University of Minnesota Law School

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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JCougar
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Re: University of Minnesota Law School

Postby JCougar » Tue Mar 09, 2010 5:20 pm

Just giving this a bump, as I am hoping to get in to Minnesota. I don't see any other threads on this school. It's one of my favorite targets right now, but the only thing that worries me is that the employment prospects salary-wise don't seem to match similarly ranked schools. Someone mentioned this earlier in the thread, but is this really a result of self-selection?

I'd be completely satisfied witha biglaw job in either Minneapolis, Chicago, or Milwaukee, but Minnesota fared worse as far as placing people into NLJ 250 firms last year than Illinois, Wisconsin, and WUSTL.

All else equal, I'd rather be living in Minneapolis than Urbana-Champaign, St. Louis, or even Madison (although this would be a close second). But Minnesota's biglaw placement worries me, especially because its medians say that I will be competing with equal or more talented students than the other schools.

drleather
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Re: University of Minnesota Law School

Postby drleather » Wed Mar 10, 2010 12:34 pm

Assuming the economy gets better...

People who go to UMN often go here because they want to stay in the TC area, and there just aren't that many 250 firms in the region. But there is still a sizable legal market in general. Meaning, many folks take jobs at firms that are "big" but not 250 big. UW likely places marginally better in Milwaukee and Chicago, but Madison itself has an extremely small legal market, so don't go to UW thinking that living in Madison is a realistic possibility.

If you want to live in Chicago, to to UIUC. If you don't really care where you live, and the money is close, go to WUSL. If you think you would like to live in Minneapolis, but don't want to 100% limit yourself to that option, go to UMN. If you are 100% sure you want to live in MN for the rest of your life, get a full ride at William Mitchell (seriously).

As for salaries, keep in mind that cost of living here is far lower than it is in Chicago, so a $80K/yr salary is roughly equivalent to a $100K/yr salary in NYC, Chicago, SF, or LA.

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opus127
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Re: University of Minnesota Law School

Postby opus127 » Wed Mar 10, 2010 12:47 pm

drleather wrote:Assuming the economy gets better...

People who go to UMN often go here because they want to stay in the TC area, and there just aren't that many 250 firms in the region. But there is still a sizable legal market in general. Meaning, many folks take jobs at firms that are "big" but not 250 big. UW likely places marginally better in Milwaukee and Chicago, but Madison itself has an extremely small legal market, so don't go to UW thinking that living in Madison is a realistic possibility.

If you want to live in Chicago, to to UIUC. If you don't really care where you live, and the money is close, go to WUSL. If you think you would like to live in Minneapolis, but don't want to 100% limit yourself to that option, go to UMN. If you are 100% sure you want to live in MN for the rest of your life, get a full ride at William Mitchell (seriously).

As for salaries, keep in mind that cost of living here is far lower than it is in Chicago, so a $80K/yr salary is roughly equivalent to a $100K/yr salary in NYC, Chicago, SF, or LA.


Thanks for weighing in! I'm curious about the part I bolded, since I have very similar scholarship offers from MN and WUSTL. Do you have a sense of how much better (if at all) MN grads do in the Twin Cities than Wash U grads? (I grew up in MN, and can see myself living there, but I'm not 100% sure.)

Also, beyond the job prospects, could you offer pros/cons of the U? I'm especially interested in
-quality and enthusiasm of students and professors
-age range/maturity of students (I'm on the old side and am not looking to extend an undergrad experience)
-competitiveness among students (is everyone stressed out about class rank?)

Thanks!

JOThompson
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Re: University of Minnesota Law School

Postby JOThompson » Wed Mar 10, 2010 1:01 pm

eas331 wrote:
drleather wrote:Assuming the economy gets better...

People who go to UMN often go here because they want to stay in the TC area, and there just aren't that many 250 firms in the region. But there is still a sizable legal market in general. Meaning, many folks take jobs at firms that are "big" but not 250 big. UW likely places marginally better in Milwaukee and Chicago, but Madison itself has an extremely small legal market, so don't go to UW thinking that living in Madison is a realistic possibility.

If you want to live in Chicago, to to UIUC. If you don't really care where you live, and the money is close, go to WUSL. If you think you would like to live in Minneapolis, but don't want to 100% limit yourself to that option, go to UMN. If you are 100% sure you want to live in MN for the rest of your life, get a full ride at William Mitchell (seriously).

As for salaries, keep in mind that cost of living here is far lower than it is in Chicago, so a $80K/yr salary is roughly equivalent to a $100K/yr salary in NYC, Chicago, SF, or LA.


Thanks for weighing in! I'm curious about the part I bolded, since I have very similar scholarship offers from MN and WUSTL. Do you have a sense of how much better (if at all) MN grads do in the Twin Cities than Wash U grads? (I grew up in MN, and can see myself living there, but I'm not 100% sure.)

Also, beyond the job prospects, could you offer pros/cons of the U? I'm especially interested in
-quality and enthusiasm of students and professors
-age range/maturity of students (I'm on the old side and am not looking to extend an undergrad experience)
-competitiveness among students (is everyone stressed out about class rank?)

Thanks!

The U seems to dominate the legal market in TC. You can do a People search at big firm sites like Faegre and Benson and notice that there are far more Minnesota than WUSTL grads represented.

The students, staff, and professors I met were all very friendly and helpful. Even though many of the professors are prominent (HYS), most have open door policies. I was particularly impressed with the dean. He's got a CV a mile long but he still knows most students by name. There were a surprisingly wide range of ages represented at the ASW. The school features a pretty collegial vibe from what I noticed. People seem to genuinely want each other to succeed. For me, it'll be the ideal learning environment.

xanderdellus wrote:Does anybody know anything about T.O.R.T.? I am in professional theatre and just got accepted to MN and I was wondering how I could help out as a 1L.

Also, I read a mention of assistantships for 2L and 3L on admissiondean.com, but can't find mention anywhere else (inc. the MN law site). Anyone know anything?

The TORT show was excellent. I've heard they're very inclusive, even of those without much theatre experience. If you want to be involved, they'd be glad to have you.

I think Nick Wallace briefly mentioned assistantships on Saturday. Did he say they'd be listed on Symplicity?
Last edited by JOThompson on Wed Mar 10, 2010 1:06 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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opus127
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Re: University of Minnesota Law School

Postby opus127 » Wed Mar 10, 2010 1:06 pm

JOThompson wrote:
eas331 wrote:
drleather wrote:Assuming the economy gets better...

People who go to UMN often go here because they want to stay in the TC area, and there just aren't that many 250 firms in the region. But there is still a sizable legal market in general. Meaning, many folks take jobs at firms that are "big" but not 250 big. UW likely places marginally better in Milwaukee and Chicago, but Madison itself has an extremely small legal market, so don't go to UW thinking that living in Madison is a realistic possibility.

If you want to live in Chicago, to to UIUC. If you don't really care where you live, and the money is close, go to WUSL. If you think you would like to live in Minneapolis, but don't want to 100% limit yourself to that option, go to UMN. If you are 100% sure you want to live in MN for the rest of your life, get a full ride at William Mitchell (seriously).

As for salaries, keep in mind that cost of living here is far lower than it is in Chicago, so a $80K/yr salary is roughly equivalent to a $100K/yr salary in NYC, Chicago, SF, or LA.


Thanks for weighing in! I'm curious about the part I bolded, since I have very similar scholarship offers from MN and WUSTL. Do you have a sense of how much better (if at all) MN grads do in the Twin Cities than Wash U grads? (I grew up in MN, and can see myself living there, but I'm not 100% sure.)

Also, beyond the job prospects, could you offer pros/cons of the U? I'm especially interested in
-quality and enthusiasm of students and professors
-age range/maturity of students (I'm on the old side and am not looking to extend an undergrad experience)
-competitiveness among students (is everyone stressed out about class rank?)

Thanks!

The U seems to dominate the legal market in TC. You can do a People search at big firm sites like Faegre and Benson and notice that there are far more Minnesota than WUSTL grads represented.

The students, staff, and professors I met were all very friendly and helpful. Even though many of the professors are prominent (HYS), most have open door policies. There were a surprisingly wide range of ages represented at the ASW. The school features a pretty collegial vibe from what I noticed. People seem to genuinely want each other to succeed.


haha, JOT, you might recall we've exchanged PMs on a similar topic. :) I was hoping an anonymous current student might weigh in. I'm glad your impressions of the school were so good! I also liked much of what I saw when I visited, but still have a lot to think about.

JOThompson
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Re: University of Minnesota Law School

Postby JOThompson » Wed Mar 10, 2010 1:08 pm

If you can attend the next Campus Preview, I think it would invaluable in your decision-making process. I was very much on the fence until I saw the school and city firsthand. I've pretty much decided to attend, even though I'd be passing up the Iowa full ride. Minnesota's clinics are great and they have one of the better criminal law faculties, so it's a better fit for my goals. I'm only hesitant about the weather, extra cost, and distance from home (portability).

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JCougar
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Re: University of Minnesota Law School

Postby JCougar » Wed Mar 10, 2010 1:54 pm

drleather wrote:Assuming the economy gets better...

People who go to UMN often go here because they want to stay in the TC area, and there just aren't that many 250 firms in the region. But there is still a sizable legal market in general. Meaning, many folks take jobs at firms that are "big" but not 250 big. UW likely places marginally better in Milwaukee and Chicago, but Madison itself has an extremely small legal market, so don't go to UW thinking that living in Madison is a realistic possibility.

If you want to live in Chicago, to to UIUC. If you don't really care where you live, and the money is close, go to WUSL. If you think you would like to live in Minneapolis, but don't want to 100% limit yourself to that option, go to UMN. If you are 100% sure you want to live in MN for the rest of your life, get a full ride at William Mitchell (seriously).

As for salaries, keep in mind that cost of living here is far lower than it is in Chicago, so a $80K/yr salary is roughly equivalent to a $100K/yr salary in NYC, Chicago, SF, or LA.


Thanks!

I'm from Wisconsin originally, and I really want to move back to the Midwest. I'm pretty sure I qualify for reciprocity at UM, since my parents still live in Wisconsin and, having gone to high school there, I qualify for in-state at Wisconsin. Not that reciprocity gets you a huge discount, but it's another $5K per year on top of any scholarship I would get. My brother went to undergrad in St. Paul, and I've been up there many times. The quality of life is hard to beat. But I also miss Chicago, having lived there for 4 years after college. So I guess I am undecided right now, but I'd be pretty happy to work in either area.

JOThompson
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Re: University of Minnesota Law School

Postby JOThompson » Wed Mar 10, 2010 4:38 pm

eas331 wrote:
JOThompson wrote:
eas331 wrote:
drleather wrote:Assuming the economy gets better...

People who go to UMN often go here because they want to stay in the TC area, and there just aren't that many 250 firms in the region. But there is still a sizable legal market in general. Meaning, many folks take jobs at firms that are "big" but not 250 big. UW likely places marginally better in Milwaukee and Chicago, but Madison itself has an extremely small legal market, so don't go to UW thinking that living in Madison is a realistic possibility.

If you want to live in Chicago, to to UIUC. If you don't really care where you live, and the money is close, go to WUSL. If you think you would like to live in Minneapolis, but don't want to 100% limit yourself to that option, go to UMN. If you are 100% sure you want to live in MN for the rest of your life, get a full ride at William Mitchell (seriously).

As for salaries, keep in mind that cost of living here is far lower than it is in Chicago, so a $80K/yr salary is roughly equivalent to a $100K/yr salary in NYC, Chicago, SF, or LA.


Thanks for weighing in! I'm curious about the part I bolded, since I have very similar scholarship offers from MN and WUSTL. Do you have a sense of how much better (if at all) MN grads do in the Twin Cities than Wash U grads? (I grew up in MN, and can see myself living there, but I'm not 100% sure.)

Also, beyond the job prospects, could you offer pros/cons of the U? I'm especially interested in
-quality and enthusiasm of students and professors
-age range/maturity of students (I'm on the old side and am not looking to extend an undergrad experience)
-competitiveness among students (is everyone stressed out about class rank?)

Thanks!

The U seems to dominate the legal market in TC. You can do a People search at big firm sites like Faegre and Benson and notice that there are far more Minnesota than WUSTL grads represented.

The students, staff, and professors I met were all very friendly and helpful. Even though many of the professors are prominent (HYS), most have open door policies. There were a surprisingly wide range of ages represented at the ASW. The school features a pretty collegial vibe from what I noticed. People seem to genuinely want each other to succeed.


haha, JOT, you might recall we've exchanged PMs on a similar topic. :) I was hoping an anonymous current student might weigh in. I'm glad your impressions of the school were so good! I also liked much of what I saw when I visited, but still have a lot to think about.

Yep, I definitely appreciated your perspectives. Seems like you have some great options. Are you leaning toward a particular school yet?

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Thomas Jefferson
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Re: University of Minnesota Law School

Postby Thomas Jefferson » Wed Mar 10, 2010 4:47 pm

eas331 wrote: If you don't really care where you live, and the money is close, go to WUSL.

Thanks for weighing in! I'm curious about the part I bolded, since I have very similar scholarship offers from MN and WUSTL.


+1

I have very similar offers between WUSTL, UMN, and W&L as well. It's been a toss-up in my mind between UMN and W&L (after ASW, I'm leaning UMN), but with what everyone seems to be saying about WUSTL, I'm feeling I should visit St. Louis (strangely enough, they gave me a scholly but no travel stipend for ASW, so I wasn't planning on it--I already tried negotiating one) before making a decision. I have not really been considering WUSTL because of the better clerkship and academia figures/prospects/atmosphere at W&L and UMN. I'm wondering if anyone has any thoughts (beyond just go visit--if I should be considering WUSTL more, WHY is that?).

Edit: to add that I have NO desire for biglaw; I'm thinking First Amendment and/or civil liberties PI, want to clerk, and academia would be my dream (I know it's a huge long-shot at any of these schools though).

Geist13
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Re: University of Minnesota Law School

Postby Geist13 » Wed Mar 10, 2010 10:32 pm

People go on and on about how much better for biglaw WUSTL is than Minnesota. But if you look at the numbers, last year WUSTL only placed about 8% more of its students in the NLJ250 than Minnesota. When you consider that Minneapolis is not a biglaw hub and that it has a small number of NLJ250 firms (and remember, NLJ 250 is the largest in size not in salary, though there is generally a correlation), the 8% difference, small to begin with, pretty much disappears.

People go on and on about how much more mobile WUSTL is than Minneapolis. This is indeed supported by the numbers, but the numbers only speak to where people got jobs and say nothing about where people tried to get jobs. Of course almost no one at WUSTL stays in St. Louis (hello, its in Missouri!). Minnesota, on the other hand, is a state school which means a very high percentage of its students never intended to leave the state to begin with (that's why they went there) and is in a largish legal market (not huge but substantial). They have a lot of students who get great opportunities without looking elsewhere. I've never seen any statistics that the Minnesota students who actually try to work elsewhere have real troubles doing so (in fact the lawyers i've spoken to have suggested quite the opposite, but I don't pretend that such opinions are all that convincing).

Additionally, Minnesota has almost a 10% edge on clerkships (17% v. 8%). It could be argued that these students could get top jobs and this would eliminate the big law and portability differences between the schools.

I admit this is all conjecture. But so are all the arguments against minnesota, a school that to my mind gets an unfair rap on this site. I think the two schools are pretty much equal, with the same type of differences you will find when comparing most public schools to their private peers. The built in market and QOL provided by Minneapolis push Minnesota over the edge in my eyes.

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JCougar
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Re: University of Minnesota Law School

Postby JCougar » Wed Mar 10, 2010 11:18 pm

Geist13 wrote:People go on and on about how much better for biglaw WUSTL is than Minnesota. But if you look at the numbers, last year WUSTL only placed about 8% more of its students in the NLJ250 than Minnesota. When you consider that Minneapolis is not a biglaw hub and that it has a small number of NLJ250 firms (and remember, NLJ 250 is the largest in size not in salary, though there is generally a correlation), the 8% difference, small to begin with, pretty much disappears.

People go on and on about how much more mobile WUSTL is than Minneapolis. This is indeed supported by the numbers, but the numbers only speak to where people got jobs and say nothing about where people tried to get jobs. Of course almost no one at WUSTL stays in St. Louis (hello, its in Missouri!). Minnesota, on the other hand, is a state school which means a very high percentage of its students never intended to leave the state to begin with (that's why they went there) and is in a largish legal market (not huge but substantial). They have a lot of students who get great opportunities without looking elsewhere. I've never seen any statistics that the Minnesota students who actually try to work elsewhere have real troubles doing so (in fact the lawyers i've spoken to have suggested quite the opposite, but I don't pretend that such opinions are all that convincing).

Additionally, Minnesota has almost a 10% edge on clerkships (17% v. 8%). It could be argued that these students could get top jobs and this would eliminate the big law and portability differences between the schools.

I admit this is all conjecture. But so are all the arguments against minnesota, a school that to my mind gets an unfair rap on this site. I think the two schools are pretty much equal, with the same type of differences you will find when comparing most public schools to their private peers. The built in market and QOL provided by Minneapolis push Minnesota over the edge in my eyes.


That clerkship thing is actually very important, although it does matter what kind of clerkships those are. Also, the fact that it is a public school would make it draw more local students that only want to return locally. The thing that worried me is that even Wisconsin seems to have better biglaw placement, and that is also a state school. But the clerkship thing might explain that. Even though I'm a bit older, a clerkship thing is something that would interest me if I got the chance.

Actually, I think the best way to compare hiring prospects is to look at the GPA requirements at OCI. Wisconsin actually posts each firm's requirements on their website. It seems to take top 25% there to get anything. Anyone have an idea about what it takes to get an interview at your average biglaw firm at Minnesota's OCI?

Anyway, thanks for your post. It has sort of allayed some of my concerns. I still need to be admitted.... :D

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Fast_Fingers
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Re: University of Minnesota Law School

Postby Fast_Fingers » Wed Mar 17, 2010 1:39 pm

JCougar wrote:Actually, I think the best way to compare hiring prospects is to look at the GPA requirements at OCI. Wisconsin actually posts each firm's requirements on their website. It seems to take top 25% there to get anything. Anyone have an idea about what it takes to get an interview at your average biglaw firm at Minnesota's OCI?

Anyway, thanks for your post. It has sort of allayed some of my concerns. I still need to be admitted.... :D


Based on the tour I took during ASW, they really want the top 25% and go from there.

With local firms, a lottery system is in place (since there's really no local academic competition).

Geist13
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Re: University of Minnesota Law School

Postby Geist13 » Wed Mar 17, 2010 4:01 pm

Fast_Fingers wrote:
JCougar wrote:Actually, I think the best way to compare hiring prospects is to look at the GPA requirements at OCI. Wisconsin actually posts each firm's requirements on their website. It seems to take top 25% there to get anything. Anyone have an idea about what it takes to get an interview at your average biglaw firm at Minnesota's OCI?

Anyway, thanks for your post. It has sort of allayed some of my concerns. I still need to be admitted.... :D


Based on the tour I took during ASW, they really want the top 25% and go from there.

With local firms, a lottery system is in place (since there's really no local academic competition).


Wow, my tour guide did not give that impression at all.

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xanderdellus
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Re: University of Minnesota Law School

Postby xanderdellus » Mon Mar 22, 2010 12:01 pm

Any insight on the Elliot Park neighborhood? We are looking at a building there. A bit tough from FL.

BoomBoom1986
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Re: University of Minnesota Law School

Postby BoomBoom1986 » Tue Mar 23, 2010 10:07 pm

Hmmm, does anyone else have any thoughts on Minnesota's employment prospects compared to WUSTL and it's overall portability?

motiontodismiss
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Re: University of Minnesota Law School

Postby motiontodismiss » Thu Mar 25, 2010 1:16 am

drleather wrote:As for salaries, keep in mind that cost of living here is far lower than it is in Chicago, so a $80K/yr salary is roughly equivalent to a $100K/yr salary in NYC, Chicago, SF, or LA.


Not quite.

$80k in Minneapolis is equivalent to:
  • $128,840 in New York (61% more expensive)
  • $99,036 in Chicago (24% more expensive)
  • $146,640 in San Francisco (84% more expensive)
  • $121,917 in LA (52% more expensive)
http://www.bestplaces.net/col/

Conclusion: California COL is absurd, especially SF. I don't see the appeal of that place.

--LinkRemoved--
As of however current these numbers are, a number of MSP firms seem to be paying $100k-$125k. Except for that 1 outlier that pays New York scale. State income tax, however, is absurd, topping out at 7.85% for incomes above $75k, but still less than NYC.

dcrlo3
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Re: University of Minnesota Law School

Postby dcrlo3 » Thu Mar 25, 2010 2:25 pm

anyone have a clue what's going on w/ admissions?? are they filled up? I've been IR since 2/2 -- crickets.. I was a fee waiver, with the rankings and city etc. I figured I would apply, but same situation with UIUC and was accepted after 2 weeks... this has been 2 mo's no word.. btw 3.65 167 stats

rogerlodge
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Re: University of Minnesota Law School

Postby rogerlodge » Mon Mar 29, 2010 12:43 am

xanderdellus wrote:Any insight on the Elliot Park neighborhood? We are looking at a building there. A bit tough from FL.


Depends where in Elliot Park. There is a nice pocket, but a lot of not great around it. If you tell me the building name I can give you more details as I live in MPLS now.

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bostelo
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Re: University of Minnesota Law School

Postby bostelo » Mon Mar 29, 2010 12:14 pm

dcrlo3 wrote:anyone have a clue what's going on w/ admissions?? are they filled up? I've been IR since 2/2 -- crickets.. I was a fee waiver, with the rankings and city etc. I figured I would apply, but same situation with UIUC and was accepted after 2 weeks... this has been 2 mo's no word.. btw 3.65 167 stats


Right!? I'm in the same boat. And judging from self-reported decision dates on LSN, it's been a few weeks since ANYONE has heard from them.

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legalease9
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Re: University of Minnesota Law School

Postby legalease9 » Sun Apr 04, 2010 1:41 pm

I got a scholarship offer from UMN with a 2.5 gpa cutoff. Does anyone with experience with the school know how hard that is to maintain?

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Thomas Jefferson
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Re: University of Minnesota Law School

Postby Thomas Jefferson » Sun Apr 04, 2010 4:30 pm

legalease9 wrote:I got a scholarship offer from UMN with a 2.5 gpa cutoff. Does anyone with experience with the school know how hard that is to maintain?


For the Class of 2011 75% of students had a 3.0 or above. HTH.

http://www.law.umn.edu/careers/grades.html

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legalease9
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Re: University of Minnesota Law School

Postby legalease9 » Sun Apr 04, 2010 9:32 pm

Thomas Jefferson wrote:
legalease9 wrote:I got a scholarship offer from UMN with a 2.5 gpa cutoff. Does anyone with experience with the school know how hard that is to maintain?


For the Class of 2011 75% of students had a 3.0 or above. HTH.

http://www.law.umn.edu/careers/grades.html


Thanks!

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xanderdellus
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Re: University of Minnesota Law School

Postby xanderdellus » Mon Apr 05, 2010 4:27 pm

We are looking at the co-op called Old Town in Town. It's on 16th, I think. Thanks.

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taw856
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Re: University of Minnesota Law School

Postby taw856 » Mon Apr 05, 2010 5:05 pm

:D

gweng
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Re: University of Minnesota Law School

Postby gweng » Mon Sep 06, 2010 3:11 pm

I am wondering what the on campus dorm baths look like. I remember seeing a slightly higher rent for "semi-private" baths in an M-- dorm building, so what is a non-private bath?? Never lived in a place where baths are public.

Also wondering about the dating/social scene in Minneapolis. Is it difficult to blend in? Do people accept new comers? From the info I have gathered so far, Minneapolis seems a nice place to spend the next 10 years at, but if locals are like those here in STL...I'd think twice before I move up north.




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