Devastated- need advice.

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clh2005
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Devastated- need advice.

Postby clh2005 » Sat Jan 21, 2012 5:36 pm

1L at Tier 1 (40-50). We got our grades last week- I have a 2.5, the curve is around a 3.0. So obviously well below median.

It's really, really frustrating because of all the time and effort put in, and feeling so confident in the month after exams.

Looking ahead, there's no way I can salvage myself for Biglaw jobs and I know this, but I was never really interested in that to begin with. I DO really enjoy studying the law and law school itself- I guess I just suck at taking exams. I''m not someone who hates the idea of being a lawyer or studying law or anything like that- in other words, I like law school, I'm just not very good at it (at least through one semester).

I know what people have said here before- talk to your profs, go over the old exams, see where you went wrong, etc. I'm just trying to determine at this point whether it's worth it to continue. I'm extremely fortunate in the sense that I won't have any debt when I graduate, but I'm trying to determine if any hope for a job that doesn't consist of doc review in a dimly lit closet at this point.

I'd appreciate any constructive advice anyone may have.

Thanks.

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Always Credited
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Re: Devastated- need advice.

Postby Always Credited » Sat Jan 21, 2012 5:38 pm

clh2005 wrote:1L at Tier 1 (40-50). We got our grades last week- I have a 2.5, the curve is around a 3.0. So obviously well below median.

It's really, really frustrating because of all the time and effort put in, and feeling so confident in the month after exams.

Looking ahead, there's no way I can salvage myself for Biglaw jobs and I know this, but I was never really interested in that to begin with. I DO really enjoy studying the law and law school itself- I guess I just suck at taking exams. I''m not someone who hates the idea of being a lawyer or studying law or anything like that- in other words, I like law school, I'm just not very good at it (at least through one semester).

I know what people have said here before- talk to your profs, go over the old exams, see where you went wrong, etc. I'm just trying to determine at this point whether it's worth it to continue. I'm extremely fortunate in the sense that I won't have any debt when I graduate, but I'm trying to determine if any hope for a job that doesn't consist of doc review in a dimly lit closet at this point.

I'd appreciate any constructive advice anyone may have.

Thanks.



Everyone who asks "should I continue" needs to preface that question with telling us exactly why you attended law school in the first place

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AVBucks4239
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Re: Devastated- need advice.

Postby AVBucks4239 » Sat Jan 21, 2012 5:39 pm

What was your general approach for studying? Not just for exams but throughout the semester. People on here can't really give you solid advice when all we know is that you're disappointed with your grades.

Edit: since you enjoy law school, I'm assuming you want advice as to how to improve second semester to at least try to redeem yourself from first semester.
Last edited by AVBucks4239 on Sat Jan 21, 2012 5:47 pm, edited 1 time in total.

MrAnon
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Re: Devastated- need advice.

Postby MrAnon » Sat Jan 21, 2012 5:39 pm

clh2005 wrote:1L at Tier 1 (40-50). We got our grades last week- I have a 2.5, the curve is around a 3.0. So obviously well below median.

It's really, really frustrating because of all the time and effort put in, and feeling so confident in the month after exams.

Looking ahead, there's no way I can salvage myself for Biglaw jobs and I know this, but I was never really interested in that to begin with. I DO really enjoy studying the law and law school itself- I guess I just suck at taking exams. I''m not someone who hates the idea of being a lawyer or studying law or anything like that- in other words, I like law school, I'm just not very good at it (at least through one semester).

I know what people have said here before- talk to your profs, go over the old exams, see where you went wrong, etc. I'm just trying to determine at this point whether it's worth it to continue. I'm extremely fortunate in the sense that I won't have any debt when I graduate, but I'm trying to determine if any hope for a job that doesn't consist of doc review in a dimly lit closet at this point.

I'd appreciate any constructive advice anyone may have.

Thanks.



If you don't care about biglaw why would you quit? You will find something but it will be a slog and it may take a long time to get any kind of footing in the profession. If you like law school so far carry on. My advice is to find a job now while in school, maybe paralegal at an office that could hire you? Don't worry about your grades any more because they won't carry you. Focus on experience and trying to earn a little money. Forget about summer jobs for 1L or 2L, you need real experience now in a law office someplace.

MrAnon
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Re: Devastated- need advice.

Postby MrAnon » Sat Jan 21, 2012 5:40 pm

Always Credited wrote:
clh2005 wrote:1L at Tier 1 (40-50). We got our grades last week- I have a 2.5, the curve is around a 3.0. So obviously well below median.

It's really, really frustrating because of all the time and effort put in, and feeling so confident in the month after exams.

Looking ahead, there's no way I can salvage myself for Biglaw jobs and I know this, but I was never really interested in that to begin with. I DO really enjoy studying the law and law school itself- I guess I just suck at taking exams. I''m not someone who hates the idea of being a lawyer or studying law or anything like that- in other words, I like law school, I'm just not very good at it (at least through one semester).

I know what people have said here before- talk to your profs, go over the old exams, see where you went wrong, etc. I'm just trying to determine at this point whether it's worth it to continue. I'm extremely fortunate in the sense that I won't have any debt when I graduate, but I'm trying to determine if any hope for a job that doesn't consist of doc review in a dimly lit closet at this point.

I'd appreciate any constructive advice anyone may have.

Thanks.



Everyone who asks "should I continue" needs to preface that question with telling us exactly why you attended law school in the first place


Agreed. Why are you really asking. It shows that you had no plan in place. If I do well, I'll do x. If I don't do well, I'll do y. Instead you are on here saying now what.

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romothesavior
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Re: Devastated- need advice.

Postby romothesavior » Sat Jan 21, 2012 5:41 pm

Your grades are pretty bad, and few people below median in T40-50 country are looking at decent jobs. Really sorry to hear about your situation, but the market is so bad that you might just be wasting your time. What are you looking to do with a law degree? You say you don't want biglaw, so what do you want instead?

If you were looking at debt, I'd tell you to bail, but since you don't have any, it is more of a personal call. Sounds like you like law school and want to be a lawyer, which is good. If you get your grades up and hit the pavement hard, you might be able to scrape up something decent for graduation. You've got a long uphill climb ahead of you.

clh2005
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Re: Devastated- need advice.

Postby clh2005 » Sat Jan 21, 2012 5:45 pm

Always Credited wrote:
clh2005 wrote:1L at Tier 1 (40-50). We got our grades last week- I have a 2.5, the curve is around a 3.0. So obviously well below median.

It's really, really frustrating because of all the time and effort put in, and feeling so confident in the month after exams.

Looking ahead, there's no way I can salvage myself for Biglaw jobs and I know this, but I was never really interested in that to begin with. I DO really enjoy studying the law and law school itself- I guess I just suck at taking exams. I''m not someone who hates the idea of being a lawyer or studying law or anything like that- in other words, I like law school, I'm just not very good at it (at least through one semester).

I know what people have said here before- talk to your profs, go over the old exams, see where you went wrong, etc. I'm just trying to determine at this point whether it's worth it to continue. I'm extremely fortunate in the sense that I won't have any debt when I graduate, but I'm trying to determine if any hope for a job that doesn't consist of doc review in a dimly lit closet at this point.

I'd appreciate any constructive advice anyone may have.

Thanks.



Everyone who asks "should I continue" needs to preface that question with telling us exactly why you attended law school in the first place

Sure- like I said, I really do enjoy law school classes and the study of law. And I've always wanted to go to law school, I'm just not very good at taking exams apparently. But the study of law has always interested me much more than other career paths.


As for studying approach, I read all the cases and made short briefs of them before class, and also relied heavily on supplements that had been recommended to me by older students. I made my outlines based primarily off of outlines from successful 2Ls and 3Ls. Perhaps this is where I went wrong?

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romothesavior
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Re: Devastated- need advice.

Postby romothesavior » Sat Jan 21, 2012 5:47 pm

clh2005 wrote:
Always Credited wrote:Everyone who asks "should I continue" needs to preface that question with telling us exactly why you attended law school in the first place

Sure- like I said, I really do enjoy law school classes and the study of law. And I've always wanted to go to law school, I'm just not very good at taking exams apparently. But the study of law has always interested me much more than other career paths.

That's not what he asked. He asked why you went to law school, and I hope the answer to that wasn't "Because I love learning teh lawls!"

What do you want to do with your degree, mang? What's your gameplan?

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Grizz
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Re: Devastated- need advice.

Postby Grizz » Sat Jan 21, 2012 5:47 pm

clh2005 wrote:Sure- like I said, I really do enjoy law school classes and the study of law. And I've always wanted to go to law school, I'm just not very good at taking exams apparently. But the study of law has always interested me much more than other career paths.

Unless you're an academic, the "study of law" is not a career path.

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AVBucks4239
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Re: Devastated- need advice.

Postby AVBucks4239 » Sat Jan 21, 2012 5:50 pm

clh2005 wrote:As for studying approach, I read all the cases and made short briefs of them before class, and also relied heavily on supplements that had been recommended to me by older students. I made my outlines based primarily off of outlines from successful 2Ls and 3Ls. Perhaps this is where I went wrong?

What about doing hypos and/or practice exams?

clh2005
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Re: Devastated- need advice.

Postby clh2005 » Sat Jan 21, 2012 5:59 pm

AVBucks4239 wrote:
clh2005 wrote:As for studying approach, I read all the cases and made short briefs of them before class, and also relied heavily on supplements that had been recommended to me by older students. I made my outlines based primarily off of outlines from successful 2Ls and 3Ls. Perhaps this is where I went wrong?

What about doing hypos and/or practice exams?

Yes, I took several practice exams for each class about a month before exams. I thought I had a really good feel for what the profs were looking for but I guess not. Maybe I should have started sooner?

To answer the other question, I wasn't sure what field I wanted to go into when I started. MAybe that was my problem as well. There are several fields that interest me, like criminal law, real estate law, and tort law. My best grade (sadly, a B+) was in Torts, so maybe I should concentrate on finding internships with firms that specialize in tort law??

crit_racer
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Re: Devastated- need advice.

Postby crit_racer » Sat Jan 21, 2012 6:01 pm

would you be open to things like family law, criminal defense, personal injury, or probate kinda stuff? You can probably get in with a small firm in one of these fields if you can do well in interviews. Those are probably your best options at this point, but those career paths are not as bad as some on here would make them out to be. You may enjoy it if you like the court room and lots of personal interaction with your clients.

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romothesavior
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Re: Devastated- need advice.

Postby romothesavior » Sat Jan 21, 2012 6:05 pm

Grizz wrote:
clh2005 wrote:Sure- like I said, I really do enjoy law school classes and the study of law. And I've always wanted to go to law school, I'm just not very good at taking exams apparently. But the study of law has always interested me much more than other career paths.

Unless you're an academic, the "study of law" is not a career path.

And that's using "career" liberally. It could more aptly be described as "a lifetime of intellectual circle-jerking."

clh2005
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Re: Devastated- need advice.

Postby clh2005 » Sat Jan 21, 2012 6:05 pm

crit_racer wrote:would you be open to things like family law, criminal defense, personal injury, or probate kinda stuff? You can probably get in with a small firm in one of these fields if you can do well in interviews. Those are probably your best options at this point, but those career paths are not as bad as some on here would make them out to be. You may enjoy it if you like the court room and lots of personal interaction with your clients.

Yes, absolutely.

crit_racer
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Re: Devastated- need advice.

Postby crit_racer » Sat Jan 21, 2012 6:08 pm

clh2005 wrote:
crit_racer wrote:would you be open to things like family law, criminal defense, personal injury, or probate kinda stuff? You can probably get in with a small firm in one of these fields if you can do well in interviews. Those are probably your best options at this point, but those career paths are not as bad as some on here would make them out to be. You may enjoy it if you like the court room and lots of personal interaction with your clients.

Yes, absolutely.


start e-mailing those kinda firms and see if you could be a part time LA/paralegal during the school year and work full time during the summer. In those areas of legal practice, it's ALL about networking, so get out there and start meeting some of those attys. GL!

2014jd
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Re: Devastated- need advice.

Postby 2014jd » Sat Jan 21, 2012 6:09 pm

You should definitely keep going. You like learning about the law, you are going to graduate with no debt, and you are going to a solid school where you indeed still can get a solid job. I know that for this crowd, all three premises are questionable so I'll explain.

Studying the law isn't a career path, but it's at least a good sign that you will like a career in law. And I know practicing law has nothing to do with law school, but that's probably good for you because you aren't very good at it. Graduating with no debt means the only thing you are losing is opportunity cost, and depending on your situation, that could be minimal. A top 50 school is still a solid school where you can get a solid job. Yeah, big law is probably out for you, but there are still small firms, gov't, and nonprofits. I know those don't pay $160k, but with no debt, you don't need a high paying job to do what you want to do with life.

I do agree with others to not worry so much about grades at this point and try to get experience/connections.

clh2005
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Re: Devastated- need advice.

Postby clh2005 » Sat Jan 21, 2012 6:21 pm

Thanks to everyone for your input and advice. I really appreciate it.

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jkpolk
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Re: Devastated- need advice.

Postby jkpolk » Sat Jan 21, 2012 6:26 pm

If you were to drop out, would you have immediate, gainful employment? If I were you I'd stay in school while I looked for any vaguely amusing job. If I found a sweet gig I'd drop out... rashly quitting sounds dumb considering you are not accumulating debt and enjoy school.

clh2005
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Re: Devastated- need advice.

Postby clh2005 » Sat Jan 21, 2012 6:28 pm

polkij333 wrote:If you were to drop out, would you have immediate, gainful employment? If I were you I'd stay in school while I looked for any vaguely amusing job. If I found a sweet gig I'd drop out... rashly quitting sounds dumb considering you are not accumulating debt and enjoy school.

Immediate? No. I have past work experience, but I wouldn't even know where to begin with looking for a full-time job right now

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Yvonnella
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Re: Devastated- need advice.

Postby Yvonnella » Sat Jan 21, 2012 7:12 pm

It's an observation on the obvious, but quitting is what quitters do. Don't quit. I work with a lot of in-house counsel, and NONE of them have stressed that anything less than a 4.0 will prevent you from getting a job, even though you may not get the Biglaw job of your dreams. In fact, some of them, excellent and well-paid attorneys, I should add, have candidly admitted that their grades in law school were not all that hot. Personally, I would rather graduate from a great school with average grades than graduate from an average school with great grades. Your grades in LS become decreasingly important the more experience you gain and the further from law school you get. If you like studying law, stay with it.

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sunynp
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Re: Devastated- need advice.

Postby sunynp » Sat Jan 21, 2012 7:18 pm

The only reason to stay in school is because you won't owe any money. It is only costing you the opportunity cost of starting in a new field of work. You might be able to find something in law after you finish school - but you should be prepared for the idea that you may not. You need to read some of the threads in the employment forum so you understand how hard finding a job will be.

You need to start a part time job if you can find one. You need to understand what the day to day practice of law is about. You need to start building experience.


What areas of the country are you looking in? What kind of salary do you want? What else can you do besides law?

PS. Don't stay in something that isn't working for you because you are afraid of what other people might think. For many people quitting law school would be the absolute best move, but very few of them will actually drop out.

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arvcondor
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Re: Devastated- need advice.

Postby arvcondor » Sat Jan 21, 2012 9:14 pm

romothesavior wrote:
clh2005 wrote:
Always Credited wrote:Everyone who asks "should I continue" needs to preface that question with telling us exactly why you attended law school in the first place

Sure- like I said, I really do enjoy law school classes and the study of law. And I've always wanted to go to law school, I'm just not very good at taking exams apparently. But the study of law has always interested me much more than other career paths.

That's not what he asked. He asked why you went to law school, and I hope the answer to that wasn't "Because I love learning teh lawls!"

This is a needlessly dickish response. Stop being an asshole to someone who's looking for help.

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Grizz
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Re: Devastated- need advice.

Postby Grizz » Sat Jan 21, 2012 10:47 pm

Yvonnella wrote:It's an observation on the obvious, but quitting is what quitters do. Don't quit. I work with a lot of in-house counsel, and NONE of them have stressed that anything less than a 4.0 will prevent you from getting a job, even though you may not get the Biglaw job of your dreams. In fact, some of them, excellent and well-paid attorneys, I should add, have candidly admitted that their grades in law school were not all that hot. Personally, I would rather graduate from a great school with average grades than graduate from an average school with great grades. Your grades in LS become decreasingly important the more experience you gain and the further from law school you get. If you like studying law, stay with it.

45,000 legal grads, 25,000 ish legal jobs, not all of which are full time, permanent, or desirable in any way. Do the math.

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Grizz
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Re: Devastated- need advice.

Postby Grizz » Sat Jan 21, 2012 10:49 pm

arvcondor wrote:
romothesavior wrote:
clh2005 wrote:
Always Credited wrote:Everyone who asks "should I continue" needs to preface that question with telling us exactly why you attended law school in the first place

Sure- like I said, I really do enjoy law school classes and the study of law. And I've always wanted to go to law school, I'm just not very good at taking exams apparently. But the study of law has always interested me much more than other career paths.

That's not what he asked. He asked why you went to law school, and I hope the answer to that wasn't "Because I love learning teh lawls!"

This is a needlessly dickish response. Stop being an asshole to someone who's looking for help.

It's entirely legitimate. As far as I can tell, OP has no career aspirations besides "learning the law," which incidentally law school does a very bad job of teaching you.

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arvcondor
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Re: Devastated- need advice.

Postby arvcondor » Sat Jan 21, 2012 10:54 pm

Then phrase such a thought in a less mocking tone. Not that tough.




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