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Author Topic: Transfer from Tulane to GULC - Worth $60k?  (Read 2894 times)

botbot

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Transfer from Tulane to GULC - Worth $60k?
« on: July 19, 2009, 09:22:25 PM »
Ok, so I write for www.zerolblog.com - a website where we (myself and another admissions consultant) take and answer a variety of law school admissions questions.

One of the answers given by my co-writer spawned some debate within the lifeat160 thread, and while there has already been a decent amount of discussion there, I thought it best to start a new thread.

The question:

Quote
Iím a rising 2L at Tulane Law. My 1L grades landed me in the top 10% (which also gets me on law review), but I have been accepted to Georgetown Law as a transfer. Should I pull the trigger? I have a $25k a year scholarship at Tulane and I landed a competitive internship this summer.
- GPA: XX LSAT: XX

The answer:

Quote
Sorry, I donít really see why you should transfer in this situation. The shrinking availability of big-firm jobs has caused a number of law students (including you!) to consider transferring when it probably isnít in their best interest. Look, you are still in position to land one of the coveted big-firm jobs Ė probably in a better position than if you transferred to Georgetown. Every big-firm coming to Tulaneís OCI program will be looking to recruit students just like you. Why pay full price at Georgetown when you can get the same jobs at discount? Transferring would be a mistake.

I agree with the answer (although I may quibble with the "probably in a better position than if you transferred" line).  What do you think?

Make the following assumptions/considerations:

Student wants a big firm job in any market.
Student has a 40% chance of being published as a member of law review.

botbot

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Re: Transfer from Tulane to GULC - Worth $60k?
« Reply #1 on: July 19, 2009, 09:37:41 PM »
i feel like if you had said assume the goal is market salary in any big city, then the discussion would have been a little different.

this would not have been applicable, for example:

If NYC is the target, the student will get a lot more interviews by going to GULC. If New Orleans is the target... well, no New Orleans firms come to GULC.

Well we don't know the situation, it's unfair to assume any city.

RonSantoRules

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Re: Transfer from Tulane to GULC - Worth $60k?
« Reply #2 on: July 19, 2009, 10:00:59 PM »
I think your info was correct. On TLS, one person considering a GULC transfer said the lottery system only guaranteed 8-12 interviews. I think that GULC's class size poses unique challenges for transfer students, especially in this economy. I was in a similar situation in that I was accepted EA and have a large scholarship from a slightly higher ranked school, and I decided that I would rather not risk the $$ in this uncertain economy on GULC. I would have only recommended the school if there was a desire to work in DC or the surrounding area because GULC's location provides the ability to network/get externships in DC that aren't available anywhere else in the country.

Bigbie

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Re: Transfer from Tulane to GULC - Worth $60k?
« Reply #3 on: July 19, 2009, 10:36:48 PM »
The only thing that a GULC transfer might give him/her is a shot at firms outside of the traditional Tulane geographic markets.

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Re: Transfer from Tulane to GULC - Worth $60k?
« Reply #4 on: July 19, 2009, 10:44:46 PM »
Make the following assumptions/considerations:

Student wants a big firm job in any market.

botbot: Let's make assumptions so the advice my business partner gave is correct!

big - fat - box

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Re: Transfer from Tulane to GULC - Worth $60k?
« Reply #5 on: July 19, 2009, 10:54:53 PM »
How many interviews one gets at GULC or any other t14 depends a lot on what market you're targeting. I know students at t14s who bid heavily on cities in secondary markets that weren't popular with the majority of the student body and ended up with 25+ screening interviews.

If the student transfers to GULC, he might have a better shot at biglaw since many firms are pulling back from a lot of schools further down the rankings like Tulane. However, it's also worth considering that firms have never recruited as deep into GULC's class as they do some of the other T14s and they certainly won't be recruiting as deep this year at any t14. Plus, even the students who do receive summer assoc. offers are not guaranteed permanent offers to join biglaw after graduation. Even those who do receive permanent offers could find that their offers are rescinded if the economy doesn't improve.

Historically, even transfers who went to t14s from tier 2/3/4 schools have landed biglaw most of the time if they wanted. However the economy is not good right now. I think the student would be in a better position as a GULC transfer over some other transfers simply b/c he is already coming from a top 50 school. Still, no guarantees he will get biglaw at GULC or if he stays at Tulane.

In the short term, staying at Tulane is a good idea to keep debt down in case biglaw doesn't work out for whatever reason. If the student chooses to stay, he should try to negotiate the most generous scholarship package he can by implying that he might jump ship if they don't give him a better deal. Even an extra 5-10K per year would help in this economy, but a full ride would be nice.

In the long term, a degree from GULC will hold more weight. Problem is, is the OP prepared to ride out the bad economy with much more debt from GULC until things get better if biglaw doesn't work out? If not, the OP should stay put.

botbot

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Re: Transfer from Tulane to GULC - Worth $60k?
« Reply #6 on: July 20, 2009, 10:28:51 AM »
Make the following assumptions/considerations:

Student wants a big firm job in any market.

botbot: Let's make assumptions so the advice my business partner gave is correct!

Well, can we assume the student chose Tulane for a reason? 

Given the scholarship size, the student could have been accepted to a number of schools that place better in a variety of markets.  While Tulane places well in NYC for its location, Dozo ($$) and Fordham were probably both in play.  I don't see GULC being significantly better for any other primary Tulane market (NOLA, Dallas, Houston, Birmingham).  So can we assume that, since the student chose Tulane, the student is comfortable in Tulane's primary markets?

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Re: Transfer from Tulane to GULC - Worth $60k?
« Reply #7 on: July 20, 2009, 10:34:37 AM »
Make the following assumptions/considerations:

Student wants a big firm job in any market.

botbot: Let's make assumptions so the advice my business partner gave is correct!

Well, can we assume the student chose Tulane for a reason? 

Given the scholarship size, the student could have been accepted to a number of schools that place better in a variety of markets.  While Tulane places well in NYC for its location, Dozo ($$) and Fordham were probably both in play.  I don't see GULC being significantly better for any other primary Tulane market (NOLA, Dallas, Houston, Birmingham).  So can we assume that, since the student chose Tulane, the student is comfortable in Tulane's primary markets?

You can.  I wouldn't.  People make dumb decisions all the time

You really shouldn't be making that many assumptions as an "admissions consultant".

botbot

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Re: Transfer from Tulane to GULC - Worth $60k?
« Reply #8 on: July 20, 2009, 11:13:19 AM »
You can.  I wouldn't.  People make dumb decisions all the time

You really shouldn't be making that many assumptions as an "admissions consultant".

This wasn't a question submitted from one of my (or Jane's) clients, it was a question submitted on our open advice website zeroL.  On zeroL, we strive to answer each questions in a way that will help others in similar situations.

I sent out an email to the original question asker last night and he sent over his clarifications this morning.  The post has been adjusted with the following two sentences added to the question:

Quote
I'm looking to work for a larger firm but I have little preference where the firm is located.  I have some family connections in Houston and Mississippi.

Hopefully this resolves your issues with the question, thanks for reading.

botbot

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Re: Transfer from Tulane to GULC - Worth $60k?
« Reply #9 on: July 20, 2009, 11:22:01 AM »
actually, a suggestion for your blog, which i think might make your advice more useful to its readers:

be explicit as to the assumptions that you're making.  if you're giving advice on the assumption that the student is looking for a biglaw salary in any market, or on the assumption that they're fine with tulane's primary markets, then say that's what you're doing.  also, you could be explicit about what factors weigh in one direction or the other.  (if the person really wants to stay in texas or LA, that should weigh in favor of tulane; if the person happens to be loaded and doesn't really care as much about money as most people, that weighs in favor of GULC, etc.)

Fair enough, if you read back through the posts, you should see quite a few "assuming"s.  And yes, it would have helped this question's answer.