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Author Topic: Harvard v. Yale?  (Read 8163 times)

braindead

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Harvard v. Yale?
« on: December 10, 2007, 09:48:14 AM »
Does anyone have thoughts on choosing between Harvard & Yale?  Pros/cons of each?

CandyMonster

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Re: Harvard v. Yale?
« Reply #1 on: December 10, 2007, 09:50:41 AM »
Weeeell, you gotta love the no grades thing at Yale.  :D
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Morning Star

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Re: Harvard v. Yale?
« Reply #2 on: December 10, 2007, 09:55:06 AM »
But Boston/Cambridge>>>>>>New Haven.
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H4CS

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Re: Harvard v. Yale?
« Reply #3 on: December 10, 2007, 09:58:45 AM »
Weeeell, you gotta love the no grades thing at Yale.  :D

Well, yes and no.  When applying to fellowships and for OCI, all that does it put an undue value on your undergarudate institution, as that's one of the only ways for firms to differentiate.  Students at Yale, like Harvard and Stanford, obviously don't have much of a problem, but hiring people are effectively rewarding you for where you to undergrad and not your performance in law school.

If you went to HYP or some other similar school, you've got to love the no grades thing.  However, some of my closest friends at Harvard who did extremely well as 1Ls went to schools that would not have opened a lot of doors for them.  At the clerkship level, you will have at least one year of Hs to show for it (hopefully), although that wasn't true in the past.

bass

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Re: Harvard v. Yale?
« Reply #4 on: December 10, 2007, 10:02:05 AM »
Yale, much smaller class size, no grades, and fewer douchebags than what you read about on OneL.

I'm sure you're joking, but it's worth noting that OneL is about a law school of decades ago.  And the grades thing isn't 100% positive, depending on your situation.  It's hard to know how you'd do in advance, but a student with a not-super-impressive background (non-ivy ugrad, no grad degree) who goes to yale will have more trouble distinguishing herself than if she had gone to harvard and did well.  Make no mistake: not every Yalie gets the clerkship of her dreams.  Distinctions are made along some axis, and some people fare much better when that axis is grades rather than 1) ability to schmooze w/ profs or 2) pre-law school accomplishments (e.g., Rhodes).

If all you want to do is work at a firm, then the no grades pressure is probably amazing.  It just so happens that most Yalies want more.

H4CS

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Re: Harvard v. Yale?
« Reply #5 on: December 10, 2007, 10:04:25 AM »
I'm sure you're joking, but it's worth noting that OneL is about a law school of decades ago.  And the grades thing isn't 100% positive, depending on your situation.  It's hard to know how you'd do in advance, but a student with a not-super-impressive background (non-ivy ugrad, no grad degree) who goes to yale will have more trouble distinguishing herself than if she had gone to harvard and did well.  Make no mistake: not every Yalie gets the clerkship of her dreams.  Distinctions are made along some axis, and some people fare much better when that axis is grades rather than 1) ability to schmooze w/ profs or 2) pre-law school accomplishments (e.g., Rhodes).

If all you want to do is work at a firm, then the no grades pressure is probably amazing.  It just so happens that most Yalies want more.

I totally beat you.

bass

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Re: Harvard v. Yale?
« Reply #6 on: December 10, 2007, 10:06:55 AM »
Weeeell, you gotta love the no grades thing at Yale.  :D

Well, yes and no.  When applying to fellowships and for OCI, all that does it put an undue value on your undergarudate institution, as that's one of the only ways for firms to differentiate.  Students at Yale, like Harvard and Stanford, obviously don't have much of a problem, but hiring people are effectively rewarding you for where you to undergrad and not your performance in law school.

If you went to HYP or some other similar school, you've got to love the no grades thing.  However, some of my closest friends at Harvard who did extremely well as 1Ls went to schools that would not have opened a lot of doors for them.  At the clerkship level, you will have at least one year of Hs to show for it (hopefully), although that wasn't true in the past.

I know you!

my perception is that harvard and yale have different attitudes in terms of teaching legal doctrine as opposed to legal philosophy.  do some of the harvard, yale students want to address that issue?

I thought this was false because, on the whole, law profs are largely similar, they move from harvard to yale and vice versa, they were largely taught at the same schools.  I'm less sure now that I've taken a class with a prof who moved here from yale, but I still think this varies widely by professor, and less by school.  Two institutional points bear mentioning, however.  First, that a core doctrinal course is taught in small groups at yale will probably drastically shift the focus of 1L towards theory, at least in that course.  Second, that the 1L required curriculum lasts only one semester at Yale allows for digging into less doctrinal stuff more quickly.

bass

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Re: Harvard v. Yale?
« Reply #7 on: December 10, 2007, 10:07:43 AM »
I'm sure you're joking, but it's worth noting that OneL is about a law school of decades ago.  And the grades thing isn't 100% positive, depending on your situation.  It's hard to know how you'd do in advance, but a student with a not-super-impressive background (non-ivy ugrad, no grad degree) who goes to yale will have more trouble distinguishing herself than if she had gone to harvard and did well.  Make no mistake: not every Yalie gets the clerkship of her dreams.  Distinctions are made along some axis, and some people fare much better when that axis is grades rather than 1) ability to schmooze w/ profs or 2) pre-law school accomplishments (e.g., Rhodes).

If all you want to do is work at a firm, then the no grades pressure is probably amazing.  It just so happens that most Yalies want more.

I totally beat you.

Yes. 

CandyMonster

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Re: Harvard v. Yale?
« Reply #8 on: December 10, 2007, 10:12:23 AM »
Honestly they are both so awesome that I'm really having a hard time letting one go for the other. It may just come down to COL and financial aid offers.

Harvard
-In Cambridge. I've heard it's a wonderful city.
-Large school. Lots of opportunities to meet some truly outstanding ppl.
-It's got an internation reputation for being the "It" school.
-Lots more classes to choose from.

Yale
-In New Haven. Yeah, I know, but at least it's cheaper.
-Small school. A big plus for those who love a more intimate setting.
-No grades. Yes getting a coupld of Hs will be necessary depending on what you want to do, but it's still nice to have the first semester (or is it first year?) only P/F. Or should I say P/P?  :D
-Ummm, it's Yale.
2007-2008 cycle
Accepted (in order): Duke, Harvard, UMich, Yale, Cornell, UVa, UPenn
Pending: Stanford, NYU, Columbia

bass

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Re: Harvard v. Yale?
« Reply #9 on: December 10, 2007, 10:17:38 AM »
Honestly they are both so awesome that I'm really having a hard time letting one go for the other. It may just come down to COL and financial aid offers.

Harvard
-In Cambridge. I've heard it's a wonderful city.
-Large school. Lots of opportunities to meet some truly outstanding ppl.
-It's got an internation reputation for being the "It" school.
-Lots more classes to choose from.

Yale
-In New Haven. Yeah, I know, but at least it's cheaper.
-Small school. A big plus for those who love a more intimate setting.
-No grades. Yes getting a coupld of Hs will be necessary depending on what you want to do, but it's still nice to have the first semester (or is it first year?) only P/F. Or should I say P/P?  :D
-Ummm, it's Yale.

Money is an important factor, but I want to say two things about financial aid offers.  First, whatever your preference is between the schools, you can probably get the school with the lower offer to match or beat the higher one.  HLS offered me MUCH less than YLS, and then I convinced them to offer me marginally more.  Second, unless the difference in aid packages is very significant, it is probably a less rational factor on which to base this decision than you might think, depending on your career goals.  For example, 1000 per year extra (presumably in loans) paid back over ten years at a lawyer's salary isn't especially noticeable.  That said, cost of living differences may amplify aid differences, such that it amounts to much more.

EDIT: A 3000 loan at 7% paid over 10 years is less than $40 per month.  That's the kind of number I was talking about.