Law School Discussion

Cardozo vs Temple

Cardozo vs Temple
« on: March 26, 2014, 05:17:57 PM »
So I'm trying to decide between temple and Cardozo. I have instate tuition at temple and they also gave me a $10,000 scholarship. Cardozo gave me a $28,000 scholarship but will still be much more expensive than temple (my tuition at temple will be 9,000 a year). The thing is I really want to practice law in NYC. Any advice or opinions that anyone has would be extremely appreciated, I have no idea what to do. I got a 160 on the LSAT and have a 3.6 GPA.

Accepted: St John's Brooklyn Cardozo Temple Villanova Pitt American Catholic Univ. Of South Carolina
Waitlisted: Fordham
Haven't heard: GW

Re: Cardozo vs Temple
« Reply #1 on: March 28, 2014, 05:45:35 PM »
First remember anything you read on this board or others is coming from anonymous internet posters and should be taken with a grain of salt, my post included.

With that said I think any law student should consider the following factors when choosing a law school (1) Location; (2) Cost; (3) Personal Feelings about the School; (4) Understanding the reality of legal education; (5) Last and least U.S. News Rankings.

I will apply these factors to your situation.

(1) Location: [/b
This is the most important factor by far when choosing a law school and it looks like all your applications except for South Carolina reflect a desire to live in an urban environment on the east coast, and you specifically say you want to end up in New York City.

Remember that law school does not exist in a vacuum and wherever you attend law school is where you will be spending three years of the prime of your life. Although, you will be busy particularly first year there will be time to have fun and enjoy the City you are living in.

Additionally, during your law school career you will make friends, likely enter a serious relationship, and get an apartment/house you are comfortable living in. You will also make connections near your school.

If your certain you want to be in New York then attending d law school in New York will allow you to experience the City for all three years of law school. You will make connections in N.Y. and you will prepare for the New York Bar Exam.

(2) Cost:
This is certainly something to consider and a definite plus in favor of Temple. However, one thing to be careful of with scholarships are the conditions. Typically they will require you to maintain a 3.0 GPA or rank in a certain percentage. Every law student goes in certain they will finish in the top 10% of the class and thinks there is no way they will get below a 3.0 GPA.

Law school, however is a different animal and there is a strict curve that typically allows only 35% of the class to maintain a 3.0 GPA, which means your scholarship can be gone for years two and three. This article does a better job explaining the system than I can.

Also do not be afraid to negotiate for more money with any of these schools. You have all the bargaining power as a 0L, but you lose it all once you enroll do not be afraid to ask for another 5-15k. Worst thing that will happen is they will say no.

(3) Personal Feelings about the school:
Each school has a culture to it and whether you like it or hate that culture is something only you can answer. I strongly encourage you to visit Cardozo, Temple, and any other school you are considering and talk to students, professors, admins, walk around the campus, walk around the neighborhood surrounding the campus and see how you feel.

There will be schools you like and schools you don't and your gut will tell you. Visit the schools and you will come away with a feeling and that feeling is something you should really listen to.

(4) Understanding Legal Education:
No matter what ABA school you attend you will learn the same thing. Your first year will consist of (1) Torts; (2) Contracts: (3) Civil Procedure: (4) Property; and LRW. In these courses you will read supreme court cases and learn bluebook citation.

Both Temple and Cardozo will provide you with a solid legal education as well any of the other schools you have applied to.

(5) U.S. News Rankings:
Remember this is a for-profit unregulated magazine offering an opinion nothing more nothing less. It should not be the basis of a life altering decision such as where to spend three years of your life, $100,000 of your money, and develop the foundation of your legal career.

Realize U.S. News ranks more than law schools Albuquerque, New Mexico is the best place to live according to U.S. News. . I imagine you will not be moving to New Mexico based on this ranking and use the same logic when choosing a law school.

You can certainly use it as a tie breaker, but this should be the last factor in your decision.


Neither I or anyone else can possibly know what the best decision for "you" is. The reality is you will never know what the "right" decision is. When making the choice of what law school to attend there will always be a "what if" factor. Making a commitment is difficult, but that is the first step to becoming a lawyer.

It is a tough decision as location definitely favors Cardozo, but costs favors Temple. I encourage you to negotiate more scholarship money and visit the schools to see what you come away with financially and from your visits.

Good luck.

Re: Cardozo vs Temple
« Reply #2 on: March 29, 2014, 08:38:06 AM »
Cardozo COA: $235kish.
Cardozo COA after scholarship: $150kish

Temple COA: $130kish
Temple COA after scholarship: $100kish

That means the difference is about $50kish. Not that this is an insignificant figure, but it is, in the long term, workable. I do strongly believe you can negotiate for more money out of Cardozo. Even if you don't get any more, though, since you want to work in NY, Cardozo is the place to go given your current situation.

Good luck!

Re: Cardozo vs Temple
« Reply #3 on: March 30, 2014, 01:07:13 PM »
Thank you both for your responses it has helped me organize my thoughts a little more. I guess my biggest question is, if I choose to go to temple for financial reasons, will I be shutting myself out of the New York City legal market? Or will it be plausible for me to get a job there when I graduate. I know most firms recruit regionally unless you go to a top 20 school, but Philly is pretty close to New York. Also, I already negotiated more money out of Cardozo, they originally offered me $20k but was able to get them to increase to $28k. My other thought was to just tell them that I'm going to have to commit to Temple and see if they give me more money last minute. Thoughts?

Re: Cardozo vs Temple
« Reply #4 on: March 30, 2014, 05:42:01 PM »
You will not be shutting yourself off completely, it is certainly possible to get a job in New York from Temple, but it will be much harder to get a job in New York if your attending school in Philly. When the stress of actually finding a job choosing where to take the bar etc becomes real and it will during 3L the odds are if your at Temple you will get a job in Philly and take the PA Bar. If your in New York you will likely get a job in NY and take the NY Bar. 

As for additional money keep pushing for it. It seems like the only thing really stopping you from choosing Cardozo is the money and let them know that and even give them a financial breakdown. You already got more by asking, but keeping asking for more. Be a pest and get the best possible deal for yourself this is a 3 year $100,000 commitment and you should pull out all the stops.

Also visit both schools and really see how you feel about them. Talking to the profs, seeing the campus, etc will give you a lot of insight.

With all that there is no right answer no matter what school you attend there will a "what if", but that is part of the selection process. I know making the commitment is very stressful I did it years ago and it drove me crazy, but once you finally make the choice it is relieving and realistically you can make anything happen if you put your mind to it.

Good luck.