bottom quarter at uc davis...surprised and confused.needhelp

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Anonymous User
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bottom quarter at uc davis...surprised and confused.needhelp

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Jul 09, 2011 8:22 pm

Finished my first year at davis and ended up in the bottom quarter(near the 25th percentile though). I cant quite understand how I got the grades I did. My GPA is well below a 3.0 and at this point I'm just looking for any job that pays...I'm fortunate enough to have no debt or loans coming out.

I went to a top undergrad school with a good LSDAS GPA(i know this doesnt matter) and I have a job now at a small firm for the summer and have a job with the DA this fall(both unpaid).

I need advice regarding the job situation...should I do OCI? I know law firms are out, but could government or public interest be an option or would those be out too? What is resume collection? Any advice on what the best route for me would be is greatly appreciated.

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Lawquacious
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Re: bottom quarter at uc davis...surprised and confused.needhelp

Postby Lawquacious » Sat Jul 09, 2011 8:27 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Finished my first year at davis and ended up in the bottom quarter(near the 25th percentile though). I cant quite understand how I got the grades I did. My GPA is well below a 3.0 and at this point I'm just looking for any job that pays...I'm fortunate enough to have no debt or loans coming out.

I went to a top undergrad school with a good LSDAS GPA(i know this doesnt matter) and I have a job now at a small firm for the summer and have a job with the DA this fall(both unpaid).

I need advice regarding the job situation...should I do OCI? I know law firms are out, but could government or public interest be an option or would those be out too? What is resume collection? Any advice on what the best route for me would be is greatly appreciated.



I imagine networking could be key for you, and also working closely with your Career Services Office. I don't know that you'll be able to get anything paying for 2L summer (maybe something for $10/hr, but I could be wrong in that you may not be able to get even that, or you may do better), but I'm also not really of the drop-out crowd (though it sounds like you are on full scholly, so most people who would usually recommend that probably won't anyway).

From what I've heard it is always worth doing OCI, though probably targeting public interest jobs (including volunteer) will be key. I think if you have substantial WE it could help you considerably with this situation. All this is just my speculation though.

Black-Blue
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Re: bottom quarter at uc davis...surprised and confused.needhelp

Postby Black-Blue » Sat Jul 09, 2011 8:37 pm

At T30-T50 schools, there are only top 15% people, and non-top 15% people. So my suggestion is to forget about the grade woes and find a "non-OCI" job out there.

By "non-OCI", you should still do OCI, because OCI typically includes local small firms and local courts. I wouldn't bother applying to anything else on OCI unless you have a hook, though.

Anonymous User
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Re: bottom quarter at uc davis...surprised and confused.needhelp

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Jul 09, 2011 8:40 pm

Black-Blue wrote:At T30-T50 schools, there are only top 15% people, and non-top 15% people. So my suggestion is to forget about the grade woes and find a "non-OCI" job out there.

By "non-OCI", you should still do OCI, because OCI typically includes local small firms and local courts. I wouldn't bother applying to anything else on OCI unless you have a hook, though.


so ur saying at T30-T50...median and bottom quarter has little difference? I guess I will have to focus more on getting more/better work experience and connections

yo!
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Re: bottom quarter at uc davis...surprised and confused.needhelp

Postby yo! » Sat Jul 09, 2011 8:46 pm

I'm sorry this happened. There are plenty of extremely smart people who ended up near the bottom for whatever reason. Do OCI for the interview practice, and start networking your ass off. Offer your services for free and hope that it leads to something worthwhile. From my understanding of the hiring process, firm work and top govt jobs require good grades. Beyond that, most employers won't even ask what your grades are. Since you won't have any debt, I see no reason to drop out. You'll just have to work extremely hard to find your first job. Good luck.

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prezidentv8
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Re: bottom quarter at uc davis...surprised and confused.needhelp

Postby prezidentv8 » Sat Jul 09, 2011 8:47 pm

Anonymous User wrote:more/better work experience and connections


TIProbablyTCR

Danteshek
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Re: bottom quarter at uc davis...surprised and confused.needhelp

Postby Danteshek » Sat Jul 09, 2011 8:51 pm

You need to find a niche and network. You need to know what you want. No more diddling.

de5igual
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Re: bottom quarter at uc davis...surprised and confused.needhelp

Postby de5igual » Sat Jul 09, 2011 8:56 pm

how difficult is it to get work at a state agency? i know debt isn't an issue for OP, but i've been told before that for those that miss the prestige train during OCI, working for a state agency (esp for a large state like CA) is probably the best path for your career since it gives you an opportunity to specialize in an area of admin law, which would be a lot more marketable later on than working in shitlaw. it would also qualify for ibr (but of course this factor won't be relevant to the op).

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ndirish2010
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Re: bottom quarter at uc davis...surprised and confused.needhelp

Postby ndirish2010 » Sat Jul 09, 2011 8:58 pm

I might consider dropping out. However, you should be able to find SOME job if you realize now you won't get something through OCI.

Danteshek
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Re: bottom quarter at uc davis...surprised and confused.needhelp

Postby Danteshek » Sat Jul 09, 2011 9:01 pm

f0bolous wrote:how difficult is it to get work at a state agency? i know debt isn't an issue for OP, but i've been told before that for those that miss the prestige train during OCI, working for a state agency (esp for a large state like CA) is probably the best path for your career since it gives you an opportunity to specialize in an area of admin law, which would be a lot more marketable later on than working in shitlaw. it would also qualify for ibr (but of course this factor won't be relevant to the op).


IBR is available to everyone. I think you mean PSLF.

http://www.ibrinfo.org/

Black-Blue
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Re: bottom quarter at uc davis...surprised and confused.needhelp

Postby Black-Blue » Sat Jul 09, 2011 10:35 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Black-Blue wrote:At T30-T50 schools, there are only top 15% people, and non-top 15% people. So my suggestion is to forget about the grade woes and find a "non-OCI" job out there.

By "non-OCI", you should still do OCI, because OCI typically includes local small firms and local courts. I wouldn't bother applying to anything else on OCI unless you have a hook, though.


so ur saying at T30-T50...median and bottom quarter has little difference? I guess I will have to focus more on getting more/better work experience and connections

Oh, I'd forgotten that Davis is now T30. Somehow, I'd thought that its rank is about the same as Hastings. Anyways, in general, outside of OCI, grades do not matter as much. It still matters, but not as much, but Its hard to quantify.

schooner
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Re: bottom quarter at uc davis...surprised and confused.needhelp

Postby schooner » Sat Jul 09, 2011 10:44 pm

What can you do to figure out why you got the grades you did? Did you go over your exams with your professors? Did you do LEEWS/GTM/the how-to guides here, etc? If you don't change whatever's not working, the next two years of your life won't be good for your morale or motivation.

Anonymous User wrote:Finished my first year at davis and ended up in the bottom quarter(near the 25th percentile though). I cant quite understand how I got the grades I did. My GPA is well below a 3.0 and at this point I'm just looking for any job that pays...I'm fortunate enough to have no debt or loans coming out.

I went to a top undergrad school with a good LSDAS GPA(i know this doesnt matter) and I have a job now at a small firm for the summer and have a job with the DA this fall(both unpaid).

I need advice regarding the job situation...should I do OCI? I know law firms are out, but could government or public interest be an option or would those be out too? What is resume collection? Any advice on what the best route for me would be is greatly appreciated.

Anonymous User
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Re: bottom quarter at uc davis...surprised and confused.needhelp

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Jul 11, 2011 3:48 am

OP here...

so dropping out wouldnt make sense if I of course wanna be a lawyer and have no debt coming out...But I still wanna make at least 40-60k coming out my first year doing private practice or even some government job.

CanadianWolf
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Re: bottom quarter at uc davis...surprised and confused.needhelp

Postby CanadianWolf » Mon Jul 11, 2011 10:26 am

Any correlation between your first year performance in law school & your LSAT score relative to your class ? Thanks, in advance.

Sorry, but I cannot help regarding your employment situation.

P.S. I ask about your LSAT score relative to your classmates for the obvious as well as due to your claim that you were surprised about your class rank in light of your LSDAS GPA which suggests, by ommission, that it was not surprising relative to your LSAT.
Last edited by CanadianWolf on Mon Jul 11, 2011 11:16 am, edited 1 time in total.

schooner
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Re: bottom quarter at uc davis...surprised and confused.needhelp

Postby schooner » Mon Jul 11, 2011 10:54 am

Anonymous User wrote:OP here...

so dropping out wouldnt make sense if I of course wanna be a lawyer and have no debt coming out...But I still wanna make at least 40-60k coming out my first year doing private practice or even some government job.


For private practice, you will probably have to network like crazy, call in family favors, etc. For govt jobs, you should look at state, county, and municipal jobs too, not just federal jobs, even if they don't necessarily have much to do with practicing law. You'll be hard-pressed to find a good job there because most smaller govts are contracting, unless you'd be open to relocating to Utah, South Dakota, or another state that is doing OK in this economy. (Not sure you'd have a lot of success with that strategy, though, since you'd be competing against grads of local law schools.) Pray the economy recovers by the time you graduate.

Rule11
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Re: bottom quarter at uc davis...surprised and confused.needhelp

Postby Rule11 » Mon Jul 11, 2011 11:17 am

Drop out. You have to spend two more years there. That is a very significant opportunity cost. Being a lawyer is just a job. You are very fortunate not to have debt--that should help you avoid the sunk-costs fallacy. Just make the best decision going forward: you now know that you're bad at law school (even though I'm certain that you excel at many things), so the next two years will buy you a degree in a field for which you've demonstrated no aptitude. Unfortunately, almost all legal employers are obsessed with your grades, even several years into your career (do not believe the 1L myths to the contrary).

Yes, you might get a great job by networking. Yes, you might find that your true passion is doc review (seriously--I know a guy like this). But those are long odds--the Nile river long (pun emphatically intended).

Please, drop out.

schooner
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Re: bottom quarter at uc davis...surprised and confused.needhelp

Postby schooner » Mon Jul 11, 2011 11:28 am

Rule11 wrote:Drop out. You have to spend two more years there. That is a very significant opportunity cost. Being a lawyer is just a job. You are very fortunate not to have debt--that should help you avoid the sunk-costs fallacy. Just make the best decision going forward: you now know that you're bad at law school (even though I'm certain that you excel at many things), so the next two years will buy you a degree in a field for which you've demonstrated no aptitude. Unfortunately, almost all legal employers are obsessed with your grades, even several years into your career (do not believe the 1L myths to the contrary).

Yes, you might get a great job by networking. Yes, you might find that your true passion is doc review (seriously--I know a guy like this). But those are long odds--the Nile river long (pun emphatically intended).

Please, drop out.


OP, in two years, you will graduate with no debt and an advanced degree in an economy that will probably be better than it is today. Having a JD as an advanced degree -- having any advanced degree -- will open more doors than you might think.

If you drop out now, you will be searching for a job in a shitty economy with just a bachelor's degree (probably in a liberal arts field) and either a huge time gap or a "I flunked out of law school" mark on your resume.

You will definitely need to lower your expectations about your job prospects after graduation. There might not be a legal job in your near future. But if you drop out now, you definitely won't be able to EVER get a legal job.

softspoken
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Re: bottom quarter at uc davis...surprised and confused.needhelp

Postby softspoken » Mon Jul 11, 2011 12:07 pm

what was OP's lsat score?

09042014
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Re: bottom quarter at uc davis...surprised and confused.needhelp

Postby 09042014 » Mon Jul 11, 2011 12:16 pm

softspoken wrote:what was OP's lsat score?


That doesn't matter in the least.

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sunynp
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Re: bottom quarter at uc davis...surprised and confused.needhelp

Postby sunynp » Mon Jul 11, 2011 12:22 pm

OP you need to find an area of practice that you can work in and get experience. Do clinics in whatever area suits you the most. Become friends with practitioners who work with the clinics and tell them your situation. Get to know everyone who works in that area. I would even go to bar association events in that area and network. Not everyone will ding you for your grades.

Do not drop out now if you will have no six-figure debt to repay. After your first job, your grades are meaningless. You can still have a great career.

merc280
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Re: bottom quarter at uc davis...surprised and confused.needhelp

Postby merc280 » Mon Jul 11, 2011 12:25 pm

I'm kind of curious if he did any prep before 1L, and what he thinks might have caused the low grades.

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gwuorbust
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Re: bottom quarter at uc davis...surprised and confused.needhelp

Postby gwuorbust » Mon Jul 11, 2011 12:30 pm

OP, contrary to much of the echo-chamber TLS talk there are jobs out there that you could get. Will the jobs come to you like biglaw at OCI? hell no. But just because a lot of law students don't find jobs doesn't mean that there aren't jobs to be found, it just means that some % didn't find the jobs that are available. And before jumping down my throat, anyone who gives up looking for a legal job before sending out 5,000+ applications hasn't tried hard enough. what is the cost of an email? nothing.

if you were taking on a lot of debt I would say drop out cause you may very likely be in that % that isn't as good at jobs. but since you aren't risking huge debt loads there is little downside to continuing.

softspoken wrote:what was OP's lsat score?


totally irrelevant.

CanadianWolf
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Re: bottom quarter at uc davis...surprised and confused.needhelp

Postby CanadianWolf » Mon Jul 11, 2011 12:32 pm

Correlation between one's LSAT score in relation to first year performance in law school is important & almost the entire law school industry relies on it. Although not relevant to the OP's job search, it is information that may be of interest to many on this website---especially when OP raises a correlation between his LSDAS GPA & first year performance.
Last edited by CanadianWolf on Mon Jul 11, 2011 12:34 pm, edited 1 time in total.

09042014
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Re: bottom quarter at uc davis...surprised and confused.needhelp

Postby 09042014 » Mon Jul 11, 2011 12:33 pm

CanadianWolf wrote:Correlation between one's LSAT score in relation to first year performance in law school is important & almost the entire law school industry relies on it. Although not relevant to the OP's job search, it is information that should be of interest to many on this website.


1) Anecdote is totally fucking useless.
2) There are published reports on the correlation. Those are much more accurate.
3) He's asking questions, not taking them.

CanadianWolf
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Re: bottom quarter at uc davis...surprised and confused.needhelp

Postby CanadianWolf » Mon Jul 11, 2011 12:35 pm

Sorry. OP is free to disregard request for more info. Good luck !




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