Law Graduates Face a Tough Job Market - WSJ.com

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Anonymous User
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Re: Law Graduates Face a Tough Job Market - WSJ.com

Postby Anonymous User » Thu May 06, 2010 12:35 pm

I agree that networking can be a very effective way to find a legal job, but something to keep in mind is that what works well in a mid-sized city or small town might not work quite as well in a big city.

Most of the top schools are located in big cities or traditionally feed into big cities. The problem with big cities (like NYC) is that the legal markets there have been severely affected by the economy. Tons of unemployed, experienced lawyers are on the market scrounging for jobs, which doesn't leave a lot of room for someone coming right out of law school. Sure, you can network, but people are lot less friendly and eager to help a young lawyer or someone trying to join the profession. It's dog eat dog, basically and everyone is either trying to be number one or get whatever scraps they can.

Now, there are a lot of students that are at big name, big city schools that are originally from somewhere else, but that "somewhere else" where finding a job by networking might be more feasible, but it is a plane flight away. This is where the students at the "somewhere else" local law school might have a leg up because they have the opportunity to network while in school. Some of these top school students will move back home and take the bar in their home state and start networking after that but they are at a disadvantage compared to the local school student who has been networking all through law school.

But what if you are from another big dog eat dog city? Or if you are from a place with high unemployment and a crumbling economy? If you don't have family resources and connections to draw on, you might be screwed.

Coriolanus
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Re: Law Graduates Face a Tough Job Market - WSJ.com

Postby Coriolanus » Thu May 06, 2010 12:37 pm

It's all rather simple. Nowadays, if you go to LS, make sure you finish in the top 10% of your class.

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Re: Law Graduates Face a Tough Job Market - WSJ.com

Postby Anonymous User » Thu May 06, 2010 12:38 pm

There are AmeriCorps positions for attorneys but they are much less plentiful than you think. They are basically competitive fellowships that get a ton of applicants for a very small number of slots, much like some of the "prestigious" public interest fellowships which are out there.

webbylu87 wrote:I will say though that there are AmeriCorps positions out there which are with legal organizations.

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Matthies
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Re: Law Graduates Face a Tough Job Market - WSJ.com

Postby Matthies » Thu May 06, 2010 12:41 pm

Coriolanus wrote:It's all rather simple. Nowadays, if you go to LS, make sure you finish in the top 10% of your class.


that alone won't work for many. If you go to law school have back up plans (for finding a legal job) aim for top 10%, but in case you don't make it, aim for OCi, but in case you don't make it, plan to massmail, but in case you don't make it, networking, but in case that does not work, intern, in case that does not work ect. Do this from 1L, the time to start saying I should have prsused other avenues in not the summer after you go no offered or 1 month before graduation. Plan for the wrost and hope for the best, rather than hope for the best then try and get yourself out of a hole with no plan before hand.

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Re: Law Graduates Face a Tough Job Market - WSJ.com

Postby D. H2Oman » Thu May 06, 2010 12:42 pm

Coriolanus wrote:It's all rather simple. Nowadays, if you go to LS, make sure you finish in the top 10% of your class.


I'm screwed.

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Re: Law Graduates Face a Tough Job Market - WSJ.com

Postby Anonymous User » Thu May 06, 2010 12:42 pm

By top school, I mean t14. If you want to cut out the 11-14 schools and draw the line at top 10, that's fine. What I just said applies to students at the top 10 schools as well. Many of them are struggling just as much as many students at my school.

of Benito Cereno wrote:"top school" is really often misapplied. if its not top10 its just a law school. if its below 50 its not a law school its just a retard tax. a school filled with 3.4/165 students is in now way a "top" school. i'm guessing you've misapplied the label.

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Re: Law Graduates Face a Tough Job Market - WSJ.com

Postby texas man » Thu May 06, 2010 12:44 pm

The Invisible Man wrote:
texas man wrote:
The Invisible Man wrote:If you're going to law school for a get-rich-quick scheme, you're sorely mistaken and will be disappointed.

If you're going to law school because you're genuinely interested in law or have career-specific goals that require a JD, then you should go anyways.


And if you want to get a job when you graduate (in the legal field) it is a lot harder than it was 3 years ago. Now, the variable of debt at graduation is elevated in importance.



And I say to that, while debt is always an important factor, there is more to being a lawyer than what Hollywood's conventional depiction of lawyers are (intelligent, flashy car, huge salary, hot model girlfriend). Having a JD may not promise you a six-figure salary BUT it earns you the knowledge of the law, a vast amount of opportunities that are not limited to the legal field and respect from just about everybody. I also find it interesting that a legal career is one of the few careers where downward mobility is highly implausibly, meaning you can only go up, especially after a significant amount of time. So, while some may never have that 180K salary, in due time, if you keep working hard, you'll eventually be making enough to live comfortably. Or you may just luck out working for some other job that highly values people with JDs. And as far as debt goes, you'll pay it off.


I was just writing an addendum to your original post that I agree with. I am one who falls into your second category of someone "going to law school because you're genuinely interested in law or have career-specific goals that require a JD".
However, when you say "So, while some may never have that 180K salary, in due time, if you keep working hard, you'll eventually be making enough to live comfortably.", I would just add the word hopefully before eventually.
Also, while I agree with the old saying that "luck favors the skilled", for some it could be overly optimistic to say "And as far as debt goes, you'll pay it off."
After reading this article, and others, one change in perspective that I think is significant is thinking more about debt at graduation -- this should affect prospective law students in there decision of where to go to school -- and the scholarships/grants received become more valuable.

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Dr. Strangelove
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Re: Law Graduates Face a Tough Job Market - WSJ.com

Postby Dr. Strangelove » Thu May 06, 2010 12:45 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Most of the top schools are located in big cities or traditionally feed into big cities. The problem with big cities (like NYC) is that the legal markets there have been severely affected by the economy. Tons of unemployed, experienced lawyers are on the market scrounging for jobs, which doesn't leave a lot of room for someone coming right out of law school. Sure, you can network, but people are lot less friendly and eager to help a young lawyer or someone trying to join the profession. It's dog eat dog, basically and everyone is either trying to be number one or get whatever scraps they can.


Yea- NYC has it especially tough. Good thing I want to go to law school for other reasons besides $$$.
Last edited by Dr. Strangelove on Thu May 06, 2010 1:15 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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The Invisible Man
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Re: Law Graduates Face a Tough Job Market - WSJ.com

Postby The Invisible Man » Thu May 06, 2010 12:54 pm

texas man wrote:
The Invisible Man wrote:
texas man wrote:
The Invisible Man wrote:If you're going to law school for a get-rich-quick scheme, you're sorely mistaken and will be disappointed.

If you're going to law school because you're genuinely interested in law or have career-specific goals that require a JD, then you should go anyways.


And if you want to get a job when you graduate (in the legal field) it is a lot harder than it was 3 years ago. Now, the variable of debt at graduation is elevated in importance.



And I say to that, while debt is always an important factor, there is more to being a lawyer than what Hollywood's conventional depiction of lawyers are (intelligent, flashy car, huge salary, hot model girlfriend). Having a JD may not promise you a six-figure salary BUT it earns you the knowledge of the law, a vast amount of opportunities that are not limited to the legal field and respect from just about everybody. I also find it interesting that a legal career is one of the few careers where downward mobility is highly implausibly, meaning you can only go up, especially after a significant amount of time. So, while some may never have that 180K salary, in due time, if you keep working hard, you'll eventually be making enough to live comfortably. Or you may just luck out working for some other job that highly values people with JDs. And as far as debt goes, you'll pay it off.


I was just writing an addendum to your original post that I agree with. I am one who falls into your second category of someone "going to law school because you're genuinely interested in law or have career-specific goals that require a JD".
However, when you say "So, while some may never have that 180K salary, in due time, if you keep working hard, you'll eventually be making enough to live comfortably.", I would just add the word hopefully before eventually.
Also, while I agree with the old saying that "luck favors the skilled", for some it could be overly optimistic to say "And as far as debt goes, you'll pay it off."
After reading this article, and others, one change in perspective that I think is significant is thinking more about debt at graduation -- this should affect prospective law students in there decision of where to go to school -- and the scholarships/grants received become more valuable.


Personally, I agree with you and I do believe people should seriously consider debt, especially ITE, for everything. Period. But I also believe that the quality of education and the potential of opportunities in and outside of the legal opportunity is still worth more than a 6-figure debt. I'm from a family that values education quite highly so I don't believe that a price tag should ever prevent anyone from the getting the best education possible for him or her.

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Re: Law Graduates Face a Tough Job Market - WSJ.com

Postby webbylu87 » Thu May 06, 2010 12:56 pm

Dr. Strangelove wrote:Good thing I want to go to law school for other reasons besides $$$.


+1 (In my case: IBR, PSLF, and modest Midwestern expectations of a "successful/fulfilled life" FTW.)

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mikehoe
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Re: Law Graduates Face a Tough Job Market - WSJ.com

Postby mikehoe » Thu May 06, 2010 1:09 pm

Thanks for the link, i enjoyed the read. I'm still adamant about going to law school. I will only hope the 2014 graduating class will have a better job market.

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Re: Law Graduates Face a Tough Job Market - WSJ.com

Postby 270910 » Thu May 06, 2010 1:11 pm

Matthies wrote:
Coriolanus wrote:It's all rather simple. Nowadays, if you go to LS, make sure you finish in the top 10% of your class.


that alone won't work for many. If you go to law school have back up plans (for finding a legal job) aim for top 10%, but in case you don't make it, aim for OCi, but in case you don't make it, plan to massmail, but in case you don't make it, networking, but in case that does not work, intern, in case that does not work ect. Do this from 1L, the time to start saying I should have prsused other avenues in not the summer after you go no offered or 1 month before graduation. Plan for the wrost and hope for the best, rather than hope for the best then try and get yourself out of a hole with no plan before hand.


Major +1. People seem to fail to realize that even OCI is hustle-based. Sure, it's easier if you're good school + good grades SECURE, but you'll have more to pick from at the banquet if you couple that with aggressive networking and getting yourself informed about the legal world. Career services here said strikeout's both top and bottom of the class seemed less invested in the process.

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Re: Law Graduates Face a Tough Job Market - WSJ.com

Postby webbylu87 » Thu May 06, 2010 1:25 pm

I can't remember what thread I got this article (http://abovethelaw.com/2010/05/nalp-201 ... eneration/) from but it had an interesting quote from Jim Leipold, NALP Executive Director which is in line with this thread:

The employed-nine-months-after-graduation fiasco led Leipold into a larger discussion about the “lost generation”: students in the class of 2009, 2010, 2011, and maybe even 2012 that have been shut out of or laid off from Biglaw. Leipold didn’t have a lot of hopeful things to say to these people:

"I don’t think Biglaw will ever reabsorb that group of people. Maybe a few individuals, but not statistically… For a large group of people that came of in age in this time … their career paths will look very different [then people who graduated during past boom times]…It’s just their bad luck"

The truth might hurt, but it’s hard to deny what Leipold is saying from a statistical standpoint. There are more people signing up for law school than ever before. Talent keeps flowing into the system. At some point, soon perhaps, it will make more sense for Biglaw to hire fresh talent, talent that hasn’t been scarred by this recession, instead of going back and picking up people who got thrown off the bandwagon during the recession.


There's no doubt in the article that the current market has gone to hell, but by the c/o 2013 Leipold and the author seem to think that some decent recovery will have occurred. Leipold seems to imply that the c/o 2013 may be significantly better off than 2009-2012.

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Re: Law Graduates Face a Tough Job Market - WSJ.com

Postby D. H2Oman » Thu May 06, 2010 1:27 pm

Dr. Strangelove wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Most of the top schools are located in big cities or traditionally feed into big cities. The problem with big cities (like NYC) is that the legal markets there have been severely affected by the economy. Tons of unemployed, experienced lawyers are on the market scrounging for jobs, which doesn't leave a lot of room for someone coming right out of law school. Sure, you can network, but people are lot less friendly and eager to help a young lawyer or someone trying to join the profession. It's dog eat dog, basically and everyone is either trying to be number one or get whatever scraps they can.


Yea- NYC has it especially tough. Good thing I want to go to law school for other reasons besides $$$.


Knowing constitutional law won't do you much good when you live a damn Buick.

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Re: Law Graduates Face a Tough Job Market - WSJ.com

Postby southernboy » Thu May 06, 2010 1:31 pm

whoever listed an "MD" as a way to get rich quick is retarded. Maybe you never considered the fact that MD's have more debt than JD's, plus they have an extra year of medical school, AND they spend at least the first 4 years of work in residency where they will be working 80-100 hour weeks for about 30-40k a year. And when they do finally start making 6-digits when they reach their 30s they can expect a portion of their salary to be flushed down the toilet for malpractice insurance. Oh yeah and then they can START paying off their exorbitant medical school bills. A friend of my family is an ER doctor who is currently living in a trailer home and he has still not paid off his med school bills (he's 45). Why do idiots on this board assume that going to medical school is so much better than Law school?

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Re: Law Graduates Face a Tough Job Market - WSJ.com

Postby Anonymous User » Thu May 06, 2010 1:33 pm

D. H2Oman wrote:
Dr. Strangelove wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Most of the top schools are located in big cities or traditionally feed into big cities. The problem with big cities (like NYC) is that the legal markets there have been severely affected by the economy. Tons of unemployed, experienced lawyers are on the market scrounging for jobs, which doesn't leave a lot of room for someone coming right out of law school. Sure, you can network, but people are lot less friendly and eager to help a young lawyer or someone trying to join the profession. It's dog eat dog, basically and everyone is either trying to be number one or get whatever scraps they can.


Yea- NYC has it especially tough. Good thing I want to go to law school for other reasons besides $$$.


Knowing constitutional law won't do you much good when you live a damn Buick.



Because that's what happens to the unfortunate and awful law students who don't attend T14s, right, Waterman?

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Re: Law Graduates Face a Tough Job Market - WSJ.com

Postby Kobe_Teeth » Thu May 06, 2010 1:33 pm

webbylu87 wrote:
There's no doubt in the article that the current market has gone to hell, but by the c/o 2013 Leipold and the author seem to think that some decent recovery will have occurred. Leipold seems to imply that the c/o 2013 may be significantly better off than 2009-2012.



I wouldn't read that much into it. I'm inclined to think he just doesn't have opinions about anything that far in the future.

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Re: Law Graduates Face a Tough Job Market - WSJ.com

Postby webbylu87 » Thu May 06, 2010 1:36 pm

Kobe_Teeth wrote:
webbylu87 wrote:
There's no doubt in the article that the current market has gone to hell, but by the c/o 2013 Leipold and the author seem to think that some decent recovery will have occurred. Leipold seems to imply that the c/o 2013 may be significantly better off than 2009-2012.



I wouldn't read that much into it. I'm inclined to think he just doesn't have opinions about anything that far in the future.


I'm fully aware that I'm definitely grasping at straws/hoping I won't be totally screwed in 3 years.

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D. H2Oman
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Re: Law Graduates Face a Tough Job Market - WSJ.com

Postby D. H2Oman » Thu May 06, 2010 1:38 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
D. H2Oman wrote:
Dr. Strangelove wrote:
Yea- NYC has it especially tough. Good thing I want to go to law school for other reasons besides $$$.


Knowing constitutional law won't do you much good when you live a damn Buick.



Because that's what happens to the unfortunate and awful law students who don't attend [strike]T14[/strike]T13s, right, Waterman?



Fixed that for you, you anonymous mystery man.

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Re: Law Graduates Face a Tough Job Market - WSJ.com

Postby stintez » Thu May 06, 2010 1:43 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:What the article fails to address is how the dearth of big firm jobs has created a domino effect where all other legal jobs (smaller law firm, federal/state government or non-profit legal jobs) are much more difficult to get. The fact that the economy is down has also made these jobs much less plentiful than ever before, and that is compounding the problem.

It isn't just the lack of high paying jobs at corporate law firms that law graduates are upset about, it's the lack of jobs available that offer a livable salary and health insurance. $80,000 per year doesn't sound too bad at all but those jobs are few and far between. The reality is that finding a stable job with a reputable employer that pays even $40,000-50,000 is very difficult right now, even if you are coming from a good school. Many employers, particularly smaller law firms, have no problem offering new grads very low pay with no health insurance due to the glut of unemployed law graduates on the market.


+1

+1

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Re: Law Graduates Face a Tough Job Market - WSJ.com

Postby Anonymous User » Thu May 06, 2010 1:47 pm

It seems like most people on TLS want to become lawyers just so they can bank those few/elite 150K BIGLAW associate positions. Why go to law school then if the legal market is messed up?

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Re: Law Graduates Face a Tough Job Market - WSJ.com

Postby Anonymous User » Thu May 06, 2010 1:50 pm

Not an Anonymous D-Bag.... just me, Mr. Matlock.... a regular D-Bag. If a mod can change it to me, go for it.



miamiman wrote:
Matthies wrote:Jesus H Christ


Way to be a go getter. Didn't get an summer offer, so you send out 50 WOW unsolicited resumes and when you get no response you give up, move back with your parents and sell music online. WTF. Hi I sent 50 resumes out, no jobs, ist all the economys fault guess that means I should give up now. But if they gave you 3k a week you would all the sudden become the go getter you could be but can't seem to be when you need to do something on your own? :roll:



please. can we stop perpetuating this myth that kids who are getting f*cked have done so on account of their own laziness? I have a close friend, a 2L at CLS, who has spammed maybe 200 law offices after getting no-offered at OCI. She has nothing. It's not like the 101st is that much more effective


So, let's re-cap. You throw the first volley by using of all things.... an anecdotal story. Beautiful and sweet too, because she's your friend. It's nice to have friends.

Matthies replies:

Matthies wrote:Oh, ok then its not her fault at all its the schools, ABA, the economy. Two WORST WAYS to find a legal job: OCI and mass mailing unsolicted resumes.

Hmmmmm.... seems to make sense. No real personal shot at your friend there, and you even reply that maybe she should have looked "outside" the city. But, then you come back with this hammer throw:
miamiman wrote:Yes, you're right: one of two worst ways to find a legal job at CLS is OCI.


you, sir, are officially retarded.

Hurray!!!!!!!! Time for the first ad-hom!!!!! Yea!!!!!!!!!!!! TLS happy fun time. :D

From there, a little back and forth on CLS OCI.... riveting stuff.... you really held your own. Then this version of how the self masturbatory scene played out in your head:

miamiman wrote:Umm....let's recap

1. I post an anecdote about a friend at CLS who struck out/has been otherwise unsuccessful in landing a job despite considerable effort on her part (rebutting your claim that NU 3L's sending out 50 resumes was grossly inadequate).

yea, turns out she kind of did help fuck herself over.

miamiman wrote:2. You counterclaim with, as I understood it, your friend is an idiot to rely upon OCI/mass resume spamming since they are the two worst ways of getting a job.

Yes, as "you" understood it. Back to that whole self-masturbatory scene in your head.

miamiman wrote:3. I reply with empirical data suggestive that CLS places a clear majority of its kids into jobs via OCI.

Maybe a few anecdotal recollections of TLS discussions past.... but hardly empirical
miamiman wrote:4. You deflect by generalizing the discussion again away from my friend and claim you were never referring specifically to my friend.

Um.... originally he wasn't. You brought up your friend after he commented on the guy in the article. And once again, even you admit, your friend may have fucked up.

miamiman wrote::roll: :roll:

Fuck you and your eye rolls. Chicago is lucky to have a real peach like you.
Last edited by Anonymous User on Thu May 06, 2010 2:50 pm, edited 1 time in total.

270910
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Re: Law Graduates Face a Tough Job Market - WSJ.com

Postby 270910 » Thu May 06, 2010 1:53 pm

Uh oh. Shit's about to get real.

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Re: Law Graduates Face a Tough Job Market - WSJ.com

Postby holydonkey » Thu May 06, 2010 1:54 pm

Why is everyone in this forum anon? I'm not sure if there's one guy posting or 8.

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Re: Law Graduates Face a Tough Job Market - WSJ.com

Postby erniesto » Thu May 06, 2010 1:54 pm

Those considering law school might want to reconsider, said Allan Tanenbaum, chairman of an American Bar Association commission studying the impact of the economic crisis on the profession. Students take on average law-school debt of about $100,000 and, given the job market, many "have no foreseeable way to pay that back," he said.


You have to love the mother f*cking ABA.




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