COVID-19 and Admissions (Expect lower yields)

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COVID-19 and Admissions (Expect lower yields)

Post by LSATWiz.com » Mon Mar 23, 2020 1:51 pm

The college board is expecting much lower yields for most universities due to the economic situation caused by COVID-19 where families who expected to be able to afford a school will now no longer be able to afford it. This isn't expected to significantly impact Ivy League schools with large endowments who will respond by increasing aid, but will impact private universities without such endowments.

Law students are less likely to rely on their parents to pay tuition, but it's still fair to expect lower yields across the board. This means that there will likely be more waitlist applicants accepted, and it also creates an opportunity for students to negotiate higher scholarships. If possible, students should avail themselves to this opportunity as they are a more attractive candidate now than they were a month ago.

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Re: COVID-19 and Admissions (Expect lower yields)

Post by bobcat404 » Tue Mar 24, 2020 3:43 pm

Hi there,

First time poster whose on the wait list at many of my top choice schools (splitter). I was thinking about this topic and actually had the opposite theory, that more students who are admitted would be likely to enroll. This would be a reaction to a contraction in the labor market and less opportunities out there, similar to a recession.

With that said, I was also thinking that the inability for waitlisted students to retake the March/April/May LSATs might counteract this, causing things to balance out.

Do you have any numbers you can point to, or is this just theory at this point?

Thanks!

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Re: COVID-19 and Admissions (Expect lower yields)

Post by decimalsanddollars » Tue Mar 24, 2020 5:12 pm

See, I kind of see things going the opposite way: the economy worsens, people can't get jobs or get laid off, and they choose to go to law school rather than continue the job search, hoping the economy improves by the time they get out. I do agree that (1) this is a bad move for many people and (2) there are probably some very rational people who decide not to go to law school now because they can't afford it, but because law school can be financed entirely with government loans, I don't think people will actually decide they "can't afford it" unless they're particularly debt-averse AND have significant career alternatives. I predict next cycle will have significantly MORE applications (including and especially mediocre ones), but top schools will still be recruiting high scorers, which is a group not extremely likely to increase under my theory (and most likely to decrease under yours, given that high scorers tend to have good alternatives). In that case, excellent test prep is even more important for moving an applicant from the growing, undesirable pile to the shrinking, desirable pile of high-score applications.

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Re: COVID-19 and Admissions (Expect lower yields)

Post by LSATWiz.com » Tue Mar 24, 2020 5:53 pm

Replying to above - I see the lower yield this year, not necessarily in subsequent years. This is also a projection so there isn't really data to support it as we're predicting something that hasn't happened yet, but many sources have forecasted a lower yield for colleges:

https://finance.yahoo.com/news/coronavi ... 08357.html

https://www.insidehighered.com/news/202 ... nrollments

https://www.insidehighered.com/admissio ... admissions

https://www.forbes.com/sites/avivalegat ... 073e8e5e9d

I suspect colleges will be hit the hardest, but non-top 14 law schools will likely face much lower yields as well. I'd imagine that if the situation worsens, the more elite law schools will go into their endowments to put a class together whereas third or fourth tier schools may not be in a position to operate at a profit and be unwilling to operate at a loss.

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Re: COVID-19 and Admissions (Expect lower yields)

Post by decimalsanddollars » Wed Mar 25, 2020 10:00 am

LSATWiz.com wrote:I suspect colleges will be hit the hardest, but non-top 14 law schools will likely face much lower yields as well. I'd imagine that if the situation worsens, the more elite law schools will go into their endowments to put a class together whereas third or fourth tier schools may not be in a position to operate at a profit and be unwilling to operate at a loss.
100% agree. Less of a problem for schools with a war chest; more of a problem for schools that already have a few problems.

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Re: COVID-19 and Admissions (Expect lower yields)

Post by Red_Bird » Wed Mar 25, 2020 10:36 am

I agree. I think since non-trads are the ones who are especially attracted to lower-tier law schools, there will be less people willing to attend those schools. They generally have more responsibilities and law school will not be seen as a priority at this time. I'm interested to see how this plays out. I think colleges will be OK, overall. I know a lot of non-trads actually went to school to earn their first degree in the last financial crisis.

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Re: COVID-19 and Admissions (Expect lower yields)

Post by bobcat404 » Fri Mar 27, 2020 1:03 am

Thanks for taking the time to post those links. They were some interesting reads! Here's what I got out of them as it pertains to law school:
1 - Going out of state is less likely now because A- increased uncertainty bc you can't see a school in real life and B- may feel more comfortable to home, possibly for family health reasons (this is if schools don't go online and there is no need to move to attend an out of state school)
2 - International (especially Chinese) students are very unlikely to move now

I see #2 as less relevant. 1 is true because I am feeling it myself. I don't want to leave my home state just in case one of my family members gets sick and I am needed for support, emotionally/financially/etc.

With that said and unemployment skyrocketing, I would think applications might pour in towards April-May.

I see many schools have extended their application and deposit deadlines. Do you think this is directly attributed to trying to cast a wider net to make up for the drop-off in applicants/yield versus prior years?

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Re: COVID-19 and Admissions (Expect lower yields)

Post by LSATWiz.com » Fri Mar 27, 2020 11:24 am

bobcat404 wrote:Thanks for taking the time to post those links. They were some interesting reads! Here's what I got out of them as it pertains to law school:
1 - Going out of state is less likely now because A- increased uncertainty bc you can't see a school in real life and B- may feel more comfortable to home, possibly for family health reasons (this is if schools don't go online and there is no need to move to attend an out of state school)
2 - International (especially Chinese) students are very unlikely to move now

I see #2 as less relevant. 1 is true because I am feeling it myself. I don't want to leave my home state just in case one of my family members gets sick and I am needed for support, emotionally/financially/etc.

With that said and unemployment skyrocketing, I would think applications might pour in towards April-May.

I see many schools have extended their application and deposit deadlines. Do you think this is directly attributed to trying to cast a wider net to make up for the drop-off in applicants/yield versus prior years?
Yeah, but we haven't really seen unemployment skyrocket yet in the kind of fields pre-law school students have. Right now it's mostly impacting wait staff and people who work in construction.

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Re: COVID-19 and Admissions (Expect lower yields)

Post by bwh8813 » Sat Mar 28, 2020 12:12 am

It's true that yields will almost certainly be lower, but class sizes may also end up being quite a bit lower. Many law schools are preparing to potentially still be remote in the fall in some capacity - even if they plan to have students back by August, there's a concern over a 2nd wave. There's a real concern that a significant portion of the applicant pool holds off on going to law school for a cycle or two, or that many who do go will stay closer to home than they may otherwise have. There are a lot of unknowns at this point.

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Re: COVID-19 and Admissions (Expect lower yields)

Post by rgwen » Tue Mar 31, 2020 12:40 pm

bwh8813 wrote:It's true that yields will almost certainly be lower, but class sizes may also end up being quite a bit lower. Many law schools are preparing to potentially still be remote in the fall in some capacity - even if they plan to have students back by August, there's a concern over a 2nd wave. There's a real concern that a significant portion of the applicant pool holds off on going to law school for a cycle or two, or that many who do go will stay closer to home than they may otherwise have. There are a lot of unknowns at this point.
Do you think schools will reduce their class sizes before allowing medians to slip?

Somewhat related, I'm sitting on three waitlists so I'm curious how movement will be affected. Waitlisted candidates often are people they would like to have in the class, but don't quite have the numbers. We may see more movement, but I'm wondering if there would be a cutoff where a school would just eat the tuition dollars and field a smaller class to keep the numbers up. Also wondering if schools will be waitlisting a lot more candidates in April in order to have a larger reserve pile which may offset any advantage a waitlist candidate may have had from any increased movement.

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Re: COVID-19 and Admissions (Expect lower yields)

Post by ABCDEFGHJK » Sun Apr 12, 2020 6:38 am

bwh8813 wrote:It's true that yields will almost certainly be lower, but class sizes may also end up being quite a bit lower. Many law schools are preparing to potentially still be remote in the fall in some capacity - even if they plan to have students back by August, there's a concern over a 2nd wave. There's a real concern that a significant portion of the applicant pool holds off on going to law school for a cycle or two, or that many who do go will stay closer to home than they may otherwise have. There are a lot of unknowns at this point.
Following on this, any ideas what school policies will be if classes are still remote come September? I am waitlisted at Yale, and under normal circumstances would be fully committed to that waitlist position if it came through. But I'm concerned that I get in off waitlist, only to be told in August that first semester will be taught remotely. Would it be frowned upon to withdraw at that point? I can't fathom paying all this money only to be stuck on Zoom all day... I also live abroad so travel/visas etc. may be a problem. I'm planning to turn down other offers and reapply next year (I applied very late which hurt my chances in a few areas) but am torn about turning down even this potential long shot spot, as who knows if it will be on the table (I know only a waitlist spot but still).

Understand that a global pandemic is unchartered waters for everyone so not expecting anything definitive, but thought people might be able to shed some light on how a university is going to manage a lot of their students potentially foregoing the opportunity (I assume they are receiving a lot of deferral requests at the moment, which means waitlist chances are up...but don't want to be the sucker who does 1L remote...)

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Re: COVID-19 and Admissions (Expect lower yields)

Post by nixy » Sun Apr 12, 2020 8:37 am

If Yale does remote education this fall, it will be because everyone still is doing remote education this fall. Not sure why doing that would make you a sucker.

But in any case, there's no reason you can't turn down an offer to attend even if it comes the day before classes start (or tomorrow). Staying on the waitlist doesn't obligate you to attend. Even enrolling doesn't obligate you to attend; you can always withdraw before classes start. Or if you get accepted, you can ask to defer a year. (I'm not sure everyone's response to this crisis is going to be to ask to defer for a year; if people had organized their lives around going to law school in the fall, a lot will still probably want to go in the fall.)

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Re: COVID-19 and Admissions (Expect lower yields)

Post by QContinuum » Sun Apr 12, 2020 2:49 pm

It's unfathomable to me that someone would think you'd have to be a "sucker" to attend YLS if the first semester was held remotely due to the coronavirus.

Like, what's the concern, exactly? YLS will still provide the same brand and same placement power it always has. YLS will still provide the same curriculum, taught live by the same professors. And YLS has always graded first semester pass/fail, so even grades aren't an issue. So what exactly is the concern - one less semester to party at Toad's?

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Re: COVID-19 and Admissions (Expect lower yields)

Post by LSATWiz.com » Tue Apr 14, 2020 2:21 pm

I think trade schools like law school are different in that you're not there for the experience and not really even there to learn anything as it's really just a Hunger Games like contest. All that matters is the prestige on the resume. It's not like employers are going to equate Yale with Quinnipiac because you took classes online.

I would personally be less inclined to attend say NYU over a CUNY or Emory over Georgia State, etc., etc. for undergrad given that there you are going largely for the experience.

I just think you may see lower yields for law schools if people are less inclined to move out of state or become less comfortable taking out government loans. Law school tuitions were propped up in part because of the large starting salaries in big law. Even if schools had 5% big law placement, a substantial percentage of enrollees fully expect to be in that 5%. If say these reductions last for a year or more, which is not unlikely especially if the alternative is laying people off, even those who expect to be in the top 5% may be less likely to attend schools at their current tuition.

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Re: COVID-19 and Admissions (Expect lower yields)

Post by QContinuum » Tue Apr 14, 2020 3:44 pm

LSATWiz.com wrote:I would personally be less inclined to attend say NYU over a CUNY or Emory over Georgia State, etc., etc. for undergrad given that there you are going largely for the experience.
I think the impact will largely be limited to relatively few schools. Maybe primarily some of the "notorious" party schools - folks might instead opt for a cheaper option closer to home, with relatively similar reputation.

With your examples, there's still a large-enough prestige difference between NYU vs. CUNY (or even the average SUNY vs. the average CUNY), or Emory vs. Georgia State, that folks are still going to have a strong incentive to pay more for the name brand. I don't think people routinely choose Emory over Georgia State because they think Emory offers a better college experience. I think people choose Emory over Georgia State because they want the Emory name on their resume, and they perceive relatively greater value in Emory's placement ability and alumni network.

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Re: COVID-19 and Admissions (Expect lower yields)

Post by LSATWiz.com » Tue Apr 14, 2020 6:05 pm

QContinuum wrote:
LSATWiz.com wrote:I would personally be less inclined to attend say NYU over a CUNY or Emory over Georgia State, etc., etc. for undergrad given that there you are going largely for the experience.
I think the impact will largely be limited to relatively few schools. Maybe primarily some of the "notorious" party schools - folks might instead opt for a cheaper option closer to home, with relatively similar reputation.

With your examples, there's still a large-enough prestige difference between NYU vs. CUNY (or even the average SUNY vs. the average CUNY), or Emory vs. Georgia State, that folks are still going to have a strong incentive to pay more for the name brand. I don't think people routinely choose Emory over Georgia State because they think Emory offers a better college experience. I think people choose Emory over Georgia State because they want the Emory name on their resume, and they perceive relatively greater value in Emory's placement ability and alumni network.
I think you're underestimating the economic fallout of COVID-19. A lot of families that could have afforded to pay for their kids' tuition at these schools 3 months ago can't now. If you're the type of family that is considering sending your child to NYU or Emory, the stimulus package is not going to make up for losing your job or seeing the value of your stock holdings dip 20%. Even if you aren't laid off or furloughed, you have to bet that you won't be in the next 4 years and you have to make that bet right now. You have your retirement to worry about, and while most parents would gladly lay down their lives for their children, sending your child to a more affordable state school isn't sending them to Auschwitz. On a college level, it's going to be humongous yield differential - probably the biggest dips in history even among Ivy League universities with the exception of the very top schools. The current yields are being sustained by the upper middle class who are hit hard by this and don't really benefit that much from the stimulus package.

As applied to law school, it really depends on how college students and grads respond to being out of work. I can say on the LSAT front there seem to be fewer students prepping for the LSAT than there were a year ago, but it could be that the market for online tutoring has taken off. The online market is so saturated and saturated with tutors living in low cost of living areas that it just isn't really viable for a more specialized option so this observation should be taken with a grain of salt.

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Re: COVID-19 and Admissions (Expect lower yields)

Post by The Lsat Airbender » Tue Apr 14, 2020 10:47 pm

LSATWiz.com wrote:among Ivy League universities with the exception of the very top schools.
Cornell BTFO yet again

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Admissions In the Time of COVID-19

Post by baysmith3 » Thu Apr 16, 2020 1:24 pm

Does anyone have any insight into how COVID-19 has affected law school admissions? Is the process taking a shorter/longer period of time? Are more people admitted than usual? Are lower scores being accepted?

I am a student in Louisiana who wishes to practice in Louisiana - therefore, I am attending a Louisiana law school. I am above both the 75% margin in both LSAT and GPA rankings at my top school. I just applied, only because I was advised by the admissions office of the school to retake the LSAT and faced issues with my testing center. Those issues were finally resolved about two weeks ago and I secured my application. The deadline for my top school is not until late July, however. I realize with rolling admissions I will probably not hear back from my schools for a while but was just wondering how COVID was affecting admissions...
Last edited by baysmith3 on Thu Apr 16, 2020 1:43 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Admissions In the Time of COVID-19

Post by cavalier1138 » Thu Apr 16, 2020 1:37 pm

baysmith3 wrote:Does anyone have any insight into how COVID-19 has affected law school admissions? Is the process taking a shorter/longer period of time? Are more people admitted than usual? Are lower scores being accepted?

I am a student in Louisiana who wishes to practice in Louisiana - therefore, I am attending a Louisiana law school. I am above both the 75% margin in both LSAT and GPA rankings at my top school. I just applied, only because I was advised by the admissions office of the school to retake the LSAT and faced issues with my testing center. Those issues were finally resolved about two weeks ago and I secured my application. The deadline for my top school is not until late July, however. I realize with rolling admissions I will probably not hear back from my schools for a while but was just wondering how COVID was affecting admissions...
Which law schools have application deadlines in July?

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Re: Admissions In the Time of COVID-19

Post by baysmith3 » Thu Apr 16, 2020 1:46 pm

cavalier1138 wrote:
baysmith3 wrote:Does anyone have any insight into how COVID-19 has affected law school admissions? Is the process taking a shorter/longer period of time? Are more people admitted than usual? Are lower scores being accepted?

I am a student in Louisiana who wishes to practice in Louisiana - therefore, I am attending a Louisiana law school. I am above both the 75% margin in both LSAT and GPA rankings at my top school. I just applied, only because I was advised by the admissions office of the school to retake the LSAT and faced issues with my testing center. Those issues were finally resolved about two weeks ago and I secured my application. The deadline for my top school is not until late July, however. I realize with rolling admissions I will probably not hear back from my schools for a while but was just wondering how COVID was affecting admissions...
Which law schools have application deadlines in July?
Louisiana State University is July 1, Loyola NOLA is Aug 1, Mississippi College (offers Louisiana law certificate) is July 10 I believe.

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Re: COVID-19 and Admissions (Expect lower yields)

Post by zoeantonioni » Fri Apr 24, 2020 12:44 am

bobcat404 wrote:Thanks for taking the time to post those links. They were some interesting reads! Here's what I got out of them as it pertains to law school:
1 - Going out of state is less likely now because A- increased uncertainty bc you can't see a school in real life and B- may feel more comfortable to home, possibly for family health reasons (this is if schools don't go online and there is no need to move to attend an out of state school)
2 - International (especially Chinese) students are very unlikely to move now

I see #2 as less relevant. 1 is true because I am feeling it myself. I don't want to leave my home state just in case one of my family members gets sick and I am needed for support, emotionally/financially/etc.

With that said and unemployment skyrocketing, I would think applications might pour in towards April-May.

I see many schools have extended their application and deposit deadlines. Do you think this is directly attributed to trying to cast a wider net to make up for the drop-off in applicants/yield versus prior years?

I completely agree with this first statement, as it is something that directly pertains to myself and close friends going to law school. All of us were looking at, and favoring, out-of-sate schools. However, due to the pandemic we have not been able to visit the schools, which really makes moving across the country a lot more terrifying. This, coupled with the fact that being away from family during this uncertainty, definitely adds a level of fear to going somewhere out of state - or to even going to law school at all this year. I'm on the waitlist at my top-choice school right now, and this is all so bittersweet as it of course would be great to be admitted, but moving during chaos is terrifying.

I agree with OP that a lot are likely to no attend this year due to the uncertainty and fear. There is a chance there will be a second wave of COVID, which could result in classes being held online. There is just so much unknown that starting something as new and daunting as law school seems much more overwhelming than it did a few months ago. My circle is definitely a very small sample, but I know we are all sharing the fear of starting in the fall. That being said, we have all been out of school for a few years and all still have secure jobs, so this might skew my perspective on the reality of the situation.

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