How To Choose Among Law School Acceptances
You’ve received more than one law school acceptance. You’ve made it. You’re going to law school.
Now comes the tough part – which law school will you choose?
ONLY FACTOR ACTUAL OFFERS – FOR NOW
To simplify your decision, Kuris recommends applicants to only weigh existing offers and ignore schools that have yet to get back to you.
“Don’t give up hope on schools that put you on the waitlist, but they shouldn’t factor into decisions between existing offers once deposits are due,” Kuris writes. “If you are genuinely interested in a school that wait-listed you, try to avoid obsessing over it. Simply send a letter of continued interest, stay on the list and make a decision if and when an opportunity appears.”
VISIT EACH SCHOOL
Experts say one of the best ways to make a decision is to actually visit the schools you’ve been accepted into.
“Research is an imperfect substitute for real-life experience,” Kuris writes. “Explore the campus, attend a class, check out flyers and event listings, and grab lunch in the cafe. Talk to students, perhaps even a professor. Observe the culture and take notes on your own reactions and comfort level.”
Additionally, experts say, it can be helpful to reach out to career services at a law school and ask any employment-related questions you may have.
“Ask how many recent graduates land jobs in the state you hope to work in,” Hillary Mantis, director of the pre-law advising program at Fordham University, writes for National Jurist. “Are they overwhelmingly employed in state or going to work all over the region? This may help you determine, beyond rankings, which law school is best connected to employers in the area you hope to practice in.”
LOOK AT FINANCIAL OFFERS
Law school, for many, is a huge financial investment. That’s why it’s important to consider financial offers from each school.
Kuris recommends applicants consider factors such as tuition, cost of living, scholarships and loans, terms and conditions of financial assistance, and loan repayment options.
“Having competing offers in hand puts you in a better position to negotiate merit-based aid, so don’t shy away from politely asking a school to match a rival’s offer,” Kuris writes. “Carefully weigh each school’s financial impact, because law school is a major financial commitment.”