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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camelcrema
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Re: Columbia 1L(s) taking questions

Postby camelcrema » Fri Jan 27, 2012 12:59 am

lakerfanimal wrote:
Excited to see all of you prospective 1L's

1L curriculum is pretty cool? It's going to be fairly standard everywhere that's on a semester system I think. Subject wise the classes are fun/interesting. I think first semester the school sort of coddles you because you get a lot of time to prep for finals and it seems like all of us had at least 1 great professor if not all the professors.

I like that LRW is high pass, pass, low pass. That class is supposed to teach a skill and so it's nice being able to try to master a skill on your own without grading pressure.

Spot on with the comments about student body attractiveness. The women here are way more attractive than I expected.


Says the person who worked harder than anyone else I know during fall semester. :)

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puppylaw
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Re: Columbia 1L(s) taking questions

Postby puppylaw » Fri Jan 27, 2012 5:40 am

Thanks for the info on housing everyone.

Now for a tough one that's been asked ad infinitum, I know, but you'll be able to offer some insight as people who presumably just made the same choice and are now in the thick of the results:

Why should I pick Columbia over Chicago and NYU? Any reasons why I should pick one of the others over Columbia? Cold hard data and heated conjecture are both appreciated.

viking138
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Re: Columbia 1L(s) taking questions

Postby viking138 » Fri Jan 27, 2012 9:07 am

puppylaw wrote:Thanks for the info on housing everyone.

Now for a tough one that's been asked ad infinitum, I know, but you'll be able to offer some insight as people who presumably just made the same choice and are now in the thick of the results:

Why should I pick Columbia over Chicago and NYU? Any reasons why I should pick one of the others over Columbia? Cold hard data and heated conjecture are both appreciated.


I'd say Columbia over NYU if you want to go into anything nationally, anything non-legal, etc. Columbia does have more of that traditionally prestigious, Ivy League name. The New York law community obviously recognizes that Columbia and NYU are basically equal, but I'd say especially in more far-flung areas, the Columbia name would probably travel better. But I think honestly it's more an issue of fit between Columbia and NYU.

If you want to be in New York, I'd say Columbia over Chicago without any hesitation, because you get the opportunity to network with NYC attorneys. I reached out to undergrad alums during my 1L year and met with a lot of lawyers in the city. Any legal pro bono projects you do will engage you in the NYC legal scene as well. I think it's definitely a pro to Columbia. But again, if after visiting you much preferred Chicago, I think fit is most important between the three schools because if you prefer one a lot more, you'll probably do better there.

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mel2010
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Re: Columbia 1L(s) taking questions

Postby mel2010 » Fri Jan 27, 2012 11:29 am

puppylaw wrote:Thanks for the info on housing everyone. Now for a tough one that's been asked ad infinitum, I know, but you'll be able to offer some insight as people who presumably just made the same choice and are now in the thick of the results:

Why should I pick Columbia over Chicago and NYU? Any reasons why I should pick one of the others over Columbia? Cold hard data and heated conjecture are both appreciated.

I'd say visit and pick the one you like best and that makes the most financial sense. I don't regret picking CLS over NYU, but I'm pretty sure I wouldn't regret it if I had picked the other way around either. That being said, without trying to start the rage war that typically ensues, I will allege that CLS is a slightly better springboard for biglaw, and NYU is probably a more significantly better springboard for public interest. As mentioned above, outside of NYC CLS is definitely more recognized, but I don't know how true that is among legal recruiters who assumedly know their shit.

The biglaw thing may be self-selection or who knows what, and plenty of people get those jobs from NYU, but the attorney listing for as many of the "top" firms as I was willing to look through all showed significantly more CLS alums than NYU alums (whatever that means).

Public interest, I don't think there's really a question. It's certainly possible at CLS, and they're working on strengthening it, but the institutional support just hasn't caught up to place like NYU where it's really a focus. But both will work with you on getting internships/etc, and both have strong LRAP programs to pay down your debt if you go into PI.

That being said, these are differences only mentioned because you're trying to differentiate two very similar schools. You can go to either one and have a great shot at biglaw or public interest. I don't go to NYU so I can't tell you how things directly compare, but I think visiting and getting a sense of the vibe is probably the best you're going to be able to do absent some $ up in here.

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Guchster
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Re: Columbia 1L(s) taking questions

Postby Guchster » Fri Jan 27, 2012 11:40 am

puppylaw wrote:Thanks for the info on housing everyone.

Now for a tough one that's been asked ad infinitum, I know, but you'll be able to offer some insight as people who presumably just made the same choice and are now in the thick of the results:

Why should I pick Columbia over Chicago and NYU? Any reasons why I should pick one of the others over Columbia? Cold hard data and heated conjecture are both appreciated.


DAMN YOU FOR GETTING ME MAD. Everyone knows on here that I love NYU more than CLS. Most people I've met at NYU > most people at CLS (U mad, CLS 1Ls?) I'm sorta just kidding, obvi. There's probably not a sig. difference in culture/people--everyone is smart and polite, with douchebags and assholes sprinkled about on all three campuses.

You're a smart one for asking for cold hard data. I remember when I was making the decision I 'search forum'd' for some charts and statistics. I also remember looking at the employment breakdown part of their websites.

At the time, I picked CLS because I wanted to do BigLaw in NYC, and CLS was fine. Note that I'd be in just as good of a position at Chicago and NYU. People will talk about a difference in cultures and professors, but I'm not very sensitive to these differences--every school felt kinda the same to me. I could love/hate the school largely depending on the 4/400 people I spoke with that date. If all 4 people were cool, then the school must be cool? Or if 4 are douchebags, school is douchebaggy? I picked CLS/NYU over Chicago because I figured I wanted to live in NYC. I then picked CLS, because I liked the escape from NYU's campus which I felt would distract me (which I regret making cuz I distract myself all the time). I also prefer living in the UWS an partying in Villages, then living in the village and partying in UWS.

ETA: Mel is correct in stating that NYU is marginally better for public interest. Our PI fucking sucks huge balls but CLS is selling their left nut to fix it. They frequently throw money at the student group I'm apart of to get us to partner with them and find pro bono stuff to do. But they still suck in terms of organization and are no where near 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).

That being said, if you came to CLS to do public interest, you'll find/get the same opportunities as an NYU student would. CLS is just going to HARDCORE work to get you to do Biglaw, cuz it's so easy to do it/get wrapped up in the models/bottles.

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Re: Columbia 1L(s) taking questions

Postby NC1 » Sat Jan 28, 2012 4:23 am

I haven't been on here in forever, but I guess I can help out. It's weird not knowing who these other CLS people are though.

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Re: Columbia 1L(s) taking questions

Postby arez » Sat Jan 28, 2012 6:28 pm

Could anyone share pics of the inside of CLS housing? I'm especially interested in Lenfest. Thanks!

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Re: Columbia 1L(s) taking questions

Postby pineappledazzler » Sun Jan 29, 2012 4:19 pm

Another recent admit wondering about housing here - is it fairly easy for a 1L to get a studio in Lenfest/another UAH building?

I know it will be more expensive than renting a studio off-campus, but if I wasn't living in campus housing I wouldn't be able to justify living nearby since I have another NYC option with family/friends. I would probably go for a studio over a share because it would seem less like a college dorm...

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Guchster
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Re: Columbia 1L(s) taking questions

Postby Guchster » Sun Jan 29, 2012 4:22 pm

pineappledazzler wrote:Another recent admit wondering about housing here - is it fairly easy for a 1L to get a studio in Lenfest/another UAH building?

I know it will be more expensive than renting a studio off-campus, but if I wasn't living in campus housing I wouldn't be able to justify living nearby since I have another NYC option with family/friends. I would probably go for a studio over a share because it would seem less like a college dorm...


It seems like studios are for couples-housing. I know of one or two people that have a studio in lenfest that are single. Both have $$$ so they do what they want.

I live in a 2BR share and it's pretty nice. My roommate and I don't really hang out, but we're extremely polite/respectful of one another.

pineappledazzler
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Re: Columbia 1L(s) taking questions

Postby pineappledazzler » Sun Jan 29, 2012 4:29 pm

okay, will take that into consideration. Would even listing a preference for a studio on the housing app be futile then? I am single, not to mention a K-JD so definitely would not qualify for housing reserved for couples/older students with families. I've just done the roommate thing and had some interesting experiences with the common area we shared, so not looking to repeat that! The amount of $ I have for housing will depend on whether they decide to give me any aid or not, I guess, I didn't know Lenfest had a reputation for being more expensive.

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Guchster
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Re: Columbia 1L(s) taking questions

Postby Guchster » Sun Jan 29, 2012 4:38 pm

pineappledazzler wrote:okay, will take that into consideration. Would even listing a preference for a studio on the housing app be futile then? I am single, not to mention a K-JD so definitely would not qualify for housing reserved for couples/older students with families. I've just done the roommate thing and had some interesting experiences with the common area we shared, so not looking to repeat that! The amount of $ I have for housing will depend on whether they decide to give me any aid or not, I guess, I didn't know Lenfest had a reputation for being more expensive.


Lenfest is def. more expensive. Depending on your suite/set up I think it can range from 1800-2400 a month (can someone at CLS fact-check that?). If you poke around UAH website, it lists the numbers somewhere

I listed studio first for the same reasons, and they gave me a 2BR. Most people I know are in 3BR +, so maybe they tried to be as respectful as possible. I remember on the housing app, you list a bunch of preferences, and then you have to rank the preferences in order based on which are most important to you. There is also a place to write other info important to housing decisions. You can try that.

Also, you don't have to accept the housing assignment you're given. You can decline and go onto a waste list or just flat turn them down.

pineappledazzler
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Re: Columbia 1L(s) taking questions

Postby pineappledazzler » Sun Jan 29, 2012 4:45 pm

thanks for the response, this is all good to know. I guess my other question would be if it's really detrimental to live in another area of the city in terms of both academics/social life? Still in manhattan but either the UES/UWS rather than morningside heights?

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Guchster
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Re: Columbia 1L(s) taking questions

Postby Guchster » Sun Jan 29, 2012 4:53 pm

I don't think so. Plenty of people live off campus. You'll have to work a bit harder to hang out with people, but it's not too big of a deal.

I don't think it'll mess with your academics. If you prefer the library, you can just stay here, like a job. If you prefer to study at your apartment, just go home.

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piccolittle
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Re: Columbia 1L(s) taking questions

Postby piccolittle » Sun Jan 29, 2012 5:58 pm

Guchster wrote:Also, I'm sure we could get piccolittle and kwais in here to help. They actually have brains.


Awww I just saw this! :mrgreen: Cheers for that, and happy to help answer stuffs.

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Re: Columbia 1L(s) taking questions

Postby piccolittle » Sun Jan 29, 2012 6:16 pm

Guchster wrote:ETA: Mel is correct in stating that NYU is marginally better for public interest. Our PI fucking sucks huge balls but CLS is selling their left nut to fix it. They frequently throw money at the student group I'm apart of to get us to partner with them and find pro bono stuff to do. But they still suck in terms of organization and are no where near 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).

That being said, if you came to CLS to do public interest, you'll find/get the same opportunities as an NYU student would. CLS is just going to HARDCORE work to get you to do Biglaw, cuz it's so easy to do it/get wrapped up in the models/bottles.


Just goes to show that everyone's experience is different, though maybe I'm not the most qualified to comment as I'm heading (hopefully) for firm life. All through first semester, I felt like they were pushing PI super hard. All the mandatory careers events were geared toward crafting your PI resume and the PI job search etc etc. This is probably because they expect most people to do PI work during 1L summer. For that reason, there isn't much good information on attainable private sector stuff or the application timeline for 1L private sector/judicial jobs. Everything I knew about job apps (especially for in-house, judges, and firm stuff) I got from TLS - currently, most of my friends barely have any interviews scheduled, because OCS/SJI has told them that's normal, and that they should be going for PI. YMMV, though. EIP/OCI happens in 2L August at every law school, so I don't think the fact that CLS's private sector process is generally more organized than the PI one should count against them; from what I understand, PI recruiting in general (at every school) is much less of a conveyor belt than firm stuff.

I've said it before, but I really really like everyone I have met here (or maybe that makes me one of the douches?), even the people I didn't quite get along with in the beginning. I think it's all about coming in with no preconceptions about the student body here, which really isn't helped by the whole "NYU are hippies, CLS are corporate hacks" kind of rhetoric. Everyone here is fairly attractive too (with, yes, the ladies winning by a fair margin).

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Guchster
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Re: Columbia 1L(s) taking questions

Postby Guchster » Sun Jan 29, 2012 6:31 pm

piccolittle wrote:
Guchster wrote:ETA: Mel is correct in stating that NYU is marginally better for public interest. Our PI fucking sucks huge balls but CLS is selling their left nut to fix it. They frequently throw money at the student group I'm apart of to get us to partner with them and find pro bono stuff to do. But they still suck in terms of organization and are no where near 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).

That being said, if you came to CLS to do public interest, you'll find/get the same opportunities as an NYU student would. CLS is just going to HARDCORE work to get you to do Biglaw, cuz it's so easy to do it/get wrapped up in the models/bottles.


Just goes to show that everyone's experience is different, though maybe I'm not the most qualified to comment as I'm heading (hopefully) for firm life. All through first semester, I felt like they were pushing PI super hard. All the mandatory careers events were geared toward crafting your PI resume and the PI job search etc etc. This is probably because they expect most people to do PI work during 1L summer. For that reason, there isn't much good information on attainable private sector stuff or the application timeline for 1L private sector/judicial jobs. Everything I knew about job apps (especially for in-house, judges, and firm stuff) I got from TLS - currently, most of my friends barely have any interviews scheduled, because OCS/SJI has told them that's normal, and that they should be going for PI. YMMV, though. EIP/OCI happens in 2L August at every law school, so I don't think the fact that CLS's private sector process is generally more organized than the PI one should count against them; from what I understand, PI recruiting in general (at every school) is much less of a conveyor belt than firm stuff.

I've said it before, but I really really like everyone I have met here (or maybe that makes me one of the douches?), even the people I didn't quite get along with in the beginning. I think it's all about coming in with no preconceptions about the student body here, which really isn't helped by the whole "NYU are hippies, CLS are corporate hacks" kind of rhetoric. Everyone here is fairly attractive too (with, yes, the ladies winning by a fair margin).


Piccolittle, stop being so level-headed and precise!!!

No, but seriously I'm being dramatic when I rag on CLS PI stuff. All career stuff for 1Ls has mostly been geared towards PI work. If I gmail searched "careers" or "resume" or "interview" I'm sure the majority of stuff would be from SJI. I really think CLS and SJI are doing their best at becoming a worthy resource. I guess I'm just annoyed that our PI summer fair, is actually NYU's PI summer fair.

My OCS person says because firms are so rare and competitive, and CLS can't fund judges in anyway, it makes sense from an institutional standpoint to push PI work--as CLS can fund it and its not as competitive, so that CLS kids are beating CLS kids for slots--they're goal after all is to get 100% employment.

According to 2Ls, after this first semester, the OCS honey moon is over and we head into overdrive in terms of private stuff. Between the insanity that will be firm dinners/receptions to student group dinners/ receptions (CBS, CLWA, BLSA, LOLsa, Outlaws, etc.), to the resume, bid, interview prep that will come later this semester, I think Columbia will turn up the notch when it comes times for us to viably compete for big law jerbs.

I heard SJI dies after 1L fall. For instance, the fact that PI EIP does not exist, and the OCI basically takes BigLaws left overs, is sad to me. I heard from 2Ls that BigLaw convincing will happen this semester/summer as we head into the rat race in August. I think people get lost in the hype/energy of it: I know I did for my 1L SA, and there wasn't even anyone around me egging me on!!! There's something about a list of different firms with different personalities that are selective that act like a puzzle/competition for kids. Then again, as piccolittle said, it's like that I'm sure at every T6, so I should stop complaining. I wonder how this culture of getting lost in the Big Law hype works at NYU.

To piccolittle's second point, as much shit as I talk about CLS, I actually honestly enjoy the people here too. At first, I felt it was a little college-y/clique-y,but I'm starting to really like my classmates and opening up to more people. People always say how 2nd semester, law school becomes awful and people turn crazy, I've actually really enjoyed my classmates more this semester than ast one.

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Re: Columbia 1L(s) taking questions

Postby piccolittle » Sun Jan 29, 2012 6:54 pm

Guchster wrote:Piccolittle, stop being so level-headed and precise!!!

:oops: I'm such a CLS groupie, it might actually be hard for me to let any negative comments slide ITT lol

Oh, here's a negative: professors taking forever to grade exams and the absence of any notification when grades are posted.

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Guchster
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Re: Columbia 1L(s) taking questions

Postby Guchster » Sun Jan 29, 2012 6:55 pm

piccolittle wrote:
Guchster wrote:Piccolittle, stop being so level-headed and precise!!!

:oops: I'm such a CLS groupie, it might actually be hard for me to let any negative comments slide ITT lol

Oh, here's a negative: professors taking forever to grade exams and the absence of any notification when grades are posted.


:evil: :evil: :evil: :evil: :evil: :evil: :evil: :evil: :evil: :evil: :evil: :evil: :evil: :evil: :evil: :evil: :evil: :evil: :evil: :evil: :evil: :evil: :evil:

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mel2010
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Re: Columbia 1L(s) taking questions

Postby mel2010 » Sun Jan 29, 2012 7:15 pm

Guchster wrote:
piccolittle wrote: :oops: I'm such a CLS groupie, it might actually be hard for me to let any negative comments slide ITT lol

Oh, here's a negative: professors taking forever to grade exams and the absence of any notification when grades are posted.


:evil: :evil: :evil: :evil: :evil: :evil: :evil: :evil: :evil: :evil: :evil: :evil: :evil: :evil: :evil: :evil: :evil: :evil: :evil: :evil: :evil: :evil: :evil:


CLS Registration Services wrote:Dear, mel2010! [sic, sweet grammar guys/gals]

This is to notify you that you now can view your grades for the following
courses through the "Check Grades" service on Lawnet:

[insert list of classes with grades posted 2 weeks-3 months ago, and no mention of the still-unreported grade]

You can access LAWNET at http://www.law.columbia.edu/lawnet

Sincerely,
Registration Services.

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Guchster
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Re: Columbia 1L(s) taking questions

Postby Guchster » Sun Jan 29, 2012 11:21 pm

birdlaw117 wrote:
Guchster wrote:Sure. My crazy ass will play too. Just don't ask me about NYU, cuz y'all know how I feel about that.

How jealous are you that you're so far away from the Village?


On a scale of 1-10, a 10.

More pissed about your classmates though vs. the assholes I go to school with.

On a scale of 1-10, my jealousy is about an 11 .

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Re: Columbia 1L(s) taking questions

Postby birdlaw117 » Sun Jan 29, 2012 11:26 pm

Guchster wrote:
birdlaw117 wrote:
Guchster wrote:Sure. My crazy ass will play too. Just don't ask me about NYU, cuz y'all know how I feel about that.

How jealous are you that you're so far away from the Village?


On a scale of 1-10, a 10.

More pissed about your classmates though vs. the assholes I go to school with.

On a scale of 1-10, my jealousy is about an 11 .

Lulz. I was wondering if you were going to respond to my question.

Also, thank you for providing me with adequate feedback to make my decision between CLS and NYU.

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Guchster
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Re: Columbia 1L(s) taking questions

Postby Guchster » Sun Jan 29, 2012 11:32 pm

birdlaw117 wrote:
Guchster wrote:
birdlaw117 wrote:
Guchster wrote:Sure. My crazy ass will play too. Just don't ask me about NYU, cuz y'all know how I feel about that.

How jealous are you that you're so far away from the Village?


On a scale of 1-10, a 10.

More pissed about your classmates though vs. the assholes I go to school with.

On a scale of 1-10, my jealousy is about an 11 .

Lulz. I was wondering if you were going to respond to my question.

Also, thank you for providing me with adequate feedback to make my decision between CLS and NYU.


In all sincerity, I ignore most of the shit my classmates write, so I didn't even look at the rest of the page.

But I skimmed over it to see what I wrote earlier and found it, and I found your gem. Of course I would never leave a question unanswered by you!

ETA: But seriously make someone at NYU drop out so I can transfer.

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birdlaw117
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Re: Columbia 1L(s) taking questions

Postby birdlaw117 » Sun Jan 29, 2012 11:36 pm

Guchster wrote:In all sincerity, I ignore most of the shit my classmates write, so I didn't even look at the rest of the page.

But I skimmed over it to see what I wrote earlier and found it, and I found your gem. Of course I would never leave a question unanswered by you!

ETA: But seriously make someone at NYU drop out so I can transfer.

Consider it done.

ETA: Seriously. It's done.

lsatcrazy
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Re: Columbia 1L(s) taking questions

Postby lsatcrazy » Mon Jan 30, 2012 7:50 pm

How competitive are the externships? Are the Washington ones very hard to get into?

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puppylaw
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Re: Columbia 1L(s) taking questions

Postby puppylaw » Tue Jan 31, 2012 1:39 pm

Guchster wrote:I don't think so. Plenty of people live off campus. You'll have to work a bit harder to hang out with people, but it's not too big of a deal.

I don't think it'll mess with your academics. If you prefer the library, you can just stay here, like a job. If you prefer to study at your apartment, just go home.


About that studying in the library... I'm all about studying in the library, and it's no fun when the library is too crowded. How is Columbia's? The ABA School Guide lists Columbia's study seating capacity at 369. NYU's is 850. Point NYU?




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