First and foremost do not let anonymous internet posters, which include those writing on this board or others myself included to make the life altering commitment of where to attend law school. There is no qualification to write on this board and it is not uncommon for individuals who have 0 experience with law school or the legal profession to loudly announce their opinions anonymously on internet forums such as this. The same applies to my post for all you know I am a crackhead in a public library writing this post.
With that said I believe any incoming law student should consider the following factors in this order when choosing a law school. (1) Location; (2) Cost; (3) Personal Feelings about the school; (4) Understanding the reality of legal education; (5) Last and not least U.S. News Ranking. Here is an article analyzing these factors in detail http://www.legalmatch.com/choose-the-right-law-school.html
. below I will analyze them to your situation. Location:
This is the most important consideration when choosing a law school particularly in a state with one law school, such as Rhode Island. I have never been to Rhode Island, but I am sure most judges, lawyers, etc in Rhode Island went to Roger Williams. The law school will have connection in Rhode Island and they will teach for the Rhode Island Bar.
If you want to live in Rhode Island after graduation then go to Roger Williams. Also realize that law school does not exist in a vacuum and the culture, neighborhood, and connections you have or do not have nearby Rhode Island will make a difference in your life. You will in Rhode Island for three years if you attend Roger Williams, I have never met you and know nothing about you maybe Rhode Island is where you want to be if so attend Roger Williams, maybe you despite the State and if that is the case don't go.
Roger Williams Tuition is $40,000 per year and offers on campus living for 21k per year. So you are looking at 61k per year, which is not outrageous as far as law school goes, but without a scholarship you will be $183,000 in debt at graduation. You can make this up as the legal profession can be very rewarding financially if you last the first few years.
I would encourage you to ask about scholarship options, you have nothing to lose by asking. Personal Feelings about the School:
How you personally feel about the school is a huge consideration, and it sounds like you did the right thing and visited the school already. During the visit you had a positive experience, which is something to consider. When I was a 0L I visited many schools and some I hated while others I loved. If you liked your experience visiting Roger Williams that is something to consider. Reality of Legal Education:
At any ABA law school you will learn the exact same thing with a few state law exceptions, but during your first year you will have the following classes whether you attend Harvard or Roger Williams (1) Torts; (2) Contracts; (3) Property; (4) Civil Procedure; (5) Crim Law/Crim Pro/or Con Law schools typically offer one of these three first year and require you to take the other two during 2L. In those courses you will read Supreme Court Cases and the Supreme Court does not write separate opinions for different law schools, more importantly the law is the law no matter what law school you attend. For example in Civil Procedure you will read Pennoyver v. Neff to learn about Notice, Contracts Hadley v. Baxendale to learn contract remedies; and Torts Palsgraff to learn proximate cause.
At the end of your three years at the ABA law school you attend you will then have to take the bar exam. While facing the stress of the bar exam you will either sign up with Barbri or Kaplan and take a bar review class. At the end of three years and the bar exam course you will be packed into a room with hundreds of other law students from law schools across the country to take the state bar exam. If you pass your a lawyer if you don't your not and it does not matter what law school you attended. U.S. News Ranking:
Realize that U.S. News is nothing more than a for-profit and unregulated magazine offering an opinion. They rank more than law schools and have determined Albuquerque, New Mexico is the best place to live. http://money.usnews.com/money/personal-finance/slideshows/best-places-to-live
Will you be attend New Mexico Law School for a chance to live in the #1 City? Probably not, making New Mexico is cooler than I thought it was, but I will not make the life altering decision of choosing to move there, because U.S. News said it was #1. Use the same logic when choosing a law school and remember it is a magazine.
If you want to be a lawyer in Rhode Island then there is probably no better place to attend law school than Roger Williams. If your goal is to end up in Oregon then do not attend Roger Williams. Be mindful of costs during law school and be sure the legal profession is something you want to get into.
I have never met you and know nothing about you so I could possibly tell you what the right answer is, but I encourage you to analyze the factors above to your own life and make a decision. I would also encourage to stop listening to anonymous internet posters I realize it is the easiest way to access information, but it is the most unreliable. You should reach out to alumni from Roger Williams and talk to them about their experience. If you talk to people in person you can really gauge their credibility.
Good luck whatever you decide.