Columbia or University of Connecticut?

(Rankings, Profiles, Tuition, Student Life, . . . )

Columbia or Connecticut?

Poll ended at Mon Jul 15, 2019 2:42 pm

Columbia, 220k debt
16
94%
Connecticut, 40k debt
1
6%
 
Total votes: 17

memo2

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Columbia or University of Connecticut?

Postby memo2 » Fri Jul 05, 2019 2:42 pm

That may seem like an easy question, but going to Connecticut means graduating with a 40k debt max, and going to Columbia means graduating with 220k debt.

My goal is biglaw with a possibility of switching to fed. government (e.g. DOJ, FTC etc). Any advice?

Wubbles

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Re: Columbia or University of Connecticut?

Postby Wubbles » Fri Jul 05, 2019 2:48 pm

Is there no lower t13 option in between? UConn should not be in play for someone who can get into Columbia and is interested in biglaw and bigfed, so we should just go ahead and get that out of the way.

QContinuum

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Re: Columbia or University of Connecticut?

Postby QContinuum » Fri Jul 05, 2019 2:49 pm

If your goal is BigLaw, obviously you should not attend UConn, which had an anemic 2018 BigLaw placement rate of 14.4%. Compare that to Columbia at 81.6%. This is not remotely in the same ballpark.

But you should have more options than UConn with a full ride or Columbia at sticker. What other schools did you apply to? Your best option will likely be a "lower" T13 or a T20 with a significant scholarship.

cavalier1138

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Re: Columbia or University of Connecticut?

Postby cavalier1138 » Fri Jul 05, 2019 2:59 pm

Yeah, I'm confused by the lack of in-between options. What are you numbers?

But I second (third) the sentiment that UConn shouldn't even be in consideration based on your goals.

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Re: Columbia or University of Connecticut?

Postby memo2 » Fri Jul 05, 2019 3:04 pm

QContinuum wrote:If your goal is BigLaw, obviously you should not attend UConn, which had an anemic 2018 BigLaw placement rate of 14.4%. Compare that to Columbia at 81.6%. This is not remotely in the same ballpark.

But you should have more options than UConn with a full ride or Columbia at sticker. What other schools did you apply to? Your best option will likely be a "lower" T13 or a T20 with a significant scholarship.


I wanted to stay in Connecticut, so I also applied to Yale (didn't get in). I threw an application at Columbia and NYU because NYC is the only place I would consider moving out of state to. I've recently visited NYU and I don't want to go there, so it is no longer part of my consideration.

cavalier1138 wrote:Yeah, I'm confused by the lack of in-between options. What are you numbers?

But I second (third) the sentiment that UConn shouldn't even be in consideration based on your goals.


174 and 3.5 (should have probably partied less in the past 4 years). :D

Wubbles wrote:Is there no lower t13 option in between? UConn should not be in play for someone who can get into Columbia and is interested in biglaw and bigfed, so we should just go ahead and get that out of the way.


Yep, I am a bit concerned about UConn employment stats, but maybe if I graduated in the top 10% I'd be able to get a biglaw job?

220k just seems like hella lot of money to borrow.

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Re: Columbia or University of Connecticut?

Postby cavalier1138 » Fri Jul 05, 2019 3:45 pm

That is a barrel full of red flags, so let me try taking them one by one:

memo2 wrote:I wanted to stay in Connecticut, so I also applied to Yale (didn't get in). I threw an application at Columbia and NYU because NYC is the only place I would consider moving out of state to. I've recently visited NYU and I don't want to go there, so it is no longer part of my consideration.


Your approach to law school admissions is 100% wrong (sorry if that sounds too harsh, but you really went all the way in the wrong direction). Law school is not a second undergrad. It's professional school. So your top concern should be job placement and cost. That doesn't mean you can't factor in things like location, but if your goals are biglaw and bigfed, you absolutely cannot limit yourself to only attending school in Connecticut or NYC.

You're only going to law school for three years. Based on your goals, you're clearly contemplating working in DC, so you're going to have to cut that umbilical cord at some point. Might as well do it now, because you left massive amounts of money on the table with your current strategy.

memo2 wrote:174 and 3.5 (should have probably partied less in the past 4 years).


Probably. But 174/3.5 gets you in to most of the T13 (minus HYS and probably Chicago/Berkeley). It definitely gets you decent scholarships at some excellent schools that you didn't bother applying to.

memo2 wrote:Yep, I am a bit concerned about UConn employment stats, but maybe if I graduated in the top 10% I'd be able to get a biglaw job?


Maybe. But you can't guarantee that you'll graduate in the top 10% of your class. And if you don't, that's it: You missed the boat, and you're basically stuck in Connecticut doing work you never wanted to do for the foreseeable future.

Long story short, the correct path for you is to not go anywhere this cycle. Reapply next cycle, and reapply broadly across the T13. You're either sacrificing your goals or your wallet with your current options, and you don't have to do that. Taking a year to live a little is only going to help you, both through an increase in work experience and overall maturity. Law school isn't going anywhere; take the time to make a good decision.

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Re: Columbia or University of Connecticut?

Postby memo2 » Fri Jul 05, 2019 4:35 pm

cavalier1138 wrote:That is a barrel full of red flags, so let me try taking them one by one:

memo2 wrote:I wanted to stay in Connecticut, so I also applied to Yale (didn't get in). I threw an application at Columbia and NYU because NYC is the only place I would consider moving out of state to. I've recently visited NYU and I don't want to go there, so it is no longer part of my consideration.


Your approach to law school admissions is 100% wrong (sorry if that sounds too harsh, but you really went all the way in the wrong direction). Law school is not a second undergrad. It's professional school. So your top concern should be job placement and cost. That doesn't mean you can't factor in things like location, but if your goals are biglaw and bigfed, you absolutely cannot limit yourself to only attending school in Connecticut or NYC.

You're only going to law school for three years. Based on your goals, you're clearly contemplating working in DC, so you're going to have to cut that umbilical cord at some point. Might as well do it now, because you left massive amounts of money on the table with your current strategy.

memo2 wrote:174 and 3.5 (should have probably partied less in the past 4 years).


Probably. But 174/3.5 gets you in to most of the T13 (minus HYS and probably Chicago/Berkeley). It definitely gets you decent scholarships at some excellent schools that you didn't bother applying to.

memo2 wrote:Yep, I am a bit concerned about UConn employment stats, but maybe if I graduated in the top 10% I'd be able to get a biglaw job?


Maybe. But you can't guarantee that you'll graduate in the top 10% of your class. And if you don't, that's it: You missed the boat, and you're basically stuck in Connecticut doing work you never wanted to do for the foreseeable future.

Long story short, the correct path for you is to not go anywhere this cycle. Reapply next cycle, and reapply broadly across the T13. You're either sacrificing your goals or your wallet with your current options, and you don't have to do that. Taking a year to live a little is only going to help you, both through an increase in work experience and overall maturity. Law school isn't going anywhere; take the time to make a good decision.


Well, yeah, it is a bit harsh, but I see your point. I would absolutely wait a year if I had a job lined up, but I don't. As it happens, I did not major in anything that would help me get into a lucrative field with just a B.A. I'd probably end up working as a waitress the whole year, which I have done in the past and did not enjoy.

My biggest worry about taking the Columbia offer is that I won't like law school (less likely), or that I won't like biglaw (more likely) or bigfed. That's the main reason why I am considering taking the full ride and staying in Connecticut. It's less risky. You're right that if I do bigfed I may have to move to DC, and it really isn't something I am keen on. NYC would be fine though, I think.

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Re: Columbia or University of Connecticut?

Postby BobLoblaw18 » Fri Jul 05, 2019 5:01 pm

Based on your replies in this thread, you probably shouldn't go to law school, sorry.

Wubbles

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Re: Columbia or University of Connecticut?

Postby Wubbles » Fri Jul 05, 2019 5:17 pm

For one, there isn't much BigFed in NYC. Also, UConn is higher risk. If you don't get perfect grades you'll be stuck with some shitlaw job in Connecticut making 50k and mad about not going to a better school to get the job you actually wanted

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Re: Columbia or University of Connecticut?

Postby Npret » Fri Jul 05, 2019 5:36 pm

What kind of advisor would tell someone to apply only to Yale, Columbia, NYU and UConn? That person deserves to be fired.

OP: working a waitress job and reapplying could save you tens of thousands of dollars. You would be extremely foolish to go to either school.

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Re: Columbia or University of Connecticut?

Postby cavalier1138 » Fri Jul 05, 2019 5:40 pm

Or don't work a waitress job. There are other jobs. They might not be "lucrative," but neither are the vast majority of jobs available to UConn grads.

But your recent posts are confusing me. What do you actually want to do with your degree? If you don't want to move to DC, then you aren't actually interested in any of the agencies you listed. And if you don't think you actually want biglaw, then that's out. So what are your actual reasons for wanting a JD?

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Re: Columbia or University of Connecticut?

Postby QContinuum » Fri Jul 05, 2019 7:12 pm

memo2 wrote:I've recently visited NYU and I don't want to go there, so it is no longer part of my consideration.

What was your scholarship offer (if any) from NYU? Your best option is still likely going to be a "lower" T13 or T20 as previously noted, but if you got a good offer from NYU (which is known to be quite generous in offering scholarship aid), that may be worth reconsidering. While different law schools do have different vibes, each law school is large enough - in terms of student population and professors - that I firmly believe everyone would be able to find "their people" at any school.

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Re: Columbia or University of Connecticut?

Postby memo2 » Fri Jul 05, 2019 9:06 pm

Npret wrote:What kind of advisor would tell someone to apply only to Yale, Columbia, NYU and UConn? That person deserves to be fired.

OP: working a waitress job and reapplying could save you tens of thousands of dollars. You would be extremely foolish to go to either school.


Well, I will admit multiple people suggested that I apply to a few other schools as well, including the those in the lower T14, so not applying to them is really on me :oops:

If I go to Columbia, how long will it take to pay off the 220k student loan? I'm thinking 6-7 years?

cavalier1138 wrote:Or don't work a waitress job. There are other jobs. They might not be "lucrative," but neither are the vast majority of jobs available to UConn grads.

But your recent posts are confusing me. What do you actually want to do with your degree? If you don't want to move to DC, then you aren't actually interested in any of the agencies you listed. And if you don't think you actually want biglaw, then that's out. So what are your actual reasons for wanting a JD?


I would like to work for a big law firm, probably doing some transactional work, or antitrust/competition (obviously those preliminary interests may change once I actually start law school). At least I think I would like that, but how can I really be sure? I've heard so much about the crazy hours biglaw lawyers work. I've also heard most people do not stay in biglaw longer than 4 years. Where do they even go after? Government?

I named FTC and DOJ because they deal with antitrust, and I would probably move to DC to work for them, but not for school.

QContinuum wrote:
memo2 wrote:I've recently visited NYU and I don't want to go there, so it is no longer part of my consideration.

What was your scholarship offer (if any) from NYU? Your best option is still likely going to be a "lower" T13 or T20 as previously noted, but if you got a good offer from NYU (which is known to be quite generous in offering scholarship aid), that may be worth reconsidering. While different law schools do have different vibes, each law school is large enough - in terms of student population and professors - that I firmly believe everyone would be able to find "their people" at any school.


NYU offered 20k more than Columbia, and I already turned the offer down. It just didn't feel like the right fit. I did like Columbia though.

BobLoblaw18 wrote:Based on your replies in this thread, you probably shouldn't go to law school, sorry.


There aren't really that many other options available to me. I majored in English.

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Re: Columbia or University of Connecticut?

Postby Dcc617 » Sat Jul 06, 2019 1:57 am

Your decision to go will impact you for the rest of your life. Your decision to wait a year will impact you a year. You should really position yourself to get the best possible options. For your goals, neither option is optimal.

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Re: Columbia or University of Connecticut?

Postby QContinuum » Sat Jul 06, 2019 2:04 am

Dcc617 wrote:Your decision to go will impact you for the rest of your life. Your decision to wait a year will impact you a year. You should really position yourself to get the best possible options. For your goals, neither option is optimal.

The above is entirely true, but if OP refuses to do the smart thing and wait - and so many 0Ls refuse to do the smart thing and wait - then at least going to Columbia at sticker wouldn't be disastrous. Going to UConn, in contrast, would be a huge mistake, in light of OP's amorphous goals which seem to revolve around prestige and/or a six-figure starting salary.

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Re: Columbia or University of Connecticut?

Postby cavalier1138 » Sat Jul 06, 2019 6:59 am

memo2 wrote:I would like to work for a big law firm, probably doing some transactional work, or antitrust/competition (obviously those preliminary interests may change once I actually start law school). At least I think I would like that, but how can I really be sure? I've heard so much about the crazy hours biglaw lawyers work. I've also heard most people do not stay in biglaw longer than 4 years. Where do they even go after? Government?

I named FTC and DOJ because they deal with antitrust, and I would probably move to DC to work for them, but not for school.


So this all indicates that you shouldn't go to school right now. But if you're interested in antitrust, yes, you'll generally need to start at a firm if you want to end up in the government. Those positions are among the most competitive to get, so I'd have a backup plan.

I'm still really confused about your location concerns. No one has said that you need to go to Georgetown. But why are you limiting yourself to Connecticut/NYC for school if you don't intend to limit yourself to those locations for future jobs?

memo2 wrote:NYU offered 20k more than Columbia, and I already turned the offer down. It just didn't feel like the right fit. I did like Columbia though.


Can you be more specific about this? You said you visited NYU recently, which implies that classes weren't in session. And I'm deeply skeptical of the "fit" argument when it comes to two schools that are literally in the same city and ranking band. The T13 are basically all interchangeable in terms of class quality and students. You'll find your group and great (or not so great) professors everywhere. Yes, there are intangible qualities like city/rural preference or "feel," but those shouldn't even enter into the equation until you're looking at exactly equal costs and job outcomes.

Again, I strongly suggest you don't go to law school this cycle. Your application strategy and other discussions here indicate that you haven't thought this through. Going now would be a mistake, especially if your major motivator is that you feel like you don't have other options.

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Re: Columbia or University of Connecticut?

Postby QContinuum » Sat Jul 06, 2019 12:58 pm

cavalier1138 wrote:Can you be more specific about this? You said you visited NYU recently, which implies that classes weren't in session. And I'm deeply skeptical of the "fit" argument when it comes to two schools that are literally in the same city and ranking band. The T13 are basically all interchangeable in terms of class quality and students. You'll find your group and great (or not so great) professors everywhere. Yes, there are intangible qualities like city/rural preference or "feel," but those shouldn't even enter into the equation until you're looking at exactly equal costs and job outcomes.

I agree, but in this particular case, I'm not sure NYU would actually be cheaper than Columbia given the increased cost of living in the Village vs. Morningside Heights. It'd probably come out in the wash, and in any case, even if NYU actually proves to be a total of $20k cheaper than CLS over three years, that's not huge enough to be worth focusing on, IMO. Paying $20k more for CLS over NYU - it's not something I'd recommend, but it's not irredeemably dumb.

The far larger issue is OP's yet-unexplained limitation to CT and NYC for law school, and her (I assume, given the use of the term "waitress") frankly reckless "plan" to graduate in the top 10% from UConn.

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Re: Columbia or University of Connecticut?

Postby Npret » Sat Jul 06, 2019 2:02 pm

OP isn’t unique in assuming that they will be top 10% even though the undergrad GPA isn’t indicative of excellence.

Many 0Ls don’t understand the nature of law school and law school exams, the strict curve, and one final exam to decide your grade. They don’t know that the number of A’s are set before they even start school or completely grasp the implications. They often underestimate the quality of the competition as well as the grind.

They also don’t understand the crucial nature of first year grades in getting employment for a 2L SA leading to a permanent job offer.

I suspect OP will end up at Columbia with a huge amount of debt they could have avoided - that is if they are serious about their vague goals. I’ve given up on trying to persuade people who want to cling to their ill informed decisions, they only hurt themselves.

Maybe someone else with more initiative to research schools and their career will benefit from the advice in these type of threads.

I still wish you good luck OP. I hope I’m wrong and you listen to us.

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Re: Columbia or University of Connecticut?

Postby QContinuum » Sat Jul 06, 2019 2:18 pm

Npret wrote:I suspect OP will end up at Columbia with a huge amount of debt they could have avoided - that is if they are serious about their vague goals. I’ve given up on trying to persuade people who want to cling to their ill informed decisions, they only hurt themselves.

Maybe someone else with more initiative to research schools and their career will benefit from the advice in these type of threads.

I still wish you good luck OP. I hope I’m wrong and you listen to us.

We can but hope! As you note, OP could easily save $100k by, say, attending Michigan next year. Factoring in the fact that loans accrue interest, and that loan repayment comes out of post-tax income, taking out $100k less in loans equates to an effective income of roughly $150k. And if OP were to postpone a year, she could at least make minimum wage that year, which would net her an additional ~$20k (given CT's current minimum wage of $10.10), so she'd be effectively paid ~$170k+ if she were to postpone law school for one year.
Image

But still, OP would do just fine if she were to go to Columbia now. Every year, many students attend Columbia at sticker and go on to repay their debt and have very rewarding careers. Sure, OP'd be "overpaying" tens of thousands of dollars, but regardless, standing alone it's far from an awful choice to pay sticker at a T13. Lots of folks would kill for the opportunity.

So my worry isn't that OP will attend Columbia, but that she will "bet on herself" by attending UConn. That has a 90% chance of proving to be a complete, career-ruining disaster given her goals.

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Re: Columbia or University of Connecticut?

Postby Npret » Sat Jul 06, 2019 2:39 pm

How does someone with a 3.5 undergrad GPA assume they will magically be top 10% in law school? Genuinely curious. Maybe they will party less? Maybe they think the LSAT score correlates to law school grades?

I don’t think OP will go to UConn. The difference in employment outcomes between Columbia and UConn is too large.

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Re: Columbia or University of Connecticut?

Postby objctnyrhnr » Sat Jul 06, 2019 4:47 pm

QContinuum wrote:
Dcc617 wrote:Your decision to go will impact you for the rest of your life. Your decision to wait a year will impact you a year. You should really position yourself to get the best possible options. For your goals, neither option is optimal.

The above is entirely true, but if OP refuses to do the smart thing and wait - and so many 0Ls refuse to do the smart thing and wait - then at least going to Columbia at sticker wouldn't be disastrous. Going to UConn, in contrast, would be a huge mistake, in light of OP's amorphous goals which seem to revolve around prestige and/or a six-figure starting salary.


100% seconded. If we assume OP is definitely not going to take a year. C is the clear play. Take out the loans. Keep partying to a minimum so you don’t end up in bottom 10 or 20% or wherever the biglaw cut-off is at C (where is it these days?) then just suck it up in biglaw and pay off the loans. Many people like biglaw. I, for one, think it’s great a number of days, fine a number of days, and only a pain occasionally.

Going to Uconn, by contrast, Would be quite dumb.

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Re: Columbia or University of Connecticut?

Postby QContinuum » Sat Jul 06, 2019 6:27 pm

objctnyrhnr wrote:
QContinuum wrote:
Dcc617 wrote:Your decision to go will impact you for the rest of your life. Your decision to wait a year will impact you a year. You should really position yourself to get the best possible options. For your goals, neither option is optimal.

The above is entirely true, but if OP refuses to do the smart thing and wait - and so many 0Ls refuse to do the smart thing and wait - then at least going to Columbia at sticker wouldn't be disastrous. Going to UConn, in contrast, would be a huge mistake, in light of OP's amorphous goals which seem to revolve around prestige and/or a six-figure starting salary.


100% seconded. If we assume OP is definitely not going to take a year. C is the clear play. Take out the loans. Keep partying to a minimum so you don’t end up in bottom 10 or 20% or wherever the biglaw cut-off is at C (where is it these days?) then just suck it up in biglaw and pay off the loans. Many people like biglaw. I, for one, think it’s great a number of days, fine a number of days, and only a pain occasionally.

Going to Uconn, by contrast, Would be quite dumb.

Columbia's BigLaw placement power for the class of 2018 was 81.6%, which is about as assured as you can get, considering there's always gonna be like ~10-15% of the class who're going to be hardcore public interest/government. Ofc if one was in the bottom 10% or so it might still be rough (and this isn't unique to Columbia, it's true at any of the T13 except Yale and maaaybe Stanford), but TLS generally assumes median performance and I think so long as OP doesn't revert to her hard-partying self during 1L, she should be safe.

And frankly I think even bottom 10% at Columbia would be a better position to be in - at least vis-a-vis BigLaw - than, say, top third at UConn given UConn's <15% BigLaw placement power.

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Re: Columbia or University of Connecticut?

Postby memo2 » Sat Jul 06, 2019 8:54 pm

Alright guys, you won't believe this, but I've decided to postpone law school for a year. It seems like I may be able to get a paralegal job at a mid-size firm in my hometown. Hopefully it'll work out. Thanks for advice, it did make me think things through.

QContinuum wrote:
Dcc617 wrote:Your decision to go will impact you for the rest of your life. Your decision to wait a year will impact you a year. You should really position yourself to get the best possible options. For your goals, neither option is optimal.

The above is entirely true, but if OP refuses to do the smart thing and wait - and so many 0Ls refuse to do the smart thing and wait - then at least going to Columbia at sticker wouldn't be disastrous. Going to UConn, in contrast, would be a huge mistake, in light of OP's amorphous goals which seem to revolve around prestige and/or a six-figure starting salary.


"amorphous goals which seem to revolve around prestige and/or a six-figure starting salary" lol that's right on point.

QContinuum wrote:
objctnyrhnr wrote:
QContinuum wrote:
Dcc617 wrote:Your decision to go will impact you for the rest of your life. Your decision to wait a year will impact you a year. You should really position yourself to get the best possible options. For your goals, neither option is optimal.

The above is entirely true, but if OP refuses to do the smart thing and wait - and so many 0Ls refuse to do the smart thing and wait - then at least going to Columbia at sticker wouldn't be disastrous. Going to UConn, in contrast, would be a huge mistake, in light of OP's amorphous goals which seem to revolve around prestige and/or a six-figure starting salary.


100% seconded. If we assume OP is definitely not going to take a year. C is the clear play. Take out the loans. Keep partying to a minimum so you don’t end up in bottom 10 or 20% or wherever the biglaw cut-off is at C (where is it these days?) then just suck it up in biglaw and pay off the loans. Many people like biglaw. I, for one, think it’s great a number of days, fine a number of days, and only a pain occasionally.

Going to Uconn, by contrast, Would be quite dumb.

Columbia's BigLaw placement power for the class of 2018 was 81.6%, which is about as assured as you can get, considering there's always gonna be like ~10-15% of the class who're going to be hardcore public interest/government. Ofc if one was in the bottom 10% or so it might still be rough (and this isn't unique to Columbia, it's true at any of the T13 except Yale and maaaybe Stanford), but TLS generally assumes median performance and I think so long as OP doesn't revert to her hard-partying self during 1L, she should be safe.

And frankly I think even bottom 10% at Columbia would be a better position to be in - at least vis-a-vis BigLaw - than, say, top third at UConn given UConn's <15% BigLaw placement power.



Well, it looks like I have one more year of partying ahead of me, at least on weekends, but I'll be a very good girl when I start law school, I promise :P

I'll probably re-take LSAT; I think I'll be able to get a higher score the second time around.

QContinuum wrote:
Npret wrote:I suspect OP will end up at Columbia with a huge amount of debt they could have avoided - that is if they are serious about their vague goals. I’ve given up on trying to persuade people who want to cling to their ill informed decisions, they only hurt themselves.

Maybe someone else with more initiative to research schools and their career will benefit from the advice in these type of threads.

I still wish you good luck OP. I hope I’m wrong and you listen to us.

We can but hope! As you note, OP could easily save $100k by, say, attending Michigan next year. Factoring in the fact that loans accrue interest, and that loan repayment comes out of post-tax income, taking out $100k less in loans equates to an effective income of roughly $150k. And if OP were to postpone a year, she could at least make minimum wage that year, which would net her an additional ~$20k (given CT's current minimum wage of $10.10), so she'd be effectively paid ~$170k+ if she were to postpone law school for one year.


But still, OP would do just fine if she were to go to Columbia now. Every year, many students attend Columbia at sticker and go on to repay their debt and have very rewarding careers. Sure, OP'd be "overpaying" tens of thousands of dollars, but regardless, standing alone it's far from an awful choice to pay sticker at a T13. Lots of folks would kill for the opportunity.

So my worry isn't that OP will attend Columbia, but that she will "bet on herself" by attending UConn. That has a 90% chance of proving to be a complete, career-ruining disaster given her goals.


I'm going to postpone a year, but UConn is not that bad, and the town is pretty. Additionally, my grandparents live in Hartford, so I'd be a very well fed law student if I went there :D

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Re: Columbia or University of Connecticut?

Postby cavalier1138 » Sun Jul 07, 2019 6:25 am

It's so rare to see a 0L make the right choice on this, so kudos to you. One quick note:

memo2 wrote:I'll probably re-take LSAT


Don't bother. With your GPA, even if you were able to bump your score up a point or two (or five), it wouldn't matter. If you want to spend time working on law school-related stuff, spend it learning about legal careers and hiring practices. Make sure that you have more defined goals going into the next cycle than prestige and money.

And most importantly, don't be afraid to discover that you don't actually want to go to law school. One of the best decisions people can make is delaying or foregoing law school when they haven't decided if they actually want to be practicing lawyers.

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Re: Columbia or University of Connecticut?

Postby QContinuum » Sun Jul 07, 2019 9:03 pm

OP- Thanks for the update, and for seriously considering our advice. I echo cav's kudos re: your decision.

I also echo cav in saying that your case is one of the rare situations where there really isn't much of a point in retaking the LSAT. You aren't going to get in to Y/S/H/Chicago (or Cornell, which is idiosyncratically picky re: GPA) even if you were to bump your LSAT up to 180. Also due to your GPA, you aren't going to get any significant merit aid at Columbia/NYU even if you were to bump your LSAT up to 180. At the same time, your 174 is already plenty high enough to get you lots of $$$ at the "lower" T13/T20; it's already above their LSAT 75%, so they won't really give you more money for bumping the 174 to 180.

So the key here next cycle is to blanket the T13 from Columbia on down (probably excluding Cornell which is not splitter-friendly, and possibly excluding Berkeley which is notably stingy on merit aid). If cost is a major concern you can/should also pick a few T20s to apply to. If you're generally interested in practicing in NYC/DC, probably Georgetown, Vandy and WUSTL would be the T20s to apply to. It looks like you'd likely get a full ride at WUSTL, which you could then consider along with your most generous T13 offer (which is likely to come from Michigan).

Again, though, the best - objective - choice is almost certainly going to be a "lower" T13/T20 with lots of $$$. If you remain unwilling to attend school outside CT/NYC, then you might as well matriculate now to Columbia, because you aren't really going to get a better offer from them next cycle regardless of how high you crank up your LSAT.

cavalier1138 wrote:It's so rare to see a 0L make the right choice on this, so kudos to you.

With your GPA, even if you were able to bump your score up a point or two (or five), it wouldn't matter.



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