Public Interest

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simplycatalina
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Public Interest

Postby simplycatalina » Sun Feb 24, 2013 2:14 am

Is it more beneficial to go to a top public interest school (NYU, Georgetown) or to go to a T1 school with almost a full ride in a city you'd for sure want to practice in?

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Dr. Dre
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Re: Public Interest

Postby Dr. Dre » Sun Feb 24, 2013 2:31 am

$$$ from T14 > full ride TTT

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TripTrip
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Re: Public Interest

Postby TripTrip » Sun Feb 24, 2013 5:25 am

Dr. Dre wrote:$$$ from T14 > full ride TTT

OP implied no money from T14.

However, for public interest, there's always the LRAP. Do you qualify for the G-town LRAP?

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eav1277
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Re: Public Interest

Postby eav1277 » Sun Feb 24, 2013 7:27 am

How exactly do the LRAPs work? you have to be employed in either gov or non profits. Then The school covers the interest. And after ten years ur loans are forgiven(by the fed gov)? N is that ten years time from graduation or ten years of employment? Anyone with a great understanding of the process?

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RhymesLikeDimes
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Re: Public Interest

Postby RhymesLikeDimes » Sun Feb 24, 2013 9:29 am

Getting a PI job that actually qualifies for a school's LRAP is very, very difficult. Don't make it your only goal.

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Dr. Dre
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Re: Public Interest

Postby Dr. Dre » Sun Feb 24, 2013 10:07 am

Would the nonprofit Earthjustice be a good place to work? (assuming you want environmental law) Also, don't mean to hijack.

http://earthjustice.org/

rad lulz
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Re: Public Interest

Postby rad lulz » Sun Feb 24, 2013 11:11 am

Dr. Dre wrote:Would the nonprofit Earthjustice be a good place to work? (assuming you want environmental law) Also, don't mean to hijack.

http://earthjustice.org/

Your chances of getting a job at a place like that, even if you go to a top school, are negligible.

Arcticlynx
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Re: Public Interest

Postby Arcticlynx » Sun Feb 24, 2013 11:51 am

rad lulz wrote:
Dr. Dre wrote:Would the nonprofit Earthjustice be a good place to work? (assuming you want environmental law) Also, don't mean to hijack.

http://earthjustice.org/

Your chances of getting a job at a place like that, even if you go to a top school, are negligible.


Why???

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RhymesLikeDimes
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Re: Public Interest

Postby RhymesLikeDimes » Sun Feb 24, 2013 12:07 pm

Non-profits have taken just as big a hit as the rest of the legal market. Positions, when they do open up, are swamped with highly qualified applicants. The terms of most LRAPs lead to very high retention rates, as people want to stick out the full term to get their loans paid down. Treat PI like you would a clerkship. It's a nice thing to aim for, but don't expect it. And absolutely do NOT make it your only option.

Get it out of your head that taking a PI job is somehow a selfless act of altruism. It's a great gig to get, especially in this economy.

rad lulz
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Re: Public Interest

Postby rad lulz » Sun Feb 24, 2013 12:28 pm

RhymesLikeDimes wrote:Non-profits have taken just as big a hit as the rest of the legal market. Positions, when they do open up, are swamped with highly qualified applicants. The terms of most LRAPs lead to very high retention rates, as people want to stick out the full term to get their loans paid down. Treat PI like you would a clerkship. It's a nice thing to aim for, but don't expect it. And absolutely do NOT make it your only option.

Get it out of your head that taking a PI job is somehow a selfless act of altruism. It's a great gig to get, especially in this economy.

And the other side of the coin is plenty of people with firm experience want to leave to do something more PI minded. They have training. You don't.

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A. Nony Mouse
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Re: Public Interest

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Sun Feb 24, 2013 1:55 pm

The PI route - for something like Earthjustice - is tough in part because it's sort of a catch-22. To get a job like that, you're going to be competing against applicants who have lived, eaten, and breathed nothing but environmental law throughout law school (and probably before and after). So you have to do that, too. Which makes it hard to hedge your bets, so to speak - you kind of have to put all your eggs in one basket, and if it doesn't pay off, you can be kind of stuck (it's harder to convince a firm you've really always wanted to do insurance defense if all your experience is protecting natural wildlife and the like).

I guess in my experience the PI route is a little like the biglaw route - if you have the qualifications to get biglaw, you probably have the qualifications to get something PI in your field - with the caveat that there are probably fewer positions overall, and that RLD and rad are right that funding has suffered and they like people with experience. I went to a T1 with a big environmental law program. I know someone a couple of classes ahead of me working at Earthjustice, and someone in my class is working for the National Wildlife Federation. Others in my class ended up in environmental-related fedgov jobs; another is in the environmental division of the state government. Conversely, a classmate of mine did only environmental law stuff during school, but didn't end up getting anything environmental and now does civil litigation at a firm (employment, construction, that kind of thing). It's a very good firm and he made the jump because he was one of the top 5-10 people in my class and did a (state) clerkship. If he'd been median? I don't know that the outcome would have been so good.

This is also defining PI broadly as all public sector. As with anything, the more narrowly you define your goal, the tougher it's going to be.

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vanwinkle
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Re: Public Interest

Postby vanwinkle » Sun Feb 24, 2013 2:24 pm

rad lulz wrote:
RhymesLikeDimes wrote:Non-profits have taken just as big a hit as the rest of the legal market. Positions, when they do open up, are swamped with highly qualified applicants. The terms of most LRAPs lead to very high retention rates, as people want to stick out the full term to get their loans paid down. Treat PI like you would a clerkship. It's a nice thing to aim for, but don't expect it. And absolutely do NOT make it your only option.

Get it out of your head that taking a PI job is somehow a selfless act of altruism. It's a great gig to get, especially in this economy.

And the other side of the coin is plenty of people with firm experience want to leave to do something more PI minded. They have training. You don't.

Both of these are true. Even from T14, PI jobs are hard to get now. There's less supply (fewer job openings) and more demand (folks who would've taken more money before will now gun for PI because it pays something).

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BearState
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Re: Public Interest

Postby BearState » Sun Feb 24, 2013 3:05 pm

vanwinkle wrote:
rad lulz wrote:
RhymesLikeDimes wrote:Non-profits have taken just as big a hit as the rest of the legal market. Positions, when they do open up, are swamped with highly qualified applicants. The terms of most LRAPs lead to very high retention rates, as people want to stick out the full term to get their loans paid down. Treat PI like you would a clerkship. It's a nice thing to aim for, but don't expect it. And absolutely do NOT make it your only option.

Get it out of your head that taking a PI job is somehow a selfless act of altruism. It's a great gig to get, especially in this economy.

And the other side of the coin is plenty of people with firm experience want to leave to do something more PI minded. They have training. You don't.

Both of these are true. Even from T14, PI jobs are hard to get now. There's less supply (fewer job openings) and more demand (folks who would've taken more money before will now gun for PI because it pays something).


I know someone from S with top grades, a 9th circuit clerkship and an environmental fellowship that hasn't found a permanent job in the field. These sorts of positions are practically impossible.

BigZuck
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Re: Public Interest

Postby BigZuck » Sun Feb 24, 2013 3:13 pm

cbarlow1016 wrote:Is it more beneficial to go to a top public interest school (NYU, Georgetown) or to go to a T1 school with almost a full ride in a city you'd for sure want to practice in?


You got into NYU???

And what is the almost full ride school in question?

Or is this just a for-funsies question?

If you're asking about the Hastings and Loyolas of the world I don't see you getting PI from those schools and even an actual job at all would be tough.

jml8756
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Re: Public Interest

Postby jml8756 » Sun Feb 24, 2013 3:17 pm

I think, in addition to the fact that a lot of folks can no longer get Big Law jobs, there's also a growing number of people who don't WANT Big Law, even if they could get it. Yeah you might make $160k your first year, but you're also essentially working two full-time jobs in terms of hours. And those hours might not be very exciting.

In contrast, people are realizing that in a public interest job they can make enough to pay the bills, pay off their loans through IBR/LRAP/10-year forgiveness, and have a meaningful, exciting career that leaves room for family, friends, and hobbies.

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Dr. Dre
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Re: Public Interest

Postby Dr. Dre » Sun Feb 24, 2013 7:16 pm

BearState wrote:I know someone from S with top grades, a 9th circuit clerkship and an environmental fellowship that hasn't found a permanent job in the field. These sorts of positions are practically impossible.


So what would be a good route to a position like Earthjustice? If any?

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A. Nony Mouse
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Re: Public Interest

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Sun Feb 24, 2013 7:23 pm

Dr. Dre wrote:
BearState wrote:I know someone from S with top grades, a 9th circuit clerkship and an environmental fellowship that hasn't found a permanent job in the field. These sorts of positions are practically impossible.


So what would be a good route to a position like Earthjustice? If any?

The individual Earthjustice offices list attorneys and have bios - you can take a look and see what their backgrounds are.

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Dr. Dre
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Re: Public Interest

Postby Dr. Dre » Sun Feb 24, 2013 7:26 pm

A. Nony Mouse wrote:
Dr. Dre wrote:
BearState wrote:I know someone from S with top grades, a 9th circuit clerkship and an environmental fellowship that hasn't found a permanent job in the field. These sorts of positions are practically impossible.


So what would be a good route to a position like Earthjustice? If any?

The individual Earthjustice offices list attorneys and have bios - you can take a look and see what their backgrounds are.


Very few of them went to T14.

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TheThriller
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Re: Public Interest

Postby TheThriller » Sun Feb 24, 2013 7:30 pm

Dr. Dre wrote:
A. Nony Mouse wrote:
Dr. Dre wrote:
BearState wrote:I know someone from S with top grades, a 9th circuit clerkship and an environmental fellowship that hasn't found a permanent job in the field. These sorts of positions are practically impossible.


So what would be a good route to a position like Earthjustice? If any?

The individual Earthjustice offices list attorneys and have bios - you can take a look and see what their backgrounds are.


Very few of them went to T14.


Probably because they all had softs like working at LSAC

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Dr. Dre
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Re: Public Interest

Postby Dr. Dre » Sun Feb 24, 2013 7:31 pm

TheThriller wrote:Probably because they all had softs like working at LSAC


lol

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cinephile
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Re: Public Interest

Postby cinephile » Sun Feb 24, 2013 7:36 pm

RhymesLikeDimes wrote:Getting a PI job that actually qualifies for a school's LRAP is very, very difficult. Don't make it your only goal.


This.

Also, plenty of schools have terrible LRAP programs. So I wouldn't count on it too much.

The full ride at a decent TI (like best school in the state you want to work in) is your best option. It'd be even better if you can get a (partial) living stipend.

BigZuck
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Re: Public Interest

Postby BigZuck » Sun Feb 24, 2013 8:03 pm

cinephile wrote:
RhymesLikeDimes wrote:Getting a PI job that actually qualifies for a school's LRAP is very, very difficult. Don't make it your only goal.


This.

Also, plenty of schools have terrible LRAP programs. So I wouldn't count on it too much.

The full ride at a decent TI (like best school in the state you want to work in) is your best option. It'd be even better if you can get a (partial) living stipend.


Do CA schools offer full rides? The only one I have heard of is UCLA.

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Dr. Dre
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Re: Public Interest

Postby Dr. Dre » Sun Feb 24, 2013 8:10 pm

BigZuck wrote:
Do CA schools offer full rides? The only one I have heard of is UCLA.



Santa Clara, Pacific McGeorge, LMU, and (I believe) USF

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A. Nony Mouse
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Re: Public Interest

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Sun Feb 24, 2013 8:10 pm

Dr. Dre wrote:
A. Nony Mouse wrote:
Dr. Dre wrote:
BearState wrote:I know someone from S with top grades, a 9th circuit clerkship and an environmental fellowship that hasn't found a permanent job in the field. These sorts of positions are practically impossible.


So what would be a good route to a position like Earthjustice? If any?

The individual Earthjustice offices list attorneys and have bios - you can take a look and see what their backgrounds are.


Very few of them went to T14.

I wouldn't say very few went to a T14 - this is the list I came up with:

Yale x4
Harvard x6 (1 w/a Ph.D. from Harvard)
Stanford x2
NYU x3
Columbia x2
Chicago x2
Michigan x5
Virginia x3
U Penn x2
Berkeley x6
Cornell x2
Duke x2
Georgetown
UCLA
Texas
W&L
BC
Iowa
Hastings x2
Wash U.
UWMadison x2
U Colorado x3
Lewis & Clark
Oregon x3
Tulane x2 (both in Florida)
U Maryland
Hawaii x2 (both in the HI office)
Vermont Law School
Maine (w/a DVM)
none listed - x15

I don't think this means T-14 is required, but it doesn't suggest it's not an advantage (a bunch of these people had experience before going to Earthjustice).

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Rahviveh
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Re: Public Interest

Postby Rahviveh » Sun Feb 24, 2013 8:23 pm

Dr. Dre wrote:
BigZuck wrote:
Do CA schools offer full rides? The only one I have heard of is UCLA.



Santa Clara, Pacific McGeorge, LMU, and (I believe) USF

Unfortunately I know for SCU PM and USF all their "full rides" have terrible stipulations on them. Then again, if you fall below the cutoff you should drop out anyways.

Not sure about LMU. AFAIK Hastings and Davis don't have stips.




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