Florida Law Schools

A forum for applicants and admitted students to ask law students and graduates about law school and the practice of law.
the lantern
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Re: Florida Law Schools

Postby the lantern » Mon Sep 28, 2009 10:38 am

invictus wrote:
the lantern wrote:
invictus wrote:
Brooklyn13 wrote:I will be applying to UF this fall...I hope they like out of state applicants!


I got in fine...though they're cutting the class sizes so it may be more difficult, so apply early. Just be aware you won't be getting in-state tuition at any point.


I called FSU the other day and they told me it was still entirely possible to get in state tuition your second and third years, there were just more hoops to jump through. Is this a UF specific thing or ..? Just wondering because if I can't get in-state at FSU/UF, they will go from my top choices to schools I won't even apply to.


You might, but from what I understood talking with folks knowledgeable in such matters it will be a big gamble. It comes down to whether you're willing to make a $50,000 bet on in-state tuition. Evaluate the schools for their merits, not their cost.


Cost is an important part of the school. To ignore that is completely ridiculous. If you can reach your goals at FSU or UF, then cost can become nearly the sole determinant on whether or not you attend. For me, a 26 year old non traditional student, they told me it would be absolutely no problem to get residency. If you are under 25, I think it might be more complicated (but not sure) because your parents might somehow get factored into this whole mess.

emfllaw
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Re: Florida Law Schools

Postby emfllaw » Tue Sep 29, 2009 1:09 pm

Hello everyone,

New to this forum. I am planning on applying to Florida schools for fall 2010. Born and raised in Miami. I'd like to know what people's thoughts are as to what the best Florida school would be if I am interested in government work and human rights. (I would ideally like to end up with a judicial clerkship, nonprofit fellowship [such as Equal Justice Works], etc. I noticed that FSU has a couple of very promising externships in human rights listed on their website, but of course UF seems to be the hands-down pick of most people. UF also seems to be the best choice if I ever want to leave Florida for a D.C. fed position, since the second most popular place for grads (after Florida) is Washington, D.C. (This is assuming I don't get huge sums of money from UM, which I'm not counting on.)

Thoughts?

ChaotiCait
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Re: Florida Law Schools

Postby ChaotiCait » Tue Sep 29, 2009 1:18 pm

FSU, being in Tallahassee, is the best for government work. While UF is coming down in the rankings, FSU has been moving up. They have a great law school with a great community, I dont know why people are arguing that UF is so much better. There is nothing around UF, eing in Tallahassee offers many opportunities that you would not get otherwise. If you want to work in FL government, FSU is the place to be.

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invictus
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Re: Florida Law Schools

Postby invictus » Tue Sep 29, 2009 5:28 pm

the lantern wrote:
Cost is an important part of the school. To ignore that is completely ridiculous. If you can reach your goals at FSU or UF, then cost can become nearly the sole determinant on whether or not you attend. For me, a 26 year old non traditional student, they told me it would be absolutely no problem to get residency. If you are under 25, I think it might be more complicated (but not sure) because your parents might somehow get factored into this whole mess.


I'm not telling him to ignore the costs, I'm saying that he shouldn't count on in-state tuition at these schools.

Regarding residency, here's some information from an e-mail I received on the subject. Note that it says the 12 months of residency must be achieved before the first day of classes, and how reclassification is now extremely limited, age notwithstanding. Admittedly, it leaves open some avenues to be reclassified, but look at the situation in Florida: many of these schools are facing DRASTIC budget cuts due to the state having a major funding shortage. The changes to residency reclassification were made specifically to prevent people from coming down to take advantage of cheaper tuition on the state's dime. Add to this fact that these schools are not familiar with who exactly will qualify and it is clearly a huge gamble to apply to a Florida school for tuition reasons. Is it written in stone that somebody from out of state can't be reclassified? No, but you'd better be damn sure of your prospects before you start if that is the reason for applying.

First, a student may become eligible for reclassification if the student's parent(s) moved to Florida while the student was still in high school, if the student graduated from high school in Florida, and if the student is a dependent child; in this case, the student becomes eligible for reclassification when the parent qualifies for permanent residency. Second, if a student who is a dependent and his or her parents move to the state after the dependent graduates from high school, the student becomes eligible for reclassification when the parent submits evidence that he or she has established legal residency in the state and has maintained that residency for at least 12 consecutive months. Third, a student may be reclassified as a resident if he or she marries a person who either (a) is a legal resident of the state or (b) becomes a legal resident if the student submits evidence of the marriage and of the spouse's legal residence in the state for at least 12 consecutive months immediately preceding the application for reclassification.



More generally, after July 1, 2009, an individual who has been classified as a nonresident may become eligible for reclassification as a resident if the individual (or if the individual is a dependent, a parent) presents “clear and convincing documentation” that supports legal residency for at least 12 months, as opposed to temporary residency for the purpose of pursuing an education. The statute gives two non-exclusive examples of clear and convincing documentation: (1) full-time permanent employment for the prior 12 months; (2) the purchase of a home in this state and residence therein for 12 months while not enrolled in an institution of higher learning.

the lantern
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Re: Florida Law Schools

Postby the lantern » Tue Sep 29, 2009 7:36 pm

I agree, but I also just wanted to say that FSU told me it would not be a problem, without a hint of doubt in the lady's voice. I've read that statute a bunch of times and I don't know how they can say that with such certainty, but it is still something worth investigating once you get your applications back and are starting to seriously look at where you are going to matriculate.

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invictus
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Re: Florida Law Schools

Postby invictus » Thu Oct 01, 2009 5:39 pm

the lantern wrote:I agree, but I also just wanted to say that FSU told me it would not be a problem, without a hint of doubt in the lady's voice. I've read that statute a bunch of times and I don't know how they can say that with such certainty, but it is still something worth investigating once you get your applications back and are starting to seriously look at where you are going to matriculate.

Was is somebody from FSU Law, or the FSU Registrar's office? If they run things at all like UF, then the law school does not make those decisions, the Registrar for FSU as a whole does. I would advise anyone attending law school in Florida to talk to their school registrar before they commit. They call the shots, from what I understand.

the lantern
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Re: Florida Law Schools

Postby the lantern » Thu Oct 01, 2009 6:48 pm

invictus wrote:
the lantern wrote:I agree, but I also just wanted to say that FSU told me it would not be a problem, without a hint of doubt in the lady's voice. I've read that statute a bunch of times and I don't know how they can say that with such certainty, but it is still something worth investigating once you get your applications back and are starting to seriously look at where you are going to matriculate.

Was is somebody from FSU Law, or the FSU Registrar's office? If they run things at all like UF, then the law school does not make those decisions, the Registrar for FSU as a whole does. I would advise anyone attending law school in Florida to talk to their school registrar before they commit. They call the shots, from what I understand.


This was from FSU Law's admissions office. They told me without a hint of doubt in their voice that it would be "no problem at all" to reclassify after 1L. Obviously, I would want to investigate it more if I were planning on sending in a seat deposit or something. I don't know how they can say it either, and I've read all that stuff you've posted and wondered the same thing. I'm just repeating what FSU law told me.

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ame05d
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Re: Florida Law Schools

Postby ame05d » Sat Nov 07, 2009 9:43 pm

the lantern wrote:
invictus wrote:
the lantern wrote:I agree, but I also just wanted to say that FSU told me it would not be a problem, without a hint of doubt in the lady's voice. I've read that statute a bunch of times and I don't know how they can say that with such certainty, but it is still something worth investigating once you get your applications back and are starting to seriously look at where you are going to matriculate.

Was is somebody from FSU Law, or the FSU Registrar's office? If they run things at all like UF, then the law school does not make those decisions, the Registrar for FSU as a whole does. I would advise anyone attending law school in Florida to talk to their school registrar before they commit. They call the shots, from what I understand.


This was from FSU Law's admissions office. They told me without a hint of doubt in their voice that it would be "no problem at all" to reclassify after 1L. Obviously, I would want to investigate it more if I were planning on sending in a seat deposit or something. I don't know how they can say it either, and I've read all that stuff you've posted and wondered the same thing. I'm just repeating what FSU law told me.


i am an fsu 1L, they kept stressing during orientation that out of state people needed to get everything in (everything as in what they needed to be reclassified, i am in state so i have no idea what that would be, i remember kids talking about getting fl licenses and registering to vote among other things) before the first day of classes started. In addition, they said b/c of the new stricter requirements, students should turn in their bar applications before the first day of class also. This was nearly impossible for most people b/c applying for the bar requires so many things, so much info, etc. Kids were having to get fingerprinted, look up every driving and banking record, go back and find out exact employment dates, etc. in a matter of a few days, which just didn't happen for most people. FSU admissions office is like the smallest thing ever with 2 rude receptionists answering the phones. These receptionists have never been to law school, clearly, and don't have much to do w/ the school. I would call the assistant dean of student affairs, Janeia Daniels, to get more accurate info.

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whuts4lunch
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Re: Florida Law Schools

Postby whuts4lunch » Mon Nov 09, 2009 3:44 pm

Florida resident here, though I went to college out of state.

UF is apparantly cutting its class size from ~400 to ~300. What does everything think this will do to help the poor bar passage rate? How far will UF's rank climb? What will the new LSAT 25-75 range be? Will the quality of education improve with the improved student to faculty ratio? Will UF's job placement substantially improve (as far as percent of grads getting good jobs, not total number)? Does paying in-state tuition at UF make more sense than attending a school like USC/Vanderbilt/BU/Emory at full price?

Does UF offer scholarship money, or can only private schools do that?

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Kchuck
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Re: Florida Law Schools

Postby Kchuck » Wed Jan 27, 2010 3:57 pm

ChaotiCait wrote:FSU, being in Tallahassee, is the best for government work. While UF is coming down in the rankings, FSU has been moving up. They have a great law school with a great community, I dont know why people are arguing that UF is so much better. There is nothing around UF, eing in Tallahassee offers many opportunities that you would not get otherwise. If you want to work in FL government, FSU is the place to be.


This bothers me, and I don't believe it is entirely true.

UF's alumni base is huge and rabid. If you also look at the numbers, UF has had more alumni in every major political position. I'm a life long resident of the state, am not attending UF or FSU for undergrad (though i was accepted), but may attend one of the two for Law School. I can understand that many think just because FSU is in near the State's Capitol that it means that you have better placement in government. I challenge this position.

Here are some numbers:

Florida Governors that are/were UF Alumni: 10 (Reubin Askew, C. Farris Bryant, Lawton Chiles, Bob Graham, Spessard Hollard, Charley Johns, Buddy MacKay, Daniel MacCarty, Wayne Mixon, and Fuller Warren)

Florida Governors that are/were FSU Alumni: 2 (Reubin Askew and Charlie Crist. However, neither went to FSU for law. Askew attened UF for law school, and Crist atteneded Cumberland Law at Samford)

Federal Judges
UF Alumni: 44
FSU Alumni: 10

Members of United States Congress:
UF Alumni: 39 House Members, 2 Senators
FSU Alumni:8 House Members, 2 Senators

UF 2008 Placement Statistics:
66% Private Practice
19% Government or Judicial Clerkships
8% Public Interest or Academic
8% Business Industry
(76% Remained in Florida)

Despite searching, I could not find FSU's Placement Statistics. Although I would be happy to see them added, as I would love to see how they compare to UF's.

To finish, I'm not trying to say that overall UF is a better law school than FSU. I believe that UF is a better law school for some, and FSU is better for others. It is subjective. I also understand that the number of Alumni that have gone on to become Governor, Congressional member, or a Federal Judge is not telling of your personal success in law school. However, I believe these statistics do challenge the notion that FSU is entirely better than UF if you are interested in going into government work. I think it is pretty clear that UF has a more established Alumni and a more storied history of producing big names in the state of Florida. I hate to type that, too. I went to a VERY LARGE, yet un-prestigious school here in Florida for undergrad and I am not the kind of person who pre-hypes prestige. But, It's clear that UF has more history and a more established track record that FSU.

Tuyarp
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Re: Florida Law Schools

Postby Tuyarp » Wed Jan 27, 2010 7:20 pm

Kchuck wrote: But, It's clear that UF has more history and a more established track record that FSU.


Yeah. UF law has been around a lot longer than FSU law.

DSC
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Re: Florida Law Schools

Postby DSC » Thu Feb 11, 2010 5:18 pm

I agree that UF has a much more distinguished group of alumni. But, this is almost entirely due to the fact that it has been around much longer and has a bigger class. UF law was started in 1909 and its current class size is around 1200 students. FSU law was not started until 1966 and has only around 700 students in the school. As a result, UF has had many more lawyers practicing within the state and in government. Both schools have nearly identical LSAT and GPA numbers for their respective incoming 1L classes. Just some food for thought.

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iShotFirst
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Re: Florida Law Schools

Postby iShotFirst » Fri Feb 12, 2010 9:28 pm

Does UF give out any scholarships? I've been accepted a few weeks ago with decent numbers (LSAT above 75th, GPA median), and wondering if I would get anything. Do they send out a notice with scholarships, or do you have to apply like at FSU, or what?

I have acceptances from all the Florida schools and scholarships from a few, and I'd really like to know where I stand with UF before I start to think too hard about it or visit any of the schools.

lawschoolstudent85
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Re: Florida Law Schools

Postby lawschoolstudent85 » Fri Feb 12, 2010 9:33 pm

.
Last edited by lawschoolstudent85 on Tue May 11, 2010 3:25 pm, edited 1 time in total.

DRok
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Re: Florida Law Schools

Postby DRok » Tue Feb 16, 2010 9:22 pm

I wouldn't apply to Stetson or any "small school." Even with a large scholarship and the supposed "excellent writing program." (Which can best be described by this Courtoon: http://www.courtoons.net/wp-content/upl ... kings1.jpg) The list of benefits that they push is overwhelmed by the list of inadequacies. What they don't tell you about "getting to know your professors" is that they equally get to know you, well before you come to the school. They'll check anything out there and make judgments well before meeting you.

What I know is that students at Stetson are dealing with:

Low Job opportunities outside of FL
Poor Quality Medical Insurance
Lower bar passage rate

-D.Rok

BarryLaw
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Re: Florida Law Schools

Postby BarryLaw » Wed Feb 17, 2010 4:34 pm

Barry Law is a great school. If you are interested in living in Florida after graduation, I highly recommend it.
Last edited by BarryLaw on Thu Feb 18, 2010 4:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Drew2010
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Re: Florida Law Schools

Postby Drew2010 » Wed Feb 17, 2010 9:47 pm

BarryLaw wrote:Unfortunately, I don't believe that anyone on this discussion board has made a single valid point, especially about my law school, Barry Law.

Yes, it is a new law school (we just celebrated our 10th anniversary in Dec.), but that does not mean that it a "weak" law school or that our students don't get placed in jobs after graduation. Oh, and for those that want to say that Barry Law is a "regional" law school, please tell that to the classmates of mine that worked over the summer in NYC (Wall Street actually), Pittsburgh, Miami, Tampa, and DC.

Orlando is a great city with a huge legal market and so far, most lawyers (and a few judges) I've spoken with from Orlando seem to think that Barry Law produces some great trial attorneys. It only makes sense seeing as our trial team often places 1st in the competitions we compete in, including invitationals. We beat teams like Harvard, Stanford, Yale, Berkeley, and the like. Oh yea, and we often beat that #1 trial ad law school in the state, Stetson.

So, to recap: Sure, we don't have the best reputation in the State, probably because people like you keep saying it without realizing what Barry Law has been accomplishing recently. We are not a "weak" law school by any means, and for the most part, we are highly competitive with lawyers from other law schools in the Orlando/Tampa area. Honestly, people should stop with the Fl. Coastal, Barry Law, St. Thomas, Nova talk. It's just ridiculous. Just think of the students that attend the 60+ nonaccredited law schools. You people act like Barry Law and the other small private schools hasn't been accredited by the same Bar Association that gave your law school it's accreditation.

The only law schools in the State that I would say are better than us is FSU and UF. I didn't get into FSU and didn't apply to UF, but I would have gone there most definitely for the tuition. Fun Fact: The student that graduated #1 from FSU last year was a Barry Law transfer.

I know you'll have a field day with this post so please ENJOY!!!


I'm not going to disagree with you that Barry grads probably make good, even great lawyers sometimes. However, if I could throw up all over my application and probably still get accepted to a school, then I'm inclined not to think very highly of it. Since the word on the street is that the legal profession is quite the prestige whore this doesn't seem to bode well for Barry, because I'm probably not the only person with that impression.

Edit: This is in no way to imply I agree with some of the stupidity and narrow mindedness demonstrated above.

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scribelaw
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Re: Florida Law Schools

Postby scribelaw » Wed Feb 17, 2010 9:55 pm

I am consistenly surprised by the numbers of trolls for Florida's large contingent of TTT law schools on here.

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Pleadthe5th
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Re: Florida Law Schools

Postby Pleadthe5th » Fri Feb 19, 2010 8:59 am

People continuously say UF is the clear cut winner unless you get $$ from Miami. If both were equal in cost (and assuming no GPA stipulations) and one wanted to practice in S. Florida (Miami or Ft. Lauderdale) which would be the better choice and why? I'm really interested in hearing opinions on this?

Tuyarp
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Re: Florida Law Schools

Postby Tuyarp » Fri Feb 19, 2010 11:34 am

Pleadthe5th wrote:People continuously say UF is the clear cut winner unless you get $$ from Miami. If both were equal in cost (and assuming no GPA stipulations) and one wanted to practice in S. Florida (Miami or Ft. Lauderdale) which would be the better choice and why? I'm really interested in hearing opinions on this?


Check this thread: viewtopic.php?f=7&t=107937&start=75

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darknightbegins
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Re: Florida Law Schools

Postby darknightbegins » Fri Feb 19, 2010 12:50 pm

Pleadthe5th wrote:People continuously say UF is the clear cut winner unless you get $$ from Miami. If both were equal in cost (and assuming no GPA stipulations) and one wanted to practice in S. Florida (Miami or Ft. Lauderdale) which would be the better choice and why? I'm really interested in hearing opinions on this?


Man...you just opend a can of worms. I patiently await Lomax to honk for the Gators.

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Mickey Quicknumbers
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Re: Florida Law Schools

Postby Mickey Quicknumbers » Fri Feb 19, 2010 1:11 pm

BarryLaw wrote:Unfortunately, I don't believe that anyone on this discussion board has made a single valid point, especially about my law school, Barry Law.

Yes, it is a new law school (we just celebrated our 10th anniversary in Dec.), but that does not mean that it a "weak" law school or that our students don't get placed in jobs after graduation. Oh, and for those that want to say that Barry Law is a "regional" law school, please tell that to the classmates of mine that worked over the summer in NYC (Wall Street actually), Pittsburgh, Miami, Tampa, and DC.

Orlando is a great city with a huge legal market and so far, most lawyers (and a few judges) I've spoken with from Orlando seem to think that Barry Law produces some great trial attorneys. It only makes sense seeing as our trial team often places 1st in the competitions we compete in, including invitationals. We beat teams like Harvard, Stanford, Yale, Berkeley, and the like. Oh yea, and we often beat that #1 trial ad law school in the state, Stetson.

So, to recap: Sure, we don't have the best reputation in the State, probably because people like you keep saying it without realizing what Barry Law has been accomplishing recently. We are not a "weak" law school by any means, and for the most part, we are highly competitive with lawyers from other law schools in the Orlando/Tampa area. Honestly, people should stop with the Fl. Coastal, Barry Law, St. Thomas, Nova talk. It's just ridiculous. Just think of the students that attend the 60+ nonaccredited law schools. You people act like Barry Law and the other small private schools hasn't been accredited by the same Bar Association that gave your law school it's accreditation.

The only law schools in the State that I would say are better than us is FSU and UF. I didn't get into FSU and didn't apply to UF, but I would have gone there most definitely for the tuition. Fun Fact: The student that graduated #1 from FSU last year was a Barry Law transfer.

I know you'll have a field day with this post so please ENJOY!!


ITE, assuming you aren't getting a job through connections or networking:
Prestige of school = number of job opportunities
Barry Law = poor prestige
Barry Law = poor job opportunities

I'm glad your school is doing great things, but there's really no other way to look at it. Kids go to law school to get jobs, not beat Harvard in trial competitions.

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darknightbegins
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Re: Florida Law Schools

Postby darknightbegins » Fri Feb 19, 2010 1:34 pm

From what I've read the Florida legal market is pretty rough right now. In 3 years it could be doing better. But if I was going to school in Florida I would have a hard time going to a school outside the big 3 without close to a full ride.

As to tuition...if you don't already get in state tuition to start with then good luck getting it. This website specifies that getting in state at UF will be difficult and getting a drivers ID isn't enough. I would plan on paying out of state for three years if you go to UF, and if you get in state the last two years then so much the better. I don't know about FSU but I would assume its likely the same.

Personally, I applied to UM and FSU and I am an out of state resident. I applied to FSU because I thought I would if I got in because I could get in state tuition after the first year. I am currently on hold there and I got into UM back in November. If I have to pay close to equal for FSU and UM then I would just as soon go to Miami and if I can't get in state tuition for FSU after the first year then I likely won't be spending alot more to go to Miami than going to FSU. I didn't apply to UF, not because I think the school is crap, just that if I go to school in Florida I would either want to work in government (FSU) or in a big market and enjoy Miami (UM).

Overall UF has better placement throughout the state. Is it a better law school? I don't know. All three schools are regional schools and have similar numbers from most the categories I have seen. I doubt going to one of these schools gives you a major advantage in any area throughout the state than others. Sure in North Florida UF likely gets a better shot if for no other reason that you have more Gators there and they may blindly favor fellow Gators over other students, all things being equal. But if you are say top 20 percent in your class at Miami and the guy next to you is a Gator and graduated around 60 percent in his class I can't believe the Gator gets the job over the Cane all things being equal. Same is true in Miami for Cane over Gator.

Visit the schools and see how you like the areas. Got any connections any where? Friends at any schools? Family? Good luck!

starrey
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Re: Florida Law Schools

Postby starrey » Sat Feb 20, 2010 4:43 pm

I've heard that UF doesn't like to accept their own students. IE - if there are two similar candidates and one went to UF for undergrad and the other went to another school, the admissions committee will favor the non-UF student.

I honestly figured it was a silly rumor started by people looking for a reason why they didn't get accepted by their alma mater, but I'm finding myself in this boat (and possibly eating my words). I'm still waiting to hear from UF and I've spoken with 3 non-UF grads with similar numbers to me who have already been accepted. So... anyone else heard about this or am I just being paranoid?

stjaba
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Re: Florida Law Schools

Postby stjaba » Sun Feb 21, 2010 1:22 pm

iShotFirst wrote:Does UF give out any scholarships? I've been accepted a few weeks ago with decent numbers (LSAT above 75th, GPA median), and wondering if I would get anything. Do they send out a notice with scholarships, or do you have to apply like at FSU, or what?

I have acceptances from all the Florida schools and scholarships from a few, and I'd really like to know where I stand with UF before I start to think too hard about it or visit any of the schools.


They do give out scholarships, but you may have to be patient. After I received my admission letter last year, I received another letter telling me that I was being considered for a scholarship. Sometime in May or June I got a letter telling me that I was getting $2500/semester. 2500 may not seem like much, but considering UF's low sticker price, it was definitely nice.




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