Law School Discussion

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1
Where should I go next fall? / Re: UNLV (full-ride) vs. Cardozo (no $$)
« on: February 25, 2006, 09:52:48 PM »
Thanks so much for posting on this board. It is sometimes rare to find someone already in school willing to help out. Do you know anyone at the UNLV part time day program? I did all 11 of my apps in late December, realizing last week that I really limited myself to 3 very highlyranked schools and three Tier 4 schools (dinged at a few of my reaches...did too many out of my league). After looking again at Tier 3, I just couldnt imagine moving to Toledo or North Dakota. Long story short, I applied to UNLV part time because 1. I am afraid applying this week means I'm very late and 2. I didnt think my 3.4/151 would be competative enough for full time. I can see myself enjoying Vegas and coming from DC, cost of living appeals to me. Anyway! Do you think it might be easy to transfer to full time, provided I've got the grades? Also, the website doesn't have too many pictures (although the few they do look beautiful} but how are the facilities? Work load? Thanks again! :)

I think that it isn't too difficult to transfer from the part-time program into the full-time program. I know a few classmates who have done so. Their grades are pretty good though.

I think that our website sucks because they could have a ton of cool pictures, but they don't. The law building is really nice. It's only three or four years old. The technology inside the classrooms is awesome. They are now building a large multi-level auditorium and court rooms adjacent to the law school so that the Nevada Supreme Court can come and hold hearings here more often. The UNLV campus itself isn't the most beautiful, though.

The work load is probably what you could expect to find at most other schools. It's rigorous, especially when you have your appellate brief due and then have to argue it. Come finals, you'll downright hate life, but hopefully you'll see the light at the end of the tunnel. In general, though, I think that it is manageable. As a 1L you'll spend so much time studying your ass off. In your second and third years, you'll be much more efficient. As a 2L that's on law review and externs for a federal judge twice a week, I can honestly say that I'm bored on the weekends. I spend about 10 hours/week studying now. (Again, that wasn't the case last year though).

2
Where should I go next fall? / Re: UNLV (full-ride) vs. Cardozo (no $$)
« on: February 25, 2006, 02:23:57 AM »
I'm currently a 2L at UNLV. I'd be more than happy to answer any of your questions as objectively as possible, just send me a PM.

As far as the cost of living is concerned, while it is dirt cheap to a Manhattanite, it is becoming rather pricey for the rest of us. Many of the high-rise condos are starting at $650K or more for a studio (and they don't even come w/ a place for a washer and dryer in the unit). The converted condos, aka former low-rise apts, are around $150K +.

Now as far as the legal market is concerned, I do not think that there is a glut of attys. Here's a good article that describes the LV legal market. http://www.swlaw.com/data/whatsnew/American_Lawyer_Cover_Betting_on_Vegas.pdf. In addition, there have been a few changes since the article was written. Currently, there is a wage war going on. When I started law school the large Vegas firms paid anywhere b/w $70-80K. Now, most of the large firms are paying $90K + b/c all of these out-of-town firms are moving in and driving up the wages to steal attys away. The highest paying firm pays $110K. The point is that the starting salary keeps going up every month and is becoming more and more like the CA legal market. (NY still pays more).

Vegas is a ton of fun. I have crazy stories that you probably wouldn't believe. Everyone has a "crazy Vegas" story of some sort it seems.

The weather is nice. The summers are sizzling. To be honest, though, I'm generally carrying a sweater with me b/c everywhere has their AC set to freezing.

In addition, there's great UFC fighting. (Tickets are expensive though). I've seen Chuck Liddell hanging out in the local bars twice now. He's super nice. There's also a lot of concerts, but mainly of the very commercial kind. Vegoose is a great festival that brings in a bunch of non-commercial types. Also, all the commedy tours stop here.

Again, if you have questions about the law school itself, don't be afraid to ask.

3
Where should I go next fall? / Re: USD 1L Happy to take questions
« on: December 27, 2005, 07:23:59 PM »
It takes a lot to build a rapport w/ a firm. I'm sorry to break it to you guys, but as 1Ls you won't be invited to private, swanky cocktail parties where laywers and judges hang out. Even if you were, do you think these attys are going to remember who you are. If they do, chances are they'll just tell you "Talk to Cindy. She handles all of our recruiting." Also, what makes you think that they'll call in a favor for some 1L or 2L that they don't know that well.

Once you guys go through OCI, you'll see that no one gets their jobs based of their networking abilities. Sure some will get jobs b/c of family ties but not b/c of some stranger.

4
Where should I go next fall? / Re: NEED LOTS OF ADVICE!!
« on: December 26, 2005, 11:37:25 PM »
While I'm not sure what your chances are for those Chicago schools, I can say that you'd be better off going to the PT program than John Marshall. You can eventually transfer into their full-time day program at those schools.

Also, some employers will ask you if the PT students are less competitive. If you aren't working and didn't do well, then you'll have a tough time answering this question. If you do well, though, it won't matter to them.

5
Where should I go next fall? / Re: opinions on these schools?
« on: December 26, 2005, 11:33:40 PM »
You are better off waiting a year to re-apply than planning on transferring. There are several reasons why it's difficult to transfer:
1. Schools in the T14 won't consider you if you are outside of the top 10% of your class. While many soon-to-be 1Ls are optimistic, you'll quickly realize that you'll be glad to rank at all after your first year.
2. Several of the students that ranked no. 1-10 at their school will probably apply to the T14s. This will be your competition, even if you are in the top 9.99% of your class.
3. If a school is geographically close, they probably receive several transfer apps from that school b/c the applicants want little change in their life but a better degree.

If you aren't sure whether you want to practice in Jersey, then just go to the highest ranked school that you get into.

6
Where should I go next fall? / Re: opinions on these schools?
« on: December 26, 2005, 04:40:52 PM »
I'm not sure where Rutgers is on the rankings, but you may also want to consider Temple and Villanova, if you are looking at the Philly market. If you prefer the NYC market, then look at some of the other NY schools.

As far as the higher ranked schools that you mentioned, I wouldn't go to any of them if you'd like to stay in Jersey long-term. Only the T20 are truly national schools, IMO. It's extremely difficult to transfer and I wouldn't count on it. There's no guarantee that you'll be ranked high enough to transfer. Plus, if you are highly ranked, you'll be better off staying at Rutgers b/c you'll get a good job and have little debt.

7
Where should I go next fall? / Re: USD 1L Happy to take questions
« on: December 26, 2005, 04:30:16 PM »

 But a lot of being a lawyer is working with others, and they want to employ people that they themselves want to work with.  They all agreed that a secretary who worked at their firm, who was well liked, and did reasonably well at USD (top 40% or so) would be more than competitive against a top 10% Harvard grad.

As a 2L, I agree w/ the fact that going to a regional school only makes it more difficult to get a job somewhere else, but certainly not impossible. However, I disagree w/ the idea that firms are looking for someone that they'd like to work w/. It's all based on grades. Having gone through OCI and observing who got callbacks, I find it hard to believe that the ppl ranked in the top ten (as in ppl, not percent), have that much better of a personality than most of the ppl outside of the top ten. Yet, they got 90% of the callbacks.


8
Where should I go next fall? / Re: Villanova vs. Pitt?
« on: December 23, 2005, 05:38:56 PM »
I went to Villanova for my undergrad. It was really cool. There are some religious undertones in the educational experience, but not that many!

I can say that the VU financial aid office is very generous and will do everything to meet 100% of your need. You won't believe how important this is.

Also, their graduate do very well in the Philly job market. You'll be working alongside NYU and UPenn grads at the large firms. (I have a few friends that are 2Ls there).

First, I'll say, whereevere Giraffe205 is going trumps either of these places -- are you from SE PA or did you come from elsewhere to go to Villanova?

On a more realistic response, I'd say Pitt for Western PA and Villanova for Eastern PA.  It's that simple, really.  They're both great schools.  You wouldn't struggle really anywhere in PA with either degree.

I went there b/c my boyfriend at the time got into Wharton at UPenn. I got in to their law school but really wanted to come back to the West Coast since I couldn't put up w/ the snow.

However, as far as ppl's comments about the school...yes, it's a Catholic school. Yet, I didn't find the religious stuff to be that bad considering I don't even believe in Jesus. The only time that it was a problem was when I needed a prescription for birth control. If you can get along w/ someone who is Catholic at your work or school, I'm sure that you won't find the religious undertones that overwhelming.

With respect to the night life. There's a lot of local bars that ppl go to. It's actually a lot of fun since you get a lot of college kids from Saint Joe's, Haverford College, Bryn Mawr College and VU. If you want to go to clubs, then Philly is the place. The clubs there are ok, but I think that the clubs on the West Coast are better.

Also, while I have only had great experiences w/ financial aid as an undergrad, I don't think that it's that different for law school. They offered me a 1/4 tuition scholarship. When I spoke to the admissions office about how that would not be enough, they had financial aid call me the next day and promise to give me grants if I was unable to find a private loan to cover the difference. I currently attend a public law school and I can tell you that our financial aid office doesn't try this hard.

9
I'm a 2L at UNLV. I love it here.

Pros:
-Good legal market. There is currently a wage war going on. At the start of this year the standard starting salary was $80K. As the year closes, the top firms are paying $110K. I'm not sure if it'll keep going or plateau at this point. Also, several large national and regional firms have opened up shop w/in this past year, and more are expected.
-Interesting legal work. There's a ton of work related to real estate, both transactional and litigation.
-If you have decent grades, you'll get a good job in Vegas. (I have a job lined up through OCI).
-The faculty is awesome. There's even a few federal judges that teach, including a 9th Circuit Court of Appeals judge.
-The student body is really close knit.
-Nice building, equipped w/ wireless internet

Cons:
-The school should sponsor more social activities. Right now ppl go out w/ others from their section, but it'd be nice to have events where we could mingle w/ ppl from other sections and class years.
-It's hard to get a job outside of Nevada. It's do-able, but hard.
-You don't bid for interviews during OCI like at the T14s. Instead, you submit your materials and are then invited to an interview.
-Sometimes it feels as if the school treats us like children that are punished if they don't do as they're told.

If you have any other questions, feel free to PM me.

10
Where should I go next fall? / Re: Villanova vs. Pitt?
« on: December 22, 2005, 11:56:08 PM »
I went to Villanova for my undergrad. It was really cool. There are some religious undertones in the educational experience, but not that many!

I can say that the VU financial aid office is very generous and will do everything to meet 100% of your need. You won't believe how important this is.

Also, their graduate do very well in the Philly job market. You'll be working alongside NYU and UPenn grads at the large firms. (I have a few friends that are 2Ls there).

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