Hello everybody. I've been lurking this thread for a while but after taking a tour of campus and realizing how seriously I am considering BrookLaw, I decided it was time to post. I was admitted on Feb. 19 after sending my application during the second week of January. I don't have any other dates about status checker because I don't remember. I am a Richardson merit scholarship recipient.
I basically applied everywhere in NYC and schools ranked lower than BLS all gave me full tuition scholarships and schools outside the T14 gave me less generous amounts than BLS (makes sense doesn't it?). Anyway, I thought it would be hard to throw away the opportunity to receive a JD without taking out loans to finance the degree itself (CoL aside, obviously) but after visiting St. John's, Hofstra and NYLS I am coming to terms with actually doing that. Those three schools did not particularly impress what I was looking for, though I will say I appreciated the strengths that each of those schools possess.
I received an excess of information at Dozo's ASD this past week and nothing really seemed to resonate strongly with me. I also walked away impressed with Cardozo's strengths, though.
I only a roughly two hour tour of BrookLaw, but it was a place I could envision enjoying myself most, compared to the other schools. Unfortunately, while I languished through day long admitted student days elsewhere, I was left wanting to know more about BLS after my tour. If it's okay, I'll post some take-aways that I personally have and some things that I am trying to know better.
Although I grew up in Queens, I think of Brooklyn as a foreign place. I've never spent significant time there before, but I really like the area in which Brooklyn's campus resides. I'd prefer to live close to my law school during 1L and while I'd be more likely to live anywhere in Manhattan when attending a school in that borough; I would not be comfortable living in any other area of Brooklyn than the BK Heights. I actually do believe housing at Feil is affordable for a studio when you consider the market in Brooklyn Heights is very expensive.
I can't speak to the support that professors and staff afford students at BLS (because it was just a tour), it did not appear to me that BLS was a restrictive environment for students. Moot court, journals, clinical experience, affinity clubs, and externships are all available and nothing precludes you from exercising one option at the same time as another. I got the impression that many students try their best to pad their resume with many of these activities, but I'm in the camp that believes law school will be what you make of it so I kind of like that.
I guess on the more negative end of the spectrum, I got a feeling that BLS is very competitive and can be characterized as "cut throat" (in fact the 2L giving my tour confided that in the few of us still hanging around at the end of the tour. It may just be my rose color glasses, but I think that has to do with the pressure that you can feel from your classmates taking part in many of the opportunities available to them. Also, I think it'd be very considerate to characterize the facility as "rustic," but that's as best as I can do. It seems like was designed from the law school archetype we know from old movies. Technology does not appear to be strongly integrated in classrooms. The microphones hanging from the ceilings of large lecture hall may bring visions of gallows and slipknots to some unfortunate Socratic method victim. Technology means a lot to me and it seems like BLS needs a drastic overhaul in that regard.
Finally, financially I am grateful to have received such a generous amount with generous stipulations, but it would really help me out if negotiation were available (full disclosure I haven't tried yet). I am a few years removed from my undergraduate career and that has resulted in my debt-tolerance to decrease. I want to know more about how to discuss this topic effectively and professionally. I also want to learn more about fellowship opportunities. If I were admitted to a fellowship program my decision would basically be made for me, but the deadlines are inconsistent and the results come out much later than when deposits are required so it may be a leap of faith.
If you think I should do some research on something you believe I'm overlooking, agree or disagree with something I said or you just wish I would write less next time let me know. I hope that there are others on this thread who are seeking a sounding board as they make their decision. Best of luck to all.