BigZuck wrote:Never applied to SMU so not really familiar with their scholarship policy. But Texas schools are kind of wonky with their scholarship offers (one instate splitter on this site was offered as much at UH as at Northwestern and UT). But if SMU is decently cheaper AND the OP doesn't really care about big law I think SMU could be a decent option.
Agreed that SMU could be a decent option if decently cheaper than UT. It's just that even if SMU gives a super generous full-tuition scholly, as long as UT gives what it's been giving, UT would still most likely be the better option. Definitely worth sending an app into, I'm just doubtful that she'll actually end up there.
BigZuck wrote:I think lower T14 is always credited over UT if big law is the be all, end all goal (and you're not concerned about cost).
BigZuck wrote:Maybe you can parse it out and say median at Duke is better than median at NU if you want TX big law (I honestly don't know if that's true or not) but when I was deciding schools I was given the impression that TX big law was relatively easy to get out of the T14, much more so than out of UT. "Like shooting fish in a barrel" and anecdotes about 1L SA offers before 1st semester grades came were common things I heard when speaking to kids at lower T14s. None of that is really true of UT, for the most part you're going to need good grades.
I have no actual knowledge about that either. However, the focus so many people put on ties (your Dallas comment, for example), makes "like shooting fish in a barrel" suspect. Maybe it's like shooting fish in a barrel for T14 students with legit ties, but OP doesn't really have legit ties to the state except for (presumably) one year of living in Dallas.
BigZuck wrote:It's when you start considering things like cost and personal preference and maybe wanting non-big law jobs that UT starts to be a consideration over the lower T14. Again, just my opinion.
Also, I'm still kind of operating under the assumption that her number will leave her with a "need to get big law" level of debt. True, NU might technically be more than UT but I would probably prefer to roll with 180K debt at NU than 120K at UT. NU is going to give you a much better shot at paying it off in one way or another.
Finally, I could be wrong but has the OP said she wants big law? If she just wants any lawyer job in Texas then zeroing in on UT and SMU (ideally after living and working in state before applying and if its at a reasonable, "don't need big law" cost) makes a ton of sense to me.
OP mentioned that she might be interested in working in government. She seems really drawn to living in Texas in particular. Hasn't said anything about biglaw, which is why I'm even more hesitant about the advisability of T14.
I looked at LSN and got estimates of approximately 95k debt at UT (assuming residency+60k) and 225k debt at NU (assuming 45k).
Edit: Scooped. High preference for low debt, and many different levels of outcomes are acceptable? Sounds like UT over T14 to me.