Law School Discussion

Nine Years of Discussion
;

Author Topic: New England Law Boston?  (Read 6919 times)

wiseman

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 4
    • View Profile
Re: New England Law Boston?
« Reply #20 on: March 04, 2011, 01:06:11 PM »
Thank you both for replying to my post. I really appreciate the help.

All of the schools i am waitlisted at do not rank their waitlist. They also do not know the percentage of students that make it off the list. All of them said something like "it's tough to say" when asked about it. The waitlists are also not ranked. Simply put, i have no idea how the porcess works because they akl said that they just start pulling files after the first deposit deadline. They would not openly discuss their process with me. The final students will be added from the waitlist shortly after the july deposits are collected. A few more may be added after the orientation but it is unlikely. So far i have tried to familiarize myself with the schools and admissions staff. I have added supplemental material in the form of letters of recommendation and evalutions. I have also toured umaine. I will be attending an open house at unh and scheduling a tour at suffolk. I dont know that there is anything else i should do. Probably not. The admissions staff knows who i am so hopefully they liked me an that is enough to pull my file over the others. I have also told all of them that they are my first choice. I figured it may be q white lie but it is a good marketing strategy.

I do have to say that i was not impressed by umaine. The building  was a dump and the admissions staff i met with did not seem qualified. They didnt really know how to hold a conversation. Hard to explain i guess. I toured nesl and it was a far better experience. The building and library were leaps and bounds above umaine. I know the building isnt a good way to judge the institution and its academic program but i was shocked at the difference. Umaine is a tier 3 and nesl is a tier 4. You would never know it visiting their campus. I will be sitting in on a class or 2 at each. Hopefully that will allow me to better judge what type of education i will be receiving.

As far as fcsl goes...... i am sorry if i sounded immature. I did not mean that i will jot be attending fcsl based solely on what some random internet forum post said. What i mean is that there are too many risks for me to take to go there. It also sounds like i would need to live in jacksonville to find a job. I plan on working in nh or mass after graduation. My point was that i dont feel that fcsl is a prestigious school. It almost looks to be a transitional school. I just dont trust it and i dpont believe that i will receive a good formal education if i go there. I really wanted to go there too. They even gave me a scholarship. It sounds like everyone gets a scholarship though. So im really not that special  haha

bigs5068

  • Sr. Citizen
  • ****
  • Posts: 1474
    • View Profile
    • Email
Re: New England Law Boston?
« Reply #21 on: March 04, 2011, 03:49:20 PM »
It sounds like you are doing everything right. There is not much more you can do other than visit the school, supplement your application, and make some contacts with the admissions officers. If you want to practice in New England or New Hampshire then UNH/Franklin Pierce not sure what it is called now, NESL, or Suffolk are your best options. One thing to realize is that the tier 3/4 label makes absolutely no sense. As you stated you thought NESL was better than Maine. You probably did much more research than U.S. News & World report does. You visited the school and interacted with students, admissions officers, faculty etc.

 You woudl think U.S. News would do something along those lines, but they do nowhere near that much work. Instead the formula quite literally works like this. 60% of a schools ranking is based on Lawyers/Judges from across the country marking a scantron of Excellent, Very Good, Good, or marginal. A judge in South Dakota checks the Good box for Florida International one year having never been to Miami or meeting a student from the school, but he checks a box that is 60% of the schools ranking. The next 20% is based on employment 9 months after graduation, which would make perfect sense. EXCEPT what does employed mean? Fry cook at McDonald's employed, unpaid legal intern that is employment as well, Managing Partner at X Mega Law Firm also counts as employment and neither the ABA or U.S. News sees any problem with counting Fry Cook at Mcdonald's or Managing Partner at a law firm as equal. I think there is a slight disparity between those two jobs, but that is just me.

To round out the remaining 20% of their ranking, I believe 2.5% is based on percentage of applicants accepted. So what do law schools do with this? Send out tons of fee waivers to people they have absolutely no intention of admitting. This way they can reject a bunch of people with 2.6 GPA's and 142 LSATS. Again, there is no measurement of the qualify of applicant they rejected just pure numbers. The ABA does track the numbers of the applicants, but that would be to much work for U.S. News they are trying to sell magazines at a profit remember.

Then irrelevant things like a school's bar passage rate make up you guessed it 2% of a school's ranking. I personally think passing the bar is pretty important and so does every State in America, because you can't practice law without passing the bar, but what does that matter?  Then LSAT makes up 10%, which is completely legitimate.

Then Undergrad GPA makes up the rest, but this is manipulated as well. Again, U.S. News fails to look with any depth at the numbers in front of them. The LSAT is a uniform so it cannot be manipulated as is the bar exam so those would seem to be good criteria to base a school's ranking on, but they make up 12%. Undergrad GPA on the other hand is completely susceptible to manipulation, because a 4.0 in underwater basket weaving is better than a 2.9 in Molecular Biology according to U.S. News. Does U.S. News distinguish between majors? Again, no they fail to look with any depth at what they are publishing. I benefited significantly from this and received a ton of scholarship money from several schools for having played college basketball. This was my transcript.

Varsity Basketball A
Theory of Basketball A
Fundamentals of Basketball A
Principles of Basketball A
Varsity Conditioning A
Weightlifting A

These were all 1 unit classes, but put that together over 8 semesters and 48 FREE A's. Does U.S. News care that they are complete B.S. no. Some other guy busting his ass in a chemistry lab to pull a 3.2 does not get the scholarship money, because U.S. News does care that he actually learned something in college. All they care about is my inflated GPA. As a result of this essentially bogus formula tier 2/3/4 schools change positions frequently every year and I believe right now there is a 14 way tie for 93rd place. A school like University of San Francisco over the past 4 years has gone from 73rd, to tier 3, to 84, to the 14 way tie in 93rd place. Do you what changed at the school over those 4 years? You guessed it NOTHING. It miraculously gets worse and improves while retaining the same professors, course offerings, etc. For all the reasons I stated above the ABA and AALS on their website expressly say DO NOT LISTEN TO THE RANKINGS. U.S. News is a unregulated magazine that publishes whatever they want. They are not guided by anything, except a desire to sell magazines. They have a 1st amendment right to give their subjective unfounded opinions on things. Unfortunately, people take these rankings as if they are gospel, but they literally bogus look at the facts.

The point of that whole rant is that you really should not take U.S. News Ranking seriously. Certainly Harvard, Yale, etc are phenomenal schools and the elite schools can be properly ranked. However, outside of the top 25 or so schools there is no way to reliably measure the schools. It sounds like you are looking at tier 3/4 schools, which will provide you with a good education. Not a Harvard one, but a good education. NESL, SUFFOLK, FRANKLIN PIERCE/UNH can all open up doors for you in Massachusetts or New Hampshire. Wait-lists suck, but it sounds like you have a good impression and rapport with NESL and they accepted you. It might be best to just go with them if that is the location you want to live in. I got accepted into Franklin Pierce and nearly attended the school. I was really impressed with everyone I dealt with there and I have a friend that attended Suffolk and enjoyed it. Can't say anything personally about Maine or NESL, but any school that keeps ABA accreditation is reputable. Good luck to you.


like_lasagna

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 82
    • View Profile
Re: New England Law Boston?
« Reply #22 on: March 06, 2011, 09:59:47 PM »
bigs: It's not about learning the law. It's about getting a job. People at higher prestige schools have a much better shot @ that.

bigs5068

  • Sr. Citizen
  • ****
  • Posts: 1474
    • View Profile
    • Email
Re: New England Law Boston?
« Reply #23 on: March 06, 2011, 10:16:17 PM »
There is no doubt going to a more prestigious school helps, but I don't think there are many schools that prospective employers consider "prestigious". Harvard, Yale, Stanford, NYU, etc are certainly prestigious and if you are capable of getting into those schools pack your bags and go! You will have a lot more opportunities going to  schools in the T14.  However, there are only 14  T14 schools. The majority of lawyers come from the other 186 ABA schools. I don't think there is much difference in prestige between Gonzaga and Hofstra or University or San Francisco and Southwestern. The list goes on and on the majority of these schools will teach you the law pretty much equally. Every ABA school is based on the Harvard method started in the late 1800's and if you graduate and pass the bar you know approximately the same as every other person who passed that year. 

If you pass the bar and have a Harvard degree you are in a pretty good spot. Most Harvard grads or T14 students get more than one job offer. Going to a tier 4 school I have turned down jobs, so I can only imagine how many opportunities come to a T14 grad. There simply are not enough T14 graduates to fill the numerous vacancies that exist in America. Most T14 students go into BigLaw if that is your goal then go to a T14 school. The majority of D.A., Public Defender, Medium, Small firms etc do not have Harvard Grads working there. Bottom line is there are a large number of jobs if you graduate from an ABA school and pass the bar.  If you go to a truly "PRESTIGIOUS" school in the T14 you are set. If you go to New England, Suffolk, Franklin Pierce, Northeastern, or any of the other mid level schools in Boston I don't think there is much of a difference in employment opportunities. In the Boston area I am speculating Harvard grads get top priority. NYU & Colombia Grads also get a look, but outside of those I don't think any other "PRESTIGIOUS SCHOOLS" are present. I might be missing one or two in the area, but very few schools have enough PRESTIGE to guarantee you a walk in the park.