Chicago or Columbia?


natassja
Hi guys!

I was admitted in December at CLS and in February at Chicago.

At first, I thought that I will attend Columbia, since I believed that, besides Yale (undoubtedly the best), CLS was the best law school, at the same level that SLS and HLS, but I have heard this last months that, considering only the law school (not the city, since most people prefer NYC), Chicago is better than CLS, and that they have similar prestige.

What do you think? Does somebody knows what US lawyers think about?

Thanks!
Hi guys!

I was admitted in December at CLS and in February at Chicago.

At first, I thought that I will attend Columbia, since I believed that, besides Yale (undoubtedly the best), CLS was the best law school, at the same level that SLS and HLS, but I have heard this last months that, considering only the law school (not the city, since most people prefer NYC), Chicago is better than CLS, and that they have similar prestige.

What do you think? Does somebody knows what US lawyers think about?

Thanks!
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icep
I'll start. I think that's a tough decision, and I'd be interested to hear what others have to say.

Both schools can lay claim to the Barack Obama effect.

Chicago has a smaller and more personalised programme. Columbia's in New York. I've seen people argue that proximity to the job market there is an advantage. I doubt that. It certainly isn't in current times. But the location itself is probably still a plus.

Did an academic tell you that Chicago was better, or did someone in practice? Better in what way?
I'll start. I think that's a tough decision, and I'd be interested to hear what others have to say.

Both schools can lay claim to the Barack Obama effect.

Chicago has a smaller and more personalised programme. Columbia's in New York. I've seen people argue that proximity to the job market there is an advantage. I doubt that. It certainly isn't in current times. But the location itself is probably still a plus.

Did an academic tell you that Chicago was better, or did someone in practice? Better in what way?
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Jenny1980
I need advices too!!

I was sure about CLS too, but now I'm facing the same "problem".

Columbia or Chicago, that's the question.
I need advices too!!

I was sure about CLS too, but now I'm facing the same "problem".

Columbia or Chicago, that's the question.

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Seems to me as if for the domestic US market, especially regarding the J.D. degree, not the LL.M., there's no difference at all in reputation and prestige. I just know for a fact that in my country, and probably in Middle Europe as a whole, Columbia has the better brand name. Superficial, yes, but that's how it is. That "prestige" argument (at least for abroad) combined with its location slightly outweighs the smaller class size and consequent intimacy as well as the immensely high academic quality of Chicago. It's a very personal decision, though.
Seems to me as if for the domestic US market, especially regarding the J.D. degree, not the LL.M., there's no difference at all in reputation and prestige. I just know for a fact that in my country, and probably in Middle Europe as a whole, Columbia has the better brand name. Superficial, yes, but that's how it is. That "prestige" argument (at least for abroad) combined with its location slightly outweighs the smaller class size and consequent intimacy as well as the immensely high academic quality of Chicago. It's a very personal decision, though.
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grugani
I am facing this problem and I am 80% sure I'll get Chicago... Smaller class, cheaper living costs, and I intend to work in NY after the LLM (and, therefore, enjoy 2 different experiences in the US)... On the other hand, Columbia has a better reputation in Brazil among the general public.

I confess although it's been hard times to pick-up one of them...
I am facing this problem and I am 80% sure I'll get Chicago... Smaller class, cheaper living costs, and I intend to work in NY after the LLM (and, therefore, enjoy 2 different experiences in the US)... On the other hand, Columbia has a better reputation in Brazil among the general public.

I confess although it's been hard times to pick-up one of them...
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nylaw777
I would definitely recommend Chicago over Columbia for four main reasons. I have friends who have done both programs so have heard quite a bit about both schools.

1. Chicago is MUCH MUCH cheaper than New York and is generally a more beautiful, cleaner city.
2. Chicago has a smaller LLM program and better job placement than Columbia. At Chicago, the Career Services department can get to know every LLM student and is 100% behind each LLM student. At Colubmia, it's easy to get lost in the crowd and just be a number (And not end up with a job!).
3. Chicago is THE best university in the world for economics (Just count all their Nobel Prizes). If you are interested in anything related to Law and Economics, Chicago has the best faculty in the world (Posner, etc). Columbia doesn't even come close for law and economics.
4. Chicago has a more intellectual and personalized community than Columbia. In fact, Chicago produces far more law professors and judicial clerks than Columbia on a per student basis.
I would definitely recommend Chicago over Columbia for four main reasons. I have friends who have done both programs so have heard quite a bit about both schools.

1. Chicago is MUCH MUCH cheaper than New York and is generally a more beautiful, cleaner city.
2. Chicago has a smaller LLM program and better job placement than Columbia. At Chicago, the Career Services department can get to know every LLM student and is 100% behind each LLM student. At Colubmia, it's easy to get lost in the crowd and just be a number (And not end up with a job!).
3. Chicago is THE best university in the world for economics (Just count all their Nobel Prizes). If you are interested in anything related to Law and Economics, Chicago has the best faculty in the world (Posner, etc). Columbia doesn't even come close for law and economics.
4. Chicago has a more intellectual and personalized community than Columbia. In fact, Chicago produces far more law professors and judicial clerks than Columbia on a per student basis.
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Jenny1980
Hey nylaw777, are you American?

Because I am asking American lawyers which law school has a better brand name within USA.

About the city, I prefear NYC than Chicago, and the cost are similar (at least I perceive that), but agree with you about the size of the class.
Hey nylaw777, are you American?

Because I am asking American lawyers which law school has a better brand name within USA.

About the city, I prefear NYC than Chicago, and the cost are similar (at least I perceive that), but agree with you about the size of the class.
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nylaw777
yeah, i am american. chicago generally has a more intellectual climate and better reputation for law. columbia is okay in some niche areas, but chicago is clearly recognized as the world leader in everything related to law and economics.

new york is WAY more expensive than chicago!!!!! housing, food, transportation are definitely going to cost you significantly more than in chicago. talk to anybody who has lived in new york and chicago and you'll realize that new york drains your wallet faster than any city in america

plus, chicago's campus has a more intimate feel than columbia. it's easy to get lost at columbia (and ha, students literally dissapear sometime!) chicago offers the best of both worlds - a world class city and a close knit law community
yeah, i am american. chicago generally has a more intellectual climate and better reputation for law. columbia is okay in some niche areas, but chicago is clearly recognized as the world leader in everything related to law and economics.

new york is WAY more expensive than chicago!!!!! housing, food, transportation are definitely going to cost you significantly more than in chicago. talk to anybody who has lived in new york and chicago and you'll realize that new york drains your wallet faster than any city in america

plus, chicago's campus has a more intimate feel than columbia. it's easy to get lost at columbia (and ha, students literally dissapear sometime!) chicago offers the best of both worlds - a world class city and a close knit law community
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nylaw777
And if you're an Obama supporter, you'll hear some great stories about him from the Chicago law faculty!!!

Ha, maybe Obama will even stop by for a visit some time to the Law School since he still has a lot of close links to Chicago.
And if you're an Obama supporter, you'll hear some great stories about him from the Chicago law faculty!!!

Ha, maybe Obama will even stop by for a visit some time to the Law School since he still has a lot of close links to Chicago.
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App2009
I am facing the same "problem"...I do not know which one should I choose: NYU (with full tuition scholarshing and being a professor assistant), CLS or Chicago. Can anybody give me some piece of advice? Tks
I am facing the same "problem"...I do not know which one should I choose: NYU (with full tuition scholarshing and being a professor assistant), CLS or Chicago. Can anybody give me some piece of advice? Tks
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junto344
If you are ever considering going into legal teaching in the future, you should definitely pick CHICAGO!

In America, Chicago is often thought of as a feeder school for law professors, whereas CLS and NYU are not.

Chicago, HLS, SLS, Yale are the best schools for future law professors. From what I hear, legal teaching is a nice alternative to 100 hour weeks :-)
If you are ever considering going into legal teaching in the future, you should definitely pick CHICAGO!

In America, Chicago is often thought of as a feeder school for law professors, whereas CLS and NYU are not.

Chicago, HLS, SLS, Yale are the best schools for future law professors. From what I hear, legal teaching is a nice alternative to 100 hour weeks :-)
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rbp
At the JD level, both Columbia and U Chicago are considered excellent schools. I have a couple of professors who went to U Chicago and one who went to Columbia. But I think there is a big difference between the JD program and the LL.M. program. You want to look at the LL.M program in the particular specialty. I really wouldn't do this by trying to figure out which school is slightly more prestigious from U.S. News & World Report's at the JD level.

Anyway, just my two cents.
At the JD level, both Columbia and U Chicago are considered excellent schools. I have a couple of professors who went to U Chicago and one who went to Columbia. But I think there is a big difference between the JD program and the LL.M. program. You want to look at the LL.M program in the particular specialty. I really wouldn't do this by trying to figure out which school is slightly more prestigious from U.S. News & World Report's at the JD level.

Anyway, just my two cents.
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wolla
I'm in the same boat - admitted to both Chicago and CLS.

If we focus on the areas of corporate finance and capital markets, which school should I prefer?
I'm in the same boat - admitted to both Chicago and CLS.

If we focus on the areas of corporate finance and capital markets, which school should I prefer?
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natassja
Hard decision

Which one do you think has a better brand name in Europe?
Hard decision…

Which one do you think has a better brand name in Europe?
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Santa
Columbia is still better known with the big companies I think, but with law firms it makes no difference.
Columbia is still better known with the big companies I think, but with law firms it makes no difference.
quote
If you are ever considering going into legal teaching in the future, you should definitely pick CHICAGO!

In America, Chicago is often thought of as a feeder school for law professors, whereas CLS and NYU are not... From what I hear, legal teaching is a nice alternative to 100 hour weeks :-)


A few quick thoughts: (1) Chicago is, and has always been, viewed as an intellectual haven. Yale and Chicago are, in my opinion, the top two if you are considering an academic career; (2) Having worked long weeks in law firms as an American attorney, life as a professor is much different...Hence the competitiveness of securing a teaching job.

I would not discount Columbia. I know a very sharp and accomplished professor who earned an LLM at Columbia.
<blockquote>If you are ever considering going into legal teaching in the future, you should definitely pick CHICAGO!

In America, Chicago is often thought of as a feeder school for law professors, whereas CLS and NYU are not... From what I hear, legal teaching is a nice alternative to 100 hour weeks :-) </blockquote>

A few quick thoughts: (1) Chicago is, and has always been, viewed as an intellectual haven. Yale and Chicago are, in my opinion, the top two if you are considering an academic career; (2) Having worked long weeks in law firms as an American attorney, life as a professor is much different...Hence the competitiveness of securing a teaching job.

I would not discount Columbia. I know a very sharp and accomplished professor who earned an LLM at Columbia.
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Pitch
If you are looking for a job go with Columbia, 100%
At the job fair you can really tell the difference between HLS and CLS LLMs and the others from Chicago, YLS and other schools. Who got the highest number of interviews? CLS and HLS students.
Who got the highest number of call backs? HLS and CLS students (more CLS because in this market law firms are not willing to pay for travel for the interview, so CLS students are directly in NYC and they don't cost a single penny)

In addition, and especially with a recession still on the go, best (and maybe only) way to get a job is by networking and the best place where you can do that is in New York...
So, in the end, choose CLS
Cheers
If you are looking for a job go with Columbia, 100%
At the job fair you can really tell the difference between HLS and CLS LLMs and the others from Chicago, YLS and other schools. Who got the highest number of interviews? CLS and HLS students.
Who got the highest number of call backs? HLS and CLS students (more CLS because in this market law firms are not willing to pay for travel for the interview, so CLS students are directly in NYC and they don't cost a single penny)

In addition, and especially with a recession still on the go, best (and maybe only) way to get a job is by networking and the best place where you can do that is in New York...
So, in the end, choose CLS
Cheers
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yasminm
Agree with Pitch on the CLS and HLS effect (though I would also categorise SLS and YLS in that category), but a lot depends on your objectives of the LLM. As some of the people above rightly pointed out, Chicago is law and economics haven - it is, quite frankly, difficult to find a better place to develop an understanding in that field than Chicago. If the aim is to break into the US academic market, I'd go for Chicago as well (needless to say, the argument becomes even more powerful if you want to be a law and economics academic!).

If the aim is a law firm career, then CLS I suspect. It has more students, but generally speaking, being in New York and the Columbia brand name helps a fair bit, and in this market, every small thing that helps can be important. Although truth be told, it is close to impossible to find employment whether you go to CLS or Chicago in the present market.
Agree with Pitch on the CLS and HLS effect (though I would also categorise SLS and YLS in that category), but a lot depends on your objectives of the LLM. As some of the people above rightly pointed out, Chicago is law and economics haven - it is, quite frankly, difficult to find a better place to develop an understanding in that field than Chicago. If the aim is to break into the US academic market, I'd go for Chicago as well (needless to say, the argument becomes even more powerful if you want to be a law and economics academic!).

If the aim is a law firm career, then CLS I suspect. It has more students, but generally speaking, being in New York and the Columbia brand name helps a fair bit, and in this market, every small thing that helps can be important. Although truth be told, it is close to impossible to find employment whether you go to CLS or Chicago in the present market.
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lawthinker
of coz Columbia
of coz Columbia
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chicago or nyu? for teaching, of course chicago I assume, but what about law firm career?any thoughts?
chicago or nyu? for teaching, of course chicago I assume, but what about law firm career?any thoughts?
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