Actually, a T3 school is not a dead end.

(Applications Advice, Letters of Recommendation . . . )
VTarmyjag
Posts: 12
Joined: Wed Jan 12, 2011 11:46 am

Actually, a T3 school is not a dead end.

Postby VTarmyjag » Sun Jan 16, 2011 12:51 am

.
Last edited by VTarmyjag on Sun Jul 01, 2012 2:27 pm, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
vanwinkle
Posts: 9740
Joined: Sun Dec 21, 2008 3:02 am

Re: Actually, a T3 school is not a dead end.

Postby vanwinkle » Sun Jan 16, 2011 12:53 am

Can you get employed from a T3 school? Possibly.

Does this make going there at sticker a safe bet? That's another question entirely, and one I don't think the statistics really bear out. I especially have to ask what year the numbers above are based on; are the employment figures from places like Mercer and Marquette based on 2009 or earlier data?

User avatar
kapital98
Posts: 1188
Joined: Sun Jan 09, 2011 9:58 pm

Re: Actually, a T3 school is not a dead end.

Postby kapital98 » Sun Jan 16, 2011 12:53 am

Thank You.

Btw, where did you get those employment numbers?

User avatar
AreJay711
Posts: 3406
Joined: Tue Jul 20, 2010 8:51 pm

Re: Actually, a T3 school is not a dead end.

Postby AreJay711 » Sun Jan 16, 2011 12:56 am

University of Baltimore for instance is not a terrible school if you want to practice in MD (a relatively wealthy state). However, just because you can get a firm job out of UB this doesn't mean it is going to be particularly high paying and probably not worth paying sticker for it. UB is fine if you can get it cheap and want to practice in MD, probably at a small firm, but that isn't what most people on TLS want.

VTarmyjag
Posts: 12
Joined: Wed Jan 12, 2011 11:46 am

Re: Actually, a T3 school is not a dead end.

Postby VTarmyjag » Sun Jan 16, 2011 12:58 am

.
Last edited by VTarmyjag on Sun Jul 01, 2012 2:27 pm, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
northwood
Posts: 4872
Joined: Fri May 14, 2010 7:29 pm

Re: Actually, a T3 school is not a dead end.

Postby northwood » Sun Jan 16, 2011 1:01 am

if you do your research, and are offered a good scholarship, and are okay with working in that region then it may not be a bad choice. Also, if there are not a lot of schools nearby, the school may be something to look into.

User avatar
Helmholtz
Posts: 4394
Joined: Wed Sep 17, 2008 1:48 pm

Re: Actually, a T3 school is not a dead end.

Postby Helmholtz » Sun Jan 16, 2011 1:05 am

1. Are you a 0L? Any experience in the legal market?
2. "If you work hard enough to be in the top 50%..." No no no no. Trust me. There are people who work harder than +90% of their classmates and still get below median. Hard work is soooo far from being a sufficient means for law schools success. It's difficult to grasp until you get there. A commonly held 0L belief is that you'll work hard and do well. The problem is that most people going in have this belief. And it's graded on a curve, so I'll let you figure that out for yourself.
3. " Its fair to say that lawyers in these jobs could certainly pay off their debt in a reasonable amount of time." Do you know just how little small law firms pay? Can you imagine trying to pay off $170k in loans from some place like Marquette Law while only making $40k/yr? It has to be living hell.

In general, a Tier 3 or 4 law school might make sense for a very small majority (e.g. people with huge scholarships or something definite lined up for post-grad), but for most, it's an awful idea.

roofles
Posts: 97
Joined: Mon Feb 22, 2010 10:05 pm

Re: Actually, a T3 school is not a dead end.

Postby roofles » Sun Jan 16, 2011 1:07 am

This thread has legs. Tagging for future reference.

User avatar
megaTTTron
Posts: 980
Joined: Thu Jan 21, 2010 4:26 pm

Re: Actually, a T3 school is not a dead end.

Postby megaTTTron » Sun Jan 16, 2011 1:12 am

roofles wrote:This thread has legs. Tagging for future reference.


That can't outrun the TLS snipers who are slowly taking aim.

User avatar
JaLeCa
Posts: 301
Joined: Thu Jan 28, 2010 8:42 pm

Re: Actually, a T3 school is not a dead end.

Postby JaLeCa » Sun Jan 16, 2011 1:12 am

VTarmyjag wrote:The numbers are from the ABA Official Law Schools Guide for 2010. Here's the link: http://www.lsac.org/LSACResources/Publications/official-guide-archives.asp


Um

User avatar
dr123
Posts: 3503
Joined: Tue Jan 04, 2011 2:38 am

Re: Actually, a T3 school is not a dead end.

Postby dr123 » Sun Jan 16, 2011 1:15 am

n
Last edited by dr123 on Sat Jul 06, 2013 3:45 am, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
dextermorgan
Posts: 1138
Joined: Wed Jul 09, 2008 12:37 am

Re: Actually, a T3 school is not a dead end.

Postby dextermorgan » Sun Jan 16, 2011 1:15 am

LOL.

Kaitlyn
Posts: 149
Joined: Sat Oct 30, 2010 2:06 pm

Re: Actually, a T3 school is not a dead end.

Postby Kaitlyn » Sun Jan 16, 2011 1:33 am

VTarmyjag wrote:I know this is going to draw a bunch of controversy; however, I think too many people are getting the wrong idea about T3 (and sometimes T4) schools. From what I can see, the general consensus about T3 schools is that its almost always a terrible option and not worth the money. I honestly think that is not the best advice. Sure, if somebody has the opportunity to retake the LSAT - go for it, it's probably for the better. But for those who end up looking at acceptance only from T3 schools, that's OK! (if you really want to be a lawyer). Here are some numbers I found:


Mercer - 64.1% employed in law firms

Marquette - 57.9% employed in law firms

Drake - 52.4% employed in law firms


Now these jobs most likely don't draw the $100k+ salaries that T3 naysayers crave; however, its fair to say that lawyers in these jobs could certainly pay off their debt in a reasonable amount of time. Looking at those numbers, its completely reasonable to say that if you work hard enough to be in the top 50% (assuming those numbers roughly correspond with class ranking), there are jobs for you.

And for those who say that there's not a job out there for even a T14 graduate, here's something I'm familiar with: JAG. The Army just released its list for the fall selection for JAG. Many of the selected members were from T3/T4 schools. Here are a few:

Univeristy of Baltimore
Florida International University
University of South Dakota
University of Akron
University of Toledo
Faulkner University
North Carolina Central University

Also, they will pay $60,000 for your student loans.


This is just my opinion, so take how you want, but I just felt like a different perspective was needed for those seriously considering a T3 school.


I don't think people on TLS have the wrong idea at all. The rhetoric can get a bit, well, hysterical- but the fact of the matter is that whether or not a T3 or T4 school is a worthwhile investment is more than just a question of whether you can get employed afterward and pay off debt. For those who want to, a) make the safest gamble they can in choosing a law school (since the choice to attend law school is very much a gamble for many), b) have wide and diverse career opportunities after graduating, and c) attend a law school that is likely to give them the most geographical mobility, T3/T4 is an unfortunate position to be in. As it turns out, these are the main objectives of a sizable number of us. For those with different ambitions, T3/T4 is certainly not a fate worse than death, but with the state of the legal market right now, I wouldn't exactly start cheerleading for that cause either.

User avatar
DoubleChecks
Posts: 2333
Joined: Fri Sep 25, 2009 4:35 pm

Re: Actually, a T3 school is not a dead end.

Postby DoubleChecks » Sun Jan 16, 2011 1:38 am

some problems with OP's post:

1) saying working at a law firm != getting paid that much because it can be a crappy small law firm

2) working at a law firm can also mean being a paralegal at a law firm lol

holy crap, and i just noticed, this is just straight ABA data! lol its not x% are employed in law firms...it is x% of those who responded who are employed are in some type of law firm, working in some capacity

there are threads on how unreliable the employment stats schools post are...i mean, they are gamed and EXTREMELY misleading...NYTimes article anyone? haha

User avatar
mpj_3050
Posts: 372
Joined: Fri Oct 02, 2009 9:59 pm

Re: Actually, a T3 school is not a dead end.

Postby mpj_3050 » Sun Jan 16, 2011 1:52 am

northwood wrote:if you do your research, and are offered a good scholarship, and are okay with working in that region then it may not be a bad choice. Also, if there are not a lot of schools nearby, the school may be something to look into.


This is acceptable for sure. If you leave a T3 with 40k or under in debt you can be okay if you make 40k starting. But, for many, many T3/T4 students 40k debt will not be realistic. When you talk about 100k plus, or even 80k it is extraordinarily difficult to pay of a loan with that kind of salary. Can IBR and extended repayment for government loans work? Yeah, you will not be living in poverty, but the interest on 100k of debt is going to be huge if you IBR/extend repayment for that level of debt.

Again there is a huge difference between a lower ranked public school w/residency and the massively expensive private ones. Paying sticker at NYLS, JMLS (and why the hell are there two of them), TJ in San Diego is a recipe for disaster. These schools can't place because of the enormous competition and are so astronomically expensive, even with a scholarship, that you would be hard pressed to come up with a scenario where attending one of these schools is a good choice. Plus, they seem to be quite fond of bait and switch with scholarships (Akron top 15% I believe) and others can be worse (Regent top 10%). These schools know that students overestimate their ability to rank high in the class and many folks lose their scholarships.

Can a T3/T4 be a good choice? Maybe if you manage your debt and expectations then you might be okay. Look at the rankings and not all T3/T4 schools are created equally. The state schools can be alright if you keep debt low but the privates in the need to be shut down.

Edit: However, if you told me that the bottom half of a small state public never work as attorneys I really wouldn't be surprised.
Last edited by mpj_3050 on Sun Jan 16, 2011 1:53 am, edited 1 time in total.

mst
Posts: 925
Joined: Sun Jun 06, 2010 3:01 am

Re: Actually, a T3 school is not a dead end.

Postby mst » Sun Jan 16, 2011 1:53 am

Yes there are quite a few T3/4s' that have some notable alumni bases and markets in which to place... but as Hemholtz said the salaries are just terrible in consideration of the debt load. Don't fool yourself. A good deal of these employed alumni (and by the way those stats are total bulls**t) are making no more than 50k a year even 5-10 years out of school, and that's even in a good economy. Who on earth would say that's a manageable investment when you take out well over 100k in debt that can't be discharged? I mean, if your lifelong dream is to be a lawyer and that's the only thing that will make you happy and youre OK making much, much less after debt payments than you would just being a waiter or a teacher or any other profession you could get into... then sure, go to a T3 or T4.

Let's say you get a 15k a year scholarship and manage to keep your debt or cost of attendance to 75-100k over 3 years, and you want to pay your loans off over 10 years... youre making 40k - 1k in debt payments a month (minimum) - taxes. Ok so now you have like 20k a year to spend on everything else in your life. You're going to need to live in an expensive city or one where you need a car. So right off the bat there goes 10,000 a year at least. I could keep going with the expenses obviously. If you want to be dirt poor until youre in in your mid to late 30's, and possibly into your 40's, that's your choice. But for the vast majority of American's we (the people on this forum who apparently start "controversy") assume people reading these boards want some other things, such as kids, disposable income, a home, a car with airbags, maybe a dog. And maybe just one of those things is worth not wasting 3 years and 100k+ of their life + lost opportunities in wages for a <60% chance at being dirt poor and a 40% chance at never gaining employment as a lawyer while making a salary that can in NO WAY pay off that kind of debt nor support what most people in this country would consider a preferable lifestyle (and this assumes that your cherry-picked data is both TRUE... which it is not... and that it can be applied to even a few more t3/t4 law schools... which it can't).

LogosEther
Posts: 123
Joined: Wed Dec 30, 2009 2:43 am

Re: Actually, a T3 school is not a dead end.

Postby LogosEther » Sun Jan 16, 2011 2:35 am

I'm glad you're challenging the status quo, but you need to be careful with those stats. Where did you find them?

Here is the caveat to keep in mind: those percentages are very likely the percentages out of those who completed the employment survey, or even worse and more likely, those who completed the employment survey an indicated that they have jobs (meaning the other 50% or so are baristas). Think about how many people don't even answer the survey, especially people who don't want to be explicit about the fact that they don't have jobs.

Typically, I'm an optimist. I just can't bring myself to be optimistic though, when my buddy from CCN can't find work. I personally think that going to a T3/T4 can be a GREAT idea for some people - just be careful about throwing around those numbers.

User avatar
northwood
Posts: 4872
Joined: Fri May 14, 2010 7:29 pm

Re: Actually, a T3 school is not a dead end.

Postby northwood » Sun Jan 16, 2011 2:41 am

let me clarify my post
I am talking about getting a nice scholarship offer ( more than half scholly) at a school that is not in a super saturated market ( nyc, chicago, california, etc), has a good reputation in its area ( and does not compete with a lot of other schools- or is not around a lot of schools). I know and understand that going to the majority of TTT and TTTT schools is a recipe for disaster. I was just trying to see what peoples opinions are about going to a TTT or TTTT with a very good scholarship ( contigent on being top half of class, or with no strings attached). Since it would be wise to drop out if you are below median anyways, and go on to plan B or C, from a TTT TTTT, is it really that bad of a proposition? Knowing that you have one year to give it your best shot, and if it doesnt work, cut your losses and move on, why not go for it?

User avatar
DoubleChecks
Posts: 2333
Joined: Fri Sep 25, 2009 4:35 pm

Re: Actually, a T3 school is not a dead end.

Postby DoubleChecks » Sun Jan 16, 2011 2:41 am

LogosEther wrote:I'm glad you're challenging the status quo, but you need to be careful with those stats. Where did you find them?

Here is the caveat to keep in mind: those percentages are very likely the percentages out of those who completed the employment survey, or even worse and more likely, those who completed the employment survey an indicated that they have jobs (meaning the other 50% or so are baristas). Think about how many people don't even answer the survey, especially people who don't want to be explicit about the fact that they don't have jobs.

Typically, I'm an optimist. I just can't bring myself to be optimistic though, when my buddy from CCN can't find work. I personally think that going to a T3/T4 can be a GREAT idea for some people - just be careful about throwing around those numbers.


yes, there have been a lot of articles on how employment stats via ABA from schools are extremely misleading and are unreliable...i hope some fix comes in the near future

User avatar
DoubleChecks
Posts: 2333
Joined: Fri Sep 25, 2009 4:35 pm

Re: Actually, a T3 school is not a dead end.

Postby DoubleChecks » Sun Jan 16, 2011 2:42 am

northwood wrote:let me clarify my post
I am talking about getting a nice scholarship offer ( more than half scholly) at a school that is not in a super saturated market ( nyc, chicago, california, etc), has a good reputation in its area ( and does not compete with a lot of other schools- or is not around a lot of schools). I know and understand that going to the majority of TTT and TTTT schools is a recipe for disaster. I was just trying to see what peoples opinions are about going to a TTT or TTTT with a very good scholarship ( contigent on being top half of class, or with no strings attached). Since it would be wise to drop out if you are below median anyways, and go on to plan B or C, from a TTT TTTT, is it really that bad of a proposition? Knowing that you have one year to give it your best shot, and if it doesnt work, cut your losses and move on, why not go for it?


if you want to work in that lower market and you are okay with cutting your losses if you are not in the top half...it might not be that horrible of a decision

MrAnon
Posts: 1615
Joined: Wed Aug 25, 2010 9:08 pm

Re: Actually, a T3 school is not a dead end.

Postby MrAnon » Sun Jan 16, 2011 2:54 am

I think the law school deans have marketing agents posting on this board now.

No T3 school is worth the money, period. It is a huge gamble that your six figures of debt will earn a return and only 5% of people at a T3 school get that. It is like purchasing 100,000 worth of scratch off tickets. The chances you will hit the jackpot are still insanely small, but more likely you will get a bunch of $100 winners and have a little something to show for your efforts. Definitely not as much as you laid out though.

the numbers of people getting JAG from these schools is insanely small. 1 person from a school? 2 at most.

LogosEther
Posts: 123
Joined: Wed Dec 30, 2009 2:43 am

Re: Actually, a T3 school is not a dead end.

Postby LogosEther » Sun Jan 16, 2011 3:00 am

Sorry, I checked out the link you posted of the actual data.

Yeah, those percentages are of the students who reported being employed. So if 224/354 students respond to the survey and 2/224 of those student report that they have jobs and 1/2 of those jobs is with a law firm, the data will still show 50%. For example, Yale's number is probably really low because they send tons of students to clerkships. So a different stat is probably a better indicator for what you're looking for.

User avatar
ResolutePear
Posts: 8614
Joined: Fri Jul 02, 2010 10:07 pm

Re: Actually, a T3 school is not a dead end.

Postby ResolutePear » Sun Jan 16, 2011 3:03 am

The only school I would go from that list is FIU and that's only because it would cost me less than 40k for my JD. Although, the numbers would have to be so bad that I can't get into FSU or UF. In which case I've already failed before I started.

flcath
Posts: 1502
Joined: Fri Nov 06, 2009 11:39 pm

Re: Actually, a T3 school is not a dead end.

Postby flcath » Sun Jan 16, 2011 3:08 am

Honestly, with IBR, the OP has a point.

I think the TLS mindset is accurate given its own expectations (a middle class lifestyle with some stability), but one area where TLSers are absolutely, 100% on quaaludes is the gross overestimation of opportunity cost for your average TTT attendee. Most of these ppl have the type of resume that qualifies them for living at home with their parents, not much else.

Aggiegrad2011
Posts: 1514
Joined: Sat Jun 05, 2010 6:42 pm

Re: Actually, a T3 school is not a dead end.

Postby Aggiegrad2011 » Sun Jan 16, 2011 3:25 am

LOL, quaaludes... nice.




Return to “Law School Admissions Forum”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: carlos_danger, Lawl_Schoolz, ND2018, RamTitan, t-14orbust and 6 guests