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Messages - Felsen

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Choosing the Right Law School / Re: fee waivers from t14
« on: July 20, 2006, 03:52:27 PM »
The "your numbers look good" fee waivers tend to be more of the "oh crap, we don't have enough people applying to our school this year to look good" fee waivers.  So they send out a bunch of fee waivers later in the cycle so they can pump up the number of folks to reject.

I have my own opinions on this.  Any schools that are doing this didn't make their waitlists deep enough.  At the end of last year, I was watching the numbers LSAC was publishing about people taking the LSAT and visiting the law forums.  They were down about 10% from last year.  With that much of a drop, some schools may have been caught off-guard about how many people to admit and waitlist to ensure full class sizes.  In addition to the drop in number of students, the students have been applying to more places.  So schools may see an increase of 10% in applications, but a drop in 20% of accepts, and may not be prepared to handle it.

Incoming 1Ls / Re: PSA: Don't Buy a Laptop Just Yet!
« on: June 22, 2006, 02:13:18 PM »
If you are buying your laptop through a school purchase program arranged with Dell, this will not be affected by it.  Those purchase programs are negotiated once a year, and typically aren't affected by subsequent price cuts.

My work has a Dell purchase program, and usually towards the end of the cycle when they are ready to negotiate new prices, it is cheaper to just use the normal Dell specials instead of using the company program.

Law School Admissions / Re: best short-term investment?
« on: June 15, 2006, 08:46:12 AM »
I'm using CDs myself.  I did not go through my normal bank to get them.  I chose since they had pretty good interest rates, and didn't have too high of deposit requirements.

After I did this, I had a friend who mentioned he had just started trying out as a bank.  It looks like a good option as well, nearly rivalling the CDs rate I got.

Law School Admissions / Re: When Applying: Science degrees and GPA
« on: June 15, 2006, 08:32:26 AM »
I've got an Engineering degree.  I came in thinking it would provide some kind of edge in the applications process, but came out thinking that nobody gave it any extra weight.  I didn't write any extra consideration papers telling them that they should take it into account, so maybe they need something more obvious to make them take notice.

Incoming 1Ls / Re: What do you guys think about this?
« on: June 15, 2006, 06:50:40 AM »
Multiple seat deposits are just fine.  You pay the law school $XXX.XX and they get to keep the money if you don't attend.  Sure, they'd like you to actually attend, but they know that some people will end up elsewhere.

If law school admissions offices are really concerned about this, then they can raise the seat deposit amount or have letters of intent sent in earlier.

Once you've ruled a school out, you should let them know as soon as possible, though.  There's nothing unethical about playing by the rules that the law school admissions offices have collectively mandated for us to follow.

Incoming 1Ls / Re: what do you think about this computer?
« on: June 15, 2006, 06:34:19 AM »
The price sounds quite expensive for that machine.  Does your school not offer some kind of Dell discount program?  I'm getting a quite beefy Dell Latitude 820 for only about $250 more than you list here for your Vaio.  The system will be just fine for word processing and other law school stuff. 

You're right, that it won't be something you'd want to game with.  That's a reason why I beefed up my system.  Between possible summers away from home, and long hours at the law school and needing some distraction opportunities, I decided it was worth it.

Choosing the Right Law School / Re: help: U of Texas or Vanderbilt
« on: June 13, 2006, 10:50:47 AM »
I chose Texas over Vanderbilt.  Here were some of my considerations, though:

Texas was cheaper tuition by about $5K per year after grants.
I have a home in Texas, and much of my wife's primary and extended family live in either Austin or Houston.
I believe that Texas has better prospects of rising higher in the rankings than Vanderbilt.  Texas is already consistently slightly higher than Vanderbilt.
Better Law Library at Texas.

For the other side, there were some things I preferred about Vanderbilt.  They just weren't enough to sway me:

Smaller class size and higher Faculty:Student ration.
Nashville commuter traffic is much better than Austin.
Vanderbilt didn't line every single wall in the school with plaques of people who gave them money.
I thought the Vanderbilt classroom facilities were better than Texas.

Choosing the Right Law School / Re: To Defer or not to Defer???
« on: June 13, 2006, 10:43:01 AM »
I'd go to school this year.  I don't personally see enough difference between a #17 and a #7 school to warrant waiting a year to start. 

I'm missing something on your situation.  To my knowledge, schools don't generally grant students the option of coming off the waitlist and into the guaranteed admissions slot by deferring a year.  This past year, there was a significant drop in the number of people taking the LSAT and applying to law school, contrasted with steady increases most of the past few years.  I would think that this year was one of the best times to apply and get accepted at preferred schools.

Excepting extenuating circumstances, I'd take the extra year of a lawyers salary over what you're probably earning now.  If you postpone law school by a year, you aren't giving up one year of your starting salary.  It is more like you are giving up one year of your lawyer salary right before you retire.

I told all of the waitlist offers to stuff it, since I got in a UT.  OK, I didn't actually tell them that, I just circular filed their offers and ignored their continuing correspondence asking if I was going to fill out their waitlist forms.  My waitlist looked similar to yours, except Cornell accepted me outright, then said with Aid I'd still have to pay 10K more per year to attend.  I like it when schools make my acceptance decisions really easy.

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