« on: April 10, 2007, 08:30:57 PM »
All right, I don't feel so bad then. My problem is that, frankly, I wish I could go to both schools. Penn was always been my realistic "goal" since before the LSAT. A close family member is at Penn, and that is a big personal draw for me that has nothing to do with the school itself. All along, I've heard wonderful things about Penn's environment and bad things about CLS's. Plus, I was intimidated by New York and I actually like Philly quite a bit. But, I was very impressed by CLS's ASW, moreso than UPenn. The students seemed happy (maybe you could comment on your impressions-- socially-- of CLS, Resident CLS troll, because that's something that's very important to me...I want to have a good three years and am not in this purely for my future job prospects) and I got a certain vibe of energy at CLS that I just didn't get at Penn. (Again, do you think that would be a fair assessment?) I realized that Penn's small class size and focus on being collegial and friendly might be a bit to claustrophobic for me, although, don't get me wrong, I want to go to a place with those characteristics.
Overall, I liked both schools, a lot, and without definitive notion of what I'd like to do (besides not wanting to go into PI and not necessarily wanting to go into BIGLAW), it's a tough decision.
Okay, let me ramble for a bit and we'll see if you find anything useful.
First, let's get the whole law firm question out of the way. I think we win in this department in terms of placement, and there's not a whole lot of debate about that as far as I know. Having said that, once you're at a place like CLS or Penn, what firm options are open to you depends more on how you do in the school than which school you're attending. Being in New York makes life a bit easier come 2L fall I believe, but how much that's worth, I'm not really sure.
Again, I don't know why people keep trashing our environment. Actually, I do know why: it's because we're the foil to NYU, the "hip, fun, cool" school downtown. Fine, maybe they're Mac and we're PC, but that doesn't mean that people here are cutthroat gunners or whatever it is they say about us. I've never found the environment here to be anything less than collegial, and there are a lot of people that I've met here that I like a lot. Are there gunners? Yes. This is law school. They exist at Penn as well. But they're definitely not indicative of the general environment. Now I can't speak for Penn (they waitlisted me, the bastards); I've heard that it's a friendly place. So are we. People are happy here as far as I can see.
As for energy, I think that's partly attributable to just feeding off of being in New York. There's always something going on, and pretty much everyone can find something that they're excited about. I forgot about the class size thing. Being at a bigger school does provide more resources. Some people prefer smaller programs, so that might not be true for you, but it's something to consider.
Okay, I need to stop rambling for a bit. Hopefully something here gives you food for thought.