Penn Students & Graduates Taking Questions

Discuss comparisons of various school choices and the various metrics that inform them, including rankings, student life, location, etc.
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BullPenn
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Re: Penn Students & Graduates Taking Questions

Post by BullPenn » Wed Mar 07, 2018 7:08 pm

JohnnieSockran wrote:
Tue Mar 06, 2018 9:09 pm
Responding to a few posts above...I'm a 2017 Penn grad, doing west coast biglaw. Penn has west coast reach- I don't really have significant ties here and had bottom 10% grades in my class (if not lower).

Also, I too found Penn extremely collaborative. Literally did not feel competitive at all. The few gunners were even generally nice people and willing to share notes with me, unprompted. Classmates actually just noticed if you missed a class and would freely send notes unsolicited (in my experience anyway).
abujabal wrote:
Wed Mar 07, 2018 5:39 pm
Thanks so much for taking the time! I think that's one of my biggest concerns about Penn - people have painted it to me as a very "gunners only" place, with little collaboration, but I'm not sure how much of that is true and how much of that is hyperbole.
I have literally never heard this, and frankly I'd question the veracity of the person who said this
abujabal wrote:
Wed Mar 07, 2018 5:39 pm
Could you speak a little more to your experience with your classmates? Did you find yourself studying often with them, or was it more of an individualistic approach? I know I'm someone who does best in a collaborative environment, so this is heartening to hear.
You can collaborate with others as much as you want. Some classes I felt it was more helpful to collaborate (theory-based exams, usually) and others I needed to do it on my own (e.g., practice exams). Study groups happen naturally with your friends in your section, sometimes acquaintances. Sometimes one at a time. It really doesn't feel different than regular college classes.

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Re: Penn Students & Graduates Taking Questions

Post by abujabal » Wed Mar 07, 2018 9:28 pm

BullPenn wrote:
Wed Mar 07, 2018 7:08 pm
I have literally never heard this, and frankly I'd question the veracity of the person who said this
JohnnieSockran wrote:
Wed Mar 07, 2018 6:11 pm
As far as the "gunners only" culture, who told you that? My experience was the complete opposite. Most of my classmates either studied in groups and even the ones that preferred to study on their own still hungout with the rest of the class socially. Don't get me wrong, your Penn classmates will be very smart and very hard working, but in my experience, none of that was a competition. There was no sabotaging or anything like that, and generally everyone was friendly and accommodating, and Penn is very intentional about continuing that culture.
This is heartening to hear. Admittedly, this comes from a couple of 0Ls, and older alums of a similarly-ranked different institution. I think that my main fear is that having done my undergrad on the west coast, that'd I'd have trouble adjusting to a more "east coast" mentality for academics. Good to hear that it's just misplaced worries.

Here's another question. I used to live in Philly, right by the Italian Market. Much as I loved that part of town, I'd imagine that'd be too far away to live to commute, especially as a 1L. Thoughts? I'm figuring the smarter move may be living somewhere close to the MFL in Chinatown/Old City, or just finding a place in West Philly. What did both of you do?

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Re: Penn Students & Graduates Taking Questions

Post by ymmv » Wed Mar 07, 2018 9:36 pm

abujabal wrote:
Wed Mar 07, 2018 9:28 pm
BullPenn wrote:
Wed Mar 07, 2018 7:08 pm
I have literally never heard this, and frankly I'd question the veracity of the person who said this
JohnnieSockran wrote:
Wed Mar 07, 2018 6:11 pm
As far as the "gunners only" culture, who told you that? My experience was the complete opposite. Most of my classmates either studied in groups and even the ones that preferred to study on their own still hungout with the rest of the class socially. Don't get me wrong, your Penn classmates will be very smart and very hard working, but in my experience, none of that was a competition. There was no sabotaging or anything like that, and generally everyone was friendly and accommodating, and Penn is very intentional about continuing that culture.
This is heartening to hear. Admittedly, this comes from a couple of 0Ls, and older alums of a similarly-ranked different institution. I think that my main fear is that having done my undergrad on the west coast, that'd I'd have trouble adjusting to a more "east coast" mentality for academics. Good to hear that it's just misplaced worries.
Yeah these are the last people whose advice you should be taking.
abujabal wrote: Here's another question. I used to live in Philly, right by the Italian Market. Much as I loved that part of town, I'd imagine that'd be too far away to live to commute, especially as a 1L. Thoughts? I'm figuring the smarter move may be living somewhere close to the MFL in Chinatown/Old City, or just finding a place in West Philly. What did both of you do?
It's still a great place to live and an easy enough commute by bike or bus. I lived near Washington Square for most of law school (similar distance) and loved it.

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Re: Penn Students & Graduates Taking Questions

Post by JohnnieSockran » Wed Mar 07, 2018 9:56 pm

abujabal wrote:
Wed Mar 07, 2018 9:28 pm
BullPenn wrote:
Wed Mar 07, 2018 7:08 pm
I have literally never heard this, and frankly I'd question the veracity of the person who said this
JohnnieSockran wrote:
Wed Mar 07, 2018 6:11 pm
As far as the "gunners only" culture, who told you that? My experience was the complete opposite. Most of my classmates either studied in groups and even the ones that preferred to study on their own still hungout with the rest of the class socially. Don't get me wrong, your Penn classmates will be very smart and very hard working, but in my experience, none of that was a competition. There was no sabotaging or anything like that, and generally everyone was friendly and accommodating, and Penn is very intentional about continuing that culture.
This is heartening to hear. Admittedly, this comes from a couple of 0Ls, and older alums of a similarly-ranked different institution. I think that my main fear is that having done my undergrad on the west coast, that'd I'd have trouble adjusting to a more "east coast" mentality for academics. Good to hear that it's just misplaced worries.

Here's another question. I used to live in Philly, right by the Italian Market. Much as I loved that part of town, I'd imagine that'd be too far away to live to commute, especially as a 1L. Thoughts? I'm figuring the smarter move may be living somewhere close to the MFL in Chinatown/Old City, or just finding a place in West Philly. What did both of you do?
Yeah ignore their opinions. I agree, it is possible that some east coast schools are gunnery, but Penn is not one of them (at least for law school and Wharton, I can't speak to the rest of the university).

Personally, I went with 2 extremes for living. During 1L I lived at Domus (right next to law school, but pricey). Then I got engaged and we moved out to Manayunk to have more space. Manayunk had a bit of a commute, but I was already halfway through 2L by then with a job lined up, so I had more flexibility to avoid going to campus by then if I didn't feel like it.

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Re: Penn Students & Graduates Taking Questions

Post by abujabal » Wed Mar 07, 2018 10:08 pm

ymmv wrote:
Wed Mar 07, 2018 9:36 pm


Yeah these are the last people whose advice you should be taking.
Yup, precisely why I came here to confirm it
JohnnieSockran wrote:
Wed Mar 07, 2018 9:56 pm
Good to hear! Looked briefly at Domus, but yeah, seems like there's much cheaper stuff just across the river. Thanks for the responses, good to hear that what I had heard was totally off base

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Re: Penn Students & Graduates Taking Questions

Post by wsbl » Thu Mar 08, 2018 9:13 am

abujabal wrote:
Wed Mar 07, 2018 10:08 pm
ymmv wrote:
Wed Mar 07, 2018 9:36 pm


Yeah these are the last people whose advice you should be taking.
Yup, precisely why I came here to confirm it
JohnnieSockran wrote:
Wed Mar 07, 2018 9:56 pm
Good to hear! Looked briefly at Domus, but yeah, seems like there's much cheaper stuff just across the river. Thanks for the responses, good to hear that what I had heard was totally off base
Beating a dead horse at this point, but I'm a 1L and sometimes the law school seems almost too collaborative. Students share notes, outlines, other information with everyone else all the time.

As for commuting, plenty of people bike, trolley, subway to school each day. Very common for Philadelphia.

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Re: Penn Students & Graduates Taking Questions

Post by 3741 » Thu Mar 08, 2018 12:18 pm

Would any current/former students who got Dean's Scholarships be willing to find/post when they received notification of that? I have good offers from M and V but P is my first choice. I can only visit 2/3 during the upcoming ASWs and it wouldn't make sense to visit if I get no $$ from them

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Re: Penn Students & Graduates Taking Questions

Post by LSNlife » Thu Mar 08, 2018 1:44 pm

3741 wrote:
Thu Mar 08, 2018 12:18 pm
Would any current/former students who got Dean's Scholarships be willing to find/post when they received notification of that? I have good offers from M and V but P is my first choice. I can only visit 2/3 during the upcoming ASWs and it wouldn't make sense to visit if I get no $$ from them
0L here but I emailed FinAid a question yesterday and they told me today that they plan to have the majority of their merit aid offers out by the end of March, although they continue making awards all the way up until the deposit deadline.

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Re: Penn Students & Graduates Taking Questions

Post by 3741 » Thu Mar 08, 2018 3:21 pm

LSNlife wrote:
Thu Mar 08, 2018 1:44 pm
3741 wrote:
Thu Mar 08, 2018 12:18 pm
Would any current/former students who got Dean's Scholarships be willing to find/post when they received notification of that? I have good offers from M and V but P is my first choice. I can only visit 2/3 during the upcoming ASWs and it wouldn't make sense to visit if I get no $$ from them
0L here but I emailed FinAid a question yesterday and they told me today that they plan to have the majority of their merit aid offers out by the end of March, although they continue making awards all the way up until the deposit deadline.
Glad to hear they'll try to let us know by March, presumably all Dean's Scholarships will go out by 4/12 since that's when the nomination email said we have to withdraw from other schools that've accepted us if we plan on taking one. Hoping they let us know sooner rather than later for travel planning purposes though, trying to get things finalized by this weekend

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Re: Penn Students & Graduates Taking Questions

Post by cwasser3 » Thu Mar 08, 2018 3:23 pm

Does anyone have any information on the Supreme Court Clinic? It looks like an amazing opportunity.

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Re: Penn Students & Graduates Taking Questions

Post by BullPenn » Thu Mar 08, 2018 6:31 pm

cwasser3 wrote:
Thu Mar 08, 2018 3:23 pm
Does anyone have any information on the Supreme Court Clinic? It looks like an amazing opportunity.
I'll leave the details of it to any participants (you should definitely read all about the media associated with it) but I will say it's pretty much reserved for top performers. Not necessarily law review, but definitely a bunch of checked boxes of high performance in some capacity.

Everyone I know who did it says it is as amazing as it looks and sounds. Altho with Prof. Bibas now on the bench I'm not sure what it looks like

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Re: Penn Students & Graduates Taking Questions

Post by turtlecat » Mon Mar 12, 2018 3:45 pm

Any current students here live in or know someone who lives in the Castle Hill Apartments?

I’m looking at a place there and have a couple questions: is it a safe area (43rd and Spruce)/safe enough for a late night walk home from the library? And should I worry about cockroaches/mice infestations?

Thanks!

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Re: Penn Students & Graduates Taking Questions

Post by inflammatorywrit » Mon Mar 12, 2018 6:54 pm

Anyone here in the Levy program and able to share their experiences with it? I'm now leaning Penn after getting it but would love to hear some first hand thoughts!

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Re: Penn Students & Graduates Taking Questions

Post by wsbl » Mon Mar 12, 2018 8:15 pm

inflammatorywrit wrote:
Mon Mar 12, 2018 6:54 pm
Anyone here in the Levy program and able to share their experiences with it? I'm now leaning Penn after getting it but would love to hear some first hand thoughts!
First off, Congrats!

Second, PM me

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Re: Penn Students & Graduates Taking Questions

Post by goat.parkour » Tue Mar 13, 2018 12:34 pm

turtlecat wrote:
Mon Mar 12, 2018 3:45 pm
Any current students here live in or know someone who lives in the Castle Hill Apartments?

I’m looking at a place there and have a couple questions: is it a safe area (43rd and Spruce)/safe enough for a late night walk home from the library? And should I worry about cockroaches/mice infestations?

Thanks!
A good amount of people live in that area, it's not bad - about a 20 min walk from the school. Penn campus police only patrol west until around 41st street, so as a female walking home alone at night I would prefer to live east of 41st (but it all depends on your familiarity/comfort with cities). The apartment company that owns Castle Hill (University City Housing) has a TON of other apartments that are probably closer to the law school, grocery store, etc, all for relatively cheap. You should email UCH and ask for a list of availabilities and you can google-map out your favorite one (it's how I got my place). Feel free to PM me if you have more questions!

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Re: Penn Students & Graduates Taking Questions

Post by LSNlife » Thu Mar 15, 2018 11:23 am

Can anyone comment on the on-campus climate regarding Professor Wax and the removal of her from teaching mandatory 1L courses? Is it something that many people are focused on or less prevelant on campus then it seems to be for us who aren’t there? How is the campus community responding to the negative attention?

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Re: Penn Students & Graduates Taking Questions

Post by ymmv » Thu Mar 15, 2018 11:47 am

LSNlife wrote:
Thu Mar 15, 2018 11:23 am
Can anyone comment on the on-campus climate regarding Professor Wax and the removal of her from teaching mandatory 1L courses? Is it something that many people are focused on or less prevelant on campus then it seems to be for us who aren’t there? How is the campus community responding to the negative attention?
As a grad I’m obviously not on campus much these days, but Penn Facebook/FB groups have been predominantly anti-Wax or silent IME. There’s been a lot of frustration mounting with Ruger and the leadership’s lack of meaningful response for a long time, and mixed relief now on Wax finally being removed from 1L courses. Already seen complaints about that as a placating half-measure; guess we’ll see where that conversation goes.

It was always a frustrating background issue when I was there, mostly people just resigned to nothing being done about her, I think, and frequent dark jokes about our token racist/homophobic prof. But I imagine it’s much more of a topic of active protest given the change in political climate.

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Re: Penn Students & Graduates Taking Questions

Post by BullPenn » Thu Mar 15, 2018 12:43 pm

ymmv wrote:
Thu Mar 15, 2018 11:47 am
LSNlife wrote:
Thu Mar 15, 2018 11:23 am
Can anyone comment on the on-campus climate regarding Professor Wax and the removal of her from teaching mandatory 1L courses? Is it something that many people are focused on or less prevelant on campus then it seems to be for us who aren’t there? How is the campus community responding to the negative attention?
As a grad I’m obviously not on campus much these days, but Penn Facebook/FB groups have been predominantly anti-Wax or silent IME. There’s been a lot of frustration mounting with Ruger and the leadership’s lack of meaningful response for a long time, and mixed relief now on Wax finally being removed from 1L courses. Already seen complaints about that as a placating half-measure; guess we’ll see where that conversation goes.

It was always a frustrating background issue when I was there, mostly people just resigned to nothing being done about her, I think, and frequent dark jokes about our token racist/homophobic prof. But I imagine it’s much more of a topic of active protest given the change in political climate.
the fact that she'll be an entirely elective professor will make the presence far, far more subdued I think. 1L professors are iconic and talked about incessantly.

on the other hand she's FedSoc's go to for a last ditch effort to get someone to be on a panel, so she'll be in the presence of 1Ls seeking free food frequently

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Re: Penn Students & Graduates Taking Questions

Post by LSNlife » Thu Mar 15, 2018 2:48 pm

BullPenn wrote:
Thu Mar 15, 2018 12:43 pm
ymmv wrote:
Thu Mar 15, 2018 11:47 am
LSNlife wrote:
Thu Mar 15, 2018 11:23 am
Can anyone comment on the on-campus climate regarding Professor Wax and the removal of her from teaching mandatory 1L courses? Is it something that many people are focused on or less prevelant on campus then it seems to be for us who aren’t there? How is the campus community responding to the negative attention?
As a grad I’m obviously not on campus much these days, but Penn Facebook/FB groups have been predominantly anti-Wax or silent IME. There’s been a lot of frustration mounting with Ruger and the leadership’s lack of meaningful response for a long time, and mixed relief now on Wax finally being removed from 1L courses. Already seen complaints about that as a placating half-measure; guess we’ll see where that conversation goes.

It was always a frustrating background issue when I was there, mostly people just resigned to nothing being done about her, I think, and frequent dark jokes about our token racist/homophobic prof. But I imagine it’s much more of a topic of active protest given the change in political climate.
the fact that she'll be an entirely elective professor will make the presence far, far more subdued I think. 1L professors are iconic and talked about incessantly.

on the other hand she's FedSoc's go to for a last ditch effort to get someone to be on a panel, so she'll be in the presence of 1Ls seeking free food frequently

Thanks for the info y’all! Professor Wax isn’t really a part of my decision making but the community response is definitely something that’s important to me!

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Re: Penn Students & Graduates Taking Questions

Post by wsbl » Thu Mar 15, 2018 10:21 pm

LSNlife wrote:
Thu Mar 15, 2018 11:23 am
Can anyone comment on the on-campus climate regarding Professor Wax and the removal of her from teaching mandatory 1L courses? Is it something that many people are focused on or less prevelant on campus then it seems to be for us who aren’t there? How is the campus community responding to the negative attention?
It's definitely not the first thing on everybody's mind, but there had been a strong push by student groups, law review, students in general in supporting BLSA and our colleagues. Removing her from the required courses was the right move; she won't be relevant (on campus) anymore.

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Re: Penn Students & Graduates Taking Questions

Post by RubyRhad » Sat Mar 17, 2018 8:39 pm

Is the Legal Practice Skills course letter-graded or pass/fail?

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Re: Penn Students & Graduates Taking Questions

Post by ymmv » Sat Mar 17, 2018 8:40 pm

alykdesire wrote:
Sat Mar 17, 2018 8:39 pm
Is the Legal Practice Skills course letter-graded or pass/fail?
Pass/fail/honors

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Re: Penn Students & Graduates Taking Questions

Post by RubyRhad » Sat Mar 17, 2018 8:57 pm

How viable is it to go to Texas after graduation? Is self-selection that a small percentage of students (2.8%) go there after law school?

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Re: Penn Students & Graduates Taking Questions

Post by wsbl » Sat Mar 17, 2018 9:52 pm

alykdesire wrote:
Sat Mar 17, 2018 8:57 pm
How viable is it to go to Texas after graduation? Is self-selection that a small percentage of students (2.8%) go there after law school?
It's difficult to give a helpful answer to this question other than to say that not many are aiming to go to Texas from Penn, but that still there are a number who will be doing so for SA or post-graduation (think top 10 firms in Houston).

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Re: Penn Students & Graduates Taking Questions

Post by wannabegenius » Sun Mar 18, 2018 9:24 am

BullPenn wrote:
Thu Feb 01, 2018 11:47 am
LSNlife wrote:
Thu Feb 01, 2018 9:46 am
This may be a little too "in the weeds" but how difficult is it to find housing that includes parking//how common is it for students to bring vehicles with them? I have to have mine due to other commitments outside of Philly and I don't necessarily need to drive to class but I'm a little concerned about the feasibility of finding cheap parking included with housing options close to campus.
Parking tends to be a pain in this particular area of town

You're not going to find many places that "include" parking, and even the places that have parking in their building charge an extra fee

Left Bank tended to be a popular option for those who needed parking, but Left Bank is expensive and shitty. I don't think 2400 Chestnut has a garage? Could be wrong there, their apartments are ok but expensive.

My suggestion is honestly to get a place in University City (like, b/n 38th and 44th) and rely on street parking; it's not so bad to get reliable street parking within 2 blocks honestly
Why do you say Left Bank is shitty? I've been looking at apartments and thus far it has been my first choice. Is there something I should know? Thanks!

Edit: Where would you recommend instead? That's my price range. Value is important as is an easy commute.

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