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Author Topic: What's Your Feeling On Florida International University?  (Read 10831 times)

RockinJay

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What's Your Feeling On Florida International University?
« on: April 21, 2008, 10:03:29 PM »
Hey All,

I just got into Florida International University today.  It was ranked T3 last year but got bumped down to T4 in the recent 2009 issue.  I am attracted to the school because the instate tuition is only $6K for part-time, has a pretty good bar passage/employment rates and only competes with U. of Miami in the major city.

Any thoughts anyone?

Oh yeah, my other schools I've gotten into are Valparaiso, Florida A&M, Florida Coastal and Nova Southeastern.

Still waiting on Loyola - New Orleans, Duquesne, Lousville and Akron.

DontQuestionMe

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Re: What's Your Feeling On Florida International University?
« Reply #1 on: April 21, 2008, 10:11:08 PM »
Take a year off, study really hard for the LSAT, retake the LSAT, reapply to T1 schools next year. If you find a cure for cancer in the meantime, that will increase your chances. Good luck.

DontQuestionMe

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Re: What's Your Feeling On Florida International University?
« Reply #2 on: April 21, 2008, 10:19:10 PM »
Take a year off, study really hard for the LSAT, retake the LSAT, reapply to T1 schools next year. If you find a cure for cancer in the meantime, that will increase your chances. Good luck.

What a sweetie pie.

Sorry, I have nothing to add.  That guy's just an ass.

What is wrong with what I said? The job prospects graduating from a T3 or T4 are dismal at best. They are not worth the time or financial commitment. With the right prep work I am sure the OP can boost his LSAT score and get into a T1 or T2.

What I said is the best advice he will get. Giving someone good advice is not being an ass.

RockinJay

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Re: What's Your Feeling On Florida International University?
« Reply #3 on: April 21, 2008, 10:36:27 PM »
I appreciate your advice but I think the tone of your words comes off similar to many of the T3/T4 bashers.  Look, I went to NYU graduate school and can appreciate name recognition.  And in the field of law, unfortunately, that's all that matters.  It's amazing how many T50 responders are compelled to inform us T3/T4 applicants how bad the job prospects are for attending such schools.  You think we do not know the reputation of these schools?  Do you think we just blindly apply?  Hell, if that were the case, I'd send out apps. to all the Ivy's!  But all of us plan to bust our asses and hope for the best.  Some of us want to work in a small market, or transfer after their first year, or not even work in BigLaw.  That is the difference between those that get into T14 and the rest of the 180+ law schools.  We try our best and hope for the best.

I don't want to get into another defensive T3/T4 applicant rant (I guess I already did..haha).  I just wanted to see what people thought of FIU without anyone stating unoriginal comments.  Oh well....

wtracing

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Re: What's Your Feeling On Florida International University?
« Reply #4 on: April 21, 2008, 10:39:55 PM »
I am not very familiar with any of those schools to be honest but to me, I'd look at the following: Florida has a fairly small legal market biglaw wise...although its smaller firm/government work is pretty decent. Florida also has quite a few law schools. Are the other schools located in areas where it might be 2nd best in the market, etc? I'd probably just go where the legal competition statewide is going to be as minimal as possible.
Tulane Class of 2011

DontQuestionMe

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Re: What's Your Feeling On Florida International University?
« Reply #5 on: April 21, 2008, 10:59:07 PM »
I appreciate your advice but I think the tone of your words comes off similar to many of the T3/T4 bashers.  Look, I went to NYU graduate school and can appreciate name recognition.  And in the field of law, unfortunately, that's all that matters.  It's amazing how many T50 responders are compelled to inform us T3/T4 applicants how bad the job prospects are for attending such schools.  You think we do not know the reputation of these schools?  Do you think we just blindly apply?  Hell, if that were the case, I'd send out apps. to all the Ivy's!  But all of us plan to bust our asses and hope for the best.  Some of us want to work in a small market, or transfer after their first year, or not even work in BigLaw.  That is the difference between those that get into T14 and the rest of the 180+ law schools.  We try our best and hope for the best.

I don't want to get into another defensive T3/T4 applicant rant (I guess I already did..haha).  I just wanted to see what people thought of FIU without anyone stating unoriginal comments.  Oh well....

Before I took the LSAT, I had already decided that if I could not get into a T1-T2, I would not go to law school. I am not talking down to you. Job prospects for lawyers are terrible. Anyone who says otherwise is not very well informed. Graduating from a T2, it will be difficult for people to get jobs. T3/T4 prospects are awful at best. I have spoken to two hiring partners at V100 firms and a General Counsel of an S&P 250 corporation, all three harped on the importance of attending the most prestigious law school possible. 

If you got into an Ivy League undergrad you must have done fairly well on the ACT or SAT. That tells me you have the ability to test well. Take the time to study the LSAT and retake the test. I truly believe that anyone who can read quickly enough to finish each section is capable of scoring 160+ (minimum) with the proper prep work.

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Re: What's Your Feeling On Florida International University?
« Reply #6 on: April 21, 2008, 11:14:34 PM »
I appreciate your advice but I think the tone of your words comes off similar to many of the T3/T4 bashers.  Look, I went to NYU graduate school and can appreciate name recognition.  And in the field of law, unfortunately, that's all that matters.  It's amazing how many T50 responders are compelled to inform us T3/T4 applicants how bad the job prospects are for attending such schools.  You think we do not know the reputation of these schools?  Do you think we just blindly apply?  Hell, if that were the case, I'd send out apps. to all the Ivy's!  But all of us plan to bust our asses and hope for the best.  Some of us want to work in a small market, or transfer after their first year, or not even work in BigLaw.  That is the difference between those that get into T14 and the rest of the 180+ law schools.  We try our best and hope for the best.

I don't want to get into another defensive T3/T4 applicant rant (I guess I already did..haha).  I just wanted to see what people thought of FIU without anyone stating unoriginal comments.  Oh well....

Before I took the LSAT, I had already decided that if I could not get into a T1-T2, I would not go to law school. I am not talking down to you. Job prospects for lawyers are terrible. Anyone who says otherwise is not very well informed. Graduating from a T2, it will be difficult for people to get jobs. T3/T4 prospects are awful at best. I have spoken to two hiring partners at V100 firms and a General Counsel of an S&P 250 corporation, all three harped on the importance of attending the most prestigious law school possible. 

If you got into an Ivy League undergrad you must have done fairly well on the ACT or SAT. That tells me you have the ability to test well. Take the time to study the LSAT and retake the test. I truly believe that anyone who can read quickly enough to finish each section is capable of scoring 160+ (minimum) with the proper prep work.

Most of what DontQuestionMe said is absolutely true but I know that's not why you started this thread so I will speak for FIU as I am from south Florida.  FIU is probably the best t4 school along with Southwestern.  It is the only school you got into that will be t3 by the time you graduate.  Everything is growing there, from the prestige of their faculty and student body, to the funds being dumped into it.  The brand new law building is the nicest in FL.  Job prospects won't be great but it is your best option.  I have to tell you though that planning on transferring is definitely counting your chics before they hatch.  Everyone in t4 wants to transfer after being around and knowing their fate in a congested lawyer market.  Thus, the competiton will make it tough to make that top 10-15 in order to get into a school worth transferring to.

DontQuestionMe

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Re: What's Your Feeling On Florida International University?
« Reply #7 on: April 22, 2008, 01:52:17 AM »
I appreciate your advice but I think the tone of your words comes off similar to many of the T3/T4 bashers.  Look, I went to NYU graduate school and can appreciate name recognition.  And in the field of law, unfortunately, that's all that matters.  It's amazing how many T50 responders are compelled to inform us T3/T4 applicants how bad the job prospects are for attending such schools.  You think we do not know the reputation of these schools?  Do you think we just blindly apply?  Hell, if that were the case, I'd send out apps. to all the Ivy's!  But all of us plan to bust our asses and hope for the best.  Some of us want to work in a small market, or transfer after their first year, or not even work in BigLaw.  That is the difference between those that get into T14 and the rest of the 180+ law schools.  We try our best and hope for the best.

I don't want to get into another defensive T3/T4 applicant rant (I guess I already did..haha).  I just wanted to see what people thought of FIU without anyone stating unoriginal comments.  Oh well....

Before I took the LSAT, I had already decided that if I could not get into a T1-T2, I would not go to law school. I am not talking down to you. Job prospects for lawyers are terrible. Anyone who says otherwise is not very well informed. Graduating from a T2, it will be difficult for people to get jobs. T3/T4 prospects are awful at best. I have spoken to two hiring partners at V100 firms and a General Counsel of an S&P 250 corporation, all three harped on the importance of attending the most prestigious law school possible. 

If you got into an Ivy League undergrad you must have done fairly well on the ACT or SAT. That tells me you have the ability to test well. Take the time to study the LSAT and retake the test. I truly believe that anyone who can read quickly enough to finish each section is capable of scoring 160+ (minimum) with the proper prep work.

Most of what DontQuestionMe said is absolutely true but I know that's not why you started this thread so I will speak for FIU as I am from south Florida.  FIU is probably the best t4 school along with Southwestern.  It is the only school you got into that will be t3 by the time you graduate.  Everything is growing there, from the prestige of their faculty and student body, to the funds being dumped into it.  The brand new law building is the nicest in FL.  Job prospects won't be great but it is your best option.  I have to tell you though that planning on transferring is definitely counting your chics before they hatch.  Everyone in t4 wants to transfer after being around and knowing their fate in a congested lawyer market.  Thus, the competiton will make it tough to make that top 10-15 in order to get into a school worth transferring to.

Everyone going to law school plans on being in the top of their class. No one goes to law school with the intention of being mediocre. There are a lot of smart people in law school and competition is tough. Don't assume you are going to be able to transfer out. You really should operate under the premise that wherever you get accepted is where you will graduate from.

P.S. If you are absolutely intent on going to law school this year, go to the T3/T4 where you can take out the least amount of debt. That way, if you are working at Starbucks in three years as an assistant manager, you can still make your loan payments. Not to be hard on you, but Florida has a limited law market and you are going to be competing with graduates from Florida, Florida State, Miami, Stetson, etc.

Florida International University College of Law alumni at Miami firms:

White & Case - 0
Weil Gotshal - 0
Greenberg Traurig - 0
Hunton & Williams - 0
Hogan & Hartson - 0
Morgan, Lewis & Bockius - 0
Holland & Knight - 1
Squire, Sanders & Dempsey - 1
Shook, Hardy & Bacon - 0
Carlton Fields - 0

V10 Miami firms (regional) and TWO Florida International University College of Law alumni! If you are lucky enough to graduate #1 in your class and have some killer connections, you MAY get an interview after graduation.

Median starting salary after graduation in the PRIVATE sector: $48,500

The median home price in Miami is 289k:

http://www.housingtracker.net/askingprices/Florida/Miami-FortLauderdale-MiamiBeach/

Even with 4k/year tuition you are going to be taking out loans for living expenses, etc. Here is what Florida International University College of Law puts your non-tuition expenses at:

Room/Board - $9,672.00

Books - $2,160.00

Transportation - $2,372.00

Personal Expenses - $2,008.00

TOTAL - $16,212

http://law.fiu.edu/admissions/tuition.htm

This is from 2006-2007, so assume inflation has pushed these numbers up!


$16,212 x 3 years x $8,500 subsidized Stafford, $7,712 unsubsidized Stafford x 10 years = Monthly payment $539.96

http://www.finaid.org/calculators/loanpayments.phtml

$48,500 x 25% federal income tax bracket x 7.65% employment tax (Social Security, etc) x 0% local tax rate = $32,664.75

http://www.mgcpa.com/calculators/payroll/aftertax.php

Annual take home after loan payments and taxes: $26,185.13

I am not trying to be a downer or anything, but how do you expect to support yourself, let alone a family, taking home $26,185.13 annually in Miami? This is why you would be better off:

a) Have you considered spending your resources on cooking schools? Executive Chefs at casinos make $82,000/yr median:

http://swz.salary.com/salarywizard/layoutscripts/swzl_salaryresults.asp?hdSearchByOption=&hdLocationOption=1&hdKeyword=&hdJobCategory=HS01&hdNarrowDesc=Food%2C+Beverage%2C+and+Tobacco&hdZipCode=&hdStateMetro=&hdGeoLocation=Miami%2C+FL+33131&hdCurrentPage=&hdViewAllRecords=&hdJobCode=HS08000072&hdJobTitle=Executive+Chef+-+Casino&hdCurrentTab=1&hdZipCodePosted=&hdPaycheckCalc=&hdpageName=&hdOmniJobTitle=Counter+Attendant&hdOmniNarrowDesc=Food%2C+Beverage%2C+and+Tobacco%2C+&op=salswz_psr&pagefrom=salaryresults&hdOmniState=&hdOmniGeoLocation=Miami%2C+FL+33131&d50th=24412.4106&jobcounter=3%2C+3&countertype=0%2C+0&totaljoblistnum=&wsrcode=SW1&cmbEducation=&kw=Enter+keywords&country=USA&locations=&industry=&hdNarrowDesc=&hdAjaxDisplaySection1=1&hdAjaxDisplaySection2=&hdAjaxKeyword=&hdAjaxKeywordWithOR=

b) Restaurant managers at casinos make $55,000/yr median:

http://swz.salary.com/salarywizard/layoutscripts/swzl_salaryresults.asp?hdSearchByOption=&hdLocationOption=1&hdKeyword=&hdJobCategory=HS01&hdNarrowDesc=Food%2C+Beverage%2C+and+Tobacco&hdZipCode=&hdStateMetro=&hdGeoLocation=Miami%2C+FL+33131&hdCurrentPage=2&hdViewAllRecords=0&hdJobCode=HS08000135&hdJobTitle=Restaurant+Manager+-+Casino&hdCurrentTab=1&hdZipCodePosted=&hdPaycheckCalc=&hdpageName=&hdOmniJobTitle=Executive+Chef+-+Casino&hdOmniNarrowDesc=Food%2C+Beverage%2C+and+Tobacco%2C+&op=salswz_psr&pagefrom=salaryresults&hdOmniState=&hdOmniGeoLocation=Miami%2C+FL+33131&d50th=78209.3567&jobcounter=3%2C+3&countertype=0%2C+0&totaljoblistnum=&wsrcode=SW2&cmbEducation=&kw=Enter+keywords&country=USA&locations=&industry=&hdNarrowDesc=&hdAjaxDisplaySection1=1&hdAjaxDisplaySection2=&hdAjaxKeyword=&hdAjaxKeywordWithOR=

c) Laundry manager at a health care facility makes $52,000/yr median

http://swz.salary.com/salarywizard/layoutscripts/swzl_salaryresults.asp?hdSearchByOption=&hdLocationOption=1&hdKeyword=&hdJobCategory=HS01&hdNarrowDesc=Food%2C+Beverage%2C+and+Tobacco&hdZipCode=&hdStateMetro=&hdGeoLocation=Miami%2C+FL+33131&hdCurrentPage=5&hdViewAllRecords=0&hdJobCode=HC07000298&hdJobTitle=Laundry+Manager+-+Healthcare&hdCurrentTab=1&hdZipCodePosted=&hdPaycheckCalc=&hdpageName=&hdOmniJobTitle=Restaurant+Manager+Assistant+-+Casino&hdOmniNarrowDesc=Food%2C+Beverage%2C+and+Tobacco%2C+&op=salswz_psr&pagefrom=salaryresults&hdOmniState=&hdOmniGeoLocation=Miami%2C+FL+33131&d50th=40170.8111&jobcounter=3%2C+3&countertype=0%2C+0&totaljoblistnum=&wsrcode=SW1&cmbEducation=&kw=Enter+keywords&country=USA&locations=&industry=&hdNarrowDesc=&hdAjaxDisplaySection1=1&hdAjaxDisplaySection2=&hdAjaxKeyword=&hdAjaxKeywordWithOR=

You have a college degree; you could be qualified for any of these positions. Get one of these jobs and you will be ahead of the curve, making more money without the debt to worry about.

defense

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Re: What's Your Feeling On Florida International University?
« Reply #8 on: April 22, 2008, 08:13:33 AM »
We applied to the some of the same schools so here's what I know/think for what it's worth:

I have done quite a bit of research on Florida International and it seems to be well respected in South Florida.  The school is relatively new so the alumni network and graduates working in big firms will be small.  If you want to do public interest work and you don't mind living in South Florida then this school is your best option after UM given it's low cost.  The average debt upon graduation is almost nonexistent.

I really like Nova.  The facilities are beautiful and graduates appear to do very well in the South Florida area.  Alumni can be found in firms throughout the area.  I have heard from some people that it's extremely cutthroat especially for 1L's since everyone is hoping to transfer.

I also like Valparaiso.  I think the school is underrated in the rankings.  The school is well respected in Indiana and elsewhere but I would worry about the degree's portability.    You may need to remain in the area for a while following graduation.  So if you don't mind Indiana then this school is an option.

If had to make the decision with these schools, I would choose FIU (forget about Florida Coastal and Florida A & M, they can't compete with FIU or Nova).  I really like the South Florida area, I think there are tremendous opportunities in the area overall for someone professionally.  Ultimately it's your decision.

What are your numbers?

RockinJay

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Re: What's Your Feeling On Florida International University?
« Reply #9 on: April 22, 2008, 10:18:07 AM »
Defense,

Thank you so much for your response.   It's nice to see someone respond who's in the same boat as I am and doesn't talk down to me like I am such 2 year old playing with blocks!  Hahahaha.

I have come to the same conclusions as you have regarding the schools I've listed.  Regarding my own personal situation, I do have an MPA from NYU but have been working in law firms in public finance securities (i.e. tender option bonds) for the last five to six years.  My school loan debt is already fairly high from both undergrad and NYU so costs will become a major factor.  Therefore, I think FIU is the front runner for me in Florida since the in-state tuition is incredibly low and I can live at home with the parents (that should be interesting).

I am still waiting on the following schools:

3 more T3's: Loyola-New Orleans, Akron, Arkansas-Little Rock

2 more T4's: Duquesne and New England

1 more T2: Louisville

Oh yes, my numbers are 147/3.30.  I wrote a great statement about my historically low standardized test scores and how they've not predicted low academic performance.  Some schools have bought it, others have not.

What are your numbers and where else are you applying?