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Kansas, here we come?

18 February, 2008

At the end of the week last week, I received my acceptance from Washburn University School of Law. Washburn is located in Topeka, Kansas. The next day, I received notification that I have been named a Child and Family Advocacy Fellow, which means that I would receive $12,000 per year towards tuition and that the summer after my second year, I would have an externship stipend of $3,000 to help cover living expenses while working in a Child and Family Law-related job. This fellowship does not lock me into Child and Family Advocacy, though pursuing that field is encouraged.

This is far better than it first sounds. For a non-resident, tuition is $22,500. However, after six months and fulfilling a few requirements, I can easily become a Kansas resident. This means tuition would drop to $14,400. Then I’d only be paying $2400 per year to go to law school! That’s over an 80% tuition scholarship. In addition, I have been invited to apply for a number of other scholarship awards that are full tuition even if you are a non-resident plus additional stipends.

There are a few problems with going to Kansas. One, it’s Kansas. I’m not exactly overjoyed at the thought of living in Topeka. I don’t have anything against Kansas. Frankly, it’s a lot like Iowa. It’s a four hour drive, which I suppose isn’t too bad in the scheme of things. Also, I suppose it’s only an hour from Kansas City so it wouldn’t be so bad. Second, I’m not entirely sure of the reputation that Washburn has locally. Bob Dole went to school there, but so what? Will that get me a job in Des Moines? Omaha? We want to stay close to our families, and I don’t want to live in Kansas forever. Third, I have no idea what the job prospects are in the area for Ryan. He can’t commute to Kansas City everyday–we won’t be able to afford the gas. Rent will be cheap, but I don’t think it will be cheap enough to make a difference.


Who knew such good news would raise such dilemmas?

4 Comments leave one →
  1. josh permalink
    18 February, 2008 1:14 pm


    Things will work out. You’ll worry over it night and day for a bit, but in the end you’ll be happy with how things went.

  2. 18 February, 2008 4:02 pm


    I’m currently facing the same sort of dilemma. I’m having difficulty deciding how much money at some of the lesser schools is too much to turn down. I’m trying to calculate the equilibrium point where taking the short term money won’t hurt me in the long run (starting salary /advancement).

    Unfortunately I haven’t even come close to finding the point. Heck, I haven’t even heard from a few schools yet. I thought getting into these places was supposed to be the difficult part!

    All the best

  3. Justine permalink
    18 February, 2008 7:09 pm

    Congratulations on your acceptance and the wonderful offer! You definitely have many tough decisions ahead of you, but it’s only the beginning. Trust your instinct and your brilliance. And remember that we’re all cheering for you no matter what!

  4. 19 February, 2008 11:01 am

    Josh: Thanks. Yes, I certainly will. I’m just hoping and praying for the public interest scholarship at Drake. That would solve everything!

    Brad: I’m definitely struggling to find that same equilibrium. Do let me know if you figure it out, but too bad it won’t be the same for us. 🙂 I definitely thought that the worst of it would be getting in, but it’s shaping up that my decision is going to be pretty tough, too.

    Aunt Tine: Thank you! *hugs*

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