Law School Discussion

Deciding Where to Go => Choosing the Right Law School => Topic started by: SouthSide on March 23, 2006, 10:07:26 AM

Title: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: SouthSide on March 23, 2006, 10:07:26 AM
Obviously, all of us are obsessed with the question of where we'll get in, and then where we should go. I just wonder how much it matters where you end up going, or if other, much more personal factors ultimately determine success.

For example, there was a great study done recently that showed that students who got into highly selective colleges but went to non-selective colleges ended up with just as much success as those who attended these highly selective colleges. In other words, the best evidence suggests that it is the person, not the school, that determines success.

I wonder if this is also true of law school. I don't know.

The defender of the elite schools would point to all the prominent achievers who went to the top five or six law schools. This would not prove anything, however, because those schools attract the top students. If all those top students decided to go to some school ranked 75th, I'm guessing that school's alumni would suddenly be just as successful as the students at the top. The person, not the school, makes the difference.

I think it would be great if someone tried to do a similar study comparing people who got into top 14 law schools, but chose to go elsewhere, with those who actually attended the top 14 schools. It's a fascinating question.


Here's a link to an article that discusses the study:
http://www.brookings.edu/views/articles/20040902easterbrook.htm (http://www.brookings.edu/views/articles/20040902easterbrook.htm)


Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: somniferum on March 23, 2006, 04:33:10 PM
Short Answer: Yes it matters.

Longer Answer: You would have to define 'successful' first.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: ChlorasepticRelief on March 25, 2006, 02:15:18 PM
Well, as you said, the top students go to the top schools. This improves the quality of the student body and allows you to network with people who will *most likely* be successful one day.... so yes, it does matter where you go. A little.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: burghblast on March 27, 2006, 06:05:39 PM
Three federal appellate court judges gave a lunchtime panel discussion about the clerkship process at NU last month.  The senior-most judge started:

"I hire my clerks from the Top 15 or so schools according to USNWR."

Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: Kittyl30 on March 28, 2006, 11:35:22 PM
you hand in your resume. so does some other dude. he goes to a t14. you go to a ttt. whos resume do you think they will look at first?
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: ElectricalStorm on March 29, 2006, 05:30:51 AM
I'd say it matters quite a bit for your first 5-10 years out, then your personal reputation will overshadow that of your school. During those early times, individuals looking at you really only have your law school to estimate your capabilities. After that, then who cares that you went to a T2/T3 if you can get the job done, you just have to prove it.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: Goodfella Aaron on March 29, 2006, 06:16:43 AM
I'd say it matters quite a bit for your first 5-10 years out, then your personal reputation will overshadow that of your school. During those early times, individuals looking at you really only have your law school to estimate your capabilities. After that, then won't care that you went to a T2/T3 if you can get the job done, you just have to prove it.

This isn't always the case. Usually you can only get potential employers to look away from the school you went to if you can bring your own clients to the firm, which takes more than 5-10 years. My former headhunter professor (she did it for mostly biglaw firms in Boston) tells of guys in their 50s who were grilled about not being on the law review.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: trogdor on March 29, 2006, 06:30:29 AM
The defender of the elite schools would point to all the prominent achievers who went to the top five or six law schools. This would not prove anything, however, because those schools attract the top students. If all those top students decided to go to some school ranked 75th, I'm guessing that school's alumni would suddenly be just as successful as the students at the top. The person, not the school, makes the difference.


if being the key word.  the point is that they don't for the most part.  the top students generally go to the top schools, and that definitely plays a large part in what makes a school good.  interacting with other bright people helps oneself further develop, and provides important opportunities for networking and future employment.  as i've said before, it may be a self-fulfilling prophecy, but good students go to good schools, further reinforcing the quality of those schools and ensuring better opportunities upon graduation. 
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: yiplong on March 29, 2006, 07:35:28 AM
You guys are talking as if Columbia offers the same kind of education as CUNY.  That is certainly not true.  Given 2 guys with exactly the same potential and personality, the guy who receives a degree from Columbia would be a lot better at the practice of law than the guy who ends up in CUNY. 
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: philibusters on March 29, 2006, 03:57:02 PM
Southside: I am a sports fan, but I had to see "1919 (say it ain't so, Joe): none
1920-2004 (the loooong wait): none
2005 (Ozzieball): NYU, Harvard, Columbia ($$$), Yale" 

a few times before I got, even though in hindsight it was fairly obvious.  October 2005 seems so long ago now somehow.  A redsox fan could do something similiar.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: SouthSide on March 30, 2006, 12:06:56 AM
Southside: I am a sports fan, but I had to see "1919 (say it ain't so, Joe): none
1920-2004 (the loooong wait): none
2005 (Ozzieball): NYU, Harvard, Columbia ($$$), Yale" 

a few times before I got, even though in hindsight it was fairly obvious.  October 2005 seems so long ago now somehow.  A redsox fan could do something similiar.

That's because the White Sox get no love outside of the South Side. We're ok with that.

Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: Alamo on March 30, 2006, 07:37:06 AM
Yeah, I've lived in Wrigleyville for a couple of years after 23 years in VA, and cubs fans for the most part annoy me - much more about beer than baseball, and gratuitous condescension towards their southside brethren.  I've lived in Hyde Park too, and while I like the north side better than the south side in most respects, there's no question of where the better baseball team resides.

The funny thing is that in a small town in Costa Rica where I was just on vacation, they were selling Chi-Sox 2005 world series tees - shirts that I could never find in my own neighborhood.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: Happy_Weasel on April 06, 2006, 11:22:50 PM
Are the any real career glass ceilings for what school you went to? I mean, it appears that you have to go a T14 to get into the appellate court and the district court judge never hires from the local school around here. Is this a government-only thing where you have to come from a rich school or do firms have a list that is like:


YSHCNC- Can be equity partner
Non-YSHCNC T15- Can only be partner
 runner-ups to the top (16-50)- Can only be associate
Non-elite ranked- Have to be on the LR to be hired
non-ranked- Can't hire

I mean, if you got a 155 or 160 on the LSAT, does that mean you can never be hired into a real business?
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: Happy_Weasel on April 07, 2006, 09:30:45 AM
So, some major employeers will discriminate, but some will just expect you to be more determined, then.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: Jackie Chiles, ESQ. on April 10, 2006, 10:40:19 PM
of course it matters... you need to go to the best place you can, even if it is P/T for the first year.. you want to be successful, you have to go to the best places
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: Happy_Weasel on April 11, 2006, 05:17:07 PM
Well, you can always transfer or go for the LLM if your top choice keeps defeating you.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: SouthSide on April 12, 2006, 03:22:40 AM
No one has dealt with my original question very substantively. Of course you will get better jobs more easily coming out of a top-tier law school as opposed to a lower tier one. This is also very true of college.

The study I linked to in my original post, however, showed that over time, this initial advantage doesn't mean anything. In the end, the evidence is against the idea that where you went to college matters very much for your prospects in life. The study ingeniously corrects for selection bias by comparing students who got into the same schools but went to different ones.

So the question is: does the same logic apply to law school? It seems fairly clear that initial prospects are better at some schools than others, but how true does this hold over time?

If someone were to do the same study with law schools, and look at people who got into top schools but didn't go, compared with those who did go to the top schools, what would it reveal and why?

If it matters which school you went to even long after you graduate, there can only be three explanations, as I see it. One, it could be that the law is just a more prestige-oriented profession than any other and therefore people will always judge you first by where you went to school, even if you have the same career accomplishments as someone else.

Two, it could be that the quality of the education you get and the connections you make in the three years of law school is so important that it fundamentally changes your capacity to succeed in the legal profession.

Three, it could be that your initial post-law school job is vitally important to your future career prospects. In other words, the legal career is like a race in which it a small head start at the beginning makes a huge difference.

None of these reasons sounds super compelling for me, which is why I question how much it matters which school you go to in the first place.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: Alamo on April 12, 2006, 08:32:57 AM
No one has dealt with my original question very substantively. Of course you will get better jobs more easily coming out of a top-tier law school as opposed to a lower tier one. This is also very true of college.

The study I linked to in my original post, however, showed that over time, this initial advantage doesn't mean anything. In the end, the evidence is against the idea that where you went to college matters very much for your prospects in life. The study ingeniously corrects for selection bias by comparing students who got into the same schools but went to different ones.

So the question is: does the same logic apply to law school? It seems fairly clear that initial prospects are better at some schools than others, but how true does this hold over time?

If someone were to do the same study with law schools, and look at people who got into top schools but didn't go, compared with those who did go to the top schools, what would it reveal and why?

If it matters which school you went to even long after you graduate, there can only be three explanations, as I see it. One, it could be that the law is just a more prestige-oriented profession than any other and therefore people will always judge you first by where you went to school, even if you have the same career accomplishments as someone else.

Two, it could be that the quality of the education you get and the connections you make in the three years of law school is so important that it fundamentally changes your capacity to succeed in the legal profession.

Three, it could be that your initial post-law school job is vitally important to your future career prospects. In other words, the legal career is like a race in which it a small head start at the beginning makes a huge difference.

None of these reasons sounds super compelling for me, which is why I question how much it matters which school you go to in the first place.


I think that your three factors are spot on - however, I would disagree with your conclusion.  Taken one by one, I don't think any of these factors could be solely responsible for differenting among schools.  I believe it's possible to overcome perceptions of prestige, it's possible to learn on the job to make up for a less than stellar legal education, and that it's possible to really excel in a crappy first post-LS job and parlay that into greater opportunities.

On the whole, however, stacking up these three hurdles produces an almost insurmountable barrier.  Say you were to go to NYLS instead of Columbia - even if you're at the top of your class, you won't have the same educational environment or the same networking opportunities, so even at graduation you'll be at least a step or two behind Columbia grads.  For your first job, you'll be taking something less desirable than Columbia students take, which places you two or three steps farther behind.  Getting out of that less than desirable first job, you won't have the prestige of your law school backing you up, placing you five or six steps behind. 

I have faith in heroic efforts and brilliant initiative coming from people with any education level (look no further than Wal-Mart founder Sam Walton, a high-school dropout).  In Law, however, such initiative and efforts coming out of Columbia might land you on the supreme court.  From NYLS, I don't see this happening.  Perhaps it's possible, and I absolutely think the brilliant NYLS grad could start his/her own firm down the road and achieve unlimited success - it's just tougher, so I'd imagine fewer people would be able to achieve it.

I also think that most employers assume that a law student went into the best-tiered school he or she was admitted to.  I don't think it looks good on a resume to put "Was admitted to Columbia, but chose not to go there."  If anything, it makes you look less ambitious. 

I think one more important factor makes law different from the college studies.  Keen business sense is often found in those who aren't "book smart," and in terms of financial success, a shrewd but ill-educated businessman will blow many of the more bookwormish types away.  In law, I think you really need a super-sharp "booksmart" intellect to succeed. 

I'll admit that I'm basing this upon my perceptions, and throwing it out there as a theory, not one with substantiated proof.  But you have to start somewhere.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: Happy_Weasel on April 12, 2006, 09:51:49 AM
I will agree with you. More traditional legal environemnts take more traditional law students. However, if you can somehow play your medocre local school into some type of populist platform, you could make it. I guess that's what I'm going to do. I am going to play the disadvantaged populist card.  I do plan on being academically succesful and am only planning on living in the front range area. This why I think I should be able to play it off for a Wyoming top quarter may have a hail mary verses a top-third Denver or Colorado grad instead of being doomed to failure the same way that even a #1 NYLS grad does verses even a mediocre Columbia or NYU student.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: JaimeNina on April 12, 2006, 10:11:34 AM
I think that a main difference between higher-ranked law schools and lower-ranked law schools is not just the quality of education, but the type of education. At higher ranked schools, where most everyone passes the bar, you take classes on you personal interests in a much "higher-level" abstract academic way. At lower-ranked schools, you take "bar-review" classes covering literally the content of what is going to be on the bar. Even if you are the super-smart kid at USF who is totally going to pass the bar no matter what, you still don't have the options to take the classes on appellate litigation that the kids at stanford are taking, because you have to take what your school teaches, like tax law and other "bar prep" topics.  I don't know if this will in any way affect your ability as a lawyer, but I would prefer to take the more creative and theoretical classes taught at a higher-ranked school and just cram for the bar.  That's just my preference.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: pinkybella on April 12, 2006, 10:24:59 AM
Does it matter where you go to school? I think it depends on what you want to do....

The top judge for the juvenile court in Orange County went a "night law school" (his words, not mine) and he said that where he went to law school was never an issue. I think in terms of government jobs, it may not be as much of an issue. DA's office may be more selective but not by much: a Whittier grad I know is working for the Long Beach DA's office.

I think in small firms/medium firms, it also may not be an issue unless the people hiring are looking to hire from the same schools they went to. In that case, it really doesn't matter if you went to a tier 1 or a tier 4.

In BIG law it does matter. A very small percentage of people who go to tier 4s are hired at those big firms. So in terms of getting a job at those firms, it does matter where you went to school.

But all in all, it's about connections and I think that people who have trouble finding jobs out of law school did not make connections while they were in law school. It's important to join clubs and associations where they have mixers and dinners with current attorneys so those attorneys can get to know you and introduce you to other hiring attorneys. Law is one of those professions where it's all about WHO you know; not WHAT you know. If you make those connections while you're in law school, where you go will become less and less of an issue.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: Goodfella Aaron on April 12, 2006, 10:32:25 AM
Does it matter where you go to school? I think it depends on what you want to do....

The top judge for the juvenile court in Orange County went a "night law school" (his words, not mine) and he said that where he went to law school was never an issue. I think in terms of government jobs, it may not be as much of an issue. DA's office may be more selective but not by much: a Whittier grad I know is working for the Long Beach DA's office.


Depends on the government job. Prestige matters big time in DC. But for local jobs you're right, my political science thesis advisor said often it's better to attend a local law school over a higher ranked one if you want to get one of those jobs.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: pinkybella on April 12, 2006, 10:34:33 AM
Does it matter where you go to school? I think it depends on what you want to do....

The top judge for the juvenile court in Orange County went a "night law school" (his words, not mine) and he said that where he went to law school was never an issue. I think in terms of government jobs, it may not be as much of an issue. DA's office may be more selective but not by much: a Whittier grad I know is working for the Long Beach DA's office.


Depends on the government job. Prestige matters big time in DC. But for local jobs you're right, my political science thesis advisor said often it's better to attend a local law school over a higher ranked one if you want to get one of those jobs.

I agree with you about federal government jobs. They are probably more selective than the local goverment so it probably matters more where you went to law school.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: pinkybella on April 12, 2006, 11:55:30 AM
What about for family law - does it matter as much where you went to school? I was looking at the findlaw.com lawyer location & it seems that many of the top family law firms in San Diego & Orange County are partnered by people who went to Tier 4s. Does anyone have any insight on this? Does where you went to school severly impact your job opportunities in family law?

Any insight would be great.  :)
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: Happy_Weasel on April 12, 2006, 01:27:39 PM
In a way, it is almost as if you start choosing who you want to work for starting in 1l.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: pinkybella on April 12, 2006, 01:35:00 PM
What about for family law - does it matter as much where you went to school? I was looking at the findlaw.com lawyer location & it seems that many of the top family law firms in San Diego & Orange County are partnered by people who went to Tier 4s. Does anyone have any insight on this? Does where you went to school severly impact your job opportunities in family law?

Any insight would be great.  :)

Anyone have any ideas?
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: burghblast on April 12, 2006, 08:40:13 PM
No one has dealt with my original question very substantively. Of course you will get better jobs more easily coming out of a top-tier law school as opposed to a lower tier one. This is also very true of college.

The study I linked to in my original post, however, showed that over time, this initial advantage doesn't mean anything. In the end, the evidence is against the idea that where you went to college matters very much for your prospects in life. The study ingeniously corrects for selection bias by comparing students who got into the same schools but went to different ones.

So the question is: does the same logic apply to law school? It seems fairly clear that initial prospects are better at some schools than others, but how true does this hold over time?

If someone were to do the same study with law schools, and look at people who got into top schools but didn't go, compared with those who did go to the top schools, what would it reveal and why?

If it matters which school you went to even long after you graduate, there can only be three explanations, as I see it. One, it could be that the law is just a more prestige-oriented profession than any other and therefore people will always judge you first by where you went to school, even if you have the same career accomplishments as someone else.

Two, it could be that the quality of the education you get and the connections you make in the three years of law school is so important that it fundamentally changes your capacity to succeed in the legal profession.

Three, it could be that your initial post-law school job is vitally important to your future career prospects. In other words, the legal career is like a race in which it a small head start at the beginning makes a huge difference.

None of these reasons sounds super compelling for me, which is why I question how much it matters which school you go to in the first place.


I'm at NU and I know being here has opened up doors that would have been closed if I'd gone to a lower ranked school.  I got a BigLaw firm job this summer as a first year student - in a market in an entirely different state.  While I'm in the minority among my classmates, those of us who have paying summer jobs as first years students are by no means rare. The numbers I've heard have around 20% of our class getting paying firm jobs as 1L's.  This is a pretty significant windfall, since you can earn $25,000-$35,000 over the course of the summer - that's almost like a full scholarhip for next year's tuition.  Also, from what I've been told, having a firm job on your resume going into fall interviewing next year is very advantageous.  This is but one example of something "tangible" that a top school buys you.

Another example: Judicial clerkships.  NU is a very respectable school, and I'm sure I'll have a shot at clerkship positions in 2 years that would be totally out of my reach if I'd gone to a less presitigious school.  A federal appellate judge who spoke to our class a couple months ago flat out told us that he only hires his clerks from "the top 10 or 15 schools, according to USNWR."  Beyond the perceived "prestige," I think you're much more likely to come in contact with faculty who did SCOTUS and/or appellate clerkships themselves at higher ranked schools.  This is a significant advantage since letters of reccommendation play a huge part in getting a clerkship, and if you're tight with a professor who clerked for Justice Roberts 20 years ago, then that's just money in the bank.

Now the other perspective from my point of view: I realize that I'm at a significant disadvantage here relative to YHS and, to a lesser degree, CCN students when it comes to clerkships.  One of the few NU professors who clerked on the Supreme Court gave a talk today about the process, and the jist of it was that the absolute minimum requirements for an NU grad looking to do a SCOTUS clerkship are:

* Top 10 percent of the class
* Law review, preferrably an editorial position
* A 50-100 page writing sample that reflects serious academic research done for a journal or a professor
* 3-5 very enthusiastic letters of recommendation from professors
* A lot of luck, because even with all these requisites getting a SCOTUS clerkship is like being struck by lightning

They didn't give us exact numbers, but I believe only a handful of NU students get SCOTUS clerkships (On average less than 1 per year, I assume).  I don't want to say that YHS students can take SCOTUS clerkships for granted, but I bet the "lightning" factor is reduced or eliminated for them.  Maybe the editor in chief of the YHS Law Reviews can take a SCOTUS clerkship somewhat for granted, while the editor in chief of the NU Law Review has a shot but still needs a lot of luck.   

Similar analysis holds true for appellate and district court clerkships, which are much easier to obtain for YHS students than NU students, although a couple dozen NU students do go on to federal clerkships every year. 

So I guess my answer to your question is:  If you want to work for BigLaw, then going to a "top" school matters.  If you want to work for any size firm in a different region than the region where your school is located, then going to a top school matters.   You can take getting a BigLaw job almost anywhere in the country for granted at any of the top 10 or 15 schools, but might have to work your ass off and be a little lucky to get it elsewhere, especially in regards to the geography aspect if you're applying out of state.

If you want to do a judicial clerkship and/or work in academia, then going to a top school matters, and going to a REALLY top school matters even more.  But if your goal is only to work in BigLaw - or even in another field entirely like public interest or government work - then the difference between going to a T6 and a T14 school is probably minimal as far as career prospects go. 

If your goal is to work outside of BigLaw in the same city where you go to school, then going to a top school might not be that beneficial for your career.  However, I will say that there are certain other intangible benefits to choosing the most "challenging" school you can.  I feel like I push myself harder than I ever have in my life at NU, and I feel like everyone around me has so much to offer that I'm constantly becoming a better person just by being in this environment, almost through osmosis.  I'm not sure that I would have had that same feeling if I'd gone to some of the "lesser" schools that offered me scholarships, and I definitely wouldn't have the same career opportunities. 

Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: Happy_Weasel on April 12, 2006, 08:50:26 PM
So the big clerkships are totally out of the question for those out of the top 20.
 
But is local big law out of the question for those from average schools?
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: burghblast on April 12, 2006, 09:18:20 PM
So the big clerkships are totally out of the question for those out of the top 20.
 
But is local big law out of the question for those from average schools?

Out of the question? Hell no.  Harder to get?  Hell yes.  I'll explain why, instead of working on my property outline like I should be doing right now:

Exampe: Chicago.  The city has almost half a dozen law schools: Loyola, Kent, John Marshall, UoC, and NU (Am I forgetting any?  If so, my bad).  Students at any of these schools have "a shot" at working for most of the firms in Chicago.  But at the extreme end, the absolute biggest and most competitive firms might only interview at NU and UoC.  As far as I know every major firm in the city interviews at both.  But firms like Skadden and Kirkland Ellis might not even interview at the other Chicago-area schools.  This is pure speculation on my part, and I would assume that the majority of firms, even BigLaw firms, probably do.  But you might be "locked out" of the top 1 or 2 firms unless you go to NU or UoC.

Secondly, and more importantly, NU and (I presume) UoC don't publish class rank, so the interview process is done by lottery.  You select the firms you want to interview with and bid on them using a points system.  Interviews are then assigned somewhat randomly, but with some regard for student preference.  If all of a firm's interview slots don't fill up, then any student can just sign up for an interview with them.  At lower ranked schools, BigLaw firms will come in and say, "We want to interview the top 10% of your class."  So the same 15 or 20 people who got the highest grades will be the only ones competing for the BigLaw jobs.  Those in the middle, or God forbid, bottom of the class won't have a shot. 

Finally, I think it is next to impossible to get a BigLaw job outside of the city or region where you went to school unless you go to one of the "national" schools (This is where the term "T14" comes from - these schools offer their graduates employment opportunities throughout the entire country).  I read Law School Confidential, and they advise that if you only get accepted to law schools outside the city or state where you want to practice, and you don't get into a top 10-15 school, withdraw all your applications and reapply next year.  The odds of getting a job in an entirely different area coming out of a lower ranked school - apparently even a T1 school - are not in your favor. 

An anecdote:  I have friends at Loyola and Kent.  One night last week a bunch of us went out to dinner and the topic turned to summer plans.  The Kent and Loyola people debated the importance of doing something "law related" your first year summer, as opposed to taking the entire summer off or flipping burgers.  They seemed to believe it was entirely acceptable and normal to do so.  I was a little shocked, because I only know one person at NU who isn't doing something law related (either a judical externship, faculty research, public interest, government work, or a firm job) this summer.  I knew most people didn't get paying firm jobs, but I didn't realize it was even an option to do something entirely unrelated to law your first summer, and apparently a lot of people at the lower ranked schools can't find anything law related at all, paid or unpaid. On top of that, one of the Loyola guys was a 3L on Law Review and the Moot Court team with outstanding grades.  He doesn't have a job lined up yet.  He has no idea what he's going to be doing in a couple months.  Almost everyone at NU secures a full time job very early in their 3L year - you typically end up at the firm you summered with as a 2L.  As a result, almost no 3L's even participate in the on-campus-interview program here, because they already have jobs.  And here's this brilliant Loyola kid - on law review - graduating in less than a month, with no job. 

That's it, I'm done - I really have to accomplish some outlining tonight. 
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: Alamo on April 13, 2006, 05:21:33 AM
Burgh, thanks for the info . . . you did, however, forget Depaul.  Any tips for getting in off the waitlist?  I'm planning to visit NU next week, then hopefully write a letter of continued interest about how special my visit was. 
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: Happy_Weasel on April 13, 2006, 09:43:33 AM
Well, I only have plans for 60K-100K starting salary level law in Denver, so I think I should be OK. If I am not, I guess I will wash off my academic impurities with an LLM from Denver(if I haven't transferred there or Arizona). If even that doesn't work, I can always write a book about how the "middle class crush" has spread up to the upper-middle class. I'm thinking about a book around Barbara Ehrenreich's "Nickled and Dimed" and "Bait and Switch".
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: ibroadrunr on April 13, 2006, 09:58:18 AM
baff
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: Happy_Weasel on April 13, 2006, 09:59:44 AM
the hell does that mean? I'll write about if I can't get a decent law job.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: ibroadrunr on April 13, 2006, 10:07:33 AM
baff = tag = nothing to add now, but sticking this thread in my unreads
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: burghblast on April 13, 2006, 02:06:54 PM
Burgh, thanks for the info . . . you did, however, forget Depaul.  Any tips for getting in off the waitlist?  I'm planning to visit NU next week, then hopefully write a letter of continued interest about how special my visit was. 

Ahh DePaul, I knew I was leaving someone out.  And I was just in their neighborhood two nights ago for wings and beer.

As far as the WL goes, I don't know of anything specifically helpful for NU.  I got into Michigan off the WL last year after staying in continued contact with the dean herself and the admissions office.  I sent a couple e-mails reiterating that Michigan was one of my top choices and that I was really hopeful about getting in.  I think I even let them know I was in at NU and needed to make up my mind soon - from what I understand dropping the names of other schools that "compete" with the school you're trying to get into can be enticing. 

I see you're in at UoC and I know NU loves to steal students away from them, so if you have a particular, compelling interest you'd rather be at NU than UoC, emphasize that.

[EDIT] Whoops, my bad - I just realized you didn't get into UoC.  So nevermind that last piece of advice :)

Conversely, I was WL'd at WUSL, where I expected to be a near "auto-admit" based on LSN's numbers and my success at several higher ranked and comparable schools.  However, WUSL was the one school I showed absolutely zero interest in after mailing the application.  I never called or e-mailed to check on my status.  I didn't stay on the WUSL waitlist, so I'll never know if I might have eventually been admitted there.  But the lesson seems to be that these schools really keep track of the little, personal signals you send - or lack thereof. 

 
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: street_ave on April 16, 2006, 10:30:58 PM
burghblast, i did not have the numbers to apply to nu or u of c, but i want to go to law school and eventually practice in chicago. i was waitlisted at loyola, kent, and depaul, and was recently taken off the kent and depaul waitlists if i will attend part time/evening status for the first year (same deal at both kent and depaul). i am still waiting to hear from loyola as it is my top choice of the three schools. so i have a question:

what is your (or anyone's) general perception of these three schools in chicago? i am leaning toward choosing kent over depaul if it comes down to that because it is ranked higher and the grads seem more successful, but i am a bit worried because nobody has really even heard of kent outside of chicago (which could matter far in the future), yet depaul has a decent national reputation...and so i am having a hard time making that decision.  anyone have any insight?
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: Paragon of Prestige on April 16, 2006, 10:55:50 PM
If it's not Princteon, the rest are fungible.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: street_ave on April 16, 2006, 11:46:02 PM
I've considered the salary statistics that rank Kent higher than Depaul, but I don't know how much I trust those, either. 

Anyone else have any ideas about Kent v. Depaul?

Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: Alamo on April 17, 2006, 07:20:10 AM
Anecdote: I was visiting the George Mason law library, and saw that they carry the Depaul Business Law Journal, dating back pretty far.  Since law libraries probably can't carry every journal from every school (unless it's Yale's), this makes me think that:

1) Depaul's stength is business law.
2) Depaul might be a pretty decent school.

However, I'm certainly no law librarian, so if my speculation is misguided, I would welcome a more accurate assessment (maybe all law libraries DO carry all other schools' journals since the beginning of time). 
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: superman10 on April 18, 2006, 08:11:12 PM
Burgh, this anecdote you gave about people not finding work coming out of Kent or Loyola: do you think it applies to people who want to do IP as well? I've always felt that people going into IP law are a little bit less affected by the whole rankings thing.

I know you were EE so I'm wondering if you know about this. Are you looking to do IP as well?

Thanks.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: blocke123 on April 20, 2006, 05:00:18 AM
Burghbuh;

Given a choice of Kent Law and Uof Iowa for Chicago jobs (I would like to go into Biglaw)... which one would you choose?  I've posted this question before and get mixed reviews.  I'm not sure if these people have attempted to get jobs in Chicago and actually know the market but perhaps you have some experiance or know those who have had some experiance finding work in Chicago...

I am purely interested in my ability to find a good paying (80K+) after graduation.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: WinnieCooper on April 20, 2006, 07:10:55 AM
What about for family law - does it matter as much where you went to school? I was looking at the findlaw.com lawyer location & it seems that many of the top family law firms in San Diego & Orange County are partnered by people who went to Tier 4s. Does anyone have any insight on this? Does where you went to school severly impact your job opportunities in family law?

Any insight would be great.  :)

Family law is an area that will always have some national demand.  You will probably not make tons and tons of money doing it- in fact, most biglaw firms don't offer family practice because there's not as much money in it as there is in M&A, corporate, litigation, etc.  If you are sure that's what you want to do, decide where you want to live when you are done with law school and go to the best school you can afford (which could be a tier 1 or tier 4).  It's not necessary to go to the best school you can get into if you want to do family law.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: yiplong on April 20, 2006, 07:59:43 AM
Burghbuh;

Given a choice of Kent Law and Uof Iowa for Chicago jobs (I would like to go into Biglaw)... which one would you choose?  I've posted this question before and get mixed reviews.  I'm not sure if these people have attempted to get jobs in Chicago and actually know the market but perhaps you have some experiance or know those who have had some experiance finding work in Chicago...

I am purely interested in my ability to find a good paying (80K+) after graduation.

Biglaws are simply not very interested in hiring someone from Kent.  You chance will be a lot better coming from Iowa.  For medium to small laws though, Kent might be better.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: burghblast on April 20, 2006, 09:55:02 AM
Burgh, this anecdote you gave about people not finding work coming out of Kent or Loyola: do you think it applies to people who want to do IP as well? I've always felt that people going into IP law are a little bit less affected by the whole rankings thing.

I know you were EE so I'm wondering if you know about this. Are you looking to do IP as well?

Thanks.

I can only speak to my intuition about this.  I don't really have any hard empirical evidence to support a conclusion since I don't know anyone doing IP at Kent or Loyola.

I assume that no matter where you go to school, it will be easier to find a job if you have an engineering degree and are interested in doing IP.  I had over half a dozen interviews for firm jobs this summer, which is a lot for a 1L.  But more than half of those were places that only appeared interested in my EE degree for patent/IP law, despite the fact I'm not interested in patent/IP and made no mention of it in my cover letters.  And the stereotype sticks to me like stank on a fat chick - as soon as anyone hears I have an engineering degree, they assuume the reason I came to law school was to do patent/IP stuff, and when they find out I'm not interested in that field they act all disappointed like I'm missing out on some huge, incredible opportunity. 

I was talking to the woman at NU who coordinates our clerkship program and when I mentioned my background she exclaimed, "Oh, yes a clerkship on the federal circuit doing patent/IP stuff will be perfect for you!  The IP firms will love that!"  To which I replied, "Um... I have no interest in doing IP law."  To which she replied, with a stunned, sad look on her face, "Oh, that's ashame... you could have really written your own ticket!"  To which I replied again, "Gee, thanks a lot... I hope to be able to write my own ticket in whatever field of law I choose, that's why I'm paying $38,000 for an NU degree."

So yeah, I think your odds will be improved with an EE degree in IP law.

Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: burghblast on April 20, 2006, 09:59:37 AM
Burghbuh;

Given a choice of Kent Law and Uof Iowa for Chicago jobs (I would like to go into Biglaw)... which one would you choose?  I've posted this question before and get mixed reviews.  I'm not sure if these people have attempted to get jobs in Chicago and actually know the market but perhaps you have some experiance or know those who have had some experiance finding work in Chicago...

I am purely interested in my ability to find a good paying (80K+) after graduation.

I would have said Kent, but the other poster replied with the exact opposite response.  I guess Iowa is a very good regional school, and it's in the midwest.  So it wouldn't surprise me if a lot (even most) of their grads ended up in Chicago.  I'd recommend looking at USNWR's detailed stats for Iowa and finding out where most of their grads go.  If 75% of them take the IL bar exam, then it's a good bet you won't have any trouble getting into Chicago Biglaw with an Iowa degree.

As far as Biglaw firms here in Chi-town not hiring from Kent, I can't speak one way or the other on that.  My assumption was that other than NU and UoC, all other Chicago schools probably competed pretty equally for jobs here.  But I'm not familiar with their rankings - is Kent a T4 school, and are DePaul, Loyola, and John Marshall T2 schools?  Maybe that makes a difference, I don't know.  At the very least, I'll say that if you want a Biglaw job coming out of any of those lower ranked schools, you better be in the top 10 or 15% of your class to make the interview cutoff.  And if, for whatever reason, Biglaw firms don't interview at your school at all, then you might be totally SOL.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: blocke123 on April 20, 2006, 12:25:18 PM
Burghbuh;

Given a choice of Kent Law and Uof Iowa for Chicago jobs (I would like to go into Biglaw)... which one would you choose?  I've posted this question before and get mixed reviews.  I'm not sure if these people have attempted to get jobs in Chicago and actually know the market but perhaps you have some experiance or know those who have had some experiance finding work in Chicago...

I am purely interested in my ability to find a good paying (80K+) after graduation.

I would have said Kent, but the other poster replied with the exact opposite response.  I guess Iowa is a very good regional school, and it's in the midwest.  So it wouldn't surprise me if a lot (even most) of their grads ended up in Chicago.  I'd recommend looking at USNWR's detailed stats for Iowa and finding out where most of their grads go.  If 75% of them take the IL bar exam, then it's a good bet you won't have any trouble getting into Chicago Biglaw with an Iowa degree.

As far as Biglaw firms here in Chi-town not hiring from Kent, I can't speak one way or the other on that.  My assumption was that other than NU and UoC, all other Chicago schools probably competed pretty equally for jobs here.  But I'm not familiar with their rankings - is Kent a T4 school, and are DePaul, Loyola, and John Marshall T2 schools?  Maybe that makes a difference, I don't know.  At the very least, I'll say that if you want a Biglaw job coming out of any of those lower ranked schools, you better be in the top 10 or 15% of your class to make the interview cutoff.  And if, for whatever reason, Biglaw firms don't interview at your school at all, then you might be totally SOL.
School/USnews ranking...
Iowa 22
Kent 60
Loyola 74
DePaul 80

However, I'm not sure if this ranking holds true for Chicago.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: guyminuslife on April 21, 2006, 12:00:23 AM
It does if you're Harriet Miers.

/obligatory
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: SouthSide on April 21, 2006, 12:35:23 AM
It does if you're Harriet Miers.

/obligatory

I don't get this.

My thread has been seriously jacked.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: SouthSide on April 21, 2006, 01:42:24 AM
Ah, the Harriet Miers comment was actually a reply to my original post, rather than all the "let's compare middle-range Chicago-area schools" discussion.

In which case, it's actually a good point. I thought a lot about this when her nomination came up. I think a lot of people would have been much more willing to support her had she graduated from an elite school. The supreme Court is pretty dominated by recognizable schools. However, if she had had better qualifications, such as having ever been a judge before, a lot of people would have been more willing to overlook her school. So I would say that, if you are going to be nominated to one of the most publicly scrutinized offices in the country, the school you went to does matter.

Harriet Miers can also prove the contrapositive, however. She is a great example of someone who has had an amazing career depsite not being from an "elite school." It was probably a harder path for her at the beginning, but she ultimately became managing partner at a large firm, president of a large state bar, and counsel to the White House. I think most of us would be pretty happy with those accomplishments. (I've commented on this elsewhere on this board)

I think there are a lot of factors over the course of your career, and the school you went to is only one of them. Ultimately, in the "school versus individual" balance, I would just put a lot more weight on the individual.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: trogdor on April 21, 2006, 12:31:10 PM
Harriet Miers can also prove the contrapositive, however. She is a great example of someone who has had an amazing career depsite not being from an "elite school." It was probably a harder path for her at the beginning, but she ultimately became managing partner at a large firm, president of a large state bar, and counsel to the White House. I think most of us would be pretty happy with those accomplishments. (I've commented on this elsewhere on this board)

a lot of this was luck... she got in with the right people who just happened to gain some power and give her a little kickback.  hard work or her being incredibly brilliant doesn't necessarily factor in.  i'm not saying she's stupid or totally unqualified, just that much of her success can be attributed to fortunate circumstances.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: Alamo on April 21, 2006, 12:59:21 PM
It does if you're Harriet Miers.

/obligatory

No, the reason we opposed her nomination was not because she went to a not great school, but because she had no qualifications for the Supreme Court.

Wasn't the fact that her JD was from SMU instead of Harvard a perceived disqualification?

No, it was the fact that not only had she never been a judge, but that she had no experience in Constitutional law, and was far from a scholar. 


True.  Here's what I think happened: Bush, being a simple man, thought that simplicity of thought was underrepresented on the court, so he picked one of his trusted simplistic associates.  Complex thinkers in the media and in congress shot him down. 
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: Dunson II on April 23, 2006, 03:06:09 PM
LSD is so silly.  To take commonsense/obvious and debate it for pages and pages.

TO OP: YES IT MATTERS WHERE YOU WENT TO LAW SCHOOL!

Not a 1:1 correlation to 'success' but pretty close.  Failure to recognize this as obvious = stupidiTTTy.

HTH.

This is my biggest beef with both xoxo and lsd.

I suggest more thread hijacks and less substantive discussion.

The latter part of your post is spot on though.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: SouthSide on April 23, 2006, 03:21:48 PM
LSD is so silly.  To take commonsense/obvious and debate it for pages and pages.

TO OP: YES IT MATTERS WHERE YOU WENT TO LAW SCHOOL!

Not a 1:1 correlation to 'success' but pretty close.  Failure to recognize this as obvious = stupidiTTTy.

HTH.

Unfortunately, much of what people think is "common sense obvious" is actually wrong. For example, most people think it makes a tremendous difference where you go to college, but the best research indicates that it actually does not (see original post). I wonder how much the same applies to law school, and would love to see someone do a study of it. I think it is clear that your shool makes a great deal of difference right after you graduate, but that it matters less and less as time goes on. Also, even if it matters, the question of how much it matters is hugely important. If it counted for 75% of your future career, that would make a big differnce compared to if it counted for 5% of your future. This discussion matters a lot to people deciding where they want to go to law school, as virtually everyone on this board is.


Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: ACK! on April 28, 2006, 08:40:49 AM
LSD is so silly.  To take commonsense/obvious and debate it for pages and pages.

TO OP: YES IT MATTERS WHERE YOU WENT TO LAW SCHOOL!

Not a 1:1 correlation to 'success' but pretty close.  Failure to recognize this as obvious = stupidiTTTy.

HTH.

Unfortunately, much of what people think is "common sense obvious" is actually wrong. For example, most people think it makes a tremendous difference where you go to college, but the best research indicates that it actually does not (see original post). I wonder how much the same applies to law school, and would love to see someone do a study of it. I think it is clear that your shool makes a great deal of difference right after you graduate, but that it matters less and less as time goes on. Also, even if it matters, the question of how much it matters is hugely important. If it counted for 75% of your future career, that would make a big differnce compared to if it counted for 5% of your future. This discussion matters a lot to people deciding where they want to go to law school, as virtually everyone on this board is.


Agreed.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: nekko on May 01, 2006, 07:20:57 PM
How are we defining success?
If you want to be an academic then where you went to school is of overwhelming importance.

If you want a job in corporate law then where you want to school is extremely significant.

Want to do family law, criminal defense, certain areas of state/local gov't, mid-size to small firms then where you went to school is very helpful but not of overwhelming value particularly when you talk about specialized areas where it's more important that you know about X topic with Y connections than where you went to school.

If we're talking pure money terms then school is very important but I think you're most likely to find people on the extreme money end from lesser schools since the lawyers who make the most are often plaintiff attorneys but being a successful plaintiff attorney on that type of scale is essentially like being a major league baseball player, i.e. one success out of thousands of failures.

Also the comparison to undergraduate schools isn't useful since a lot of those studies showing the value of school do it from a monetary perspective. This makes sense to a degree but people don't tell teenagers that majoring in medieval literature at Princeton is vastly important for them to make money instead of getting an accounting degree at Rice or something.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: blocke123 on May 02, 2006, 06:17:12 AM
How are we defining success?
If you want to be an academic then where you went to school is of overwhelming importance.

If you want a job in corporate law then where you want to school is extremely significant.

Want to do family law, criminal defense, certain areas of state/local gov't, mid-size to small firms then where you went to school is very helpful but not of overwhelming value particularly when you talk about specialized areas where it's more important that you know about X topic with Y connections than where you went to school.

If we're talking pure money terms then school is very important but I think you're most likely to find people on the extreme money end from lesser schools since the lawyers who make the most are often plaintiff attorneys but being a successful plaintiff attorney on that type of scale is essentially like being a major league baseball player, i.e. one success out of thousands of failures.

Also the comparison to undergraduate schools isn't useful since a lot of those studies showing the value of school do it from a monetary perspective. This makes sense to a degree but people don't tell teenagers that majoring in medieval literature at Princeton is vastly important for them to make money instead of getting an accounting degree at Rice or something.

What school you attend makes a huge difference when you first graduate law school.  I can't imagine a law firm thinking that they would rather hire a University of Idaho grad over Yale.  However, after your first job that "where you went to school" question gets thrown out.  Your school will put you in a position (through OCI) and prestige to get you in the door but your skills and work ethic will allow you to succeed.

FYI- for college, this applies to undergraduate as well.  Its very hard to get a job when you haven't been able to interview on campus unless you have connections or you have had a few years of experiance.  I got hired is 2002 so maybe the recession made me more cynical.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: kmpnj on May 02, 2006, 06:53:48 AM
Interestingly enough, I had this same conversation with one of my professors when I was trying to decide where to go.  Her opinion was especially valuable because of her background.  She was lead co-counsel for Planned Parenthood in Planned Parenthood v Casey.  For the last year, she's been kind of a mentor.  She highly recommended Widener.  She said that Widener places its graduates very well and has a pretty good reputation in Philly, South Jersey and Delaware.  She also said that she knows, personally, of three Widener students that have clerked for the 3rd circuit court, as they were former students of hers.

So, if I had to choose to accept adivce, I think I'm going to take the advice of a lawyer who has won a case in front of the Supreme Court over all of you.  Please don't take offense to that, but she's been in the field, so her opinion is an informed one.

So, for those going to a lower ranked school, her advice is to keep the nose to the proverbial grindstone and do really well.  Will it be harder for you, not going to a "top" school?  Yes.  Is it impossible?  Hell no.  Just as a little added note, the Attorney General of New Jersey...Widener Grad.  Sen. DeWine...Ohio Northern Grad.  Gov. Vilsack...Albany Grad.  Sen. Biden...Syracuse Grad.

Good luck and go get 'em
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: jiggedyjared on May 02, 2006, 07:44:42 AM
I've heard the same study about undergrad school not really affecting your future success.  However, Law school (any grad school) changes your future career potential in a way that is uncomparable to your undergraduate school.  Just about all undergraduate educations are equal.  However, graduate and professional schools are different.  Also, those hiring from graduate/professional schools are different kinds of people. 
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: Alamo on May 02, 2006, 07:49:34 AM
Just about all undergraduate educations are equal.

Although we can all have only 1 undergraduate education, so we can never REALLY know, I'm gonna call shenanigans.  Personally, I think I would've gotten a very different education if I'd gone to Swarthmore as opposed to UVA, and those are recognized as somewhat comparable schools.  When you compare Yale to Southeast Podunk State, I don't think you get an equal education.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: Erapitt on May 02, 2006, 07:51:58 AM
Just about all undergraduate educations are equal.

Although we can all have only 1 undergraduate education, so we can never REALLY know, I'm gonna call shenanigans.  Personally, I think I would've gotten a very different education if I'd gone to Swarthmore as opposed to UVA, and those are recognized as somewhat comparable schools.  When you compare Yale to Southeast Podunk State, I don't think you get an equal education.


I went to a state school for undergrad and got a great job after graduation as well as being admitted to a T20 law school. 

I have met and spoken to Harvard grads. that are going to 2nd tier law schools.  It doesn't matter where you went, just your GPA and LSAT score.

One thing I have learned throughout my growth process as a person is I will do whatever it takes to get my children to go to a state school.  It simply does not make sense to end up $50-100K in debt for undergrad.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: Alamo on May 02, 2006, 07:57:23 AM
Just about all undergraduate educations are equal.

Although we can all have only 1 undergraduate education, so we can never REALLY know, I'm gonna call shenanigans.  Personally, I think I would've gotten a very different education if I'd gone to Swarthmore as opposed to UVA, and those are recognized as somewhat comparable schools.  When you compare Yale to Southeast Podunk State, I don't think you get an equal education.


I went to a state school for undergrad and got a great job after graduation as well as being admitted to a T20 law school. 

I have met and spoken to Harvard grads. that are going to 2nd tier law schools.  It doesn't matter where you went, just your GPA and LSAT score.

One thing I have learned throughout my growth process as a person is I will do whatever it takes to get my children to go to a state school.  It simply does not make sense to end up $50-100K in debt for undergrad.

I agree that it's definitely possible for a dedicated student out of any school to achieve success.  I think that the difference in education is probably greater than the difference in outcomes.  But there are a ton of different factors that influence an education: school size and location are very important in addition to perceived notions of "quality."  I refuse to believe that they're roughly equal; not that one deserves a claim to being "superior," just that they're different. 
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: Erapitt on May 02, 2006, 08:08:53 AM
You can believe what you want, but it sounds to me like you are a freshly graduating senior.  The real world could care less where your UG degree comes from.  A bachelors is nothing more than the price of admission.  Major, where, etc.... its all irrelevant.  The degree just gives you chance to get into the big game, after that it is up to you to make yourself stand out from the crowd.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: trogdor on May 02, 2006, 08:23:21 AM
You can believe what you want, but it sounds to me like you are a freshly graduating senior.  The real world could care less where your UG degree comes from.  A bachelors is nothing more than the price of admission.  Major, where, etc.... its all irrelevant.  The degree just gives you chance to get into the big game, after that it is up to you to make yourself stand out from the crowd.

this is not entirely true.  i agree that it definitely does not matter as much where you go to undergrad as it does where you go to law school, and it matters far less where you go to undergrad if you go straight to grad/professional school afterwards as compared to working.  i went to a decent public school, graduated with a 4.0 (i transferred there after freshman year elsewhere), graduated magna cum laude, and came out looking for a job.  i put in tons of applications (private, government, and nonprofit) over a 4 month period.  i got a job offer in mid-august.  now, compare this to one of my friends who graduated from stanford.  she didn't even have to look for a job (not one single resume sent out blindly).  a nonprofit in dc asked an acquaintance if she knew of any stanford grads with an english background who needed a job as a technical writer/editor.  instant job offer... no official interview, no look at the resume, just a call.  this is not the only case i know of either...  having said this, i was able to secure a great job with great starting pay after putting in a lot of hard work, but nothing was handed to me like it is to grads at some of the top schools in the nation. 

for law school apps, undergrad matters minimally, but it's still taken into consideration.  you think adcoms look at a 3.8 from a state school the same as a 3.8 from HYP?  definitely not...  it's not an overwhelming difference, and not worth the 50-100k debt you may incur in undergrad at those schools without rich parents, but you can't say it makes no difference. 
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: jiggedyjared on May 02, 2006, 08:24:59 AM
Quote
You can believe what you want, but it sounds to me like you are a freshly graduating senior.  The real world could care less where your UG degree comes from.  A bachelors is nothing more than the price of admission.  Major, where, etc.... its all irrelevant.  The degree just gives you chance to get into the big game, after that it is up to you to make yourself stand out from the crowd.

Precisely.  When I graduated from college, I just knew that my UG school was the sh**.  After working for a bit, I know better.  It's pretty much all equal - the classes I mean.  The key to a really good UG education is getting involved outside the classroom in professional clubs, sports, etc.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: Alamo on May 02, 2006, 08:25:08 AM
You can believe what you want, but it sounds to me like you are a freshly graduating senior.  The real world could care less where your UG degree comes from.  A bachelors is nothing more than the price of admission.  Major, where, etc.... its all irrelevant.  The degree just gives you chance to get into the big game, after that it is up to you to make yourself stand out from the crowd.

Actually, by the time I start LS this fall I'll have been out for 6 years.  I often wonder how my life would be different if I'd chose to go to college elsewhere.  Pointless speculation, I realize, and perhaps it would be no different.  While my school's name recognition (particularly within the state) has helped me in a few cases, you're right, most people could care less.  Once again, I'm talking about the education itself, not the professional outcomes of the education, as being different among different schools.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: Erapitt on May 02, 2006, 08:25:51 AM
Fair enough trog.  Point taken.

However, I do think it is extremely hyped up as to the importance of going to a good UG.  Especially in terms of the cost. It simply isn't worth $100K to end up with a job paying $40-50K to start (and that is on the higher end than many entry-level positions).
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: Alamo on May 02, 2006, 08:32:42 AM
Fair enough trog.  Point taken.

However, I do think it is extremely hyped up as to the importance of going to a good UG.  Especially in terms of the cost. It simply isn't worth $100K to end up with a job paying $40-50K to start (and that is on the higher end than many entry-level positions).

I understand, and I was lucky to have such a good public school in my state to attend for undergrad.  I think differences in school quality are overhyped, and often blindly accepted as "conventional wisdom," but that does not, to me, make all UG educations equal.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: trogdor on May 02, 2006, 08:40:32 AM
I understand, and I was lucky to have such a good public school in my state to attend for undergrad. 

lucky for you.  i came from a state with ridiculous public schools.  i look at people from california, texas, etc., and think... i hate you! jk   :D  truly, it does suck that this is the case though.  there should be more cooperative exchange programs for those in "less desirable" states without access to good public schools. 
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: blocke123 on May 02, 2006, 08:44:42 AM
Fair enough trog.  Point taken.

However, I do think it is extremely hyped up as to the importance of going to a good UG.  Especially in terms of the cost. It simply isn't worth $100K to end up with a job paying $40-50K to start (and that is on the higher end than many entry-level positions).

I understand, and I was lucky to have such a good public school in my state to attend for undergrad.  I think differences in school quality are overhyped, and often blindly accepted as "conventional wisdom," but that does not, to me, make all UG educations equal.

While its not a sole contributing factor the UG you go to is a factor for the FIRST JOB out of college.  In fact it is a huge factor, this is from someone who has been out in the field for four years.  The year I graduated the UG I went to made a difference (UIUC) but after two years of glowing reviews at a major corporation known for its reputation, no one even asks where I went to.

That's all I'm saying.  All the lawyers I ask say it does matter where you go if you want to go into private law, with diminishing returns after a few years in the profession.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: Erapitt on May 02, 2006, 08:48:15 AM
Fair enough trog.  Point taken.

However, I do think it is extremely hyped up as to the importance of going to a good UG.  Especially in terms of the cost. It simply isn't worth $100K to end up with a job paying $40-50K to start (and that is on the higher end than many entry-level positions).

I understand, and I was lucky to have such a good public school in my state to attend for undergrad.  I think differences in school quality are overhyped, and often blindly accepted as "conventional wisdom," but that does not, to me, make all UG educations equal.

While its not a sole contributing factor the UG you go to is a factor for the FIRST JOB out of college.  In fact it is a huge factor, this is from someone who has been out in the field for four years.  The year I graduated the UG I went to made a difference (UIUC) but after two years of glowing reviews at a major corporation known for its reputation, no one even asks where I went to.

That's all I'm saying.  All the lawyers I ask say it does matter where you go if you want to go into private law, with diminishing returns after a few years in the profession.

This is outright wrong.  I have been out for three years as well and you are sitting here telling me where you go to UG matters for your first job while I sit behind my cushy desk in the job I received after graduation.  I went to a state school and did alright, nothing amazing.  Don't make broad generalizations when you can't back them up.

Law school is a different story.  It will always matter to some extent.  Just more so earlier than later after graduation.

Trog. are you from DC?  You realize you could have gotten in-state tuition in any state, right?  Its one of the benefits of taxation without representation.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: jiggedyjared on May 02, 2006, 08:49:54 AM
Yeah, you may have better opportunities come to think of it if you graduate from an Ivy League undergrad.  For example, I graduated from Texas A&M recently (top 50 nationally, but just a public school), and we just recently started having McKinsey start recruiting on our campus.  They typically only hire Ivy Leaguers from what I hear.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: trogdor on May 02, 2006, 08:54:16 AM
Trog. are you from DC?  You realize you could have gotten in-state tuition in any state, right?  Its one of the benefits of taxation without representation.

i wish.  i'm from out west.  i heard about that when i moved here, and wanted to cry.  if i were interested in having children, i would definitely take advantage of that for their sakes.  that's an amazing opportunity. 
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: blocke123 on May 02, 2006, 08:58:43 AM
Fair enough trog.  Point taken.

However, I do think it is extremely hyped up as to the importance of going to a good UG.  Especially in terms of the cost. It simply isn't worth $100K to end up with a job paying $40-50K to start (and that is on the higher end than many entry-level positions).

I understand, and I was lucky to have such a good public school in my state to attend for undergrad.  I think differences in school quality are overhyped, and often blindly accepted as "conventional wisdom," but that does not, to me, make all UG educations equal.

While its not a sole contributing factor the UG you go to is a factor for the FIRST JOB out of college.  In fact it is a huge factor, this is from someone who has been out in the field for four years.  The year I graduated the UG I went to made a difference (UIUC) but after two years of glowing reviews at a major corporation known for its reputation, no one even asks where I went to.

That's all I'm saying.  All the lawyers I ask say it does matter where you go if you want to go into private law, with diminishing returns after a few years in the profession.

This is outright wrong.  I have been out for three years as well and you are sitting here telling me where you go to UG matters for your first job while I sit behind my cushy desk in the job I received after graduation.  I went to a state school and did alright, nothing amazing.  Don't make broad generalizations when you can't back them up.

Law school is a different story.  It will always matter to some extent.  Just more so earlier than later after graduation.

Trog. are you from DC?  You realize you could have gotten in-state tuition in any state, right?  Its one of the benefits of taxation without representation.

You asked that I not make broad generalizations... yet your only response has been that you have a good job.  As do I.  I graduated from the U of I a state institution, but mind you a GREAT strate institution.  Its very well regarded especially in engineering.  My school was visited by many large corporations who could only attend a few schools for business and engineering.  They picked UIUC, Georgia Tech MIT etc. 

Again, as I am said, after a few years of working hard it really doesn't make a damn bit of difference where you went to school.  However, fresh out of school, companies can only visit a limited number of schools and favor an even narrower set of schools.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: jiggedyjared on May 02, 2006, 09:26:15 AM
Quote
I graduated from the U of I a state institution, but mind you a GREAT strate institution.  Its very well regarded especially in engineering.  My school was visited by many large corporations who could only attend a few schools for business and engineering.  They picked UIUC, Georgia Tech MIT etc. 

You do realize that pretty much every large state school think it's a GREAT state school, and that every school has companies that only choose it and a couple others to recruit at.  Come on... this reminds me of the Football fan forum I read. 
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: jiggedyjared on May 02, 2006, 09:28:05 AM
Quote
U of I

another reason it seems like you're straight out of undergrad.  No one outside of your state realizes if you're talking about Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, or Illionis.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: Special Agent Dana Scully on May 02, 2006, 09:34:33 AM
Just about all undergraduate educations are equal.

Although we can all have only 1 undergraduate education, so we can never REALLY know, I'm gonna call shenanigans.  Personally, I think I would've gotten a very different education if I'd gone to Swarthmore as opposed to UVA, and those are recognized as somewhat comparable schools.  When you compare Yale to Southeast Podunk State, I don't think you get an equal education.


I went to a state school for undergrad and got a great job after graduation as well as being admitted to a T20 law school. 

I have met and spoken to Harvard grads. that are going to 2nd tier law schools.  It doesn't matter where you went, just your GPA and LSAT score.

One thing I have learned throughout my growth process as a person is I will do whatever it takes to get my children to go to a state school.  It simply does not make sense to end up $50-100K in debt for undergrad.

Hmm..I agree for the most part about UG not really mattering.  However, I don't think I would push my kid to go to state school.  It seems unfair to me, because I'm not rich (no where near it) yet my mom paid for me to go to school all my life (parochial school from k-12, and then ivy ug). Thus, I can't see myself telling my future kid, that they should attend a public school.  Plus, in my case, my state school gave me a ridiculous amount of loans, and that school system isn't even that good (NY)

However, if I lived in a state with a good public university system (CA, MI, VA, etc) then I would tell them to think about those schools. 
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: Mr. Pink on May 02, 2006, 10:19:50 AM
Just about all undergraduate educations are equal.

Although we can all have only 1 undergraduate education, so we can never REALLY know, I'm gonna call shenanigans.  Personally, I think I would've gotten a very different education if I'd gone to Swarthmore as opposed to UVA, and those are recognized as somewhat comparable schools.  When you compare Yale to Southeast Podunk State, I don't think you get an equal education.


I went to a state school for undergrad and got a great job after graduation as well as being admitted to a T20 law school. 

I have met and spoken to Harvard grads. that are going to 2nd tier law schools.  It doesn't matter where you went, just your GPA and LSAT score.

One thing I have learned throughout my growth process as a person is I will do whatever it takes to get my children to go to a state school.  It simply does not make sense to end up $50-100K in debt for undergrad.

Hmm..I agree for the most part about UG not really mattering.  However, I don't think I would push my kid to go to state school.  It seems unfair to me, because I'm not rich (no where near it) yet my mom paid for me to go to school all my life (parochial school from k-12, and then ivy ug). Thus, I can't see myself telling my future kid, that they should attend a public school.  Plus, in my case, my state school gave me a ridiculous amount of loans, and that school system isn't even that good (NY)

However, if I lived in a state with a good public university system (CA, MI, VA, etc) then I would tell them to think about those schools. 

I'm with you on this one.  It pisses me off a lot, that instead of creating one flagship university (like UVA, Umich, Berkeley, etc.), New York chooses to have numerous crappy schools.  They market Binghamton as being the most selective in the system, but let's be honest, it's really not that good a school.  Plus it has by far the ugliest campus that I have ever seen. 

NY could definetely improve its college system.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: Mr. Pink on May 02, 2006, 10:25:10 AM
Just about all undergraduate educations are equal.

Although we can all have only 1 undergraduate education, so we can never REALLY know, I'm gonna call shenanigans.  Personally, I think I would've gotten a very different education if I'd gone to Swarthmore as opposed to UVA, and those are recognized as somewhat comparable schools.  When you compare Yale to Southeast Podunk State, I don't think you get an equal education.


I went to a state school for undergrad and got a great job after graduation as well as being admitted to a T20 law school. 

I have met and spoken to Harvard grads. that are going to 2nd tier law schools.  It doesn't matter where you went, just your GPA and LSAT score.

One thing I have learned throughout my growth process as a person is I will do whatever it takes to get my children to go to a state school.  It simply does not make sense to end up $50-100K in debt for undergrad.

Hmm..I agree for the most part about UG not really mattering.  However, I don't think I would push my kid to go to state school.  It seems unfair to me, because I'm not rich (no where near it) yet my mom paid for me to go to school all my life (parochial school from k-12, and then ivy ug). Thus, I can't see myself telling my future kid, that they should attend a public school.  Plus, in my case, my state school gave me a ridiculous amount of loans, and that school system isn't even that good (NY)

However, if I lived in a state with a good public university system (CA, MI, VA, etc) then I would tell them to think about those schools. 

I'm with you on this one.  It pisses me off a lot, that instead of creating one flagship university (like UVA, Umich, Berkeley, etc.), New York chooses to have numerous crappy schools.  They market Binghamton as being the most selective in the system, but let's be honest, it's really not that good a school.  Plus it has by far the ugliest campus that I have ever seen. 

NY could definetely improve its college system.

Absolutely.  NY is one of the few states with a very large population that cannot manage to come up with one good state school.  If I lived in a state like VA, I would almost definitely go to UVA unless I got into HYP. 

I think California has the best Public College system.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: blocke123 on May 02, 2006, 10:47:48 AM
Quote
U of I

another reason it seems like you're straight out of undergrad.  No one outside of your state realizes if you're talking about Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, or Illionis.

See above when I reference UIUC which most people in this board refer to as University of Illinois UC... I will take care to repeat specify. 

UIUC is regarded as a great public school not simply because i have stated so but by reputation and rankings.  Whatever your view of USNews rankings UIUC is considered a good school.

I restate my position that it does matter where you graduate undergrad and several corporations have only limited ability to recruit and so would not waste their time at schools without some reputation.  While I admit those reputations may not follow USNews rankings, there definitely is a difference between various schools.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: Mr. Pink on May 02, 2006, 10:47:50 AM
Just about all undergraduate educations are equal.

Although we can all have only 1 undergraduate education, so we can never REALLY know, I'm gonna call shenanigans.  Personally, I think I would've gotten a very different education if I'd gone to Swarthmore as opposed to UVA, and those are recognized as somewhat comparable schools.  When you compare Yale to Southeast Podunk State, I don't think you get an equal education.


I went to a state school for undergrad and got a great job after graduation as well as being admitted to a T20 law school. 

I have met and spoken to Harvard grads. that are going to 2nd tier law schools.  It doesn't matter where you went, just your GPA and LSAT score.

One thing I have learned throughout my growth process as a person is I will do whatever it takes to get my children to go to a state school.  It simply does not make sense to end up $50-100K in debt for undergrad.

Hmm..I agree for the most part about UG not really mattering.  However, I don't think I would push my kid to go to state school.  It seems unfair to me, because I'm not rich (no where near it) yet my mom paid for me to go to school all my life (parochial school from k-12, and then ivy ug). Thus, I can't see myself telling my future kid, that they should attend a public school.  Plus, in my case, my state school gave me a ridiculous amount of loans, and that school system isn't even that good (NY)

However, if I lived in a state with a good public university system (CA, MI, VA, etc) then I would tell them to think about those schools. 

I'm with you on this one.  It pisses me off a lot, that instead of creating one flagship university (like UVA, Umich, Berkeley, etc.), New York chooses to have numerous crappy schools.  They market Binghamton as being the most selective in the system, but let's be honest, it's really not that good a school.  Plus it has by far the ugliest campus that I have ever seen. 

NY could definetely improve its college system.

Absolutely.  NY is one of the few states with a very large population that cannot manage to come up with one good state school.  If I lived in a state like VA, I would almost definitely go to UVA unless I got into HYP. 

I think California has the best Public College system.

Best system, probably.  In terms of individual schools, however, I'd go to UVA or Umich over Berkeley any day. 

Such a choice depends heavily on your major.  Obviously berkeley is best in the sciences.s
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: Mr. Pink on May 02, 2006, 11:12:51 AM
Just about all undergraduate educations are equal.

Although we can all have only 1 undergraduate education, so we can never REALLY know, I'm gonna call shenanigans.  Personally, I think I would've gotten a very different education if I'd gone to Swarthmore as opposed to UVA, and those are recognized as somewhat comparable schools.  When you compare Yale to Southeast Podunk State, I don't think you get an equal education.


I went to a state school for undergrad and got a great job after graduation as well as being admitted to a T20 law school. 

I have met and spoken to Harvard grads. that are going to 2nd tier law schools.  It doesn't matter where you went, just your GPA and LSAT score.

One thing I have learned throughout my growth process as a person is I will do whatever it takes to get my children to go to a state school.  It simply does not make sense to end up $50-100K in debt for undergrad.

Hmm..I agree for the most part about UG not really mattering.  However, I don't think I would push my kid to go to state school.  It seems unfair to me, because I'm not rich (no where near it) yet my mom paid for me to go to school all my life (parochial school from k-12, and then ivy ug). Thus, I can't see myself telling my future kid, that they should attend a public school.  Plus, in my case, my state school gave me a ridiculous amount of loans, and that school system isn't even that good (NY)

However, if I lived in a state with a good public university system (CA, MI, VA, etc) then I would tell them to think about those schools. 

I'm with you on this one.  It pisses me off a lot, that instead of creating one flagship university (like UVA, Umich, Berkeley, etc.), New York chooses to have numerous crappy schools.  They market Binghamton as being the most selective in the system, but let's be honest, it's really not that good a school.  Plus it has by far the ugliest campus that I have ever seen. 

NY could definetely improve its college system.

Absolutely.  NY is one of the few states with a very large population that cannot manage to come up with one good state school.  If I lived in a state like VA, I would almost definitely go to UVA unless I got into HYP. 

I think California has the best Public College system.

Best system, probably.  In terms of individual schools, however, I'd go to UVA or Umich over Berkeley any day. 

Such a choice depends heavily on your major.  Obviously berkeley is best in the sciences.s

Yeah, but I've also heard that in the sciences, Berkeley has a forced curve where a 92 can result in a C.

hard it is, but best faculty they have
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: jiggedyjared on May 02, 2006, 11:21:23 AM
Yeah... I used to play the game where I'd talk to others who had graduated from lower ranked schools for their UG and make fun of them.  I honestly thought that I had gotten a great deal better education just because of US News&WR.  I've worked with a T3 who is one of the smartest people I know, and I've worked with 2 T1's who are complete morons. 


Besides that, a lot of people I know think that lower ranked schools like TCU or SMU are better just because they're private.  UG's are UG's.  Ivy gets you a little more clout.  However, law school and graduate schools are horses of a different color as far as education and as far as potential careers.

People say that it won't matter in 20 years, and that it'll all depend on your career history.  The problem with that is your career history (i.e. your first couple of jobs) is determined by the school you went to.  Does this not strike anyone as not making any sense?
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: Erapitt on May 02, 2006, 11:32:25 AM
Graduate school is not always much different than undergrad. for one reason: GRADE INFLATION.

The strict absolute curve in law school and medical school is what seperates these professional schools from masters programs and UG that simply give away As and Bs.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: ibroadrunr on May 02, 2006, 11:41:05 AM
Graduate school is not always much different than undergrad. for one reason: GRADE INFLATION.

The strict absolute curve in law school and medical school is what seperates these professional schools from masters programs and UG that simply give away As and Bs.

 ???
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: trogdor on May 02, 2006, 11:44:10 AM
sorry to hijack the thread for a brief interlude but... ibroadrunner, are you reapplying next year, just hoping you get off a waitlist, or is your lsn account not updated?

Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: ibroadrunr on May 02, 2006, 11:47:15 AM
Waitlist/reapply.  :-\
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: ibroadrunr on May 02, 2006, 11:53:11 AM
Waitlist/reapply.  :-\

Can I ask why you're not taking UVA's 57k offer?

Might be crazy, but...For where I am right now, Yale's it.

(If Stanford took me off their waitlist, I'd have trouble saying no.  Cross that bridge later if need be.)
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: jiggedyjared on May 02, 2006, 11:55:15 AM
Quote
Might be crazy

I'd probably change that to definitely.  I'm surprised. Chicago WL you.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: trogdor on May 02, 2006, 11:55:55 AM
Waitlist/reapply.  :-\

Can I ask why you're not taking UVA's 57k offer?

Might be crazy, but...For where I am right now, Yale's it.

(If Stanford took me off their waitlist, I'd have trouble saying no.  Cross that bridge later if need be.)

i'm shocked berkeley rejected and penn waitlisted.  who do they think they are?!? (particularly berkeley, the GPA whores)  ???  anyway, good luck! 

Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: ibroadrunr on May 02, 2006, 12:01:29 PM
Yep, definitely hijacked.   ;)

It's been a strange year, and that's reflected in my cycle.

If Yale's still a no-go next year, I'll probably get an MA in Gender & Sexuality Studies or something similar.  Law school can wait.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: trogdor on May 02, 2006, 12:04:16 PM
Yep, definitely hijacked.   ;)

It's been a strange year, and that's reflected in my cycle.

If Yale's still a no-go next year, I'll probably get an MA in Gender & Sexuality Studies or something similar.  Law school can wait.

definitely.. haha... sorry for being so nosy ibroadrunner. 
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: Mr. Pink on May 02, 2006, 12:04:47 PM
Yes is does matter, but you make it matter.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: Lily Jaye on May 02, 2006, 12:07:07 PM
Just about all undergraduate educations are equal.

Although we can all have only 1 undergraduate education, so we can never REALLY know, I'm gonna call shenanigans.  Personally, I think I would've gotten a very different education if I'd gone to Swarthmore as opposed to UVA, and those are recognized as somewhat comparable schools.  When you compare Yale to Southeast Podunk State, I don't think you get an equal education.


I went to a state school for undergrad and got a great job after graduation as well as being admitted to a T20 law school. 

I have met and spoken to Harvard grads. that are going to 2nd tier law schools.  It doesn't matter where you went, just your GPA and LSAT score.

One thing I have learned throughout my growth process as a person is I will do whatever it takes to get my children to go to a state school.  It simply does not make sense to end up $50-100K in debt for undergrad.

Hmm..I agree for the most part about UG not really mattering.  However, I don't think I would push my kid to go to state school.  It seems unfair to me, because I'm not rich (no where near it) yet my mom paid for me to go to school all my life (parochial school from k-12, and then ivy ug). Thus, I can't see myself telling my future kid, that they should attend a public school.  Plus, in my case, my state school gave me a ridiculous amount of loans, and that school system isn't even that good (NY)

However, if I lived in a state with a good public university system (CA, MI, VA, etc) then I would tell them to think about those schools. 

I'm with you on this one.  It pisses me off a lot, that instead of creating one flagship university (like UVA, Umich, Berkeley, etc.), New York chooses to have numerous crappy schools.  They market Binghamton as being the most selective in the system, but let's be honest, it's really not that good a school.  Plus it has by far the ugliest campus that I have ever seen. 

NY could definetely improve its college system.

Absolutely.  NY is one of the few states with a very large population that cannot manage to come up with one good state school.  If I lived in a state like VA, I would almost definitely go to UVA unless I got into HYP. 

I was under the impression that Cornell was New York's first land-grant University.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: Erapitt on May 02, 2006, 12:08:43 PM
Yep, definitely hijacked.   ;)

It's been a strange year, and that's reflected in my cycle.

If Yale's still a no-go next year, I'll probably get an MA in Gender & Sexuality Studies or something similar.  Law school can wait.


Not to hijack this yet again.... but why on earth would you even apply to law school if you weren't actually planning on going?  You got into some great schools and yet aren't going because it is yale or bust for you.  Kinda funny actually.  Your parents must be paying for grad. school because coming from the real world, an MA in "Gender & Sexuality Studies" is completely and totally worthless.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: Special Agent Dana Scully on May 02, 2006, 12:12:34 PM
Just about all undergraduate educations are equal.

Although we can all have only 1 undergraduate education, so we can never REALLY know, I'm gonna call shenanigans.  Personally, I think I would've gotten a very different education if I'd gone to Swarthmore as opposed to UVA, and those are recognized as somewhat comparable schools.  When you compare Yale to Southeast Podunk State, I don't think you get an equal education.


I went to a state school for undergrad and got a great job after graduation as well as being admitted to a T20 law school. 

I have met and spoken to Harvard grads. that are going to 2nd tier law schools.  It doesn't matter where you went, just your GPA and LSAT score.

One thing I have learned throughout my growth process as a person is I will do whatever it takes to get my children to go to a state school.  It simply does not make sense to end up $50-100K in debt for undergrad.

Hmm..I agree for the most part about UG not really mattering.  However, I don't think I would push my kid to go to state school.  It seems unfair to me, because I'm not rich (no where near it) yet my mom paid for me to go to school all my life (parochial school from k-12, and then ivy ug). Thus, I can't see myself telling my future kid, that they should attend a public school.  Plus, in my case, my state school gave me a ridiculous amount of loans, and that school system isn't even that good (NY)

However, if I lived in a state with a good public university system (CA, MI, VA, etc) then I would tell them to think about those schools. 

I'm with you on this one.  It pisses me off a lot, that instead of creating one flagship university (like UVA, Umich, Berkeley, etc.), New York chooses to have numerous crappy schools.  They market Binghamton as being the most selective in the system, but let's be honest, it's really not that good a school.  Plus it has by far the ugliest campus that I have ever seen. 

NY could definetely improve its college system.

Absolutely.  NY is one of the few states with a very large population that cannot manage to come up with one good state school.  If I lived in a state like VA, I would almost definitely go to UVA unless I got into HYP. 

I was under the impression that Cornell was New York's first land-grant University.

Cornell is...but not everyone wants to go to an agricultural school or hotel management school.  NY needs a great state school that encompasses a great liberal arts and science education for an instate price, a la UVa or UMich, etc...  The SUNY system is so crappy...even Binghamton is crap (like someone else mentioned). 
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: Lily Jaye on May 02, 2006, 12:13:07 PM
What a bizarre system.  :-\
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: blocke123 on May 02, 2006, 12:16:06 PM
Yeah... I used to play the game where I'd talk to others who had graduated from lower ranked schools for their UG and make fun of them.  I honestly thought that I had gotten a great deal better education just because of US News&WR.  I've worked with a T3 who is one of the smartest people I know, and I've worked with 2 T1's who are complete morons. 


Besides that, a lot of people I know think that lower ranked schools like TCU or SMU are better just because they're private.  UG's are UG's.  Ivy gets you a little more clout.  However, law school and graduate schools are horses of a different color as far as education and as far as potential careers.

People say that it won't matter in 20 years, and that it'll all depend on your career history.  The problem with that is your career history (i.e. your first couple of jobs) is determined by the school you went to.  Does this not strike anyone as not making any sense?

Not sure if this was directed at me... however, I don't think anyone is making fun of someone's undergrad.  The rest of this is confusing... can you elaborate?
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: Special Agent Dana Scully on May 02, 2006, 12:16:27 PM
Just about all undergraduate educations are equal.

Although we can all have only 1 undergraduate education, so we can never REALLY know, I'm gonna call shenanigans.  Personally, I think I would've gotten a very different education if I'd gone to Swarthmore as opposed to UVA, and those are recognized as somewhat comparable schools.  When you compare Yale to Southeast Podunk State, I don't think you get an equal education.


I went to a state school for undergrad and got a great job after graduation as well as being admitted to a T20 law school. 

I have met and spoken to Harvard grads. that are going to 2nd tier law schools.  It doesn't matter where you went, just your GPA and LSAT score.

One thing I have learned throughout my growth process as a person is I will do whatever it takes to get my children to go to a state school.  It simply does not make sense to end up $50-100K in debt for undergrad.

Hmm..I agree for the most part about UG not really mattering.  However, I don't think I would push my kid to go to state school.  It seems unfair to me, because I'm not rich (no where near it) yet my mom paid for me to go to school all my life (parochial school from k-12, and then ivy ug). Thus, I can't see myself telling my future kid, that they should attend a public school.  Plus, in my case, my state school gave me a ridiculous amount of loans, and that school system isn't even that good (NY)

However, if I lived in a state with a good public university system (CA, MI, VA, etc) then I would tell them to think about those schools. 

I'm with you on this one.  It pisses me off a lot, that instead of creating one flagship university (like UVA, Umich, Berkeley, etc.), New York chooses to have numerous crappy schools.  They market Binghamton as being the most selective in the system, but let's be honest, it's really not that good a school.  Plus it has by far the ugliest campus that I have ever seen. 

NY could definetely improve its college system.

Absolutely.  NY is one of the few states with a very large population that cannot manage to come up with one good state school.  If I lived in a state like VA, I would almost definitely go to UVA unless I got into HYP. 

I was under the impression that Cornell was New York's first land-grant University.

Cornell is...but not everyone wants to go to an agricultural school or hotel management school.  NY needs a great state school that encompasses a great liberal arts and science education for an instate price, a la UVa or UMich, etc...  The SUNY system is so crappy...even Binghamton is crap (like someone else mentioned). 

The hotel school is actually private.  The public schools are agricultural and life sciences, human ecology, and industrial and labor relations.  The rest are all private.  Personally, I think the state should buy up some more land around SUNY Purchase, and make that the flagship school.  A school with tough admissions standards, a suburban campus, and proximity to the city could easily become a top school. 

Thanks for the correction.  And I agree that there should be flagship school (dunno if it should be Purchase though...but that's because I don't know much about the system).
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: Mr. Pink on May 02, 2006, 12:17:20 PM
Just about all undergraduate educations are equal.

Although we can all have only 1 undergraduate education, so we can never REALLY know, I'm gonna call shenanigans.  Personally, I think I would've gotten a very different education if I'd gone to Swarthmore as opposed to UVA, and those are recognized as somewhat comparable schools.  When you compare Yale to Southeast Podunk State, I don't think you get an equal education.


I went to a state school for undergrad and got a great job after graduation as well as being admitted to a T20 law school. 

I have met and spoken to Harvard grads. that are going to 2nd tier law schools.  It doesn't matter where you went, just your GPA and LSAT score.

One thing I have learned throughout my growth process as a person is I will do whatever it takes to get my children to go to a state school.  It simply does not make sense to end up $50-100K in debt for undergrad.

Hmm..I agree for the most part about UG not really mattering.  However, I don't think I would push my kid to go to state school.  It seems unfair to me, because I'm not rich (no where near it) yet my mom paid for me to go to school all my life (parochial school from k-12, and then ivy ug). Thus, I can't see myself telling my future kid, that they should attend a public school.  Plus, in my case, my state school gave me a ridiculous amount of loans, and that school system isn't even that good (NY)

However, if I lived in a state with a good public university system (CA, MI, VA, etc) then I would tell them to think about those schools. 

I'm with you on this one.  It pisses me off a lot, that instead of creating one flagship university (like UVA, Umich, Berkeley, etc.), New York chooses to have numerous crappy schools.  They market Binghamton as being the most selective in the system, but let's be honest, it's really not that good a school.  Plus it has by far the ugliest campus that I have ever seen. 

NY could definetely improve its college system.

Absolutely.  NY is one of the few states with a very large population that cannot manage to come up with one good state school.  If I lived in a state like VA, I would almost definitely go to UVA unless I got into HYP. 

I was under the impression that Cornell was New York's first land-grant University.

I think your right.  But Cornell is not fully public.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: jiggedyjared on May 02, 2006, 12:24:06 PM
Quote
The rest of this is confusing... can you elaborate?

Sorry.  I'm hypoglycemic, ran 5 miles on my lunch break, and haven't eaten anything all day.  I'm crashing.  Anyhow, what I was getting at is people say that after your first job, your work history decides the rest of your career.  However, person A graduates from Yale Law and gets two great jobs based on his Yale law degree.  Person B graduates from NESL and obviously doesn't get the same first two job offers because it's T3/T4.  Therefore, the fact that someone graduated from a good school gives them a better work history for their first job or two.  They therefore will have a better resume than the T3/T4 grad, and better job potential for the rest of their career
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: Special Agent Dana Scully on May 02, 2006, 12:25:37 PM
Just about all undergraduate educations are equal.

Although we can all have only 1 undergraduate education, so we can never REALLY know, I'm gonna call shenanigans.  Personally, I think I would've gotten a very different education if I'd gone to Swarthmore as opposed to UVA, and those are recognized as somewhat comparable schools.  When you compare Yale to Southeast Podunk State, I don't think you get an equal education.


I went to a state school for undergrad and got a great job after graduation as well as being admitted to a T20 law school. 

I have met and spoken to Harvard grads. that are going to 2nd tier law schools.  It doesn't matter where you went, just your GPA and LSAT score.

One thing I have learned throughout my growth process as a person is I will do whatever it takes to get my children to go to a state school.  It simply does not make sense to end up $50-100K in debt for undergrad.

Hmm..I agree for the most part about UG not really mattering.  However, I don't think I would push my kid to go to state school.  It seems unfair to me, because I'm not rich (no where near it) yet my mom paid for me to go to school all my life (parochial school from k-12, and then ivy ug). Thus, I can't see myself telling my future kid, that they should attend a public school.  Plus, in my case, my state school gave me a ridiculous amount of loans, and that school system isn't even that good (NY)

However, if I lived in a state with a good public university system (CA, MI, VA, etc) then I would tell them to think about those schools. 

I'm with you on this one.  It pisses me off a lot, that instead of creating one flagship university (like UVA, Umich, Berkeley, etc.), New York chooses to have numerous crappy schools.  They market Binghamton as being the most selective in the system, but let's be honest, it's really not that good a school.  Plus it has by far the ugliest campus that I have ever seen. 

NY could definetely improve its college system.

Absolutely.  NY is one of the few states with a very large population that cannot manage to come up with one good state school.  If I lived in a state like VA, I would almost definitely go to UVA unless I got into HYP. 

I was under the impression that Cornell was New York's first land-grant University.

Cornell is...but not everyone wants to go to an agricultural school or hotel management school.  NY needs a great state school that encompasses a great liberal arts and science education for an instate price, a la UVa or UMich, etc...  The SUNY system is so crappy...even Binghamton is crap (like someone else mentioned). 

The hotel school is actually private.  The public schools are agricultural and life sciences, human ecology, and industrial and labor relations.  The rest are all private.  Personally, I think the state should buy up some more land around SUNY Purchase, and make that the flagship school.  A school with tough admissions standards, a suburban campus, and proximity to the city could easily become a top school. 

Thanks for the correction.  And I agree that there should be flagship school (dunno if it should be Purchase though...but that's because I don't know much about the system).

The problem is that our legislature is completely useless.  They spend more time implementing keg registration laws than they do worrying about why our public education system (both grade school and higher) sucks. 

Completely credited.  That's exactly the reason that I've never been in public school.  Most of them (elementary and hs) are $hit--that's why even though my mom could have defintiely used the money for her own debt, she sent me to parochial school k-12.  Not that parochial schools don't have their problems, because they do, but they are a step up from the public school system in NYC & NY.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: ibroadrunr on May 02, 2006, 12:27:54 PM
Yep, definitely hijacked.   ;)

It's been a strange year, and that's reflected in my cycle.

If Yale's still a no-go next year, I'll probably get an MA in Gender & Sexuality Studies or something similar.  Law school can wait.


Not to hijack this yet again.... but why on earth would you even apply to law school if you weren't actually planning on going?  You got into some great schools and yet aren't going because it is yale or bust for you.  Kinda funny actually.  Your parents must be paying for grad. school because coming from the real world, an MA in "Gender & Sexuality Studies" is completely and totally worthless.

I've prioritized some things differently since applying, actually.

At the end of the day, I'm the only one who needs to evaluate worth in making my decisions.  Neither the three years in law school nor two in a graduate program would be about the traditional use-value of a JD/MA for me.  (fwiw, no, my parents have not and will not fund my education.)

Anything else, start a new thread or PM.  This thread seems to be going elsewhere.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: jiggedyjared on May 02, 2006, 12:35:34 PM
Quote
Neither the three years in law school nor two in a graduate program would be about the traditional use-value of a JD/MA for me.  (fwiw, no, my parents have not and will not fund my education.)

Hmm... I wonder what everyone's thoughts are on the goal of getting an education.  I kind of always thought that it was to get a job.  As intelligent people, it should darn near be an obligation to use your time wisely and work hard in life.  What do you guys think? 
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: Alamo on May 02, 2006, 12:46:00 PM
Quote
Neither the three years in law school nor two in a graduate program would be about the traditional use-value of a JD/MA for me.  (fwiw, no, my parents have not and will not fund my education.)

Hmm... I wonder what everyone's thoughts are on the goal of getting an education.  I kind of always thought that it was to get a job.  As intelligent people, it should darn near be an obligation to use your time wisely and work hard in life.  What do you guys think? 

Yes, preparing yourself for gainful employment is important, but unless you're a complete workaholic, work is only one facet of your life.  A good education teaches you to think about everything differently; if all it does is prepare you for work, it might as well be a trade school.  Perhaps engineering and business undergrad degrees are somewhat different, but there's still the wide range of extracurricular activities that people undertake in college.  Ask most people what their most valuable learning experiences were in college, and I daresay the majority will cite experiences outside the classroom.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: jiggedyjared on May 02, 2006, 12:50:48 PM
I'd say that's not entirely true, though.  If you go to a trade school vs. getting an undergrad in liberal arts, then your career potential is completely different.  However, spending a couple of years and a lot of money to study something just to kill time seems... I don't know.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: trogdor on May 02, 2006, 12:55:32 PM
education has intrinsic value for some, rather than simply a means to $$$.  sure, one important reason is to get a job, but there are other considerations that are unique to individuals and also important. 
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: Mr. Pink on May 02, 2006, 01:44:07 PM
Just about all undergraduate educations are equal.

Although we can all have only 1 undergraduate education, so we can never REALLY know, I'm gonna call shenanigans.  Personally, I think I would've gotten a very different education if I'd gone to Swarthmore as opposed to UVA, and those are recognized as somewhat comparable schools.  When you compare Yale to Southeast Podunk State, I don't think you get an equal education.


I went to a state school for undergrad and got a great job after graduation as well as being admitted to a T20 law school. 

I have met and spoken to Harvard grads. that are going to 2nd tier law schools.  It doesn't matter where you went, just your GPA and LSAT score.

One thing I have learned throughout my growth process as a person is I will do whatever it takes to get my children to go to a state school.  It simply does not make sense to end up $50-100K in debt for undergrad.

Hmm..I agree for the most part about UG not really mattering.  However, I don't think I would push my kid to go to state school.  It seems unfair to me, because I'm not rich (no where near it) yet my mom paid for me to go to school all my life (parochial school from k-12, and then ivy ug). Thus, I can't see myself telling my future kid, that they should attend a public school.  Plus, in my case, my state school gave me a ridiculous amount of loans, and that school system isn't even that good (NY)

However, if I lived in a state with a good public university system (CA, MI, VA, etc) then I would tell them to think about those schools. 

I'm with you on this one.  It pisses me off a lot, that instead of creating one flagship university (like UVA, Umich, Berkeley, etc.), New York chooses to have numerous crappy schools.  They market Binghamton as being the most selective in the system, but let's be honest, it's really not that good a school.  Plus it has by far the ugliest campus that I have ever seen. 

NY could definetely improve its college system.

Absolutely.  NY is one of the few states with a very large population that cannot manage to come up with one good state school.  If I lived in a state like VA, I would almost definitely go to UVA unless I got into HYP. 

I was under the impression that Cornell was New York's first land-grant University.

Cornell is...but not everyone wants to go to an agricultural school or hotel management school.  NY needs a great state school that encompasses a great liberal arts and science education for an instate price, a la UVa or UMich, etc...  The SUNY system is so crappy...even Binghamton is crap (like someone else mentioned). 

The hotel school is actually private.  The public schools are agricultural and life sciences, human ecology, and industrial and labor relations.  The rest are all private.  Personally, I think the state should buy up some more land around SUNY Purchase, and make that the flagship school.  A school with tough admissions standards, a suburban campus, and proximity to the city could easily become a top school. 

Thanks for the correction.  And I agree that there should be flagship school (dunno if it should be Purchase though...but that's because I don't know much about the system).

The problem is that our legislature is completely useless.  They spend more time implementing keg registration laws than they do worrying about why our public education system (both grade school and higher) sucks. 

Completely credited.  That's exactly the reason that I've never been in public school.  Most of them (elementary and hs) are $hit--that's why even though my mom could have defintiely used the money for her own debt, she sent me to parochial school k-12.  Not that parochial schools don't have their problems, because they do, but they are a step up from the public school system in NYC & NY.

Agreed.  While the public schools are fine in the suburbs, I wouldn't want to go to a public school in the city unless I could get into Stuy or Bx Science. 

And Brooklyn Tech, female dog.
Title: Re: Does it Matter Where you go to Law School?
Post by: blocke123 on May 02, 2006, 03:58:06 PM
Quote
Neither the three years in law school nor two in a graduate program would be about the traditional use-value of a JD/MA for me.  (fwiw, no, my parents have not and will not fund my education.)

Hmm... I wonder what everyone's thoughts are on the goal of getting an education.  I kind of always thought that it was to get a job.  As intelligent people, it should darn near be an obligation to use your time wisely and work hard in life.  What do you guys think? 

Agree with both your previous comments, that getting a degree from a good school is important, which is exactly what I was saying earlier.  I also think that the point ofgoing to school is to get a good job.