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Messages - jhport12

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Choosing the Right Law School / Re: what do i do for financial aid?
« on: April 25, 2004, 06:53:50 PM »
Whatever you do with your financial aid there's one thing to remember: almost EVERYONE ends up with a ridiculous amount of debt after they graduate.  The people whose rich parents pay for it aren't that great in number (unless you're at the top schools) and those prodigies with ridiculous scholarships are even more rare.

Find some comfort in the simple fact that we all come out with lots of debt and that you have to look at law school as a financial investment in yourself that only begins to pay dividends after you graduate.  I had a hard time accepting this as someone whose never had much money and can't fathom having a small mortgage on my hands.  I then talked with some law students in their third year and they gave me some perspective.

I know I'm a little off topic, but considering how much people talk about financial aid and debt, I felt it was important to look at it in context.  It also helps people calm down and focus on the important thing: learning the law and getting good grades so that you have the best possible opportunities when you graduate.

Choosing the Right Law School / Re: BU vs. Northeastern
« on: April 25, 2004, 06:26:58 PM »
The difference between BU and Northeastern is pretty huge.  While Northeastern's Coop program gives it an edge compared to other tier-3 law schools, to make the argument that it is competitive with a tier-1 law school is honestly ridiculous.

If you just want to be a random lawyer in New England and want to experiment through the Coops to really know what law interests you, then NUSL is a fine choice.  But if you have an ounce of ambition (even half an ounce), then you would be a fool not to go to BUSL.  That's the simple truth, and I say this as someone whose top choice is Northeastern (I'm on the waitlist right now).

Choosing the Right Law School / Re: very thin envelope
« on: April 23, 2004, 02:50:46 PM »
I applied to three law school and got three thin envelopes in response.

One: An acceptance letter.

Two: A letter saying I was on their waitlist.

Three: A rejection letter.

Go figure.

Law School Admissions / Re: Personal Statements Don't Matter
« on: April 23, 2004, 01:39:28 PM »
Not that I want to join in the pigpile on Yaleman, but I did want to respond to the LSAT issue.

As someone who's GPA is low (2.83) because of a bad sophomore slump, the LSAT presented an opportunity for me to show what I was capable of.  I studied, took practice exams, and came out with a score of 167.  This score, and an addendum explaining my academic stumble, allowed me to apply to respected schools with quality programs (as opposed to pretentious schools who rely on their aristocratic pedigree).

You do not see me whining about how schools place too much emphasis on GPA's, or don't take into account special circumstances.  And, as a matter of fact, I am CERTAIN that my personal statements had a role in my acceptances and waitlistings.  One statement was tangibly less exciting and interesting compared to another and the schools I sent it to waitlisted me.  The other was much more focused and enthusistic, and schools who got that one accepted me.

I worked hard and earned my LSAT score, and it is largely responsible for me being able to aim higher than I would have just relying on my GPA.  And, truth be told, GPA and where you went to undergrad are JUST AS SUBJECTIVE as the LSAT.  I know a lot of people may disagree with me on that, but just because it represents a larger commitment doesn't make it any less subjective.

We live in a world where pedigree and "brand naming" eclipse ability and character.  This is especially true on the coasts and in large cities.  When you get out of your scholastic cocoon and into the real world you sink or swim entirely on your own.  A good school can get you off to a good start, but that only gets you so far.

Of course, if you are already privileged and have a ton of connections that's a completely different story.

Choosing the Right Law School / Re: Suffolk Scholarships
« on: April 21, 2004, 02:59:30 PM »

I think you're right that the Coop program gives NUSL a big advantage over Suffolk.

It's ironic that you have a good GPA and less stellar LSAT and I have a good LSAT and a less stellar GPA; I wonder if Northeastern weighs the GPA more heavily than the LSAT.  I have also been told that Suffolk leans toward the more conservative side (as much as you can in Massachusetts) and Northeastern is much more liberal and laid-back.

It's a tough choice, but I actually met and spoke with an NUSL student and she made it seem like Northeastern gives you the chance to really learn the law and try out different types of practice whereas other law schools make you stressed out about class rankings and don't give you many chances to try out different types of law.

Choosing the Right Law School / Re: Suffolk Scholarships
« on: April 20, 2004, 01:16:18 PM »
Northeastern isn't necessarily better than Suffolk, it depends on what you want to do.  Suffolk is very plugged in to the financial district in Boston.  Northeastern doesn't give out grades or rankings, which can make getting interviews harder.

Weez, are you choosing between Suffolk w/10k and Northeastern w/zero?  Do you have specific reasons for choosing NUSL over Suffolk?

I got only 6k at Suffolk, this in spite of having a 167 LSAT score.  I am on the waitlist at Northeastern, but pretty confident they will extend me an offer come June.  Depending on the aid they give me, I might have a difficult choice to make.

P.S.  My GPA is a little low (2.83), due to a bad sophomore slump, but I graduated from a good school.  My high LSAT score is saving me, it seems.

If you want to stay in New England, NESL w/full scholarship is the way to go.  You have no idea what coming out of law school with no debt will do for you psychologically and emotionally.  If you like IP, then Suffolk is the way to go, they have a great program.

Choosing the Right Law School / Re: Roger Williams Law School
« on: April 11, 2004, 06:47:22 PM »
They are a relatively young school, that is part of why they have not built up a reputation.  As the only law school in RI, you would have a unique opportunity to get internships in Providence Law Firms and Courts.  If you like RI, and would want to practice there, it is a golden choice.  If you want to stay in New England, they are still a good choice.  Outside of New England, and you may want to look at other schools.

Choosing the Right Law School / Re: Northeastern Or Loyola or IIT kent
« on: April 11, 2004, 06:41:40 PM »
Northeastern has been getting over-rated a lot because of its coop program.  Many law schools run clinics that function as essentially the same thing.  With the current economy and everyone worried about jobs, the idea of coming out of law school with job experience is enticing.  But I don't think Northeastern's coop program puts them above other schools that run clinics.  You also have to think about where you want to practice.  If you want to stay in New England, then Northeastern is a decent choice.

Choosing the Right Law School / Re: Catholic v. Northeastern
« on: April 11, 2004, 06:31:59 PM »
With six law schools, Boston is certainly a flooded market for lawyers.  It sound like you are interested in a change anyway.  I certainly wouldn't mind the warmer weather, that's for sure.  And if you went to the Catholic campus and liked what you saw . . . that is an important factor to keep in mind.  Best of luck with the decision-making.

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