Hey, I know it may sound dumb since I haven't even started working as a lawyer yet. I was really thinking about my exit option when I asked the question.
I am not sure if I am interested in being a in-house legal council. I'm more interested in some business management role. I have an academic background in economics/finance and I really would like to become a business executive in the finance industry or whatever company if any opportunity presents.
I think corporate is definitely a practice that I need to pick. I wonder
(1) among corporate, what practice will give me the most rounded skill set that I can later move into a business role? I heard M&A is good.
(2) what companies will hire biglaw associates (junior/mid level) to their corporate department. I know it's impossible for them to hire me as an executive, but I would like a non-entry level role.
(3) is it possible to transition from in-house to management? Do I need to go to b-school? Is b-school easy to get in after working for a V5 firm?
thesealocust wrote:Now that my seething/snark has subsided a bit:
S&C is in a group of NYC firms for which you'd be hard pressed to pick an unequivocally better firm. I think that's the best way to look at it, and there are probably 5-10 such firms in that category.
If you're an eager law student with amorphous career goals (as most are) then you can't go wrong at S&C, but there are also other firms you can't go wrong at. If you start looking at specific practice areas, you will find many firms with better and worse, larger and smaller, better and less known, etc. practice areas. If you happen to have more specific career goals, then those differences may become important. S&C may not be the best firm to go to for bankruptcy or private equity work. Wachtell is going to be an objectively awful choice if you want to do securities work.
When it comes down to "prestige" it's too amorphous of a concept to draw meaningful distinctions within a group of similar firms. There are real differences in "prestige" between some firms, but that gap has to get pretty big for that to actually mean anything. Keep in mind that every biglaw firm is an enormous, successful business with fantastically wealthy people running it and paying ridiculous entry level salaries to clueless law school grads.
Lawyers and law students have this group obsession with ranking things. Pick any firm that isn't S&C to compare with it and you could fill a thread with people going back and forth on relative levels of "prestige" over all kinds of pointless metrics. But at the end of the day, I really think the most relevant and honest answer to this question is that S&C is one of several firms that are clearly at the top of the heap in NYC.
Without more specific ambitions or questions trying to slice it any finer will be done at the cost of those distinctions having any real relevance.