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Messages - Citylaw

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You might want to take your LSAT in a small California town like Chico or Monterey. I actually took mine at Cal Northern Law School in Chico and there were only 18 people in the room. I am from L.A. and did not want hundreds of people around me and to be fighting traffic etc.

Here is the list of test centers.

I would say Santa Rosa, Humboldt, Chico, Sonoma would be low key areas. I imagine Chico and Humboldt would be the best.

Exactly, but there is always more research that can be done, but at some point you also have to pull the trigger and do a tangible task. Where that balance is of doing to much or to little research is a difficult thing to learn.  I know personally they have been times when I made something simple very complicated and other times I should have done more research.

I also wanted to make one comment about the number of Harvard associates in Biglaw.  Again, if Biglaw/Clerkship is the goal then there is no question that choosing a T14 school is the way to go.  Biglaw cares about credentials, but outside of that 1-5% of the legal market it matters much less.  There are many people that simply want to be D.A.'s or Public Defenders. If that is the goal do not go to Harvard or Yale get out with as little debt as possible.

Again, good posting it is nice to not have spammers on here.

Agreed and it certainly is not easy to start your own firm out of law school and for most recent graduates it is not likely. However, there certainly are graduates that have enough confidence right out of law school to do the things you mentioned, but it is rare. As you know most of the law is simply having the confidence to think your right, but that is not easy to obtain. Some people are born with that decisiveness and confidence while others are not.  The confidence and decisiveness can also backfire if it is wrong, but having clerked etc I imagine you saw many lawyers that you could have done better than.

Solid post Loki.

The Transvestite post was not towards Harvard, I imagine Boston and Harvard to be very accepting places. I was mentioning a situation such as a Transvestite student at BYU not being a good fit or a bible thumping Christian from Alabama struggling to fit in at Berkeley. Those are extreme scenarios, but although Boalt is a great school I would not recommend someone that is highly conservative attending school in the Bay Area. I would also not recommend a highly liberal transvestite attending a Mormon school. Not to say either school would deliberatley do anything bad, but I think it would be very difficult for either of those students to fit in.

As for the hanging out your own shingle again for the typical straight out of undergrad to law school student hanging out your own shingle would be a bad idea. However, to go back to the age aspect if someone has 10 years of business experience before going to law school they could probably handle operating their own law firm right out of law school. However, I imagine both you and I had similar paths with minimal work experience prior to law school. I would have been a disaster hanging out my own shingle right out of law school as well, but I was 27 years old with some minor paralegal experience.

I had classmates older classmates that had started their own businesses before law school and business backgrounds and started their own firms out of law school that did quite well.

Widener U School of Law / Re: Widener TAP 2015
« on: March 27, 2015, 02:06:44 AM »
Out of curiosity what is the Widener Tap program?

Great post above and it really is that simple if your goal is to end up in Florida go to school in Florida. One other pro of a number of Florida schools is in-state tuition if you can obtain that it will be a substantial savings.

To sum it up if your goal is to end up in Florida do not attend Wake Forest over a law school in Florida.

Good luck.

Law School Applications / Re: a bit of variance; seeking guidance
« on: March 26, 2015, 07:02:05 PM »
179 is awesome good job!

With that you will have a lot of opportunities possibly at some T14's as well as scholarship options at mid to even low ranked schools.

What you should really ask yourself is where you want to live and apply to every school in that area. Then try applying to Harvard, Yale, Stanford etc if they accept they can be something to consider.

One thing to do to save on law school application costs is attend an LSAC forum. this is the list of where they are held. Before the event many schools will offer you fee waivers if you just stop by their booth and you can just write your number down at each booth as well. I did this at one forum and got something like 40+ fee waivers and applied to most of them, which then gave me scholarship options etc.

Basically you have a lot of doors and this is a good article offering some preliminary guidance on how to choose a law school.

Good posts and this is why location is and personal feelings about the school are so much more important than rankings etc. Where you live and the people you are around make the experience.

As to your question of course your school is going to say it needs to be a serious hardship. You are a paying student and they don't want to let you go easily, but if you really want to leave you can apply to be a visiting student and you will be much better off reaching out to the schools you are interested in visiting as they will be interested in you paying them and have an incentive to make it happen. Your current school does not. So hypothetically if you want move to New York reach out to schools in New York I included Cardozo's link . It looks like you can transfer up to 42 units and maybe you would lose credits or something, but ask around to the schools you are interested in and there might be a way.

However, you might also just want to finish out 3L one year in the grand scheme of things is not that big of a deal, but I think your post shows why location/personal feelings about a school mean so much more than anything else.

Good luck.

Where should I go next fall? / Re: Need help making a decision
« on: March 26, 2015, 02:50:42 PM »
Good advice all around and I think you are making one of the most common 0L mistakes one I myself made and thinking to much about rankings.  You are looking at schools all over the place  L.A, Washington, Texas, St. Louis, Colorado etc.

If you attend Houston I am assuming you are from Texas and your goal is to be in Texas, but that is just an assumption. However, one of the most important things to consider when choosing a law school is it's location. L.A. and Boulder Colorado are very different places and the reality is wherever you attend law school is likely where you will end up living. Colorado will not open many doors in Texas and Houston will not open many doors in Colorado.

One school I was always impressed with in Mock Trial Competitions was South Texas Law School in Houston. If you want to be a litigator it really is a good school and you probably get substantial scholarship money there. That is something to consider, but as everyone says don't plan on transferring and choose a school in the area you want to live in. If you want to live in Texas after graduation there are about 10 schools there and go to school in Texas.

This is a pretty good article explaining how to choose a law school.

Solid posts above, but my overall advice is for each individual person to take their own feelings into account. All four people that have chimed in on this thread attended law school and are working as lawyers, and none of us are in complete agreement. In all likelihood the four of us have very little common with the OP.

For all I know OP is a Transvestite and a Transvestite student might have a harder time fitting in at Harvard or Yale than a school in San Francisco.  Although, BYU is a great school I would not recommend Provo, Utah. There can be a lot more to choosing a school than prestige. For the typical white male/female straight out of undergrad sure Harvard, Yale, Stanford if those doors are open go for it.

Another example would be if we are talking about a 44 year old non-traditional student with a family. That person should not attend Harvard, Yale, or Stanford.  First making your family move to attend law school is probably not a good idea. Even if there is no family consideration very few big law firms are hiring 47 year old associates and that student would be better off going to a regional school getting out with as little debt as possible and opening their own firm.

Again, location does matter as well. I am a City Attorney and we have had Harvard, Yale, graduates apply for positions with us, but we are in California and government agencies don't have budgets to fly people across the country for interviews nor are we going to offer someone a job that doesn't live locally.  In politics, which attorney work many cities want people from the area not some person out of nowhere.

Would I as a typical white male with few family connections chosen  Harvard, Yale, Stanford over any other school? Yes I would have, but there are plenty of people with different goals, expectations and wants. Of course use common sense, but each persons law school experience is highly personal and I strongly believe whether someone succeeds as a lawyer has a lot more to do with them than the school they attended. However, there are plenty of lawyers out there that believe credentials are the most important.

To the original question it looks like OP wants to be in Pennsylvania, and I strongly believe any of these schools will give you the opportunity to succeed. If you are not that entrepreneurial and want the clerkship/big law route then Penn will open the most doors for jobs.

If you are more of a hustler and really just want to start your own firm then getting out with as little debt as possible is a good option.

Also, if possible try to negotiate a scholarship with Penn tell them you are very impressed, but X school is offering you a full ride they might throw $5,000-$10,000 a year your way. Worst thing they say is  no and your in the same position your in now.

Good luck. 

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