Law School Discussion

Nine Years of Discussion
;

Author Topic: Deciding between a full tuition scholarship(T3) and a partial scholarship(T1)  (Read 4571 times)

amensupremera

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Posts: 11
    • View Profile
    • Email
Wondering if anybody had some advice for me. I've been awarded a full tuition scholarship to the University of St Thomas MN and I've been awarded a $60,000 scholarship to DePaul College of Law. DePaul would be my first choice but their scholarship would be broken down to 20K every year not to mention the costs of living expenses ($38K est) so I would definately have to pull hard on whatever loan money I could scratch up. That means that I would be deep in dept by the time I graduated. The St. Thomas offer is better because of the full tuition thing and I do have 14 months of GI Bill money left over from my undergrad days. Basically, I want to know your opinion on whether I should go with the full tuition Tier 3 school or should I opt for the Tier 1 school and the dept. Also, does anybody think that I might have room to scholarship negotiate with DePaul?

TTom

  • Sr. Citizen
  • ****
  • Posts: 130
    • View Profile
Wondering if anybody had some advice for me. I've been awarded a full tuition scholarship to the University of St Thomas MN and I've been awarded a $60,000 scholarship to DePaul College of Law. DePaul would be my first choice but their scholarship would be broken down to 20K every year not to mention the costs of living expenses ($38K est) so I would definately have to pull hard on whatever loan money I could scratch up. That means that I would be deep in dept by the time I graduated. The St. Thomas offer is better because of the full tuition thing and I do have 14 months of GI Bill money left over from my undergrad days. Basically, I want to know your opinion on whether I should go with the full tuition Tier 3 school or should I opt for the Tier 1 school and the dept. Also, does anybody think that I might have room to scholarship negotiate with DePaul?

There are a million questions you'd want to answer before deciding, such as Where do you want to work? The Twin Cities or Chicago? Both of these schools are very regional and tend not to place outside of their region. But... let's be honest: Job prospects coming from St. Thomas are not going to be good. The pro is that you'll end up with a law degree on the cheap. The con is that you'll end up with a cheap law degree. In this market, I don't believe any ttt/tttt is worth going to. Even with a tt degree from DePaul you're going to have a tough time (especially outside of Chicago).

TTom


G o Matic

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Posts: 5
    • View Profile
    • Email
I am in the same spot, as I have a full scholarship to a 3L, a half scholarship to a top-40 ranked school, and I am waiting on possible offers at other well-ranked schools.  I am tempted by being relatively free of debt... 

seattlegirl

  • Sr. Citizen
  • ****
  • Posts: 114
    • View Profile
I am in the same spot, as I have a full scholarship to a 3L, a half scholarship to a top-40 ranked school, and I am waiting on possible offers at other well-ranked schools.  I am tempted by being relatively free of debt... 


Ditto this. It is becoming difficult for me to turn down a full tution scholarship considering I will likely be taking out somewhere around 100k in loans at a higher ranked school.

TTom

  • Sr. Citizen
  • ****
  • Posts: 130
    • View Profile
I am in the same spot, as I have a full scholarship to a 3L, a half scholarship to a top-40 ranked school, and I am waiting on possible offers at other well-ranked schools.  I am tempted by being relatively free of debt... 

You should know that your job prospects from a tier 1 will be greatly different from those at a tier 2. This is not hype. There are too many schools and employers have too many students to choose between. They are going to take tier 1 over tier 2 any day. So you may not have much debt, but you may not have many job offers either.


G o Matic

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Posts: 5
    • View Profile
    • Email
Thanks for the answer.  From talking to a few lawyers (with T1 degrees), they seem to think it does not matter as much.  From what I gather, if I work in the same city as the courting potential T3, I'm fine.  With T1, I can work regionally or in a few select cities that these school feeds into.  Does this seem correct.... 

willametterules

  • Guest
I'm sure you guys considered this... but I'll tell you a story.  I had a full ride to a T4 and acceptances from a T1 and some T2s.  I had savings, no debt, and loved the idea of not borrowing.  I have since transferred and am paying full tuition at a T2.

1.  Having experienced OCI, networking, career services, and local job markets at 2 law schools.  I can tell you a few things... It is true the average lawyer could care less (outside of the T-10) where you graduated from.  The problem is the average lawyer isn't out recruiting or hiring in their market.  Also, hiring partners often have resumes screened, it is not unusual for lower ranked schools resumes to never make it to his/her desk after they are picked through.  Finally, initial job prospects, employers that recruit on campus...overall opportunity is far lower at the lower ranked schools, the experience is vastly different.

2.  People lose scholarships at these lower ranked schools all the time.  My school's were randomly pegged at 2.9 or 3.0 gpa.  The school awarded scholarships to half the entering class and then artificially deflated the curve by sections.  Essentially the curve was kept at a 2.7 and all of the students with at least half scholarships are put in an "honors" section.... competing against each other.  End result 60% of those scholarship recipients were full paying tuition students for their final 2 years.  My gpa was 2.96, guess what my scholarship was pegged to?  ***I know what the obvious rebuttal is..".won't happen to me, I have never gotten grades lower than B's etc.  Stuff happens though, like getting a 95% in Legal Writing and finding out after grades are given that a last minute change to the section curve makes it a B+.  Instead of a 3.03, you have a 2.96.

 I'm no math geek, but you'll see most T3/T4 scholarships have statistical odds stacked against them.  Schools just can't hand out that free money to that many people. 

Best of luck in your decisions.



TTom

  • Sr. Citizen
  • ****
  • Posts: 130
    • View Profile
I'm sure you guys considered this... but I'll tell you a story.  I had a full ride to a T4 and acceptances from a T1 and some T2s.  I had savings, no debt, and loved the idea of not borrowing.  I have since transferred and am paying full tuition at a T2.

1.  Having experienced OCI, networking, career services, and local job markets at 2 law schools.  I can tell you a few things... It is true the average lawyer could care less (outside of the T-10) where you graduated from.  The problem is the average lawyer isn't out recruiting or hiring in their market.  Also, hiring partners often have resumes screened, it is not unusual for lower ranked schools resumes to never make it to his/her desk after they are picked through.  Finally, initial job prospects, employers that recruit on campus...overall opportunity is far lower at the lower ranked schools, the experience is vastly different.

2.  People lose scholarships at these lower ranked schools all the time.  My school's were randomly pegged at 2.9 or 3.0 gpa.  The school awarded scholarships to half the entering class and then artificially deflated the curve by sections.  Essentially the curve was kept at a 2.7 and all of the students with at least half scholarships are put in an "honors" section.... competing against each other.  End result 60% of those scholarship recipients were full paying tuition students for their final 2 years.  My gpa was 2.96, guess what my scholarship was pegged to?  ***I know what the obvious rebuttal is..".won't happen to me, I have never gotten grades lower than B's etc.  Stuff happens though, like getting a 95% in Legal Writing and finding out after grades are given that a last minute change to the section curve makes it a B+.  Instead of a 3.03, you have a 2.96.

 I'm no math geek, but you'll see most T3/T4 scholarships have statistical odds stacked against them.  Schools just can't hand out that free money to that many people. 

Best of luck in your decisions.




I think you're spot on. Although many lawyers will say that it doesn't matter where you get your JD, the fact is that for those that actually do the hiring, it does. A quick glance at NALP will confirm this.

I personally know of one student, very likeable, who finished number 1 at a ttt and could not find employment. And I stress that there was nothing socially awkward about him that would have prevented him from getting hired. 

clairel

  • Sr. Citizen
  • ****
  • Posts: 981
  • UChicago 3L
    • View Profile
    • Email
Thanks for the answer.  From talking to a few lawyers (with T1 degrees), they seem to think it does not matter as much.  From what I gather, if I work in the same city as the courting potential T3, I'm fine.  With T1, I can work regionally or in a few select cities that these school feeds into.  Does this seem correct.... 

at the very least, i would check the restrictions on the full scholarship. if it's unconditional, it might be worth it. if it requires a 3.0 and the curve is 2.5 or something, i would think twice.

TTom

  • Sr. Citizen
  • ****
  • Posts: 130
    • View Profile
Thanks for the answer.  From talking to a few lawyers (with T1 degrees), they seem to think it does not matter as much.  From what I gather, if I work in the same city as the courting potential T3, I'm fine.  With T1, I can work regionally or in a few select cities that these school feeds into.  Does this seem correct.... 

at the very least, i would check the restrictions on the full scholarship. if it's unconditional, it might be worth it. if it requires a 3.0 and the curve is 2.5 or something, i would think twice.

I know the scholarship is tempting but I plead you to speak with other people than those of us on this board. Hop online, find a firm you respect/admire, and email the hiring partner or recruiting director. Be very police and respectful and keep it short. Email a few people and you'll get at least one response.

It's important that potential students realize this is a long term investment. You might save some money in the short run, but you've got your whole career to think about. Flat out, although many ttt/tttt students will do very well in life, they are the minority. Most of them are struggling to find jobs paying at or below 50,000 per year.