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Author Topic: 60 mile commute to LS. Am I nuts?  (Read 3362 times)

TRad

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60 mile commute to LS. Am I nuts?
« on: April 23, 2008, 09:24:28 AM »
I'd like feedback from current law students who commute a significant distance to school.  Is it nuts?   Am I better off going to the nearby, highly-respected-within-my-region T2 with higher tuition or sucking up the drive for a T1 with lower tuition?

It is inevitable that the commute will make it much harder to participate in extracurriculars.  What about doing things like moot court/ law review, etc? 

Factor in that I'm a nontrad, single mom of two older kids (though I have a strong support network of friends/ family who will help).

Thanks for your feedback.

CocoPuff

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Re: 60 mile commute to LS. Am I nuts?
« Reply #1 on: April 23, 2008, 09:45:54 AM »
Do NOT live 60 miles from law school - most especially your first year. You will hate yourself for that. Time is of the essence in law school and it will get to the point where you will resent most things that take time from your studying - such as a long commute. Since you have other responsibilities, you should make it as easy for yourself as possible. So I suggest that if you can't move closer to the T1, go to the T2. The better ranking is not worth your sanity - just my opinion
There's just this for consolation: an hour here or there when our lives seem, against all odds and expectations, to burst open and give us everything we've ever imagined"

SASS

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Re: 60 mile commute to LS. Am I nuts?
« Reply #2 on: April 23, 2008, 09:50:17 AM »
I had a friend who was a mother of two and drove something like 60 miles (if not more) to get to school. She dropped out after the first semester. She was always tired and had no time for her family. Just think about how much more productive you could be in the day with 2 more hours of it.

Good luck.

jimmyjohn

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Re: 60 mile commute to LS. Am I nuts?
« Reply #3 on: April 23, 2008, 09:59:21 AM »
I hope you have a fuel efficient car or a lot of money because gas prices aren't going down any time soon. 

resipsaloquitur

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Re: 60 mile commute to LS. Am I nuts?
« Reply #4 on: April 23, 2008, 10:04:53 AM »
Don't commute that distance.  The time it takes away from you will not be worth it.  If you want to stay in the region, I'd say go to the T2 if you are not able to move closer to the T1.

just ducky

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Re: 60 mile commute to LS. Am I nuts?
« Reply #5 on: April 23, 2008, 10:33:01 AM »
Is there any kind of public transportation that would make it so that you could get work done on your commute?  I plan on commuting an hour on the train, but there is a big difference between time that can be used to read or study and completely wasted time driving.
Georgetown University Law Center '11

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TRad

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Re: 60 mile commute to LS. Am I nuts?
« Reply #6 on: April 23, 2008, 11:07:09 AM »
Thank you everyone.

I am still WL at W & M, but seriously thinking of withdrawing.  I can't believe that I'm considering that after spending the last 9 months longing for W & M like some distant lover.  UR has always been sloppy seconds, but maybe I've been wrong in thinking that. At any rate, I need to be clear on the direction I'm taking and I don't want to make a hasty, impulsive decision.

I want to stay in the metro Richmond area, long-term.  I could move to Williamsburg but would move back in 3 years -- the jobs are here, not in Williamsburg.  When I factor in the cost of moving my household twice, the tuition differential shrinks.  If I don't move and factor in the additional travel cost to W & M, the tuition differential shrinks (and of course there's the ever rising cost of gas).   The cost difference is between 5k and 8k per year (depending on gas cost, etc).  It's 60 miles, one way, of either interstate or country road driving.  No public transit.

UR's proximity allows for significant intangibles, most notably the ability to network in the legal community where I want to work (and where many, many powerful UR alums still work.  e.g. the CEO of Williams Mullin).  Additionally, I'd really like to do moot court and law review -- both more likely at UR.

UR + moot court + law review + networking  trumps W & M (no moot court, no law review, little networking)?

This summer, I'm interning with a judge in my local county court.  Other summers, I'd like to be an SA (but then don't we all want that  ;)).  Richmond has 5 firms in the NLJ 250, 3 of which hire 1L's for SA.  So, if I moved to W & M it's possible that I'd be commuting back to Richmond for summer work of some kind.

One child will be a senior this fall; the other a 6th grader.

Again, thanks to everyone for holding my hand while I spin over this.... Please continue to share your thoughts, they've been very helpful.




limegreen

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Re: 60 mile commute to LS. Am I nuts?
« Reply #7 on: April 23, 2008, 11:19:50 AM »
I don't think I'd do the commute- the SO and I drive to Richmond from Williamsburg about once every week or two and that is enough for me.  It's a long, boring drive and traffic can be bad sometimes.

That being said, if there's any chance you could relocate it might be worth it.  W&M is a significantly better school than UR, and while you say you have more opportunities while @ Richmond (which may be true because of it's location) in the long run a W&M degree will probably have a lot more weight and open a lot more doors.

I think most people on this board will agree with that, but it's definitely a personal choice and especially since you have  a family you really have to do what you think is best for everyone in the long run, so it's really hard to say that one or the other is significantly better for your situation.

TRad

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Re: 60 mile commute to LS. Am I nuts?
« Reply #8 on: April 23, 2008, 11:38:09 AM »
I have lots of family in Williamsburg that I could bunk with during the week.  My parents, who live out of state, are retired and are my biggest cheerleaders.   

Would they help to the tune of me being gone all week/ most weeks in Wmbsg and them "living" in my house and running the show?

Dunno, but it's worth asking.

Thanks for helping me think about this in a fresh way.  It's also very hard to ask my parents for such a sacrifice.  I'll let you know what they say.

jeffislouie

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Re: 60 mile commute to LS. Am I nuts?
« Reply #9 on: April 23, 2008, 12:20:16 PM »
Since I still have two cents (finals are coming up), I'll share them.
Though I am not involved in tons of extracurricular's, I can say that there is a definite advantage to living close to law school.  I am 7 minutes away from mine.  And it's great.
Forget a book?  No problem.  Need to do some research?  No problem.  Friend calls you up to study?  Done.  Not to mention, I can leave between classes and still make it back.
Ideally, living on campus of your law school, when possible, is the way to go.  60 miles will take an hour and a half each way out of your day.  That's 3 hours a day that you can't study, relax, hang out with family and friends, review your notes, etc.  It is not worth it.  You will not have the chance to know people and will miss out on alot of the bonding that happens at law schools after classes.
There are students who live 20 miles or so from my law school and they have very little family time and virtually no social life with the other students, which is sort of sad....
Good luck!
Justice is tangy....