Will JD help if I am also getting an MPA?

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jared6180
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Will JD help if I am also getting an MPA?

Postby jared6180 » Sat Apr 07, 2012 1:27 am

I live in Kansas, and locally we have the #9 Ranked school for Public Affairs, and #1 with a specialty in City Management. My initial idea was to get a joint JD/MPA from Kansas, and move primarily into the City Management career path. In reality would a JD really stand out? Lets say I get a job in Florida for 4-5 years, I have to obviously take the Florida bar if I want to use my JD at all, then I move to Texas for 4-5 years, and again I have to take another bar exam.

Is it worth it to get the JD if I really want to go the MPA City Management route? I have dreamed of becoming an attorney, just not how specifically it could work for me in an MPA field or career if I already have an MPA. Just getting your opinion, not making a real decision for at least 6 months.

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MrPapagiorgio
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Re: Will JD help if I am also getting an MPA?

Postby MrPapagiorgio » Sat Apr 07, 2012 1:41 am

jared6180 wrote:I live in Kansas, and locally we have the #9 Ranked school for Public Affairs, and #1 with a specialty in City Management.

Specialty rankings mean nothing.

jared6180 wrote:My initial idea was to get a joint JD/MPA from Kansas, and move primarily into the City Management career path. In reality would a JD really stand out?

No. If you want to go into City Management (whatever that means), do not get a JD. There is no need. It's a waste of time, money and energy.

jared6180 wrote:Lets say I get a job in Florida for 4-5 years, I have to obviously take the Florida bar if I want to use my JD at all, then I move to Texas for 4-5 years, and again I have to take another bar exam.

I have no idea where Florida or Texas come into play. And if you want to get into this "City Management" field, why would you spend 10 years in law in two different states?

jared6180 wrote:Is it worth it to get the JD if I really want to go the MPA City Management route?

No. See Above.

jared6180 wrote:I have dreamed of becoming an attorney, just not how specifically it could work for me in an MPA field or career if I already have an MPA.

Only two joint degrees are "worth it," and only under limited circumstances are they useful. Those are the JD/MBA and the JD/PhD. This MPA thing you're interested will not be bolstered by a JD, and I hope you're not doing the joint degree because it's the only way you can get into an MPA program. Piggy-backing degrees like that on a JD is almost never worth it.

tl;dr--don't get a JD unless you want to be a lawyer. It will never boost your position in a non-law job (fine, except for very rare circumstances if you don't like absolutes).

bdole2
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Re: Will JD help if I am also getting an MPA?

Postby bdole2 » Sun Apr 08, 2012 11:49 pm

MrPapagiorgio wrote:
jared6180 wrote:I live in Kansas, and locally we have the #9 Ranked school for Public Affairs, and #1 with a specialty in City Management.

Specialty rankings mean nothing.


He's not talking about specialty law school rankings :roll:

Still though, I don't see how you could justify spending the extra money on a JD if you don't plan on being an attorney.

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SehMeSerrious
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Re: Will JD help if I am also getting an MPA?

Postby SehMeSerrious » Mon Apr 09, 2012 4:51 am

Jared, apologies for MrPapagiorgio. It seems like TLS has really gotten to him. His post should be ignored and should not influence you in either direction, either for or against the JD.

rad lulz
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Re: Will JD help if I am also getting an MPA?

Postby rad lulz » Mon Apr 09, 2012 5:01 am

SehMeSerrious wrote:Jared, apologies for MrPapagiorgio. It seems like TLS has really gotten to him. His post should be ignored and should not influence you in either direction, either for or against the JD.

Nah I wouldn't get the JD; no need for city mgmt

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MrPapagiorgio
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Re: Will JD help if I am also getting an MPA?

Postby MrPapagiorgio » Mon Apr 09, 2012 3:40 pm

SehMeSerrious wrote:Jared, apologies for MrPapagiorgio. It seems like TLS has really gotten to him. His post should be ignored and should not influence you in either direction, either for or against the JD.

He's right. A JD is the most useful and versatile degree and will be valuable in any field you choose to go into. And they are always worth it, no matter how much it costs or which school you attend.

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SehMeSerrious
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Re: Will JD help if I am also getting an MPA?

Postby SehMeSerrious » Mon Apr 09, 2012 7:15 pm

MrPapagiorgio wrote:
SehMeSerrious wrote:Jared, apologies for MrPapagiorgio. It seems like TLS has really gotten to him. His post should be ignored and should not influence you in either direction, either for or against the JD.

He's right. A JD is the most useful and versatile degree and will be valuable in any field you choose to go into. And they are always worth it, no matter how much it costs or which school you attend.

I agree with your ultimate conclusion that a JD wouldn't be worth it for him, but your logic was way off and you clearly didn't understand what he was talking about. You applied generic tropes of TLS sayings about JD programs and applied it blindly to an MPA, and you did it in the most sarcastic way possible as if you were frustrated by his stupidity.
Last edited by SehMeSerrious on Mon Apr 09, 2012 11:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.

rckybbby
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Re: Will JD help if I am also getting an MPA?

Postby rckybbby » Mon Apr 09, 2012 10:01 pm

SehMeSerrious wrote:
MrPapagiorgio wrote:
SehMeSerrious wrote:Jared, apologies for MrPapagiorgio. It seems like TLS has really gotten to him. His post should be ignored and should not influence you in either direction, either for or against the JD.

He's right. A JD is the most useful and versatile degree and will be valuable in any field you choose to go into. And they are always worth it, no matter how much it costs or which school you attend.

I agree with your ultimate conclusion that a JD wouldn't be worth it for him, but your logic was way off and you clearly didn't understand what he was talking about. You applied generic tropes of TLS saying about JD programs and applied it blindly to an MPA, and you did it in the most sarcastic way possible as if you was frustrated by his stupidity.



boom.

jared6180
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Re: Will JD help if I am also getting an MPA?

Postby jared6180 » Tue Apr 10, 2012 2:17 am

SehMeSerrious wrote:I agree with your ultimate conclusion that a JD wouldn't be worth it for him, but your logic was way off and you clearly didn't understand what he was talking about. You applied generic tropes of TLS sayings about JD programs and applied it blindly to an MPA, and you did it in the most sarcastic way possible as if you were frustrated by his stupidity.


Yeah, mrpapagiorgio basically regurgitated 80% of the most common TLS quips and quotes, no original thought at all, which is fine being that I am an avid TLS reader, and know the difference.

For some reason I think a JD would help especially if I stay in Kansas my entire career in city or county leadership, however I am not convinced I want to do that. I will say a JD probably will not double my income or even give me a 25% bump in income, but I think just having the background could give me the edge on jobs that I may be competing for in Public Administration. I have no evidence, just thinking out loud, and explaining who I would hire if I were the hiring authority. Someone who knew how to apply the law on his/her own and would not need as much oversight or someone who was brilliant in the education of Public Admin, but was clueless on what the law would allow. Maybe this is why they also have special counsel and city attorneys. oh well, just talking my way though an idea, not sold on it yet. My Pre-Law advisor thinks its a great idea, and I would not even be going to my current school.

rad lulz
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Re: Will JD help if I am also getting an MPA?

Postby rad lulz » Tue Apr 10, 2012 2:21 am

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Last edited by rad lulz on Mon Apr 22, 2013 11:37 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Buckeye33
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Re: Will JD help if I am also getting an MPA?

Postby Buckeye33 » Tue Apr 10, 2012 4:19 pm

I agree with the above posters that a JD would be unnecessary for a career in city management. Also, I'm not an expert on the field, but I'd make sure to realize that this is a pretty lucrative career that is hard to come by. I'm sure your MPA program will be beneficial, and appealing to employers, but in the end there are only a few of these jobs around.

You would not need to take (and pass) the bar in any state in which you were to live -- unless you actually wanted to be a practicing attorney. You can have your JD and work as a city manager without ever passing the bar in a single state.

jared6180
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Re: Will JD help if I am also getting an MPA?

Postby jared6180 » Tue Apr 10, 2012 4:55 pm

Buckeye33 wrote:You would not need to take (and pass) the bar in any state in which you were to live -- unless you actually wanted to be a practicing attorney. You can have your JD and work as a city manager without ever passing the bar in a single state.


I am trying to think of a way that as a City Manager or Asst City Manager in a state where I did not take or pass the bar, I would be put in an ethical or legal dilemma. If that was the case and the dilemma stemmed from me not having passed the state bar, then I would want to take the bar immediately upon hiring or the first opportunity to take the bar after hiring.

I acknowledge the relative lack of positions in the field of Public Administration/Affairs, I also know that KU, a T9 MPA school, only admits 12-15 people to the program yearly, so it is not quite the same problem the law field is having with admitting 40,000+ students a year with 20-25,000 jobs (estimated) to choose from. From what I have read if you are willing to relocate to California, Texas, Florida, and a couple other decent spots there are enough jobs to get into and make decent money. Our City Manager who was just fired over scrap copper theft and a list of other things was making $137,500/yr + $550/mo car allowance. To stay here, I would take 75% of that and the city could keep the car allowance. Him getting fired got me thinking.

Again, I am probably just seeing the positives, but I keep leaning back towards law, that is what I have wanted to do for a LONG time. This is just me thinking out loud.

r6_philly
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Re: Will JD help if I am also getting an MPA?

Postby r6_philly » Thu Apr 12, 2012 11:45 am

Having a JD can be quick beneficial in the public affair/admin field. There are a lot of legal related work in the field, but really hard to break into without a MPA. A good MPA establishes commitment to public service and establish connections with local government/non-profits. I met both JD and MPA alums at local economic development organizations.

Career options: gov consulting, municipal solicitors, economic/regional development, gov/public sector financing, even agency management.

However, how beneficial depends on the cost and quality of both programs of course. I have a MPA, I see the benefits in my case, and I am glad I did it. PM me if you have specific questions.

Jwb0711
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Re: Will JD help if I am also getting an MPA?

Postby Jwb0711 » Tue Jul 17, 2012 3:50 pm

I am curious: can a MPA/MPP help when it comes to private sector consulting regarding government issues (procurement, politics etc)? Like a credibility booster? Or is that something an MBA would lend more weight to?




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