Transfers, COVID and the Economy

A forum for those current students who are or may be transferring from one school to another. Post any questions, advice, or other transfer related comments here.
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stc2128

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Transfers, COVID and the Economy

Post by stc2128 » Fri May 01, 2020 10:26 am

Hey TLS,

Hypothetical question that I imagine a fair number of 1Ls across the country are thinking about.

Imagine you were a strong/top student at a decent T2, let's say at least in the top 20% of your class. For the hypothetical, think Chicago-Kent/Loyola/DePaul in Chicago, Cardozo/Brooklyn/St. John's in NYC, American/Maryland/George Mason in the DMV area or Hastings/Loyola/San Diego in California. You probably have a solid if not full scholarship, are on law review/ a journal, etc. During good economic times, you may be in the running to have a shot at big law job. At the very least, you have a good chance of graduating with a solid local job and minimal debt.

Such a student would likely have a decent chance of transferring at least to a T20. Imagine you were at Loyola Chicago on close to a full ride. With the recession on, transferring to Northwestern would improve your chances at a big law job and possibly just legal employment generally. But such a student may be paying full tuition there. Feel free to swap in a Brooklyn/NYU, or an American/GULC transfer.

What do you think, TLS? With the economy headed in a bad direction (although the degree of 'bad' remains uncertain), would you rather be a top Hastings grad with close to no debt, or a Boalt grad with 6-figure debt?

Thanks in advance for any insight!

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cavalier1138

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Re: Transfers, COVID and the Economy

Post by cavalier1138 » Fri May 01, 2020 10:56 am

stc2128 wrote:Brooklyn/NYU, or an American/GULC transfer.
But those are such radically different situations that it's impossible to give a generic answer. Same goes for your hypothetical Hastings/Boalt transfer and pretty much all your other specific schools. You've identified a pretty wide range of schools with very diverse outcomes (and you've been generous with your definition of what constitutes a "decent T2" as well as the likely transfer possibilities for someone in the top 20% of the class).

In general, it probably only makes sense to transfer to a top school (T13, not T20) if you want biglaw (or a similarly competitive job) and don't have a significant scholarship at your current school. But it's always going to depend on a student's specific employment goals and debt load. The economy only changes this equation insofar as biglaw is going to become a harder proposition from everywhere, and non-T13 schools will take the hardest hit to employment prospects.

stc2128

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Re: Transfers, COVID and the Economy

Post by stc2128 » Fri May 01, 2020 11:02 am

cavalier1138 wrote:
stc2128 wrote:But those are such radically different situations that it's impossible to give a generic answer. Same goes for your hypothetical Hastings/Boalt transfer and pretty much all your other specific schools. You've identified a pretty wide range of schools with very diverse outcomes (and you've been generous with your definition of what constitutes a "decent T2" as well as the likely transfer possibilities for someone in the top 20% of the class).


Thanks for that. I'm not sure the particular dynamics of legal markets in other parts of the country. I just threw out a few examples off the top of my head. Maybe folks can speak to some of the diverse outcomes, and hypothesize how an impeding period of economic recession would impact students in these different positions.

proudgunner

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Re: Transfers, COVID and the Economy

Post by proudgunner » Fri May 01, 2020 1:23 pm

cavalier1138 wrote:
stc2128 wrote:Brooklyn/NYU, or an American/GULC transfer.
But those are such radically different situations that it's impossible to give a generic answer. Same goes for your hypothetical Hastings/Boalt transfer and pretty much all your other specific schools. You've identified a pretty wide range of schools with very diverse outcomes (and you've been generous with your definition of what constitutes a "decent T2" as well as the likely transfer possibilities for someone in the top 20% of the class).

In general, it probably only makes sense to transfer to a top school (T13, not T20) if you want biglaw (or a similarly competitive job) and don't have a significant scholarship at your current school. But it's always going to depend on a student's specific employment goals and debt load. The economy only changes this equation insofar as biglaw is going to become a harder proposition from everywhere, and non-T13 schools will take the hardest hit to employment prospects.
Not totally related, but why do people say T-13 instead of T-14?

zg43

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Re: Transfers, COVID and the Economy

Post by zg43 » Fri May 01, 2020 3:00 pm

I wouldn't go anywhere with a full ride and top placement in my class

decimalsanddollars

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Re: Transfers, COVID and the Economy

Post by decimalsanddollars » Fri May 01, 2020 3:23 pm

proudgunner wrote:Not totally related, but why do people say T-13 instead of T-14?
Two main reasons: first, because the top 13 schools, not including Georgetown, place federal clerks plus biglaw at a significantly higher rate than Georgetown, which on that metric places more similarly to UT, UCLA, and Vandy than to the top 13 schools. Second, Texas passed Georgetown a few years ago in ranking, so it's no longer true that the top 14 schools have always been in the top 14; only 13 schools can claim that mantle now.

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