EDIT: Even more info;;;EDIT: New Info;;;Just got off Stanford Waitlist, is it crazy to consider it?

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Re: Just got off Stanford Waitlist, is it crazy to consider it?

Post by bearsfan23 » Sun Aug 23, 2015 3:43 pm

Go to Stanford

Post again in 1 year when you're so happy with your decision and that you have no regrets

Post again in 5 years when you're slaving away to pay off debt from the exact same job you would've gotten from Chicago

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Re: Just got off Stanford Waitlist, is it crazy to consider it?

Post by rnoodles » Sun Aug 23, 2015 3:47 pm

I'm an 0L, so take this with a grain of salt.

An offer to Chicago for $100K, added with the fact that you seem like you've already become very well situated there with a place, books, etc. complicates matters. But I also think school won't start there for like another few weeks (or month?) so it's not like you don't have any leeway at all. Have you considered what your lease stipulations and restrictions are? What about the actual COL in Chicago vs. Palo Alto? Would you need a car one place versus just a bike, walking, or public transportation at the other? Is $100K at Chicago equivalent to sticker (or slightly lesser) at Stanford for yourself and your finances given your career goals? There's a lot you have to consider in a relatively short amount of time.

In my opinion, again as an 0L, I think the prestige, connections, etc. of Stanford is definitely worth the trouble and costs in the short term. Some guy had a post a little while back where he got like full-tuition + stipend at Berk, but still chose Stanford at a much higher cost. Of course, his move and situation was likely much easier than yours will be. But it could help to know that you're not entirely crazy giving up all that money and time to make the move to Stanford. Others have done it, and they seem to be happy with it.

At the end of the day, you're the only person who knows what will be right. TLS can go back and forth giving you advice ranging from personal experience/opinions to well reasoned COL and COA breakdowns. That's all well and good, but none of us know you, your goals, or your situation better than, yup you guessed it, YOU. Whatever you choose, OP, you'll be in a great situation. I wish you the absolute best, and hope all works out for you at Chicago or Stanford and well beyond then!

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Re: Just got off Stanford Waitlist, is it crazy to consider it?

Post by hdunlop » Sun Aug 23, 2015 3:53 pm

Anyone taking Stanford at sticker over free Berkeley with a stipend is a bona fide moron. I hope that's not what happened here and "much higher cost" is total COA of $100K and he still got a ton of aid from Stanford because otherwise that's insane. The guy who turned down the Ruby for Stanford is also likely nuts.

For me Stanford's worth ~$50K more than Chicago for some mix of stronger CA prospects (unless you're from CA, in which case they're probably marginal), stronger clerking prospects and quality of life (not that Hyde Park isn't really nice in January). $100K v. $45K in aid feels like something I can (and did) justify (but I'm not paying it back yet). $100K discount v. sticker is an objectively bad decision (though subjectivity is a hell of a thing and it would suck turning it down).

The guy above is right that it's only up to you. The thing is that either way you're going to have regret: will it be regret you spent the money when you're paying it back, or will it be the what-could-have-been thing that kills you more. Know that you're going to hate your decision at times either way, figure out which one you'll hate less, and go for it.

One other thing to take into account is whatever money Stanford gives you is need-based and therefore not guaranteed to follow through in years two and three whereas Chicago's generally will.

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Re: Just got off Stanford Waitlist, is it crazy to consider it?

Post by Tiago Splitter » Sun Aug 23, 2015 4:01 pm

The person who took Stanford over Berk with stipend was looking at about a 65k cost difference.

I wonder if OP could negotiate a little more money out of Chicago. 100k feels a little light for someone with Stanford credentials.

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Re: Just got off Stanford Waitlist, is it crazy to consider it?

Post by rnoodles » Sun Aug 23, 2015 4:06 pm

Oh man, well that changes things obviously. Thanks for the clarification Tiago. Didn't recall much else from that thread.

I'm sure OP could get a bump from Chicago with a Stanford admission. Then again, they may have just been really desperate at Stanford to fill a spot and picked someone with Chicago credentials but serious ties to the area or some other soft that would be nice to have in the incoming class/make the decision to attend much easier. If OP is reading this, I don't mean this in a rude way at all. Just thinking of what the likelihood of a significant bump would be.

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Re: Just got off Stanford Waitlist, is it crazy to consider it?

Post by Notareallawyer123 » Sun Aug 23, 2015 4:51 pm

rnoodles22 wrote:Oh man, well that changes things obviously. Thanks for the clarification Tiago. Didn't recall much else from that thread.

I'm sure OP could get a bump from Chicago with a Stanford admission. Then again, they may have just been really desperate at Stanford to fill a spot and picked someone with Chicago credentials but serious ties to the area or some other soft that would be nice to have in the incoming class/make the decision to attend much easier. If OP is reading this, I don't mean this in a rude way at all. Just thinking of what the likelihood of a significant bump would be.
I got off the waitlist one week before classes start there, I'm well aware I wasn't quite their first choice. :P Though my credentials were median and above 75th percentile at Stanford.

And how would I go about hitting up Chicago for money? (again) I guess I can go in person: I am right here.

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Re: Just got off Stanford Waitlist, is it crazy to consider it?

Post by hdunlop » Sun Aug 23, 2015 5:15 pm

Chicago told me no in similar spot.

Must have been very small stipend at B.

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Re: Just got off Stanford Waitlist, is it crazy to consider it?

Post by WheninLaw » Sun Aug 23, 2015 6:33 pm

rnoodles22 wrote:In my opinion, again as an 0L, I think the prestige, connections, etc. of Stanford is definitely worth the trouble and costs in the short term.
But it's not. This is the problem with 0Ls giving advice in these situations. Undoubtably, in 2-3 years, you will change your mind.
rnoodles22 wrote:At the end of the day, you're the only person who knows what will be right. TLS can go back and forth giving you advice ranging from personal experience/opinions to well reasoned COL and COA breakdowns. That's all well and good, but none of us know you, your goals, or your situation better than, yup you guessed it, YOU. Whatever you choose, OP, you'll be in a great situation. I wish you the absolute best, and hope all works out for you at Chicago or Stanford and well beyond then!
This is silly and reflects a strange disconnect on TLS. If this was someone asking about two low ranked schools, nobody would give the "only you can know" advice -- but we give it in these situations, in which one decision (assuming it's 0/100) is, similarly, objectively much worse.

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Re: Just got off Stanford Waitlist, is it crazy to consider it?

Post by rnoodles » Sun Aug 23, 2015 7:56 pm

Notareallawyer123 wrote:
rnoodles22 wrote:Oh man, well that changes things obviously. Thanks for the clarification Tiago. Didn't recall much else from that thread.

I'm sure OP could get a bump from Chicago with a Stanford admission. Then again, they may have just been really desperate at Stanford to fill a spot and picked someone with Chicago credentials but serious ties to the area or some other soft that would be nice to have in the incoming class/make the decision to attend much easier. If OP is reading this, I don't mean this in a rude way at all. Just thinking of what the likelihood of a significant bump would be.
I got off the waitlist one week before classes start there, I'm well aware I wasn't quite their first choice. :P Though my credentials were median and above 75th percentile at Stanford.

And how would I go about hitting up Chicago for money? (again) I guess I can go in person: I am right here.
Oh no, please know you have definitely accomplished a great, great thing. Few people can say they were accepted to Stanford, and it's probably harder off the waitlist. So please pat yourself on the back, OP. First choice or not, you got the offer.

As far as negotiating is concerned, I think other TLSers can probably give much better advice than I would. You obviously want to be respectful and professional, esp. because there is the possibility that you will end up at Chicago anyway. But I don't know how going to the office in person to ask for more $$$ or else you'll bail will come off. Hope some other TLSers can speak to this better than I can/have so far.

Edit: Spelling.

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Re: Just got off Stanford Waitlist, is it crazy to consider it?

Post by nerd1 » Sun Aug 23, 2015 8:11 pm

rnoodles22 wrote: In my opinion, again as an 0L, I think the prestige, connections, etc. of Stanford is definitely worth the trouble and costs in the short term.
Stanford does not necessarily provide much better connections than Chicago from what I've seen. Because of its small size and shorter history, you wouldn't choose Stanford because of connections. More prestigious than Chicago for sure and so firms definitely prefer Stanford students over Chicago students with similar grades.

I think it's down to how risk-averse you are, whether your family could support you etc. The benefits of going to Stanford over Chicago that I've mentioned would not be worth the money you are giving up though. Suppose you decide go to Stanford. Unless you do very well at Stanford such that you would be looking at super selective firms (Munger, W&C etc) and a fed clerkship, or do poorly there such that you would appreciate the extra security, you will regret not having gone to Chicago.

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Re: Just got off Stanford Waitlist, is it crazy to consider it?

Post by abl » Sun Aug 23, 2015 10:14 pm

If you're pretty sure you want to do some sort of fairly mainstream biglaw (like "Vault 50 litigation in NY or LA"), Stanford is probably not worth $100k more than Chicago. Those are the sorts of jobs that make lawyers miserable, so I would strongly recommend reconsidering if that's what you're currently gunning for. These are the jobs that most folks at TLS are gunning for--whether out of debt-service necessity or because the more rewarding legal positions tend to be much harder to land (for a variety of reasons, not limited to just application selectivity). And, unsurprisingly, there is a general TLS "inevitability of biglaw" attitude. To be fair, biglaw feels pretty inevitable if you're a 1L or a 2L at a T14 (or if you're in biglaw).

But biglaw isn't inevitable. There are a non-negligible number of alternative careers available, especially to graduates of top law schools. The reason to choose Stanford over Chicago for a $100k COA difference isn't to improve your chances of landing some biglaw position, or to improve the likelihood that you'll end up in a V10 rather than a V50: Chicago is sufficiently biglaw secure to make the marginal additional security of Stanford not worth big change to any but the most risk averse applicants, and the difference in a V10 vs a V50 is sufficiently small to make the increase that you'll have the option of a V10 at Stanford not worth very much (certainly not $100k, at least not to most law students).

The main reason to choose Stanford over Chicago is to shoot for one of the few law jobs that don't suck. Many of these jobs require clerkships, and Stanford provides a huge advantage in this area over Chicago. Many of these jobs are intensely competitive and, well, the fine prestige differences (like between Chicago and Stanford) tend to matter the most for the most competitive positions. Many of these jobs also require lots of work, research, and connections to land, and Stanford (like Yale) has much less of a biglaw-centered culture than Chicago -- which means that far more of your classmates will be looking for other things, far more Stanford alums doing other things (to talk and network with), far more professors pushing Stanford grads into doing other things, far more different jobs recruiting on campus, etc. I think Chicago's cultural particularly enthusiastic endorsement of biglaw, in particular, hurts it here.

Look, the majority of Stanford grads will do the same thing after graduation as the majority of Chicago grads. And the majority of Stanford biglaw alums will do the same thing as the majority of Chicago biglaw alums post-biglaw. If you think you're highly likely to follow the masses whether at Stanford or Chicago, well, it's probably not worth an extra $100k for Stanford--when something like 60% of the class at Stanford and 80% of the class at Chicago do biglaw, chances are you will too. But if you're willing to do a little bit of extra legwork to go against the flow, I do think that Stanford could be a reasonable choice over Chicago for $100k extra. (And I certainly think Stanford at full COA is a reasonable option, full stop.)

Finally, because so many folks are dismissing others' opinions based on the fact they are 0Ls, 1Ls, boomers, etc, I'm neither a law student nor a boomer, and I graduated with significant debt (which I have had several years of working on paying to fully appreciate). Sure, no debt is better than debt, but (having worked at jobs I hate and jobs I love, and having made several years worth of debt payments) I find the burden of debt payments to make far less of an impact on my happiness than the burden of working at a job that I hate. Not everyone's going to feel this way, but I do think it's an abnormal or unreasonable way to feel about debt and work.

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Re: Just got off Stanford Waitlist, is it crazy to consider it?

Post by abl » Sun Aug 23, 2015 10:16 pm

nerd1 wrote:
rnoodles22 wrote: In my opinion, again as an 0L, I think the prestige, connections, etc. of Stanford is definitely worth the trouble and costs in the short term.
Stanford does not necessarily provide much better connections than Chicago from what I've seen. Because of its small size and shorter history, you wouldn't choose Stanford because of connections. More prestigious than Chicago for sure and so firms definitely prefer Stanford students over Chicago students with similar grades.

I think it's down to how risk-averse you are, whether your family could support you etc. The benefits of going to Stanford over Chicago that I've mentioned would not be worth the money you are giving up though. Suppose you decide go to Stanford. Unless you do very well at Stanford such that you would be looking at super selective firms (Munger, W&C etc) and a fed clerkship, or do poorly there such that you would appreciate the extra security, you will regret not having gone to Chicago.
Isn't SLS older than CLS?

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Re: Just got off Stanford Waitlist, is it crazy to consider it?

Post by jbagelboy » Sun Aug 23, 2015 10:20 pm

abl wrote:
nerd1 wrote:
rnoodles22 wrote: In my opinion, again as an 0L, I think the prestige, connections, etc. of Stanford is definitely worth the trouble and costs in the short term.
Stanford does not necessarily provide much better connections than Chicago from what I've seen. Because of its small size and shorter history, you wouldn't choose Stanford because of connections. More prestigious than Chicago for sure and so firms definitely prefer Stanford students over Chicago students with similar grades.

I think it's down to how risk-averse you are, whether your family could support you etc. The benefits of going to Stanford over Chicago that I've mentioned would not be worth the money you are giving up though. Suppose you decide go to Stanford. Unless you do very well at Stanford such that you would be looking at super selective firms (Munger, W&C etc) and a fed clerkship, or do poorly there such that you would appreciate the extra security, you will regret not having gone to Chicago.
Isn't SLS older than CLS?
What? Stanford university wasn't founded until the end of the 19th century, let alone the law school (est. 1893). CLS was founded in 1858. Unless by cls you mean university of chicago, which is a very bizarre way to refer to the school.

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Re: Just got off Stanford Waitlist, is it crazy to consider it?

Post by A. Nony Mouse » Sun Aug 23, 2015 10:23 pm

I get that most people don't call Chicago CLS, but since this whole discussion has been about Chicago, it's pretty clear that's what abl meant. That said, they seem to have been founded 5 years apart, and "short history" is a pretty ridiculous argument to make about either of them.

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Re: Just got off Stanford Waitlist, is it crazy to consider it?

Post by abl » Sun Aug 23, 2015 10:35 pm

WheninLaw wrote:
rnoodles22 wrote:In my opinion, again as an 0L, I think the prestige, connections, etc. of Stanford is definitely worth the trouble and costs in the short term.
But it's not. This is the problem with 0Ls giving advice in these situations. Undoubtably, in 2-3 years, you will change your mind.
rnoodles22 wrote:At the end of the day, you're the only person who knows what will be right. TLS can go back and forth giving you advice ranging from personal experience/opinions to well reasoned COL and COA breakdowns. That's all well and good, but none of us know you, your goals, or your situation better than, yup you guessed it, YOU. Whatever you choose, OP, you'll be in a great situation. I wish you the absolute best, and hope all works out for you at Chicago or Stanford and well beyond then!
This is silly and reflects a strange disconnect on TLS. If this was someone asking about two low ranked schools, nobody would give the "only you can know" advice -- but we give it in these situations, in which one decision (assuming it's 0/100) is, similarly, objectively much worse.
I totally disagree about both of your points.

First, I think it's likely that most 0Ls giving this advice will still agree with their initial advice in 2-3 years. Why? Because much of folks' relevant advice on these threads is based on the personal value that they assign to things like career risk, career reward, debt, prestige, etc -- and those things tend to change fairly slowly for most people. Sure, some folks will do a 180 (and will undoubtedly be the most vocal about airing their changed views) but most folks will feel roughly similarly about these factors after graduating from Chicago or Stanford as they did entering.

Second, and relatedly, "only you can know" is the answer in all possible circumstances -- obviously. Sure, there are some circumstances in which it is exceedingly unlikely that an applicant would truly be better off in situation [a] than situation (like Cooley at $100k debt vs Harvard at $50k debt), but it is the case in every circumstance that individual preferences will control the decision. And it is at the very least, conceivable, that Cooley could be a better decision than Harvard for some hypothetical lawyer.

I think that there is a surprisingly fine line between telling folks that they're incorrectly evaluating the differences between schools ("no, really, Harvard is a lot better than Cooley") and telling folks that their own personal valuation of the various factors is wrong ("you're wrong to think that your wife having a dream job in Lancing is a reason to go to law school in Lancing"). And I think that this is a problem with so many of these discussions on TLS. Are there valid reasons one could have for attending Stanford at full COA? Obviously. Are there valid reasons one could have for paying $100k or $200k more to go to Stanford than Chicago? Obviously. Do all prospective students making these choices value the respective differences between the schools such to justify such choices? Obviously not. But some do, which strikes me as being an obvious truth too often summarily dismissed by many (but not all) posters on TLS.
Last edited by abl on Sun Aug 23, 2015 10:41 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: Just got off Stanford Waitlist, is it crazy to consider it?

Post by abl » Sun Aug 23, 2015 10:36 pm

A. Nony Mouse wrote:I get that most people don't call Chicago CLS, but since this whole discussion has been about Chicago, it's pretty clear that's what abl meant. That said, they seem to have been founded 5 years apart, and "short history" is a pretty ridiculous argument to make about either of them.
This.

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Re: Just got off Stanford Waitlist, is it crazy to consider it?

Post by nerd1 » Sun Aug 23, 2015 10:44 pm

A. Nony Mouse wrote:I get that most people don't call Chicago CLS, but since this whole discussion has been about Chicago, it's pretty clear that's what abl meant. That said, they seem to have been founded 5 years apart, and "short history" is a pretty ridiculous argument to make about either of them.
That was "pretty ridiculous", wasn't it? You must have nothing else to ridicule.
My bad about history. Should have said both schools lack history and size to boast connections.

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Re: Just got off Stanford Waitlist, is it crazy to consider it?

Post by A. Nony Mouse » Sun Aug 23, 2015 11:07 pm

nerd1 wrote:
A. Nony Mouse wrote:I get that most people don't call Chicago CLS, but since this whole discussion has been about Chicago, it's pretty clear that's what abl meant. That said, they seem to have been founded 5 years apart, and "short history" is a pretty ridiculous argument to make about either of them.
That was "pretty ridiculous", wasn't it? You must have nothing else to ridicule.
My bad about history. Should have said both schools lack history and size to boast connections.
I wasn't paying attention to the rest of the argument. I just really don't think Stanford/Chicago's age make the slightest difference - 120-odd years is plenty of time to create alumni. A short history is, say, Ave Maria. Smaller groups often have tighter bonds/connections than larger ones, too.

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Re: Just got off Stanford Waitlist, is it crazy to consider it?

Post by abl » Sun Aug 23, 2015 11:09 pm

nerd1 wrote:
A. Nony Mouse wrote:I get that most people don't call Chicago CLS, but since this whole discussion has been about Chicago, it's pretty clear that's what abl meant. That said, they seem to have been founded 5 years apart, and "short history" is a pretty ridiculous argument to make about either of them.
That was "pretty ridiculous", wasn't it? You must have nothing else to ridicule.
My bad about history. Should have said both schools lack history and size to boast connections.
I can't tell if you're joking. But in case you're not, 120 years is easily more than enough time for connections in the U.S., especially in a field that's changed as much as law has.

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Re: Just got off Stanford Waitlist, is it crazy to consider it?

Post by kaiser » Sun Aug 23, 2015 11:12 pm

WheninLaw wrote:It would be absolutely insane to go to Stanford without some money. Insane. Don't listen to 0/1Ls.
+1 to this from another grad

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Re: Just got off Stanford Waitlist, is it crazy to consider it?

Post by WheninLaw » Sun Aug 23, 2015 11:25 pm

abl wrote:First, I think it's likely that most 0Ls giving this advice will still agree with their initial advice in 2-3 years. Why? Because much of folks' relevant advice on these threads is based on the personal value that they assign to things like career risk, career reward, debt, prestige, etc -- and those things tend to change fairly slowly for most people. Sure, some folks will do a 180 (and will undoubtedly be the most vocal about airing their changed views) but most folks will feel roughly similarly about these factors after graduating from Chicago or Stanford as they did entering.
And those valuations are dumb and often irrational. 0L's, in general, assign far too much value to certain factors (e.g., prestige) and far too little value to other (e.g., debt). I treat them as people that buy expensive wine, but couldn't tell the difference between a $50 and $100 bottle, with one caveat: most don't have the $100 to buy the fucking bottle in the first place.

People will feel the same when they graduate due to confirmation bias. That doesn't mean the original decision wasn't objectively bad. Like, there are a lot of threads where people turn down the Ruby or Hamilton for truly no other reason than prestige. Unfortunately, they (and 99% of 0L's) don't have any conception of debt or big law. Graduating from Liberal Arts school X with 50K in debt is a lot different than 250K.

Like, christ - "there are valid reasons to pick S over C and pay $200K more." Are you serious? I can think of a few, and they won't apply to 99% of law students. edit: trying to be nicer.

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Re: Just got off Stanford Waitlist, is it crazy to consider it?

Post by stronitsing » Mon Aug 24, 2015 12:11 am

abl wrote:
WheninLaw wrote:
rnoodles22 wrote:In my opinion, again as an 0L, I think the prestige, connections, etc. of Stanford is definitely worth the trouble and costs in the short term.
But it's not. This is the problem with 0Ls giving advice in these situations. Undoubtably, in 2-3 years, you will change your mind.
rnoodles22 wrote:At the end of the day, you're the only person who knows what will be right. TLS can go back and forth giving you advice ranging from personal experience/opinions to well reasoned COL and COA breakdowns. That's all well and good, but none of us know you, your goals, or your situation better than, yup you guessed it, YOU. Whatever you choose, OP, you'll be in a great situation. I wish you the absolute best, and hope all works out for you at Chicago or Stanford and well beyond then!
This is silly and reflects a strange disconnect on TLS. If this was someone asking about two low ranked schools, nobody would give the "only you can know" advice -- but we give it in these situations, in which one decision (assuming it's 0/100) is, similarly, objectively much worse.
Are there valid reasons one could have for paying $100k or $200k more to go to Stanford than Chicago? Obviously.
what are valid reasons for a person choosing stanford for 200k more over chicago ?

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Re: Just got off Stanford Waitlist, is it crazy to consider it?

Post by Ron Howard » Mon Aug 24, 2015 12:27 am

stronitsing wrote:
abl wrote:
WheninLaw wrote:
rnoodles22 wrote:In my opinion, again as an 0L, I think the prestige, connections, etc. of Stanford is definitely worth the trouble and costs in the short term.
But it's not. This is the problem with 0Ls giving advice in these situations. Undoubtably, in 2-3 years, you will change your mind.
rnoodles22 wrote:At the end of the day, you're the only person who knows what will be right. TLS can go back and forth giving you advice ranging from personal experience/opinions to well reasoned COL and COA breakdowns. That's all well and good, but none of us know you, your goals, or your situation better than, yup you guessed it, YOU. Whatever you choose, OP, you'll be in a great situation. I wish you the absolute best, and hope all works out for you at Chicago or Stanford and well beyond then!
This is silly and reflects a strange disconnect on TLS. If this was someone asking about two low ranked schools, nobody would give the "only you can know" advice -- but we give it in these situations, in which one decision (assuming it's 0/100) is, similarly, objectively much worse.
Are there valid reasons one could have for paying $100k or $200k more to go to Stanford than Chicago? Obviously.
what are valid reasons for a person choosing stanford for 200k more over chicago ?
Rich parents.

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Re: Just got off Stanford Waitlist, is it crazy to consider it?

Post by UofCforme » Mon Aug 24, 2015 12:36 am

Rising 2L at Chicago with many friends at Stanford. Stay put. You will get the same job that you would with a Stanford diploma. Seriously, take that money.

Also, clerking from Chicago is pretty do-able. There are lots of people in my class with clerkships already lined up.

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Re: Just got off Stanford Waitlist, is it crazy to consider it?

Post by Tiago Splitter » Mon Aug 24, 2015 12:41 am

OP is it really gonna be 100k? No money from family and no money from Stanford?

Seriously? What are you waiting for?

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