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Author Topic: Case Western Vs. Villanova --- Opinions? Advice? HELP?  (Read 2923 times)

GetUpGetDown

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Case Western Vs. Villanova --- Opinions? Advice? HELP?
« on: May 02, 2008, 05:46:40 PM »
GetUpGetDown's Situation:

Villanova @ Cost or Case Western w/ $13,000 per year? ... Tuition @ both schools is absurd.

I plan on practicing in either Pittsburgh or Philadelphia. Will a Case Western degree carry to Philadelphia, or Pittsburgh for that matter? Additionally, will a Villanova degree carry to Pittsburgh?

I have yet to hear back from PITT and am assuming that is a sign of being waitlisted ... So we'll leave that school out of the equation for this post.

I am very interested in international law and will attempt to transfer to Georgetown, my ideal school, after 1L if I manage to get into the top of either school's class. Which school would give me a better shot at a transfer to Georgetown?

I know what you all are thinking: "Take a year off. Study hard for the LSAT to raise your score because you simply cannot count on transferring." Well I am unsure if a year off is a viable option at this point. I have a poor family situation and am practically homeless ... that is a sad term ... "domicile challenged" after I graduate next week. Thus, I am attending law school without any family backing/support. A break in my education will cause me to  start paying on my student loans (because I waived my grace period to consolidate them) and with the job market in my area I'm not sure I could support myself for the year. I don't know, perhaps I'm just being negative about the year off option. Do any of you feel that is the best option?

Any input would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!
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stateofbeasley

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Re: Case Western Vs. Villanova --- Opinions? Advice? HELP?
« Reply #1 on: May 02, 2008, 06:29:04 PM »
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I plan on practicing in either Pittsburgh or Philadelphia.

Choose your location and then choose your school.  Both schools will have some degree of brand name recognition, but don't count on it giving you much of a boost outside of their respective regions.

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Which school would give me a better shot at a transfer to Georgetown?

My hunch is about equal chance.  Similarly ranked institutions. 

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I know what you all are thinking... I have a poor family situation and am practically homeless ...

You aren't going to like this, but I think you should find a job instead of taking on more debt to live.  If you planned on moving for law school, is it possible to move to a location with better job prospects?

It seems to me that you want to go to GULC.  Why settle for another school?

The way I see it, you are going to law school to put off paying your debt.  If you go to law school this fall, and graduate in 3 years with another $100,000 in debt, will you be able to pay the bills? 

Villanova1L

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Re: Case Western Vs. Villanova --- Opinions? Advice? HELP?
« Reply #2 on: May 03, 2008, 12:29:47 AM »
Transferring to Georgetown from Villanova won't be easy. The other thing you should consider is that if you get good enough grades (top 10%) you can place in a large Philadelphia firm and with some networking larger firms in New York. I don't think a VLS degree will have any problem going to Pittsburgh, especially if you have a compelling reason to tell employers you want to work their over Philadelphia.

I based my decision assuming I'd finish in the middle of the class, and chose VLS because of the job prospects in Philadelphia.

I had a friend that did very well at Case his first year and didn't get accepted trying to transfer to Georgetown, but did transfer to George Washington.

Definitely don't bank on transferring, and best of luck with the decision.

ElMismoPandejo

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Re: Case Western Vs. Villanova --- Opinions? Advice? HELP?
« Reply #3 on: May 03, 2008, 01:02:39 AM »
I feel for you, but you really have to rethink this.

I have a poor family situation and am practically homeless ... that is a sad term ... "domicile challenged" after I graduate next week. Thus, I am attending law school without any family backing/support. A break in my education will cause me to  start paying on my student loans (because I waived my grace period to consolidate them) and with the job market in my area I'm not sure I could support myself for the year. I don't know, perhaps I'm just being negative about the year off option. Do any of you feel that is the best option?

How much debt do you already have?  Maybe you could try to pay some of it down before trying law school.  For example, if you have a bachelor's degree, you can teach English in South Korea and make some decent coin, you could probably pay down a chunk of it that way.  Just think up something.

What you should NOT do, however, is rush off to law school while you're all stressed out over other stuff.  You really have to think up a way to beat your fellow classmates, and it's hard to get ready to do all that if you're in a stressful personal situation.

I am very interested in international law and will attempt to transfer to Georgetown, my ideal school, after 1L if I manage to get into the top of either school's class. Which school would give me a better shot at a transfer to Georgetown?

WTF?  No.  Just no.  The answer to all this is NO.  "Interested in international law" is a red flag for not truly being interested in practicing law at all.  There are easier ways to make a living, you know.  You can pick just about anything and it would be easier.  You would have to beat ALL your other classmates to transfer up, and what makes you think you can?  Do you have some secret preparation method for LS that no one else has?  Did you outperform your smartest classmates on the LSAT by 10+ points?  No.  It is much, much easier to score 10 more LSAT points than it ever is to transfer up.

Villanova @ Cost or Case Western w/ $13,000 per year? ... Tuition @ both schools is absurd.

I plan on practicing in either Pittsburgh or Philadelphia. Will a Case Western degree carry to Philadelphia, or Pittsburgh for that matter? Additionally, will a Villanova degree carry to Pittsburgh?

The answers to this are a) Case Western is marginally better, b) the schools will not help you out of their respective metro areas.  Listen, are you a Pennsylvania resident?  If so, go to Temple/Pitt, or better yet move to a cheaper state.  Actually if you go to Rutgers-Camden you can get in-state in NJ after your first year, and that's equivalent to Nova/Temple for the Philly area.  These schools will allow you to be a local general practice lawyer and little else unless you completely destroy your classmates.  If you're not 100% enthusiastic about doing this--and few people are--then you just shouldn't.

GetUpGetDown

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Re: Case Western Vs. Villanova --- Opinions? Advice? HELP?
« Reply #4 on: May 03, 2008, 03:17:01 PM »
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Listen, are you a Pennsylvania resident?  If so, go to Temple/Pitt, or better yet move to a cheaper state.

Yes I am a PA resident and wish to stay in my home state unless I could crack the DC market.

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I have yet to hear back from PITT and am assuming that is a sign of being waitlisted ... So we'll leave that school out of the equation for this post.

I was waitlisted at Temple.

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"Interested in international law" is a red flag for not truly being interested in practicing law at all. There are easier ways to make a living, you know.  You can pick just about anything and it would be easier.

DEFENSIVE MECHANISM: I interned at an immigration firm to experience the tedium of the profession. I have poured through Planet Law School, Law School Confidential, and the other pulp pieces designed to scare those entering the profession half-heartedly. I have done all I can as a soon-to-be college grad and consider myself being more interested/excited than the majority of entering 1Ls. Expressing my interest in international law is a "red flag" for sh*t. I am as ignorant of the law as you are/were as a 1L.

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Did you outperform your smartest classmates on the LSAT by 10+ points?  No.  It is much, much easier to score 10 more LSAT points than it ever is to transfer up.

Good Point.
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GetUpGetDown

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Re: Case Western Vs. Villanova --- Opinions? Advice? HELP?
« Reply #5 on: May 03, 2008, 03:46:10 PM »
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find a job instead of taking on more debt to live.
Wow, you have just given me much to think about with one very succinct statement.

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The way I see it, you are going to law school to put off paying your debt.

You are correct in that I would prefer paying off my debts following the completion of my education, but I am going to law school because I want to practice law. So for me debt is determining the time I go to law school, not the reason.

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If you go to law school this fall, and graduate in 3 years with another $100,000 in debt, will you be able to pay the bills?

I don't know. Like everyone else I harbor the "nose to the grindstone" / "can do" mentality so that really depends on my class rank.

But:

Will I be happier struggling in a profession that I sincerely want to work in than working whatever job I could muster with my liberal arts education (BAs in History in Anthropology from a state school)? Yeah.


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dekocards

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Re: Case Western Vs. Villanova --- Opinions? Advice? HELP?
« Reply #6 on: May 03, 2008, 03:58:59 PM »
You have a good GPA, so I would suggest taking the year to work and study for the LSAT, maybe even two year.  I know it's scary to try to pay the loans yourself by working some random office job, but I think jumping into law school too early is a huge mistake that many people make.  The two years I've taken off have been great and really helped me to prepare myself for school.  I have a similar situation in that I am completely independent.  It was a little tricky, and I worked a crummy job for a bit, but in the end I got into schools that I really want to go to, and I got work experience that I think will really help me through school. 

If you pulled your LSAT score up even a few points, your financial situation regarding school will be vastly improved.  That alone is worth taking the year off.

latinlord

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Re: Case Western Vs. Villanova --- Opinions? Advice? HELP?
« Reply #7 on: May 04, 2008, 03:49:47 AM »
yea definitely first poster is right.. I'd say that if  you want to work in philly or pitt go to the school in the respected region.. That is very important.. trust me i know... I'm from philly and go to school in Indiana. I had to nework my ass for my summer job back home in philly. Next year I plan on "hopefully" visiting a law school there just so I can network more and work in the area that is my home..
   Good luck though.. they are both good schools. - Ciao
Graduated from Indiana Law - Indianapolis!!
Was a 3rd year Visiting Student at Villanova University School of Law.
Graduated from Temple University Beasley School of Law - LL.M in Trial Advocacy Candidate 2010
 Published by Chicano/Latino Law Review of UCLA LAW. & I'm a Licensed Esq. NOW!

stateofbeasley

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Re: Case Western Vs. Villanova --- Opinions? Advice? HELP?
« Reply #8 on: May 04, 2008, 08:30:48 AM »
I don't know. Like everyone else I harbor the "nose to the grindstone" / "can do" mentality so that really depends on my class rank.

You don't know if you'll be able to pay the bills?

Look ahead to the future.  Calculate your monthly payments after law school: http://www.finaid.org/calculators/loanpayments.phtml.  Based on the salaries that you know law firms pay, will you be able to pay these loans?  Will Sallie Mae be sending debt collectors after you?

Many of my coworkers did not think about this when they made the decision to attend law school.  The result?  Some are living paycheck to paycheck.  Some are on the verge of bankruptcy due to credit card debt and student loans.  They work hard and are just barely staying on the treadmill.

The "spend now & worry about it later/never" mentality inevitably leads to lots of stress and disaster. 

My advice still stands.  Put off law school for awhile.  Find a job.  Get your LSAT score up.  Get into Georgetown because that's where you really want to go.

Edit:  Your GPA is very good... def study up on the LSAT.  Even a boost of a few points will mean a lot more scholarship $.

GetUpGetDown

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Re: Case Western Vs. Villanova --- Opinions? Advice? HELP?
« Reply #9 on: May 04, 2008, 10:27:09 AM »
The decision making process that law school entails = Le Sigh
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