Law School Discussion

Deciding Where to Go => Choosing the Right Law School => Topic started by: El_Che on December 19, 2007, 08:55:39 PM

Title: Loyola vs. Chi-Kent Hypothetical
Post by: El_Che on December 19, 2007, 08:55:39 PM
I've been accepted to both already, with $20k/yr at Kent and $15k/yr at Loyola. My questions is this: Are there any tangible differences between these 2 schools in employment prospects in Chicago, quality of faculty, courses, or anything.

Now, to make it interesting. I don't really care about Kent's well-known "technical" legal specialties, ie IP law. I also am not that interested in Loyola's perceived strengths in Litigation. Come to mention it, I also got into DePaul with a $20k/yr as well, however I'm not interested in health law, and from what I hear, that's about all it has going for it.

So is there anything separating these 2 schools, if one is not interested in pursing either IP or Litigation?  As of now I'm leaning towards staying in the Chicago area, so it will probably come down to these 2 schools, I guess I'm looking for some insight into what sets them apart, before I go tour them next month. Thanks in advance!
Title: Re: Loyola vs. Chi-Kent Hypothetical
Post by: Secant Tangent Cosine Sine 3.14159 on December 19, 2007, 09:06:35 PM
Hello:

Despite the obvious ranking difference (around twenty spots in favor of Kent), I think the general consensus is that both have a strong regional placement record in the Chicagoland area.  Personally, I would prefer Kent.  If academics isn't an issue for you, I have read some very compelling stories about internship and externship opportunities pursued there.  It has a history of blazing trails and incorporating a lot of student involvement.   I also like the location much better (West Loop) because it is an up-and-coming area of the city that is getting better by the minute it seems.  I have lived at 949 West Madison (not far at all from the school) in a terrific, very reasonably priced condo (which alas, I did not own myelf) that sat positioned amongst many others like it.   Oh and how can you beat walking distance to Greektown with all that great breakfast and lunch food!? Yum!

HTH

Secant
Title: Re: Loyola vs. Chi-Kent Hypothetical
Post by: big - fat - box on December 20, 2007, 10:28:20 AM
Pick the school that is giving you the renewable scholarship UNCONDITIONALLY, with no first year GPA strings attached. If a school is offering a conditional scholarship based on first year GPA, you should not expect to keep the scholarship beyond the first year.

Specialty programs and the like, and marginal differences in rankings don't really mean anything except to naive pre-laws. There is no functional difference between a school ranked #64 and one ranked #86 for example.

Lots of schools have internships and externships, so what? Placement for permanent jobs really comes down to grades. If you're in the top 10% or so at any of these schools, you might have a shot at a big bucks job at a large firm...if your grades are average, you won't have a shot at those opportunities, it's that simple.
Title: Re: Loyola vs. Chi-Kent Hypothetical
Post by: El_Che on December 20, 2007, 11:27:45 AM
Both scholarships are dependent on grades. 3.2's for both I believe. I'm not counting on having them after the first year necessarily, so that's not as big of a factor (although it's still important in my decision for the first year).

I'm wondering more about things such as openness of faculty, student communities, commute times, facilities, acedemic differences, etc. I know that neither one will probably provide a significant advantage employment-wise upon graduation (correct me if I'm wrong though!) Just looking to get a heads up on any big differences before I can go visit next month.
Title: Re: Loyola vs. Chi-Kent Hypothetical
Post by: big - fat - box on December 20, 2007, 11:51:09 AM
If you end up getting into Minn. , I'd go there hands down with in-state tuition over any of the other schools on your LSN list. If you haven't already, send them a letter of continued interest and let them know you want to attend.

The majority of the schools on your list offer big debt loads and mediocre to poor job prospects for most students. Not a good combo.

Employment opportunities and debt load are pretty much the things that matter most. Nearly all of the other stuff is just fluff in most circumstances.

If any school touts the "openness of their faculty", that is largely B.S. I'd rather not go into a lengthy explanation here, but you'll see what I mean after you have a semester or two of law school under your belt.
Title: Re: Loyola vs. Chi-Kent Hypothetical
Post by: El_Che on December 24, 2007, 09:33:56 AM
Any other thoughts?
Title: Re: Loyola vs. Chi-Kent Hypothetical
Post by: wustl3l on December 24, 2007, 09:44:45 AM
Personally given your situation I would choose the cheapest of the three and if they are all equal then Depaul as they have the deepest alumni network in the city. Don't buy into the speciality hype of any school. I find that it matters very little on the job market.
Title: Re: Loyola vs. Chi-Kent Hypothetical
Post by: TheMaddRapper on December 24, 2007, 10:06:05 AM
Someone with your numbers has no business going to any of the three (or four) mediocre Chicago city schools.  You'll at least get into Madison.  Go there if you don't have better options.  You'll be paying MN reciprocity tuition there, which isn't great but a lot cheaper than an expired scholarship at DePaul or Kent or whatever.
Title: Re: Loyola vs. Chi-Kent Hypothetical
Post by: El_Che on December 24, 2007, 02:04:21 PM
Someone with your numbers has no business going to any of the three (or four) mediocre Chicago city schools.  You'll at least get into Madison.  Go there if you don't have better options.  You'll be paying MN reciprocity tuition there, which isn't great but a lot cheaper than an expired scholarship at DePaul or Kent or whatever.

Yea I'm still waiting to hear from Madison, if I get in there I'll go, but I'm thinking of backups since I was waitlisted at Minn, who's to say I won't be waitlisted at Madison too..
Title: Re: Loyola vs. Chi-Kent Hypothetical
Post by: law001 on December 25, 2007, 05:07:49 PM
"Placement for permanent jobs really comes down to grades."
-This isn't true. A lot of people land the jobs they got after law school from internships and connections they made during their years in school. So, there is an argument for going to school in the city you would like to end up in over a higher ranked school because it will likely open the door to jobs.

Anyway, I've heard that Kent students are overall more satisfied with the administration at their school than Loyola and Depaul students.  And, if you care at all about the future of the school you choose, Kent seems to have that going on over Loyola. They won this year's National Trial Competition, their bar passage rates are now higher than schools ranked much higher than them, and they have recently been recognized as very underrated. Loyola probably has more layman name recognition, but this could change over time.
Title: Re: Loyola vs. Chi-Kent Hypothetical
Post by: big - fat - box on December 25, 2007, 06:54:47 PM
Sure some student will land jobs after doing internships and through "connections" made during school, but not a whole lot of the best jobs. Many legal internships in law school are unpaid, and the organizations and employers (non-profits, judges, legal aid, solo practitioners, in-house legal depts., etc.) often cannot hire students after graduation due to their lack of experience or simply because the employer doesn't have the budget to hire new attorneys each year.

Sorry, but grades matter a whole lot for the best jobs: large firms, federal government positions, etc. Even the Cook County state's attorney prefers students in the top half of class.

The Chicago job market is pretty competitive...ask anyone who actually has any familiarity with it.

Any difference between Loyola / Kent / DePaul is marginal at best in placement. The are not heavy hitters by any stretch of the imagination. No one cares about marginal differences in ranking between schools ranked outside of the top 25 or so besides naive pre-laws that think that stuff actually matters.
Title: Re: Loyola vs. Chi-Kent Hypothetical
Post by: nikos13 on December 26, 2007, 12:22:28 PM
overall, kent has to be thought of as the better choice. better location, better facilities, better faculty, better career prospects. etc. if the money they're offering is the same, go with kent
Title: Re: Loyola vs. Chi-Kent Hypothetical
Post by: Rule of Reason on December 26, 2007, 12:42:50 PM
I picked Loyola over Kent --- but $$ was a little better for me at Loyola.

I'd look at classes at both schools and see which one you would rather be at as a student - plain and simple.
 
I think you'll find the classes are a little smaller and much more conversational at loyola, and their location is really nice. Also their scholarships are easier to keep!! At Kent I think you generally need a 3.25 and at Loyola a 3.0 --- plus loyola's curve / median gpa is significantly higher...

There are a couple things I like about Kent... I think their students and administration might be a little more ambitous career-wise wheareas Loyola is a little more homely and laid back. Also, I found Kent's clinical opportunities and specializations to be more interesting... but conventional wisdom told me not to lean so heavily on those things as a 0L.

In terms of potential for job prospects, there is no real difference --- but I'd say check em both out and go with your gut.
Title: Re: Loyola vs. Chi-Kent Hypothetical
Post by: El_Che on December 26, 2007, 04:26:41 PM
^^ Do you know what the curve/gpa differences are between them? They're still neck and neck overall for me...
Title: Re: Loyola vs. Chi-Kent Hypothetical
Post by: TheMaddRapper on December 26, 2007, 05:03:52 PM
There is no real difference between Kent/Loyola/DePaul.  Maybe go with Kent if you have IP credentials, DePaul/Loyola if you want to work for a personal injury firm or for the local government, but I don't see the difference.

The important thing about these schools is almost no one could benefit from going to any of them without a hefty scholarship.  They have a lot of alums in insurance defense, but it's hard to find a decent-paying insurance defense job right after bar passage unless you're in the top third/half or so or maybe you look good and interview real well.  The Chicago job market is tough.

Some bigger Chicago firms might go a tiny bit deeper into Kent than say DePaul.  But when the difference is between 10% and 15% (and that's stretching it) who cares?

For purposes of working in small-law practice areas, it doesn't matter where you go to school.  If you're interested in this type of school you might have an interest in family law.  If so, I'd even go to Marshall with lots of $$ over paying like 20K/year for DePaul on a scholarship.

And ALL these schools will scheme up ways to take your scholarship away.  They will stop at nothing.