Law School Discussion

Southwestern v Cal Western {Serious Help Please}

Southwestern v Cal Western {Serious Help Please}
« on: July 08, 2005, 03:41:31 PM »
So, here I am.  I've read NUMEROUS posts on Internet boards trashing both schools.  In actuality, I've read a ton of posts trashing any school not in the 1st tier.  However, this is the decision I am faced with.  My GPA, score, etc., are what they are, and are not going to change over the next 48 hours.

My focus/strategy for law school is Entertainment Law.  It is what I set out to do when I received my bachelor's, and is what has led me to this point.  I have thought from day one that Southwestern had the premier CURRICULUM for Ent. Law, but am hesitant because of so many negative reviews from people (most competitive, decreasing reputation, bad part of town, 4th preference for firms in L.A., etc., etc.).

I was accepted at Southwestern 2 years ago, WL, rejected last year, and then WL, accepted TODAY, this year.  So, up until this morning, I had planned on attending Cal Western in San Diego.  I have a flight booked on Sunday, three hotel nights, financial aid set up, etc. 

I absolutely love the idea of studying in San Diego.  Who wouldn't?  That's a gimme.  However, I have to be real, and remind myself that I am not going to school for the climate/social atmosphere/"laid back" environment. 

Is there a choice here at all?  Mainly, I needed to get this in writing to organize my thoughts.  But I would love any advice, suggestions, or experiences you have to share. 

Can I call Cal Western and ask for money?  How quickly will Southwestern get me a financial aid package set up?



Re: Southwestern v Cal Western {Serious Help Please}
« Reply #1 on: July 08, 2005, 04:11:59 PM »
Just a quick follow up so no one replies with an answer...

I talked to SW and my fin. aif package is done.  Their loan offers do not add up to as much as CWSL...just another thing to consider...

Only a couple thousand, but still $...


Re: Southwestern v Cal Western {Serious Help Please}
« Reply #2 on: July 08, 2005, 04:26:20 PM »
I'll reply to your last post first. Don't count on any increase in your financial aid from Southwestern next year either. They just don't give out that much, and you have to really pin them down to get a straight answer, except for this one financial aid counselor who is very nice. Sorry, I don't remember here name.

Heck yes, call Cal Western about money. It never hurts to ask.

Well, in a way this sounds like a no-brainer, T3 vs. T4. Neither of these schools are likely to change tiers anytime in the near future.

I applied to, visited, and was accepted to both schools. I like Cal Western probably for some of the same reasons you seem to. By the way, have you visited either school yet? If not, that MUST be your first order of business upon arriving in California. You can make a one-way drive between the two schools in about 2-3 hours, unless you go at absolute rush hour. Then it could be longer. Definitely worth the trip. BTW, if you don't have any other way to travel, both schools are located near major rail transit.

Amtrak too.

Public transportation in SoCal is horrible. But do what you gotta do.

How you feel is important, IMHO, so don't ignore it completely.

I don't know anything about Entertainment Law at Cal Western. You'll have to listen to others about Southwestern. Certainly, though, Southwestern has it.

The good thing about Cal Western is that it is solidly entrenched as the #2 law school in San Diego, and it is difficult but not impossible to get on with a good firm there.

This is a tough choice to make on such limited time. Good luck.


Re: Southwestern v Cal Western {Serious Help Please}
« Reply #3 on: July 08, 2005, 04:59:41 PM »
it's a tough choice to make but you should be glad that you're in a position to make this decision. Have you tried using one school as leverage over the other for scholarship money? It might be worth a shot, I know many people on this board have tried before but it needs to be done very delicately

BTW, I PM'd you about SW's waitlist.


Re: Southwestern v Cal Western {Serious Help Please}
« Reply #4 on: July 08, 2005, 05:42:37 PM »
My advice is probably going to make you more frustrated but here goes:  go with your gut.  I think you will be fine either way.  Southwestern will definitely afford more entertainment-centered classes, etc and it puts you in LA.  However, I am confident that you could probably break into EL without Southwestern.  Do whatever makes you happiest--unless one school offers lotsa money--and don't look back.

Re: Southwestern v Cal Western {Serious Help Please}
« Reply #5 on: July 08, 2005, 11:43:25 PM »

1.  Pretty well thought of Entertainment Law program, prime location for that field of law.

2.  Higher tier, Cal Western is no threat for catching it in my opinion.  Better to be a small fish in a big pond than an even smaller fish in a smaller pond (and not even the right pond at that).