Help me decide, T10, T15 or T30?????

(Rankings, Profiles, Tuition, Student Life, . . . )

Please read my post before voting (totals are debt not scholly.)

Michigan - $115,000 of Debt
93
73%
Texas - $50,000 of Debt
14
11%
UGA - $0 of Debt
18
14%
Bama - $0 of Debt and stipend.
3
2%
 
Total votes: 128

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doinmybest
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Re: Help me decide, T10, T15 or T30?????

Postby doinmybest » Mon Mar 15, 2010 12:00 pm

holydonkey wrote:
TheBigMediocre wrote:
holydonkey wrote:If you take out 150k debt and are able to pay back 10k the first year and 40k years 2-5, you're done with almost all of the debt and interest in about 5 years

FYI, this is an extremely rosy (dare I say unrealistic) outlook on how fast you can pay off debt unless you live solely for that purpose.

Oh it's definitely fast. However, I currently make less than 40k and live in an expensive area, I could easily live on 50k after law school (I'll need to buy a few suits :) ) and devote the rest to debt payments. I'd rather be the guy with no debt and an Aveo than the guy with a Charger and debt (Charger is a highend car to me, this should tell you something).


I agree in Atlanta, or South Florida I could easily live on 50K. I live on less than 40K now and I'm doing fine relatively speaking. Of course I wont be able to buy a house, and starting a family would be tough.

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TheBigMediocre
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Re: Help me decide, T10, T15 or T30?????

Postby TheBigMediocre » Mon Mar 15, 2010 12:01 pm

UF Gators wrote:
TheBigMediocre wrote:
holydonkey wrote:I keep thinking about the debt in my head and I go back and forth a lot.

I mean, for Michigan, if you can clerk for a federal judge, that's like 70k for a year right (from the clerks I've talked to). And then assuming a clerk bonus from a big/mid firm you're making 120-170k for at least the 3 years you're an associate with them. If you take out 150k debt and are able to pay back 10k the first year and 40k years 2-5, you're done with almost all of the debt and interest in about 5 years. And you've set yourself up nicely for a lateral move/another clerkship/government.

If you aren't able to get the clerkship from UGA and have to settle for mid/small law, you're making 50-100k strait out (assuming a job) which is awesome with no debt. You're an associate for three years with a decent/good salary, but then what? Maybe you make partner or stay a senior associate. Maybe you have to lateral to another mid/small firm, but it really doesn't seem like you'd have the same options as someone from a T10.

I figure worst case at T30 is unemployment, worst case at Michigan is you have to stay in Michigan and be one of the 3% working in Detroit in a mid firm that loves you for your degree if not for your gpa. Of course, living in Detroit is a whole different kind of hell.


FYI, this is an extremely rosy (dare I say unrealistic) outlook on how fast you can pay off debt unless you live solely for that purpose.

If you are making over 120k there is no reason why you can't pay off $150k debt in five years unless you have children.


I still think its debatable.

Say you're making $120k working in ATL. You're paying $7,200 in state income tax right off the bat. Ignoring property/sales taxes you're paying throughout the year, you're AGI is $112,800. Fed income tax for that would currently be $25,293. Your best case situation would be $87,507 in after-tax income. Spending an average of $2500 on food for yourself for the year (that's roughly the national average for 2007, which is probably lower then what you'll be spending eating out in ATL) and you spend $15,000 ($1250/mo) on rent. Ignore utilities and car payments. You're at $71,257. Do you want to put anything in an IRA? What about discretionary spending? Purchasing property? Starting a family?

I'm just saying, paying $150k of debt with 6.8% of annually capitalized interest (assuming Stafford Loan) sucks.

Disclaimer: I know this is very shaky accounting and a lot of assumptions are made. I'm just using it as an illustration.
Last edited by TheBigMediocre on Mon Mar 15, 2010 12:05 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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thickfreakness
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Re: Help me decide, T10, T15 or T30?????

Postby thickfreakness » Mon Mar 15, 2010 12:04 pm

TheBigMediocre wrote:
UF Gators wrote:
TheBigMediocre wrote:
holydonkey wrote:I keep thinking about the debt in my head and I go back and forth a lot.

I mean, for Michigan, if you can clerk for a federal judge, that's like 70k for a year right (from the clerks I've talked to). And then assuming a clerk bonus from a big/mid firm you're making 120-170k for at least the 3 years you're an associate with them. If you take out 150k debt and are able to pay back 10k the first year and 40k years 2-5, you're done with almost all of the debt and interest in about 5 years. And you've set yourself up nicely for a lateral move/another clerkship/government.

If you aren't able to get the clerkship from UGA and have to settle for mid/small law, you're making 50-100k strait out (assuming a job) which is awesome with no debt. You're an associate for three years with a decent/good salary, but then what? Maybe you make partner or stay a senior associate. Maybe you have to lateral to another mid/small firm, but it really doesn't seem like you'd have the same options as someone from a T10.

I figure worst case at T30 is unemployment, worst case at Michigan is you have to stay in Michigan and be one of the 3% working in Detroit in a mid firm that loves you for your degree if not for your gpa. Of course, living in Detroit is a whole different kind of hell.


FYI, this is an extremely rosy (dare I say unrealistic) outlook on how fast you can pay off debt unless you live solely for that purpose.

If you are making over 120k there is no reason why you can't pay off $150k debt in five years unless you have children.


I still think its debatable.

Say you're making $120k at working in ATL. You're paying $7,200 in state income tax right off the bat. Ignoring property/sales taxes you're paying throughout the year, you're AGI is $112,800. Fed income tax for that would currently be $25,293. Your best case situation would be $87,507 in after-tax income. Spending an average of $2500 on food for yourself for the year (that's roughly the national average for 2007, which is probably lower then what you'll be spending eating out in ATL) and you spend $15,000 ($1250/mo) on rent. Ignore utilities and car payments. You're at $71,257. Do you want to put anything in an IRA? What about discretionary spending? Purchasing property? Starting a family?

I'm just saying, paying $150k of debt with 6.8% of annually capitalized interest (assuming Stafford Loan) sucks.


A helpful reply for the thread, indeed. That amount of debt can be really, really limiting of your QOL after school. I think you need to visit and really try to figure out what you want to do after school. Taking on 150k of debt commits you to biglaw, almost out of necessity. Keep in mind that legal clerkships rarely qualify as PI jobs for the purposes of LRAP assistance, so you'd be making full loan payments on a lower salary while you're clerking.

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Re: Help me decide, T10, T15 or T30?????

Postby dreman510 » Mon Mar 15, 2010 12:08 pm

TheBigMediocre wrote:
UF Gators wrote:
TheBigMediocre wrote:
holydonkey wrote:I keep thinking about the debt in my head and I go back and forth a lot.

I mean, for Michigan, if you can clerk for a federal judge, that's like 70k for a year right (from the clerks I've talked to). And then assuming a clerk bonus from a big/mid firm you're making 120-170k for at least the 3 years you're an associate with them. If you take out 150k debt and are able to pay back 10k the first year and 40k years 2-5, you're done with almost all of the debt and interest in about 5 years. And you've set yourself up nicely for a lateral move/another clerkship/government.

If you aren't able to get the clerkship from UGA and have to settle for mid/small law, you're making 50-100k strait out (assuming a job) which is awesome with no debt. You're an associate for three years with a decent/good salary, but then what? Maybe you make partner or stay a senior associate. Maybe you have to lateral to another mid/small firm, but it really doesn't seem like you'd have the same options as someone from a T10.

I figure worst case at T30 is unemployment, worst case at Michigan is you have to stay in Michigan and be one of the 3% working in Detroit in a mid firm that loves you for your degree if not for your gpa. Of course, living in Detroit is a whole different kind of hell.


FYI, this is an extremely rosy (dare I say unrealistic) outlook on how fast you can pay off debt unless you live solely for that purpose.

If you are making over 120k there is no reason why you can't pay off $150k debt in five years unless you have children.


I still think its debatable.

Say you're making $120k working in ATL. You're paying $7,200 in state income tax right off the bat. Ignoring property/sales taxes you're paying throughout the year, you're AGI is $112,800. Fed income tax for that would currently be $25,293. Your best case situation would be $87,507 in after-tax income. Spending an average of $2500 on food for yourself for the year (that's roughly the national average for 2007, which is probably lower then what you'll be spending eating out in ATL) and you spend $15,000 ($1250/mo) on rent. Ignore utilities and car payments. You're at $71,257. Do you want to put anything in an IRA? What about discretionary spending? Purchasing property? Starting a family?

I'm just saying, paying $150k of debt with 6.8% of annually capitalized interest (assuming Stafford Loan) sucks.

Disclaimer: I know this is very shaky accounting and a lot of assumptions are made. I'm just using it as an illustration.

Oh wow, that is a nice breakdown. Can you do my accounting/family planning? :lol: :lol:
It really makes you appreciate states like Texas and Florida with no State (or City-coming from NYC) income taxes

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UF Gators
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Re: Help me decide, T10, T15 or T30?????

Postby UF Gators » Mon Mar 15, 2010 12:18 pm

TheBigMediocre wrote:
UF Gators wrote:If you are making over 120k there is no reason why you can't pay off $150k debt in five years unless you have children.


I still think its debatable.

Say you're making $120k working in ATL. You're paying $7,200 in state income tax right off the bat. Ignoring property/sales taxes you're paying throughout the year, you're AGI is $112,800. Fed income tax for that would currently be $25,293. Your best case situation would be $87,507 in after-tax income. Spending an average of $2500 on food for yourself for the year (that's roughly the national average for 2007, which is probably lower then what you'll be spending eating out in ATL) and you spend $15,000 ($1250/mo) on rent. Ignore utilities and car payments. You're at $71,257. Do you want to put anything in an IRA? What about discretionary spending? Purchasing property? Starting a family?

I'm just saying, paying $150k of debt with 6.8% of annually capitalized interest (assuming Stafford Loan) sucks.

Disclaimer: I know this is very shaky accounting and a lot of assumptions are made. I'm just using it as an illustration.

If you are disciplined and serious about paying off debt, $87k after tax is absolutely enough for a single person. Live in a less expensive apartment or get roommates, get a used, cheaper car, only take out $30 bucks a week for entertainment...I would rather live way below my means for a few years and pay off debt than live a bit more lavishly and have loan payments hanging over my head.

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Re: Help me decide, T10, T15 or T30?????

Postby holydonkey » Mon Mar 15, 2010 12:24 pm

TheBigMediocre wrote:I still think its debatable.

Say you're making $120k working in ATL. You're paying $7,200 in state income tax right off the bat. Ignoring property/sales taxes you're paying throughout the year, you're AGI is $112,800. Fed income tax for that would currently be $25,293. Your best case situation would be $87,507 in after-tax income. Spending an average of $2500 on food for yourself for the year (that's roughly the national average for 2007, which is probably lower then what you'll be spending eating out in ATL) and you spend $15,000 ($1250/mo) on rent. Ignore utilities and car payments. You're at $71,257. Do you want to put anything in an IRA? What about discretionary spending? Purchasing property? Starting a family?

I'm just saying, paying $150k of debt with 6.8% of annually capitalized interest (assuming Stafford Loan) sucks.

Disclaimer: I know this is very shaky accounting and a lot of assumptions are made. I'm just using it as an illustration.

If I had 70k after paying taxes, food, and rent I would be extremely happy. I think right now after taxes, food, and rent I make about 15-20k a year. So that's an extra 50-55k, of which I could use 40-45k to pay down debt and still increase my gross 10k. All this with 120k and no bonus. I'm actually starting to think the debt may not be too bad.

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TheBigMediocre
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Re: Help me decide, T10, T15 or T30?????

Postby TheBigMediocre » Mon Mar 15, 2010 12:25 pm

UF Gators wrote:
TheBigMediocre wrote:
UF Gators wrote:If you are making over 120k there is no reason why you can't pay off $150k debt in five years unless you have children.


I still think its debatable.

Say you're making $120k working in ATL. You're paying $7,200 in state income tax right off the bat. Ignoring property/sales taxes you're paying throughout the year, you're AGI is $112,800. Fed income tax for that would currently be $25,293. Your best case situation would be $87,507 in after-tax income. Spending an average of $2500 on food for yourself for the year (that's roughly the national average for 2007, which is probably lower then what you'll be spending eating out in ATL) and you spend $15,000 ($1250/mo) on rent. Ignore utilities and car payments. You're at $71,257. Do you want to put anything in an IRA? What about discretionary spending? Purchasing property? Starting a family?

I'm just saying, paying $150k of debt with 6.8% of annually capitalized interest (assuming Stafford Loan) sucks.

Disclaimer: I know this is very shaky accounting and a lot of assumptions are made. I'm just using it as an illustration.

If you are disciplined and serious about paying off debt, $87k after tax is absolutely enough for a single person. Live in a less expensive apartment or get roommates, get a used, cheaper car, only take out $30 bucks a week for entertainment...I would rather live way below my means for a few years and pay off debt than live a bit more lavishly and have loan payments hanging over my head.


I agree completely about living within one's means. I just think that OP is cornering himself into biglaw if he takes on so much debt and the worst, worst case situation would be if he doesn't do as well as he would like at UM and ends up with a lot of debt with limited job prospects.

Plus, you can't trust advice from someone named "UF Gators" when attending UGA is a concern :lol: :lol:

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doinmybest
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Re: Help me decide, T10, T15 or T30?????

Postby doinmybest » Mon Mar 15, 2010 12:33 pm

For those who wanted more detail what my employment preferences are:

It is difficult to pin yourself in a job you definitely want to do before attending law school and taking any classes. However, I know I am most interested in con law (weird I know). Constitutional litigation is probably very unrealistic. So my first choice would be a nice clerkship, and then maybe I'd like to do some biglaw after that followed by academia (if the opportunity was available). I think that’s where I'm leaning as of now. I am pretty set on Atlanta or South Florida, however if a super prestigious clerkship opportunity came up somewhere else I’d probably go for it.

dreman510
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Re: Help me decide, T10, T15 or T30?????

Postby dreman510 » Mon Mar 15, 2010 12:36 pm

doinmybest wrote:For those who wanted more detail what my employment preferences are:

It is difficult to pin yourself in a job you definitely want to do before attending law school and taking any classes. However, I know I am most interested in con law (weird I know). Constitutional litigation is probably very unrealistic. So my first choice would be a nice clerkship, and then maybe I'd like to do some biglaw after that followed by academia (if the opportunity was available). I think that’s where I'm leaning as of now. I am pretty set on Atlanta or South Florida, however if a super prestigious clerkship opportunity came up somewhere else I’d probably go for it.

Clerkship=Michigan FTW
Edit+ Academia=Michigan FTW x2
Last edited by dreman510 on Mon Mar 15, 2010 12:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.

reverendt
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Re: Help me decide, T10, T15 or T30?????

Postby reverendt » Mon Mar 15, 2010 12:36 pm

Forget Texas. It's not where you want to work, and it doesn't offer the options that Mich does.

UGA will probably get you a nice job in Georgia, but you can forget about academia. However...no debt is nice!

On the other hand, lots of professors come out of Mich. But of course, that comes with a price. It's up to you. What is the chance at academia and much greater chance of biglaw worth to you?

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doinmybest
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Re: Help me decide, T10, T15 or T30?????

Postby doinmybest » Mon Mar 15, 2010 12:56 pm

So it feels like a lot of people are taking for granted how easy it would be to get Biglaw in Atlanta from UGA. The NLJ 250 had UGA at approximately 16% I was under the impression that once the 2L OCI ITE stats hit, that number could be cut down significantly. Am I wrong here?? Also would it be significantly harder to get a federal clerkship out of UGA?

dreman510
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Re: Help me decide, T10, T15 or T30?????

Postby dreman510 » Mon Mar 15, 2010 12:59 pm

doinmybest wrote:So it feels like a lot of people are taking for granted how easy it would be to get Biglaw in Atlanta from UGA. The NLJ 250 had UGA at approximately 16% I was under the impression that once the 2L OCI ITE stats hit, that number could be cut down significantly. Am I wrong here?? Also would it be significantly harder to get a federal clerkship out of UGA?

It is likely that you will need at least top 10%, if not 5% from UGA. And a clerkship is always going to be easier from a t-14.

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Charles Barkley
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Re: Help me decide, T10, T15 or T30?????

Postby Charles Barkley » Mon Mar 15, 2010 1:00 pm

TheBigMediocre wrote:SEC vs. Big-10?

No Brainer.

This.

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doinmybest
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Re: Help me decide, T10, T15 or T30?????

Postby doinmybest » Tue Mar 16, 2010 7:38 am

dreman510 wrote:
doinmybest wrote:So it feels like a lot of people are taking for granted how easy it would be to get Biglaw in Atlanta from UGA. The NLJ 250 had UGA at approximately 16% I was under the impression that once the 2L OCI ITE stats hit, that number could be cut down significantly. Am I wrong here?? Also would it be significantly harder to get a federal clerkship out of UGA?

It is likely that you will need at least top 10%, if not 5% from UGA. And a clerkship is always going to be easier from a t-14.


This is what I suspected, and I am surprised at how close this vote is. I would be interested to hear from someone at Michigan who is in that much debt and how they are dealing with it. Anyone want to comment or point me in the direction of a poster so I can send a PM?

keg411
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Re: Help me decide, T10, T15 or T30?????

Postby keg411 » Tue Mar 16, 2010 8:55 am

doinmybest wrote:So it feels like a lot of people are taking for granted how easy it would be to get Biglaw in Atlanta from UGA. The NLJ 250 had UGA at approximately 16% I was under the impression that once the 2L OCI ITE stats hit, that number could be cut down significantly. Am I wrong here?? Also would it be significantly harder to get a federal clerkship out of UGA?


I think people are voting for UGA because you would have no debt and therefore wouldn't be married to BigLaw, even if you want it now (i.e. if you strike out on BigLaw, making 40-50k wouldn't kill you if you have nothing to pay off). Also, I think UGA does fairly well in terms of clerkships.

It's really a weight of how much you want to take the risk for a more prestigious career (i.e. BigLaw and clerkships) over not having a burden of debt.

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Re: Help me decide, T10, T15 or T30?????

Postby rando » Tue Mar 16, 2010 9:52 am

holydonkey wrote:
If you aren't able to get the clerkship from UGA and have to settle for mid/small law, you're making 50-100k strait out (assuming a job) which is awesome with no debt. You're an associate for three years with a decent/good salary, but then what? Maybe you make partner or stay a senior associate. Maybe you have to lateral to another mid/small firm, but it really doesn't seem like you'd have the same options as someone from a T10.

I figure worst case at T30 is unemployment, worst case at Michigan is you have to stay in Michigan and be one of the 3% working in Detroit in a mid firm that loves you for your degree if not for your gpa. Of course, living in Detroit is a whole different kind of hell.


These assumptions are not very good on a couple accounts.

Atlanta firms have a lot to offer other than small/mid law. Not V5 but very prestigious, large firms. Assuming you will be in some mid-law purgatory is ridiculous.

Worst case at Michigan is unemployment. Seriously, where have you been for the past two years? Do you have any idea what paying off that debt would be like working in PI or scrapping by on unemployment?

That being said. Academia is pretty much impossible from UGA. And you can certainly get a clerkship. But probably on the fed district level or state courts. A fed COA clerkship is a LOOOOONGshot.

If all you are looking for is prestige then go to Michigan and figure out how to pay off your debt later. If you want to be comfortable and have a lot of options with the opportunity to practice in a great Atlanta firm then go to UGA.

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Re: Help me decide, T10, T15 or T30?????

Postby holydonkey » Tue Mar 16, 2010 10:03 am

rando wrote:
holydonkey wrote:If you aren't able to get the clerkship from UGA and have to settle for mid/small law, you're making 50-100k strait out (assuming a job) which is awesome with no debt. You're an associate for three years with a decent/good salary, but then what? Maybe you make partner or stay a senior associate. Maybe you have to lateral to another mid/small firm, but it really doesn't seem like you'd have the same options as someone from a T10.

I figure worst case at T30 is unemployment, worst case at Michigan is you have to stay in Michigan and be one of the 3% working in Detroit in a mid firm that loves you for your degree if not for your gpa. Of course, living in Detroit is a whole different kind of hell.

These assumptions are not very good on a couple accounts.

Atlanta firms have a lot to offer other than small/mid law. Not V5 but very prestigious, large firms. Assuming you will be in some mid-law purgatory is ridiculous.

Worst case at Michigan is unemployment. Seriously, where have you been for the past two years? Do you have any idea what paying off that debt would be like working in PI or scrapping by on unemployment?

That being said. Academia is pretty much impossible from UGA. And you can certainly get a clerkship. But probably on the fed district level or state courts. A fed COA clerkship is a LOOOOONGshot.

If all you are looking for is prestige then go to Michigan and figure out how to pay off your debt later. If you want to be comfortable and have a lot of options with the opportunity to practice in a great Atlanta firm then go to UGA.

Please don't think I'm saying Atlanta doesn't have much to offer! You're completely right, Atlanta is a great legal market. I'd like to work there if I don't end up in DC. I was just pointing out that UGA graduates don't seem to place extremely well in large firms even in Atlanta. From all the NLJ250 stats for the past 5 or 6 years, it looks like UGA never places more than about 18% of its class in NLJ250 firms.

I'm also sure that it is possible to be unemployed at Michigan, but with almost 70% of the class going into NLJ250 and clerkships, it seems like the number of graduates unemployed would be very very low.

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Re: Help me decide, T10, T15 or T30?????

Postby doinmybest » Mon Mar 29, 2010 11:43 am

Updated the OP with some new info.

freddy123
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Re: Help me decide, T10, T15 or T30?????

Postby freddy123 » Mon Mar 29, 2010 11:57 am

I think people are greatly underestimating the legal clerkship opportunities available via UGA. It looks like they may actually place a higher percentage in clerkships than Michigan (http://www.law.com/pdf/nlj/20080414empl ... trends.pdf). Remember Georgia, Florida and 11th COA aren't that competitive unless you go to school in the SE.

I think people also underestimate how many Georgia strong Georgia is with federal judgeships, especially in the Southeast:

--LinkRemoved--

Florida, Alabama, and Emory place more...Florida because there are simply more federal judge positions in Florida and 'Bama because it is a strong law school, and really the only law school in 'Bama.

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doinmybest
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Re: Help me decide, T10, T15 or T30?????

Postby doinmybest » Tue Mar 30, 2010 7:39 am

freddy123 wrote:I think people are greatly underestimating the legal clerkship opportunities available via UGA. It looks like they may actually place a higher percentage in clerkships than Michigan (http://www.law.com/pdf/nlj/20080414empl ... trends.pdf).


But isn't that very old data from 2005? This data is from 2009 and seems to be much more relevant viewtopic.php?f=1&t=75513&start=0&st=0&sk=t&sd=a According to this, Michigan is only behind HYS.

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Re: Help me decide, T10, T15 or T30?????

Postby rando » Tue Mar 30, 2010 8:18 am

holydonkey wrote:
rando wrote:
holydonkey wrote:If you aren't able to get the clerkship from UGA and have to settle for mid/small law, you're making 50-100k strait out (assuming a job) which is awesome with no debt. You're an associate for three years with a decent/good salary, but then what? Maybe you make partner or stay a senior associate. Maybe you have to lateral to another mid/small firm, but it really doesn't seem like you'd have the same options as someone from a T10.

I figure worst case at T30 is unemployment, worst case at Michigan is you have to stay in Michigan and be one of the 3% working in Detroit in a mid firm that loves you for your degree if not for your gpa. Of course, living in Detroit is a whole different kind of hell.

These assumptions are not very good on a couple accounts.

Atlanta firms have a lot to offer other than small/mid law. Not V5 but very prestigious, large firms. Assuming you will be in some mid-law purgatory is ridiculous.

Worst case at Michigan is unemployment. Seriously, where have you been for the past two years? Do you have any idea what paying off that debt would be like working in PI or scrapping by on unemployment?

That being said. Academia is pretty much impossible from UGA. And you can certainly get a clerkship. But probably on the fed district level or state courts. A fed COA clerkship is a LOOOOONGshot.

If all you are looking for is prestige then go to Michigan and figure out how to pay off your debt later. If you want to be comfortable and have a lot of options with the opportunity to practice in a great Atlanta firm then go to UGA.

Please don't think I'm saying Atlanta doesn't have much to offer! You're completely right, Atlanta is a great legal market. I'd like to work there if I don't end up in DC. I was just pointing out that UGA graduates don't seem to place extremely well in large firms even in Atlanta. From all the NLJ250 stats for the past 5 or 6 years, it looks like UGA never places more than about 18% of its class in NLJ250 firms.

I'm also sure that it is possible to be unemployed at Michigan, but with almost 70% of the class going into NLJ250 and clerkships, it seems like the number of graduates unemployed would be very very low.


That's the point though. NLJ 250 isn't very good data for Atlanta. And it cuts the other way too. The NLJ data is not current to the recent hiring disaster. I'm not hyping ATL so much as pointing out that it doesn't fit in with NLJ 250 that well

keg411
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Re: Help me decide, T10, T15 or T30?????

Postby keg411 » Tue Mar 30, 2010 8:29 am

I get the feeling that OP wants to justify the Michigan debt. OP, if you really want Mich, go to Mich.

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FunkyJD
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Re: Help me decide, T10, T15 or T30?????

Postby FunkyJD » Tue Mar 30, 2010 8:38 am

Do you need an Article III clerkship to be happy?

Do you need biglaw to be happy?

Do you need to teach at a Tier 1 school to be happy?

Optimally, all of these things would be available to you. All but the third item would probably be possible from UGA.

Is it really worth it to pay $115k to go to Michigan to maximize the chances of the first two, and bring the third item in play, if you don't need all three items to be happy in life -- and maybe, once you are a summer associate and see biglaw up close, decide that you don't even want it?

Choosing a law school is like buying a car. I want a functional one that has some useful features, but I don't need the flashiest one on the road. That's not my personality. I won't overpay for more performance than I need to be happy in life. Some people get more utility from a high performance vehicle than I do, and that's fine. Personally, I'd rather save the money for something else. Jealousy feels better than buyer's remorse, and has a lower downside.

But man, I'd go to UGA so fast under these circumstances. But ultimately your decision depends on how much of a risk taker you are -- the risk being decades of six-figure debt that you could have avoided. It will limit your choices and opportunities in life, even in a best-case scenario.

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TTH
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Re: Help me decide, T10, T15 or T30?????

Postby TTH » Tue Mar 30, 2010 9:05 am

Just thought I'd drop in to say congrats on a great cycle.

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FlightoftheEarls
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Re: Help me decide, T10, T15 or T30?????

Postby FlightoftheEarls » Tue Mar 30, 2010 9:32 am

FunkyJD wrote:Do you need to teach at a Tier 1 school to be happy?

So you're implying that if one goes to UGA then one's prospect of getting Academia is easy, just so long as she is not hoping to teach at T1 schools? You do realize that this is not even the case at HS, yes?


FunkyJD wrote:Choosing a law school is like buying a car. I want a functional one that has some useful features, but I don't need the flashiest one on the road. That's not my personality. I won't overpay for more performance than I need to be happy in life.

This is a pretty difficult analogy you're trying to draw. Unless, of course, you admit that this car is the only one that will transport you throughout the remainder of your career, create your ability to reach out to gas stations around the world, and make it much easier for you to get to your destinations with your gas tank. If that's the case, sometimes people are willing to invest a little more money, and sometimes that is for a good reason. Some of the more economical cars do far better than expected and prove to be incredibly reliable, but people tend to think of them as the exception, rather than the rule.


rando wrote:And you can certainly get a clerkship. But probably on the fed district level or state courts. A fed COA clerkship is a LOOOOONGshot.

It amazes me how people think Fed District court clerkships are so easily obtained.



rando wrote:If all you are looking for is prestige then go to Michigan and figure out how to pay off your debt later. If you want to be comfortable and have a lot of options with the opportunity to practice in a great Atlanta firm then go to UGA.

I'm not going to take any time explaining to you the concept of the strawman argument, since it appears you've already mastered that. So what about all of the other graduates from UGA? Emory? All of those classes of law students that want prestigious firm work in Atlanta? You'd better do pretty damn well to distinguish yourself from all of these individuals competing for jobs in this market if you go to UGA. Oh, and don't forget that you have T14 grads from around the country aiming for secondary markets and having great success if they can demonstrate ties to the area. You'll be competing against them too. But it's cool - if you go to UGA you'll have lots of options and the opportunity to practice in a great Atlanta firm, just like that. At Michigan? Unemployment FTL. Obvsies.



OP - People have a lot of opinions and they ultimately won't mean anything when it comes to your decision. It's good to hear advice from all sides, but the decision and career is ultimately yours. Debt is scary, no doubt. But that's why schools offer LRAP plans - to ensure that you can pursue a career in the public interest and not starve. You won't be popping bottles at Tryst every weekend, but you can do something you love and not force yourself into biglaw if you realize that it isn't right for you. Best of luck in your decision!




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