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FSU v. Stetson for Criminal Law

Posted: Sun Apr 15, 2018 8:24 pm
by innocenceproject
I am a non-resident of Florida and received partial scholarships to both FSU and Stetson. I want to go into criminal law (potentially work for an innocence project), and I’m not sure which school would be better for me considering FSU’s overall ranking and Stetson’s top rankings in trial advocacy and legal writing. Please help.

Re: FSU v. Stetson for Criminal Law

Posted: Mon Apr 16, 2018 9:03 am
by Lawworld19
Where ever it is cheaper. My dad went to Stetson, did Plaintiff trial insurance work (sinkhole/hurricane damage), retired in his 40's with way more than enough to retire.

Re: FSU v. Stetson for Criminal Law

Posted: Mon Apr 16, 2018 11:21 am
by TransferAdvice18
I'd say take FSU because you'll have more flexibility to find a job throughout the state of Florida, whereas with Stetson you'll mostly be limited to the Tampa area. You're also more likely to get a job coming out of FSU than Stetson. According to LST, FSU's full time long term bar passage required employment is 72% and Stetson's is 55.4% with almost 20% under employment. Also, you can reclassify as a FL resident and get instate tuition after your first year.

Criminal law is a pillar of legal education so you'll get a fine background in crim wherever you go. I wouldn't pay too much attention to the secondary rankings, especially the trial advocacy one since over 90% of criminal cases are pled out.

Re: FSU v. Stetson for Criminal Law

Posted: Wed May 09, 2018 7:52 am
by mpk11d
innocenceproject wrote:I am a non-resident of Florida and received partial scholarships to both FSU and Stetson. I want to go into criminal law (potentially work for an innocence project), and I’m not sure which school would be better for me considering FSU’s overall ranking and Stetson’s top rankings in trial advocacy and legal writing. Please help.


I know the first round of seat deposits for most schools have come and gone. If you're still deciding, however, the answer is FSU. Stetson has phenomenal trial advocacy and legal writing but so does FSU. FSU's Trial Team routinely wins national competitions. FSU's Moot Court team has won a national championship in 9 of the last 10 years.

Also, for REAL criminal work, and not the Moot/Mock world. At FSU you have the ability to do an externship with either the State Attorney's Office or the Public Defender (you may be able to do this at Stetson as well, I simply don't know because I didn't go to Stetson). You become a Certified Legal Intern ("CLI") and try real cases, with real ramifications, while you're in law school. I have quite a few friends who have done this externship and have raved about it. FSU also has quite a few classes geared down criminal litigation etc (one being Criminal Litigation Skills - where you try a criminal trial for class).

Aside from that - the poster above is correct. Your job opportunities are far greater at FSU. And unless you're pulling a full ride from Stetson it's a pretty safe bet that FSU will be cheaper.

Best of luck.

Re: FSU v. Stetson for Criminal Law

Posted: Wed May 09, 2018 11:27 am
by cindyv
if you're looking to work with the Innocence Project, FSU for sure...Florida Innocence Project is in Tallahassee and lots of FSU law students intern/extern there. Stetson does offer prosecutor and public defender clinics in both Hillsborough County (Tampa) and Pinellas County (St. Pete) and one point in the past handful of years they offered a clinic with the Innocence Project, but I haven't seen that offered since. (Someone correct me if I'm wrong, please)