I couldn't find this topic/comparison in the forum, but please correct me if I'm wrong.
As the title implies, I'm hoping to get a good comparison between McGill and University of Manitoba going.
I'm ideally trying to figure out which program works best for me, and have seen posts like this in the past so am hoping it's not out of line to provide the following details and ask for the opinions of those more experienced than I when it comes to law school and the opportunities that specific programs can provide. I don't know what factors to even consider any more when considering my offer of admission to McGill.
So what should I be considering given the following context:
- I've been admitted into McGill twice now, but still dont know if I should accept. I haven't even applied for University of Manitoba yet & I don't want to get ahead of myself because I've never done the LSAT (McGill doesn't require it because I guess the LSAT isn't offered in French?). However, assuming University of Manitoba is even feasible as a future alternative, I'm trying to balance other details like:
- I'm a 30 year old PhD student with completed M.A., and I'm actually fully employed at the moment with what I feel is a great salary (although from what I understand, it is below what most lawyers make within 2 years of leaving law school). I highlight pay because I'm a humanities graduate student, which offers very few employment opportunities within the field, so I'm aware how fortunate I am to be one of the few grad students/M.A. graduates with economic stability relatively soon after a degree.
- I am aware that I will need to leave this good job to pursue law, but I just started it and it's the first time this perpetual student has had financial stability.
- I have a mortgage in Winnipeg, so University of Manitoba would be financially cheaper, but both programs are financially feasible with a professional student loan.
- I have a spouse with a well-paying career in Winnipeg. We met in grad school so we have been surrounded by successful long-distance relationships. My partner fully supports either decision.
- I have been told that McGill offers more opportunities outside of Manitoba and even Canada, whereas University of Manitoba offers opportunities mostly within Manitoba. My partner and I enjoy Winnipeg but met outside of Winnipeg, grew up in different provinces, and both love the flexibility of being able to feasibly support ourselves in a different city if we so choose.
- I have family in Winnipeg that has made clear they support my studies at University of Manitoba only, and that they think I am making "the mistake of my life" even considering accepting McGill's second offer of admission. I have been told that this is a bit abusive, but my family is very tight-knight in many ways, and not North American in just as many ways, so considering family for life decisions is weighed heavily. Take that as you will, forum participants.
- McGill is actually my dream program for so many reasons I won't bother to list in an already-long post. I was previously admitted, but had to say no because I couldn't afford it at the time and received a generous & competitive offer to pursue doctoral studies. I was in debt at the time and am now completely debt free minus my mortgage thanks to that decision.
- I am rather determined to do law school one way or another, but I am very scared about the LSAT. I do very well academically, but that is in a research-based context. I have not done a standardized/multiple choice exam since high school. I don't remember my scores but would assume they were average. I excel at long-form examinations, so I'm not confident I'd be able to get a high score for a standardized test. I have heard that the University of Manitoba has a percentile cut-off, and that it's very rigid (source: friend who was around 0.0.3% below the cut-off and was told she would not be considered). I am considered this is a case of a bird in the hand is better than two in the bush
I'm hoping to get unbiased opinions regarding both programs & what is the best career move for someone in my situation.
Thanks in advance