Help! Should I drop out?

(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: 273425
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Help! Should I drop out?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Oct 02, 2012 12:20 am

2L here at a T30. Around top 15-20%. Will probably drop this semester if I stick around because class has been at the bottom of my priority list after my internship, job hunting, etc.

So I struck out at OCI. 1 CB - dinged. To be honest I hate law anyway. I was top 5% for most of 1L (up until my last grade or so) and even then I wanted to drop out, but I knew my family and friends wouldn't let me drop out if I was doing so well (plus there was a lot of opportunity). But my grades dropped and I struck out (though I don't think my disinterest had to do with striking out, at least for OCI my mindset was that I love law and couldn't do anything else).

Did about 170 mass mailings, 5 screeners, all dings. Signed up for the big PI fair, so far I'm at about 12 dings and 1 interview.

I'm close to sticker at an expensive school (a <10k scholarship). So far I'd guess I have about 80-90k debt, I'll have close to 200 if I graduate. Lib arts major from a [decent] state school so no real other career option to fall back on. If I do drop out I guess I'd go get a 2nd bachelors in Comp Engineering and either start working or go on for a masters. (Speaking of which, can anyone speak to how career prospects are in the comp engineering field? Or what kind of school is necessary for decent employment prospects?). The only other option would probably be doing something medical - either nursing school or a postbac for pre-med and doing med school.

Well any advice would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!

Anonymous User
Posts: 273425
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Help! Should I drop out?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Oct 02, 2012 12:31 am

Normally, I would say drop out, but when I hear people speaking about a second BA/BS, I cringe.
That is another four years, tons of money, and yes, the possibility that 1) you might not be that bright in math and fail (SAT scores would help here), 2) the market still being tough in that field. Indeed, I thought for most engineers, six figure pay checks are very rare. It is kind of weird overall how our generation looks at a degree as an easy way to money, when historically we must be the generation that should least see it that way.

I would personally stick out because you have no other career alternative. It sucks striking out, but wherever you start you will be starting at a low wage, including law unless there is a miracle.

If you really are not certain though, take a year of absence and really experiment with some careers. Since your degree is English, I would try sales jobs like real estate and see whether you have much talent. I did know people from college who are making it big in the field, even though they started at a bad economic time.

User avatar
prezidentv8
Posts: 2821
Joined: Mon Dec 29, 2008 5:33 am

Re: Help! Should I drop out?

Postby prezidentv8 » Tue Oct 02, 2012 1:07 am

I lean toward dropping out, but I should stress that it's a really personal call. My logic: OCI strikeout + 200k debt if you finish means your odds of financial success aren't very good. 80-90k is waaaaaaaaaaaaaay more manageable.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273425
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Help! Should I drop out?

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

Does your school have a JD/MBA? I know some people at my school take the tuition hit for the extra year, tack on the MBA, and then use the fierce B-school connections/OCI to get a high-level job that is usually not doing law. These jobs are mostly less money than biglaw, but if you hate law then maybe that's less important.

09042014
Posts: 18282
Joined: Wed Oct 14, 2009 10:47 pm

Re: Help! Should I drop out?

Postby 09042014 » Tue Oct 02, 2012 1:10 am

Anonymous User wrote:Does your school have a JD/MBA? I know some people at my school take the tuition hit for the extra year, tack on the MBA, and then use the fierce B-school connections/OCI to get a high-level job that is usually not doing law. These jobs are mostly less money than biglaw, but if you hate law then maybe that's less important.

Just do get mbb bro.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273425
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Help! Should I drop out?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Oct 02, 2012 1:13 am

OP here.

Thanks for the replies so far, looks like a split decision.

Some corrections: I think I could handle the math, took Calculus I and II and managed. Always been more of a math/science person, more the reason I just feel out of place in law school and not an IP person. Nowhere near type A and I hate arguing. I actually kinda hate with a passion reading for long periods (especially dry material, but even interesting material is difficult) and writing. I'm a terrible writer.

I mean I could just take the pre-reqs for a masters in comp engineering, but I'd have to pay for it on my own since it isn't a degree program. And with my psych degree and debt I'll probably be approaching mid-30s by the time I manage to save the couple thousand required to take the pre-reqs.

My school has JD/MBA but the MBA here is pretty TTT and I was hoping to save the MBA card for later down the road after I have some work experience in case I hit a career dead-end.

User avatar
EvilClinton
Posts: 342
Joined: Wed Aug 15, 2012 6:45 pm

Re: Help! Should I drop out?

Postby EvilClinton » Tue Oct 02, 2012 1:15 am

Drop out now. Nothing is going to make 100k more in debt worth it.

User avatar
sunynp
Posts: 1899
Joined: Tue May 24, 2011 2:06 pm

Re: Help! Should I drop out?

Postby sunynp » Tue Oct 02, 2012 1:20 am

Drop out. You don't want to be a lawyer. Don't go into more debt. FWIW you can do a post-baccularate degree for medicine. It doesn't take 4 more years.

Can't you do pre-req for computer science at a community college or a local state school for pretty cheap?

Anonymous User
Posts: 273425
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Help! Should I drop out?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Oct 02, 2012 1:27 am

sunynp wrote:Drop out. You don't want to be a lawyer. Don't go into more debt. FWIW you can do a post-baccularate degree for medicine. It doesn't take 4 more years.

Can't you do pre-req for computer science at a community college or a local state school for pretty cheap?


Post-Bac is something I've considered a lot, however I have 0 med volunteer/work experience so that'll be problematic since good post-bacs/med-schools care about that sorta thing. The ideal scenario is me getting some kind of job for now and maybe volunteering in my spare time.

Yeah I can take the pre-reqs for relatively cheap, but it'll still run 2-5k+ which is going to take a good handful of years to save up since I'm going to be looking at <$12-14/hour and lots of debt payments.

User avatar
sunynp
Posts: 1899
Joined: Tue May 24, 2011 2:06 pm

Re: Help! Should I drop out?

Postby sunynp » Tue Oct 02, 2012 1:31 am

Anonymous User wrote:
sunynp wrote:Drop out. You don't want to be a lawyer. Don't go into more debt. FWIW you can do a post-baccularate degree for medicine. It doesn't take 4 more years.

Can't you do pre-req for computer science at a community college or a local state school for pretty cheap?


Post-Bac is something I've considered a lot, however I have 0 med volunteer/work experience so that'll be problematic since good post-bacs/med-schools care about that sorta thing. The ideal scenario is me getting some kind of job for now and maybe volunteering in my spare time.

Yeah I can take the pre-reqs for relatively cheap, but it'll still run 2-5k+ which is going to take a good handful of years to save up since I'm going to be looking at <$12-14/hour and lots of debt payments.


Cant you IBR your debt for a couple of years?
I think you must have more options out there somewhere between $200,000 for law school and $12 an hour.

r6_philly
Posts: 10707
Joined: Sat Dec 19, 2009 4:32 pm

Re: Help! Should I drop out?

Postby r6_philly » Tue Oct 02, 2012 12:24 pm

Many schools offer MS in IT/MIS/CS for non CS ug majors. You have to take a few classes as prereq but they offer them as dual listed courses. If you don't like to do any real work, go for a MIS/IT type degree that will lead you to manage infrastructure and personnel/equipment. I wouldn't go hard core CS/CE and try to be a software engineer because it is boring as hell, unless/even if you make games.

So I vote MS IT/MIS or MBA with a IT/MIS major. I would probably still consider finish the JD too, you can try to go consulting and your JD would add value.

User avatar
fl0w
Posts: 1404
Joined: Fri Jul 10, 2009 9:46 am

Re: Help! Should I drop out?

Postby fl0w » Tue Oct 02, 2012 12:39 pm

r6_philly wrote:Many schools offer MS in IT/MIS/CS for non CS ug majors. You have to take a few classes as prereq but they offer them as dual listed courses. If you don't like to do any real work, go for a MIS/IT type degree that will lead you to manage infrastructure and personnel/equipment. I wouldn't go hard core CS/CE and try to be a software engineer because it is boring as hell, unless/even if you make games.

So I vote MS IT/MIS or MBA with a IT/MIS major. I would probably still consider finish the JD too, you can try to go consulting and your JD would add value.


I agree with this post. as a CS major who specialized in video game programming that shit is no joke. And when you say you did fine in calc I and II... dude there is SO much more math that gets way more complex after that. Like I had to get a math minor to be able to understand how to write the code for the PRE-REQUISITE to my video game programming course. I had a second major in business mgt in case, as the above poster mentioned, i wanted to go into managing IT depts.

For your MBA, don't get it from a TTT school. You won't get a job. My ex went to do her MBA and I learned a lot about the process from helping her through it. Take the GMAT until you can get into a top school if that's the route you decide to take.

There are also opportunities, as stated above, to use a JD in consulting. I know of firms that handle e-discover and computer forensics projects. Know a little of the tech and have a JD to understand the data that comes out.

I guess my main point is that going CS or CE is by no means easy man. I listen to all my liberal arts friends talk about how much they loved their 4 years of partying in college and all I can remember is going blind programming in the labs.

that was a bit all over the place, but i hope something was useful.

User avatar
romothesavior
Posts: 14772
Joined: Fri Jun 26, 2009 4:29 pm

Re: Help! Should I drop out?

Postby romothesavior » Tue Oct 02, 2012 12:44 pm

Drop out.

lovelaw27
Posts: 218
Joined: Thu Dec 18, 2008 6:35 am

Re: Help! Should I drop out?

Postby lovelaw27 » Tue Oct 02, 2012 1:58 pm

Anonymous User wrote: To be honest I hate law anyway.


Drop out now. Working a job you hate is never going to work.

User avatar
ndirish2010
Posts: 2950
Joined: Mon Dec 14, 2009 4:41 pm

Re: Help! Should I drop out?

Postby ndirish2010 » Tue Oct 02, 2012 2:14 pm

Most people hate their jobs. It's not like it is shocking.

User avatar
fl0w
Posts: 1404
Joined: Fri Jul 10, 2009 9:46 am

Re: Help! Should I drop out?

Postby fl0w » Tue Oct 02, 2012 3:04 pm

ndirish2010 wrote:Most people hate their jobs. It's not like it is shocking.


truth.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273425
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Help! Should I drop out?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Oct 02, 2012 5:06 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
sunynp wrote:Drop out. You don't want to be a lawyer. Don't go into more debt. FWIW you can do a post-baccularate degree for medicine. It doesn't take 4 more years.

Can't you do pre-req for computer science at a community college or a local state school for pretty cheap?


Post-Bac is something I've considered a lot, however I have 0 med volunteer/work experience so that'll be problematic since good post-bacs/med-schools care about that sorta thing. The ideal scenario is me getting some kind of job for now and maybe volunteering in my spare time.

Yeah I can take the pre-reqs for relatively cheap, but it'll still run 2-5k+ which is going to take a good handful of years to save up since I'm going to be looking at <$12-14/hour and lots of debt payments.

Anonymous User wrote:OP here.
I actually kinda hate with a passion reading for long periods (especially dry material, but even interesting material is difficult) and writing. I'm a terrible writer.

I mean I could just take the pre-reqs for a masters in comp engineering, but I'd have to pay for it on my own since it isn't a degree program. And with my psych degree and debt I'll probably be approaching mid-30s by the time I manage to save the couple thousand required to take the pre-reqs.


A couple of things here. First, medical school is far, I repeat, FAR, more reading than law school. Far more memorization of hyper specific terminology that you will often never use in your end career. My brother did medical school and for the first 2.5 years, they would have binders of about 200 pages that they had to learn every week. Not "better skim the case because you might get cold called, but you'll never actually be tested on the details of what you're reading" reading, but "read and learn this shit because you're going to have an exam on it in 2 weeks" reading. Do not go to medical school if you cannot handle tedium and mass reading, you will be miserable.

Second, if you do consider going back to school for a postbac, fairly sure you will be able to do it on private loans unless you have abysmal credit. Especially if you're just talking sub 10k. At that level, it's basically just like applying for a credit card. Adding to your debt is scary, but it will most likely be better in the long run than spending a "handful of years" saving up before you go back to school, at which point you'll still be deferring the loans anyway.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273425
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Help! Should I drop out?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Oct 02, 2012 5:34 pm

Anonymous User wrote:A couple of things here. First, medical school is far, I repeat, FAR, more reading than law school. Far more memorization of hyper specific terminology that you will often never use in your end career. My brother did medical school and for the first 2.5 years, they would have binders of about 200 pages that they had to learn every week. Not "better skim the case because you might get cold called, but you'll never actually be tested on the details of what you're reading" reading, but "read and learn this shit because you're going to have an exam on it in 2 weeks" reading. Do not go to medical school if you cannot handle tedium and mass reading, you will be miserable.

Second, if you do consider going back to school for a postbac, fairly sure you will be able to do it on private loans unless you have abysmal credit. Especially if you're just talking sub 10k. At that level, it's basically just like applying for a credit card. Adding to your debt is scary, but it will most likely be better in the long run than spending a "handful of years" saving up before you go back to school, at which point you'll still be deferring the loans anyway.


As for the first part - I can probably handle it for a couple years of school. I don't think I'll ever be able to just sit down and read 30+ textbook pages in one sitting, but I can usually get through it if given enough time. I managed to get it done first semester of law school even if it did take me 2x as long. But as soon as I realized I didn't have to in order to do good enough that ended. But the point is I can probably handle it for school, I just don't think it'd be smart to do a career where literally my only job is reading and writing boring things.

Yeah that's what I thought, just wasn't sure how easy it is to come by. I mean my credit is kinda crappy (low/mid 600s) but I might be able to get it with a high interest rate (or find a guarantor).

Anonymous User
Posts: 273425
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Help! Should I drop out?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Oct 02, 2012 6:17 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:A couple of things here. First, medical school is far, I repeat, FAR, more reading than law school. Far more memorization of hyper specific terminology that you will often never use in your end career. My brother did medical school and for the first 2.5 years, they would have binders of about 200 pages that they had to learn every week. Not "better skim the case because you might get cold called, but you'll never actually be tested on the details of what you're reading" reading, but "read and learn this shit because you're going to have an exam on it in 2 weeks" reading. Do not go to medical school if you cannot handle tedium and mass reading, you will be miserable.

Second, if you do consider going back to school for a postbac, fairly sure you will be able to do it on private loans unless you have abysmal credit. Especially if you're just talking sub 10k. At that level, it's basically just like applying for a credit card. Adding to your debt is scary, but it will most likely be better in the long run than spending a "handful of years" saving up before you go back to school, at which point you'll still be deferring the loans anyway.


As for the first part - I can probably handle it for a couple years of school. I don't think I'll ever be able to just sit down and read 30+ textbook pages in one sitting, but I can usually get through it if given enough time. I managed to get it done first semester of law school even if it did take me 2x as long. But as soon as I realized I didn't have to in order to do good enough that ended. But the point is I can probably handle it for school, I just don't think it'd be smart to do a career where literally my only job is reading and writing boring things.

Yeah that's what I thought, just wasn't sure how easy it is to come by. I mean my credit is kinda crappy (low/mid 600s) but I might be able to get it with a high interest rate (or find a guarantor).


You are rationalizing something you know nothing about on the basis of "well yes, if I had to I would do it."

I guarantee this is the same thing you said to yourself going to law school. You have solid stats, and you have no chance of doing anything else outside of going back to do more schooling. In what way is that appealing unless you legitimately have a passion for another career? This doesn't like the case here, you're just trying to jump on another ship and hope something sticks. The way I see it you have two options:

1) Continue law school, because no other viable options exist and you can wind up growing to like it. I understand big law has sailed, but it is not "big law or bust" as many claim here, especially with your stats.
2) Take a leave of absence after the end of this semester, look around, if you can't find anything come back. Don't drop out, that's the stupid option if you have a leave of absence available, you never know how you will feel a few months out if you decide to leave. It's too late to get most of your tuition for Fall anyway, might as well get your credits worth.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273425
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Help! Should I drop out?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Oct 02, 2012 6:23 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
You are rationalizing something you know nothing about on the basis of "well yes, if I had to I would do it."

I guarantee this is the same thing you said to yourself going to law school. You have solid stats, and you have no chance of doing anything else outside of going back to do more schooling. In what way is that appealing unless you legitimately have a passion for another career? This doesn't like the case here, you're just trying to jump on another ship and hope something sticks. The way I see it you have two options:

1) Continue law school, because no other viable options exist and you can wind up growing to like it. I understand big law has sailed, but it is not "big law or bust" as many claim here, especially with your stats.
2) Take a leave of absence after the end of this semester, look around, if you can't find anything come back. Don't drop out, that's the stupid option if you have a leave of absence available, you never know how you will feel a few months out if you decide to leave. It's too late to get most of your tuition for Fall anyway, might as well get your credits worth.


I mean law school was more of the anomaly than anything medical would be. Though I do understand your point. My family is all in the med field and I always wanted to do something medical in the beginning of UG (and at all times prior), I just freaked out because I didn't think I'd have the stats and I made the terrible decision to try law instead. But again I see your point, I just don't want it to seem like I failed here so now I'm going to try a random career with ok prospects and hope it works - I've seriously considered it for a very long time and generally think it would be more enjoyable for me/something I could have an easier time being passionate about.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273425
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Help! Should I drop out?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Oct 02, 2012 7:16 pm

Anonymous User wrote:I'm close to sticker at an expensive school (a <10k scholarship). So far I'd guess I have about 80-90k debt, I'll have close to 200 if I graduate. Lib arts major from a [decent] state school so no real other career option to fall back on. If I do drop out I guess I'd go get a 2nd bachelors in Comp Engineering and either start working or go on for a masters. (Speaking of which, can anyone speak to how career prospects are in the comp engineering field? Or what kind of school is necessary for decent employment prospects?). The only other option would probably be doing something medical - either nursing school or a postbac for pre-med and doing med school.

Well any advice would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!


CE/CS is a good field, you'll rely a lot more on your GPA than your school when being hired. It certainly helps to come from a good school, but the tech companies are not as picky about the school ranking as law firms are. I don't know any unemployed CE's that had decent (3.5+) GPA as long as their school was ABET accredited.

My girlfriend is in med-school and she does a lot more work than I do comparably in law-school. She was miserable up until Step II, three years in. Its a painful process, and the rote memorization she has to do makes me appreciate reading cases. If you didn't like law, you'll probably hate the first few years of med school.

She's happy now in her fourth year, where the work she does is different from the material she was forced to learn. Law is similar, and the practice is different from the study. I would suggest talking with people in the med/CE fields before making any decisions. Changing careers is a hard thing to do, and there are a lot of costs in terms of lost tuition and time. If you've invested so much into law-school already, you may consider trying alternatives such as consulting, or business as well.

User avatar
cinephile
Posts: 3469
Joined: Sun Jul 18, 2010 3:50 pm

Re: Help! Should I drop out?

Postby cinephile » Tue Oct 02, 2012 7:31 pm

In response to something posted above, you don't have to use private loans for a postbacc. I used fed loans (unsubsidized stafford) without a problem.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273425
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Help! Should I drop out?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Oct 02, 2012 7:53 pm

cinephile wrote:In response to something posted above, you don't have to use private loans for a postbacc. I used fed loans (unsubsidized stafford) without a problem.


Was it a structured program? Most schools say if you're just there to take classes for pre-reqs the govt won't loan you money.

And re: the above ... Are there really a lot of consulting or business opportunities for a T30 grad? TLS wisdom seems to suggest businesses won't want you if you have a JD and consulting is for T6 grads. Though I'd be happy to try that if it were an option.

User avatar
cinephile
Posts: 3469
Joined: Sun Jul 18, 2010 3:50 pm

Re: Help! Should I drop out?

Postby cinephile » Tue Oct 02, 2012 8:23 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
cinephile wrote:In response to something posted above, you don't have to use private loans for a postbacc. I used fed loans (unsubsidized stafford) without a problem.


Was it a structured program? Most schools say if you're just there to take classes for pre-reqs the govt won't loan you money.



It was a part of a program where you get a second bachelor's in reduced time (2 years), so I guess that explains it.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273425
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Help! Should I drop out?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Oct 02, 2012 8:39 pm

Anonymous User wrote:And re: the above ... Are there really a lot of consulting or business opportunities for a T30 grad? TLS wisdom seems to suggest businesses won't want you if you have a JD and consulting is for T6 grads. Though I'd be happy to try that if it were an option.


I have a few friends from T40 schools who are at Deloitte/Accenture/IBM/PWC. You probably won't get McKinsey or Bain, but you can probably find a job at some of the less prestigious firms if you did well in school. You could also do a tax llm, but given that you hate law, you'll probably hate tax. As with law firms, the GPA matters a lot during the hiring process. The pay isn't as high as what a big-law associate would make, but the majority of them started close to 80K. A CE would probably earn a lower salary with no work experience.

Edit: Salaries are a bit lower this year than I remember.
Last edited by Anonymous User on Tue Oct 02, 2012 8:47 pm, edited 1 time in total.




Return to “Legal Employment”

Who is online

The online users are hidden on this forum.