Bottom 7% how is this possible?

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OnionKnight
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Re: Bottom 7% how is this possible?

Postby OnionKnight » Mon Jan 13, 2014 7:10 pm

I like how the OP has to qualify his post with "I'm not a minority" with regard to his shitty performance. Classy.

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PepperJack
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Re: Bottom 7% how is this possible?

Postby PepperJack » Mon Jan 13, 2014 7:13 pm

rad lulz wrote:
Mr. Carter wrote:Regardless of your grades, when considering giving up completely on this career path, you should be asking yourself whether you really want to be a lawyer. If, as you seemed to hint in your original post, you are truly attracted to this career path, and know that it is what you want to do with your life, you should not allow one semester of poor grades to get in the way.

Because our careers are in their infancy, and because we know how volatile the legal job market is, we, as law students, are prone to interpreting every setback as utter calamity. In the mind of a law student, poor first semester 1L grades trigger reactions like, "Oh my gosh! My life is over! I have to drop out immediately!" But trust me, one semester of poor grades in law school is not the end, if you don't make it the end. Try to look at it in perspective: it's just one semester of one year of law school, which is just one of many stages in your career.

Sure, it sucks that you underachieved in your first semester. And sure, sometimes it's best to cut your losses. But are you really going to give up completely? If this is what you really want to do with your life, and you are willing to work through adversity, you will find your own unique path to success. Maybe because you don't have the grades for a biglaw job, you will end up interning at a plaintiff's PI firm, find your true calling, and become wildly successful in that field. Maybe this experience will force you to develop your networking skills, and you will get your dream job somewhere down the line as a result. Maybe what today seems like a huge setback, will end up being your biggest asset when its all said and done.

Try to remember that life is a journey, and that there are always going to be bumps along the way. Nobody goes through life without setbacks. Nobody goes through life without adversity. It is those of us who use that adversity to our benefit who are able to find success.

And after all, you are at a great school with no debt. That's a wonderful spot to be in and that situation didn't go away with your first semester grades. You still have it better than a ton of law students out there. If you had poor grades from a TTT with full loans, then sure, the most prudent thing may be to drop out. But, in my opinion, dropping out now would be the cowardly thing to do (assuming you truly want to be a lawyer).

Please, I urge you, before you drop out, talk to someone older, who has had a long career and has some perspective. While the opinions of other law students are certainly valuable, I think it would be even more valuable to consider the opinion of someone who has gone through adversity in his or her career and can help you put your poor first semester into perspective.

Maybe law isn't for you. Maybe this experience has taught you that you are not on the right path, and are not pursuing the career that is right for you. If this is the case, then sure, drop out. But from your initial comments it seems like a career in law is something that you do really want. If this is the case, then don't give up! Just try to keep this semester in perspective, buck up, stay optimistic, learn from your mistakes, fight through this setback, and you'll be better for it.

Best of luck!

What's cowardly is not facing facts that w that level of grades you may very well be fucked

Don't talk to damn boomers who made bad grades back in the day

They have literally no idea what it's like to get a job now

Lol @ maybe you'll have to develop networking skills

As if people with good grades from T20s also don't develop networking skills

Because frankly even w decent grades from t20 you have a not insignificant chance of getting fucked

TCR. You can't take people who succeeded in big law with terrible grades from an era when going to a t20 made big law a birthright. I have heard stories of people at t-14's playing golf with professors the day before finals, and just drawing pictures for an exam from this era. With the exception of the real white shoe firms or clerkships, there was no real incentive for people to really gun. The supply and demand is different, and while nobody says there's a direct link between high grades and high lawyering, the high grades are now a necessary condition to having the opportunity to be a lawyer.

But I agree that with little debt it can be worth it. At some point in your life there is going to be something that comes up in which having a law degree can help you. This isn't worth 200k, but it isn't worth 0. Maybe, god forbid, you have a child with special needs and the school district tries to jimmy arm you. Having the elite JD in itself might help you be treated differently. You need to in the next week or so really think this over rationally (no sitting around meditating like the prior idiot on page 1 said), and decide how much the degree will be worth to you assuming that you will never get big law. If this number is above 50k, stay. If below, go.

On the note with being a minority - there is extensive literature that being a minority DOES help with hiring. I don't know if it helps at the bottom of the class, but 50% of AA students are in the bottom 10% of the curve yet their big law rate from t-14's is higher than other groups so it's clear that would impact the analysis of staying or dropping out.

I personally think it's justified for them to have this particular boost after so many generations of being openly excluded from these very same firms irrespective of merit, but know this is not the forum for this debate. However, the fact is that from a financial standpoint if OP were a minority with that scholarship he should 100% stay and try to improve grades as much possible, because he would not be by any means a dead fish in the water.
Last edited by PepperJack on Mon Jan 13, 2014 7:16 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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rpupkin
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Re: Bottom 7% how is this possible?

Postby rpupkin » Mon Jan 13, 2014 7:14 pm

OnionKnight wrote:I like how the OP has to qualify his post with "I'm not a minority" with regard to his shitty performance. Classy.

In OP's defense, URM status is relevant to his job prospects and thus relevant to his decision to stay in (or drop out of) law school.

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OnionKnight
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Re: Bottom 7% how is this possible?

Postby OnionKnight » Mon Jan 13, 2014 7:17 pm

rpupkin wrote:
OnionKnight wrote:I like how the OP has to qualify his post with "I'm not a minority" with regard to his shitty performance. Classy.

In OP's defense, URM status is relevant to his job prospects and thus relevant to his decision to stay in (or drop out of) law school.


I stand corrected.

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PepperJack
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Re: Bottom 7% how is this possible?

Postby PepperJack » Mon Jan 13, 2014 7:18 pm

rpupkin wrote:
OnionKnight wrote:I like how the OP has to qualify his post with "I'm not a minority" with regard to his shitty performance. Classy.

In OP's defense, URM status is relevant to his job prospects and thus relevant to his decision to stay in (or drop out) of school.

This is 100% correct. On the other hand, I can understand that if one were unaware of this fact, saying I did bad and I'm not even a minority is offensive. However, there are non-grade factors that assist with hiring, one of which happens to be race.

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thesealocust
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Re: Bottom 7% how is this possible?

Postby thesealocust » Mon Jan 13, 2014 7:19 pm

Also, don't discount survivorship bias when it comes to lawyer anecdotes. You don't hear about the people who did poorly in law school and then stopped being lawyers or never became lawyers... because they aren't lawyers and nobody is asking them for advice on their legal careers.

It reminds me of the continually high "employment rate" for lawyers. Well no shit - unemployed lawyers often stop being lawyers since it takes time/money/effort to stay a lawyer while not be employed in the practice of law.

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PepperJack
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Re: Bottom 7% how is this possible?

Postby PepperJack » Mon Jan 13, 2014 7:27 pm

thesealocust wrote:Also, don't discount survivorship bias when it comes to lawyer anecdotes. You don't hear about the people who did poorly in law school and then stopped being lawyers or never became lawyers... because they aren't lawyers and nobody is asking them for advice on their legal careers.

It reminds me of the continually high "employment rate" for lawyers. Well no shit - unemployed lawyers often stop being lawyers since it takes time/money/effort to stay a lawyer while not be employed in the practice of law.

Yeah. It's no different than mentioning Bill Gates, Steve Jobs or Mark Zuckerberg as examples of college dropouts. It's not a coincidence that the college dropout success stories were smart enough to get into the best colleges, probably would have pulled honors if they stayed and only left because it was a waste of their time. The guy working at Wendy's doesn't say, "You know, I was in Yale for 2 semesters." This isn't to trivialize labor based employment, but to say that those that had an opportunity to make 10x the salary but forfeited it for more menial employment are not necessarily proud they had the opportunity in the first place. Another thing to consider is the financial downturn started 5 years ago already. That's admittedly not enough time to make partner, but why is it all the TTTT examples people point to graduated 20 years ago? 5 years isn't enough time to get on the Supreme Court, but is certainly enough time to make 200k. Where are those class of 2008 TTTT success stories?

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rpupkin
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Re: Bottom 7% how is this possible?

Postby rpupkin » Mon Jan 13, 2014 8:01 pm

PepperJack wrote: That's admittedly not enough time to make partner, but why is it all the TTTT examples people point to graduated 20 years ago? 5 years isn't enough time to get on the Supreme Court, but is certainly enough time to make 200k. Where are those class of 2008 TTTT success stories?

I dunno. The two TTT examples I gave earlier were from the classes of 2008 and 2009, respectively. No, they're not on partnership tracks at big law firms and they're not AUSAs, but they're working at small law firms while pulling a decent salary, and they enjoy what they're doing.

NotMyRealName09
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Re: Bottom 7% how is this possible?

Postby NotMyRealName09 » Mon Jan 13, 2014 8:24 pm

rpupkin wrote:
Lol @ maybe you'll have to develop networking skills

As if people with good grades from T20s also don't develop networking skills

Actually, people with good grades who get jobs through OCI often have piss-poor networking skills. They don't have to develop networking skills because they got their interviews (and jobs) by virtue of their 1L grades. People with shitty grades have to hustle and develop networking skills--they have no choice.


Actually? Often? Eh, grades get you into the interview, but your sparkling personality is what gets you the job over other candidates who all have similar credentials. Interview skills may not equate directly to networking skills, but the two are surely inter-related. I'd go so far as to say that most good networkers are also good interviewers, because it's all about having comfortable conversations with strangers. I know of several people who were on law review with me, who had comparable or better resumes, and who were shutout. The only commonality I could see is that they were, shall we say, weirdos of some kind, or came off as smug in person. So while those who land jobs through OCI did not have to hustle, I don't think you can generalize that they therefore lack networking skills, which are, in the end, just another kind of people skill.

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PepperJack
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Re: Bottom 7% how is this possible?

Postby PepperJack » Mon Jan 13, 2014 8:27 pm

NotMyRealName09 wrote:
rpupkin wrote:
Lol @ maybe you'll have to develop networking skills

As if people with good grades from T20s also don't develop networking skills

Actually, people with good grades who get jobs through OCI often have piss-poor networking skills. They don't have to develop networking skills because they got their interviews (and jobs) by virtue of their 1L grades. People with shitty grades have to hustle and develop networking skills--they have no choice.


Actually? Often? Eh, grades get you into the interview, but your sparkling personality is what gets you the job over other candidates who all have similar credentials. Interview skills may not equate directly to networking skills, but the two are surely inter-related. I'd go so far as to say that most good networkers are also good interviewers, because it's all about having comfortable conversations with strangers. I know of several people who were on law review with me, who had comparable or better resumes, and who were shutout. The only commonality I could see is that they were, shall we say, weirdos of some kind, or came off as smug in person. So while those who land jobs through OCI did not have to hustle, I don't think you can generalize that they therefore lack networking skills, which are, in the end, just another kind of people skill.

And you neglect the fact that having great networking skills doesn't make grades less important. Grades will still be the overarching feature with those networking skills just becoming necessary once one strikes out. They are not hiring someone with the expectation they'll bring in clientele, because they won't until 95% of the time they're gone.

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rpupkin
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Re: Bottom 7% how is this possible?

Postby rpupkin » Mon Jan 13, 2014 8:34 pm

NotMyRealName09 wrote:
Actually? Often? Eh, grades get you into the interview, but your sparkling personality is what gets you the job over other candidates who all have similar credentials. Interview skills may not equate directly to networking skills, but the two are surely inter-related. I'd go so far as to say that most good networkers are also good interviewers, because it's all about having comfortable conversations with strangers. I know of several people who were on law review with me, who had comparable or better resumes, and who were shutout. The only commonality I could see is that they were, shall we say, weirdos of some kind, or came off as smug in person. So while those who land jobs through OCI did not have to hustle, I don't think you can generalize that they therefore lack networking skills, which are, in the end, just another kind of people skill.

I stand by my characterization. I grant you that personality plays a huge role in both networking and interviewing, but the two require different personality strengths. You can be a great interviewee and yet be very lazy. Networking is more about hustling and taking risks. It takes guts to walk up cold to someone and start talking to them at an event. It's different than sitting in a chair at pre-scheduled interviews at which you answer the same questions over and over.

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rpupkin
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Re: Bottom 7% how is this possible?

Postby rpupkin » Mon Jan 13, 2014 8:42 pm

PepperJack wrote:And you neglect the fact that having great networking skills doesn't make grades less important. Grades will still be the overarching feature with those networking skills just becoming necessary once one strikes out. They are not hiring someone with the expectation they'll bring in clientele, because they won't until 95% of the time they're gone.

I think you're missing the point of the OP's situation. Absent some extraordinary circumstance, the OCI-big-law door is closed. In that sense, he has already "struck out." If OP wants a legal career, then he has to focus on a different category of jobs than the one you've been focused on with your above-median grades at a T14. Once you're outside that world, I don't agree with you that "grades will be the overarching feature" for the OP. Networking will be far more important.

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cinephile
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Re: Bottom 7% how is this possible?

Postby cinephile » Mon Jan 13, 2014 8:57 pm

We're talking about a T20 school, not a T14. Every single student will be networking like crazy. Most won't get decent jobs. It isn't worth your time to stick around. That extra $10k tuition and whatever living expenses you'd have to borrow this semester are not worth it. Cut your losses and move on now.

NotMyRealName09
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Re: Bottom 7% how is this possible?

Postby NotMyRealName09 » Mon Jan 13, 2014 9:50 pm

rpupkin wrote:
NotMyRealName09 wrote:
Actually? Often? Eh, grades get you into the interview, but your sparkling personality is what gets you the job over other candidates who all have similar credentials. Interview skills may not equate directly to networking skills, but the two are surely inter-related. I'd go so far as to say that most good networkers are also good interviewers, because it's all about having comfortable conversations with strangers. I know of several people who were on law review with me, who had comparable or better resumes, and who were shutout. The only commonality I could see is that they were, shall we say, weirdos of some kind, or came off as smug in person. So while those who land jobs through OCI did not have to hustle, I don't think you can generalize that they therefore lack networking skills, which are, in the end, just another kind of people skill.

I stand by my characterization. I grant you that personality plays a huge role in both networking and interviewing, but the two require different personality strengths. You can be a great interviewee and yet be very lazy. Networking is more about hustling and taking risks. It takes guts to walk up cold to someone and start talking to them at an event. It's different than sitting in a chair at pre-scheduled interviews at which you answer the same questions over and over.


This isn't an important point for me to quibble with, but you said "often," and nothing you said supports the proposition you made. Sure, those who went through OCI could be poor networkers, but they could just as easily be amazing networkers and just not need to network. Who knows? You're right, networking takes balls and guts, but it also requires confidence, a trait that helps with acing interviews. I disagreed with your frequency quantification, but we can agree to disagree. I veered off topic, this doesn't matter, my bad.

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rpupkin
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Re: Bottom 7% how is this possible?

Postby rpupkin » Mon Jan 13, 2014 10:00 pm

NotMyRealName09 wrote:
rpupkin wrote:I stand by my characterization. I grant you that personality plays a huge role in both networking and interviewing, but the two require different personality strengths. You can be a great interviewee and yet be very lazy. Networking is more about hustling and taking risks. It takes guts to walk up cold to someone and start talking to them at an event. It's different than sitting in a chair at pre-scheduled interviews at which you answer the same questions over and over.


This isn't an important point for me to quibble with, but you said "often," and nothing you said supports the proposition you made. Sure, those who went through OCI could be poor networkers, but they could just as easily be amazing networkers and just not need to network. Who knows? You're right, networking takes balls and guts, but it also requires confidence, a trait that helps with acing interviews. I disagreed with your frequency quantification, but we can agree to disagree. I veered off topic, this doesn't matter, my bad.

I actually think it's reasonably on-topic given the OP's predicament. And I agree with you that I just blithely used "often" without anything to back it up. You're right to quibble! But let me say a little more. We're both in the realm of anecdotal observation here, but, in my experience, the students with the top grades are more likely to be awkward in interpersonal communications compared to their bottom-of-the-class counterparts. As you mentioned a few posts back, you know several "weirdos" with you on law review who got shut out at OCI. That doesn't surprise me. Again, just based on anecdotal observation, some of the students near median and below tend to have better personalities and an easier time carrying on a conversation. If anything, I'd say that law school academic success is negatively correlated with good networking skills.

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Nelson
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Re: Bottom 7% how is this possible?

Postby Nelson » Mon Jan 13, 2014 10:13 pm

rpupkin wrote: If anything, I'd say that law school academic success is negatively correlated with good networking skills.

Rationalize much?

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rpupkin
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Re: Bottom 7% how is this possible?

Postby rpupkin » Mon Jan 13, 2014 10:28 pm

Nelson wrote:
rpupkin wrote: If anything, I'd say that law school academic success is negatively correlated with good networking skills.

Rationalize much?

Sometimes. But you know what that's like. When you're alone and thinking about the pain of not getting into HLS or CLS, you can rationalize how Penn was better for you anyway because you got to go to school in beautiful Philadelphia and still managed to land that sweet V50 gig in NYC.

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A. Nony Mouse
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Re: Bottom 7% how is this possible?

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Mon Jan 13, 2014 10:33 pm

Nelson wrote:
rpupkin wrote: If anything, I'd say that law school academic success is negatively correlated with good networking skills.

Rationalize much?

Yeah, in my experience, a lot of people who are really really smart and good at school stuff are good at a lot of things, including all the interpersonal stuff. Sure, there are some socially awkward brilliant people. There are also plenty of socially awkward idiots. I could maybe see an argument that law schools don't value/reward the kinds of skills associated with networking, but that doesn't mean people who are good at academics can't also network when put in a context where it's more valued.

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stillwater
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Re: Bottom 7% how is this possible?

Postby stillwater » Mon Jan 13, 2014 10:37 pm

A. Nony Mouse wrote:
Nelson wrote:
rpupkin wrote: If anything, I'd say that law school academic success is negatively correlated with good networking skills.

Rationalize much?

Yeah, in my experience, a lot of people who are really really smart and good at school stuff are good at a lot of things, including all the interpersonal stuff. Sure, there are some socially awkward brilliant people. There are also plenty of socially awkward idiots. I could maybe see an argument that law schools don't value/reward the kinds of skills associated with networking, but that doesn't mean people who are good at academics can't also network when put in a context where it's more valued.


networking is boomer flame.

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rpupkin
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Re: Bottom 7% how is this possible?

Postby rpupkin » Mon Jan 13, 2014 10:39 pm

A. Nony Mouse wrote:
Nelson wrote:
rpupkin wrote: If anything, I'd say that law school academic success is negatively correlated with good networking skills.

Rationalize much?

Yeah, in my experience, a lot of people who are really really smart and good at school stuff are good at a lot of things, including all the interpersonal stuff. Sure, there are some socially awkward brilliant people. There are also plenty of socially awkward idiots. I could maybe see an argument that law schools don't value/reward the kinds of skills associated with networking, but that doesn't mean people who are good at academics can't also network when put in a context where it's more valued.

I agree that there's a lot of variation. I definitely know bad students with interpersonal problems, and I know students near the top of the class who have great personalities. But I think, overall, you find more awkward people at the very top of the class. I understand that others may disagree, but it's not a "rationalization" for anything.

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A. Nony Mouse
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Re: Bottom 7% how is this possible?

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Mon Jan 13, 2014 11:02 pm

stillwater wrote:
A. Nony Mouse wrote:
Nelson wrote:
rpupkin wrote: If anything, I'd say that law school academic success is negatively correlated with good networking skills.

Rationalize much?

Yeah, in my experience, a lot of people who are really really smart and good at school stuff are good at a lot of things, including all the interpersonal stuff. Sure, there are some socially awkward brilliant people. There are also plenty of socially awkward idiots. I could maybe see an argument that law schools don't value/reward the kinds of skills associated with networking, but that doesn't mean people who are good at academics can't also network when put in a context where it's more valued.


networking is boomer flame.

substitute "social skills necessary to succeed in the workplace," then. it isn't all about the quality of your work.

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stillwater
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Re: Bottom 7% how is this possible?

Postby stillwater » Mon Jan 13, 2014 11:09 pm

networking makes me think of CSO and sleazy used cars salesmen.

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minnbills
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Re: Bottom 7% how is this possible?

Postby minnbills » Mon Jan 13, 2014 11:18 pm

stillwater wrote:networking makes me think of CSO and sleazy used cars salesmen.


Well, having connections is arguably the most important factor in how successful you'll be.

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brotherdarkness
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Re: Bottom 7% how is this possible?

Postby brotherdarkness » Mon Jan 13, 2014 11:32 pm

.
Last edited by brotherdarkness on Sat Jun 28, 2014 1:42 pm, edited 1 time in total.

memo2partner
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Re: Bottom 7% how is this possible?

Postby memo2partner » Mon Jan 13, 2014 11:34 pm

Yeah, and he also has a not insignificant chance of "getting fucked" if he drops out of law school and takes his chances in this shitty job market with his worthless humanities degree. If OP has a scholly and still has an interest in being a lawyer, he should think a bit before he follows the echo chamber advice on TLS.


OP is in a tough predicament. If he drops out of law school, he is looking at Wal-Mart minimum wage jobs. If he stays, though, he has a chance of becoming a licensed attorney and the possibility of making at least $50k per year.




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