Probably Gonna Strike Out - Alternatives to Law?

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Probably Gonna Strike Out - Alternatives to Law?

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Sep 22, 2012 9:11 pm

I am at a T-14, median, no journal. Have been rejected by 2 of my CBs. I have 3 more CBs outstanding (though they all have class sizes of about 1-3), and I have yet to do 1 more (firm with a 3 summer class). I've mass mailed pretty much everywhere, but I guess I can keep doing it. I'm obviously going to try to nail this next CB, but at this point, I'm seriously considering other options to law. I'll obviously try to kill it this year grades-wise, but I'm not sure I'll have a fighting chance at clerkships without a journal.

The thing about me is that I'm not sure I'd be happy doing very litigation heavy work at a small firm or public interest group living in the middle of nowhere for the rest of my life. I came into law school with the hope that I'd live in at least some kind of major city. My eventual goal is to work in Asia. I obviously didn't go to law school solely for these objectives, but they are certainly important to me. Big or mid-law was always my major focus because it figured fairly critically into my geographic plans.

To cut this ramble short, what I'm asking is if anybody knows of other options I should be exploring at this point. What other industries or career paths can I get into that would look positively, even if only marginally, on a JD from a top school? I'm starting to switch gears into hustling other industries - for example, trying to get a consulting gig by going to recruitment events and practicing case studies and case interviews. Ofcourse, I realize that I have a very small chance given my grades and lack of any real standout credentials. Another avenue is pursuing a business or finance related masters after I get my JD, or doing the CFA level 1. I could work a few years out of law school doing whatever legal job I could find and then apply for an MBA. I've also heard of the legal consulting industry, which actually doesn't require a JD and doesn't pay super well, but it is a career and would allow for some geographic mobility. Your thoughts?

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Re: Probably Gonna Strike Out - Alternatives to Law?

Postby 071816 » Sat Sep 22, 2012 9:14 pm

Consider going into waste management.

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Re: Probably Gonna Strike Out - Alternatives to Law?

Postby ilovesf » Sat Sep 22, 2012 9:16 pm

There's an alternative career thread in the lounge, check it out. You still are waiting to hear back from 3 though, that's not too bad. Just keep applying to more jobs.

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Re: Probably Gonna Strike Out - Alternatives to Law?

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Sep 22, 2012 9:17 pm

First, to one of the above posters: you're mean.

Second, don't give up. There are plenty of legal or policy positions out there. Consulting isn't easy to get. My husband went to Harvard Business School and couldn't even get a consulting gig out of there.

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Re: Probably Gonna Strike Out - Alternatives to Law?

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Sep 22, 2012 9:32 pm

OP here - I'm not going to give up. I sometimes feel a little depressed, but overall I'm willing to just keep hustling. I still believe I'll get the things I want in life, just that it may take longer to get them or the avenues I go down may be less orthodox than I had envisioned.

I'm also Canadian. What about doing an LLM in Canada after my JD, assuming my grades are good?

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Re: Probably Gonna Strike Out - Alternatives to Law?

Postby bizzybone1313 » Sat Sep 22, 2012 10:34 pm

You should apply for jobs at the Big Four accounting firms (KPMG, Deloitte, E&Y and PWC). I use to work for KPMG. If you get lucky and work in the right division, the amount you eventually make per hour could be pretty high. I have heard that people with a JD probably start around $80K. With your T-14 pedigree, I bet you have a fairly decent chance of an interview with them if you have a technical/business undergraduate degree. In the one year I was there, I traveled to Singapore, Norway, Chicago and Atlanta. I almost got to go to the Dominican Republic. The problem with the Big Four is if you end up in the wrong division; you get worked like a dog and don't get compensated enough for it.

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Re: Probably Gonna Strike Out - Alternatives to Law?

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Sep 22, 2012 11:23 pm

bizzybone1313 wrote:You should apply for jobs at the Big Four accounting firms (KPMG, Deloitte, E&Y and PWC). I use to work for KPMG. If you get lucky and work in the right division, the amount you eventually make per hour could be pretty high. I have heard that people with a JD probably start around $80K. With your T-14 pedigree, I bet you have a fairly decent chance of an interview with them if you have a technical/business undergraduate degree. In the one year I was there, I traveled to Singapore, Norway, Chicago and Atlanta. I almost got to go to the Dominican Republic. The problem with the Big Four is if you end up in the wrong division; you get worked like a dog and don't get compensated enough for it.


Not OP, but do those Big4 have SA programs?

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Re: Probably Gonna Strike Out - Alternatives to Law?

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Sep 23, 2012 11:39 am

Anonymous User wrote:OP here - I'm not going to give up. I sometimes feel a little depressed, but overall I'm willing to just keep hustling. I still believe I'll get the things I want in life, just that it may take longer to get them or the avenues I go down may be less orthodox than I had envisioned.

I'm also Canadian. What about doing an LLM in Canada after my JD, assuming my grades are good?


That sounds like a plan. Get your LLM in Canada and move back there. The US has too many lawyers.
I am also at a T14 and am below median, no LR, no WE. I got rejected everwhere, but did get ONE offer at a V100 firm in NYC. Although I was hoping to get 2-3 offers and decide from there, I tell myself that I only need one job.
Good luck with your other call backs and hope it works out. Unlike you, I would have had to stay here had I struck out at OCI. You at least have the option of moving back to your native country and working there.

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Re: Probably Gonna Strike Out - Alternatives to Law?

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Sep 23, 2012 12:06 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:OP here - I'm not going to give up. I sometimes feel a little depressed, but overall I'm willing to just keep hustling. I still believe I'll get the things I want in life, just that it may take longer to get them or the avenues I go down may be less orthodox than I had envisioned.

I'm also Canadian. What about doing an LLM in Canada after my JD, assuming my grades are good?


That sounds like a plan. Get your LLM in Canada and move back there. The US has too many lawyers.
I am also at a T14 and am below median, no LR, no WE. I got rejected everwhere, but did get ONE offer at a V100 firm in NYC. Although I was hoping to get 2-3 offers and decide from there, I tell myself that I only need one job.
Good luck with your other call backs and hope it works out. Unlike you, I would have had to stay here had I struck out at OCI. You at least have the option of moving back to your native country and working there.


Are you fucking kidding me?

OP, sounds like you still have a shot even if you don't believe you do. Keep mailing, it's still too early to actually give up.

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Re: Probably Gonna Strike Out - Alternatives to Law?

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Sep 23, 2012 12:19 pm

OP here.

You guys are all very nice and helpful with your suggestions. Sometimes I think I should start an alternative careers support group, where students who struck out at OCI and/or are not sanguine about the other legal options out there start brainstorming together about other career paths. We could also branch out to other student groups on campus to explore their professional specialties.

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Re: Probably Gonna Strike Out - Alternatives to Law?

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Sep 23, 2012 12:44 pm

Anonymous User wrote:OP here.

You guys are all very nice and helpful with your suggestions. Sometimes I think I should start an alternative careers support group, where students who struck out at OCI and/or are not sanguine about the other legal options out there start brainstorming together about other career paths. We could also branch out to other student groups on campus to explore their professional specialties.


That's what some students did a few years ago. They blogged about how they got screwed by the law schools and then went on to sue the schools for falsifying their claims about job prospects.

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Re: Probably Gonna Strike Out - Alternatives to Law?

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Sep 23, 2012 1:04 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:OP here - I'm not going to give up. I sometimes feel a little depressed, but overall I'm willing to just keep hustling. I still believe I'll get the things I want in life, just that it may take longer to get them or the avenues I go down may be less orthodox than I had envisioned.

I'm also Canadian. What about doing an LLM in Canada after my JD, assuming my grades are good?


That sounds like a plan. Get your LLM in Canada and move back there. The US has too many lawyers.
I am also at a T14 and am below median, no LR, no WE. I got rejected everwhere, but did get ONE offer at a V100 firm in NYC. Although I was hoping to get 2-3 offers and decide from there, I tell myself that I only need one job.
Good luck with your other call backs and hope it works out. Unlike you, I would have had to stay here had I struck out at OCI. You at least have the option of moving back to your native country and working there.


Are you f kidding me?

No not kidding. The reason I thought I would be in a decent position is because I interview well, did very well undergrad at an Ivy and am urm. But, obviously all those things mattered squat.

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Re: Probably Gonna Strike Out - Alternatives to Law?

Postby Icculus » Sun Sep 23, 2012 1:11 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:OP here - I'm not going to give up. I sometimes feel a little depressed, but overall I'm willing to just keep hustling. I still believe I'll get the things I want in life, just that it may take longer to get them or the avenues I go down may be less orthodox than I had envisioned.

I'm also Canadian. What about doing an LLM in Canada after my JD, assuming my grades are good?


That sounds like a plan. Get your LLM in Canada and move back there. The US has too many lawyers.
I am also at a T14 and am below median, no LR, no WE. I got rejected everwhere, but did get ONE offer at a V100 firm in NYC. Although I was hoping to get 2-3 offers and decide from there, I tell myself that I only need one job.
Good luck with your other call backs and hope it works out. Unlike you, I would have had to stay here had I struck out at OCI. You at least have the option of moving back to your native country and working there.


Are you f kidding me?

No not kidding. The reason I thought I would be in a decent position is because I interview well, did very well undergrad at an Ivy and am urm. But, obviously all those things mattered squat.


Or perhaps those helped you get the one offer. I mean below median with aV100 offer is pretty good. Most people I know below median did not end up in the same boat.

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Re: Probably Gonna Strike Out - Alternatives to Law?

Postby Peg » Sun Sep 23, 2012 2:21 pm

Yeah, don't give up. I'm wondering if you bid too ambitiously on highly ranked firms? Get off the Vault Prestige Whore thing and apply to literally every firm in every major market that has more than a 100 lawyers. Go on Martindale and look up firms by location and size, and then mass mail the shit out of them. You can't afford to be selective in your position and only chase Vault firms (which I don't know that you did, but it sounds like you might have).

You mentioned wanting to work in Asia. Are you proficient in a valuable language like Mandarin? You might get Asian Biglaw if so...

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Re: Probably Gonna Strike Out - Alternatives to Law?

Postby crazycanuck » Sun Sep 23, 2012 3:25 pm

Anonymous User wrote:OP here - I'm not going to give up. I sometimes feel a little depressed, but overall I'm willing to just keep hustling. I still believe I'll get the things I want in life, just that it may take longer to get them or the avenues I go down may be less orthodox than I had envisioned.

I'm also Canadian. What about doing an LLM in Canada after my JD, assuming my grades are good?


Canada's legal market is still very unsaturated as the schools are heavily regulated. However Canadian law firms are very insular and tend to hire out of the cities the firms are in. I have heard that it is very difficult to get a job with a Canadian firm from a states school (unless it harvard/yale/stanford where they can put a bio on you on their website as a brag) The only city where you would really have a shot is in Toronto. Calgary/Vancouver you may have a shot, but they will likely throw your resume in the garbage and look at a UofA/UBC application instead. If you're not french, you're not getting in Montreal, and unless you're from Atlantic Canada or a prairie province then you're not getting in those provinces either.

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Re: Probably Gonna Strike Out - Alternatives to Law?

Postby bizzybone1313 » Sun Sep 23, 2012 4:08 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
bizzybone1313 wrote:You should apply for jobs at the Big Four accounting firms (KPMG, Deloitte, E&Y and PWC). I use to work for KPMG. If you get lucky and work in the right division, the amount you eventually make per hour could be pretty high. I have heard that people with a JD probably start around $80K. With your T-14 pedigree, I bet you have a fairly decent chance of an interview with them if you have a technical/business undergraduate degree. In the one year I was there, I traveled to Singapore, Norway, Chicago and Atlanta. I almost got to go to the Dominican Republic. The problem with the Big Four is if you end up in the wrong division; you get worked like a dog and don't get compensated enough for it.


Not OP, but do those Big4 have SA programs?


I worked for the Big Four with only a technical undergraduate degree in construction management. I was in the advisory division. I wouldn't call the summer positions as you being a summer associate per se. It would be more like a summer internship. The best time to intern there would be as a 1L when you can't really get a summer associate position with Big Law. You could use this internship as a back up plan if you strike out from Big Law. In the summer, you would probably get paid something decent per hour. At all costs, avoid the audit and tax divisions, because they tend to work longer hours than the advisory positions. I would say you would have a pretty decent shot of getting an interview with them as a 3L. Your economics degree combined with a T-20ish law school pedigree would help. I would go on indeed.com or all of the Big Four websites and apply to all of the jobs in the advisory/consulting divisions in the cities of the states you have ties in. Your biggest problem is going to convince them that you don't just want to be there temporarily until you get a legal job. If you get an interview, I would say your economics/international relations/legal degree give you a trifecta of skills that make you perfect for one of these positions. The economics degree gives you the financial knowledge; the international relations gives you the ability to speak more than one language, which means you would be a valuable asset in foreign countries if the need arises; and the legal degree gives you the writing and critical thinking skills. These three combined would make you more of an asset to the Big Four, because you could be utilized in a variety of the different types of consulting gigs. This is exactly what you should say during the interviews if you get them. If you get asked in the interview if you don't mind traveling a lot, the answer is NO!!!!!. Not wanting to travel will get you dinged very fast. Getting hired to a Big Four would be of tremendous value to your career going forward.

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Re: Probably Gonna Strike Out - Alternatives to Law?

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Sep 23, 2012 4:42 pm

bizzybone1313 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
bizzybone1313 wrote:You should apply for jobs at the Big Four accounting firms (KPMG, Deloitte, E&Y and PWC). I use to work for KPMG. If you get lucky and work in the right division, the amount you eventually make per hour could be pretty high. I have heard that people with a JD probably start around $80K. With your T-14 pedigree, I bet you have a fairly decent chance of an interview with them if you have a technical/business undergraduate degree. In the one year I was there, I traveled to Singapore, Norway, Chicago and Atlanta. I almost got to go to the Dominican Republic. The problem with the Big Four is if you end up in the wrong division; you get worked like a dog and don't get compensated enough for it.


Not OP, but do those Big4 have SA programs?


I worked for the Big Four with only a technical undergraduate degree in construction management. I was in the advisory division. I wouldn't call the summer positions as you being a summer associate per se. It would be more like a summer internship. The best time to intern there would be as a 1L when you can't really get a summer associate position with Big Law. You could use this internship as a back up plan if you strike out from Big Law. In the summer, you would probably get paid something decent per hour. At all costs, avoid the audit and tax divisions, because they tend to work longer hours than the advisory positions. I would say you would have a pretty decent shot of getting an interview with them as a 3L. Your economics degree combined with a T-20ish law school pedigree would help. I would go on indeed.com or all of the Big Four websites and apply to all of the jobs in the advisory/consulting divisions in the cities of the states you have ties in. Your biggest problem is going to convince them that you don't just want to be there temporarily until you get a legal job. If you get an interview, I would say your economics/international relations/legal degree give you a trifecta of skills that make you perfect for one of these positions. The economics degree gives you the financial knowledge; the international relations gives you the ability to speak more than one language, which means you would be a valuable asset in foreign countries if the need arises; and the legal degree gives you the writing and critical thinking skills. These three combined would make you more of an asset to the Big Four, because you could be utilized in a variety of the different types of consulting gigs. This is exactly what you should say during the interviews if you get them. If you get asked in the interview if you don't mind traveling a lot, the answer is NO!!!!!. Not wanting to travel will get you dinged very fast. Getting hired to a Big Four would be of tremendous value to your career going forward.


Different anon. I am also interested in big four having striked out of oci. No finance/economics background, but taking courses now at the business school of my t-14, and pretty good at thinking math, though no real way of showing that in my resume (think 750+ SAT, 800 GRE type thing, but no job experience where math was required or degree in science field).
You mention getting hired by Big Four would be tremendous value going forward?

In what sense, obviously it will not get you back at a legal career.
But can you grow within the firm? My buddy who was a consultant at PWC did not feel so. Is your experience different?
Or are there good exit options of some sort? Requirement of MBA for such options?

Also, let me know what is the best way for non-economics majors to approach this industry. I am thinking of enrolling in all business + transactional classes I am allowed to, but any thing else?

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Re: Probably Gonna Strike Out - Alternatives to Law?

Postby bizzybone1313 » Sun Sep 23, 2012 7:19 pm

I would rank your options in this way: Big Law> Academia/Major clerkship> Big Four> Mid Law> Shit Law> fellowship. At my branch alone, there were four Directors/Principals with law degrees (Georgetown, Emory, UT and University of Baltimore) in the consulting division. If you play your cards right and land in a good division, you can build a career there. Even if you do not get hired in a good division, there is the chance you move to a different one within the company. The best part about working for the Big Four is that you get experience in a variety of industries/sectors of the economy. If there isn't any work to do in your hired on division, you can be borrowed to another one to assist on their work. In the time you are there, you will most likely would have performed work for Fortune 100/500 companies (think Microsoft, Conoco Phillips and Caterpillar). If you are good, some of these very same companies will try to poach you from the Big Four. Some of the Big Four jobs are JD preferred and you would be using your legal skills very frequently. If you have a legal related job at the Big Four, you could possibly lateral back to the legal market, but I am not sure why you would want to. At the end of the day, you could eventually make $100-150K, work 40-50 hours a week (if you get lucky and get hired in a good division), get 5 weeks vacation (at KPMG anyways) and travel to cool places. A Big Four job is far more stable than a Big Law one. In terms of getting hired, I wouldn't bank on just taking a lot of business courses. The problem with doing this is that you don't get an actual credential in the end. The Big Four love credentials. If you do not have a job after graduating, I would spend night and day to study for financial related certifications, such as the CFP. You might not need a business related degree to sit for them. I quit my job to study for the LSAT. My ultimate goal is to get into politics and help "bring about change in Washington" or something like that. Otherwise, I would have remained there and built a career. The major drawbacks of working at a Big Four is too many chiefs not enough Indians (I had 10+ plus managers in my one year there), you need to be highly efficient because there are not enough hours in the budget to do the work and sometimes you travel too much.

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Re: Probably Gonna Strike Out - Alternatives to Law?

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Sep 23, 2012 11:20 pm

OP here.

To the various responses:

- I am Chinese (though raised here), speak mandarin, father works in shanghai. Had one chinese legal internship in undergrad.
- I realize the canadian legal market is super insular - i was thinking more along the lines of LLM at Osgoode/UofT/UBC post JD. I also have an undergrad degree from a top canadian school (UofT/McGill/UBC).

Someone mentioned asian big law, but I'm not particularly sure how I'd go about doing that. Don't they only want American JDs who have had V25 cap markets/M&A experience and 3-4 years as an associate?

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Re: Probably Gonna Strike Out - Alternatives to Law?

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Sep 24, 2012 12:31 am

Does it have to be Big 4? Would lower ranked accounting firms that have advisory also take JDs?

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Re: Probably Gonna Strike Out - Alternatives to Law?

Postby crazycanuck » Mon Sep 24, 2012 12:34 am

Anonymous User wrote:OP here.

To the various responses:

- I am Chinese (though raised here), speak mandarin, father works in shanghai. Had one chinese legal internship in undergrad.
- I realize the canadian legal market is super insular - i was thinking more along the lines of LLM at Osgoode/UofT/UBC post JD. I also have an undergrad degree from a top canadian school (UofT/McGill/UBC).

Someone mentioned asian big law, but I'm not particularly sure how I'd go about doing that. Don't they only want American JDs who have had V25 cap markets/M&A experience and 3-4 years as an associate?


Go to UBC, get an LLM, work for a Van "big-law" firm like Blakes or Stikemans. They do tons of work with companies in Asia. At my firm in Vancouver, I have been to China multiple times. Some of the firms may even have offices in China. Seems like a waste of time though. Why go through all that in Canada if you want to go to Asia?

On a side note, the big law firms in Vancouver are pretty sweet. 80-90k as a first year (after required articling months) with required billables of 1600 hours with top top performers doing 2000. That's the dream for lawyers right there.

You could also get into a big 4 in vancouver and after a couple of years transfer to one of the asian offices. If you're a strong performer international transfers are encouraged. Even if you're not a really strong performer they are still pretty common. I know people at big 4 who have transferred to Hong Kong and Tokyo.

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Re: Probably Gonna Strike Out - Alternatives to Law?

Postby crazycanuck » Mon Sep 24, 2012 12:39 am

Anonymous User wrote:Does it have to be Big 4? Would lower ranked accounting firms that have advisory also take JDs?


Yeah, [deleted] norris penny has a pretty strong advisory practice in Vancouver, but those kinds of firms definitely don't have the same kind of international opportunities that the big 4 do. (all the mid-market firms do, Grant Thornton, Davidson & Co, etc. but they all tend to much smaller than big 4)

Really if you want to go to asia, it's big 4 or bust imo.

You should have got an accounting degree and done the CA route right after uni. You could do the DAP program at UBC and get into the Big 4 that way as a CA student, but you're going to get paid shit for the first few years. CA's are in super high demand in Asia though.

You also just missed out on the big 4 recruitment in Van. The financial advisory, tax, audit and enterprise risk are only allowed to hire in the fall, they are doing interviews this week and next, resumes were due last week for new hires starting in 2013. Consulting hires whenever they want though.

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Re: Probably Gonna Strike Out - Alternatives to Law?

Postby jessuf » Mon Sep 24, 2012 12:49 am

If someone is interested in trying for Big 4 instead of big law, does it make sense to get a tax LLM, or is it not worth the extra semester and tuition $$?

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Re: Probably Gonna Strike Out - Alternatives to Law?

Postby crazycanuck » Mon Sep 24, 2012 12:54 am

Jessuf wrote:If someone is interested in trying for Big 4 instead of big law, does it make sense to get a tax LLM, or is it not worth the extra semester and tuition $$?


Depends on what your undergrad is. If you did a commerce degree or something and took a tax course it's probably fine, if you majored in music, you will need the LLM.

In Canada people should also look into completing the CICA in-depth tax courses levels I II and III. There's probably something similar in the states.

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Re: Probably Gonna Strike Out - Alternatives to Law?

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Sep 24, 2012 1:47 am

Can someone speak to American accounting recruiting season? Has the ship sailed on that too? Thanks.




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