Should I transfer to a better undergrad (and take on loans)?

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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Should I transfer to a better undergrad (and take on loans)?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Sep 27, 2016 10:55 am

Hey guys :)

I currently attend California University of Pennsylvania. It's a pretty obscure, rural school but I love the classes, am pulling excellent grades and the teaching staff have been so nice. I have nothing bad to say about the school itself. However, I was wondering if I should transfer to a good state school--Penn State.

I am worried that Cal U. is not a "prestigious" enough school and does not have the name recognition needed. Not that Penn State does, but at least Penn State is ranked and is well-regarded in the Northeast where I am from. I hate having to take on school loans for undergrad as Penn State is a bit more expensive, but I might transfer to get my BA if having a degree from Cal U. will be a detriment to me in the law school application process and/or the OCI process later on. I'm almost done at Cal U. but can easily transfer to get my last 36 credits in there and get the BA there.

Thoughts?

foregetaboutdre

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Re: Should I transfer to a better undergrad (and take on loans)?

Postby foregetaboutdre » Tue Sep 27, 2016 11:19 am

Anonymous User wrote:Hey guys :)

I currently attend California University of Pennsylvania. It's a pretty obscure, rural school but I love the classes, am pulling excellent grades and the teaching staff have been so nice. I have nothing bad to say about the school itself. However, I was wondering if I should transfer to a good state school--Penn State.

I am worried that Cal U. is not a "prestigious" enough school and does not have the name recognition needed. Not that Penn State does, but at least Penn State is ranked and is well-regarded in the Northeast where I am from. I hate having to take on school loans for undergrad as Penn State is a bit more expensive, but I might transfer to get my BA if having a degree from Cal U. will be a detriment to me in the law school application process and/or the OCI process later on. I'm almost done at Cal U. but can easily transfer to get my last 36 credits in there and get the BA there.

Thoughts?


Not only no, but hell no. Penn State will not help you AT ALL in the law school admissions process. It may marginally help you in a career other than law.

If you're considering transferring to UPENN than I'd consider it (but not in terms of law school admissions; just b/c you will probably have better job opportunities coming out of undergrad).

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Re: Should I transfer to a better undergrad (and take on loans)?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Sep 27, 2016 11:28 am

OP here.

Thanks for the emphatic reply! I do not want to take out any loans if I can avoid it, so you sort of confirmed what I already thought.

The problem is I want to work BigLaw. On the one hand, nobody on any firm websites I look at has gotten their BA from Cal U., but on the other hand I am pulling straight As here, and I'm confident that it is allowing me the peace of mind to study for the LSAT and pull an excellent GPA. I've been taking practice tests and do very well and from what I see on mylsn.info if I keep this up, I can easily get into a T-14.

I'm just worried that law is an "old boy" profession and people will scoff at my undergrad choice.

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Re: Should I transfer to a better undergrad (and take on loans)?

Postby RaceJudicata » Tue Sep 27, 2016 11:31 am

You think college is fun at California U of Pennsylvania... then yes, transfer to Penn State. You'll have a great time, and Penn State is a notoriously easy state school. Won't help your admissions very much, but may help you down the line with jobs (many more penn state ug's in big law/legal world then Cal U Penn folks -- and probably by about 100x).

Your grades will be just fine at Penn State, and life isn't only about law school admissions - go for it.

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Re: Should I transfer to a better undergrad (and take on loans)?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Sep 27, 2016 11:36 am

OP again.

I'm just not sure if taking on the extra debt is worth it as I don't have much of a "school" atmosphere anywhere I go because I study online! :D If going to Penn State is better because of the draw of the actual campus, it's a moot point for me (unfortunately!). I looked at both Cal U. and Penn for their online degrees in jurisprudence and law and legal studies, respectively, and ultimately Cal U won out because of the price.

What you say about UGs from Penn being in BigLaw does make sense. I just have to decide if it's worth it for me... tough decision.

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Re: Should I transfer to a better undergrad (and take on loans)?

Postby SFSpartan » Tue Sep 27, 2016 11:54 am

Anonymous User wrote:OP again.

I'm just not sure if taking on the extra debt is worth it as I don't have much of a "school" atmosphere anywhere I go because I study online! :D If going to Penn State is better because of the draw of the actual campus, it's a moot point for me (unfortunately!). I looked at both Cal U. and Penn for their online degrees in jurisprudence and law and legal studies, respectively, and ultimately Cal U won out because of the price.

What you say about UGs from Penn being in BigLaw does make sense. I just have to decide if it's worth it for me... tough decision.


It doesn't make sense for you to transfer to Penn State. To me, the chief benefit Penn State would provide is a larger potential network - but if you aren't around to develop that network, it's pretty much a moot point. To the extent you want to work before LS (and you should, IMO), Penn State can also help lock down a job, and the name probably goes a bit further.

But it won't help you in LS admissons at all, and will at best have an ancillary benefit in finding a legal job. Adcoms don't generally care about where you went to UG, and firms mostly care about where you went to LS (Cravath et. al won't be jumping to hire a Harvard UG that went to Touro, for example)

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Re: Should I transfer to a better undergrad (and take on loans)?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Sep 27, 2016 11:56 am

Got it, thanks.

Re: work... the reason I am attending online is because I am a non-trad student and I've owned my own consulting business for the past 10 years in a peripherally related field. I hope that my work experience and maturity works in my favor come admissions time.

Thank you everyone for the replies. I appreciate it!

lavarman84

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Re: Should I transfer to a better undergrad (and take on loans)?

Postby lavarman84 » Tue Sep 27, 2016 5:46 pm

Biglaw won't care about your undergrad if you go to a top law school. Stay where you're at. It's cheap, and you're doing well. Focus on killing the LSAT.

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Re: Should I transfer to a better undergrad (and take on loans)?

Postby RaceJudicata » Tue Sep 27, 2016 5:57 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Got it, thanks.

Re: work... the reason I am attending online is because I am a non-trad student and I've owned my own consulting business for the past 10 years in a peripherally related field. I hope that my work experience and maturity works in my favor come admissions time.

Thank you everyone for the replies. I appreciate it!


This makes a lot more sense. I thought you were 18/19 year old freshman or sophomore. I suggested Penn State so you wouldn't be wed to the idea of going to law school -- never know how interests will change. Given you seem pretty dead set on this, just get a+'s and do well on the lsat. you'll be fine.

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Re: Should I transfer to a better undergrad (and take on loans)?

Postby Joscellin » Thu Oct 06, 2016 8:41 pm

Yeah, absolutely don't transfer undergrads (especially unless you're getting like HYP). Maintain a baller GPA, kill the LSAT, and then go somewhere fancy for law school.

ETA: Went to crazy obscure shitty state school myself and am doing just fine.



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