Calling U. of Houston Law Students

A forum for applicants and admitted students to ask law students and graduates about law school and the practice of law.
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FunkyJD
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Calling U. of Houston Law Students

Postby FunkyJD » Thu Dec 31, 2009 4:16 pm

Are there any UH law students or recent law school alumni who are able to answer questions about the school?

Curious to know your general impressions about the law school, the quality of the facilities (library and classrooms) and faculty, helpfulness of your career services office, and placement rates in jobs with good firms outside of Houston (particularly in Dallas and in Austin).

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Stringer Bell
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Re: Calling U. of Houston Law Students

Postby Stringer Bell » Thu Dec 31, 2009 4:30 pm

Just to give your thread a bump, I'll share my impression from some former UH law students I know. The facilities aren't very good. Pre-ITE UH placed pretty well relative to comparably ranked schools. Top 15% gave you a really good shot at biglaw (maybe even top quarter if you were IP with a hard science) and most medianish students found work w/o much difficulty. Of course, ITE, all bets are off. I have heard of numerous students struggling to find any work. I also think that the placement is pretty Houston exclusive for the most part. Texas grads will swoop up most of the Austin jobs and SMU fills the same role in Dallas that UH does in Houston.

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catharsis
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Re: Calling U. of Houston Law Students

Postby catharsis » Thu Dec 31, 2009 4:32 pm

^ probably sounds about right but I still think UH is a fine law school.

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Stringer Bell
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Re: Calling U. of Houston Law Students

Postby Stringer Bell » Thu Dec 31, 2009 4:46 pm

catharsis wrote:^ probably sounds about right but I still think UH is a fine law school.


I don't disagree. I would make a case for UH with in state tuition over a school like IU-B at sticker.

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FunkyJD
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Re: Calling U. of Houston Law Students

Postby FunkyJD » Thu Dec 31, 2009 6:34 pm

Stringer Bell wrote:
catharsis wrote:^ probably sounds about right but I still think UH is a fine law school.


I don't disagree. I would make a case for UH with in state tuition over a school like IU-B at sticker.


Interesting to know/consider, since I also applied to IU-B.

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FunkyJD
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Re: Calling U. of Houston Law Students

Postby FunkyJD » Thu Dec 31, 2009 6:46 pm

Stringer Bell wrote:Just to give your thread a bump, I'll share my impression from some former UH law students I know. The facilities aren't very good. Pre-ITE UH placed pretty well relative to comparably ranked schools. Top 15% gave you a really good shot at biglaw (maybe even top quarter if you were IP with a hard science) and most medianish students found work w/o much difficulty. Of course, ITE, all bets are off. I have heard of numerous students struggling to find any work. I also think that the placement is pretty Houston exclusive for the most part. Texas grads will swoop up most of the Austin jobs and SMU fills the same role in Dallas that UH does in Houston.


Next to UT, which TX law degree is the most portable within TX, outside of their main market? SMU or UH? In other words, would a top 15% SMU student have a better chance of getting work in Houston than a top UH student would have of getting work in Dallas? Or vice versa?

Texas is where I want to practice, or at least end up ... and I'm assuming that I may want to move between Dallas or Houston or Austin sometime in my career, for professional and/or personal/family reasons.

Or is the answer Baylor?

Thanks for your thoughts.

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catharsis
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Re: Calling U. of Houston Law Students

Postby catharsis » Thu Dec 31, 2009 6:58 pm

FunkyJD wrote:
Stringer Bell wrote:Just to give your thread a bump, I'll share my impression from some former UH law students I know. The facilities aren't very good. Pre-ITE UH placed pretty well relative to comparably ranked schools. Top 15% gave you a really good shot at biglaw (maybe even top quarter if you were IP with a hard science) and most medianish students found work w/o much difficulty. Of course, ITE, all bets are off. I have heard of numerous students struggling to find any work. I also think that the placement is pretty Houston exclusive for the most part. Texas grads will swoop up most of the Austin jobs and SMU fills the same role in Dallas that UH does in Houston.


Next to UT, which TX law degree is the most portable within TX, outside of their main market? SMU or UH? In other words, would a top 15% SMU student have a better chance of getting work in Houston than a top UH student would have of getting work in Dallas? Or vice versa?

Texas is where I want to practice, or at least end up ... and I'm assuming that I may want to move between Dallas or Houston or Austin sometime in my career, for professional and/or personal/family reasons.

Or is the answer Baylor?

Thanks for your thoughts.


no offense to Baylor students but I honestly think Baylor is at the bottom of ranked schools in Texas. trying to compare whether a UH student would have a better shot at Dallas than an SMU student in Houston is going to be futile at best. it's impossible to compare that and I doubt anyone could really give you a real accurate response. both schools are ideal (other than Texas which places everywhere with priority in the state) for their own respective cities.

Baylor imo gives you the least opportunities of all four ranked schools (UT, UH, and SMU) for big law if that's what you want to do.

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Stringer Bell
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Re: Calling U. of Houston Law Students

Postby Stringer Bell » Thu Dec 31, 2009 7:15 pm

catharsis wrote:no offense to Baylor students but I honestly think Baylor is at the bottom of ranked schools in Texas. trying to compare whether a UH student would have a better shot at Dallas than an SMU student in Houston is going to be futile at best. it's impossible to compare that and I doubt anyone could really give you a real accurate response. both schools are ideal (other than Texas which places everywhere with priority in the state) for their own respective cities.

Baylor imo gives you the least opportunities of all four ranked schools (UT, UH, and SMU) for big law if that's what you want to do.


+1

I believe in recent years SMU placed slightly better for biglaw and clerkships than UH did, but both schools are pretty comparable. The big difference is that UH is substantially cheaper at sticker, but SMU gives out alot more $$. If I were picking between the two I'd go with cost first. If that's comparable then I'd go to other factors like what kind of law you want to practice (UH has a good IP program) or QOL (SMU has a beautiful campus in a nice part of Dallas).

Also, I would imagine Austin will be tough to crack from any of those schools. It's not a huge legal market and UT students love Austin and many will do anything they can to stay there after graduation.

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catharsis
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Re: Calling U. of Houston Law Students

Postby catharsis » Fri Jan 01, 2010 6:49 pm

Stringer Bell wrote:
catharsis wrote:no offense to Baylor students but I honestly think Baylor is at the bottom of ranked schools in Texas. trying to compare whether a UH student would have a better shot at Dallas than an SMU student in Houston is going to be futile at best. it's impossible to compare that and I doubt anyone could really give you a real accurate response. both schools are ideal (other than Texas which places everywhere with priority in the state) for their own respective cities.

Baylor imo gives you the least opportunities of all four ranked schools (UT, UH, and SMU) for big law if that's what you want to do.


+1

I believe in recent years SMU placed slightly better for biglaw and clerkships than UH did, but both schools are pretty comparable. The big difference is that UH is substantially cheaper at sticker, but SMU gives out alot more $$. If I were picking between the two I'd go with cost first. If that's comparable then I'd go to other factors like what kind of law you want to practice (UH has a good IP program) or QOL (SMU has a beautiful campus in a nice part of Dallas).

Also, I would imagine Austin will be tough to crack from any of those schools. It's not a huge legal market and UT students love Austin and many will do anything they can to stay there after graduation.


and +1 to this.

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hotdog123
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Re: Calling U. of Houston Law Students

Postby hotdog123 » Wed Feb 17, 2010 11:24 am

Reposting for all you cougar hopefuls...


Ouch........

http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/met ... 69559.html

Law school students to see biggest tuition increase
By JEANNIE KEVER
Copyright 2010 Houston Chronicle
Feb. 16, 2010, 12:43PM

Students will pay a little more at the University of Houston next year.

Law students will pay much more. Regents this morning approved a 16.5 percent increase for students at the law school.

Law school Dean Ray Nimmer defended the increase — originally proposed as a 20 percent hike but whittled down before today's board meeting — as a necessity.

“Legal education has just skyrocketed in cost around the country,” he said. “We've held our own even though we haven't done any large tuition increases. But with state budget cuts and with the demands of being able to run a really good law school, we just have to do it.”

Undergraduate tuition at UH will rise by 3.95 percent. It will go up at other UH system schools, as well:

• UH-Downtown, 5.1 percent.

• UH-Clear Lake, 4.5 percent.

• UH-Victoria, 3.8 percent.

Regent Nandita Berry cast the only “no” vote.

“I personally cannot ask students to pay more in today's economy,” she said. “It's a tough decision.”

Berry said the university should cut its budget instead, although she declined to suggest where the cuts should be made. That is an administrative decision, she said.

In fact, UH and all other public universities in the state just completed plans to trim 5 percent of state funding from their current budget. Gov. Rick Perry and other state leaders asked for the plans, although they haven't yet ordered them to be enacted.

UH Provost John Antel said tuition increases over the past 20 years have generally offset a drop in the level of state funding. In 1990, he said, state money covered 54 percent of the university's operating budget. This year, it's 32 percent.

“We realize we have to become more self-supporting,” he said.

The tuition increases were approved by a board committee last week, sparking a vocal protest from state Sen. John Whitmire, D-Houston. He wrote UH Chancellor Renu Khator, calling the law school increases “unconscionable.”

There was little discussion of the proposal today.

Overall, graduate tuition at UH will go up 7.7 percent. It will climb 9.6 percent at UH-Clear Lake, 5.5 percent at UH-Downtown and 3.9 percent at UH-Victoria.

The law school increase generated the most talk.

Incoming students next fall will actually pay 26.5 percent more; current students will see their tuition go up 12 percent.

“We have to hold that back,” Antel said. “They came here with an expectation for what they would pay.”

Nimmer defended the increase as necessary to continue the law school's climb in the national rankings. He said tuition at UH is currently about 35 percent less than that at the University of Texas at Austin's law school, and about half that at the law schools at Baylor University and Southern Methodist University.

“Obviously, nobody wants to pay more,” he said of student reaction.

But Erin Ferris, a third-year law student, said students understand the need to pay more.

“The overwhelming response from the student body is, we need to preserve the rankings and get better,” she said.

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madmartigan
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Re: Calling U. of Houston Law Students

Postby madmartigan » Mon Mar 15, 2010 4:17 pm

Any UH students around that want to comment on summer jobs and job prospects in general? A UH 2L told me that almost everyone gets some kind of summer employment. But what about paid firm jobs?

From the NLJ reports, it appears about the top 20-25% landed fed clerkships or top250 firm jobs. That's pretty solid; any reason to doubt those #s?

UH claims 2008 numbers as 96% employment after 9 months with an average salary of 94K. I know 2008 was the peak before the storm, but can we expect relatively similar #s?

Any other commentary would helpful as the seat deposit deadline looms.

colemf
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Re: Calling U. of Houston Law Students

Postby colemf » Mon Mar 15, 2010 6:10 pm

Does anyone have any insight into the Harris county district attorneys office? Do they hire almost exclusivly form UH? Are they hiring at all right now with the economy?

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Josh the Goat
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Re: Calling U. of Houston Law Students

Postby Josh the Goat » Mon Mar 15, 2010 7:38 pm

I'm currently a 2L at UH. Most of the posters above are right, SMU graduates tend to stick around Dallas, UH graduates tend to stick around Houston, and UT can go anywhere in Texas or out of state.

But in comparison to the different Texas law schools, getting a job after law school is a combination of your grades during law school, your network, and luck. I don't think it has as much to do with which Texas school you went to. Don't worry if you want to practice in Dallas, but want to go to UH, you'll still be able to do that if you have good grades and try to network with people from the Dallas area.

As for job prospects, it's a tough summer for a lot of people that I know. I managed to get a paying job with an oil and gas company as a landman for this summer. I don't have stellar grades, I'm not on any journals, and I don't do mock trial or moot court. So if I can get a job, I guess there's hope for pretty much anyone to get a job this summer.

I'll try to answer any other questions you guys have.




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