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Author Topic: Simple question UNC vs GMU  (Read 524 times)

marcusbarnes30

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Simple question UNC vs GMU
« on: February 03, 2008, 02:52:42 PM »
only determining factor is employablity

JeNeSaisLaw

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Re: Simple question UNC vs GMU
« Reply #1 on: February 03, 2008, 04:29:11 PM »
UNC took a dive this year in the rankings, but you can see that it's short-term by just looking at their peer and lawyer/judge reputation scores on USNWR. UNC is definitely much more national (though calling them national would not be right either [not that that's what JD was saying]) than GMU.
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remiz22

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Re: Simple question UNC vs GMU
« Reply #2 on: February 03, 2008, 11:17:54 PM »
UNC took a dive this year in the rankings, but you can see that it's short-term by just looking at their peer and lawyer/judge reputation scores on USNWR. UNC is definitely much more national (though calling them national would not be right either [not that that's what JD was saying]) than GMU.


The UNC brand is far more recognizable than the GMU brand, but GMU law school seems to be a better law school. GMU has a better faculty, better student quality, and a more desirable location.

UNC has serious problems with state funding and has had difficulty raising money through alumni. They have lost some of their best faculty recently and were severely embarrassed when Erwin Chemerinsky publicly rebuked UNC is rejecting their deanship offer due to the inadequate resources of the school.

http://leiterlawschool.typepad.com/leiter/2006/04/unc_dean_search.html

JeNeSaisLaw

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Re: Simple question UNC vs GMU
« Reply #3 on: February 04, 2008, 12:46:10 AM »
But on the flip side, the new Dean knows that there is a problem with state funding. Moreover, there is a new chancellor starting in a few months, who will hopefully realize the importance of the state having a premier state law school. And finally, a 200,000 square foot law building is expected to open fiscal year 2010-2011 at Carolina North; it's being paid for with state funds. http://media.collegepublisher.com/media/paper885/documents/q9t31r37.pdf

And I've been to the Arlington campus. Not 5 minutes after getting there did I decide I wouldn't apply. I disliked the location that much, even while being near DC. It should also be noted that the peer assessment of GMU is the 2nd worst in the USNWR top 50. UNC is in the top 20. The quality of students at GMU is also not obviously better. Their 25th/75ths are 160/166 and 3.1/3.8. UNC's is 158/164 and 3.4/3.8. To keep things in perspective, UNC's class size is significantly (almost 40%) larger.

Not trying to troll here, but making sure that it's clear to the OP that things aren't just as you say.

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Vanderbilt Class of 2011

marcusbarnes30

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Re: Simple question UNC vs GMU
« Reply #4 on: February 04, 2008, 09:34:04 AM »
Thanks for the info guys

DCLabor25

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Re: Simple question UNC vs GMU
« Reply #5 on: February 04, 2008, 09:49:55 AM »
I think there are some important variables to consider here -- first and foremost, where do you really see yourself working?  Do you want to be in the DC area?  Then, I would probably say go to GMU.  Yes, it's still the third fiddle in DC, but I think your job prospects are better in DC with a GMU degree than a UNC degree.  There are a ton of GMU alumni in the DC area, not only in firms but also on Capitol Hill, government, etc.  If your dream in life is to work in that kind of environment, GMU seems like the better choice.

If however you want to work pretty much anywhere in the south, then I would say UNC is far better -- without a doubt.  If your not sure where you want to work or if you want to work somewhere outside of the south/dc, then I think the choice is much more difficult, though I'd probably give a small edge to UNC, simply because Mason is relatively new to the more elite law school levels.  I do think though that both of these schools are more regional in nature though and if you want to work outside of DC/South, you should probably look at compartively ranked schools in those regions.

Also, I know you only mentioned the employment factor as the sole consideration, but it bears mentioning that the cost between these schools is huge, depending on whether you are in-state or out-of-state.  Both schools have very inexpensive in-state tuition and relatively expensive out-of-state rates.  You can't obviously live in both states so where you would get in-state tuition might be a very important factor....just my two cents. 

remiz22

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Re: Simple question UNC vs GMU
« Reply #6 on: February 04, 2008, 02:03:25 PM »
But on the flip side, the new Dean knows that there is a problem with state funding. Moreover, there is a new chancellor starting in a few months, who will hopefully realize the importance of the state having a premier state law school. And finally, a 200,000 square foot law building is expected to open fiscal year 2010-2011 at Carolina North; it's being paid for with state funds. http://media.collegepublisher.com/media/paper885/documents/q9t31r37.pdf

And I've been to the Arlington campus. Not 5 minutes after getting there did I decide I wouldn't apply. I disliked the location that much, even while being near DC. It should also be noted that the peer assessment of GMU is the 2nd worst in the USNWR top 50. UNC is in the top 20. The quality of students at GMU is also not obviously better. Their 25th/75ths are 160/166 and 3.1/3.8. UNC's is 158/164 and 3.4/3.8. To keep things in perspective, UNC's class size is significantly (almost 40%) larger.

Not trying to troll here, but making sure that it's clear to the OP that things aren't just as you say.



The Deans recognition of the funding problem doesn't itself cure the funding problem. Previous Deans no doubt were also aware of the funding problem.

I don't see how an objective viewer could say that the quality of students at GMU are not superior to UNC. GMU medians are 164/3.6 and UNC medians are 162/3.57. At that range of spectrum, a 2 point difference in median LSAT is significant.

Finally, why should applicants care whether UNC is at a disadvantage because it has a larger class size? UNC has the option to make their class smaller.

At the end of the day, I think there are bothersome issues and problems with UNC Law and GMU Law. The OP should choose which problems concern him/her the most and where he/she feels most comfortable

JeNeSaisLaw

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Re: Simple question UNC vs GMU
« Reply #7 on: February 04, 2008, 02:09:18 PM »
If I recall correctly, the new dean is a skilled fund raiser, while the old one wasn't so much. There has already been an increase in funds to secure more (presumably quality) faculty.

And I'm not saying that applicants should care that UNC is disadvantaged by having a larger class size. What I am saying, however, is that having a larger class size obscures the quality of the students at the school.

In any case, I agree that neither has a great law school.
LSN
Vanderbilt Class of 2011