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Author Topic: SLU Or WashU?  (Read 3523 times)

cpeterson

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SLU Or WashU?
« on: June 11, 2009, 05:57:51 PM »
I have a (very) decent scholarship to SLU and nada to WashU, but I am well aware of the ranking difference. However:
 --I plan on staying in the St. Louis/the midwest,
 --and I'm very interested in Health Law, in which SLU has the #1 program in the country.
 I would appreciate thoughts!!   :)

yongsoo

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Re: SLU Or WashU?
« Reply #1 on: June 11, 2009, 10:08:18 PM »
if you want to stay in St. Louis, go to SLU

Contract2008

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Re: SLU Or WashU?
« Reply #2 on: June 12, 2009, 12:25:51 AM »
if you want to stay in St. Louis, go to SLU

You're almost guaranteed a job with a degree from WashU.  With St. Luois, you need luck. 

Ninja1

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Re: SLU Or WashU?
« Reply #3 on: June 13, 2009, 04:09:16 AM »
WUSL unless you're retarded.
I'mma stay bumpin' till I bump my head on my tomb.

non parata est

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Re: SLU Or WashU?
« Reply #4 on: June 14, 2009, 02:09:36 PM »
Speak to some SLU and Wash U grads if you're lucky enough to have the chance.  The conventional wisdom in STL is that you've got just as good a shot here with a SLU degree as with a WUSTL degree.  I'm not endorsing that myself, but I do think that there's more to look at here than the ranking.
Quote from: Lionel Hutz, Esq.
Well he's had it in for me ever since I kinda ran over his dog... Well, replace the word "kinda" with "repeatedly" and the word "dog" with "son."

yongsoo

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Re: SLU Or WashU?
« Reply #5 on: June 15, 2009, 11:58:09 PM »
Time to qualify my answer, it seems

I'm a rising 3L at WUSTL. St. Louis firms hold a bias against Wash U. Why? because the JD from Wash U will carry you nationally. The JD from SLU is not as national. Some of my classmates were asked flat out "How do I know you're not going to summer here your 2L year and not come back?"

Look at the alumni in the St Louis area. Check BAMSL or the YLD of BAMSL. The majority of practicing lawyers are SLU alum. The network is huge. This doesn't mean that Wash U doesn't put people in STL firms, but we're more heavily scrutinized. Of course, that bias isn't surprising as very few of my classmates want to stay in St. Louis. Me, for instance.

The issue that arise with practicing in St. Louis is that you'll inevitably get barred in IL. At which point, what is keeping you from moving to Chicago?

If you want to stay in St. Louis, go to SLU. If you can get into both WUSTL and SLU, you'll probably get more $$ from SLU.

However, I will add this:
there is no reason to limit yourself regionally. You never know where life will take you.

Contract2008

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Re: SLU Or WashU?
« Reply #6 on: June 16, 2009, 12:47:56 AM »
yongsoo, how's the legal market in St. Louis though?  Do most St. Luis grads get attorney jobs or are they just like any other tier 3/2 graduates who are struggling to find attorney jobs? 

cpeterson

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Re: SLU Or WashU?
« Reply #7 on: June 16, 2009, 10:26:19 AM »
thanks yongsoo, i've heard similar responses from many other people, slu and washu students alike.  i really have no intention of leaving the area, at the VERY least i would work in STL for a year (my boyfriend of 6 years is at medical school in st. louis, so i have reason to stick around).
thanks to everyone for responding.

RageLaw

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Re: SLU Or WashU?
« Reply #8 on: June 16, 2009, 08:44:40 PM »
Hi.  Rising 2L at SLU here.  I had the same decision in front of me, except it was full ride to SLU vs. 1/2 tuition to Wash U.  I chose SLU.  Here was my thought process: 
Not sure where I want to work, but most likely somewhere in the midwest.  Without question, Wash U has a better national recognition factor and a Wash U JD of its own accord will open doors to interviews nationally more easily than a JD from SLU will.  However, I think there's also something to be said about having an arguably easier path to Top 5% at SLU, which I ended up in.  Further, just as Wash U isn't an AUTOMATIC job, SLU isn't an AUTOMATIC door closing in your face (save for some rare exceptions, probably.)  So I decided to go with 1) SIGNIFICANTLY less debt and 2) potential for a better class rank, and then bank on myself to be able to network, make contacts, and try to create a path for myself into a non-St. Louis market if that's what I ultimately choose to do. 
Will it be harder than coming out of Wash U with a JD?  Oh, probably.  But I don't think it's impossible.  But I think it comes down to confidence in yourself and your willingness to go beyond the Career Services office and OCI to sell yourself.
I scored a large firm job this summer as a 1L in St. Louis, and there are, as has been alluded to, about equal SLU, Wash U, and Mizzou students working there currently. 
I don't think there's anything wrong with the "Go to the highest ranked school you get into" approach.  But I don't think it's the only approach.  And I don't think a Wash U JD is a guarantee of anything (ask the 60% of Wash U 3L's that didn't have jobs as of about April 1st this year - or so rumor would have it - it's the same situation at SLU) just as a SLU JD isn't a guarantee of being trapped in St. Louis.

prufrock

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Re: SLU Or WashU?
« Reply #9 on: June 18, 2009, 10:12:17 AM »
I'm a rising 2L at WashU in the top 1/3 of my class. I plan to stay in STL for a long time. If I had it to do over again, I would go to SLU with a scholarship, for the reasons RageLaw talks about. A high class rank from SLU places just fine in STL. Of course, class rank is far from guaranteed, but I think it's worth the gamble at SLU with a big scholarship. I'm not feeling at all confident about fall OCI with my present grades, and I can't help but think I could have done better at SLU and worked the local connections to make up for whatever deficit may exist as a result of school rank. Bear in mind, of course, that this reasoning is based on staying in STL.

Regardless of what you decide, I agree w/Rage that you'll need to make contacts in the STL community and work them. I'm amazed by how few of my classmates do this. Oh well- more beer for us.