Finnish PhD before law school?

(Applications Advice, Letters of Recommendation . . . )

Should I drop out

Yes
2
40%
No
3
60%
 
Total votes: 5

User avatar
banjo
Posts: 1345
Joined: Wed Nov 30, 2011 8:00 pm

Finnish PhD before law school?

Postby banjo » Mon Jan 09, 2012 8:10 pm

Hey guys,

LSAT: 176 (Dec '11), 164 ('09, with convincing addendum)
LSDAS GPA: 3.76

I'm working on a PhD in legal history (funded, no debt expected) and I'm wondering whether I should finish. I have about three years left. I always planned to go to law school afterwards, but now I'm wondering whether I should just drop out and apply to law school this September. I don't hate my program, and it's a pretty reputable one, but I'm not passionate about it anymore.

Pros of dropping out:
-I start climbing the career ladder three years earlier (and three years younger -- I'm currently 25)
-I start earning a decent salary (possibly a big law salary) three years earlier

Cons of dropping out:
-I lose out on a good soft on my application; dropping out may even hurt my app a bit
-I close the door slightly on an academic position in law
-I lose out on strong letters of recommendation from senior faculty who have known me for years.
-I'll be applying with an older, lower LSAT score on my record that will disappear if I stay and finish
-I'll be entering a weak legal job market

I know I've listed many more cons than pros, but I am seriously considering dropping out (which is why I retook the LSAT this December). I'm pretty divided right now. I'm making this a poll so more people respond. Thanks!

User avatar
dietcoke0
Posts: 601
Joined: Wed Jul 27, 2011 2:46 pm

Re: Finish PhD before law school?

Postby dietcoke0 » Mon Jan 09, 2012 8:18 pm

Looking for Biglaw? I say leave. Looking to teach? I say stay.

You getting a full ride with stipends? Might be better to goof off before selling your soul to law school and biglaw.

Also some schools only look at a LSAT for 3 years, so it might drop off before you cash in on it. On the other hand, the other score may drop off in 3 years, meaning it looks like you pulled a 176 out of nothing.

You probably can't go wrong, follow your heart.

User avatar
No13baby
Posts: 440
Joined: Fri Aug 19, 2011 12:42 am

Re: Finnish PhD before law school?

Postby No13baby » Mon Jan 09, 2012 8:22 pm

Not unless you're planning on working in Finland after law school, no.

User avatar
Bildungsroman
Posts: 5548
Joined: Sun Apr 11, 2010 2:42 pm

Re: Finnish PhD before law school?

Postby Bildungsroman » Mon Jan 09, 2012 8:23 pm

There's Norway you should Finnish this PhD, unless schools will look positively on it and Sweden the pot. If they will, Denmark me down as someone who supports this.

User avatar
Cade McNown
Posts: 550
Joined: Tue Jan 04, 2011 10:54 pm

Re: Finnish PhD before law school?

Postby Cade McNown » Mon Jan 09, 2012 8:30 pm

Bildungsroman wrote:There's Norway you should Finnish this PhD, unless schools will look positively on it and Sweden the pot. If they will, Denmark me down as someone who supports this.

LOL, best post evarrr.

bhan87
Posts: 850
Joined: Mon Mar 12, 2007 8:08 pm

Re: Finnish PhD before law school?

Postby bhan87 » Mon Jan 09, 2012 8:37 pm

If you're going to have no debt I'd wait it out. The economy is showing signs of recovery, but it's far from stable. Your 176 will be good for 2 more years after you finish your PhD so you'll have a decent amount of time to decide.

Also, as a side note, the number of law school professors with PhD's is increasing. Not sure if you're still interested in going into academia, but if your PhD doesn't net you a tenure-track position, you could enter law school as a second opportunity to enter as a law professor or completely change directions to the private sector.

User avatar
smokeylarue
Posts: 408
Joined: Sat Oct 30, 2010 3:55 pm

Re: Finnish PhD before law school?

Postby smokeylarue » Mon Jan 09, 2012 8:40 pm

Bildungsroman wrote:There's Norway you should Finnish this PhD, unless schools will look positively on it and Sweden the pot. If they will, Denmark me down as someone who supports this.


This is too good.

User avatar
Grizz
Posts: 10583
Joined: Mon Jan 04, 2010 6:31 pm

Re: Finnish PhD before law school?

Postby Grizz » Mon Jan 09, 2012 8:41 pm

bhan87 wrote:If you're going to have no debt I'd wait it out. The economy is showing signs of recovery, but it's far from stable. Your 176 will be good for 2 more years after you finish your PhD so you'll have a decent amount of time to decide.

Also, as a side note, the number of law school professors with PhD's is increasing. Not sure if you're still interested in going into academia, but if your PhD doesn't net you a tenure-track position, you could enter law school as a second opportunity to enter as a law professor or completely change directions to the private sector.

Guessing there's not a lot of demand for scholarship in legal history.

User avatar
vpintz
Posts: 1408
Joined: Tue Jun 21, 2011 2:51 am

Re: Finnish PhD before law school?

Postby vpintz » Mon Jan 09, 2012 8:50 pm

Bildungsroman wrote:There's Norway you should Finnish this PhD, unless schools will look positively on it and Sweden the pot. If they will, Denmark me down as someone who supports this.

The actual best post on TLS.

duckmoney
Posts: 886
Joined: Sun Jun 13, 2010 2:21 pm

Re: Finnish PhD before law school?

Postby duckmoney » Mon Jan 09, 2012 8:51 pm

Bildungsroman wrote:There's Norway you should Finnish this PhD, unless schools will look positively on it and Sweden the pot. If they will, Denmark me down as someone who supports this.


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