T3 v CLS - Is there ever a reason not to go?

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lavarman84

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Re: T3 v CLS - Is there ever a reason not to go?

Postby lavarman84 » Sat Jul 16, 2016 3:36 am

plurilingue wrote:
I'm sure you can find students from lower ranked schools at these firms as well. I've seen a number of anecdotes on this site warning transfers that they may not be given a fair shake with certain firms.


Could you comment on how many there are? To the extent that we use partner promotion as a proxy for success — your argument, not mine — go ahead and tell me how many partners are there are CGSH or S&C or DPW or any other V10 from Tier 2 and Tier 3 schools. Given that this is how you measure success, do you really want OP to subject himself to those chances against those from Columbia — with arguably the best representation in biglaw?


Yep. Because no matter where he ends up, the odds are stacked against him making partner. Might as well go into biglaw with $30,000 of debt rather than $200,000.

The money comes from the prestige of the firm and the prestige of the resumes of the attorneys. I fully acknowledge that any reasonably intelligent attorney can do most of the work. But law is about being thorough and looking behind as many corners as possible, in addition to being extremely high intelligence and having a preternatural level of attention to detail. The kids who are Harvard UG + YLS (and there are more than a few at, for example, WLRK) have literally done everything they were supposed to do since they were 10 years old. Those are the people the clients want handling their bet-the-company matters.


This is why I've strongly considered going to the plaintiff's side. Might as well make money off of the arrogance of those with "prestige." :lol:

But sure, it's the prestige of the resumes that brings in the money.

But can you prove me wrong?


Yes. But it's a waste of time. Would not be hard to show that even the top firms promote lawyers from lower ranked schools to partner. You can actually see for yourself if you check the directories.

OP, as an final matter, I would point out that both of the people who disagree with me have made personal attacks. (The other person insinuated that I am lying about my employment and have failed the bar — and later edited the post upon realizing that he's wrong.) I have completely refrained from doing so. This is symptomatic of the dynamic that will follow you for the rest of your life in the law: people in the out-group will feel jealous, bitter, and insecure when they come in contact with those in the in-group. Do you really want to spend the rest of your life being a part of the out-group?

I'm out for tonight. Enjoy.


Correct me if I'm wrong but it was you who said that people at your V10 firm regularly trash associates for having nonconforming credentials (i.e. for being from lower ranked schools). It's not jealousy, bitterness, or insecurity that provoke that response. It's being treated as inferior. That tends to make people from the "out-group" not like you. That and calling them the "out-group." But I'm more amused than anything by this conversation. It's interesting seeing that there are people out there that think this way.

In fact, the "dynamic" is actually easily explainable. A quote from Raylan Givens sums it up well: “If you run into an asshole in the morning, you ran into an asshole. If you run into assholes all day, you're the asshole.”
Last edited by lavarman84 on Sat Jul 16, 2016 3:43 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: T3 v CLS - Is there ever a reason not to go?

Postby lavarman84 » Sat Jul 16, 2016 3:39 am

BTW OP, I apologize for sidetracking your thread. You have a tough decision to make. I'd advise you to go to Columbia if you don't have an offer and are worried you won't get one (assuming you want biglaw). But if you do get an offer you like, I'd advise you to stay. Graduating with only $30,000 in debt and a biglaw salary will make your life so much easier. In the end, it's your decision, and nobody would blame you for choosing to transfer.(even if it is for prestige-related reasons)

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Re: T3 v CLS - Is there ever a reason not to go?

Postby sflyr2016 » Sat Jul 16, 2016 3:59 am

plurilingue wrote:
I'm sure you can find students from lower ranked schools at these firms as well. I've seen a number of anecdotes on this site warning transfers that they may not be given a fair shake with certain firms.


Could you comment on how many there are? To the extent that we use partner promotion as a proxy for success — your argument, not mine — go ahead and tell me how many partners are there are CGSH or S&C or DPW or any other V10 from Tier 2 and Tier 3 schools. Given that this is how you measure success, do you really want OP to subject himself to those chances against those from Columbia — with arguably the best representation in biglaw?

And as the data indicates, there isn't a bias in these firms when it comes to promoting these people to partner. Firms are all about the money. They care about which associate is doing better work, billing more, and bringing in more money, not who has the more prestigious degree.


The money comes from the prestige of the firm and the prestige of the resumes of the attorneys. I fully acknowledge that any reasonably intelligent attorney can do most of the work. But law is about being thorough and looking behind as many corners as possible, in addition to being extremely high intelligence and having a preternatural level of attention to detail. The kids who are Harvard UG + YLS (and there are more than a few at, for example, WLRK) have literally done everything they were supposed to do since they were 10 years old. Those are the people the clients want handling their bet-the-company matters.

I also have to chuckle at your assumption that only the "bottom 150 firms" are the ones promoting lower ranked law students. You're truly the quintessential Ivy League grad. You are really playing up to the stereotype. :lol:


But can you prove me wrong?

OP, as an final matter, I would point out that both of the people who disagree with me have made personal attacks. (The other person insinuated that I am lying about my employment and have failed the bar — and later edited the post upon realizing that he's wrong.) I have completely refrained from doing so. This is symptomatic of the dynamic that will follow you for the rest of your life in the law: people in the out-group will feel jealous, bitter, and insecure when they come in contact with those in the in-group. Do you really want to spend the rest of your life being a part of the out-group?

I'm out for tonight. Enjoy.


In-group/out-group? This is hilarious. Op I think what this guy is trying to say is that if you get into the firm he is in, you'll be "in" but not really "in". I mean, you'll be in, but still sort of out; at the same time, though, you'll be more "in" than the people who thought they were part of the in-group, but then didn't get into that firm. Still, you'll definitely be out of the group that's really in, and that's why you should pay 200k to go to cls.

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Re: T3 v CLS - Is there ever a reason not to go?

Postby jbagelboy » Sat Jul 16, 2016 4:45 am

If we're talking like Hofstra or St Johns I would probably transfer. I'm big on taking the money when its a matter of a few slots on US News (#11 versus #13 or #3 versus #4 or something), ESPECIALLY within the T14, but your career is not the same thing as your first job and there is a world of difference between these schools. You have the opportunity to go to one of the best schools in the country and arguably the biggest/among the three biggest firms represented in New York elite firms (along with HLS and NYU). Do I think this is worth $170,000? I don't know if any law degree is worth that much ex ante but you're already in the game. Getting an offer at a V10 is a terrific outcome from your school, but there's about a 90-95% chance that will not be your last job and this will not be the last time you have to apply to jobs.

I want to be clear that I don't think this is about prestige chasing or that names or "brands" of schools have much value on their own. The difference between one top school and another is negligible in the long-term. This is not this case.

For what it's worth I don't think you're making a career ruinous mistake by staying or anything of the sort. But if there was a transfer to make, it would be this one.

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Re: T3 v CLS - Is there ever a reason not to go?

Postby plurilingue » Sat Jul 16, 2016 5:55 am

I agree with the post above.

As borne out in the data earlier in this thread, a disproportionately large part of the most elite New York firms' associates come from HLS, CLS, and NYU — in any given year, between forty and sixty percent of summer associates. If you were at a lower T14 with a full ride, there would be no reason to leave. But this is not such a case.

Also, I have to mention here that I have heard partners at the aforementioned firms tell me openly that "[n]obody gives a [expletive] about schools like Berkeley and Michigan in New York." Given that this is how they think of completely legitimate lower T14 schools, I really think it is in your interest to transfer, especially to a school like CLS. There really is a material boost in attending one of those three schools in the New York market if that is your goal.

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Re: T3 v CLS - Is there ever a reason not to go?

Postby nick417 » Sat Jul 16, 2016 9:53 am

ilikechocolate wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
jkpolk wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
I am in the same position as you from a lower ranked T1. Set to graduate debt-free with pretty much a guaranteed job at a V50 (and likely regional office of a V10) through my school's OCI, as well as 13 interviews (several with V20 NYC firms), that I got through various recruiting programs. In the end, I thought long and hard about how much a degree is worth and decided a Columbia degree is well worth the 200k investment (as long as you take school seriously and continue to do your best, which I'm sure won't be an issue for you). Sure, you may be able to land a V10 SA spot from your current school and parlay that into your first post-law school job, but if you ever want to stop doing that (and many associates do), you'd still be in a pretty tough spot trying to move laterally to top firms or in-house positions. Your gpa and class rank will disappear from your resume in a few years and all there will be left is the name of your law school. The Columbia name will get a MUCH more favorable response than your current school and open up opportunities that you will NOT have access to coming from where you are now. The same goes for me and anyone else not at a T10 school.

Also, would you have gone to Columbia if they had accepted you as a first-year and offered you about 25k a year? You'll be in that same position now debt-wise.


First, I love the gloating that you did here. Look how awesome I am (debt free, 13 interviews with V20 firms) totally useless, self-serving information.

As for the second part, I disagree with your basic conclusion. Your law school matters only for certain jobs the further out you are from graduation. Those jobs boil down to things like U.S. Prosecutor, Supreme Court Clerk, Federal Judge, etc. But as other posters have said, your experience and reputation are more valuable than your school once you have been working a couple years.

As for the OP: I would never take on $200K debt for law school. It is not worth it. You are better off with very little debt and graduating at the top of your T3 school. Even though T3 schools suck, people still find jobs. Especially the ones at the top of the class. You already have SA interviews. It boils down to your preferences. But I would be uneasy taking on $200K in debt to work in the volatile legal industry. It really isn't worth it.

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Re: T3 v CLS - Is there ever a reason not to go?

Postby smaug » Sat Jul 16, 2016 10:02 am

plurilingue wrote:that the most elite firms across many practice areas in New York (e.g., Cleary Gottlieb; Davis Polk; Sullivan & Cromwell; Freshfields)

hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha

Bravo

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Re: T3 v CLS - Is there ever a reason not to go?

Postby smaug » Sat Jul 16, 2016 10:05 am

jbagelboy wrote:If we're talking like Hofstra or St Johns I would probably transfer. I'm big on taking the money when its a matter of a few slots on US News (#11 versus #13 or #3 versus #4 or something), ESPECIALLY within the T14, but your career is not the same thing as your first job and there is a world of difference between these schools. You have the opportunity to go to one of the best schools in the country and arguably the biggest/among the three biggest firms represented in New York elite firms (along with HLS and NYU). Do I think this is worth $170,000? I don't know if any law degree is worth that much ex ante but you're already in the game. Getting an offer at a V10 is a terrific outcome from your school, but there's about a 90-95% chance that will not be your last job and this will not be the last time you have to apply to jobs.

I want to be clear that I don't think this is about prestige chasing or that names or "brands" of schools have much value on their own. The difference between one top school and another is negligible in the long-term. This is not this case.

For what it's worth I don't think you're making a career ruinous mistake by staying or anything of the sort. But if there was a transfer to make, it would be this one.

I disagree with this post.

I'd rather be the Hofstra grad than the CLS transfer who snagged DPW.

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Re: T3 v CLS - Is there ever a reason not to go?

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Jul 16, 2016 11:58 am

OP here. I really appreciate this discussion everyone. It has given me a lot to think about. I have to re-read everything and hopefully respond to a few posts directly, but for now here is some more information:

I am not attending St. Johns/Brooklyn, but rather a school ranked somewhere between 100-150.

The v10 SA interview developed from a faculty connection.

If everything goes according to plan, I should get an SA at a v50 after OCI--if I don't, and I don't transfer, I think I will regret it for the rest of my life.

Since high school I have dreamed--never actually believing it was possible--of attending CLS, but today I sit here actually contemplating not going, but I am scared that if I don't, I will always look back and think what if. However, at the same time, I am currently of the belief that paying 200k for essentially the same job prospects, albeit, at a lower ranked firm, just isn't worth it.
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Re: T3 v CLS - Is there ever a reason not to go?

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Jul 16, 2016 11:58 am

Double post.

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Re: T3 v CLS - Is there ever a reason not to go?

Postby barkschool » Sat Jul 16, 2016 12:47 pm

Anonymous User wrote:If everything goes according to plan, I should get an SA at a v50 after OCI--if I don't, and I don't transfer, I think I will regret it for the rest of my life.

Since high school I have dreamed--never actually believing it was possible--of attending CLS, but today I sit here actually contemplating not going, but I am scared that if I don't, I will always look back and think what if. However, at the same time, I am currently of the belief that paying 200k for essentially the same job prospects, albeit, at a lower ranked firm, just isn't worth it.


You are paying ~$200k for two things.

1. Stacking the odds heavily in your favor of having your desired employment outcome.

2. Making employment in the future easier, regardless of your starting job.

My vote is CLS > TTT.

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Re: T3 v CLS - Is there ever a reason not to go?

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Jul 16, 2016 12:51 pm

OP here -- what are my chances of not getting NYC BigLaw from CLS?

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Re: T3 v CLS - Is there ever a reason not to go?

Postby barkschool » Sat Jul 16, 2016 12:54 pm

nebby wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:OP here -- what are my chances of not getting NYC BigLaw from CLS?

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Re: T3 v CLS - Is there ever a reason not to go?

Postby jkpolk » Sat Jul 16, 2016 1:06 pm

barkschool wrote:
nebby wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:OP here -- what are my chances of not getting NYC BigLaw from CLS?


>0%.

It comes down to personal goals. If you want to do NY transactional and you can get the 2L summer associate job, at a firm doing that work, you do not need Columbia for anything. Certainly not anything worth 200k. If you wanted to be a career AUSA, maybe i'd advise differently.

The thing is, law school prestige matters way less after getting that first job, especially in corporate. Sure it matters to some, but people also go "damn, that guy went to Hofstra and still murdered the corporate law game, he must be bright/competent." It's a goddamn corporate job. People care if you're good at your job and have good workplace/deal experience. You should own your school and draw motivation from the fact that you've won the game - some idiots from NYU/Columbia will jerk each other off about what school they went to while you develop actual skills, substance and confidence.

The sooner you get out of the rat race mentality and start developing your own professional swagger/image/confidence, the sooner you will accomplish whatever professional goals you desire. That confidence does not come from Columbia. The only thing you need, which does, is a job - which you may already have.

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Re: T3 v CLS - Is there ever a reason not to go?

Postby sflyr2016 » Sat Jul 16, 2016 1:08 pm

Anonymous User wrote:OP here. I really appreciate this discussion everyone. It has given me a lot to think about. I have to re-read everything and hopefully respond to a few posts directly, but for now here is some more information:

I am not attending St. Johns/Brooklyn, but rather a school ranked somewhere between 100-150.

The v10 SA interview developed from a faculty connection.

If everything goes according to plan, I should get an SA at a v50 after OCI--if I don't, and I don't transfer, I think I will regret it for the rest of my life.

Since high school I have dreamed--never actually believing it was possible--of attending CLS, but today I sit here actually contemplating not going, but I am scared that if I don't, I will always look back and think what if. However, at the same time, I am currently of the belief that paying 200k for essentially the same job prospects, albeit, at a lower ranked firm, just isn't worth it.


op, i'm one of the people encouraging you to stay IF you feel that you would have a good shot at ny biglaw from the school you are attending. Being guaranteed one or two interviews is one thing; people with your class rank at your school consistently getting ny biglaw is another. If all you're going to get from your current school is a handful of interviews extended to you as a favor to one of your professors, then the odds don't seem good enough to stay. I highly doubt that transferring to cls will ever be a decision you'll regret, as it will very close to guarantee you a biglaw position and because you have always wanted to attend cls anyway (and that's worth a lot). My only point was that if you thought that you'd get essentially the same job whether or not you transferred, then, monetarily, it's not worth the added cost. Again, though, if your chances of getting big law from your current school are merely a coin flip (or worse), then by all means transfer and don't look back. You'll be able to service that debt.

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Re: T3 v CLS - Is there ever a reason not to go?

Postby xfer999 » Sat Jul 16, 2016 1:22 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Since high school I have dreamed--never actually believing it was possible--of attending CLS, but today I sit here actually contemplating not going, but I am scared that if I don't, I will always look back and think what if. However, at the same time, I am currently of the belief that paying 200k for essentially the same job prospects, albeit, at a lower ranked firm, just isn't worth it.


Hey OP - I transferred to my dream school even though I realized I would be paying $200k to probably reach the same outcome (but the doors would be easier to open, and there would be more doors available if I wanted to open them.) Financially foolish - but I have no regrets. If you want to talk about this aspect further, feel free to PM me.

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Re: T3 v CLS - Is there ever a reason not to go?

Postby Nebby » Sat Jul 16, 2016 2:38 pm

TBF it's only $180k for two full years at CLS debt serviced

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Re: T3 v CLS - Is there ever a reason not to go?

Postby Nebby » Sat Jul 16, 2016 2:39 pm

barkschool wrote:
nebby wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:OP here -- what are my chances of not getting NYC BigLaw from CLS?

You could always be a horrible interviewer and not get it. I don't know of any transfer who wanted biglaw and didn't get it, though.

I'd transfer if you want the opportunity to interview with firms you wouldn't otherwise. I don't know how helpful that is though, since you likely have little idea what you want or even what corporate v. lit looks like so it's moot.

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Re: T3 v CLS - Is there ever a reason not to go?

Postby smaug » Sat Jul 16, 2016 3:39 pm

i'm going to continue to push back against the advice ITT

*even if you strike out* i'm not sure you're really better off transferring

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Re: T3 v CLS - Is there ever a reason not to go?

Postby sublime » Sat Jul 16, 2016 3:48 pm

smaug wrote:i'm going to continue to push back against the advice ITT

*even if you strike out* i'm not sure you're really better off transferring



Yea, I don't really get it.

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Re: T3 v CLS - Is there ever a reason not to go?

Postby smaug » Sat Jul 16, 2016 4:05 pm

I think people just don't have any conception of what 200,000 dollars is in practice, and what the difference in lifestyle is.

Let's say you're on a 10 year repayment plan. Your monthly payment will be around $2500 or so. That's $30,000 a year. But, you actually wouldn't need to make 150,000 to approach the biglawyer making 180. The break-even point would actually be closer to 120,000.

I know there aren't tons of jobs to get in that range, especially starting, but it's something to consider.

Debt is a real burden. Don't walk into it lightly because you want a fancier degree.

---

ETA:

and note, that's to break even at one month, to feel like you're in the same place. biglawyer with 200k debt is going to need to keep dedicating that money (likely not for 10 years, due to raises, but for a while...) to up to pace with 120k debt free dude. Debt free dude will be building savings why biglawyer is fighting to get out of debt...

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Re: T3 v CLS - Is there ever a reason not to go?

Postby sflyr2016 » Sat Jul 16, 2016 4:17 pm

smaug wrote:I think people just don't have any conception of what 200,000 dollars is in practice, and what the difference in lifestyle is.

Let's say you're on a 10 year repayment plan. Your monthly payment will be around $2500 or so. That's $30,000 a year. But, you actually wouldn't need to make 150,000 to approach the biglawyer making 180. The break-even point would actually be closer to 120,000.

I know there aren't tons of jobs to get in that range, especially starting, but it's something to consider.

Debt is a real burden. Don't walk into it lightly because you want a fancier degree.

---

ETA:

and note, that's to break even at one month, to feel like you're in the same place. biglawyer with 200k debt is going to need to keep dedicating that money (likely not for 10 years, due to raises, but for a while...) to up to pace with 120k debt free dude. Debt free dude will be building savings why biglawyer is fighting to get out of debt...



The pay gap between biglaw and lower-paying firms widens every year -- i doubt a firm paying 120/yr is going to pay out 50k bonuses and increase base pay another 30k within 3 years, for example. So I disagree that he should stay even if his odds at biglaw are not great where he is at. If biglaw is not realistic from your current school, op, then transfer. It if is, then save yourself 200k.

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Re: T3 v CLS - Is there ever a reason not to go?

Postby smaug » Sat Jul 16, 2016 4:18 pm

more people burn out of biglaw more quickly than you'd expect, and way way more don't get market bonuses

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Re: T3 v CLS - Is there ever a reason not to go?

Postby sublime » Sat Jul 16, 2016 4:22 pm

Yea, Smaug, I think it is a difficulty of conceptualizing what 200k is for a lot of people. I mean, fuck, that's a house free and clear in most areas of the country. Or 200k early in your career is a hell of a start to retirement.

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Re: T3 v CLS - Is there ever a reason not to go?

Postby jkpolk » Sat Jul 16, 2016 4:31 pm

sublime wrote:Yea, Smaug, I think it is a difficulty of conceptualizing what 200k is for a lot of people. I mean, fuck, that's a house free and clear in most areas of the country. Or 200k early in your career is a hell of a start to retirement.


I would happily give back my degree and vprettyhigh job (which i find not that bad tbh) for 200k debt forgiveness. You keep the back half of that transaction, OP, while also keeping the front half. Staying is win-win.



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