Going to a not so high end law school good idea or not?

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Thatonestudent
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Going to a not so high end law school good idea or not?

Postby Thatonestudent » Mon Nov 14, 2011 4:26 pm

My GPA is 3.3 according to LSAC and my LSAT is still between mid 150s and 160 (my first one was 154 and I'm retaking it I seem to be able to do better than that now). So I was thinking there are a few lower end first tier schools that would still be willing to take me in CA but from the looks of it getting a job in a big law firm afterwards doesn't look so promising, so what are my other options, except for opening my own private practice, if I were to graduate from one of those schools (ie. Chapman). Would it be possible to get a government job or would the fact that I didn't go to a great law school prevent me from doing that too? Also, even a couple years down the line (lets say 5) would I be able to get a job at a big law firm or would firms generally just reject me based on the school I went to and the fact that I haven't worked for a big law firm before.

Danteshek
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Re: Going to a not so high end law school good idea or not?

Postby Danteshek » Mon Nov 14, 2011 4:44 pm

You are too young and naive to be considering law school at this time. Also, your credentials are probably not good enough even for a Tier 3 school. You might sneak into Chapman, but trust me, you do no want to go there.

005618502
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Re: Going to a not so high end law school good idea or not?

Postby 005618502 » Mon Nov 14, 2011 4:59 pm

Thats a little rough. I think you could definitely get public work (public defenders office) maybe even an assistant DA position. I interned at the DA's for 2 summers in CA (OCDA) and very few went to highly ranked schools.

There are also small firms that you could go into as long as you do well. You need to make sure you kill yourself working as hard as you can though (because you sure didnt in UG).

Do i recommend this approach? No

Could you, and do others, make it work? Yes

Its your choice but it will be a big gamble on yourself that you will need to justufy (to yourself, not anyone else)

Good luck!

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BiglawOrBust
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Re: Going to a not so high end law school good idea or not?

Postby BiglawOrBust » Tue Nov 15, 2011 4:43 pm

Danteshek wrote:You are too young and naive to be considering law school at this time. Also, your credentials are probably not good enough even for a Tier 3 school. You might sneak into Chapman, but trust me, you do no want to go there.


Damn, dude.

His credentials can easily get him into most of the third tier, and for all you know the OP could be 40 years old.

PersuasiveCharm
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Re: Going to a not so high end law school good idea or not?

Postby PersuasiveCharm » Tue Nov 15, 2011 4:46 pm

Chapman is a tier 1 school?

theaether
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Re: Going to a not so high end law school good idea or not?

Postby theaether » Tue Nov 15, 2011 6:02 pm

prepare for a rough road and many closed doors
and debt. lots of it

005618502
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Re: Going to a not so high end law school good idea or not?

Postby 005618502 » Tue Nov 15, 2011 6:12 pm

Comments here are going to be rough based on the demographic it pulls. Many people dont want a big firm job. If some sort of public interest/work is your goal then you will be fine. I have said a million times, most assistant DAs didnt go to amazing schools nor did PDs. Its all about what you want.

If you are out looking for a biglaw/market salary job you are crazy (unless you graduate #1/2 in the class)

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Strange
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Re: Going to a not so high end law school good idea or not?

Postby Strange » Tue Nov 15, 2011 6:15 pm

AssumptionRequired wrote:Comments here are going to be rough based on the demographic it pulls. Many people dont want a big firm job. If some sort of public interest/work is your goal then you will be fine. I have said a million times, most assistant DAs didnt go to amazing schools nor did PDs. Its all about what you want.

If you are out looking for a biglaw/market salary job you are crazy (unless you graduate #1/2 in the class)


My understanding was that you still need to go the best schools if you want a PI job

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Veyron
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Re: Going to a not so high end law school good idea or not?

Postby Veyron » Tue Nov 15, 2011 6:16 pm

AssumptionRequired wrote:Thats a little rough. I think you could definitely get public work (public defenders office) maybe even an assistant DA position. I interned at the DA's for 2 summers in CA (OCDA) and very few went to highly ranked schools.

There are also small firms that you could go into as long as you do well. You need to make sure you kill yourself working as hard as you can though (because you sure didnt in UG).

Do i recommend this approach? No

Could you, and do others, make it work? Yes

Its your choice but it will be a big gamble on yourself that you will need to justufy (to yourself, not anyone else)

Good luck!


Kids at Boalt can't get positions with the DA's office or PD's office right now, let alone Chapman.

005618502
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Re: Going to a not so high end law school good idea or not?

Postby 005618502 » Tue Nov 15, 2011 6:24 pm

Veyron wrote:
AssumptionRequired wrote:Thats a little rough. I think you could definitely get public work (public defenders office) maybe even an assistant DA position. I interned at the DA's for 2 summers in CA (OCDA) and very few went to highly ranked schools.

There are also small firms that you could go into as long as you do well. You need to make sure you kill yourself working as hard as you can though (because you sure didnt in UG).

Do i recommend this approach? No

Could you, and do others, make it work? Yes

Its your choice but it will be a big gamble on yourself that you will need to justufy (to yourself, not anyone else)

Good luck!


Kids at Boalt can't get positions with the DA's office or PD's office right now, let alone Chapman.


The director of the sexual assault unit told me that the specific school does not matter much. They want to see decent grades and an ability to speak well and think on your feet. They are not going to take any person just because they could get into a good school and study hard. There is more to it. It will still be competitive of course but going to chapman will not hold you out. I also think those positions are held highly on who you know.


Though the state of the CA economy does not help anyone much.

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Strange
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Re: Going to a not so high end law school good idea or not?

Postby Strange » Tue Nov 15, 2011 6:26 pm

AssumptionRequired wrote:
Veyron wrote:
AssumptionRequired wrote:Thats a little rough. I think you could definitely get public work (public defenders office) maybe even an assistant DA position. I interned at the DA's for 2 summers in CA (OCDA) and very few went to highly ranked schools.

There are also small firms that you could go into as long as you do well. You need to make sure you kill yourself working as hard as you can though (because you sure didnt in UG).

Do i recommend this approach? No

Could you, and do others, make it work? Yes

Its your choice but it will be a big gamble on yourself that you will need to justufy (to yourself, not anyone else)

Good luck!


Kids at Boalt can't get positions with the DA's office or PD's office right now, let alone Chapman.


The director of the sexual assault unit told me that the specific school does not matter much. They want to see decent grades and an ability to speak well and think on your feet. They are not going to take any person just because they could get into a good school and study hard. There is more to it. It will still be competitive of course but going to chapman will not hold you out. I also think those positions are held highly on who you know.


Though the state of the CA economy does not help anyone much.


The bolded seems like a generic stock answer just about any employer will say.

005618502
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Re: Going to a not so high end law school good idea or not?

Postby 005618502 » Tue Nov 15, 2011 6:30 pm

Strange wrote:
AssumptionRequired wrote:
Veyron wrote:
AssumptionRequired wrote:Thats a little rough. I think you could definitely get public work (public defenders office) maybe even an assistant DA position. I interned at the DA's for 2 summers in CA (OCDA) and very few went to highly ranked schools.

There are also small firms that you could go into as long as you do well. You need to make sure you kill yourself working as hard as you can though (because you sure didnt in UG).

Do i recommend this approach? No

Could you, and do others, make it work? Yes

Its your choice but it will be a big gamble on yourself that you will need to justufy (to yourself, not anyone else)

Good luck!


Kids at Boalt can't get positions with the DA's office or PD's office right now, let alone Chapman.


The director of the sexual assault unit told me that the specific school does not matter much. They want to see decent grades and an ability to speak well and think on your feet. They are not going to take any person just because they could get into a good school and study hard. There is more to it. It will still be competitive of course but going to chapman will not hold you out. I also think those positions are held highly on who you know.


Though the state of the CA economy does not help anyone much.


The bolded seems like a generic stock answer just about any employer will say.


Hmm even though she knew I was going to a T14? You may be right, maybe she was just saying it. But only one attorney (of about 10) I worked for went to law school at a T14 and that was Northwestern. She went to Southwestern, which is not a great school at all.

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Strange
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Re: Going to a not so high end law school good idea or not?

Postby Strange » Tue Nov 15, 2011 6:36 pm

AssumptionRequired wrote:
Hmm even though she knew I was going to a T14? You may be right, maybe she was just saying it. But only one attorney (of about 10) I worked for went to law school at a T14 and that was Northwestern. She went to Southwestern, which is not a great school at all.


You said in your original post that the thread starter will be fine if he doesn't go to a top school. Obviously a T14 doesn't guarantee a PI gig but I would think it's that much harder to get a PI job out of a place like Chapman, other things being equal.

Employers saying the school you go to doesn't matter, seems like the equivalent of admissions officials saying they'll look at more than your GPA and LSAT scores.

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Veyron
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Re: Going to a not so high end law school good idea or not?

Postby Veyron » Tue Nov 15, 2011 6:42 pm

[/quote]

Kids at Boalt can't get positions with the DA's office or PD's office right now, let alone Chapman.[/quote]

The director of the sexual assault unit told me that the specific school does not matter much. They want to see decent grades and an ability to speak well and think on your feet. They are not going to take any person just because they could get into a good school and study hard. There is more to it. It will still be competitive of course but going to chapman will not hold you out. I also think those positions are held highly on who you know.


Though the state of the CA economy does not help anyone much.[/quote]

The bolded seems like a generic stock answer just about any employer will say.[/quote]

Hmm even though she knew I was going to a T14? You may be right, maybe she was just saying it. But only one attorney (of about 10) I worked for went to law school at a T14 and that was Northwestern. She went to Southwestern, which is not a great school at all.[/quote]

Employers in my market made like T14 didn't matter much as far as hiring was concerned. Then they proceeded to make hiring decisions as if it did. Just another example of the special little snowflake culture.

acrossthelake
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Re: Going to a not so high end law school good idea or not?

Postby acrossthelake » Tue Nov 15, 2011 6:52 pm

Thatonestudent wrote:My GPA is 3.3 according to LSAC and my LSAT is still between mid 150s and 160 (my first one was 154 and I'm retaking it I seem to be able to do better than that now). So I was thinking there are a few lower end first tier schools that would still be willing to take me in CA but from the looks of it getting a job in a big law firm afterwards doesn't look so promising, so what are my other options, except for opening my own private practice, if I were to graduate from one of those schools (ie. Chapman). Would it be possible to get a government job or would the fact that I didn't go to a great law school prevent me from doing that too? Also, even a couple years down the line (lets say 5) would I be able to get a job at a big law firm or would firms generally just reject me based on the school I went to and the fact that I haven't worked for a big law firm before.


Re: Govt. Depends what level of govt. you're talking about.
Re: DOJ, very competitive. Pulls from a wide range, but still favors top schools.
Re; Biglaw: Biglaw firms hire laterals (people from other big law firms), or law students.

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Bronte
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Re: Going to a not so high end law school good idea or not?

Postby Bronte » Tue Nov 15, 2011 7:00 pm

AssumptionRequired wrote:Comments here are going to be rough based on the demographic it pulls. Many people dont want a big firm job. If some sort of public interest/work is your goal then you will be fine. I have said a million times, most assistant DAs didnt go to amazing schools nor did PDs. Its all about what you want.

If you are out looking for a biglaw/market salary job you are crazy (unless you graduate #1/2 in the class)


The fact that lots of people in public interest jobs did not go to top schools is not good evidence that going to a lower ranked school will give you a good shot at those jobs. The question is how many people from lower ranked schools who want PI jobs can get them. The evidence is that, currently, many if not most cannot. One piece of evidence to this effect is that only 67% of the entire class of 2010 got JD required jobs.

To the original poster: the prevailing opinion on this website and others is that it is almost never a good idea to attend low ranked law schools. We've had this debate about once a week for the past couple years. As to your question about entering big law after five years, this is very rare. Big law firms mostly hire students directly out of law school.

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mrtoren
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Re: Going to a not so high end law school good idea or not?

Postby mrtoren » Tue Nov 15, 2011 7:21 pm

GTFO of CA.

shock259
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Re: Going to a not so high end law school good idea or not?

Postby shock259 » Tue Nov 15, 2011 8:19 pm

DANGER DANGER




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