Stetson Law School

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SouthFloridaGrad
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Stetson Law School

Postby SouthFloridaGrad » Wed Aug 13, 2008 2:51 pm

Hi all,

Can anyone fill me in on where to go for good resources on Stetson Law School? It is the only law school in my local area and I am seriously considering it but would love to know more about it. Job placement, student life, intellectual rigor, etc.

My first actual LSAT diagnostic was 161 and my GPA is 3.5, so I think I can get in there.

Thanks in advance!

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vasiok
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Re: Stetson Law School

Postby vasiok » Sat Aug 16, 2008 1:27 pm

Any reason for staying in local area only?

Your GPA is decent and 161 on diagnostic means you have good chance of hitting 170+ which opens up a lot of doors.

I wouldn't go there even if they offered me a full ride.

SouthFloridaGrad
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Re: Stetson Law School

Postby SouthFloridaGrad » Sat Aug 16, 2008 2:36 pm

Well, I am trying to be realistic about my chances of getting in places. My undergrad wasn't much of a school and I don't have a ton of softs (being a musician)... would I even be able to get in somewhere better?

The local factor is basically my family/friends/girlfriend. If I could get into an excellent school somewhere else, I would consider it.

Stetson has the #1 Advocacy program and the #5 Legal Writing program, according to US News, so I figured concentrating in those areas wouldn't be a total waste.

Why would you not go there even if they offered you a full ride? Just too low-ranked of a school?

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vasiok
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Re: Stetson Law School

Postby vasiok » Sat Aug 16, 2008 2:51 pm

Your UG school doesn't matter, besides USF is a top 50 research university :D :lol:

It's mostly about numbers game, if you hit 170+ you'll probably get into some T14 schools and would probably get some money from T25 schools.

Stetson means that you'll be practicing in Florida for the rest of your life. It's too regional, too low ranking.

SouthFloridaGrad
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Re: Stetson Law School

Postby SouthFloridaGrad » Sun Aug 17, 2008 12:51 am

Well, alright. I guess the best thing for me to do is just try to make sure I DO crack 170 on the LSAT and then apply and see what happens and go from there. I suppose a degee from a Top 25 school would probably play some down here if I chose to come back to the area...

Thanks for your help :)

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ColtonDLong
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Re: Stetson Law School

Postby ColtonDLong » Sun Aug 17, 2008 12:57 am

vasiok wrote:Your UG school doesn't matter, besides USF is a top 50 research university :D :lol:

It's mostly about numbers game, if you hit 170+ you'll probably get into some T14 schools and would probably get some money from T25 schools.

Stetson means that you'll be practicing in Florida for the rest of your life. It's too regional, too low ranking.


Vaslock I'm not sure how much I agree with that. It seems like the age old debate, but with work experience especially, I don't think it is THAT difficult to find a job out of state, plus...what if you know you WANT to be in Florida for the rest of your life? As crazy as it sounds I know I want to live in the twin cities, so if I got to William Mitchell and graduate in the top 30 percent, who cares? I have about a good of a shot as any. WM is a HUUUUUUUGGGEE last resort fall back, but I really wouldn't mind too much I suppose.

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hous
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Re: Stetson Law School

Postby hous » Sun Aug 17, 2008 1:33 am

Stetson is a great school, but it is regional. Its not impossible to find a job outside of Florida, Stetson is one of those T2 schools that everyone knows and respect it.

You will get into Stetson easily with your numbers, try to improve your score a few points and aim for a Full Ride.

Good luck!

SouthFloridaGrad
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Re: Stetson Law School

Postby SouthFloridaGrad » Sun Aug 17, 2008 2:14 am

Thanks everyone so much for your input. Living in Tampa area, all I hear is how great Stetson is because most of the lawyers I know went there. OTOH, none of my friends and family outside of this area have even HEARD of Stetson. Of course, none of my friends anf amily outside of this area are anywhere near any law circles.

Ideally, I would work in entertainment or sports law (I know that is cliche), but I feel that I may realistically be looking at something more along the lines of non-profit or government-style practice. Does that make any difference in anyone's opinion?

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Corsair
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Re: Stetson Law School

Postby Corsair » Sun Aug 17, 2008 2:53 pm

..

azorbust
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Re: Stetson Law School

Postby azorbust » Sun Aug 17, 2008 3:32 pm

i'm also very serious about stetson, with its median job starting salary pretty high, and with its seemingly decent rep, i'm surprised it's just 100 in the T100.

bigben
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Re: Stetson Law School

Postby bigben » Sun Aug 17, 2008 3:40 pm

Median starting salary statistics are usually lies, just so you know.

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hous
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Re: Stetson Law School

Postby hous » Sun Aug 17, 2008 3:42 pm

What does Stetson report their median starting salary as?

azorbust
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Re: Stetson Law School

Postby azorbust » Sun Aug 17, 2008 3:44 pm

hous wrote:What does Stetson report their median starting salary as?



TLS reports it as: "Median private sector starting salary: $75,000"

i know that's not like ridiculously high, but for the fact they're a T1 barely, id say that's good. besides, TLS is reporting that FSU's median private sector starting salary is $60,000 and they're in the mid T100's. kinda weird if true.

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hous
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Re: Stetson Law School

Postby hous » Sun Aug 17, 2008 3:58 pm

azorbust wrote:
hous wrote:What does Stetson report their median starting salary as?



TLS reports it as: "Median private sector starting salary: $75,000"

i know that's not like ridiculously high, but for the fact they're a T1 barely, id say that's good. besides, TLS is reporting that FSU's median private sector starting salary is $60,000 and they're in the mid T100's. kinda weird if true.


Cool, I didnt realize TLS updated that. Last time I checked they didnt have info on Maimi or Stetson.

Those figures are misleading. Im sure the average FSU and UF grad makes more money and has better job opportunities outside the state then Stetson. What all schools do is report only those students who go into private practise, but the truth is the vast majority of students from Stetson go into public and make around 41k in the state of Florida.

Which 41k is still good money starting salary, but not when your paying off 150k in debt.

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yalie10
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Re: Stetson Law School

Postby yalie10 » Sun Aug 17, 2008 4:07 pm

The salary statistics reported by schools are largely meaningless. Stetson reported a $65/$75/$90 salary range with 65% of students reporting salary information. However, this is only for private practice. As higher earning students tend to report in higher numbers, the median is almost always unrealistically high. In addition, the salary reported is for those that enter private practice. For some schools this may be as low as 40-50% of the class. Those that enter business or government tend to make lower salaries.

In addition, schools pretty much have free reign as to how they come up with their figures. There is little or no oversight. The only salary statistics that are trustworthy are those for the top 10 or so schools because at such schools the vast majority of students can obtain biglaw jobs if they so choose. Thus, the median salary will simply be market rate. In 2006, market rate was $145,000. In 2007, you'll see the medians increasing to $160,000.

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hous
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Re: Stetson Law School

Postby hous » Sun Aug 17, 2008 4:10 pm

yalie10 wrote:The salary statistics reported by schools are largely meaningless. Stetson reported a $65/$75/$90 salary range with 65% of students reporting salary information. However, this is only for private practice. As higher earning students tend to report in higher numbers, the median is almost always unrealistically high. In addition, the salary reported is for those that enter private practice. For some schools this may be as low as 40-50% of the class. Those that enter business or government tend to make lower salaries.

In addition, schools pretty much have free reign as to how they come up with their figures. There is little or no oversight. The only salary statistics that are trustworthy are those for the top 10 or so schools because at such schools the vast majority of students can obtain biglaw jobs if they so choose. Thus, the median salary will simply be market rate. In 2006, market rate was $145,000. In 2007, you'll see the medians increasing to $160,000.


Why the huge 15k increase? Inflation? Heftier workload? Increase in Legal Market?

markakis
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Re: Stetson Law School

Postby markakis » Sun Aug 17, 2008 4:18 pm

150k debt at Stetson? Are you serious?

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hous
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Re: Stetson Law School

Postby hous » Sun Aug 17, 2008 4:45 pm

markakis wrote:150k debt at Stetson? Are you serious?


30k tuition a year = 90k, plus 20k a year living expenses = 60k.

Total = 150k. that 20k is living off the bare minimum of eating at home every meal, paying rent, and books.

Yeah, its 150k easy.

Law school is expensive.

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yalie10
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Re: Stetson Law School

Postby yalie10 » Sun Aug 17, 2008 4:47 pm

markakis wrote:150k debt at Stetson? Are you serious?


He could be including undergraduate debt as well. Many people enter law school with $50k or more of ugrad debt. You have to look at the total cost of attendance - not tuition. Even at GMU, which is a public university, COA for an out-of-state student was $50k (about $38k in-state). At Yale it's over $64,400 (though Yale gives excellent financial aid).

$150k is not at all unusual for debt upon graduation.

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yalie10
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Re: Stetson Law School

Postby yalie10 » Sun Aug 17, 2008 4:54 pm

hous wrote:
yalie10 wrote:The salary statistics reported by schools are largely meaningless. Stetson reported a $65/$75/$90 salary range with 65% of students reporting salary information. However, this is only for private practice. As higher earning students tend to report in higher numbers, the median is almost always unrealistically high. In addition, the salary reported is for those that enter private practice. For some schools this may be as low as 40-50% of the class. Those that enter business or government tend to make lower salaries.

In addition, schools pretty much have free reign as to how they come up with their figures. There is little or no oversight. The only salary statistics that are trustworthy are those for the top 10 or so schools because at such schools the vast majority of students can obtain biglaw jobs if they so choose. Thus, the median salary will simply be market rate. In 2006, market rate was $145,000. In 2007, you'll see the medians increasing to $160,000.


Why the huge 15k increase? Inflation? Heftier workload? Increase in Legal Market?


The upper-end of the legal market is highly competitive. When one firm ups salaries, others match. In 2000, base salary was $125k. Then it moved to $135. In 2006 most markets moved to $145k. In 2007, it went up to $160k in every major market (NYC, D.C., Chicago, LA, Boston etc.). This also doesn't include year-end or clerkship bonuses.

The very top firms pay a $45k bonus to 1st years in major markets. In addition, federal clerks generally start as 2nd year associates plus get a $50k clerkship bonus. So, a first year at a top firm is looking at total compensation of $205,000 ($160k base + $45k bonus). Someone that does a federal clerkship (some firms pay less for district court clerkships) is looking at $275k ($170k base + $55k bonus + $50k clerkship bonus). There is a great deal of stratification between the bottom and top of the legal market. While those working in large firms (250+ attorneys) have obtained a 80-100% increase in salary over the last decade while those at small firms have barely kept up with inflation.

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Jay Wa
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Re: Stetson Law School

Postby Jay Wa » Sun Aug 17, 2008 9:39 pm

I am going to Stetson right now. Anybody else?

SouthFloridaGrad
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Re: Stetson Law School

Postby SouthFloridaGrad » Mon Aug 18, 2008 1:14 am

hous wrote:
markakis wrote:150k debt at Stetson? Are you serious?


30k tuition a year = 90k, plus 20k a year living expenses = 60k.

Total = 150k. that 20k is living off the bare minimum of eating at home every meal, paying rent, and books.

Yeah, its 150k easy.

Law school is expensive.


Yes, I was a little surprised to see their tuition as $31K/year, but I was happy to see that most people who report over on LSN with anything in the 3.5/160+ range usually get a decent amount of scholarship, with a good percentage getting a full-ride. Obviously, I have to GET an LSAT score, APPLY, and GET ACCEPTED first, but I could live with starting out at $41K-$75K with, say, $30K debt. I would especially be appealing because I already have low-cost local residence, and a work-from-home style job that would allow me to at least make SOME income while I went to school, even if just to offset transportation/food/books.

Does anyone know anyone who has actually GONE to Stetson? Lately, I mean? I know a bunch of 80's grads in the area but not a lot of people who have been there lately.

Oh, and they do have Bruce Jacob on the faculty. That's pretty cool.

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VaultBound
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Re: Stetson Law School

Postby VaultBound » Mon Aug 18, 2008 1:24 am

I go to UF and, although I admittedly didn't look into Florida schools all that much, my friends did and I also spoke with a bunch of people in my TestMasters course.

The one girl in my TM course previously got a 149 on the real deal and was "shooting for a 150" to get into Stetson. I haven't heard anyone with anything north of a 160 even considering Stetson. My understanding was that it was UF>UM>FSU>Stetson>Coastal>FIU.

3.5/161 could possibly get you into Florida, so why not apply? You'll be in a much better position to grab a higher paying job in the state and maybe even branch out to other states in the Southeast.

SouthFloridaGrad
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Re: Stetson Law School

Postby SouthFloridaGrad » Mon Aug 18, 2008 12:09 pm

VaultBound wrote:I go to UF and, although I admittedly didn't look into Florida schools all that much, my friends did and I also spoke with a bunch of people in my TestMasters course.

The one girl in my TM course previously got a 149 on the real deal and was "shooting for a 150" to get into Stetson. I haven't heard anyone with anything north of a 160 even considering Stetson. My understanding was that it was UF>UM>FSU>Stetson>Coastal>FIU.

3.5/161 could possibly get you into Florida, so why not apply? You'll be in a much better position to grab a higher paying job in the state and maybe even branch out to other states in the Southeast.



Oh, I will certainly apply elsewhere just to see what options I truly will have. If I stay local, I would have to go to Stetson. I live 15 minutes away. If I don't stay local, then I would probably try to go to the best school I could. It is a decision for sure. Right now, I have to get my butt in gear on my LSAT prep...I have only bumped my practice scores up to the 164-166 range so far. Although I tend to test well, I could see dropping a few points on actual test day as I have to drive 45 minutes just to get to the testing center and I usually don't even get UP until noon.

sdhockey09
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Re: Stetson Law School

Postby sdhockey09 » Mon Aug 18, 2008 7:45 pm

If you are going to go to law school in Florida look to UF-FSU-UM and Stetson before you look at any others.

As far as the 149 test taker, "shooting for a 150" to get into Stetson, I'd say they must have some very bad information and should do some more research.

The four I mentioned above are the concensus best in the state and are all very reputable throughout. The last two being significantly higher cost due to being private schools. Go where you want to live, where you are happiest and where you can afford/want to be. A school with a good reputation is just that. When you look at a magazine it doesn't tell you what school is best for you. Don't live through their system, be guided by it. Anyone telling you any differently is living vicariously through a magazine.




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