Picking law school = picking where I'll live forever?

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HarveyBirdman
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Picking law school = picking where I'll live forever?

Postby HarveyBirdman » Sat Mar 12, 2011 10:45 pm

I'm worried that picking a law school is also going to require a commitment of where I will live for at least the rest of my working life, since most law schools are so regional. Right now I live in NE Ohio, where I was born and raised. Everyone's telling me I should go to Cleveland State, or Case, and be done with it. "Stay local, and cheap (Cleveland State, anyway)." I don't think my girlfriend wants to move far far away because her family is in this area. Mine is too, but it's not important to me like it is to her. But then I think, holy shit do I really want to live here for the rest of my life? I mean, I'm used to it and all and I guess most people in general don't leave a 25 mile radius of where they were born, but how do I know what I want to do?

The other option I've been thinking about is going to Pitt. 2 or 3 hours away, so not inaccessible to family and home, but then I think "do I really want to commit to living in the Pittsburgh area? why can't I just stay here? what's the difference, really?"

How did you guys decide where you wanted to be?

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buckilaw
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Re: Picking law school = picking where I'll live forever?

Postby buckilaw » Sat Mar 12, 2011 10:57 pm

Well. As a fellow NE Ohio native I can say with confidence that staying in NE Ohio for the rest of your life is a scary prospect. I would advise you to identify other schools in areas that you are interested in living. The higher you go up in the rankings the easier it will be to come back to NE Ohio should you choose to do so. So study your ass off for the LSAT and make sure you are a viable candidate at solid regional schools like BU, USC, GW, etc; if you decide to go to law school in Ohio with an LSAT good enough for the T20 you will get a shit ton of $. Lastly, this is your life, don't be afraid to roll the dice a bit.

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mpj_3050
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Re: Picking law school = picking where I'll live forever?

Postby mpj_3050 » Sat Mar 12, 2011 11:03 pm

What kind of money is Cleveland State offering?

I totally understand what you are saying about staying in the area forever. And as the other poster noted, for the vast majority of folks will have their birth and death occur within a close proximity.

I'm from Columbus and will be leaving (if I attend law school) and going out of state.

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FalafelWaffle
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Re: Picking law school = picking where I'll live forever?

Postby FalafelWaffle » Sat Mar 12, 2011 11:05 pm

HarveyBirdman wrote:I'm worried that picking a law school is also going to require a commitment of where I will live for at least the rest of my working life, since most law schools are so regional. Right now I live in NE Ohio, where I was born and raised. Everyone's telling me I should go to Cleveland State, or Case, and be done with it. "Stay local, and cheap (Cleveland State, anyway)." I don't think my girlfriend wants to move far far away because her family is in this area. Mine is too, but it's not important to me like it is to her. But then I think, holy shit do I really want to live here for the rest of my life? I mean, I'm used to it and all and I guess most people in general don't leave a 25 mile radius of where they were born, but how do I know what I want to do?

The other option I've been thinking about is going to Pitt. 2 or 3 hours away, so not inaccessible to family and home, but then I think "do I really want to commit to living in the Pittsburgh area? why can't I just stay here? what's the difference, really?"

How did you guys decide where you wanted to be?


Stay local and cheap is good advice if you want to stay where you are. If you want to go places, aim as high as you can. Nail the LSAT, and flood the top 20 or so schools.

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buckilaw
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Re: Picking law school = picking where I'll live forever?

Postby buckilaw » Sat Mar 12, 2011 11:05 pm

Also, FWIW a former adjunct professor at Case who is currently a law firm partner told me that Case grads have had rather poor job prospects as of late.

BeenDidThat
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Re: Picking law school = picking where I'll live forever?

Postby BeenDidThat » Sat Mar 12, 2011 11:09 pm

Step one: Envision yourself going to one school, living in that area for awhile.

Step two: Envision yourself going to a different school and living in that area for awhile.

Step three: Decide which vision you like better.

Step four: Enroll in school that you attend in that vision.

Non-Dickish Answer: Informed gut feeling is all you've got in this world.

Crazy4lawzzz
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Re: Picking law school = picking where I'll live forever?

Postby Crazy4lawzzz » Sat Mar 12, 2011 11:11 pm

I mean I don't really know about all this...I think considering there are no jobs anywhere, you can move to where you want, start volunteering as an atty and hope you make some good connections.

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mpj_3050
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Re: Picking law school = picking where I'll live forever?

Postby mpj_3050 » Sat Mar 12, 2011 11:11 pm

buckilaw wrote:Also, FWIW a former adjunct professor at Case who is currently a law firm partner told me that Case grads have had rather poor job prospects as of late.


I heard this from a couple students I know. Of course job prospects are down at most places but Case is insanely expensive and if you make 40-50k you have a mountain of debt. I was offered 15k a year and withdrew because there is no way in hell I am paying 75k in tuition for any school I can get into.

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incase2011
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Re: Picking law school = picking where I'll live forever?

Postby incase2011 » Sat Mar 12, 2011 11:49 pm

mpj_3050 wrote:
buckilaw wrote:Also, FWIW a former adjunct professor at Case who is currently a law firm partner told me that Case grads have had rather poor job prospects as of late.


I heard this from a couple students I know. Of course job prospects are down at most places but Case is insanely expensive and if you make 40-50k you have a mountain of debt. I was offered 15k a year and withdrew because there is no way in hell I am paying 75k in tuition for any school I can get into.


Any school? For realsies?

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The Gentleman
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Re: Picking law school = picking where I'll live forever?

Postby The Gentleman » Sun Mar 13, 2011 12:06 am

I'll hop in this thread as a lifelong NE Ohio resident having the opposite problem. I've been accepted at several T14s, which is great because I want to move to DC after graduation and work for a federal agency, but I don't know about raising a family so far away from my parents/SO's parents.

Sorry for hijacking your thread though... I don't know your situation OP, but Case without a bigtime scholarship is a bad idea. Even with one, the stips are pretty risky. Cleveland-Marshall is a TTT(T), and if Case grads are hurting, then CM grads are getting absolutely pwned. Did you apply to Cinci/OSU

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HarveyBirdman
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Re: Picking law school = picking where I'll live forever?

Postby HarveyBirdman » Sun Mar 13, 2011 6:33 pm

^I wouldn't say your problem is the opposite...you're just further along and more sure of your career goals than me. I take the LSAT in June and will start applying to schools this fall to start in 2012. You seem to have similar concerns, such as raising a family far away from the grandparents of your children. I don't have kids and I'm not even engaged yet, but I think about these things. It would suck for the kids to not see their grandparents and cousins a lot because of location, but I also think about more practical things like who do we get to babysit for when me and the mrs. want to go out? Some teenage girl that advertises on craigslist?

But yeah, as I said I won't be applying to schools until this fall, with my LSAT score and what makes sense to me determining what schools that will be. Besides like Harvard or Yale and maybe Chicago, I'm over the whole rankings thing. I just want to go to a school that is well established and in a city with a good overall economy (why staying in Cleveland makes me nervous!). The rest I'm leaving up to my own hard work.

Anyone else long for the old days where lawyers trained as apprentices instead of going into thousands of dollars of debt just to be allowed to practice law? I mean, haha imagine not only is your legal education free, the firm you're working for and teaching you is also paying you a modest starting wage. Higher education seems like such a scam sometimes.

CanadianWolf
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Re: Picking law school = picking where I'll live forever?

Postby CanadianWolf » Sun Mar 13, 2011 6:43 pm

If you want to train as an apprentice, move to Vermont.

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mpj_3050
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Re: Picking law school = picking where I'll live forever?

Postby mpj_3050 » Sun Mar 13, 2011 6:54 pm

incase2011 wrote:
mpj_3050 wrote:
buckilaw wrote:Also, FWIW a former adjunct professor at Case who is currently a law firm partner told me that Case grads have had rather poor job prospects as of late.


I heard this from a couple students I know. Of course job prospects are down at most places but Case is insanely expensive and if you make 40-50k you have a mountain of debt. I was offered 15k a year and withdrew because there is no way in hell I am paying 75k in tuition for any school I can get into.


Any school? For realsies?


I mean for any school that I can get into based off of my numbers.

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Ersatz Haderach
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Re: Picking law school = picking where I'll live forever?

Postby Ersatz Haderach » Thu Mar 17, 2011 5:03 am

If you don't want to work in Ohio, you shouldn't go to either CSU or Case. You probably shouldn't go to CSU at all, unless you're particularly committed to being a prosecutor/PD or are absolutely, 100% certain you want to stay in Cleveland. Case, I would say you need to at least acknowledge the possibility your best offers will be in Northeast Ohio. Not necessarily Cleveland, but remember - this is a state with way too many law schools, and OSU looms over them all.

I am a current Case student. Got big $$$$, and am a fan of Cleveland. No T20 admits. So, easy choice. Probably not too many people like me on this site. :) I'm not in debt and Cleveland COL is laughably low, so that's one huge monkey off my back. That said, job market isn't good. I am not worried about being employed, just about the quality of employment out of the gate.

If you want to work in Ohio and are an Ohio resident, you might be best off going to OSU. Don't choose Case over OSU unless you want to be in Northeast Ohio specifically or it ends up being significantly cheaper.

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HarveyBirdman
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Re: Picking law school = picking where I'll live forever?

Postby HarveyBirdman » Thu Mar 17, 2011 10:40 pm

^ I wish I could find that web site that is like a directory of lawyers. I spent about half an hour one day looking through pretty much everyone at the Jones Day Cleveland office, checking their schools. And yeah a lot were Cleveland State or Case, but some were weird out of state schools too. I need to do more research, but still.

My quandary is I don't KNOW if i want to work and live in NE Ohio or not. I feel like I'm missing something somewhere else, even if that's not true.

Right now I plan on applying to CSU, Case, OSU, Pitt, and perhaps some higher ranked schools depending on my LSAT and what is realistic. I'm not expecting any significant financial aid because I fucking got straight As in high school and am paying full price for my state college education. Why? My dad makes $100k a year so schools think the money just falls out of the sky into my lap. But it only does that after I work as much as I can at my shitty retail job...I digress.

edit: And did you see the recent article in Crane's Cleveland magazine about the job market for lawyers in Cleveland? It featured a urm from Case who was one of the lucky few to find a job at a firm, though they didn't mention the salary, as well as a CSU grad who is accepting her career as a McDonalds supervisor after months and months of sending out her resume with no luck. But the general consensus was in the math, with hundreds of grads entering the market each year from CSU, Case, and Akron combined and only a dozen or so being hired at each of the very few big firms. This shit is scary and I don't want to trap myself in this hell hole. It would be different if Cleveland was better, economically.

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Re: Picking law school = picking where I'll live forever?

Postby clearfire » Fri Mar 18, 2011 11:27 pm

in Ohio for the last 3 years, but not from here, study harder than you think you should for the LSAT, go to OSU with in-state tuition and hopefully a scholarship, they will only consider you and not your parents for need based aid so a plus there, work harder than you think you should in law school and you will be good to go in Ohio, and if you work hard you can get out of the state.

take this for what it is, I've enjoyed my last three years in Columbus but am ready to move on, and will be attending law school somewhere else.

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esq
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Re: Picking law school = picking where I'll live forever?

Postby esq » Fri Mar 18, 2011 11:29 pm

I'm worried that picking a law school is also going to require a commitment of where I will live for at least the rest of my working life, since most law schools are so regional.

You're pretty much committed, especially outside of the T12.

69Coronet
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Re: Picking law school = picking where I'll live forever?

Postby 69Coronet » Sun Mar 20, 2011 5:54 pm

Here's my take, as someone who was making decisions about where to apply last fall and is now just about firm in where he wants to go to school:

First and foremost, I hemmed and hawed about what I wanted for career options, as I think that is an important aspect of law school decisions. I work at the District Attorney's Office, and I love it, but I don't know if I want to be a prosecutor forever (or get paid diddly forever), and I just can't see myself as a defense attorney, so I want to experience what it is like to work in a private firm while I'm in law school and see if I like that.

Second, I had to make a basic decision as to where I wanted to practice (and therefore where I wanted to live in the future). I realize this is primarily what your question is about, and I think it is at least somewhat valid. For me, I live in MA and love it here, so I decided I wanted to practice here in MA, probably in Boston, even though I'm from the Worcester area.

Third, once I started applying, I applied at schools all over New England, with an emphasis on the ones here in MA. I applied to nearly every law school in MA, and literally every one in Boston. This corresponded with the fact that I wanted to work in MA.

Fourth, once I was accepted to most of the schools to which I applied, I had to weigh my options. I got in to every one of the schools to which I applied in Boston, save for BU, but I didn't want to go there anyway. :P

In the end, however, I went with one that had given me a complete scholarship. I am not paying a dime for law school, I'm going to a school with a great reputation in the Boston area, and I'm happy as hell with my decision, because I can spin this into whatever type of legal career I want.

If I had no idea where I wanted to practice and just wanted to go somewhere I could make tons and tons of money, I would have considered applying to all top tier schools in high-paying areas, but that was just not the goal I was chasing. Even then, making tons of money is tough in this economy, and law school debt doesn't sleep.

It sounds to me like you aren't too committed to the Ohio area, in which case, I'd find the closest city that has some semblance of legal job prospects (and that doesn't sound too daunting to drive to your parents' house from) and shoot for there, applying to the schools that have good reputations in that area. Otherwise, you can just do what so many others on here do: Apply to every single T14 school to which they can and then go where ever is best.

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Adjudicator
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Re: Picking law school = picking where I'll live forever?

Postby Adjudicator » Sun Mar 20, 2011 5:59 pm

You won't be stuck in one area forever if you don't want to be; get a good job in your region out of school, and then once you have experience you will be able to pursue opportunities in other cities and regions.

However, on the flip side, I would not go to a school somewhere that I didn't want to live.

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HarveyBirdman
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Re: Picking law school = picking where I'll live forever?

Postby HarveyBirdman » Mon Mar 21, 2011 12:01 am

clearfire wrote:in Ohio for the last 3 years, but not from here, study harder than you think you should for the LSAT, go to OSU with in-state tuition and hopefully a scholarship, they will only consider you and not your parents for need based aid so a plus there, work harder than you think you should in law school and you will be good to go in Ohio, and if you work hard you can get out of the state.

take this for what it is, I've enjoyed my last three years in Columbus but am ready to move on, and will be attending law school somewhere else.


What you said about not considering parent's income for need based aid is interesting. I mean, really?

But yeah I know the all mighty OSU looms up there as the "top" law school in the state, but I was at OSU for two years of undergrad and...I didn't like it. Now sure I can go back and have a completely different experience, but I'd also like to move on to somewhere else.

See, I picked the "wrong" college and now I'm worried I'm going to pick the wrong law school. Ironic if it were the same exact school both times...like how dumb am I?

clearfire
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Re: Picking law school = picking where I'll live forever?

Postby clearfire » Mon Mar 21, 2011 7:49 am

HarveyBirdman wrote:I'm worried that picking a law school is also going to require a commitment of where I will live for at least the rest of my working life, since most law schools are so regional. Right now I live in NE Ohio, where I was born and raised. Everyone's telling me I should go to Cleveland State, or Case, and be done with it. "Stay local, and cheap (Cleveland State, anyway)." I don't think my girlfriend wants to move far far away because her family is in this area. Mine is too, but it's not important to me like it is to her. But then I think, holy shit do I really want to live here for the rest of my life? I mean, I'm used to it and all and I guess most people in general don't leave a 25 mile radius of where they were born, but how do I know what I want to do?

The other option I've been thinking about is going to Pitt. 2 or 3 hours away, so not inaccessible to family and home, but then I think "do I really want to commit to living in the Pittsburgh area? why can't I just stay here? what's the difference, really?"

How did you guys decide where you wanted to be?



Birdman, it sounds like you need to figure out where you want to live, not where you want to go to school. Once you figure out where you want to/are willing to live the school choice will probably become a lot easier. Not sure what you didn't like about OSU, but if it's classes and classmates it will probably be different in law school, if it's the city and area, that's not going to change.




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