If you get top 3 (Harvard/Yale/Stanford), maybe go full time. If you get the next three, (Chicago, Columbia, NYU) with money, crunch some numbers. Anything else in the t-14 toss for Fordham PT unless it is near a full-ride.You can purchase school insurance if you go full-time, so it is not that you will lose medical coverage, it is that you will have to pay more for it. Might be a big cost factor if you have medical issues or family to support. That should go in your calculations too.
Apply to schools that appeal to you* as well as Fordham's PT program. With those numbers and your work experience, there's a good chance you'll receive good scholarship money from places like UIUC and BC. You can then weigh those options against going to school part-time and/or use them to negotiate aid from other schools.As for job prospects out of Fordham... if you're interested in BigLaw, it's one of the best outside of the T14. Lots of top firms participate in OCI there. One thing to consider, though, is that your last summer, if aiming for midlaw or biglaw, you will want to be a summer associate. The pay will be decent, but I imagine once you leave your current job (for the summer gig), you won't be able to come back. Just something to keep in mind when you're crunching the numbers.I don't think your #3 con to a T14 is really relevant. While legal employers do seem to like previous work experience, they don't expect you to work during law school. In top legal jobs, PT programs are the exception, not the rule. I imagine many non-legal employers recognize this as well. You will, however, want to work/hold internships in the summers.*seems like you're interested in staying in the Northeast, but you might want to throw Northwestern on your list. It might be a bit of a stretch with your LSAT, but they pretty much require work experience and seem to love engineers. They also placed a higher percentage of their class in BigLaw spots than any other law school last year.Good luck and congrats!
Yes, I'm very interested in BigLaw. If the current economic situation continues, I will not give up my job just for an internship in any BigLaw without any guarantee of full-time employment. I don't want to lose my seniority or vested interest on my 401k plans. I also know a college mate who gave up his job in a big construction firm for a summer internship in a law firm back in 2008. He graduated from Seton Hall and the law firm didn't hire him in the end. So, he really got screwed and had to go back to work as an engineer again for another company. In general, these days it is best to hang on to what you have. The greatest dilemma for me is that I do not hate my current career. I think I'm getting good pay and regular work hours. Overtime work also gets premium pay.I really don't want to risk my current engineering career for an unknown nascent legal career. I'm working for a major publicly traded company also. Maybe, I can find a legal position in the corporate hierarchy while going to law school P/T.Thank you for your thoughts.