"Don't go to law school because of opportunity cost"

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Columbia Law
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"Don't go to law school because of opportunity cost"

Postby Columbia Law » Sun May 30, 2010 6:34 pm

I am sick of people on JDU and XOXO using opportunity cost as a reason not to go to law school. Use debt, unemployment, etc. but opportunity cost is a terrible argument. The truth is that most people have useless liberal arts degrees and can't get a good job anyway. I worked construction every summer leading up to my college graduation and made a ton of money. Then the economy tanked and they wouldn't put me on for permanent employment. I sent out resumes, went face to face, and called everyone...still nothing. I ended up working in retail for a year about 30 hours a week, occasional overtime. I think I made 12k the whole year. I know a lot of people who weren't even willing to look for a labor job who are graduates in the same boat as me.

Minus the lucky few who were able to get office jobs, construction jobs, police officer jobs, what opportunities are people really missing out on?

miamiman
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Re: "Don't go to law school because of opportunity cost"

Postby miamiman » Sun May 30, 2010 6:36 pm

You get a job?

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Columbia Law
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Re: "Don't go to law school because of opportunity cost"

Postby Columbia Law » Sun May 30, 2010 6:39 pm

Now I'm in law school. Struck out at OCI, but I am lucky enough to have a family-like connection who was able to get me into upper shitlaw and hands on experience. I actually don't mind this considering people I know who hate their lives in biglaw.

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A'nold
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Re: "Don't go to law school because of opportunity cost"

Postby A'nold » Sun May 30, 2010 6:42 pm

This is why I constantly defend going to law school against the JDU trolls or those that say uninformed crap like, "take off the blinders man, they do have a good point." Those peeps just use circular reasoning to come to the conclusion that "they have a good point." Anyone that knows what it's like to come out of an average college with a BA in some kind of liberal art knows that there is no such thing as opportunity cost, lol.

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Re: "Don't go to law school because of opportunity cost"

Postby miamiman » Sun May 30, 2010 6:44 pm

Columbia Law wrote:Now I'm in law school. Struck out at OCI, but I am lucky enough to have a family-like connection who was able to get me into upper shitlaw and hands on experience. I actually don't mind this considering people I know who hate their lives in biglaw.


Few qs if you don't mind my asking:

1) what is upper shitlaw? insurance defense? product liability cases?

2) what's your outlook in the near-term? ie. take the job then eventually lateral?

3) any advice in general

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Columbia Law
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Re: "Don't go to law school because of opportunity cost"

Postby Columbia Law » Sun May 30, 2010 6:45 pm

A'nold wrote:This is why I constantly defend going to law school against the JDU trolls or those that say uninformed crap like, "take off the blinders man, they do have a good point." Those peeps just use circular reasoning to come to the conclusion that "they have a good point." Anyone that knows what it's like to come out of an average college with a BA in some kind of liberal art knows that there is no such thing as opportunity cost, lol.


Agreed. This summer I am making almost as much as I did during my year off. I didn't do it by NOT going to law school.

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Re: "Don't go to law school because of opportunity cost"

Postby rundoxierun » Sun May 30, 2010 6:50 pm

A'nold wrote:This is why I constantly defend going to law school against the JDU trolls or those that say uninformed crap like, "take off the blinders man, they do have a good point." Those peeps just use circular reasoning to come to the conclusion that "they have a good point." Anyone that knows what it's like to come out of an average college with a BA in some kind of liberal art knows that there is no such thing as opportunity cost, lol.


Umm.. I go to an average college and will be getting a BA in Economics this December and I have a 40-50k/yr job lined up if I want it. Life isnt 100% as bleak as people paint it.

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Columbia Law
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Re: "Don't go to law school because of opportunity cost"

Postby Columbia Law » Sun May 30, 2010 6:53 pm

miamiman wrote:
Columbia Law wrote:Now I'm in law school. Struck out at OCI, but I am lucky enough to have a family-like connection who was able to get me into upper shitlaw and hands on experience. I actually don't mind this considering people I know who hate their lives in biglaw.


Few qs if you don't mind my asking:

1) what is upper shitlaw? insurance defense? product liability cases?

2) what's your outlook in the near-term? ie. take the job then eventually lateral?

3) any advice in general



1) Upper shitlaw as is in a personal injury firm that has been around forever who has a big building and a famous commercial in a big city. They are still ambulance chasers but everyone there makes bank.

2) Take the job and then lateral. To tell you the truth, almost everyone there went to a TTT and love me. All I hear are positive jokes about my school. I have a great time at work.

3) If you are not TOTALLY socially awkward, you can really make things work for you. All of the ITE stuff IS there but once you get a job, it isn't really talked about and you forget that it is even there (obviously not until you've been laid off).

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Columbia Law
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Re: "Don't go to law school because of opportunity cost"

Postby Columbia Law » Sun May 30, 2010 6:54 pm

tkgrrett wrote:
A'nold wrote:This is why I constantly defend going to law school against the JDU trolls or those that say uninformed crap like, "take off the blinders man, they do have a good point." Those peeps just use circular reasoning to come to the conclusion that "they have a good point." Anyone that knows what it's like to come out of an average college with a BA in some kind of liberal art knows that there is no such thing as opportunity cost, lol.


Umm.. I go to an average college and will be getting a BA in Economics this December and I have a 40-50k/yr job lined up if I want it. Life isnt 100% as bleak as people paint it.


Good for you. I have a degree in Economics and haven't been able to get shit. Because you have a 40-50k job lined up then its easy for everyone?

rundoxierun
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Re: "Don't go to law school because of opportunity cost"

Postby rundoxierun » Sun May 30, 2010 6:59 pm

Columbia Law wrote:
tkgrrett wrote:
A'nold wrote:This is why I constantly defend going to law school against the JDU trolls or those that say uninformed crap like, "take off the blinders man, they do have a good point." Those peeps just use circular reasoning to come to the conclusion that "they have a good point." Anyone that knows what it's like to come out of an average college with a BA in some kind of liberal art knows that there is no such thing as opportunity cost, lol.


Umm.. I go to an average college and will be getting a BA in Economics this December and I have a 40-50k/yr job lined up if I want it. Life isnt 100% as bleak as people paint it.


Good for you. I have a degree in Economics and haven't been able to get shit. Because you have a 40-50k job lined up then its easy for everyone?


Wait.. you have degrees in Econ/Finance with a 4.0 from a t1 school.. yet you spent your summers working construction rather than being a corporate intern?? You go to Columbia now and you are unable to get a job beyond what you label as shitlaw?? You are doing something wrong somewhere..your situation is not due to the economy

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Re: "Don't go to law school because of opportunity cost"

Postby prezidentv8 » Sun May 30, 2010 7:06 pm

Columbia Law wrote:
tkgrrett wrote:
A'nold wrote:This is why I constantly defend going to law school against the JDU trolls or those that say uninformed crap like, "take off the blinders man, they do have a good point." Those peeps just use circular reasoning to come to the conclusion that "they have a good point." Anyone that knows what it's like to come out of an average college with a BA in some kind of liberal art knows that there is no such thing as opportunity cost, lol.


Umm.. I go to an average college and will be getting a BA in Economics this December and I have a 40-50k/yr job lined up if I want it. Life isnt 100% as bleak as people paint it.


Good for you. I have a degree in Economics and haven't been able to get shit. Because you have a 40-50k job lined up then its easy for everyone?


Single data points ftw!!!!!

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voice of reason
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Re: "Don't go to law school because of opportunity cost"

Postby voice of reason » Sun May 30, 2010 7:08 pm

Columbia Law wrote:I am sick of people on JDU and XOXO using opportunity cost as a reason not to go to law school. Use debt, unemployment, etc. but opportunity cost is a terrible argument. The truth is that most people have useless liberal arts degrees and can't get a good job anyway. I worked construction every summer leading up to my college graduation and made a ton of money. Then the economy tanked and they wouldn't put me on for permanent employment. I sent out resumes, went face to face, and called everyone...still nothing. I ended up working in retail for a year about 30 hours a week, occasional overtime. I think I made 12k the whole year. I know a lot of people who weren't even willing to look for a labor job who are graduates in the same boat as me.

Minus the lucky few who were able to get office jobs, construction jobs, police officer jobs, what opportunities are people really missing out on?


This is not really an argument against considering opportunity cost. It is an observation that your opportunity costs for law school are low. Some people have considerably higher opportunity costs. For some, opportunity costs exceed tuition.

Anyone considering law school should estimate their opportunity costs. As you illustrate, for some new college graduates, opportunity costs are low. But for people with more marketable degrees and experience, they can be tremendous.

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Re: "Don't go to law school because of opportunity cost"

Postby d34d9823 » Sun May 30, 2010 7:45 pm

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Last edited by d34d9823 on Wed Aug 04, 2010 11:21 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Bildungsroman
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Re: "Don't go to law school because of opportunity cost"

Postby Bildungsroman » Sun May 30, 2010 8:06 pm

A high opportunity cost by itself means nothing until it's compared to returns. If you miss three years of good wages, but graduate law school making really good wages, you might make back the opportunity cost. And for people with low opportunity costs (perhaps graduating with a B.A. in Political Science like I will be), then it doesn't take much of an increase in earning power from the j.d. to make the opportunity costs a non-issue (wow, a starting salary of $40k as a lawyer? fuck yes the opportunity cost is worth it. I hope missing 3 years of fast food wages doesn't cut me too deep).

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Re: "Don't go to law school because of opportunity cost"

Postby blsingindisguise » Sun May 30, 2010 8:12 pm

d34dluk3 wrote:I started at 70k out of college in chemE, and I'm going to law school because my ambition exceeds the career paths available to an engineer. So yeah, all generalizations are false.


Unless you're going to a T14 and preferably a T6, the same will be true for law school as for engineering.

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swc65
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Re: "Don't go to law school because of opportunity cost"

Postby swc65 » Sun May 30, 2010 8:14 pm

d34dluk3 wrote:I started at 70k out of college in chemE, and I'm going to law school because my ambition exceeds the career paths available to an engineer. So yeah, all generalizations are false.



LoL Did you make a paradoxical statement on purpose?

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TUP
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Re: "Don't go to law school because of opportunity cost"

Postby TUP » Sun May 30, 2010 8:17 pm

voice of reason wrote:
Columbia Law wrote:I am sick of people on JDU and XOXO using opportunity cost as a reason not to go to law school. Use debt, unemployment, etc. but opportunity cost is a terrible argument. The truth is that most people have useless liberal arts degrees and can't get a good job anyway. I worked construction every summer leading up to my college graduation and made a ton of money. Then the economy tanked and they wouldn't put me on for permanent employment. I sent out resumes, went face to face, and called everyone...still nothing. I ended up working in retail for a year about 30 hours a week, occasional overtime. I think I made 12k the whole year. I know a lot of people who weren't even willing to look for a labor job who are graduates in the same boat as me.

Minus the lucky few who were able to get office jobs, construction jobs, police officer jobs, what opportunities are people really missing out on?


This is not really an argument against considering opportunity cost. It is an observation that your opportunity costs for law school are low. Some people have considerably higher opportunity costs. For some, opportunity costs exceed tuition.

Anyone considering law school should estimate their opportunity costs. As you illustrate, for some new college graduates, opportunity costs are low. But for people with more marketable degrees and experience, they can be tremendous.


And you can't quantify disliking your current career even if it's well paying. Some people act like the law school decision is a DCF analysis problem in finance class in which every variable is fully quantifiable.

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Re: "Don't go to law school because of opportunity cost"

Postby d34d9823 » Sun May 30, 2010 8:17 pm

.
Last edited by d34d9823 on Wed Aug 04, 2010 11:21 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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swc65
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Re: "Don't go to law school because of opportunity cost"

Postby swc65 » Sun May 30, 2010 8:19 pm

d34dluk3 wrote:
swc65 wrote:
d34dluk3 wrote:I started at 70k out of college in chemE, and I'm going to law school because my ambition exceeds the career paths available to an engineer. So yeah, all generalizations are false.



LoL Did you make a paradoxical statement on purpose?

Yes, it's one of my favorite jokes :)

:o

d34d9823
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Re: "Don't go to law school because of opportunity cost"

Postby d34d9823 » Sun May 30, 2010 8:19 pm

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Last edited by d34d9823 on Wed Aug 04, 2010 11:21 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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profs<3mycomments
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Re: "Don't go to law school because of opportunity cost"

Postby profs<3mycomments » Sun May 30, 2010 8:43 pm

I largely agree with OP. I think the problem with opportunity cost analysis on these boards is that they tell you to consider opportunity cost and then dictate all the variables for you, which includes:

1) you are employed right now
2) your chances of getting biglaw are equal to the percent of people in your LS that get biglaw
3) you would be equally happy doing a) biglaw b) working at a coffee shop and c) doing corporate sales or construction or whatever shit job makes the most money for UGs.

This is why half the conversation on xo revolves around dentistry.

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Re: "Don't go to law school because of opportunity cost"

Postby BaiAilian2013 » Sun May 30, 2010 8:46 pm

profs<3mycomments wrote:I largely agree with OP. I think the problem with opportunity cost analysis on these boards is that they tell you to consider opportunity cost and then dictate all the variables for you, which includes:

1) you are employed right now
2) your chances of getting biglaw are equal to the percent of people in [strike]your[/strike] LS that get biglaw <--ftfy
3) you would be equally happy doing a) biglaw b) working at a coffee shop and c) doing corporate sales or construction or whatever shit job makes the most money for UGs.

This is very true.

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Re: "Don't go to law school because of opportunity cost"

Postby r2b2ct » Sun May 30, 2010 8:55 pm

tkgrrett wrote:
A'nold wrote:This is why I constantly defend going to law school against the JDU trolls or those that say uninformed crap like, "take off the blinders man, they do have a good point." Those peeps just use circular reasoning to come to the conclusion that "they have a good point." Anyone that knows what it's like to come out of an average college with a BA in some kind of liberal art knows that there is no such thing as opportunity cost, lol.


Umm.. I go to an average college and will be getting a BA in Economics this December and I have a 40-50k/yr job lined up if I want it. Life isnt 100% as bleak as people paint it.

Yours isn't.
Last edited by r2b2ct on Sun May 30, 2010 9:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.

miamiman
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Re: "Don't go to law school because of opportunity cost"

Postby miamiman » Sun May 30, 2010 8:59 pm

Tbf, xoxo's current cw can be summed up plainly:

1) law school doesn't make sense, generally speaking and particularly outside of hys

2) oci 2010 will be worse than 2009. Recession exposed structural flaws of the biglaw model, china bubble to burst, outsourcing to india of junior associate work

3) jokes, however redundant, involving racial slurs, latham and watkins (bob dell specifically), incest, and dla piper are uniformly lol

d34d9823
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Re: "Don't go to law school because of opportunity cost"

Postby d34d9823 » Sun May 30, 2010 9:01 pm

I don't go to xoxo because it hurts my eyes.




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