Would midlaw consider a top 2% student at Cooley?

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lostjake
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Re: Would midlaw consider a top 2% student at Cooley?

Postby lostjake » Sat Feb 13, 2010 1:22 pm

CMR wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:I do know a Cooley grad that works at a well respected midlaw firm in Portland. Impossible to repeat her success? No, but it seems difficult, even with top grades. I would look at transferring, just to be safe.


This is extremely encouraging, because at this point I'm split as to whether I'd like to stay in Michigan long term, where my friends and family are, or whether I'd instead like to move back out west, where I'd prefer to live. How long has she been practicing though? Because I get the sense that Cooley's reputation really didn't plummet until this decade or so; before the whole rankings debacle and expansion, I think they were just seen as another unranked school, no better or worse.

kittenmittons wrote:What is midlaw


A very broad, general term I use to subtly recognize that my employment prospects aren't great regardless of my ranking (in order to avoid incurring wrath) while concurrently keeping the breadth of my inquiry as wide as possible. Frankly, I don't have a clue except it's not big and not small.

enygma wrote:FWIW I was at a job fair type thing the other week and met a girl who was a 3L at Cooley. She said she was #10 or 11 in her class and had so far been unable to secure a single interview. Our conversation was brief, so I didn't get any more detail. However, she didn't seem at all like someone who would have some abnormally terrible aspect to their personality or resume.


Yeah, I've heard some horror stories from students ranked fairly decently. I'm assuming it's much worse if you're an out of state student.

This is all rather frustrating, because at the risk of sounding cocky, in my opinion I'd stack up fairly well in terms of intelligence and aptitude with nearly any student in the country. If almost any other unranked school had been in my hometown, I wouldn't have these worries right now, as I'd be fairly confident that I could at least secure an interview with my stats; here, however, I just don't have confidence that I'll even get that look. On the other hand, I've got two RA positions, a good relationship with a dean, a great reputation academically (though I think some professors regard me as arrogant because I tend to like discussing theory). I'm considering gutting it up, going to the dean and a couple other faculty that are regional partners, and asking very frankly about the current regional employment situation.

Everyone is telling me to transfer, but man, that's a LOT of money to put down in exchange for cutting all the contacts I've made so far. If I do decide to transfer, I'm literally going to lock myself away when the chance to write on comes up and live on 5 hour energy.


MSU?

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dutchstriker
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Re: Would midlaw consider a top 2% student at Cooley?

Postby dutchstriker » Sat Feb 13, 2010 1:41 pm

lostjake wrote:
CMR wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:I do know a Cooley grad that works at a well respected midlaw firm in Portland. Impossible to repeat her success? No, but it seems difficult, even with top grades. I would look at transferring, just to be safe.


This is extremely encouraging, because at this point I'm split as to whether I'd like to stay in Michigan long term, where my friends and family are, or whether I'd instead like to move back out west, where I'd prefer to live. How long has she been practicing though? Because I get the sense that Cooley's reputation really didn't plummet until this decade or so; before the whole rankings debacle and expansion, I think they were just seen as another unranked school, no better or worse.

kittenmittons wrote:What is midlaw


A very broad, general term I use to subtly recognize that my employment prospects aren't great regardless of my ranking (in order to avoid incurring wrath) while concurrently keeping the breadth of my inquiry as wide as possible. Frankly, I don't have a clue except it's not big and not small.

enygma wrote:FWIW I was at a job fair type thing the other week and met a girl who was a 3L at Cooley. She said she was #10 or 11 in her class and had so far been unable to secure a single interview. Our conversation was brief, so I didn't get any more detail. However, she didn't seem at all like someone who would have some abnormally terrible aspect to their personality or resume.


Yeah, I've heard some horror stories from students ranked fairly decently. I'm assuming it's much worse if you're an out of state student.

This is all rather frustrating, because at the risk of sounding cocky, in my opinion I'd stack up fairly well in terms of intelligence and aptitude with nearly any student in the country. If almost any other unranked school had been in my hometown, I wouldn't have these worries right now, as I'd be fairly confident that I could at least secure an interview with my stats; here, however, I just don't have confidence that I'll even get that look. On the other hand, I've got two RA positions, a good relationship with a dean, a great reputation academically (though I think some professors regard me as arrogant because I tend to like discussing theory). I'm considering gutting it up, going to the dean and a couple other faculty that are regional partners, and asking very frankly about the current regional employment situation.

Everyone is telling me to transfer, but man, that's a LOT of money to put down in exchange for cutting all the contacts I've made so far. If I do decide to transfer, I'm literally going to lock myself away when the chance to write on comes up and live on 5 hour energy.


MSU?

I'm guessing OP is in Grand Rapids.

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XxSpyKEx
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Re: Would midlaw consider a top 2% student at Cooley?

Postby XxSpyKEx » Sat Feb 13, 2010 11:22 pm

If you graduate at top 2% or #1 at cooley (or even top 5%), I think you will have some job prospects in the future. Firms around 10-25 in Michigan might be possible. With how things are right now I would be really, really impressed if you were able to find any paying legal employment. People who say otherwise have no idea of how bad the legal market is right now. Biglaw hiring #s are actually really good in comparison to small/mid-size firms (even PI organizations aren't hiring right now). In the fall I sent out applications to a good number small/mid-size firms while I was waiting for an offer and I didn't get any interviews at any small/mid-size firms (although, I did get some at some larger firms that I couldn't get interviews with at OCI). I think the worst insult was when some cocksucker Cooley grad at a smaller firm sent me a rejection letter. Pretty much no one else outside biglaw is hiring (it doesn't matter if you are #1 at Harvard, if there isn't any need for you at XYZ small firm, you aren't getting a job at XYZ small firm).

As far as transferring, if things are like they were this year at OCI you will certainly strike out at your transfer school (even if that's Michigan). There are a LOT of people at my school that transferred in from a lot better schools then Cooley (obviously with stellar grades) that struck out this fall and took things like externships with judges. You do gain an advantage by transferring (in comparison with staying at the same school) because of OCI, but firms still aren't going to view as top of your transfer school. With that said, it would still be worth it to transfer to a school like Michigan or it's equivalent because in the long run your job prospects will be better (even if they don't include biglaw).

CMR
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Re: Would midlaw consider a top 2% student at Cooley?

Postby CMR » Mon Feb 15, 2010 1:24 pm

XxSpyKEx wrote:If you graduate at top 2% or #1 at cooley (or even top 5%), I think you will have some job prospects in the future. Firms around 10-25 in Michigan might be possible. With how things are right now I would be really, really impressed if you were able to find any paying legal employment. People who say otherwise have no idea of how bad the legal market is right now. Biglaw hiring #s are actually really good in comparison to small/mid-size firms (even PI organizations aren't hiring right now). In the fall I sent out applications to a good number small/mid-size firms while I was waiting for an offer and I didn't get any interviews at any small/mid-size firms (although, I did get some at some larger firms that I couldn't get interviews with at OCI). I think the worst insult was when some cocksucker Cooley grad at a smaller firm sent me a rejection letter. Pretty much no one else outside biglaw is hiring (it doesn't matter if you are #1 at Harvard, if there isn't any need for you at XYZ small firm, you aren't getting a job at XYZ small firm).

As far as transferring, if things are like they were this year at OCI you will certainly strike out at your transfer school (even if that's Michigan). There are a LOT of people at my school that transferred in from a lot better schools then Cooley (obviously with stellar grades) that struck out this fall and took things like externships with judges. You do gain an advantage by transferring (in comparison with staying at the same school) because of OCI, but firms still aren't going to view as top of your transfer school. With that said, it would still be worth it to transfer to a school like Michigan or it's equivalent because in the long run your job prospects will be better (even if they don't include biglaw).


Yeah, I'm in no hurry to graduate. Will respond more on this later.

enigmaingr
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Re: Would midlaw consider a top 2% student at Cooley?

Postby enigmaingr » Mon Feb 15, 2010 2:49 pm

dutchstriker wrote:
CMR wrote:My biggest worry is that a partner from the region's biggest firm recently told me that they had an unofficial policy against hiring Cooley grads. That was a wake up call, and it also put a bit of a chip on my shoulder.

Varnum?


Varnum does have a recent Cooley grad. Cooley does have a lot of grads with solo/small shops and in several county prosecutor positions around Michigan. In Michigan, you don't have to worry about UM grads because they mostly all leave the state for bigger markets; next comes Wayne State. U of D Mercy, MSU, and Cooley are arguably on the same playing field within Michigan. For hope, I suggest that you take a peek at the bios of various judges and at local law firms for a tasting of where people went to school; you might be surprised to see UD Mercy, MSU, and Cooley well represented. I imagine few people go to law school with the goal of becoming a solo practitioner/part-time prosecutor in Lake County, Michigan but it is a job and makes some people content. But it sounds like you aiming a little higher than that so, while you may have a chance, it's going to be an uphill battle coming from Cooley.

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XxSpyKEx
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Re: Would midlaw consider a top 2% student at Cooley?

Postby XxSpyKEx » Mon Feb 15, 2010 6:30 pm

enigmaingr wrote:
dutchstriker wrote:
CMR wrote:My biggest worry is that a partner from the region's biggest firm recently told me that they had an unofficial policy against hiring Cooley grads. That was a wake up call, and it also put a bit of a chip on my shoulder.

Varnum?


Varnum does have a recent Cooley grad. Cooley does have a lot of grads with solo/small shops and in several county prosecutor positions around Michigan. In Michigan, you don't have to worry about UM grads because they mostly all leave the state for bigger markets; next comes Wayne State. U of D Mercy, MSU, and Cooley are arguably on the same playing field within Michigan. For hope, I suggest that you take a peek at the bios of various judges and at local law firms for a tasting of where people went to school; you might be surprised to see UD Mercy, MSU, and Cooley well represented. I imagine few people go to law school with the goal of becoming a solo practitioner/part-time prosecutor in Lake County, Michigan but it is a job and makes some people content. But it sounds like you aiming a little higher than that so, while you may have a chance, it's going to be an uphill battle coming from Cooley.


Keep in mind a lot of those judges and associates at those local law firms might be Cooley grads from before people started getting a bad taste in their mouths when someone else mentioned that they went to Cooley. Also, a good economy is a world of difference from this one. I've heard of bottom of the class Cooley grads finding shittier PI jobs (such as county/city DA or PD), but ITE it's a different ball game.

starstruck393
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Re: Would midlaw consider a top 2% student at Cooley?

Postby starstruck393 » Mon Feb 15, 2010 6:42 pm

XxSpyKEx wrote:
enigmaingr wrote:
dutchstriker wrote:
CMR wrote:My biggest worry is that a partner from the region's biggest firm recently told me that they had an unofficial policy against hiring Cooley grads. That was a wake up call, and it also put a bit of a chip on my shoulder.

Varnum?


Varnum does have a recent Cooley grad. Cooley does have a lot of grads with solo/small shops and in several county prosecutor positions around Michigan. In Michigan, you don't have to worry about UM grads because they mostly all leave the state for bigger markets; next comes Wayne State. U of D Mercy, MSU, and Cooley are arguably on the same playing field within Michigan. For hope, I suggest that you take a peek at the bios of various judges and at local law firms for a tasting of where people went to school; you might be surprised to see UD Mercy, MSU, and Cooley well represented. I imagine few people go to law school with the goal of becoming a solo practitioner/part-time prosecutor in Lake County, Michigan but it is a job and makes some people content. But it sounds like you aiming a little higher than that so, while you may have a chance, it's going to be an uphill battle coming from Cooley.


Keep in mind a lot of those judges and associates at those local law firms might be Cooley grads from before people started getting a bad taste in their mouths when someone else mentioned that they went to Cooley. Also, a good economy is a world of difference from this one. I've heard of bottom of the class Cooley grads finding shittier PI jobs (such as county/city DA or PD), but ITE it's a different ball game.


Yea, the reputation of Cooley in Michigan isn't great, but it isn't quite as bad as one might be led to believe. And Wayne State is only the top dog in Detroit. Start going west - Lansing, Grand Rapids, Kzoo - and I'd say the advantage goes to MSU over Wayne, with Cooley, UDM and formerly Ave distinctly behind.

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dutchstriker
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Re: Would midlaw consider a top 2% student at Cooley?

Postby dutchstriker » Mon Feb 15, 2010 7:52 pm

The woman cutting my hair suggested I should check out Cooley because "that's a pretty good one." So some people in Michigan hold it in high regards.

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Cleareyes
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Re: Would midlaw consider a top 2% student at Cooley?

Postby Cleareyes » Mon Feb 15, 2010 7:55 pm

dutchstriker wrote:The woman cutting my hair suggested I should check out Cooley because "that's a pretty good one." So some people in Michigan hold it in high regards.


All she cares about are rankings!

And to OP...I'm not sure how anyone here can answer your question better than people who have previously been top students at Cooley. Have you talked to your law review editor and other top 3ls to see what their experiences were like?

ToTransferOrNot
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Re: Would midlaw consider a top 2% student at Cooley?

Postby ToTransferOrNot » Mon Feb 15, 2010 7:58 pm

dutchstriker wrote:The woman cutting my hair suggested I should check out Cooley because "that's a pretty good one." So some people in Michigan hold it in high regards.


The woman cutting your hair may very well have been a Cooley grad.

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nealric
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Re: Would midlaw consider a top 2% student at Cooley?

Postby nealric » Mon Feb 15, 2010 10:44 pm

The woman cutting my hair suggested I should check out Cooley because "that's a pretty good one." So some people in Michigan hold it in high regards.


A lot of local schools have the "only law school I've ever heard of besides Harvard" effect going on. A lot of people assume if they have heard of a school it must be good.

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General Tso
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Re: Would midlaw consider a top 2% student at Cooley?

Postby General Tso » Mon Feb 15, 2010 11:13 pm

JSUVA2012 wrote:I'm shaking my head at the "top 2% from any school gets you MidLaw" comment.

When some top 5% people at respected T1s aren't getting ANY BigLaw offers, you can be pretty sure that top 2% at one of the lowest accredited schools in the country is far from a guarantee of MidLaw, or any paid job at all.

Transfer.


just kill yourself already

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RVP11
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Re: Would midlaw consider a top 2% student at Cooley?

Postby RVP11 » Tue Feb 16, 2010 12:11 am

swheat wrote:
JSUVA2012 wrote:I'm shaking my head at the "top 2% from any school gets you MidLaw" comment.

When some top 5% people at respected T1s aren't getting ANY BigLaw offers, you can be pretty sure that top 2% at one of the lowest accredited schools in the country is far from a guarantee of MidLaw, or any paid job at all.

Transfer.


just kill yourself already


Now that's just mean. OP is obviously a bright person. Transferring is a much better choice than suicide.

enigmaingr
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Re: Would midlaw consider a top 2% student at Cooley?

Postby enigmaingr » Tue Feb 16, 2010 2:11 pm

starstruck393 wrote:Yea, the reputation of Cooley in Michigan isn't great, but it isn't quite as bad as one might be led to believe. And Wayne State is only the top dog in Detroit. Start going west - Lansing, Grand Rapids, Kzoo - and I'd say the advantage goes to MSU over Wayne, with Cooley, UDM and formerly Ave distinctly behind.


Along with this, Michigan isn't exactly a destination state for anyone not from here. This is why people graduating from MSU/Cooley/UDM can do relatively well if they stay in Michigan. Would firms here rather hire a U of M grad? Of course! Firms can only hire those who apply and the fact is they (and just about anyone from T50 that isn't from here) mostly don't seek jobs here. Again though, for the OP, Cooley is not the place if you want to get a good legal job in a competitive market.

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XxSpyKEx
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Re: Would midlaw consider a top 2% student at Cooley?

Postby XxSpyKEx » Tue Feb 16, 2010 11:09 pm

ToTransferOrNot wrote:
dutchstriker wrote:The woman cutting my hair suggested I should check out Cooley because "that's a pretty good one." So some people in Michigan hold it in high regards.


The woman cutting your hair may very well have been a Cooley grad.


TITCR.

Just to add to these stories, I recall, after I made the decision to attend the school I went to, one of my parent's friends were over and told me that their kid went to Cooley in a proud manner. I tried not to laugh, and asked them whether he went to school for free, and they told me he paid full price. Then I asked them how much money he was currently making and they told me around $40K /year. That was 2 or 3 years after he graduated and in Chicago (not exactly a cheap place to live), and in obviously in a really good market.

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RVP11
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Re: Would midlaw consider a top 2% student at Cooley?

Postby RVP11 » Wed Feb 17, 2010 11:10 am

XxSpyKEx wrote: I...asked them whether he went to school for free, and they told me he paid full price.

Then I asked them how much money he was currently making...


Your daddy never taught you no manners.

CMR
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Re: Would midlaw consider a top 2% student at Cooley?

Postby CMR » Fri Feb 19, 2010 11:15 pm

enigmaingr wrote:
dutchstriker wrote:
CMR wrote:My biggest worry is that a partner from the region's biggest firm recently told me that they had an unofficial policy against hiring Cooley grads. That was a wake up call, and it also put a bit of a chip on my shoulder.

Varnum?


Varnum does have a recent Cooley grad. Cooley does have a lot of grads with solo/small shops and in several county prosecutor positions around Michigan. In Michigan, you don't have to worry about UM grads because they mostly all leave the state for bigger markets; next comes Wayne State. U of D Mercy, MSU, and Cooley are arguably on the same playing field within Michigan. For hope, I suggest that you take a peek at the bios of various judges and at local law firms for a tasting of where people went to school; you might be surprised to see UD Mercy, MSU, and Cooley well represented. I imagine few people go to law school with the goal of becoming a solo practitioner/part-time prosecutor in Lake County, Michigan but it is a job and makes some people content. But it sounds like you aiming a little higher than that so, while you may have a chance, it's going to be an uphill battle coming from Cooley.


CR, Cooley is actually fairly well represented in the western half of Michigan. What concern me, however, has been echoed elsewhere in this thread; most of the people I've met that began their careers in fairly decent positions graduated in the 80's/90's, before Cooley's reinvention as a multi-campus self-ranking money-making machine.

I'm doing RA work right now, but I hope to respond more substantively to some of these responses later tonight.




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