UT v Bama v UGA With a Twist!

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BigZuck

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Re: UT v Bama v UGA With a Twist!

Postby BigZuck » Sun Apr 02, 2017 12:01 pm

ggmu1992 wrote:
BigZuck wrote:
cavalier1138 wrote:
ggmu1992 wrote:2. I am not ignoring this advice. I think it's good advice, which i would heed, for the top 15-20 schools (including UT). But I know people that have gone to schools 20-50, and I've met people there. I think that for a person who goes to a school they are overqualified for, they'll have a pretty easy time coming out on top, assuming no work ethic problems/other extraneous factors. I've got a friend who matches the profile of the overconfident person who is median at law school, and I am not him. I'm more realistic about my ability, and I work harder.
BUT I also realize that I have absolutely ZERO credibility on this matter until I do it, so I do take everyone's advice on this seriously. I hedge for it, even though I "know" it won't happen to me.
If you do know of a thread where people have gone to a T20-50 school knowing that they are, numbers-wise, better than everyone else there and significantly better than the median, and still have done poorly, I'd be happy to read it. Every time I see this advice, though, it is oriented towards people who are average for their school, OR are going to T14 schools, where of course everyone is brilliant. I don't really want this to be a sticking point for this thread, though. Like I said--please don't conflate my confidence that I can do really well with an inability to consider that I might be wrong.


This just isn't how it works. Working harder doesn't always correlate to performing better than others on an exam, and that's literally the only thing that you're graded on.

I went a T20 with entering stats probably in at least the Top 10% of the class. I ended up above median when I graduated but not significantly so. And that's with me being pretty strategic about what classes I took and genuinely trying hard for all 3 years. I was good at school my whole life, I just wasn't particularly good at law school. It happens. I had no way of predicting that going in.


I appreciate this. Thanks.
Do you still think this would be the case at a lower ranked school? It seems the standard deviation for students is a lot bigger at lower ranked schools (which is why big firms will hire the top few students, and leave the rest).

I don't know if I think that but I do think that expecting to be top 10% at one of these schools is a dumb thing for a supposedly very smart person to think. All it takes is one bad cold or missing that one makeup class where your Torts professor covered all the material on one half of your test (this literally happened) for you to bink one bad (or even just median) grade and then your fated top 10% is out the window.

You don't think this because you're smart or special or whatever but there can be a razor thin margin of error here. Given how few classes actually calculate into your GPA (especially 1L year which is mostly all that matters) it'd be pretty easy to fall into the unwashed medianish masses just based on your performance on a single test.

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Re: UT v Bama v UGA With a Twist!

Postby BigZuck » Sun Apr 02, 2017 12:02 pm

Or as already stated maybe you're just not all that good at law school. That was me.

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Re: UT v Bama v UGA With a Twist!

Postby ggmu1992 » Sun Apr 02, 2017 12:23 pm

A. Nony Mouse wrote:
ggmu1992 wrote:
Bob loblaw law blog wrote:Retake. Gets you better options and might give you some better logical reasoning in the process. Christ.

Your friend's experience is entirely irrelevant and you continue to assume your smarter than everyone else. There will be plenty of smart people in every law school. There will be multiple people at Bama who turned down T14 for Bama cause it's their home and it was free. You may be better at law school than them, or you might not, and the same applies to literally everyone else in the class vs you. No one knows how they're going to do, stop assuming you're special.


My logical reasoning is just fine! And I am smarter than most people!

It is silly of you (and others) to insinuate that there is no way to predict law school success. But I've said multiple times that I'm willing to concede the possibility that I come out in the middle. It's why I'm debt averse. If I'm an average lawyer, I probably won't continue doing law very long, because I don't like doing things that I am not very very good at--and that possibility is why i don't want to be chained to debt. But it is utterly silly to PLAN on being bad at something, when I've been good at similar things my whole life (and this isn't just about ability, it's also about work ethic).

My belief that I'll end up in the top of the class is a distinct issue from whether I am circumspect enough to make a decision that accounts for the possibility that it won't happen. Only the latter is required to make a responsible decision, and only the latter is what YOU should care about if you are on these forums to help people make responsible decisions. You seem to actually care more about eliminating the belief, which is unhelpful. It doesn't bother me, but maybe consider that when you advise others!

Dude. You really can't predict law school success. You haven't previously been in a situation where you've been graded on a curve, in a situation where the people all around you fall pretty close to you on the LSAT/GPA scale (because most law schools have students who fall within a pretty narrow range), being tested on material unrelated to your previous areas of study. In the end, you can't predict your success because your success isn't determined by what you do, but by what everyone else in your class does, which you can't predict or control.

And the problem is that maybe you are going to be circumspect enough to account for the possibility that it won't happen, but SO MANY applicants show up here saying "it's okay to go to School X because I'll be in the top 10%," and want to make decisions based on that belief, and your belief that you can predict your success just encourages them to think that way.


Does you care if I tell you my undergrad major was graded on a curve?

Point taken about other people on these forums. To any prospective students that empathize with me in this thread, please note that I am only considering places with low-to-zero debt after graduation--because if I DO underperform my expectations and don't achieve my goals, I am not also buried under debt.

Unrelatedly, I really respect for your excellent moderating and your genuine concern for people around here.

Again, appreciate everyone's feedback. I know I seem like I'm taking hard lines on stuff, but arguing is just how I process decision making.

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Re: UT v Bama v UGA With a Twist!

Postby ggmu1992 » Sun Apr 02, 2017 12:25 pm

BigZuck wrote:Or as already stated maybe you're just not all that good at law school. That was me.


Margin of Error stuff noted. Was aware of that coming in to the thread, but you have definitely helped drive it home. Thanks.

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A. Nony Mouse

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Re: UT v Bama v UGA With a Twist!

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Sun Apr 02, 2017 12:29 pm

ggmu1992 wrote:Does you care if I tell you my undergrad major was graded on a curve?

Not really, because in law school you're not going to be graded on a curve against the people from your undergrad major, and it's going to be on material none of you have studied before. (Having previously been graded on a curve gives you some psychological comfort with the concept, I suppose, but I don't see how it gives anyone any advantage being graded on a curve in the future. Is there some method of study only applicable or particularly helpful when being graded on a curve?)

Also thanks.

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Re: UT v Bama v UGA With a Twist!

Postby favabeansoup » Sun Apr 02, 2017 12:31 pm

The only people I knew who did the JD/MPA at UT were very political/non profit policy work focused. Laser focused on it. People would go into BigFed or other gov positions.

They didn't fit into the mold of people who later wanted to go into business or who wanted to stop practicing some sort of law (exception for getting into politics themselves).

Also, to state the obvious for many of us, law school teaches you nothing practically to help someone run a business/help a non profit. Legal education in general is remarkably bad at giving people practical experience, it's more of a foundation that generally buttresses on the job trial by fire training for the first few years post graduation.

If your long term career goals are to be more business oriented and policy/data focused, I'd personally still get a MPA but try to get a CPA too. CPAs are a ton more useful for business related issues than a JD ever will be.

Lawyers aren't the "decision makers" in life. We are the people (at least on the transactional/business side) that make sure the decision makers actually get what they decided they want. That's a difference many people have trouble understanding and coming to terms with a few years into practice.

That's not to say lawyers suck, people can love this job and we are necessary for so many things. It's just important not to misunderstand the role a lawyer, and a legal education, has in the business world.

TLDR: go get a CPA /MPA and go into business straight off, don't get a JD.

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Re: UT v Bama v UGA With a Twist!

Postby ggmu1992 » Sun Apr 02, 2017 12:34 pm

Dcc617 wrote:
ggmu1992 wrote:
Npret wrote:1. You talked to two people from Alabama that got jobs in NY and suddenly it isn't regional? Charlotte and Atlanta are cities I would expect Alabama grads to go, and possibly they already had ties there.

2. There is no way to guarantee you will be top 5 or 10% of your class. Almost everyone like you assumes they will be because they have had great grades in the past and assume they will be smarter than everyone else at school.
You say you know this but blah, blah, blah.


3. I would be interested in how you think you will spin getting an MPA in an interview with a law firm.

4. If you do so desperately want the MPA, it seems that would immediately take Alabama out of the running.

5. Also, are your debt costs accurate? You can cover COL yourself?


1. Well, a previous response said implied that UGA/Bama placed in diff places. Which, sure, they will place better in the big cities they are right next to, but it seems both would place in the SouthEast generally, for a good student at least.

2. I am not ignoring this advice. I think it's good advice, which i would heed, for the top 15-20 schools (including UT). But I know people that have gone to schools 20-50, and I've met people there. I think that for a person who goes to a school they are overqualified for, they'll have a pretty easy time coming out on top, assuming no work ethic problems/other extraneous factors. I've got a friend who matches the profile of the overconfident person who is median at law school, and I am not him. I'm more realistic about my ability, and I work harder.
BUT I also realize that I have absolutely ZERO credibility on this matter until I do it, so I do take everyone's advice on this seriously. I hedge for it, even though I "know" it won't happen to me.
If you do know of a thread where people have gone to a T20-50 school knowing that they are, numbers-wise, better than everyone else there and significantly better than the median, and still have done poorly, I'd be happy to read it. Every time I see this advice, though, it is oriented towards people who are average for their school, OR are going to T14 schools, where of course everyone is brilliant. I don't really want this to be a sticking point for this thread, though. Like I said--please don't conflate my confidence that I can do really well with an inability to consider that I might be wrong.

3. "I wanted to get good at data cause I like data" (so basically, I wouldn't. I'd just use it to pivot towards a more conversational explanation of some of my interests/hobbies.)

4. Noted., and appreciated. But graduating without any debt would be reallly nice... (this is my problem)

5. Yeah, they're good. Thanks for the concern though! :D


1) Your goals seem all over the place, which means you don't really know what you want. It would be helpful if you could clarify what your minimum goals would be.

2) None of those schools are the best options for geographic mobility, biglaw, bigfed, etc. You want T13. I have trouble believing that you have a big scholarship to UT and a Harvard waitlist, but nothing in between. Did you apply to Duke or UVA?

3) The vast majority of law school kids think they're going to be at the top of the class. However, that cannot be what happens. Being above the medians, or even 75ths does not mean you'll be the best at law school exams. That's why you assume median and see if you'd be happy with the result.

4) Professional degrees are for jobs. I mean, it's your decision to take out tens of thousands of dollars in debt for fun, but I think you'd be better off not doing that and saving up for a downpayment on a house or something.

5) Cut the shitty tone. Most people who take the time to respond are genuinely trying to help. Why even ask the question if you're not going listen or act like you're actually so special that advice doesn't apply to you?


Hey, I almost missed this.

I think It takes a cynical person to interpret my tone as shitty. I genuinely meant thank you (and even threw the smiley face in specifically to help you see that I was not being sarcastic). I've tried to be genuinely kind because everyone ELSE is always shitty on these forums. :?

Thanks for your other inputs. Like I said, I applied real late. Haven't heard from UVA, priority WL at Duke. Both would be prohibitively expensive.

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Re: UT v Bama v UGA With a Twist!

Postby ggmu1992 » Sun Apr 02, 2017 12:38 pm

zot1 wrote:
ggmu1992 wrote:
My logical reasoning is just fine! And I am smarter than most people!



You're gonna be a great lawyer.


If this is an attack, it's weird that you chose these two sentences, out of all the things I've hurriedly typed this morning. Like... a defining characteristic of a lawyer is that they don't know basic facts about themselves? *shrugs*

You work in gov and could've given me actual advice!

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Re: UT v Bama v UGA With a Twist!

Postby ggmu1992 » Sun Apr 02, 2017 12:46 pm

favabeansoup wrote:The only people I knew who did the JD/MPA at UT were very political/non profit policy work focused. Laser focused on it. People would go into BigFed or other gov positions.

They didn't fit into the mold of people who later wanted to go into business or who wanted to stop practicing some sort of law (exception for getting into politics themselves).

Also, to state the obvious for many of us, law school teaches you nothing practically to help someone run a business/help a non profit. Legal education in general is remarkably bad at giving people practical experience, it's more of a foundation that generally buttresses on the job trial by fire training for the first few years post graduation.

If your long term career goals are to be more business oriented and policy/data focused, I'd personally still get a MPA but try to get a CPA too. CPAs are a ton more useful for business related issues than a JD ever will be.

Lawyers aren't the "decision makers" in life. We are the people (at least on the transactional/business side) that make sure the decision makers actually get what they decided they want. That's a difference many people have trouble understanding and coming to terms with a few years into practice.

That's not to say lawyers suck, people can love this job and we are necessary for so many things. It's just important not to misunderstand the role a lawyer, and a legal education, has in the business world.

TLDR: go get a CPA /MPA and go into business straight off, don't get a JD.


Thanks for this. This thread HAS helped me think about MPA stuff. I understand that the two degrees are pretty different career paths. I don't know which I'd prefer, and I don't think I'll know until I am immersed in both. People don't really talk about how to know whether you'll LIKE the jobs you get when you get out of a degree program on these forums much, but I think the only way to know is to do the job. I never thought I'd like working at a golf course as much as I did, and I never thought I'd hate working at a grocery store as much as I did. Ya know?

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Re: UT v Bama v UGA With a Twist!

Postby ggmu1992 » Sun Apr 02, 2017 12:48 pm

guys and girls, this Arsenal/City game is nuts

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Re: UT v Bama v UGA With a Twist!

Postby zot1 » Sun Apr 02, 2017 2:44 pm

ggmu1992 wrote:
zot1 wrote:
ggmu1992 wrote:
My logical reasoning is just fine! And I am smarter than most people!



You're gonna be a great lawyer.


If this is an attack, it's weird that you chose these two sentences, out of all the things I've hurriedly typed this morning. Like... a defining characteristic of a lawyer is that they don't know basic facts about themselves? *shrugs*

You work in gov and could've given me actual advice!


You come to this forum to ask for advice. People give you advice. You disregard all of the advice you get because you're smarter than most people. Sounds to me like there's nothing I could tell you. You got this.
Last edited by zot1 on Sun Apr 02, 2017 4:39 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: UT v Bama v UGA With a Twist!

Postby Npret » Sun Apr 02, 2017 3:32 pm

ggmu1992 wrote:
favabeansoup wrote:The only people I knew who did the JD/MPA at UT were very political/non profit policy work focused. Laser focused on it. People would go into BigFed or other gov positions.

They didn't fit into the mold of people who later wanted to go into business or who wanted to stop practicing some sort of law (exception for getting into politics themselves).

Also, to state the obvious for many of us, law school teaches you nothing practically to help someone run a business/help a non profit. Legal education in general is remarkably bad at giving people practical experience, it's more of a foundation that generally buttresses on the job trial by fire training for the first few years post graduation.

If your long term career goals are to be more business oriented and policy/data focused, I'd personally still get a MPA but try to get a CPA too. CPAs are a ton more useful for business related issues than a JD ever will be.

Lawyers aren't the "decision makers" in life. We are the people (at least on the transactional/business side) that make sure the decision makers actually get what they decided they want. That's a difference many people have trouble understanding and coming to terms with a few years into practice.

That's not to say lawyers suck, people can love this job and we are necessary for so many things. It's just important not to misunderstand the role a lawyer, and a legal education, has in the business world.

TLDR: go get a CPA /MPA and go into business straight off, don't get a JD.


Thanks for this. This thread HAS helped me think about MPA stuff. I understand that the two degrees are pretty different career paths. I don't know which I'd prefer, and I don't think I'll know until I am immersed in both. People don't really talk about how to know whether you'll LIKE the jobs you get when you get out of a degree program on these forums much, but I think the only way to know is to do the job. I never thought I'd like working at a golf course as much as I did, and I never thought I'd hate working at a grocery store as much as I did. Ya know?

Do you really need some one to explain to you to get a job as a paralegal or clerk at a law firm or volunteer somewhere to learn about the job?

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Re: UT v Bama v UGA With a Twist!

Postby eck456 » Sun Apr 02, 2017 3:41 pm

ggmu1992 wrote:This is my second-ever post, mainly because I am always on TLS at work where IT has figured out how to prevent folks from logging into sites (but I can still view them? IT is lame). So I feel guilty for just leeching, but, eh.

Point is, I've been around the TLS block and know the standard advice.

Some schools haven't gotten back yet (I applied almost at deadlines), but the current options are:

UT @ 90 k (prenegotiation--think I have decent odds at getting that to 60k after negotiation-- at/above both 75ths)

UGA 35k.

Bama for free.

Goals: big fed or in house. Potential pit stops at clerkship and/or big law, depending on life situations/ambitions/etc. Don't care where.

BUT WAIT THERE'S A TWIST: well, two actually.

(1) I want to do an MPA dual. Want to learn the stuff, and have better quant skills. UGA is top 5 in the country for that. UT is top 10. Bama's MPA program, as far as USNews is concerned, doubles as a janitorial staff.

(2) related to the above: I might not want to be a lawyer forever! *GASP* BUT before you shout me down: I know I'd be happy being a lawyer forever, as I work with legal at my job. I just also like the business side of things, and have diverse interests in general, and would gladly enter another related profession if the opportunity arose. In fact, I know I'm someone who probably won't do the same exact thing for 30 years. Which is why I like the MPA option (to gain a broader education), and is why I am (please hear this) VERY debt-averse. Even 35 k is scary to me, because I don't want loan payments to ever determine any choice that I make.

So in summary:
Best law school: UT > Bama & UGA
Best MPA: UT & UGA > Bama
Best cost: Bama > UGA > UT

See how that is cyclical?

Also I'm WL at H and would absolutely accept an offer and go for full cost because I'm a starry eyed dunce.

Soooo... skewer me.

P.S. - visited Bama. Impressed. Visiting UGA next week. Asked UT if they'll fund a visit; no response yet.

P.P.S. --- I purposefully didn't include stats, though there are hints. I'm considering retaking (again)/going again next cycle. Personal reasons for both staying and going, but point is: assume I'm going, know that retake advice is already being considered carefully, and yes I know that if I retake and improve a bit and apply earlier, I will probably get in nearly everywhere with $$$. You may tell me to retake/reapply, but if that is your only contribution... I mean, I can't tell you what to do, but you'll waste 2 clicks and 6 keystrokes


I'm not going to read the whole thread, but I'm a policy program dual degree too -something to consider is that USNWT rankings do not align AT ALL for policy school reputations. it's pretty much a big joke in policy schools how inaccurate they are to the actual ability to be employed in cool shit, and people will literally pull random programs out of the hat as a joke bc it just doesn't align. I can tell you FOR SURE that johnson @ texas is way better regarded as a policy school than uga. as in, I've met cool UT grads doing cool stuff and know of many others who are doing cool stuff, and I've never met anyone who did an mpa at UGA or heard of anyone from there doing cool stuff. maybe they're really well hired within georgia or within the south? but if it's a decision between UT Austin + Johnson I would x2000 take that over UGA, disregarding $$

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Re: UT v Bama v UGA With a Twist!

Postby eck456 » Sun Apr 02, 2017 3:42 pm

eck456 wrote:
ggmu1992 wrote:This is my second-ever post, mainly because I am always on TLS at work where IT has figured out how to prevent folks from logging into sites (but I can still view them? IT is lame). So I feel guilty for just leeching, but, eh.

Point is, I've been around the TLS block and know the standard advice.

Some schools haven't gotten back yet (I applied almost at deadlines), but the current options are:

UT @ 90 k (prenegotiation--think I have decent odds at getting that to 60k after negotiation-- at/above both 75ths)

UGA 35k.

Bama for free.

Goals: big fed or in house. Potential pit stops at clerkship and/or big law, depending on life situations/ambitions/etc. Don't care where.

BUT WAIT THERE'S A TWIST: well, two actually.

(1) I want to do an MPA dual. Want to learn the stuff, and have better quant skills. UGA is top 5 in the country for that. UT is top 10. Bama's MPA program, as far as USNews is concerned, doubles as a janitorial staff.

(2) related to the above: I might not want to be a lawyer forever! *GASP* BUT before you shout me down: I know I'd be happy being a lawyer forever, as I work with legal at my job. I just also like the business side of things, and have diverse interests in general, and would gladly enter another related profession if the opportunity arose. In fact, I know I'm someone who probably won't do the same exact thing for 30 years. Which is why I like the MPA option (to gain a broader education), and is why I am (please hear this) VERY debt-averse. Even 35 k is scary to me, because I don't want loan payments to ever determine any choice that I make.

So in summary:
Best law school: UT > Bama & UGA
Best MPA: UT & UGA > Bama
Best cost: Bama > UGA > UT

See how that is cyclical?

Also I'm WL at H and would absolutely accept an offer and go for full cost because I'm a starry eyed dunce.

Soooo... skewer me.

P.S. - visited Bama. Impressed. Visiting UGA next week. Asked UT if they'll fund a visit; no response yet.

P.P.S. --- I purposefully didn't include stats, though there are hints. I'm considering retaking (again)/going again next cycle. Personal reasons for both staying and going, but point is: assume I'm going, know that retake advice is already being considered carefully, and yes I know that if I retake and improve a bit and apply earlier, I will probably get in nearly everywhere with $$$. You may tell me to retake/reapply, but if that is your only contribution... I mean, I can't tell you what to do, but you'll waste 2 clicks and 6 keystrokes


I'm not going to read the whole thread, but I'm a policy program dual degree too -something to consider is that USNWT rankings do not align AT ALL for policy school reputations. it's pretty much a big joke in policy schools how inaccurate they are to the actual ability to be employed in cool shit, and people will literally pull random programs out of the hat as a joke bc it just doesn't align. I can tell you FOR SURE that johnson @ texas is way better regarded as a policy school than uga. as in, I've met cool UT grads doing cool stuff and know of many others who are doing cool stuff, and I've never met anyone who did an mpa at UGA or heard of anyone from there doing cool stuff. maybe they're really well hired within georgia or within the south? but if it's a decision between UT Austin + Johnson I would x2000 take that over UGA, disregarding $$


While adding, I'm sure there are great UGA people doing great things! but if we're going off standard, well known reputations in the wider policy community, UT every time

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Re: UT v Bama v UGA With a Twist!

Postby vcap180 » Mon Apr 03, 2017 3:15 am

Clearly, you should never go into a situation that requires you to finish in the top "x" percent. That would be foolish.

HOWEVER, let's not act like LS performance is 100% random, with zero perdictive variables. One's LSAT and UGPA, taken together, have been shown to have a reasonably strong degree of perdictive validity for both 1L and Bar success.

OP said he's well over UTs 75ths and WLd at H, which means he is WAYYYYYYYY over Bama and UGAs - perhaps by a full standard deviation (or two) with respect to the LSAT.

OPs projected debt levels are pretty damn minimal. If he gambles on himself and loses (finishes median), his situation should still be manageable -- a JD from a state flagship with very minor debt; and if he succeeds, then he won the law school game.

It's not the worst bet in the world, and frankly, the data would "suggest" that his odds of winning "may" be better than 50/50.

All that said, make sure you really want to be a lawyer before making any decision! If you don't truly want to be a lawyer, then all of these choices objectively suck.

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Re: UT v Bama v UGA With a Twist!

Postby cavalier1138 » Mon Apr 03, 2017 5:30 am

vcap180 wrote:It's not the worst bet in the world, and frankly, the data would "suggest" that his odds of winning "may" be better than 50/50.


This sentence is absolutely correct, primarily because you've put the quotation marks in just the right spot.

The correlation between LSAT/GPA and law school performance isn't that strong, specifically because of the 1L curve. Gambling on performing well is a dumb idea in any circumstance.

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Re: UT v Bama v UGA With a Twist!

Postby brinicolec » Mon Apr 03, 2017 6:01 am

I read this thread because I wanted to know what the twist was then couldn't stop reading because it's just.. ridiculous lol.

OP, it really doesn't matter that you're above 75ths, that's not going to guarantee you're a top student (as people have said). Some people aren't able to adjust to "thinking like a lawyer" the way that is required on tests in LS; some people will most likely be better at law school than you; I highly doubt you'll be the smartest person in any room at any given time in LS.

You really SHOULD consider where you want to work because you're looking at places that are, yes, primarily regional schools. UT has a better reach but I'm not willing to say they have national reach.

Also, why does your cycle suck so much if your numbers are so great? I guess the assumption could be that it's because you applied late but... there was a lot of talk of the "reverse cycle" as well as quite a few schools that seemed to have slower responses so it seems odd to me.

I think you need to sit out a cycle (at the very least) and do some soul-searching because your goals are all over the place, your dual-degree desire is strange, and contrary to what another poster said in here, with the unclear reason you want a JD, I think ANY debt is more debt than you should be willing to take on to go to law school until you have a better idea of why you want a law degree to begin with.

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Re: UT v Bama v UGA With a Twist!

Postby MangoPapi » Mon Apr 03, 2017 8:02 am

I'm not really sure why you're so interested in getting a MPA with your JD; if you're doing it for some math expertise like you mentioned you can easily just take some individual math/business courses rather than go for an additional degree that I doubt will give you any benefit when applying to law firms

As for the "top 10%" argument you're making, it's quite silly. You've never experienced law school nor it's exams; all you have are anecdotal experiences and threads on this forum that try to state how law school exams are. People who've been to/are in law school are telling you that assuming you'll be in the top 10-20% is a bad assumption. I'd heed their advice, they know what they're talking about.

And just because you're above the school's 75th percentile for their GPA/LSAT doesn't guarantee that you will be in the top 20%. What you're saying is analogous to a rich person buying lottery tickets; sure they can afford to buy additional tickets compared to another person who isn't as financially well off but buying a few additional tickets isn't going to increase their chances by a whole lot of winning the jackpot.

For a school that graduates 200 people, top 10% would mean being the top 20 students,thats a tall order and a lot of pressure for a person who's never experienced a law school exam to excel at

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Re: UT v Bama v UGA With a Twist!

Postby vcap180 » Mon Apr 03, 2017 10:41 am

MangoPapi wrote:I'm not really sure why you're so interested in getting a MPA with your JD; if you're doing it for some math expertise like you mentioned you can easily just take some individual math/business courses rather than go for an additional degree that I doubt will give you any benefit when applying to law firms

As for the "top 10%" argument you're making, it's quite silly. You've never experienced law school nor it's exams; all you have are anecdotal experiences and threads on this forum that try to state how law school exams are. People who've been to/are in law school are telling you that assuming you'll be in the top 10-20% is a bad assumption. I'd heed their advice, they know what they're talking about.

And just because you're above the school's 75th percentile for their GPA/LSAT doesn't guarantee that you will be in the top 20%. What you're saying is analogous to a rich person buying lottery tickets; sure they can afford to buy additional tickets compared to another person who isn't as financially well off but buying a few additional tickets isn't going to increase their chances by a whole lot of winning the jackpot.

For a school that graduates 200 people, top 10% would mean being the top 20 students,thats a tall order and a lot of pressure for a person who's never experienced a law school exam to excel at



Your analogy is way off. Here is a more apt one:

Banking on your 6'7 15 year old son making it to the NBA. Statistically, there is some correlation between one's height and their chances of making it in the league; and so, your chances *could* be better than a person of average height. Should you bet the house on it? No! Is it okay to pursue that goal as long as you have a sound backup plan in case you fail? Sure!

EDIT: Upon second read, your analogy isn't great, but it's also not "way off".

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Re: UT v Bama v UGA With a Twist!

Postby MangoPapi » Mon Apr 03, 2017 11:35 am

Your analogy is way off. Here is a more apt one:

Banking on your 6'7 15 year old son making it to the NBA. Statistically, there is some correlation between one's height and their chances of making it in the league; and so, your chances *could* be better than a person of average height. Should you bet the house on it? No! Is it okay to pursue that goal as long as you have a sound backup plan in case you fail? Sure!

EDIT: Upon second read, your analogy isn't great, but it's also not "way off".[/quote]

I was rushing when I wrote that but I agree, yours is a lot more sound than what I stated. As long as we hammer the message to OP, that's all that matters

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Re: UT v Bama v UGA With a Twist!

Postby ggmu1992 » Mon Apr 03, 2017 4:04 pm

favabeansoup wrote:The only people I knew who did the JD/MPA at UT were very political/non profit policy work focused. Laser focused on it. People would go into BigFed or other gov positions.

They didn't fit into the mold of people who later wanted to go into business or who wanted to stop practicing some sort of law (exception for getting into politics themselves).

Also, to state the obvious for many of us, law school teaches you nothing practically to help someone run a business/help a non profit. Legal education in general is remarkably bad at giving people practical experience, it's more of a foundation that generally buttresses on the job trial by fire training for the first few years post graduation.

If your long term career goals are to be more business oriented and policy/data focused, I'd personally still get a MPA but try to get a CPA too. CPAs are a ton more useful for business related issues than a JD ever will be.

Lawyers aren't the "decision makers" in life. We are the people (at least on the transactional/business side) that make sure the decision makers actually get what they decided they want. That's a difference many people have trouble understanding and coming to terms with a few years into practice.

That's not to say lawyers suck, people can love this job and we are necessary for so many things. It's just important not to misunderstand the role a lawyer, and a legal education, has in the business world.

TLDR: go get a CPA /MPA and go into business straight off, don't get a JD.


I've got no real feedback, but thanks for this.

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Re: UT v Bama v UGA With a Twist!

Postby ggmu1992 » Mon Apr 03, 2017 4:11 pm

zot1 wrote:
ggmu1992 wrote:
zot1 wrote:
ggmu1992 wrote:
My logical reasoning is just fine! And I am smarter than most people!



You're gonna be a great lawyer.


If this is an attack, it's weird that you chose these two sentences, out of all the things I've hurriedly typed this morning. Like... a defining characteristic of a lawyer is that they don't know basic facts about themselves? *shrugs*

You work in gov and could've given me actual advice!


You come to this forum to ask for advice. People give you advice. You disregard all of the advice you get because you're smarter than most people. Sounds to me like there's nothing I could tell you. You got this.


Bruh--I've repeatedly said that I appreciate all the advice, and have mentioned that arguing with stuff is my way of processing things. If you've unhesitatingly taken every piece of advice you've ever solicited, then you and I have very little in common and that is why you are confused
Last edited by ggmu1992 on Mon Apr 03, 2017 4:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: UT v Bama v UGA With a Twist!

Postby ggmu1992 » Mon Apr 03, 2017 4:13 pm

MangoPapi wrote:I'm not really sure why you're so interested in getting a MPA with your JD; if you're doing it for some math expertise like you mentioned you can easily just take some individual math/business courses rather than go for an additional degree that I doubt will give you any benefit when applying to law firms

As for the "top 10%" argument you're making, it's quite silly. You've never experienced law school nor it's exams; all you have are anecdotal experiences and threads on this forum that try to state how law school exams are. People who've been to/are in law school are telling you that assuming you'll be in the top 10-20% is a bad assumption. I'd heed their advice, they know what they're talking about.

And just because you're above the school's 75th percentile for their GPA/LSAT doesn't guarantee that you will be in the top 20%. What you're saying is analogous to a rich person buying lottery tickets; sure they can afford to buy additional tickets compared to another person who isn't as financially well off but buying a few additional tickets isn't going to increase their chances by a whole lot of winning the jackpot.

For a school that graduates 200 people, top 10% would mean being the top 20 students,thats a tall order and a lot of pressure for a person who's never experienced a law school exam to excel at


Certainly, part of the value of this thread has been reinforcing these ideas for me. Thanks to you and to the others who said similar things before you.

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Re: UT v Bama v UGA With a Twist!

Postby ggmu1992 » Mon Apr 03, 2017 4:18 pm

eck456 wrote:
eck456 wrote:
ggmu1992 wrote:This is my second-ever post, mainly because I am always on TLS at work where IT has figured out how to prevent folks from logging into sites (but I can still view them? IT is lame). So I feel guilty for just leeching, but, eh.

Point is, I've been around the TLS block and know the standard advice.

Some schools haven't gotten back yet (I applied almost at deadlines), but the current options are:

UT @ 90 k (prenegotiation--think I have decent odds at getting that to 60k after negotiation-- at/above both 75ths)

UGA 35k.

Bama for free.

Goals: big fed or in house. Potential pit stops at clerkship and/or big law, depending on life situations/ambitions/etc. Don't care where.

BUT WAIT THERE'S A TWIST: well, two actually.

(1) I want to do an MPA dual. Want to learn the stuff, and have better quant skills. UGA is top 5 in the country for that. UT is top 10. Bama's MPA program, as far as USNews is concerned, doubles as a janitorial staff.

(2) related to the above: I might not want to be a lawyer forever! *GASP* BUT before you shout me down: I know I'd be happy being a lawyer forever, as I work with legal at my job. I just also like the business side of things, and have diverse interests in general, and would gladly enter another related profession if the opportunity arose. In fact, I know I'm someone who probably won't do the same exact thing for 30 years. Which is why I like the MPA option (to gain a broader education), and is why I am (please hear this) VERY debt-averse. Even 35 k is scary to me, because I don't want loan payments to ever determine any choice that I make.

So in summary:
Best law school: UT > Bama & UGA
Best MPA: UT & UGA > Bama
Best cost: Bama > UGA > UT

See how that is cyclical?

Also I'm WL at H and would absolutely accept an offer and go for full cost because I'm a starry eyed dunce.

Soooo... skewer me.

P.S. - visited Bama. Impressed. Visiting UGA next week. Asked UT if they'll fund a visit; no response yet.

P.P.S. --- I purposefully didn't include stats, though there are hints. I'm considering retaking (again)/going again next cycle. Personal reasons for both staying and going, but point is: assume I'm going, know that retake advice is already being considered carefully, and yes I know that if I retake and improve a bit and apply earlier, I will probably get in nearly everywhere with $$$. You may tell me to retake/reapply, but if that is your only contribution... I mean, I can't tell you what to do, but you'll waste 2 clicks and 6 keystrokes


I'm not going to read the whole thread, but I'm a policy program dual degree too -something to consider is that USNWT rankings do not align AT ALL for policy school reputations. it's pretty much a big joke in policy schools how inaccurate they are to the actual ability to be employed in cool shit, and people will literally pull random programs out of the hat as a joke bc it just doesn't align. I can tell you FOR SURE that johnson @ texas is way better regarded as a policy school than uga. as in, I've met cool UT grads doing cool stuff and know of many others who are doing cool stuff, and I've never met anyone who did an mpa at UGA or heard of anyone from there doing cool stuff. maybe they're really well hired within georgia or within the south? but if it's a decision between UT Austin + Johnson I would x2000 take that over UGA, disregarding $$


While adding, I'm sure there are great UGA people doing great things! but if we're going off standard, well known reputations in the wider policy community, UT every time


Thanks for this. I had assumed those rankings were nowhere near as rigid as the Law rankings (I looked into Poli Sci PhD's a while ago and the rankings there are iffy, too), but your info is helpful. I sort of assumed UGA and UT were "peer schools." Thanks for disabusing me of that notion.

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Re: UT v Bama v UGA With a Twist!

Postby zot1 » Mon Apr 03, 2017 4:23 pm

ggmu1992 wrote:
zot1 wrote:
ggmu1992 wrote:
zot1 wrote:
ggmu1992 wrote:
My logical reasoning is just fine! And I am smarter than most people!



You're gonna be a great lawyer.


If this is an attack, it's weird that you chose these two sentences, out of all the things I've hurriedly typed this morning. Like... a defining characteristic of a lawyer is that they don't know basic facts about themselves? *shrugs*

You work in gov and could've given me actual advice!


You come to this forum to ask for advice. People give you advice. You disregard all of the advice you get because you're smarter than most people. Sounds to me like there's nothing I could tell you. You got this.


Bruh--I've repeatedly said that I appreciate all the advice, and have mentioned that arguing with stuff is my way of processing things. If you've unhesitatingly taken every piece of advice you've ever solicited, then you and I have very little common and that is why you are confused


Ugh no, that's not it.

Nevertheless, in the spirit of helping others, generally the Feds hire those in the top 30% of the class, with some agencies being pickier than others. Of those, agencies prefer students from top 50 schools. And if you have a t13 student in the top 30% versus someone from Bama, unless there's something special about the Bama student, the latter will lose every single time.

Feds are prestige crazy, specially when the hiring is done out of D.C. Regional offices are less prestige oriented because they want someone who will actually want to work in say Mississippi. But if HQ is doing the hiring for regional offices, the ole miss grad might still miss out. And this is also true if someone from a higher ranked school with better stats really demonstrates they want to move to the middle of nowhere.

Aside from this, banking on government hiring while we don't know where this administration is going is a big mistake. We are still in a hiring freeze and OMB has a mandate to reduce personnel. No one knows the long term effect of this.

And finally, all of the above lead to an ever increased pool of talent for little to no spots. My agency hired only clerks last year because the pool was so over the top talented. Imagine that, recent grads didn't even stand a chance. Of course this is not true of every agency, but things get tighter.
Last edited by zot1 on Mon Apr 03, 2017 4:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.



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