« on: January 26, 2006, 04:51:34 PM »
Hi, just a little imput here. It might seem biased because I've chosen Boalt (deferred entry to 2006) but I don't think it is. I'm just giving you the info I have/know.
I visited Boalt this fall and spent a week there with a friend who is a 2L. I met a lot of students there, her friends and colleagues and sat in on some classes. I definitely didn't feel any vibe of 'we didn't get into the top 6 so that's why we're here'. On the contrary, several had targeted Boalt very specifically for certain programs, like IP, or for the lifestyle. My friend got into Northwestern and Michigan and chose Boalt over those. If you check back to the summer's posts, you'll find a few people who ended up choosing Boalt over Columbia and NYU. This was for location reasons (I think they were Californians).
I have to say that I don't believe that schools other than HYS confer a significant advantage over one another for firm jobs nationally. Columbia places excellently in New York, and Boalt places excellently in California.
I come from England and over the summer I did a summer placement at a huge US firm, Cleary Gottlieb (ranked 6th by Vault) in London (because you can do this as an undergrad here). Out of all their associates that year graduating from law schools, only 2 came from Boalt and maybe 40 from Columbia and NYU. This is because they are a New York firm without West Coast offices.
I met a girl on the scheme who was a 2L at Columbia, with above average grades. She had done a Masters at Berkeley before going to law school and desired to return to the Bay Area. She'd interviewed with big firms such as Orrick, MoFo, Pillsbury etc without success, whilst getting top jobs in New York.
I was at Boalt during hiring season. My friend, whose grades are very average at Boalt, got several offers from these sorts of firms.
This is anecdotal perhaps, but it is telling in my opinion. Columbia's prestige (assuming it is _that_ much more prestigious - not being in the States I'm not that sure) won't get you further in California, and Boalt won't be a particular asset in NYC.
In the end it probably depends on what you want for the next three years, and more where you want to be post-graduation.
Good luck either way - you've done amazingly well, and hopefully more good news is on its way.