Just read Don't Go to Law School (Unless)

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Tiago Splitter
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Re: Just read Don't Go to Law School (Unless)

Postby Tiago Splitter » Mon Oct 08, 2012 11:06 pm

collegebum1989 wrote:But my question for you is, that even if you strike out a biglaw firm (either not making partner or getting dinged) you still have developed a professional network and valuable skills during your tenure at the firm. I imagine this (combined with your t14 pedigree) would cushion the unemployment process since you'd be applying for jobs against people with less prestigious credentials or experience (regional school students). Therefore, I'm not sure how these teo students would be "essentially the same".


He's saying that if you don't get a big firm job while in law school you are in exactly the same position whether you go to a T-14 or a TTT.

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minnbills
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Re: Just read Don't Go to Law School (Unless)

Postby minnbills » Mon Oct 08, 2012 11:07 pm

God I wish I went to law school in the glory days. There was actually a time when somebody at my school wouldn't even be worried about getting a decent job. Now? Fuck.

Also, yeah, paying sticker can get pretty sketchy.

Miracle
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Re: Just read Don't Go to Law School (Unless)

Postby Miracle » Mon Oct 08, 2012 11:28 pm

Tiago Splitter wrote:
collegebum1989 wrote:But my question for you is, that even if you strike out a biglaw firm (either not making partner or getting dinged) you still have developed a professional network and valuable skills during your tenure at the firm. I imagine this (combined with your t14 pedigree) would cushion the unemployment process since you'd be applying for jobs against people with less prestigious credentials or experience (regional school students). Therefore, I'm not sure how these teo students would be "essentially the same".


He's saying that if you don't get a big firm job while in law school you are in exactly the same position whether you go to a T-14 or a TTT.


Which is an accurate statement. People attend T-14 to have a chance at big law. That's it. You strike out of it, you are in the same boat as everyone else.

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BruceWayne
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Re: Just read Don't Go to Law School (Unless)

Postby BruceWayne » Mon Oct 08, 2012 11:34 pm

Tiago Splitter wrote:
BruceWayne wrote:Because of the current state of legal hiring going to a strong regional for free or close to it is becoming the better option. If you do very well you will land the biglaw job (oftentimes in a lower COL secondary market) with no debt--and amazing situation. If you strike out of biglaw like most of the class you won't have any debt to worry about and will basically be back at square one.


Part of the problem with this logic is that someone who would be taking out COL loans at a T-14 will almost always be doing the same at anywhere else. A full ride can still mean 60K in debt at graduation.

I know of a couple of splitters who only managed to get into Columbia and WUSTL. Someone with those options and a desire for BigLaw either needs to chance it at Columbia or not go. WUSTL and everything below it just aren't options. Now if that same guy would love small firm work in Kansas City going to WUSTL isn't so bad, but with a 100K scholly he's still going to graduate with around 100K debt.


No. I and I know many others who paid sticker for our top 14 but could have gone to schools like Emory, UGA, UNC, Florida, South Carolina, Alabama,Wake Forest, American, Illinois, etc. for free.


And you're throwing in the "biglaw is only possible in NYC" mantra that warps a lot of people's thinking and makes a certain line of argument easier.


Miracle wrote:Which is an accurate statement. People attend T-14 to have a chance at big law. That's it. You strike out of it, you are in the same boat as everyone else.


Exactly. One thing that just isn't stressed enough on here is that once you strike out on biglaw, the "mystique" and prestige benefits of a top 14 law degree almost completely dissipate. Of course you are not seen as being exactly the same as a Cooley or Florida Coastal grad. But that doesn't translate to having the type of hiring advantage that exists for an above median top 14 student vs. an average regional grad.



One more thing to point out in response to the top 14 degree name "cushioning" you even if you miss biglaw. Outside of the extremes like HYS or at the other end of the spectrum a true tier 3 school your grades and whether you were on law review seem to matter a lot more than the school name in terms of "cushioning" you if you miss a firm. Many many legal employers rather have a top 10 or 20 percent UNC student with law review than a below median top 14 one--period. People on here heavily exaggerate the importance of school name for below median students. Once you're below median you're a pariah to employers that care about grades (note what I said there--for employers that care about grades. There are a significant number of legal employers that don't--but those aren't the ones that people attending a top 14 generally expect to be working for).

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Tiago Splitter
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Re: Just read Don't Go to Law School (Unless)

Postby Tiago Splitter » Mon Oct 08, 2012 11:43 pm

BruceWayne wrote:No. I and I know many others who paid sticker for our top 14 but could have gone to schools like Emory, UGA, UNC, Florida, South Carolina, Alabama,Wake Forest, American, Illinois, etc. for free.


So no borrowing to finance COL at those schools but borrowing to finance COL at UVA? I suppose this could be the case for some people who could, say, live with parents near the regional school or have money saved up. But the people with money saved could also use that at the T-14, and plenty of people have parents who live near T-14s too.

The real point is that a "full ride" can still lead to serious debt for a person who needs to borrow to live.

BruceWayne wrote:And you're throwing in the "biglaw is only possible in NYC" mantra that warps a lot of people's thinking and makes a certain line of argument easier.


No I'm not. I'm saying that someone who is gunning for BigLaw and isn't terribly interested in any other kind of legal work should just move on rather than take 100K at WUSTL.

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Re: Just read Don't Go to Law School (Unless)

Postby senorhosh » Mon Oct 08, 2012 11:49 pm

Miracle wrote:
Tiago Splitter wrote:
collegebum1989 wrote:But my question for you is, that even if you strike out a biglaw firm (either not making partner or getting dinged) you still have developed a professional network and valuable skills during your tenure at the firm. I imagine this (combined with your t14 pedigree) would cushion the unemployment process since you'd be applying for jobs against people with less prestigious credentials or experience (regional school students). Therefore, I'm not sure how these teo students would be "essentially the same".


He's saying that if you don't get a big firm job while in law school you are in exactly the same position whether you go to a T-14 or a TTT.


Which is an accurate statement. People attend T-14 to have a chance at big law. That's it. You strike out of it, you are in the same boat as everyone else.


Have you graduated yet?
Can those who have graduated (hopefully those who have been out for 1-3 years and had struck out OCI) qualify this statement?

I mean, it's hard to believe when you're applying for a job (biglaw, government, whatnot) a year after graduation, a Columbia graduate would be treated equally as someone who went to WUSTL. I know WE counts for more after graduating but 1-3 years still seems like a short amount of time.

I'm not saying it's not true but I have doubts. Is this true and why?

Edit: Also the numbers don't make sense.
The average law student has a 50% chance of being unemployed (biglaw or not).
A Columbia grad who struck out of OCI (So 40-50% of the class who don't make biglaw) still has a chance at a job. Only a small portion of the class was actually UNEMPLOYED whereas those in lower ranked schools have literally 20-50% the class working as baristas or the like.

In numbers:
There were only TEN people who were considered "unemployed" for Columbia Class of 2011
Using a CONSERVATIVE figure of those who struck out, didn't get PI, etc. this is about 10 out of 150 people. That's about 7%. Even 10 out of 100 people at Columbia who didn't get what they want is 10%.
There were 100 people who were considered "unemployed" for American Class of 2011 out of 400+.
Using a CONSERVATIVE (in terms of AGAINST Columbia) figure that takes 100 out of ALL 400 (including those who did or didn't get biglaw), that's about 25% who don't have jobs out of the entire class. Using the same criteria as Columbia, comparing these 100 to those that struck out, didn't get the job they wanted, etc., this number is even HIGHER.

Basically, the numbers don't show what you guys are saying.
Obviously this is a rough estimate/analysis but I don't understand what evidence there is to claim this statement.

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Re: Just read Don't Go to Law School (Unless)

Postby timbs4339 » Tue Oct 09, 2012 12:50 am

senorhosh wrote:
Miracle wrote:
Tiago Splitter wrote:
collegebum1989 wrote:But my question for you is, that even if you strike out a biglaw firm (either not making partner or getting dinged) you still have developed a professional network and valuable skills during your tenure at the firm. I imagine this (combined with your t14 pedigree) would cushion the unemployment process since you'd be applying for jobs against people with less prestigious credentials or experience (regional school students). Therefore, I'm not sure how these teo students would be "essentially the same".


He's saying that if you don't get a big firm job while in law school you are in exactly the same position whether you go to a T-14 or a TTT.


Which is an accurate statement. People attend T-14 to have a chance at big law. That's it. You strike out of it, you are in the same boat as everyone else.


Have you graduated yet?
Can those who have graduated (hopefully those who have been out for 1-3 years and had struck out OCI) qualify this statement?

I mean, it's hard to believe when you're applying for a job (biglaw, government, whatnot) a year after graduation, a Columbia graduate would be treated equally as someone who went to WUSTL. I know WE counts for more after graduating but 1-3 years still seems like a short amount of time.

I'm not saying it's not true but I have doubts. Is this true and why?

Edit: Also the numbers don't make sense.
The average law student has a 50% chance of being unemployed (biglaw or not).
A Columbia grad who struck out of OCI (So 40-50% of the class who don't make biglaw) still has a chance at a job. Only a small portion of the class was actually UNEMPLOYED whereas those in lower ranked schools have literally 20-50% the class working as baristas or the like.

In numbers:
There were only TEN people who were considered "unemployed" for Columbia Class of 2011
Using a CONSERVATIVE figure of those who struck out, didn't get PI, etc. this is about 10 out of 150 people. That's about 7%. Even 10 out of 100 people at Columbia who didn't get what they want is 10%.
There were 100 people who were considered "unemployed" for American Class of 2011 out of 400+.
Using a CONSERVATIVE (in terms of AGAINST Columbia) figure that takes 100 out of ALL 400 (including those who did or didn't get biglaw), that's about 25% who don't have jobs out of the entire class. Using the same criteria as Columbia, comparing these 100 to those that struck out, didn't get the job they wanted, etc., this number is even HIGHER.

Basically, the numbers don't show what you guys are saying.
Obviously this is a rough estimate/analysis but I don't understand what evidence there is to claim this statement.


CLS grad here. CLS employed a shitton of people in a school funded fellowship program in 2010 and 2011. I knew several people unemployed at graduation who took the program this year. Even the biglaw folks are starting to freak about 200k+ in debt.

The calculus you need to make considering HYS or CCNP or whatever the biglaw "most likely outcome" is should be whether it will increase your earning power 5+ years down the line. It's going to take you at least 5 years to get back to zero, probably more like 7-10 if you factor in the possibility of getting laid off or burned out. So, what kind of careers can you expect to have 5, 10 years out of college vs. what are the biglaw exit options?

I was one of the people for whom a top school unequivocally made sense. My UG/GPA combo was competitive for retail and little else, I had no connections in the professional world, etc etc. Most of my classmates, however, had many different options other than law school. They went to UGs and had GPAs where high earning/prestigious careers were more readily available.

For most American law schools, however, the size of the debt vs. the potential boost to earning power is a death spiral. You will not make enough for a very long time to climb out of that hole. Unless you inherit a shitload of money or marry rich, it's going to have serious consequences on your ability to have a middle class life.

crate2012
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Re: Just read Don't Go to Law School (Unless)

Postby crate2012 » Tue Oct 09, 2012 9:24 am

Anybody cares to comment on other factors. People only talk about debts. It is a big deal. I get it. But law school is not the only place you go for making money. What about the prestige in attending top 14 and being around overall smarter people? Certain doors will be closed to you without top 14. Looking at life time earning potential and opportunities, 2nd tier schools will match out?

collegebum1989
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Re: Just read Don't Go to Law School (Unless)

Postby collegebum1989 » Tue Oct 09, 2012 9:43 am

General consensus seems to be that the most lucrative earning potential after law school is a legal job. So striking out with big-law and/or legal job means you will have to apply for jobs that do not require a JD in the first place, making law school a ruined investment.

The prestige aspects of a T14 law school are related to legal jobs. In most cases, the prestige does not carry over to other types of jobs because employers are aware that you have salary requirements due to the debt you incur pursuing the JD. The types of non-legal jobs that offer comparable salaries require substantial experience in that field. This means that if you're a JD with no experience, you are actually LESS likely to get a non-legal job since more doors are closed to you since employers are likely to hire non-JDs with smaller salary requirements to perform the same entry-level job.

Some people believe that their unique background, combined with a JD, will allow them to be more versatile in their fields. This is false, since after being trained in law school, your previous experience may be irrelevant since you have not practiced it for three years (ex. Being a scientist, engineer, broker, etc).

If any older graduates disagree with what I've said, please feel free to add/correct my comments.

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Re: Just read Don't Go to Law School (Unless)

Postby timbs4339 » Tue Oct 09, 2012 9:51 am

collegebum1989 wrote:General consensus seems to be that the most lucrative earning potential after law school is a legal job. So striking out with big-law and/or legal job means you will have to apply for jobs that do not require a JD in the first place, making law school a ruined investment.

The prestige aspects of a T14 law school are related to legal jobs. In most cases, the prestige does not carry over to other types of jobs because employers are aware that you have salary requirements due to the debt you incur pursuing the JD. The types of non-legal jobs that offer comparable salaries require substantial experience in that field. This means that if you're a JD with no experience, you are actually LESS likely to get a non-legal job since more doors are closed to you since employers are likely to hire non-JDs with smaller salary requirements to perform the same entry-level job.

Some people believe that their unique background, combined with a JD, will allow them to be more versatile in their fields. This is false, since after being trained in law school, your previous experience may be irrelevant since you have not practiced it for three years (ex. Being a scientist, engineer, broker, etc).

If any older graduates disagree with what I've said, please feel free to add/correct my comments.


There are a few jobs where a T14 degree might help as a signaling factor. IME (as an unemployed 3L), the ones that stand out were

Consulting firms: McKinsey gives a callback to pretty much everyone who applies from my school, but it's almost unheard of to make it through the interview process, so not a good backup plan. I went through McKinsey as a 3L and the other JDs were from similar backgrounds in terms of school prestige- but had spent a few years in biglaw.
Presidential Management Fellowship: Highly competitive, but a good program.
Compliance programs: If big banks have entry-level compliance programs these can also occasionally be high paying. You might be competing with people 1-2 years out. I also had relevant WE in law school so that was probably a plus.
A bunch of "private wealth management" entry-level jobs at firms like Goldman: I've heard this is basically a sales gig, and one that is tough to do well at if you don't have that personality or connections to a lot of rich folk.

These programs are so rare (I'd be surprised if McKinsey hired more than 10 entry-level JDs), that they are essentially useless as a backup plan.

crate2012
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Re: Just read Don't Go to Law School (Unless)

Postby crate2012 » Tue Oct 09, 2012 10:00 am

collegebum1989 wrote:General consensus seems to be that the most lucrative earning potential after law school is a legal job. So striking out with big-law and/or legal job means you will have to apply for jobs that do not require a JD in the first place, making law school a ruined investment.

The prestige aspects of a T14 law school are related to legal jobs. In most cases, the prestige does not carry over to other types of jobs because employers are aware that you have salary requirements due to the debt you incur pursuing the JD. The types of non-legal jobs that offer comparable salaries require substantial experience in that field. This means that if you're a JD with no experience, you are actually LESS likely to get a non-legal job since more doors are closed to you since employers are likely to hire non-JDs with smaller salary requirements to perform the same entry-level job.

Some people believe that their unique background, combined with a JD, will allow them to be more versatile in their fields. This is false, since after being trained in law school, your previous experience may be irrelevant since you have not practiced it for three years (ex. Being a scientist, engineer, broker, etc).

If any older graduates disagree with what I've said, please feel free to add/correct my comments.


What you said almost justified going to top schools. Besides debt, you do not lose much by attending a better school. I do not see the situation any different for other fields. Recruiters target certain schools only. You losing out is not the end. I have working experiences wonder how many people comment here do not.

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Re: Just read Don't Go to Law School (Unless)

Postby cahwc12 » Tue Oct 09, 2012 10:10 am

senorhosh wrote:Edit: Also the numbers don't make sense.
The average law student has a 50% chance of being unemployed (biglaw or not).
A Columbia grad who struck out of OCI (So 40-50% of the class who don't make biglaw) still has a chance at a job. Only a small portion of the class was actually UNEMPLOYED whereas those in lower ranked schools have literally 20-50% the class working as baristas or the like.

In numbers:
There were only TEN people who were considered "unemployed" for Columbia Class of 2011
Using a CONSERVATIVE figure of those who struck out, didn't get PI, etc. this is about 10 out of 150 people. That's about 7%. Even 10 out of 100 people at Columbia who didn't get what they want is 10%.
There were 100 people who were considered "unemployed" for American Class of 2011 out of 400+.
Using a CONSERVATIVE (in terms of AGAINST Columbia) figure that takes 100 out of ALL 400 (including those who did or didn't get biglaw), that's about 25% who don't have jobs out of the entire class. Using the same criteria as Columbia, comparing these 100 to those that struck out, didn't get the job they wanted, etc., this number is even HIGHER.

Basically, the numbers don't show what you guys are saying.
Obviously this is a rough estimate/analysis but I don't understand what evidence there is to claim this statement.


You chose what is easily the worst performer in employment prospects in American U to compare arguably the most successful biglaw feeder school to.

Image

This is from the other thread I made on employment statistics from ABA data. Depending on how you decide define "biglaw" (>100 or >500), and if you consider that someone who lands a federal clerkship could almost assuredly land a similarly prestigious private sector job (is that an invalid assumption?), between 60-70% of CLS grads landed or could have landed these biglaw jobs.

85% of CLS grads had what isn't obviously a fake job, as compared to just 35% of American grads.


And aside from that fact, your comparison is not relevant to the point they made, which is that for those CLS grads who DON'T get these jobs, they are in the same boat, debt-wise and job-prospect-wise, as those who were suckered into going to American.


Tiago Splitter wrote:
BruceWayne wrote:Because of the current state of legal hiring going to a strong regional for free or close to it is becoming the better option. If you do very well you will land the biglaw job (oftentimes in a lower COL secondary market) with no debt--and amazing situation. If you strike out of biglaw like most of the class you won't have any debt to worry about and will basically be back at square one.


Part of the problem with this logic is that someone who would be taking out COL loans at a T-14 will almost always be doing the same at anywhere else. A full ride can still mean 60K in debt at graduation.

I know of a couple of splitters who only managed to get into Columbia and WUSTL. Someone with those options and a desire for BigLaw either needs to chance it at Columbia or not go. WUSTL and everything below it just aren't options. Now if that same guy would love small firm work in Kansas City going to WUSTL isn't so bad, but with a 100K scholly he's still going to graduate with around 100K debt.


You can't marginalize the difference between COL in Manhattan and COL in St. Louis.

And someone who has the choice between Columbia and WUSTL would get undoubtedly get a full ride to WUSTL, while presumably paying sticker to CLS.

So you're looking at around $45k debt to attend WUSTL as compared to $280k debt to attend Columbia. Certainly CLS has much better placement, but this is not an automatic decision to make.
Last edited by cahwc12 on Tue Oct 09, 2012 10:16 am, edited 1 time in total.

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vanwinkle
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Re: Just read Don't Go to Law School (Unless)

Postby vanwinkle » Tue Oct 09, 2012 10:14 am

senorhosh wrote:A Columbia grad who struck out of OCI (So 40-50% of the class who don't make biglaw) still has a chance at a job.

The question you should be asking is, what kind of jobs are available to Columbia grads who strike out at OCI?

Someone already pointed out that a significant number of CLS grads ended up in temporary CLS-funded fellowships, just so the school could list them as "employed after graduation". They're definitely not the only school to do this; I know for a fact that UVA did, and I'd be shocked if the other T14 weren't doing similar things. Basically, the difference between a T14 and a lower-ranked school may be that they give you that first 1-2 years of legal job experience, but after that you're on your own, and you likely haven't been working in a place with good networking options in the meantime. Most fellowships put people in PI orgs that are swamped with free workers and couldn't afford to hire someone anyway if they wanted. This actually has made the PI hiring market worse, which just feeds back into the whole problem-finding-a-job thing.

It used to be that attending a school like CLS made financial sense because most who wanted BigLaw could get it; used to be most CLS grads who didn't get BigLaw chose to do something else. They would go to gov't or PI jobs, but those jobs don't really exist like they used to. PI orgs have struggled to find funding, government agencies across the country have seen payrolls slashed, and even the DOJ has had to drastically cut back. I'm not sure how it went this year, but last summer they cut their Honors program down from 180 spots to around 100, and 50 of those were fixed-term positions without a permanent employment option. Even folks at HLS who wanted DOJ Honors couldn't get it, because the jobs just weren't there. And when T6 grads with stellar resumes can't get DOJ/BigGov, they take whatever else is available; folks who struck out at BigLaw don't have the resumes to compete for what's left.

Things are different now. The majority of CLS grads are still finding jobs, and certainly more than at lower-ranked schools, but there are still plenty that aren't. Absent something like patent bar eligibility, you can't know going in whether you'll be successful or strike out. Most people don't want to spend 3 years and $200K getting an Ivy League degree so they can live off a $20K fellowship stipend while scrounging for permanent work when they graduate. They've got to realize that's a possibility, and it changes the decision-making dramatically.

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Re: Just read Don't Go to Law School (Unless)

Postby cahwc12 » Tue Oct 09, 2012 10:21 am

vanwinkle wrote:Things are different now. The majority of CLS grads are still finding jobs, and certainly more than at lower-ranked schools, but there are still plenty that aren't. Absent something like patent bar eligibility, you can't know going in whether you'll be successful or strike out. Most people don't want to spend 3 years and $200K getting an Ivy League degree so they can live off a $20K fellowship stipend while scrounging for permanent work when they graduate. They've got to realize that's a possibility, and it changes the decision-making dramatically.


Sorry to derail, but this is directly germane to my interests. I have the opportunity to return to school (cheaply) for a semester in the Spring and take three classes which would qualify me for the Patent Bar (and i could then take in the summer before 1L). I was told I'd be at a significant disadvantage not having a hard-science degree even though I would have qualified for and presumably passed the Patent Bar. Would this still give me a major advantage over others who don't have this option, even though it sets me far behind comparable IP prospectives who actually have degrees, whereas I only have a hodge-podge of science classes?

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Re: Just read Don't Go to Law School (Unless)

Postby msquaredb » Tue Oct 09, 2012 10:24 am

cahwc12 wrote:
vanwinkle wrote:Things are different now. The majority of CLS grads are still finding jobs, and certainly more than at lower-ranked schools, but there are still plenty that aren't. Absent something like patent bar eligibility, you can't know going in whether you'll be successful or strike out. Most people don't want to spend 3 years and $200K getting an Ivy League degree so they can live off a $20K fellowship stipend while scrounging for permanent work when they graduate. They've got to realize that's a possibility, and it changes the decision-making dramatically.


Sorry to derail, but this is directly germane to my interests. I have the opportunity to return to school (cheaply) for a semester in the Spring and take three classes which would qualify me for the Patent Bar (and i could then take in the summer before 1L). I was told I'd be at a significant disadvantage not having a hard-science degree even though I would have qualified for and presumably passed the Patent Bar. Would this still give me a major advantage over others who don't have this option, even though it sets me far behind comparable IP prospectives who actually have degrees, whereas I only have a hodge-podge of science classes?


What does it take to be patent bar eligible? Would I be as a Biochem major?

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cahwc12
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Re: Just read Don't Go to Law School (Unless)

Postby cahwc12 » Tue Oct 09, 2012 10:28 am

msquaredb wrote:What does it take to be patent bar eligible? Would I be as a Biochem major?


Yes, if you hold a bachelor's degree in a hard science, you are patent bar eligible. If you don't, there are a list of other ways you can become eligible (none of them easy). I would qualify under either the physics (24 hours + 12 or 16 hours of other sciences) or the 40 hours of approved science coursework option.

And at least from what I've read on the subject, I highly recommend studying for and taking the patent bar before starting 1L.

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Re: Just read Don't Go to Law School (Unless)

Postby timbs4339 » Tue Oct 09, 2012 10:30 am

vanwinkle wrote:
senorhosh wrote:A Columbia grad who struck out of OCI (So 40-50% of the class who don't make biglaw) still has a chance at a job.

The question you should be asking is, what kind of jobs are available to Columbia grads who strike out at OCI?


I can say from experience that the options are not great if you strike out or get no offered. Some wind up doing okay. I got very lucky, for example. But more than a few of my former classmates are doing the school fellowship, moar skool, or went back to their old jobs.

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Re: Just read Don't Go to Law School (Unless)

Postby vanwinkle » Tue Oct 09, 2012 10:30 am

cahwc12 wrote:Would this still give me a major advantage over others who don't have this option, even though it sets me far behind comparable IP prospectives who actually have degrees, whereas I only have a hodge-podge of science classes?

Unfortunately this isn't the kind of thing I know the answer to. You might start your own thread about it in the "Ask a Law Student/Graduate" forum; that should attract the kind of posters who know the answer to your question.

msquaredb wrote:What does it take to be patent bar eligible? Would I be as a Biochem major?

There are two ways to qualify, with "Category A" or "Category B" eligibility. You can read the full requirements here, with the degree/education requirements on pages 4 and 5: http://www.uspto.gov/ip/boards/oed/GRB_March_2012.pdf

It appears that a bachelor's degree in "Biochemistry" would satisfy the requirements for Category A eligibility, on page 4.

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Re: Just read Don't Go to Law School (Unless)

Postby IAFG » Tue Oct 09, 2012 10:45 am

collegebum1989 wrote:

Some people believe that their unique background, combined with a JD, will allow them to be more versatile in their fields. This is false, since after being trained in law school, your previous experience may be irrelevant since you have not practiced it for three years (ex. Being a scientist, engineer, broker, etc).

If any older graduates disagree with what I've said, please feel free to add/correct my comments.

As someone who had a JD-preferred job before law school, I still think if I'd had to I could have gotten back into my old field and ultimately still have been better off from having gone to law school, but I was very glad to have not needed to test my theory. Still, I tend to trust people to be able to evaluate their own chances about that sort of thing and would not go around telling them they're wrong if they think they could go back to a previous job.

People who I have seen been wrong in several instances though: people who thought they had some connection to partners that would guarantee them an SA. I have seen a lot of types of connections fall through.

collegebum1989
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Re: Just read Don't Go to Law School (Unless)

Postby collegebum1989 » Tue Oct 09, 2012 10:52 am

Being patent-bar eligible is not the same thing as being competitive for IP prosecution jobs during or after law school. Yes, the number of law grads with hard science degrees is relatively low, but most of the prosecution jobs for attorneys with bio/biochem backgrounds require PhD's or at least a masters. This is because the market is saturated with PhD's practicing biotech patent law. Most patent attorneys who are able to prosecute with just a bachelors degrees are usually engineers (EE, ChemE, MechE and CS).

Check intelproplaw forums, its specifically catered to IP/Patent Law.

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Bronte
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Re: Just read Don't Go to Law School (Unless)

Postby Bronte » Tue Oct 09, 2012 11:01 am

I'm agnostic on the question whether T14s can be worth it at sticker. But I disagree with the assertion that, having paid sticker and having achieved big law, the average person is no better off economically than she would have been absent law school. There are admittedly a lot of unknowns here, most importantly the person's earning potential absent law school, how long the person will stay in big law, and what the exit options out of big law look like.

Still, I think most T14 grads probably make more doing big law plus full-debt than they would going straight into the market after undergrad. As we've discussed in other threads, with $225,000 in debt, five years in big law, and a five year repayment plan, you will make an average $70,000 after loan payments and taxes. That's roughly equivalent to an average $90,000 a year salary. Although there are some straight from undergrad jobs where you'd make an average $90,000 over your first five years, I don't think they're that common even for the type of people that go to T14s.

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Aberzombie1892
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Re: Just read Don't Go to Law School (Unless)

Postby Aberzombie1892 » Tue Oct 09, 2012 11:02 am

IAFG wrote:
collegebum1989 wrote:

Some people believe that their unique background, combined with a JD, will allow them to be more versatile in their fields. This is false, since after being trained in law school, your previous experience may be irrelevant since you have not practiced it for three years (ex. Being a scientist, engineer, broker, etc).

If any older graduates disagree with what I've said, please feel free to add/correct my comments.

As someone who had a JD-preferred job before law school, I still think if I'd had to I could have gotten back into my old field and ultimately still have been better off from having gone to law school, but I was very glad to have not needed to test my theory. Still, I tend to trust people to be able to evaluate their own chances about that sort of thing and would not go around telling them they're wrong if they think they could go back to a previous job.

People who I have seen been wrong in several instances though: people who thought they had some connection to partners that would guarantee them an SA. I have seen a lot of types of connections fall through.


This. Larger employers across all industries have redesigned their hiring process (committee voting) to ensure that they hire the best overall candidate and not some random person who happens to live near someone at the organization who is a partner/member/supervisor/etc.

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Lincoln
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Re: Just read Don't Go to Law School (Unless)

Postby Lincoln » Tue Oct 09, 2012 11:05 am

bk1 wrote:
BruceWayne wrote:The problem is that the current reality is that only HYS and CCNPenn (for NYC jobs) provide a "fairly good chance". And the thing about the CCNPenn option is that the lot of debt neutralizes the outcome for those who attain the NYC firm jobs (and when considering the low job security at these firms in the current climate things get even bleaker).


Why does the debt neutralize the outcome for CCNP but not HYS? We also come full circle to disagreement about what is a "fairly good chance." And where do you get that job security in biglaw is low?


This. Why does, say, $200k in debt "neutralize" the value of a $160k job if you graduate from a T14 but does not neutralize the same if you graduate from HYS?

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Tiago Splitter
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Re: Just read Don't Go to Law School (Unless)

Postby Tiago Splitter » Tue Oct 09, 2012 12:48 pm

cahwc12 wrote:You can't marginalize the difference between COL in Manhattan and COL in St. Louis.

And someone who has the choice between Columbia and WUSTL would get undoubtedly get a full ride to WUSTL, while presumably paying sticker to CLS.

So you're looking at around $45k debt to attend WUSTL as compared to $280k debt to attend Columbia. Certainly CLS has much better placement, but this is not an automatic decision to make.


Stick with me here. All I said was that for someone who really only wants BigLaw WUSTL isn't much of an option at all. Going to WUSTL for BigLaw is essentially the same as going to WUSTL with the intention to transfer. It's not CLS v. WUSTL; it's whether law school at all makes any sense given those two choices.

And one of the people I know who got into only CLS and WUSTL did not get a full ride to WUSTL. But even if he had gotten a full ride and only left with 45K in debt, that's still very different from the "regional school always gives you zero debt" assumption made earlier.

EDIT: By the way, graduating with sticker debt from CLS is also SPS. I can certainly understand someone deciding not to attend any school when they'll be graduating with 280K in debt. But for the 3.3 splitter crowd who want large firm corporate law it's between that and shooting for a different career.
Last edited by Tiago Splitter on Tue Oct 09, 2012 1:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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BruceWayne
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Re: Just read Don't Go to Law School (Unless)

Postby BruceWayne » Tue Oct 09, 2012 12:54 pm

Lincoln wrote:
bk1 wrote:
BruceWayne wrote:The problem is that the current reality is that only HYS and CCNPenn (for NYC jobs) provide a "fairly good chance". And the thing about the CCNPenn option is that the lot of debt neutralizes the outcome for those who attain the NYC firm jobs (and when considering the low job security at these firms in the current climate things get even bleaker).


Why does the debt neutralize the outcome for CCNP but not HYS? We also come full circle to disagreement about what is a "fairly good chance." And where do you get that job security in biglaw is low?


This. Why does, say, $200k in debt "neutralize" the value of a $160k job if you graduate from a T14 but does not neutralize the same if you graduate from HYS?


Two substantial reasons.

1. HYS do need based aid only--i.e you won't end up in 200K in debt from HYS unless you're the type of person who can afford that anyway. Big difference.

2. HYS give you a reasonable shot at a firm job in markets other than NYC--meaning that your salary for your COL will be much higher and your likelihood of being forced out of biglaw in 4 years is much lower.

And its common knowledge that job security in the big NYC firms is very low. You are generally forced out in a couple of years.




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