Why is Biglaw the only financially viable option?

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stratocophic
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Re: Why is Biglaw the only financially viable option?

Postby stratocophic » Tue Dec 07, 2010 12:28 am

Desert Fox wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
General Tso wrote:PI work used to be something that mid-level candidates (lower T1, T2) students could get fairly easily. In this economy, those jobs are highly sought after even among T20 students, both those who want the work for ideological reasons and those who struck out at OCI and are looking for a way out of 200k worth of loans. Long story short....today's PI is only slightly less exclusive than big law. Don't forget the effect that dwindling gov't budgets are having on PI jobs as well.

So once you take PI and big law off the table, 75-90% of what is left is either going to be working in small firms or in other sectors. Usually that translates into 40-65k salaries. That kind of salary will not support debt of 130k+. It is not all bad though, I believe both IBR and tax deductions on student loan interest kick in once you are earning less than 70k.


by my calculations 65k salary will pay off a 130k debt in 2 years.


This is why you couldn't get a real job.
For this one, the universe is short on sufficient quantities of both face and palm. We need a mod to de-anonymous that post for the lulz.

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2Serious4Numbers
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Re: Why is Biglaw the only financially viable option?

Postby 2Serious4Numbers » Tue Dec 07, 2010 12:29 am

Desert Fox wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
General Tso wrote:PI work used to be something that mid-level candidates (lower T1, T2) students could get fairly easily. In this economy, those jobs are highly sought after even among T20 students, both those who want the work for ideological reasons and those who struck out at OCI and are looking for a way out of 200k worth of loans. Long story short....today's PI is only slightly less exclusive than big law. Don't forget the effect that dwindling gov't budgets are having on PI jobs as well.

So once you take PI and big law off the table, 75-90% of what is left is either going to be working in small firms or in other sectors. Usually that translates into 40-65k salaries. That kind of salary will not support debt of 130k+. It is not all bad though, I believe both IBR and tax deductions on student loan interest kick in once you are earning less than 70k.


by my calculations 65k salary will pay off a 130k debt in 2 years.


This is why you couldn't get a real job.



Boom goes the dynamite

ToTransferOrNot
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Re: Why is Biglaw the only financially viable option?

Postby ToTransferOrNot » Tue Dec 07, 2010 12:31 am

For the sake of my faith in humanity, I'm goin to go ahead and assume flame on that post.

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General Tso
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Re: Why is Biglaw the only financially viable option?

Postby General Tso » Tue Dec 07, 2010 12:33 am

ToTransferOrNot wrote:For the sake of my faith in humanity, I'm goin to go ahead and assume flame on that post.


same. i hope the mods out them for anon misuse.

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jwaters
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Re: Why is Biglaw the only financially viable option?

Postby jwaters » Tue Dec 07, 2010 1:39 pm

From reading all these posts it seems like most of you are saying that its the high amount of debt that makes biglaw the only option. So for someone who is out at the T14, but has the option of:

1. attending a T25 or better but paying close to sticker
2. attending a decent T1 or T2 but with 75%+ tuition paid for

It would seem like option 2 is the better of the two, because while you have slightly better job prospects at a school like WUSTL, it doesn't make up for the 150k in student loan debt you would accrue. Am I missing something?

2LLLL
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Re: Why is Biglaw the only financially viable option?

Postby 2LLLL » Tue Dec 07, 2010 2:29 pm

From what I've heard, WUSTL in particular has underpunched its weight in recent years

Basically if you're not going to a T14, your school choice needs to be more informed by where you want to practice then USNWR ranking. I think a lot of people make the mistake of going to places like WUSTL or Emory without having a connection (or desire to practice in) St. Louis or Atlanta, and then strike out because these schools don't have great pull nationally.

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Re: Why is Biglaw the only financially viable option?

Postby Aqualibrium » Tue Dec 07, 2010 2:39 pm

jwaters wrote:From reading all these posts it seems like most of you are saying that its the high amount of debt that makes biglaw the only option. So for someone who is out at the T14, but has the option of:

1. attending a T25 or better but paying close to sticker
2. attending a decent T1 or T2 but with 75%+ tuition paid for

It would seem like option 2 is the better of the two, because while you have slightly better job prospects at a school like WUSTL, it doesn't make up for the 150k in student loan debt you would accrue. Am I missing something?


You'd be an idiot to pay sticker at Wash U with 75% to full ride offers on the table at T1's. I don't even think the difference between the schools is in the class rank you need. IMO, it's more in the level of firm you have access to. I'd say that ITE you need to be in the top 25% at Tulane, UGA, BAMA, UNC, Wash U, ND, or GW to have a realistic shot at a job that pays more than 100k. The difference is, at Wash U, ND, GW, you have access to a wider range of firms up in the food chain.

Is having a few v100's at OCI worth that much money to you? I don't think that difference justifies 150k+ in debt. IMO, the only schools worth sticker are the ones that place greater than 50% of their students into jobs that pay 100k+ through OCI.


Basically if you're not going to a T14, your school choice needs to be more informed by where you want to practice than USNWR ranking.


This is correct. 1. Regional preference 2. Money. That is what matters outside the t14.

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Re: Why is Biglaw the only financially viable option?

Postby xyzbca » Tue Dec 07, 2010 2:54 pm

jwaters wrote:From reading all these posts it seems like most of you are saying that its the high amount of debt that makes biglaw the only option. So for someone who is out at the T14, but has the option of:

1. attending a T25 or better but paying close to sticker
2. attending a decent T1 or T2 but with 75%+ tuition paid for

It would seem like option 2 is the better of the two, because while you have slightly better job prospects at a school like WUSTL, it doesn't make up for the 150k in student loan debt you would accrue. Am I missing something?


Factor in the location of the schools and I would agree with your assessment.

Location is important b/c the school you attend will have a big influence on where you get your first job and you may be facing stiff competition from lots of other schools. No sense in going to any school for free if you won't be happy in the market it serves.

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nealric
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Re: Why is Biglaw the only financially viable option?

Postby nealric » Tue Dec 07, 2010 3:49 pm

1. attending a T25 or better but paying close to sticker
2. attending a decent T1 or T2 but with 75%+ tuition paid for


It seems like the T25 types like WUSTL, Emory, GW got hit the hardest by the recession. They were semi-national, so never got in as well with the good-ol boy network in their local markets. But they were also the first schools the big national firms dropped off their OCI lists when they needed to cut class sizes. As a result, they seem to have gone from placing 30-40% in biglaw to placing 5%-10%. By contrast, most of the lower T14 went from placing 50-60% to placing 25%-35%. The local T2's went from placing 5% to placing 1-2%- not nearly as dramatic of a shift in terms of the numbers affected.

I'm just pulling out numbers off the top of my head, but I think they are pretty good ballpark figures. Bottom line: if you can't swing T14 ITE, there may not be that much advantage for attending middling T1 schools over the local schools.

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Re: Why is Biglaw the only financially viable option?

Postby Aqualibrium » Tue Dec 07, 2010 4:00 pm

nealric wrote:
1. attending a T25 or better but paying close to sticker
2. attending a decent T1 or T2 but with 75%+ tuition paid for


It seems like the T25 types like WUSTL, Emory, GW got hit the hardest by the recession. They were semi-national, so never got in as well with the good-ol boy network in their local markets. But they were also the first schools the big national firms dropped off their OCI lists when they needed to cut class sizes. As a result, they seem to have gone from placing 30-40% in biglaw to placing 5%-10%. By contrast, most of the lower T14 went from placing 50-60% to placing 25%-35%. The local T2's went from placing 5% to placing 1-2%- not nearly as dramatic of a shift in terms of the numbers affected.

I'm just pulling out numbers off the top of my head, but I think they are pretty good ballpark figures. Bottom line: if you can't swing T14 ITE, there may not be that much advantage for attending middling T1 schools over the local schools.



I think the numbers you quoted for local t1's t2's are right and wrong (I know you didn't cite them as fact, and I know you actually only addressed t2's). With regards to NLJ250 placement, your numbers are probably right. In the best of times a t1-high t2 school probably only placed about 10-15% of their students in NLJ 250 jobs. These days that number has certainly dropped. From my experience though, that doesn't mean that these schools only have 5% or so chance of their students getting the region equivalent of "market" firm jobs. The NLJ and Vault are deceiving because a large number of hiring firms in places like Atlanta, Birmingham, New Orleans, etc... aren't even on the list.

I don't think going to a school like UNC, Bama, or Tulane means you have only a 5-10% shot at a market paying job. It means you have only a 5-10% shot at an NLJ250 job, even lower at a V100 job. Reality ite is though, you have a good shot at the local region's market paying jobs down to about the top 1/3rd or so. That's at least been the breakdown I've seen at my school this year. That is why it's so important to pick schools outside the t14 based on regional preference.

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nealric
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Re: Why is Biglaw the only financially viable option?

Postby nealric » Tue Dec 07, 2010 5:29 pm

I don't think going to a school like UNC, Bama, or Tulane means you have only a 5-10% shot at a market paying job.


It depends on what you mean by a "market paying job". I understand that biglaw is a nebulous term, but I would define it as a firm that pays 160k market, or a slightly under market branch office of a firm that pays 160k in major markets. I doubt more than a tiny handful of people from Alabama get such jobs. I really wouldn't consider a firm paying 90k in Alabama to be biglaw.

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Re: Why is Biglaw the only financially viable option?

Postby Aqualibrium » Tue Dec 07, 2010 5:32 pm

nealric wrote:
I don't think going to a school like UNC, Bama, or Tulane means you have only a 5-10% shot at a market paying job.


It depends on what you mean by a "market paying job". I understand that biglaw is a nebulous term, but I would define it as a firm that pays 160k market, or a slightly under market branch office of a firm that pays 160k in major markets. I doubt more than a tiny handful of people from Alabama get such jobs. I really wouldn't consider a firm paying 90k in Alabama to be biglaw.


Yeah, I meant that region's equivalent of "market." In Louisiana, Bama, etc there are firms with well over 300 attorneys, but at most they pay in the 100-120k range. I suppose you can't consider that "biglaw," but like you and I both acknowledged, there are probably far less than 5% of the students in a school like that getting the actual biglaw jobs.

You also have to consider that the 90-120k that a firm in these regions pays is generally equivalent to, or far more than the 160k that firms in DC, Chicago, NY, etc pay...It takes something like 70k in New Orleans to match the spending power of 160k in NY. There is definitely a big trade off in QOL though.

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BruceWayne
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Re: Why is Biglaw the only financially viable option?

Postby BruceWayne » Tue Dec 07, 2010 5:46 pm

XxSpyKEx wrote:
BruceWayne wrote: So many of you are from middle class or higher backgrounds and went to top undergrads that you don't realize that a 28-35K a year job is about the BEST one can hope for from an average undergrad if they did not major in engineering and do not know someone. If your choice is to take a job working retail at Macys full time vs. going to Cornell sticker, the latter is usually the better choice.


I'm not sure why so many law students think like this. There are plenty of non-bullshit majors in college (e.g. any of the hard sciences, accounting, etc.). There are even bullshit UG majors that can land you jobs (e.g. physical education --> grade school PE teacher (they make decent money)). I also don't understand why people that picked bullshit majors decide to attend law school afterwards? Why not just pick another bullshit grad school degree like a masters in sociology? ... I guess I just find it odd that law students go from a BS major --> law school (what makes them decide all of a sudden that they need to go to school to do something that will eventually find them a job when they didn't have that common sense when they went to UG?). Anyways... /rant.


LOL so what, you think just because you have a non bullshit major you will get a job straight out of undergrad from an average school? I have friends who are accounting majors with decent GPA's who had to move back home with their parents when they graduated because they couldn't find a job. I know a guy who double majored in Math/Econ and had to move back home once he graduated. If you attend some top school the dichotomy that you described probably does exist, but for people who attend average colleges it's not that simple. There are more people graduating form undergrad that are having to move back home with their parents than ever before. I know of a huge state school whose career service office found out that 70 percent of their BUSINESS major graduates were unemployed at graduation.

TLS needs a reality check. So many of you attended top schools and come from higher end backgrounds that you don't realize that "OMG it's only a 50 percent shot at a 160K a year job from a top 14" sounds like heaven when your other options are to move back home and wait tables if you're lucky (many people don't even have this option). No joke going to law school is a huge opportunity cost if you went to Wharton undergrad and majored in accounting. But for the kid from Average State U with no connections, going to GULC sticker vs. working at JC Penny part time while waiting tables and trying to pay rent to mom and dad (if he's lucky) isn't a hard choice to make.
http://money.cnn.com/2010/10/14/pf/boom ... /index.htm

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/06/2 ... 19181.html

http://moneywatch.bnet.com/retirement-p ... me/351895/
http://www.usatoday.com/news/nation/200 ... kids_x.htm

Notice how the last article has the number moving back at 57 percent back in 2005, but now the number is at 85 percent; in other words the economy has tanked and hurt everyone--not just law graduates (contrary to TLS lore).

Anonymous User wrote:
I'm not sure if you are purposely missing this to be a jackass or what, but to even have option number 1....YOU NEED A JOB THAT YOU CAN SUPPORT YOURSELF OFF OF. These are not being handed out to fresh college graduates at anywhere near the rate that you think they are (unless you're talking about retail, and even there it's rough. It's even harder if you are a minority). So many of you are from middle class or higher backgrounds and went to top undergrads that you don't realize that a 28-35K a year job is about the BEST one can hope for from an average undergrad if they did not major in engineering and do not know someone. If your choice is to take a job working retail at Macys full time vs. going to Cornell sticker, the latter is usually the better choice.




What's wrong with $28-35k straight out of undergrad? That's pretty standard outside of finance or consulting.

I majored in Economics/History and started as a legal assistant at a firm in Virginia making $33k in July, 2007. By the end of the year I had been elevated to a paralegal position and was making $37k. In May, 2008 I moved to a different firm in DC which bumped my salary to $43k. By the time I left for law school in August, 2009, I was at $45k. Add about $1.5k in bonuses over that period. Had I stayed at that job, or leveraged my experience to go to a 3rd firm, I would almost certainly be in a higher position making $50k +.

You start low coming out of undergrad because you have no skills. Once you show that you're a capable and hard working employee you can easily rise quickly. I've seen the same thing from college friends who went into non-legal fields.



Nothing's wrong with it; notice that I said a chance of making that out of undergrad. It's actually not a very good chance for the average recent college graduate. If your options are attending Cornell with a 50 percent chance of making 160K when you graduate (plus you know that if you don't make that you can make 40K or so and have ALL your law debt forgiven, not to mention IBR) vs. a 20 percent chance to make 28-35K WHILE YOU HAVE TO PAY OFF UNDERGRAD LOANS WITH INTEREST (while risking screwing up your credit--and not paying student loans really screws your credit over--because you don't know exactly when/if you will get that 28K job. Not to mention it's going to be pretty damn tough to pay student loans, rent, food etc. off of 28K that may not even consistently come in; a lot of jobs in that range actually pay commission) and possibly move back home with mom and dad, Cornell sticker starts looking pretty damn good really quickly.

And I sure as hell wouldn't count on "rising quickly" because you're showing your employer that you're "capable". Your average employer is hurting right now; he doesn't give a damn how "hard" you're working--that's irrelevant to whether or not he's capable of giving you a raise. One of the worst things you can do when going into a job is to expect to get a raise; the only thing you expect to get is about 20 percent less than what they quoted you when you were hired (see:taxes). Going into a job expecting to "work hard" and get a raise is akin to going into law school and expecting to "work hard" and end up on law review. It's funny how TLS only uses it's logic under certain circumstances.

What's with this TLS obsession with being pessimistic with the legal field, but then being naive and absolutely rosy about every other field? It doesn't make any sense.

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XxSpyKEx
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Re: Why is Biglaw the only financially viable option?

Postby XxSpyKEx » Tue Dec 07, 2010 11:03 pm

BruceWayne wrote:
XxSpyKEx wrote:
BruceWayne wrote: So many of you are from middle class or higher backgrounds and went to top undergrads that you don't realize that a 28-35K a year job is about the BEST one can hope for from an average undergrad if they did not major in engineering and do not know someone. If your choice is to take a job working retail at Macys full time vs. going to Cornell sticker, the latter is usually the better choice.


I'm not sure why so many law students think like this. There are plenty of non-bullshit majors in college (e.g. any of the hard sciences, accounting, etc.). There are even bullshit UG majors that can land you jobs (e.g. physical education --> grade school PE teacher (they make decent money)). I also don't understand why people that picked bullshit majors decide to attend law school afterwards? Why not just pick another bullshit grad school degree like a masters in sociology? ... I guess I just find it odd that law students go from a BS major --> law school (what makes them decide all of a sudden that they need to go to school to do something that will eventually find them a job when they didn't have that common sense when they went to UG?). Anyways... /rant.


LOL so what, you think just because you have a non bullshit major you will get a job straight out of undergrad from an average school? I have friends who are accounting majors with decent GPA's who had to move back home with their parents when they graduated because they couldn't find a job. I know a guy who double majored in Math/Econ and had to move back home once he graduated. If you attend some top school the dichotomy that you described probably does exist, but for people who attend average colleges it's not that simple. There are more people graduating form undergrad that are having to move back home with their parents than ever before. I know of a huge state school whose career service office found out that 70 percent of their BUSINESS major graduates were unemployed at graduation.


The economy has been hard on everyone. I graduated from a smaller public UG back in 2006 and every single accounting and finance major in my class had a job by graduation. I actually never even did much to look for post-graduation employment (because I knew I wanted to go to law school), but I did post my resume on the school’s career services board and that got me a good number of phone calls about jobs.

Also, I’m not sure that you proved your point that at best the average UG major, that is not engineering, can hope for is working at Macys or attend Cornell Law. The economy was equally rough on engineers (do you really think that engineers are in high demand when production of everything has come to a screeching halt as a result of people not buying anything?). I actually know for a fact that there are a number of engineering majors that can’t find jobs right

But I’m not completely sure the fact that the economy has been rough and people with real degrees can’t find jobs right now justifies spending $200K on law school, especially if you were one of those people that got a real non-BS degree. The US economy isn’t going to continue plummet forever or remain like it is right now. When things do pick back up, people that have real degrees will be able to find jobs (e.g. the typical hard science major, engineering major, etc will be able to find a job in the field they went to school for eventually). The same doesn’t hold true for liberal arts degree holders (i.e. they never had very good job opportunities, even in a good economy).

I guess it’s worth noting that people that are attending top law schools will also most likely be able to find jobs after the economy turns around (even though they can’t find jobs now). But the real difference there is that you pay $200k+ for that law degree. That’s tough to justify taking just some job that pays $45k /year with a couple years after graduation. The same isn’t true for UG degrees since UG doesn’t leave most people with very much debt, and $45k /year is a decent chunk of change for someone out of college with no prior work experience and no real debt.

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Re: Why is Biglaw the only financially viable option?

Postby guimoman » Wed Dec 08, 2010 12:55 am

Pshh, Any undergrads reading this needs to change their major to either Finance or Economics and then get a job in the banking sector. My gf has been out of school 2.5 years and is making a 6 figure salary not counting her bonus. She's been promoted 4 times since she started working and was offered a position as a trader for an assshitton of money but turned it down because she would have to spend her life snorting cocaine in order to function. But clearly a BS in Finance or Economics is an excellent degree. SO go do that.

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vanwinkle
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Re: Why is Biglaw the only financially viable option?

Postby vanwinkle » Wed Dec 08, 2010 12:57 am

thegor1987 wrote:by my calculations 65k salary will pay off a 130k debt in 2 years.

See, sometimes wishes do come true.

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General Tso
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Re: Why is Biglaw the only financially viable option?

Postby General Tso » Wed Dec 08, 2010 2:26 am

vanwinkle wrote:
thegor1987 wrote:by my calculations 65k salary will pay off a 130k debt in 2 years.

See, sometimes wishes do come true.


it's a Festivus miracle!

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AreJay711
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Re: Why is Biglaw the only financially viable option?

Postby AreJay711 » Wed Dec 08, 2010 2:33 am

On topic:

I actually had the managing partner for a medium sized firm (90 lawyers) come in to talk to my undergrad today. His firm pays 105K starting but he said ITE they aren't hiring people straight out of law school because they don't need to. Also said they almost strictly hire from the local tier 3 and tier 2 schools (and Harvard for some reason) because they don't want their associates to cut and run for NY or DC first chance they get. So idk if midlaw really is out there for most people.

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Re: Why is Biglaw the only financially viable option?

Postby keg411 » Wed Dec 08, 2010 8:54 am

Nothing's wrong with it; notice that I said a chance of making that out of undergrad. It's actually not a very good chance for the average recent college graduate. If your options are attending Cornell with a 50 percent chance of making 160K when you graduate (plus you know that if you don't make that you can make 40K or so and have ALL your law debt forgiven, not to mention IBR) vs. a 20 percent chance to make 28-35K WHILE YOU HAVE TO PAY OFF UNDERGRAD LOANS WITH INTEREST (while risking screwing up your credit--and not paying student loans really screws your credit over--because you don't know exactly when/if you will get that 28K job. Not to mention it's going to be pretty damn tough to pay student loans, rent, food etc. off of 28K that may not even consistently come in; a lot of jobs in that range actually pay commission) and possibly move back home with mom and dad, Cornell sticker starts looking pretty damn good really quickly.


I've been there. Working a non-prestigious low-paying job isn't the worst thing in the world. This is a good illustration of why people are jumping into law school without knowing what they are getting into -- to avoid going out into the "real world".

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Re: Why is Biglaw the only financially viable option?

Postby dihydrogenmonoxide » Wed Dec 08, 2010 8:20 pm

Aqualibrium wrote:IMO, the only schools worth sticker are the ones that place greater than 50% of their students into jobs that pay 100k+ through OCI.


What would you (and everyone) recommend as the best way to figure out what % of a given class at a given school gets those sorts of jobs?

Would be so much more helpful than mean/median salary data!

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Lawlcat
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Re: Why is Biglaw the only financially viable option?

Postby Lawlcat » Wed Dec 08, 2010 8:38 pm

dihydrogenmonoxide wrote:
Aqualibrium wrote:IMO, the only schools worth sticker are the ones that place greater than 50% of their students into jobs that pay 100k+ through OCI.


What would you (and everyone) recommend as the best way to figure out what % of a given class at a given school gets those sorts of jobs?

Would be so much more helpful than mean/median salary data!


oh hai

http://www.law.com/jsp/nlj/PubArticleNL ... hbxlogin=1

This is one reasonable-seeming definition of BigLaw, as I understand it: the NLJ 250. (I suppose some might find it over-inclusive?)

Of course, there ARE jobs outside of BigLaw worth taking ... at places like HYS, the share of students doing fancy clerkships/DoJ stuff or whatever is significant.

I would repeat something from another thread that I think bears consideration: 50% get BigLaw does not mean that above median gets BigLaw. BigLaw recruitment factors vary but are somewhat more complex in most cases.

dihydrogenmonoxide
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Re: Why is Biglaw the only financially viable option?

Postby dihydrogenmonoxide » Thu Dec 09, 2010 12:30 am

Lawlcat wrote:
dihydrogenmonoxide wrote:
Aqualibrium wrote:IMO, the only schools worth sticker are the ones that place greater than 50% of their students into jobs that pay 100k+ through OCI.


What would you (and everyone) recommend as the best way to figure out what % of a given class at a given school gets those sorts of jobs?

Would be so much more helpful than mean/median salary data!


oh hai

http://www.law.com/jsp/nlj/PubArticleNL ... hbxlogin=1

This is one reasonable-seeming definition of BigLaw, as I understand it: the NLJ 250. (I suppose some might find it over-inclusive?)

Of course, there ARE jobs outside of BigLaw worth taking ... at places like HYS, the share of students doing fancy clerkships/DoJ stuff or whatever is significant.

I would repeat something from another thread that I think bears consideration: 50% get BigLaw does not mean that above median gets BigLaw. BigLaw recruitment factors vary but are somewhat more complex in most cases.


Thanks! Is there similar information available with regard to which students get fancy clerkships? I ask because clerkship data would be helpful in explaining anomalies like that Northwestern > Yale for Biglaw on that chart. While a case like that is obvious, its not so obvious in cases like USC vs UCLA.

I really appreciate all the discussion from everyone. I feel better with the responses in this subforum than in places where most of the advice givers have as much law school experience as I do...

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Re: Why is Biglaw the only financially viable option?

Postby 20160810 » Thu Dec 09, 2010 7:25 pm

nealric wrote:
1. attending a T25 or better but paying close to sticker
2. attending a decent T1 or T2 but with 75%+ tuition paid for


It seems like the T25 types like WUSTL, Emory, GW got hit the hardest by the recession. They were semi-national, so never got in as well with the good-ol boy network in their local markets. But they were also the first schools the big national firms dropped off their OCI lists when they needed to cut class sizes. As a result, they seem to have gone from placing 30-40% in biglaw to placing 5%-10%. By contrast, most of the lower T14 went from placing 50-60% to placing 25%-35%. The local T2's went from placing 5% to placing 1-2%- not nearly as dramatic of a shift in terms of the numbers affected.

I'm just pulling out numbers off the top of my head, but I think they are pretty good ballpark figures. Bottom line: if you can't swing T14 ITE, there may not be that much advantage for attending middling T1 schools over the local schools.

IDK. I attend a middling T1 school, and it seems like anyone in the top-25% or so had a shot at a firm job. That's not to say everyone with those grades got one, but you definitely didn't need to be top-10% to land a firm job through OCI. By contrast, I'd be incredibly surprised if more than 5% of kids from the local T2 (in my case Santa Clara) has a shot at those jobs. The difference between 5% and 25%, all things being equal, is pretty substantial even if 25% ain't great.

sperry
Posts: 137
Joined: Tue Oct 02, 2007 8:52 pm

Re: Why is Biglaw the only financially viable option?

Postby sperry » Thu Dec 09, 2010 11:43 pm

SBL wrote:
nealric wrote:
1. attending a T25 or better but paying close to sticker
2. attending a decent T1 or T2 but with 75%+ tuition paid for


It seems like the T25 types like WUSTL, Emory, GW got hit the hardest by the recession. They were semi-national, so never got in as well with the good-ol boy network in their local markets. But they were also the first schools the big national firms dropped off their OCI lists when they needed to cut class sizes. As a result, they seem to have gone from placing 30-40% in biglaw to placing 5%-10%. By contrast, most of the lower T14 went from placing 50-60% to placing 25%-35%. The local T2's went from placing 5% to placing 1-2%- not nearly as dramatic of a shift in terms of the numbers affected.

I'm just pulling out numbers off the top of my head, but I think they are pretty good ballpark figures. Bottom line: if you can't swing T14 ITE, there may not be that much advantage for attending middling T1 schools over the local schools.

IDK. I attend a middling T1 school, and it seems like anyone in the top-25% or so had a shot at a firm job. That's not to say everyone with those grades got one, but you definitely didn't need to be top-10% to land a firm job through OCI. By contrast, I'd be incredibly surprised if more than 5% of kids from the local T2 (in my case Santa Clara) has a shot at those jobs. The difference between 5% and 25%, all things being equal, is pretty substantial even if 25% ain't great.



It depends on the quality of student at each school though. At my state's best law school, which is not a particularly great law school, the top 10% has a reasonable shot at very good jobs that pay $100k, while top 2-3% has a chance at national big law. By contrast, the 50-60% of my current school will land big law, but it is much easier to land in that top 10% than it is to land in the top 50% at my school, and it's easy to see why. Way less than 10% of people at my state's school would have had any shot at all to get into the school I'm at now. Pretty much anyone at my current school would be on full ride at the state school.

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RVP11
Posts: 2774
Joined: Tue Nov 06, 2007 6:32 pm

Re: Why is Biglaw the only financially viable option?

Postby RVP11 » Fri Dec 10, 2010 1:00 am

sperry wrote:but it is much easier to land in that top 10% than it is to land in the top 50% at my school, and it's easy to see why. Way less than 10% of people at my state's school would have had any shot at all to get into the school I'm at now.


How do you know this?




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