Transfer down to improve employment prospects?

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Anonymous User
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Transfer down to improve employment prospects?

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Jun 08, 2012 10:54 am

I am .1 below median at a regional T25 (where I am not from that region and don't care to stay), have 3 years work experience, but not in anything that would transfer over to law or impress legal employers. Getting a job through OCI is probably out, I'm thinking my best shot is for getting a job after graduation/passing the bar.

I've thought about transferring down to a relatively inexpensive public T2 in the region where I'm from and living with parents for the next two years to save money. I'm also hoping that after transferring, my GPA is wiped clean and I can start over. Wouldn't only 2L and 3L grades count into my GPA then? At least then I could graduate with a higher GPA and that might help when I'm looking for work later.

Advise me please.

concurrent fork
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Re: Transfer down to improve employment prospects?

Postby concurrent fork » Fri Jun 08, 2012 11:50 am

Employers will still ask to see your 1L transcript once they know you transferred. You can't hide your grades. And, regardless, if you were median at a T25 you will probably be median at a T2.

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Re: Transfer down to improve employment prospects?

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Jun 08, 2012 1:12 pm

My hope was to get my foot in the door with a higher GPA, which happens anyway after 1L, especially if you take bullshit seminars, which I intend to do regardless.

But I see your point. If they're going to ask for my transcript anyway, it doesn't make much sense except to save some money.

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buckilaw
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Re: Transfer down to improve employment prospects?

Postby buckilaw » Fri Jun 08, 2012 2:07 pm

If you can save a substantial amount of money by doing this I don't think it's a terrible idea, especially since you don't want to work in your current school's market.

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Re: Transfer down to improve employment prospects?

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Jun 08, 2012 2:37 pm

Is 60k substantial?

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buckilaw
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Re: Transfer down to improve employment prospects?

Postby buckilaw » Fri Jun 08, 2012 10:44 pm

I would think so, ya.

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Re: Transfer down to improve employment prospects?

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Jun 09, 2012 8:09 am

buckilaw wrote:I would think so, ya.


My math was off actually, I'd only save 40k. That being said, I think I'll apply to transfer anyway. My section lost 5 people to dropouts after first semester and there'll probably be the same thing after this semester plus the top of the class transferring up (last year it was about 5-6 per section). Maybe if the school doesn't want to lose another student, they might offer me a bit more $ to stay. I know it's not the same as transferring up, but maybe they'll do what they can to try to keep from losing seats (which arguably they could just replace with transfers, but who transfers to a poor-placing T25?).

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dingbat
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Re: Transfer down to improve employment prospects?

Postby dingbat » Sat Jun 09, 2012 8:16 am

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Last edited by dingbat on Sun Jun 10, 2012 9:41 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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manofjustice
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Re: Transfer down to improve employment prospects?

Postby manofjustice » Sat Jun 09, 2012 8:27 am

concurrent fork wrote:Employers will still ask to see your 1L transcript once they know you transferred. You can't hide your grades. And, regardless, if you were median at a T25 you will probably be median at a T2.


Data suggest otherwise. See http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=1640058 The issue, though, is that a T2 is a T2. Sounds like you're in a rough spot OP. Regional schools in a region you don't want to stay in are far from ideal.

(Btw, I am assuming here that a T2 is the 100+ cohort of the USNWR rankings?)

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dingbat
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Re: Transfer down to improve employment prospects?

Postby dingbat » Sat Jun 09, 2012 8:56 am

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Last edited by dingbat on Sun Jun 10, 2012 9:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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quiver
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Re: Transfer down to improve employment prospects?

Postby quiver » Sat Jun 09, 2012 8:57 am

manofjustice wrote:Data suggest otherwise. See http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm? ... id=1640058 The issue, though, is that a T2 is a T2. Sounds like you're in a rough spot OP. Regional schools in a region you don't want to stay in are far from ideal.

(Btw, I am assuming here that a T2 is the 100+ cohort of the USNWR rankings?)
I didn't read the paper but I bet it misses the mark if it says what you say it does. And T2 as used here on TLS usually means schools 50-100.

concurrent fork wrote:And, regardless, if you were median at a T25 you will probably be median at a T2.

I generally agree with concurrent fork here; maybe OP would move up a little bit, but the most likely scenario is that s/he will end up around median at the T2.

Tough choice OP. Median at a T25 where you don't want to practice is not a great situation but median at a T2 in the region you do want to practice isn't much better. Maybe if you transferred you'd have the opportunity to grab internships during the year and network your ass off (while saving 40k). That might be worth it.

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Re: Transfer down to improve employment prospects?

Postby concurrent fork » Sat Jun 09, 2012 9:25 am

manofjustice wrote:Data suggest otherwise. See http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=1640058

From the abstract, I don't see how. Maybe pull the quote? I'm not going to read the whole paper.

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Re: Transfer down to improve employment prospects?

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Jun 09, 2012 12:33 pm

Theoretically, if you are competing against less smarter classmates, you will receive a better score. This theory parallels the analogy that if you are playing against NBA pros you will have a harder time than playing against non-NBA players. Matching your wits against those with a lower GPA/LSAT should prove to be an advantage. Theoretically.

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Re: Transfer down to improve employment prospects?

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Jun 10, 2012 2:36 pm

I'm mildly interested in this - would it make sense to transfer to a school(60s) that is in the major city that I want to work (opposed from 1.5 hours away where I am now ?) I went from median to decently below median after spring grades at a T40 (personal reasons, i'm an idiot too), and the potential transfer school has a whole program in exactly what I'm interested. My current schools has virtually nothing for it.

Am I just looking for a way out of my grades or would this make any sort of sense ?? Cost would be the same. I always dig myself in a GPA hole and then when it matters I do awesome, but now even with stellar grades for the next two years I'll finish with a 3.3ish and be around top 30-40%.

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Re: Transfer down to improve employment prospects?

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Jun 10, 2012 4:22 pm

OP here. I feel like this got sort of off-track discussing whether I would or wouldn't be below median elsewhere. Just for the sake of clarity, my grades were A, B+, B+, B (first semester) and A, A-, B-, B- (second semester). It's not like there was any consistency there. But that's beside the point. My point was if I'm applying for post-graduate jobs after my first semester at a transfer school, do I still have to report the grades I got at my original school or can I just omit that information from my resume? Particularly, if I'm applying for jobs as a 3L, I'll have a whole year of new grades at a new school. Can I just use that, or would they expect me to list my original school GPA on my resume and provide transcripts from the first school?

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Re: Transfer down to improve employment prospects?

Postby Skyblaze » Sun Jun 10, 2012 4:39 pm

It would be a terrible life choice to transfer down. Your job prospects will be much better if you stay. If you already have ties to the area your looking to go to, transferring over there won't help. My guess is that employers will be pretty sceptical of someone who transferred down without a pretty compelling reason as to why that can be explained in interviews (member of family on death bed or something). And you're grades arn't terrible, you still beat 50 percent of the people at a T25 law school. Half you're class would be pretty irritated reading your post. T25 schools are great. With your grades the school may not be the golden ticket to Big Law, but it will sure as hell be better than the situtaion you would put yourself in by transferring down. Don't do it.

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Re: Transfer down to improve employment prospects?

Postby de5igual » Sun Jun 10, 2012 4:50 pm

Skyblaze wrote:It would be a terrible life choice to transfer down. Your job prospects will be much better if you stay. If you already have ties to the area your looking to go to, transferring over there won't help. My guess is that employers will be pretty sceptical of someone who transferred down without a pretty compelling reason as to why that can be explained in interviews (member of family on death bed or something). And you're grades arn't terrible, you still beat 50 percent of the people at a T25 law school. Half you're class would be pretty irritated reading your post. T25 schools are great. With your grades the school may not be the golden ticket to Big Law, but it will sure as hell be better than the situtaion you would put yourself in by transferring down. Don't do it.

Skyblaze
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Re: Transfer down to improve employment prospects?

Postby Skyblaze » Sun Jun 10, 2012 5:13 pm

Trollers gonna Troll.

Anonymous User
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Re: Transfer down to improve employment prospects?

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Jun 11, 2012 11:38 am

One last bump to see if anyone else thinks this is a good/bad idea.

NotMyRealName09
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Re: Transfer down to improve employment prospects?

Postby NotMyRealName09 » Mon Jun 11, 2012 4:48 pm

A transfer down would raise a serious red flag in my mind. Who would do that? You work hard to get into a top 25, then quit for supposedly "easier" pastures because you couldn't hack it? I won't believe your explanation, unless you tell me you transferred down because you thought if you did you'd be able to intellectually dominate your dumber "regional T2" peers and get better grades (even though I probably went to that T2 because you are interviewing locally). Then, I'd know a lot about your character and I wouldn't like it.

What isn't being said is that 1L grades are the MOST important (at least in my opinion). Grading gets easier 2L and 3L years. Any employer will demand to see your 1L grades - they won't disappear.

You are asking if your plan to game the system will gain you any advantages. I opine no. You'd be better off graduating median at your T25 then taking your nice new degree and apply for jobs "back home," telling employers you want to settle down and begin your career where you were born and raised.

A T25 degree - even with median grades - can open doors at regional firms that typically only see T2 / T3 / T4 law student applicants.

Good luck.

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Re: Transfer down to improve employment prospects?

Postby NotMyRealName09 » Mon Jun 11, 2012 4:53 pm

Anonymous User wrote:OP here. I feel like this got sort of off-track discussing whether I would or wouldn't be below median elsewhere. Just for the sake of clarity, my grades were A, B+, B+, B (first semester) and A, A-, B-, B- (second semester). It's not like there was any consistency there. But that's beside the point. My point was if I'm applying for post-graduate jobs after my first semester at a transfer school, do I still have to report the grades I got at my original school or can I just omit that information from my resume? Particularly, if I'm applying for jobs as a 3L, I'll have a whole year of new grades at a new school. Can I just use that, or would they expect me to list my original school GPA on my resume and provide transcripts from the first school?


No, you'll list your first school's GPA, then you'll list your new school's GPA on your resume. If you didn't, my first question as an interviewer would be "What was your GPA at School One? And where is your transcript from that school? And why the hell did you leave [T25] to come to [T2]? People would kill to get into [T25] over [T2]."

Disclose disclose disclose is the name of the game.

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Re: Transfer down to improve employment prospects?

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Jun 11, 2012 5:23 pm

Thanks, it's helpful to hear what an employer will think.

NotMyRealName09
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Re: Transfer down to improve employment prospects?

Postby NotMyRealName09 » Mon Jun 11, 2012 11:05 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Thanks, it's helpful to hear what an employer will think.


Listening to people here, you'd think grades were the simple end of it. But if you're in a top 25 school, your lower grades still compare favorably because I know what it took to even gain admittance to your school. Let us be frank - a median at a T25 has earned the benefit of the doubt over a median at a T50-100.

So, don't fret. You may be in concentrated company, full of law school dominates at your school. Learn from them, do your best, and take it with you. This place (TLS) creates an air of "models and bottles" success as if that is the measure. Fuck no it isn't. Have you met any of those douches? They'll be divorced at 40 and trying to impress you with stories of how 23 year old strippers are impressed with their bankroll. What they won't tell you is how much their 6-10 year old daughter misses their daddy, and the size of their alimony payments. Or how they miss their (ex)-wives and make up for it with shallow displays of outward wealth. They'll never tell you they misprioritized their lives. They will tell you about the trips, and the women, and the lot of it. And I don't doubt they are having fun. But . . .

GPAs don't make good lawyers. Commitment to the practice does. And you can commit to good practice in Nebraska as easily as you can in New York.

You'll be fine.

2012JayDee
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Re: Transfer down to improve employment prospects?

Postby 2012JayDee » Mon Jun 11, 2012 11:22 pm

Your GPA at your T-25 is just that. It's your grades relative to the people in your class that year.
It says nothing of what your GPA would have been if you were at the T2. Employers will not just assume that you would have at least been median at the T2 or top of the class. Employers do not assume that GPAs from different schools in different markets are similar enough in that respect to make that assumption.

If you went to the T25 because you thought the school would provide you with good legal prospects, but later realized that you preferred to work in your home market there is absolutely nothing wrong with that. It's a rather genuine reason for wanting to transfer, and one that shows regional employers that you were committed enough to work in that region to leave your higher-ranked school behind in order to make connections and network in your desired market.

If you left your T25 because you're somehow trying to game the system and you think you're going to be in the top 10% of the class because the students at a T2 couldn't possibly be that smart you may be in for a surprise. Regional schools can be much more competitive because student's employment chances are usually more limited due to tighter regional legal choices and lack of opportunity. You could be in for a rude awakening. That's not to say student's at your T25 aren't competitive, but there could be a noticeable difference. Chances are more students will have employment as 2Ls from your t25 than those at the T2 (at least that's the common hope for people deciding between T1 and T2 schools). Those with employment may be more relaxed during 2L and 3L. Whereas, at the t2 the students are still hustling hard for A's and trying to snag up jobs. Just be ready to go in pretty hard as a 2L and be ready to compete with a group of intelligent students.




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