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Author Topic: Vandy vs W&L ($$)  (Read 866 times)

soundsgood

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Vandy vs W&L ($$)
« on: June 06, 2007, 10:41:51 PM »
  Hey guys, I've read for awhile, but never posted.  I just found out today that I was accepted to Vanderbilt, for some reason I wasn't actually waitlisted but didn't find out until today.  I had essentially decided to go to Washington and Lee, and just actually got back today from looking at places to live.  W&L offered me 23,000 a year, contingent on a 3.0, versus nothing at Vanderbilt, and it does not seem like I will be able to milk anything out of Vanderbilt. 
  I eventually would like to practice in either DC or the Southeast, I have no desire to be north of Maryland, or the Midwest or West Coast.  I've worked in a Biglaw firm in DC for the past year, and while I haven't ruled out that type of career, I'm very open to working in a smaller market such as Nashville, Richmond, Charlotte, or Charleston.  I think I would probably enjoy Vanderbilt a bit more, as Nashville seems like a great city (especially for a country music fan like me), but would the Vanderbilt education be that much more beneficial to someone in my situation that it would be worth the extra 70-75k in debt?  I think I'm leaning to W&L at the moment, mainly because of the money and the fact that I'm so far into the process of planning to be there in the fall.  I just want to make sure I'm not making a large mistake by turning down Vanderbilt.  Thanks for all your help.

Auelan

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Re: Vandy vs W&L ($$)
« Reply #1 on: June 07, 2007, 11:10:25 AM »
I definitely understand the dilemma you're facing. I've run the same scenerio through in my head a million times in case I get off the Vandy waitlist. Are you sure you won't be getting money from Vandy? Whatever your numbers are, if they're high enough to get $23k/yr from W&L, I'm surprised they're not high enough to get $7k/yr or so from Vandy. I don't think there's any doubt that the Vandy degree is more valuable than a W&L degree, but how much more valuable is questionable. If you want to work in the south, W&L is quite strong and will serve you well for not a lot of money. If you want to travel out of the south, however, a Vandy degree is definitely more national than a W&L degree. I'd have a hard time making that decision with my W&L scholarship, which is only half of yours. It'd be quite tough for me to turn down W&L so cheap for a marginally better degree at full private school price. Good luck.

Pmass322

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Re: Vandy vs W&L ($$)
« Reply #2 on: June 07, 2007, 11:56:34 AM »
I think in the southeast a W&L degree is practically equal to a Vandy degree.  I'd even go as far as to say that in most of the northeast a W&L degree is practically equal to a Vandy degree.  Vandy may give you a slight advantage but I don't think it's a significant enough advantage to justify paying 70K+ more.

I can also tell you that W&L is an excellent place to go to law school.  As I'm meeting law students from other schools at my summer job, I am growing happier and happier with my decision to attend W&L.  W&L students really support one another, and the inevitably competitive atmosphere of law school is much more collegial at W&L than it is at other schools.  In short, I say you stick with W&L. 

To be fair, I know very little about the atmosphere at Vandy.  None of my fellow summer legal interns go there, but the general impression I get from their stories is that W&L's extremely close-knit student population is unique among law schools.
W&L Law Class of 2009

Here's how my admission cycle went:
http://www.lawschoolnumbers.com/display.php?user=Pmass322

Alamo

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Re: Vandy vs W&L ($$)
« Reply #3 on: June 07, 2007, 12:23:21 PM »
Yeah, I love W&L.  Hopefully Lenny will post here; he's a recent grad who picked W&L over Vandy and Georgetown PT  GW.  W&L has a major advantage in cost-of-living.  I also think that the supportive, low-traffic, little-distraction environment is a major plus for law school.  It's a great chance to experience a small-town environment that you probably wouldn't otherwise consider.  It's got a great student-faculty ratio, you can talk to your professors without being a total dork/gunner, and overall it's a fantastic experience.  I'm really not sure what the advantage of Vandy is if you want to work in the Southeast, other than it being in a great city (I'm looking at Nashville for a job once I graduate), but you'll be busy enough in school (and, if you're like most of us, broke enough too) that you really won't be able to enjoy it that much.

Just my 2c, I can't knock Vandy, but you can't go wrong w/W&L, unless you're an obnoxious prick (you certainly don't seem like one), because you won't have any friends here. 
I must admit that I may have been infected with society's prejudices and predilections and attributed them to God . . . and that in years hence I may be seen as someone who was on the wrong side of history.  I don't believe such doubts make me a bad Christian.  I believe they make me human . . .

Lenny

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Re: Vandy vs W&L ($$)
« Reply #4 on: June 07, 2007, 12:44:55 PM »
Already on it.  I gave soundsgood the personal treatment with a PM.  And it was Vandy and GW, not Gtown PT - I didnt apply to any part-time programs.

Last King of Edinburgh

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Re: Vandy vs W&L ($$)
« Reply #5 on: June 07, 2007, 12:50:47 PM »
Yeah, I love W&L.  Hopefully Lenny will post here; he's a recent grad who picked W&L over Vandy and Georgetown PT.  W&L has a major advantage in cost-of-living.  I also think that the supportive, low-traffic, little-distraction environment is a major plus for law school.  It's a great chance to experience a small-town environment that you probably wouldn't otherwise consider.  It's got a great student-faculty ratio, you can talk to your professors without being a total dork/gunner, and overall it's a fantastic experience.  I'm really not sure what the advantage of Vandy is if you want to work in the Southeast, other than it being in a great city (I'm looking at Nashville for a job once I graduate), but you'll be busy enough in school (and, if you're like most of us, broke enough too) that you really won't be able to enjoy it that much.

Just my 2c, I can't knock Vandy, but you can't go wrong w/W&L, unless you're an obnoxious prick (you certainly don't seem like one), because you won't have any friends here. 

Yeah, you can trust Lenny for his candor.
Washington University School of Law 2010

Lenny

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Re: Vandy vs W&L ($$)
« Reply #6 on: June 07, 2007, 02:21:20 PM »
I would say thanks for the compliment, but that pesky ellipsis makes me think otherwise.  Praytell when I have ever not been candid (uncandid?  is that a word?).

Last King of Edinburgh

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Re: Vandy vs W&L ($$)
« Reply #7 on: June 07, 2007, 03:49:32 PM »
I would say thanks for the compliment, but that pesky ellipsis makes me think otherwise.  Praytell when I have ever not been candid (uncandid?  is that a word?).

Oh I see what u saying Lenny, pardon me, thats just the way I write. I do mean it though.
Washington University School of Law 2010

General2010

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Re: Vandy vs W&L ($$)
« Reply #8 on: June 07, 2007, 04:36:22 PM »
Lenny, can you send me the same PM? I'm still on the waitlist, but I'm already going over the scenario in my head just in case I get off of it.

My situation is a little bit different--I received 10.5K a year from W&L, am from Texas and would prefer to return back there after graduation (hopefully Austin, and to work at the law firm I've worked at for the past four summers), and just spent four years in a small college town (Ithaca, NY, though Lexington makes Ithaca look like a metropolis).

One of the reasons why Vanderbilt is appealing to me is the weight it has in Texas. Although W&L apparently sends about 10% of its class each year to Texas, that's only 12 people. Vandy sends many more graduates to Texas and a larger number of Texas firms recruit there (whether this is due to prestige differences or simple geography, I am not sure). I've also noticed that W&L does well in Dallas and Houston, but not as well in Austin (scanning the firm directories of some of the big law firms in town have only pulled up a few W&L Law alums).

W&L students also seem to have less luck in finding first year summer associateships than Vandy students. From many of the W&L students I met, I got the impression that a First year clerkship at a firm is the exception, not the rule for most of the students. From the Vandy students I spoke with, it seemed like the opposite. I'm not quite sure why this is, or if I am going off bad samples here.

Any thoughts from anyone regarding my comments are appreciated.
W&L Class of 2010

ANBUDOM

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Re: Vandy vs W&L ($$)
« Reply #9 on: July 16, 2007, 04:31:13 PM »
I heard some rumor that Texas law firms are more willing to take 1L's than other places for the summer.  I know two Texas 1L's were able to find paying firm jobs for their 1L summer.  One of them got a biglaw firm job there too. 

Other than that I can't really tell you what the job prospects are like for Texas.  I haven't looked too much into the issue. 

if my sentences make no sense i blame my new glasses... i can't read half the things i'm typing out right now...
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