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Messages - whartonn

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Yongsoo, since you mentioned that this is a worry to you, can I assume you are either a current student or a potential enrollee at WUSTL? What did you think about the placement capability of the school? WUSTL didn't show up in any of the eleven schools featured in the NLJ Report for Chicago. What's the deal with that?

The NJL report you mentioned has nothing to do with which schools place the best in Chicago. It is simply a listing of NLJ 250 placement by the 11 schools considered to be in the Chicago region. Since WUSTL is outide that region, they are not on the NJL Report for the Illinois region.

In 2005, WUSTL was #22 for NLJ 250 placement. Compared to Cornell, WUSTL BigLaw stats are mediocre. But compared to Vandy or UCLA, its employment prospects do not appear that bad. It looks like UCLA and Vandy place about 7-10% more of their class in NJL 250. A good size difference, but not what I would have imagined and certainly not worth paying 30-60k extra to attend one of those two.

no matching funds yet/ not in-state

let's say i decide to work in Asia post-grad -- to what extent do you think Columbia name trumps Berk?

Doesn't.  Boalt all the way in that case. 

When I was sixteen (a long time ago - I'm the real dinosaur), I lived in Sweden.  Friends kept asking me if I'd ever visited the great Oo-clah University.  I was, like, what?  You know.  Oo-clah.  U-C-L-A.  Oo-clah!  (being from Connecticut, and an East Coast college snob, I didn't appreciate the import at the time.)

The UC brand is strong around the world, but now with the close ties between Asia and California, you can't go wrong with Berkeley.

While I agree that UC-Berkeley is a strong international brand, but it is debatable whether it is a stronger international brand than Cornell or Columbia. The Times Higher Education Global University Rankings 2007 ranked Columbia 12th, Cornell 19th, and UC-Berkeley 22nd.

UC-Berkeley has fallen in statute quite a bit over the last 10 years and has lost some of its best faculty to Ivy League schools. This is mainly due to growing disparities in funding. Thinking long-term, I would expect Cornell and Columbia to extend their international footprint, especially relative to UC-Berkeley.

If I were OP, I would take the full ride at Cornell or the scholarship at Columbia.

But you have to have awesome grades to get into Big Law in ANY market, unless you went to a T30.

Which WUSTL is...

Thus my reasoning that OP will have better career options, much greater career flexability, and more safety in terms of class ranking coming from WUSTL.


It's starting to bother me that all your posts are based on the assumption that Chicago is the second biggest market for SLU grads. It's not. Kansas City is.

Not trying to argue or get super involved in the discussion. Just wanted to clear that up for everyone.

Very sorry for the misunderstanding. Just responding to RageLaw's post at 2:25 pm which stated that Chicago was their #2 placement area.

Keep in mind, I'd also be fine with working for a few years in a St. Louis firm and then IF i wanted to move elsewhere, trying to pursue a lateral at that time.  I can't say Chicago BIGLAW right out of school is my number one priority.  I'm also not convinced Martindale is the end all to end all of identifying alumni networks. 

1) Lateraling has a lot to with business origination, but also depends on credentials. You will have a much easier time lateraling to Chicago (or any other market) with a T20 law degree than with a T2/T3 degree.

2) As for Martindale not being the final source, I fully agree. Even if not fully accurate, the disparity between SLU at 5 lawyers in Chicago, and WUSTL with hundreds in Chicago, is quite stark. To be more thorough, you might want to check the websites of some bigger firms in Chicago to see how many SLU alumni they have.

3) Finally, I wouldn't assume that there are lots of BigLaw slots for SLU grads in St Louis just because there are lots of SLU alumni in St Louis BigLaw. If Chicago is it's second biggest market, and only a handful of SLU grads get jobs in Chicago, you are going to be fighting a lot of classmates for work in fairly small legal market after graduation.

You don't have to be top 5% if you do health law at SLU and want to be in Chicago. You have to do well, just not THAT well, and you have to find a position there over the summer.

How can you support that contention? Martindale shows that there is only 1 (ONE!!) associate in all of Chicago who is a SLU grad. Even if there were 15x that number of SLU grads in Chicago, it would still indicate that SLU is placing a miniscule number of students in Chicago each year. After looking at Martindale, it might actually be more accurate to say that you need to be top 5% AND be lucky to get a job in Chicago from SLU.

PS: If you have statistics showing otherwise, please post.

Acceptances, Denials, and Waitlists / Re: GULC PT v Cornell
« on: April 10, 2008, 12:26:52 PM »
I know Cornell is higher in USNWR but I get the sense that GULC is the better school. I would like to make it back to California after law school. Thoughts?

Very similar employment prospects. I would choose Cornell so you would be full-time and so you could benefit from the smaller class-size (GULC is more of a diploma mill)

If you are set on that career path, go to GULC.  Although I would feel very uneasy about the extra $100+k if I didn't end up with that position.

I have to agree. If you want that career path, GULC is the only school that gives you a legit chance at getting there.

But, as Botbot notes, its a scary proposition to undertake 100k in debt for that uncertain future.

I think it is safe to say that GW could be crossed off your list because the other two schools are superior and cost less, and GW cannot help you accomplish your goal anyway.


SLU is considered THE best school to go to to find work in St. Louis, and their #2 placement area is Chicago.   It's just hard for me to rationalize the additional debt at WUSTL over what SLU offers considering my goals. 

I have to agree with some of the earlier posts about SLU placement in Chicago. Martindale shows only 5 total attorneys in Chicago who went to SLU. There appears to be several hundred attorneys in Chicago from WUSTL.

The fact that SLU's second-biggest market appears to be taking in only one (or even zero) associates per year should be cause for serious concern. That means that the great majority of SLU grads will be remaining in St. Louis, a small legal market with flat growth. Not a huge problem if you totally ace law school, but very scary if you are just a good-to-average student.

Visits, Admit Days, and Open Houses / Re: Emory ASW Review [Long]
« on: April 07, 2008, 08:32:31 AM »
I agree with many of the posts. My tour was horrible, although most of the people I met were nice.

Things I liked...
Housing- local rents are pretty cheap
Campus- the Emory campus was nice
Food- very good foods on campus and great restaurants around the city

Things I did not like...
Career Services- It is still totally unclear what types of opportunities Emory law provides us.
Safety- I was told by multiple students that petty crime (robberies and muggings) was an issue for students.
Traffic- My goodness! It's endless

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