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Author Topic: Born, Raised, and Educated in Western MA. Going to law school in warmer pastures  (Read 781 times)

Mspoon

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I was wondering if anyone had some first hand experience on these schools/areas as they are my current front runners. Of course I'm going to check them out/narrow them down before I choose to attend. Any info would be great thanks! As a side note, I deciding between concentrating in intellectual property and tax/business law. Thanks!

Santa Clara

Stetson

U of Oregon

Texas Tech

Ole Miss

Oklahoma

U of Kentucky

I went to undergrad at Umass Amherst and enjoy the college town atmosphere, but I am also comfortable in small/medium sized cities as well.

bigs5068

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I'm familiar with Santa Clara and San Jose. None of the other ones you listed. Santa Clara is a fine school and San Jose is a nice city the 10th largest in America, which is very surprising, but true. You are only an hour away from San Francisco as well so if you wanted see the city it would be easy to do.

Santa Clara has a pretty good reputation in the Bay Area, but the Bay Area is one of the most competitive places in America. Like Boston or New York. Santa Clara is probably the 4th / 5th most highly regarded school in the Bay Area and you will be competition with 9 law schools. Stanford, Berkeley, Hastings, USF, Santa Clara, Golden Gate and the CBA schools JFK, San Francisco, and then UC Davis and McGeorge are not far away. 

San Jose is a nice town though it is perfect weather almost year round and Santa Clara is nice I have nothing bad to say about it. It is a Jesuit school and that is kind of present there, but that might be a result of the few people I know there being Jesuit to begin with so they probably bring up more than the normal students there.

Anyways, Santa Clara gets a thumbs up for me, but it is expensive and finding a job will be difficult, but it can be done.

Mspoon

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I'm familiar with Santa Clara and San Jose. None of the other ones you listed. Santa Clara is a fine school and San Jose is a nice city the 10th largest in America, which is very surprising, but true. You are only an hour away from San Francisco as well so if you wanted see the city it would be easy to do.

Santa Clara has a pretty good reputation in the Bay Area, but the Bay Area is one of the most competitive places in America. Like Boston or New York. Santa Clara is probably the 4th / 5th most highly regarded school in the Bay Area and you will be competition with 9 law schools. Stanford, Berkeley, Hastings, USF, Santa Clara, Golden Gate and the CBA schools JFK, San Francisco, and then UC Davis and McGeorge are not far away. 

San Jose is a nice town though it is perfect weather almost year round and Santa Clara is nice I have nothing bad to say about it. It is a Jesuit school and that is kind of present there, but that might be a result of the few people I know there being Jesuit to begin with so they probably bring up more than the normal students there.

Anyways, Santa Clara gets a thumbs up for me, but it is expensive and finding a job will be difficult, but it can be done.

Thanks for the info. The competitive legal market in Cali is really the only thing that is giving me pause in regards to Santa Clara. The more I look at their intellectual property/high tech law classes the more I want to go there. I suppose if there is one place to be and indebted and jobless lawyer it's beautiful San Jose right?

bigs5068

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Yea I suppose cost of living is really high though. So that is one of the major drawbacks to going to school in the Bay Area or any major market like NYC, DC and so on. The debt grows real fast and even if you get a job cost of living is not cheap. I have a huge scholarship at my school and my debt from cost of living just for rent and so on it pretty damn high.

There are some cheaper state schools if you can establish residency in them. I remember really considering Florida International University. It is only 10k a year or something and in Miami, which isn't as expensive and if you want warmer weather well that is a good place to go.

I have loved my law school experience so far and I was pretty cautious with money and so on, but could have done some things differently regarding educational cost and so on. I looked my bill and 100k in debt would be 180k if not for the scholarships and that is a LOT of money especially considering it will be growing at 8% interest, which is 8k a year in interest alone. Big numbers a little intimidating and it is going to suck to pay back, but again glad I choose the path I have enjoyed pretty much everything about law school.

I think some of the schools you had listed like Texas Tech is only 15k per yer for tuition and 13k for living expenses so 28K.

Santa Clara 38K tuition 21K cost of living so 59K per year.

By the time you are done you would have 86k in debt from Tech or 180k from Santa Clara. Then the interest accumulations on 180k v 86k is significant.

However, if the Bay Area is where you want to be then by all means come to Santa Clara, but if you really don't have a geographic preference then look at costs. The most important things when choosing a school are Cost & Location. 

If you know where you want to end living or at least think you have a strong idea then go to school in that region. On the flip side if you could not possibly see yourself living in Texas then don't go to Texas Tech. 3 years is a long time to spend somewhere and odds are you will end up living where you go to school. I know there are exceptions, but the majority of people stay where they started. Often you will get a girlfriend/boyfriend while at school, makefriends, all that stuff you build over three years and it will  hard to leave. So choose your location carefully because odds are that is where you will end up living for a long time.

Then of course cost as you can see the difference between Tech and Santa Clara 100k in savings is significant especially when you calculate the interest that applies. Kind of a long rant, but it is important to really consider all these things.

When I was applying I was applying all over the country not really thinking about location, cost, and so on. I thankfully made the right choice based on where I wanted to live, but I almost went far far away and I continually think of what a big mistake that would have been. Three years of law school is a long long time and it is a life changing experience for better or worse and living in a city your happy with is very important. Anyways, I will stop my likely incoherent rant here. Good luck on your applications and so on.