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Messages - lawnecon

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Have you visited both? I have a friend who went to Villanova for LS and was very disappointed in the diversity of her class and the faculty. I'm not talking about affirmative action but that the student body lacked different backgrounds and experiences. She said it hrt the overall experience and quuality of education. The reputation I've heard from both undergrad and law school is that it's very vanilla. I don't know if that matters to you.

I said it in another thread..visit Villanova before attending. Everyone looked, dressed and acted exactly the same. It was like an preppy cult. Scared me to death.

Hey!  ;)

But, yeah, go to McGeorge if you want to stay in California. It's a lot easier to build contacts, etc. in the location where you attend school. That said, we have a decent number of students from CA and some go back after graduation.

PM me if you want any additional information about the law school.

Choosing the Right Law School / Re: Liberty, Regent or Ave Maria
« on: May 29, 2008, 08:59:02 PM »
Any of the 3 is fine. With a degree from them, people can easily peg you as the religious fundie whacko that you are and avoid you at all costs.

How "Tolerant" of you.  ::)

Why are you asking us, anyway? Shouldn't Jesus be telepathically telling you what school you should be going to?

I was wondering how long it would take for one of these comments to appear  ::)

The guy wants to go to a school with a certain environment. He isn't attacking other schools. He came here to assess his situation. It's fair to note that none of these schools has great employment prospects and that he may be sacraficing his post graduate options for his preferred environment. I don't, however, see why it's necessary to run a guy down because he happens to have a different perspective. I'm sure you wouldn't like such a response when you're making an honest appeal for information.

Choosing the Right Law School / Re: Liberty, Regent or Ave Maria
« on: May 29, 2008, 11:17:20 AM »
None of those schools receive too many positive comments on this board - both due to their low ranks and controversial politics.

Of the three, I'd say Regent is the best option. AM has a decent reputation (for a new school) in Michigan, but there has been a lot of controversy surrounding a proposed move to Florida. I'm not sure if the issue has been resolved, but I wouldn't want to enter a law school with such an uncertain future. Liberty, on the otherhand is a very new school and only provisionally accredited. The only person I know who has attended there already had a guaranteed JAG position (and free tuition).

Regent is poorly ranked, but it has been around for a while. It has an alumni base and networking connections among Republicans/conservatives. I was recently at the school (which has very nice facilities) for a moot court competition. They were advertising OCI positions in some flyers - the list was rather skimpy, but they did list local DA offices. If you want to work for a DA office in Virginia Beach/Newport News, Regent may be a decent choice.

Regent made the news because a number of Justice Dept. lawyers were Regent grads (despite the school's low rank). Obviously, these appointments were controversial, but having close the close ties with well connected Republicans can provide networking opportunities that aren't available to graduates from other low ranking schools.

I wouldn't attend any of these institutions without significant scholarship money, though.

Choosing the Right Law School / Re: Syracuse vs. T4s
« on: May 21, 2008, 09:09:46 AM »
I can't believe Syracuse charges that amount of money for a borderline T2/T3 school which isn't even in a nice area of the country. Personally, I think that tier 2 schools located around or near major cities are ripping students off when they charge 30k a year.

Anyway, even with your scholarship, I think Syracuse is over priced. A couple years ago I received about a 1/2 tuition scholarship to go to Cuse - when it *only* cost $35k a year. I turned it down because I didn't hear great things about the employment opportunities and living in Syracuse in the winter didn't really interest me. I'm not a 100% sure I made the right deicision - I'd probably have less debt, but with the tuition hikes, I'm not sure it would be significant enough to justify going there. There was also a GPA requirement which meant that the scholarship wasn't guaranteed if I couldn't keep my grades up.

That said I do have a friend who went to Syracuse and graduated last year. He said most of his friends had jobs after graduation. He even had a job offer from a local DA's office with a starting salary of $50k per year, and he was in the bottom part of his class.

Based upon what I know about the school and my friend's experience, here's my breakdown of SU Law.


-Good name recognition because of the well ranked undergrad and that SU was once a much better regarded law school - The name probably gives you a leg up on most other T3/T4 schools - at least among people who don't follow the rankings

-Great joint degree options - Of course, you usually have to hang around Syracuse during one summer to finish your degree on time - Though, if you're interested in the joint degree - Is it really necessary to get the JD as well?

-Lots of alumni in upstate NY to help with your job search - if you want to live in upstate NY - Buffalo is cheaper though and has a similar benefit

-Syracuse has a low COL which can save you some money


-Incredibly expensive tuition - You better have a plan to pay off your debt. My friend had a lot of help from his family. I would have had help from my family and the scholarship.

-OCI - When I looked a couple years ago, NALP listed only 6 employers who visited Cuse. I think a couple were just JAG offices offering informational interviews.

-Employment overall - You'll have to do a lot of leg work particularly if you want to leave upstate NY and don't want to just do doc review. T2 and ever T1 students often have to struggle to get jobs. Syracuse won't be any different.

- Grades - The curve is under 3.0 and (at least when my friend was there) each class had to fail about 5% of students - including the small writing classes - Technically, I think the grades had to be C- or lower, but you didn't get credit. Having a low GPA (just because of the curve) can hurt you with potential employers.

- Bar exam - Even if you stay upstate, you have to take the dreaded NY bar

There were a couple of girls on this board who accepted almost full rides to SU (with a 3.0 GPA requirement) - It would be interesting to know how their deicision turned out for them. Unfortunately, they haven't come back (that I know of).

Another fellow, FSUGeoff, ended up choosing FIU over Syracuse because of the money issue. I think he was happy with his decision.

As for your other schools, they are probably better options if you want to work in those locations, BUT be careful about the debt.

Hi - I'm a 2L at VLS - I don't have a lot of time since we're in the midst of finals/take home exams. PM me if you have any specific questions, and I'll try to get back to you quickly.

Also, check out my old posts from last year. I provided info to prospective students last year in a number of posts - including a breakdown of school's employment figures.

Best of luck.

Visits, Admit Days, and Open Houses / Re: Villanova 1L Taking Questions
« on: September 07, 2007, 09:06:11 PM »
I think you are underestimating the market in Philadelphia and the number of Villanova grads that work there. I have friends interviewing for jobs in Philadelphia, New York, and DC all starting in the mid 100,000 range that aren't top 20%. The jobs are there if you put the time into looking for them. Relying on OCI is the mistake a lot of people make.

Philadelphia is a saturated market.  I've been working here for a year, and the place is overrun with JD's.  The truth is unpleasant, but this is the reality on the ground.

Law firms paying $135-145k/year generally do not hire T2 grads who are not at the top of their class and on law review.  I don't know anyone who managed to get around this barrier.  I don't know anyone who knows anyone who managed to get around this barrier. 

I agree, to the earlier point, that this is speculative until my 2L summer. I will definitely let you all know how it goes. The problem I have is that you are talking about public jobs starting in the low 30's in middle PA, which isn't where most Villanova grads go. I'd like to see the median salary for people working in Philadelphia in small firms (under 10 associates) and medium firms (up to 50 associates). That to me would show a median salary of those in private practice.

This is from my above referenced post - The numbers are from the career center. Check out the link above for my comments about the accuracy of the data. Btw, the career center will have a mandatory session for 1L's some time this semester where they'll give the data (updated for the class of 2006)

2-10 Attorneys: 24% ($54k)
11-25 " 15% ($63k)
26-50 " 12% ($72k)
51-100 " 8% ($83k)
101-250 " 6% ($95k)
251-500 " 14% ($108k)
500 or more: 17% ($115k)
Unknown: 4% (n/a)

HTH (Remember this is roughly 60% of the graduating class of 2005)

Visits, Admit Days, and Open Houses / Re: Villanova 1L Taking Questions
« on: September 04, 2007, 09:11:04 PM »
I'm glad that you're enjoying your first year at Nova, but let's see how you feel in the middle of December ;)

Anyway, re: job stats - If you're interested, I posted a breakdown of the law school's employment data on this thread back in the spring:,88107.msg2224899.html#msg2224899

SoBeasley is correct, though - The generic stats you get with US News don't mean much. However, most schools DO actually have 90% employment rates at 9 months - but the only reason is because most students NEED to be employed at 9 months because Aunt Sallie Mae comes knocking for monthly payments at 6 months out.

That said, employment prospects are pretty good @ Villanova, but you can't just sit back amd expect to be handed a 6 figure salary through OCI like at some T25 schools. $40-70k is more realistic. [See my post for more detailed info.]

Best of luck.

That is a tough call - I took a look at both schools a while back.

If you're really interested in international law, AU is definitely the better choice. However, keep in mind that your interests may change and that it seems like every other law student is interested in international law - it's a very competitive field. High paying jobs probably only go to best students and while positions with non-profits orgs, etc. may be easier to find (I'm just speculating), AU's hefty price tag might make it difficult for you to accept such positions. DC is also incredibly expensive, which doesn't help matters.

Richmond on the other hand is obviously cheaper due to your grant, lower tuition, and COL. That said, it seems like most people from Richmond end up working in smaller and mid-size firms in and around Richmond. You'll proably be able to make it up to the NoVA area if you really like the DC area. If you do well enough at either school you'll probably have very good options regardless.

Bottom line: If you really want to do international law and have the urban law school experience, go to AU. If you just want to be a lawyer and don't mind where you end up practicing, then Richmond is the better bet.

Choosing the Right Law School / Re: Villnova vs. Penn State
« on: May 25, 2007, 07:00:51 PM »
Sorry for even having to make this thread, but I just want opinions.

A little back story...
I'm hoping to practice on the east coast and with either school Philadelphia seems most likely, but I'm not sold on staying in Pennsylvania. The name recognition of Penn State nation wide I think will be helpful, but I know both schools are very regional. Penn State has offered $10,000 a year with the stipulation I remain in good standing. Villanova is not offering any money. I am going to be paying all the loans myself and the cost of living in Carlisle will save me an additional $4,000 a year. NALP Directory shows only 42 firms doing OCI at Penn State, but Penn State relies heavily on telecommunications for recruiting and had over 120 firms participate this way last year. Villanova had 120 firms particiate as well. My question is simple. Is there a big enough difference in job placement (assuming I'm right in the middle of my class) to take on the extra $46,000 in debt?

If the OP is good at marketing him or herself, then sure, take the money from PSU.  However, if the poster is looking to get any milage with the name on the diploma, then Villanova appears to be the better option.  PSU is a great choice for PA, but look at the bolded.

TITCR (I've always wanted to type that.)

Choosing the Right Law School / Re: Villnova vs. Penn State
« on: May 25, 2007, 03:06:09 PM »
Based upon the career center figures I received (and tried to analyze in the other thread), those US News numbers don't seem to be too far off base...Of course, I don't have similar PSU numbers.

Anyway, another thing to keep in mind is that while US News tends to ignore how regional most schools out of the top 20 or so happen to be, if you look at the rankings for schools in the same region, they tend to be pretty representative of the actual pecking order. (e.g. in DC - Georgetown, GW, GMU, AU, Catholic, Howard, and UDC). It's probably fair to say that PSU lags behind the Philly area schools with the exception of Widener.

That said, 10k a year with no real strings attached is the equivalent of getting a year free at Villanova. If the OP doesn't really care where he works, Villanova probably isn't worth the cost. Top 10-20%* will get you a great job, top 50% should get you a solid job in a medium Philly firm (or something similar), lower half will still land you a decent job if you have some bright spots on your resume, network, and of course, pass the bar.

* - Sorry, I don't know what the exact GPA range is for the 10-20% rank, but not to be a wise guy, you need to beat 80-90% of your class. That's a tough task, but it's not impossible. That said, the people are quite bright. It's a tough decision, but I don't think you'll be in a bad spot whichever school you choose.

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