wert3813 wrote:Can you give us a frank assessment of negotiation from the other side? Lots of Deans like to pretend they don't negotiate but it seems to happen quite a bit. What goes into your assessment of whether to beat, match, or let your offer stand?
There are no absolutes. So a dean may have a policy of not negotiating and 99% of the time it holds. That number not being 100% doesn't mean the person is "pretending". There are all sorts of reasons I won't get into as to why exceptions might be made. At the same time, I don't think it's hard to understand how any school would be hesitant to proclaim "We Negotiate!". That would create an administrative nightmare and make it incredibly hard to manage a scholarship budget when 100% of your class tries to "get a deal".
Personally, I don't enjoy it. It would make everyone's life easier if we (law schools) just gave our best offer and students simply made a decision. I wish I could give everyone a huge scholarship, but I can't. So every dollar I increase someone means I have one less dollar to give someone else. I bet at many schools the practice doesn't actually end up in a better class, only in the school spending more money on the class it would have had anyway.
I approach my decision as if I were the student asking. I ask for the letter from the other school (notice that's singular) and I engage the student in a discussion about what it is they're looking for in a law school. With that information, I think about what it would take for me to choose Texas Tech if I had the same options. I don't want to lose a great student if I can help it so I will do what I can. At some point, though, students have to make a decision. Fish or cut bait. #*&% or get off the pot.
And hey, sometimes the best decision for a student isn't Texas Tech even if I can offer a full-ride. I get that.
It's becoming so pervasive now, and that's not fun. It's usually pretty clear when someone just wants to use my offer to take back to their real 1st choice.
Also, please know how to do simple math. I had one student repeatedly come back to me for increases even though the other school she said she was considering was MORE expensive than we were even with their scholarship.
I want students that want to be here and are serious about their intention to come. Every year there are a handful of students who say they want to practice in Texas, but who I lose to out-of-state schools who wooed with large scholarships and the big city. And I just shake my head and wish them luck because, even if those schools are a little cheaper or slightly higher ranked, it's usually going to be much harder for them to find work, contacts back in Texas than it would have been had they come here (or anywhere else in Texas for that matter).
And since this post passed TL;DNR status a LONG time ago I will add a small request: Please write your request yourself. I've gotten up to three requests in a 2-day period that were almost identical. That tells me that you either don't actually care about coming to Tech and probably sent the same email to every other school, which doesn't make me all that inclined to do anything for you.
OK, if I were at home in my sweats I'd keep going, but I've been at work all day so I'm headed home. I left a lot on the table up there. Feel free to ask follow-up questions, and please remember that these are just my opinions jotted down as I wind down from reviewing files. I haven't gone over this like it was a law review article for submission so if I need to clarify or explain something I said a bit more, I will do so.