boilercat wrote:I made this promise to Berkeley. Said straight-up in my PS that I would promptly withdraw everywhere else and enroll if I got in. Fully plan on backing it up but I know I'm not going to get the opportunity to.
If I could've told it to a second school, it would've been SLS. A small part of the reason I chose to tell Berk was bc I knew that with my nonexistent softs SLS was going to look at my 3.63 and laugh (Berk, too, but at least I'm above their 75th LSAT and reasonably close to their 25th GPA). I'm counting on diversity (tho I have to check 'white' on the forms) and UG prestige to give me a dark shot in hell at SLS. I would easily take SLS over any school but Berk.
While I completely understand your reasoning for choosing Berkeley as your de facto
ED school, I've always wondered what it is about Berkeley that appeals to you more than SLS.
Let's say you get into both and pick Berkeley. Why do you do it, assuming $$ is equal?
I'm sure that boilercat has an answer, but I've given this question some thought as well. For years, the big advantage of Berkeley over Stanford was $$. Not long ago, in-state tuition at Boalt was a quarter of what it was at SLS. It was like every California resident got a 75% scholarship just by virtue of being accepted. (And OOS students could establish residency and get the in-state tuition for their second and third years.) That was a tough deal to turn down.
Now, as we all know, Berkeley's in-state tuition is approaching the level of SLS's, and may even pass it within a couple of years. With the cost of both schools being about the same, I think there are going to be very few students who will choose Berkeley over SLS. I can think of only two reasons why someone would:
1. While in law school, the student wants to earn a concurrent degree in a graduate program in which Berkeley is stronger than Stanford.
2. The student really prefers living in Berkeley to living in Palo Alto.
There might be the occasional law student who is swayed by the first consideration. Although Stanford's professional schools are more highly regarded, Berkeley probably has a slight edge in the overall reputation of its graduate programs, particularly in the Humanities and Social Sciences. It depends, of course, on what program we're talking about. (I would not, for example, rank Berkeley's Poli Sci program ahead of Stanford's.) But there are graduate programs where Berkeley is stronger, and a student seeking a concurrent degree might want to take advantage of that.
As for the second consideration, there are a lot of people, particularly young people, who dislike living in Palo Alto. Although I would rather live in Berkeley than Palo Alto, I can't imagine making a law school choice based on that factor. But there are definitely prospective law students out there who seem to really care about where they live; a few of these students might choose Berkeley Law over SLS based on location.
So, that was all a long way of saying that I find it hard to think of good reasons for choosing Berkeley Law over SLS. I hope that I eventually have this relatively easy choice.