29 yr old LS graduate...too old?

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kTXe
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29 yr old LS graduate...too old?

Postby kTXe » Sun Apr 24, 2011 4:37 am

From this NYT article http://www.nytimes.com/2011/01/09/business/09law.html?pagewanted=6&_r=2 :

“Most of us either went to the wrong law school, which is the bottom two-thirds, or we were too old when we graduated,” he said. “I was 32 when I graduated, and at 32 you’re washed up in this field, in terms of a shot at the real deal. They perceived me as somebody they can’t indoctrinate into slave labor and work to death for seven years and then release if they don’t like you.”

Does age really matter this much to LS grads? I will be 29 when I graduate, do I have any reason to worry?

flpackerfan
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Re: 29 yr old LS graduate...too old?

Postby flpackerfan » Sun Apr 24, 2011 4:51 am

No. There are plenty of people starting law school in their mid to late 20s.

The point of that article was taking on debt for law school might not be a great investment anymore.

The quote you are referring to is just some random bitter guy's reasoning for why he didn't get a job.
Last edited by flpackerfan on Sun Apr 24, 2011 6:09 am, edited 1 time in total.

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worldtraveler
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Re: 29 yr old LS graduate...too old?

Postby worldtraveler » Sun Apr 24, 2011 5:49 am

The median age for starting law school is 25, which would make it 28 at graduation. In my opinion, those with some work/life experience tend to have an easier time finding jobs anyway. Age has nothing to do with why that guy can't get a job.

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Leira7905
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Re: 29 yr old LS graduate...too old?

Postby Leira7905 » Sun Apr 24, 2011 9:24 am

I'll be 35 when I graduate.... In fact, there's an entire thread dedicated to the 30+ LS crowd. This question has been discussed heavily in this forum. The general consensus is that while age may be considered a negative in some ways (those mentioned in the OP) some solid WE and the right spin control during your interviews will often turn a would-be negative into a selling point. Having said all of that.... 29 is NOT old for graduating from LS.... Not even close. So, just calm urself or you'll upset us old folks... And you don't want that, Son.

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Lwoods
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Re: 29 yr old LS graduate...too old?

Postby Lwoods » Sun Apr 24, 2011 9:49 am

worldtraveler wrote:The median age for starting law school is 25, which would make it 28 at graduation. In my opinion, those with some work/life experience tend to have an easier time finding jobs anyway. Age has nothing to do with why that guy can't get a job.


Not to mention 29+ y/o graduates are more likely to have other friends who are senior enough in their careers to be prime potential clients (or decision makers / influences for potential clients). 25 year old kids have a tough time with client development because they typically don't have a very impressive network yet.

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unc0mm0n1
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Re: 29 yr old LS graduate...too old?

Postby unc0mm0n1 » Sun Apr 24, 2011 9:53 am

kTXe wrote:From this NYT article http://www.nytimes.com/2011/01/09/business/09law.html?pagewanted=6&_r=2 :

“Most of us either went to the wrong law school, which is the bottom two-thirds, or we were too old when we graduated,” he said. “I was 32 when I graduated, and at 32 you’re washed up in this field, in terms of a shot at the real deal. They perceived me as somebody they can’t indoctrinate into slave labor and work to death for seven years and then release if they don’t like you.”

Does age really matter this much to LS grads? I will be 29 when I graduate, do I have any reason to worry?


I hope not I'll be 33 when I graduate. :shock:

06162014123
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Postby 06162014123 » Sun Apr 24, 2011 10:04 am

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PKSebben
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Re: 29 yr old LS graduate...too old?

Postby PKSebben » Sun Apr 24, 2011 10:04 am

I was 31 when I graduated and now I'm 32 as a first-year associate. My boyish good looks (ha!) make me look younger than I am (I think), so it hasn't been a big problem. It's that or the fact I still primarily watch cartoons.

Anyways, when I tell people my age at the firm and they realize they are younger than me and five class years ahead, they give me an odd look. One even asked "what the hell were you doing, man?" I have an interesting prelaw background, so it always ends up with "cool!"

I'll buy into idea that firms may think into the age = unwillingness to work disgusting hours. I don't buy into that perception, but I can see a recruiter having it. I think it's key to have a good story on: a) why you're a late(ish) bloomer; b) why you're not just a flake and; c) that you're prepared to grind. With law being very up-or-out and with such low associate-to-partner rates, I don't think it's rational for older grads to be autoding. Plus, if you have contacts in another industry that would be useful to the firm, that could even be a selling point.

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PKSebben
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Re: 29 yr old LS graduate...too old?

Postby PKSebben » Sun Apr 24, 2011 10:05 am

RedShift wrote:I've spoken to a bunch of people in financial/banking areas who have said young people are preferred, but this is usually in subsections where the hours are really long and the work is tedious. Apparently there's a belief that older employees will burn out faster or be unsatisfied with the work and try to find something else. Which sort of makes sense in a way, but is probably a tad exaggerated. No idea if it applies at all to the legal market, though.


Good explanation. I think law takes the same view. However, from my interactions with bankers, my understanding is that in IB / PE age can be an absolute bar.

06162014123
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Postby 06162014123 » Sun Apr 24, 2011 10:13 am

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AntipodeanPhil
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Re: 29 yr old LS graduate...too old?

Postby AntipodeanPhil » Sun Apr 24, 2011 12:48 pm

kTXe wrote:From this NYT article http://www.nytimes.com/2011/01/09/business/09law.html?pagewanted=6&_r=2 :

“Most of us either went to the wrong law school, which is the bottom two-thirds, or we were too old when we graduated,” he said. “I was 32 when I graduated, and at 32 you’re washed up in this field, in terms of a shot at the real deal. They perceived me as somebody they can’t indoctrinate into slave labor and work to death for seven years and then release if they don’t like you.”

Does age really matter this much to LS grads? I will be 29 when I graduate, do I have any reason to worry?

I just did some research. The guy they're quoting, John Thatcher, states on his LinkedIn page that he went to Albany LS.

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birdlaw117
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Re: 29 yr old LS graduate...too old?

Postby birdlaw117 » Sun Apr 24, 2011 12:51 pm

I feel like 29 is pretty close to an ideal age to graduate LS. I'm going to be 26, and I feel like I'll be at a slight disadvantage for being a little younger than many and not having as much WE.

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AntipodeanPhil
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Re: 29 yr old LS graduate...too old?

Postby AntipodeanPhil » Sun Apr 24, 2011 12:58 pm

After some further reading, that entire NYT article strikes me as irresponsible fear-mongering. The articles focuses chiefly on this guy:

"WHEN Mr. Wallerstein started at Thomas Jefferson, he was in no mood for austerity. He borrowed so much that before the start of his first semester he nearly put a down payment on a $350,000 two-bedroom, two-bath condo, figuring that the investment would earn a profit by the time he graduated.... Instead, Mr. Wallerstein rented a spacious apartment. He also spent a month studying in the South of France and a month in Prague — all on borrowed money. There were cost-of-living loans, and tuition of about $33,000 a year. Later came a $15,000 loan to cover months of studying for the bar."

Some irresponsible loser gets himself in a mountain of debt at a T4, and what is that supposed to indicate about the legal profession?
Last edited by AntipodeanPhil on Sun Apr 24, 2011 1:17 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Ersatz Haderach
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Re: 29 yr old LS graduate...too old?

Postby Ersatz Haderach » Sun Apr 24, 2011 1:01 pm

This article is stupid beyond measure. There is no reason age will stop you from being a good lawyer. There are very good reasons, on the other hand, for not being as blind as the idiot who went to TJ with no idea of what to do, and spent WAY too much on cost of living.

scammedhard
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Re: 29 yr old LS graduate...too old?

Postby scammedhard » Sun Apr 24, 2011 1:11 pm

kTXe wrote:Does age really matter this much to LS grads? I will be 29 when I graduate, do I have any reason to worry?

IMO, age matters in some circumstances, like when once is hired for sweatshop-style job (e.g., document review). Young people can tolerate these working conditions better.
The solution? Just don't go to a law school that will put you in such a position, and I am thinking of TTTs here.
Last edited by scammedhard on Sun Apr 24, 2011 1:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.

09042014
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Re: 29 yr old LS graduate...too old?

Postby 09042014 » Sun Apr 24, 2011 1:28 pm

I would argue that too young and they won't handle working because they've never held done a job, and too old and they can't handle the hours. I'd never hire a 24 year old who has never had a real job to work in a job that requires 60+ hours a week. That person has been in school for 20 years straight and is used to taking it easy. And a 40 year old probably isn't going to last long doing 60 hour weeks.

kTXe
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Re: 29 yr old LS graduate...too old?

Postby kTXe » Sun Apr 24, 2011 1:38 pm

Thanks for all the feedback. I certainly think that being an older grad with some awesome WE would be beneficial, but mine sucks (working at a restaurant in the 4 years since undergrad). Any way for me to positively spin that come OCI? Truth is, I have been a flake, but really don't want to look like one. The money and hours were great, and I just kinda got sucked in to the industry.

Also, I agree with the sentiment that the article as a whole was a bit ridiculous (the statement I quoted was the only one I was somewhat alarmed by). $350k in debt for TJ? And he's surprised/upset at the result? Wow. Every society needs a lower class, I guess. Enjoy it, idiot.

f*** UVa
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Re: 29 yr old LS graduate...too old?

Postby f*** UVa » Sun Apr 24, 2011 1:49 pm

Desert Fox wrote:I would argue that too young and they won't handle working because they've never held done a job, and too old and they can't handle the hours. I'd never hire a 24 year old who has never had a real job to work in a job that requires 60+ hours a week. That person has been in school for 20 years straight and is used to taking it easy. And a 40 year old probably isn't going to last long doing 60 hour weeks.


Really? And the basis for your expertise in this subject? Aside from presumption and arrogance...

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AntipodeanPhil
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Re: 29 yr old LS graduate...too old?

Postby AntipodeanPhil » Sun Apr 24, 2011 1:52 pm

kTXe wrote:$350k in debt for TJ? And he's surprised/upset at the result? Wow. Every society needs a lower class, I guess. Enjoy it, idiot.

LOL. Yeah, someone needs to do document review, et cetera, and that guy must be about the absolute bottom of the barrel, in terms of law school grads. Hopefully the top ranked at TJ do at least a little better.

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birdlaw117
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Re: 29 yr old LS graduate...too old?

Postby birdlaw117 » Sun Apr 24, 2011 3:01 pm

f*** UVa wrote:
Desert Fox wrote:I would argue that too young and they won't handle working because they've never held done a job, and too old and they can't handle the hours. I'd never hire a 24 year old who has never had a real job to work in a job that requires 60+ hours a week. That person has been in school for 20 years straight and is used to taking it easy. And a 40 year old probably isn't going to last long doing 60 hour weeks.


Really? And the basis for your expertise in this subject? Aside from presumption and arrogance...

I don't see the problem with that statement, and there certainly isn't any arrogance in it. He even qualified it with the word "probably."

09042014
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Re: 29 yr old LS graduate...too old?

Postby 09042014 » Sun Apr 24, 2011 3:33 pm

f*** UVa wrote:
Desert Fox wrote:I would argue that too young and they won't handle working because they've never held done a job, and too old and they can't handle the hours. I'd never hire a 24 year old who has never had a real job to work in a job that requires 60+ hours a week. That person has been in school for 20 years straight and is used to taking it easy. And a 40 year old probably isn't going to last long doing 60 hour weeks.


Really? And the basis for your expertise in this subject? Aside from presumption and arrogance...


Elderly people has less stamina.

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haus
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Re: 29 yr old LS graduate...too old?

Postby haus » Sun Apr 24, 2011 4:21 pm

Desert Fox wrote:
f*** UVa wrote:
Desert Fox wrote:I would argue that too young and they won't handle working because they've never held done a job, and too old and they can't handle the hours. I'd never hire a 24 year old who has never had a real job to work in a job that requires 60+ hours a week. That person has been in school for 20 years straight and is used to taking it easy. And a 40 year old probably isn't going to last long doing 60 hour weeks.


Really? And the basis for your expertise in this subject? Aside from presumption and arrogance...


Elderly people has less stamina.


???

Heck, my father who is in his mid 60's has worked a few 24+ hour days in the last year alone. Not everyone is ready to be sent out to pasture by their 40's.

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birdlaw117
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Re: 29 yr old LS graduate...too old?

Postby birdlaw117 » Sun Apr 24, 2011 4:38 pm

haus wrote:
Desert Fox wrote:
f*** UVa wrote:
Desert Fox wrote:I would argue that too young and they won't handle working because they've never held done a job, and too old and they can't handle the hours. I'd never hire a 24 year old who has never had a real job to work in a job that requires 60+ hours a week. That person has been in school for 20 years straight and is used to taking it easy. And a 40 year old probably isn't going to last long doing 60 hour weeks.


Really? And the basis for your expertise in this subject? Aside from presumption and arrogance...


Elderly people has less stamina.


???

Heck, my father who is in his mid 60's has worked a few 24+ hour days in the last year alone. Not everyone is ready to be sent out to pasture by their 40's.

Yeah?!? Well.... My dad could beat up your dad!

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Leira7905
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Re: 29 yr old LS graduate...too old?

Postby Leira7905 » Sun Apr 24, 2011 4:39 pm

Desert Fox wrote:
f*** UVa wrote:
Desert Fox wrote:I would argue that too young and they won't handle working because they've never held done a job, and too old and they can't handle the hours. I'd never hire a 24 year old who has never had a real job to work in a job that requires 60+ hours a week. That person has been in school for 20 years straight and is used to taking it easy. And a 40 year old probably isn't going to last long doing 60 hour weeks.


Really? And the basis for your expertise in this subject? Aside from presumption and arrogance...


Elderly people has less stamina.

Elderly???!??? At 40??!!!? Well, I guess I'd better stock up on muumuus, cats, denture cream, and Depends.... Screw LS! I hear shuffleboard calling my name! :roll:




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