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Author Topic: Dear Current Students who took Money over Presitge..Please Help!  (Read 5567 times)

Luziana

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Re: Dear Current Students who took Money over Presitge..Please Help!
« Reply #30 on: June 13, 2008, 09:34:54 AM »
I think one huge question you have to ask yourself when making this decision is geography.  Do you want to work in Ohio?  Or near the location of the T2/T3?



premieraw

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Re: Dear Current Students who took Money over Presitge..Please Help!
« Reply #31 on: June 13, 2008, 12:35:38 PM »
Quote
liberal elitists

I don't want to wade into this tired debate again (T1 v. T3 with $$$), but WTF does being liberal or conservative have to do with any of this?

I agree, the debate is quite old, however as you might have missed in my original post, i'm looking for pure personal experience/narration, NOT so much speculation.
1L...wait, really?

Kittyl30

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Re: Dear Current Students who took Money over Presitge..Please Help!
« Reply #32 on: June 15, 2008, 05:58:02 AM »
not very analogous to your situation but I took a t25 with some money (not a whole lot) over some schools ranked a bit higher/school ranked a tiny bit lower that was in the area I wanted to work in.  I was at the higher end of the LSAT range for this school.  I ended up in the top 20%ish after 1L year (I think - we didnt rank but thats around what i was ) and am now in the top 10% after 2L year.  I'm also in that area I wanted to work in.  so like I said, not the correlation you were looking for but I was able to keep my scholarship, maintain slightly less debt, go to a great school and now im working this summer at a job I am very happy with. 
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everybody's tired of something..

ouffha

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Re: Dear Current Students who took Money over Presitge..Please Help!
« Reply #33 on: June 16, 2008, 10:46:50 AM »
Hello,
I am in the EXTREME minority, and will be undoubtedly flamed up and down this board, but I turned down a T-14 spot for a T3  full ride. However, I had some unique factors in that I am a bit older, had a wife that could not easily move and I would be fine ending up in the small state that my school is in. Also, my school has a strong specialty program that I was also very interested in. Now that 1-L is over, I am at the very top of my class and am beginning to start my job search. I found the single largest factor in doing well on 1-L exams was writing ability. The best writers in my class are all at the top of the class. It may not be fair, but when a prof sits down and starts reading a well-written exam, there is a strong bias toward that student - small mistakes are overlooked and positive assumptions made. There is also a very strong correlation at my school between LSAT and class rank. I don't know if this is common at other schools, but it is a clear delineating line here.
It will be interesting to see how my job prospects shake out, but I am not overly concerned. I have little debt and will have a lot of flexibility as a result. I am very happy with my choice and urge everyone to take into account all the various factors that should go into a serious decision such as school choice.
For many students, "take the top ranked" is the answer, but that is largely a function of the relatively homogenous pool of this forum. If you are young, dead-set on BigLaw with few obligations and willingness to follow the money wherever it may lead, that advice is often solid. But for those of us who don't fit the mold, the decision is more nuanced.

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*devo*

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Re: Dear Current Students who took Money over Presitge..Please Help!
« Reply #34 on: June 16, 2008, 12:21:48 PM »
Hello,
I am in the EXTREME minority, and will be undoubtedly flamed up and down this board, but I turned down a T-14 spot for a T3  full ride. However, I had some unique factors in that I am a bit older, had a wife that could not easily move and I would be fine ending up in the small state that my school is in. Also, my school has a strong specialty program that I was also very interested in. Now that 1-L is over, I am at the very top of my class and am beginning to start my job search. I found the single largest factor in doing well on 1-L exams was writing ability. The best writers in my class are all at the top of the class. It may not be fair, but when a prof sits down and starts reading a well-written exam, there is a strong bias toward that student - small mistakes are overlooked and positive assumptions made. There is also a very strong correlation at my school between LSAT and class rank. I don't know if this is common at other schools, but it is a clear delineating line here.
It will be interesting to see how my job prospects shake out, but I am not overly concerned. I have little debt and will have a lot of flexibility as a result. I am very happy with my choice and urge everyone to take into account all the various factors that should go into a serious decision such as school choice.
For many students, "take the top ranked" is the answer, but that is largely a function of the relatively homogenous pool of this forum. If you are young, dead-set on BigLaw with few obligations and willingness to follow the money wherever it may lead, that advice is often solid. But for those of us who don't fit the mold, the decision is more nuanced.

Thanks for sharing; I found your story very insightful.  If I get into a T14 I probably won't be able to attend because I am also married with one on the way.  Still, going to a T3 school seems like such a risk to me (even with my strong writing and work ethic).  I am glad everything worked out for you.  I often envy those who take the T14 with lots of debt because of their ambition, but after hearing your story I admire you just as much for taking the risk of lower job prospects for no debt and seemingly pulling it off.

philosophia

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Re: Dear Current Students who took Money over Presitge..Please Help!
« Reply #35 on: June 16, 2008, 01:52:23 PM »
Hello,
I am in the EXTREME minority, and will be undoubtedly flamed up and down this board, but I turned down a T-14 spot for a T3  full ride. However, I had some unique factors in that I am a bit older, had a wife that could not easily move and I would be fine ending up in the small state that my school is in. Also, my school has a strong specialty program that I was also very interested in. Now that 1-L is over, I am at the very top of my class and am beginning to start my job search. I found the single largest factor in doing well on 1-L exams was writing ability. The best writers in my class are all at the top of the class. It may not be fair, but when a prof sits down and starts reading a well-written exam, there is a strong bias toward that student - small mistakes are overlooked and positive assumptions made. There is also a very strong correlation at my school between LSAT and class rank. I don't know if this is common at other schools, but it is a clear delineating line here.
It will be interesting to see how my job prospects shake out, but I am not overly concerned. I have little debt and will have a lot of flexibility as a result. I am very happy with my choice and urge everyone to take into account all the various factors that should go into a serious decision such as school choice.
For many students, "take the top ranked" is the answer, but that is largely a function of the relatively homogenous pool of this forum. If you are young, dead-set on BigLaw with few obligations and willingness to follow the money wherever it may lead, that advice is often solid. But for those of us who don't fit the mold, the decision is more nuanced.

Thanks for your story.  It seems to me that you have hit the nail on the head re: the types of people on this board, and even with regard to how you chose your school. I think that for many non-traditional students (myself included) the idea of a T14 and BIGLAW isn't all that glamorous.  This is especially true if you have a spouse and/or children. Sometimes, people honestly just want to be lawyers no matter the path to getting there.

On another note, I hope that you are right when it comes to the correlation b/t writing, LSAT scores, and being at the top of the class. Like most people here (even though I am not aiming for BIGLAW and am not at a T14), I would still like to be at the top of my class.  I guess I can post back here next summer and let you know how that all panned out for me!!! hahaha

I just want to shout out to all the MILS and DILS out there, too.  It takes courage to take on law school and be a parent all at the same time!  ;) lol

Lampshade Punk

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Re: Dear Current Students who took Money over Presitge..Please Help!
« Reply #36 on: June 18, 2008, 02:03:34 PM »
Always take the sure thing.  Nothing in law school is a sure thing.  hth.

Clara Bear

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Re: Dear Current Students who took Money over Presitge..Please Help!
« Reply #37 on: June 19, 2008, 09:27:21 AM »
My situation is similar to Killjoy's.  I took a full scholarship at a Tier 3 because I knew that I wanted to live in my city, and almost all the lawyers in this city graduated from my school. My LSAT/UGPA was one of the highest in the class. I just finished 1L, and I'm 2nd in my class.  Just like Killjoy said, the very top students at my school are the good writers.  It also helps to be extremely analytical.  #1 is a computer programmer.  I was a history major, but also have strong interests and abilities in math and science.  As far as I know, most of the students at the very top also had excellent LSAT/UGPAs.

Just like every else has said, consider all the factors in your decision, not just money or ranking.

Legal Ease

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Re: Dear Current Students who took Money over Presitge..Please Help!
« Reply #38 on: June 27, 2008, 03:17:07 AM »
I took the T3 $$$ option and I am happy with the decision.  I made the law review.  Law review is a chance for me to study and write about topics that pertain to my own interest. Seems invaluable, although it will only pay back what I put in. 

Whether you are at a T1 or a T3, you have to put in the effort to become a professional.  There is no shortcut to that - great schools don't surgically implant the ability into their students. 

Also I agree with Killjoy. It's a good point about the lenience for a well-written exam.  I think the profs get disgusted reading some of the exams.  Many of them are probably quite awful because they are written under a timed environment and the authors are not always working with a full understanding of the law or even the question. Still, you need to quickly learn what is expected in a legal essay.  Within an essay, you could make the most outstanding, insightful point, but it might score exactly the same as a mundane but equally applicable and accurate point.  The question is how many distinct, point-scoring sentences do you get on paper in a readable fashion, within the time constraints; not how brilliant your arguments are.

Occasionally I long to be at one of the top schools, schmoozing with their all-star cast. But I just didn't have the money.  And really, I would be stressing a lot more if I had a lot of debt piling up.  I don't like unnecessary stress all that much.

worldlyjd

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Re: Dear Current Students who took Money over Presitge..Please Help!
« Reply #39 on: June 27, 2008, 05:04:58 AM »
What are the terms of the scholarship? Most Tier 3 schools have some kind of GPA or ranking requirement. A good friend of mine had a full ride and lost it after her first year because she couldn't maintain the required ranking (top 1/3). And look into the GPA, some schools say you must maintain a 3.0, which looks easy enough, until you see their curve is a 2.5 and a 3.0 is top 25%.

You can also ask for more scholarship money, sometimes they give it to you. When I was figuring out schools I talked to the admissions office of one school and they asked me if a larger scholarship would entice me to go (they later increased my scholarship offer). Another school actually matched and beat the offer from another school.

I know there are other factors that play into this, but don't simply pick a Tier 3 because they're throwing money at you. Location, job placement in that market, alumni connections, what kind of job you want, etc. should all be considered.

Just remember, don't assume you'll be at the top of your class and will maintain your scholarship.