So you "can" get a good job if you aren't top 50%?

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sunynp
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Re: So you "can" get a good job if you aren't top 50%?

Postby sunynp » Fri Dec 30, 2011 3:09 pm

Veyron wrote:
sunynp wrote:
acrossthelake wrote:The thing is, I've always regarded TLS as being relatively optimistic compared to other law school boards and general scamblogs.


+1

I think TLS tries to dissuade the oblivious from ruining their lives by taking on large amounts of non- dischargable debt. But it is still overly optimistic given all the recent information on employment. I'm starting to think the best advice is that anyone below median at all but the t6 should drop out after 1L or even the first semester.


Plenty of folks below median getting good jobs at Penn. Lol, T6, just lol.


Yeah, I was being dramatic. I'm not sure how far down the list to go, but it isn't many schools where below median students get great jobs so they will be able to repay loans. More than 10? 14? I don't know the number, but many many many people stay in school who should be cutting their losses, once they know where they stand grade-wise.

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vanwinkle
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Re: So you "can" get a good job if you aren't top 50%?

Postby vanwinkle » Fri Dec 30, 2011 3:41 pm

Let me clear about something: You "can" get a decent job with below-median grades, even from lower-ranked schools, even in this market. It's not, strictly speaking, impossible. You will find success stories, even today, from people who made it through and are happy now.

The real question isn't whether it's possible, it's how likely it is. For each success story, how many people with similar stats struck out? How many from similar schools and with similar backgrounds? If a guy from a T2 can do below-median and land a great job anyway, but are there 10 unemployed people for each success like him? 20? 50? It varies by market and background and grades, but the truth is the odds of success are damningly low at most law schools right now, especially considering how much debt you graduate with.


That's why there's a HYS/T6/T14 or bust type of mindset here these days. It's not that you can't find work otherwise, it's that the odds of success typically can't justify full tuition+COA anywhere else.

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DoubleChecks
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Re: So you "can" get a good job if you aren't top 50%?

Postby DoubleChecks » Fri Dec 30, 2011 3:49 pm

sparty99 wrote:I've talked to prosecutors who graduated last year and have jobs. They were below median and went to a top 40.

However, I think being at median is not good. If you think about all the law schools and the people they graduate, how will employer's distinguish "top talent." The easiest way is by going with people who have high grades, law review, and moot court.

If you are below median, I wouldn't drop out (per se). There are jobs outside of a big law/attorney field that a law degree will be beneficial, however, law school is not a winning bet.


While I do not disagree with the conclusion of your post, the bolded is a bit of a stretch. Outside of intrinsic benefits (read: hard to measure), I don't know if a law degree is all that beneficial in a non-law capacity. The possible benefits are certainly not worth the money I bet.

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sunynp
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Re: So you "can" get a good job if you aren't top 50%?

Postby sunynp » Fri Dec 30, 2011 4:53 pm

vanwinkle wrote:Let me clear about something: You "can" get a decent job with below-median grades, even from lower-ranked schools, even in this market. It's not, strictly speaking, impossible. You will find success stories, even today, from people who made it through and are happy now.

The real question isn't whether it's possible, it's how likely it is. For each success story, how many people with similar stats struck out? How many from similar schools and with similar backgrounds? If a guy from a T2 can do below-median and land a great job anyway, but are there 10 unemployed people for each success like him? 20? 50? It varies by market and background and grades, but the truth is the odds of success are damningly low at most law schools right now, especially considering how much debt you graduate with.


That's why there's a HYS/T6/T14 or bust type of mindset here these days. It's not that you can't find work otherwise, it's that the odds of success typically can't justify full tuition+COA anywhere else.


I am wondering at what point a person can justify continuing school if they are below median? This is a serious question.

I just think that maybe people should give school a shot, but if they end up below median, they should get out before utter financial ruin. The problem is that most people think they can be in the top of their class; but obviously most of them can't. So perhaps instead of not going at all, people can go to school and see how they do. It's just an idea I have - go; but drop out as soon as it is apparent you won't get a job to repay the loans you've already taken out. .

I agree it is all about the equation of debt and potential income. I wonder how many below median people get jobs with a high enough income to repay their loans? (And, at many schools, it is more like below top 10-15% and you may not get a job to repay your loans.)

If you can't get a job that repays the cost of education, then you should get out as soon as you can.

sparty99
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Re: So you "can" get a good job if you aren't top 50%?

Postby sparty99 » Fri Dec 30, 2011 8:52 pm

sunynp wrote:
sparty99 wrote:I've talked to prosecutors who graduated last year and have jobs. They were below median and went to a top 40.

However, I think being at median is not good. If you think about all the law schools and the people they graduate, how will employer's distinguish "top talent." The easiest way is by going with people who have high grades, law review, and moot court.

If you are below median, I wouldn't drop out (per se). There are jobs outside of a big law/attorney field that a law degree will be beneficial, however, law school is not a winning bet.


No, this isn't true. There are no other fields that a law degree helps you with a job. If you can think of any, please post them! I have only heard that having a law degree means people in other fields won't hire you because they think you will leave as soon as you find a job practicing, or they think something is wrong with you because you can't find a job practicing.


A law degree is an advanced degree. You can become a teacher on a slightly higher pay scale with a law degree. Additionally, there are policy positions/think-tank. Human Resources. Financial Services loves law degrees. There are also "sister industries" that provide services to legal organizations that having a law degree can help. Also, business loves people with advanced degrees. Additionally, business people won't care too much about law school rankings, but they will love that someone has an advanced degree - especially a law degree. Yes, they will wonder why you are not taking a law job, but it's not hard to "spin it" or sell the hiring manager on how your legal background will benefit business. Granted, you don't need a law degree to become a HR, Teacher, or business professional, but the "do-or-die" scenarios on this board is kind of annoying.

SOuth Texas College of Law has a document that says, "300 Things You can Do with a Law Degree."

ou812c
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Re: So you "can" get a good job if you aren't top 50%?

Postby ou812c » Fri Dec 30, 2011 9:48 pm

Your going to get "a job" if have a j.d. That's that.

Derrida
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Re: So you "can" get a good job if you aren't top 50%?

Postby Derrida » Sat Dec 31, 2011 1:12 am

Interesting what this post has turned into... Sounds to me like a lot of fear. If your on here adamantly arguing about how difficult it is to make it in the legal field I question your insight. Give me a field that requires so much time, effort, money, and dedication, etc... just to get an invitation to attempt (passing the bar) to obtain a license to join that does not have extreme competition.

I think of it like this: there are millions of new small businesses that start every year. Very few of them are successful as most fail. However, millions of people keep assuming the risk, debt, and lost wages they could have made working a regular 9-5. Why??? I say it's the dream...

Bottom line is we all have our own dream; if your afraid of falling short of achieving that dream then your facing a self fulfilling prophecy. Some people want to be practice law for the money/prestige/title while others want to "change the world" and so on and so on.

So, if your confident in your decisions (and what 20 something ever really is?) then follow your gut and proudly wave the 1 finger that matters in your rear-view mirror as you achieve your goals while they continue to proclaim how the odds are stacked against them... how there is no chance...

btw - I believe in you :wink: posting.php?mode=reply&f=1&t=174592#

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DoubleChecks
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Re: So you "can" get a good job if you aren't top 50%?

Postby DoubleChecks » Sat Dec 31, 2011 4:23 am

sparty99 wrote:
A law degree is an advanced degree. You can become a teacher on a slightly higher pay scale with a law degree. Additionally, there are policy positions/think-tank. Human Resources. Financial Services loves law degrees. There are also "sister industries" that provide services to legal organizations that having a law degree can help. Also, business loves people with advanced degrees. Additionally, business people won't care too much about law school rankings, but they will love that someone has an advanced degree - especially a law degree. Yes, they will wonder why you are not taking a law job, but it's not hard to "spin it" or sell the hiring manager on how your legal background will benefit business. Granted, you don't need a law degree to become a HR, Teacher, or business professional, but the "do-or-die" scenarios on this board is kind of annoying.

SOuth Texas College of Law has a document that says, "300 Things You can Do with a Law Degree."


Most of what you said, even if I agree with it, still has the difficulty of measuring the law degree's value in obtaining that job. Also, keep in mind, it isn't just whether it will help you or help you x, it is whether the debt one would take on is worth the possible 'hard-to-measure' benefits a JD offers in other fields. I mean, maybe for some it is /shrugs...

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sunynp
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Re: So you "can" get a good job if you aren't top 50%?

Postby sunynp » Sat Dec 31, 2011 9:04 am

There is a big difference between fear and a reality check. Even the ABA is publishing articles now about legal employment. Paul Campos has a blog about legal employment from a law professors view. If you want to undertake huge amount of non- dischargable debt without a clear idea of how you will pay it back, that is your choice. If you want to not listen to reality, that is your choice. Just manage your debt and investigate your job prospects carefully.

Edit to add- I think the idea of taking on large amounts of debt should make you a little afraid. Afraid enough that you have a good idea of what the job market is like.

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sunynp
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Re: So you "can" get a good job if you aren't top 50%?

Postby sunynp » Sat Dec 31, 2011 9:40 am

ou812c wrote:Your going to get "a job" if have a j.d. That's that.

No, sadly this isn't true. Many jd holders are unemployed. Or if they are employed, they are working at jobs they could have had without the time investment and massive debt they undertook to go to law school. But now they are a worse position because of the debt.

To the above poster, I would love to see the document that describes the 300 things you can do with a law degree.

I'm only being so adamant in this thread because of the OP. I don't want people to think that they can just get a job from the bottom of the class. There is a unique combination of school, class rank, work experience, bidding strategies, interview ability, location for each person. Using an individual graduate from years ago before the crash is a misleading example.

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Re: So you "can" get a good job if you aren't top 50%?

Postby Paul Campos » Sat Dec 31, 2011 9:55 am

sparty99 wrote:
sunynp wrote:
sparty99 wrote:I've talked to prosecutors who graduated last year and have jobs. They were below median and went to a top 40.

However, I think being at median is not good. If you think about all the law schools and the people they graduate, how will employer's distinguish "top talent." The easiest way is by going with people who have high grades, law review, and moot court.

If you are below median, I wouldn't drop out (per se). There are jobs outside of a big law/attorney field that a law degree will be beneficial, however, law school is not a winning bet.


No, this isn't true. There are no other fields that a law degree helps you with a job. If you can think of any, please post them! I have only heard that having a law degree means people in other fields won't hire you because they think you will leave as soon as you find a job practicing, or they think something is wrong with you because you can't find a job practicing.


A law degree is an advanced degree. You can become a teacher on a slightly higher pay scale with a law degree. Additionally, there are policy positions/think-tank. Human Resources. Financial Services loves law degrees. There are also "sister industries" that provide services to legal organizations that having a law degree can help. Also, business loves people with advanced degrees. Additionally, business people won't care too much about law school rankings, but they will love that someone has an advanced degree - especially a law degree. Yes, they will wonder why you are not taking a law job, but it's not hard to "spin it" or sell the hiring manager on how your legal background will benefit business. Granted, you don't need a law degree to become a HR, Teacher, or business professional, but the "do-or-die" scenarios on this board is kind of annoying.

SOuth Texas College of Law has a document that says, "300 Things You can Do with a Law Degree."


Help me tiny baby Jesus

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sunynp
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Re: So you "can" get a good job if you aren't top 50%?

Postby sunynp » Sat Dec 31, 2011 11:10 am

I found the link for this list of 300 things on the South Texas website. I couldn't link to it here, but if you want to find it just go to the South Texas Law School website and search for 300 things you can do with a law degree.

The South Texas list thanks the University of Minnesota, so I looked on the Minnesota website. It turns out that list of jobs is from 1998 and was written for practicing lawyers who want to change career paths.

I think that referencing this list now and using it as advice for prospective students is beyond irresponsible.

Here is the reference from the UMinnesota Law site:

Greenberg, Hindi. The Lawyer's Career Change Handbook: More Than 300 Things You Can Do With a Law Degree. New York, NY: Avon Books, 1998. Call Number: KF 297 .Z9 G74 1998. [Location: Law, Plaza Level].

(Note too that law school tuition was much lower in 1998.)

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Re: So you "can" get a good job if you aren't top 50%?

Postby DoubleChecks » Sat Dec 31, 2011 1:53 pm

I'm not that surprised South Texas College of Law did that...doesn't it actually have the worst actual reporting percentages out of all law schools? I remember reading that its salary stats, where median was like around 80k and the 75th percentile was 160k, was based on only ~5% of its class hahaha.

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Re: So you "can" get a good job if you aren't top 50%?

Postby Derrida » Sat Dec 31, 2011 3:45 pm

sunynp wrote:There is a big difference between fear and a reality check. Even the ABA is publishing articles now about legal employment. Paul Campos has a blog about legal employment from a law professors view. If you want to undertake huge amount of non- dischargable debt without a clear idea of how you will pay it back, that is your choice. If you want to not listen to reality, that is your choice. Just manage your debt and investigate your job prospects carefully.

Edit to add- I think the idea of taking on large amounts of debt should make you a little afraid. Afraid enough that you have a good idea of what the job market is like.



yep - I agree that it's in your best interest to be aware of what your getting into as far as loans etc... I've worked in the private, for-profit college industry for the past few years and have seen way too many students take out way to much debt to pay for their education.

However, I also think that having a law degree and license to practice is in fact a prestigious honor in our country; and as such the path to getting there is and should be one of the hardest paths out there to any profession. I think it's a good thing and better for our country in the long run.

Being realistic in your decision making is not a bad thing. Having fears is normal. But, I am a firm believer that it we will all end up right where we belong. If we embody the entrepreneurial spirit that made this country we can achieve our goals - whatever they may be. On the other hand, if we think society owes us a return on our investments (this is imho the recurring theme when I hear people talking about the rankings etc..) then we end up waiting around for our dreams to find us...

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Re: So you "can" get a good job if you aren't top 50%?

Postby vanwinkle » Sat Dec 31, 2011 4:05 pm

Derrida wrote:Being realistic in your decision making is not a bad thing. Having fears is normal. But, I am a firm believer that it we will all end up right where we belong.

I believe that a person can end up where they belong, too, if they keep trying. However, it's incredibly expensive to go to law school and discover you don't belong there. It's too expensive a proposition to try now, especially with weak hiring. If someone really belongs in the law, they could still end up there eventually.

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Re: So you "can" get a good job if you aren't top 50%?

Postby sparty99 » Sat Dec 31, 2011 4:21 pm

sunynp wrote:I found the link for this list of 300 things on the South Texas website. I couldn't link to it here, but if you want to find it just go to the South Texas Law School website and search for 300 things you can do with a law degree.

The South Texas list thanks the University of Minnesota, so I looked on the Minnesota website. It turns out that list of jobs is from 1998 and was written for practicing lawyers who want to change career paths.

I think that referencing this list now and using it as advice for prospective students is beyond irresponsible.

Here is the reference from the UMinnesota Law site:

Greenberg, Hindi. The Lawyer's Career Change Handbook: More Than 300 Things You Can Do With a Law Degree. New York, NY: Avon Books, 1998. Call Number: KF 297 .Z9 G74 1998. [Location: Law, Plaza Level].

(Note too that law school tuition was much lower in 1998.)


There are a number of jobs on that list that don't require prior experience........If you actually google some of those jobs.

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sunynp
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Re: So you "can" get a good job if you aren't top 50%?

Postby sunynp » Sat Dec 31, 2011 4:41 pm

sparty99 wrote:
sunynp wrote:I found the link for this list of 300 things on the South Texas website. I couldn't link to it here, but if you want to find it just go to the South Texas Law School website and search for 300 things you can do with a law degree.

The South Texas list thanks the University of Minnesota, so I looked on the Minnesota website. It turns out that list of jobs is from 1998 and was written for practicing lawyers who want to change career paths.

I think that referencing this list now and using it as advice for prospective students is beyond irresponsible.

Here is the reference from the UMinnesota Law site:

Greenberg, Hindi. The Lawyer's Career Change Handbook: More Than 300 Things You Can Do With a Law Degree. New York, NY: Avon Books, 1998. Call Number: KF 297 .Z9 G74 1998. [Location: Law, Plaza Level].

(Note too that law school tuition was much lower in 1998.)


There are a number of jobs on that list that don't require prior experience........If you actually google some of those jobs.


The point is that a job guide from 1998 is fairly useless. The other point is that it is a waste to go to law school if you are not going to practice law. Many people have found that having a JD hurts them from getting jobs because of the reasons I stated above - people think they will leave, or they think they are losers because they can't get a job practicing law. The only job a JD helps you get is practicing law - if you aren't going to practice, you should not go to law school.

As to the point about getting where you want to be eventually - I don't think this is true. Many people have lost jobs due to the economy and they can't find new jobs. Other people were misled by false employment statistics. Many people were naive and uninformed - and I think that many students are still uniformed. Maybe if currently unemployed attorneys weren't hobbled by huge debt they would have a chance to work their way into the profession, but with a large amount of debt they can't get ahead.

I am all for going to law school, practicing law and having a great career. I believe in the idea of dreams. But go to law school with a good idea of how you will repay the debt you take out.

Note that in this thread several current students say they wished they had really understood the job market: viewtopic.php?f=4&t=172609

There are other threads on this forum by students who are having a very tough time getting a SA or a permanent job- even people from T6 schools.
Last edited by sunynp on Sat Dec 31, 2011 4:45 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Redzo
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Re: So you "can" get a good job if you aren't top 50%?

Postby Redzo » Sat Dec 31, 2011 4:43 pm

Who is the one who truly is being driven by fear? He who accepts a realistic view of his likelihood of success and continues anyway, or he who proceeds in willful ignorance of the circumstances, with blind faith that everything will turn out all right in the end?

That doesn't take courage. Being a realist takes courage.

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Re: So you "can" get a good job if you aren't top 50%?

Postby mattviphky » Sat Dec 31, 2011 8:26 pm

Paul Campos wrote:
sparty99 wrote:
sunynp wrote:
sparty99 wrote:I've talked to prosecutors who graduated last year and have jobs. They were below median and went to a top 40.

However, I think being at median is not good. If you think about all the law schools and the people they graduate, how will employer's distinguish "top talent." The easiest way is by going with people who have high grades, law review, and moot court.

If you are below median, I wouldn't drop out (per se). There are jobs outside of a big law/attorney field that a law degree will be beneficial, however, law school is not a winning bet.


No, this isn't true. There are no other fields that a law degree helps you with a job. If you can think of any, please post them! I have only heard that having a law degree means people in other fields won't hire you because they think you will leave as soon as you find a job practicing, or they think something is wrong with you because you can't find a job practicing.


A law degree is an advanced degree. You can become a teacher on a slightly higher pay scale with a law degree. Additionally, there are policy positions/think-tank. Human Resources. Financial Services loves law degrees. There are also "sister industries" that provide services to legal organizations that having a law degree can help. Also, business loves people with advanced degrees. Additionally, business people won't care too much about law school rankings, but they will love that someone has an advanced degree - especially a law degree. Yes, they will wonder why you are not taking a law job, but it's not hard to "spin it" or sell the hiring manager on how your legal background will benefit business. Granted, you don't need a law degree to become a HR, Teacher, or business professional, but the "do-or-die" scenarios on this board is kind of annoying.

SOuth Texas College of Law has a document that says, "300 Things You can Do with a Law Degree."


Help me tiny baby Jesus


Government. usajobs.com. In a bureaucracy, checking the degree box is mostly what it's about.

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Redzo
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Re: So you "can" get a good job if you aren't top 50%?

Postby Redzo » Sat Dec 31, 2011 10:22 pm

Just curious then, what government jobs can you get with a JD that you couldn't have got with a Bachelor's? (Other than actual law jobs, since that isn't what we're talking about here, anyway.)

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Michaela
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Re: So you "can" get a good job if you aren't top 50%?

Postby Michaela » Sat Dec 31, 2011 10:46 pm

mattviphky wrote: Government. usajobs.com. In a bureaucracy, checking the degree box is mostly what it's about.


Yeah but for government jobs having a JD is equivalent to having a masters- they don't consider it to be the same as a PhD.

sparty99
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Re: So you "can" get a good job if you aren't top 50%?

Postby sparty99 » Sat Dec 31, 2011 11:04 pm

Redzo wrote:Just curious then, what government jobs can you get with a JD that you couldn't have got with a Bachelor's? (Other than actual law jobs, since that isn't what we're talking about here, anyway.)


A JD puts you on a higher pay scale and puts you in the running for governmental positions. If you did a search on the government website, you would quickly see that a JD is beneficial for a number of non-attorney jobs. Even a Program Management Analyst or whatever they call it. There is so many to list, that you should research it yourself.

Additionally, if you have prior work experience, a JD is another advantage. Couple a JD with business experience and see the doors that you could open in the Department of State or Commerce (to name a few). Yes, if you are going to law school, you should probably at least practice law (since that is what a JD is for), but to say you should drop out because you are not at median is really extreme. In this market, you have to take a holistic approach.

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AreJay711
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Re: So you "can" get a good job if you aren't top 50%?

Postby AreJay711 » Sat Dec 31, 2011 11:31 pm

The thing is that a "good" job is relative. If you'd be happy just having a legal job and paying the bills then it is very possible. Though you could find a job that puts you in a better position without law school and I imagine that it would be heard to determine whether you actually would like being a lawyer till you tried it.




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