Should I attend West Virginia University college of Law?

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Should I attend West Virginia University college of Law?

Postby wvufan » Sat Nov 06, 2010 1:42 am

Hey everyone!

I'm currently a student at a West Virginia instate public college. I have a 3.7-3.8 GPA, and a 165 LSAT. According to a lot of people I have talked to, these scores could get me a huge scholarship, and since I'm an instate resident, my debt will be very low (instate tuition in only 10k). My goal is to practice in WV at one of the big WV law firms (Jackson Kelly, Steptoe Johnson, spillman battle, Bowles and rice, etc). However my worries/questions

1. How hard is it to get a job at one of the big WV law firms, or even just a well paying legal job (at least 60k and up)

2. Should I instead apply to a T30 school, hope to finish top 1/3-median and then apply to a big WV law firm since I have T30 "pedigree"

3. If I do go to WVU, but don’t get a WV big firm am i screwed when it comes to getting legal employment.

Btw... I’m a born and raised West Virginian, minority (not URM status though), have great soft factors such as interning with a major WV political figure, and it's safe to say that my family is developing solid relationships/networking with WV politicians and especially people associated with them (rich attorneys for example). I really want to attend WVU for LS, because of being close to family/my girlfriend, and I truly love living in WV. However I’m scared of job prospects out of WVU, and don’t want to take out massive debt at a T30, especially with the legal market being so bad.

Thanks in advance!

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Re: Should I attend West Virginia University college of Law?

Postby kk19131 » Sat Nov 06, 2010 1:46 am

Not if you want a legitimate job.

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Re: Should I attend West Virginia University college of Law?

Postby AreJay711 » Sat Nov 06, 2010 2:21 am

Nothing against WV (I've had good times in Morgantown) but you wont be facing the steepest competition for jobs there. Still, WVU seems like a bit of a risk even if it's free. I'd apply to some top 30 and top 25 and see where that takes you. You might also want to apply to some other tier 1 and 2 schools in states surrounding WV since you have connects. I'd be wary going to far away though -- like I said WV isn't where everyone from the top 14 is clamoring to go and firms might not think that you are going to stick around if not studying in the MD, VA, OH, PA regions. You still have good scholarship shots at Pitt and Penn State and Case Western which are reasonably close if you don't want to take on any debt. There are a lot of higher ranked schools you could get into that would give you a MUCH better chance at getting the kind of job you want that you should be able to crack.
Last edited by AreJay711 on Sun Nov 07, 2010 9:30 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Should I attend West Virginia University college of Law?

Postby ZachOda » Sun Nov 07, 2010 2:32 am

Have to go with AreJay on this one. Don't sell yourself short here, you have very good numbers and would get into a good amount of T1's. Apply to WVU, but add a few more schools in, especially in the Mid-Atlantic region, to shore up your list.

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Re: Should I attend West Virginia University college of Law?

Postby bergg007 » Sun Nov 07, 2010 3:19 am

Bail... just bail. Truth is you'll be a shoo-in if you go to say georgia or maryland. Washington and lee might be good for you it's highly ranked and not very far away... well not as far as a lot of other places. Buena Vista/ lexington are nice areas especially if you are a westvirginian, they'll fee like home. It has a real small town feel, and it is a small town but there are three small colleges there so there are tons of young people there. Also look into william and mary. you'll likely get in to these places with your numbers and they all do well placing regionally. are you looking to work in Charleston, Morgantown, or huntington? or one of the even smaller towns? if you're going to a really small town and don't care about a "big law firm" then you can probably go wherever you want, not very many people are dying to move to West Virginia. Try living outside the state for a while, you might just like it. and your financial situation will be better in the long run for it. I don't mean to slam WV but there's just not much going for it but supreme scenic beauty.

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Re: Should I attend West Virginia University college of Law?

Postby mst » Sun Nov 07, 2010 3:58 am

I would immediately ED to UVA, and put in apps for Vandy and GW. All of those schools beat a scholarship at WVU in my opinion. And I think both would leave you with just as much of a chance (if not more) of being able to go back to WV to practice law if you decide that's what you want to do. And GW & UVA are not insanely far either. Easy decision.

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