Easy Major v. Marketable Major for Law?

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AfricanGal
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Easy Major v. Marketable Major for Law?

Postby AfricanGal » Mon Aug 05, 2013 4:00 pm

Philosophy Major v. Economics Major

I'm trying to decided between the prospects of majoring in something relatively "easy" that would lead to a higher gpa verses a major relatively difficult (at least in my school, Econ department one of the best in the nation) but would help with a decent paying job out of undergrad. I've only taken one Econ class and received a C+ (bombed my first midterm (25% of grade) with an F), but I did rebound and tried to keep an A/B average for the rest of my grades had it not been for the initial fluke I would have ended up with an B+/A-. I actually did like Econ a lot, and I excelled at the theory side of Economics, but the quantitative elements tripped me up. My math skills are decent, but nothing to brag about.

My talents lend more to writing, inquiry, and rhetoric, so I figure I'd find it easier to major in Philosophy or some other humanities-based major. I know it won't lead to a job out of undergrad, but it would be my best shot at a good gpa for law school. I'm starting back at my top lac in the fall and I currently have below a 3.0 (familial issues, varsity athlete, money issues, working part-time...).

I do know that if given the chance to attend a T-6 school I'd take it and that I think the life and scholarly aptitude of a lawyer or aspiring lawyer fits me well, but I'm also concerned that maybe I'm making a mistake about not majoring in Econ. What if the economy doesn't get better? What if I don't make it to the T-6 or T-14 because of my GPA or LSAT? What if I decide later down the road law school isn't for me? It seems to be the perfect fit for me now, but I've changed my major and goals so often that I'm not sure if it will still be my goal in 3 years. I can't see myself doing anything else with a humanities degree other than teaching. I wouldn't be the best Econ student, and my gpa would probably suffer, but I feel like my chances of attaining a somewhat stable career would be greater.

thoughts?

thenewguy
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Re: Easy Major v. Marketable Major for Law?

Postby thenewguy » Mon Aug 05, 2013 4:03 pm

AfricanGal wrote:Philosophy Major v. Economics Major

I'm trying to decided between the prospects of majoring in something relatively "easy" that would lead to a higher gpa verses a major relatively difficult (at least in my school, Econ department one of the best in the nation) but would help with a decent paying job out of undergrad. I've only taken one Econ class and received a C+ (bombed my first midterm (25% of grade) with an F), but I did rebound and tried to keep an A/B average for the rest of my grades had it not been for the initial fluke I would have ended up with an B+/A-. I actually did like Econ a lot, and I excelled at the theory side of Economics, but the quantitative elements tripped me up. My math skills are decent, but nothing to brag about.

My talents lend more to writing, inquiry, and rhetoric, so I figure I'd find it easier to major in Philosophy or some other humanities-based major. I know it won't lead to a job out of undergrad, but it would be my best shot at a good gpa for law school. I'm starting back at my top lac in the fall and I currently have below a 3.0 (familial issues...).

I do know that if given the chance to attend a T-6 school I'd take it and that I think the life and scholarly aptitude of a lawyer or aspiring lawyer fits me well, but I'm also concerned that maybe I'm making a mistake about not majoring in Econ. What if the economy doesn't get better? What if I don't make it to the T-6 or T-14 because of my GPA or LSAT? What if I decide later down the road law school isn't for me? It seems to be the perfect fit for me now, but I've changed my major and goals so often that I'm not sure if it will still be my goal in 3 years. I can't see myself doing anything else with a humanities degree other than teaching. I wouldn't be the best Econ student, and my gpa would probably suffer, but I feel like my chances of attaining a somewhat stable career would be greater.

thoughts?


You basically laid out the pros/cons youself. Easier major defined by what will give you the best GPA will be better in terms of law school but you don't want something with 0 utility in the event that you dont want to go to law school, bomb the LSAT, etc.

20141023
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Re: Easy Major v. Marketable Major for Law?

Postby 20141023 » Mon Aug 05, 2013 4:05 pm

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Last edited by 20141023 on Sun Feb 15, 2015 10:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Cicero76
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Re: Easy Major v. Marketable Major for Law?

Postby Cicero76 » Mon Aug 05, 2013 4:22 pm

Depending on the school, philosophy might not be easy at all.

AfricanGal
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Re: Easy Major v. Marketable Major for Law?

Postby AfricanGal » Mon Aug 05, 2013 4:29 pm

thenewguy wrote:
AfricanGal wrote:Philosophy Major v. Economics Major

I'm trying to decided between the prospects of majoring in something relatively "easy" that would lead to a higher gpa verses a major relatively difficult (at least in my school, Econ department one of the best in the nation) but would help with a decent paying job out of undergrad. I've only taken one Econ class and received a C+ (bombed my first midterm (25% of grade) with an F), but I did rebound and tried to keep an A/B average for the rest of my grades had it not been for the initial fluke I would have ended up with an B+/A-. I actually did like Econ a lot, and I excelled at the theory side of Economics, but the quantitative elements tripped me up. My math skills are decent, but nothing to brag about.

My talents lend more to writing, inquiry, and rhetoric, so I figure I'd find it easier to major in Philosophy or some other humanities-based major. I know it won't lead to a job out of undergrad, but it would be my best shot at a good gpa for law school. I'm starting back at my top lac in the fall and I currently have below a 3.0 (familial issues...).

I do know that if given the chance to attend a T-6 school I'd take it and that I think the life and scholarly aptitude of a lawyer or aspiring lawyer fits me well, but I'm also concerned that maybe I'm making a mistake about not majoring in Econ. What if the economy doesn't get better? What if I don't make it to the T-6 or T-14 because of my GPA or LSAT? What if I decide later down the road law school isn't for me? It seems to be the perfect fit for me now, but I've changed my major and goals so often that I'm not sure if it will still be my goal in 3 years. I can't see myself doing anything else with a humanities degree other than teaching. I wouldn't be the best Econ student, and my gpa would probably suffer, but I feel like my chances of attaining a somewhat stable career would be greater.

thoughts?


You basically laid out the pros/cons youself. Easier major defined by what will give you the best GPA will be better in terms of law school but you don't want something with 0 utility in the event that you dont want to go to law school, bomb the LSAT, etc.


Yes, I'm just not certain which bears the greater risk.

AfricanGal
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Re: Easy Major v. Marketable Major for Law?

Postby AfricanGal » Mon Aug 05, 2013 4:31 pm

I'm just basing this on your screen name, but are you actually an black female?

If so, you'll have decent chances at a T6 as long as you get a 3.6ish and a 165+ LSAT score. Of course, the better the GPA the better your chances at getting into HYS, but I would personally do something that is a "usable" major in case you end up changing your mind about law school.


Yes, i'm a black female. Realistically looking to reach 3.4 (optimistically 3.5 by end of junior year).

Depending on the school, philosophy might not be easy at all.


True, I'm still considering other options, as well. Philosophy seems like a good bet.
Last edited by AfricanGal on Mon Aug 05, 2013 4:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.

whynot123
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Re: Easy Major v. Marketable Major for Law?

Postby whynot123 » Mon Aug 05, 2013 4:32 pm

Or... you could choose the major that is most suited to interest you in the long run. I'd choose the subject I was more passionate about in the long run.

AfricanGal
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Re: Easy Major v. Marketable Major for Law?

Postby AfricanGal » Mon Aug 05, 2013 4:35 pm

whynot123 wrote:Or... you could choose the major that is most suited to interest you in the long run. I'd choose the subject I was more passionate about in the long run.


I really haven't found anything that I'm truly passionate about and it seems like time is running out to choose a major. I only know what I'm good at, what I tend to struggle in, and what might be profitable in the future.

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Balthy
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Re: Easy Major v. Marketable Major for Law?

Postby Balthy » Mon Aug 05, 2013 4:38 pm

Cicero76 wrote:Depending on the school, philosophy might not be easy at all.


This is true. Don't underestimate it. Intro phil courses can be deceptively easy. Once you get past intro and start reading Godel, Wittgenstein, Kant, etc., it can hit you like a bus.

Also, look into your econ department's placement. People usually overestimate the marketability of an econ degree, though if it's a top program perhaps you have nothing to worry about.

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Balthy
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Re: Easy Major v. Marketable Major for Law?

Postby Balthy » Mon Aug 05, 2013 4:39 pm

AfricanGal wrote:
whynot123 wrote:Or... you could choose the major that is most suited to interest you in the long run. I'd choose the subject I was more passionate about in the long run.


I really haven't found anything that I'm truly passionate about and it seems like time is running out to choose a major. I only know what I'm good at, what I tend to struggle in, and what might be profitable in the future.



If you aren't particularly passionate about anything, maybe consider a business degree. Seems to be the best combo of ease and marketability.

erik the viking
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Re: Easy Major v. Marketable Major for Law?

Postby erik the viking » Mon Aug 05, 2013 4:44 pm

Another thing to consider. Econ might prepare you better for the LSAT:

http://www.potsdam.edu/academics/AAS/Ph ... Majors.pdf

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nothingtosee
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Re: Easy Major v. Marketable Major for Law?

Postby nothingtosee » Mon Aug 05, 2013 5:10 pm

erik the viking wrote:Another thing to consider. Econ might prepare you better for the LSAT:

http://www.potsdam.edu/academics/AAS/Ph ... Majors.pdf


Meh what about selection bias of ivys without business schools, so those kids take Econ. Post hoc ergo prompter hoc, yo.

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cinephile
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Re: Easy Major v. Marketable Major for Law?

Postby cinephile » Mon Aug 05, 2013 5:55 pm

Neither are super useful. If you want to go for a "hard" or "marketable" major, just do accounting. That way you might have other job options down the line.

AfricanGal
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Re: Easy Major v. Marketable Major for Law?

Postby AfricanGal » Mon Aug 05, 2013 6:21 pm

I'm attending a top lac, but unfortunately it doesn't offer business or accounting. Econ is a pretty popular and marketable major at my school, but not sure I'd be very competitive in the major

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cinephile
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Re: Easy Major v. Marketable Major for Law?

Postby cinephile » Mon Aug 05, 2013 7:27 pm

AfricanGal wrote:I'm attending a top lac, but unfortunately it doesn't offer business or accounting. Econ is a pretty popular and marketable major at my school, but not sure I'd be very competitive in the major


Got it. Do you think you'll use econ if you don't go to law school? If you don't think it'll help with your other potential career paths, might as well go for the major you think you'd do better in.

PRgradBYU
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Re: Easy Major v. Marketable Major for Law?

Postby PRgradBYU » Mon Aug 05, 2013 8:58 pm

cinephile wrote:Neither are super useful. If you want to go for a "hard" or "marketable" major, just do accounting. That way you might have other job options down the line.


TITCR. If I could go back and redo my UG degree, I'd definitely major in accounting.

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hephaestus
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Re: Easy Major v. Marketable Major for Law?

Postby hephaestus » Mon Aug 05, 2013 9:44 pm

AfricanGal wrote:I'm attending a top lac, but unfortunately it doesn't offer business or accounting. Econ is a pretty popular and marketable major at my school, but not sure I'd be very competitive in the major

If there are no more "Useful" majors at your LAC, econ sounds like a good choice.

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Gunnar Stahl
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Re: Easy Major v. Marketable Major for Law?

Postby Gunnar Stahl » Tue Aug 06, 2013 11:47 am

buddyt wrote:I'll post this list again:
    Computer science/engineering/systems engineering
    Electrical engineering
    Some other engineering majors (e.g. probably chemical, probably not civil)
    Math/statistics/informatics
    Computer information systems
    Nursing
    Accounting
    Supply chain management


I feel like if the quant stuff in econ is giving you trouble, then you will have a hard time with the upper level stuff.

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90convoy
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Re: Easy Major v. Marketable Major for Law?

Postby 90convoy » Tue Aug 06, 2013 12:11 pm

I'm a philosophy major, and although I feel that it is pretty easy and prepares you for the logical reasoning portion of the lsat, if I could go back I would do econ or finance.

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sinfiery
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Re: Easy Major v. Marketable Major for Law?

Postby sinfiery » Tue Aug 06, 2013 12:22 pm

Finance major with tons of Econ courses here and if I could do it over again, I'd pick Philosophy or History. Yeah, I could get a job but I'm going to law school anyways so I wish I studied something more interesting.

AfricanGal
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Re: Easy Major v. Marketable Major for Law?

Postby AfricanGal » Tue Aug 06, 2013 12:32 pm

I know a handful of graduating seniors who are going off to work at JP Morgan and Goldman Sachs. Others going off into consulting, straight to grad or business school, and some with some prestigious internships related to economics at my school. The Econ program has a lot of networking, prestige, and rigor, and I know for a fact that if I did well it could lead to a good career out of undergrad. Part of my wanting to attempt econ is that my mom also works in the business industry (works for citigroup) and she's always saying how it'd be a good career choice for me.

There really isn't anything "marketable" that I have a talent or passion for and because I attend a LAC there isn't Computer Science, IT, business, accounting majors.

My gpa is my main concern, it's a 2.3 atm

AllTheLawz
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Re: Easy Major v. Marketable Major for Law?

Postby AllTheLawz » Tue Aug 06, 2013 12:44 pm

I think econ here by a wide margin. Idk where the people in this thread come from but at my non-prestigious undergrad an econ major was extremely marketable (essentially the equivalent of a finance or Business degree for intents and purposes) and Econ + Varsity Athlete guaranteed you at least an analyst position at a small investment bank or one of the fortune 500 companies in the region.

In addition, with a full-year gpa of 2.3 it is time to start thinking about life other than law school. Getting close to 3.5 cumulative would probably require straight 4.0s the rest of college and that is pretty unrealistic at most top LACs (unless that LAC is Pomona.. but then my question is how on earth you got a 2.3)

AfricanGal
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Re: Easy Major v. Marketable Major for Law?

Postby AfricanGal » Tue Aug 06, 2013 1:06 pm

AllTheLawz wrote:I think econ here by a wide margin. Idk where the people in this thread come from but at my non-prestigious undergrad an econ major was extremely marketable (essentially the equivalent of a finance or Business degree for intents and purposes) and Econ + Varsity Athlete guaranteed you at least an analyst position at a small investment bank or one of the fortune 500 companies in the region.

In addition, with a full-year gpa of 2.3 it is time to start thinking about life other than law school. Getting close to 3.5 cumulative would probably require straight 4.0s the rest of college and that is pretty unrealistic at most top LACs (unless that LAC is Pomona.. but then my question is how on earth you got a 2.3)


There's quite a bit of grade deflation at my school, especially in the Econ department. Being a varsity athlete really manipulated much of my time to studies, my mother faced a series of financial issues in which she lost her home and business, and I had to pick of the slack by taking on a part-time job. It really killed my gpa. I've never done this poorly before so I'm hoping this was only a fluke.

Azariel
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Re: Easy Major v. Marketable Major for Law?

Postby Azariel » Tue Aug 06, 2013 8:04 pm

AfricanGal wrote:I know a handful of graduating seniors who are going off to work at JP Morgan and Goldman Sachs. Others going off into consulting, straight to grad or business school, and some with some prestigious internships related to economics at my school. The Econ program has a lot of networking, prestige, and rigor, and I know for a fact that if I did well it could lead to a good career out of undergrad. Part of my wanting to attempt econ is that my mom also works in the business industry (works for citigroup) and she's always saying how it'd be a good career choice for me.

There really isn't anything "marketable" that I have a talent or passion for and because I attend a LAC there isn't Computer Science, IT, business, accounting majors.

My gpa is my main concern, it's a 2.3 atm


Assuming you don't overload or anything and the highest grade possible is a 4.0, the highest you can get your average up to is a 3.58. And that's if you're *perfect* from here on out.

Your school sounds a lot like my alma mater. I majored in both philosophy and econ, so I sort of understand some of the benefits and disadvantages of each, though obviously it's somewhat different at every school. Econ is not a golden ticket by any means - it certainly wasn't for me - but it can be a lot easier to find a job - or at least interviews - post-grad than from philosophy, even if you receive a much lower GPA in Econ than you would have in philosophy. Too, the courses you take and your extra-curricular activities can greatly impact your employability - a lot of employers will look more favorably on a B in courses like corporate finance or derivatives than on As in econ classes that are more theory-oriented. Internships help, as do connections. Honestly, in my experience, connections are one of the biggest factors of success, and if you already have a family member in the field you want to go into, that can be a major help. (A lot of people I knew in college got internships, even at big names like JP Morgan, because of a parent/family member or family friend...). If you want to do consulting, especially if you want to go to one of the big names like BCG or Bain, you'll want to get your GPA up and start practicing cases now. In my experience, the big ones had GPA floors for the first interview, but the people who got past that interview stage were all the ones who had been practicing the cases since sophomore year, or had had an internship with the company the summer before senior year. (Some might have special diversity programs that might be to your benefit and help you skirt the GPA issue - I'd research more about that if you're interested in consulting because it might make things completely different from what I'm saying.) Consulting can be a very good field to go into in that it's a good launching pad for all sorts of careers - and some of the big ones will pay for your graduate education (usually MBAs).

Ultimately I wouldn't do law school, unless you're either a born 180 or really, really set on being a lawyer and 100% willing to do the work it'll take. Talk to your friends who have found good jobs and investigate what sort of connections your econ department actually has - because, believe me, things can seem very rosy when graduation's years away and the job pressure isn't as strong. If I were you, knowing what I do from my experiences, I would choose to focus on either accounting or finance (even if it's just an econ major, I'm SURE there are courses in those areas), probably accounting, as you say you are not as strong with the quantitative aspects. If both of these careers seem utterly soul-killing and unappealing to you, I would strongly consider another major - if you can't find one that'll give you a decent chance of employment, transfer. It's harsh, but unless you have some serious family connections you can fall back on, you have to look at college like an investment. If you're not getting the ROI, especially if you have any debt, you're screwed. And don't major in philosophy unless you're absolutely sure that you want to do law or some form of further education. I found it very valuable in a lot of ways (yes, even for taking the LSAT), but unfortunately a lot of people, including employers, are too thick to see its value.

(Also: there are a good handful of people on here who've gone into finance-y careers (e.g. i-banking) so they will probably have much better information and advice in that regard.)

20141023
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Re: Easy Major v. Marketable Major for Law?

Postby 20141023 » Tue Aug 06, 2013 8:20 pm

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Last edited by 20141023 on Sun Feb 15, 2015 10:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.




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