I'm afraid I can't help you. My impression is that Loyola is a better school that will offer better opportunities, and that you should go there. If you don't want to go to Loyola, but have a potential job to at least fall back on after graduation, I would say you should go with Pacific-McGeorge, so as to graduate with less debt. However, you should definitely know much more about the legal market in California than I do.Also, you clearly want to go to USD. How much is it worth to you, to go to a school you think you will like a lot more in a city you would much rather live in? I can't tell you that. I also can't help you out with the family issues, besides saying that my personal recommendation would be to set them aside entirely in making this decision.
Loyola's job prospects after 9 mos aren't significantly better than USD's are they? If you want to work in SD, USD might be better than Loyola from what I've been hearing. My dilemma about USD is the money. I could go to Houston on the cheap, but I don't want to work in Houston. Also, I think 86% employed isn't as bad as people say. As long as you're near the top of the class, it seems fine. Did USD offer you a scholarship?
Loyola's job prospects are better than USD, but only marginally to be honest. If you add in the factor that you really don't want to work in LA, USD should be your first choice.
First off, I want to thank everyone for their input. My situation is this: I'm basically being scared to death about not being able to pay back my law school loans by my stepfather even though he was the one who pushed me to go to law school. Nevertheless, I am going to attend law school not because my family wants me to but because I want to. My family still doesn't see that my choice was based on my own interests rather than their arm twisting. Additionally, my stepfather has always said that I have the brains to do well in law school but now believes that I will flunk out because I have a bad work ethic, a belief that is based on my GPA. He thinks that I should go to Loyola Law School instead of the University of San Diego School of Law because Loyola is a stronger school. He has also successfully tutored law students in the past and wants to tutor me while I attend his alma mater. I don't think that his analysis is correct nor do I want to be around someone who is so insulting. On top of that, he is very arrogant and irritable. So why would I want to end up like him? I would rather go to school in San Diego than in downtown LA since my goal is to avoid LA. Furthermore, my stepfather insists that those coming out of USD have the same job opportunities as those at Pacific-McGeorge, which offered me 15K a year, and that Loyola is in the same league as NYU. I think that he's insane. He says that it took him 10 years to pay back his loans and I expect the same unless I am at the top of my class. Now the question is, should I put up with going to school in a city that I don't want to practice in because USD supposedly has worse job prospects? I've heard that San Diego is in a tiny legal market and that it will be very difficult to find a job there. The positives of going to Loyola are that it's supposedly a stronger school with better job prospects, my family lives in LA, I already have a good place to live, and I will have a tutor if I stay here. On top of that, my family is likely to help me financially if I go to Loyola and might be less willing to do so if I go to USD. The negatives of going to Loyola are that I would likely end up in LA since the network is best here, I have to put up with my arrogant stepfather, I have to go to school in downtown LA, Loyola doesn't have the community feel that USD does, and Loyola's attrition rate is worse than USD's. My gut feeling tells me to go with USD and to pass on Loyola even though my stepfather would likely give me a job after law school. I just don't want to go to the same school as he did, I don't want to be like him, I don't like the atmosphere of Loyola or Los Angeles, and I would really prefer to get away. Am I really stupid for passing up all these opportunities or am I smart for going with my gut feeling and staying away from the lunacy here?