WUSTL ($$$) or Reapply?

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thatplasticdude

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WUSTL ($$$) or Reapply?

Post by thatplasticdude » Thu Apr 08, 2021 2:30 pm

A splitter victim of this hellish cycle, i'm looking for some advice from random strangers.

173/3.5low, KJD but with a masters degree and solid internship experience. Figured it would be a total crapshoot going into the cycle with my numbers and lack of WE but wasn't expecting this result. Applied to almost all T13, waitlisted at 5 of them, rejected at four. Waitlisted at UCLA and Vandy as well. Only acceptances coming from WUSTL and NDLS, both with $$.5.

Short term goals are FC --> bigfed or maybe biglaw. No interest in practicing in the midwest, want to end up on either coast with a preference for DC (where I went to undergrad) or NY (grew up in the area).

I didn't think i'd be considering not heading to school in the fall, but now i'm getting cold feet and think I underperformed this cycle. I am not employed in any significant manner, just some random work to make some money as i've been waiting for decisions. I don't think retaking the LSAT is a good move, even though my PT average was 175-177 considering I've already taken it three times and at those high scores it feels like a crapshoot. I guess I would just be banking on next year being less competitive than this year which seems possible but not definite.

Am I overthinking and should just head to St. Louis?

crazywafflez

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Re: WUSTL ($$$) or Reapply?

Post by crazywafflez » Fri Apr 09, 2021 11:52 am

You aren't really a hard splitter though. I'm a bit dumbfounded that this cycle has just been so crazy. WashU for cheap isn't a bad option; but I feel like you should've at least had admittance to a few bottom T14s- maybe at sticker, but I feel those should've been options; and in years before you would've had a small scholly at gtown, sticker at Cornell, and a good/great scholly at T20 schools. Obviously, I have no clue about other things in your application (whether you messed up somewhere, or applied late or something); also, no clue if this is going to be the new norm for awhile on scores/competitiveness. I think your goals are possible from WashU or NDLS, but you'll need to perform pretty well, and I hate betting on those kind of odds- I usually bet on being median- but you'll have to do that equation yourself. Also, softs don't do much unless you're at the margins, and I think your softs are pretty standard for a lot of the students at T1 schools. I went to a T1 on a full scholly myself, and most of my peers were ex-engineers, teachers, worked on the hill, military personnel, a few PhDs, a lot of master degree folks, authors, journalists, etc. If I had to guess, only a quarter or so were K-JD. It is all about the numbers. But I do think you slightly underperformed your numbers. It could just be this cycle (and maybe you applied late or wrote a weird PS), but it could be like this for a couple years. What would your total COA for the 3 years (including living expenses) be for NDLS and WashU? What would your total debt be?

thatplasticdude

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Re: WUSTL ($$$) or Reapply?

Post by thatplasticdude » Fri Apr 09, 2021 12:23 pm

crazywafflez wrote:
Fri Apr 09, 2021 11:52 am
You aren't really a hard splitter though. I'm a bit dumbfounded that this cycle has just been so crazy. WashU for cheap isn't a bad option; but I feel like you should've at least had admittance to a few bottom T14s- maybe at sticker, but I feel those should've been options; and in years before you would've had a small scholly at gtown, sticker at Cornell, and a good/great scholly at T20 schools. Obviously, I have no clue about other things in your application (whether you messed up somewhere, or applied late or something); also, no clue if this is going to be the new norm for awhile on scores/competitiveness. I think your goals are possible from WashU or NDLS, but you'll need to perform pretty well, and I hate betting on those kind of odds- I usually bet on being median- but you'll have to do that equation yourself. Also, softs don't do much unless you're at the margins, and I think your softs are pretty standard for a lot of the students at T1 schools. I went to a T1 on a full scholly myself, and most of my peers were ex-engineers, teachers, worked on the hill, military personnel, a few PhDs, a lot of master degree folks, authors, journalists, etc. If I had to guess, only a quarter or so were K-JD. It is all about the numbers. But I do think you slightly underperformed your numbers. It could just be this cycle (and maybe you applied late or wrote a weird PS), but it could be like this for a couple years. What would your total COA for the 3 years (including living expenses) be for NDLS and WashU? What would your total debt be?
Applied to almost all schools in early October. PS was a little nontraditional, didn't really speak much about Why Law but rather about a story that I thought showcased my personality. Don't think it really hurt me but definitely didn't help clearly.

I've been feeling the same way. Of course if I end up at the top of the class I would definitely be able to achieve my goals but I am really trying to base my thoughts on median outcomes. My concern is exactly what you said, maybe this is just the new norm at least for a few cycles and my LSAT doesn't mean as much as it used to.

Given the NDLS shenanigans I really soured on that option. But for the sake of comparison i'll leave it in here.

NDLS: $104k COA
WUSTL: $~80k COA (just negotiated a scholly increase so I haven't run the numbers again but that number looks right.)

crazywafflez

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Re: WUSTL ($$$) or Reapply?

Post by crazywafflez » Fri Apr 09, 2021 4:22 pm

80k for WashU isn't a bad outcome- does this include living expenses? If it does, I would feel totally fine myself taking out 80 for WashU, as I feel it is a good enough school to hazard that kind of debt (others will disagree and you'll have to make that determination). No reason for ND to be in the running, WashU is even a bit better (last I checked?), and it is cheaper for you, and you don't seem to like ND, no reason to pick it. DC is gonna be rough from either; I think NYC is a good possibility from WashU, especially if the economy is doing better and since you're from there.
If you are able to get that cost down at WashU I would personally go for it; I'd probs still go for it in your current circumstance, but know that you could strike out on FCs or biglaw.
If you underperformed your LSAT practice tests maybe I'd retake? I think waiting till next cycle could just give you the same thing, but it is really hard to tell.
But WashU at 80 isn't a bad move at all- and if you can get it to like 60 (which would be basically a fullride and oyu're just paying living expenses) than that is a great outcome. You already know basically everything I'm saying and the placement power of these schools + retaking + waiting, etc.

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Dcc617

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Re: WUSTL ($$$) or Reapply?

Post by Dcc617 » Fri Apr 09, 2021 7:33 pm

A few years ago I knew people with your numbers who got half tuition at Columbia.

I'd sit out and try again. Especially as a KJD.

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replevin123

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Re: WUSTL ($$$) or Reapply?

Post by replevin123 » Fri Apr 09, 2021 7:54 pm

Agree with the advice to try again next year. I would think those numbers should get $ at CCN (maybe not Chi because of GPA) and possibly $$$ at t14. If you feel confident enough, retaking isn't crazy. A 176, for example, would put you in serious contention for big money from Columbia and could even get you H (though without strong aid, you should take big money elsewhere).

CalF123

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Re: WUSTL ($$$) or Reapply?

Post by CalF123 » Fri Apr 09, 2021 8:20 pm

Usually I would say never to factor in a future cycle being hypothetically less competitive in your decision- making as there is no guarantee it will be. I don’t expect next year to be significantly better than this one.

But in your case I think you really have been unlucky. With those numbers I would certainly have expected offers from a number of T14s with good schollies from T20s.

I would reapply and get help with your PS.

thatplasticdude

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Re: WUSTL ($$$) or Reapply?

Post by thatplasticdude » Sat Apr 10, 2021 9:51 am

Appreciate all the input. Yes, the 80k includes living costs. It really is a great option but I just have this nagging feeling I should've done better.

Does the fact that I am currently unemployed change any thoughts on reapplying? Of course I would very strongly look for work if I do decide to go that route but there's not guarantee that I get anything meaningful and so the extra year of WE may not be super relevant.

Iowahawk

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Re: WUSTL ($$$) or Reapply?

Post by Iowahawk » Sat Apr 10, 2021 3:00 pm

CalF123 wrote:
Fri Apr 09, 2021 8:20 pm
Usually I would say never to factor in a future cycle being hypothetically less competitive in your decision- making as there is no guarantee it will be. I don’t expect next year to be significantly better than this one.

But in your case I think you really have been unlucky. With those numbers I would certainly have expected offers from a number of T14s with good schollies from T20s.

I would reapply and get help with your PS.
Medians at T6 schools are going to be like 3.95/173 or something and Yale could conceivably have like a 175 median LSAT, it's the most competitive cycle in history by a mile and should be better next year. The number of high LSATs exploded due to the shorter online LSAT option, which should be less of a factor going forward.

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