Law School Discussion

Nine Years of Discussion
;

Poll

What would you pick?

GW with 0; $150k debt
 31 (39.2%)
IU with 1/3; $50k debt (in-state)
 18 (22.8%)
Pitt with $22k/yr. / $15-20k debt
 11 (13.9%)
Stay on Northwestern and Vandy waitlists and  hope for the best
 16 (20.3%)
Apply again next cycle
 3 (3.8%)

Total Members Voted: 73

Author Topic: Decide my fate!  (Read 3906 times)

SleepyGuyYawn

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Re: Decide my fate!
« Reply #60 on: May 30, 2005, 12:52:33 PM »
What I think you don't understand is that quality of life is not made up of "things to do."  It's about how you live your everyday life.  Do you have to take a car everywhere you go?  Do you know your neighbors?  Are you safe?  Are you financially secure?  Quality of life is not about how many broadway plays you can go to or basketball games you can attend.  It's not about how many American Eagles are located within driving distance.  In my opinion, a city where you can live safely and simply and have lots of things within walking distance offers a great quality of life.  Pittsburgh does this as well as San Francisco and New York and Philly, but at a lower cost of living. 

To the extent that a quality of life is made up of the things you do, I would argue that the special occasion type things like a basketball game, a ballet, or a broadway play don't add or take away from your experience that much.  Because most people don't do those things often enough for the lack of them to make much of a difference (although I might say that Pittsburgh does have three sports teams and Div 1 athletics, a ballet, and a great independent theater scene).  No -- what matters so much more are the things you actually do on a regular basis.  Like a place to go play basketball or baseball or golf yourself.  Or a nice large park to walk your dog.  Or lots of little streets of independently owned shops (not mallish shops that you can get anywhere).  Or a wide selection of ethnic restaurants, if that's what you like.

My point is that most people don't make a habit of doing all the things that you think make up a great quality of life in a medium-sized or large city. 

And I only threw Detroit in there because I know that as a metro area, Detroit has much more to offer than most people think.

If you're going to move somewhere for the suburbs, you'd be just as well to move to Detroit as you would Houston or Atlanta or just about any other large American city.  Except for the weather, what you'd get would be just about exactly the same.

What I'm saying is that if you like urban life -- being able to live safely in the city within walking distance of all of your necessities -- that's what seperates places like Philadelphia, DC, NYC, Chicago, and yes Pittsburgh. 

I lived in downtown Detroit -- on Cass Avenue (I'm going to guess that you probably lived in the suburbs?) -- and I can easily say that Detroit is a terribly difficult city in which to live if you don't have a car.  There aren't very many grocery stores -- only the occasional low quality farmer jack -- and the city is terribly dangerous.

Of course, Detroit has decent suburbs, but like I said, suburbs are all the same.  I've lived in Columbus, several places in Michigan, and several other cities in the United States and I can tell you that one Banana Republic or Gap is just like another.


I've never been to Pittsburgh, and I'm not saying I wouldn't love it.  I'm saying that I you either typically see people talking up those cities, or trashing them, and I believe they have to visited first.


I agree that when you typically see people trashing Pittsburgh, they haven't been there.  But I've yet to see anybody talk up Pittsburgh without having spent some time there.  I've never seen it. 

When I talk about limitless entertainment options, in New York you have Broadway and other numerous theater options, 8 major sports teams, limited release movies, every concert tour imaginable, and every type of club you could want. 

Pittsburgh just about everything DC has.  And just about everything New York has.  Sure it doesn't have two-thousand clubs, but most New Yorkers or people in DC just find a few they like and keep going to those anyways.  I have news for you -- living in NYC/DC doesn't mean you go a different place everyday.  You still live in a neighborhood and go to the same restaurants and same pubs over and over.  It's called community.

Ann Arbor is not a traditional college town.  Yes, it is only as big as it is because of U of M, but after all the automotive suppliers moved in, it is not a typically college town.  This is my personal definition only, but college towns are dead in the summer, and downtown Ann Arbor, except for a couple small areas near campus, is very active all summer long.  It's also well over 100,000 people, and I will argue that it is a suburb of Detroit until I'm blue in the face.

First, Ann Arbor is a community where a lot of Detroit commuters live.  I agree that it's in the Detroit metro area.  But it definately isn't a suburb -- in the urban sprawl sense.  Ann Arbor has been added to the Detroit metro area as folks starting commuting longer distances to jobs in Detroit.  That said, Ann Arbor has a lot of high tech, health care, biotech, higher ed, and pharmaceutical jobs of its own.  In fact, of the people I know in Ann Arbor in their thirties I don't know one that commutes to the Detroit area.  I'm sure there are some, but the people I know all work in various jobs in or near Ann Arbor. 

All that said, you're right that Ann Arbor isn't as much of a college town as Bloomington -- it's more on par with a Madison, WI.  But I think the fact that I can't stand the college atmosphere any longer while living in Ann Arbor underscores my point about Bloomington.  I'm 24 right now and I can easily say that I feel like there's a big difference in maturity between the average 19 year old and the average 25 year old.  And in Bloomington you'd be swamped with the former.

And I can think of a ton of things to do in Bloomington for the grad student, like the low key bars, IU Auditorium, Musical Arts Center, poetry scene, Lake Monroe and Lake Griffey, IU Athletics, etc. 

Wait a minute.  You just proved yourself wrong.  You're saying there's not enough in Pittsburgh to do (having never been there no less) and yet you make an argument for Bloomington having plenty to do?  Come on...

But anyway, to restate my point, I'm just saying what I hear, and many people either love or hate these blue-collar Midwestern cities

Pittsburgh isn't midwestern and it is no longer really blue-collar at all...

, and while if I could put up with traffic and a high cost of living, I might take it on someone's word that I would like Chicago (although I doubt it), I would never take it on someone else's word that I would like the rest of the Midwest because it's very polarizing.

Like I said, Pittsburgh really isn't the midwest.  But I never told anybody to just take my word for it.  All along all I've said is that people should visit and see for themselves.  My argument is that a person shouldn't make such a decision without a visit. 


VivaLaMuerte

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Re: Decide my fate!
« Reply #61 on: May 30, 2005, 01:41:46 PM »
SGY:

I agree with virtually every one of your sentiments regarding Pittsburgh.  But you might do well to notice what your first sentence does. It condescends.  It sets forth a view of the good life as, by mere coincidence, that sort of life which you prefer.  Again, I am pretty much in agreement with you that Pittsburgh is a great place to live, and provides for wonderful quality of life for many people.  But those broadway plays, and those basketball games and those hipster clubs of NYC, or the powerful government hobknobbing and whatnot of DC, and painfully self-conscious coolness of SF are things which, in fact,  many people desire.  Perhaps they might change their mind later on after they "grow out of that phase."  But your suggestion is that, until such a maturing process takes place, they are incorrectly pursuing the wrong lifestyle, or are motivated too much by image, or don't understand what really makes them happy, etc. Virtually anyone who has it explained to them that their preference set is incorrect with react defensively.   


I understand that you are an advocate for a city you've recently come to love, and I applaud your enthusiasm.  Pittsburgh needs it. But your advocacy would be much more successful with suggestive comments and not proofs of Pittsburgh's relative superiority.  In other words, I recommend easing up on the slightly combative attitude and simply repeating one thing we both know.  Pittsburgh is a city virtually nothing like what most people think of it.  It's worth a visit. 

Nonetheless, I also recommend Pitt, but more strongly recommend not trusting the outcome of this pole. 

Candide!

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Re: Decide my fate!
« Reply #62 on: May 30, 2005, 02:21:19 PM »
seeing as how the OPs SO is going to school in pitt (at least that is how i remember things) i am pretty sure she is aware of the city and what it can/cannot offer
Loyola (Los Angeles) '08

phxangel

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Re: Decide my fate!
« Reply #63 on: May 30, 2005, 04:16:56 PM »
I voted for Pitt solely because of cost factors.

If you are thinking of staying in Indy, I'm curious if you gave IUI a shot?  They'd probably give you a full ride, and it places well in Indy.  Then, you'd have zero debt and a nice job in Indianapolis.

Also, I'm leaning hard toward IUI and you'd be going to school with me!  ;D

Also, I think Indy 500 tickets are going to be a hard thing to find again now that Danica Patrick looks like she is going to be a hot attraction in the years to come.

EDIT: I see that you gave IUI a shot, and it appears that they gave you $$.  I take it that you are no longer considering IUI since it wasn't a choice on this poll?

btw all, I am an IU-B grad

funny you ask about IU-I -- they courted me all thru the admit process - even had alums in Phoenix touch base with me to see how the process was going - but when I got my offer they gave $5k a year. I was, admittedly, a little surprised.

So I called and nicely and sweetly asked what was up. Patricia Kinney, their admissions dean, told me their funding for scholarships was severely slashed this year. Apparently it was something like 2/3 of their scholarship budget just - poof! - gone. She was extremely apologetic and I told her I'd thought about waiting until next year to reapply, when the situation up there could change a bit. It sux for IU-Indy, b/c they traditionally are able to lure some of the IUB pool by offering $$ and a big-city atmosphere. But alas, not this year.
They want me: Vanderbilt, IU($$), IU-Indy($$), Pitt($$$$), Baylor(full ride), Emory, GW
They're thinking about it: NW (shortened summer WL)
Ding it! Michigan, GULC

Paperback Writer

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Re: Decide my fate!
« Reply #64 on: May 30, 2005, 04:24:38 PM »
If you are a resident of Indiana, then that $5k pays for a lot of it.  In-state tuition in Indiana is dirt cheap.

SleepyGuyYawn

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Re: Decide my fate!
« Reply #65 on: May 30, 2005, 08:31:05 PM »
I agree with virtually every one of your sentiments regarding Pittsburgh.  But you might do well to notice what your first sentence does. It condescends.

You are right.  Hopefully ya'll will find a way to look past the delivery and understand what I was getting at.

On the other hand, I think my real point is not to say that Pittsburgh is the city for everybody, and that if you disagree you're immature or unintelligent.  Rather, I'm only trying to get folks to take a closer look at Pittsburgh, rather than to dismiss it based on what they assume it must be like (i.e. just like all the other midwestern cities he mentioned).

NYC, SF, DC, Chicago, Pittsburgh, Philly -- all great cities.  But none of these cities are for everybody.  It bugs me that people are so much more willing to give other places a chance though.  I'm not sure why this is, but it seems to be the case.  It was even the case for me until I visited Pitt for a few days.  Since then I've been on several visits and everytime I love it more.  If I'm biased towards Pitt, it's only because it surprised me so much to like it so much.  After I got to know the city of Pittsburgh, I realized that I'd rather go to Pitt than Tulane, Iowa, Wisconsin, Temple, and some other schools to which I'd applied.  That was my experience -- take it for what it is.   

phxangel

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Re: Decide my fate!
« Reply #66 on: May 30, 2005, 11:08:26 PM »
I agree with virtually every one of your sentiments regarding Pittsburgh.  But you might do well to notice what your first sentence does. It condescends.

You are right.  Hopefully ya'll will find a way to look past the delivery and understand what I was getting at.

On the other hand, I think my real point is not to say that Pittsburgh is the city for everybody, and that if you disagree you're immature or unintelligent.  Rather, I'm only trying to get folks to take a closer look at Pittsburgh, rather than to dismiss it based on what they assume it must be like (i.e. just like all the other midwestern cities he mentioned).

NYC, SF, DC, Chicago, Pittsburgh, Philly -- all great cities.  But none of these cities are for everybody.  It bugs me that people are so much more willing to give other places a chance though.  I'm not sure why this is, but it seems to be the case.  It was even the case for me until I visited Pitt for a few days.  Since then I've been on several visits and everytime I love it more.  If I'm biased towards Pitt, it's only because it surprised me so much to like it so much.  After I got to know the city of Pittsburgh, I realized that I'd rather go to Pitt than Tulane, Iowa, Wisconsin, Temple, and some other schools to which I'd applied.  That was my experience -- take it for what it is.   
\

SGY, i do know what you're saying about pitt. I first visited in February, when I was helping the SO find a place there (he's a page designer at the post-gazette). it was in the middle of a snowstorm, and I kept thinking about how it was 75 degrees in Phoenix ;). I wasn't sure about it on my first visit. The second visit? I was thinking, ehhhh, maybe. It took four trips for me to finally get over my preconceived notions of Pittsburgh and what is was and now is and to truly love it. I went to a Pirates game. I ate cheesesteaks on Carson Street. I drank local beer and walked around Shadyside. And I relished the low cost of living. So yes, I think I could do Pittsburgh. Ultimately, I'm an Indiana girl at heart, though, and I think I'd like to end up there eventually (what? someone on LSD DOESN'T want to live in nyc or dc and do biglaw?!?! horrors! ;))......
They want me: Vanderbilt, IU($$), IU-Indy($$), Pitt($$$$), Baylor(full ride), Emory, GW
They're thinking about it: NW (shortened summer WL)
Ding it! Michigan, GULC

SleepyGuyYawn

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Re: Decide my fate!
« Reply #67 on: May 31, 2005, 12:12:28 AM »
I hear ya.  If you like Indiana, you couldn't do much better than IU -- that's for sure.


phxangel

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Re: Decide my fate!
« Reply #68 on: May 31, 2005, 04:41:24 PM »
I hear ya.  If you like Indiana, you couldn't do much better than IU -- that's for sure.



True...decisions, decisions. At this point I'm trying to determine whether a few spots in the rankings are worth living in Bloomington (which i LOVE - don't get me wrong - but i grew up two hours away and went to school there for 4 years)....
They want me: Vanderbilt, IU($$), IU-Indy($$), Pitt($$$$), Baylor(full ride), Emory, GW
They're thinking about it: NW (shortened summer WL)
Ding it! Michigan, GULC

ilsox7

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Re: Decide my fate!
« Reply #69 on: May 31, 2005, 04:43:09 PM »
I hear ya.  If you like Indiana, you couldn't do much better than IU -- that's for sure.



True...decisions, decisions. At this point I'm trying to determine whether a few spots in the rankings are worth living in Bloomington (which i LOVE - don't get me wrong - but i grew up two hours away and went to school there for 4 years)....

At this point, you should be completely ignoring the rankings.