Michigan 2012

(housing, friendships, future exams, all things 2012)
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USC2009
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Re: Michigan 2012

Postby USC2009 » Tue Apr 21, 2009 6:26 pm

topsome wrote:
USC2009 wrote:I picked Michigan over Duke with equal scholarships, FWIW. I liked both ASWs, I loved Duke's campus (probably more than Michigan's campus overall, though the law quad clearly wins the LS battle). In the end though, I felt that Michigan was a better fit for me.



In what way was it a better fit?


It's hard to really define it. I met a lot of great people at both schools, but almost everyone at Michigan reminded me of my friends in one way or another. That wasn't necessarily the case at Duke (the same was true at Texas). Also, I like that Michigan skews a bit older than Duke, based on what I saw. I'm 21, but I only felt like a typical "college student" for my first two years of college. Also, I tried to go exploring on my own at both schools to meet 1/2/3Ls just hanging out or in the library - both praised their schools, but at Michigan people were RAVING about their experiences. Plus, I preferred Ann Arbor to Durham (although I can't comment about Chapel Hill/Raleigh, neither of which I saw).

I hope this helps. Let me know if you have any more questions.

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FlightoftheEarls
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Re: Michigan 2012

Postby FlightoftheEarls » Tue Apr 21, 2009 6:29 pm

topsome wrote:Thank you for your thorough analysis. I seem to get the feeling that Michigan has some edge or more prestige than Duke from reading these threads. I don't know how true that assumption is but I guess this decision is really hard regardless.

I would say each school has their advantages and disadvantages, and on the whole you'll find that nobody can really fault you for deciding either way. I didn't apply to Duke because I was simply not interested in the school, and I'm sure you can find plenty of people who didn't even apply to Michigan because they were afraid of the weather.

As you can probably discern just from me posting here, I've certainly weighed my options and am gladly attending Michigan. I also could not be more excited about that reality. I wish I could give you more concrete reasons, and I'll happily give more facts and figures if that helps you feel comfortable, but the real decision will and should come down to your personal take on the schools.

kmo33
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Re: Michigan 2012

Postby kmo33 » Tue Apr 21, 2009 6:32 pm

topsome wrote:Hello Michigan Law Class of 2012,

I asked this in the Duke forum as well. I'm having a really hard time deciding between Duke and Michigan. I narrowed it down to both of these schools because the student body seemed to be the most friendly and laid-back.

-I went to both ASW and had a great time.
-I'm a New Yorker and looking to go back to NYC after Law School.
-Duke is giving me $48,000 and Michigan is giving me $45,000.

What made you choose Michigan over other schools, specifically Duke? Any insight you guys can give me would be great. Are there things I can do at Michigan that I can't do at Duke?


I just went through the same decision and chose Mich over Duke, despite Duke offering much more money. In the end, I went with my gut because Michigan just felt right to me in a way Duke didn't. But if you don't have a gut preference, try to think about what you might want to do after law school. Michigan's LRAP program was a huge factor for me--there's no income cap (vs. Duke's $60,000 income cap), and unlike Duke's, it's purely income based, i.e., you can be doing something that falls outside the "public interest" definition, as long as it's not a clerkship or fellowship. There's also no cap on total benefits, whereas Duke has maximum of $80,000 over the period you're receiving benefits. Now, these differences may not work out to be huge in the end, but Michigan's definitely seemed more flexible to me. So maybe that's something for you to consider. Otherwise, does either school have a particularly strong legal interest area (IP, international law, etc.), or is there a professor or student group at either school that you might want to work with? There really is no wrong choice (and I know how much that might suck to hear), but the long and short of it is that you'll probably be happy at either school. They're both great, at least from a 0L's perspective. Good luck :)

tcortez
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Re: Michigan 2012

Postby tcortez » Tue Apr 21, 2009 6:43 pm

topsome wrote:
FlightoftheEarls wrote:
topsome wrote:Hello Michigan Law Class of 2012,

I asked this in the Duke forum as well. I'm having a really hard time deciding between Duke and Michigan. I narrowed it down to both of these schools because the student body seemed to be the most friendly and laid-back.

-I went to both ASW and had a great time.
-I'm a New Yorker and looking to go back to NYC after Law School.
-Duke is giving me $48,000 and Michigan is giving me $45,000.

What made you choose Michigan over other schools, specifically Duke? Any insight you guys can give me would be great. Are there things I can do at Michigan that I can't do at Duke?

That's a very tough question to answer, and I'm probably not the best person to give a response as I did not apply to Duke. With that said, I'll give my 2 cents anyway.

Your price-tag is going to be very comparable for each school, so I don't think money is really going to be a deciding factor, as it was for me (about 90k cheaper than Northwestern and NYU, which really helped me cling to Michigan).

Both schools will place you into a large firm, should you decide that's where you'd like to go. I think Michigan tends to spread out more into Chicago and SF, if those are areas of potential interest, and is also very competitive in NYC, it's largest market by placement percentage.

I think Michigan has a noticeable edge when it comes to academia, placing 22 new academics in the past 5 years vs. 10 at Duke (although Duke has a smaller class-size, worth noting). Clerkships, however, is tough to give an advantage to. Duke puts in a higher class % into fed appellate positions (D: 8.6% vs M: 7.1% last year), but Michigan has a higher total number of placements total (D:18 vs M: 28). That's up to you to decide which is better.

Figures aside, however, you're going to be deciding largely based on which school you feel the most comfortable with. Forget rankings and all that, as they're both great schools, even though I do personally believe that Michigan has a noteworthy edge. I'm born and raised in heat (AZ & Cali), so I can understand that the cold can be a deterrent, yet I'm somewhat excited about living in Ann Arbor for a few years. I also find AA to be a much more vibrant community than Durham, but that's still my personal opinion. I also can't seem to get over the idea that this is the place I get to call my home for the next three years:

Image

Best of luck in your decision, and hopefully we'll see you at Michigan come August!


Thank you for your thorough analysis. I seem to get the feeling that Michigan has some edge or more prestige than Duke from reading these threads. I don't know how true that assumption is but I guess this decision is really hard regardless.


I had a similar issue between Penn and Mich, which are even closer in similarities. Like you, my gut told me i'd be happy either way and I loved both, although for different reasons. The end result was I looked at numbers (i.e. clerkships, Public interest, professors, etc) because nothing else helped make the decision. My wise friend I met at ASW told me that i was eventually gonna have to just make a dang decision and stick with it and thats what i'm doing now. But I def understand what you're going thru. Too many good decisions is almost as hard as no decisions!

topsome
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Re: Michigan 2012

Postby topsome » Tue Apr 21, 2009 6:44 pm

Are any of your worried about Michigan's lack of lay prestige? Does that stuff even matter when you're at a law firm or seeking a public interest job?

I know that much more people have heard of Penn or Duke over Michigan (myself included before I started the law school process).

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USC2009
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Re: Michigan 2012

Postby USC2009 » Tue Apr 21, 2009 6:45 pm

topsome wrote:Are any of your worried about Michigan's lack of lay prestige? Does that stuff even matter when you're at a law firm or seeking a public interest job?

I know that much more people have heard of Duke over Michigan (myself included before I started the law school process).


I only worry about lay prestige in terms of impressing my friends. It doesn't make a difference at all when you're looking for a job. They know the prestige of the law school, not the undergrad/overall lay prestige.

hdg315
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Re: Michigan 2012

Postby hdg315 » Tue Apr 21, 2009 6:46 pm

topsome wrote:Are any of your worried about Michigan's lack of lay prestige? Does that stuff even matter when you're at a law firm or seeking a public interest job?

I know that much more people have heard of Penn or Duke over Michigan (myself included before I started the law school process).


In all honesty, and I've said this multiple times before I even chose Michigan: lay prestige means next to nothing, except for impressing your friends with the name of the school you're attending. The people who will matter in your career will know which law schools are the best, and Michigan is one of them.

hdg315
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Re: Michigan 2012

Postby hdg315 » Tue Apr 21, 2009 6:47 pm

USC2009 wrote:
I only worry about lay prestige in terms of impressing my friends. It doesn't make a difference at all when you're looking for a job. They know the prestige of the law school, not the undergrad/overall lay prestige.


Ha, oops. Jinx.

tcortez
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Re: Michigan 2012

Postby tcortez » Tue Apr 21, 2009 6:49 pm

topsome wrote:Are any of your worried about Michigan's lack of lay prestige? Does that stuff even matter when you're at a law firm or seeking a public interest job?

I know that much more people have heard of Penn or Duke over Michigan (myself included before I started the law school process).


Actually, on my side of the world, people know about Michigan or Duke over Penn in terms of lay people.

topsome
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Re: Michigan 2012

Postby topsome » Tue Apr 21, 2009 6:55 pm

You guys are right about lay prestige. One last question, are you guys happy with Michigan being at #9 this year (totally crushing the notionthat Michigan is in decline)? :D
Last edited by topsome on Tue Apr 21, 2009 7:02 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Alexandria
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Re: Michigan 2012

Postby Alexandria » Tue Apr 21, 2009 6:57 pm

No, I want to be at 6 or higher. :) But I never bought the whole decline thing anyway.

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Sixigan
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Re: Michigan 2012

Postby Sixigan » Tue Apr 21, 2009 7:05 pm

Vail67 wrote:If you do MAP and are living in the LC, can you move right into the LC then, or do you stay in the hotel as well?

And if you don't do MAP, does anyone know when you can move in?

Thank you for potentially saving me a phone call. :mrgreen:


You cannot move into the LC early unless you are paying to stay for Early Interview Week. Michigan should pay for your hotel stay, which lasts until the Lawyers Club opens.

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mightydinosaur
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Re: Michigan 2012

Postby mightydinosaur » Tue Apr 21, 2009 7:14 pm

topsome wrote:Are any of your worried about Michigan's lack of lay prestige? Does that stuff even matter when you're at a law firm or seeking a public interest job?

I know that much more people have heard of Penn or Duke over Michigan (myself included before I started the law school process).

In terms of worries over lay prestige in general, I thought about it a little when making my decision, but really, it's called lay prestige because it only matters with laypeople. It will not affect your ability to get a job. In the end, I chose Michigan over two of the T4 because I decided that picking the school that was the best academic and cultural fit for me mattered more than watching people's eyes bug out when I told them where I went to school.

As for specific worries about lay prestige of Michigan versus Duke, I'd guess that any difference in perception between the two is regional. Personally, I always thought more of Michigan based on my background, but I'm sure other people are the opposite. At any rate, unless you plan to settle within 100 miles of either one of them and not work in law, I wouldn't consider lay prestige in picking between them.

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Sixigan
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Re: Michigan 2012

Postby Sixigan » Tue Apr 21, 2009 7:16 pm

I just can't comprehend why lay prestige is so important to such ostensibly well-adjusted, mature, and intelligent people.

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dresden doll
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Re: Michigan 2012

Postby dresden doll » Tue Apr 21, 2009 7:18 pm

Sixigan wrote:I just can't comprehend why lay prestige is so important to such ostensibly well-adjusted, mature, and intelligent people.


Cosigned. It never gave me a moment's concern. What do I care whether my neighbor knows of Michigan or not?

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FlightoftheEarls
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Re: Michigan 2012

Postby FlightoftheEarls » Tue Apr 21, 2009 7:18 pm

topsome wrote:You guys are right about lay prestige. One last question, are you guys happy with Michigan being at #9 this year (totally crushing the notionthat Michigan is in decline)? :D

I also refused to buy into the stupid economic decline idea, but I'm glad that Michigan held strong compared to its competition. With that said, UVA and NU are both still excellent schools, although I personally think Michigan is on very comparable to UVA and marginally better than NU.

I also think Michigan is a slightly better school than Penn, and rather comparable with Berkeley (a school which, in my opinion, benefits from its lay prestige over Michigan due to the global reputation of its Ph.D. programs).

If I were to give my personal opinion of rankings, I'd put:

Y (1)
H/S (2)
Col (4)
NYU/Chi (5)
B/M/V (7)
P (10)
N/D (11)
C (13)
G (14).

Not that it matters at all, but that's how I personally perceive these schools.

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dresden doll
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Re: Michigan 2012

Postby dresden doll » Tue Apr 21, 2009 7:36 pm

FlightoftheEarls wrote:
topsome wrote:You guys are right about lay prestige. One last question, are you guys happy with Michigan being at #9 this year (totally crushing the notionthat Michigan is in decline)? :D

I also refused to buy into the stupid economic decline idea, but I'm glad that Michigan held strong compared to its competition. With that said, UVA and NU are both still excellent schools, although I personally think Michigan is on very comparable to UVA and marginally better than NU.

I also think Michigan is a slightly better school than Penn, and rather comparable with Berkeley (a school which, in my opinion, benefits from its lay prestige over Michigan due to the global reputation of its Ph.D. programs).

If I were to give my personal opinion of rankings, I'd put:

Y (1)
H/S (2)
Col (4)
NYU/Chi (5)
B/M/V (7)
P (10)
N/D (11)
C (13)
G (14).

Not that it matters at all, but that's how I personally perceive these schools.


This list is on par with what I think as well, down to the last detail.

snotrocket
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Re: Michigan 2012

Postby snotrocket » Tue Apr 21, 2009 7:39 pm

There are Michigan people EVERYWHERE, or at least it seemed that way after I got admitted. Even people who just went to undergrad here always seemed super friendly and wanting to talk to me after they found out (usually because my wife told them) that we were coming here.

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Sixigan
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Re: Michigan 2012

Postby Sixigan » Tue Apr 21, 2009 7:42 pm

I'm pretty sure that if any admitted students approached Dean Zearfoss with the "lay prestige" "issue", she'd immediately regret admitting them.

snotrocket
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Re: Michigan 2012

Postby snotrocket » Tue Apr 21, 2009 7:44 pm

Sixigan wrote:I'm pretty sure that if any admitted students approached Dean Zearfoss with the "lay prestige" "issue", she'd immediately regret admitting them.

I'm pretty sure she would slap them. I've seen her do it.

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dresden doll
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Re: Michigan 2012

Postby dresden doll » Tue Apr 21, 2009 7:45 pm

Sixigan wrote:I'm pretty sure that if any admitted students approached Dean Zearfoss with the "lay prestige" "issue", she'd immediately regret admitting them.


I'm hopeful people will realize the futility of worrying about that in due time.

topsome
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Re: Michigan 2012

Postby topsome » Tue Apr 21, 2009 7:45 pm

Sixigan wrote:I'm pretty sure that if any admitted students approached Dean Zearfoss with the "lay prestige" "issue", she'd immediately regret admitting them.


Grrr I'm sorry. Dean Z is awesome, I'd hate to make her upset.

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summertimechi
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Re: Michigan 2012

Postby summertimechi » Tue Apr 21, 2009 7:45 pm

snotrocket wrote:There are Michigan people EVERYWHERE, or at least it seemed that way after I got admitted. Even people who just went to undergrad here always seemed super friendly and wanting to talk to me after they found out (usually because my wife told them) that we were coming here.

largest living alumni base ftw

--ImageRemoved--

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Sixigan
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Re: Michigan 2012

Postby Sixigan » Tue Apr 21, 2009 7:45 pm

iono, I tell her "Michigan to T6" all the time, baby.

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Sixigan
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Re: Michigan 2012

Postby Sixigan » Tue Apr 21, 2009 7:46 pm

dresden doll wrote:
Sixigan wrote:I'm pretty sure that if any admitted students approached Dean Zearfoss with the "lay prestige" "issue", she'd immediately regret admitting them.


I'm hopeful people will realize the futility of worrying about that in due time.


Realize the futility of worrying about Dean Zearfoss regretting admitting them?




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