Please help me decide whether to drop out...

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bilbobaggins
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Re: Please help me decide whether to drop out...

Postby bilbobaggins » Tue Jan 18, 2011 7:00 pm

I wouldn't drop out based on one semester of mediocre grades, especially if you're not interested in big law.

This is a decision that should really be carefully thought over and I'd give it this semester to see how you feel. If you don't want to be in school after that, then I'd say do it.

TLS posters tend to be too risk averse and also financial doom and gloom oriented. A T25 school with a small scholarship is a good position to be in. The grades aren't great, but grades matter most for Big Law, which this poster says he/she has not interest in.

This is a large decision. I'd think about it for a while and see how the semester develops.

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romothesavior
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Re: Please help me decide whether to drop out...

Postby romothesavior » Tue Jan 18, 2011 7:09 pm

Gatriel wrote:If you drop out your a fool.

This is a little extreme. Would I drop out if I were median or below after one semester? No. But that's because I want to be a lawyer really, really badly, and my job prospects elsewhere aren't great. If OP looks at their situation, realizes they are in for a really tough road ahead, and they don't really want to be a lawyer all that badly, then dropping out doesn't make them a fool. Quite the opposite actually.

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bostonian
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Re: Please help me decide whether to drop out...

Postby bostonian » Tue Jan 18, 2011 8:36 pm

Gatriel wrote:If you drop out your a fool.


I was immediately reminded of this:
--ImageRemoved--

Aqualibrium
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Re: Please help me decide whether to drop out...

Postby Aqualibrium » Tue Jan 18, 2011 8:41 pm

Is there any truth to the notion that C's on your transcript at a t25 = no shot with biglaw? If so, op might have some things to consider. I still wouldn't advise someone to drop out after only one semester though. Unless they are very bottom of the class and paying sticker that is.

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bostonian
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Re: Please help me decide whether to drop out...

Postby bostonian » Tue Jan 18, 2011 11:39 pm

To provide a little more substance than my last post...

Honestly, I'd say it comes down to whether or not you want to be a lawyer. If you want to be a lawyer because you want to be a lawyer (not because you're hoping for a $150k+ job with a big firm), then the only way to do that is to stay in law school. I suppose of course you could try to apprentice in and take the bar in one of the few states that doesn't actually require a law degree, but that's not genearlly a valid option.
If you don't want to be a lawyer, then leave. That's what I did. The idea of a law degree being flexible and valuable outside the law has become somewhat outdated. Plenty of people with law degrees do other things, but for most, the degree doesn't actually help them in a non-legal career. Ultimately, you'll just have a couple hundred thousand dollars in debt and a degree you're not going to use. I went to law school with the "flexible degree" mindset, not really wanting to practice law. My initial plan was that I'd go into corporate law for a few years, make some contacts in an industry, then move into management. However, I realized a few things: (a) That's a horribly inefficient way of doing things, and as someone who pretty much always tries to find the most efficient way to accomplish anything (to the point of appearing lazy to those who don't know me well), I found that hard to stomach. (b) I really really despise analytical writing. The thought of writing one more legal memo or case brief or even an issue-spotter exam made me want to jump off the Sears Tower. (c) I want to further develop my mathematical skills, not just going into a general management career, but into a more specialized and technical field, ideally airline operations and route planning. A law degree would not help me get there, and I'd still need to go back to school afterward to take the math (and probably some engineering) classes I'd need, since my economics degree didn't carry me past multivariable calculus and introductory statistics.
If you're really not sure, take a leave of absence. Try to find a job that's somehow related to what you think you might want to do instead of law (I know, finding a job isn't the easiest thing to do right now, but if you're not expecting a huge salary, you should be able to get something). See how you like it, and talk to people who've been in the industry for awhile. While you're at it, talk to some lawyers. If you decide you want to go back, then you can.
I'm generally not an advocate of dropping out because of grades, particularly at a top school. My grades were shitty this past semester, but I made the decision to drop out before I got them back, so they didn't impact my decision. Unless you're only willing to work in law if you can get a big firm job, you still can be a lawyer without being at the top of the class. Whether or not you stay in law school should really come down to whether or not you actually want to be a lawyer.

sethc
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Re: Please help me decide whether to drop out...

Postby sethc » Wed Jan 19, 2011 2:24 am

bostonian wrote:To provide a little more substance than my last post...

Honestly, I'd say it comes down to whether or not you want to be a lawyer. If you want to be a lawyer because you want to be a lawyer (not because you're hoping for a $150k+ job with a big firm), then the only way to do that is to stay in law school.
If you don't want to be a lawyer, then leave. That's what I did. The idea of a law degree being flexible and valuable outside the law has become somewhat outdated. Plenty of people with law degrees do other things, but for most, the degree doesn't actually help them in a non-legal career.


Agree with you 100% on the first part of that.. but to underscore the usefulness of ANY J.D. in addition to whatever education/experience you already have?? I'm not sure if that's how you meant it, but I really don't think it's antiquated at all. You might be in a better position than I to make that call, but I know there are many non-legal opportunities out there that a JD will help with. Regardless of where you went (and as always, better school = better overall), I can't imagine a career where knowledge of the law would be disregarded as an asset to the job. Unless you're talking some run-of-the-mill job that pays hourly, or something..

..which is my next point. I think, in a sense, it can make you seem WAY overqualified depending on where/what you're applying for. In other words, I think employers will take a glance, see that, and figure "eh this guy is going to expect too much money. pass." - now that part, I can see.. but I think that's heavily dependent on the job. Just my $0.02.

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$1.99
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Re: Please help me decide whether to drop out...

Postby $1.99 » Wed Jan 19, 2011 2:29 am

drop out man. these are some of the worst grades ive seen. plus your reason of joining a record label with a jd is ridiculous

sethc
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Re: Please help me decide whether to drop out...

Postby sethc » Wed Jan 19, 2011 2:55 am

Jeez, that was a little harsh.. but to each their own.

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holdencaulfield
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Re: Please help me decide whether to drop out...

Postby holdencaulfield » Wed Jan 19, 2011 12:00 pm

Doritos wrote:Do you think it would help the OP to talk to career services at his/her school and see what kind of GPA cutoffs different employers have w/r/t grads from there?



Not if his career services is anything like mine. (Did you know networking is a great way to boost your job search??!)

megadeth317
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Re: Please help me decide whether to drop out...

Postby megadeth317 » Thu Jan 20, 2011 8:43 am

I appreciate all the responses and replies I did not think I'd get this many at all. Sorry I haven't been posting much I've been running around talking to career services etc about my situation. I'll post back shortly. Been a rough week...

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Cupidity
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Re: Please help me decide whether to drop out...

Postby Cupidity » Thu Jan 20, 2011 8:51 am

If you are where I think you are, we have more credits this semester than last, if you do slightly above median, it could seriously pull you up. And, our CDO is pretty amazing, use them. You'll be ok.

09042014
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Re: Please help me decide whether to drop out...

Postby 09042014 » Thu Jan 20, 2011 10:59 am

OP has to get a 3.6 (probably top 20% or higher) just to get back to median. And median at a T25 doesn't get you shit.

Drop out if you can still get tuition back.

OP what is your hard science background?

megadeth317
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Re: Please help me decide whether to drop out...

Postby megadeth317 » Thu Jan 20, 2011 2:27 pm

Cupidity wrote:If you are where I think you are, we have more credits this semester than last, if you do slightly above median, it could seriously pull you up. And, our CDO is pretty amazing, use them. You'll be ok.


Thanks I appreciate it.

Desert Fox wrote:OP has to get a 3.6 (probably top 20% or higher) just to get back to median. And median at a T25 doesn't get you shit.

Drop out if you can still get tuition back.

OP what is your hard science background?


Science background is BA in bio so its nothing substantial really. Plus I don't really want to do anything with that (research used to drive me crazy)

Does it make any difference that I KNOW I didn't prep right last semester? (Outlining late, hardly ANY practice tests, barely any supplements)

09042014
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Re: Please help me decide whether to drop out...

Postby 09042014 » Thu Jan 20, 2011 2:52 pm

megadeth317 wrote:
Cupidity wrote:If you are where I think you are, we have more credits this semester than last, if you do slightly above median, it could seriously pull you up. And, our CDO is pretty amazing, use them. You'll be ok.


Thanks I appreciate it.

Desert Fox wrote:OP has to get a 3.6 (probably top 20% or higher) just to get back to median. And median at a T25 doesn't get you shit.

Drop out if you can still get tuition back.

OP what is your hard science background?


Science background is BA in bio so its nothing substantial really. Plus I don't really want to do anything with that (research used to drive me crazy)

Does it make any difference that I KNOW I didn't prep right last semester? (Outlining late, hardly ANY practice tests, barely any supplements)


Even if you do a lot better you are still fucked.

And I don't think you can count on doing better. I did great in two classes I didn't take notes in, and just used other peoples outlines. Got median pwnd in two classes I tried hard in.

Effort doesn't equal grades. You are probably just stupid.

firemed
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Re: Please help me decide whether to drop out...

Postby firemed » Thu Jan 20, 2011 3:51 pm

megadeth317 wrote:Science background is BA in bio so its nothing substantial really. Plus I don't really want to do anything with that (research used to drive me crazy)

Does it make any difference that I KNOW I didn't prep right last semester? (Outlining late, hardly ANY practice tests, barely any supplements)



PA school. DO school. NP school. Sure, people will throw up on you. But when you have a guaranteed job making $100+K a year... well, I don't think you'll worry too much.

Or... go to a good MBA program and get a job at a record label.

There ya go.

Srsly, have you considered the possibility you didn't study right because subconsciously you don't really want to be a lawyer? I mean, srsly, in your OP you state you don't really have any desire to be an attorney.

ETA: and you are aware that record labels are having a hard time right now, and still will even after the economy recovers, right?

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romothesavior
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Re: Please help me decide whether to drop out...

Postby romothesavior » Thu Jan 20, 2011 4:26 pm

Desert Fox wrote:Effort doesn't equal grades.

This... oh so much.

I think a certain threshold of hard work is necessary to doing well in LS, but once you get past that minimum threshold, hard work is almost irrelevant.

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Doritos
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Re: Please help me decide whether to drop out...

Postby Doritos » Thu Jan 20, 2011 4:53 pm

Desert Fox wrote:Effort doesn't equal grades. You are probably just stupid.


Geez, quit sugar coating it and tell him how you really feel.

09042014
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Re: Please help me decide whether to drop out...

Postby 09042014 » Thu Jan 20, 2011 5:17 pm

Doritos wrote:
Desert Fox wrote:Effort doesn't equal grades. You are probably just stupid.


Geez, quit sugar coating it and tell him how you really feel.


His mom should have aborted him when she had the chance.

09042014
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Re: Please help me decide whether to drop out...

Postby 09042014 » Thu Jan 20, 2011 5:18 pm

romothesavior wrote:
Desert Fox wrote:Effort doesn't equal grades.

This... oh so much.

I think a certain threshold of hard work is necessary to doing well in LS, but once you get past that minimum threshold, hard work is almost irrelevant.


I literally have an inverse relationship.

megadeth317
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Re: Please help me decide whether to drop out...

Postby megadeth317 » Fri Jan 21, 2011 10:27 am

firemed wrote:
megadeth317 wrote:Science background is BA in bio so its nothing substantial really. Plus I don't really want to do anything with that (research used to drive me crazy)

Does it make any difference that I KNOW I didn't prep right last semester? (Outlining late, hardly ANY practice tests, barely any supplements)



PA school. DO school. NP school. Sure, people will throw up on you. But when you have a guaranteed job making $100+K a year... well, I don't think you'll worry too much.

Or... go to a good MBA program and get a job at a record label.

There ya go.

Srsly, have you considered the possibility you didn't study right because subconsciously you don't really want to be a lawyer? I mean, srsly, in your OP you state you don't really have any desire to be an attorney.

ETA: and you are aware that record labels are having a hard time right now, and still will even after the economy recovers, right?


Thanks for the advice, physical therapy is something I might be interested in and should look into. THe schooling costs similar to ls I think but the uncertainty is way lower. I think a good MBA is out because I don't have significant work experience and getting some (enough to getting into an mba program that is probably worth it) would take like 3-4 years. I'd be done with law school by then and be 27. Yea, record labels are struggling I know. Idk what to say about that one haha.

romothesavior wrote:
Desert Fox wrote:Effort doesn't equal grades.

This... oh so much.

I think a certain threshold of hard work is necessary to doing well in LS, but once you get past that minimum threshold, hard work is almost irrelevant.


I do agree with this but when I look back I really only put serious effort in the last month of school (and then i was just starting outlines). I was literally the only person I know without anything written down when classes ended. And practice tests...I STARTED them 1-2 days before the exam. Maybe I'm stupid when it comes to this stuff but I feel like like a LOT of doing well is writing a good exam (duh), which is something Im sure I didnt do. I read GTM in the summer etc but I really had no idea how to write what is actually a good exam.

sethc
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Re: Please help me decide whether to drop out...

Postby sethc » Fri Jan 21, 2011 12:35 pm

megadeth317 wrote:I do agree with this but when I look back I really only put serious effort in the last month of school (and then i was just starting outlines). I was literally the only person I know without anything written down when classes ended. And practice tests...I STARTED them 1-2 days before the exam. Maybe I'm stupid when it comes to this stuff but I feel like like a LOT of doing well is writing a good exam (duh), which is something Im sure I didnt do. I read GTM in the summer etc but I really had no idea how to write what is actually a good exam.



Don't stress about that man, think about those that got worse grades than you (or failed out!) -- I'd be willing to bet that some stress, studies, and prepared way longer and way earlier than you. That's not inherently a bad thing, in fact I'm more of an optimist so I look at it to be a good thing. Step back - your school is prestigious and you DIDN'T FAIL! You didn't even come close to failing.. in fact I think your grades are pretty damn good man. Think about it: you're a 1L and just took your first round of (many) finals. There's a certain learning-curve to ANY law school, I think, no matter WHAT your LSAT score says.. so I'm just approaching it like that. 1st term was a reality check & a barometer, especially for what to expect re: finals. I'm confident I can grasp & learn the material enough to do NO LESS than median, but I now have confidence that above-median should not be a problem for me. It's now a matter of tweaking my habits/methods/approaches so that everything comes quicker to me.

With your grades, your confidence should be much higher than mine! Your school is more prestigious & you have less students to compete with. Don't sell yourself short, my man.

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Unitas
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Re: Please help me decide whether to drop out...

Postby Unitas » Fri Jan 21, 2011 12:40 pm

sethc wrote:
megadeth317 wrote:I do agree with this but when I look back I really only put serious effort in the last month of school (and then i was just starting outlines). I was literally the only person I know without anything written down when classes ended. And practice tests...I STARTED them 1-2 days before the exam. Maybe I'm stupid when it comes to this stuff but I feel like like a LOT of doing well is writing a good exam (duh), which is something Im sure I didnt do. I read GTM in the summer etc but I really had no idea how to write what is actually a good exam.



Don't stress about that man, think about those that got worse grades than you (or failed out!) -- I'd be willing to bet that some stress, studies, and prepared way longer and way earlier than you. That's not inherently a bad thing, in fact I'm more of an optimist so I look at it to be a good thing. Step back - your school is prestigious and you DIDN'T FAIL! You didn't even come close to failing.. in fact I think your grades are pretty damn good man. Think about it: you're a 1L and just took your first round of (many) finals. There's a certain learning-curve to ANY law school, I think, no matter WHAT your LSAT score says.. so I'm just approaching it like that. 1st term was a reality check & a barometer, especially for what to expect re: finals. I'm confident I can grasp & learn the material enough to do NO LESS than median, but I now have confidence that above-median should not be a problem for me. It's now a matter of tweaking my habits/methods/approaches so that everything comes quicker to me.

With your grades, your confidence should be much higher than mine! Your school is more prestigious & you have less students to compete with. Don't sell yourself short, my man.


When did LSs start failing people?

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romothesavior
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Re: Please help me decide whether to drop out...

Postby romothesavior » Fri Jan 21, 2011 12:40 pm

sethc wrote:I do agree with this but when I look back I really only put serious effort in the last month of school (and then i was just starting outlines).

This doesn't sound all that different from most people's study habits.

megadeth317
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Re: Please help me decide whether to drop out...

Postby megadeth317 » Fri Jan 21, 2011 12:46 pm

romothesavior wrote:
sethc wrote:I do agree with this but when I look back I really only put serious effort in the last month of school (and then i was just starting outlines).

This doesn't sound all that different from most people's study habits.


yea but practice tests a day before the exam?

sethc
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Re: Please help me decide whether to drop out...

Postby sethc » Fri Jan 21, 2011 4:06 pm

Unitas wrote:
sethc wrote:
megadeth317 wrote:I do agree with this but when I look back I really only put serious effort in the last month of school (and then i was just starting outlines). I was literally the only person I know without anything written down when classes ended. And practice tests...I STARTED them 1-2 days before the exam. Maybe I'm stupid when it comes to this stuff but I feel like like a LOT of doing well is writing a good exam (duh), which is something Im sure I didnt do. I read GTM in the summer etc but I really had no idea how to write what is actually a good exam.



Don't stress about that man, think about those that got worse grades than you (or failed out!) -- I'd be willing to bet that some stress, studies, and prepared way longer and way earlier than you. That's not inherently a bad thing, in fact I'm more of an optimist so I look at it to be a good thing. Step back - your school is prestigious and you DIDN'T FAIL! You didn't even come close to failing.. in fact I think your grades are pretty damn good man. Think about it: you're a 1L and just took your first round of (many) finals. There's a certain learning-curve to ANY law school, I think, no matter WHAT your LSAT score says.. so I'm just approaching it like that. 1st term was a reality check & a barometer, especially for what to expect re: finals. I'm confident I can grasp & learn the material enough to do NO LESS than median, but I now have confidence that above-median should not be a problem for me. It's now a matter of tweaking my habits/methods/approaches so that everything comes quicker to me.

With your grades, your confidence should be much higher than mine! Your school is more prestigious & you have less students to compete with. Don't sell yourself short, my man.


When did LSs start failing people?



Low-tier schools? I'm not sure when they started, but I can tell you for a fact that they do - or at least make an effort. Not saying shit grades is intrinsically a school or even prof's fault at all.. but lenient admission criteria means, obviously, that more people will be admitted initially which, again obviously, is big $. The problem is that by virtue of this, they take more students than they can accommodate and the end result is "weeding out" but it's more out of continuity and necessity than it is to produce the best lawyers. I'm sure it's a combination of both, but you can't ignore the obvious financial conflict-of-interest IMO.

All I'm saying as that at places like my school, your grades will not always reflect that you busted your ass and gave it 110%. Don't misconstrue into thinking that my message is like "IT AIN'T FAIR!!" because that's not what I wanted to get across (sorry if it was). You could extrapolate that to "life" in general or undergrad, I guess, but the learning curve isn't as harsh or long in any other facet, at least not in my experience.

Also as an aside, I thought most in the thread were aware that I went to a low-tier & I also try to make sure my posts make that clear (especially advice-giving posts like this one) so my bad for not mentioning that at the outset like I normally do. Having said that, I think it might be a lot easier to sell yourself short at a T14/25 if your grades come out lower than you thought they should be because it's such a competitive school and one might feel "not worthy" of his peers etc. I can't speak on that, maybe I'm wrong, but reassurance from a stranger can be a disturbingly awesome thing.




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