Law School Discussion

Unlv or Hawaii

Unlv or Hawaii
« on: December 08, 2013, 01:04:24 PM »
I have been accepted to Hawaii and UNLV law school, but I am not sure which school I want to attend.

My plan is to practice law in Hawaii, but it would be ideal to study law in UNLV, which is located in my home state. However, I know UNLV Boyd is a regional school and its employment prospects are higher in Nevada than anywhere else.

I'm aware of the high cost of living in Hawaii, and I am not concerned about living in luxury or working with a high wage. My goal is to live a simple life. What is of main concern to me is finding employment after I leave law school and I made practicing law in Hawaii as one of my goals. I have family who are close to me that are planning to live in Hawaii within the next decade, and I want to live near them. Apparently, UNLV has better employment prospects, yet unfortunately there is a chance I will be geographically limited to where I can find legal work.

So, this is a tough decision. Would studying at UNLV, building my career as a lawyer in Nevada or in the Pacific states, and then practicing in Hawaii be a wiser decision than studying in Hawaii while hoping I'll land a job somewhere in Hawaii?

Please advise me on this. I really appreciate your help.

Re: Unlv or Hawaii
« Reply #1 on: December 16, 2013, 10:48:58 PM »
When choosing a law school I think any 0L should consider the following factors in this order (1) Location (2) Cost (3) Personal Feelings about the School (4) Understanding the Reality of Legal Education (5) Last and Least rankings.

Each Factor is analyzed and applied to your situation below.

1. Location
This is always a huge factor and particularly in your situation. I am sure you are aware Las Vegas and Hawaii are two very different places and you will spend a minimum of three years at either school and likely the rest of your legal career.

If you attend Hawaii you are going to take the Hawaii Bar and if you attend UNLY you will take the Nevada Bar. If attend law school at UNLV your internships etc will be in Las Vegas and if your in Hawaii your internships will be in Hawaii. A Hawaii law firm or government agency will not go out of their way to recruit from UNLV and vice versa.

If your ultimate goal is to end up in Hawaii then attend law school in Hawaii, but be sure you actually familiar with Hawaii. It is a great place to vacation, but Hawaii can be very isolating and if your from Nevada you may want to consider staying there.  Law school is difficult and from your post I can't tell if you actually know anyone in Hawaii. If your waiting on friends possibily move to Hawaii they likely will not end up there and accessing friends, family, etc from Hawaii will be difficult and the combined with acclimated with the stress of law school could be very difficult.

2. Cost
Both Hawaii and UNLV offer in-state tuition and it will be 24k per year if your a Nevada Resident. However, if you can get residency in Hawaii you will only pay 17k per year, but if residency cannot be obtained Hawaii will be 35k x 3= 105,000 in tuition.

24k x 3= 72,000 in UNLV tuition so $33,000 in tuition plus if you have family in the Vegas area you will save money possibly getting free meals from family etc.

3. Personal Feelings about School

Each school has a culture to it and make sure the school you attend fits what your style. You should visit both schools talk to professors, admins, students and walk around the campus see what school feels right to you.

4. Reality of Legal Education
Any law school will teach you essentially the same thing your first year will consist of Torts, Contracts, Civil Procedure etc and you will read Supreme Court cases. As an FYI the Supreme Court does not write seperate opinions for different law school.

With that said Hawaii is rumored to provide blatant tips to Hawaii law students to pass the Hawaii Bar exam the only state rumored to do that and it is only a rumor.

5. Rankings
U.S. News is nothing more than a for-profit unregulated magazine offering an opinion, but if you really can't decide it may be worth using as a tiebreaker.

Whatever school you choose will be a life altering decision and there is no RIGHT answer, but if your goal really is to end up practicing law in Hawaii then attend Hawaii, but if you never actually been to Hawaii and do not know anybody there and simply think living there would be cool you may want to think twice about moving to such an isolated location for law school.

Good luck whatever you decide.

17,000 per resident and 32,000 non-resident

Re: Unlv or Hawaii
« Reply #2 on: February 15, 2014, 08:24:33 AM »
Personally I would go with Hawaii as it might get tough trying to break into the market with a UNLV degree. Maybe try and get residency by moving there first and working for a year but that is also risky as Hawaii is expensive. But if Hawaii is where you want to be then go! Best of luck!

Re: Unlv or Hawaii
« Reply #3 on: February 17, 2014, 01:13:16 PM »
I think both of these schools will open doors in their local market. Hawaii has no competition in Hawaii and UNLV has no competition in Las Vegas, but Vegas and Hawaii are very different places and it really depends on what you want.

Good luck

Re: Unlv or Hawaii
« Reply #4 on: March 20, 2014, 10:34:21 AM »
Hands down, go to UH.
Hawaii is such a small community that the networking you do in law school will be your most valuable tool when looking for a job after graduating.