Struck out at OCI... drop out?

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Struck out at OCI... drop out?

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Oct 01, 2012 5:53 am

I had over 20 screeners and not a single callback. Law school was miserable last year but I didn't drop out because I had good grades (GPA 3.6) at a top 20 school. I thought I'd have a good chance of getting a high-paying law firm job. Now I don't think I even want to be a lawyer anymore. I have a science background and planned to go into patent law, but now that I'm taking a class and have some experience in it, the thought of doing it every day makes me want to claw my eyeballs out. I hated legal research, I'm not particularly good at writing or oral advocacy, I don't have an area of law that I'm super passionate about, and I don't think I can handle the stress/heavy workload at a law firm. Many lawyers and law students seem to be uptight status-obsessed douchebags. This year is exceedingly worse than 1L.

So should I drop out in the middle of 2L fall? Any thoughts on alternative non-legal careers where a law degree would actually be helpful?

If I decide to stay but I'm not trying for big firms (or any firms), would it matter if I dropped journal? School would be more tolerable if I wasn't on a journal.

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northwood
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Re: Struck out at OCI... drop out?

Postby northwood » Mon Oct 01, 2012 7:10 am

Anonymous User wrote:I had over 20 screeners and not a single callback. Law school was miserable last year but I didn't drop out because I had good grades (GPA 3.6) at a top 20 school. I thought I'd have a good chance of getting a high-paying law firm job. Now I don't think I even want to be a lawyer anymore. I have a science background and planned to go into patent law, but now that I'm taking a class and have some experience in it, the thought of doing it every day makes me want to claw my eyeballs out. I hated legal research, I'm not particularly good at writing or oral advocacy, I don't have an area of law that I'm super passionate about, and I don't think I can handle the stress/heavy workload at a law firm. Many lawyers and law students seem to be uptight status-obsessed douchebags. This year is exceedingly worse than 1L.

So should I drop out in the middle of 2L fall? Any thoughts on alternative non-legal careers where a law degree would actually be helpful?

If I decide to stay but I'm not trying for big firms (or any firms), would it matter if I dropped journal? School would be more tolerable if I wasn't on a journal.


before you drop out- i think it would be best to solidify as best as possible your alternative plans so you dont just drop out and are spinning your wheels. That will most likely make you feel even more miserable. What else do you want to do? Have you started applying for those positions/ getting ready for another round of school applications (if thats what you thinkis best- but i would take a yaer off before you jump into another program). If you do stay, drop the journal. IMO unless you want biglaw, a journal is pretty pointless- especially for all of the work that is required. Good luck

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Re: Struck out at OCI... drop out?

Postby northwood » Mon Oct 01, 2012 7:11 am

20 screeners but not a single callback could be an indicator of an issue with your interviewing skills/ technique.

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Re: Struck out at OCI... drop out?

Postby 2014 » Mon Oct 01, 2012 9:31 am

What are your alternative options, how much debt are you in, how much more debt will you be in if you finish, and how much of a refund can you get for this semester?

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Re: Struck out at OCI... drop out?

Postby gdane » Mon Oct 01, 2012 10:06 am

Drop out. You went into law school for the wrong reasons.

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Re: Struck out at OCI... drop out?

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Oct 01, 2012 12:38 pm

Is it too lAte to drop out? Like op I also struck out ( three callbacks 3 dings) and don't like law school at all. Won't be elibinle for any refund and will have spent 90k and will spend another 30k to compete 2 and 3L. Seriously thinking of non traditional careers, but is it worth the extra 30grand? I found out about last ding a week ago and have been weighing my options. I don't care about biglaw (which is good cuz that boat is gone) but just want something that will pay decently but am not sure what it is..

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Re: Struck out at OCI... drop out?

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Oct 01, 2012 12:49 pm

I recommend not dropping out yet. What is your science background?

I worked at a firm my 1L summer and I absolutely hated it. Combine that with terrible grades at a T20 and I wanted to abandon ship. I felt miserable and very depressed. I called my parents every other day crying/arguing why I should drop out.

However, I stuck with it and ended up getting a law clerkship at another firm in November of my 2L year and loved it. I ended up getting several job offers during my 3L year and I'm so happy I stuck it out.

I think the problem is your interviewing. Have you done a mock interview? Have you spoken with patent attorneys, esp. those that are in your technical background? Make sure you speak with patent attorneys have both boutique and general practice firms and at firms of different sizes. I think it is about finding the right fit.

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Re: Struck out at OCI... drop out?

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Oct 01, 2012 3:55 pm

2014 wrote:What are your alternative options, how much debt are you in, how much more debt will you be in if you finish, and how much of a refund can you get for this semester?


I could probably go back to my previous job working in a lab or find something similar for now. Then I could go to grad school for science or for some non-MD healthcare profession like nursing, pharmacy, optometry, physician assistant, etc., or study for actuarial exams on my own and get a job as an actuary. I would do something more math/science based.

Debt isn't really an issue - my parents are helping me out. They're pushing me to stay in law school and get the degree, but unless I miraculously find a law career I would like, I doubt it's a better use of time and money than starting something else asap. I haven't talked to anyone about tuition refunds yet, but I've heard of others at my school leaving around this time in the semester and getting most if not all of their money back.

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Re: Struck out at OCI... drop out?

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Oct 01, 2012 4:00 pm

Anonymous User wrote:I could probably go back to my previous job working in a lab or find something similar for now. Then I could go to grad school for science or for some non-MD healthcare profession like nursing, pharmacy, optometry, physician assistant, etc., or study for actuarial exams on my own and get a job as an actuary. I would do something more math/science based.

Debt isn't really an issue - my parents are helping me out. They're pushing me to stay in law school and get the degree, but unless I miraculously find a law career I would like, I doubt it's a better use of time and money than starting something else asap. I haven't talked to anyone about tuition refunds yet, but I've heard of others at my school leaving around this time in the semester and getting most if not all of their money back.


Apply to jobs in your science field now and if you get one, drop out. Don't waste more of your parents money and your own time on something you apparently hate and may never actually get a job doing.

As far as alternative non-legal careers, a partial JD doesn't help for much of anything. Some research positions might find that helpful, maybe. I saw a job posting for an analyst position that said "some law school" would be desirable but that was a single ad, not necessarily a trend.

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Re: Struck out at OCI... drop out?

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Oct 01, 2012 4:11 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:I could probably go back to my previous job working in a lab or find something similar for now. Then I could go to grad school for science or for some non-MD healthcare profession like nursing, pharmacy, optometry, physician assistant, etc., or study for actuarial exams on my own and get a job as an actuary. I would do something more math/science based.

Debt isn't really an issue - my parents are helping me out. They're pushing me to stay in law school and get the degree, but unless I miraculously find a law career I would like, I doubt it's a better use of time and money than starting something else asap. I haven't talked to anyone about tuition refunds yet, but I've heard of others at my school leaving around this time in the semester and getting most if not all of their money back.


Apply to jobs in your science field now and if you get one, drop out. Don't waste more of your parents money and your own time on something you apparently hate and may never actually get a job doing.

As far as alternative non-legal careers, a partial JD doesn't help for much of anything. Some research positions might find that helpful, maybe. I saw a job posting for an analyst position that said "some law school" would be desirable but that was a single ad, not necessarily a trend.


What kind of analyst position was it? And do you think that a completed JD would be more helpful for alternative careers?

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Re: Struck out at OCI... drop out?

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Oct 01, 2012 4:19 pm

Whatever you do I would work on your interviewing. Same thing happened to me and I was doing alot of things poorly. Not the best for normal interviewing but awful for firm interviewing. Whatever you do I would work on it alot, I think I've gotten to a solid average now.

25 screeners 1 cb and 1 ding so I know what your going through. I'm sticking around though.

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Re: Struck out at OCI... drop out?

Postby NotMyRealName09 » Mon Oct 01, 2012 5:24 pm

I just offer this as another perspective, not knowing your personal situation at all.

But consider if you are suffering from undiagnosed depression. You read like it. Suddenly don't like anything, don't know what you want to do, have no interest, want to drop everything, everyone around you sucks, etc.

Yes, striking out at OCI sucks and could be a contributing factor to how you're feeling of course, but before you do something rash - like dropping out half way through law school after having done well academically, and having surely considered your choice to attend law school dating way back to before you first signed up for the LSAT - maybe ask a doctor for a second opinion.

Then, if you know you're thinking clearly without the influence of depression (or whatever), then at least you know you're acting entirely rational when deciding to throw it all away. However, OCI isn't everything. Not all attorneys perform legal research as part of their jobs. Shit, not all attorneys are good writers. Law school and OCI are NOT all there is to law. I know they make it seem like it, but the actual practice bears little similarity to law school.

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Re: Struck out at OCI... drop out?

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Oct 01, 2012 5:55 pm

Another option is taking a leave of absence. Once you've made a decision to drop out, there isn't an advantage to just dropping out vs. taking a leave of absence. Most schools have a really lax leave policy, and if you change your mind in a year, you can re-start 2L. You might be able to go through OCI again, though I doubt you'd have better luck after trying to explain away a year off.

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Re: Struck out at OCI... drop out?

Postby somewhatwayward » Tue Oct 02, 2012 9:40 am

The leave of absence advice is good. Maybe if you took one now, you could come back in a few years as a 2L with more work experience and do OCI over again. If you do that, though, you need to figure out what is going on with your interviewing. A person with your grades at a T20 + IP has a very good chance of landing an offer, and you didn't even get any CBs. From reading your post, I wonder if your misery and hatred of law school and simultaneous desire to get a firm job because it pays a lot of money were all coming through. Did you try reaching out to some of your interviewers to ask what the problem was? When you struck out at OCI, did you mass mail? If you do decide that you want to stay in law school, and you still want a firm job, I think you may still have a shot mass mailing at this point as an attractive IP candidate.

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Re: Struck out at OCI... drop out?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Oct 02, 2012 11:14 am

I'm not the OP, but to all those recommending to work on interviewing - why? OCI is over, so I don't see what good improving interviewing would do.

Also, to the anon @ 10/1, 12:49 pm - I'd love to hear more about what happened to you. What type of firm did you clerk at, and did it lead to biglaw offers during your third year?

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Re: Struck out at OCI... drop out?

Postby northwood » Tue Oct 02, 2012 11:22 am

Anonymous User wrote:I'm not the OP, but to all those recommending to work on interviewing - why? OCI is over, so I don't see what good improving interviewing would do.

Also, to the anon @ 10/1, 12:49 pm - I'd love to hear more about what happened to you. What type of firm did you clerk at, and did it lead to biglaw offers during your third year?



interviewing is a skill that you need throughout life. OP had 20 screeners and 0 callbacks- which may be an indicator that OP needs to revamp his/her interview approach. Regadless of what the position is, OP needs to excell at the first interview there.

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Re: Struck out at OCI... drop out?

Postby bk1 » Tue Oct 02, 2012 11:30 am

northwood wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:I'm not the OP, but to all those recommending to work on interviewing - why? OCI is over, so I don't see what good improving interviewing would do.

Also, to the anon @ 10/1, 12:49 pm - I'd love to hear more about what happened to you. What type of firm did you clerk at, and did it lead to biglaw offers during your third year?



interviewing is a skill that you need throughout life. OP had 20 screeners and 0 callbacks- which may be an indicator that OP needs to revamp his/her interview approach. Regadless of what the position is, OP needs to excell at the first interview there.


This. OP (and others) eventually will need to get some job. Whatever that job is, it will likely require interviewing. If bad interviewing torpedoed OCI then it very well might might torpedo future job searches.

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Re: Struck out at OCI... drop out?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Oct 02, 2012 11:33 am

Anonymous User wrote:I'm not the OP, but to all those recommending to work on interviewing - why? OCI is over, so I don't see what good improving interviewing would do.

Also, to the anon @ 10/1, 12:49 pm - I'd love to hear more about what happened to you. What type of firm did you clerk at, and did it lead to biglaw offers during your third year?


Forgot to mention this to the OP. I am also in patent law. I clerked at a midsized patent boutique firm (about 20-30 attorneys). I got offers from both biglaw and large ip boutique firms. I ended up taking the offer from one of the boutique firms in a large market with market-paying salary ($160,000).

OP, if I can get a job with bottom of the barrel grades, you can too. I agree with what has been said about seeing a doctor about depression. I should have done this too, but I felt I was "better" than that. Once things calm down here, I will probably make an appointment just to keep everything regulated so that I am ready to go for my first year.

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Re: Struck out at OCI... drop out?

Postby IAFG » Tue Oct 02, 2012 11:35 am

Anonymous User wrote:I'm not the OP, but to all those recommending to work on interviewing - why? OCI is over, so I don't see what good improving interviewing would do.

Also, to the anon @ 10/1, 12:49 pm - I'd love to hear more about what happened to you. What type of firm did you clerk at, and did it lead to biglaw offers during your third year?

Are you planning on getting your next job through email exchange? Lottery selection?

Interviews are far more important once you've missed out at OCI. If you're at a lottery school, it's possible the firms just never really wanted to talk to you anyway. The interview ding isn't even necessarily a comment on your interviewing skills. Once you're outside OCI, basically every interview you get is pre-select, and the interview is much more of a "yours to lose" situation. Getting interviews is also far more rare, however. You'll never get to sit down and do 20 in a week again, so each one should be far more critical to you.

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Re: Struck out at OCI... drop out?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Oct 02, 2012 1:10 pm

Not trying to say doing one thing or another.... But for what it's worth... Had I struck out at OCI, I would have dropped out, given I have no activities or moot court or journal and I'm only top 1/3, and school is far too expensive to NOT have a job post-graduation.

Luckily that didn't happen, and I think it really is a function of your interviewing skills.

I have a reasonably interesting resume (nothing incredible) so I just really brought my A game for interviews and out of around 40 or so screeners I got ONLY 1 offer from a major congressional agency for a position in their summer honors program in DC.

This may or may not lead to post-graduation employment, although, this particular agency made it reasonably clear that they actually do intend to hire the very small number of summer associates that they are hiring.

So, I'll just cross my fingers and stick with law school for now.

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Re: Struck out at OCI... drop out?

Postby somewhatwayward » Tue Oct 02, 2012 1:14 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Not trying to say doing one thing or another.... But for what it's worth... Had I struck out at OCI, I would have dropped out, given I have no activities or moot court or journal and I'm only top 1/3, and school is far too expensive to NOT have a job post-graduation.

Luckily that didn't happen, and I think it really is a function of your interviewing skills.

I have a reasonably interesting resume (nothing incredible) so I just really brought my A game for interviews and out of around 40 or so screeners I got ONLY 1 offer from a major congressional agency for a position in their summer honors program in DC.

This may or may not lead to post-graduation employment, although, this particular agency made it reasonably clear that they actually do intend to hire the very small number of summer associates that they are hiring.

So, I'll just cross my fingers and stick with law school for now.


I'm confused. How does this provide advice to the OP?

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Re: Struck out at OCI... drop out?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Oct 02, 2012 1:23 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Not trying to say doing one thing or another.... But for what it's worth... Had I struck out at OCI, I would have dropped out, given I have no activities or moot court or journal and I'm only top 1/3, and school is far too expensive to NOT have a job post-graduation.

Luckily that didn't happen, and I think it really is a function of your interviewing skills.

I have a reasonably interesting resume (nothing incredible) so I just really brought my A game for interviews and out of around 40 or so screeners I got ONLY 1 offer from a major congressional agency for a position in their summer honors program in DC.

This may or may not lead to post-graduation employment, although, this particular agency made it reasonably clear that they actually do intend to hire the very small number of summer associates that they are hiring.

So, I'll just cross my fingers and stick with law school for now.


I'm confused. How does this provide advice to the OP?


1. I would see how much of a refund, if anything, you can get on tuition.

2. Start looking for alternative jobs and/or graduate programs you are interested in NOW, OR start mass mailing and applying to as many jobs you can think of because it's not over and some places MAY still be hiring.

3. I would drop journal.

Overall: Once again, if I were in your shoes I probably would drop out, although I guess I can't say for sure nor would I ever even dream of encouraging you not to keep trying. If you want to keep going with law, MASS MAIL, NOW. Go crazy with this job search and stop worrying about journal and grades as much.

OR you can double down and get awesome grades and stay on journal and apply for a clerkship beginning of 3L year.

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Re: Struck out at OCI... drop out?

Postby sky7 » Tue Oct 02, 2012 1:44 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:I'm not the OP, but to all those recommending to work on interviewing - why? OCI is over, so I don't see what good improving interviewing would do.

Also, to the anon @ 10/1, 12:49 pm - I'd love to hear more about what happened to you. What type of firm did you clerk at, and did it lead to biglaw offers during your third year?


Forgot to mention this to the OP. I am also in patent law. I clerked at a midsized patent boutique firm (about 20-30 attorneys). I got offers from both biglaw and large ip boutique firms. I ended up taking the offer from one of the boutique firms in a large market with market-paying salary ($160,000).

OP, if I can get a job with bottom of the barrel grades, you can too. I agree with what has been said about seeing a doctor about depression. I should have done this too, but I felt I was "better" than that. Once things calm down here, I will probably make an appointment just to keep everything regulated so that I am ready to go for my first year.


Concur - it's anecdotally overwhelming that bottom of the barrel grades still lands market salary jobs in patent law. If I could do it, very easily, you will be fine. Keep calm and carry on.

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Re: Struck out at OCI... drop out?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Oct 02, 2012 1:50 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Forgot to mention this to the OP. I am also in patent law. I clerked at a midsized patent boutique firm (about 20-30 attorneys). I got offers from both biglaw and large ip boutique firms. I ended up taking the offer from one of the boutique firms in a large market with market-paying salary ($160,000).

OP, if I can get a job with bottom of the barrel grades, you can too. I agree with what has been said about seeing a doctor about depression. I should have done this too, but I felt I was "better" than that. Once things calm down here, I will probably make an appointment just to keep everything regulated so that I am ready to go for my first year.


I apologize to OP for derailing the thread, but anonymous person who wrote this quote, could you PM me? I have some questions about working for a small patent firm and would really appreciate some advice.




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