University of Minnesota 1L Taking Questions

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lawgunner75
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University of Minnesota 1L Taking Questions

Postby lawgunner75 » Sun Dec 26, 2010 12:31 pm

I always found these threads very helpful when I was applying so I am here to take questions about Minnesota. I am a 1L and just finished my first round of exams.

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deadpoetnsp
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Re: University of Minnesota 1L Taking Questions

Postby deadpoetnsp » Mon Dec 27, 2010 4:29 pm

How competitive/collaborative is the student body at UMinn? How is the faculty? Did you enjoy the classes you took?

Is the law school a part of the main university campus, or is it a satellite?

What are good places to stay near the law school?

Does the weather make you wish you were elsewhere? I'm from Chicago and am familiar with freezing winters, but getting somewhat tired of the cold

Finally: are you happy there, or wish you were elsewhere :)

Hesiod
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Re: University of Minnesota 1L Taking Questions

Postby Hesiod » Tue Dec 28, 2010 2:19 am

I didn't start this thread, but I found a similar one helpful when I was applying too.

deadpoetnsp wrote:How competitive/collaborative is the student body at UMinn? How is the faculty? Did you enjoy the classes you took?


Everyone seemed to work together really well within their own section and everyone seems to have some section pride. Instead of a competitive, tense atmosphere, most people seemed to get along fairly well; however, there was one exception, a section that took tests instead of a final asked for their exams to be more difficult so that the curve would be differentiated. There was also one joint section (which involved the same section) where the professor had to remind people to return exam questions/answers which were on reserve.

Most professors are friendly and approachable; it's up to the student though to take the initiative. Every student is also assigned a faculty mentor, most of whom met individually or took their students out to lunch. Our first semester curriculum included Torts, Contracts, Civil Procedure, Criminal Law, and Legal Writing. Legal Writing is pass/fail. I think the general consensus was that Crim Law was the least useful. Every section had rescheduled classes; some were rescheduled during lunch (the professor bought lunch for the class once); others created brutal schedules (6-8ish? hours nonstop on Frieday); most were rescheduled on Monday during time set aside for "volunteer work" by the administration.

deadpoetnsp wrote:Is the law school a part of the main university campus, or is it a satellite?


The university is divided by the Mississippi River; the law school is on the west bank along with the business school, many of the performing arts venues, a dorm, a library, and a large lecture hall (which is separated from the library by a two story glass window, kind of like a fish tank). Everything on the west bank is connected by a series of underground tunnels and skyways. Undergrads occasionally filter into the library, but it's not worth the walk/bus trip across the bridge.

deadpoetnsp wrote:What are good places to stay near the law school?


Many people live in Uptown, but if you want to stay close there are a few apartments in Seven Corners. A bunch of people also live in Dinkytown on the other bank of the river.

deadpoetnsp wrote:Does the weather make you wish you were elsewhere? I'm from Chicago and am familiar with freezing winters, but getting somewhat tired of the cold


I lived in Chicago for a few years and I actually think it's better here. While it's cold, it's not windy which is nice. Also, with the amount of time I spend in the law school, it doesn't even matter. Half the classrooms don't even have windows.

deadpoetnsp wrote:Finally: are you happy there, or wish you were elsewhere :)


I'm happy to be here. Everyone, including the other students, is really friendly, and I really enjoy Minneapolis. I've been to Twins and Timberwolves (only $3!) games; I've seen the Gophers lose at both football and hockey; and I've been to a lot of cheap bars.

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gbpackerbacker
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Re: University of Minnesota 1L Taking Questions

Postby gbpackerbacker » Tue Dec 28, 2010 2:22 am

I know you're a 1L, but what are the Job prospects from what you can gather?

Hesiod
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Re: University of Minnesota 1L Taking Questions

Postby Hesiod » Tue Dec 28, 2010 2:40 am

gbpackerbacker wrote:I know you're a 1L, but what are the Job prospects from what you can gather?


I get mixed messages from okay to crap. The big emphasis has been on building a network, developing contacts. One of the 3L's I met had a job because of the contacts he made. I was told that the people who finished top 15% and have no job didn't approach career services or make any general effort to seek out employment on their own. I have no idea though. Dean Wippman admitted that a bunch of students from the last class were using a paid internship service provided by the school (I can't remember the name off the top of my head); the head career counselor admitted that it's tough right now to get a job in Chicago (if that's your goal).

I'm not sure what the legal market is going to look like in a few years so I really don't want to make any projections. One of the guest speakers from a large bank said they were looking to outsource some of their legal services to India.

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deadpoetnsp
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Re: University of Minnesota 1L Taking Questions

Postby deadpoetnsp » Wed Dec 29, 2010 10:54 pm

Hesiod wrote:I didn't start this thread, but I found a similar one helpful when I was applying too.


I really appreciate your detailed reply, Hesiod! I almost felt that you were taking me on a campus tour. Thank you :)

uniqlaw
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Re: University of Minnesota 1L Taking Questions

Postby uniqlaw » Sun Jan 02, 2011 1:44 pm

My wife and I are from Florida, and are looking at apartments in Minnesota, as I will be attending the law school there in 2011. What are some areas in which most law students live? I saw other posts about bad neighborhoods and want to steer clear of those. Thanks for the help in advance. I am very excited because I've heard only great things about the Twin Cities.

Lasker
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Re: University of Minnesota 1L Taking Questions

Postby Lasker » Sun Jan 02, 2011 3:25 pm

uniqlaw wrote:My wife and I are from Florida, and are looking at apartments in Minnesota, as I will be attending the law school there in 2011. What are some areas in which most law students live? I saw other posts about bad neighborhoods and want to steer clear of those. Thanks for the help in advance. I am very excited because I've heard only great things about the Twin Cities.


Its hard to be really specific about "bad" neighborhoods, because people's perception and tolerance of them varies so widely. Although I don't live there now and thus cannot speak to where law students tend to live, I grew up in South Minneapolis and spent a lot of time hanging around the West Bank (the location of the Law school) and nearby neighborhoods. The only nearby neighborhood that I would have qualms about living in is "Philips", especially the eastern section.

You can see where that is on this map:

http://www.ci.minneapolis.mn.us/about/maps/neighborhoods.pdf

Just in case you are totally unfamiliar with the city/school, the law school is in the "Cedar-Riverside" neighborhood, which generally overlaps with what students are more likely to refer to as the West Bank.

Depending on your standards, you might also find some areas in "Powderhorn" (especially the "Central" subdivision) objectionable as well, but this area varies quite a bit on a block by block basis. There are also many parts of it that are quite nice and I don't think would bother anybody.

In general (limiting this to South Minneapolis as I don't know much about North Minneapolis or St. Paul) the nicer (narrowly defined as safer/wealthier) neighborhoods are farther west near the chain of lakes. West of 35W is generally better than east of 35W, and the same goes for Lyndale and Hennepin. There are still some somewhat sketchy pockets between 35W and Lyndale though. Between 35W and Hiawatha on the east-west axis and between Franklin and 42nd or so on the north-south axis are the areas where the most care needs to be exercised. There *are* many nice areas in that rectangle, but many not-so-nice as well. As one progresses further east and get closer to the river, the neighborhoods become somewhat safer again, although in this area you are pretty far from much that is of interest in the city.

I wouldn't take this as definitive, but just as my opinion. I don't feel, based on my visits, that Minneapolis has changed much since when I lived there as far as the above is concerned, but I would guess that my tolerance for less-safe neighborhoods is relatively high by the standards of this board, so YMMV.
Last edited by Lasker on Sun Jan 02, 2011 3:45 pm, edited 1 time in total.

uniqlaw
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Re: University of Minnesota 1L Taking Questions

Postby uniqlaw » Sun Jan 02, 2011 3:31 pm

Lasker wrote:
uniqlaw wrote:My wife and I are from Florida, and are looking at apartments in Minnesota, as I will be attending the law school there in 2011. What are some areas in which most law students live? I saw other posts about bad neighborhoods and want to steer clear of those. Thanks for the help in advance. I am very excited because I've heard only great things about the Twin Cities.


Its hard to be really specific about "bad" neighborhoods, because people's perception and tolerance of them varies so widely. Although I don't live there now and thus cannot speak to where law students tend to live, I grew up in South Minneapolis and spent a lot of time hanging around the West Bank (the location of the Law school) and nearby neighborhoods. The only nearby neighborhood that I would have qualms about living in is "Philips", especially the eastern section.

You can see where that is on this map:

http://www.ci.minneapolis.mn.us/about/maps/neighborhoods.pdf

Depending on your standards, you might also find some areas in "Powderhorn" (especially the "Central" subdivision) objectionable as well, but this area varies quite a bit on a block by block basis. There are also many parts of it that are quite nice and I don't think would bother anybody.


I care not for the makeup of the people that live in the neighborhood, so much as the safety of walking on its streets. Thank you for the advice!

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ScrabbleChamp
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Re: University of Minnesota 1L Taking Questions

Postby ScrabbleChamp » Tue Mar 08, 2011 9:01 am

Not sure if you guys/gals are still around, but do you known anyone who got in off the waitlist, and if so, what did they do, if anything, to help them get off the waitlist?

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dot
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Re: University of Minnesota 1L Taking Questions

Postby dot » Tue Mar 08, 2011 11:50 am

uniqlaw wrote:
Lasker wrote:
uniqlaw wrote:My wife and I are from Florida, and are looking at apartments in Minnesota, as I will be attending the law school there in 2011. What are some areas in which most law students live? I saw other posts about bad neighborhoods and want to steer clear of those. Thanks for the help in advance. I am very excited because I've heard only great things about the Twin Cities.


Its hard to be really specific about "bad" neighborhoods, because people's perception and tolerance of them varies so widely. Although I don't live there now and thus cannot speak to where law students tend to live, I grew up in South Minneapolis and spent a lot of time hanging around the West Bank (the location of the Law school) and nearby neighborhoods. The only nearby neighborhood that I would have qualms about living in is "Philips", especially the eastern section.

You can see where that is on this map:

http://www.ci.minneapolis.mn.us/about/maps/neighborhoods.pdf

Depending on your standards, you might also find some areas in "Powderhorn" (especially the "Central" subdivision) objectionable as well, but this area varies quite a bit on a block by block basis. There are also many parts of it that are quite nice and I don't think would bother anybody.


I care not for the makeup of the people that live in the neighborhood, so much as the safety of walking on its streets. Thank you for the advice!


I'm from the area, not a UMN law student, but I can fill in a lil.
Where I've lived:
Como, north of Dinkytown has a lot of students (less law, more general pop.) and isn't the safest neighborhood - several of my friends have been mugged/had houses or cars broken into. Despite this, it generally felt safe to me.

Ceder-Riverside is also not the safest area. But this is a bit more commercial (you won't really find houses, just apartment complexes) so there's actually more going on making it safer to walk the streets. That said, there was a rash of muggings by groups of teenagers a couple years back. Not sure how the situation is today.

Seward is really right next to Cedar-Riverside but the more typical Minneapolis residential in terms of streets/housing. If you know DC, it is a lot like Takoma, in terms of having this weird hippy paradise feel to it while still being affordable. I felt safer walking around than a few streets over in Cedar-Riverside, even though it is much quieter/darker/calmer in Seward.

Uptown is actually a smaller area than most people use the term to cover. I quite like the Wedge (northern tip of Lowry Hill East on the map), Whittier and Lyndale. An express bus gets you to the West Bank in maybe 5-15 minutes depending on how far south you are and of course on traffic (it hops on the highway)

Other places nearby-ish:
NE Minneapolis (Nordeast) has been up-and-coming recently. Especially the closer you get to downtown (St Anthony) the more gentrified it is. But even further up Central can be a nice place to live. Depends on what you're looking for in your neighborhood, but I quite like the mix of cheap ethnic restaurants and cheap hole-in-the-wall pubs :)

Prospect Park
is quite a nice area, but mostly professors live there; finding a house for rent can be a bit difficult.

Along Hiawatha, such as in eastern Powderhorn (Corcoran) is quite nice because the light rail runs down Hiawatha. If your spouse gets a job downtown, this can be a major perk. Buses (well, express buses) are fine in Minneapolis, but I personally love trains and am very excited that we have a line in Minneapolis! You can also take it to Cedar-Riverside station for UMN West Bank.

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weber35
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Re: University of Minnesota 1L Taking Questions

Postby weber35 » Wed Mar 16, 2011 1:05 pm

I am interested in the Uptown area and am particularly concerned about transportation. Is the express bus an adequate method of transportation to get to and from Mondale Hall? If so, is it a complete nuisance? I have been considering that, or actually driving. I've heard there is a nearby parking lot where students can park for a 'reasonable' monthly rate. Any information on that?

Also, I have looked at places further north of what is considered 'Uptown,' specifically the Lorring Park area. Does anyone have any experience with the area?

Thanks much.

Sandro
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Re: University of Minnesota 1L Taking Questions

Postby Sandro » Wed Mar 16, 2011 1:41 pm

Can you talk some more about job prospects outside of the top of the class, wherever that cutoff may be?

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ArthurDigbySellers
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Re: University of Minnesota 1L Taking Questions

Postby ArthurDigbySellers » Wed Mar 16, 2011 3:49 pm

Sandro wrote:Can you talk some more about job prospects outside of the top of the class, wherever that cutoff may be?


+1

tinlawman
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Re: University of Minnesota 1L Taking Questions

Postby tinlawman » Mon Mar 28, 2011 6:47 pm

This may be a stupid question, but what are the facilities like? I don't really care much about the look from the outside, but is the stuff inside pretty up to date? I.e. Are computers 10 years old? Is the network weak? Are desks in the classrooms newish or have they been there for 30 years? I'm trying to get onto the UMN site, but apparently the server is down or something.

abrahamlincoln
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Re: University of Minnesota 1L Taking Questions

Postby abrahamlincoln » Mon Apr 11, 2011 9:27 pm

deadpoetnsp wrote:What are good places to stay near the law school?


I don't go to law school at UMN, but I have some experience with GrandMarc at Seven Corners... It is conveniently located, but I would strongly recommend avoiding that place. The management there is a pain to deal with, and the lease terms are oppressive (google some other reviews for details).

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deadpoetnsp
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Re: University of Minnesota 1L Taking Questions

Postby deadpoetnsp » Tue Apr 12, 2011 12:10 am

abrahamlincoln wrote:
deadpoetnsp wrote:What are good places to stay near the law school?


I don't go to law school at UMN, but I have some experience with GrandMarc at Seven Corners... It is conveniently located, but I would strongly recommend avoiding that place. The management there is a pain to deal with, and the lease terms are oppressive (google some other reviews for details).


Thanks for the info; I'll avoid that place.

courtinglaw
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Re: University of Minnesota 1L Taking Questions

Postby courtinglaw » Sat Apr 23, 2011 11:09 pm

ScrabbleChamp wrote:Not sure if you guys/gals are still around, but do you known anyone who got in off the waitlist, and if so, what did they do, if anything, to help them get off the waitlist?

Just got off the waitlist about a week and a half ago. I had sent a letter, but I read somewhere that they were taking people with high GPA's -- I was a reverse splitter, so I figured that was why. Sorry if that's not helpful...

Sandro wrote:Can you talk some more about job prospects outside of the top of the class, wherever that cutoff may be?


+1[/quote]
+2. Would love to know more about this.

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Lonagan
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Re: University of Minnesota 1L Taking Questions

Postby Lonagan » Tue Apr 26, 2011 11:35 am

tinlawman wrote:This may be a stupid question, but what are the facilities like? I don't really care much about the look from the outside, but is the stuff inside pretty up to date? I.e. Are computers 10 years old? Is the network weak? Are desks in the classrooms newish or have they been there for 30 years? I'm trying to get onto the UMN site, but apparently the server is down or something.


I am a student at the U. The facilities suck. Everything is in a basement. The network, while fine when it works, often does not work. It's a building from the '70s, nothing more.

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tiffers16
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Re: University of Minnesota 1L Taking Questions

Postby tiffers16 » Thu May 26, 2011 10:14 am

ScrabbleChamp wrote:Not sure if you guys/gals are still around, but do you known anyone who got in off the waitlist, and if so, what did they do, if anything, to help them get off the waitlist?


I got in off the waitlist yesterday. I sent an email that same morning expressing a continued interest and an update of my new address. Ten hours later I get the phone call that I have been admitted. I do not know if this was coincidence or just great timing.

If you really want to attend I would say the time to show initiative is probably now because deposits are due and decisions have to be made at this point.

sparcarc
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Re: University of Minnesota 1L Taking Questions

Postby sparcarc » Wed Jun 01, 2011 9:33 am

Question!

How often is it that UMN Law grads move out of the state to find a job, perhaps to the coasts? (Specifically DC area.) I see that one of the lawyers from the UMN website works for a law firm in D.C., but is it common to see people moving out of the state to find a job, and is such a thing a 'common' sentiment in UMN law school? Or is it the expectation that everyone who graduates / goes to the school will stay in Minneapolis area?




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