Giving up Law Review to Transfer Up

A forum for those current students who are or may be transferring from one school to another. Post any questions, advice, or other transfer related comments here.
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forestgirl
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Giving up Law Review to Transfer Up

Postby forestgirl » Thu May 31, 2012 11:27 am

I'm at a T30 school, grades aren't completely out yet, but I will probably end up top 5-10%. I'll likely grade on to Law Review, and I'm on moot court. I'm applying for transfer to Columbia, NYU, Penn, Harvard, and Yale. I might get on a secondary journal at those schools, but not law review. My career goals right now are biglaw for a few years, but I'm starting to think I might want to enter academia. Is it worth it to give up law review at my current school to transfer? Any thoughts on my chances at these schools?

2012JayDee
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Re: Giving up Law Review to Transfer Up

Postby 2012JayDee » Thu May 31, 2012 1:15 pm

If you can get into Columbia, Harvard or Yale then go.

Law review at your current school is just one small way employers will separate you out from the bunch. If you and 25 other classmates apply for the job and only 5 of you have law review then they may only choose to screen those with law review (assuming your grades are similar). Law Review is not that useful in real life so having it doesn't mean you will be a better associate at the firm.

On the other hand going to CHY you will have the opportunity to get jobs at places that, even with law review at your current school, you probably wouldn't have had an opportunity to interview with. Worse case you apply to transfer and get rejected. You still have your school with LR. But if you get in giving up law review and moot court will hardly be important.

As far as your chances: your chances are just as good as every other student in the top 1-5% around the country trying to transfer into those schools. I know people that have transferred to Columbia, NYU, Duke and Stanford, none of them regret it.

CanadianWolf
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Re: Giving up Law Review to Transfer Up

Postby CanadianWolf » Thu May 31, 2012 2:08 pm

Yes, it is usually worth it depending upon your goals.

Chances depend upon your class rank & your current law school. Reasons for transferring may affect your chances also.

Recommendations may be more important to Yale than to the others.

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vanwinkle
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Re: Giving up Law Review to Transfer Up

Postby vanwinkle » Thu May 31, 2012 2:12 pm

At the H/Y level it's definitely worth it. I know T30 transfers who left behind LR, had opportunities here they wouldn't have gotten at their old school, and quite a few just graduated from H with honors.

Below that it's hard to say. CLS could be worth it especially if you want to work in NY.

forestgirl
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Re: Giving up Law Review to Transfer Up

Postby forestgirl » Thu May 31, 2012 2:26 pm

Thanks all. Yes, I really want to work in New York. I did not love NYU when I visited but I think I will still apply to have a leg up in NYC. I'm keeping Penn on the list because they send so many graduates to big firms.

chasgoose
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Re: Giving up Law Review to Transfer Up

Postby chasgoose » Fri Jun 01, 2012 3:09 pm

forestgirl wrote:Thanks all. Yes, I really want to work in New York. I did not love NYU when I visited but I think I will still apply to have a leg up in NYC. I'm keeping Penn on the list because they send so many graduates to big firms.


I don't know if Penn is worth it though. Although most Penn students get biglaw, they don't send students in droves to the top firms the way HYSCCN do. Penn will send 2-5 to each V10, whereas HLS/CLS/NYU will send upwards of 20 each to the big ones (Stanford and Yale do well, but they are smaller so its hard to tell). Penn does a good job of getting its students into big law (perhaps even better than NYU does) but if you are top 5% at a T30 and on law review, you are very likely to get a biglaw job AND a decent scholarship for threatening to transfer. The only reason to transfer in your position would be to gain access to the very best firms and/or clerkships. Penn doesn't really do either, CCN don't really help you that much with the latter (losing law review hurts you more in the clerkship game than CCN will help), but the access to top firms might be worth the cost of transferring on its own, depending what you want.

No reason not to send out an app, but if you only get into Penn, I would seriously consider using the acceptance to get more scholarship $$ out of your current school instead of transferring to Penn.

forestgirl
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Re: Giving up Law Review to Transfer Up

Postby forestgirl » Fri Jun 01, 2012 4:50 pm

New developments. Got a disappointing B+ grade.... overall GPA is now 3.74, which my school will round to a 3.7 when calculating rank. I know that anything 3.6 and above gets an individual, not percentage, rank, but I don't really know what my rank will be. This is a little lower than I was hoping for. Should I not waste my money on Y/H now? Anywhere I should be expanding my sights to in the Northeast? I'm so frustrated. If any one of my grades were a tiny bit higher, I would round up to the 3.8. I might still be top 5% though.

concurrent fork
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Re: Giving up Law Review to Transfer Up

Postby concurrent fork » Fri Jun 01, 2012 5:38 pm

forestgirl wrote:New developments. Got a disappointing B+ grade.... overall GPA is now 3.74, which my school will round to a 3.7 when calculating rank. I know that anything 3.6 and above gets an individual, not percentage, rank, but I don't really know what my rank will be. This is a little lower than I was hoping for. Should I not waste my money on Y/H now? Anywhere I should be expanding my sights to in the Northeast? I'm so frustrated. If any one of my grades were a tiny bit higher, I would round up to the 3.8. I might still be top 5% though.

We can't offer much advice without your rank. Every school has a different curve so posting your GPA doesn't get us anywhere. If you are outside of top 5%, then yes H + Y are a waste of money.

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transferquery
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Re: Giving up Law Review to Transfer Up

Postby transferquery » Fri Jun 01, 2012 5:45 pm

My current school is on a 3.0 curve and 3.74 would scarcely crack top 10%; I'd say y and h are out unless you're on a 2.7 curve.

2012JayDee
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Re: Giving up Law Review to Transfer Up

Postby 2012JayDee » Sat Jun 02, 2012 9:48 pm

forestgirl wrote:New developments. Got a disappointing B+ grade.... overall GPA is now 3.74, which my school will round to a 3.7 when calculating rank. I know that anything 3.6 and above gets an individual, not percentage, rank, but I don't really know what my rank will be. This is a little lower than I was hoping for. Should I not waste my money on Y/H now? Anywhere I should be expanding my sights to in the Northeast? I'm so frustrated. If any one of my grades were a tiny bit higher, I would round up to the 3.8. I might still be top 5% though.



One B+ isn't really a killer. There are a lot of other factors the admissions committee can consider.
For example: how many substantive courses you were taking or how many total credits.
Not all schools offer the 1L curriculum the same way. School A may require 4-5 grades courses in one semester and School B may only require 3 grades classes. Some school's electives for first year can vary greatly. If you took a 4 credit Federal Income tax as a first year and got an A- that may look slightly more favorable than someone who took a 3 credit policy course and got an A.
Although your school may round to a 3.7 if you legitimately have a 3.74 maybe there is some way you can display that? Not sure what the rules are.

You only get 1 opportunity to transfer. Either you'll get in or you won't. If you apply and don't get in the only thing you're out of is money (and not that money is easy to come by in school) but the regret of not knowing if you could've gotten in may linger for a while. As the saying goes, "you miss 100 percent of the shots you don't take." I say apply.

flcath
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Re: Giving up Law Review to Transfer Up

Postby flcath » Sat Jun 02, 2012 10:03 pm

Things always relevant to the consideration:
-How much $$$ are you getting at your current school?
-Will you make LR at your current school?
-What transfer schools will you get into?


#1 you know now, #2 you'll know soon, and #3 you'll only know by applying, which you should do. It's worth the money for the apps, and you should apply more "top heavily" (mostly to reaches) than you did for 1L apps.

There are situations where a Vandy -> Duke transfer makes sense (didn't make LR at Vandy; paying sticker), and other times when a W&M -> CLS transfer doesn't (you've got a full-ride and tip-top grades).

forestgirl
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Re: Giving up Law Review to Transfer Up

Postby forestgirl » Sat Jun 02, 2012 10:36 pm

Thanks for the positive advice, everybody. I will know my rank sometime next week so I'll be interested in feedback when I get it. I have money at my current school ($14k) but nowhere near a free ride. I've started talking with admissions about the possibility of more money next year. If I am in the top 10% when rankings come out (which it seems like I will be, but I can't be sure) I am nearly guaranteed to grade on to LR. Even MORE new developments: one factor for me in transferring has been that my long term boyfriend is in finance, and there is zero finance industry where I currently go to school. So, he hasn't been able to move there with me. Because I grew up in the northeast, I've really wanted to transfer to a NYC or Philly school. But, he is now open to moving pretty much anywhere as long as he can find a finance job. I'm down with living almost anywhere... so this possibly opens up thoughts about Boalt, Duke, maybe Chicago. I think my approach will be to apply to Columbia, NYU, Penn, Boalt, Duke, Chi, Gtown and see what happens, then decide based on where/if I get in.

woeisme
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Re: Giving up Law Review to Transfer Up

Postby woeisme » Sat Jun 02, 2012 10:47 pm

forestgirl wrote:Thanks for the positive advice, everybody. I will know my rank sometime next week so I'll be interested in feedback when I get it. I have money at my current school ($14k) but nowhere near a free ride. I've started talking with admissions about the possibility of more money next year. If I am in the top 10% when rankings come out (which it seems like I will be, but I can't be sure) I am nearly guaranteed to grade on to LR. Even MORE new developments: one factor for me in transferring has been that my long term boyfriend is in finance, and there is zero finance industry where I currently go to school. So, he hasn't been able to move there with me. Because I grew up in the northeast, I've really wanted to transfer to a NYC or Philly school. But, he is now open to moving pretty much anywhere as long as he can find a finance job. I'm down with living almost anywhere... so this possibly opens up thoughts about Boalt, Duke, maybe Chicago. I think my approach will be to apply to Columbia, NYU, Penn, Boalt, Duke, Chi, Gtown and see what happens, then decide based on where/if I get in.


Throw in apps for Northwestern and Cornell for solid Chicago/NYC opportunities too.

flcath
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Re: Giving up Law Review to Transfer Up

Postby flcath » Sat Jun 02, 2012 10:52 pm

forestgirl wrote:Thanks for the positive advice, everybody. I will know my rank sometime next week so I'll be interested in feedback when I get it. I have money at my current school ($14k) but nowhere near a free ride. I've started talking with admissions about the possibility of more money next year. If I am in the top 10% when rankings come out (which it seems like I will be, but I can't be sure) I am nearly guaranteed to grade on to LR. Even MORE new developments: one factor for me in transferring has been that my long term boyfriend is in finance, and there is zero finance industry where I currently go to school. So, he hasn't been able to move there with me. Because I grew up in the northeast, I've really wanted to transfer to a NYC or Philly school. But, he is now open to moving pretty much anywhere as long as he can find a finance job. I'm down with living almost anywhere... so this possibly opens up thoughts about Boalt, Duke, maybe Chicago. I think my approach will be to apply to Columbia, NYU, Penn, Boalt, Duke, Chi, Gtown and see what happens, then decide based on where/if I get in.

What's your current school's tuition? Anywhere you'd transfer to has roughly the same tuition ($40-45K range), but I think there are a few T30s that are down in the $20Ks, so I thought I'd ask.

Also, if you're from the northeast, it will be much easier to find a job in the northeast than anywhere else (including wherever your T30 is). It's very disappointing, after all the 1L focus on grades, to find out that firms care about your ties just as much. Attending LS in a region is a very weak tie (though maybe it's stronger if you build a narrative about why you transferred there; I don't know), but if your bf can decide in advance what market you'll both be targeting, maybe you can spin a convincing narrative on that end.


See what other people ITT think, but assuming you're getting $14K at a school that costs the standard $40K, and you make LR at your current school, I'd say it'd definitely be worth going to a T6 (I'm shakier on NYU based on some of their previous year's stats, but I could be wrong), probably worth Penn, and a tossup for anywhere from MVB down to Cornell. Be aware that UVa has a rep for being in-state heavy with transfers, and NU still cares about WE (also, NU's stats are probably better because everyone has WE).

forestgirl
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Re: Giving up Law Review to Transfer Up

Postby forestgirl » Sat Jun 02, 2012 11:04 pm

After my fellowship I'm paying about $25k in tuition (plus living expenses of about $12k). Anywhere else would be significantly more expensive.

de5igual
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Re: Giving up Law Review to Transfer Up

Postby de5igual » Sat Jun 02, 2012 11:08 pm

also make sure wherever you transfer to will allow you to participate in OCI (*cough*Cornell*cough)

flcath
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Re: Giving up Law Review to Transfer Up

Postby flcath » Sat Jun 02, 2012 11:10 pm

f0bolous wrote:also make sure wherever you transfer to will allow you to participate in OCI (*cough*Cornell*cough)

I'd heard Fordham did this, but I had no idea anyone else did. (I didn't apply to Cornell; I'd decided in advance that I'd only consider Mich/Penn on up.)

Why even take transfers if you aren't going to let them reap the benefits of transferring?

keg411
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Re: Giving up Law Review to Transfer Up

Postby keg411 » Sun Jun 03, 2012 9:42 am

flcath wrote:
f0bolous wrote:also make sure wherever you transfer to will allow you to participate in OCI (*cough*Cornell*cough)

I'd heard Fordham did this, but I had no idea anyone else did. (I didn't apply to Cornell; I'd decided in advance that I'd only consider Mich/Penn on up.)

Why even take transfers if you aren't going to let them reap the benefits of transferring?


The few people who transfer want the name of Cornell. I'll just say that I applied there last year, was accepted and probably would've gone if they let transfers do OCI. The same week of my acceptance, I attempted to call the Career Services office and got stonewalled (pretty much everyone was on vacation, except for one assistant who was no help at all). Another poster talked to someone who basically told that person to stay at their current school as the chances of getting a job without going to the NY Job fair was not good.

Apparently Cornell has a new FAQ that says transfer can participate in OCI-activities (Cornell has the NY Job Fair, which is their primary recruiting and then a smaller recruiting program on-campus during the school year). If I were thinking of applying this year, I'd call the career services office NOW to find out what is really going on rather than waste the $$$ on an application.

nonprofit-prophet
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Re: Giving up Law Review to Transfer Up

Postby nonprofit-prophet » Sun Jun 03, 2012 9:52 am

does the name on your degree have an impact on partner prospects? Does it have any kind of impact beyond getting your foot in the door (exit options from firms, etc) Is it better to have law review at UT or a degree from H? I'm basically paying sticker at UT.

CanadianWolf
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Re: Giving up Law Review to Transfer Up

Postby CanadianWolf » Sun Jun 03, 2012 9:57 am

A degree from Harvard is better than law review at Texas unless you're in Texas & want to remain in Texas.

nonprofit-prophet
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Re: Giving up Law Review to Transfer Up

Postby nonprofit-prophet » Sun Jun 03, 2012 10:06 am

CanadianWolf wrote:A degree from Harvard is better than law review at Texas unless you're in Texas & want to remain in Texas.


can you explain? Better for what? Getting more interviews at OCI, making partner, having better exit options, or getting better assignments/practice groups while at a firm?

I'd like to work at one of the big 3 in TX and want the best shot of making partner or having good exit options. Also, big firms certainly love UT, but UT does not have quite the lock on TX that TLS appears to believe. Firms really want HYSCCN talent (can't reveal how I know this).

CanadianWolf
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Re: Giving up Law Review to Transfer Up

Postby CanadianWolf » Sun Jun 03, 2012 10:09 am

Quote: " Firms in Texas really want HYSCCN talent (can't reveal how I know this)."

If you "know this", then you should explain why & how you know that a Harvard Law degree is better in Texas than a degree from the University of Texas School of Law with law review. I don't agree based on OCI recruiting & numbers from each school at Texas biglaw firms, but UT obviously will place the most in Texas biglaw. Also, if you "know this", then why did you post the question on another's thread on TLS ?

nonprofit-prophet
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Re: Giving up Law Review to Transfer Up

Postby nonprofit-prophet » Sun Jun 03, 2012 10:17 am

CanadianWolf wrote:Quote: " Firms in Texas really want HYSCCN talentIf you "know this", then you should explain why you know that a Harvard Law degree is better in Texas than a degree from the University of Texas School of Law with law review. I don't agree based on OCI recruiting & numers from each school at Texas biglaw firms.


I said that to avoid the standard "UT if you want TX" answer that TLS always provides. What I know is that firms love UT, but many actively over recruit HYSCCN for 1L spots (and not as many from UT) in order to get em early. I know one firm's 1L class is like half HYS kids. I know another big 3 firm took only one UT 1L at all their TX offices, but took HYS 1Ls. Also heard from an associate at another big 3 (he works for hiring partner) that they are trying to increase their number of HYS grads). Now the employment numbers you reference definitely show TX firms love UT students, but I would bet that UT would have a harder time if more HYS students wanted TX. That is the extent of my knowledge.

So that answers the "opens doors" question. What I don't know is what I asked in my previous post. Beyond opening doors, does an H degree provide other benefits? Does it improve partner prospects, practice group selection, or exit options?

CanadianWolf
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Re: Giving up Law Review to Transfer Up

Postby CanadianWolf » Sun Jun 03, 2012 10:31 am

A Harvard degree probably does not improve partnership options since one's law degree has little to do with the usual standards for making partner which focus on generating clients & profits for the firm.

Exit options focus on relationships & expertise, not one's law school (unless the exit option is to work in academia, I suppose).

In the context of this thread on transfers, in order for a UT with law review to transfer to Harvard, the UT law review student would also have to rank in, at least, the top 10% at Texas. A law student at Texas with law review & a top 10% ranking should do as well or better than the typical Harvard Law School student seeking work in Texas biglaw.

nonprofit-prophet
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Re: Giving up Law Review to Transfer Up

Postby nonprofit-prophet » Sun Jun 03, 2012 10:35 am

CanadianWolf wrote:A Harvard degree probably does not improve partnership options since one's law degree has little to do with the usual standards for making partner which focus on generating clients & profits for the firm.

Exit options focus on relationships & expertise, not one's law school (unless the exit option is to work in academia, I suppose).

In the context of this thread on transfers, in order for a UT with law review to transfer to Harvard, the UT law review student would also have to rank in, at least, the top 10% at Texas. A law student at Texas with law review & a top 10% ranking should do as well or better than the typical Harvard Law School student seeking work in Texas biglaw.


Yea 40 of the 50 law review spots are basically grade on (slight weight to essay score), so the vast majority of law review students will be top 10%.

Thanks for the insight. Staying put probably makes the most sense.




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