Law School Discussion

Law Students => Transferring => Topic started by: toddbrown on July 14, 2009, 07:38:08 AM

Title: Is transfering worth it?
Post by: toddbrown on July 14, 2009, 07:38:08 AM
I was recently admitted to Notre Dame Law School.  I currently go to a T3.  I have a full ride and finished 6th in my class, graded on to law review.  Eventually, I'd like to get an LL.M. and maybe even try to teach.  I'd also like to clerk after graduation.  I know that most people on these boards are waiting to hear about some really top of the top schools.  But if anyone has any advice on what they'd do, I'd appreciate it.
Title: Re: Is transfering worth it?
Post by: LawMan21 on July 14, 2009, 07:48:07 AM
Stay where you are. While your current school probably kills most teaching opportunities, Notre Dame doesn't give you much teaching opportunity either unless you do exceptionally well.

Only scenario where I would go to Notre Dame is if you have been dying to go there and this is your dream school. I know that many people have a long love for Notre Dame in general (idk if this is dying out or not), and if law school is your ticket to fulfill that... then do it. Otherwise stay. Top 30-35% or so at ND (a guess) will get you nice job prospects, but you could end up doing poorly at Notre Dame and be in trouble.
Title: Re: Is transfering worth it?
Post by: ;;;;; on July 14, 2009, 08:23:10 AM
I was recently admitted to Notre Dame Law School.  I currently go to a T3.  I have a full ride and finished 6th in my class, graded on to law review.  Eventually, I'd like to get an LL.M. and maybe even try to teach.  I'd also like to clerk after graduation.  I know that most people on these boards are waiting to hear about some really top of the top schools.  But if anyone has any advice on what they'd do, I'd appreciate it.

I would transfer.  Although I agree that teaching from either school would probably be difficult, obtaining a judicial clerkship would be a lot easier.  http://law.nd.edu/careers/judicial-clerkships  ND had 3 SCOTUS clerks in the last 8 years and no offense, I doubt your T3 has the same stats.  Good luck deciding and congrats on the acceptance.
Title: Re: Is transfering worth it?
Post by: UnbiasedObserver on July 14, 2009, 08:43:40 AM
I would transfer.  Although I agree that teaching from either school would probably be difficult, obtaining a judicial clerkship would be a lot easier.  http://law.nd.edu/careers/judicial-clerkships  ND had 3 SCOTUS clerks in the last 8 years and no offense, I doubt your T3 has the same stats.  Good luck deciding and congrats on the acceptance.

While those stats are impressive for ND, don't judges/justices look at GPA?  Getting a good GPA at ND will be difficult, even for someone with a great GPA from a T3 school, with all due respect.

But getting a clerkship at a T3 is tough, especially depending on location.  I honestly don't know what to tell the OP....
Title: Re: Is transfering worth it?
Post by: Dr. Balsenschaft on July 14, 2009, 09:22:53 AM
I would figure out whether most transfers do as well at their transfer schools as they did at their first school.  I've heard they do comparatively well.  If this were true, then I think it's realistic to say the OP has a good chance of being in the top 10-15% at ND.  This doesn't answer the question, but I think it should be looked at and taken into account.
Title: Re: Is transfering worth it?
Post by: big - fat - box on July 14, 2009, 09:39:38 AM
Impossible to make recommendation w/o more information.

Teaching at a law school on the tenure track level is highly unlikely from either school, even assumming federal clerkship. Clerkships are unlikely at T3. Clerkship chances impossible to predict w/o ND grades for 2L.

What are your career plans if you can't teach? What if you can't clerk?

Do you have family or personal $$$ or other means of reducing debt load at ND?
Title: Re: Is transfering worth it?
Post by: toddbrown on July 14, 2009, 09:53:49 AM
What are your career plans if you can't teach? What if you can't clerk?

Do you have family or personal $$$ or other means of reducing debt load at ND?

I'd like to work whatever job I could to pay off debt quickly. That's likely biglaw, but who knows if I can get in to it.  I don't want to work my whole life away, but I would like to make a decent salary.  Maybe appellate litigation would be fun as I prefer looking at the larger issues.  Also, I'd like to work on the east coast.  My current school is in Connecticut.  It's regional reputation is okay at best.  On average only about 3 or so people get jobs at OCI and they're usually in Connecticut.  I'd prefer to be in a city.  Also, even though I know this shouldn't be an issue, I do have a semi-serious girlfriend at school.  I don't have any personal or family money to help reduce the debt at ND.  Right now, I'd graduate with about $76,000 in debt from undergrad and law school living expenses.  If I went to ND, I'd graduate with close to $150,000 in total debt.  Thanks for all the advice.
Title: Re: Is transfering worth it?
Post by: ablaw on July 14, 2009, 12:17:58 PM
I am faced with a very similar dilemma right now - think I want to have a federal clerkship and teach eventually. Currently full scholarship at a T3, top 2%, law review, very good regional reputation (southeast).
I've been accepted to Hastings and waiting on Boalt or Stanford (which is a long shot). I don't know if I want to be East Coast or west (although family is east coast) and I will be about $150k in debt if I transfer.

Is it worth it to go to Hastings?
What about Boalt (assuming I get accepted). What about the unmentionable fact that I am a woman and may want a family at some point?

Thanks
Title: Re: Is transfering worth it?
Post by: gmasonlaw on July 14, 2009, 12:54:43 PM
Yes, move from T3 to T1.   The question of where to transfer among the T1's is generally the harder question.
Title: Re: Is transfering worth it?
Post by: RandyJ51 on July 14, 2009, 01:03:19 PM
I am faced with a very similar dilemma right now - think I want to have a federal clerkship and teach eventually. Currently full scholarship at a T3, top 2%, law review, very good regional reputation (southeast).
I've been accepted to Hastings and waiting on Boalt or Stanford (which is a long shot). I don't know if I want to be East Coast or west (although family is east coast) and I will be about $150k in debt if I transfer.

Is it worth it to go to Hastings?
What about Boalt (assuming I get accepted). What about the unmentionable fact that I am a woman and may want a family at some point?

Thanks

I am also in a similar situation. I currently go to a T4 (in the South West)and I am in the top 15% with Law Review. I will receive some scholarship money for this year, though I paid sticker last year. I enjoy my current school's people and location.

I got into WUSTL and I have heard/researched terrific things about the school.

I am not exactly set of where I would live after graduation, so the important thing is that I want my options open.
I would like to Clerk and eventually work in real estate law. 

Any thoughts?
Title: Re: Is transfering worth it?
Post by: big - fat - box on July 14, 2009, 01:38:18 PM
No guarantees on biglaw b/c of the economy. If you're okay with working a lower paying job (like 50K more or less) for a few years until things get better w/ the economy then you should consider that long term career prospects will likely be better from ND in general. Make though mistake though, the chance that you'll have to slog it out for a few years at a lower paying job are very real. The economy is really that bad. Chances of getting back into biglaw if you don't make it now are very slim though b/c of the way biglaw hiring works. No question that ND will give you more choices on where to look for a job on the east coast.

As for the GF, if your relationship is serious you should be able to make it through 1 year of long distance. Is she applying to transfer too? If not, it is much easier to get into a school as a third year visiting student than a transfer. She could apply to visit at ND and other schools in Indiana and the regional after her second year.

Are you waiting to hear from any other schools?


What are your career plans if you can't teach? What if you can't clerk?

Do you have family or personal $$$ or other means of reducing debt load at ND?

I'd like to work whatever job I could to pay off debt quickly. That's likely biglaw, but who knows if I can get in to it.  I don't want to work my whole life away, but I would like to make a decent salary.  Maybe appellate litigation would be fun as I prefer looking at the larger issues.  Also, I'd like to work on the east coast.  My current school is in Connecticut.  It's regional reputation is okay at best.  On average only about 3 or so people get jobs at OCI and they're usually in Connecticut.  I'd prefer to be in a city.  Also, even though I know this shouldn't be an issue, I do have a semi-serious girlfriend at school.  I don't have any personal or family money to help reduce the debt at ND.  Right now, I'd graduate with about $76,000 in debt from undergrad and law school living expenses.  If I went to ND, I'd graduate with close to $150,000 in total debt.  Thanks for all the advice.
Title: Re: Is transfering worth it?
Post by: big - fat - box on July 14, 2009, 01:46:25 PM
Even Boalt won't necessarily give you great chances of teaching, especially w/o a clerkship. Clerkship depends on 2L grades at Boalt. I know they have no grades per se, but students with a transcript full of honors are probably more likely to clerk. Also, I've heard that they will release rankings in confidence to judges for clerkship purposes only but I don't know if that's true. Even if teaching is out and clerking is out, Boalt will give good long term prospects even though you might not get biglaw b/c of the economy.

As far as the kids issue, I suppose a lot depends on your age and when you plan to have kids. Also, if you're planning to take advantage of Boalt's LRAP (either as a first plan or backup if biglaw doesn't work out), read the fine print. Many school funded LRAPs take ALL of your assets into account including spousal income.

I can't see Hastings really being worth it. It might marginally increase your chances of clerking but will do absolutely nothing on the teaching front.


I am faced with a very similar dilemma right now - think I want to have a federal clerkship and teach eventually. Currently full scholarship at a T3, top 2%, law review, very good regional reputation (southeast).
I've been accepted to Hastings and waiting on Boalt or Stanford (which is a long shot). I don't know if I want to be East Coast or west (although family is east coast) and I will be about $150k in debt if I transfer.

Is it worth it to go to Hastings?
What about Boalt (assuming I get accepted). What about the unmentionable fact that I am a woman and may want a family at some point?

Thanks
Title: Re: Is transfering worth it?
Post by: smileyjilley on July 15, 2009, 05:50:51 PM
ToddBrown, Can I ask how you heard you were accepted at ND? Did they call/e-mail/ or regular mail? I'm waiting to hear from them, so I think that means I didn't get in!

Congratulations on the acceptance! And good luck making a decision.
Title: Re: Is transfering worth it?
Post by: toddbrown on July 20, 2009, 08:50:50 AM
ToddBrown, Can I ask how you heard you were accepted at ND? Did they call/e-mail/ or regular mail? I'm waiting to hear from them, so I think that means I didn't get in!

Congratulations on the acceptance! And good luck making a decision.

Hi Smiley,
   Notre Dame e-mailed me.  The e-mail was followed by some fed-ex thick packages.  I declined the ND spot, broke my heart to do it, but I did.  So that spot is open, good luck!