TUP wrote: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.
Sure you can quantify it. How much more would you have to earn to make your current career worthwhile? How big a pay cut would you take to do something you actually liked? There, you just quantified it.