Law School Discussion

Deciding Where to Go => Choosing the Right Law School => Topic started by: Freedom of Chat on June 09, 2012, 02:49:54 AM

Title: CFNJBLS???
Post by: Freedom of Chat on June 09, 2012, 02:49:54 AM
Title: Re: Cardozo FT $$$$ vs New Job x Brooklyn PT???
Post by: legend on June 09, 2012, 11:25:23 AM
Before I start realize what I or anyone else says on this board or others is nothing more than anonymous internet poster and whatever is said should be heavliy scrutinized nobody could possibly know what is the best situation for you better than yourself. However, I will try to offer some things to think about while making this decision.

One thing very few people realize until it is to late is that law school scholarship conditions are very stringent. They may not appear to be as they will often say you need to maintain a 3.0 GPA and anyone that received a scholarship from an ABA law school got a 3.0 without even trying. Unfortunately, that is not how it works in law school. Rule of thumb is at most schools only 35% of the class can have a 3.0 GPA. Everybody could perform extremly well on their exam, but they are curved  and only a certain amount of   can get an A or B it is simpy how law school works. This NY times article does a good job explaining it. .

I don't know what the conditions of your scholarship at Cardozo are, but you need to ask. The students in that article did not ask questions and got burned for it and that is their own fault. If someone is giving you a 100,000 you need to ask what, why, how, just really get in depth ask serious questions. I.E. How many people have scholarships, how many people lost them, do not hold back anything the schools will disclose if you ask, but if you don't press them they have no problem taking more money if you don't satisfy whatever standard they have created. Considering they stand to make literally millions of dollars if the conditions are not satisfied they usually bend them in their favor.

If the conditions are not favorable ask for better ones. If you want money from Brooklyn tell them about your deal at Cardozo neither school will take anything away from you for asking, but they won't give you anything extra for being silent. Remember law schools are a business above all else and you are a customer if you were buying a house you would negotiate, ask questions, etc. Law school is as significant an investment as buying a home you have 100,000 or more on the line, 3 years of your life, and it will be your stepping stone into a legal career so ask the people in charge questions and see what you can get out of them. The schools will raise their tuition every year to get an extra 2k out of you and once your enrolled you have no leverage, but right now the ball is in your court see what you can get. It is an everything to gain and nothing to lose situation.

I realize you have a unique situation by having a family and again I am an internet anonymous poster that cannot possibly know what that relationship is like so again take the advice below with a grain of salt.

I personally never think PT law school is a good idea. The legal field is a very compettiive profession and if your not going to go all in it probably is not worth the time. My reasons for saying this are that law school is very difficult and there is a good chance you could fail out as a part timer if your dealing with a career, family, and so on that is a lot to handle. Even if you do manage to pass the odds are you will finish near the bottom of your class by taking on all those responsiblities it is nothing against your intelligence just the simple fact that a kid with no career to worry about well have more time to study and do better academically. Your grades will be a big factor in getting your first job you at the bottom of the class which odds are you will be going part time, dealing with a career, a baby, and a fiance then that doesn't bode well for your first prospects.

Furthermore, you will not be able to get law school internships, summer associate gigs, judicial externships, none of that will be available to you because you will be working at your career. So the odds are you will graduate at the bottom of your class with no legal experience and considering the competitiveness of the legal marketplace today it will be tough going and you will have spent 100,000 to put yourself in that situation. Since few prospects will be available you will stay at the job you had before and have spent a lot of money & time to be in the same situation you were at before.

It is true you may finish at the bottom of the class and never get an internship at Cardozo either, but the odds are you will do better as a full-time student. You might be valedictorian at Brooklyn while working it is hard to know how it will turn out, but balancing a career with a family and law school is probably not going to end well. Law school is very hard particularly first year and you cannot possibly appreicate that until your in it.

Again for the reasons you stated this is usually not a good idea. Life gets in the way another baby could be on the way next year, a promotion at work could come up, your fiance could get relocated, a family member might get sick, or you might retake and get the same result, but think you could do better next time. Any number of things could happen and the longer you put off going the less likely it is to happen. If law school is really what you want to do then you should strike while the iron is hot. You have options and you have gone through the whole application process so you have put in work already and I imagine you did everything you coudl realistically do the options probably won't improve drastically the next time around especially since admission standards are getting higher and higher.

As an anonymous internet poster that knows abosolutey nothing about you, your situation, your likes, your dislikes, or even the slightest thing about you I would choose Cardozo. I would do this for the reasons listed above, but I only posted that to make you think you certainly know what your capabiliteis are better than I do. I know many 0L's including myself back when I was trying to decide look to the internet for guidance, but indiviudals that post anonymously on the interent are often simply dead wrong, have no idea what they are talking about, have an agenda, or any number of things. Don't be Michael Scott when making such an important life decision .

Good luck to you whatever you decide.
Title: Re: Cardozo FT $$$$ vs New Job x Brooklyn PT???
Post by: Freedom of Chat on June 09, 2012, 02:26:58 PM
Thanks for the insightful feedback... The cardozo scholarship doesn't have any stipulations so it's a sure thing for 3 years no matter how good or poorly i do.
Title: Re: Cardozo FT $$$$ vs New Job x Brooklyn PT???
Post by: legend on June 09, 2012, 02:55:44 PM
Glad to be of some assistance. If Cardozo is in fact the case that is a phenomenal very few schools do that.  I would recommend if you haven't already making sure those are the conditions I'm not trying to question your credibilty, but just be 100% sure there is no exception to that. You don't get this kind of paranoia about these kinds of things until law school ends it might seem like a hassle, but if there is that much money on the line be certain it can't hurt to ask. If you have done this already then negate what I have said. 

If you have a large guaranteed scholarship then that is a pretty temping offer. However, as I stated earlier I know nothing about your situation or either school use your gut instinct.

One other thing to consider is visit these schools and really see how you mesh. Each school does have a culture to it and whether that culture fits your sytle is highly subjective and if you live close by a visit is certainly in order. Meet with a professor, observe how students interact, I have visited a lot of different schools and noticed some major differences regardign how people act. The education is the same everywhere, but the personal experience is a factor to consider.

Good luck in your legal career whatever you decide.
Title: Re: Cardozo FT $$$$ vs New Job x Brooklyn PT???
Post by: Maintain FL 350 on June 09, 2012, 03:16:34 PM
Usually, even the most generous scholarships require that you remain in "good standing". That probably means something like a 2.0 GPA. I can't imagine that any law school would donate 100k+ to a student who fails classes, is on academic probation, etc. I'm not disputing the terms you were offered, OP, but law schools are not always entirely transparent about scholarship requirements. You might want to ask some specific questions.

Otherwise, sounds like a good deal, Good Luck!
Title: Re: Cardozo FT $$$$ vs New Job x Brooklyn PT???
Post by: Freedom of Chat on June 09, 2012, 04:36:04 PM
Yeah it says guaranteed to be renewed for the 2nd and 3rd years provided that I comply with the disciplinary code applicable to all Cardozo students... There's nothing in there about a GPA minimum, but I'll be sure to ask just to be 100%. I ran the numbers a couple more times, and thought about each scenario playing out; at the moment I'm thinking Cardozo might make more sense unless Brooklyn can give me at least 15k/year. Gonna try to cut my expenses down as much as possible to keep the debt down.
Title: Re: Cardozo FT $$$$ vs New Job x Brooklyn PT???
Post by: Anti09 on June 12, 2012, 07:59:05 AM
Neither of those schools is worth what you would be paying.  Brooklyn isn't worth anything near sticker, and even with that scholarship, COA at 'Dozo would exceed $150k.  You need biglaw to service that debt and 'Dozo only places ~15%.  That's a lot of money to gamble on pretty awful odds if you ask me.