rolark wrote:I visited Michigan recently since I won't be able to make the ASW. I think I fell in love anyway.
Question: Does anyone have experience with the PHID House? While I'm a pretty big fan of communal living, my undergrad didn't have frats and I'm a little scared of the idea of a stereotypical frat (noise, partying, etc.) What's the PHID House like?
I can't answer this specifically, but I have known several people who have lived there, and they seem to have been pretty happy with it. I definitely don't think you need to worry about it being like a "real" frat. I mean, they do throw occasional law school parties. But other than that, I think it's more just like sharing a house with a whole bunch of roommates, except a bit more structured (I just mean in terms of whose turn it is to do what chore).
This is the impression I also get from my friends who live in the Phid house. The reality is that these students, even though their residence is called a "frat" house, are law students, first and foremost. They throw a couple parties a year that are a great time, but the house really is nothing like a real fraternity house. It's going to be very similar to living in a house with quite a few other people, but the focus here is on academics instead of taking shots and chasing tail. The different priorities naturally lead to a different environment.
Tangerine Gleam wrote:Damn the man (and thanks for the advice)! I really need to try to make it out there for ASW...
I cannot stress this enough, but you really do need to make it out here for an ASW if you can. Take work off and do whatever you have to do, but this is an incredibly important decision that will affect not only the next three years, but also your future for quite some time down the road.
I strongly encourage you (and every student considering law schools) to attend the ASWs for every school you are interested in, not just Michigan. Not only does it make it easier to decide where you want to end up, it also makes it easier to go to school much more confident that you made the right decision in the end. I know many, many people (myself, and others in this thread included) who easily chose Michigan over higher ranked "T6" schools after giving a fair look to every option and then deciding on the best place for them. I found something about the environment at Michigan that I just did not see at other schools, which became even easier to recognize when all the schools are putting their very best foot forward at ASWs to try and impress potential new students.
navalspartan wrote:I just wanted to post a small anecdote to quell some of the weather fears that some may have. I moved back to Michigan in December after a decade of living in San Diego, Florida and Maryland weather. I was definitely concerned about braving the Michigan winters but it certainly has not been as bad as anticipated. Part of that can be attributed to having a mild winter and part of it is just that things are never as bad as you think they will be. Get a warm coat and some warm shoes and you are good to go. I walk to work 15 minutes each way and it is nothing.
Yesterday was beautiful. It was mid-thirties and sunny. I went for a run through the Arb and finished it off at the Law Quad. The Law School's aesthetic appeal may even be enhanced with a little bit of snow.
I reserve the right to become bitter with the onslaught of a prolonged cold spell or when I am still freezing through March. For now though, I am sticking by my assessment that the weather is not as bad as most will envision it to be.
I also agree with the above assessment. In the sake of full disclosure, I'm not good with cold - at all. I was born and raised in Arizona and spent the past 5 years in the SF Bay Area of CA. I can take cold in moderation when snowboarding, but even that I dislike. But the weather here is something you get used to and don't really think about. Granted, it has been a pretty mild winter, but just last week I was walking outside and later checked the weather to see that it was -6 with the windchill, the coldest day we've had. Yes, it was cold. But it really wasn't as unbearable as I thought it'd be. No collapsing and dying from frostbite on the sidewalk. People were still walking around, going places, and there was very little snow on the ground. In fact, it wasn't even ugly outside - it was sunny and beautiful. I'm sure Michigan eventually gets worse, but I'm not joking when I say that the weather here was one of the scariest things for me when deciding about coming to Michigan. You put on a coat, a hat, and decide that you're not laying out in the middle of the quad again until March or April. It really has not been that big of a deal.
doinmybest wrote: maggiebre wrote:
Can someone who lives/has lived in the Lawyer's Club speak to their experience? Is it worth it to live there for the the social atmosphere and convenience? I think if I attend that's where I'll probably live, but the idea of using shared bathrooms grosses me out a bit
Would love to hear more about this as well. I went to the housing website, and the page that had a virtual tour of the lawyers club is down. I still have no idea what it looks like in a typical room. Blindly, I just sent out my housing application for the lawyers club (non-binding). Additionally, I understand most people recommend not bringing your car up due to parking troubles. If I'm living in the lawyers club I won't need a car right?
Good question, and since I'm a 1L in the LC right now I'll be happy to answer.Experience:
I would say it is absolutely worth the experience of living in the LC, but that is going to largely depend on whether you enjoyed the social aspect of living in dorms. We have about half of the incoming 1L class in the LC, which provides far more contact than you'll have with people in other sections than you ever would living off campus. I know a decent amount of people from off-campus (friends I made during MAP - a pre-orientation program that I recommend everyone
do), but I would definitely say I'm closest with people a.) who live in the LC that I have the opportunity to interact with consistently, both in and out of my section, followed by b.) people in my section. While some people get freaked out by the idea of being around people in the LC all the time, it really isn't that bad since I feel that the vast majority of my fellow classmates are incredibly interesting/diverse individuals. And there are a couple hundred of them in the LC, so it's not like you're with the same five, ten or even fifty people all the time, if you don't want to be. Furthermore, since most people you'll hang out with in the LC will be outside
of your section (approximately 1 in 4), it actually gives you a great break from constantly hanging out with people in
your section (which is when I
would think that constant interaction might actually get overbearing, since you spend so much time in class with them). The time you have to spend with others can be as limited to as little as just eating a quick lunch and dinner (and even if you wanted to, it's easy to go elsewhere around the campus), but those are actually my favorite moments of the day when I get to see everybody and we can be real people while discussing non-law-related subjects. Convenience
Yes, it is convenient. Very convenient. Lunch is cooked for you (no wasted time cooking, errands, dishes, etc). Dinner is cooked for you (no wasted time cooking, errands, dishes, etc). It is a 100 yard walk across the quad to your classrooms, the library, the reading room, your professor's offices, etc. Sometimes I feel kind of spoiled at the level of convenience the LC affords me, but at the same time I decided on staying here fully aware that during my 1L year I wanted every advantage I could get. I don't have to worry about long walks in the snow (which seems to be a moot point this year since the weather is so mild). Shared Bathrooms:
Ok, so the bathrooms are shared - each one has two showers and two stalls, but I've seen a couple guys' bathrooms that also have a urinal. There is a sink in there, but they're pretty functional. While the idea of sharing a bathroom get some people to turn up their noses, it isn't all that much weirder than sharing a bathroom with 4 guys in a house. For one - it's probably cleaner. There is a cleaning crew that goes in daily and restocks everything, bleach (or so it smells like it) cleans the showers, sprays the floors, and generally makes sure that you're living in a nice place without dealing with all the hassles. In addition, because it's a communal shower, people keep all their random crap in their rooms. There's no shaving cream, or toothpaste, or hair shavings, or what-have-you all over the place like you'd probably find at most shared (at least in college) houses. The bathrooms really are remarkably clean for being in a dorm, and I haven't had an issue with it at all. Also, while most wings of the LC are separated by gender, the ones that do have both male and female rooms also have both male and female bathrooms, so that is not an issue.Typical Rooms:
There are four different types of room, as you may see on the website (or will probably see in the brochure). There are 3 singles: economical, regular, and a larger-size (no recollection of what it's called). I live in a regular single, which is slightly bigger than the dorm I had in college (which wasn't too bad then - not to mention that I had a roommate in college). I can't really speak to the size of the other rooms, since I'm not sure exactly what they are like, but suffice it to say that the regular single doesn't feel cramped when you consider that it's dorm living. It's also a fair bit larger than the single room I'll have next year when I move into a house with a few other guys. The rooms are somewhat older looking in the furniture (which they provide - dresser, bookshelf, desk, chair, table, bed), and all seem to have have a sink/mirror, sliding door closet with a hanging rack, and a heater by the window. Most people bring in a rug (since it's tile), a fridge, a microwave, and other chairs if they think they'd prefer them. The one downside, however, is the bed. They give you a twin-xl sized bed, which really is not that big. And they won't remove the bed, so you could theoretically bring another but you'd have to store the bed somewhere (not to mention the lease doesn't allow this, but they don't verify rooms - we're professional students). That said, the girl I'm dating also lives in the LC and a twin bed, although tight, can still work just fine. Not ideal, of course, but it gets the job done.
The double rooms all seem to have a similar layout, which is an open common room (about the size of a regular single) with two desks and plenty of space for a couch or futon or the like, and then two smaller rooms attached. The smaller rooms are a decent amount smaller than the regular single, but they have sliding door closets, dressers, beds, and room for another dresser or bookshelf if you wanted. It seems like most in the double rooms will do their private lounging in their personal rooms, but can do studying/hanging out in the common rooms. The doubles also make the best layouts for LC parties, which happen with solid frequency on the weekends at the beginning of semesters.Cars:
If I had a car, I would have a tough time deciding whether I would bring it now. It would be really nice for those times when I want to get off campus and do some shopping or whatnot, but I haven't had a problem borrowing friends' cars when I really needed. It's something of a toss-up and depends on whether you want to fork up the extra money for the insurance/gas/parking costs, especially when you already have plenty to do on campus and in school. If you do opt for the car (which I really don't mean to suggest is a bad idea, but is by no means necessary), be prepared to find parking (either on craigslist at somebody's house who is selling a spot), or to search for parking a few blocks away by the IM Sports building.
If anybody has any more questions re: the LC, I'll be happy to answer those as best I can. Or about any other topic, for that matter.