Law School Discussion

KU v. Washburn

KU v. Washburn
« on: March 14, 2016, 01:26:21 PM »
I live in KCMO. I've been accepted to both KU and Washburn (I interview with KU next week.) KU's tuition with scholarships is 24k with a COA of 34k. Ranked 67. Washburn's tuition with scholarship is 9k with a COA of 20k and ranked 167.

I work at a law firm and statistics of area grads are as follows
KU-45%
Washburn-36%
UMKC-18%

Is Washburn really that bad? I'd much rather go to a state school that's at least known outside of the metro, but not at 34k.

Is it not graduating with honors that matters, or is it the name on the degree? (If its between these two schools.. not a t20 school.) The three most recent graduates at the large-ish KC firm I work at are Washburn grads. We hire top 25% at this firm and attys start at 75k+ salaries (I'd assume, based on the lifestyle of the grads.) The president and vice president at our firm are Washburn grads.

I hope I'm not being too difficult, I just would like as much as input as anyone is willing to give. 20k is so much more attractive than 34k, unless there's going to be a huge difference in the amount of offers I receive. I just wonder if people are looking less at the place of the degree and more of the stats of the degree holder.

Unless my prospects at working at a firm where I can make 70-90k would be stifled by going to Washburn, I would like to forego stacking on 100k debt, if possible. But not at the cost of employment opportunities!

Thanks!

loki13

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Re: KU v. Washburn
« Reply #1 on: March 14, 2016, 02:36:39 PM »
Disclaimer- while I am familiar with quite a few legal markets, KS/MO isn't one of them.

Generic advice; once you move out of the T14, the most important things to consider are cost and location. Period. Kansas will have marginally better job prospects, but it's unlikely to be worth the added expense. Especially if you are planning on practicing in that geographic location.

Make sure you review the terms and conditions of the scholarships. Also, don't depend on graduating at the top of your class- 100% of law school students believe they will finish at the top 10% of their class.

Re: KU v. Washburn
« Reply #2 on: March 14, 2016, 02:51:47 PM »
Loki provides great advice and as I am sure he will agree nobody cares about what U.S. News Rankings thinks as it relates to the difference between Kansas and Washington. Remember that U.S. News is an unregulated for profit magazine offering it's subjective opinion. U.S. News is not doing anything wrong, by offering an opinion, but it doesn't mean you have to take it seriously.

There are polls and opinions that support Trump to be a good President, but that doesn't make it true for me.   Furthermore, as evidenced by the attached link the rankings change drastically year by year. http://www.top-law-schools.com/rankings.html. In 2009 Kansas was in a multiple way tie for 65th. So if anyone enrolled in 2009 based on its' 2009 ranking, they would have been pretty disappointed when they graduated in 2012 and Kansas in a multiple way tie for 89th.

The same student that thought he was enrolling in the 69th best school in 2009, graduated from the 89th best school in 2012. However, do you think anyone cares about the difference between 65th and 89th? Not really.

With all that here is a pretty good article that might help you make your decision. http://www.legalmatch.com/choose-the-right-law-school.html

Re: KU v. Washburn
« Reply #3 on: March 15, 2016, 09:08:52 AM »
The other posers have already given good advice, I will just add this:

Outside of the Midwest, no one will draw any real distinction between Washburn and Kansas. As a graduate of either school, you won't be relying on your pedigree to get  job. You will need to get experience and make connections, and that will probably matter more than ranking.

Re: KU v. Washburn
« Reply #4 on: March 15, 2016, 01:50:26 PM »
The other posers have already given good advice, I will just add this:

Outside of the Midwest, no one will draw any real distinction between Washburn and Kansas. As a graduate of either school, you won't be relying on your pedigree to get  job. You will need to get experience and make connections, and that will probably matter more than ranking.


Thank you!
I didn't think so. They're both T2/T3 schools, one just has a mascot people have heard of and the other is an Ichabod. I would enjoy life on KU's campus so much more, but I don't know if I'll enjoy it at that price. So just get good grades at the cheaper school? My chances of portability is similar with each degree I presume?

Re: KU v. Washburn
« Reply #5 on: March 16, 2016, 04:41:28 PM »
I don't live in the Midwest, so I can't say for sure, but I assume that Kansas probably has a more established reputation as the flagship state university. Maybe that helps, especially in-state. Maybe that's worth the extra cost, I don't know.

But for example, where I live (CA) they would both be viewed the same. Not bad, not great, unlikely to open doors based on reputation alone. Does that mean that the degree is not portable? No, not at all. You just won't be able to rely on your pedigree to get the job. You'll have to show up with experience and be willing to battle against local law grads if you decide to move.

Honestly, the education you receive at either school (or any other ABA school) will be nearly identical. I'd probably be inclined to just pick the cheapest degree.