Pre-Law & Chicago

<p>Newmassdad - I don't know how much more I can do with the stats that are publicly available. I've pointed to the average number of applicants from Chicago, provided Yale as a reference point, and then literally PLEADED - both with current students and with the pre-law adviser at Chicago- for the school to release it's placement stats. Despite all my efforts, it doesn't look like we're any closer to having this information be publicly available.</p>

<p>Besides that, we have my anecdotal evidence, Maroon8 - a current student - who suggests that Chicago's law placement stats "aren't amazing," and a Maroon article that suggests the school impedes the Chicago applicants' success in the law school app process. Based on these sources and the very impressive Yale data, I then go on to suggest that the "average" Chicago applicant does not do as well as the "average" Yale applicant. From there, you accuse me of bashing the U of C.</p>

<p>So now, let me plead with you: I believe you either currently have or recently saw some of your children graduate from Chicago. Would you mind spending 2 minutes to shoot an e-mail to the pre-law adviser to get SOME data? It seems from the vitriol you sometimes spout in my direction, that you - just like I - have a vested interest in Chicago's success. Accordingly, I've made my efforts to find as much data as possible. You accuse me of bashing, but if you please just spent a couple minutes sending an e-mail to the pre-law adviser, we might actually get somewhere. Let me know if you'd be willing to do this. I've asked for stats both from the institution and on this board, but to no avail. Any help you could provide would be GREATLY appreciated.</p>

<p>Maroon8 - I said that out of the top 15 or so schools, FOUR schools (Harvard, NYU, Columbia, and Georgetown) are in the 450-550 range. I never said the majority of top law schools were that large. Also, you're right, I forgot that Duke was around 200 students.</p>

<p>Also, LSAC gives us the exact numbers for how many Chicago applicants apply to law school every year. The number fluctuates from around 200-250 students per year. That's similar to the number of applicants from Columbia, Brown, and Dartmouth. </p>

<p>Also, not to be harsh, but I still don't think that, just because our "top" students aren't applying, we (as in Chicago) shouldn't still boast stellar law school placement stats. Fine, they may not be as strong as Yale's, but when a class as uniformly strong as a Chicago class graduates, I would expect the MAJORITY of students to go on and earn impressive acceptances, jobs, etc. This may be greedy of me, but as an interested alum, I'm sure Yale etc. does a very good job with a good chunk of their class, and I'd hope Chicago is getting closer to being on that same page. </p>

<p>As JHS said, the "run of the mill" Yale grad interested in law school is still getting into a great school. Perhaps Chicago isn't quite as strong because of its academic tilt, but it still should be quite competitive. In this regard, a look at the raw numbers would be helpful. I certainly don't see how it would hurt. We already know roughly how many Chicago students apply each year to law school (220-250), why would it be detrimental to see more specific statistics?</p>

<p>Also, Maroon8, here's what I get when you look at the top 15 schools according to US News (Texas and UCLA tie for 15th according to USN). (I'm just going on the US News data on the website, and then dividing the total number of students by 3 to get students per class)</p>

<p>Yale (588 students total, so 196 per class)</p>

<p>Harvard (1730 total, so 576 per class)</p>

<p>Stanford (539 total, so 180 per class)</p>

<p>Columbia (1266 total, so 422 per class)</p>

<p>NYU (1423 total, so 474 per class)</p>

<p>Chicago (593 total, so 197 per class)</p>

<p>Berkeley (865, so 288 per class)</p>

<p>UPenn (786, so 262 per class)</p>

<p>Michigan (1,151, so 383 per class)</p>

<p>Duke (611, so 204 per class)</p>

<p>Northwestern (779, so 260 per class)</p>

<p>Virginia (1155, so 385 per class)</p>

<p>Cornell (591, so 197 per class)</p>

<p>Georgetown (1631, so 545 per class)</p>

<p>UCLA (1012, so 337 per class)</p>

<p>Texas (1233, so 411 per class)</p>

<p>Overall for the top 15 or so schools, the class average is then about 333 per class. I don't know a ton about law schools specifically, but I've heard the "Top 15" are roughly the most coveted schools in the country.</p>

<p>Again, I don't quite buy your argument that our placement stats are worse because fewer and less qualified Chicago students apply to law school. While I believe we (we as in Chicago) are a very phd-preparation oriented school, but if you look at the LSAC data, we send out about as many law school apps per year as Columbia, Brown, Princeton, and Dartmouth - and all these schools are roughly the same size as Chicago. We have about the same number of students applying, and the data is publicly available for a school like Princeton - so it'd be interesting to see how we fare in the head to head analysis.</p>

<p>As another point of interest, here are Penn's pre-law stats:</p>

<p>Career</a> Services, University of Pennsylvania</p>

<p>Interestingly, in 2008, 436 Penn students or alums applied to law school. The same year, according to LSAC, 222 Chicago students applied to law school. Penn is about twice the size as Chicago, and, despite all the talk about Penn being quite a pre-professional place and Chicago being more academic, Chicago students applied to law school at about the same clip as their peers from Penn. </p>

<p>Now, while maybe Penn's law applicant group was stronger than Chicago's, it perhaps provides a more realistic comparison point than Yale. Based on these stats, to be comparable, Chicago would need to send about 10 kids per year to Harvard, 5-6 a year to Columbia, 11 per year to NYU, 8 to Georgetown, etc. If you shift for Chicago's midwestern location, you would still expect to see Chicago send high numbers to NU, Michigan, etc. Maroon8, if you would extrapolate your anecdotal experiences out a bit, and say that yeah, it's probably accurate that Chicago's sending 10 a year to Harvard, 10 to NYU, etc., then maybe we've gotten better of late. I still have my doubts, and accordingly would love to see some numbers, either from a current student, or for another invested alum who manages to get through to the remarkably unresponsive pre-law advisers.</p>

<p>I would say that with respect to Harvard/Yale/Stanford, Chicago definitely matches UPenn's or comes quite close. </p>

<p>Another factor for Midwesterners -- state law schools are feasible (and cheap) options. If you scan the associates at major Chicago firms, you see a lot of U of Illinois, U of Iowa and U of Wisconsin graduates. If someone is interested in being involved in politics/government in a midwestern state or is sure they want to live in a particular midwestern city, it's not clear that paying $60,000 a year for a Top 14 school on the coast makes much sense.</p>

<p>Since I don't have the Chicago stats, here are the breakdowns found at a few top law schools based on what I could find on from law schools directly, or just through quick google searches.</p>

<p>For Yale Law: <a href=""&gt;;/a&gt;&lt;/p>

<li><p>Scroll down to page 139 on the Yale Law bulletin. Total, there are 13 Chicago grads currently at Yale Law, a number comparable to Dartmouth, but considerably behind a few other schools that send out a comparable number of apps each year - Columbia (26 total at Yale law), Brown (20 total at Yale Law), and Princeton (65 total at Yale law).</p></li>
<li><p>For Harvard, based on data from a college confidential poster, this was the situation in 2006:</p></li>

<p>Originally Posted by the_prestige
Top HLS Per Capita Numbers:</p>

<p>Top 20 National Universities
Rank Name Ratio
1 Harvard University 6.80
2 Yale University 11.69
3 Stanford University 20.67
4 Princeton University 22.76
5 Brown University 29.98
6 Dartmouth College 30.69
7 Columbia University 36.07
8 Rice University 40.11
9 Duke University 42.05
10 University of Pennsylvania 44.77
11 Georgetown University 48.47
12 Brandeis University 67.18
13 Cornell University 69.07
14 Massachusetts Inst. of Technology 71.14
15 University of California-Berkeley 85.44
16 Emory University 89.93
17 University of Chicago 92.54
18 Northwestern University 97.60
19 University of Notre Dame 98.30
20 University of California-Los Angeles 113.38</p>

<p>So roughly 1 of every 7 students at Harvard Law hails from Harvard Undergrad. Princeton, Dartmouth, Columbia, and Brown all have a similar number of law school applicants per year as Chicago, bu P, D, C, and B do considerably better based on a per capita basis. </p>

<p>The full post with this data can be found here: <a href=""&gt;;/a&gt;&lt;/p>

<p>Here is the UVA Law class profile for the current class:</p>

<p>2012: Class</a> of 2012 Profile</p>

<p>Yale, Princeton, Dartmouth, Duke have at least 6 per more, Chicago isn't listed.</p>

<p>Maroon8 - with regard to affordable good midwestern law schools drawing Chicago undergrads, my response to you would be: maybe. If you look at the Illinois Law class profile for 2012, however, notice that Chicago isn't represented AT ALL in the class:</p>

<p><a href=""&gt;;/a&gt;&lt;/p>

<p>You have someone from harvard, princeton, columbia, northwestern, etc. there, but no one from Chicago. Obviously, this is just a fluke year, but from what I know, the old adage for law school is: go to the highest ranking school that accepts you. I would be surprised if Chicago was really sending more than a handful of students per year to Minn, Iowa, etc. Chicago's student body is, by all accounts, getting wealthier, which means the push to get into a top, "national" law school would be more pressing.</p>


<p>In the absence of DATA, the correct response is "I don't know".</p>

<p>Social data is difficult enough to interpret when it actually exists. To interpret (i.e. draw conclusions) in the absence of data is just unreasonable. </p>

<p>This is where we differ. I am comfortable with saying "I don't know". You seem to want to emphasize the negative. Why I do not know. (I don't have "data" on you so to speak...)</p>

<p>To put it another way, speculation is no substitute for information. Speculation is no basis for decision making. </p>

<p>Since this discussion is going no where, I will step out.</p>

<p>Newmassdad - I agree, the discussion would be much better if we had hard data available. I've contacted the pre-law adviser and never heard back, and I've pleaded with current students on the board to provide some hard data.</p>

<p>If you look at the above posts, I've also politely asked you to find the data if you can. Would you be willing to send a quick e-mail to Chicago's pre-law adviser. You have a horse in the race - your kids went (or go to) Chicago, so in essence, you've been a paying customer. Or, if one of your kids is currently at Chicago, maybe they could make an appointment and take a quick look at the law placement list? </p>

<p>I get the sense that you are more immediately connected to the U of C than I am. Accordingly, anything you could do to help bring the info to light would be greatly appreciated.</p>

<p>Newmassdad: I have been on this forum for quite awhile, and I noticed that you are becoming increasingly negative toward other posters on this forum. I believe that Cue7 is just as enthusiastic toward UofC as you are. I don't think Cue7 was deliberately bashing the University. He was just simply highlighting a sentiment that the student body already had; the sentiment that being a pre-med or pre-law at the UofC may be more challenging than at some other universities. It is fair to say that Cue7 was being negative, but it is just outright impolite to say that Cue7 is bashing the University. I do not think that any alumni deliberately try to bash their alma mater. I, along with many other posters on this forum, genuinely believe that Cue7 is simply trying to facilitate an insightful discussions. Let's keep the discussions that way. As a current student at this school, I have certainly heard numerous whining about the difficulties of pre-med, and certainly some people complain about being pre-meds and about Brown's seemingly easier (or what I call "pastoral" or "lala land") grading, but this does not diminish our love for this great institution. Let's be encouraging of others on this forum.</p>

<p>Cue7: Contrary to what Newmassdad believes, many of us do not think that you were bashing UofC. I think that you love the University just as much as we all do. Keep up the good work!</p>

<p>DivineComedy - Aw thanks for the kind words! I appreciate it. Also, contrary to what newmassdad may think, I'm a very big U of C booster. I wish the administration was more transparent at times, but in terms of the education offered and the quality of the school, it really is second to none. I hope you are enjoying your time in Hyde Park! I still miss it on a near-daily basis.</p>

Why won't the University release it's stats? I'm guessing they aren't amazing. But not because lots of applicants are failing to get in to law school, but rather that fewer of the top students at UChicago are applying to Law School. With more students seeking other graduate degrees (i.e. PhD.'s), there are fewer top students applying to law school from UChicago.


<p>Is it really true that UChicago undergrads seek PhD's at a higher rate than students from other schools? I've always heard that assertion being made, but it seems belied by the data. According to the data, the percentage of UChicago undergrads who completed PhD's in a recent 10 year period was 15.3%, not significantly higher than that of Yale (14.5%), Princeton (14.3%) and Harvard (14.3%). </p>

<p><a href=""&gt;;/a&gt;&lt;/p>

<p>Hence, it seems that whatever dearth UChicago may exhibit with regards to sending undergrads to law school, it cannot be reasonably attributed to them obtaining PhD's instead. Perhaps one could make the argument that a disproportionate percentage of UChicago undergrads attend PhD programs but don't actually finish the degree. Yet I doubt that this would be an argument that UChicago would like to make.</p>


<p>In the absence of DATA, the correct response is "I don't know".</p>

<p>Social data is difficult enough to interpret when it actually exists. To interpret (i.e. draw conclusions) in the absence of data is just unreasonable.</p>

<p>This is where we differ. I am comfortable with saying "I don't know". You seem to want to emphasize the negative. Why I do not know. (I don't have "data" on you so to speak...)</p>

<p>To put it another way, speculation is no substitute for information. Speculation is no basis for decision making.</p>

<p>Since this discussion is going no where, I will step out.


<p>What I find odd about this epistemological stance is that newmassdad doesn't seem to be particularly shy about voicing his opinions on plenty of other threads for which little hard data is presented, if it exists at all. For example, he has posted numerous threads regarding his opinions about UC that seem to be generalized from the experience of his daughter, which by nature is merely a 'case study' where the number of observations is by definition equal to one. Maybe UC is a strong school because of the positive experience enjoyed by his daughter, or maybe she just happens to be an outlier. But when confronted with actual statistical data - even if incomplete- that points to a conclusion he dislikes, he retreats behind a smokescreen of "I don't know". </p>

<p>The more fair way is to draw conclusions from whatever data is available. If newmassdad's daughter had a positive experience at UC and he wants to present that as data from which to draw conclusions, I have no problem with that. But similarly, others should be allowed to present possibly incomplete statistical data and draw conclusions from that. {If anything, the latter data is actually better than the former, for at least that data has information about more than one case.}</p>

<p>If anything, the truly 'correct' response to deficiencies of the data should actually be: "I don't know, but I want to find out.", which is where Cue7's suggestion is apropos. So to enlighten us all, how about if newmassdad, Cue7, and I together write an email to the UC career office and ask them for data regarding the law schools that UC students are admitted to. Whatever response we obtain, we will pledge to post it here. That will allow us to modify our conclusions in light of whatever new evidence we find, or validate our concerns if no response is forthcoming. Barring that, how about we ask a current UC student - of which there surely must be some here on this board - to view the information and post some of it here. </p>

<p>Otherwise, it seems to me that the actual (and sad) response being invoked is: "I don't know, and I don't want to know."</p>

<p>To be clear, I have nothing against UC. Indeed, I believe that UC offers an education that is highly beneficial to a great many of its students. But - here's the rub - I can't "prove" that. Nobody is going to allow me to run an experiment where I take a bunch of students, have half of them randomly assigned to attend UC and the other half to some reference school and then track their career paths and happiness over time.</p>