Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

A forum for applicants and admitted students to ask law students and graduates about law school and the practice of law.
Frozen98
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby Frozen98 » Wed Feb 05, 2014 1:57 am

...
Last edited by Frozen98 on Thu Feb 06, 2014 6:13 am, edited 1 time in total.

tomwatts
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby tomwatts » Wed Feb 05, 2014 2:08 am

paglababa wrote:Thinking more and more about the HBS MBA and how much more useful it would be than the JD for my current background. Anyone here doing a combined degree? I gather that I could get to LS and apply during my 1L year? I suppose I need to sit for the gmat and prep my apps before I attend as school will be very hectic / busy.

I'm doing an HLS/HKS joint degree, to which I applied during 1L year. Yes, it is very necessary to do the GMAT before you start law school and get as much of your apps out of the way as you can before the school year starts, too. If you have to do a little during 1L year, it's not too bad, but you don't want to have to be creating apps from scratch.

The HLS/HBS JD/MBA is probably the highest-voltage joint professional degree in the country (perhaps tied with the Stanford JD/MBA), but it has the pros and cons inherent to any joint professional degree.

tachikara
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby tachikara » Wed Feb 05, 2014 10:51 am

Frozen98 wrote:Yea I'm one of the means to an end types. In UG (and I went to a scare quotes "rigorous" UG), once I realized attendance & participation is worth 0% of my grade, I showed up maybe 3-4 times the whole semester and read a mountain of printouts and books in the 2-3 days before the exam.

So now that we've established that for some people it's logical to just disappear, what options are there? will firms/anybody hire a legal assistant who's technically enrolled in LS if I say in my cover letter or interview that "yea but I never show up to class anyway so don't worry about it." That might not be best thing to tell them because it suggests a certain aloofness.



What kind of job would you find that'd be worth your time? I can't believe that any big law firm would hire you during the academic year, gov't / public interest positions are generally unpaid, and you wouldn't get much money at all at ambulance-chasing firms. You are still limited to 20 hours a week as a 2L/3L: http://www.law.harvard.edu/current/sfs/ ... yment.html. Maybe you could just RA for the $11.50/hour, and plus it will help you with prof recs: http://www.law.harvard.edu/about/admini ... s-fy08.pdf.

Furthermore, you are going to get paid $3,000/week when you graduate into big law, which is literally 1000% more than what you would realistically make working during the school year. If you're not going to class, why not just literally go on vacation or relax? Or, you can try to study abroad through Harvard, or apply for the exchange program with Berkley. Or you can take lots of cross-registered classes that you are interested in (languages, music, art, underwater basket weaving, etc). Maybe you'll even love law school classes. With the good professors, it's generally not just regurgitation of the source material.

Lastly, aren't you a 0L? You should definitely go to class and not work at all as a 1L. While participation is still 0% of your grade, all your classmates will be gunning for grades and you don't need to needlessly disadvantage yourself. You also need to bond with your section, and it doesn't help if you're the person that's always missing from class. If you're considering clerkships, it will also be hard to get recs if you are not in class.

AllTheLawz
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby AllTheLawz » Wed Feb 05, 2014 11:49 am

tachikara wrote:
Frozen98 wrote:Yea I'm one of the means to an end types. In UG (and I went to a scare quotes "rigorous" UG), once I realized attendance & participation is worth 0% of my grade, I showed up maybe 3-4 times the whole semester and read a mountain of printouts and books in the 2-3 days before the exam.

So now that we've established that for some people it's logical to just disappear, what options are there? will firms/anybody hire a legal assistant who's technically enrolled in LS if I say in my cover letter or interview that "yea but I never show up to class anyway so don't worry about it." That might not be best thing to tell them because it suggests a certain aloofness.



What kind of job would you find that'd be worth your time? I can't believe that any big law firm would hire you during the academic year, gov't / public interest positions are generally unpaid, and you wouldn't get much money at all at ambulance-chasing firms. You are still limited to 20 hours a week as a 2L/3L: http://www.law.harvard.edu/current/sfs/ ... yment.html. Maybe you could just RA for the $11.50/hour, and plus it will help you with prof recs: http://www.law.harvard.edu/about/admini ... s-fy08.pdf.

Furthermore, you are going to get paid $3,000/week when you graduate into big law, which is literally 1000% more than what you would realistically make working during the school year. If you're not going to class, why not just literally go on vacation or relax? Or, you can try to study abroad through Harvard, or apply for the exchange program with Berkley. Or you can take lots of cross-registered classes that you are interested in (languages, music, art, underwater basket weaving, etc). Maybe you'll even love law school classes. With the good professors, it's generally not just regurgitation of the source material.

Lastly, aren't you a 0L? You should definitely go to class and not work at all as a 1L. While participation is still 0% of your grade, all your classmates will be gunning for grades and you don't need to needlessly disadvantage yourself. You also need to bond with your section, and it doesn't help if you're the person that's always missing from class. If you're considering clerkships, it will also be hard to get recs if you are not in class.


Definitely go to class first semester, this isn't like undergrad at all. After grades come out you can decide based on your own comfort. My view is the more mediocre your grades are, the less incentive there is to go to class since the difference in outcomes between 1H and 3H is small and realistically Im not sure how much just working harder will help you.

As far as what to do in your spare time? Check out things in Boston, go to museums, get lunch with friends, watch TV series on Netflix, go to the gym more, etc. I strongly believe that the traditional law school teaching method (a free-form lecture and frequently useless question asking preceded by reading actual legal cases rather than ones specifically designed for teaching [Hint: in pretty much every other program "cases" are designed to be taught]) is absurdly bad so you don't lose much by not going to class. On the contrary, some people need the structure to keep them going so who knows what end of the spectrum a given individual falls on.

I think the quoted is right in terms of getting a job. If you are looking at jobs that pay less than $25/hour or so then it really isn't worth your time (unless its a job where you work remotely).

One of the major advantages of being at HLS is that we can enjoy life without risking much in terms of job outcome. I really wish more people would embrace that instead of leaving in constant manufactured stress.

MissouriMisery
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby MissouriMisery » Wed Feb 05, 2014 12:18 pm

Hello current Harvard students! Thank you for answering my questions the other day about financial aid.

I posted a question/poll yesterday in "Choosing a law school", http://www.top-law-schools.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=224222&view=viewpoll. I have specific career/geographical interests (see thread) and would appreciate some input in that thread from some of you current HLS students...particularly anybody who understands the PI market in the Bay Area. I will ask current Berkeley students as well.

Thanks for your time, and I will not post any more about my choice here because I know it is not the focus of this page :)

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t-14orbust
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby t-14orbust » Wed Feb 05, 2014 12:26 pm

What's the process for getting onto law review? I understand that it's one of if not the most competitive programs at HLS, but I was just wondering exactly how competitive we're talking here. How many people apply and how many get chosen? Anyone here make it onto HLS LR? Thanks.

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BelugaWhale
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby BelugaWhale » Wed Feb 05, 2014 12:38 pm

t-14orbust wrote:What's the process for getting onto law review? I understand that it's one of if not the most competitive programs at HLS, but I was just wondering exactly how competitive we're talking here. How many people apply and how many get chosen? Anyone here make it onto HLS LR? Thanks.


http://www.harvardlawreview.org/hlr_477.php

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BelugaWhale
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby BelugaWhale » Wed Feb 05, 2014 2:48 pm

Got a question for those who have applied to clerkships...so none of the professor assistants need excel spreadsheets of oscar judges...how will they know then which oscar judges they should send the LOR to?

Do they get some sort of notification after I finalize an application on OSCAR?

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wert3813
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby wert3813 » Wed Feb 05, 2014 4:06 pm

AllTheLawz wrote:
tachikara wrote:
Frozen98 wrote:Yea I'm one of the means to an end types. In UG (and I went to a scare quotes "rigorous" UG), once I realized attendance & participation is worth 0% of my grade, I showed up maybe 3-4 times the whole semester and read a mountain of printouts and books in the 2-3 days before the exam.

So now that we've established that for some people it's logical to just disappear, what options are there? will firms/anybody hire a legal assistant who's technically enrolled in LS if I say in my cover letter or interview that "yea but I never show up to class anyway so don't worry about it." That might not be best thing to tell them because it suggests a certain aloofness.



What kind of job would you find that'd be worth your time? I can't believe that any big law firm would hire you during the academic year, gov't / public interest positions are generally unpaid, and you wouldn't get much money at all at ambulance-chasing firms. You are still limited to 20 hours a week as a 2L/3L: http://www.law.harvard.edu/current/sfs/ ... yment.html. Maybe you could just RA for the $11.50/hour, and plus it will help you with prof recs: http://www.law.harvard.edu/about/admini ... s-fy08.pdf.

Furthermore, you are going to get paid $3,000/week when you graduate into big law, which is literally 1000% more than what you would realistically make working during the school year. If you're not going to class, why not just literally go on vacation or relax? Or, you can try to study abroad through Harvard, or apply for the exchange program with Berkley. Or you can take lots of cross-registered classes that you are interested in (languages, music, art, underwater basket weaving, etc). Maybe you'll even love law school classes. With the good professors, it's generally not just regurgitation of the source material.

Lastly, aren't you a 0L? You should definitely go to class and not work at all as a 1L. While participation is still 0% of your grade, all your classmates will be gunning for grades and you don't need to needlessly disadvantage yourself. You also need to bond with your section, and it doesn't help if you're the person that's always missing from class. If you're considering clerkships, it will also be hard to get recs if you are not in class.


Definitely go to class first semester, this isn't like undergrad at all. After grades come out you can decide based on your own comfort. My view is the more mediocre your grades are, the less incentive there is to go to class since the difference in outcomes between 1H and 3H is small and realistically Im not sure how much just working harder will help you.

As far as what to do in your spare time? Check out things in Boston, go to museums, get lunch with friends, watch TV series on Netflix, go to the gym more, etc. I strongly believe that the traditional law school teaching method (a free-form lecture and frequently useless question asking preceded by reading actual legal cases rather than ones specifically designed for teaching [Hint: in pretty much every other program "cases" are designed to be taught]) is absurdly bad so you don't lose much by not going to class. On the contrary, some people need the structure to keep them going so who knows what end of the spectrum a given individual falls on.

I think the quoted is right in terms of getting a job. If you are looking at jobs that pay less than $25/hour or so then it really isn't worth your time (unless its a job where you work remotely).

One of the major advantages of being at HLS is that we can enjoy life without risking much in terms of job outcome. I really wish more people would embrace that instead of leaving in constant manufactured stress.

Yeah. All of this is credited. I would say I think you get more out of the experience if you at least go through the motions. One of the coolest things about HLS is who your classmates are and will be and you lose that if you are just completely removed. Also you should know that the ABA requires a certain amount of attendance or the teacher can technically fail you. Never enforced but I imagine if I showed up to class 3 times last semester I would have had some teachers who would have not been okay with that.

If you are this anti law school before going I would caution you to maybe not go.

Frozen98
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby Frozen98 » Wed Feb 05, 2014 6:54 pm

...
Last edited by Frozen98 on Thu Feb 06, 2014 6:14 am, edited 3 times in total.

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TripTrip
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby TripTrip » Wed Feb 05, 2014 6:59 pm

Frozen98 wrote:I'll probably want to nab latin honors so I won't completely idle during my 2L and 3L years, but if I think I can pull off the study from previous outlines only approach, it'd be more fun to do that while chilling in Europe.

Dude... what the hell?

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patogordo
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby patogordo » Wed Feb 05, 2014 7:01 pm

Frozen98 wrote:But it is a good point that one of the best things about HLS is its students so I might stay around for that.

i think you're disproving that theory as we speak

Frozen98
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby Frozen98 » Wed Feb 05, 2014 7:03 pm

nvm
Last edited by Frozen98 on Thu Feb 06, 2014 6:14 am, edited 2 times in total.

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ph14
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby ph14 » Wed Feb 05, 2014 7:05 pm

Frozen98 wrote:
TripTrip wrote:
Frozen98 wrote:I'll probably want to nab latin honors so I won't completely idle during my 2L and 3L years, but if I think I can pull off the study from previous outlines only approach, it'd be more fun to do that while chilling in Europe.

Dude... what the hell?


I recently had a decision to make regarding my major in UG. Since I'm going to LS anyway (and even if I didn't), latin honors/pbk are more important than whether I majored in X or Y since the types of employers I'd be looking at don't care about that anyway.

Similarly w/ latin honors @ hls. if you get latin honors, why would anyone care whether you took class A or class B to get there?


It doesn't, really.

Frozen98
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby Frozen98 » Wed Feb 05, 2014 7:09 pm

nvm
Last edited by Frozen98 on Thu Feb 06, 2014 6:14 am, edited 1 time in total.

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TripTrip
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby TripTrip » Wed Feb 05, 2014 7:14 pm

1L grades are the only ones that matter for EIP, and 8/10 classes will be picked for you that year. How are you going to choose easier classes to get Hs in?

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ph14
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby ph14 » Wed Feb 05, 2014 7:18 pm

Frozen98 wrote:you mean it doesnt matter whether class A or class B appears on my transcript, or getting latin honors doesn't matter?

I'm not the kind of person who gets latin honors (in UG or LS) just to rub it in someone's face since no classmate would care. But I heard some employers like W&C & WLRK care about UG prestige and performance. Not that I'm V1 or bust, but if you're me, what lends itself better to best positioning myself for a job like that even if I don't ultimately get it: majoring in X or Y based on "genuine intellectual curiosity" when I don't care about either, or choosing the easier one?

likewise with LS.


Whether you picked class A or class B. I don't think employers really care about undergrad performance though. If you got into HLS and you succeeded, your UG isn't going to hold you back. Now maybe it might be a very minor plus factor, but I doubt it's going to hold you back. Also, keep in mind that many people at HLS turn down WLRK, though W&C is much more popular.

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ph14
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby ph14 » Wed Feb 05, 2014 7:19 pm

TripTrip wrote:1L grades are the only ones that matter for EIP, and 8/10 classes will be picked for you that year. How are you going to choose easier classes to get Hs in?


I think he's talking about for latin honors purposes.

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TripTrip
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby TripTrip » Wed Feb 05, 2014 7:23 pm

ph14 wrote:
TripTrip wrote:1L grades are the only ones that matter for EIP, and 8/10 classes will be picked for you that year. How are you going to choose easier classes to get Hs in?


I think he's talking about for latin honors purposes.

But then he talked about how employment was his outcome goal. If you are a Cravath SA your 2L summer, doesn't that satisfy?

Even if the goal is Latin honors, if a class is easy it's easy for everyone in the class. I don't think there's a lot of finagling you could do to guarantee Hs. You could definitely lessen your workload, though.

Frozen98
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby Frozen98 » Wed Feb 05, 2014 7:23 pm

nvm
Last edited by Frozen98 on Thu Feb 06, 2014 6:14 am, edited 2 times in total.

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koalacity
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby koalacity » Wed Feb 05, 2014 7:24 pm

Frozen98 wrote:Yea I'm one of the means to an end types. In UG (and I went to a scare quotes "rigorous" UG), once I realized attendance & participation is worth 0% of my grade, I showed up maybe 3-4 times the whole semester and read a mountain of printouts and books in the 2-3 days before the exam.

So now that we've established that for some people it's logical to just disappear, what options are there? will firms/anybody hire a legal assistant who's technically enrolled in LS if I say in my cover letter or interview that "yea but I never show up to class anyway so don't worry about it." That might not be best thing to tell them because it suggests a certain aloofness.

Aloofness: Image

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ph14
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby ph14 » Wed Feb 05, 2014 7:26 pm

TripTrip wrote:
ph14 wrote:
TripTrip wrote:1L grades are the only ones that matter for EIP, and 8/10 classes will be picked for you that year. How are you going to choose easier classes to get Hs in?


I think he's talking about for latin honors purposes.

But then he talked about how employment was his outcome goal. If you are a Cravath SA your 2L summer, doesn't that satisfy?

Even if the goal is Latin honors, if a class is easy it's easy for everyone in the class. I don't think there's a lot of finagling you could do to guarantee Hs. You could definitely lessen your workload, though.


There's a distinction between an "easy class" in the sense that the material isn't conceptually difficult (for example, many people use torts as an example of this, though I think it can get quite complicated in some cases) and classes where it is easier to get an H, in the sense that it is uncurved, the curve is less tough, etc.

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ph14
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby ph14 » Wed Feb 05, 2014 7:27 pm

Frozen98 wrote:I know that 1L grades determine EIP results which is why I said "I won't completely idle during my 2L and 3L years," since I know idling during 1L isn't an option.

but I'm not vain enough to think "just get WLRK and make partner there, nbd." I know there will probably be some lateraling later on. So even if something like magna is only a feather on the scale since your first job and performance there will probably determine most of the lateraling, it's still more important than whether I took class A or class B as a 3L.

Now if it turns out that chilling in Europe will make it harder for me to do well because I know one does simply outcompete 90% of HLS, I'll just stay local since the area looks great and full of things to do anyway.

BTW the chilling in europe thing isn't a pure fantasy. I know a current/former HLS student who did that. he took his textbook with him on the trip but when he made the return trip the book was still in wraps. He got an H anyway.


I like how you phrase it like it's still up in the air. As if, somehow, you don't know whether or not missing every single class would make it harder for you to do well.

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TripTrip
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby TripTrip » Wed Feb 05, 2014 7:27 pm

Frozen98 wrote:BTW the chilling in europe thing isn't a pure fantasy. I know a current/former HLS student who did that. he took his textbook with him on the trip but when he made the return trip the book was still in wraps. He got an H anyway.

Yes. I've also heard the one about the SCOTUS clerk who failed con law. Just because it has been done doesn't mean you should do it.

Who am I kidding, though? Enjoy Europe if you want to.

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ph14
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby ph14 » Wed Feb 05, 2014 7:28 pm

TripTrip wrote:
Frozen98 wrote:BTW the chilling in europe thing isn't a pure fantasy. I know a current/former HLS student who did that. he took his textbook with him on the trip but when he made the return trip the book was still in wraps. He got an H anyway.

Yes. I've also heard the one about the SCOTUS clerk who failed con law. Just because it has been done doesn't mean you should do it.

Who am I kidding, though? Enjoy Europe if you want to.


:lol:




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