Law School Discussion

Deciding Where to Go => Choosing the Right Law School => Topic started by: Alamo on March 28, 2006, 10:10:33 PM

Title: W&L Job placement
Post by: Alamo on March 28, 2006, 10:10:33 PM
So I'm looking at the new rankings, and happy that W&L, my top choice at this point, didn't drop.  They have an awesome S/F ratio, decent grades and LSATs, and a good rep from peers and professionals.

Then I look at their job placement percentages.  76.9% at graduation - only 91.2% 9 months out. 

To find a worse 9-month job placement rate, you have to drop to Utah at 57.  Does anyone have any idea why?  Everything I hear about W&L is that they have a small but great alumni network and really look out for their own.

I don't anticipate being in the bottom decile of my class, so this shouldn't affect me, but why is their ranking so far below comparable schools?  Anyone?
Title: Re: W&L Job placement - WTF???
Post by: Fred Hits on March 28, 2006, 10:16:33 PM
that bugged me a lot last year looking at schools- while its def not great there is a few things to consider
w&l places a lot of people in clerkships and govt jobs- both of which i believe require you to pass the bar BEFORE officially having the job- thereby less peopel are techincally employed at graduation

i dont know how much that acccounts for but i think it pulls it out of the 'omg awful' category and into the 'hmm iffy' category
Title: Re: W&L Job placement - WTF???
Post by: Reaching on March 28, 2006, 10:32:33 PM
that bugged me a lot last year looking at schools- while its def not great there is a few things to consider
w&l places a lot of people in clerkships and govt jobs- both of which i believe require you to pass the bar BEFORE officially having the job- thereby less peopel are techincally employed at graduation

i dont know how much that acccounts for but i think it pulls it out of the 'omg awful' category and into the 'hmm iffy' category

You're right about most gov't jobs, but I don't believe the clerkships require you to pass the bar. You do get higher pay if you passed the bar though.

Just look at Yale's employment numbers. They place a tremendous percentage of their graduates in clerkship positions.
Title: Re: W&L Job placement - WTF???
Post by: yiplong on March 29, 2006, 07:29:04 AM
I looked at UIUC, and their placement at graduation is only 72% ??? ??? And Iowa, the school which everyone bashes has placement of 88%?  Why is this?  I would expect Illinois grads to have better placement at graduation, simply because they are closer to Chicago.
Title: Re: W&L Job placement - WTF???
Post by: aufhebung on March 29, 2006, 07:43:19 AM
What puzzlew me is why on their website W&L lists:
emp. at grad: 90.35%
emp at 9mos.: 98.40%


http://law.wlu.edu/career/Class%20of%202005%20MASTER%20STATISTICAL%20REPORT%20OCP.pdf (http://law.wlu.edu/career/Class%20of%202005%20MASTER%20STATISTICAL%20REPORT%20OCP.pdf)
This is supposedly for class of 2005, which should be the same data as in USNews.

Anybody know what gives?
Title: Re: W&L Job placement - WTF???
Post by: Reaching on March 29, 2006, 07:55:12 AM
What puzzlew me is why on their website W&L lists:
emp. at grad: 90.35%
emp at 9mos.: 98.40%


http://law.wlu.edu/career/Class%20of%202005%20MASTER%20STATISTICAL%20REPORT%20OCP.pdf (http://law.wlu.edu/career/Class%20of%202005%20MASTER%20STATISTICAL%20REPORT%20OCP.pdf)
This is supposedly for class of 2005, which should be the same data as in USNews.

Anybody know what gives?

US News uses '04 graduates info for the new rankings.
Title: Re: W&L Job placement - WTF???
Post by: Fred Hits on March 29, 2006, 08:02:24 AM
us news does use 04- i also know the carear services if very new- i think last year (2005) was the first year they had
Title: Re: W&L Job placement - WTF???
Post by: aufhebung on March 29, 2006, 08:05:53 AM
What puzzlew me is why on their website W&L lists:
emp. at grad: 90.35%
emp at 9mos.: 98.40%


http://law.wlu.edu/career/Class%20of%202005%20MASTER%20STATISTICAL%20REPORT%20OCP.pdf (http://law.wlu.edu/career/Class%20of%202005%20MASTER%20STATISTICAL%20REPORT%20OCP.pdf)
This is supposedly for class of 2005, which should be the same data as in USNews.

Anybody know what gives?

US News uses '04 graduates info for the new rankings.

Oh.  well then.

Thanks...
Title: Re: W&L Job placement - WTF???
Post by: yiplong on March 29, 2006, 08:29:02 AM
What puzzlew me is why on their website W&L lists:
emp. at grad: 90.35%
emp at 9mos.: 98.40%


http://law.wlu.edu/career/Class%20of%202005%20MASTER%20STATISTICAL%20REPORT%20OCP.pdf (http://law.wlu.edu/career/Class%20of%202005%20MASTER%20STATISTICAL%20REPORT%20OCP.pdf)
This is supposedly for class of 2005, which should be the same data as in USNews.

Anybody know what gives?

US News uses '04 graduates info for the new rankings.

If 04' emp. rate is at 76%, there is no way it can jump to 90% in 05'.  In my opinion, one of the 2 numbers must be false.  I think the USNews number is more believable. 
Title: Re: W&L Job placement - WTF???
Post by: Reaching on March 29, 2006, 08:31:52 AM
What puzzlew me is why on their website W&L lists:
emp. at grad: 90.35%
emp at 9mos.: 98.40%


http://law.wlu.edu/career/Class%20of%202005%20MASTER%20STATISTICAL%20REPORT%20OCP.pdf (http://law.wlu.edu/career/Class%20of%202005%20MASTER%20STATISTICAL%20REPORT%20OCP.pdf)
This is supposedly for class of 2005, which should be the same data as in USNews.

Anybody know what gives?

US News uses '04 graduates info for the new rankings.

If 04' emp. rate is at 76%, there is no way it can jump to 90% in 05'.  In my opinion, one of the 2 numbers must be false.  I think the USNews number is more believable. 

Sure both of those numbers can be true. The economy was in recovery in '05, and graduates across the country were getting better and more job offers. The job market in '05 was simply better than '04
Title: Re: W&L Job placement - WTF???
Post by: Lenny on March 29, 2006, 09:33:06 AM
Both of those numbers are absolutely true.  The 2004 class was a bit of an anomaly, and pretty lame as well.  Last year's class is more typical, and this year's class is shaping up very well.  And, well said, Lily, about other schools maybe not fully reporting.  I promise you that if Yale only had 90-something percent, Duke did not have 100%.
Title: Re: W&L Job placement - WTF???
Post by: Alamo on March 29, 2006, 09:33:41 AM
Good point reach.  I'm not worried about my personal chances of getting a job as an W&L grad, but the small part of me that is obsessed with rankings is rankled by the fact that these employment numbers bring the school down . . .
Title: Re: W&L Job placement - WTF???
Post by: joespecial on March 29, 2006, 09:41:33 AM
I would take % employment numbers with a grain of salt. Schools can do shady things like hire back their grads for temp jobs to increase the #'s. I'm not sure how many or which schools actually do this, but they can.
Title: Re: W&L Job placement - WTF???
Post by: LitDoc on March 29, 2006, 11:50:27 AM
Something to keep in mind re: W&L...

They don't rank nearly so high on other rankings (Consus, Leiter, etc.). They fare well in USN because USN uses size as a criterion -- and it carries weight in such a way as to knock large schools down (e.g. Harvard, Texas) and to raise small schools up (e.g. Yale, W&L). Harvard would probably be #1 every year on USN if it wasn't so big; Texas would probably be in the 9-12 range; and W&L would probably drop to #30 or so if it wasn't so tiny.

If you're going straight by USN rankings, W&L looks great. But its job placement isn't as great as other comparably USN-ranked schools because it isn't really a comparable school.

For USN, size matters. In strange ways.
Title: Re: W&L Job placement
Post by: Alamo on March 29, 2006, 12:22:11 PM

If you're going straight by USN rankings, W&L looks great. But its job placement isn't as great as other comparably USN-ranked schools because it isn't really a comparable school.


What is it, then, that makes schools comparable?  USNWR does take into account peer and faculty reputation; in this respect, W&L is on a level with the other schools in the mid-first tier range.  I've heard arguments that a small class size may allow a school to manipulate LSAT and GPA data, but any size school could potentially manipulate this by taking people solely on the basis of hard factors.  On the plus side of small, W&L's S/F ratio is elite, and this does mean a lot to me - it's something that's usually sacrificed at large schools, and I like the close-knit community feel.

Look at the 3 other schools W&L is tied with in USNWR and tell me what separates the other schools (BU, Iowa and ND) from W&L.  Other than job placement, W&L scores better in the other areas.

As for job placement, I'm not too concerned, because W&L has a great rep for clerkships, and research of their alumni shows a lot of them in areas and locations in which I'd like to practice.  While it does make me wonder what the bottom 25% of students were doing, I know that I'll earn a job if I go there and give it my best effort.

Also, Consus has W&L at 27, not a huge leap down from USNWR - I was surprised to see Mason ranked at 25 on this list.

I'll reserve further judgment until my visit this weekend, but I'm inclined to believe (possibly due to bias) that W&L is every bit as good as similarly ranked schools, if not better.

Title: Re: W&L Job placement - WTF???
Post by: LitDoc on March 29, 2006, 12:35:37 PM

If you're going straight by USN rankings, W&L looks great. But its job placement isn't as great as other comparably USN-ranked schools because it isn't really a comparable school.


What is it, then, that makes schools comparable?  USNWR does take into account peer and faculty reputation; in this respect, W&L is on a level with the other schools in the mid-first tier range.  I've heard arguments that a small class size may allow a school to manipulate LSAT and GPA data, but any size school could potentially manipulate this by taking people solely on the basis of hard factors.  On the plus side of small, W&L's S/F ratio is elite, and this does mean a lot to me - it's something that's usually sacrificed at large schools, and I like the close-knit community feel.

Look at the 3 other schools W&L is tied with in USNWR and tell me what separates the other schools (BU, Iowa and ND) from W&L.  Other than job placement, W&L scores better in the other areas.

As for job placement, I'm not too concerned, because W&L has a great rep for clerkships, and research of their alumni shows a lot of them in areas and locations in which I'd like to practice.  While it does make me wonder what the bottom 25% of students were doing, I know that I'll earn a job if I go there and give it my best effort.

Also, Consus has W&L at 27, not a huge leap down from USNWR - I was surprised to see Mason ranked at 25 on this list.

I'll reserve further judgment until my visit this weekend, but I'm inclined to believe (possibly due to bias) that W&L is every bit as good as similarly ranked schools, if not better.


In answer to the bolded parts:
1. What do you mean by "mid-1st tier range"? W&L is certainly comparable to Mason and probably Wm&Mary, and others. But not to, say, BU or UIUC and others. "Mid-1st tier range" is a loose construct -- W&L certainly belongs somewhere in that range, but that doesn't mean its equal to all the schools in that range.

2. You're right, their S/F ratio is excellent -- a real strength for the school. And their small size makes this possible. But it also means they have a small faculty, which may limit course offerings, etc. Something to look into...

3. What separates W&L from schools like BU, Iowa, and ND is national recognition. The latter 3 schools have a name that will travel to basically any region in the country. That's a big factor in why W&L suffers a bit in comparison when it comes to job placement. A BU or ND grad can still compete with grads from regional schools in, say, Oregon. But a W&L grad loses a step in the competition, because its name is not as national as the others'.

4. You're right -- if you are in the top 25% of your class at W&L, you'll find a job for sure. And their clerkship placement is reasonably strong, too. Don't get me wrong, W&L is a good school. I'm just saying that their ranking is inflated on USN, because USN counts size in a way that skews things a bit. I think they're more on par with Mason and Wm&Mary than with BU and ND. That's all.
Title: Re: W&L Job placement - WTF???
Post by: Fred Hits on March 29, 2006, 01:22:17 PM
Something to keep in mind re: W&L...

They don't rank nearly so high on other rankings (Consus, Leiter, etc.). They fare well in USN because USN uses size as a criterion -- and it carries weight in such a way as to knock large schools down (e.g. Harvard, Texas) and to raise small schools up (e.g. Yale, W&L). Harvard would probably be #1 every year on USN if it wasn't so big; Texas would probably be in the 9-12 range; and W&L would probably drop to #30 or so if it wasn't so tiny.

If you're going straight by USN rankings, W&L looks great. But its job placement isn't as great as other comparably USN-ranked schools because it isn't really a comparable school.

For USN, size matters. In strange ways.

someone has been drinking the leiter kool aid
Title: Re: W&L Job placement - WTF???
Post by: Fred Hits on March 29, 2006, 01:34:19 PM
to give more of a real response-
first of all that big school thing makes no sense- sure smaller schools have less spots to fill but bigger schools usually are located in big cities and have a big pool to draw from

the only rankings w&l seems generally weaker then usual on is in the 'faculty citation' rankings- w&l prides itself on an academic based approach more then a research approach and you see that in the faculty

as far as quality- illinois has an attrocious gpa range and w&l has very strong numbers comparable to schools like nd, gw--- numbers much better then illinois, iowa, and bu which for some reason you think are well known to be better schools

in fact i dont really know where your argument is coming from- it seems like the bad employment rate combined with letiers constant w&l bashing means its a bad school---please explain further
Title: Re: W&L Job placement - WTF???
Post by: Alamo on March 29, 2006, 01:39:28 PM
Litdoc, by "mid first-tier" I was looking specifically at the schools that USNWR ranks 17 (USC/Vandy) to 32 (Fordham & Wisconsin-Madison).  This is the exact middle of the top 50 if you divide it into thirds.  In terms of combined peer and faculty rating, W&L scores slightly better than either UIUC or BU, and scores above most schools in this mid first-tier range, although behind a couple lower ranked schools (UNC and UW-M). 

Although I like W&L better than the other mid first-tier schools for a range of reasons, I'll not assert that the school is superior to these other schools - but I don't see how you assert that it isn't comparable. 

I also understand course offering limitations, and that's a trade-off I'm willing to make for a small S/F ratio.  A matter of personal preference, nothing more. 

As for national recognition, I understand, and I am perfectly content to live east of the Mississippi for the foreseeable future.  W&L does have a good number of alumni throughout the east coast and eastern portions of the midwest - I've looked into it and am happy with the locations I can expect to live in.

You obviously have your own preferences as to how you rank schools, but I do take issue with you objectively grouping BU and ND above W&M and Mason - everyone should rank these schools differently based on the factors that are important to them.
Title: Re: W&L Job placement - WTF???
Post by: Lenny on March 29, 2006, 01:54:05 PM
Yeah, I'll go ahead and chime in and just say that LitDoc's comments seem very inaccurate, at least based upon my experience in my three years here at W&L.  I assume we will just have to agree to disagree on some things, but at the very least, don't believe everything you hear about a school from someone who has never set foot in law school in general, much less the school in question.
Title: Re: W&L Job placement - WTF???
Post by: philibusters on March 29, 2006, 02:59:23 PM
Wow, to say that w&l isn't comparable to notre dame or Iowa, or BU is way too strong.  Lots of people do it all the time and they don't think they are being irrational.  As for reputation I think it varies by region, Iowa and ND or midwest schools.  On the east coast hardly anybody knows Iowa, I follow sports so I know them from their football, basketball, and of course their powerhouse wrestling program, but I wouldn't have been able to guess their undergrad or law school rankings at all.  ND has football and to be honest a bigger name than Iowa on the east coast, so maybe you have some truth there.  BU is slightly in the shadow of BC (I believe BU doesn't even have a football team, so thats not going to help them become known.)  So I am not convinced what you say is true, the Notre Dame one rings a little true, because their football team seems ubitiqious somehow.  You seem to have a midwestern bias of sorts, because Iowa and ILL. aren't famous at all on the east coast, I see them, I think state school, not particularly prestigious.

 Also question people, why does the usnews have a different lsat range for w&l then lsac?

(Actually I think its quite normal to develop regional baises, I think east coast college sports easily trump midwest or west coast college teams, despite the success of a team like USC in football.   As for law schools I would have thought mich st. and penn st. have same reputation as say minn. and iowa as I think of all of them as big 10 schools.  Generally the east coast and west coasts dominate the undergrad college public school ranking, top 7 public are berekley, uva, ucla, micigan (ucla and michigan are tied), unc, and william and mary, uc san diego, so I was surprised that big 10 public schools like minn, iowa, ill did as well as they did)
Title: Re: W&L Job placement - WTF???
Post by: LitDoc on March 29, 2006, 03:42:02 PM
I think it's worth noting that Fred Hits and Lenny are both W&L students/grads. Obviously, there's a vested interest in "protecting" W&L's rep here. Please note: I am not trying to trash W&L in any way. I think it's a great school. I just disagree with you, apparently, on which schools it is more comparable to, and on where it belongs in the rankings.

Before continuing, let me just say, too, that one doesn't have to "set foot" in a school to gauge its quality, unless your criteria for measuring quality is strictly atmospheric (e.g. beautiful campus, clean streets, friendly students, etc.).

As with any and all "rankings," this is all going to come down to chosen criteria. If S/F ratio and teaching quality are high on your list, then W&L does very well. Hell, on those criteria it's a better school than Georgetown. If a rural atmosphere and small class size are important, W&L is great -- again, better than Georgetown, Harvard, Texas, and Michigan. If a relatively high LSAT range for incoming students is important to you, then, again, W&L does well for the "mid-1st tier."

This thread began, though, with a focus on job prospects and job placement, so I took for granted that an emphasis was being placed on these kinds of criteria. And I think it's hard to argue, for example, that W&L competes with, say, Illinois in BigLaw placement. (Illinois places a lot of grads in Chicago BigLaw, and is among Vault's top schools for big firm placement; W&L is not on Vault's list, despite its proximity to DC.) And I'm frankly a bit amazed that anyone would argue that W&L has a "national rep" on par with ND or BU. I'm from the West (lived in OR, ID, UT, and NV). I've had a career in academia. W&L is not a recognizable name like ND or BU, or Illinois or Iowa, or Vanderbilt or Minnesota. Sure, in the field of law, it is more recognizable and carries more weight than outside the field of law; but it's just not on par with these other names -- not in the West.

Of course, Alamo notes that he's fine sticking in the East -- again, if that's your criteria, then W&L is great. I was approaching this with "national" job prospects in mind. But 82% of W&L grads stay in the South and mid-Atlantic region. That doesn't seem incredibly national to me. 

Also, yes, I'm a fan of Leiter's rankings, and I agree with a lot of what Leiter has to say. If we move away from job stuff to other criteria, I think the quality of a school DOES depend heavily on the quality of the faculty, and the quality of the faculty IS revealed significantly through publications. Publications show familiarity with current issues/topics in the field, and productivity in and contribution to the field. I've been a professor in several English departments, and I can attest that great teachers do not necessarily deliver great education. The best education comes from great teachers who are also great researchers and writers, actively contributing to the field.

W&L has a rep for great teachers -- but not a great rep for publications. This ought to be of concern to anyone interested in obtaining the best education possible. A great teacher can deliver less-than-up-to-date info; moreover, if your prof has made no contribution to the field via publications, then his/her letter of recommendation won't carry as much weight either.

Again -- I'm not trying to trash on W&L. I think it deserves to be in the mid-1st tier. I just think it belongs closer to the '32' end of that range than to the '17' end. I wasn't saying W&L wasn't comparable at all to BU or ND -- only that it was more comparable to Mason and Wm&Mary, and less comparable to BU and ND. And I think it's least comparable to, say, Vanderbilt, which seems a solid step up (teetering on the edge of the top third of the first tier).
Title: Re: W&L Job placement - WTF???
Post by: yiplong on March 29, 2006, 03:55:08 PM
Well, of all the schools we talked about, BU, BC, Iowa, Illinois, ND and W&L, Illinois should have the strongest reputation overall. (not just for law school).  Even people in Asia or Europe has heard of Illinois, due to their very strong engineering program, they are also ranked as top university in the world. 
Title: Re: W&L Job placement - WTF???
Post by: dwarflegs7 on March 29, 2006, 04:25:45 PM
Well, of all the schools we talked about, BU, BC, Iowa, Illinois, ND and W&L, Illinois should have the strongest reputation overall. (not just for law school).  Even people in Asia or Europe has heard of Illinois, due to their very strong engineering program, they are also ranked as top university in the world. 

So Illinois is a top research university and W&L and BU aren't.  That's nice.  Lawyers know law school reputation, and it doesn't much matter what non-lawyers think of your degree.  Who cares?  How is your point, whatever that point may be, at all relevant to the decision making process?


It doesn't matter what non-lawyers think about your degree?  Well I assume you want to be a lawyer, so what about potential clients?  They will judge by their own gut reaction to how good a school is. 

As for judging law schools by the faculty citations, that is absolutely ridiculous.  Washington and Lee is known for being an outstanding place to receive a law education.  It is a small school, but so what?  It's a small university, would you ask that their law school class be the same size as their undergraduate class?

In terms of job prospects, it seems to me that none of us yet knows what our job prospects are.  There are SO many more factors in hiring than where you went to school.  If you go to BU and finish in the middle of your class, your prospects are not as good as someone who finished in the top 1/4 at W&L.  My point?  You will do better if you like the school.  If you like W&L and want to go there, do so.  Don't let people who have already sold themselves on BU or Notre Dame talk you out of it.  No school is a good fit for everyone.

I have a few friends who are undergrads at W&L and I have heard nothing but good things about it.  Granted, the law school would be different, but the W&L people here seem to like it.
Title: Re: W&L Job placement - WTF???
Post by: LawyersGunnersnMoney on March 29, 2006, 04:27:17 PM
Well, of all the schools we talked about, BU, BC, Iowa, Illinois, ND and W&L, Illinois should have the strongest reputation overall. (not just for law school).  Even people in Asia or Europe has heard of Illinois, due to their very strong engineering program, they are also ranked as top university in the world. 

that might be the dumbest thing ive heard all day.  ND and even BC has far, far more national and international recognition than illinois...

not to mention that w&l is highly regarded in the legal field.  so who has heard of them in asia is about as relevant as saying FSU has a stronger reputation overall bc of their great football program.  after all, a lot more people follow football than engineering
Title: Re: W&L Job placement - WTF???
Post by: Fred Hits on March 29, 2006, 04:29:17 PM
thanks for noting i go to W&L- i leave that at the bottom of my profile for a reason, so people know where i am coming from- i don't know if it is your intent but i feel like you are only mentioning that to basicaly say 'ignore these guys'  -i try very hard to be fair when saying anything so maybe i am reading more into that then i should, but still..

I repeat what i said before that you offer no real reason for what you are saying.  I know you say you aren't 'slamming' W&L but I fail to see how you are doing anything but.  My impression is that you are basing your argument on the idea that w&l doesn't have everything for everyone.  I don't see how this is anything new.  I don't know of many if any schools that offer everything someone would want. Most every school has its tradeoffs. 

Now I'm trying to see what you are getting at and it seems to me that you are saying that for you personally, w&l does not offer what you want and to you is about as valuable as certain other schools because of those preferences.  If so, then thats fine.  I would have said last year that to me going to a school like villanova is more valuable then illinois because i wanted to be on the east coast.  Illinois is a midwest school just as w&l is an east coast school.  To each his own.  Thing is, that is not what it sounds like you say. 

You then argue that w&l is not as good as those other schools without much to show except your opinion.  You keep referring to this 'national reputation' but i have no idea where you are coming from.  Sure ND has a huge national rep but thats a big exception t othe general rule.  ND football is college football.  Are you saying that from the people you talk to in your region of the country w&l isn't nearly as national?  If so, I can honestly say people here dont think of either iowa or illinois as super steller institutions unless they are in the 'legal know' so to speak. 

Maybe this is a regional difference, but still you are arguing for a national rep, not a regional one.  Also you mention academia reputation.  W&L is a small liberal arts college- in fact the only such school with a graduate school.  So no, W&L does not have massive labs, does not conduct massive studies, or have D1 football teams.

So maybe you are just agreeing with what leiter says?  If so, ok, I'll assume you are making his arguments and i'll go hide in the woods somewhere (i think what he says is some of the stupidest 1 sided stuff but thats for another day and i would at least know why you are saying what you do).  But I really would like to know where your opinion is coming from.  The more you know and understand the more sense things make.  I'm trying to see what you are saying but like i've said, I don't yet see it.
Title: Re: W&L Job placement - WTF???
Post by: philibusters on March 29, 2006, 04:36:18 PM
I think generally a good way to tell quality of law school is by the academic creditinals of the students.  Yes, you may say "so what, what does the quality of the class mean to me"-I think in generally people understand their assests, in this case their lsat's and grades and try to maximize it to the best extent possiblity (go to the best school for their ambitions whether that be biglaw or clerkships, whatever, so that student quality to me seems like the best indicator of school reputation.  Obviously things like family and geographic ties, and financial situations means its not a perfect correlation, but all things being equal, whos going to pick a school they don't will help them reach their goals as well as another school if they have the option between teh two.

I think Leiter over emphasizes faculty importance ot me, I would much rather know my profs, then have big name profs, though ideally I would want both.  I think Leiter whos in academia himself has a bias for faculty quality, thats obvious whats important for him.  It could be litdoc, that you ahve the same vantage pt. of leiter if you were in academia for a while.

 All this raises the questions is who is the usnews ranking really are designed for, 1)the potential student (thats who usnews would claim) or 2) the school's adminstration and faculty.  Leiter's ranking are def. designed for school's adminstration and facutly though there is a lot of cross of relevance for potential students.
Title: Re: W&L Job placement - WTF???
Post by: yiplong on March 29, 2006, 08:29:57 PM
they are also ranked as top university in the world. 

Except that they aren't, even UIUC admits so: http://www.publications.uiuc.edu/info/rankings.html

Now who said they were the top in the world?  Maybe USNews for Civil Engineeing, but that's some ineresting exaggeation here, I can think of at least five better schools for engineering alone.

Please, what are you talking about? How does the fact that you can think of five better schools for engineering show that Illinois is not a 'top university'?
http://ed.sjtu.edu.cn/rank/2005/ARWU2005TOP500list.htm
Illinois ranked 25th on this ranking, and ranked 19th by Times Higher Education Supplement for 200 Best Schools in the world.   
good luck finding washington and lee on the list. 
Don't mean to bash the school or anything, but nobody I talked to either in the East Coast, Midwest or Asia has ever heard of Washington and Lee, some have heard of ND, and many confuse BU with BC.  Of these schools, only Illinois has any real international reputation. 
I would assume a Japanese client be more likely to accept service from a lawyer from Illinois than Washington and Lee (everything else being equal). There is little surprise that  T14 schools almost always have a strong undergrad/graduate reputation. 
But of course, W&L is a very good school, the above is just my opinion on how the reputation of the whole university overall might impact the value of your law degree. 
Title: Re: W&L Job placement - WTF???
Post by: LawyersGunnersnMoney on March 29, 2006, 09:06:59 PM
they are also ranked as top university in the world. 

Except that they aren't, even UIUC admits so: http://www.publications.uiuc.edu/info/rankings.html

Now who said they were the top in the world?  Maybe USNews for Civil Engineeing, but that's some ineresting exaggeation here, I can think of at least five better schools for engineering alone.

Please, what are you talking about? How does the fact that you can think of five better schools for engineering show that Illinois is not a 'top university'?
http://ed.sjtu.edu.cn/rank/2005/ARWU2005TOP500list.htm
Illinois ranked 25th on this ranking, and ranked 19th by Times Higher Education Supplement for 200 Best Schools in the world.   
good luck finding washington and lee on the list. 
Don't mean to bash the school or anything, but nobody I talked to either in the East Coast, Midwest or Asia has ever heard of Washington and Lee, some have heard of ND, and many confuse BU with BC.  Of these schools, only Illinois has any real international reputation. 
I would assume a Japanese client be more likely to accept service from a lawyer from Illinois than Washington and Lee (everything else being equal). There is little surprise that  T14 schools almost always have a strong undergrad/graduate reputation. 
But of course, W&L is a very good school, the above is just my opinion on how the reputation of the whole university overall might impact the value of your law degree. 


what about the fact that Illinois' own rankings dont even put them in the t40 PUBLIC schools internationally?...

how you think illinois is better known than ND is rediculous...

if youre concerned about the layperson opinion, i wouldnt put much stock in illinois' decent (not top) reputation in engineering.  unless you have an engineer or engineering firm as a prospective client, they wont have a clue that illinois is in the t20 in engineering.  nor will they care...

you are an idiot if you dont think anyone on the east coast has heard of w&l.  and if youre speaking strictly from an anecdotal perspective of one moron you know then thats equally pointless.



Title: Re: W&L Job placement - WTF???
Post by: philibusters on March 29, 2006, 09:40:58 PM
yiplong only giant research institutions will have any international reputation, in other words big schools, that means nothing in law, nothing, law profession is a tight knit community, most lawyers are most familiar with the schools in their geographical area.

Ill. is a good undergrad but not great by any standard.  It is much tougher to gain admission to Notre Dame than Ill.  ND is ranked 18th in the nation, Ill 42nd by USNEWS.  I would guess W&L had better freshman data and is harder to get into than Ill.  W&L especially is different, its not even ranked against national universities, but is ranked against other liberal arts schools, and its 14th.  Thats a real good ranking, if it was a national university my guess is it would be ranked around 30th cause thats where W&M is ranked and they are similiar but thats only a guess.
Title: Re: W&L Job placement - WTF???
Post by: yiplong on March 29, 2006, 09:58:26 PM
they are also ranked as top university in the world. 

Except that they aren't, even UIUC admits so: http://www.publications.uiuc.edu/info/rankings.html

Now who said they were the top in the world?  Maybe USNews for Civil Engineeing, but that's some ineresting exaggeation here, I can think of at least five better schools for engineering alone.

Please, what are you talking about? How does the fact that you can think of five better schools for engineering show that Illinois is not a 'top university'?
http://ed.sjtu.edu.cn/rank/2005/ARWU2005TOP500list.htm
Illinois ranked 25th on this ranking, and ranked 19th by Times Higher Education Supplement for 200 Best Schools in the world.   
good luck finding washington and lee on the list. 
Don't mean to bash the school or anything, but nobody I talked to either in the East Coast, Midwest or Asia has ever heard of Washington and Lee, some have heard of ND, and many confuse BU with BC.  Of these schools, only Illinois has any real international reputation. 
I would assume a Japanese client be more likely to accept service from a lawyer from Illinois than Washington and Lee (everything else being equal). There is little surprise that  T14 schools almost always have a strong undergrad/graduate reputation. 
But of course, W&L is a very good school, the above is just my opinion on how the reputation of the whole university overall might impact the value of your law degree. 


what about the fact that Illinois' own rankings dont even put them in the t40 PUBLIC schools internationally?...

how you think illinois is better known than ND is rediculous...

if youre concerned about the layperson opinion, i wouldnt put much stock in illinois' decent (not top) reputation in engineering.  unless you have an engineer or engineering firm as a prospective client, they wont have a clue that illinois is in the t20 in engineering.  nor will they care...

you are an idiot if you dont think anyone on the east coast has heard of w&l.  and if youre speaking strictly from an anecdotal perspective of one moron you know then thats equally pointless.

To be sure, ND overall is less well known than Illinois and W&L has no reputation whatsoever in the Northeast.  No one I have talked to has ever heard of W&L, and to be sure, many of them are a lot better educated than you.  So next time, check your own credential before calling others 'morons', this might just make you look more stupid than you really are.  Even some practicing lawyers in NY that I have talked to (my uncle included) think W&L law school is some kind of TTT.
Title: Re: W&L Job placement - WTF???
Post by: kingofspain on March 29, 2006, 10:19:50 PM
wow this thread is so testy.  For the current W+L students on this thread:  why, in your opinion, should I choose W+L over ND?
Title: Re: W&L Job placement - WTF???
Post by: Lenny on March 29, 2006, 10:39:48 PM
Ok, this is absurd.  What's going on here is that two people, LitDoc and yiplong, are making totally baseless assertions with little to no justification.  LitDoc's assertions, while well stated, are just uninformed (save for by the Leiter rankings, which make research methodolody experts cringe).  Yiplong's assertions, both on this thread and others, lead me to the conculsion that he or she is totally unqualified to attend whichever institution he or she so chooses -- have fun missing the forest for the trees wherever you end up.

Now, for kingofspain, you should choose W&L over ND if and only if you like the atmosphere and feel of W&L more.  The job opportunties, on a national, broadly generalized level, are basically the same.  ND  does a bit better in some markets, W&L does better in others.  They both do about the same in the "random" markets.  I make these assertions having done 2 years of job search and summer associate experience at large firms, lest I be accused of baseless assertions.  So, holding job opportunity generally equivalent, the only thing left is feel.  Do with that what you will.
Title: Re: W&L Job placement - WTF???
Post by: Fred Hits on March 29, 2006, 10:40:33 PM
personal pref or regional desire
Title: Re: W&L Job placement - WTF???
Post by: philibusters on March 30, 2006, 05:14:10 AM
I am not sure yiplong is serious, on his own lsn page he has w&l ranked with a higher preference than ill.
Title: Re: W&L Job placement - WTF???
Post by: LitDoc on March 30, 2006, 10:06:02 AM
thanks for noting i go to W&L- i leave that at the bottom of my profile for a reason, so people know where i am coming from- i don't know if it is your intent but i feel like you are only mentioning that to basicaly say 'ignore these guys'  -i try very hard to be fair when saying anything so maybe i am reading more into that then i should, but still..

I repeat what i said before that you offer no real reason for what you are saying.  I know you say you aren't 'slamming' W&L but I fail to see how you are doing anything but.  My impression is that you are basing your argument on the idea that w&l doesn't have everything for everyone.  I don't see how this is anything new.  I don't know of many if any schools that offer everything someone would want. Most every school has its tradeoffs. 

Now I'm trying to see what you are getting at and it seems to me that you are saying that for you personally, w&l does not offer what you want and to you is about as valuable as certain other schools because of those preferences.  If so, then thats fine.  I would have said last year that to me going to a school like villanova is more valuable then illinois because i wanted to be on the east coast.  Illinois is a midwest school just as w&l is an east coast school.  To each his own.  Thing is, that is not what it sounds like you say. 

You then argue that w&l is not as good as those other schools without much to show except your opinion.  You keep referring to this 'national reputation' but i have no idea where you are coming from.  Sure ND has a huge national rep but thats a big exception t othe general rule.  ND football is college football.  Are you saying that from the people you talk to in your region of the country w&l isn't nearly as national?  If so, I can honestly say people here dont think of either iowa or illinois as super steller institutions unless they are in the 'legal know' so to speak. 

Maybe this is a regional difference, but still you are arguing for a national rep, not a regional one.  Also you mention academia reputation.  W&L is a small liberal arts college- in fact the only such school with a graduate school.  So no, W&L does not have massive labs, does not conduct massive studies, or have D1 football teams.

So maybe you are just agreeing with what leiter says?  If so, ok, I'll assume you are making his arguments and i'll go hide in the woods somewhere (i think what he says is some of the stupidest 1 sided stuff but thats for another day and i would at least know why you are saying what you do).  But I really would like to know where your opinion is coming from.  The more you know and understand the more sense things make.  I'm trying to see what you are saying but like i've said, I don't yet see it.

I guess if you can't see what I'm saying, you can't see what I'm saying. I'm not convinced that that the problem in communication here is mine, though. IMHO, it is you who is offering nothing but opinion. I've offered valid reasons for why W&L is not as strong as some other schools -- and I've stated VERY CLEARLY that W&L is a great school based on certain criteria, and not as great based on other criteria. You seem to be reading past all that, though, being too eager to defend W&L's honor -- which, by the way, I haven't been tarnishing.
Title: Re: W&L Job placement - WTF???
Post by: Fred Hits on March 30, 2006, 10:18:02 AM
right so i offer up a couple possible things i think you might be saying and then ask if you could clarify whether i am right or going the right directino with some of them- you respond telling me im the one with a communication problem......ok
Title: Re: W&L Job placement - WTF???
Post by: LitDoc on March 30, 2006, 10:22:49 AM
Ok, this is absurd.  What's going on here is that two people, LitDoc and yiplong, are making totally baseless assertions with little to no justification.  LitDoc's assertions, while well stated, are just uninformed (save for by the Leiter rankings, which make research methodolody experts cringe).  Yiplong's assertions, both on this thread and others, lead me to the conculsion that he or she is totally unqualified to attend whichever institution he or she so chooses -- have fun missing the forest for the trees wherever you end up.

Now, for kingofspain, you should choose W&L over ND if and only if you like the atmosphere and feel of W&L more.  The job opportunties, on a national, broadly generalized level, are basically the same.  ND  does a bit better in some markets, W&L does better in others.  They both do about the same in the "random" markets.  I make these assertions having done 2 years of job search and summer associate experience at large firms, lest I be accused of baseless assertions.  So, holding job opportunity generally equivalent, the only thing left is feel.  Do with that what you will.

Please don't lump me in with Yiplong. I agree that his/her arguments are irrelevant. (Not baseless -- irrelevant. You should learn the difference.) As for my own arguments, you seem to have the same problem as the other W&L defender -- you can't seem to see any reason or validity in what I'm saying, only because you're too caught up in defending W&L.

So far as I can remember, both of you have admitted that W&L is much more well known and marketable regionally. I have not disputed that at all -- on the contrary, I've agreed with it. My contention is only that based on certain criteria, including the "national" marketability of the degree, W&L is not as strong as some other schools, such as BU, ND, Illinois, etc. I even cited some evidence of that: 82% of W&L grads stay in the South and mid-Atlantic region. Of course, to some extent this is self-selecting -- these students go to this school because they WANT to stay in those regions. But compare this to, say, Illinois, where 21% of their alums are on the West Coast, and 29% are in the Northeast. That's HALF of Illinois' grads who are NOT in the Midwest. But you want to contend that Illinois is as much a regional school as W&L.

You can continue to look past my evidence and well-reasoned arguments all you want, in your fervor to defend W&L. I'll say it again: I think W&L is a great school, with a great regional rep and some great things to offer (small size, great S/F ratio, great teaching). But I just don't think it's as comparable to the schools on the upper end of the "mid-1st tier" as it is to the schools on the lower end of that range.

Oh, and trash Leiter all you want -- that's merely an attempt at "guilt by association" -- a logical fallacy that I won't buy into. And for you to say that faculty scholarship shouldn't matter to students is ridiculous. It shows how little you know about higher education.
Title: Re: W&L Job placement - WTF???
Post by: mirror on March 30, 2006, 10:23:33 AM
they are also ranked as top university in the world. 

Except that they aren't, even UIUC admits so: http://www.publications.uiuc.edu/info/rankings.html

Now who said they were the top in the world?  Maybe USNews for Civil Engineeing, but that's some ineresting exaggeation here, I can think of at least five better schools for engineering alone.

Please, what are you talking about? How does the fact that you can think of five better schools for engineering show that Illinois is not a 'top university'?
http://ed.sjtu.edu.cn/rank/2005/ARWU2005TOP500list.htm
Illinois ranked 25th on this ranking, and ranked 19th by Times Higher Education Supplement for 200 Best Schools in the world.   
good luck finding washington and lee on the list. 
Don't mean to bash the school or anything, but nobody I talked to either in the East Coast, Midwest or Asia has ever heard of Washington and Lee, some have heard of ND, and many confuse BU with BC.  Of these schools, only Illinois has any real international reputation. 
I would assume a Japanese client be more likely to accept service from a lawyer from Illinois than Washington and Lee (everything else being equal). There is little surprise that  T14 schools almost always have a strong undergrad/graduate reputation. 
But of course, W&L is a very good school, the above is just my opinion on how the reputation of the whole university overall might impact the value of your law degree. 


what about the fact that Illinois' own rankings dont even put them in the t40 PUBLIC schools internationally?...

how you think illinois is better known than ND is rediculous...

if youre concerned about the layperson opinion, i wouldnt put much stock in illinois' decent (not top) reputation in engineering.  unless you have an engineer or engineering firm as a prospective client, they wont have a clue that illinois is in the t20 in engineering.  nor will they care...

you are an idiot if you dont think anyone on the east coast has heard of w&l.  and if youre speaking strictly from an anecdotal perspective of one moron you know then thats equally pointless.

To be sure, ND overall is less well known than Illinois and W&L has no reputation whatsoever in the Northeast.  No one I have talked to has ever heard of W&L, and to be sure, many of them are a lot better educated than you.  So next time, check your own credential before calling others 'morons', this might just make you look more stupid than you really are.  Even some practicing lawyers in NY that I have talked to (my uncle included) think W&L law school is some kind of TTT.

i dont need a weatherman to know which way the wind blows and i dont need a JD in hand to know that w&l is a good school.  its certainly possible that some lawyers in NY (there are idiots in all walks) dont know about w&l but that just shows their ignorance.  w&l's reputation in the legal field doesnt need my justification.
Title: Re: W&L Job placement - WTF???
Post by: Fred Hits on March 30, 2006, 10:27:05 AM
wahoo thank you- finally you made a real point- i disagree with the point about the % being telling of what 'national' is but at least its something we can agree to disagree on--- besides that your argue nothing except trying to throw my cred under the bus (which honestly is what gets on my nerves more then anything about the school)
Title: Re: W&L Job placement - WTF???
Post by: LitDoc on March 30, 2006, 10:30:46 AM
right so i offer up a couple possible things i think you might be saying and then ask if you could clarify whether i am right or going the right directino with some of them- you respond telling me im the one with a communication problem......ok

If you were merely asking for clarification, then you didn't make that very clear. (Ironic, no?) The bulk of your post sounded like you were trying to dismiss everything I said as mere opinion. The only request for clarification I saw was when you asked if I was simply lipsyncing to Leiter. I thought it was merely a rhetorical way of (again) dismissing my arguments, as you were implicitly dismissing Leiter. If it was a sincere request for clarification, then here's my answer: No. I'm not just a stand-in for what Leiter says. I agree with a lot of what he has to say, but I also disagree with him, too. (For example, he thinks much less of Duke than I do, and perhaps more of Chicago than I do.)

Don't dismiss what I have to say just because you don't like it, or because you don't like Leiter, or because you feel the need to defend W&L. Either accept some of what I have to say as valid, or come up with more than personal opinion and hearsay to support your rebuttal.

And I wasn't throwing your cred under a bus. I simply noted that you have a vested interest in defending W&L, and this ought to be noted, because it does speak to your pov. I've noted that I'm coming from the West, and obviously this colors my perspective, too. Don't be so touchy about your "cred" -- it will cause you to lose it.
Title: Re: W&L Job placement - WTF???
Post by: Fred Hits on March 30, 2006, 10:35:58 AM
right about that last part- it just seemed a bit funny to me that its obvious i go to w&L and you felt the need to hammer on that several times- and im usually very unsenstiive to anything- in fact this may be the first time on here someone has bugged me with some snappy remarks-----either way- we've gone off point--- i still don't think you have given any reason and prefer to simply make remarks trying to sound like a smart ass and you think i'm just not listenting and doing nothing but responding negative to everything you say- whatever, i've had enough of this nonsense
Title: Re: W&L Job placement - WTF???
Post by: LitDoc on March 30, 2006, 10:43:14 AM
right about that last part- it just seemed a bit funny to me that its obvious i go to w&L and you felt the need to hammer on that several times- and im usually very unsenstiive to anything- in fact this may be the first time on here someone has bugged me with some snappy remarks-----either way- we've gone off point--- i still don't think you have given any reason and prefer to simply make remarks trying to sound like a smart ass and you think i'm just not listenting and doing nothing but responding negative to everything you say- whatever, i've had enough of this nonsense

Hmmm. Have you actually read my posts? And yours? I DID offer reasons, and you HAVE simply dismissed it all and responded negatively. I never meant to piss anyone off -- go back and you'll see that my first post was simply offering some info to think about. Your first response was that I was "drinking the Leiter Kool Aid," if I remember correctly. Honestly, I can't see that you have any ground to stand on at this point.
Title: Re: W&L Job placement - WTF???
Post by: Fred Hits on March 30, 2006, 11:50:13 AM
Oh god I so wanted this stupid discussion but I guess my Ďlets just drop ití attempt failed-  Since you think Iím not listening to you I will now prove that you are mistaken:

Your first post: To save space, you note w&l doesnít do as well on other rankings (citing leiter and consus- not sure what the second is)- you say us news overvalues for size

Next:
1- You make a very bold claim- W&L is nothing like BU or ND and if anything is closer to w&m and george mason ---no evidence yet presented
2- You mention small size for course offerings- thatís fine- i think this goes without saying but thatís why I left it alone
3- BU, Iowa, and ND have a name that will travel to almost anywhere in the country- W&L does not
4- basically you go back to the overrated claim due to size

To summarize- so W&L is overrated because it has much less national recognition- you offer up the leiter rankings and the leiter explanation on the flaws of usnews- not really convincing info to me.  I then responded making a quick remark about the size method and why I think letier is wrong (without going into detail), note why I think his faculty rankings are bs to an extent and ask you to explain yourself further.

Your next post-
You first start off stating another obvious point- I go to w&l, not that it isnít obvious from the giant letters in bold- you seem to imply since I go to w&l I am hiding the ball- maybe I overreact to this comment a bit but what you said seems unnecessary as I deliberately make it obvious where I go to school

Stepping onto the campus- you seem to think that this only tells you about atmosphere and neighborhood- to an extent you are correct but it seems very naÔve that some numbers or lists tell you all you need to know
Then you go to the Ďwhatever you want in your experienceí criteria- this would be fine by me- as I responded, what a person wants does play a role- at this point I thought you were simply saying that each person has their own preference based on what they want

The thing is you donít do this.  Next you decide to go back to your Ďoverratedí claim.  Not overrated for you, which is a personal opinion, but overrated.  You mention the vault list.  I assume you mean the leiter vault rankings?  You never really say.  Hard to make a point without any facts.  Then you say again it doesnít have the national rep those other schools do in the west.  Again, however, no facts.

Now you go to the faculty point.  You have some personal experience here so I canít say your claim is 100% baseless on this point but you do conclude that publications reveal faculty quality.  Now while you obviously have more experience then most of us here, this still seems like a pretty strong claim.

So again, you make a strong assertation that w&l is nowhere near as national as its peer schools.  You back this up with some US News data and what leiter says about big schools being given a bump.  You think the faculty isnít as good because publications are important to finding out quality.  I donít think anything I said was baseless.  I was trying to see what you were trying to say because you jump around a bit.  At one point, you discuss what an individual wants and another how w&l isnít really as good as most people think.  Is this two arguments, or one?  That is what I was trying to figure out.  I donít see how anything I said Ďwasnít listeningí especially when you make some major claims that go against what most people think and offer weak support for those claims.  So there you have it.  If you have a specific point and backup for it, then fine, I will gladly agree to disagree.  I just donít see anything that justifies the very strong stance you are making.

now can we please drop this- if you have some points- make another post and ill be sure to listen- but everything in this thread has been ridiculous
Title: Re: W&L Job placement - WTF???
Post by: aufhebung on March 30, 2006, 12:13:15 PM
So... what's up with W&L's job placements, anyway?
Title: Re: W&L Job placement - WTF???
Post by: Alamo on March 30, 2006, 12:19:49 PM
So... what's up with W&L's job placements, anyway?

LOL that's what I'm asking!  The three relevant points I've heard:

-many people go into government work, which requires you to pass the bar before you start work
-the class included in the year USNWR data was lame; these stats should go up in the future
-W&L doesn't lie, cheat and steal its way into better stats the way some schools do

Yep, that's it.  Assuming I go there, I just plan on making sure I don't end up in the bottom quartile - those who do well from W&L will have a ton of opportunities in the east, although transferrability to the west coast without any job experience has been called into question.
Title: Re: W&L Job placement - WTF???
Post by: aufhebung on March 30, 2006, 12:24:45 PM
So... what's up with W&L's job placements, anyway?

LOL that's what I'm asking!  The three relevant points I've heard:

-many people go into government work, which requires you to pass the bar before you start work
-the class included in the year USNWR data was lame; these stats should go up in the future
-W&L doesn't lie, cheat and steal its way into better stats the way some schools do

Yep, that's it.  Assuming I go there, I just plan on making sure I don't end up in the bottom quartile - those who do well from W&L will have a ton of opportunities in the east, although transferrability to the west coast without any job experience has been called into question.

What's the old saw?  everyone thinks they'll be in the top half of their class, just half of us are wrong.
Title: Re: W&L Job placement - WTF???
Post by: LitDoc on March 30, 2006, 02:11:52 PM
Oh god I so wanted this stupid discussion but I guess my Ďlets just drop ití attempt failed-  Since you think Iím not listening to you I will now prove that you are mistaken:

Your first post: To save space, you note w&l doesnít do as well on other rankings (citing leiter and consus- not sure what the second is)- you say us news overvalues for size

Next:
1- You make a very bold claim- W&L is nothing like BU or ND and if anything is closer to w&m and george mason ---no evidence yet presented
2- You mention small size for course offerings- thatís fine- i think this goes without saying but thatís why I left it alone
3- BU, Iowa, and ND have a name that will travel to almost anywhere in the country- W&L does not
4- basically you go back to the overrated claim due to size

To summarize- so W&L is overrated because it has much less national recognition- you offer up the leiter rankings and the leiter explanation on the flaws of usnews- not really convincing info to me.  I then responded making a quick remark about the size method and why I think letier is wrong (without going into detail), note why I think his faculty rankings are bs to an extent and ask you to explain yourself further.

Your next post-
You first start off stating another obvious point- I go to w&l, not that it isnít obvious from the giant letters in bold- you seem to imply since I go to w&l I am hiding the ball- maybe I overreact to this comment a bit but what you said seems unnecessary as I deliberately make it obvious where I go to school

Stepping onto the campus- you seem to think that this only tells you about atmosphere and neighborhood- to an extent you are correct but it seems very naÔve that some numbers or lists tell you all you need to know
Then you go to the Ďwhatever you want in your experienceí criteria- this would be fine by me- as I responded, what a person wants does play a role- at this point I thought you were simply saying that each person has their own preference based on what they want

The thing is you donít do this.  Next you decide to go back to your Ďoverratedí claim.  Not overrated for you, which is a personal opinion, but overrated.  You mention the vault list.  I assume you mean the leiter vault rankings?  You never really say.  Hard to make a point without any facts.  Then you say again it doesnít have the national rep those other schools do in the west.  Again, however, no facts.

Now you go to the faculty point.  You have some personal experience here so I canít say your claim is 100% baseless on this point but you do conclude that publications reveal faculty quality.  Now while you obviously have more experience then most of us here, this still seems like a pretty strong claim.

So again, you make a strong assertation that w&l is nowhere near as national as its peer schools.  You back this up with some US News data and what leiter says about big schools being given a bump.  You think the faculty isnít as good because publications are important to finding out quality.  I donít think anything I said was baseless.  I was trying to see what you were trying to say because you jump around a bit.  At one point, you discuss what an individual wants and another how w&l isnít really as good as most people think.  Is this two arguments, or one?  That is what I was trying to figure out.  I donít see how anything I said Ďwasnít listeningí especially when you make some major claims that go against what most people think and offer weak support for those claims.  So there you have it.  If you have a specific point and backup for it, then fine, I will gladly agree to disagree.  I just donít see anything that justifies the very strong stance you are making.

now can we please drop this- if you have some points- make another post and ill be sure to listen- but everything in this thread has been ridiculous

Oversimplifying and misrepresenting everything I said doesn't prove you listened, nor does it do anything for credibility. I'm tired of repeating myself, but I will just one more time, briefly:

1. Rankings, or claims of "better" or "worse" or "comparable," are all a matter of criteria.

2. Under certain (perfectly valid) criteria, W&L is an excellent school that is "better" even than many top-20 schools, as well as "better" than its so-called peer institutions (not top 20).

3. Under other (perfectly valid) criteria, W&L is not "better" than, and perhaps even less than comparable to, some of its so-called peer institutions.

4. This thread was about job placement -- originating with a question about why W&L's job placement didn't look so hot.

5. I offered some possible reasons for and evidence of W&L being "worse" than some of its so-called peer institutions at national job placement. I have acknowledged every step of the way that W&L does very well in the South and the mid-Atlantic regions.

6. Along the way, I also offered my opinion that W&L might be a little overrated on the USN rankings, favored by its small size; that faculty quality does matter; that scholarship does have something to do with faculty quality; and that Leiter doesn't know everything, but that he does make some good arguments in critique of USN. I also pointed out a few times that you are from W&L yourself, and thus have a vested interest in defending W&L. I, on the other hand, am from the West, thus have a Western pov -- but I also have no vested interest in trashing W&L, nor have I tried to do so.

I think #5 is what everyone is really interested in, and I think if you review my previous posts, you'll see that I did offer more than just empty "opinion" on this matter. For example, I cited employment numbers from a few schools. I also cited the Vault list. I'm very surprised that you don't know about Vault (www.vault.com) -- no, it has nothing to do with Leiter. I couldn't find the article I cited, to give you a link, but in it they ranked the top 40 (if I remember correctly) law schools for BigLaw job placement. W&L was not on the list; Illinois was.

I had not intended to get snarky here -- I started out simply offering some things to think about. I didn't get snarky until you started cursorily dismissing everything I had to say.

I think W&L is a great school -- hell, I applied to W&L. But I withdrew before a decision was made, because I was already accepted to some schools that I think -- for me -- are better. Like Illinois and Minnesota. And one of the reasons I think these schools are better is their national job placement.
Title: Re: W&L Job placement
Post by: philibusters on March 30, 2006, 03:16:28 PM
This is like a legal dispute, both sides offer different set of facts that are both self-interested and rooted in the truth.  I would sum it up like this, LitDoc, whether she admits it or not, set off the thread with the provocative statement that W&L was not comparable to schools like Iowa, ND, BU, or ILL.  Some people, including myself criticized that stance and then everybody dug their heels in and starting trying to justify their position.  Then when people started saying they were being too adversial, we started pleading our case that the other person started it.  In conclusion saying "Iowa, ND, BU, or ILL aren't comparable to W&L probably was not a smart thing to say because its based to much on opinion (and the first post def did not say it as an opinion, but said it rather matter of factly.)  After that people probably over-reacted.
Title: Re: W&L Job placement
Post by: LitDoc on March 30, 2006, 03:53:42 PM
This is like a legal dispute, both sides offer different set of facts that are both self-interested and rooted in the truth.  I would sum it up like this, LitDoc, whether she admits it or not, set off the thread with the provocative statement that W&L was not comparable to schools like Iowa, ND, BU, or ILL.  Some people, including myself criticized that stance and then everybody dug their heels in and starting trying to justify their position.  Then when people started saying they were being too adversial, we started pleading our case that the other person started it.  In conclusion saying "Iowa, ND, BU, or ILL aren't comparable to W&L probably was not a smart thing to say because its based to much on opinion (and the first post def did not say it as an opinion, but said it rather matter of factly.)  After that people probably over-reacted.

I agree with much of this. But I'll add that I said W&L "wasn't comparable" to those other schools in the context of a conversation about job placement. As I've asserted all along, the numbers simply do not support the claim that W&L is as "national" as those other schools. When 82% of your grads take jobs in the South or mid-Atlantic regions, only some of that can be explained as the result of self-selection. I apologize if my claim seemed overly strong, but I stand by the claim that W&L is not as "national" as those other schools. It just doesn't compare.

Allow me to share some "evidence," which I just shared with someone in a PM. (He PM'd me to tell me further why I don't know what I'm talking about; I hope that after I shared this with him he was at least partially persuaded that I might know a LITTLE bit.) This evidence, combined with other rankings and reasons, underlies my claim about W&L's lack of "national" pull.

I am from Oregon. My primary desire is for a career in academia -- so I have to go to the best school I can get into -- but I also have a desire, should academia not work out, to end up back in the West. So, I have researched extensively the legal markets in cities such as Portland, Seattle, San Francisco, Salt Lake City, and Denver. In each city, I randomly selected half-a-dozen or so mid- to large firms, and I went through their roster of associates -- tallying up the number of associates who graduated from the law schools I had applied to. The goal? To find out roughly how many alums from each school were in that market. Also, I inferred that these numbers spoke somewhat to the respective school's ability to place law grads in those markets. (Of course, I recognize that this is only an inference, as it isn't possible to tell whether the associates came to these markets straight from law school or not.)

I applied to W&L, as well as to other "comparable" schools such as Illinois, Minnesota, WUStL, and Iowa. I kept an associate tally for each of these schools, in each of the cities I mentioned. And though I did not keep an official tally on BU and ND, I did keep an eye out for those schools, as I had considered applying to them.

In the end, W&L was SERIOUSLY outperformed by the other schools. Illinois and Minnesota performed the best, with Iowa close behind, and WUStL a little further behind. BU and ND also did fairly well, though I can't say how well in comparison, because I didn't keep the hard numbers. W&L, though, was hardly on the map. In Portland and Seattle, for example, after scanning the rosters of over a dozen firms, I had found ZERO W&L grads. Not a single one. Zero.

I realize fully the limitations of this "study" -- don't start attacking my methodology. I offer this only to show that what I've been saying is not "baseless" or mere "opinion." My findings, combined with the reasonable placement that schools like Illinois and Minnesota have in the East, leads me to conclude that they are at least moderately "national" schools. They are, by my measure, much more national than W&L, which places well only in the East (including the South).

Take from all this what you will. I repeat: I think W&L is a great school. I simply think that it has trouble comparing to the abovementioned schools in terms of "national" job placement. For someone like me, in particular, interested in jobs west of the Mississippi, there is simply no comparison.
Title: Re: W&L Job placement
Post by: kingofspain on March 30, 2006, 04:58:48 PM
thanks to the people who responded to me, i'll be there this weekend to check out the feel of W+L.
Title: Re: W&L Job placement
Post by: Alamo on March 30, 2006, 05:05:13 PM
thanks to the people who responded to me, i'll be there this weekend to check out the feel of W+L.

See you there . . .
Title: Re: W&L Job placement
Post by: philibusters on March 30, 2006, 08:22:13 PM
Fair enough LitDoc, not sure I udnerstand you interest in academia, its a hard field to break into, the pay is decent, but won't blow you socks off.  It makes sense for some people, but their are a lot of smart people competing for too few jobs.  It could be you are the naturally intellectual type, if so go for it enough.

At W&M, in my first two semesters, I ahd a professor from Akron and another from Ill., and third one from UNC so its definitely possible to do it from a mid first tier school, but all of them had to run a 10 or 12 year gauntlet, where they were visiting professors that weren't hired, before they had enough publications to stand on their own.  For biglaw it might matter which of the schools you are considering you go to, but for academia, you are going to have publish papers on the law no matter and probably run the gauntlet a little bit no matter what, if anything you might be best at W&L where you might get to know your profs better.