Penn 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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Georgiana
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Penn Students Taking Questions

Postby Georgiana » Thu Jul 23, 2009 12:55 pm

Hi all!

I'm trying to procrastinate (aren't we all) so I figured I would make a thread to keep me busy.

Random info about me:
3L
~ top 25-30% (after 1L... probably have fallen below that by now... oops)
Involved in the Penn IP Group (as a 2L... not anymore)
Applied to way too many schools so I know a lot about admissions
Worked as an RA 1L summer, Worked at a V10 2L summer (DC)
Secondary Journal (Made board for 2010-2011)
I do awesomely awesome pro bono work

Questions can be about anything, not just Penn.

Edit: You can also feel free to PM me if you have a question you don't want everyone reading :)

UPDATE: I'm done with law school :) Will still be around over the summer but not sure I'll stick around after that (maybe one of those super cool "First Year Biglaw Associate Taking Questions" threads will be mine!) but hopefully some current students will take over for me here :)
Last edited by Georgiana on Sat May 07, 2011 10:10 am, edited 8 times in total.

law_hippo
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Re: Penn Students Taking Questions

Postby law_hippo » Thu Jul 23, 2009 12:57 pm

Why did you choose Penn?

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Georgiana
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Re: Penn Students Taking Questions

Postby Georgiana » Thu Jul 23, 2009 1:01 pm

law_hippo wrote:Why did you choose Penn?


Mainly money.

It came down to Chicago, Penn and UVA because NYU and UMich didn't give me money (even after informing them of my other options).

I visited UVA and wasn't a fan. I went to a big state school for undergrad and had had enough of that college feel. Plus IMO its in the middle of nowhere. I didn't want to be 2 hours from the nearest big city (DC). Then considering Chicago and Penn I got a better feel from Penn and they gave me more money. Other factors I considered were the weather and whether I would need a car. Most people at UChi said to have a car whereas very few people at Penn have cars (I hate driving).

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Chuch
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Re: Penn Students Taking Questions

Postby Chuch » Thu Jul 23, 2009 1:04 pm

what do you think about this?
http://www.top-law-schools.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=8&t=79918&p=1862179&hilit=i+wouldn%27t+worry+about+it#p1862179

specifically
Solerpower wrote:The law school building is fantastic and its just beautiful.

thisguy456
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Re: Penn Students Taking Questions

Postby thisguy456 » Thu Jul 23, 2009 1:07 pm

Georgiana wrote:Hi all!

I'm trying to procrastinate (aren't we all) so I figured I would make a thread to keep me busy.

Random info about me:
Rising 2L
OCI bidding just closed (I focused on LA and DC)
Doing regional interviews in LA
~ top 25-30%
Involved in the Penn IP Group (Symposium co-chair)
Applied to way too many schools so I know a lot about admissions
Working as an RA this summer

Questions can be about anything, not just Penn.


Thanks for offering your time and advice.

Any general advice you can give about the admissions process from an admitted student? Is it basically a numbers game like everywhere else? Does a desire to stay in Philly after school help?

How is OCI shaping up this year compared to years past?

How does Penn do in DC (I've heard it just does OK)?

Thanks again!
Last edited by thisguy456 on Thu Jul 23, 2009 1:14 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Ken
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Re: Penn Students Taking Questions

Postby Ken » Thu Jul 23, 2009 1:12 pm

Dear Georgiana,

Welcome to TLS! Thanks for already making a contribution to the community as having current students answer questions about their law school provides the most candid insight available. There have not been many Penn students taking questions so your thoughts on Penn are greatly appreciated.

I hope to soon get interviews with Dean of Penn and Dean of Admissions as it is a great school (that I strongly considered attending) and I look forward to having more information available for TLS members, which your thread also helps with.

Cheers,

Ken

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Georgiana
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Re: Penn Students Taking Questions

Postby Georgiana » Thu Jul 23, 2009 1:12 pm

Chuch wrote:what do you think about this?
http://www.top-law-schools.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=8&t=79918&p=1862179&hilit=i+wouldn%27t+worry+about+it#p1862179

specifically
Solerpower wrote:The law school building is fantastic and its just beautiful.


I love our building(s)... its actually 4 buildings. Silverman is the really "eye catching" old school building that everyone falls in love with. Then we have Pepper which is being re-done over the next few years which will make the school significantly better. Then there is Gittis which has the larger classrooms and Tanenbaum which has the journal offices as well as Biddle Law Library which is a great library. It doesnt have that old school feel that NYU's law library has (which I like), but its a very comfortable library for studying and is always bright so you dont feel like you're locked away in a cave.

And there is always the courtyard (not a building but still a great part of the school).

The only issue I have with our school is the climate control which they are constantly working to fix.

And the overall Penn campus is great, if you don't want to study at the law school there are plenty of other places to go.

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SteelersandGators
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Re: Penn Students Taking Questions

Postby SteelersandGators » Thu Jul 23, 2009 1:13 pm

How do you see the Big 10 shaping up this season?

law_hippo
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Re: Penn Students Taking Questions

Postby law_hippo » Thu Jul 23, 2009 1:14 pm

Georgiana wrote:Involved in the Penn IP Group (Symposium co-chair)


Is Penn particularly strong with IP? That is the road I am considering but I haven't gotten any indication that Penn is above average in IP especially compared to Stanford/Berkeley.

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Georgiana
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Re: Penn Students Taking Questions

Postby Georgiana » Thu Jul 23, 2009 1:22 pm

thisguy456 wrote:
Thanks for offering your time and advice.

Any general advice you can give about the admissions process from an admitted student? Is it basically a numbers game like everywhere else? Does a desire to stay in Philly after school help?

How is OCI shaping up been this year compared to years past?

How does Penn do in DC (I've heard it just does OK)?

Thanks again!


I have to agree with the main sentiment that law school admissions is *mainly* a numbers game. People say that the "Why Penn" essay can really help with admissions here, but I didn't write it because I honestly only applied because of the fee waiver and had nothing good to say about Philly when I was applying. Doing ED at Penn certainly helps if your numbers arent quite up with the averages but you express a strong desire to attend. They love to hear about people who want to do interdisciplinary things and they really love diversity.

OCI is... sigh. lol I think everywhere is hurting right now so we didn't expect it to be the same as years past. We have ~140 different firms (not offices) coming to OCI this year and I have 4 interviews set up in LA for regionals (maybe more once the waitlist is sorted out). I know these numbers are smaller than in years past, but its like that everywhere.

I haven't heard anything terrible about our DC placement. A lot of Penn students self select for NYC which is something we are pretty well known for but there is a good amount that go to DC. According to CPP 8-10% go to DC, 35-50% to NYC, 15-20% stay in Philly, 8-10% to the west coast and the rest are spread out in smaller markets.

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Georgiana
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Re: Penn Students Taking Questions

Postby Georgiana » Thu Jul 23, 2009 1:24 pm

SteelersandGators wrote:How do you see the Big 10 shaping up this season?


I was an ACC undergrad... and as we all know, Penn is in the Ivy League. :)

I believe you were thinking Penn State. Its ok, we can't all know about the Ivys :roll:

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GeePee
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Re: Penn Students Taking Questions

Postby GeePee » Thu Jul 23, 2009 1:27 pm

Georgiana wrote:
SteelersandGators wrote:How do you see the Big 10 shaping up this season?


I was an ACC undergrad... and as we all know, Penn is in the Ivy League. :)

I believe you were thinking Penn State. Its ok, we can't all know about the Ivys :roll:

Don't worry about that comment... The common UPenn/Penn State confusion is a TLS running joke

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Georgiana
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Re: Penn Students Taking Questions

Postby Georgiana » Thu Jul 23, 2009 1:27 pm

law_hippo wrote:
Georgiana wrote:Involved in the Penn IP Group (Symposium co-chair)


Is Penn particularly strong with IP? That is the road I am considering but I haven't gotten any indication that Penn is above average in IP especially compared to Stanford/Berkeley.


I would go to Stanford above everything so I can't argue there :) And I didn't look into Berkeley much so I can't comment on their program.

From what I've seen of the curriculum at Penn there are plenty of opportunities for IP. As a 1L you can take two electives 2nd semester which can include Intro to IP law. After that there are courses in Trademark, Copyright, Patent, Patent Lit, Internet Law, Telecommunications Law and I'm sure there are more...

There are some schools that have a better IP program but ours isn't lacking so I wouldn't base a decision based on it. Were you thinking of going into Patent Prosecution or something else?

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Georgiana
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Re: Penn Students Taking Questions

Postby Georgiana » Thu Jul 23, 2009 1:28 pm

GeePee wrote:
Georgiana wrote:
SteelersandGators wrote:How do you see the Big 10 shaping up this season?


I was an ACC undergrad... and as we all know, Penn is in the Ivy League. :)

I believe you were thinking Penn State. Its ok, we can't all know about the Ivys :roll:

Don't worry about that comment... The common UPenn/Penn State confusion is a TLS running joke


I know :) And it actually is a common issue in life... my mom would say "Penn State" and I would get angry... finally I gave up and just rolled my eyes.

I do wish we had better football :(

markymark
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Re: Penn Students Taking Questions

Postby markymark » Thu Jul 23, 2009 1:29 pm

Kind of a random question, but I just noticed that we have school on the day before Thanksgiving and I fully intend on going back to LA for that holiday. Do profs cancel class that day or otherwise, do people skip class (that day or ever)?

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Georgiana
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Re: Penn Students Taking Questions

Postby Georgiana » Thu Jul 23, 2009 1:31 pm

Ken wrote:Dear Georgiana,

Welcome to TLS! Thanks for already making a contribution to the community as having current students answer questions about their law school provides the most candid insight available. There have not been many Penn students taking questions so your thoughts on Penn are greatly appreciated.

I hope to soon get interviews with Dean of Penn and Dean of Admissions as it is a great school (that I strongly considered attending) and I look forward to having more information available for TLS members, which your thread also helps with.

Cheers,

Ken


Thanks for the welcome!

Let me know if I can help with anything.

-G

Edit: to appease Capercaillie the grammar nazi
Last edited by Georgiana on Thu Jul 23, 2009 3:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Georgiana
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Re: Penn Students Taking Questions

Postby Georgiana » Thu Jul 23, 2009 1:33 pm

markymark wrote:Kind of a random question, but I just noticed that we have school on the day before Thanksgiving and I fully intend on going back to LA for that holiday. Do profs cancel class that day or otherwise, do people skip class (that day or ever)?


This was a big issue last year too. Some profs canceled and held a make-up class but others didn't. They fully expected people to skip if they needed to and most classes are recorded so it wasn't a big deal.

As far as skipping in general, its more common 2nd semester when you are less scared of being a 1L. I would say I missed 1-2 lectures tops first semester but definitely more than that 2nd semester. It also depends on the Prof. Some of them are really big on attendance, others don't really care.

law_hippo
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Re: Penn Students Taking Questions

Postby law_hippo » Thu Jul 23, 2009 1:52 pm

Georgiana wrote:Were you thinking of going into Patent Prosecution or something else?


More likely litigation, but that's neither here nor there.

Another random question, how hard/expensive is it to find housing? And what is the cost of living like?

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Georgiana
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Re: Penn Students Taking Questions

Postby Georgiana » Thu Jul 23, 2009 2:00 pm

law_hippo wrote:
Georgiana wrote:Were you thinking of going into Patent Prosecution or something else?


More likely litigation, but that's neither here nor there.

Another random question, how hard/expensive is it to find housing? And what is the cost of living like?


Housing isn't bad in Philly. I personally pay $1k/month for a studio in Rittenhouse which includes all utilities. You can definitely pay more or less depending on what you want. Living with roomies will obviously decrease your housing costs but I wanted to live alone.

As far as other things go... if you grocery shop in Philly it can be a little expensive (around me the closes things are a Trader Joes and the Rittenhouse Markey, neither of which are cheap) but I started having groceries delivered through genuardis.com and its not bad plus it enables laziness.

Going out can either cost you a lot or a little depending on where you go, what you eat/drink, whether you take cabs etc.

If you have specific pricing questions let me know, but I don't think Philly is a very expensive city for students. I know people that paid $400/month for rent and others who are willing to pay 2k. There's something for all price ranges.

Also, getting a budget increase for housing is pretty easy. I think they allow you somewhere around $900 for housing, but if you submit a copy of your lease they will increase your budget to include the higher housing costs.

law_hippo
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Re: Penn Students Taking Questions

Postby law_hippo » Thu Jul 23, 2009 2:12 pm

Do most people study in groups or alone? Have you changed your study habits after your first couple semesters?

Do you find the faculty particularly engaged with the students (the TLS profile says lunches with profs are mandatory), or is that overrated?

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Georgiana
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Re: Penn Students Taking Questions

Postby Georgiana » Thu Jul 23, 2009 2:19 pm

law_hippo wrote:Do most people study in groups or alone? Have you changed your study habits after your first couple semesters?

Do you find the faculty particularly engaged with the students (the TLS profile says lunches with profs are mandatory), or is that overrated?


There are people that study in groups and people that don't. I generally am not a group studier. I like to have one or two people I trust to ask questions if I have them, but study groups aren't my thing. I did find it semi-helpful to take exams with others though I only did that for 1 class and I don't think it impacted my grade so who knows.

I haven't changed much, but I tell myself I will. Its hard to outline along the way and to make outlines from scratch, especially when you have outlines from past semesters available to you (Penn has an online bank as well as student group resources).

Lunches are not *mandatory* but they are encouraged (sadly the school does not foot the bill). I went to lunch with all of my profs first semester and none of them second semester. Most professors were very engaged and very easy to contact outside of the classroom via email or in their office. For most of my professors I didn't feel as though teaching was a *chore* that they had to put up with in order to be an academic, but there are always those few people you can tell don't really appreciate teaching (at least not what they were teaching at the time).

plastic-cup
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Re: Penn Students Taking Questions

Postby plastic-cup » Thu Jul 23, 2009 2:23 pm

What was orientation like and how many of the "extra" events did you do? Thanks. Also, do you find that at orientation people are reserved--taking it all in and getting a lay of the land--or outgoing?

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puppleberry finn
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Re: Penn Students Taking Questions

Postby puppleberry finn » Thu Jul 23, 2009 2:29 pm

I know you said that Penn students tend to self-select away from Philly, but do those who wish to stay in town find it difficult? Are there a decent number of local firms at OCI?

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Georgiana
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Re: Penn Students Taking Questions

Postby Georgiana » Thu Jul 23, 2009 2:31 pm

plastic-cup wrote:What was orientation like and how many of the "extra" events did you do? Thanks. Also, do you find that at orientation people are reserved--taking it all in and getting a lay of the land--or outgoing?


I was pretty anti-orientation honestly...

I did meet up with a bunch of people before orientation at Quizzo which was a lot of fun. Other than that I did the required things and service day... I really think thats it :oops: I sound horrible!

The people I met were all pretty outgoing, I feel like the situation dictates that you meet people because you really have no other option.

On a side note, if you don't go to orientation events you can still make friends when school starts :) its not the end-all friend maker... I swear I have friends lol

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Georgiana
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Re: Penn Students Taking Questions

Postby Georgiana » Thu Jul 23, 2009 2:34 pm

puppins wrote:I know you said that Penn students tend to self-select away from Philly, but do those who wish to stay in town find it difficult? Are there a decent number of local firms at OCI?


This year it seems more Philly firms are hurting than elsewhere... I think the local market is just sucking (aka Morgan Lewis/BlankRome).

As long as you can show them you want to be in Philly it's not hard to stay. They just know students at Penn often leave Philly so they want to make sure you actually want to be here. There is also Wilmington to look at if you want to stay in Philly, its only like 20 min on the commuter rail and they have a lot of corporate law and law in general (yay to incorporation in DE!).




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