NYU $, Mich/Cornell $$ or sit out?

(Rankings, Profiles, Tuition, Student Life, . . . )

What to do?

NYU- ~260 at repayment
36
46%
Michigan- ~190 at repayment
14
18%
Cornell- ~190 at repayment
18
23%
Sit out and/or pray for Harvard
10
13%
 
Total votes: 78

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phillywc

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NYU $, Mich/Cornell $$ or sit out?

Post by phillywc » Sun Mar 23, 2014 12:00 am

-The schools you are considering:
NYU, Michigan, Cornell


-The total Cost of Attendance (COA) of each:
NYU: 25k total. ~260k debt at repayment
Michigan: 54k total. ~190k debt at repayment
Cornell: 75k total. ~190k debt at repayment

-How you will be financing your COA, i.e. loans, family, or savings:
Loans, entirely.

-Where you are from and where you want to work, and other places where you have significant ties (if any):

I am from Philadelphia and have major ties here (albeit non-legal), and ideally that is where I would like to work. Wouldn't mind NYC at all, however. Have ties to a few other secondary markets, but nothing major.

-Your general career goals:
Clerkship would be great. Big Law>In-House/Gov is what I want as a 0l, but it is hard to say.

-Your LSAT/GPA numbers:
3.5x/173

-How many times you have taken the LSAT:
Just the once. 100% willing to take again, as I under studied, but I don't know that it would help very much.


Other options: USC/Vandy with 80k were not super appealing options to me. Held at Columbia. Haven't heard from HLS/NU yet, but not expecting major money from NU or to get in at HLS. WL'd by Penn.

I am K-JD. I do work full time, but I already have an end date for that job so I couldn't continue to do that if I sat out a year. I do not think I would be able to get great or high paying work that would really help my app/help me save money. I could live at home for a year in theory if I didn't get work, but it would put major financial strain on my parents. I'm very, very young, so I don't mind sitting out if it would help my options, but I do think my GPA is going to limit me going forward.

I will say that while I think I would enjoy the atmosphere at Michigan/Cornell a bit better (my ug experience was a bit lacking, getting part of that during LS would be cool), I visited NYU and LOVED it.

eta: don't quote please :)

Also, I have not negotiated yet. I don't think I have a ton of room to move, but NYU might give me a little more?
Last edited by phillywc on Sun Mar 23, 2014 12:06 am, edited 2 times in total.

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Mack.Hambleton

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Re: NYU $, Mich/Cornell $$ or sit out?

Post by Mack.Hambleton » Sun Mar 23, 2014 12:02 am

I'd say NYU to hedge your bets for biglaw.

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lawschool22

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Re: NYU $, Mich/Cornell $$ or sit out?

Post by lawschool22 » Sun Mar 23, 2014 12:24 am

I think with your options and goals NYU is your best bet. Of course you definitely wanna negotiate, but the others aren't offering you enough at this point to sway you from NYU. #NYULS2017!!

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Lacepiece23

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Re: NYU $, Mich/Cornell $$ or sit out?

Post by Lacepiece23 » Sun Mar 23, 2014 2:29 am

I'd go Cornell. A lot of people get Biglaw still and NYU to me isn't worth 70k more. Just my opinion. Or sit out for some more money.

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Re: NYU $, Mich/Cornell $$ or sit out?

Post by BigZuck » Sun Mar 23, 2014 3:14 am

I agree that retaking probably wouldn't help a whole lot so probably not worth it. Have you noticed 3.5/177+ getting much better offers? The only thing I can think is maybe bringing Columbia into play. I think Noodley was a 3.5/179 or thereabouts and got a big scholarship to UVA, but he was also instate so maybe that mattered.

Of these I think I would probably choose Cornell as I don't think NYU is worth 70K more.

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aboutmydaylight

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Re: NYU $, Mich/Cornell $$ or sit out?

Post by aboutmydaylight » Sun Mar 23, 2014 3:24 am

You're going to need big law to repay 190k anyway. I think NYU is justified in this case, since Cornell really doesn't give you any more flexibility and NYU outperforms it.

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lastsamurai

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Re: NYU $, Mich/Cornell $$ or sit out?

Post by lastsamurai » Sun Mar 23, 2014 8:18 am

I voted for NYU. I'm not sure how much sitting out 1 year would help you. Maybe if you could get some solid WE and would sit out 2 years, but that doesn't seem to be in line with your current expectations post graduation. Honestly don't think you can go wrong choosing NYU in this scenario

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Tiago Splitter

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Re: NYU $, Mich/Cornell $$ or sit out?

Post by Tiago Splitter » Sun Mar 23, 2014 10:20 am

I think NYU is justified if you want to go that way but I'd take Cornell.

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AAJD2B

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Re: NYU $, Mich/Cornell $$ or sit out?

Post by AAJD2B » Sun Mar 23, 2014 10:25 am

Don't underestimate the additional 70k you would owe, separate from accruing interest. Debt is real.

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Re: NYU $, Mich/Cornell $$ or sit out?

Post by staysha » Sun Mar 23, 2014 10:46 am

AAJD2B wrote:Don't underestimate the additional 70k you would owe, separate from accruing interest. Debt is real.

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Otunga

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Re: NYU $, Mich/Cornell $$ or sit out?

Post by Otunga » Sun Mar 23, 2014 11:34 am

Can anybody speak to how much the biglaw firm prestige matters to obtaining in-house/fed gov work? Since NYU is a better bet for the more prestigious firms, if the prestige matters in a sufficiently substantial way, then maybe NYU is the better choice here, with the added bonus that you're simply more likely to get biglaw at NYU. That said, I voted for Cornell. 70k is significant enough.

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Re: NYU $, Mich/Cornell $$ or sit out?

Post by Hutz_and_Goodman » Sun Mar 23, 2014 11:35 am

I would sit out or pray for Harvard. What about Northwestern?

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jbagelboy

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Re: NYU $, Mich/Cornell $$ or sit out?

Post by jbagelboy » Sun Mar 23, 2014 11:50 am

Hutz_and_Goodman wrote:I would sit out or pray for Harvard. What about Northwestern?
I can only see this being worthwhile if OP's financial circumstances would lend themselves to a large aid grant. Otherwise, H would just cost more. Also the number of 3.5x non-urm that get into H is practically negligible.

I voted NYU, but it's close. It will be a lot of debt, but unless your GPA increased this semester, I don't see future cycles improving your odds greatly. I think WE could be very valuable to you, but not if you 1) don't have a job after graduation, because anything you get at this point would likely be low paying and meh, and 2) are actually committed to being an attorney, in which case going to one of the best schools in the country isn't a bad way to start.

Also, why do you want to clerk? Are you interested in litigation, or doing deals? What kind of gov attorney would you like to be, ultimately, after your stint in biglaw to pay off the debt? clerking for a federal judge is compatible with some career choices, but not a reasonable decision for everyone. Think about why you'd want to do it, not just because it's prestigious or sounds cool. For example, you listed both in-house and gov: as far as exit options go, a transactional/corporate practice like banking/finance, capital markets or M&A might lend itself more to the transition to in-house counsel, in which case a clerkship would be useless and a waste of time, whereas maybe you would want to be a litigator if you were heading to DoJ (or a securities litigator for SEC).

I think you should talk about these decisions with your family/SO if you have one/ect. and decide what kind of lifestyle you want 5 yrs out, 10 yrs out, and how badly you want to practice law. It sounds like you've made some interesting career choices already, like working 30-40 hours as a college student (which I would not have done, for example). Maybe law school is something to revisit in several years, maybe not. Either way, I highly doubt sitting out 1 cycle will help.
Last edited by jbagelboy on Sun Mar 23, 2014 11:56 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: NYU $, Mich/Cornell $$ or sit out?

Post by BigZuck » Sun Mar 23, 2014 11:55 am

Kind of surprised so many people are saying NYU. I get it, maybe big law chances are somewhat better out of NYU than Cornell but do you really think there are a lot of scenarios were he strikes out at Cornell but wouldn't have at NYU? And is that worth 70K? Honest questions.

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Re: NYU $, Mich/Cornell $$ or sit out?

Post by radikal_eyes » Sun Mar 23, 2014 12:09 pm

BigZuck wrote:Kind of surprised so many people are saying NYU. I get it, maybe big law chances are somewhat better out of NYU than Cornell but do you really think there are a lot of scenarios were he strikes out at Cornell but wouldn't have at NYU? And is that worth 70K? Honest questions.
going off the NLJ rankings, NYU placed 295 (out of 537) first-year associates in NLJ250 firms while Cornell placed 87 (out of 193). That's nearly 10% more of graduates placed in big law...

also, in terms of "firm favorite" rankings, NYU places much better than Cornell.

is that advantage worth 70 K? possibly.

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lawschool22

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Re: NYU $, Mich/Cornell $$ or sit out?

Post by lawschool22 » Sun Mar 23, 2014 12:12 pm

BigZuck wrote:Kind of surprised so many people are saying NYU. I get it, maybe big law chances are somewhat better out of NYU than Cornell but do you really think there are a lot of scenarios were he strikes out at Cornell but wouldn't have at NYU? And is that worth 70K? Honest questions.
Fair points, I just think once you start approaching $200k+ the extra insurance against striking out becomes more and more important. If I'm going to spend $200k+ I want to have as high as odds as possible that I will get biglaw. I would take the risk of lower chances at getting biglaw if it meant I was going to be closer to the $100k end of the spectrum, but once you get up there toward $200k I feel like I would want to be confident I'll get a jerb.

Now I think you do raise an important question that we probably need to answer before writing cornell off, and that is how much more likely are you to get biglaw at NYU vs Cornell? Another thing is that OP wants philly, so would NYU make that easier than cornell? I think it probably would since you're competing with a good number of Penn grads, so it would help to have NYU behind you.

Sorry for the rambling nature of this post, I'm writing it on my phone while eating brunch lol. Just wanted to get some thoughts out there for discussion.

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Re: NYU $, Mich/Cornell $$ or sit out?

Post by AAJD2B » Sun Mar 23, 2014 12:13 pm

radikal_eyes wrote:
BigZuck wrote:Kind of surprised so many people are saying NYU. I get it, maybe big law chances are somewhat better out of NYU than Cornell but do you really think there are a lot of scenarios were he strikes out at Cornell but wouldn't have at NYU? And is that worth 70K? Honest questions.
going off the NLJ rankings, NYU placed 295 (out of 537) first-year associates in NLJ250 firms while Cornell placed 87 (out of 193). That's nearly 10% more of graduates placed in big law...
Self-selection, anyone?

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lawschool22

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Re: NYU $, Mich/Cornell $$ or sit out?

Post by lawschool22 » Sun Mar 23, 2014 12:14 pm

Also jbagel makes good points that apply to everyone going to LS. It's really important to at least have a somewhat clear idea of where you want to be career-wise, because that helps make the decision a lot easier.

(Not saying philly's goals aren't clear. I'm speaking broadly.)

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Re: NYU $, Mich/Cornell $$ or sit out?

Post by BigZuck » Sun Mar 23, 2014 12:33 pm

radikal_eyes wrote:
BigZuck wrote:Kind of surprised so many people are saying NYU. I get it, maybe big law chances are somewhat better out of NYU than Cornell but do you really think there are a lot of scenarios were he strikes out at Cornell but wouldn't have at NYU? And is that worth 70K? Honest questions.
going off the NLJ rankings, NYU placed 295 (out of 537) first-year associates in NLJ250 firms while Cornell placed 87 (out of 193). That's nearly 10% more of graduates placed in big law...

also, in terms of "firm favorite" rankings, NYU places much better than Cornell.

is that advantage worth 70 K? possibly.
Yeah but the NLJ 250 does not compose all desirable jobs. At firms of 100+ + federal clerkships, Cornell is pretty even with NYU (I know, I know NYU bros, PI self-selection, etc.)

A part of me feels like if the OP does something to strike out at Cornell (bad grades, bad interviewing skills), if he were in the same position at NYU the extra awesomeness of the NYU degree might not save him anyway. We're talking about the difference between NYU and Cornell for big law in the northeast, not the difference between NYU and, say, Vandy for big law in the northeast.

I'm not saying I'm right and other people are wrong, I honestly don't know. 70K just sounds like an awful lot of money to me to say NYU is a no brainer here.

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Nelson

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Re: NYU $, Mich/Cornell $$ or sit out?

Post by Nelson » Sun Mar 23, 2014 12:53 pm

I vote Cornell, but I'd work on that Penn waitlist and try and get some late money. If you want to work in Philly, going to one of the NYC schools is going to make getting back here damn near impossible.

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phillywc

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Re: NYU $, Mich/Cornell $$ or sit out?

Post by phillywc » Sun Mar 23, 2014 1:10 pm

jbagelboy wrote:
Hutz_and_Goodman wrote:I would sit out or pray for Harvard. What about Northwestern?
I can only see this being worthwhile if OP's financial circumstances would lend themselves to a large aid grant. Otherwise, H would just cost more. Also the number of 3.5x non-urm that get into H is practically negligible.

I voted NYU, but it's close. It will be a lot of debt, but unless your GPA increased this semester, I don't see future cycles improving your odds greatly. I think WE could be very valuable to you, but not if you 1) don't have a job after graduation, because anything you get at this point would likely be low paying and meh, and 2) are actually committed to being an attorney, in which case going to one of the best schools in the country isn't a bad way to start.

Also, why do you want to clerk? Are you interested in litigation, or doing deals? What kind of gov attorney would you like to be, ultimately, after your stint in biglaw to pay off the debt? clerking for a federal judge is compatible with some career choices, but not a reasonable decision for everyone. Think about why you'd want to do it, not just because it's prestigious or sounds cool. For example, you listed both in-house and gov: as far as exit options go, a transactional/corporate practice like banking/finance, capital markets or M&A might lend itself more to the transition to in-house counsel, in which case a clerkship would be useless and a waste of time, whereas maybe you would want to be a litigator if you were heading to DoJ (or a securities litigator for SEC).

I think you should talk about these decisions with your family/SO if you have one/ect. and decide what kind of lifestyle you want 5 yrs out, 10 yrs out, and how badly you want to practice law. It sounds like you've made some interesting career choices already, like working 30-40 hours as a college student (which I would not have done, for example). Maybe law school is something to revisit in several years, maybe not. Either way, I highly doubt sitting out 1 cycle will help.
HLS would likely give me a good bit in need aid, for the same reason I had to work 30-40 hours throughout school, my family is not super well off. I won't get HLS, but if I did, it would absolutely be a gamechange and my best choice, it might be my cheapest option. Any job I could get would be low paying/meh. I'm open to taking several years off (like I said, really young) but I do want to be an attorney and looking through the jobs I could get now, I can't help but think "there is no way I should put off law school to do this".

I want to clerk because I think it would be enjoyable, help with the pipe dream stuff (Academia!) and the bonus sounds awesome. I understand that clerkship is usually better for lit folks. I'm fine with lit, but if I don't get a clerkship I think I might rather do corp. It is hard as a 0L who hasn't done anything at all related to the law to say what they want to do, but the exit options seemed a bit more reliable. I'm unsure.

Thank you for your input and I apoligize for not elaborating in the OP. Also, sorry for all the spelling errors I am sure are there. I'm a terrible speller and work computers use an ancient version of IE with no spell check :/

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BanjoCalhoun

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Re: NYU $, Mich/Cornell $$ or sit out?

Post by BanjoCalhoun » Sun Mar 23, 2014 1:12 pm

If you can negotiate NYU into a larger scholarship this could get easier, but I agree that if you want more biglaw certainty NYU is the right choice anyway. Also sending a LOCI to Penn could be helpful to you since that seems like a good option if you're serious about Philly.

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furrrman

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Re: NYU $, Mich/Cornell $$ or sit out?

Post by furrrman » Sun Mar 23, 2014 1:57 pm

NYU and Cornell have almost the same numbers for biglaw+fed clerks. Smart move says go where your getting more money, although there is also something to be said for enjoying your three years. If you love NYU that much then maybe its worth the extra 70k, and I don't think that choice would be crazy at all.

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Re: NYU $, Mich/Cornell $$ or sit out?

Post by lecsa » Sun Mar 23, 2014 1:58 pm

.
Last edited by lecsa on Thu Mar 27, 2014 12:39 am, edited 1 time in total.

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furrrman

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Re: NYU $, Mich/Cornell $$ or sit out?

Post by furrrman » Sun Mar 23, 2014 2:05 pm

lecsa wrote:
furrrman wrote:NYU and Cornell have almost the same numbers for biglaw+fed clerks. Smart move says go where your getting more money, although there is also something to be said for enjoying your three years. If you love NYU that much then maybe its worth the extra 70k, and I don't think that choice would be crazy at all.
Not historically. NYU is better historically. I don't think we can make such a statement based on one year's employment prospects. (Are you a 0L?)

That said, I don't really like any of these options.
Yes 0L. I was looking at the past two years. Numbers for biglaw + fedclerks:
NYU 2013: 67
NYU 2012: 65.1

Cornell 2013: 68.4
Cornell 2012: 64.2

But there does seem to be a noticeable gap in 2011, with Cornell at 46.9 and NYU at 54.1. In any case, I would be more prone to make a school decision based on whats happened in the past couple years than what has historically happened.

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