Honestly, is it even worth it to go to a lower tier school?

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nicksmurf
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Honestly, is it even worth it to go to a lower tier school?

Postby nicksmurf » Wed Dec 23, 2009 12:25 pm

Like at the bottom of the top 100? Marquette/DePaul/Loyola, those schools? It seems like you don't make any money coming out of them, and definitely not enough to pay back the monstrous loans.

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Nom Sawyer
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Re: Honestly, is it even worth it to go to a lower tier school?

Postby Nom Sawyer » Wed Dec 23, 2009 12:30 pm

nicksmurf wrote:Like at the bottom of the top 100? Marquette/DePaul/Loyola, those schools? It seems like you don't make any money coming out of them, and definitely not enough to pay back the monstrous loans.


Depends on scholarships, what you want out of it, and if you have realistic expectations. But yeah, usually attending these schools while paying full tuition is not a great idea.

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j.wellington
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Re: Honestly, is it even worth it to go to a lower tier school?

Postby j.wellington » Wed Dec 23, 2009 12:42 pm

I think it can be, but you probably have to really excel while you're there. I know someone who went to one of the above-mentioned schools because of the location despite having better options elsewhere. He's on track to finish at the top of his class, is president of his school's ACLU chapter and has done some impressive externships. I expect he'll do fine. So yeah, I think it can be worth it if you're ambitious enough.

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beach_terror
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Re: Honestly, is it even worth it to go to a lower tier school?

Postby beach_terror » Wed Dec 23, 2009 3:43 pm

Nobody can answer that question but you. If you're just after money, then maybe law school isn't a good bet. Paying full price for an education is something you should have learned is a bad idea in undergrad (maybe other than a top school). There's a lot of factors to weigh in when deciding on a certain school. The biggest factor for me, since I'm not going to a "top" school, is where I want to practice when I graduate.

tasteofred
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Re: Honestly, is it even worth it to go to a lower tier school?

Postby tasteofred » Wed Dec 23, 2009 3:50 pm

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Last edited by tasteofred on Mon Mar 08, 2010 11:20 pm, edited 1 time in total.

ki3ngar0o
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Re: Honestly, is it even worth it to go to a lower tier school?

Postby ki3ngar0o » Wed Dec 23, 2009 4:10 pm

i have the same question - i received 84k scholarship for loyola and am planning to stay in los angeles after law school. would that be a better choice than ucla or usc (considering i would be paying full price for these 2 schools)?

fiftyonefifty
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Re: Honestly, is it even worth it to go to a lower tier school?

Postby fiftyonefifty » Wed Dec 23, 2009 4:22 pm

i know a recent grad from whittier and makes probably 160 k doing regular lawyer work

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Doritos
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Re: Honestly, is it even worth it to go to a lower tier school?

Postby Doritos » Wed Dec 23, 2009 9:41 pm

tasteofred wrote: I know someone living in a rehab facility (for hard drugs), who is still working as an attorney making 120k.


This caught my eye.

thegor1987
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Re: Honestly, is it even worth it to go to a lower tier school?

Postby thegor1987 » Wed Dec 23, 2009 9:55 pm

watch rob dyrdek's fantasy factory on MTV, he recently hired a personal attorney who has an office in his fantasy factory. This guy has the life and do you think Dyrdek was concerned with whether the guy went to Stanford or UCLA?

IT is possible to succeed from a lower tiered school, as long as you don't define success as a $3000 per week 1st year summer job, and a 160+ K offer in 2L

Bill James
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Re: Honestly, is it even worth it to go to a lower tier school?

Postby Bill James » Wed Dec 23, 2009 9:58 pm

thegor1987 wrote:watch rob dyrdek's fantasy factory on MTV, he recently hired a personal attorney who has an office in his fantasy factory. This guy has the life and do you think Dyrdek was concerned with whether the guy went to Stanford or UCLA?

IT is possible to succeed from a lower tiered school, as long as you don't define success as a $3000 per week 1st year summer job, and a 160+ K offer in 2L


Do people actually get offers that early?

thegor1987
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Re: Honestly, is it even worth it to go to a lower tier school?

Postby thegor1987 » Wed Dec 23, 2009 10:00 pm

Bill James wrote:
thegor1987 wrote:watch rob dyrdek's fantasy factory on MTV, he recently hired a personal attorney who has an office in his fantasy factory. This guy has the life and do you think Dyrdek was concerned with whether the guy went to Stanford or UCLA?

IT is possible to succeed from a lower tiered school, as long as you don't define success as a $3000 per week 1st year summer job, and a 160+ K offer in 2L


Do people actually get offers that early?


Yes, maybe summer before 3L at the latest.

*Latest as in latest time where anyone ever gets job offers

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kittenmittons
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Re: Honestly, is it even worth it to go to a lower tier school?

Postby kittenmittons » Wed Dec 23, 2009 10:03 pm

thegor1987 wrote:watch rob dyrdek's fantasy factory on MTV, he recently hired a personal attorney who has an office in his fantasy factory. This guy has the life and do you think Dyrdek was concerned with whether the guy went to Stanford or UCLA?

IT is possible to succeed from a lower tiered school, as long as you don't define success as a $3000 per week 1st year summer job, and a 160+ K offer in 2L


This is supposed to be irony, right?

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Drake014
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Re: Honestly, is it even worth it to go to a lower tier school?

Postby Drake014 » Wed Dec 23, 2009 10:14 pm

ki3ngar0o wrote:i have the same question - i received 84k scholarship for loyola and am planning to stay in los angeles after law school. would that be a better choice than ucla or usc (considering i would be paying full price for these 2 schools)?



84k... Is this a full ride? Its something you should definitely think about. Not having a loan to payoff can give you more options for what you want to do after law school. You'll also have a much better chance of making it to the top of the class at Loyola than UCLA--something you'll have to do at Loyola if you want big law. In the end, it depends on what you want and what you think you're capable of.

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reasonable_man
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Re: Honestly, is it even worth it to go to a lower tier school?

Postby reasonable_man » Wed Dec 23, 2009 10:29 pm

j.wellington wrote:I think it can be, but you probably have to really excel while you're there. I know someone who went to one of the above-mentioned schools because of the location despite having better options elsewhere. He's on track to finish at the top of his class, is president of his school's ACLU chapter and has done some impressive externships. I expect he'll do fine. So yeah, I think it can be worth it if you're ambitious enough.


This is just silly.

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ruleser
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Re: Honestly, is it even worth it to go to a lower tier school?

Postby ruleser » Wed Dec 23, 2009 10:36 pm

ki3ngar0o wrote:i have the same question - i received 84k scholarship for loyola and am planning to stay in los angeles after law school. would that be a better choice than ucla or usc (considering i would be paying full price for these 2 schools)?

There's no one correct answer - consider:
1) you would pay the same COL for any of the schools, and still be paying about 40K for loyola...
2) you could lose your Loyola scholarship (all of them have top 1/3 or so rules with them, and they give out schols to almost 40% of people, so some are guaranteed to lose them, and others may as well...
3) What are your long term goals - if it is simply to be a practicing lawyer, Loyola with that $$ might be the choice. You would have, say, $100K debt upon graduation (40K tuition, 20k/year COL). Not the worst. And Loyola, if you do well enough, will give you solid lawyer ops. If you did SC/UCLA, you'd have $180ish-200K debt, but better shots at big law and other opening ops, better ops throughout your career, easier access to break up from mid-level, and different set of piers/alumni, perhaps a different level of education, etc.

Can't answer for you. Consider these things, visit the schools, keep asking questions...

sk_mcbride
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Re: Honestly, is it even worth it to go to a lower tier school?

Postby sk_mcbride » Thu Dec 24, 2009 1:57 am

Perhaps I shouldn't be surprised at this question, given that this is Top Law Schools dot com and that my particular situation varies from many/most. It's still baffling.

I love my particular area of the country (northeast Texas) and have every intention of living here forever. The University of Arkansas (ranked 94) places as well here as any other law school, and that includes Yale or Harvard or whatever. In-state tuition drops the price to around 30,000 dollars, most of which will be taken care of by scholarships.

Upon graduation near the top of the class, one would be assured a job making around 50,000 a year, which is quite nice in this region.

Does everyone just have his heart set on moving to New York or LA, and any other legal existence is worthless? I don't quite understand the infatuation with the "best" schools.

awesomepossum
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Re: Honestly, is it even worth it to go to a lower tier school?

Postby awesomepossum » Thu Dec 24, 2009 2:06 am

sk_mcbride wrote:Perhaps I shouldn't be surprised at this question, given that this is Top Law Schools dot com and that my particular situation varies from many/most. It's still baffling.

I love my particular area of the country (northeast Texas) and have every intention of living here forever. The University of Arkansas (ranked 94) places as well here as any other law school, and that includes Yale or Harvard or whatever. In-state tuition drops the price to around 30,000 dollars, most of which will be taken care of by scholarships.

Upon graduation near the top of the class, one would be assured a job making around 50,000 a year, which is quite nice in this region.

Does everyone just have his heart set on moving to New York or LA, and any other legal existence is worthless? I don't quite understand the infatuation with the "best" schools.


People want the best possible education and to have access to the most opportunities. It's also nice to have smart peers and well regarded profs to start off your career. They also expect a law degree to have SOME economic benefit. I was offered jobs for far more than 50 right out of college.

muffinberry
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Re: Honestly, is it even worth it to go to a lower tier school?

Postby muffinberry » Thu Dec 24, 2009 2:12 am

@sk- I'm from Southern California, would like to be in LA-SD region only because I want to stay and practice in this area post-law school. I don't have the infatuation with the "best schools" that I know a lot of people have on these boards have (but hey, this *is* top-law-schools.com!), but it would be nice to go to a well-ranked school I'm sure..?

everyone else- is Loyola that bad? I wouldn't mind going there even at sticker. Is it bad because it is expensive and doesn't land the biglaw jobs that other neighboring schools (SC, UCLA) might more easily assure their students? and jw, but is everyone here lookign for biglaw? I currently work at a boutique law firm and think that is more the route for me, anyway..

oh and
@nicksmurf- but what do you do if you can't get into the better schools--some with the same high price?

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illini10
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Re: Honestly, is it even worth it to go to a lower tier school?

Postby illini10 » Thu Dec 24, 2009 2:21 am

You have to take some of the info on this site with a grain of salt. Yes the job market sucks but that is in ever industry including law.
Going to a lower tier school is not going to be death and we are not going to starve. We will have debt and more than likely make less money than if we went to the top 14 schools. But like there are no assurance no matter where you go that you will be at the top of your field. I plan to work in the Chicago market and would love to go to Northwestern (not likely to happen) but Illinois, ND, Kent, Loyola and DePaul all have good placement in Chicago. Just an fyi to all the experts, there are many top partners in some of the largest firms in Chicago that went to Marshall.
Hey I would love to go a top 14 school and maybe I will get a xmas miracle - but if not I'm still going to work my ass off wherever I go, call all my old mans' lawyer buddies (who all told me take any money you can get to reduce your debt) and find work at one of their firms in Chicago

nicksmurf
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Re: Honestly, is it even worth it to go to a lower tier school?

Postby nicksmurf » Thu Dec 24, 2009 3:41 am

Idk, maybe it's a good thing that I'm thinking that I can't get into top schools. It will give me a chance to step back and actually think about why I want to be a lawyer. I mean, I haven't even taken my LSAT yet, and I'm only a sophomore.

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ec2xs
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Re: Honestly, is it even worth it to go to a lower tier school?

Postby ec2xs » Thu Dec 24, 2009 3:50 am

There is a lot of negativity here, but if you're good at it you can make something of it, no matter where you go. Including Cooley. If you have aspirations of opening up your own firm or already have a networking foundation for getting a legal gig, lower tier schools would be great.

I talked with someone yesterday who graduated from a third tier law school. He's three years out and making over $120,000 this year after opening up his own firm and just networking like crazy. Seems really happy, too. He's obviously not the norm, but he said most of his colleagues were gainfully employed as well (other than the DAs).

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Lonagan
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Re: Honestly, is it even worth it to go to a lower tier school?

Postby Lonagan » Thu Dec 24, 2009 4:36 am

nicksmurf wrote:Idk, maybe it's a good thing that I'm thinking that I can't get into top schools. It will give me a chance to step back and actually think about why I want to be a lawyer. I mean, I haven't even taken my LSAT yet, and I'm only a sophomore.


You have less excuse than just about anyone here to use the word 'can't'. Not even half done with college, all the time in the world to nail the LSAT? You most certainly can get accepted to a top school. Your GPA is in your own hands, the LSAT is very learnable. You can be as much a victim of a terrible self-fulfilling prophecy as you want, or you can go f*cking get some.

Figure out why you want to be a lawyer, that goes without saying. But don't quit the game before you even get to the starting line.

I'm not slamming T2 btw, there are a number of T2 schools I would be very happy to attend. There are good reasons to go to them and a lot of viable and sound paths in the legal profession, but why on earth would anyone not want the *option* of T-10?

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Havaianas
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Re: Honestly, is it even worth it to go to a lower tier school?

Postby Havaianas » Mon Dec 28, 2009 10:07 pm

ki3ngar0o wrote:i have the same question - i received 84k scholarship for loyola and am planning to stay in los angeles after law school. would that be a better choice than ucla or usc (considering i would be paying full price for these 2 schools)?


I completely have the same question - I have a full ride at Loyola and would be very happy to stay in California after grad. I'm not really thrilled about big law just happy to have a job that I like that pays the bills with some left over. I still need to wait until $$ comes in from other schools but $200K of debt at a T-14 to struggle to stay in the top third just doesn't sound that appealing.

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Aeroplane
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Re: Honestly, is it even worth it to go to a lower tier school?

Postby Aeroplane » Mon Dec 28, 2009 10:23 pm

Lonagan wrote: why on earth would anyone not want the *option* of T-10?
If someone already knows exactly what they're going to do with their degree, and for their purpose there is no added value in the prestige of the T10 degree, and/or there is significant added value (personal and/or professional) in staying local. I'm sure very few people are in this position, but it happens.

awesomepossum
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Re: Honestly, is it even worth it to go to a lower tier school?

Postby awesomepossum » Mon Dec 28, 2009 10:51 pm

Aeroplane wrote:
Lonagan wrote: why on earth would anyone not want the *option* of T-10?
If someone already knows exactly what they're going to do with their degree, and for their purpose there is no added value in the prestige of the T10 degree, and/or there is significant added value (personal and/or professional) in staying local. I'm sure very few people are in this position, but it happens.



There are people out there who want fewer options than more options? What losers.




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