« on: April 07, 2006, 07:56:16 PM »
I'm currently an 1L at UB (rising 2L), so I'll try my best to answer a few questions (however belatedly). From lightest to heaviest subject:
Anchor Bar is the original inventor, but I've heard Duff's serve THE BEST wings. I've been to Duff's and they do serve very moist chicken wings, but I haven't had a chance to visit the Anchor Bar just yet.
Life Outside Law School:
First of all, that's sort of an irony. First year students are pretty bogged down with studying and when we do have fun, it's usually hanging out, going to someone else's place or going to Bar Night (or visit one of the pubs or local eateries). I would say the events happening in school (student associations, journals, friends, moot court for 1L's, events) keep everyone pretty busy. Again, it depends on your preference: what's more important to you - the ability to get outside the school, or is school more important to you than having coffee shop outside the school to hang out?
There are several joint degree programs offered along with the JD. The best thing about many of these programs is that they will take LSAT as substitute for the GRE. For business school JD/MBA, you need to prove you have some calculus/statistics background, but for the most part, the application process is pretty straight forward. If you don't want to spend an extra year in school, you could opt to take a concentration (certification in specialized areas of law). The concentration program give your academic schedule a structure.
There are several clinics offered by the school. However, no 1L's are allowed to take them. They are only open to 2L's and 3L's with instructor permission. Some professors look at your GPA only. Some look at your GPA and a personal statement (or something that makes them think you're a compelling candidate. E.G. You've taken a course with that professor and he/she knows you, or you are doing a concentration/joint-degree or has a background in that area of law, etc.) Clinics have limited number of slots, so I would suggest applying early.
Salary, Professional Advancement:
Since most students in this school are from Western NY, and WNY has a lower living cost than NYC, the starting salary, on average, is lower than other school. But this is not suprising given the composition of the student body. Another thing you might want to factor in is because most firms that do on-campus interviews are from WNY. To work in another place like NYC or out-of-state, you have to do active search. In another words, you have to be your own promoter. Even if you are studying in a law school in NYC, you won't land a job "just because" you are from a NYC school. Having an on-campus recruiting job in NYC simply means it's more convenient for the students. But again, your selling point should be that YOU are the BEST candidate, not just you're a student of a NYC school. In fact, it might be very competitive in NYC b/c there are so many upper-tier law schools there vying for a top position. If you have housing in NYC, you could spend a few weekends over there for recruitment events. UB Career Center keeps an updated list and regular e-mail reminder of upcoming recruitment events (even those in NYC).
The biggest thing that bothered me the most about Buffalo is the winter. It lasts from 4-6 months, and since I've never lived in Northearn U.S. prior to law school, it was almost unbearable. Luckily I got used to it, so I can endure for a few more years.
Each class year has approximately 250 students. In the first year, you are divided into 3 sections, with about 80-90 students per section for substantive courses, and about 15-20 students for research & writing class. This is a pretty small ratio for a public law school.
Like every school, there are star faculties and those who are not so effective lecturers. All the faculties are very knowledgeable about their subject. It really depends on your learning style. As a first year, you don't get to choose, but by your 2nd & 3rd year, you will have a say in your schedule. Overall, UB has a stellar faculty.
I hope this helps.
If you have any questions please feel free to contact me.