Tough Choices for Prospective Intl. Public Int. Lawyer

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

Northwestern ($135k) vs. Columbia vs. Boalt

Northwestern ($135k)
39
66%
Columbia (sticker)
14
24%
Berkeley (sticker)
6
10%
 
Total votes: 59

09042014
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Re: Tough Choices for Prospective Intl. Public Int. Lawyer

Postby 09042014 » Wed Mar 24, 2010 11:17 pm

Does IBR work if you are collecting a paycheck abroad?

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badfish
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Re: Tough Choices for Prospective Intl. Public Int. Lawyer

Postby badfish » Wed Mar 24, 2010 11:18 pm

frankjones wrote:My last post probably made things more confusing. I wouldn't necessarily have to do human rights law; I'd also be interested in doing other types of international public interest law.
That said, points taken. I guess I just think that those doing dual degrees at top programs in their respective fields must be able to find at least remotely related work. And when it comes to hiring and the need for relevant work experience, I'm not sure those programs would admit people they didn't feel were employable. In other words, in fields where work experience is of paramount importance, I think most successful program applicants already have related experience.


For my money your best bet would be:

1) Go to CLS.
2) Work at a large firm for a few years, try to do as much international contract work / pro bono work as you can.
3) Rack up savings / pay down your debt.
4) I'm not sure if CLS allows you to join their LRAP after working in the private sector (NYU does) but if you can leave biglaw and join back up in the LRAP
5) Apply to the jobs that you want. Even then getting jobs like the ones you describe are extremely difficult to get. If by "international public interest" you mean that you want to go abroad and work in a public interest position, that would be decidedly easier.

You should also talk to professors at Tufts/CLS. They are likely more informed than anyone on this board.

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chris0805
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Re: Tough Choices for Prospective Intl. Public Int. Lawyer

Postby chris0805 » Thu Mar 25, 2010 1:11 am

badfish wrote:
frankjones wrote:My last post probably made things more confusing. I wouldn't necessarily have to do human rights law; I'd also be interested in doing other types of international public interest law.
That said, points taken. I guess I just think that those doing dual degrees at top programs in their respective fields must be able to find at least remotely related work. And when it comes to hiring and the need for relevant work experience, I'm not sure those programs would admit people they didn't feel were employable. In other words, in fields where work experience is of paramount importance, I think most successful program applicants already have related experience.


For my money your best bet would be:

1) Go to CLS.
2) Take one of the about 4 post-grad fellowships CLS reserves for their graduates in human rights.
3) Take part in LRAP
4) Make as many connections as possible over that 1-2 years
5) Try to find another fellowship, a term time position, or, ideally, a permanent position


You should also talk to professors at Tufts/CLS. They are likely more informed than anyone on this board.

Fixed

As someone who has done a lot "human rights" work in law school, but is planning on a more "traditional" domestic PI career, I think TLS proves 2 things:

1. 0Ls LOVE international law (and international human rights law specifically)
2. Older TLS members overstate (if only slightly) how competitive these positions are.

At CLS, out of maybe 12 "hard core" human rights people in a given class, I would say that 5 can reasonably expect to actually work in the field (for more than a year or so) at a place like HRW, Amnesty, Oxfam, OSI, Revenue Watch, African Services Committee etc. etc. I know a number of grads doing this kind of work right now, and many of them were not "Academic Superstars" at CLS necessarily. The UN specifically seems to be a little tougher to crack into, but CLS is a good place to try it.

Look, I think Oblomov was right in suggesting it's like trying to be an NFL player, but going to a place like CLS and being in the UN externship or the human rights clinic is kind of like starting for Florida/USC/whatever (please no football trolling). It doesn't guarantee that you'll move up to the next level, but it's certainly within the realm of possibility at that point.

Last few things:

Don't go to Boalt or any other school that requires you to take part in IBR. The IBR 10 year forgiveness for public service option doesn't apply when working for foreign employers and you may want to work for one.

Don't expect to have a significant other who wants to prioritize the location of his/her career :lol:. Just saying...

And definitely talk to the profs at Fletcher to see what kind of jobs their students are getting, and congrats. From what I gather it's A LOT harder to get into Fletcher than law school (that's 100% anectdotal though). If you're serious about this, you'd be crazy not to go there in place or in conjunction with getting a law degree.

leftofthedial
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Re: Tough Choices for Prospective Intl. Public Int. Lawyer

Postby leftofthedial » Thu Mar 25, 2010 1:31 am

chris0805 wrote:And definitely talk to the profs at Fletcher to see what kind of jobs their students are getting, and congrats. From what I gather it's A LOT harder to get into Fletcher than law school (that's 100% anectdotal though). If you're serious about this, you'd be crazy not to go there in place or in conjunction with getting a law degree.


For what it's worth, I spent a lot of time weighing the JD vs. MPP (or MALD in this case). I actually applied to and was accepted at Fletcher last year but declined after talking to several folks who had done quite well in the program but were having an incredibly hard time finding employment, even with the Fletcher mafia all over the place. In fact, a couple are now applying to law school. However, I'm still thinking about the joint degree...

Fletcher is one of the greatest policy schools in the land - and it also seems to be challenging, interesting, fun, and cool. I loved my visit there. That said, I'm not sure Fletcher is a lot harder to get into than a top law school; in fact, I'd tend to believe the opposite.

frankjones
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Re: Tough Choices for Prospective Intl. Public Int. Lawyer

Postby frankjones » Thu Mar 25, 2010 9:38 am

Thanks to everyone for the advice.

keg411
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Re: Tough Choices for Prospective Intl. Public Int. Lawyer

Postby keg411 » Thu Mar 25, 2010 9:57 am

Go to NW. No debt will leave you with far more flexibility in case you change your mind about Int'l PI (or whatever the heck it is you want to do). Going to the other schools ties you to a choice of relying on LRAP or BigFirmBigDebt and nothing in between.

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chris0805
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Re: Tough Choices for Prospective Intl. Public Int. Lawyer

Postby chris0805 » Thu Mar 25, 2010 10:51 am

Fletcher is one of the greatest policy schools in the land - and it also seems to be challenging, interesting, fun, and cool. I loved my visit there. That said, I'm not sure Fletcher is a lot harder to get into than a top law school; in fact, I'd tend to believe the opposite.


Fair enough. I guess it depends on how hard you think the LSAT is, but that's probably more of a subjective than objective standard.

Go to NW. No debt will leave you with far more flexibility in case you change your mind about Int'l PI (or whatever the heck it is you want to do). Going to the other schools ties you to a choice of relying on LRAP or BigFirmBigDebt and nothing in between.


I don't mean this to be as conflictual as it might sound, but what are these in between jobs you're thinking of? Obviously, if he opts out of public interest and goes into biglaw, NW would be cheaper too. Still, the LRAP eligible vs. Biglaw incorporates maybe 90 % (and maybe more) of the jobs that T14 grads will be looking at. Even most boutique firms (or at least the ones that hire T14 grads) pay 100K+ so that's still an option for him.

This isn't a rhetorical question. I actually am wondering what jobs you are thinking of that are not government/non-profit (or plaintiffs/civil rights firms), not biglaw, or not high-paying boutique firms.




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