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Author Topic: Harvard vs. the Hamilton (Columbia)  (Read 13502 times)

QueenoftheCourt

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Re: Harvard vs. the Hamilton (Columbia)
« Reply #100 on: January 31, 2008, 01:41:32 AM »
I've actually been incredibly disappointed in the HLS response actually.  :'(

I thought the scholarship would carry some weight with them, but even my fairly aggressive emails have only elicited stock responses about Harvard LIPP and institutional prestige from the fin aid people (which are obviously cut and pasted from a general form letter). I though their trademark was personalized attention, but this is really upsetting. 



Actually they've really been great to me.  I spent an hour on the phone with the director of financial services working through exactly what I should expect to pay -- if I get married, how long I spend working, if I work during the summer, if I have a brother in school, etc.  Dean Stock has put me in touch with a whole bunch of people, some of which have e-mailed me already (it's been one day!).  The letter he sent me seemed to have some form components at the top, but the end of it was very specific to my situation.

Actually, I've been very impressed.

Really? I PMed you - I'd love a response.  :)
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SouthSide

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Re: Harvard vs. the Hamilton (Columbia)
« Reply #101 on: January 31, 2008, 10:29:01 PM »
I am making my annual return to this board to highly recommend taking the scholarship at Columbia over Harvard. I am now a 2L at Columbia, and I can't believe that I ever agonized over this decision at all. I can't overestimate just how great it is to have financial freedom in law school. And I don't feel that I've given anything up to come to Columbia. The faculty and student body here are great, and the opportunities you get are, if anything, better than any of its peer schools. It was definitely the right decision for me, and I think it would be for the majority of people.

Now, I haven't taken the time to read this entire thread, so I'm not sure what people's specific concerns might be. But I will check back here periodically and I am happy to take any questions about why I made the decision I did, or my general thoughts on Columbia.
Columbia 2L.

QueenoftheCourt

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Re: Harvard vs. the Hamilton (Columbia)
« Reply #102 on: January 31, 2008, 10:37:02 PM »
I am making my annual return to this board to highly recommend taking the scholarship at Columbia over Harvard. I am now a 2L at Columbia, and I can't believe that I ever agonized over this decision at all. I can't overestimate just how great it is to have financial freedom in law school. And I don't feel that I've given anything up to come to Columbia. The faculty and student body here are great, and the opportunities you get are, if anything, better than any of its peer schools. It was definitely the right decision for me, and I think it would be for the majority of people.

Now, I haven't taken the time to read this entire thread, so I'm not sure what people's specific concerns might be. But I will check back here periodically and I am happy to take any questions about why I made the decision I did, or my general thoughts on Columbia.

Oooh, awesome - so far I've only talked to people who chose Harvard. Would it be okay if I PMed you?

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Miss P

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Re: Harvard vs. the Hamilton (Columbia)
« Reply #103 on: January 31, 2008, 10:52:16 PM »
Sorry to continually hijack, QotC.  I just want to say hi to my old friend SouthSide.

I'm glad all's still going well up there, kiddo.
That's cool how you referenced a case.

Quote from: archival
I'm so far from the end of my tether right now that I reckon I could knit myself some socks with the slack.

SouthSide

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Re: Harvard vs. the Hamilton (Columbia)
« Reply #104 on: February 01, 2008, 10:52:12 AM »

Oooh, awesome - so far I've only talked to people who chose Harvard. Would it be okay if I PMed you?


You already did. I hope my answer was helpful!

Sorry to continually hijack, QotC.  I just want to say hi to my old friend SouthSide.

I'm glad all's still going well up there, kiddo.

Hi, Miss P! How are things with you?

Congrats on Johan Santana! Maybe the team won't collapse this year.
Columbia 2L.

MahlerGrooves

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Re: Harvard vs. the Hamilton (Columbia)
« Reply #105 on: February 01, 2008, 03:29:13 PM »

Oooh, awesome - so far I've only talked to people who chose Harvard. Would it be okay if I PMed you?


You already did. I hope my answer was helpful!

Sorry to continually hijack, QotC.  I just want to say hi to my old friend SouthSide.

I'm glad all's still going well up there, kiddo.

Hi, Miss P! How are things with you?

Congrats on Johan Santana! Maybe the team won't collapse this year.


Phillies trolling??  I hope the Mets actually do well.  It's hard being a NY Fan in Philly.

Miss P

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Re: Harvard vs. the Hamilton (Columbia)
« Reply #106 on: February 01, 2008, 04:58:52 PM »
Congrats on Johan Santana! Maybe the team won't collapse this year.

::crosses fingers tightly::

Let me know if you want to catch a game this spring.

ETA:
It's hard being a NY Fan in Philly.

I'll bet.  My sympathy!
That's cool how you referenced a case.

Quote from: archival
I'm so far from the end of my tether right now that I reckon I could knit myself some socks with the slack.

Gunnery Sgt. Hartman

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Re: Harvard vs. the Hamilton (Columbia)
« Reply #107 on: February 02, 2008, 03:52:39 PM »
(Full disclosure: I'm an HLS 1L)

I wasn't lucky enough to get a Hamilton, but I did have full rides at a few other top 10 law schools.  I'd be lying if I told you it isn't worth at least considering the money, but when you think everything through HLS seems to be the better option.

The only way it might be close a close call is if you're sure you want to do big, private law firm work. If you're just going to go to a NYC megafirm regardless, it might be better to take the money.    The bottom of the bottom of HLS can get biglaw job offers.  That isn't as true at CLS, but assuming you have at least a decent grades, you're probably going to get offers if you're at CLS too.  That being said, HLS has fairly good financial aid and the price difference may not be nearly as much as you think it will be.  It's certainly something you could easily pay off in a year or two in biglaw with no noticeable lifestyle sacrifices, and of course once that year is up you've got an HLS diploma on the wall that will last a lifetime.

If you don't want to do big firm law, I think HLS wins hands down.  We have a great public interest placement office.  I had opportunities to do whatever I wanted this summer: public interest in Ireland, Russia, South Africa, urban or rural America.  Literally, whatever I wanted.  Also, you need to remember all public interest jobs aren't created equal.  The more important ones, the ones where you're getting on the track to eventually argue important cases with nationwide implications, are difficult to get.  Anecdotally, I've seen the HLS name alone (we don't even have grades yet) help a great deal in landing these sorts of jobs.

QueenoftheCourt

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Re: Harvard vs. the Hamilton (Columbia)
« Reply #108 on: February 02, 2008, 03:55:44 PM »
Thanks Gunnery! I'm not sure what I'm going to do yet, but after speaking with the HLS Fin Aid office, the ballpark figure they gave for me for my anticipated need-based grants was very generous - the financial disparity doesn't look to be more than $70,000 for me (not that much in the long term).

And so, my decision has just gotten much harder.  :-\

 
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Gunnery Sgt. Hartman

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Re: Harvard vs. the Hamilton (Columbia)
« Reply #109 on: February 02, 2008, 04:05:26 PM »
Thanks Gunnery! I'm not sure what I'm going to do yet, but after speaking with the HLS Fin Aid office, the ballpark figure they gave for me for my anticipated need-based grants was very generous - the financial disparity doesn't look to be more than $70,000 for me (not that much in the long term).

And so, my decision has just gotten much harder.  :-\

 

No problem. If you have any more questions feel free to post or PM me.

I'll stop my HLS trolling now, but I really do love the place. I think you'd like it here (almost everyone does), and I think it's the smart choice for most people.

Beyond that, however, remember that you'll be spending 3 years of your life wherever you decide.  Go visit both schools and you'll see the social scenes are worlds apart.  Having been to CLS a number of times now I can say we have a lot more fun here (while obviously still working hard).  That alone would have made your decision for someone like me, but it isn't as important to everyone.