Journeyman, I am dumbfounded as to how you got into IU and W&L with your numbers. 155 LSAT and you applied to Vanderbilt? Honestly?
What kind of law do you want to practice?Suffolk has a good reputation in the Boston area, but it's a very expensive school. NESL is less expensive; and, obviously, your scholarship at Western NE makes a difference.I'm at NESL, and I would advise you to be cautious with some of the advice of the pre-1Ls. If you do well at NESL, there are definitely employment opportunities. I imagine that it's the same at Western NE. In addition, ultimately, when you are looking for a job, employers who accept resumes from NESL and Suffolk students will consider your grades, experience, writing ability, and personality. Whether or not you went to NESL or Suffolk will likely not be determinative - your abiltities will be.Speaking for NESL, you can definitely obtain a solid legal education that will prepare you for successful practice. That said, if your ultimate goal is to work in a big firm in Boston, there are limited opportunities (but there are some opportunities).I also encourage you to visit the schools and talk to the students/professors. You will be spending three years at one of the schools - it's a good idea to go to a place where you feel comfortable.I hope this helps.
Please keep in mind that all this is coming from someone who has a vested interest in NESL, and has every reason to want to believe that this is true. Please examine the job placement and alumni statistics for Suffolk vs. WNEC and NESL. WNEC and NESL are not just a "little less marketable", they are VASTLY less marketable. The svailable statistcs bear me out.I'm not saying the students are stupid or the professors are bad... I'm sure people are very happy there. But you'll need to be in the top 10% just to get a local firm job. From what I hear, the students and professors are great at the Massachusetts School of Law, too... but that doesn't change the fact that it's not ABA accredited and it's graduates can't practice outside of MA and a couple of other states without some serious luck and some serious finagling.Don't let self-interested advice blind you to the facts. Suffolk costs more, but it is definitely worth the investment.