Penn vs Berkeley : what would you do?


go_bears

Hey everyone,
Im an LL.M. at Boalt just came across these posts. I didnt have time to carefully read all of them and will not be able to respond as they surely deserve.
Because Im amazed by my year at Boalt and the doors it is opening to me, yes, I can be very biased. Having spent some time here, I would come to Berkeley again without even considering other schools.
Since the focus of the discussion is Boalts financial situation, it may be helpful for you to access The Campaign for Boalt Hall website - http://www.law.berkeley.edu/campaign/cgoals. Youll see that the scenario is just the opposite of what some people here are suggesting. It's not my opinion, just facts.
Dean Edley is leading the most ambitious fund raising campaign ever seen in this school (goal of $125mi), which will allow, among others (check the website for details), increasing the faculty in 40%.
Contradicting what I read in previous posts, the school is fiercely disputing to continue to hire the most prominent legal minds in the US. 12 new faculty members are starting next fall.
The current feeling at Boalt is that, under Dean Edleys administration, the school is heading for an amazing escalation, and the people who are graduating are already upset for not being part of what is coming up.
Yes, it is a public school (in fact, only 30% of all funds come from the State of California) with, I believe, less money than what the peers in prestige have if you have the chance to visit other schools, maybe youll feel a difference in the facilities and support from the Career Development Office (I cant complaint at all if compare with my home country university). Yet, this doesnt affect the faculty the school has (if it could be even better, great maybe Boalt wouldnt rank #8 according to US News) and the doors it opens to the job market within or outside the US.
Well, I hope this helps to clarify. Again, my point of view may be biased, but Id seriously encourage those who are contemplating coming to Boalt.
My best wishes to all of you. I'm sure you'll have a great year no matter where.

Hey everyone,
I’m an LL.M. at Boalt just came across these posts. I didn’t have time to carefully read all of them and will not be able to respond as they surely deserve.
Because I’m amazed by my year at Boalt and the doors it is opening to me, yes, I can be very biased. Having spent some time here, I would come to Berkeley again without even considering other schools.
Since the focus of the discussion is Boalt’s financial situation, it may be helpful for you to access “The Campaign for Boalt Hall” website - http://www.law.berkeley.edu/campaign/cgoals. You’ll see that the scenario is just the opposite of what some people here are suggesting. It's not my opinion, just facts.
Dean Edley is leading the most ambitious fund raising campaign ever seen in this school (goal of $125mi), which will allow, among others (check the website for details), increasing the faculty in 40%.
Contradicting what I read in previous posts, the school is fiercely disputing to continue to hire the most prominent legal minds in the US. 12 new faculty members are starting next fall.
The current feeling at Boalt is that, under Dean Edley’s administration, the school is heading for an amazing escalation, and the people who are graduating are already upset for not being part of what is coming up.
Yes, it is a public school (in fact, only 30% of all funds come from the State of California) with, I believe, less money than what the peers in prestige have – if you have the chance to visit other schools, maybe you’ll feel a difference in the facilities and support from the Career Development Office (I can’t complaint at all if compare with my home country university). Yet, this doesn’t affect the faculty the school has (if it could be even better, great – maybe Boalt wouldn’t rank #8 according to US News) and the doors it opens to the job market within or outside the US.
Well, I hope this helps to clarify. Again, my point of view may be biased, but I’d seriously encourage those who are contemplating coming to Boalt.
My best wishes to all of you. I'm sure you'll have a great year no matter where.
quote
HighFlyer

I also agree with the viewpoint that such a tiny difference on ranking between Berkeley and Penn should be trivial for the decision. However, I still have to correct the wrong statement below.

As a matter of fact, since the US New started to publish its law school ranking in 1987, there are totally seven times for Berkeley dropping behind the Top 10 (the lowest rank was 13 in 90, 96 & 04), while there are only five times for Penn (the lowest rank was 12 in 99 &00). Therefore, from a long period prospect, Penns ranking is more stable than Berkeley indeed.

Just to clarify the fact, I dont mean to judge which school is better hereby.


You might object that because of rankings you're not going to get the same value than in UPenn.
I don't think this is true: UPenn is 7th whereas Berkeley is 8th (and the difference between the two is 1/100 on the absolute scale).
But: Berkeley has consistently ranked among the top 10 since US News ranks schools, while UPenn (much like NYU) has climbed the rankings more recently (I'm not saying this is something to be ashamed of - just that choosing Berkeley your prestige investment looks more stable in a long period prospect).

I also agree with the viewpoint that such a tiny difference on ranking between Berkeley and Penn should be trivial for the decision. However, I still have to correct the wrong statement below.

As a matter of fact, since the US New started to publish its law school ranking in 1987, there are totally seven times for Berkeley dropping behind the Top 10 (the lowest rank was 13 in ’90, ’96 & ‘04), while there are only five times for Penn (the lowest rank was 12 in ’99 &’00). Therefore, from a long period prospect, Penn’s ranking is more stable than Berkeley indeed.

Just to clarify the fact, I don’t mean to judge which school is better hereby.

<blockquote>
You might object that because of rankings you're not going to get the same value than in UPenn.
I don't think this is true: UPenn is 7th whereas Berkeley is 8th (and the difference between the two is 1/100 on the absolute scale).
But: Berkeley has consistently ranked among the top 10 since US News ranks schools, while UPenn (much like NYU) has climbed the rankings more recently (I'm not saying this is something to be ashamed of - just that choosing Berkeley your prestige investment looks more stable in a long period prospect).
quote
richardcjy

First of all, ranking is not a huge issue here. But I tend to agree Penn Law is more stable than Boalt Hall in terms of ranking in recent years. And from your name i suppose you are from Greater China (TW is my guess, pls correct me if i am totally wrong). I am surprised to hear that Penn is unknown there. Penn is definitely famous and has lots of alumni worldwide.

From your post, i feel that you like California more. Then I think Berkeley is a good choice. And both are really good school. I think you won't go wrong either way, therefore follow your guts^^


First of all, ranking is not a huge issue here. But I tend to agree Penn Law is more stable than Boalt Hall in terms of ranking in recent years. And from your name i suppose you are from Greater China (TW is my guess, pls correct me if i am totally wrong). I am surprised to hear that Penn is unknown there. Penn is definitely famous and has lots of alumni worldwide.

From your post, i feel that you like California more. Then I think Berkeley is a good choice. And both are really good school. I think you won't go wrong either way, therefore follow your guts^^

quote
dam

I'm sorry for my inaccuracies.
I promise to review my sources more thoroughly in the future.

I'm sorry for my inaccuracies.
I promise to review my sources more thoroughly in the future.
quote
figaro

Guys,

here is a US-News Ranking-Chart and List of the past 10 years. Somebody had posted it somewhere on this board before. Penn has had a constant #7 for the past five years, Berkeley, well have a look. Anyway, ranking's important but not decisive to my mind.

http://www.concurringopinions.com/archives/2006/04/us_news_ranking_1.html

The chart and the table give a very good overview. Enjoy and good luck with your decision.

Guys,

here is a US-News Ranking-Chart and List of the past 10 years. Somebody had posted it somewhere on this board before. Penn has had a constant #7 for the past five years, Berkeley, well have a look. Anyway, ranking's important but not decisive to my mind.

http://www.concurringopinions.com/archives/2006/04/us_news_ranking_1.html

The chart and the table give a very good overview. Enjoy and good luck with your decision.
quote
fg

That chart is really interesting. Thanks for posting.

That chart is really interesting. Thanks for posting.
quote
figaro

my pleasure :-)

my pleasure :-)
quote
Chang

Thanx a lot guys. I really appreciate it.

Thanx a lot guys. I really appreciate it.
quote
Roger

Thanx a lot guys. I really appreciate it.


And now Chang, what will you do?

<blockquote>Thanx a lot guys. I really appreciate it.</blockquote>

And now Chang, what will you do?
quote
junior1891

Yes Chang, what will it be? And why?

Yes Chang, what will it be? And why?
quote
Chang

And now Chang, what will you do?


Yes Chang, what will it be? And why?


Well, OK, if you want to know, here it is my friends. Please note that all of this, below, is just my personal opinion. I respect anyones view and thank you again for having expressed yours.

Two of my friends went to Penn and got now positions in top law firms in NYC and London, and, but they could be biased of course, strongly advised me to get Penns LLM. Penn is ranked above Boalt by US News. Penn courses seem nicer in my field (litigation). I was also admitted in the Wharton Certificate Program and would probably get offered a RA position.

BUT,

Penn is almost unknown in my country (in Western Europe), even though it consistently ranks among the best US law schools. I think more or less 8-9 US LS are perceived (for good or bad reasons) with a strong reputation in my country: YLS, SLS (even though almost no one graduated from those), HLS, CLS, NYU (lots of graduates for these 3), Cornell & Georgetown (I dont know why the hell! maybe just coz a lot of lawyers from my country went there), maybe Chicago U, and Berkeley - the University, not Boalt Hall - is also very well known (perhaps mainly for historical reasons; again, I dont know).

If I gotta live only one year in the US, Id prefer it would be in Cali than in Philly (as I said before, Cali-NYC would have been a tougher call). Gimme sunshine!

I applied to Penn just because my friends strongly encouraged me to do so, and because it was then my secured choice. I never dreamt of going there.

When I was told I was admitted to the Wharton Certificate Program, I was first very happy about it. Cross-registration is one of Penns serious advantages. Nevertheless, I talked to my friends, and thought about it a bit (it happens sometimes), and came to the conclusion that if I would go to Penn, I would not follow such Program. This Certificate is a huge advantage for a lotta people, and I perfectly understand it. But in my case, I dont want to take mandatory courses for which I dont give a s like environmental law etc. (which are very important BTW). I would prefer to take one or two classes at Wharton (Negotiation with Diamond for example) that I would pick freely, and thats it.

RA position would be great, but Id say that my decision (that you can guess here) is based upon a particular and personal fact. I was being offered admission to Penn with a tuition waiver. However, to accept such an offer, I should have withdrawn any other applications from consideration (!). Some friends (other than the two I above mentioned) advised me to accept the offer, without withdrawing my other applications to Harv, Yale etc I did not. Consequently, I did not cheat (should I have?) and just turned down the offer. Unfortunately, I got rejected from HLS (my first choice, but it was a long shot uh?). Now, I lost Penns tuition waiver (!). But what is $20K if you work for a big law firm in NYC? I just can tell you (but this is very personal for sure) I cannot figure out to go there and keep thinking I got screwed. It is just humanly impossible for me, Im sorry.

So, to sum-up, after having deeply thought about it, I would choose Berkeley over Penn in my case. But, since I am still not sure if can afford it, to know if I will REALLY go to Berkeley is another story ;-)

See ya guys,

Chang

<blockquote>And now Chang, what will you do?</blockquote>

<blockquote>Yes Chang, what will it be? And why?</blockquote>

Well, OK, if you want to know, here it is my friends. Please note that all of this, below, is just my personal opinion. I respect anyone’s view and thank you again for having expressed yours.

Two of my friends went to Penn and got now positions in top law firms in NYC and London, and, but they could be biased of course, strongly advised me to get Penn’s LLM. Penn is ranked above Boalt by US News. Penn courses seem nicer in my field (litigation). I was also admitted in the Wharton Certificate Program and would probably get offered a RA position.

BUT,

Penn is almost unknown in my country (in Western Europe), even though it consistently ranks among the best US law schools. I think more or less 8-9 US LS are perceived (for good or bad reasons) with a strong reputation in my country: YLS, SLS (even though almost no one graduated from those), HLS, CLS, NYU (lots of graduates for these 3), Cornell & Georgetown (I don’t know why the hell! maybe just coz a lot of lawyers from my country went there), maybe Chicago U, and Berkeley - the University, not Boalt Hall - is also very well known (perhaps mainly for historical reasons; again, I don’t know).

If I gotta live only one year in the US, I’d prefer it would be in Cali than in Philly (as I said before, Cali-NYC would have been a tougher call). Gimme sunshine!

I applied to Penn just because my friends strongly encouraged me to do so, and because it was then my “secured” choice. I never dreamt of going there.

When I was told I was admitted to the Wharton Certificate Program, I was first very happy about it. Cross-registration is one of Penn’s serious advantages. Nevertheless, I talked to my friends, and thought about it a bit (it happens sometimes), and came to the conclusion that if I would go to Penn, I would not follow such Program. This Certificate is a huge advantage for a lotta people, and I perfectly understand it. But in my case, I don’t want to take mandatory courses for which I don’t give a s… like environmental law etc. (which are very important BTW). I would prefer to take one or two classes at Wharton (Negotiation with Diamond for example) that I would pick freely, and that’s it.

RA position would be great, but I’d say that my decision (that you can guess here) is based upon a particular and personal fact. I was being offered admission to Penn with a tuition waiver. However, to accept such an offer, I should have withdrawn any other applications from consideration (!). Some friends (other than the two I above mentioned) advised me to accept the offer, without withdrawing my other applications to Harv’, Yale etc… I did not. Consequently, I did not cheat (should I have?) and just turned down the offer. Unfortunately, I got rejected from HLS (my first choice, but it was a long shot uh?). Now, I lost Penn’s tuition waiver (!). But what is $20K if you work for a big law firm in NYC? I just can tell you (but this is very personal for sure) I cannot figure out to go there and keep thinking I got screwed. It is just humanly impossible for me, I’m sorry.

So, to sum-up, after having deeply thought about it, I would choose Berkeley over Penn in my case. But, since I am still not sure if can afford it, to know if I will REALLY go to Berkeley is another story… ;-)

See ya guys,

Chang
quote
fg

I can't believe Penn screwed you like that.
NYU actually did the same to me a few years back; they said they would only let me know if I got the Hauser if I committed to going to NYU and gave up all my other applications - crazy. Apparently they didn't want the Hauser to be used as a bargaining chip against the other unis but either way I thought it was a crap tactic.

Congratulations on finally making a decision. You must be relieved!

I can't believe Penn screwed you like that.
NYU actually did the same to me a few years back; they said they would only let me know if I got the Hauser if I committed to going to NYU and gave up all my other applications - crazy. Apparently they didn't want the Hauser to be used as a bargaining chip against the other unis but either way I thought it was a crap tactic.

Congratulations on finally making a decision. You must be relieved!
quote
Chang

they said they would only let me know if I got the Hauser if I committed to going to NYU and gave up all my other applications - crazy.


Damned crooks! It was a crap tactic, I agree. Naaa, *!*? 'em, I'll give my money to someone else.

<blockquote>they said they would only let me know if I got the Hauser if I committed to going to NYU and gave up all my other applications - crazy. </blockquote>

Damned crooks! It was a crap tactic, I agree. Naaa, *!*? 'em, I'll give my money to someone else.
quote
Roger

I will go to Berkeley next year.
I hope to see you there Chang!

I will go to Berkeley next year.
I hope to see you there Chang!
quote

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