Law School Discussion

So who is going to Hofstra?

So who is going to Hofstra?
« on: April 04, 2005, 10:47:18 AM »
Just thought i'd start a new post for fall 2005 hofstra 1Ls.  Anyone going to admitted student day this sunday?


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Re: So who is going to Hofstra?
« Reply #1 on: April 11, 2005, 10:39:51 PM »
I was supposed to go but couldnt make it. For those who did attend, what did you think??

Re: So who is going to Hofstra?
« Reply #2 on: April 13, 2005, 09:37:04 AM »
admitted student day was interesting.  It was nice to hear from successful alumni and sit in on various info sessions.  In terms of atmosphere, it sounds like Hofstra isnt a 'cut throat' school. I was reassured that it is competitive, but not to the extent that people are unfriendly towards each other.  Also, it appears as though Hofstra prides itself in its teaching, meaning, there is an emphasis on student teacher relationships.  How much of that is true, i am unsure, but most of the students i've talked to seemed to think that their professors were 'great'.  All in all i'd say hofstra seems very promising, but what an ugly campus(they do have nice facilities though). 

Re: So who is going to Hofstra?
« Reply #3 on: April 13, 2005, 10:28:32 AM »

Disclaimer: YOU GET WHAT YOU PAY FOR (if you're lucky)

Here's my story (I'll try to keep it brief). Last year, I was admitted to Hofstra with a $20K scholarship. I was living on the west coast and Hofstra was the only NY school I applied to. I was admitted to schools with higher rankings (2nd tier), I even got some other (smaller) scholarship offers. I figured "what the heck" and decided to head east.


My first (& last) year at Hofstra has been an eye-opening experience. Here's a synopsis of what I learned:
#1 A Hofstra Law degree is better than no law degree
#2 If you can ignore all of the school's inadequacies for 3 years, it's worth considering
#3 Look at the numbers (and read between the lines); realize that the school minimally meets the ABA accreditation standards (and that’s when you round numbers in the school’s favor)

DON'T BE's worse than you imagine.

Every school has its faults. Things can get better, but sometimes they don't. Hofstra University has a very LONG tradition of supporting mediocrity and resisting change. The School of Law honors this tradition. You’ll soon discover that not everyone is bad, but the bureaucracy involved with simple tasks can be overwhelming.

But you may wonder, how do they have such a distinguished faculty??? And how did their ranking the rise last year??? (Answer: rhyme$ with "honey") The faculty pay far exceeds the region’s average; and the “best and brightest” students are given whopping scholarships. Dollar for dollar, the students actually “paying” for this education get less in return than they might expect.

Basically, from an "educational value" standpoint, Hofstra is overpriced. Even with a $20K scholarship, I'm ready to leave for greener pastures. Watch out West Coast, because I’m headed back!!!


The party scene is decent. Check out the Fall Bash and the Barrister’s Ball for good times (if you’re into drinking). The student body is “friendly” AKA relatively easy to hook-up with. Some of the students are attractive (not all); some of the students occasionally offer an insightful comment; sometimes alums land decent jobs and are willing to lend a helping hand.

A lot depends on your section…Section A=tenured professors anticipating their next paycheck; Section B=newer professors trying to prove themselves; Part Time Evening=professors who command enough experience and authority to require that they teach the more motivated and mature segment of the student body. Don’t get your hopes up and you won’t be disappointed. You might even be pleasantly surprised.

As a student in Section A, I am now a fan of the “mock” Socratic method. Is that to say that so long as information is presented in the form of a question, a professor say they “teach” using the Socratic method? To answer my own question, yes it is.

If you’re ever stumped in class, don’t panic…most professors will repeat the “question” and nudge you in the right direction. You’re also allowed an unlimited number of free passes, so use them often. In the event you don’t have time to read AND go to class, just choose (the content is the same). Class attendance has a bonus: if you pay attention, you’ll realize that the class “discussion” is filled with comical elements. Ha, ha.

WARNING: It is possible to be academically disqualified. So don’t be that ONE student who gets kicked out due to low grades. Otherwise, hang on to your admission letter and in three years, you can redeem it for a degree.

In sum, you’ll learn an important skill at Hofstra: how to become and how to remain skeptical. Don’t believe anything an administrator says; strongly doubt information you hear from students and professors.

A few minor points:
--Campus housing is slum-like (those expensive “new” dorm facilities only house a small segment of the population and there’s a lot of competition for those rooms; imagine “Animal House” for a picture of what it’s like to live there); your other option is a government housing project (err, rather now the University-owned “Twin Oaks Apartment Complex”).
--Food choices are limited and overpriced. Buy groceries, you’ll be happier.
--Financial aid refunds are slow to process. BUT you’ll realize that it would be even SLOWER if you weren’t a law student.
--Don’t fight the system. You’re wasting your time and your energy. Expect no one to help you. You’re on your own. You’re not the first to notice a problem and you probably won’t be the one who gets it fixed.
--You want a law degree, and Hofstra wants your money. It’s that simple. After you enroll, you’ll be worth less than a bar of soap. Really. (Once upon a time, I actually thought that the dorm bathrooms would be supplied with soap if I asked nicely…again, big mistake.)

As you struggle to come up with a convincing reason of why you chose Hofstra Law, you’ll improve your sales skills and eventually you will be able to convince a jury to award a criminal defendant a medal of honor. If you decide not to pursue a career in law, you’ll be among a small number of people qualified for a sales job in the direct marketing of frozen water to Alaskan natives.

IN SUMMARY: Hofstra #95…Not the worst, not the best.

Re: So who is going to Hofstra?
« Reply #4 on: April 13, 2005, 10:39:16 AM »
I'm interested in your experience calikid.  Or more specifically what ur expectations were going into law school?  It seems like you expected to be fawned over.  Also could this bitter attitude reflect finals time or a sub par first semester?  I'm not attacking, just interested in your anonymous experience.


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Re: So who is going to Hofstra?
« Reply #5 on: April 13, 2005, 10:45:24 AM »
hm, thanks for in the insight. Thats a very interesting view of things. One of my main concerns was the high cost of attendance as well for a school that's pretty close to tier 3. I haven't fully made up my mind regarding Hofstra, but you've given me a lot to mull over. ???

Re: So who is going to Hofstra?
« Reply #6 on: April 14, 2005, 03:42:37 AM »
I agree with the "expectations" theory. Personally, my expectations going into Hofstra were that MOST of the school's various representations would be true. Keep in mind...Hofstra is a school run by lawyers (and lawyers are masters of deception). I suppose all law schools suffer from a similar syndrome...but Hofstra really stands out. (Insider tip: when someone says "Our school is BLANK" or "we have BLANK really great thing" follow up with "that's terrific, so you wouldn't mind showing me some indicators relating to BLANK" or hit them hard with "and how would you suppose I could verify BLANK from an outside party?").

BOTTOM LINE: Don't piss on my shoe and tell me it's raining. I'm basically a straightforward person and I get along well with people who say what they mean and mean what they say.

Hofstra is, was, and may forever be a regional school. The school has ambitions of being a national law school, but its current lackings will prevent that from becoming true in the near future.

Based on my observations, Hofstra seems best for people well-aclaimated to the Long Island lifestyle. Also, academics aren't the school's bright spot.

There are lots of people who will tell you WONDERFUL things about any school they once attended. You may choose to believe them...or you might check into things yourself.

-Making friends with some of the students (there are some really interesting people)
-Off-campus events (Yale is within driving distance for weekend conferences; there are often legal organizations hosting dinners in the city)
-Getting involved with a couple of student organizations
-Working part time off-campus for a state agency
-Free Lexis & WestLaw access (you get it at any law school, but c'mon, that's worth the price of tuition alone)
-Free daily copies of the New York Times

DON'T TAKE MY WORD FOR IT: To re-emphasize an earlier point, "you get what you pay for (if you're lucky)" Realistically, I wasn't in a position to thoroughly investigate each law school before making my decision. I looked at the numbers and heard what people had to say; now that I'll be transferring, I plan to do a thorough background check on a school before I enroll.

BEST OF LUCK...use the information that you have available and make the best choice for yourself. SEE YOU IN COURT ONE DAY.

Re: So who is going to Hofstra?
« Reply #7 on: April 14, 2005, 07:24:54 AM »
Not to be a nag, but i was really trying to cull out your individual experience and what exactly went wrong with it.  I mean you have described things, but not always specific things.  What exactly were you lied to about?  What were the inadequacies you saw?  Howcome academics arent a bright spot?  On a complete side note, from what i've gathered from friends who've visited from california, they HATE long island.  I dont really get it, but then again i've never living in CA.  Anywho, thanks for the input.

Re: So who is going to Hofstra?
« Reply #8 on: April 16, 2005, 07:24:12 AM »
I think I posted this on another thread but here it goes:

I visited Hofstra Law School the day before the reception. I was not impressed with the visual atmosphere. However, I was extremely impressed with the student. I roamed the halls on Saturday and spoke with several students (8 i think). All of them had nothing but positive comments. 3 of them were transfer students and they ranged from L1-L3.
What they like about the school:

Students are competitive however they are not cut throat. All the students were in study groups and said they have made friends for life at Hofstra. They help each other out. This will make three years a much more pleasant experience.

The clinics, I believe there are like 5 different ones. Great experience.

The faculty. Apparently the professors and extremely involved with their students.

The law library.... looked good to me and the technology.

Job placement services and internships... All the L3's had been offered jobs.

What they all said they did not like about the school:


Then Saturday evening I went to a local bar for dinner and drinks. I ran into several Hofstra students... undergrad and grad and law. Again nothing but positives.

These were not students who were told to talk up the school for the reception.... these just ordinary people who like their school

Hope this helps

Re: So who is going to Hofstra?
« Reply #9 on: April 27, 2005, 09:32:09 AM »
So I haven't heard many answers to the actual title of this post...."So who is going to Hofstra?".

I for one will be a 1L in the Fall.  It was a hard decision, but the money was too good to pass up. I went to the admitted student's reception and also spoke to a lot of students there and on campus and they all had very positive things to say about the school and I enjoyed the atmosphere.  (And the bad parking situation was mentioned as well.)

I currently work for a law firm in the suburbs of NYC, and I have mulled over where to go and asked every attorney I come into contact with, and the reviews were pretty much mixed.  The bottom line though, was that if you go to a school in NY, and want to practice in NY, as long as you do well in your class, you will be fine come graduation time.

It is unfortunate that the other person who posted had a horrible experience, but everyone does not fit in everywhere.  There are people who are miserable at Harvard and Columbia and transfer, but that does not make them bad schools.  Each person's experience will be different.

Having said all that, I would love to make some connections before classes start so anyone attending in the Fall, let's talk!