Akron Law (comments from a 2L)

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2Cool4LawSchool
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Akron Law (comments from a 2L)

Postby 2Cool4LawSchool » Tue Jun 15, 2010 11:09 am

I just finished my 1L year at the University of Akron School of Law. I had a 161 LSAT and 3.7 uGPA from Ohio University. I got accepted into many Ohio law schools including Ohio State, Case Western, Capital, and Cleveland Marshall. I went to Akron because they awarded me a $17,500 scholarship which is roughly 85% of the total tuition.

Although Akron Law is still considered a 3rd tier law school, the incoming students a very able and qualified. For my class, the median LSAT was 156 and the average UGPA was around a 3.5. In 2009, Akron Law was second in the state in Bar Passage Rate for first time takers (92%), second only to OSU [Case Western (87%) Cleveland-State (88%)]. Akron also has a top 10 mock trial team, and Akron's Law Review ranks in the top 50 in the country.

If you are thinking about going to Akron Law because you want a guaranteed spot in the top 10% of the class, you probably should find another reason. The competition at Akron Law is stiff. The students are very sharp and hard-working. Don't let the Tier 3 status fool you.

Furthermore, don't be blinded by any scholarships that they may give you. Akron is known for awarding large scholarships to qualified incoming 1Ls. However, these scholarships are very difficult to keep. The large majority of students lose their scholarships or have them reduced after the first year. In order to keep an Akron scholarship a students must earn and maintain a 3.3 GPA. Akron curves to a B- / C+ during the first year and he median 1L GPA is 2.6. For the Fall of 2009, only the top 15% of the students got a 3.3 and above (14 out of 169 students). 25% of 1L class received a 2.3 or lower. These students lost their scholarships after the first semester. Once you lose your scholarship, you cannot get it back. However, if you are close to the cut-off point (3.1 - 3.3) you can retain 2/3 of the scholarship and (3.0 - 3.1) 1/3 of the scholarship. These numbers should not dissuade you from enrolling at Akron, but rather should provide you with realistic expectations as to the 1L numbers. Getting "A's" at Akron is hard. For Property I, 145 students took the final. This was the grade breakdown:

A: 14
A-: 11
B+: 11
B: 16
B-: 21
C+: 22
C: 18
C-: 12
D+: 8
D: 2
D-: 5
F: 5

Median GPA: 2.58

As you can see, the curve is steep. All other first-year classes have similar breakdowns. Don't come to Akron thinking that your grades will rock. Fortunately, I earned a 3.58 in my first year and kept my scholarships, but most of my friends were not so lucky. A 3.58 puts me in the 9th in my class of more than 150 and well within the top 10%. Also don't think that success in undergrad and high LSAT scores will equate to success at Akron. Last year the valedictorian got a 152 on her LSAT. And my other friend got a 166 on the LSAT and only got a 2.9. Everyone is fighting to keep their scholarships, therefore, the level of competition is fierce. Akron is definitely more competitive than higher ranked schools where the students fit the whole tuition bill. Be prepare to be out-worked by your colleagues.

I would recommend Akron for in-state students. The in-state tuition is very affordable and the Akron Law often outperforms most other law schools in the state when it comes bar passage rates, quality of law reviews, job placement, and competition teams.
Last edited by 2Cool4LawSchool on Tue Jun 15, 2010 2:11 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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HazelEyes
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Re: Akron Law (comments from a 2L)

Postby HazelEyes » Tue Jun 15, 2010 11:12 am

Still not sure why you would turn down much higher ranked schools. But I guess that's just my mindset...

2Cool4LawSchool
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Re: Akron Law (comments from a 2L)

Postby 2Cool4LawSchool » Tue Jun 15, 2010 2:02 pm

It comes down to price. If you can get a free (or nearly free) legal education it is hard to justify paying full price at a higher ranked school. Once you go to law school you will see that the rankings are very arbitrary with questionable methodology. Furthermore, employers are more concerned with the individual than the schools they attend. Attending a lower ranked school may negatively affect a graduate's job prospects at first. But after about 5 years, the important of the rankings dissolve away. Therefore, a student has to weigh the cost and the prestige. An OSU graduate on average has more than $70k of debt from law school alone. For me I will have less than $25k. Therefore, any initial wage discrepancy is offset by the student debt. If you are blessed enough to pay for it, then I guess the cost does not affect your decision.

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StrictlyLiable
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Re: Akron Law (comments from a 2L)

Postby StrictlyLiable » Wed Jun 16, 2010 12:11 am

I went to Akron for undergrad and I really wanted to stay at home and save money. Once I became more educated about the GPA stipulations to keep the scholarships at Akron (higher than that of Case which is 3.1) I can't really justify a free ride a a lower ranked Akron over a higher ranked school like Cincinnati that has a scholly requirement of 2.0. I would rather not stress about keeping my scholarship at a lower ranked school and have to pay sticker if I couldn't be in that top 15%, but thats me.

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StrictlyLiable
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Re: Akron Law (comments from a 2L)

Postby StrictlyLiable » Wed Jun 16, 2010 12:18 am

Also, having attended several Saturday orientations, I notice that Akron students feel the need to "defend" themselves for attending Akron. I have been at the school for several years and I know the accomplishments of the school, but I have never felt that other student panels for orientations have felt the need to justify going to their school.

legallyblonde27
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Re: Akron Law (comments from a 2L)

Postby legallyblonde27 » Mon Jun 28, 2010 7:43 pm

2Cool -

Thanks so much for your comments on Akron. I am seriously considering this school because it seems to have everything I need (closest law school to home, allows me to work full-time while attending part-time, low tuition cost, has an IP specialty, generous scholarship availability...).

I get the fact that it's a Tier 3 school, blah blah blah, but really, does that matter when it will offer me all of these benefits?? I am working as a paralegal at a law firm now, and 3 of the attorneys I work with have graduated from Akron and they are all stellar attorneys. I, however, do not want to be bombarded with a "holier than thou" attitude if I come across people who have graduated from OSU or even any T14 schools.

I would like to work in IP. If I went to Akron, I know I would have next-to-nothing loans to pay back. My uGPA is 3.46 from John Carroll. I have not taken the LSAT yet. Am I making the right decision here to go to Akron?

StrictlyLiable - I would appreciate your thoughts, as well!

2Cool4LawSchool
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Re: Akron Law (comments from a 2L)

Postby 2Cool4LawSchool » Tue Jun 29, 2010 9:31 am

Akron Law has one of the best IP programs in the country. The City of AKron houses one of a handful of national centers for intellectual property.

Furthermore, AKron LAw is building a brand new law school. THis is the perfect time to go to Akron. YOu will be be buying low and selling high. I anticipate that Akron will break into the Top 100 in the next 2-3 years.

Depending upon your LSAT score, Akron will probably give you some sort of financial aid. However, you must remember that AKron only accepted 32% of applicants last year. So definitely do not blow off the LSAT, as your acceptance may depend upon it. A 3.46 GPA is not that competitive at Akron. Many students in my class were undergrad valedictorians and or graduated summa cum laude. If you get anything above a 155 you should be fine. But if you want a nice scholarship you will probably need 159 or up. I had a 3.7 uGPA and a 161 LSAT and I received a $17,500 scholarship. But it is not all or nothing. Akron gives many half scholarships as well.

I think you would be a perfect fit at Akron. Akron is very practical and realize what students want and need. Sometimes students that attend higher ranked law schools do have a holier than thou attitude. However, the attitude is unmerited. I would rather be 9th in my class at Akron than in the bottom half at OSU (not that I would have been had I enrolled). OSU only beat AKron by 2% for BAR passage rate last year. For me, i feel a top 40 school should be performing better than that. If you are the type of person that really cares about prestige and are willing to pay, than you probably should not go to Akron. If what you want is a strong legal education, then AKron is right for you.

The professors at Akron are great. Many of them were valedictorians at their respective law schools, have multiple degrees, and freakin' smart and knowledgeable.

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nealric
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Re: Akron Law (comments from a 2L)

Postby nealric » Tue Jun 29, 2010 9:49 am

Once you go to law school you will see that the rankings are very arbitrary with questionable methodology. Furthermore, employers are more concerned with the individual than the schools they attend.


I am a law school graduate, and I find employers are very concerned with the schools people attended.


It comes down to price. If you can get a free (or nearly free) legal education it is hard to justify paying full price at a higher ranked school.


But didn't you just say that most people lose their scholarships?

Attending a lower ranked school may negatively affect a graduate's job prospects at first. But after about 5 years, the important of the rankings dissolve away.


There's no way for your first job not to affect your second, and your second, your third, etc.


All this is not to say that I think Akron students were not be successful, and it's certainly not a slam to you personally. Rather, these are considerations for prospective law students.

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Grizz
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Re: Akron Law (comments from a 2L)

Postby Grizz » Tue Jun 29, 2010 10:01 am

2Cool4LawSchool wrote:...I anticipate that Akron will break into the Top 100 in the next 2-3 years...OSU only beat AKron by 2% for BAR passage rate last year.


You do realize that "Top 100" is a meaningless distinction and that bar passage rates don't necessarily translate to employment, right?

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joeshmo39
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Re: Akron Law (comments from a 2L)

Postby joeshmo39 » Tue Jun 29, 2010 10:07 am

*GASP* wow those scholarship conditions are absolutely brutal. Honestly, no matter how qualified I was, I would not plan on holding that 'ship after the first semester. Wow, that is really brutal. That curve is also going to deflate your grades a lot and make it harder to find employment I bet. This was a good post and it was good of you to draw attention to that curve, seems your assessment was very fair. Wow, that curve and scholarship stipulation still... geez.

legallyblonde27
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Re: Akron Law (comments from a 2L)

Postby legallyblonde27 » Tue Jun 29, 2010 3:01 pm

.
Last edited by legallyblonde27 on Tue Mar 04, 2014 1:08 am, edited 1 time in total.

rundoxierun
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Re: Akron Law (comments from a 2L)

Postby rundoxierun » Tue Jun 29, 2010 4:13 pm

Ok, I have no interest in Akron Law but a few things here need to be addressed so as to not be misleading.

1) Bar passage disparity between OSU/Case/Akron- Akron has a 1L attrition rate of 15-17% typically.. these other schools have 1L attrition rates near zero. Essentially, over the 3 years Akron weeds out students unlikely to pass the bar while these others do not. It would be like a school only allowing students with 3.7+ and 30+ MCATS to apply to med school and then touting their admission rates. So that top 40 school is doing just fine.

2) You cant say a school puts a system in place that guarantees that 85% of people will lose their scholarships and then call that a competitive plus. Thats a decided minus, this does NOT make Akron more competitive than any other school of any rank.

3) Job placement - Im not sure about OSU, but I know for a FACT that most decent employers in Ohio(at least the major cities) do not consider Akron to be on the same playing field as Case.

4) Will my gpa from John Carroll be looked at differently, since my school is ranked 7th in the midwest?- No, just no.

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merichard87
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Re: Akron Law (comments from a 2L)

Postby merichard87 » Tue Jun 29, 2010 4:30 pm

Being crucified and being told the truth are 2 different things. I have no problems with regional schools but as some other posters have said, Akron requires a lot of thought. I have never heard anytone talk about Akron's IP program so I won't even go there but this student just told you for a fact that they weed out people to get the scholarship money back. If that's not a red flag I don't know what is.

legallyblonde27
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Re: Akron Law (comments from a 2L)

Postby legallyblonde27 » Tue Jun 29, 2010 5:31 pm

First of all, I never asked if my gpa would be looked at differently. For Akron, it's above the median, which is all that I really care about.

Second, there is a difference between telling the "truth" on that other thread and being outright rude to a newcomer. There were a couple of responses that were against Akron that I really appreciated hearing because they were done in a tactful, informative matter. The rest, however, were worthless.

Third, I don't think it's such a bad thing when a law school makes you work for your scholarship.

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Grizz
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Re: Akron Law (comments from a 2L)

Postby Grizz » Tue Jun 29, 2010 5:42 pm

legallyblonde27 wrote:Third, I don't think it's such a bad thing when a law school makes you work for your scholarship.


The sad truth is that the school probably gives out more scholarships than there are student who can keep them so a bunch of people are guaranteed to lose them. It's a ruse to lure kids in then save some money when a bunch of kids lose their scholarships. It's a pretty common tactic among less prestigious schools. This, combined with the high attrition rate shows that the school cares more about $$$ then it does about securing favorable outcomes for its students. So no, it's not just about "making students work for it." Seems like a pretty shitty thing to do, especially when so many other schools give guaranteed scholarships (or ones that require a very very much less stringent class rank requirement).

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nealric
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Re: Akron Law (comments from a 2L)

Postby nealric » Tue Jun 29, 2010 6:07 pm

Third, I don't think it's such a bad thing when a law school makes you work for your scholarship.

--ImageRemoved--


Really? You really think it's a good thing that a single bad grade could cost you a sum of money sufficient to buy two new cars?

legallyblonde27
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Re: Akron Law (comments from a 2L)

Postby legallyblonde27 » Tue Jun 29, 2010 6:26 pm

That's just gonna be a chance I'm willing to take... especially for ZERO LAW SCHOOL DEBT and a job waiting for me upon graduation.
Last edited by legallyblonde27 on Tue Jun 29, 2010 6:30 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Grizz
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Re: Akron Law (comments from a 2L)

Postby Grizz » Tue Jun 29, 2010 6:27 pm

legallyblonde27 wrote:That's just gonna be a chance I'm willing to take... especially for ZERO LAW SCHOOL DEBT and a job waiting for me upon graduation.


Smart money says you won't keep your full scholarship. 85% chance you won't. Also have fun with cost of living. Also, hope your job is still around in three years.

legallyblonde27
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Re: Akron Law (comments from a 2L)

Postby legallyblonde27 » Tue Jun 29, 2010 6:32 pm

I will be working full-time so I will have no cost of living crises.

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Grizz
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Re: Akron Law (comments from a 2L)

Postby Grizz » Tue Jun 29, 2010 6:33 pm

legallyblonde27 wrote:I will be working full-time so I will have no cost of living crises.


Other points still stand.

legallyblonde27
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Re: Akron Law (comments from a 2L)

Postby legallyblonde27 » Tue Jun 29, 2010 6:35 pm

rad law wrote:
legallyblonde27 wrote:I will be working full-time so I will have no cost of living crises.


Other points still stand.


You have no idea whether I will keep my scholarship or not. And I don't think the firm I'm working for NOW will be going anywhere in three years.

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Grizz
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Re: Akron Law (comments from a 2L)

Postby Grizz » Tue Jun 29, 2010 6:36 pm

legallyblonde27 wrote:
rad law wrote:
legallyblonde27 wrote:I will be working full-time so I will have no cost of living crises.


Other points still stand.


You have no idea whether I will keep my scholarship or not. And I don't think the firm I'm working for NOW will be going anywhere in three years.


Neither do you. 85% chance you won't. And hiring =/= existing.

HTH

legallyblonde27
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Re: Akron Law (comments from a 2L)

Postby legallyblonde27 » Tue Jun 29, 2010 6:41 pm

rad law wrote:
legallyblonde27 wrote:
rad law wrote:
legallyblonde27 wrote:I will be working full-time so I will have no cost of living crises.


Other points still stand.


You have no idea whether I will keep my scholarship or not. And I don't think the firm I'm working for NOW will be going anywhere in three years.


Neither do you. 85% chance you won't. And hiring =/= existing.

HTH


In that case, 85% chance I will. And I more than exist where I work. They know my capabilities.

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merichard87
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Re: Akron Law (comments from a 2L)

Postby merichard87 » Tue Jun 29, 2010 6:44 pm

Why are you defending your choices? Go to Akron but listen to what everybody is telling you. Just because you know 3 decent lawyers who probably graduated 10+ years ago doesn't mean the degree will do for you what it did for them. And I wouldn't pay Akron a penny in hopes of an IP career. I surely hope you have some type of engineering degree.

legallyblonde27
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Re: Akron Law (comments from a 2L)

Postby legallyblonde27 » Tue Jun 29, 2010 6:47 pm

I believe everyone is defending their choices... and just wants some tactful input from others as well.




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