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Author Topic: How much should I weight the specialty when choosing a law school?  (Read 489 times)

brettoni

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Say you were able to get into a top 40 law school that wasn't focused on the specialty you wanted to pursue vs. a top 70 law school that focused on something you were very interested in, which should you choose? I mean, do potential post grad employers really know which schools specialize in which areas? For example, Temple is #2 in trial advocacy, if I were applying for a trial advocacy related position in a neutral location, would I have a better chance with that degree or a degree from a higher ranked school like FSU or Yeshiva which don't specialize in trial advocacy?

FalconJimmy

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Re: How much should I weight the specialty when choosing a law school?
« Reply #1 on: December 06, 2011, 03:12:04 PM »
My take:

1.  There's not that much difference between #40 and #70, really.
2.  Chose the one that's in the geographic region you want to live in.
3.  When schools claim superiority in some specific area of the law, I tend to dismiss it as a bunch of marketing BS.  Good law schools are just good.  Also, seems like the worst law schools in the country all claim that they produce "trial-ready lawyers" or something of the sort.  The best law schools don't have to make claims like this.  If anything, it diminishes a school in my eyes.  I coudl be wrong, but I woud never pick a school just because they claimed that they were exceptional in a specific area if I could study the same area at a school that is considered better, overall.

john4040

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Re: How much should I weight the specialty when choosing a law school?
« Reply #2 on: December 07, 2011, 03:06:46 PM »
There are few schools that actually have substantive "specialty" programs that are worth passing on similar law schools.  For instance, GW and Berkeley are really well known for their intellectual property programs, NYU is known for its tax program, and Northwestern is well known for its business/corporate program. 

DO NOT go to a school because it touts a "litigation," "trial advocacy," or "appellate advocacy" specialty...

If choosing between schools ranked 40 vs. 70, just pick the school that caters to the market you wish to work in.