Is it worth it for me to transfer? Having second thoughts - please help!

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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Anonymous User
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Is it worth it for me to transfer? Having second thoughts - please help!

Postby Anonymous User » Tue May 26, 2015 11:10 am

Hello all,

Thank you for taking the time to read my post.

I'm going to finish off 1L year with my GPA somewhere between a 3.55 and a 3.72 - most likely will end up with about a 3.65, which is sitting right at top 15% at my t20 school, GW.

I've been planning on applying to Harvard, NYU, Columbia, and Georgetown. So my questions are:

1) Is it worth it to transfer to each of those schools?

2) What are the odds I will get in? What if I end up with a 3.55 GPA (which I think is about top 20%)?

I already have LORs, transcripts, etc set up - I just really don't want to throw away money if this is a total lost cause.

Also:

3) Is it worth it to transfer to Georgetown when I'm already at GW? Pros at GW are that I have a nice schedule next semester and may make LR, if not a secondary journal, but they are not offering me any money. My concern is leaving GW and becoming a small fish in a big pond at Georgetown, if you know what I mean.

Any advice is greatly appreciated!!

CanadianWolf
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Re: Is it worth it for me to transfer? Having second thoughts - please help!

Postby CanadianWolf » Tue May 26, 2015 11:17 am

Focus on Harvard & Columbia. Remember that Harvard offers need based aid.

In my opinion, law review at GW tops transferring to Georgetown without making law review at GT. Georgetown, like Harvard, also offers need based financial aid to transfers.

P.S. Will you be giving up any scholarship money at GW ?

CanadianWolf
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Re: Is it worth it for me to transfer? Having second thoughts - please help!

Postby CanadianWolf » Tue May 26, 2015 11:26 am

Also, forget your fear of feeling like a small fish in a big pond; top 15-20% at GW indicates the ability to do well at any law school in the country, in my opinion.

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Re: Is it worth it for me to transfer? Having second thoughts - please help!

Postby Anonymous User » Tue May 26, 2015 11:46 am

OP here - I have a small amount of need-based aid at GW, but no merit aid or any other scholarships.

By big fish in a small pond, I mean as far as OCI goes - when they're looking at applicants, me at top 15% at GW versus someone at top 20% at Georgetown, they might go with the Georgetown student.

Thank you for the advice!

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MurdockLLP
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Re: Is it worth it for me to transfer? Having second thoughts - please help!

Postby MurdockLLP » Tue May 26, 2015 11:59 am

Could you use the transfer acceptance at GULC for a scholarship at GW?

blsingindisguise
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Re: Is it worth it for me to transfer? Having second thoughts - please help!

Postby blsingindisguise » Tue May 26, 2015 11:59 am

I would base the decision on your expected debt at graduation. If transferring is going to substantially increase it, don't do it.

UpandDown97
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Re: Is it worth it for me to transfer? Having second thoughts - please help!

Postby UpandDown97 » Tue May 26, 2015 12:07 pm

Applications are not binding. Might as well throw 'em out and see what happens before you decide. Use the time in between submission and accepetances to contemplate what to do.

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kray
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Re: Is it worth it for me to transfer? Having second thoughts - please help!

Postby kray » Tue May 26, 2015 12:07 pm

Anonymous User wrote:OP here - I have a small amount of need-based aid at GW, but no merit aid or any other scholarships.


Anectdotal, but I received significantly more need-based aid from GULC than GW, so it may be worth it just to see what they offer you.

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Re: Is it worth it for me to transfer? Having second thoughts - please help!

Postby Anonymous User » Tue May 26, 2015 12:14 pm

I could try to use acceptance for a scholarship at GW, but rumor is that they almost never do that unfortunately.

My debt after graduation will be virtually the same at all of these schools because I receive so little from GW.

Thank you for the anecdote kray, I hadn't considered that. All things even, I would probably transfer to GULC if they provided more aid.

blsingindisguise
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Re: Is it worth it for me to transfer? Having second thoughts - please help!

Postby blsingindisguise » Tue May 26, 2015 12:32 pm

My opinion is that having a "bigger name" school on your resume can offer at least a modest career boost long term, especially Harvard or Columbia since they have that "ivy league prestige" that carries over outside of law should you leave the field. GW to GULC seems less worth it, although it would mean not moving and presumably same COL, so there's probably no harm either. Might as well apply to all and see what happens.

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ndirish2010
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Re: Is it worth it for me to transfer? Having second thoughts - please help!

Postby ndirish2010 » Tue May 26, 2015 2:18 pm

Top 15% at GW is not getting HLS. Is there something I'm missing here?

If you make law review, I wouldn't leave, particularly if you want DC. If you don't, and you manage to get NYU or CLS, go for it. Meh on GULC though.

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POTUSorSCOTUS
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Re: Is it worth it for me to transfer? Having second thoughts - please help!

Postby POTUSorSCOTUS » Tue May 26, 2015 2:51 pm

15% at GW options:

YHS (bc YOLO) - 5%
CCN - 20%
Mich - 25%
Va - <5%
Penn - 10-15%
Boalt - 15-20%
Duke - 10-15%
NU - 20% (depending on softs)
Cornell - 5%
GULC - 75%

I would apply YHS, CCN, P + D + NU (and Boalt if WestCoast interest)

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Re: Is it worth it for me to transfer? Having second thoughts - please help!

Postby Anonymous User » Tue May 26, 2015 3:02 pm

ndirish2010 wrote:Top 15% at GW is not getting HLS. Is there something I'm missing here?

If you make law review, I wouldn't leave, particularly if you want DC. If you don't, and you manage to get NYU or CLS, go for it. Meh on GULC though.

OP here -

I don't think you're missing anything, haha I can't tell if people are just being overly optimistic, or ignoring that I said I was applying there. This is why I want to know if I should even bother applying.
Thanks for the advice re: making law review.

POTUSorSCOTUS wrote:15% at GW options:

YHS (bc YOLO) - 5%
CCN - 20%
Mich - 25%
Va - <5%
Penn - 10-15%
Boalt - 15-20%
Duke - 10-15%
NU - 20% (depending on softs)
Cornell - 5%
GULC - 75%

I would apply YHS, CCN, P + D + NU (and Boalt if WestCoast interest)


I'm not interested in Chicago, Duke, or NU (though I likely don't have the softs they want anyways) and HA on Yale I wish, I'm not going to throw that money away for an application. But I'm curious why you think more of a chance at CNN and Boalt than Penn?

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POTUSorSCOTUS
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Re: Is it worth it for me to transfer? Having second thoughts - please help!

Postby POTUSorSCOTUS » Tue May 26, 2015 4:43 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
ndirish2010 wrote:Top 15% at GW is not getting HLS. Is there something I'm missing here?

If you make law review, I wouldn't leave, particularly if you want DC. If you don't, and you manage to get NYU or CLS, go for it. Meh on GULC though.

OP here -

I don't think you're missing anything, haha I can't tell if people are just being overly optimistic, or ignoring that I said I was applying there. This is why I want to know if I should even bother applying.
Thanks for the advice re: making law review.

POTUSorSCOTUS wrote:15% at GW options:

YHS (bc YOLO) - 5%
CCN - 20%
Mich - 25%
Va - <5%
Penn - 10-15%
Boalt - 15-20%
Duke - 10-15%
NU - 20% (depending on softs)
Cornell - 5%
GULC - 75%

I would apply YHS, CCN, P + D + NU (and Boalt if WestCoast interest)


I'm not interested in Chicago, Duke, or NU (though I likely don't have the softs they want anyways) and HA on Yale I wish, I'm not going to throw that money away for an application. But I'm curious why you think more of a chance at CNN and Boalt than Penn?


Penn's #''s are going up so they will likely become more selective. Columbia and NYU take huge #'s of transfers compared to Penn (and Boalt takes more than Penn too). I don't know why you're uninterested in Chi, Duke or NU ... they're better than GW and you will always have that "top 15% from GW" sticker on your resume; however, if scholarship $ is the issue, I understand.

I would still throw apps out to the aforementioned schools (indeed, I'd blanket T14) because GW is not a very good school in todays legal market and the $100 fee at a 5-20% chance of improving your quality of life is a drop in the bucket.

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ndirish2010
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Re: Is it worth it for me to transfer? Having second thoughts - please help!

Postby ndirish2010 » Tue May 26, 2015 4:57 pm

GW law review is likely better than being a random transfer at much of the T14. The "GW is not a good school in today's market" thing is true, but that applies to 0Ls, who we assume will finish median absent any other evidence. But OP already has grades from GW, and good ones.

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quiver
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Re: Is it worth it for me to transfer? Having second thoughts - please help!

Postby quiver » Tue May 26, 2015 7:07 pm

quiver wrote:Many people in this forum usually just say "I got into X school, should I transfer?" That is obviously not enough info to get helpful feedback. I noticed that the choosing law school forum has certain guidelines to address this concern, and I thought this forum may benefit from the same. In that vein, those seeking advise on transferring should provide:

-Your current law school (or as specific a range as possible) and the total debt at graduation if you were to stay (debt = cost of tuition + fees + books + cost of living (COL) + accumulated interest - scholarships - financing from sources other than loans.)
-The transfer schools you are considering and the total debt at each, at the time of graduation, if you were to transfer there.
-Where you're from and where you want to work, and other places where you have significant ties (if any).
-The type of job you are seeking directly following law school as well as your longer-term career goals.
-If you provided a range rather than your specific current law school, an assessment of how well your current school places graduates into your target market and your target jobs.
-Any other personal factors that may influence your decision (eg: being close to family, needing a market where your significant other can find a job, etc.)

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Re: Is it worth it for me to transfer? Having second thoughts - please help!

Postby Anonymous User » Wed May 27, 2015 9:52 am

quiver wrote:
quiver wrote:Many people in this forum usually just say "I got into X school, should I transfer?" That is obviously not enough info to get helpful feedback. I noticed that the choosing law school forum has certain guidelines to address this concern, and I thought this forum may benefit from the same. In that vein, those seeking advise on transferring should provide:

-Your current law school (or as specific a range as possible) and the total debt at graduation if you were to stay (debt = cost of tuition + fees + books + cost of living (COL) + accumulated interest - scholarships - financing from sources other than loans.)
-The transfer schools you are considering and the total debt at each, at the time of graduation, if you were to transfer there.
-Where you're from and where you want to work, and other places where you have significant ties (if any).
-The type of job you are seeking directly following law school as well as your longer-term career goals.
-If you provided a range rather than your specific current law school, an assessment of how well your current school places graduates into your target market and your target jobs.
-Any other personal factors that may influence your decision (eg: being close to family, needing a market where your significant other can find a job, etc.)


Sorry for the lack of details -

- Currently at GW Law, will have about 110k debt at graduation (but lower that about 30k if I do get a 2L SA)
- Considering Harvard, Columbia, NYU, and Georgetown, and I'd likely have the same amount of debt at each of those schools, or at least close to the same amount.
- I'd rather not say where I'm from but I don't have significant ties in any market, so the school location is pretty important to me. I'm open to working just about anywhere, but interested in DC and NY.
- GW places alright for biglaw if you have a good class ranking, which I do, but they don't place fantastically.
- I need a market where my SO can have a job - and that's more possible in DC and NY than other cities (which is why I'm not interested in Chicago, Duke, etc. - I figure if I can get into Chicago or Duke, I'll get into NYU and Columbia, so I'd go there.) However, Harvard is Harvard so I might attempt a long distance thing for 2 years (although my chances at Harvard are so slim I'm not even worried about that).

Hutz_and_Goodman
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Re: Is it worth it for me to transfer? Having second thoughts - please help!

Postby Hutz_and_Goodman » Wed May 27, 2015 9:58 am

Definitely apply and then evaluate options

felinafelina
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Re: Is it worth it for me to transfer? Having second thoughts - please help!

Postby felinafelina » Wed May 27, 2015 10:17 am

Hutz_and_Goodman wrote:Definitely apply and then evaluate options


Lionel Hutz and Saul Goodman? I like

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quiver
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Re: Is it worth it for me to transfer? Having second thoughts - please help!

Postby quiver » Wed May 27, 2015 7:34 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
quiver wrote:
quiver wrote:Many people in this forum usually just say "I got into X school, should I transfer?" That is obviously not enough info to get helpful feedback. I noticed that the choosing law school forum has certain guidelines to address this concern, and I thought this forum may benefit from the same. In that vein, those seeking advise on transferring should provide:

-Your current law school (or as specific a range as possible) and the total debt at graduation if you were to stay (debt = cost of tuition + fees + books + cost of living (COL) + accumulated interest - scholarships - financing from sources other than loans.)
-The transfer schools you are considering and the total debt at each, at the time of graduation, if you were to transfer there.
-Where you're from and where you want to work, and other places where you have significant ties (if any).
-The type of job you are seeking directly following law school as well as your longer-term career goals.
-If you provided a range rather than your specific current law school, an assessment of how well your current school places graduates into your target market and your target jobs.
-Any other personal factors that may influence your decision (eg: being close to family, needing a market where your significant other can find a job, etc.)


Sorry for the lack of details -

- Currently at GW Law, will have about 110k debt at graduation (but lower that about 30k if I do get a 2L SA)
- Considering Harvard, Columbia, NYU, and Georgetown, and I'd likely have the same amount of debt at each of those schools, or at least close to the same amount.
- I'd rather not say where I'm from but I don't have significant ties in any market, so the school location is pretty important to me. I'm open to working just about anywhere, but interested in DC and NY.
- GW places alright for biglaw if you have a good class ranking, which I do, but they don't place fantastically.
- I need a market where my SO can have a job - and that's more possible in DC and NY than other cities (which is why I'm not interested in Chicago, Duke, etc. - I figure if I can get into Chicago or Duke, I'll get into NYU and Columbia, so I'd go there.) However, Harvard is Harvard so I might attempt a long distance thing for 2 years (although my chances at Harvard are so slim I'm not even worried about that).
Does this mean you're aiming for biglaw?

I mean, transfer decisions are usually difficult when you're giving up a substantial scholarship for better employment prospects. If you'll have the same amount of debt at each and you're shooting for biglaw, there's not much to lose in transferring as high as you can to maximize biglaw chances (aside from friends and professors at your 1L school and some inconvenience). That said, LR at GW is in a pretty solid position for biglaw in NYC and DC, so there's not a ton to gain if you're just aiming for biglaw. I think I need more info about your career goals to determine if it's worth transferring.

But, really, the answer is almost always:
Hutz_and_Goodman wrote:Definitely apply and then evaluate options

Lawskoolnurd
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Re: Is it worth it for me to transfer? Having second thoughts - please help!

Postby Lawskoolnurd » Thu May 28, 2015 4:17 pm

Top 5% at GW have a shot anywhere?

chingwoo
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Re: Is it worth it for me to transfer? Having second thoughts - please help!

Postby chingwoo » Fri May 29, 2015 7:10 pm

POTUSorSCOTUS wrote:15% at GW options:

YHS (bc YOLO) - 5%
CCN - 20%
Mich - 25%
Va - <5%
Penn - 10-15%
Boalt - 15-20%
Duke - 10-15%
NU - 20% (depending on softs)
Cornell - 5%
GULC - 75%

I would apply YHS, CCN, P + D + NU (and Boalt if WestCoast interest)


Are these actually accurate? This seems overly pessimistic for top 15% at GW.




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