University of Louisville Louis D. Brandeis School of Law

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jfisher
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University of Louisville Louis D. Brandeis School of Law

Postby jfisher » Tue Oct 12, 2010 9:39 am

I'm a current 3L at Louisville Law and would be willing to answer any questions for people considering the school. Feel free to message me or post directly to here with your questions.

Amir N
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Re: University of Louisville Louis D. Brandeis School of Law

Postby Amir N » Tue Oct 12, 2010 9:49 am

Thanks for taking the time to do this. I applied to both Louisville and UK with a 3.57 and 159 LSAT.

1)How are the job prospects out of Louisville for your class? (OCI, summer gigs and internships)

2)Everyone I know in Kentucky says UK is the way to go, even if you know you want to work in Louisville. What is your take on that?

3)Why did you go choose Louisville?

That's it for now. Thanks again!

jfisher
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Re: University of Louisville Louis D. Brandeis School of Law

Postby jfisher » Tue Oct 12, 2010 10:23 am

Thanks for the questions! I'll try to answer your questions to the best of my abilities.

1) if you want to work in Louisville, I think you have great job prospects, and being here allows you the option of working while going to school your 2L and 3L years, a huge benefit in my opinion to actually being where you want to work. Part of what appealed to me about the school was the proximity to a real urban center with plenty of legal work to be done.

If you are looking for OCI, for jobs with Frost Brown Todd or Greenbaum or what-have-you, you need to be in the top 10% of the class, and that might be harder at a school with a less-defined curve (louisville has no strict curve, while UK does) and a smaller student body than UK. But its the same at both schools. Those jobs are reserved for the top placers. However, there are plenty of jobs available. Just peruse the Career Services website and you can see the number of area postings are quite extensive.

Internships, particularly summer gigs with judges and the like, are easily available and close by. The new Career Services dean is a great asset for those less interested in (or able to do) OCI.

2) Flagship schools have a away of snowballing reputation wise. I did my Undergrad at UF. I think it has cache with old guys at big firms if you go to the school they graduated from, so yea, people who went to UK will feel an affinity. But that doesn't mean the education is any better. To analogize between UK and U of L, its the same as Florida and Florida State: One has arguably better faculty, better resources, and better options for education and extra-curricular work, while the other has the better name. I'm not sure that the same is true here, but I don't think that UK is that much better than U of L, but its close. Lex isn't as small as Gainesville, but its certainly not as big as Louisville, and the options are therefore somewhat limited. At the end of the day, the top ten from both schools go to the top firms, and the rest of us compete for the jobs where you don't get paid 90-120,000 a year.

As to why I came here, it was the only school I applied to that cared about my Master's Degree, where the dean personally noted it on my letter, and where I felt at home during my interview. I didn't want to go to a 2500-student school, and that was a lot of what was available to me. Also, I like the city. Particularly in my case, ability to do criminal law was important to me and being in a rural area doesn't afford a wealth of options in that field. Here, i've done judicial internships, I'm doing a criminal externship, and I work in prosecution. It's been a great experience.

I think for some jobs the UK thing will matter. I think for others, particularly in Louisville, Louisville might matter more. It just depends. Most people hire based on knowledge of the prospective employee. Mostly, it depends on what you want to do and what you anticipate being able to accomplish. Only 10% can be in the top 10%, after all.

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bizjunkie4
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Re: University of Louisville Louis D. Brandeis School of Law

Postby bizjunkie4 » Wed Oct 13, 2010 6:47 pm

As a 2L here, I agree with pretty much everything that the OP has written. I am painfully aware, as a student who is just inside the top 15 percent, how difficult it is to find jobs through OCI (nine interviews this fall, one callback, hanging in there by a thread). But as the OP states, Louisville has tons of great jobs that are available through alternative means. And one other thing to chew on: U of L's bar passage rate from the July exam was just north of 92 percent, which is on par with some other very highly ranked law schools and well above any other law school in the state. Details: http://www.law.louisville.edu/cardinallawyer/node/240

jfisher
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Re: University of Louisville Louis D. Brandeis School of Law

Postby jfisher » Wed Oct 13, 2010 8:16 pm

Good input from someone who has been there. I think that about takes care of OCI, but it should be noted that OCI and summer jobs at big firms took a huge hit in the downturn/recession/great malaise or whatever you wanna call it pretty much across the board. I had friends from grad school at top 10 schools getting deferments after graduation; so you know these places aren't extending themselves on first-years. Those fat 1400 dollar a week checks are really easy targets for the budget cutters. So OCI is not doing great almost anywhere right now, UK or otherwise, and probably will be the last thing to come back once the legal services market returns to full strength. If you are entering 2011, I'd be shocked if the numbers weren't higher than 2010, 2009, and 2008. Something to look forward to. The downside, of course, is that you are competing in Louisville with Notre Dame and Indiana students that might have been looking at jobs in Chicago 5 or 10 years ago.

I should mention in regard to part of your first question about why I came here. This place has a really supportive administration (at least in my opinion) and a great faculty who I've connected with on numerous occasions. I never got the sense that any of them enjoyed student failure or prided themselves on kicking people out for poor performance. It is the sort of place that (I think) looks at student failure as the school's fault at least as much as the student's. All of the professors are there to take questions and offer advice as needed. My experience has been awesome in that regard. I can't speak to any other school, but a lot of the places that I looked at just seemed like the kind of place you could get lost in the crowd. Louisville has let me explore a lot of different avenues of interests and opportunities to develop my resume and practical skills repertoire. Those are things that have kept me here (despite the out of state tuition). It doesn't hurt that even paying out of state it is still cheaper than any private law school and has much better bar passage rates than any comparatively "ranked" law school.

For the sake of honestly, the downstairs kitchen kinda sucks and it would be nice if our Library wasn't still exhibiting the 1970s era orange carpet. Kentucky certainly isn't interested in having facilities like they have in Indiana. The classrooms got a makeover that finished my first year, so they are all outfitted pretty well, though.

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Barbie
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Re: University of Louisville Louis D. Brandeis School of Law

Postby Barbie » Fri Oct 15, 2010 11:09 pm

I asked for a fee waiver via email twice and tried to call... none of these have been even returned. Louisville would be a safety but I was still pretty interested and upset that they didn't even respond at all. Do you think this was a fluke? Are they typically pretty helpful?

jfisher
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Re: University of Louisville Louis D. Brandeis School of Law

Postby jfisher » Sat Oct 16, 2010 12:58 pm

My first response is that the website has been retooled substantially during this semester and the contact information you have might be incorrect. If I were you I would make sure to call during normal business hours (preferably 9:30-11:30 before lunch and faculty meetings, etc. start happening) so that you are sure to be able to speak to a person there rather than depend on the vagaries of email communication (what do you mean by "tried to call"? If the number didn't go through, the website issues would explain it, but if you got in touch with someone, what happened? just curious).

I'm frankly shocked that you've had problems unless they are technical. I mean, the other day I wrote to my student affairs dean about the air conditioning in our class rooms (one of the down sides is that for some reason the heat goes on at a set date every year regardless of the outside temperature, so its like 80 degrees outside and the heat was on) and got a reply back within about 25 minutes...and the A/C was on later that day. My experience has been that the administration is very responsive and communicative. However, in my case they were the ones calling me rather than the reverse. And the Dean of Admissions has changed since then. My suggestion would be to call during business hours and speak to someone in the admissions office directly, and if you can, stop by the admissions office. The fact that you haven't gotten ANY reply would to me indicate technical rather than volitional issues, but I don't know about that. If you have LSAT/UGPA scores that are below average, they might not waive the fees, but the nonresponsive nature of the query strike me as uncharacteristic of my experience with the school.

Hope that answers your questions.

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Barbie
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Re: University of Louisville Louis D. Brandeis School of Law

Postby Barbie » Sat Oct 16, 2010 1:05 pm

jfisher wrote:My first response is that the website has been retooled substantially during this semester and the contact information you have might be incorrect. If I were you I would make sure to call during normal business hours (preferably 9:30-11:30 before lunch and faculty meetings, etc. start happening) so that you are sure to be able to speak to a person there rather than depend on the vagaries of email communication (what do you mean by "tried to call"? If the number didn't go through, the website issues would explain it, but if you got in touch with someone, what happened? just curious).

I'm frankly shocked that you've had problems unless they are technical. I mean, the other day I wrote to my student affairs dean about the air conditioning in our class rooms (one of the down sides is that for some reason the heat goes on at a set date every year regardless of the outside temperature, so its like 80 degrees outside and the heat was on) and got a reply back within about 25 minutes...and the A/C was on later that day. My experience has been that the administration is very responsive and communicative. However, in my case they were the ones calling me rather than the reverse. And the Dean of Admissions has changed since then. My suggestion would be to call during business hours and speak to someone in the admissions office directly, and if you can, stop by the admissions office. The fact that you haven't gotten ANY reply would to me indicate technical rather than volitional issues, but I don't know about that. If you have LSAT/UGPA scores that are below average, they might not waive the fees, but the nonresponsive nature of the query strike me as uncharacteristic of my experience with the school.

Hope that answers your questions.


I called in early September during normal business hours and got the machine twice and left messages (the machine indicated I had called the correct place). Then I sent the emails to the listed email, not sure if it worked or not. I'm a little below median on GPA and pretty well above their 75th percentile LSAT. I am seriously broke and just couldn't justify paying for a safety when even my reaches offered me a waiver. :(

jfisher
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Re: University of Louisville Louis D. Brandeis School of Law

Postby jfisher » Sat Oct 16, 2010 1:20 pm

Hmmm. Sorry about that.

I would email the following people at the same time and see if you can't get a response:
angela.beverly@louisville.edu
brandon.hamilton@louisville.edu
charlene.olivia@louisville.edu

Call Brandon Hamilton at 502-852-6365. He is really a very helpful guy from what I've heard, and I'd be surprised if you don't get a reply. Also, Maybe explain in your email that you haven't heard back from anyone on previous attempts to get through, explain your situation, etc.

Since this is a school that, at least to me, has been very accommodating, I'm somewhat surprised about the lack of response. It also isn't a school that is particularly caught up with LSAT/UGPA issues and I honestly don't think it is that at all, I was just thinking out loud. I hope that this experience doesn't make you sour on the School.

Also, if you would like, you can message me and I could look into it for you on Tuesday when I have a chance.

Hope that helps! If you have no success next week, message me and I'll be happy to try for you!

Amir N
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Re: University of Louisville Louis D. Brandeis School of Law

Postby Amir N » Sun Oct 17, 2010 8:32 pm

Once again, thank you so much to all the Louisville folks who are on the boards and taking time to respond to our questions. I already asked this in a U. of Kentucky thread, but thought it would be relevant here as well: would you guys say that UK and U. of Louisville have better placement throughout Kentucky than other higher ranked schools such as UIUC, Indiana-Bloomington, or WUSTL? I ask this as someone who is very interested in staying in the state and looking very closely at business or corporate law.

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bizjunkie4
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Re: University of Louisville Louis D. Brandeis School of Law

Postby bizjunkie4 » Mon Oct 18, 2010 4:44 pm

Amir N wrote:Once again, thank you so much to all the Louisville folks who are on the boards and taking time to respond to our questions. I already asked this in a U. of Kentucky thread, but thought it would be relevant here as well: would you guys say that UK and U. of Louisville have better placement throughout Kentucky than other higher ranked schools such as UIUC, Indiana-Bloomington, or WUSTL? I ask this as someone who is very interested in staying in the state and looking very closely at business or corporate law.


First of all, an unsolicited response to the issue of repeated phone calls and emails about fee waivers. I think that prospective students must exercise severe discretion when contacting law schools with questions such as this. We're talking about a $50 investment. If you really can't cough up the cash, why don't you pester your friends, parents, siblings, etc., for a small loan? The school even accepts credit cards. I think you are risking the wrong kind of impression. But that's just me.

Second, my answer would be yes. Placement in state should be just as good, and in some places moderately better. A degree from IU or similar surrounding schools will definitely put you in a good position for a job, but so will U of L or UK, and those schools are going to be vastly less expensive for you. I actually considered IU, which offered me a $5,000 a year scholarship. A couple of IU grads told me to stay in Louisville, in large part due to the economics, which would have meant roughly $90,000 more in student loans over a three-year period. But that's just me.

- Alex

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Barbie
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Re: University of Louisville Louis D. Brandeis School of Law

Postby Barbie » Mon Oct 18, 2010 5:24 pm

bizjunkie4 wrote:First of all, an unsolicited response to the issue of repeated phone calls and emails about fee waivers. I think that prospective students must exercise severe discretion when contacting law schools with questions such as this. We're talking about a $50 investment. If you really can't cough up the cash, why don't you pester your friends, parents, siblings, etc., for a small loan? The school even accepts credit cards. I think you are risking the wrong kind of impression. But that's just me.

- Alex



That is just you. The purpose of fee waivers is to entice students who would otherwise not apply, to do so. It is also to help increase selectivity and give the school the opportunity to attract students who might not have otherwise considered the school, and possibly raise their #s through it. Since Louisville would be a safety, why would I spend $50 to apply there when schools that are targets and reaches for me are offering me fee waivers. And you didn't even address the actual issue. I was troubled over the lack of response (and in my messages, I didn't say I was calling for a fee waiver, I simply asked for a returned phone call for questions). The issue was not, rather, the "possible impression" I was making on the admissions committee or even them NOT offering me one. It was that I was not given an answer one way or the other. When offering unsolicited opinions, try to stay on the proper subject of the issue at the least.

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bizjunkie4
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Re: University of Louisville Louis D. Brandeis School of Law

Postby bizjunkie4 » Mon Oct 18, 2010 6:42 pm

Barbie wrote:
bizjunkie4 wrote:First of all, an unsolicited response to the issue of repeated phone calls and emails about fee waivers. I think that prospective students must exercise severe discretion when contacting law schools with questions such as this. We're talking about a $50 investment. If you really can't cough up the cash, why don't you pester your friends, parents, siblings, etc., for a small loan? The school even accepts credit cards. I think you are risking the wrong kind of impression. But that's just me.

- Alex



That is just you. The purpose of fee waivers is to entice students who would otherwise not apply, to do so. It is also to help increase selectivity and give the school the opportunity to attract students who might not have otherwise considered the school, and possibly raise their #s through it. Since Louisville would be a safety, why would I spend $50 to apply there when schools that are targets and reaches for me are offering me fee waivers. And you didn't even address the actual issue. I was troubled over the lack of response (and in my messages, I didn't say I was calling for a fee waiver, I simply asked for a returned phone call for questions). The issue was not, rather, the "possible impression" I was making on the admissions committee or even them NOT offering me one. It was that I was not given an answer one way or the other. When offering unsolicited opinions, try to stay on the proper subject of the issue at the least.


I meant no offense, and my response wasn't a personal criticism, although I could see how you might have taken it that way. Just an observation about contact with schools in general, which I maintain is still good advice. Either way, I am sorry to hear that you didn't receive a prompt answer to your phone calls and/or emails. It sounds like you have lots of options either way, which is a good thing!

jtb00711
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Re: University of Louisville Louis D. Brandeis School of Law

Postby jtb00711 » Wed Nov 03, 2010 12:22 am

I actually took a tour and received a fee waiver via email. Brandon Hamilton called me a couple of weeks ago and informed me that their email was down around the beginning of September so he was getting around to applying to everyone. I found everyone at UL to be very helpful on my visit. I've had two family members attend there and both loved it (one was from Kentucky, the other came from Wisconsin), especially the bigger city atmosphere that comes with living in Louisville. I'm hoping to attend there (since I'm in-state) and the waiting period is absolutely sucking right now.

As for questions:

-Do they place well throughout the state? I went through the law directory the other day at work and noticed most people in the eastern part of the state attended either UK or NKU. I understand that part of the state is a $hit-hole, but it was interesting to see hardly any UL grads in that specific area.

-Did you work during your first year?

-What was your routine schedule like? I know it varies for everyone, but I would like to get an idea of what to expect if I do get accepted.

Thanks

Boilernation11
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Re: University of Louisville Louis D. Brandeis School of Law

Postby Boilernation11 » Wed Nov 03, 2010 6:59 pm

How well does U of L place in nearby large market cities such as Indianapolis and Cincinnatti?

Amir N
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Re: University of Louisville Louis D. Brandeis School of Law

Postby Amir N » Sun Nov 07, 2010 5:33 pm

jfisher wrote:I'm a current 3L at Louisville Law and would be willing to answer any questions for people considering the school. Feel free to message me or post directly to here with your questions.


What do you think my chances are for money at Louisville being OOS, 3.57, 159 LSAT, Persian, and 1 year good WE?

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bizjunkie4
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Re: University of Louisville Louis D. Brandeis School of Law

Postby bizjunkie4 » Mon Nov 08, 2010 1:55 pm

Boilernation11 wrote:How well does U of L place in nearby large market cities such as Indianapolis and Cincinnatti?


I'm not the OP, but I'll take a stab at it. In general, U of L will not place "well" in these markets, at least when it comes to OCI. But we're not a very OCI-heavy school, and I would imagine that you could find jobs at medium or small firms in these markets fairly easily due to our alumni connections. To snag a large firm job, you will need to be in the top 10 in your class. Not 10 percent, but top 10 students. If you ask me it's not worth signing with a large firm anyway. So, in summary, your chances are good, but not at a large firm.

LouisvilleLaw
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Re: University of Louisville Louis D. Brandeis School of Law

Postby LouisvilleLaw » Tue Jan 04, 2011 4:56 pm

This is a little late but I will add some insight as a fourth year evening student at Brandeis. I have worked all the way through law school as an accountant (this probably lets those from Brandeis know who I am). Also, I took off from my “day” job to do a 10 week clerkship at a “large” firm one summer (yes, the nice $1,400/week jobs are still out there). I have job offers at a good firms in the city.

In general, job prospects from all law school outside of the top 25 are pretty much equal (they suck and are really competitive). It all depends upon who you know, what you want to do, and any prior experience that you might have. In our class at Brandeis we have CPAs, MDs, teachers, cops, and small business owners. All of this stuff matters at a school ranked lower than 25, as you are not going to get a $3,000/week offer from Cravath. For example, if you want to practice health law, being an MD is a real leg up. The same thing goes for being a CPA and wanting to do estate planning. I hate to burst your bubbles but those are the facts, your job prospects are exactly the same at any school below 25 and nobody really cares if you went to UK, UofL, or UC. You have to work hard, leverage your resources, and decide what you want to do.

Barbie, congratulations on being accepted to a “better school”, if you are that caught up in rank you wouldn’t fit in at Brandeis anyway. Also, you come off with a very insolent tone.

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johnnyutah
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Re: University of Louisville Louis D. Brandeis School of Law

Postby johnnyutah » Tue Jan 04, 2011 5:24 pm

jtb00711 wrote:-Do they place well throughout the state? I went through the law directory the other day at work and noticed most people in the eastern part of the state attended either UK or NKU. I understand that part of the state is a $hit-hole, but it was interesting to see hardly any UL grads in that specific area.

I'm not a Brandeis student, but I worked in eastern Kentucky for one of my summers and may be able to help with this.

Outside of Louisville, Lexington and (to some degree) Frankfort, legal practice in Kentucky - especially in Eastern Kentucky - is mostly done by word of mouth and within networks of people who know each other. Almost all of the attorneys working in Eastern KY are from Eastern KY. It's not that one school places better than another there; the schools are almost irrelevant. It's that getting a job comes from networking and being known and connected. If you are plugged in and have connections in the area, you can go to U of L, Harvard or Florida Coastal and have basically similar job prospects in Eastern KY.

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johnnyutah
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Re: University of Louisville Louis D. Brandeis School of Law

Postby johnnyutah » Tue Jan 04, 2011 5:26 pm

jfisher wrote:However, there are plenty of jobs available. Just peruse the Career Services website and you can see the number of area postings are quite extensive.

As a non-U of L student, can you hook me up with some of those postings? :mrgreen:

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johnnyutah
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Re: University of Louisville Louis D. Brandeis School of Law

Postby johnnyutah » Tue Jan 04, 2011 5:28 pm

Amir N wrote:2)Everyone I know in Kentucky says UK is the way to go, even if you know you want to work in Louisville. What is your take on that?

My take on that:

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