2L's / 3L's: What would you tell the law school c/o 2015?

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sebastian0622
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2L's / 3L's: What would you tell the law school c/o 2015?

Postby sebastian0622 » Tue Nov 29, 2011 4:39 pm

Specifically about employment and the decision to attend law school in general or, specifically, to attend YOUR law school? I was in the Iowa 2012 admit thread discussing a few things / concerns I notice now but didn't think about a lot when I was in their shoes. While I felt I was posting reasonable things (re: Iowa's job placement, OCI, how you're not going to practice "sports law" out of Iowa, etc.), if the posters in that thread were people in my room, they'd be looking at me like I had a third eye and be throwing things at me.

This made me think of two things. First, I (like many others) was really excited about law school without really knowing why or counterbalancing that with, like, facts and research and stuff--particularly about the job market. Second, it's pretty sad but current students are the only people who can protect prospective students, provide them with a more realistic perspective, and try to tell them the dangers of certain things (unemployment, finishing outside the top 10%/third/half/whatever, losing scholarships, being loaded with debt, etc.).

So what would you tell someone in that class, or what would you tell YOURSELF if you had an alter ego who was entering in 2012? Again, particularly related to employment, whether in your area/around your school or just in general, whatever. And this doesn't have to all be negative stuff or horror stories; anything goes.
Last edited by sebastian0622 on Tue Nov 29, 2011 4:41 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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20130312
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Re: 2L's / 3L's: What would you tell the law school c/o 2015?

Postby 20130312 » Tue Nov 29, 2011 4:40 pm

This thread is relevant to my interests.

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chem
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Re: 2L's / 3L's: What would you tell the law school c/o 2015?

Postby chem » Tue Nov 29, 2011 4:42 pm

ib4 MTal

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gaud
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Re: 2L's / 3L's: What would you tell the law school c/o 2015?

Postby gaud » Tue Nov 29, 2011 4:43 pm

chem wrote:ib4 MTal


haha

headandshoulderos
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Re: 2L's / 3L's: What would you tell the law school c/o 2015?

Postby headandshoulderos » Tue Nov 29, 2011 4:43 pm

I wish I realized two things.

1 - The odds of landing a biglaw job from my school. T25-50 including not only odds of getting a job, but odds of getting in the top % gradewise to even have a shot.

2 - The consequences of not landing a biglaw job, when paying full ride.

Until you are in the situation of striking out during 2L OCI, however, it's sortof impossible to grasp the magnitude. I happily ignored the facts and went anyways. Looking back, I wish I had realized that it's a decision with the power to utterly ruin your life.

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20130312
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Re: 2L's / 3L's: What would you tell the law school c/o 2015?

Postby 20130312 » Tue Nov 29, 2011 4:44 pm

headandshoulderos wrote:I wish I realized two things.

1 - The odds of landing a biglaw job from my school. T25-50

2 - The consequences of not landing a biglaw job, when paying full ride.

Until you are in the situation of striking out during 2L OCI, however, it's sortof impossible to grasp the magnitude. I happily ignored the facts and went anyways. Looking back, I wish I had realized that it's a decision with the power to utterly ruin your life.


What are the odds of 1? What are you looking at now? Also, sorry to hear that :(

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Grizz
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Re: 2L's / 3L's: What would you tell the law school c/o 2015?

Postby Grizz » Tue Nov 29, 2011 4:46 pm

Seriously consider not going. Law school is a gamble. The "profession" is a mess.

headandshoulderos
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Re: 2L's / 3L's: What would you tell the law school c/o 2015?

Postby headandshoulderos » Tue Nov 29, 2011 4:47 pm

InGoodFaith wrote:
headandshoulderos wrote:I wish I realized two things.

1 - The odds of landing a biglaw job from my school. T25-50

2 - The consequences of not landing a biglaw job, when paying full ride.

Until you are in the situation of striking out during 2L OCI, however, it's sortof impossible to grasp the magnitude. I happily ignored the facts and went anyways. Looking back, I wish I had realized that it's a decision with the power to utterly ruin your life.


What are the odds of 1? What are you looking at now? Also, sorry to hear that :(


The odds of 1 are nearly impossible. Not only is there an 80% chance you won't be in the top 20% of students, but there is a chance of striking out even with eligible grades. And since the chance of striking out is something that is impossible to control, it could be 5% or it could be 95%.

I have a biglaw SA. But I should not have gotten one, given the odds. I say I wish I knew because i'm very conscious of the fact that I was 1 callback away from ruining the rest of my life. That is not a good feeling and not smart to go into a situation not realizing that not only is that a possibility, but it's highly probable. I could still get no-offered next summer, or laid off before I pay off my loans, in which case I'm pretty much just as screwed.

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NinerFan
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Re: 2L's / 3L's: What would you tell the law school c/o 2015?

Postby NinerFan » Tue Nov 29, 2011 4:56 pm

Personally, if I could do it over again, I wouldn't have gone unless I got into HYS or got significant money from T-14, like, over 50% of tuition at least.

Also, I wish I asked the financial aid office for more money because in talking with my classmates now, it seems likely the school would have upped their offer. Doesn't hurt too much to ask if you do it respectfully and politely, and with good reason.

It's been said here and elsewhere- law school is a gamble. If you're going to take it, make sure it's the right one for you. Is the job or your job prospects out of undergrad good or bad? If you can get a nice/decent job right out of undergrad... you might want to stick with that.

Of course, the problem I've found with law school aspirants is a disconnect from the reality of the legal profession. The disconnect is not as bad as it was in previous years because of more attention being drawn to the issue, but it still exists. So, if I had a friend wanting to go to law school, I'd force them to read the TLS employment thread and ATL to get a look at what "reality" might be like.

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sunynp
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Re: 2L's / 3L's: What would you tell the law school c/o 2015?

Postby sunynp » Tue Nov 29, 2011 4:57 pm

To OP - can you explain how you didn't understand what you were getting into? I think the information about the job market is out there, even if schools persist in their dishonest and misleading employment figures. My theory is that people hear all the warnings about law school, but ignore those warnings because they assume they will be in the top 10% (or higher) of their class. I think many students simply don't understand the concept of the mandatory curve. Or else they ignore the warnings because they feel they have no other job options open to them, at least no job options that have the potential of a law salary.

This is why I think that people need to add a step in the law school process, which is to seriously consider dropping out if they don't have the grades they need to be successful. At some point, people need to face reality and sometimes it is better to cut your losses than continue.

I really don't know what else to tell people. There are so many articles about how law school is a gamble with thousands of dollars on the line.

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Re: 2L's / 3L's: What would you tell the law school c/o 2015?

Postby JamMasterJ » Tue Nov 29, 2011 4:57 pm

NinerFan wrote:Personally, if I could do it over again, I wouldn't have gone unless I got into HYS or got significant money from T-14, like, over 50% of tuition at least.

Also, I wish I asked the financial aid office for more money because in talking with my classmates now, it seems likely the school would have upped their offer. Doesn't hurt too much to ask if you do it respectfully and politely, and with good reason.

It's been said here and elsewhere- law school is a gamble. If you're going to take it, make sure it's the right one for you. Is the job or your job prospects out of undergrad good or bad? If you can get a nice/decent job right out of undergrad... you might want to stick with that.

Of course, the problem I've found with law school aspirants is a disconnect from the reality of the legal profession. The disconnect is not as bad as it was in previous years because of more attention being drawn to the issue, but it still exists. So, if I had a friend wanting to go to law school, I'd force them to read the TLS employment thread and ATL to get a look at what "reality" might be like.

would you say that this applies to ED'ers as well?

headandshoulderos
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Re: 2L's / 3L's: What would you tell the law school c/o 2015?

Postby headandshoulderos » Tue Nov 29, 2011 5:00 pm

sunynp wrote:To OP - can you explain how you didn't understand what you were getting into? I think the information about the job market is out there, even if schools persist in their dishonest and misleading employment figures. My theory is that people hear all the warnings about law school, but ignore those warnings because they assume they will be in the top 10% (or higher) of their class. I think many students simply don't understand the concept of the mandatory curve. Or else they ignore the warnings because they feel they have no other job options open to them, at least no job options that have the potential of a law salary.

This is why I think that people need to add a step in the law school process, which is to seriously consider dropping out if they don't have the grades they need to be successful. At some point, people need to face reality and sometimes it is better to cut your losses than continue.

I really don't know what else to tell people. There are so many articles about how law school is a gamble with thousands of dollars on the line.


Yea, the facts are all out there, but it's easy for an undergrad or fresh out of undergrad kid to just think that they'll be top 10%, because then none of the troubles apply to them. I knew all the facts, I just wish I'd really understood them.

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vanwinkle
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Re: 2L's / 3L's: What would you tell the law school c/o 2015?

Postby vanwinkle » Tue Nov 29, 2011 5:05 pm

Moved.

mrloblaw
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Re: 2L's / 3L's: What would you tell the law school c/o 2015?

Postby mrloblaw » Tue Nov 29, 2011 5:10 pm

NinerFan wrote:Personally, if I could do it over again, I wouldn't have gone unless I got into HYS or got significant money from T-14, like, over 50% of tuition at least.

Also, I wish I asked the financial aid office for more money because in talking with my classmates now, it seems likely the school would have upped their offer. Doesn't hurt too much to ask if you do it respectfully and politely, and with good reason.

It's been said here and elsewhere- law school is a gamble. If you're going to take it, make sure it's the right one for you. Is the job or your job prospects out of undergrad good or bad? If you can get a nice/decent job right out of undergrad... you might want to stick with that.

Of course, the problem I've found with law school aspirants is a disconnect from the reality of the legal profession. The disconnect is not as bad as it was in previous years because of more attention being drawn to the issue, but it still exists. So, if I had a friend wanting to go to law school, I'd force them to read the TLS employment thread and ATL to get a look at what "reality" might be like.


Paragraphs 1 and 3 are exactly what I was going to write (although probably just Harvard and Yale). Given my aspirations and personal limitations, I'd be concerned for my future even if I was at HYS now. While I absolutely love everything I've experienced related to legal practice and knew coming in that I really wanted to be a lawyer, I didn't know what the odds of never having a chance to practice in my life were going to be. I did my research and knew things would be bad, but not unemployed @ T1 top 10% bad.

ITE, I'm not sure that going to law school because you want to be a lawyer is much different from heading to LA because you want to be an actor: life dream or not, be prepared to fail hard.

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20130312
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Re: 2L's / 3L's: What would you tell the law school c/o 2015?

Postby 20130312 » Tue Nov 29, 2011 5:19 pm

mrloblaw wrote:ITE, I'm not sure that going to law school because you want to be a lawyer is much different from heading to LA because you want to be an actor: life dream or not, be prepared to fail hard.


Ouch... tough words. Is it silly to think that the legal profession is on the upswing and I'll be okay if I wait another year or so?

Danteshek
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Re: 2L's / 3L's: What would you tell the law school c/o 2015?

Postby Danteshek » Tue Nov 29, 2011 5:22 pm

Be at least 28 years old w/ substantive work experience.

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Mce252
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Re: 2L's / 3L's: What would you tell the law school c/o 2015?

Postby Mce252 » Tue Nov 29, 2011 5:23 pm

InGoodFaith wrote:
mrloblaw wrote:ITE, I'm not sure that going to law school because you want to be a lawyer is much different from heading to LA because you want to be an actor: life dream or not, be prepared to fail hard.


Ouch... tough words. Is it silly to think that the legal profession is on the upswing and I'll be okay if I wait another year or so?



Yes, the market will be full of jobs just like in the show "Suits".

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Re: 2L's / 3L's: What would you tell the law school c/o 2015?

Postby dailygrind » Tue Nov 29, 2011 5:24 pm

Like everyone else, I would tell them to seriously consider not going. If they must persist in their insanity, I would say that you should start talking to practicing attorneys as soon as possible; if not to build your network, at least to get a good idea of what different people do and how they got there. When it comes time to find a job, the direction and contacts could be extremely useful.

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Magnifique1908
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Re: 2L's / 3L's: What would you tell the law school c/o 2015?

Postby Magnifique1908 » Tue Nov 29, 2011 5:28 pm

Danteshek wrote:Be at least 28 years old w/ substantive work experience.


Really? I was worried that being 28 when I begin might be an issue with finding jobs (though no one could guess my age....always mistaken for a teen smh).

Can you elaborate?

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20130312
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Re: 2L's / 3L's: What would you tell the law school c/o 2015?

Postby 20130312 » Tue Nov 29, 2011 5:29 pm

Mce252 wrote:
InGoodFaith wrote:
mrloblaw wrote:ITE, I'm not sure that going to law school because you want to be a lawyer is much different from heading to LA because you want to be an actor: life dream or not, be prepared to fail hard.


Ouch... tough words. Is it silly to think that the legal profession is on the upswing and I'll be okay if I wait another year or so?



Yes, the market will be full of jobs just like in the show "Suits".


Phew, that's reassuring.

mrloblaw
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Re: 2L's / 3L's: What would you tell the law school c/o 2015?

Postby mrloblaw » Tue Nov 29, 2011 5:31 pm

InGoodFaith wrote:
mrloblaw wrote:ITE, I'm not sure that going to law school because you want to be a lawyer is much different from heading to LA because you want to be an actor: life dream or not, be prepared to fail hard.


Ouch... tough words. Is it silly to think that the legal profession is on the upswing and I'll be okay if I wait another year or so?


I really have no idea. Obviously, the legal economy will recover, and the job market will drastically improve should we not go into a double dip recession. However, the economic downturn really only exacerbated problems in an industry that was already 100 years out of date in its overall employment structure, and I can't imagine that things will ever be quite as sunny for law grads as they were in 2006 or so. The system is simply too broken to go back to business as usual.

This would not be as huge a concern , except law schools all charge tuition which only makes sense on biglaw-esque salaries. Requiring seven years of post-HS education and a quarter of a million dollar monetary investment isn't tenable in a world where newly minted JDs make what they are actually worth, which is probably about $40-60k (what those who don't win the biglaw lottery already make). Huge negative changes in the legal employment world will eventually have to spur huge positive changes in legal education, and I think that people who graduate post-economic downturn but pre educational reform are going to get screwed.

In short, I don't think that law school will ever be the sure road into the upper middle class that it was once toted as. If you really want to be a lawyer, there will be jobs out there eventually, but my #1 concern would be going for cheap.

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Re: 2L's / 3L's: What would you tell the law school c/o 2015?

Postby kalvano » Tue Nov 29, 2011 6:03 pm

Ask yourself why you want to be a lawyer. If you want to make a ton of money, don't go. If you actually want to be a lawyer and enjoy the work, then carefully weigh what you want to do. Nothing worse than talking to a guy paying full tuition and hearing that he wants to work for Legal Aid. If you want to do something like that, don't go if it's not free.

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Re: 2L's / 3L's: What would you tell the law school c/o 2015?

Postby vanwinkle » Tue Nov 29, 2011 6:12 pm

Magnifique1908 wrote:
Danteshek wrote:Be at least 28 years old w/ substantive work experience.

Really? I was worried that being 28 when I begin might be an issue with finding jobs (though no one could guess my age....always mistaken for a teen smh).

Can you elaborate?

Although Danteshek doesn't strike me as a good example, employers hiring entry-level attorneys like people who are mature. If you have a few years of work experience you're more likely to be a worthwhile hire than someone who went straight from UG to LS and never held a full-time job. You'll still need to learn on the job, but you'll have a lot less to learn before you're effective.

SecReg
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Re: 2L's / 3L's: What would you tell the law school c/o 2015?

Postby SecReg » Tue Nov 29, 2011 6:16 pm

u dun goofed

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Grizz
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Re: 2L's / 3L's: What would you tell the law school c/o 2015?

Postby Grizz » Tue Nov 29, 2011 6:23 pm

SecReg wrote:u dun goofed

Credited.




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