April 17, 2002
Monday afternoon, I sent in my deposit to the George Washington University Law School. It turned out to be a very difficult decision for a lot of reasons.
First of all, I'm still waiting to hear from four schools, at least two of which trump GW for me. I'm on the waitlist at Hastings and Georgetown, and haven't heard a thing from USC or UCLA. I'm really pleased to have had the options I had, but I found it very difficult to put my heart into a decision with so much still in the air. If the other schools all say no, I'll be psyched to go to GW. In the meantime, however, being in limbo blows.
Second, deciding between GW and Boston University was complicated. BU had a vibe I really liked. Something intangible. I got it from the students, admissions staff and faculty when I visited. They made me want to go to BU. At GW, one staff member was outright rude to me. The Dean I met was really friendly and helpful. The rest of my visit there, though, was nice but entirely unexceptional. I did not leave the school high on GW the way I had left BU a few weeks prior. Both schools are in excellent locations. BU is right on the Charles River, with a great view of downtown Boston. GW is spitting distance from the White House and various other things of interest to the budding attorney. In terms of prestige, they are comparable. Both are excellent in their regions, but neither has a significantly better reputation nationwide. Both schools have excellent programs for intellectual property law.
The deciding factor, in the end, was that I think GW has an edge when it comes to west coast job placement. When I asked at BU about getting placement in California, I was told that it can be done. Not as many firms recruit from California at BU, so you have to put in a lot more effort on your own. Basically, they put a positive spin on the fact that it's tough. At GW, the answer was more along the lines of "Of course you can get a job in California afterwards! Not only do lots of California firms recruit on campus, but here are a bunch of other ways we make it possible for you." Every third-year student I talked to seemed to know someone going to California after graduation. And there are a lot more California firms recruiting from GW than from BU.
But I still feel kind of bad about turning BU down. They were really nice to me, and went out of their way to show that they were interested in me in particular, not just as another potential tuition-payer. No regrets about declining Boston College or Santa Clara, but BU treated me well, and as excited as I am about GW, a small part of me wishes BU had more to offer so I could decide the other way.
Posted by buddha at April 17, 2002 01:56 PM
Posted by: shoop at April 17, 2002 11:21 PM
Thanks! Congrats are in order, I guess. I mean, I'm still in limbo, but less so than before. And I really like GW. I just can't put my heart into it until the rest is resolved.
I did the same for undergrad. I said yes to two schools while I sat on a third school's waiting list. I didn't make a final decision until much later, but once I did, I was gung ho. This will probably be much the same.
Posted by: dan at April 17, 2002 11:59 PM
Dude, that's awesome. Way to go! Options are very nice and don't discount your fav four yet. Being in limbo with acceptances is waaaaaay better than the alternatives.
Posted by: DK at April 18, 2002 12:45 PM
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