« on: May 29, 2012, 09:50:59 PM »
25% of the judges and DAs in Orange County are Western State grads, and I have to think that the vast majority graduated before WSU had ABA approval.
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Messages - Maintain FL 350
If you're not in a rush to start law school, you could reapply to Maine as Fortook suggested. You could also take a shot a UConn (I believe they have a part-time program which is probably easier to get into), UNH's new law school (formerly FP?), and UMass's new law school. If you establish residency in one of these states, you'd save tens of thousands in tuition over VT.
Yeah, the previous post pretty much nails it. They're both good schools, but you'll have better connections to the immediate region at each. Georgetown might have bit of an edge in terms of national reputation, but you really can't go wrong with either. Congrats!
« on: May 29, 2012, 06:43:25 PM »
lolol @ people ITT who think they can get a job from a CBE school in probably the most over saturated and competitive market in the country
I don't think anyone disputes that it's generally much harder for a CBE grad to get a job straight out of law school. Further, I don't think anyone disputes that biglaw is out of the question for CBE grads. But a statement such as the above demonstrates an obvious lack of experience. If you practice in CA you will come into contact with successful CBE grads on a daily basis. The DA's, PD's, and small firms in CA are full of CBE grads. I've met CBE grads who started successful small firms which in time became successful mid-sized firms, and who could buy and sell the average biglaw partner without even worrying.
Incidentally, I didn't attend a CBE school. I graduated from an ABA school. I've met enough good attorneys from CBE schools (and lower tiered ABA schools), however, that it's caused me to rethink some of my earlier presumptions.
« on: May 28, 2012, 03:53:52 PM »
Academic attrition at ABA schools varies greatly. You're right that schools at the top end have much lower attrition (generally) than T3-T4s. Not surprising considering that they tend to admit highly qualified academic superstars. Attrition at most T1s is as low as 2-4%. At the lower end, schools like Cooley and Whittier have high attrition. I believe it approaches 50%, but may include those who leave voluntarily or transfer out. I think Western State, Thomas Jefferson, and Cal Western have around 25-30% attrition (I could be wrong).
However, even within the fourth tier there is variation. Some regionally/locally respected schools like Drake or South dakota have very low attrition. La Verne has 4-6% average, which is pretty low.
« on: May 28, 2012, 11:56:55 AM »
I agree. For the right student in the right circumstances the CBE schools are an excellent option. A huge percentage of the small/solo firm and government attorneys here in CA are CBE grads. For someone making a career change, or who already has a job lined up, they can be a great alternative to the ABA scheme. My wife is an attorney at a large government law office in LA, and I'd say at least half of the attorneys are CBE grads. I've met plenty of CBE grads, and found them to be smart and competent. (Incidentally, I've met a few top T1 grads who complete assclowns.)
I get the impression that these schools work best for people who are highly motivated self starters, and who are adept at getting out there and marketing themselves. I've been told that the CBE schools (generally) don't offer much in the way of career services. I'm not sure tha the average CBE student has the same internship opportunities as their ABA counterparts, for example. However, most ABA grads need to be motivated self starters, too, if they're going to get a job in this economy.
Further, the CBE schools are not fly-by-night operations that can be run out of a P.O. box. They are brick and mortar schools that offer a solid, basic legal education. The California bar does not simply confer accreditation on anybody who shows up. To paraphrase the NY Times, the CBE schools offer the legal equivalent of a Honda: economical, efficient, reliable. The ABA, however, requires that you only build Cadillacs. This may come as a surprise to those who live outside of CA, but so many of the attorneys in CA are CBE grads, and so many have successful careers, that some of the "stigma" of attending a non-ABA school has been removed. Of course a degree from UCLA is always going to open more doors than a degree from the local CBE law school, but I'm not necessarily convinced that a degree from say, Western State or Whittier, is more useful than a CBE degree. If the student wishes to leave CA, that's another story.
If you are a young student, I would say always go to an ABA school. It will give you greater immediate mobility. But for others, the CBE schools are a great opportunity. I have noticed, however, that the cost of the CBE schools has increased quite a bit. The average total cost now seems to be about 50-60k. Although that's half the price of an ABA school, a student with s decent LSAT score could probably obtain enough in scholarships to a T4 ABA school to make the cost competitive.
If you're born upper-middle or upper class you're pretty set regardless of race/sexual orientation, etc. The only thing that will hold back an upper-middle/upper class kid is their own laziness.
If you're born poor, white and male you have an uphill struggle regardless.
I think you're probably right about Hofstra. Like I said, I really don't have any first hand experience with either school (or the NY market for that matter), but I have an old friend who went to NYLS and wasn't very happy with the experience. On the other hand, last I heard she's doing quite well in NYC. Single anecdotal example, but maybe it means something.
It occured to me that Hofstra might have one other advantage: it's associated with a larger university and shares the campus. Compared to stand-alone law schools (like NYLS) it might have a better social life.
OP: really think about what you want to do long term. I know that when you're in the application process you just want to get in somewhere and start, but try to develop at least some kind of plan now. Do you think you want private practice, solo practice, government? See if either school has programs that might help you work towards that goal. Also, can you deal with the very real possibility of making little money plus having large loan payments? For the first couple of years after law school you may very well be in this situation. I'm not trying to either encourage you or discourage you, but it will help to think about these things now.
That's interesting, I didn't know that NYLS had been sued too. I believe the Cooley and TJSL suits had to do with alleged misrepresentation of post-grad employment statistics. Was that the case with NYLS too?
Also, I know that people hate the idea of retaking the LSAT and reapplying, but the OP might want to consider it. If you're going to go to a T4 you might as well do everything you can to minimize your debt. Spending a year prepping, retaking the LSAT, and potentially achieving a much better score might pay off in the long run. Something to consider.