Earning degrees after law school

(On Campus Interviews, Summer Associate positions, Firm Reviews, Tips, ...)
Forum rules
Anonymous Posting

Anonymous posting is only appropriate when you are revealing sensitive employment related information about a firm, job, etc. You may anonymously respond on topic to these threads. Unacceptable uses include: harassing another user, joking around, testing the feature, or other things that are more appropriate in the lounge.

Failure to follow these rules will get you outed, warned, or banned.
Anonymous User
Posts: 273139
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Earning degrees after law school

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Nov 03, 2011 11:14 am

Suppose that someone graduated from a T10 with above median grades, but is unable to find a biglaw position or clerkship. If he immediately enrolled in a prestigious doctoral level science/engineering program and came out with a degree, might he get a second shot at an IP firm gig? I've looked at dozens of bios of biglaw IP people, and it looks like all of them earned the law degree last.

I'm really running out of ideas here.

User avatar
chem
Posts: 867
Joined: Thu Mar 03, 2011 8:14 pm

Re: Earning degrees after law school

Postby chem » Thu Nov 03, 2011 11:21 am

What science/engineering?

turbotong
Posts: 181
Joined: Thu Oct 28, 2010 12:53 am

Re: Earning degrees after law school

Postby turbotong » Thu Nov 03, 2011 12:50 pm

What was your undergraduate background?

Anonymous User
Posts: 273139
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Earning degrees after law school

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Nov 03, 2011 12:58 pm

Unless you have a kick-ass undergraduate background, lots of research, and can spin a great story for why you're going back to research after getting a J.D., you are going to find it very difficult to get into a good science/engineering PhD program. Having worked with a lot of science profs at a strong research universities over the years . . . I think the J.D. thing might be a deal breaker as it is. (they don't want someone older who has spent the past 3 years doing something totally unrelated . . . and you are probably going to have a hard time getting good recs which is everything for grad school, unless you are still very close to undergrad people that you researched with)

Getting a Ph.D for the sole purpose of going into patent law just seems ridiculous to me. If you have a strong enough background to be considering this option, you should look into consulting. Consulting is hiring like crazy right now at all levels, and they love analytical people with sci/tech backgrounds from good universities.

User avatar
sky7
Posts: 248
Joined: Tue Dec 04, 2007 2:44 pm

Re: Earning degrees after law school

Postby sky7 » Thu Nov 03, 2011 12:59 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Suppose that someone graduated from a T10 with above median grades, but is unable to find a biglaw position or clerkship. If he immediately enrolled in a prestigious doctoral level science/engineering program and came out with a degree, might he get a second shot at an IP firm gig? I've looked at dozens of bios of biglaw IP people, and it looks like all of them earned the law degree last.

I'm really running out of ideas here.


Have you already passed the patent bar?

Anonymous User
Posts: 273139
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Earning degrees after law school

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Nov 03, 2011 9:46 pm

if you earn a Ph.D, you are golden.

Emu Flu
Posts: 42
Joined: Fri Jul 16, 2010 10:21 pm

Re: Earning degrees after law school

Postby Emu Flu » Thu Nov 03, 2011 11:00 pm

I've heard of and seen profiles of people who earned a BSEE following law school and now work in patent prosecution boutiques. Some of them were former patent litigators without technical credentials.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273139
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Earning degrees after law school

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Nov 03, 2011 11:06 pm

Emu Flu wrote:I've heard of and seen profiles of people who earned a BSEE following law school and now work in patent prosecution boutiques. Some of them were former patent litigators without technical credentials.


That's the sort of thing I was looking for on firm bios.

I could currently take one undergrad course in my spare time and then sit for the patent bar, but it's my impression that patent places don't want people so absolutely minimally qualified. On the other hand, I could have a BS in about a year and a half, followed by a PhD in whatever timeline that took. I could also cut out the BS entirely and pick up some god-awful Caribbean medical degree, but the patent bar doesn't even count an MD as a science degree.

Emu Flu
Posts: 42
Joined: Fri Jul 16, 2010 10:21 pm

Re: Earning degrees after law school

Postby Emu Flu » Thu Nov 03, 2011 11:18 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Emu Flu wrote:I've heard of and seen profiles of people who earned a BSEE following law school and now work in patent prosecution boutiques. Some of them were former patent litigators without technical credentials.


That's the sort of thing I was looking for on firm bios.

I could currently take one undergrad course in my spare time and then sit for the patent bar, but it's my impression that patent places don't want people so absolutely minimally qualified. On the other hand, I could have a BS in about a year and a half, followed by a PhD in whatever timeline that took. I could also cut out the BS entirely and pick up some god-awful Caribbean medical degree, but the patent bar doesn't even count an MD as a science degree.


It's not extremely common, but it happens. I imagine it's difficult to do at Big Law firms or for litigation positions. It's done at patent prosecution boutiques where they primarily draft patent applications and respond to actions from the USPTO. Big Law firms barely do any patent prosecution nowadays. Most patent prosecution firms are under 50 lawyers (maybe even under 20 lawyers!), but pay well with lower hours.

Also, I'm not sure if you'll see dates of degrees on the bios of most patent firms.

A BS in EE, CompE, or CS are marketable. If you have a BS in Food Science or Metallurgy, then that's considered minimally qualified unless you have work experience in software.

MrAnon
Posts: 1615
Joined: Wed Aug 25, 2010 9:08 pm

Re: Earning degrees after law school

Postby MrAnon » Thu Nov 03, 2011 11:26 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Suppose that someone graduated from a T10 with above median grades, but is unable to find a biglaw position or clerkship. If he immediately enrolled in a prestigious doctoral level science/engineering program and came out with a degree, might he get a second shot at an IP firm gig? I've looked at dozens of bios of biglaw IP people, and it looks like all of them earned the law degree last.

I'm really running out of ideas here.


Its a silly idea. Why not go to into the merchant marine for a shot at admiralty law in a few years? You have to come to terms with the idea that not everyone is ripe for biglaw---you knew this going into law school, nothing is guaranteed. Just take whatever law job you can get and move on.

MrAnon
Posts: 1615
Joined: Wed Aug 25, 2010 9:08 pm

Re: Earning degrees after law school

Postby MrAnon » Thu Nov 03, 2011 11:30 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Emu Flu wrote:I've heard of and seen profiles of people who earned a BSEE following law school and now work in patent prosecution boutiques. Some of them were former patent litigators without technical credentials.


That's the sort of thing I was looking for on firm bios.

I could currently take one undergrad course in my spare time and then sit for the patent bar, but it's my impression that patent places don't want people so absolutely minimally qualified. On the other hand, I could have a BS in about a year and a half, followed by a PhD in whatever timeline that took. I could also cut out the BS entirely and pick up some god-awful Caribbean medical degree, but the patent bar doesn't even count an MD as a science degree.


What makes you think any of this will work out for you? Law school doesn't seem to have met your expectations. Do you think medicine is a guarantee? Do you think IP credentials are a guarantee? You can keep chasing degrees and getting fresh starts at new schools but at some point you do have to step out there and start working in some capacity and it may not be what you dreamed of.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273139
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Earning degrees after law school

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Nov 03, 2011 11:48 pm

MrAnon wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Emu Flu wrote:I've heard of and seen profiles of people who earned a BSEE following law school and now work in patent prosecution boutiques. Some of them were former patent litigators without technical credentials.


That's the sort of thing I was looking for on firm bios.

I could currently take one undergrad course in my spare time and then sit for the patent bar, but it's my impression that patent places don't want people so absolutely minimally qualified. On the other hand, I could have a BS in about a year and a half, followed by a PhD in whatever timeline that took. I could also cut out the BS entirely and pick up some god-awful Caribbean medical degree, but the patent bar doesn't even count an MD as a science degree.


What makes you think any of this will work out for you? Law school doesn't seem to have met your expectations. Do you think medicine is a guarantee? Do you think IP credentials are a guarantee? You can keep chasing degrees and getting fresh starts at new schools but at some point you do have to step out there and start working in some capacity and it may not be what you dreamed of.


Completely fair. I'm just trying to find a way out of the choice between shitlaw and a career change.
Last edited by Anonymous User on Fri Nov 04, 2011 12:23 am, edited 1 time in total.

Black-Blue
Posts: 279
Joined: Wed Jan 14, 2009 10:46 pm

Re: Earning degrees after law school

Postby Black-Blue » Thu Nov 03, 2011 11:53 pm

Getting a PhD after law school is uncommon.

But getting a masters is quite common for IP people, I'd say.

Get a masters. PhD takes too long, and you lose a lot of opportunity cost.

turbotong
Posts: 181
Joined: Thu Oct 28, 2010 12:53 am

Re: Earning degrees after law school

Postby turbotong » Fri Nov 04, 2011 1:15 am

Anonymous User wrote:
That's the sort of thing I was looking for on firm bios.

I could currently take one undergrad course in my spare time and then sit for the patent bar, but it's my impression that patent places don't want people so absolutely minimally qualified. On the other hand, I could have a BS in about a year and a half, followed by a PhD in whatever timeline that took. I could also cut out the BS entirely and pick up some god-awful Caribbean medical degree, but the patent bar doesn't even count an MD as a science degree.


OK, as an EE myself, I really doubt you could complete the course in 1.5 years. Or even CS. Unlike some majors, there are very strict and important pre-req's that prevent this from being possible.
On the math scale (from my university), you need calc 1 -> calc 2-> (diff eq, statistics) -> advanced engineering math -> course in fourier transforms/communications (5 semesters)
On the analog side, you need calc based physics 1 -> calc based physics 2 -> intro to digital/analogue circuits -> analogue circuits / E&M (4 semesters)
For digital circuits, you need Intro Programming -> intro to EE, digital logic, advanced digital logic (4 semester)

turbotong
Posts: 181
Joined: Thu Oct 28, 2010 12:53 am

Re: Earning degrees after law school

Postby turbotong » Fri Nov 04, 2011 1:17 am

Unless of course, you've already completed your phyiscs/calculus/programming or your school has a slightly shorter schedule

c3pO4
Posts: 835
Joined: Wed Oct 19, 2011 1:34 pm

Re: Earning degrees after law school

Postby c3pO4 » Fri Nov 04, 2011 2:52 am

Dude, stop trying to go to school school school and just create something! Whatever happened to America's entrepreneurial spirit. Take some time off, read the Steve Jobs biography, and start a revolution.

sebastian0622
Posts: 276
Joined: Fri Feb 26, 2010 10:30 pm

Re: Earning degrees after law school

Postby sebastian0622 » Fri Nov 04, 2011 5:31 am

I would personally think it makes you look a bit flaky. I'm just some random dude and not some guy who hires people, but guys who hire people are just random dudes too. I guess I don't have anything more to contribute.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273139
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Earning degrees after law school

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Nov 04, 2011 7:46 am

.

User avatar
sky7
Posts: 248
Joined: Tue Dec 04, 2007 2:44 pm

Re: Earning degrees after law school

Postby sky7 » Fri Nov 04, 2011 10:10 am

Emu Flu wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Emu Flu wrote:I've heard of and seen profiles of people who earned a BSEE following law school and now work in patent prosecution boutiques. Some of them were former patent litigators without technical credentials.


That's the sort of thing I was looking for on firm bios.

I could currently take one undergrad course in my spare time and then sit for the patent bar, but it's my impression that patent places don't want people so absolutely minimally qualified. On the other hand, I could have a BS in about a year and a half, followed by a PhD in whatever timeline that took. I could also cut out the BS entirely and pick up some god-awful Caribbean medical degree, but the patent bar doesn't even count an MD as a science degree.


It's not extremely common, but it happens. I imagine it's difficult to do at Big Law firms or for litigation positions. It's done at patent prosecution boutiques where they primarily draft patent applications and respond to actions from the USPTO. Big Law firms barely do any patent prosecution nowadays. Most patent prosecution firms are under 50 lawyers (maybe even under 20 lawyers!), but pay well with lower hours.

Also, I'm not sure if you'll see dates of degrees on the bios of most patent firms.

A BS in EE, CompE, or CS are marketable. If you have a BS in Food Science or Metallurgy, then that's considered minimally qualified unless you have work experience in software.


THIS. If you are one class away from CS, EE, MechE, then go for it - this will seriously help your odds. If you are one class away from Biology, not so much. However, I've seen people with just undergrads in life sciences, and they somehow made it work. But most of the demand is for Ph.Ds.

User avatar
thexfactor
Posts: 1277
Joined: Fri Sep 14, 2007 11:40 am

Re: Earning degrees after law school

Postby thexfactor » Fri Nov 04, 2011 11:51 am

carribbean med doesn't "promise" you a job, but ITE it comes pretty damn close. I heard the dropout rate from the good carib med schools is around 20-25%. If you can make it all 4 years, your chances of getting a residency are very high I think most good carib schools match 90%. Unlike law, they actually put the match list online and it states specifically which hospital and who is going where.

You have to consider that it is another 4 years of your life and another 200k worth of debt. + another 4 years before you can make your 150k+ salary.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273139
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Earning degrees after law school

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Nov 04, 2011 1:05 pm

turbotong wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
That's the sort of thing I was looking for on firm bios.

I could currently take one undergrad course in my spare time and then sit for the patent bar, but it's my impression that patent places don't want people so absolutely minimally qualified. On the other hand, I could have a BS in about a year and a half, followed by a PhD in whatever timeline that took. I could also cut out the BS entirely and pick up some god-awful Caribbean medical degree, but the patent bar doesn't even count an MD as a science degree.


OK, as an EE myself, I really doubt you could complete the course in 1.5 years. Or even CS. Unlike some majors, there are very strict and important pre-req's that prevent this from being possible.
On the math scale (from my university), you need calc 1 -> calc 2-> (diff eq, statistics) -> advanced engineering math -> course in fourier transforms/communications (5 semesters)
On the analog side, you need calc based physics 1 -> calc based physics 2 -> intro to digital/analogue circuits -> analogue circuits / E&M (4 semesters)
For digital circuits, you need Intro Programming -> intro to EE, digital logic, advanced digital logic (4 semester)


as an EE myself, I can guarantee you that the above is credited. Also, the teaching in EE is shit. I went to a top 5 EE school. The teaching is so horrible. The books are horrible. Everything is shit. You're going to hate it relative to law school, where the profs actually seem to give a sh.

Listen man, dont go to EE, its shh. DONT DO IT.

User avatar
chem
Posts: 867
Joined: Thu Mar 03, 2011 8:14 pm

Re: Earning degrees after law school

Postby chem » Fri Nov 04, 2011 1:06 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
turbotong wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
That's the sort of thing I was looking for on firm bios.

I could currently take one undergrad course in my spare time and then sit for the patent bar, but it's my impression that patent places don't want people so absolutely minimally qualified. On the other hand, I could have a BS in about a year and a half, followed by a PhD in whatever timeline that took. I could also cut out the BS entirely and pick up some god-awful Caribbean medical degree, but the patent bar doesn't even count an MD as a science degree.


OK, as an EE myself, I really doubt you could complete the course in 1.5 years. Or even CS. Unlike some majors, there are very strict and important pre-req's that prevent this from being possible.
On the math scale (from my university), you need calc 1 -> calc 2-> (diff eq, statistics) -> advanced engineering math -> course in fourier transforms/communications (5 semesters)
On the analog side, you need calc based physics 1 -> calc based physics 2 -> intro to digital/analogue circuits -> analogue circuits / E&M (4 semesters)
For digital circuits, you need Intro Programming -> intro to EE, digital logic, advanced digital logic (4 semester)


as an EE myself, I can guarantee you that the above is credited. Also, the teaching in EE is shit. I went to a top 5 EE school. The teaching is so horrible. The books are horrible. Everything is shit. You're going to hate it relative to law school, where the profs actually seem to give a sh.

Listen man, dont go to EE, its shh. DONT DO IT.


Creditted for ChemE too, just different course names. even 2.5 years would be generous on time requirements

MrAnon
Posts: 1615
Joined: Wed Aug 25, 2010 9:08 pm

Re: Earning degrees after law school

Postby MrAnon » Fri Nov 04, 2011 2:15 pm

You need to settle down and focus on law. You have invested 2 or 3 years in it already and more if count preparation for it. The easy way out of anything is to say "oh this is half done but not going the way I had hoped. I'm starting something completely different." Only when that failed too would you figure out oh maybe i should have stuck with the course I was on. Spend your time thinking about law, not about 50 different other degrees you could go get. You might be satisfied with the results. At least you will have some time to have a personal life which you may find more fulfilling that endless schooling.

User avatar
reasonable_man
Posts: 2200
Joined: Thu Feb 12, 2009 5:41 pm

Re: Earning degrees after law school

Postby reasonable_man » Fri Nov 04, 2011 2:19 pm

I never ask questions... Because I'm an arrogant, knowitall jerkoff... But I once flirted with the idea of getting a BS in EE after law school... Are there any "night" programs for something like this? How about online? I just always thought it would be insanely interesting..

turbotong
Posts: 181
Joined: Thu Oct 28, 2010 12:53 am

Re: Earning degrees after law school

Postby turbotong » Fri Nov 04, 2011 3:33 pm

Yes, just get into a part time program. Take classes at your leisure. Most universities offer their classes at multiple times throughout the day and almost always have one of each class taught at night just for the full time students. You can pull off at most 2 classes per semester while working full time. This is a serious work commitment, but possible. Also, do a rough calculation of how many years it will take. Spring/Summer/Fall x 2 classes/sem = 6 classes per year. Divide the total number of classes you need to take by 6, this is the number of years it will take you to complete it.

Also rethinking my previous course list, there is also a class in RF signals, solid state devices that tack on an extra semester due to their mass number of re-req's. I too was being generous with the 2.5 years like Mr. chem noted for his science courses.




Return to “Legal Employment”

Who is online

The online users are hidden on this forum.