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Author Topic: Northwestern  (Read 5634 times)

Thor

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Re: Northwestern
« Reply #40 on: January 02, 2005, 01:21:40 PM »
This hair splitting, "which T14 is better" mentality is meaningless. If you get into a T14 and do well, than anything you want is a good possiblity, whether it be BigLaw, federal clerkships, or teaching positions.

I'd have to disagree with you on this. If you do well enough at any top-tier school, anything may be possible. But it's far easier to get these jobs from certain schools, and that's why you attend them. Northwestern is an excellent school, but it generally places a shade below most schools traditionally ranked in the top 10.

Like I said, if you want to Clerk for the Supreme Court, or gain tenure at HYS, then you likely should attend one of those schools. If you want the best BigLaw jobs or clerkships outside of the Supreme Court and you think being in the top  third of your Harvard class is better than the top 10% of the Northwestern class, then I think you are probably sorely mistaken. Not that it matters to me, I'll readily admit. I have no interest in working 3000 hours a year, claerking for the Supreme Court, or teaching at a top law school, so from my perspective, avoiding the annoying people with the "HYS are the best" attitude, who attend said schools, and still having an easy road to my job of choice makes other T14 not only sufficient, but superior for my needs. I guess 50%+ of this board expect to attend HYS so they want to defend their future alma matter, but I maintain that arguing which T14 is the best is pointless unless you plan oin being at the top of your class, wherever you go.
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Thor

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Re: Northwestern
« Reply #41 on: January 02, 2005, 02:04:19 PM »
Mr. Nixon,

You're right I attributed some stances to you that you had not taken, partially due to a hasty reading of your posts and of other posts guilty of the same mistake I made. I do still disagree with your stance however, and here is why: The entire premise of your point seems to be that NU's "gimmicky" admission process will somehow hurt its prestige because its grads will mysteriously get fewer prestigious job offers. I find this conclusion a bit odd, but you may be able to clarify much better than you have. If a student comes in with a strong UG record and LSAT, does well at NU, a nationally recognized (ie T14) school, maybe makes the law review etc., why would the fact that they have more WE than other T14 students hurt them in the job finding process? How would this subsequently hurt the prestige of NU? The comment on faculty losses may have some merit, if true, and if that faculty was replaced by weaker candidates, though I'm not sure how you gathered that. I also didn't see "at least 4 places" where I addressed something you never said, though I'll admit there was at least one. You did in fact claim that "any school that would like to be considered a top school has to be academically focused" and went on to speak of faculty losses and their attempt to maintain a high quality applicant pool, clearly implying that NU is not as academically focused as other T14 schools. If you did not mean that, then you should be more clear. Like I said, you are not qualified to judge the academic focus of the school, even considering some apparently "serious" faculty losses.

You even said about Judges that they "care about grades, the prestige of the law school, and law review." How does having WE hurt this? You claim that WE has undue influence over the NU admission process, but I really don't see how you can prove this. If all else being equal, Northwestern takes the applicant with more work experience, then WE just becomes perhaps a favored tie breaker (as opposed to ECs or LORs). Frankly, you couldn't even know if it is their primary tie breaker. For all you know, they consider the LSAT, then GPA, then the PS, then LORs and only after all that resort to WE as a tie breaker. There are more than enough smart people with some WE applying to law school. Why would the fact that NU use this last little caveat in its admission process make it seem "unworthy of T14 status"? You also have not responded to the people who have read interviews, articles etc. where Adcomms explicitly state that ideally all aplicants would have a little work experience. Why do the top B Schools prefer it? Your arguments could theoretically be applied to them just as easily, yet they have found it a worthy component of a top applicant. I do agree that substantial and interesting work experience is much more relevant than filing papers for a year, but like I said before, at least that year of filing exposed said applicant to a variety of career options and gave them a chance to evaluate what they want to get out of law school. They are likely to come into law school with a better idea of where they are going than someone straight out of school and if I were an admissions officer, this would appeal to me and certainly would not be something that I would think could damage the academic reputation of my school.

Ultimately, I think you make some good points, but you also are largely stating unsubstantiated opinions. I may be guilty of the same, but for you to be right, you must disprove what I say, while your arguments have little bearing on my own beliefs in the matter. If NU has always been considered a top school and has even risen in recent rankings, then  I would have to see a serious slide for my opinion of the school to change very much. Also, I think we have different views on what constitutes a serious slide. I don't think #5 to #7 or #10 to #13 is especially noteworthy. If NU were to suddenly find itself outside the top 20, then I might have to concede your point. Anyway, this has been a stimulating, if fairly pointless discussion. I'm still applying to NU and consider it one of my top choices, but I do appreciate your viewpoint.
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grannypants

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Re: Northwestern
« Reply #42 on: January 03, 2005, 05:18:21 PM »
I had an interview there today and I was told that they only had nine students in the entering class from last year w/o WE. I was told that they are aiming to have a student body with more than 2 year WE soon. I interviewed at the school and since I am an 'older' applicant (graduated in 99) with 6 years WE in finance/accounting and tech stuff) that they told me I would be a good fit with their student body. Hmmm..let's see how they feel after reading my application!! NU is my super reach (oh wait all my schools are)

burghblast

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Re: Northwestern
« Reply #43 on: January 03, 2005, 05:35:19 PM »
Saying that prior work experience isn't valuable to anyone pursuing a graduate degree in a non-related field is the same narrow minded, whiney argument 6th graders make in algebra class: "But I'm never going to need to use algebra in my job!"  bull.  Just because you won't be directly applying the specific techniques on a daily basis does not make it worthless.  Same with work experience before law school.  Someone who has worked for several years in any professional environment has perspective on the world in general that nobody has coming out of college.  That experience and perspective is what NW - and many other law schools - value. 

NW is ranked in the much heralded "T14" for a reason.  If you get a degree from any of these schools, you're set for life.  You can get a job anywhere in the country.  That's why these schools are so damn hard to get into.  I asked my alumni interviewer about this last week, and he said the only problem you'd have with a NW degree is getting a job with a small firm outside the region, because most of them wouldn't be able to afford you, or wouldn't believe that someone with a NW degree would honestly want to settle for a small firm. 

qj

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Re: Northwestern
« Reply #44 on: January 07, 2005, 01:33:48 PM »
A few points that I think make NU a great school.
1. Small class size of around 240
2. Actually take the time to interview the candidates which says something about the fact that they look at more than the numbers.
3. have a strong clinical program
4. Located in downtown Chicago right on the lake (bad in winter)

As for the WE issue, I was told by someone familiar with the admissions process that previously Northwestern was suffering in the US News category of % employed 9 months after graduation.  This was not due to them being unemployable but to the fact that a larger percentage than at other schools were going on to get other master's degrees and more post-grad studies.  NU felt that this negatively influenced their overall ranking significantly enough to warrant addressing it.  They felt that this was caused by students coming straight out of undergrad who ended up not wanting to pursue law as a career and the best way to remedy this was by actively recruiting people with significant WE which had confirmed their desire to become lawyers.  This is what I was told.  Take it or leave it. 

melissamw

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Re: Northwestern
« Reply #45 on: January 12, 2005, 10:32:42 AM »
How many people are considering NU as one of their top choices at the moment?

burghblast

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Re: Northwestern
« Reply #46 on: January 12, 2005, 10:37:16 AM »
How many people are considering NU as one of their top choices at the moment?

They're pretty much my top choice.  I would probably go to Penn or Texas ahead of Northwestern, but I think I have about a 2% shot at either of those places whereas I give myself a 10-20% chance at Northwestern.

norm012001

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Re: Northwestern
« Reply #47 on: January 12, 2005, 01:03:02 PM »
Northwestern was my first choice, but I will not be able to up and move in July if they accept me off the waitlist.  I guess UVa is my first choice now, although still a very long shot.
3.19/165, 6yrs work experience, EE Master's

Accepted: GWU, GMU, American
Waitlist: Northwestern, Vanderbilt, Georgetown, UVa
Withdrawn: UNC (withdrew in mid March, tired of waiting)

mark1982

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Re: Northwestern
« Reply #48 on: March 09, 2005, 03:59:38 PM »
I guess I'll try to breathe new life into this thread...
Has anyone else been accepted to Northwestern who hasn't had any work experience?  (I kind of unexpectedly got an acceptance email yesterday.)  My only worry is I wonder if I'll have a hard time fitting in coming right out of undergrad, but there's got to be more of you out there.

Lost in Translation

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Re: Northwestern
« Reply #49 on: March 09, 2005, 05:09:48 PM »
I was thinking about this as well. Am I going to be able to fit in since I will be straight out from college? Will the people with a lot of WE have the time to hang out (I guess a lot of them will be married or in serious relationships)? I doubt that this will be a problem, but nevertheless, it is a concern. On the other hand, it might be really cool and curious to be able to study with people who have out-of-school knowledge. One can learn a lot from them I think.


I guess I'll try to breathe new life into this thread...
Has anyone else been accepted to Northwestern who hasn't had any work experience?  (I kind of unexpectedly got an acceptance email yesterday.)  My only worry is I wonder if I'll have a hard time fitting in coming right out of undergrad, but there's got to be more of you out there.