rockthelaw wrote:whymeohgodno wrote:Just wondering since you aren't going for biglaw, I'm assuming you got $$$ to fordham?
While you may have had a different reason for posting this, I'm assuming for sake of argument that you're concerned about the cost of law school, or have read a bunch of hardcore TLS gunners saying things like, "Law school isn't worth it if you have to pay for it," and found solace in their points.
I know that TLS' main motto is: Go to HLS at all costs, maybe CCN, the rest of the t-14 with a scholarship, and maybe a tier 1 school with full-or-close-to-full scholarship. This mentality is fine for a number of people (one thing to keep in mind about the TLS community is that it is a FRACTION of the actual law school community), however this is not how the majority of students look at law school. Yes, we can argue about the utility of paying X number of dollars for a degree AND taking out loans to pay for it DESPITE the possibility that you will have a difficult time paying back said loans. I'd even concede that this is a fair and highly persuasive argument not to go to law school if your main focus is the economic return. While I'm not suggesting this shouldn't be a factor in your decision, I am stating that many people have very different reasons for attending law school.
Some people come to law school because they really want to be lawyers. Some attend because their family will pay for it. Some attend because they want to change careers. Some attend simply because they don't have anything better to do, or think this is the last and only way they'll ever be successful. And yes, some people attend because they've convinced themselves that by reading 6 casebooks, writing 6 exams, and doing 4 legal writing assignments that they're guaranteed a 160k starting salary and a life of luxury.
The point is, everybody has their own motivation for attending law school. Some people have unrealistic goals (ex.: attending Fordham guarantees you a spot at a V50 firm, or that a JD will guarantee them at least some prestigious job), and later in their law school and professional careers they might struggle to comprehend how they so grossly exaggerated their expectations. But, in general, the people I've met are aware of the economic situation, know that it's tough to get the job they want straight out of school, but are optimistic that they can work hard and establish themselves in the world at some point. The degree is really only the start of your career. You actually have to make it work, whether you land big firm job, a position with a small shop, a government position, or, hell, you decide at the last minute to open up a bar with your buddy who just got his MBA.
In the end, you have to work hard to achieve your goals. If the money issue really wears on you, don't make the investment. Outside of a very narrow range of schools, law school does not guarantee you any set salaries. It's up to you to decide whether, for you, it's worth the time and money to be a lawyer whether or not you've got a nice office and motions to file on behalf of Fortune 500 companies. I know people are baffled that after 7 years of higher education, you might only be making 50k while working 70 hour weeks. But, you know the score. So, you can make the choice.
Of course this doesn't really say anything good or bad about Fordham, but I'll leave that to nygrrrl since she's Fordham's best cheerleader!
While I agree with most of your post the bold part is what makes the market crowded. Everyone "assumes" that with hard work and perseverance they will be able to pay back their debt and find at least a decent job practicing law. This just isn't true.
Most if not everyone works hard at law school - yet most people don't find a job that can even pay back the debt.
Don't assume that you will be a special snowflake and that somehow everyone else who fails in the job market is doing so because they are trying less than you or because they are somehow less motivated. The chances are if you don't go to a top school or go to a school with $$$ or go to a school and graduated top of your class, you will be stuck with 200k debt without a job that can pay it back.
It's not about making money - I know. But it's about being able to at least pay back a 200k debt...