General Question

alive's avatar

Where should I live?

Asked by alive (2928 points ) July 31st, 2010

I am planning to apply to law schools in the next year or so and the advice I have heard most often is to go to a school that is in a place (city and or state) that I want to live in.

That is because sometimes law degrees aren’t the most mobile—every state has its own bar exam and schools will tend to prep you for the bar in that state.

That being said, how do I know where I want to live, if I have never lived there?

I tend to like big cities, where I have a lots of options of things to do and people to meet. I have lived in the LA area (whittier). and I have done quite a bit of traveling. what I like more than living somewhere is living in places for short bouts of time—not exactly ideal for the whole law school thing.

i don’t want to rule out smaller places because i live in a city that is half a million, so not big but not small. i do like it here . i like the small town-y feeling when you know a lot of people.

tell me about where you live or have lived? what are the pros and cons. what specifications do you think will help me get a better idea of where I should live?

Thanks for your help!

please ignore type-o’s my computer/internet is being a jerk tonight

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8 Answers

max_gutierrez's avatar

well it depends of your likes, i have always lived in a big city (a really big city talking of my country haha) and i always wanted to live on a small town, but near a REALLY big big city so i can hang out and do many things near, without have to live between millions of people all time .

Rememberme's avatar

UGA is in Athens, Georgia decent town and great community and not too far away from Atlanta.

Buttonstc's avatar

The first thing I noticed about Phila. when visiting friends living nearby was how easily accessible the country was from the heart of the city.

You could go from row houses and cement to stepping in cow pies in 20–45 minutes depending upon which direction you headed.

Having grown up on Long Island (the world’s longest parking lot) and subsequently teaching in Bklyn. where farm country was at least several hours drive, this was enormously appealing.

So I moved there and enjoyed the area for the better part of 25 years. It also has great neighborhoods all full of their unique character and ethnicities. Great restaurants, great hospitals and, of course, great colleges and not a bad place to go to law school if you make the cut.

Fairmount Park occupies a goodly portion of the city and there’s boating on the Schuylkill River.

Even tho it’s a major city it has a homey type of feel to it. There are great neighborhoods to rent and live in which are only a 20 minute commute so you don’t have to live in a dumpy area if you’re a college student just to be able to afford it.

With tons of huge old Victorian homes, there’s a lot of house shares which gives one the best of both worlds. The yard space of a home at the cost of an apt. or less. Very affordable living alternatives.

And some kickass sports teams and fans if you’re into that. Also a lively Arts and music scene.

Everything you could want in a city with easy access to rural areas.

Oh yeah. Almost forgot Reading Terminal Market for all that fresh produce and Amish Farmer goodness.

Jeruba's avatar

There are great places to live in every state, both urban and otherwise. No matter where you go to law school, there are cities to choose from in that state. Your practice won’t be limited to the city your school was in if you pass the bar exam for the whole state. If you like the general climate and terrain of the state, and don’t pick Minnesota when you’d really prefer Arizona, you still have plenty of options.

But you don’t have to choose a permanent residence when you pick a law school. First of all, you can study for the state bar exam for any state and not just for the one your school is in. Second, you can take more than one. And third, depending on the type of position you’re looking for when you start your career, you may have to go where the work is. Law positions are not as easily found as they were a few years ago.

So if I were you I’d say choose the law school that suits you best, no matter where it is, and worry about your long-term residence later.

jaytkay's avatar

Many states have reciprocity, members of the bar association of one state can practice in the other without taking the bar exam. On the extremes, Washington D.C. allows all ABA members to practice and California allows nobody without the bar exam.

SufiClown's avatar

NYU or Columbia, if you like big cities you’ll love NYC. Otherwise Northwestern in is another great choice. Its close to Chicago but not too close, so you can enjoy the small town environment too. Or you could try Vanderbilt too.

chicadelplaya's avatar

McGeorge School of Law in Sacramento, CA is a good option. Sacramento is a nice place to live and it is also a short drive from great places like Lake Tahoe, Napa, and San Francisco.

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