait for a couple of years after grad.

I can’t speak to median at CLS. But to say that median at HLS gets some generic V50 jobs is factually inaccurate and borderline comical.

The Lsat Airbender

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Re: Hamilton at CLS but not in at HYS: does this happen?

Postby The Lsat Airbender » Thu Jan 31, 2019 3:36 pm

ValeVale wrote:I was median at H after 1L, K-JD. I received offers from all the NY firms I interviewed with, including multiple V10s (yes, Cravath included). I applied for district court clerkships with 5 judges in a fairly large city, and was asked to interview four days after applying. I got the first clerkship I interviewed for.


You outperformed your grades; congrats. The legion of recent HLS grads working at Baker McKenzie and its ilk weren't able to. (They went to a great school and got great outcomes, of course - not trying to put anyone down here.)

All of my friends that wanted a clerkship got one. Applying takes effort and work and so some of my friends that decided 3L they wanted to clerk had to wait for a couple of years after grad.


This is basically how Columbia and Chicago and UVA (and Stanford too, fwiw) work as well. It's mainly due to the fact that people without the grades to clerk after 1L fall quickly decide they don't really want one.

Like, nobody's saying that you don't have access to amazing opportunities at Harvard Law School - that's obvious. But the marginal difference between it and the bottom half of the T6 is pretty slim, and it accrues almost entirely to the top of the class at Harvard, who have a relatively clear path to certain opportunities (feeder clerkships, elite PI fellowships, and the academy) that are attainable but risky from CCN.

QContinuum

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Re: Hamilton at CLS but not in at HYS: does this happen?

Postby QContinuum » Thu Jan 31, 2019 5:01 pm

ValeVale wrote:I was median at H after 1L, K-JD. I received offers from all the NY firms I interviewed with, including multiple V10s (yes, Cravath included). I applied for district court clerkships with 5 judges in a fairly large city, and was asked to interview four days after applying. I got the first clerkship I interviewed for.

Of course it's possible to outperform your grades (congrats). There are also median students at CCN who are terrific interviewees and/or have impressive things in their backgrounds who land V10 SAs and A3 clerkships. Doesn't make it the expected outcome from median. The expected outcome from median is a V50 offer, and by "V50" I don't mean an offer from whatever firm is currently #50, but rather a firm between 1 and 50.

ValeVale wrote:All of my friends that wanted a clerkship got one. Applying takes effort and work and so some of my friends that decided 3L they wanted to clerk had to wait for a couple of years after grad.

As the LSAT Airbender says above, those without the grades to clerk tend to magically come to "realize" that they never wanted to clerk in the first place.

And again, it's possible to outperform your grades. I never said median at H means you're locked out of a federal clerkship, or the V10, or whatever. Only that median at H doesn't achieve discernibly different outcomes than median at CCN.

wubwubwub wrote:1. almost no one, anywhere, "slide[s] into [an] A3 clerkship[]"; the process is sufficiently arbitrary that top 10% HYS students sometimes struggle to line something up (although it usually works out for them).

Yale students indeed get A3 clerkships fairly easily. This is helped a lot by the fact that Yale has no curve and no one can really tell where anyone is in the class.

Of course there will be the occasional struggler at Y, just as there will be the occasional median H student who outperforms their grades (see ValeVale). But over the mine run of cases, it's not challenging to land an A3 clerkship out of Yale.

wubwubwub wrote:3. In addition to self selection out of clerkships, which is genuinely a thing at H, H has a large international JD student cohort and a significant number of dual degree students. I think about 30% of the class is either dual degree or international. Those factors may explain the lower rate at H, at least in part.

Self selection out of clerkships happens at all law schools, Yale included, and there's no reason to think H students are particularly adverse to clerking.

Dual degree students aren't necessarily going to be disproportionately uninterested in clerking. Dual degree students are often disproportionately interested in academia or high-level policy/PI work, for which the clerkship credential is particularly valuable (and sometimes even expected).

nixy wrote:So, I'm confused - according to Law School Transparency, 29.5% of 2017 Yale grads clerked, which is not *that* far from 19.5, and is a difference that I think actually be in part explained by self-selection (it's easy to imagine that, say, doing M&A at a fancy firm - which doesn't require clerking - is an aspiration for more Harvard students than Yale students).

My source is https://law.yale.edu/student-life/caree ... employment

I don't know how to explain the discrepancy with LST. I can only say that the ~50% figure the above link cites ((79+32)/212) is consistent with what I've heard from multiple YLS grads over the past decade, all of whom have estimated ~40-50% clerkship numbers.

nixy wrote:I don't know enough about where median falls and how clear that is to judges to say it's *easy* for a Harvard grad to clerk, but I spent a bunch of time in markets far removed from H or Y, where I think being a Harvard grad definitely took on a premium it might not in other parts of the country, so geographic flexibility would be key (and it may well be too that the Yale grads don't have to be as geographically flexible).

Perhaps my post above was unclear, but I was solely comparing H to Y. Of course H is - in any absolute sense - a tremendous and tremendously strong law school, and its graduates have access to the very best opportunities available in the country. And of course H - and the other "top" T13s - has greater placement power than schools toward the "bottom" of the T13. It's just that Y is in a league of its own w.r.t. placement power, a fact that I had (perhaps foolishly) assumed every veteran TLSer would agree on (with perhaps the only caveat being that H has greater international cachet than Y thanks to Harvard College's lay prestige, but this isn't relevant to the vast majority of law students, and it's debatable whether someone set on working internationally should even pursue a U.S. J.D. instead of an alternate graduate degree).

nixy

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Re: Hamilton at CLS but not in at HYS: does this happen?

Postby nixy » Thu Jan 31, 2019 6:10 pm

Okay, so the 79 includes state clerkships, and the 19.5% I cited for Harvard is only federal (not a huge disparity, but a difference). And LST wouldn’t include the students with clerkships starting at a later date (the 32 you’re adding) - I’m pretty sure it’s only the job directly after law school, so Harvard doubtless also has some people in the position of that 32, who aren’t captured by LST.

I feel like the degree of placement power is getting parsed really finely when you’re drawing these distinctions between two powerhouses (and it doesn’t address self-selection), but then, my perspective is from entirely outside this wheelhouse and it looks a bit like arguing whose golden platter at the restaurant where only the elite can even get a reservation is bigger.

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Re: Hamilton at CLS but not in at HYS: does this happen?

Postby QContinuum » Thu Jan 31, 2019 6:16 pm

nixy wrote:Okay, so the 79 includes state clerkships, and the 19.5% I cited for Harvard is only federal (not a huge disparity, but a difference). And LST wouldn’t include the students with clerkships starting at a later date (the 32 you’re adding) - I’m pretty sure it’s only the job directly after law school, so Harvard doubtless also has some people in the position of that 32, who aren’t captured by LST.

I feel like the degree of placement power is getting parsed really finely when you’re drawing these distinctions between two powerhouses (and it doesn’t address self-selection), but then, my perspective is from entirely outside this wheelhouse and it looks a bit like arguing whose golden platter at the restaurant where only the elite can even get a reservation is bigger.

So here's an apple-to-apple comparison: Current state + federal clerkships only (since we don't have the later-clerkships data for Harvard). That gets us to 37% for Yale and 20% for Harvard. Still almost double.

(I know typically we only look at federal clerkships, but at the caliber of YSH I think it's reasonable to assume that the state clerkships in question aren't things like state district court clerkships, but rather prestigious appellate court positions).

nixy

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Re: Hamilton at CLS but not in at HYS: does this happen?

Postby nixy » Thu Jan 31, 2019 6:32 pm

Sure, I’m not saying don’t look at state clerkships, I was just explaining the numbers I cited (I’m sure the Harvard state clerkships are prestigious too).

And my overall point would still be that more people clerking out of Yale doesn’t really entirely get at how “hard” or “not hard” it is to clerk out of Harvard.

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Re: Hamilton at CLS but not in at HYS: does this happen?

Postby QContinuum » Thu Jan 31, 2019 6:39 pm

nixy wrote:Sure, I’m not saying don’t look at state clerkships, I was just explaining the numbers I cited (I’m sure the Harvard state clerkships are prestigious too).

Of course, which is why in my post above I looked at state + federal clerkship data for both Y and H. And in explaining why I include state clerkships for both schools I expressly stated, "at the caliber of YSH" - I do not assert that only Yalies nab prestigious state clerkships, whereas Harvardians in state clerkships are toiling away in state trial courts.

nixy wrote:And my overall point would still be that more people clerking out of Yale doesn’t really entirely get at how “hard” or “not hard” it is to clerk out of Harvard.

But I think when you have a difference as large as 20% vs. 37% it does speak to the difficulty/attainability of clerking. I don't think we have any reason to suspect that H students are 50% less likely than Yalies to want to clerk.

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Re: Hamilton at CLS but not in at HYS: does this happen?

Postby nixy » Thu Jan 31, 2019 6:58 pm

Again, I think you can suspect that. Maybe not 50% less likely, but some amount less likely, given the kinds of cultural differences that appear to exist between Harvard and Yale wrt jobs.

(Also sorry to miss the YSH on the state clerkship comment.)

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Re: Hamilton at CLS but not in at HYS: does this happen?

Postby Goldie » Thu Jan 31, 2019 7:29 pm

HLS has had around 250 clerks, give or take, each of the last three years. That includes state, federal, and international courts, and both students and alumni. (And students who did consecutive clerkships would show up in that number for multiple years.) So I think some of the percentages in this thread are a bit understated.

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Re: Hamilton at CLS but not in at HYS: does this happen?

Postby hlsperson1111 » Thu Jan 31, 2019 7:38 pm

The Lsat Airbender wrote:
ValeVale wrote:I was median at H after 1L, K-JD. I received offers from all the NY firms I interviewed with, including multiple V10s (yes, Cravath included). I applied for district court clerkships with 5 judges in a fairly large city, and was asked to interview four days after applying. I got the first clerkship I interviewed for.


You outperformed your grades; congrats. The legion of recent HLS grads working at Baker McKenzie and its ilk weren't able to. (They went to a great school and got great outcomes, of course - not trying to put anyone down here.)

All of my friends that wanted a clerkship got one. Applying takes effort and work and so some of my friends that decided 3L they wanted to clerk had to wait for a couple of years after grad.


This is basically how Columbia and Chicago and UVA (and Stanford too, fwiw) work as well. It's mainly due to the fact that people without the grades to clerk after 1L fall quickly decide they don't really want one.

Like, nobody's saying that you don't have access to amazing opportunities at Harvard Law School - that's obvious. But the marginal difference between it and the bottom half of the T6 is pretty slim, and it accrues almost entirely to the top of the class at Harvard, who have a relatively clear path to certain opportunities (feeder clerkships, elite PI fellowships, and the academy) that are attainable but risky from CCN.


I will ruffle some feathers by saying this, but if you are at HLS and your only offers are from the New York offices of DLA Piper, Baker & McKenzie, etc., you probably had well below median grades (0-1 H or multiple LPs) or cannot interview your way out of a paper bag.



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