Only Go to Baylor Law IF:

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Attax
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Re: Only Go to Baylor Law IF:

Postby Attax » Sun Aug 23, 2015 12:15 pm

Exlawyer wrote:Only if you want to ruin your life, as I did 20 years ago. The profession itself is not that profitable; too many lawyers, not enough jobs, etc., but that's another topic. Let's just say that with my Baylor JD I have unloaded trucks, worked retail, mowed yards, and at age 40 I found myself applying for an entry level fast food job to bring in extra cash. Several professional recruiters have refused to work with me since non-law companies assume a JD will quit if a legal job opens up. Yet law placement-including Baylor's-could find no law jobs. The JD, a headhunter explained, makes a candidate less marketable than they were with only a BA. Most I have kept in touch with are not practicing. One-who went solo after being laid off-confessed to me that he'd only made $2000 the first half of 2014 (after expenses). He has a family. Have known several lawyers who went into public ed to get a higher, reliable paycheck and benefits. I've known 2 lawyers who were Walmart asst managers). Pays better.

1. If you're not in the top 50% after first semester most professors won't take time to work with you (and, yes, I tried)

2. Baylor emphasizes 1950's courtroom tactics at the expense of other topics, esp. Discovery phase. I had never witnessed, much less simulated, a deposition or pretrial hearing. The firm's other lawyers were obviously better prepared than I was. I only practiced 1 year out of law school before I gave up, esp. Since the firm couldn't make payroll (2 of the 3 firms owed me money when Ieft & none still exist).

3. Baylor grads end up in suburbs at smaller firms. Due to computers (Legalzoom,etc.) and tort reform by far most suburban work is in Family Law. Baylor does a dismal job on Family Law. i was shocked at the difference between their program and the reality of where the income is. I network enough to believe this assessment is still accurate in 2015.

4. Baylor is unusually high stress relative to normal law schools. It's a negative tradition that borders on hazing. Numerous students ended up with depression, marital problems, etc., with high dropout rate. I deeply regret not quitting and cutting my losses. There is a reason lawyers have high suicide, alcoholism, divorce rates, etc. would love to see how much higher Baylor rates are.

5. New facility is very nice compared to old one (I toured new one recently). It's still in isolated Waco. In Dallas/Houston you can network and go observe actual courtroom proceedings. At Baylor, you're too busy and far away for real world training.

6. I agree that Baylor is Texas-centered. Do not attend unless you are sure you will only work in Tx.

7. Baylor grades artificially low, making it hard to transfer out. Also gives you a negative on job apps/resume for rest of your life, and can make it hard to get another graduate degree in the likely event you change careers and need a better degree later.


Bottom line: Baylor prepares you for a world that no longer exists. Odds are against law school grads actually having a long, profitable career anyway. You'll probably be a statistic. Why make the odds worse by going to a small school that is out of touch with what todays jobs look like?


But where do you stand on chipotle v freebirds?

Ken Kesey
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Re: Only Go to Baylor Law IF:

Postby Ken Kesey » Wed Sep 02, 2015 1:43 am

BVest wrote:
deebanger wrote:does the quarter system in baylor make it hard to transfer after your first year? Any baylor students want to chime in?


This should never be your concern. In practice, selecting 1L school = selecting school on your JD degree. Despite the ample bandwidth used over transfers on TLS, it is by far the exception, not the rule.

But if you want an answer to this question, look to find out when spring quarter grades typically come out and compare that to schools' deadlines for transfer. Quarter systems do not, by themselves, make it more difficult to transfer, but they can have some funky effects on cycle deadlines.

ETA: It looks like, though Baylor Law is on quarters, their academic calendar aligns fairly well with semester schools (exam period ends May 1 -- cf. Chicago which ends June 5; UW which ends June 12), so it shouldn't have an effect.



Mildly ironic coming from a transfer?

Edit: less ironic when this comment comes from a failed transfer.
Last edited by Ken Kesey on Wed Sep 02, 2015 1:49 am, edited 1 time in total.

Ken Kesey
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Re: Only Go to Baylor Law IF:

Postby Ken Kesey » Wed Sep 02, 2015 1:49 am

Also I'll weigh in on this debate. Don't go to baylor. Its stupid 3L "real trial stuff" is stupid. So is the quater system. Choose UH over Baylor everytime, but hopefully you'll at least get into SMU. (I'm assuming you're content with Texas 4eva).

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BVest
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Re: Only Go to Baylor Law IF:

Postby BVest » Wed Sep 02, 2015 11:47 am

Ken Kesey wrote:
BVest wrote:.


Mildly ironic coming from a transfer?

Edit: less ironic when this comment comes from a failed transfer.


I'm not sure what you mean by a "failed transfer."

And yes, while I did transfer, I never went to my 1L school with that intent. The decision to try to transfer was made for purely personal reasons based on circumstances that arose in March and April of my 1L year.

[Some really odd bumping ITT.]

Ken Kesey
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Re: Only Go to Baylor Law IF:

Postby Ken Kesey » Thu Sep 03, 2015 9:48 pm

BVest wrote:
Ken Kesey wrote:
BVest wrote:.


Mildly ironic coming from a transfer?

Edit: less ironic when this comment comes from a failed transfer.


I'm not sure what you mean by a "failed transfer."

And yes, while I did transfer, I never went to my 1L school with that intent. The decision to try to transfer was made for purely personal reasons based on circumstances that arose in March and April of my 1L year.

[Some really odd bumping ITT.]


Failed transfer, as in I am a failed transfer. I tried to,but failed. You successfully transferred.

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BVest
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Re: Only Go to Baylor Law IF:

Postby BVest » Thu Sep 03, 2015 9:50 pm

Fair enough. Hope your OCI went better than your transfer cycle then.

TexEsq
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Re: Only Go to Baylor Law IF:

Postby TexEsq » Wed Oct 21, 2015 10:41 am

As a graduate of the Law School, I can suggest that some of this post seems off.

(1) You only want to work in Texas. Well ... most people go school where they live. If you can go to Harvard or Yale, by all means pack your bags. Texas is a good market, but I have know a good number of classmates that have moved to other states, pursued LLM, or moved when reciprocity is available.

(2) You only want to work in a small- or mid-size firm. That is true for most graduates of most law schools. For my class of 35-ish, I know that at least 20% went to large firms (100-2000 attorneys). There are also usually several that do judicial clerkship. With any law school, one needs to ascertain whether the cost of the education is worth the reward. For some, it is not. When I started, tuition was about $12,000 per year. And, that wasn't too long ago. But, the school also awards (or did award) a good number of scholarships.

(3) You do not aspire to work in BigLaw. See No. 2.[/b]

[b](4)
You have lots of money sitting around burning a hole in your pocket This is a very good point. When I went to Baylor, the cost was 50% more than a state school. But, when 50% equals $5,000, the financial differences were insignificant. The cost now is BIG. But, again, there are a number of scholarship for some.

(5) You've maxed out your retakes, must stay in Texas, and you have no better offers at schools that will offer you better employment prospects The link provided doesn't show Baylor as 10th. Baylor clearly appeals to a Texas job market. They have smaller classes, which means fewer alumni. If you graduate from UT, then you will have a more portable degree. But, after practicing for 15 years, a graduate of Baylor, Houston, Tech, and SMU are usually considered on par with on another. There are some great attorneys from other schools. And, having done hiring, quality candidates from other schools are employable (but the tie will usually go to the candidate from the more prestigious school. No news there.

(6) You just absolutely love litigation There is a big focus on litigation. But, many graduates don't pursue that route. And, nobody thinks less of you for not wanting to be a litigator. If you know that you never want to litigate, then Baylor may not be for you.

(7) You are masochistic [b]It's not fun the first or third year. But, it is a wake-up call to the practice of law. You need to take responsibility for accomplishing tasks, not talking about how the law should work. 99.9% of practicing law is knowing the law and applying it. And, you are expected to know what you are doing, including clinical practice. It isn't as competitive as one would think. Most law school students are Type-As. Ever law school has a competitive edge. But, students will help those that are making an effort.[/b]

(8) More specifically, instead of coasting your last year of law school, you want to put yourself through living hell [b]“Practice Court” is miserable. It does make finding a job out of town more challenging. And, if you are like me, I finished my last exams in July, took the bar 6 days later, and graduated 3 days later. So, taking BarBri and doing Practice Court and job seeking is tough. I had landed a judicial clerkship, so I was more worried about my final exams (2 people failed and had to come back) than passing the bar. So, that's pretty crazy. But, having taken many courses covered by the Bar, I really only had to study for the Bar for about 5 days -- not 3 months. [/b]

(9) Waco. If you don’t mind living in Waco The best two things about Waco are IH-35 North and IH-35 South. It has more dining and basic shopping now. But, Austin or Dallas is 1.5 hours away and was a good distraction from law school. People left regularly. Recruiting isn't bad in Waco. And, recruits that are selected for second interviews are regularly flown to Dallas, Houston, etc. Nobody evaluates law schools graduates based on the dining option of the city in which the school is located.

(10) (<sarcasm>) You only want to study and don’t like parties, dancing, and you epitomize conservative/Baptist viewpoints (</sarcasm>) There is no campus pub. But, there is not a prevailing conservative culture in the law school. And, with the law school across the street from the rest of the campus, it's not oppressive. Students go out and socialize. Most class sizes are small, so there aren't parties with 300 people. And, you don't need to study that hard to do well.

(11) Bonus – they have a pretty good/exciting football team, Art Briles is a great coach and they could be good for several years as long as he’s there, and they just got a new stadium built. [b]Don't forget the new law school. I guess it isn't that new anymore. And, I barely missed taking classes there. But, it is very nice.[/b]

(12) Bonus-- Waco has, like, a Chipotle, a Fazzoli’s, and like, so many other fine dining options. Don't forget Ninfa's.[/b]

[b]TL;DR
– Only go to Baylor if you have a scholarship, want to do litigation in TX, don’t care if it’s at a small(-er) law firm, and don’t mind living in Waco for 3 years, and you want the most competitive, miserable law school experience ever. I have a somewhat neutral view of Baylor Law School. I received a very good legal education and was prepared to take a judicial clerkship and work for a large firm (100+) in a diverse litigation practice. It wasn't fun. But, the work you put in in law school does pay dividends when you finish. However, the cost of attendance today is frightening. I didn't have any scholarship (because admissions couldn't get my paperwork correct -- long story of an isolated screw-up), but still finished with a small, small fraction of the debt load listed. If one finished with $250K in debt based on tuition of $40K per year (choke) you'd be living on $40K in living expenses as a student. You'd have to be looking for a lot of steak dinners at that price and have saved not a single penny from summer work.

*Disclosure: I didn't go to Baylor Law and I'm glad I didn't. I am not from Texas originally, but I am very familiar with the Waco area and Texas overall. And I've heard first-hand from multiple sources of their experience at Baylor (and others' are well documented on TLS). I see this as a public-service announcement so those considering Baylor Law can objectively identify whether the school will provide the means to help them reach their employment goals.[/quote]

BigZuck
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Re: Only Go to Baylor Law IF:

Postby BigZuck » Wed Oct 21, 2015 11:56 am

Tutition is 52K a year now. The school allows you to take out 21K for living expenses, not 40K (40K? Come on dude that's not how that works). 21K is probably a bit high, but not really if you have to stretch it out to 12 months. If you pay sticker at Baylor you'll definitely be around 250K+ in debt.

Their large firm plus clerkship placement for the most recent class is 11%. That doesn't include state clerkships though, which may or may not be a good outcome of course. Anyway, it's not 20% big law plus a number of people in (good) clerkships like you were implying.

The school seems to have become exponentially more expensive and their job placement seems to have become exponentially worse since you attended my dude.




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