Columbia students taking questions

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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Tadatsune
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Re: Columbia 1L(s) taking questions

Postby Tadatsune » Tue Mar 06, 2012 4:45 pm

timbs4339 wrote:
Tadatsune wrote:
the perfection and efficiency of our well-oiled greedy OCS which handles Big Law (our OCS is a mean, green fighting machine of a mother fucker that could've fixed the recession single-handedly because they're so hardcore).


This is, I think, the first time I have heard ardent praise for Columbia's OCS. Most of the reviews I have encountered have been lackluster, which has been a point of concern. Obviously, with CLS's employment stats something must be going right, but still...

I'd appreciate if CLS students (I know the thread says 1Ls, but any 2Ls out there?) could elaborate on OCS for me...


Perhaps the best thing I can say about CLS OCS (I'm a current 3L) is that most people will never need to rely on them for advice. I've heard they are particularly bad among top schools, which is saying something because top schools generally have pretty poor OCS's. Luckily, job placement is pretty strong overall and most students can do just fine without their "help." My advice to you is to get in touch with as many 2L/3L students as you can and ask them for advice. Don't live in the 1L bubble where you only interact with other 1Ls. This is especially important before EIP. Absolutely do not listen to whatever OCS says without first running it by current students- they can sometimes give very poor bidding advice.

Also check out the Legal Employment forum here. CLS is very well represented come EIP time. And the general advice on there is good for people who have never done a real job search before.


Thanks.

Fiddler08
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Re: Columbia 1L(s) taking questions

Postby Fiddler08 » Tue Mar 06, 2012 5:45 pm

Thanks for all of the help guys. I've got a few questions myself.


1. Did any of you CLSers have money from any schools in the lower half of the T14? What made you turn it down and do you regret that decision at all?

2. How often do you get out and explore NYC? Are there any personal advantages to being in the city, or is it mostly just good for job contacts/networking?

3. I know an earlier poster was unhappy with their experience in the Arbors. Does this happen with most students living there? Do they often feel that they're cut off from the campus/the rest of the city?

Thanks again

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thunderflesh
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Re: Columbia 1L(s) taking questions

Postby thunderflesh » Tue Mar 06, 2012 7:38 pm

Fiddler08 wrote:
2. How often do you get out and explore NYC? Are there any personal advantages to being in the city, or is it mostly just good for job contacts/networking?



During my first semester, people tended to stay somewhat close to the campus area, but that's really because we were more interested in getting to know the people in our class (which IMO reflected how much we all like each other more than being tied down geographically).

If you want to get out and see the city, you'll definitely be able to find time for it, and plenty of your classmates will want to do the same. I mean, most of my best friends live in Brooklyn, and I've found time to see them all while still spending lots of time with my classmates.

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Guchster
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Re: Columbia 1L(s) taking questions

Postby Guchster » Tue Mar 06, 2012 10:00 pm

Fiddler08 wrote:Thanks for all of the help guys. I've got a few questions myself.


1. Did any of you CLSers have money from any schools in the lower half of the T14? What made you turn it down and do you regret that decision at all?

2. How often do you get out and explore NYC? Are there any personal advantages to being in the city, or is it mostly just good for job contacts/networking?

3. I know an earlier poster was unhappy with their experience in the Arbors. Does this happen with most students living there? Do they often feel that they're cut off from the campus/the rest of the city?

Thanks again


1. I got money from other school from all over the T14. CLS gave me money too though, so it wasn't exactly a choice I would regret. While I actually really do love CLS, I would probably go where there was more money in the T6. I think once you get below the T6, the job hunt just seems more stressful talking to 1Ls and 2Ls at lower T14s schools. But inside the T6, it's a similar experience (probably minus at Yale).

I didn't have much trouble locking down a 1L SA at two V10 firms in NYC--and the one I actually picked, which is a V20-- (and a nice selection of others in my home market). I'm not so sure this would've been possible at a lower T14. I know I'm big law secure (as long as I don't fuck up). My 1L firm gives me an auto return offer as long as I don't mess up, and I already have several 2L summer callbacks scheduled for July at the NYC firms I rejected that gave me offers (most of the home-market firms made the same offers but I refused out of respect to them)--so I don't even have to go through OCI here. Everyone this past year that wanted big law got it (with the exception of a few people I spoke to that are SUPER autistic or just landed in the bottom 5% of their class. I know this was a similar experience of others at HYSCCN, though. My understanding was that this WAS NOT the case at the bottom T-14s. While I'm sure you'll be fine, it's nice to not have to live with that stress.

2. I get away from morningside heights AS MUCH AS POSSIBLE. It's quiet and peaceful (so it's a fantastic place to live and sleep), but the 1/2/3 are so close and convenient and I prefer to spend my days/weekends in other parts of the city that are more quirky and interesting. It's good for networking. Also, you get to meet a shitload of associates. They don't have to bus/fly them to other cities, and so attorneys have no problem coming to speak with you at firm receptions. It also makes attending events at firms very convenient and easy. Also made the interview process much less stressful cuz I just took a subway 5-6 stops, lol.

3. Every person I've spoken to HATES the commute back and forth from the arbor. They tolerate it as long as possible and they get so fed up they eventually transfer out to live closer to campus. It is a really nice place though.

ETA: I don't want to give the false impression that all CLS 1Ls get 1L SAs, though. They just don't exist any more for most people at any school. Most are absorbed by people at YLS (because they don't even have fall semester grades in any capacity). For the purposes of biglaw, I qualify as a URM and I have a crapload of other softs + plus pretty decent grades. All of the people that I met that got offers in NYC from these places were HYSC (as in Columbia), BigLaw URMs in some capacity (which is very different than law school URM def), with good grades + huge softs.

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piccolittle
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Re: Columbia 1L(s) taking questions

Postby piccolittle » Tue Mar 06, 2012 11:32 pm

Guchster wrote:Everyone this past year that wanted big law got it (with the exception of a few people I spoke to that are SUPER autistic or just landed in the bottom 5% of their class.


HEY NOW.

Guchster wrote:ETA: I don't want to give the false impression that all CLS 1Ls get 1L SAs, though. They just don't exist any more for most people at any school. Most are absorbed by people at YLS (because they don't even have fall semester grades in any capacity). For the purposes of biglaw, I qualify as a URM and I have a crapload of other softs + plus pretty decent grades. All of the people that I met that got offers in NYC from these places were HYSC (as in Columbia), BigLaw URMs in some capacity (which is very different than law school URM def), with good grades + huge softs.


I only know a couple of people with 1L SAs, and they're either URM or had advanced technical degrees. Maybe I need to get to know Guchster's friends :P

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Guchster
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Re: Columbia 1L(s) taking questions

Postby Guchster » Tue Mar 06, 2012 11:33 pm

Guchster wrote:Everyone this past year that wanted big law got it (with the exception of a few people I spoke to that are SUPER autistic or just landed in the bottom 5% of their class.


Oo piccolittle! I meant 2L SAs!!!! Sorry if that was unclear!!! But you're working at an AMAZING place this summer that most law students would kill for.

Also, I actually don't know many other 1L SAs. Those positions just don't exist outside of the populations you talked about. But even with those things, it's still harder to get these positions outside of the T6 . I know several people at Duke, MVP, but they are much rarer than T6 offers.

piccolittle wrote:I only know a couple of people with 1L SAs, and they're either URM or had advanced technical degrees. Maybe I need to get to know Guchster's friends :P


About your second quote, I was talking about the people I met at receptions/during or after callbacks--most of which go to HYSC. Too aspie to actually call them "friends" IRL, lol.

ETA: also, I haven't seen you in class in a while!!! I need to go say hi one day.

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mel2010
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Re: Columbia 1L(s) taking questions

Postby mel2010 » Wed Mar 07, 2012 11:28 am

Fiddler08 wrote:1. Did any of you CLSers have money from any schools in the lower half of the T14? What made you turn it down and do you regret that decision at all?

I had some decent $$ from schools in the lower half of the T14 and a tiny amount of ¢¢ from NYU. I don't regret coming here (with no $), but I don't know if I would regret it had I gone somewhere else either. I was going to have a lot of debt either way, but I feel confident in my biglaw chances here (as an aside, the LRAP is not bad either, although not as nice as NYU's) and I've always been planning to do that for a few years after school. I think like Guchster hinted at, ~T6 is in some ways the new T14 as the economy slowly recovers. Most everyone seems optimistic about their futures, aside from the few perennial pessimists.

nametaken
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Re: Columbia 1L(s) taking questions

Postby nametaken » Wed Mar 07, 2012 11:43 am

I live in NYC already, and am wondering if it's necessary to move up near campus if I decide to attend in the fall. Does anyone have any input? I don't really love the idea of being in Morningside Heights and so far from the rest of the city/my current friends but I also don't want to miss our on opportunities to socialize and become close with my class.

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Guchster
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Re: Columbia 1L(s) taking questions

Postby Guchster » Wed Mar 07, 2012 1:34 pm

nametaken wrote:I live in NYC already, and am wondering if it's necessary to move up near campus if I decide to attend in the fall. Does anyone have any input? I don't really love the idea of being in Morningside Heights and so far from the rest of the city/my current friends but I also don't want to miss our on opportunities to socialize and become close with my class.


It shouldn't be a problem at all. I have friends that live with their spouses in Brooklyn and one good friend that actually lives in Queens. Commute is not so bad, but you'll probs have to hang around campus all day. It could be a good thing because you can get all your work out of the way here before you go home in the evening, which is what most people do.

Also, as long as you're mindful about the fact that it's going to be harder to socialize with your class if you move away, you'll be fine. I avoided socializing with my class first semester, and I'm starting to really bond with people these past few months. I don't necessarily regret keeping my distance at first (that's just my more reserved personality), but there are plenty of opportunities to bond with classmates other than going out to Pourhouse or doing spontaneous bar stuff around MH (i.e., going to movies, bar crawls, bar reviews, concerts etc.). I actually make it an effort to go visit my friend in Queens (AMAZING brazillian restaurants in Astoria).

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thunderflesh
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Re: Columbia 1L(s) taking questions

Postby thunderflesh » Wed Mar 07, 2012 4:29 pm

nametaken wrote:I live in NYC already, and am wondering if it's necessary to move up near campus if I decide to attend in the fall. Does anyone have any input? I don't really love the idea of being in Morningside Heights and so far from the rest of the city/my current friends but I also don't want to miss our on opportunities to socialize and become close with my class.


IMO, move near campus, unless you're living with a significant other. You can make commuting work, but you'll lose 1-2 hours every single day and won't be able to spend as much time with your classmates.

Sure, I miss my old neighborhood, and it bites being farther away from my non-CLS friends, but I feel like (a) my friendships with classmates are stronger because I live close and (b) it's probably helped me to do better academically. The time I save by having a negligible commute is worth its weight in gold. Plus, being close makes it easier to go to various law school events and extracurriculars.

Besides, you'll have plenty of time to visit your friends and your old neighborhood on the weekends, and you can move back either for 3L or after you graduate.

timbs4339
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Re: Columbia 1L(s) taking questions

Postby timbs4339 » Wed Mar 07, 2012 8:25 pm

Fiddler08 wrote:Thanks for all of the help guys. I've got a few questions myself.


1. Did any of you CLSers have money from any schools in the lower half of the T14? What made you turn it down and do you regret that decision at all?

2. How often do you get out and explore NYC? Are there any personal advantages to being in the city, or is it mostly just good for job contacts/networking?

Thanks again


CLS 3L here.

1) My main options when I applied were NWestern at full tuition, with the stipulation that I work a year, CLS at 1/2 price, and NYU at 50K. The choice for CLS over NYU was obvious, but had the amounts been reversed (CLS 50, NYU 1/2) I would have taken NYU without hesitation. The bigger dilemma was NW at full vs. CLS half. I wrestled for quite some time, but in the end I figured that I would not be able to get a job making more than minimum wage for that year and so the extra year of biglaw salary (or whatever salary I could hope to earn after the 3-5 years in biglaw) would be more than the year's salary at min wage + the extra scholly money.

Now I'm an unemployed 3L and this is the one decision I made that just kills me inside. I regret taking the CLS offer and if I had the chance to do it again I would have taken NW. I can go into it in more detail if you want but this decision will probably haunt me for the rest of my career unless I magically luck into a decent job with two months to go in the year.

2) There are many opportunities to explore NYC. During the first few weeks/months there will be student organizations hosting events all around the city. I did most of the real touristy stuff very early on, but I go out often to restaurants and bars outside of the neighborhood. One thing that is really cool is taking day trips to neighborhoods in Brooklyn or Queens. If that's what you want to do there are plenty of people who are down to do it. Having a s/o or friends who are not law students helps immensely. However, it can get very expensive so if you are on a loan budget you might have to skimp in other areas.

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Guchster
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Re: Columbia 1L(s) taking questions

Postby Guchster » Wed Mar 07, 2012 9:58 pm

timbs4339 wrote:
Fiddler08 wrote:Thanks for all of the help guys. I've got a few questions myself.


1. Did any of you CLSers have money from any schools in the lower half of the T14? What made you turn it down and do you regret that decision at all?

2. How often do you get out and explore NYC? Are there any personal advantages to being in the city, or is it mostly just good for job contacts/networking?

Thanks again


CLS 3L here.

1) My main options when I applied were NWestern at full tuition, with the stipulation that I work a year, CLS at 1/2 price, and NYU at 50K. The choice for CLS over NYU was obvious, but had the amounts been reversed (CLS 50, NYU 1/2) I would have taken NYU without hesitation. The bigger dilemma was NW at full vs. CLS half. I wrestled for quite some time, but in the end I figured that I would not be able to get a job making more than minimum wage for that year and so the extra year of biglaw salary (or whatever salary I could hope to earn after the 3-5 years in biglaw) would be more than the year's salary at min wage + the extra scholly money.

Now I'm an unemployed 3L and this is the one decision I made that just kills me inside. I regret taking the CLS offer and if I had the chance to do it again I would have taken NW. I can go into it in more detail if you want but this decision will probably haunt me for the rest of my career unless I magically luck into a decent job with two months to go in the year.

2) There are many opportunities to explore NYC. During the first few weeks/months there will be student organizations hosting events all around the city. I did most of the real touristy stuff very early on, but I go out often to restaurants and bars outside of the neighborhood. One thing that is really cool is taking day trips to neighborhoods in Brooklyn or Queens. If that's what you want to do there are plenty of people who are down to do it. Having a s/o or friends who are not law students helps immensely. However, it can get very expensive so if you are on a loan budget you might have to skimp in other areas.


Can you PM me (or post here if you're comfortable) about the reason you think you're unemployed as a 3L?

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Re: Columbia 1L(s) taking questions

Postby Take Two » Wed Mar 07, 2012 10:25 pm

timbs4339 wrote:Now I'm an unemployed 3L and this is the one decision I made that just kills me inside. I regret taking the CLS offer and if I had the chance to do it again I would have taken NW. I can go into it in more detail if you want but this decision will probably haunt me for the rest of my career unless I magically luck into a decent job with two months to go in the year.


okay so this is terrifying...

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Re: Columbia 1L(s) taking questions

Postby timbs4339 » Thu Mar 08, 2012 2:44 am

Guchster wrote:
timbs4339 wrote:
Fiddler08 wrote:Thanks for all of the help guys. I've got a few questions myself.


1. Did any of you CLSers have money from any schools in the lower half of the T14? What made you turn it down and do you regret that decision at all?

2. How often do you get out and explore NYC? Are there any personal advantages to being in the city, or is it mostly just good for job contacts/networking?

Thanks again


CLS 3L here.

1) My main options when I applied were NWestern at full tuition, with the stipulation that I work a year, CLS at 1/2 price, and NYU at 50K. The choice for CLS over NYU was obvious, but had the amounts been reversed (CLS 50, NYU 1/2) I would have taken NYU without hesitation. The bigger dilemma was NW at full vs. CLS half. I wrestled for quite some time, but in the end I figured that I would not be able to get a job making more than minimum wage for that year and so the extra year of biglaw salary (or whatever salary I could hope to earn after the 3-5 years in biglaw) would be more than the year's salary at min wage + the extra scholly money.

Now I'm an unemployed 3L and this is the one decision I made that just kills me inside. I regret taking the CLS offer and if I had the chance to do it again I would have taken NW. I can go into it in more detail if you want but this decision will probably haunt me for the rest of my career unless I magically luck into a decent job with two months to go in the year.

2) There are many opportunities to explore NYC. During the first few weeks/months there will be student organizations hosting events all around the city. I did most of the real touristy stuff very early on, but I go out often to restaurants and bars outside of the neighborhood. One thing that is really cool is taking day trips to neighborhoods in Brooklyn or Queens. If that's what you want to do there are plenty of people who are down to do it. Having a s/o or friends who are not law students helps immensely. However, it can get very expensive so if you are on a loan budget you might have to skimp in other areas.


Can you PM me (or post here if you're comfortable) about the reason you think you're unemployed as a 3L?


If you do not know how law school hiring works for people going into the private sector, here's a short primer. The bulk of opportunities happen during the on-campus job fair at the beginning of your 2L year. Most large firms in the country will come to interview at Columbia. Depending on their projected hiring needs they will see between 20-200 students for 2L summer positions, in intervals of 20 minutes apiece. Then they will decide who to invite back to their firms for a longer interview. This fair, called EIP, is the best chance to meet employers. So naturally it is important to have your shit together.

Why am I unemployed? This is something I've mused about for a while. The instinct when you meet an unemployed CLS 3L is to immediately assume something is very wrong with the person, usually either very poor grades or a terrible personality- bottom 5% in either case. I can't say I have either. My grades after 1L year, when they matter the most, weren't stellar. They weren't terrible either- less than .05 what is bandied about as median, and they went up significantly in the semesters following 1L year so I am probably now in the top third. I've also never gotten a grade below B. So I don't think I am totally barred from a job based on grades.

Whether I have a bad personality is, of course, more subjective. I don't think so. I've been able to secure callbacks at both 2L and 3L EIP, which generally means my personality does not preclude me from having a basic conversation in an interview setting. I may not be the greatest interviewer, but I am hardly the worst. Mock interviews have confirmed this. I'm even continuing to get second round (callback) interviews during 3L year.

Does OCS deserve part of the blame? Perhaps. They have a very poor reputation among the student body, and could generally do a lot more for students if they took a different approach. But I can't blame them for giving me the same level of services they gave everybody else. They signed off on what was in retrospect a very poor bidlist with a lot of wasted interviews. But like I said above, if you have to rely on them for anything you are not doing enough on your own to prepare for the job search.

In the end, I think I was done in by being just a mediocre student in every respect. I had average grades, a bad bidlist, an average personality, no work experience, a crappy undergrad, and dead-end jobs throughout my life. You have to remember that when you go on job interviews you are competing with other CLS students. Where you rank in the above factors compared to them will determine whether you get callbacks and there are simply fewer callbacks to go around than in 2007. I had the opportunity to review about a hundred resumes of 1Ls for my journal and what I saw really shocked me. Even people who went straight through did some amazing, relevant stuff during college. Meanwhile, I had never had a job paying more than near-minimum wage and had never conducted a job search outside of walking down to the grocery store with an application in hand.

What you have to remember during 2L EIP and in any job search is that the firms are looking for a reason to hire you. You go to CLS after all. But CLS can't be your only positive, because everyone else they are seeing that day also goes to CLS. After 2L EIP, the number of opportunities goes way down. There are a trickle of posted opportunities after the EIP, and those will be highly competitive.

Right now I am at a very depressing stage in my job search. I am actually at the point where interviewers assume something must be wrong with me since I am still unemployed. I get that question often in interviews. The truth is, there simply weren't enough big firm jobs to cover everyone in the c/o 2012. I know about five people still unemployed out of about 50 or so. Some people had to get screwed and I was just one of them.

I'm sorry to hijack the thread with my depressing story. In fact, besides my job situation and impending debt I have really enjoyed my time at CLS and would be happy to answer any more questions you might have.

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Take Two
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Re: Columbia 1L(s) taking questions

Postby Take Two » Thu Mar 08, 2012 1:07 pm

Dont feel like you are hijacking the thread, at least for me that seems very relevant and I appreciate you taking the time to share.

It's really hard sorting through employment data rate now, cause schools dont really want to reveal how bad things were/are, and its good to get some personal experiences to compare to the numbers

thanks!

timbs4339
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Re: Columbia 1L(s) taking questions

Postby timbs4339 » Thu Mar 08, 2012 1:37 pm

Take Two wrote:Dont feel like you are hijacking the thread, at least for me that seems very relevant and I appreciate you taking the time to share.

It's really hard sorting through employment data rate now, cause schools dont really want to reveal how bad things were/are, and its good to get some personal experiences to compare to the numbers

thanks!


I also don't want my story to dissuade people from coming to CLS generally- it's still a very good school and most everyone will find a decent job even if it's not their first choice. There are unemployed people at all of the CCN and other schools up and down the T10. Probably only Yale and Stanford can guarantee decent employment for 100% of their class. But since the vast majority of people have lined up some sort of good legal employment it is rare to find people discussing it openly and it's easy for the school to blame the individuals without jobs.

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Kring345
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Re: Columbia 1L(s) taking questions

Postby Kring345 » Sun Mar 25, 2012 1:44 am

Can anyone talk about how the 1L curriculum works? I read somewhere that it's only 3 substantive classes the first semester? What about 2nd? How is LRW?

Im quite certain that these questions have been answered before, but I have minimal computer access, so mining for answers is easier said than done. Feel free to just respond with copy/paste or links.

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Guchster
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Re: Columbia 1L(s) taking questions

Postby Guchster » Sun Mar 25, 2012 1:50 am

Kring345 wrote:Can anyone talk about how the 1L curriculum works? I read somewhere that it's only 3 substantive classes the first semester? What about 2nd? How is LRW?

Im quite certain that these questions have been answered before, but I have minimal computer access, so mining for answers is easier said than done. Feel free to just respond with copy/paste or links.


Sure:
1L Fall: Contracts, Civ Pro, and either Torts or Property (3 classes) + LPW (pass/fail) and everyone passes. I actually got a high pass, and I did absolute shit for that dumb class--bare bones minimum.

1L Spring: Con Law, Crim Law, Property or Torts (whichever you didn't take last semester), an elective + LPW (pass/fail--except this time it's moot court) (so it's 4 classes + LPW)

LPW (what it's called here) depends entirely on your professor. But since it's P/F, people generally treat it as a nuisance that's harmless.

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WhiteGuy5
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Re: Columbia 1L(s) taking questions

Postby WhiteGuy5 » Sun Mar 25, 2012 1:53 am

Do you ever talk to classmates and think to yourself "how the fuck did this guy get into law school, let alone Columbia?"?

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Kring345
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Re: Columbia 1L(s) taking questions

Postby Kring345 » Sun Mar 25, 2012 2:18 am

Guchster wrote:
Kring345 wrote:Can anyone talk about how the 1L curriculum works? I read somewhere that it's only 3 substantive classes the first semester? What about 2nd? How is LRW?

Im quite certain that these questions have been answered before, but I have minimal computer access, so mining for answers is easier said than done. Feel free to just respond with copy/paste or links.


Sure:
1L Fall: Contracts, Civ Pro, and either Torts or Property (3 classes) + LPW (pass/fail) and everyone passes. I actually got a high pass, and I did absolute shit for that dumb class--bare bones minimum.

1L Spring: Con Law, Crim Law, Property or Torts (whichever you didn't take last semester), an elective + LPW (pass/fail--except this time it's moot court) (so it's 4 classes + LPW)

LPW (what it's called here) depends entirely on your professor. But since it's P/F, people generally treat it as a nuisance that's harmless.

Thanks!

What about the "Legal Methods" class that is listed on the site?

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Re: Columbia 1L(s) taking questions

Postby bhan87 » Sun Mar 25, 2012 2:54 am

WhiteGuy5 wrote:Do you ever talk to classmates and think to yourself "how the fuck did this guy get into law school, let alone Columbia?"?


If you would think such a thing I really hope you don't come here. The worst people at any law school are people who feel they're superior and in a different class from their classmates. EVERYONE went through the same application process and in all likelihood, that person who you think shouldn't have gotten into law school will do better than you.

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Re: Columbia 1L(s) taking questions

Postby WhiteGuy5 » Sun Mar 25, 2012 3:05 am

bhan87 wrote:
WhiteGuy5 wrote:Do you ever talk to classmates and think to yourself "how the fuck did this guy get into law school, let alone Columbia?"?


If you would think such a thing I really hope you don't come here. The worst people at any law school are people who feel they're superior and in a different class from their classmates. EVERYONE went through the same application process and in all likelihood, that person who you think shouldn't have gotten into law school will do better than you.


Wait...why would I think such a thing?

ETA: Oh wait, I get it now. Well...I don't ascribe to those views personally. In fact, the only reason why I asked is because I have met some people from Columbia who are very much like the bolded (somewhat ironic huh? :D ). Actually, I have met even more people from CLS who might not be like that themselves, but note such snottiness as one of the school's biggest flaws: a somewhat snotty student body. I thought I'd ask a question that would have been most helpful in gauging snottiness =).

I don't want to derail the thread, but the few people that I know who went to CLS and who I trust to give me an honest opinion have all complained about that. I try to take the personal experiences of individuals with a grain of salt, but it'd be nice to hear what some current CLS students think.

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Guchster
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Re: Columbia 1L(s) taking questions

Postby Guchster » Sun Mar 25, 2012 12:24 pm

Kring345 wrote:
Guchster wrote:
Kring345 wrote:Can anyone talk about how the 1L curriculum works? I read somewhere that it's only 3 substantive classes the first semester? What about 2nd? How is LRW?

Im quite certain that these questions have been answered before, but I have minimal computer access, so mining for answers is easier said than done. Feel free to just respond with copy/paste or links.


Sure:
1L Fall: Contracts, Civ Pro, and either Torts or Property (3 classes) + LPW (pass/fail) and everyone passes. I actually got a high pass, and I did absolute shit for that dumb class--bare bones minimum.

1L Spring: Con Law, Crim Law, Property or Torts (whichever you didn't take last semester), an elective + LPW (pass/fail--except this time it's moot court) (so it's 4 classes + LPW)

LPW (what it's called here) depends entirely on your professor. But since it's P/F, people generally treat it as a nuisance that's harmless.

Thanks!

What about the "Legal Methods" class that is listed on the site?


You take legal methods 3 weeks before classes start. While it sucks starting classes 3 weeks earlier than everyone else in the nation, it's great because you only have to take 3 substantive classes and thus a more relaxed fall semester in adapting to law school. Also, legal methods is complete bullshit and it's a nice way to slowly ease into law school reading, understand how to brief or mentally brief a case, and get your first cold call. Plus you can go out whenever you want with your classmates and get to know people better, if you'd like. It's credit or no credit (there isn't even a high or low pass), and EVERYONE passes. If you don't get credit, you retake, and failing it (even multiple times) doesn't even show up on your transcript in any capacity. Basically, it's a time to do whatever you want.

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Guchster
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Re: Columbia 1L(s) taking questions

Postby Guchster » Sun Mar 25, 2012 12:29 pm

WhiteGuy5 wrote:Do you ever talk to classmates and think to yourself "how the fuck did this guy get into law school, let alone Columbia?"?



Anyone person who may have an attitude like this about your classmates at a school like CLS, will quickly change his/her tune around exam time--and when grades come back. I feel like people at CLS are very cognizant of its reputation and go out of our way to make it a pleasant place. Our 1L class is very friendly and nice to one another--my section literally has no gunners or people I find annoying or overly competitive. Nobody here is stupid or dumb. And just because they choose to sound dumb or play down their brilliance in class, doesn't mean they won't kick your ass to a B-/C with their brilliance on an exam.

There are gunners (who generally get mediocre grades at best) and there are silent gunners (who you have no idea were so brilliant till grades come back and they rack up the highest grades in the class).

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Re: Columbia 1L(s) taking questions

Postby bhan87 » Sun Mar 25, 2012 2:48 pm

WhiteGuy5 wrote:
bhan87 wrote:
WhiteGuy5 wrote:Do you ever talk to classmates and think to yourself "how the fuck did this guy get into law school, let alone Columbia?"?


If you would think such a thing I really hope you don't come here. The worst people at any law school are people who feel they're superior and in a different class from their classmates. EVERYONE went through the same application process and in all likelihood, that person who you think shouldn't have gotten into law school will do better than you.


Wait...why would I think such a thing?

ETA: Oh wait, I get it now. Well...I don't ascribe to those views personally. In fact, the only reason why I asked is because I have met some people from Columbia who are very much like the bolded (somewhat ironic huh? :D ). Actually, I have met even more people from CLS who might not be like that themselves, but note such snottiness as one of the school's biggest flaws: a somewhat snotty student body. I thought I'd ask a question that would have been most helpful in gauging snottiness =).

I don't want to derail the thread, but the few people that I know who went to CLS and who I trust to give me an honest opinion have all complained about that. I try to take the personal experiences of individuals with a grain of salt, but it'd be nice to hear what some current CLS students think.


Oh, I didn't mean to imply that you in particular were such a person, but rather was using "you" in a more general sense.

In terms of snottiness, it does exist here, but fortunately it is not overwhelming. Also, anecdotally, the snottiness level seems to have gone down after we got our Fall grades.




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