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mnewboldc

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Cornell Question
« on: March 24, 2008, 04:53:12 PM »
Im in at Cornell with a 75k grant.

Im waitlisted at UMich, and have apps pending at Chicago, Columbia, and Penn.

Assuming I got in to any of those four places, with little or no grant money, does it make sense to pass up 75k... am not sure what the difference in job prospects bewteen Cornell and these four schools is.

I will probably wind up litigating in New York, but would like some potential flexibility. I know that Cornell does fairly well on the Ciolli TQs on the West Coast, but, just by relying on such an indicator its obvious that I dont know as much as I should.

Any thoughts would be most welcome, as I may have to make some very quick decisions in the near future... thanks!
Cornell 2011

mnewboldc

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Re: Cornell Question
« Reply #1 on: March 25, 2008, 10:04:59 AM »
Am on LSN... though I havent there checked in a while.

GPA: 3.4
LSAT: 161/169 (had the flu the first time... for real... they must have taken the higher score)

I also had some soft factors that might have helped (published a novel, started a business, held two previous law jobs).

Cornell got back to me two weeks ago.

Good luck!
Cornell 2011

JeNeSaisLaw

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Re: Cornell Question
« Reply #2 on: March 25, 2008, 11:18:41 AM »
Holy *&^%, they gave you 75k? I need to call them soon...I have no idea why they haven't gotten back to me about $$ or financial aid yet. Now I feel very different since you're my numbers twin...if I get that kind of money I don't know what I'd do.
LSN
Vanderbilt Class of 2011

redbull

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Re: Cornell Question
« Reply #3 on: March 25, 2008, 01:08:40 PM »
im a 1L at cornell.  if I was in your position there would be no way id take penn or mich with no money over cornell with 75K.  chicago and columbia would give me pause for thought.  you would essentially be trading debt for additional prestige and the ability to basically do nothing in law school and get a market gig. 

at cornell getting market is pretty easy but it means doing work. im convinced that anyone who puts in the effort here should be able to get around the median (there really are a bunch of people who just don't work that hard) which will get you biglaw.  at chicago/columbia instead of needing to be in the top 65-70% of  the class to land a good job you only need to stay out of the absolute gutter (bottom 5-10%).  if you plan on working hard anyways I'd go to cornell and take the money.  however if you just want to coast through law school and don't mind the added debt, columbia or chicago would be the way to go.

that being said, with a 169/3.4 columbia/chicago are pretty big reaches (numbers-wise at least) so the whole issue may be moot.  i think you have a fair shot at michigan, however as i noted above, unless they give you money i wouldn't take it over 75k from cornell.

Quail!

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Re: Cornell Question
« Reply #4 on: March 25, 2008, 01:11:45 PM »
I concur with redbull for the most part - especially if you want NYC, it takes some serious slacking to get yourself in a bad position at Cornell.  I wouldn't even say you have to work particularly "hard" to land at the median; you just have to "work."

Columbia and Chicago are definitely reaches, and Mich/Penn are possible but I doubt you'd get anywhere near the amount of money that Cornell is offering.  The minimal prestige difference between those and Cornell (if there really is one) wouldn't be worth 75k to me.
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mnewboldc

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Re: Cornell Question
« Reply #5 on: March 25, 2008, 08:00:34 PM »
Thanks much for these exceptionally helpful comments. Redbull, can I ask you further how Cornell ranks its 1L classes, and whether grant money is linked to class rank, though it didnt say so on the award? Also, do you think you could tell me how most students feel about the Moral Obligation portion of the grant req, and is the general assumption that this gets repiad pretty much straight out of school, provided you land a decent gig?

Finally, when you say working hard, are you talking about 40 or 50 hours a week of class study, or more?

JeNeSaisLaw,

When did you apply? I finalized my app in late December...
Cornell 2011

JeNeSaisLaw

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Re: Cornell Question
« Reply #6 on: March 25, 2008, 08:15:18 PM »
I applied in mid-November and went complete in early December. My acceptance came about 5 weeks ago. If this came out with your financial aid reward, then I should hear soon I guess. There was an issue with Cornell receiving my information, but it should be all good now. I have to call tomorrow to verify...I just don't want to harass them anymore because I had to fax them something last week and had a string of emails too.
LSN
Vanderbilt Class of 2011

Quail!

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Re: Cornell Question
« Reply #7 on: March 25, 2008, 08:19:01 PM »
Thanks much for these exceptionally helpful comments. Redbull, can I ask you further how Cornell ranks its 1L classes, and whether grant money is linked to class rank, though it didnt say so on the award? Also, do you think you could tell me how most students feel about the Moral Obligation portion of the grant req, and is the general assumption that this gets repiad pretty much straight out of school, provided you land a decent gig?

Finally, when you say working hard, are you talking about 40 or 50 hours a week of class study, or more?


Cornell only publishes the GPA cutoff for top 10%, and the median (3.35).  Dean's List is top 30% for the semester, but it isn't published (you get a letter after the semester if you made it).  I don't think the "moral obligation" means that you have to repay the grant money soon after graduating.  From what I hear, that's their "we helped you out, so you better give us money when you're a rich alum" line.

40 hours of study a week is over 6.5 hours per day, every day.  That's over the top if you do it consistently, IMO, unless you want to be a huge gunner.  Studying time isn't about how much you should or shouldn't do though, it is about how long it takes you to get through and be comfortable with the material.  If you can grasp what you're reading in 2-3 hours per night, you can still end up towards the top of the class even though some people studied 5-6 hours.

The only way you're assured of failure is if you just slack off.  You'll know if you're slacking off, and it has less to do with the hours you put in and more to do with your attitude.
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mnewboldc

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Re: Cornell Question
« Reply #8 on: March 26, 2008, 11:34:03 AM »
JeNeSaisLaw,

I would call Cornell right away about your aid award. From what I understand the aid process is a bit disorganized at first... materials from all applicants sit in a pile, and once an applicant is accepted the admin folks sift through it to find your financial info. When I initially called finaid to verify the completion of my forms they were a little guarded, but have been very helpful since my acceptance, and encouraged me to call with questions. Considering that C makes aid awards for three years, and that their cutoff was the 15th of this month, and that they say aid is hard to procure after the cutoff, I think your best bet is to call them. I got my aid award about a week after acceptance, which may or may not be an abnormality.
Cornell 2011

runn3r

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Re: Cornell Question
« Reply #9 on: April 02, 2008, 04:18:02 PM »
Im in at Cornell with a 75k grant.

Im waitlisted at UMich, and have apps pending at Chicago, Columbia, and Penn.

Assuming I got in to any of those four places, with little or no grant money, does it make sense to pass up 75k... am not sure what the difference in job prospects bewteen Cornell and these four schools is.

I'm in almost the same boat as you.  Good money at Cornell, WL at Michigan and Virginia, and held at Northwestern. 

Have you been able to make any further headway with your decision?  Personally, I can't really see the logic in passing up the money at Cornell (a school that I visited and really loved, btw) for the uncertain merits of one of the other schools.

Thanks.