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Author Topic: How important is the name really?  (Read 27056 times)

cmedici

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How important is the name really?
« on: November 01, 2006, 11:01:49 PM »
You know, I have heard too much for too long how important the name of the law school is on your diploma.  I have heard that the name can sometimes be more important than the ranking within your class.  But why?  I know some people say that it's because behind the name and the reputation comes excellent education, and even if it doesn't things are how they are and it's not I who will change it.  But I wonder if firms will really turn me down because I didn't go to a top 50 school.  I got a 169 on my LSAT, I had a 3.5 cum. GPA in my undergraduate school, I got in all but one out of 10 schools I applied to, 3 of them in the top 50 and one in the top 5...yeah...but I chose a school ranked 87 by the infamous US News and World Report for the full ride.  I thought it was an honor that a school bet so highly in my success that they said I don't have to pay to go there, that it is my name that may help build theirs up and not the other way around.  You know, I think that there is a lot more going for lawyers than a fancy law school.  I think that if you have additional, relevant attributes you are much better off than the stereotype anti-social Ivy-Leaguer.  I speak five languages, hold dual citizenship and American Residency, have traveled the world, volunteered abroad, worked at the Maryland General Assembly, was a crucial help on the passage of a really important child-welfare bill, I am outgoing, smart, persevering, persuasive, diligent, and yet somehow I hear that because I chose to go to Hofstra, and emphasis on the word "chose", I am doomed as far as jobs.  So my question to you, who have the experience required to answer my question, is whether it is really true that going to Hofstra Law is going to affect my job choices negatively.  I am not sure whether it is relevant, but my field of choice so far is M&A and other types of business law.  Thanks in advance for the replies. 
UMD graduate 05
1st LSAT: Oct 1st 2005

tenth8sphere

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Re: How important is the name really?
« Reply #1 on: November 02, 2006, 12:21:23 AM »
I'm not an expert by any means, but I know that many job opportunities will only look at candidates from schools in a certain range - these generally being the bigger firms. I don't think going to #87 could possibly be 'dooming', but it may make many types of jobs more difficult to obtain.

jacy85

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Re: How important is the name really?
« Reply #2 on: November 02, 2006, 07:13:14 AM »
Ditto.  A few firms might be closed out to you (the ultra prestigious, highly ranked Vault firms), and unless you're within a certain percentage of your class (top 5 or 10%), Biglaw firms and OCI in general may not produce results.  But your school will place well locally, I would guess, with other non-Biglaw employers (smaller firms, public interest, etc.)

And look at the bright side; if you can keep your scholarship, you'll have more freedom to choose what you want to do since you'll have little to know debt.

RenaldoBalkman

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Re: How important is the name really?
« Reply #3 on: November 02, 2006, 08:39:31 AM »
Of course going to Hofstra will hurt your chances getting biglaw, not so much with other employers.  What is your class rank?  Unless you are top 10% I highly doubt any biglaw firm will seriously consider you.

LegalLatin78

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Re: How important is the name really?
« Reply #4 on: November 02, 2006, 02:49:49 PM »
You forgot to mention how humble and modest you are  ::)

I am sure there will be opportunities.  But if you were smart enough to get a full ride, do you really need to ask this? 

Budlaw

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Re: How important is the name really?
« Reply #5 on: November 02, 2006, 05:28:11 PM »
I just can't believe Hofstra is number 87. I thought they were third tier.

Oh well. Learn something new every day.

RenaldoBalkman

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Re: How important is the name really?
« Reply #6 on: November 02, 2006, 06:18:53 PM »
I just can't believe Hofstra is number 87. I thought they were third tier.

Oh well. Learn something new every day.

Nope...Hofstra is still chilling in the unranked 3rd tier.

http://www.usnews.com/usnews/edu/grad/directory/dir-law/brief/glanc_03108_brief.php

LegalLatin78

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Re: How important is the name really?
« Reply #7 on: November 02, 2006, 06:40:26 PM »
A list of schools ranked 87th by U.S. News:

 87. Louisiana State University–Baton Rouge 
 87. Mercer University (GA)
 87. Northeastern University (MA)
 87. Pennsylvania State University (Dickinson)           
 87. Pepperdine University (McConnell) (CA)

Even though Hofstra is in the 3rd tier, it is a solid school. 

johns259

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Re: How important is the name really?
« Reply #8 on: November 02, 2006, 06:59:37 PM »
The name is VERY important. Hofstra is a decent school, don't get me wrong, but go with the highest ranked school you get into. Play it safe now, you can't predict where you're going to place in your law school class.

RenaldoBalkman

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Re: How important is the name really?
« Reply #9 on: November 02, 2006, 07:08:23 PM »
The name is VERY important. Hofstra is a decent school, don't get me wrong, but go with the highest ranked school you get into. Play it safe now, you can't predict where you're going to place in your law school class.

I think its too late for the OP.  She already chose Hofstra over a top 5 school according to her post.