In at Chicago: Class of 2015

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Emma.
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Re: In at Chicago: Class of 2015

Postby Emma. » Sat Feb 04, 2012 11:41 am

icpb wrote:
Elston Gunn wrote:So honored to get a Ruby. Makes it a very very tough decision. I'm so so in love with Yale--I really don't think I'll be able to turn it down. But--because I have significant savings + my parents make a lot of money, but won't really have any to pay for tuition--the decision is probably literally 0 debt vs. 200K. Good problem to have, I know.


In my view, Ruby vs Yale is an easier decision to make if its $0 debt vs $200k. UChicago is very similar to Yale, and it is almost as great in all ways that Yale is great in. $200k is a lot of money you would have to pay for that small bit of differences.

On the other hand, Ruby vs Harvard is a tougher decision even if it's $0 debt vs $200k. Harvard is very different from UChicago. No other school can match the Harvard brand outside of the legal profession and outside of the United States. Also, you will meet more power brokers and business leaders of tomorrow at Harvard than any other university in the world. If you are interested in niche topics, Harvard could help you explore them better than any university. If Harvard is the type of school you would like to attend, $200k shouldn't matter much in the grand scheme of things.


I might be biased but I couldn't disagree more with this. I have a few friends at HLS and nothing at all about their experiences suggest it is worth $200K more than UChi.

Congrats everyone, and especially you guys with the Rubenstein. It is an amazing honor.

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medialoop
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Re: In at Chicago: Class of 2015

Postby medialoop » Sat Feb 04, 2012 4:09 pm

Just checking in, so psyched to get the Ruby e-mail yesterday! I'm still waiting to hear from Yale, but right now it's between Chicago, Harvard, and Stanford. This is going to be a tough decision...

icpb
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Re: In at Chicago: Class of 2015

Postby icpb » Sat Feb 04, 2012 5:15 pm

Emma. wrote:
icpb wrote:
Elston Gunn wrote:So honored to get a Ruby. Makes it a very very tough decision. I'm so so in love with Yale--I really don't think I'll be able to turn it down. But--because I have significant savings + my parents make a lot of money, but won't really have any to pay for tuition--the decision is probably literally 0 debt vs. 200K. Good problem to have, I know.


In my view, Ruby vs Yale is an easier decision to make if its $0 debt vs $200k. UChicago is very similar to Yale, and it is almost as great in all ways that Yale is great in. $200k is a lot of money you would have to pay for that small bit of differences.

On the other hand, Ruby vs Harvard is a tougher decision even if it's $0 debt vs $200k. Harvard is very different from UChicago. No other school can match the Harvard brand outside of the legal profession and outside of the United States. Also, you will meet more power brokers and business leaders of tomorrow at Harvard than any other university in the world. If you are interested in niche topics, Harvard could help you explore them better than any university. If Harvard is the type of school you would like to attend, $200k shouldn't matter much in the grand scheme of things.


I might be biased but I couldn't disagree more with this. I have a few friends at HLS and nothing at all about their experiences suggest it is worth $200K more than UChi.

Congrats everyone, and especially you guys with the Rubenstein. It is an amazing honor.


I'm not saying everyone should choose HLS over Ruby. I agree that for most of the people who want to just be a lawyer for the rest of their lives, take the Ruby and never look back; for Harvard UGs, take the Ruby and never look back. However, for some people Harvard is definitely a better choice. I know people who took HLS over YLS, Ruby, and Hamilton, and after experiencing Harvard, they believed that they made a great choice. However, I do believe that choosing YLS over Ruby isn't worth it if the difference in cost is $200k because the two schools are too similar.

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Re: In at Chicago: Class of 2015

Postby MumofCad » Sat Feb 04, 2012 9:26 pm

icpb wrote:
Emma. wrote:
icpb wrote:
Elston Gunn wrote:So honored to get a Ruby. Makes it a very very tough decision. I'm so so in love with Yale--I really don't think I'll be able to turn it down. But--because I have significant savings + my parents make a lot of money, but won't really have any to pay for tuition--the decision is probably literally 0 debt vs. 200K. Good problem to have, I know.


In my view, Ruby vs Yale is an easier decision to make if its $0 debt vs $200k. UChicago is very similar to Yale, and it is almost as great in all ways that Yale is great in. $200k is a lot of money you would have to pay for that small bit of differences.

On the other hand, Ruby vs Harvard is a tougher decision even if it's $0 debt vs $200k. Harvard is very different from UChicago. No other school can match the Harvard brand outside of the legal profession and outside of the United States. Also, you will meet more power brokers and business leaders of tomorrow at Harvard than any other university in the world. If you are interested in niche topics, Harvard could help you explore them better than any university. If Harvard is the type of school you would like to attend, $200k shouldn't matter much in the grand scheme of things.


I might be biased but I couldn't disagree more with this. I have a few friends at HLS and nothing at all about their experiences suggest it is worth $200K more than UChi.

Congrats everyone, and especially you guys with the Rubenstein. It is an amazing honor.


I'm not saying everyone should choose HLS over Ruby. I agree that for most of the people who want to just be a lawyer for the rest of their lives, take the Ruby and never look back; for Harvard UGs, take the Ruby and never look back. However, for some people Harvard is definitely a better choice. I know people who took HLS over YLS, Ruby, and Hamilton, and after experiencing Harvard, they believed that they made a great choice. However, I do believe that choosing YLS over Ruby isn't worth it if the difference in cost is $200k because the two schools are too similar.


After working over a decade in international affairs, your argument about Harvard's name over Chi is just as pertinent to Yale over Chi. You will never need to explain Yale, you will always have tp explain Chi outside of circles than are "in the know." H and Y both travel internationally quite well. Whether it matters...that's a personal choice. Many of the international big wigs that most pushed me to choose H and Y over Chi or other schools also usually ask if I even applied to Princeton's Law School lol.

And I think Chi is actually much more practitioner oriented like Harvard than Yale. I think Chi and Yale are only superficially similar in terms of size and courses. In almost every other respect, they attract different people and put out vastly differently people from what I have heard from attorneys. I guess its all just hearsay in the end though. I was hoping ASWs would clear all this up and allow me to form my own opinion, but sadly...some overlap and others are after deposits at some schools so...

ETA: And if the decision is 200k versus 0...gosh its tough. I don't think I will need to go that far in debt, but still...

FWIW, I spoke with a friend about this recently that graduated from Yale. One interesting thing he pointed out that I've heard alot is that you really need to consider the impact of grades. He was saying Yale was a no-brainer over H back when there were grades at H, because you KNEW going to Yale was a shoe-in for greatness whereas finishing at the bottom of an H class def made it much more difficult to pursue certain things (and you shouldn't assume going in that you know, your tastes and interests will likely change). Now, the concern is with going anywhere else that still grades below them. Yes, 200k vs. 0k is a no brainer IF you could guarantee finishing in the top half of your Chi class. If however, you end up in the bottom half...it will probably not have been worth it, especially over Yale. No one will care that you were promising enough to get a Ruby going in and you most certainly shouldn't assume that because you qualified for one with UGPA/LSAT that you will automatically out compete your peers. Now given my circumstances of having many more distractions, he pretty much assured me I would get my hat handed to me. There will always be a good chunk of people at every school that are gunning - that are going to read 24/7 and do whatever it takes to get ahead. Raw intelligence will only take you so far. So you have to ask yourself, where do you fall? Are you willing to be one? Or is it worth it to you to have more flexibility, knowing if you go into PI or govt you won't be repaying much if any of your debt anyway? That's the real question IMO (and still a tough one that will be answered differently by different people, I'm still pondering whether I'm totally assured that I want to do what I think I want to do, because if I do, I most certainly don't need to be at the top of Chi to do so). His warning about change and growth is sage though.

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Doorkeeper
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Re: In at Chicago: Class of 2015

Postby Doorkeeper » Sat Feb 04, 2012 10:04 pm

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AmandaPB
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Re: In at Chicago: Class of 2015

Postby AmandaPB » Sat Feb 04, 2012 10:41 pm

MumofCad wrote: FWIW, I spoke with a friend about this recently that graduated from Yale. One interesting thing he pointed out that I've heard alot is that you really need to consider the impact of grades. He was saying Yale was a no-brainer over H back when there were grades at H, because you KNEW going to Yale was a shoe-in for greatness whereas finishing at the bottom of an H class def made it much more difficult to pursue certain things (and you shouldn't assume going in that you know, your tastes and interests will likely change). Now, the concern is with going anywhere else that still grades below them. Yes, 200k vs. 0k is a no brainer IF you could guarantee finishing in the top half of your Chi class. If however, you end up in the bottom half...it will probably not have been worth it, especially over Yale. No one will care that you were promising enough to get a Ruby going in and you most certainly shouldn't assume that because you qualified for one with UGPA/LSAT that you will automatically out compete your peers. Now given my circumstances of having many more distractions, he pretty much assured me I would get my hat handed to me. There will always be a good chunk of people at every school that are gunning - that are going to read 24/7 and do whatever it takes to get ahead. Raw intelligence will only take you so far. So you have to ask yourself, where do you fall?

+1. I totally agree.

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Re: In at Chicago: Class of 2015

Postby amc987 » Sat Feb 04, 2012 11:47 pm

MumofCad wrote:FWIW, I spoke with a friend about this recently that graduated from Yale. One interesting thing he pointed out that I've heard alot is that you really need to consider the impact of grades. He was saying Yale was a no-brainer over H back when there were grades at H, because you KNEW going to Yale was a shoe-in for greatness whereas finishing at the bottom of an H class def made it much more difficult to pursue certain things (and you shouldn't assume going in that you know, your tastes and interests will likely change). Now, the concern is with going anywhere else that still grades below them. Yes, 200k vs. 0k is a no brainer IF you could guarantee finishing in the top half of your Chi class. If however, you end up in the bottom half...it will probably not have been worth it, especially over Yale.


I am not in a position to be deciding among a Ruby and a HYS acceptance, and I haven't been admitted at any law school that doesn't have traditional grades. Still, I had a question about this statement, MoC. Even if HYS don't have grades, isn't having an Honors, Pass, Low Pass, Fail grading system like they have at H and Y essentially the same thing as having an A, B, C, D/F system? It seems to me that you'd just be calling the traditional system by a different name.

I guess it could be true that employers (firms, the government, judges, etc.) look more favorably on Pass grades than B grades. It could also be true that at schools like HYS, the grading scale is such that the Low Pass/Fail grades are almost never given out (I remember hearing that YLS hasn't failed anyone in any course for 5~ years). In that case if you compared HYS to the lower-ranked schools, some of which do give out lots of Bs and Cs, the students at HYS would have a greater safety net than students who attended schools with traditional grades. Also, I'm assuming that at HYS students get a bit of a break from prospective employers because employers understand the high quality of the students who attend. Therefore, you don't have to necessarily be in the top 5% or 10% at HYS in order to get a prestigious firm job or be able to land sought after public interest jobs post-grad like you probably would have to be at other T14 schools. Still, I think that most of us would agree that students who knock it out of the park at Chicago would be able to have some of the same opportunities as HYS students, even if they might have to do correspondingly better in relation to their classmates than their counterparts at HYS.

As I understand it, HYS are mostly valued over other T14 schools for the security that MoC mentioned (in terms of not having to do amazingly well in order to obtain a good job), the schools' networks of powerful and influential alumni, and the chance to get an incredible job if you do extraordinarily well there. For the purposes of this argument, I'm defining incredible jobs as SCOTUS clerkships, Article III clerkships (especially ones in the 2nd, 9th, and DC Circuits or with feeder judges elsewhere), DOJ Honors, Skadden fellowship, V5 firm jobs, etc. But to me, the HYS job security argument becomes less compelling when someone is talking about attending one of those schools with the hope that being an HYS graduate will help them secure one of those incredible opportunities. AFAIK, the schools' names can certainly be helpful to have on your resume; but, based on conversations I've had with attorneys it's my understanding that HYS only give you a significant bump for the incredible job opportunities if you've managed to distinguish yourself in those environments. That seems like quite the mountain to climb when you're surrounded by a class full of highly talented people. A feeder judge or a DOJ recruiter isn't just going to take a middle-of-the-road HYS graduate because they're a HYS graduate. A HYS alum isn't just going to be a Skadden fellow if their grades are mediocre (think straight Pass grades or lower) and they don't have significant journal or clinical work to show for their three years at school. Those programs are looking for people who have done exceptionally well at a top school. I don't know if there is a such thing as being a "shoe-in for greatness" regardless of the school you end up attending.

All of that is a very long-winded way of inquiring the following: If you think you might be just be an average student at an HYS because of the quality of the competition, aren't there situations where it might be best to attend another school, especially if the non-HYS school has given you significant scholarship $? Couldn't one potentially end up having better opportunities post-grad by getting stellar grades at a T10 school than by having average grades at the most elite tier of law schools? I know that there's no way to know how you'll stack up against the competition in law school until you get there, which explains why so many people gravitate towards the security provided by the highest-ranked schools. Nonetheless, it seems like going to a top 3 school just because you think that the prestige of that school will definitely get you one of those incredible opportunities I mentioned might be setting yourself up to be disappointed.
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Elston Gunn
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Re: In at Chicago: Class of 2015

Postby Elston Gunn » Sun Feb 05, 2012 12:01 am

amc987 wrote:I am not in a position to be deciding among a Ruby and a HYS acceptance, and I haven't been admitted at any law school that doesn't have traditional grades. Still, I had a question about this statement, MoC. Even if HYS don't have grades, isn't having an Honors, Pass, Low Pass, Fail grading system like they have at H and Y essentially the same thing as having an A, B, C, D/F system? It seems to me that you'd just be calling the traditional system by a different name.


By all accounts, it's really not the same. At Yale, it's roughly 50/50 H's and P's, so you only need to be in the top 50% to get an "A", and even bottom 50% almost all get "B"s. At the very least, you don't get screwed by one bad grade.

In the rest of your post, you're confusing two different things. If, like MoC said, you think you won't gun hard/well enough to make the top half of your class, you're better off at YHS than at UChi, even with the money difference. This isn't about "amazing" opportunities, but rather about getting any market-paying job at all.

The point you're bringing up is that, if you're at the top of the class, you have a greater range of opportunities at the very highest level from YHS. So, depending on the relative value for you of money and opportunities, YHS might be worth it at the top of the class as well.

I'm not coming down on one side or the other, but I certainly don't think "Take the money and run" is the obvious call, even in a case as extreme as mine.

Another important point that MoC alluded to is that even with sticker debt, there's essentially no risk of coming out of Yale and ending up in metaphorical debtor's prison. COAP is awesome. So the difference is really about, at the highest end, $30,000 a year, after taxes, for ten years. It's a ton of money, but you're not going to be totally screwed either way.

ETA: I didn't respond to this before, but I don't think there's any evidence to suggest that the caliber of student at any T14 is different enough from YHS to think you'd do significantly better at one school rather than the other. GPA and LSAT are fairly predictive in very broad strokes, but the differences are so small between T14 schools that you can't conclude much from them.

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Re: In at Chicago: Class of 2015

Postby southwick » Sun Feb 05, 2012 12:27 am

Also making the Ruby/H/S decision (waiting on Y), so I'm really enjoying this discussion.

On the grade point, only Harvard really ever gives out Low Passes, so while the system is comparable to an A/B/C/D/F system, it functions as if there are no Cs, Ds, or Fs. That means people who would have gotten Bs probably get some Hs, and people who would have gotten Cs and Ds get Ps. It also means that students can work hard for Hs in two or three of their classes and do the functional equivalent of C work in their other classes in order to get a P. That would be unheard of at a school like Chicago. That's not to suggest that people at YHS don't work hard--obviously, they do--but there are clear advantages to those school's grading systems in terms of competitive workload when compared to Chicago's

I'm interested for any more insights on whether Chicago does practical training as well as Harvard and Stanford (I know that's a huge focus at Stanford; I see interviews with Dean Kramer to that effect posted on their website all the time). Do academic rigor and black-letter law dominate at Chicago far more than at H/Y/S?

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Re: In at Chicago: Class of 2015

Postby Doorkeeper » Sun Feb 05, 2012 12:32 am

I think the numbers MoC used with Chicago and Harvard are a bit off. For Chicago, for example, they placed 58% of the class into BigLaw last year (70% total into firms), plus when you consider clerkships (14%) and PI jobs that's nearly 80-90% of the class. So the whole, the "if you're not top 50% you're screwed" argument seems to really be, "if you're in the bottom 15-20% then maybe you're screwed". I think that makes a big difference for most people making the decision.

Now maybe if you want V10, academia, or the most prestigious clerkships it's a different story. I think it's only really there where you have the argument about the grades.

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Elston Gunn
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Re: In at Chicago: Class of 2015

Postby Elston Gunn » Sun Feb 05, 2012 12:51 am

Doorkeeper wrote:I think the numbers MoC used with Chicago and Harvard are a bit off. For Chicago, for example, they placed 58% of the class into BigLaw last year (70% total into firms), plus when you consider clerkships (14%) and PI jobs that's nearly 80-90% of the class. So the whole, the "if you're not top 50% you're screwed" argument seems to really be, "if you're in the bottom 15-20% then maybe you're screwed". I think that makes a big difference for most people making the decision.

Now maybe if you want V10, academia, or the most prestigious clerkships it's a different story. I think it's only really there where you have the argument about the grades.


Yes, this seems true. It's like 75% (or more) at Chicago that get what they want. But you also have to take into account people with good WE/IP/URM/connections. Below median with none of those things, and you still might be in some trouble. (Trouble in a relative sense, of course. You'll probably get some job that, with no debt, would be still perfectly good.)

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Re: In at Chicago: Class of 2015

Postby MumofCad » Sun Feb 05, 2012 9:03 am

Doorkeeper wrote:I think the numbers MoC used with Chicago and Harvard are a bit off. For Chicago, for example, they placed 58% of the class into BigLaw last year (70% total into firms), plus when you consider clerkships (14%) and PI jobs that's nearly 80-90% of the class. So the whole, the "if you're not top 50% you're screwed" argument seems to really be, "if you're in the bottom 15-20% then maybe you're screwed". I think that makes a big difference for most people making the decision.

Now maybe if you want V10, academia, or the most prestigious clerkships it's a different story. I think it's only really there where you have the argument about the grades.



HAhaha, listen I wasn't saying you are "screwed" graduating anywhere from Chi. You aren't screwed with a Chi law degree, that would be silly to even suggest. Even in a down economy, we are still talking about an extremely valuable law degree. I suspect anyone that ends up "screwed' has much more to do with their own personal failings screwing them than the Chi law degree they hold. What I said was that it may close off CERTAIN opportunities that graduating from Yale will not period. That in no way means you are screwed, but if you want to do certain things or think you might then you need to consider this. I don't think this is any way debatable from people in the field. I highly doubt Chi profs would even deny it if they were being candid.

Yes, Harvard still works a little differently, but I've heard from this 1L class that they too are moving away from the low pass. But you still have Law Review to distinguish the top part of the class - that's a lot of extra work you need to ask yourself whether you are willing to do.

At Yale the P, HP system from all accounts from the 20 odd grads I spoken with effectively works to equalize the playing field. Almost everyone graduates with some combo of these and employers (even clerkships from what I've heard) could care less that the next guy got one more HP than you. Yalies also have much more flexibility in the coursework they take so you inevitable take some courses that you are going to excel in if you are wise. Interviews are much more important for Yale grads, but not only that, the class is so small and diverse, from what I have heard there is not alot of competition between you and the next Yale grad. You simply aren't competing in the same way against H grads, because there are so many more of them. Either way though, Yale grads generally have pretty broad interests and none of them have mentioned ever feeling any competition from other classmates in getting certain positions. There aren't many to go around. And "greatness" in my definition is defined by doing great at what you want to pursue, not in terms of SCoTUS aspirations. If your personal def of greatness is getting a spot at a V5, unless you really bomb out for some reason, Yale is going to keep that door open for you (again because there isn't a "bottom of the class"), bottom of a Chi class is going to make it extremely unlikely.

That being said, I have heard that in law firms both H grads and Chi grads are generally better prepared for the daily grind of legal practice than Yalies. This is apparently commonly accepted by big law firms and they don't worry about it in hiring. By the end of 2 summers of SA, they know that Yalies are extremely capable and smart and will be right where they need to be. These of course are generalizations and will depend on what knowledge you come in with/what courses you take, etc.

As for the implicit suggestion that people who finish at the bottom of classes at Chi or wherever in this league are somehow lazy or less intelligent...you aren't reading my post very carefully. Its not about either. Its about the fact that some people have interests outside of law, whether its advocacy or other academic interests or whatever. Yale provides a system where you can continue to explore these without a detriment to your future career prospects. Some of the other schools do not. People make choices in law school about whether they want to spend 24/7 out-competing others. Some do, some don't, it has nothing to do with intelligence. Personally, I have 3 small kids and a husband. I wouldn't consider myself a "success" if I graduated first in my class at HYS or Chi, but ended up in divorce court. Nor would I like to let go of my connection to certain advocacy networks. I can almost guarantee that I would not finish in the top 20% of my class at Chi (and not necessarily because one couldn't or has a debilitating addiction to reality tv). Its def something that should realistically be weighed in making a choice.

And when we are talking about certain possibilities, I'm not talking about a job at a law firm so I could care less about the statistics for that. Any T10 school is going to give you that option. Its not special. You might have your choice if you are higher in the class or what not, but that is not the topic at hand. Look at the composition of the Supreme Court and you will realize that where your degree comes from most certainly does matter for those with certain goals (of which I am admittedly not one), but there are some on here that are and should consider that.

But I think the core of any disagreement between any of us on this is how the grading system works. Look into it. Talk to some Yale grads. It really is important. Don't take my word for it.

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Emma.
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Re: In at Chicago: Class of 2015

Postby Emma. » Sun Feb 05, 2012 12:57 pm

MumofCad wrote:
But I think the core of any disagreement between any of us on this is how the grading system works. Look into it. Talk to some Yale grads. It really is important. Don't take my word for it.


I'd agree that Yale's grading system works really well and takes a lot of the pressure off, but don't be fooled by HLS's system. If you end up with all Ps for example it is really clear that you are in the bottom 50% of the class, and likely in much the same position as someone with a below 177 average at UChi. I've talked to employers who actually say they much prefer UChi's granular grading since they can distinguish someone who is just below median from someone who is right at the bottom of the class, which they can't do effectively at HLS. Yes, HLS's grading system protects the people at the bottom of the class, but it does so at the expense of the people who are hovering right around median.

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skers
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Re: In at Chicago: Class of 2015

Postby skers » Sun Feb 05, 2012 2:20 pm

Checking in.

Congrats to all Ruby recipients. And just for my two cents graduating debt free from a school like Chicago seems like a fucking no brainer.

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Re: In at Chicago: Class of 2015

Postby PDXNative » Sun Feb 05, 2012 2:24 pm

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phl516
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Re: In at Chicago: Class of 2015

Postby phl516 » Sun Feb 05, 2012 3:13 pm

Hi everyone. Also deciding between Ruby/H at this point. Still waiting on Y which would (obviously) impact my decision significantly.

One thing I am wondering about that I haven't heard discussed too much to this point: I am hoping to do PI/government/public policy work after graduation. While Chi's small class size is a huge advantage in some ways, I feel a little nervous when I look at the employment data and realize that the combined 8.4% of the class of 2010 that went into PI and government represents less than 20 people (as compared to 66 from Harvard's class of 2010). I know any top school will have a pretty large Biglaw contingent, which is fine, but I am worried about feeling isolated if I am one of very very few who are doing something else. Thoughts?

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Re: In at Chicago: Class of 2015

Postby acappella » Sun Feb 05, 2012 3:49 pm

Count me in on the "deciding between HLS and Ruby" discussion. I still haven't heard from Stanford or Yale but for my sanity I'm currently putting them out of mind. My family is very happily helping me pay for school, so paying sticker at Harvard would be completely doable. But I can't imagine turning down a free ticket to law school plus extra money for living expenses. At this point I'm probably just going to visit both ASWs and try to determine which feels like the better fit.

I have a pretty specific area of interest (entertainment law) and I'm wondering, should that factor into my decision? Obviously both Chi and Harvard are strong degrees in any field, so should it matter that I *think* I *might* be interested in one area specifically?

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skers
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Re: In at Chicago: Class of 2015

Postby skers » Sun Feb 05, 2012 3:52 pm

phl516 wrote:Hi everyone. Also deciding between Ruby/H at this point. Still waiting on Y which would (obviously) impact my decision significantly.

One thing I am wondering about that I haven't heard discussed too much to this point: I am hoping to do PI/government/public policy work after graduation. While Chi's small class size is a huge advantage in some ways, I feel a little nervous when I look at the employment data and realize that the combined 8.4% of the class of 2010 that went into PI and government represents less than 20 people (as compared to 66 from Harvard's class of 2010). I know any top school will have a pretty large Biglaw contingent, which is fine, but I am worried about feeling isolated if I am one of very very few who are doing something else. Thoughts?



I think part of this is that Chicago recently drastically improved its LRAP program.

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Re: In at Chicago: Class of 2015

Postby matvei » Sun Feb 05, 2012 4:43 pm

phl516 wrote:Hi everyone. Also deciding between Ruby/H at this point. Still waiting on Y which would (obviously) impact my decision significantly.

One thing I am wondering about that I haven't heard discussed too much to this point: I am hoping to do PI/government/public policy work after graduation. While Chi's small class size is a huge advantage in some ways, I feel a little nervous when I look at the employment data and realize that the combined 8.4% of the class of 2010 that went into PI and government represents less than 20 people (as compared to 66 from Harvard's class of 2010). I know any top school will have a pretty large Biglaw contingent, which is fine, but I am worried about feeling isolated if I am one of very very few who are doing something else. Thoughts?


I feel you... I want to do PI after grad too, and we may be few and far between at UChi. On the other hand, I sort of feel that maybe they're really trying to change their rep and have been recruiting public interest minded people pretty aggressively. They've radically improved their LRAP (now it's amazing), started a whole bunch of new clinics in the realm of PI, and maybe they've been admitting more people interested in PI (that's just a speculation). So maybe (and hopefully) it will change... if I go to U of C, I don't want to be alone...

MumofCad
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Re: In at Chicago: Class of 2015

Postby MumofCad » Sun Feb 05, 2012 4:48 pm

Emma. wrote:
MumofCad wrote:
But I think the core of any disagreement between any of us on this is how the grading system works. Look into it. Talk to some Yale grads. It really is important. Don't take my word for it.


I'd agree that Yale's grading system works really well and takes a lot of the pressure off, but don't be fooled by HLS's system. If you end up with all Ps for example it is really clear that you are in the bottom 50% of the class, and likely in much the same position as someone with a below 177 average at UChi. I've talked to employers who actually say they much prefer UChi's granular grading since they can distinguish someone who is just below median from someone who is right at the bottom of the class, which they can't do effectively at HLS. Yes, HLS's grading system protects the people at the bottom of the class, but it does so at the expense of the people who are hovering right around median.


Oh I totally agree, AND you have law review as well. From what I've heard Law journals at Yale can have some relevance, but employers understand that's its not the same and its chosen via blue book, not grades.

MumofCad
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Re: In at Chicago: Class of 2015

Postby MumofCad » Sun Feb 05, 2012 4:55 pm

matvei wrote:
phl516 wrote:Hi everyone. Also deciding between Ruby/H at this point. Still waiting on Y which would (obviously) impact my decision significantly.

One thing I am wondering about that I haven't heard discussed too much to this point: I am hoping to do PI/government/public policy work after graduation. While Chi's small class size is a huge advantage in some ways, I feel a little nervous when I look at the employment data and realize that the combined 8.4% of the class of 2010 that went into PI and government represents less than 20 people (as compared to 66 from Harvard's class of 2010). I know any top school will have a pretty large Biglaw contingent, which is fine, but I am worried about feeling isolated if I am one of very very few who are doing something else. Thoughts?


I feel you... I want to do PI after grad too, and we may be few and far between at UChi. On the other hand, I sort of feel that maybe they're really trying to change their rep and have been recruiting public interest minded people pretty aggressively. They've radically improved their LRAP (now it's amazing), started a whole bunch of new clinics in the realm of PI, and maybe they've been admitting more people interested in PI (that's just a speculation). So maybe (and hopefully) it will change... if I go to U of C, I don't want to be alone...


I can't speak for the current student body at Chi, but I was surprised by how many at H when I went at least spent the first SA in PI. Not sure if Chi has the same funding that makes that do-able. Anyhow, there was alot more interest in and involvement in PI, especially during law school, than employment data would indicate. You wouldn't feel odd at all.

Also, I remember someone saying that was a 1L at Chi on here that there were alot of people with PI interests at the outset. Remember that not all big lawers are by choice. Alot want to repay debt or what not, but have other interests. My guess is you would not feel alone.

icpb
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Re: In at Chicago: Class of 2015

Postby icpb » Sun Feb 05, 2012 5:57 pm

Emma. wrote:
MumofCad wrote:
But I think the core of any disagreement between any of us on this is how the grading system works. Look into it. Talk to some Yale grads. It really is important. Don't take my word for it.


I'd agree that Yale's grading system works really well and takes a lot of the pressure off, but don't be fooled by HLS's system. If you end up with all Ps for example it is really clear that you are in the bottom 50% of the class, and likely in much the same position as someone with a below 177 average at UChi. I've talked to employers who actually say they much prefer UChi's granular grading since they can distinguish someone who is just below median from someone who is right at the bottom of the class, which they can't do effectively at HLS. Yes, HLS's grading system protects the people at the bottom of the class, but it does so at the expense of the people who are hovering right around median.


Is all P's at Y/S that much better than all P's at H? I thought the downside of grading at H is that students at the top and the bottom are distinguished from others.

MumofCad
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Re: In at Chicago: Class of 2015

Postby MumofCad » Sun Feb 05, 2012 8:47 pm

icpb wrote:
Emma. wrote:
MumofCad wrote:
But I think the core of any disagreement between any of us on this is how the grading system works. Look into it. Talk to some Yale grads. It really is important. Don't take my word for it.


I'd agree that Yale's grading system works really well and takes a lot of the pressure off, but don't be fooled by HLS's system. If you end up with all Ps for example it is really clear that you are in the bottom 50% of the class, and likely in much the same position as someone with a below 177 average at UChi. I've talked to employers who actually say they much prefer UChi's granular grading since they can distinguish someone who is just below median from someone who is right at the bottom of the class, which they can't do effectively at HLS. Yes, HLS's grading system protects the people at the bottom of the class, but it does so at the expense of the people who are hovering right around median.


Is all P's at Y/S that much better than all P's at H? I thought the downside of grading at H is that students at the top and the bottom are distinguished from others.


From what I have found, there are very very few people with all Ps at Yale. If they have so, its usually by some sort of apathy rather than a failure to compete. In that sense, its a "choice." But I've never met anyone that had all Ps from Yale or knew of someone with all Ps. I am sure it happens though. Like I said, you get to take a lot of courses by choice so even if you felt you couldn't get a HP, I'm sure you could find courses where you could.

I also think in the past, H profs were held to some sort of curve, whereas Y has had this system for a long time and they were more able to use their own judgement.

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Xifeng
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Re: In at Chicago: Class of 2015

Postby Xifeng » Sun Feb 05, 2012 8:54 pm

Hey guys, here's some info about PI stuff at Chicago. Feel free to PM me if you have any specific questions!

LRAP: it's new, it's awesome, the website explains it pretty well. PM me if you have questions about it. Also, it's one of the only (the only?) to include judicial clerkships!

Community: there are a LOT of PI kids at Chicago this year. Administrators and professors have mentioned how many more there are, so if you're worried about not having a PI community, just know that they really are working on improving it and people are responding. They've also started cool things like a pro bono pledge, and hired an AMAZING public interest coordinator to help coordinate everything.

Summer funding: Chicago has guaranteed summer funding for 1L and 2L summer. You get $5k/summer for working at a qualified PI/government organization.

And if you guys have general questions for Chicago 2Ls/1Ls, we have an awesome thread for it!

JackShepard
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Re: In at Chicago: Class of 2015

Postby JackShepard » Sun Feb 05, 2012 9:26 pm

Hi guys. Long time lurker here. I was not expecting to be admitted to Chicago and have not looked into the school as much as many others. Anyone want to give me their opinion on Chicago vs. Michigan? I think that Michigan is a better fit for me personally, and they also gave me a small scholarship. But everyone I've talked to thinks I'm crazy to go to Michigan over Chi. Any thoughts?

Jack




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