Law School Discussion

Nine Years of Discussion
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 51 
 on: April 11, 2014, 12:44:19 AM 
Started by functionial drunk - Last post by lrt8000
Miami and City Law: You are giving out terrible advice. Employment stats do matter. Law schools have radically different employment outcomes. The ABA just released the class of 2014 employment report. Golden Gate University had a 22.4% employment in FULL-TIME/LONG-TERM IN BAR-PASSAGE-REQUIRED JOBS (EXCL. LAW-SCHOOL-FUNDED JOBS) in comparison to South Texas which had a 67.0% rate. Are you seriously going to tell me its just as good to go to GGU as ST.  If GGU was the only school I got into I wouldn't go because of its employment rate. FIU had a 59.6% while Florida State had a 69.6%. That looks like a big difference to me. Check the employment stats on LST before you choose a law school.

 52 
 on: April 10, 2014, 09:25:32 PM 
Started by functionial drunk - Last post by functionial drunk
As a preface let me say again that both Miami88 and CityLaw have been great in giving me the feedback that I need during this arduous process. I know I was just splitting hairs when it came to the difference in employment stats between FIU and FSU, I just really want to convince myself that one school is better than the other so that I can make a clear headed and easy decision. Fact of the matter is that I still cannot but I am slightly leaning towards FSU for a variety of reasons. 1. The peace and calm demeanor of Tallahassee should allow me to focus on my studies better 2. The cost of living leads to less money spent on gas, groceries, etc. (although I would be saving more by staying at home) 3. This consequently leads to cheaper happy hours for when I need to blow off some steam 4. I firmly believe Tallahassee is the best college town in Florida. Now FIU is a great institution and I was perfectly happy going there until I realized that I could go back to my alma mater that I am a proud graduate of.

To not give you guys too much of an easy time I have come up with some counter points: although FIU would offer the obvious "networking" advantage being located in Miami don't you think that some employers would be intrigued by an FSU grad after seeing a thousand resumes with FIU, UM, St. Thomas, Nova, etc. on them? Wouldn't some attorneys recognize that I am loyal and willing to contribute to the firm in the long term because of my willingness to receive my Bachelors and JD from the same institution? Also wouldn't I have a broader alumni network to tap into if I attended FSU because it was founded in 1966, whereas I would have to essentially "blaze my own trail" if I graduated from FIU because it was founded in 2002?

On another note yes Miami88 if I got accepted to Michigan I would probably go because it would be an opportunity that I would regret to pass up on. Michigan has an outstanding entrepreneurship/law program which I am highly interested in. Only problem is that I got "waitlisted" so they literally told me that I have from now until August to play blindfolded pin the tail on the donkey until I find out. Kind of makes me regret not applying to more top schools because I didn't think that my 157 LSAT score and 3.45 GPA were up to their standards. I do however have an outstanding resume, solid writing samples, and represent a "minority". At the end of the day  I don't need a fancy ivy league/top 20 degree to boost my self esteem or to make jobs appear out of thin air, I'm just going to do what I always have done which is use my own determination and resilience to separate myself from the competition.  I am perfectly fine and happy practicing in Florida or somewhere else in the Southeast with a relatively low burden of debt as a graduate of either FIU or FSU.

Another note for Michigan is that I have never experienced "Michigan" type cold weather. From what I hear about other residents of the Midwest is that Michigan is cold for even Ohio/Minnesota standards. Being a Florida native for the last 20 years I am not sure how I would deal with that and how it might impact my psychological well being. The coldest weather I have been in is about -10 degrees Celcius because I was in Europe at the time.

Citylaw I will make a note to check out that movie because like Miami88 I have been devouring admissions/first year/intro to law books in my quest to find the right school for me, yet I still have not found an answer. Oh yeah Miami88 if we both do make it to Michigan we will have to swap info to see if we can find suitable living arrangements.

 53 
 on: April 10, 2014, 05:16:28 PM 
Started by lrt8000 - Last post by lrt8000
The ABA has just released the law graduate outcomes for 2013 and it's another bad year for Washington and Lee. The school placed 100th on the "Percent Employed Full-Time/Long-Term Bar Passage-Required Jobs (Excluding Law-School-Funded Jobs)" list. [http://taxprof.typepad.com/taxprof_blog/2014/04/aba-releases-.html]
Their full-time long-term score was up some, but its Underemploment score was 35% compared to 31.5% in 2012. [http://www.lstscorereports.com/schools/wl/2013/]

The big problem for W & L though is its poor yield of accepted applicants for fall 2013.  Its yield was second worse of all ABA law schools at 12% bettering only UC Davis. [http://www.americanbar.org/content/dam/aba/administrative/legal_education_and_admissions_to_the_bar/statistics/2013_fall_aba_approved_law_school_entering_class_information.authcheckdam.pdf] The poor enrollment yield is even more evidence that W & L' experiential program is having no effect. Its certainly not attracting students or employers.

 54 
 on: April 10, 2014, 03:59:56 PM 
Started by ItsTribbey - Last post by ItsTribbey
Stetson came back to me with their offer.  They upped it a little bit, but it pretty much makes the COA for both schools equal.  I'm going to Gainesville tonight to participate in the ASD tomorrow, but I've pretty much decided to attend UF.  I think that's the best decision I can make at this point in time.

Thank you everyone for your input, it's been very helpful, and much appreciated!

 55 
 on: April 10, 2014, 03:26:49 PM 
Started by functionial drunk - Last post by Miami88
Several notes...

1) Although I have read far too many admissions books (credible admissions books!) than I would like to own up to and have met with several hiring attorneys in Miami (from big law firms to businesses), I am in the same exact throws of 0L life as you - applying to law school. So, I would place faarrr more weight on posters who have more experience (i.e. CityLaw, Maintain, etc.)

2) That is fantastic news regarding UMich.! In general, I would pick UMich over FIU/FSU. They also have a nice tuition repayment program. (fyi - we may be classmates come August.) :)

3) I am born and raised in Miami and lived in LA for several months. LA traffic is by no means comparable to Miami. I mean, if you live really close to work/school in LA, you are okay for the most part. But if not, you are completely screwed. Miami is only miserable for about 1-2 hours out of the day on weekdays. LA is only tolerable for 1-2 hours out of the day on weekends... :/

4) I half agree with CityLaw regarding employment stats. I think the way you use employment stats, like rankings, is what is important. Like CityLaw mentioned, obsessing over which school has 2 or 3% more point in ____ is ridiculous. The point I was trying to make was that, for being 60+ points apart in US News Rankings, the end result (a jobs) is staggeringly similar. In fact, basically all schools outside of the top 20 have basically similar employment stats (for the most part, once you get to the real bottom end it gets fugly). Yes, some schools have more pull in specific regions or sectors than other schools, and that is what you want to focus more on: what region you want to work in and in what legal sector. Can you make an argument that FSU is better for xyz employment stat reason, sure, but only nominally so. The exception, as you mentioned F.D., is with government work. If your goal, as I've mentioned before, is to work for the government in the state capital, FSU is by far the go to school. However, if you just want a private sector law job in Miami, FSU's large government presence 10 hours away is not going to help you in the same way as FIU will. Just the ability to network in Miami for 3 years will help you tremendously...

5) Employment stats to me, then, are not seen in absolute terms (x school has y % in z sector), but rather in relative terms (x school is basically the same as the other 100 schools - or x school is FAARRRRR stronger in every category as y school). This is why posters like CityLaw say ranking isn't as big of a factor as you may think (nor employment stats). For the vast majority of schools, the employment prospects are just about the same. The only real difference is the regional pull and networking ability of a school. The general consensus is if you want to work in a specific city, you go to the school with the most pull in that city. These tend to be schools that are nearby/in the city OR top elite schools (T14 - and even then there are regional biases).

6) All that said, it sounds like your mental state entering FIU, given your other offers, would be a negative one (if not, then at least a not so positive one). This is absolutely the last thing you want. This will lead to self doubt, lack of drive, poor grades, etc. If you feel a strong connection and pull with FSU and a negative one towards FIU, I would go with FSU. This is the enviromental, emotional, psychological part of your decision - and perhaps one of the more imporant ones.

In sum, you will be fine no matter which one you pick. Just have realistic expectations both while in school and after it.

Good luck and congrats!

 56 
 on: April 10, 2014, 01:31:18 PM 
Started by tmack91 - Last post by mike001
Just be sure to contact the bar first to find out. That's all that matters. With that said, I had a juvie record too and a couple cop buddies of mine did an extensive BG search for me and none of those records were available to them. They could not tell I was arrested as a teen. This is in the state of California. That's just a side note and has no bearing on your status, just thought I'd throw it out there.

 57 
 on: April 10, 2014, 10:39:00 AM 
Started by lauramren - Last post by lauramren
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 58 
 on: April 10, 2014, 10:15:29 AM 
Started by functionial drunk - Last post by functionial drunk
On the flip side I was also recently notified that I made the University of Michigan wait list. Woo hoo! (I guess) If accepted, I have to decide if I want to go further in debt in order to attend a school with a national reputation. I do love my two regional powerhouses in FIU and FSU but all of the old guard lawyers tell me to attend Michigan if I get in. Realistically the only place I would want to live in besides Florida/Southeast is NYC so I don't know if that would be worth it.

 59 
 on: April 10, 2014, 10:09:06 AM 
Started by functionial drunk - Last post by functionial drunk
Again thank  you for the prompt response CityLaw. Well you are right, I do have very little experience working in a courtroom legal setting per se but I already have had an internship for two legislative sessions in the Capitol in Tallahassee at a lobbying firm, and I currently work at a maritime law firm in Miami. As you can imagine I do not plan on being that 1% that does not do *&^% to pass the bar exam let alone try at law school. I am going to have to try because I am not a trust fund baby and I am not going to an elite level school. That being said, it is hard for me to comprehend that rankings do not matter. In my narrow minded 0L head all I can see is FSU #1 in Florida, FIU #4 in Florida by a significant margin. I have a few buddies going to St. Thomas law school (unranked) in Miami and a plethora of other friends trying to be attorneys that did not get into FSU but got into FIU. Essentially I feel like if I pass up on FSU I would be settling and although my performance at FIU would dictate what type of job I would land, in the back of my head I will always know that I could have had a magical experience in Tallahassee but I bypassed that because I was scared of a little debt.

City Law, I am glad that you can commiserate with me  when it comes to the big city traffic. I have visited LA once and let me tell you that your traffic is significantly worse than ours, I guess I am just being whiny. I just feel like Tallahassee has a much more laid back mentality that would dissipate my stress levels whereas in Miami I would have to worry about a million other things besides school. On a random note I find it intriguing that FIU has 44 yelp reviews whereas FSU only has 4 Yelp reviews. Is FIU disseminating propaganda? or is FSU suppressing information? I guess I am just too cynical for these review websites.

 60 
 on: April 10, 2014, 02:00:28 AM 
Started by mychan24 - Last post by Citylaw
I think you should wait 6 months and reapply. You might want to reevaluate everything and possibly retake the LSAT. Law school is not going anywhere, and you might want to take a few months to really study for the LSAT to make sure you are ready for the rigors of law school.

Good luck.

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