Hey, I went to the ASD on April 3rd. Overall I came away more impressed than I had expected, especially because the facilities weren't as bad as people on here and other websites seemed to report. All of the classrooms that we saw (which represented all types of classrooms; large lecture to small meeting rooms) were very comfortable with good sized wheely chairs that had excellent support, nice marker boards that had multiple layers, overhead projectors, LCD projectors, great lighting, plugs under the table for recharging computers (with access at every seat) and good sight-lines to the board and other students. The mock courtrooms were especially nice, great wooden detail and a good representation of an actual courtroom in terms of setup (as well as usable doors representing the judges chambers and the holding area). On the first floor of one of the two main buildings there was a very large locker room for students to use. Lockers are assigned one the first day of classes and students keep them for all three years. One of our tour guides commented on how convenient they were because the books can get heavy and you don't need to bring them home all of the time, also in the winter you can store boots and have nice comfortable shoes waiting for walking to class. There are also several student lounge areas, a really great cafe (so you don't have to leave the COL buildings if you don't want to), LCD panel TVs for watching keeping on top of March Madness and study carols. The library is one element that you often hear comments about on the web, and something that US News uses to create its rankings. While it is true that the library is not the newest of facilities, I really didn't find it as bad as the rumors. There are multiple printers and copiers (ALL free and easily hooked to your computer to print your own stuff), various group study rooms, two large silent rooms (one with great natural light as it is situated in the atrium), and a plethora of resources (including a floor of international law resources). The staff there were incredibly friendly and the hours are created in such a way that it really is there when you need it. The librarian even said that they give out their email, phone number, fax, and other contact information so that when they aren't around you can contact them for help. The only real down side is that there is a very slight 80's tang to the atrium area and the construction of the "newest" addition to the library. Offices for various student resources are quite convenient, more so than at many other schools. This is mainly because the law school is really situated in two buildings that are linked together. Right outside of the library is the financial aid and admissions office, and down the hall from that (literally a yard or two away) is the career development department. We interacted with both departments twice at the ASD and both times I found them to be direct and helpful. Ann Myers in particular was quite refreshing; instead of blowing steam and saying that jobs will be thrown at you at Syracuse, she made it very clear that if you do not make the effort to meet with them, they cannot help you. She reiterated several times that she hates when students say "I don't want to bother you, but can you help me with this?" She said it was her job to be bothered and we must bother her as often as we desire. She was very approachable when I talked to her later and seemed to genuinely care about helping people find the jobs. I've heard some complaints online about how "worthless" that department is, but after meeting with her and rereading those comments, I believe that those complainers probably never really met with Career Development on a regular basis. Ever student that we talked to said that they are incredibly efficient and helpful, but each one made it very clear that you must meet with them to establish a relationship, otherwise they can't do anything for you.I don't really know what else to say at the moment, but if anyone has specific questions, fire away! I am still waiting to hear back from one school, but Syracuse really did surprise me.
Remarq,I did sense that students were very serious about their studies, but I really didn't feel that it was cutthroat. One of the student ambassadors that I emailed said that the only real competitive group are the international law students, primarily because they have to later compete with the bigger IL schools and have to meet high grade expectations. While the 1L grading curve can create competition, the students we spoke with said there are no moments of people ripping pages out of books or sending around computer viruses to sabotage others. Almost every student we talked to mentioned some group of friends that they study with and do papers with. I think this is all because of SUCOL's emphasis on the importance of networking, making alumni connections, and staying connected in a positive way to keep your career moving forward. It is a fact that the guy next to you in law school today could be a partner in the firm that you want to be a part of tomorrow.Hope that helps!
Is anyone concerned that the Cuse won't be in the top 100 this year? This was the first year they were T2 in a while. Thoughts on them either staying at 100 or moving up? I don't know if I'll attend if they drop to T3.