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Visits, Admit Days, and Open Houses / My review of Michigan!!
« on: March 14, 2006, 07:27:27 PM »
So I am still in Ann Arbor, but finished with my law school visit.  I came in on Saturday and saw the school on Monday. Thanks to the Darrow they paid for my visit, so I was able to come for a while... it's been awesome.  My partner and I spent Saturday night and Sunday all day checking out the town and visiting some friends.  We had a great time finding how Ann Arbor is similar to Madison, and it does not feel smaller than Madison (though it actually is).  We had some sushi, diner food, and local beer at a brewing company - all good stuff.

Monday I spent most of the day visiting the school.  I went to a health law class where there was a guest speaker.  The speaker was good, but of course who knows if we'll see him again. Anyway, the class was about 20 students, most were definitely paying attention but not answering questions.  It was their first guest speaker of the semester, so I guess maybe they didn't want to seem too much like gunners by answering questions.  Anyway, the professor Jill Horwitz told me the class is typically half case reading and half articles on policy and best practices.  Plus she found me later and apologized for not being able to talk with me more. 

Then I went to Con Law with Scott Shapiro.  He apologized both before and after class for it being a boring lecture, which it turned out to not be boring at all.  It was around 90 people (I assume all of a section).  Most people were paying attention, taking notes, and some were answering questions.  He did use Socratic method and cold-calling, but his demeanor was pretty easy-going so it didn't feel intimidating.  I heard from two 3Ls that Prof Shapiro is very well-liked as a professor, which seemed credible.

I had lunch with two 3Ls interested in public interest careers who raved about the school.  They answered lots of questions and were really nice.  Both are off to great jobs for next year - one has a clerkship and one has a public interest fellowship.  They seemed to feel like Michigan was a particularly great place for public interest and both turned down higher ranked schools (including Harvard) to get that atmosphere.

After lunch I met with a professor, Don Herzog.  By then I had most of my questions answered so we primarily talked about the world for academia.  But he was very approachable and down-to-earth.  He's a political theorist who moved from poli sci to the law school gradually.  I'd take a class with him I think.

I also met Sarah Zearfoss, who is just as nice and funny as she seems.  The tour was great as the facilities are beautiful.  The Law Quad looks better than the photos they sent us all.  So in short, I loved it and plan to attend.  I hope to see others there too!  I'll check this thread regularly so feel free to ask questions.

Incoming 1Ls / Why is law school hard?
« on: February 26, 2006, 04:30:17 PM »
So I hear all these horror stories about law school, especially 1L, and how hard it is to do well.  But the stories seem short on detail - what is hard about law school?  Is it the amount of reading?  The professors' expectation?  The competition of other students?  All of the above?  Something else entirely?  I'm interested in figuring this out partly out of curiousity and partly to see if I feel prepared or not (and how I might be more prepared for the work at least in mentality). 

I know that it'll be hard, but graduate school has been hard too in its own way.  I'm mostly wondering if people can speak to what has been difficult for you in law school or what you expect to find difficult.

Choosing the Right Law School / Any negatives to Michigan?
« on: February 07, 2006, 07:47:43 AM »
So I've been doing lots of research on Michigan and have found out all sorts of things I like about the school.  But I'm curious whether anyone has found anything out about the school that they did NOT like so much.  The weather doesn't count as a negative as I've been in the Upper Midwest for a while now and supposedly the winter in Ann Arbor is slightly less windy than Madison's... which trust me is important!  Besides the summers make up for it in my opinion. 

Anyway have you heard anything bad about the school?  Anything that students there complain about?  I don't know any current students and the one former student I am talking with is super positive (which is awesome).  But every school has some downsides so I'm just trying to figure out what they are so I can weigh them in my decision, does that make sense? 

Law School Admissions / UNC Question
« on: January 20, 2006, 12:58:41 PM »
So I am trying to figure out whether to fill out the long form for residency consideration or just let them consider me a non-resident for tuition.  Here are the factors at play:

- I have a full ride to Michigan (WOW that still is AMAZING to type)
- This form is a big pain in the ass to fill out
- I am not a resident of any other state for tuition as Wisconsin already denied my claim
- I would love to be in NC for family reasons but would really only go if it's free
- UNC doesn't seem to offer much merit aid regardless of residency

So here's the thing, most likely it makes sense to just let them think I'm a nonresident as really I am likely not going there (yes I'd withdraw if it weren't for the fact that my mom really wants me to at least say I got in there... she doesn't care about the fact that I'm already accepted to higher ranked places).  But what if I were to get in, LOVE my visit, want to go and not be able to afford it because I'm not a resident in their eyes? 

What would you do?  I really am asking and not at all trying to seem uppity.  Thanks for any opinions.

Choosing the Right Law School / Ann Arbor vs DC
« on: January 09, 2006, 08:59:28 AM »
So I'm currently deciding between Michigan and Georgetown (until I hear otherwise from somewhere like Stanford... here's hoping).  I'm interested in working/volunteering while in school for about 10hr/week (maybe not first year, we'll see after things get rolling) for a nonprofit advocacy group.  Real world experience is really important to me, and yes I know about the ABA rules against working your first year... I'll figure it out.  I know in DC there will be some good opportunities as I have strong connections there.  Does anyone know about the Ann Arbor area (even Detroit)?  I know where I am now (Madison) it's hard to find work/volunteering options in nonprofits because of the super-saturation of recent grads from UW.  Anyone know if Ann Arbor is similar or would it be easier to find an opening?

Thanks for any help!

Law School Admissions / Let's play make believe...
« on: January 01, 2006, 12:02:09 PM »
Okay so it's only part of the way through the admissions cycle so many of us are still dealing wtih hypothetical choices... but even that can be fun.  I'd love some advice on hypothetical choices and would be happy to help others with their hypothetical choices (especially best case scenario ones, but realistic hypos are good too).

So here would be my hypo (* means already offered):

Michigan (full Darrow*) vs. Georgetown (full ride, do they match offers?) vs. Stanford (some need money, not likely to be full)  vs. UNC (full ride)

of course I have no idea whether some of these options will happen (especially Stanford), but that's half the fun.  Just fyi, I do plan to go into public interest work.

Anyone up for make believe? ::)

Law School Admissions / UMich Darrow
« on: December 23, 2005, 02:01:00 PM »
Just got a call from Dean Zearfoss.... 

I got a full Darrow!

Full tuition for three years and stipend after first year!!!



Law School Admissions / UNC Completes
« on: December 21, 2005, 04:19:46 PM »
So a week or so ago I got a strange set of two emails from UNC - one saying they needed another copy of my signed statement that what I put on my apps is true, and another saying to disregard that email and they'll let me know if I need to send anything.  Nothing since.  But I sort of know they have all of my materials and they are the only school where I am not complete.  It's been quite a long time since I submitted it all and 6 or 7 weeks since they acknowledged that receipt.  Anyone else finding their office slow or is it just me?  If others have the same issue, then I will wait...  I just don't want to prolong the process if they really are missing something from my file somehow. 

Choosing the Right Law School / Playing the $$ game
« on: December 16, 2005, 07:41:58 AM »
So I have been accepted to a few schools, nearly all of which I am still seriously considering.  Plus I'm waiting on two others that I also would still really love to go to.  But basically I am probably not going to law school next year unless it is very affordable as my partner and I have tons of student loan debt already and our career plans are not going to lead to easy repayment (music and nonprofit work)!  Anyway, so I'm trying to gain some insight into playing the money game.  For example, if I am offered a great scholarship somewhere (a big if I'm sure, but play along), but I visit the school and it doesn't seem like the right fit or whatever, does anyone have insights into how to negotiate with a different school?  Would your advice change if the school offering money is higher or lower ranked than the other school?  How much of a difference in rankings would be meaningful to that change in advice?  What about the issue of public vs private schools?

Money is not everything for deciding where I go, but I cannot go to a school and pay full tuition or close to it.  I will just go get a job instead and see if going to law school in the future would work out. 

Grad school money is a totally different ballgame as it has to do with finding particular faculty who want you, and for undergrad I was lucky to be offered more scholarship from a school after I took so long deciding.  I doubt that waiting plan would work for law school as they have much longer wait list than many colleges, and my experience getting my graduate education paid for won't really help me figure out the whole law school thing.

Anyway, I know many people on this board will be getting scholarship money (as so many of us are over-achievers) and may also have to deal with this type of issue, so maybe we can help each other out.  Especially in terms of negotiating for merit-based money, it seems like the help on this board might prove very useful.  Thanks for any insights you all have and I'll be sure to share whatever I find out from non-LSD sources!

Law School Admissions / Stanford Completes
« on: November 22, 2005, 09:05:33 AM »
I decided to check on LSN to see whether people who sent at the same time as I did were already complete, as I have not been notified that I am complete.  Oddly it seems that the people who submitted the week I did (10/10-10/16) are almost all NOT complete but most people after and before are.  Anyone submit in that week and go complete?  Did you contact Stanford to find out?  I'm not too worried as I know they have everything, but I am slightly concerned that it somehow is not all in the same file or something so they don't know I'm complete.  I was thinking I'd give them another week and then email/call.  What do others think? 

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