Law School Discussion

Poll

If you were accepted to both schools and were given equal money, which would you choose?

Penn
29 (30.9%)
Chicago
65 (69.1%)

Total Members Voted: 91

Penn vs. Chicago Poll

Penn vs. Chicago Poll
« on: September 25, 2007, 06:09:19 PM »
And while geography could influence your vote, don't let it be personal geographical ties or  your vote won't have value for others.  (i.e. Chicago may indeed get a bump if you like the Midwest, and the voting might reflect that, but if your ex-husband and his wife are at Penn but your best friend is at Chicago, that type of stuff won't be helpful in determining the better school from the point of view of LSDers.

Every year on this site--I've been around a long time :-[-- people will debate this stuff.  So here is a chance to simply tally votes.

Re: Penn vs. Chicago Poll
« Reply #1 on: September 25, 2007, 06:34:13 PM »
Not so subtle Penn trolling.

Re: Penn vs. Chicago Poll
« Reply #2 on: September 25, 2007, 07:43:43 PM »
Yeah, I keep searching to see if anyone is talking about Penn, but they're not.  I guess I've got to start my own discussion.

For those of us already committed to a school, this is about all we can do.

Cabra

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Re: Penn vs. Chicago Poll
« Reply #3 on: September 25, 2007, 07:57:39 PM »
It's true, people don't seem to talk as much about Penn as other places...
I'd love to hear why you chose Penn. I know their interdisciplinary stuff is pretty neat...what did it for you?

Cabra

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Re: Penn vs. Chicago Poll
« Reply #4 on: September 26, 2007, 08:25:43 AM »
You may be right, Lindbergh, but people seem talk more about Michigan, Boalt, UVA...than Penn, and Penn is definitely comparable to those schools.


 

Cabra

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Re: Penn vs. Chicago Poll
« Reply #5 on: September 26, 2007, 10:14:10 AM »

I think few other schools in the country are so heavily biased toward one side of a given open debate. I mean, what "economic theory" is Harvard law taught under? What "social science theory" is the foundation of all studies at Stanford? There's no answer to those questions for nearly every top-tier school except Chicago.


The faculty blog (http://uchicagolaw.typepad.com/faculty/) supports your argument for the most part. Very interesting research, but most of it seems to fit the same economic/thought frame. Where's the academic diversity? Maybe they just need some new bloggers...

Speaking of, it peeves me a little to see that of the 12 contributing faculty bloggers, all are male and all but one are white...

Still the fact that Sen. Obama taught constitutional law there gives Chicago a few points in my book. :p



Cabra

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Re: Penn vs. Chicago Poll
« Reply #6 on: September 26, 2007, 10:26:32 AM »

I think Penn is basically a niche school for people who really want to attend a northeastern Ivy, and don't get into HYSCCN.

Or people looking for a joint jd/mba from the Wharton school...

Cabra

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Re: Penn vs. Chicago Poll
« Reply #7 on: September 26, 2007, 11:54:33 AM »
Thanks for the insider info, Bosco. I definitely plan to apply and visit Chicago if they choose to accept me.

There's no way I'm letting a student body stereotype influence my choice of schools.
That said, I don't really care about the political leanings of the student body so much as I care about that of the faculty, and Chicago undoubtedly attracts more scholars interested in the relationship between law and economics than other law schools do.
That might not seem to matter in a constitutional or criminal law class, but the L&E lens can color everything. Still, that could be a really interesting and challenging...

Re: Penn vs. Chicago Poll
« Reply #8 on: September 26, 2007, 12:08:17 PM »
I personally would vote against Chicago because of the EXTREME association with one particular branch of economic and public-policy theory which the law school enjoys. If you're into that field ("Dear Ms. Rand: You are right about everything. Dumb people should die. Law is about killing all but the top tier of the human population so that the Weltanschauung can succeed. I personally get to pick who is a member of that top tier.") then go right ahead, but if you're not then I think the constant showings of "Fountainhead" are going to get on your nerves. ("Dear Mr. Friedman: You are right about everything. The free market is perfect, and is a force for nothing but good 100% of the time. Law is about killing ...").

Heh. A little personal bias showing through, I guess.  ;D

Seriously, Chicago is indeed reputed to be a great school, and as Lindbergh says is legitimately in the top 5, while Penn is a slight level lower, I think. But Chicago has SUCH a heavy bent on ONE side of an open debate, that I'd be worried for several reasons. First, if I didn't have a good background in Economics (just the basics, not biased to either side of the debate) I would be concerned that many law-related opportunities (including eventual employment) would be closed to me. Second, if I didn't agree with the particular side of the debate that they're taking at that school, I'd be worried that even good work done by me might be treated poorly.

I think few other schools in the country are so heavily biased toward one side of a given open debate. I mean, what "economic theory" is Harvard law taught under? What "social science theory" is the foundation of all studies at Stanford? There's no answer to those questions for nearly every top-tier school except Chicago.

IMNSHO. But I'd be delighted to be disabused of any misapprehension ...

This is like the Billy Madison puppy who lost his way speech.



Re: Penn vs. Chicago Poll
« Reply #9 on: September 26, 2007, 04:25:15 PM »
A couple things from the OP.  Someone pointed out that people don't talk about Penn much around here.  How true.  Even Penn trolling seems to have turned into Chicago trolling.  :D 

And why did I choose Penn?  I know very specifically what I want to study, and the faculty at Penn is stronger in that area than really anywhere.  I'm interested in immigration law and have read law review articles by Adam Cox (the guy who teaches immigration law at Chicago), Howard Chang (Penn), Yale-Lohre? (Cornell), Mark Tushnet (Georgetown), Sullivan?? (Texas), etc.  Other schools like Harvard, Columbia, Northwestern, and NYU don't really have anyone teaching immigration law regularly.  The rest of them don't ever get into theory or even advocacy, but instead they have some technical expert who could teach black-letter law excellently, but nothing more.

That isn't to say I had all these choices when I was choosing, but even if I had, I'd like to think that I wouldn't have been swayed by the prestige of other schools, because Chang really is exceptional among the immigration law professors teaching at the elite schools in the country.  (Ironically, to this thread at least, he has a Ph.D. in Economics from MIT and brings that perspective into his writing on immigration a lot).  If I had to choose a second choice among those I listed, it would be Chicago.  If I was willing to expand it a bit to look at UCLA, they have literally a dozen all-star faculty members that I would have loved to study from in this or related fields.  Michigan also has an excellent program for this sort of thing.

Ranking immigration programs, mostly based on professors and courses offered, I'd go with:
Penn
UCLA
Georgetown
Michigan
Chicago
Cornell
Something like that, but to be honest, I never looked into Yale because I didn't apply.