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What are you looking for in a law school?

jyarmojyarmo Alum Member

Besides a school's ranking and whether a particular school will improve your odds of landing a job, what are you looking for in a law school? Are there other things that make a school attractive or not? I am taking my first law school tour tomorrow and just curious about others thoughts and possible factors that may not be on my radar. Thanks!

Comments

  • Paul CaintPaul Caint Alum Member
    edited March 2018 3521 karma

    Fit! Fit fit fit!

    For example, I really like small classroom sizes, really being able to get to know my classmates and my professors, etc.

    Also I want to find out what my quality of life is going to be at the school. For example, I won't have a car, so I have to ask if the law school's city/neighborhood is walkable, if I can get a decent, reasonably inexpensive apartment, if there are grocery stores within walking distance, etc.

  • gkoskigkoski Alum Member
    106 karma

    Besides tuition, scholarship opportunities/ requirements, employment stats, and bar passage rates, here's some other things:

    I always ask about classroom size, accessibility of professors, clubs or groups that I may be interested in, and if you have an inkling about what type of law you are interested in, I always ask about what type of opportunities the law school has in order to get you involved in that particular area.

    Some other things you can explore are school atmosphere around finals time, accommodations to help with your academic success, parking, and if law students get exposure to local attorneys.

    For those non-traditional students, like myself, I always look for day care options, flexibility, and a supportive environment.

    Good luck and have fun :)

  • lTexlawzlTexlawz Member
    277 karma

    These are my criteria small class size and professors who accessible and friendly. Tuition that is affordable. Also, it is easy to get to within walking or driving distance. Good trial advocacy program and good legal community. Someplace, it is where I don't have to fight the traffic and bad weather. Possibly located in rural area even.

  • lsatplaylistlsatplaylist Alum Member
    5244 karma

    Affordable/good value. Area's somewhere I can see myself and/or family in future. People are friendly and approachable. Location is one with large amount of job growth. And yes, being near some large grocery stores is important.

  • Cant Get RightCant Get Right Alum Member Sage 🍌
    27316 karma

    The city is big for me: livability and vibe/culture. I like a place with lots of local character, things that distinguish it from the broader homogeneity. I define livability as the ability to experience that. Can I actually afford to live there or will I have hours of commute time every day? Things like that. I love my current city. I can drive anywhere I want to go in under ten minutes, walk to most places in under twenty, and easily afford to live in the central, historic neighborhood. I'm guessing things will be pretty different in school, but hopefully I can strike a balance!

  • Leah M BLeah M B Alum Member
    8392 karma

    Overall, I really hope to land at a school that is more collegial and collaborative than competitive. I'd personally be keeping an eye out for the average age of students, if there are folks that seem a little closer to my peer group. Class sizes, livability of the city and neighborhood. I would love to go to a school that I could live walking distance to, or if not walking distance, has good public transit. I have a car, but it's one less thing I'd like to fuss with. I like a vibrant city with lots of things to do, especially arts-related like concerts, museums, etc.

  • AlexAlex Alum Member
    23929 karma

    Location/city 100% I need to be in the northeast.

  • Brazil020511Brazil020511 Alum Member
    429 karma

    Location: Urban area must
    Strong BLSA Community (Black law student association)
    Good versatility in both public and private law
    I rather have a large class over a small one

  • ElleWoods77ElleWoods77 Alum Member
    edited March 2018 1184 karma

    I look for cost of living , scholarships, class size,academic quality ,a collegial friendly environment, clubs, clinics, diversity, quality of the program, ,location ( I want to stay in Texas, and facilities ( some have impressed me more than others). Visits can tell you a lot about what you like and what you don’t , I hope you enjoy it :). Law school visits are fun.

  • westcoastbestcoastwestcoastbestcoast Alum Member
    edited March 2018 3788 karma

    scholarship, employment outcomes and quality of life/cost of living

  • Seeking PerfectionSeeking Perfection Alum Member
    4423 karma

    I know it violates the spirit of your question but scholarships, cost of attendance, and cost of living are my focus.

  • _oshun1__oshun1_ Alum Member
    edited March 2018 3652 karma

    if all of the logically important factors are equal, then I would choose the most gay friendly school closest to the ocean/a body of water. Also important -- internships and clinics. Corroborative students. Accessible professors.

  • TheMikeyTheMikey Alum Member
    4196 karma

    besides cost of attendance and employment prospects, some could be that I like to know (from current/former students, not the schools themselves) if the student body is collegial/cut throat, what clinics/externship opportunities do they have that align with my goals, good faculty.

  • testfromawaytestfromaway Alum Member
    280 karma

    I'm looking for what opportunities there are for travel/interesting internships, how liveable the city is, and how classmates seem to treat each other.

    To that last point, I attended a college for undergrad that did not have grades. At all. I haven't been in a competitive (vs collaborative) academic space since high school. I understand how and why law school will be competitive, but I hope to find a place that doesn't leave me feeling like I am always against my peers instead of side by side with them.

  • jyarmojyarmo Alum Member
    350 karma

    Thank you all so much! I really appreciate the feedback and have added a few things to my list, particularly the student vibe (collaborative vs. cut throat) as well professor accessibility. The school I'm visiting is 'on paper' the best fit for me (affordable, program fit, NTS+, location perfect, etc) so really hoping it feels right! Have a great weekend all - :)

  • LSAT_WreckerLSAT_Wrecker Legacy Member
    4850 karma

    @jyarmo, definitely interested to hear feedback on the other side of your trip with respect to how / if you were able to gather any reliable feedback on the collaborative vs cut throat aspect of the student body. That is a very important factor to me as well and I’d love to hear how you tried to interrogate that particular question during your visit. Good luck!

  • goingfor99thgoingfor99th Member
    3072 karma

    @testfromaway said:
    I'm looking for what opportunities there are for travel/interesting internships, how liveable the city is, and how classmates seem to treat each other.

    To that last point, I attended a college for undergrad that did not have grades. At all. I haven't been in a competitive (vs collaborative) academic space since high school. I understand how and why law school will be competitive, but I hope to find a place that doesn't leave me feeling like I am always against my peers instead of side by side with them.

    Look into Berkeley and HYS.

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