Do You Regret Going to Law School?

A forum for applicants and admitted students to ask law students and graduates about law school and the practice of law.
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Flash
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Re: Do You Regret Going to Law School?

Postby Flash » Tue Apr 16, 2013 5:44 pm

Kronk wrote:The thing is, I don't expect any 0L to listen to our opinions or advice because when I was a 0L, tons of lawyers told me they regretted going and I also felt like it wouldn't be the same for me. Once again, not everyone hates it, but just saying I don't anticipate advice on here doing anything to affect the opinions of 0Ls, who probably all feel their situations is different, they are different personalities, or they have done more research (which some of them definitely do and have).

Exactly the same with me

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Re: Do You Regret Going to Law School?

Postby LaBarrister » Tue Apr 16, 2013 8:40 pm

I have my own question. What kind of experience do you all think a 0L could have that would dispel any delusions/disillusions about the reality of being a lawyer, generally speaking.

While there may be a few good-hearted, "do-gooders" to take from Chelsea Clinton's speech, I think we can all agree that the reality of law, especially around the successful, is full of lost souls who are greedy for money.

Again, for all of the young, naive, hapless young turds here, what could one possibly do to put him/herself in that scenario before becoming an attorney? You can't tell me there is no way. I just want you attorneys and ex-attorneys to brainstorm for the rest of us and come up with an answer. I'm talking about a real, spot-on, shitty experience that one would equate with being a lawyer.

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Re: Do You Regret Going to Law School?

Postby bjsesq » Tue Apr 16, 2013 8:47 pm

LaBarrister wrote:I have my own question. What kind of experience do you all think a 0L could have that would dispel any delusions/disillusions about the reality of being a lawyer, generally speaking.

While there may be a few good-hearted, "do-gooders" to take from Chelsea Clinton's speech, I think we can all agree that the reality of law, especially around the successful, is full of lost souls who are greedy for money.

Again, for all of the young, naive, hapless young turds here, what could one possibly do to put him/herself in that scenario before becoming an attorney? You can't tell me there is no way. I just want you attorneys and ex-attorneys to brainstorm for the rest of us and come up with an answer. I'm talking about a real, spot-on, shitty experience that one would equate with being a lawyer.


Lay your balls on a table. Now smash them with a tack hammer 10 times.

In all seriousness, there is really nothing that can prepare you. It's not necessarily the schooling itself, but the pressure of placement and douchebag profs coupled with a field where people are generally incredibly shitty to one another, and there it is. You can't know it until you are in it. Also, if any of these fucks are still law students, take what they say with a grain of sand. They know dick about what it is like to be a lawyer.

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Re: Do You Regret Going to Law School?

Postby philly_law » Tue Apr 16, 2013 8:50 pm

3L, hated every second of every day of law school, absolutely regret it. Decided to fall back on my undergrad degree, took a job in finance with no need to take the bar. Best decision I've made in a loooong time.

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Re: Do You Regret Going to Law School?

Postby LaBarrister » Tue Apr 16, 2013 8:52 pm

bjsesq wrote:
LaBarrister wrote:I have my own question. What kind of experience do you all think a 0L could have that would dispel any delusions/disillusions about the reality of being a lawyer, generally speaking.

While there may be a few good-hearted, "do-gooders" to take from Chelsea Clinton's speech, I think we can all agree that the reality of law, especially around the successful, is full of lost souls who are greedy for money.

Again, for all of the young, naive, hapless young turds here, what could one possibly do to put him/herself in that scenario before becoming an attorney? You can't tell me there is no way. I just want you attorneys and ex-attorneys to brainstorm for the rest of us and come up with an answer. I'm talking about a real, spot-on, shitty experience that one would equate with being a lawyer.


Lay your balls on a table. Now smash them with a tack hammer 10 times.

In all seriousness, there is really nothing that can prepare you. It's not necessarily the schooling itself, but the pressure of placement and douchebag profs coupled with a field where people are generally incredibly shitty to one another, and there it is. You can't know it until you are in it. Also, if any of these fucks are still law students, take what they say with a grain of sand. They know dick about what it is like to be a lawyer.


Oh, now. You're just disappointing me, and you know that.

And don't worry, I'm not listening to law students on this one, not even those who have attended SA's.

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Re: Do You Regret Going to Law School?

Postby bizzybone1313 » Tue Apr 16, 2013 8:53 pm

Going to a T-14, working in the federal government without billable hours, eventually making $100K+ and getting 25ish days off + a lot of holidays that most Americans don't get seems like a pretty sweet gig to me. What am I missing?

Or working in a field of law that one is passionate about-- like civil rights or plaintiff side employment law. It seems this a pretty attainable goal coming out of a T-14. Is it not? Wouldn't these areas of law be a lot less demanding than the typical corporate Big Law route?

What about being a law prof? That seems like a good deal as well.

If someone gunned hard for all of these type of positions, wouldn't they have a pretty good chance of getting something somewhere in the country? Maybe not the perfect position but a respectable one coming from a T-14.

I am sure I am missing other types of positions that would be cool too.

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Re: Do You Regret Going to Law School?

Postby LaBarrister » Tue Apr 16, 2013 8:55 pm

bizzybone1313 wrote:Going to a T-14, working in the federal government without billable hours, eventually making $100K+ and getting 25ish days off + a lot of holidays that most Americans don't get seems like a pretty sweet gig to me. What am I missing?

Or working in a field of law that one is passionate about-- like civil rights or plaintiff side employment law. It seems this a pretty attainable goal coming out of a T-14. Is it not? Wouldn't these areas of law be a lot less demanding than the typical corporate Big Law route?

What about being a law prof? That seems like a good deal as well.

If someone gunned hard for all of these type of positions, wouldn't they have a pretty good chance of getting something somewhere in the country? Maybe not the perfect position but a respectable one coming from a T-14.

I am sure I am missing other types of positions that would be cool too.


What the hell are you even talking about?

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Re: Do You Regret Going to Law School?

Postby bjsesq » Tue Apr 16, 2013 8:55 pm

bizzybone1313 wrote:Going to a T-14, working in the federal government without billable hours, eventually making $100K+ and getting 25ish days off + a lot of holidays that most Americans don't get seems like a pretty sweet gig to me. What am I missing?

Or working in a field of law that one is passionate about-- like civil rights or plaintiff side employment law. It seems this a pretty attainable goal coming out of a T-14. Is it not? Wouldn't these areas of law be a lot less demanding than the typical corporate Big Law route?

What about being a law prof? That seems like a good deal as well.

If someone gunned hard for all of these type of positions, wouldn't they have a pretty good chance of getting something somewhere in the country? Maybe not the perfect position but a respectable one coming from a T-14.

I am sure I am missing other types of positions that would be cool too.

Not one of the positions that you mentioned is a sure thing, or even a good chance. Even if you go to a T14. I sincerely hope that helps.

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Re: Do You Regret Going to Law School?

Postby hephaestus » Tue Apr 16, 2013 8:57 pm

bizzybone1313 wrote:Going to a T-14, working in the federal government without billable hours, eventually making $100K+ and getting 25ish days off + a lot of holidays that most Americans don't get seems like a pretty sweet gig to me. What am I missing?

Or working in a field of law that one is passionate about-- like civil rights or plaintiff side employment law. It seems this a pretty attainable goal coming out of a T-14. Is it not? Wouldn't these areas of law be a lot less demanding than the typical corporate Big Law route?

What about being a law prof? That seems like a good deal as well.

If someone gunned hard for all of these type of positions, wouldn't they have a pretty good chance of getting something somewhere in the country? Maybe not the perfect position but a respectable one coming from a T-14.

I am sure I am missing other types of positions that would be cool too.

These are all almost impossible to get directly out of school.

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Re: Do You Regret Going to Law School?

Postby Kronk » Tue Apr 16, 2013 8:58 pm

bizzybone1313 wrote:Going to a T-14, working in the federal government without billable hours, eventually making $100K+ and getting 25ish days off + a lot of holidays that most Americans don't get seems like a pretty sweet gig to me. What am I missing?

Or working in a field of law that one is passionate about-- like civil rights or plaintiff side employment law. It seems this a pretty attainable goal coming out of a T-14. Is it not? Wouldn't these areas of law be a lot less demanding than the typical corporate Big Law route?



Apparently you missed the part where I said an attorney position opened at the local government I worked for and ONE HUNDRED AND TWENTY SIX PEOPLE APPLIED. Most of them with years of experience.

And being a law professor is probably the best job in the world. Which is why you can only get it from Harvard, Yale, and Stanford if you publish while in school and are at the tip top of your class.

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Re: Do You Regret Going to Law School?

Postby bizzybone1313 » Tue Apr 16, 2013 9:09 pm

^^^All I am saying is that there has to be SOMETHING besides 60+ hour a week Big Law that pays decently and is somewhat enjoyable. Getting a good job in almost any field isn't easy. All those jobs I listed seem to fit that profile. Even if one doesn't get one of these jobs directly out of law school, I have a hard time believing a Cornell, Columbia or NYU grad couldn't get one of these positions eventually. I have surveyed a lot of plaintiff side employment and immigration law websites, and I find it amazing that a lot of these places have such few T-14 grads. At one firm that I know pays $100K+, I remember seeing very few elite educational backgrounds.

I was looking at Haynes Boone's attorney profiles from their Dallas branch, and I wasn't too impressed with what I saw. I looked through like 50 profiles and didn't come across one T-14 grad. Not one. Try the same exercise and PM if you get different results. No joke. I think the problem is everyone guns hard for NYC, LA, DC and Chicago and thinks every other place is a shithole. I concede that is probably very difficult to get one's dream job in one's dream city at one's dream salary.
Last edited by bizzybone1313 on Tue Apr 16, 2013 9:12 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Do You Regret Going to Law School?

Postby bjsesq » Tue Apr 16, 2013 9:12 pm

bizzybone1313 wrote:^^^All I am saying is that there has to be SOMETHING besides 60+ hour a week Big Law that pays decently and is somewhat enjoyable. Getting a good job in almost any field isn't easy. All those jobs I listed seem to fit that profile. Even if one doesn't get one of these jobs directly out of law school, I have a hard time believing a Cornell, Columbia or NYU grad couldn't get one of these positions eventually. I have surveyed a lot of plaintiff side employment and immigration law websites, and I find it amazing that a lot of these places have such few T-14 grads. At one firm that I know pays $100K+, I remember seeing very few elite educational backgrounds.


Holy shit, anecdotal evidence. The legal job market experienced massive contraction and law schools still put out WAY too many law students. It's great that you know people who made, a ton don't. I know that would never happen to you, right?

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Re: Do You Regret Going to Law School?

Postby bizzybone1313 » Tue Apr 16, 2013 9:16 pm

bjsesq wrote:
bizzybone1313 wrote:^^^All I am saying is that there has to be SOMETHING besides 60+ hour a week Big Law that pays decently and is somewhat enjoyable. Getting a good job in almost any field isn't easy. All those jobs I listed seem to fit that profile. Even if one doesn't get one of these jobs directly out of law school, I have a hard time believing a Cornell, Columbia or NYU grad couldn't get one of these positions eventually. I have surveyed a lot of plaintiff side employment and immigration law websites, and I find it amazing that a lot of these places have such few T-14 grads. At one firm that I know pays $100K+, I remember seeing very few elite educational backgrounds.


Holy shit, anecdotal evidence. The legal job market experienced massive contraction and law schools still put out WAY too many law students. It's great that you know people who made, a ton don't. I know that would never happen to you, right?


I don't have that attitude at all. I know my number could very easily come up and me not get a good legal gig. But I have such a marketable and valuable undergrad degree that I could get a $60K+ plus job with a snap of my fingers. I got my undergrad degree for solely that reason-- as a backup plan in case I ever needed to use it. I don't lose much sleep at night. After law school, I could very easily make $80K by selling my JD + undergrad degree. There are thousand's of employers in my field worldwide that could employ me.

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Re: Do You Regret Going to Law School?

Postby Kronk » Tue Apr 16, 2013 9:19 pm

80k would be a great deal. There aren't many < 50hpw jobs that would pay you more than 80k. The government jobs you talk about might eventually get you to 100k, but it really does take a long time. Most government attorneys at the state level start at 50K-55K and move up slowly from there. Eventually, after like 10-15 years or more, you're in the 100K range.

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Re: Do You Regret Going to Law School?

Postby LaBarrister » Tue Apr 16, 2013 9:19 pm

bizzybone1313 wrote:
bjsesq wrote:
bizzybone1313 wrote:^^^All I am saying is that there has to be SOMETHING besides 60+ hour a week Big Law that pays decently and is somewhat enjoyable. Getting a good job in almost any field isn't easy. All those jobs I listed seem to fit that profile. Even if one doesn't get one of these jobs directly out of law school, I have a hard time believing a Cornell, Columbia or NYU grad couldn't get one of these positions eventually. I have surveyed a lot of plaintiff side employment and immigration law websites, and I find it amazing that a lot of these places have such few T-14 grads. At one firm that I know pays $100K+, I remember seeing very few elite educational backgrounds.


Holy shit, anecdotal evidence. The legal job market experienced massive contraction and law schools still put out WAY too many law students. It's great that you know people who made, a ton don't. I know that would never happen to you, right?


I don't have that attitude at all. I know my number could very easily come up and me not get a good legal gig. But I have such a marketable and valuable undergrad degree that I could get a $60K+ plus job with a snap of my fingers. I got my undergrad degree for solely that reason-- as a backup plan in case I ever needed to use it. I don't lose much sleep at night. After law school, I could very easily make $80K by selling my JD + undergrad degree. There are thousand's of employers in my field worldwide that could employ me.


Hehe... it sounds like someone has an engineering degree. Welcome to the club :P

Edit: Though, I would say that if you went to law school without any engineering experience, and then expected to be able to "fall back" on that engineering degree, you may not find it holding you up anymore. Employers aren't stupid. They'll know your game. They won't want to be a backup career.

Edit: I'll have a ChemE degree and I'm still concentrating on how stupid I'll be for not going straight to an oil company after graduation.
Last edited by LaBarrister on Tue Apr 16, 2013 9:22 pm, edited 3 times in total.

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Re: Do You Regret Going to Law School?

Postby bjsesq » Tue Apr 16, 2013 9:20 pm

bizzybone1313 wrote:
bjsesq wrote:
bizzybone1313 wrote:^^^All I am saying is that there has to be SOMETHING besides 60+ hour a week Big Law that pays decently and is somewhat enjoyable. Getting a good job in almost any field isn't easy. All those jobs I listed seem to fit that profile. Even if one doesn't get one of these jobs directly out of law school, I have a hard time believing a Cornell, Columbia or NYU grad couldn't get one of these positions eventually. I have surveyed a lot of plaintiff side employment and immigration law websites, and I find it amazing that a lot of these places have such few T-14 grads. At one firm that I know pays $100K+, I remember seeing very few elite educational backgrounds.


Holy shit, anecdotal evidence. The legal job market experienced massive contraction and law schools still put out WAY too many law students. It's great that you know people who made, a ton don't. I know that would never happen to you, right?


I don't have that attitude at all. I know my number could very easily come up and me not get a good legal gig. But I have such a marketable and valuable undergrad degree that I could get a $60K+ plus job with a snap of my fingers. I got my undergrad degree for solely that reason-- as a backup plan in case I ever needed to use it. I don't lose much sleep at night. After law school, I could very easily make $80K by selling my JD + undergrad degree. There are thousand's of employers in my field worldwide that could employ me.


Note, however, that this means dick for your original argument that NYU and (LOL) Cornell = some sort of eventual gravy train.

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Re: Do You Regret Going to Law School?

Postby bizzybone1313 » Tue Apr 16, 2013 9:23 pm

I imagine most corporations that hire JD's probably pay in the $75-$100K range-- if one is graduating from the T-14 anyways. I don't really know. But anything above $70K would be pretty good. One wouldn't drown in debt once one gets above the $70K mark or so. After raises and bonuses, people could begin chipping away at that debt and make a comfortable living.

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Re: Do You Regret Going to Law School?

Postby bjsesq » Tue Apr 16, 2013 9:24 pm

bizzybone1313 wrote:I imagine most corporations that hire JD's probably pay in the $75-$100K range-- if one is graduating from the T-14 anyways. I don't really know. But anything above $70K would be pretty good. One wouldn't drown in debt once one gets above the $70K mark or so. After raises and bonuses, people could begin chipping away at that debt and make a comfortable living.


But HOW does one get this magical job?

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Re: Do You Regret Going to Law School?

Postby NoodleyOne » Tue Apr 16, 2013 9:26 pm

bizzybone1313 wrote:I imagine most corporations that hire JD's probably pay in the $75-$100K range-- if one is graduating from the T-14 anyways. I don't really know. But anything above $70K would be pretty good. One wouldn't drown in debt once one gets above the $70K mark or so. After raises and bonuses, people could begin chipping away at that debt and make a comfortable living.

Dude, you're a 0L. Just remember that. The job market is what it is. Shit isn't QUITE as bleak as TLS makes it, but the conservative attitude is generally a good one to have when you're putting down 6 figures for a degree.

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Re: Do You Regret Going to Law School?

Postby bizzybone1313 » Tue Apr 16, 2013 9:27 pm

bjsesq wrote:
bizzybone1313 wrote:
bjsesq wrote:
bizzybone1313 wrote:^^^All I am saying is that there has to be SOMETHING besides 60+ hour a week Big Law that pays decently and is somewhat enjoyable. Getting a good job in almost any field isn't easy. All those jobs I listed seem to fit that profile. Even if one doesn't get one of these jobs directly out of law school, I have a hard time believing a Cornell, Columbia or NYU grad couldn't get one of these positions eventually. I have surveyed a lot of plaintiff side employment and immigration law websites, and I find it amazing that a lot of these places have such few T-14 grads. At one firm that I know pays $100K+, I remember seeing very few elite educational backgrounds.


Holy shit, anecdotal evidence. The legal job market experienced massive contraction and law schools still put out WAY too many law students. It's great that you know people who made, a ton don't. I know that would never happen to you, right?


I don't have that attitude at all. I know my number could very easily come up and me not get a good legal gig. But I have such a marketable and valuable undergrad degree that I could get a $60K+ plus job with a snap of my fingers. I got my undergrad degree for solely that reason-- as a backup plan in case I ever needed to use it. I don't lose much sleep at night. After law school, I could very easily make $80K by selling my JD + undergrad degree. There are thousand's of employers in my field worldwide that could employ me.


Note, however, that this means dick for your original argument that NYU and (LOL) Cornell = some sort of eventual gravy train.


I don't expect a gravy train. I just find it hard to believe that most people won't EVENTUALLY have a good career coming out of some of the most elite law schools in the world. Things might not be great directly out of school, but what about 10-20 years down the line? My definition for a good career outcome is significantly below the whole $160K+ Big Law gig that everyone on TLS is so obsessed about. I would say a good career outcome would be making $80K+ for 20+ years. Things happen. People get fired. People get burnt out. People get tired of pushing paper.

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Re: Do You Regret Going to Law School?

Postby bjsesq » Tue Apr 16, 2013 9:29 pm

bizzybone1313 wrote:I don't expect a gravy train. I just find it hard to believe that most people won't EVENTUALLY have a good career coming out of some of the most elite law schools in the world. Things might not be great directly out of school, but what about 10-20 years down the line? My definition for a good career outcome is significantly below the whole $160K+ Big Law gig that everyone on TLS is so obsessed about. I would say a good career outcome would be making $80K+ for 20+ years. Things happen. People get fired. People get burnt out. People get tired of pushing paper.


I'm a T14 law student in the top 1/3 and I got dick. I am not uncommon. Problem for me: my debt isn't just gonna chill until I can pay it off with my sweet gig 20 years down the line. JUST GOTTA BE PATIENT, LENDERS

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Re: Do You Regret Going to Law School?

Postby LaBarrister » Tue Apr 16, 2013 9:30 pm

bjsesq wrote:
bizzybone1313 wrote:I imagine most corporations that hire JD's probably pay in the $75-$100K range-- if one is graduating from the T-14 anyways. I don't really know. But anything above $70K would be pretty good. One wouldn't drown in debt once one gets above the $70K mark or so. After raises and bonuses, people could begin chipping away at that debt and make a comfortable living.


But HOW does one get this magical job?


I think it is most common to have firm experience before going in-house. I've heard of people getting these jobs after establishing a relationship with a company via company-associate experience. Typically, associates go in-house to take a pay cut but enjoy fewer weekly hours, seeing as they become salaried employees of that company.

I don't know about other disciplines, but all I ever hear about when it comes to in-house attorneys is IP work. That's because that's all I ask about. I'm sure there are others. But, with an engineering degree, one has many ways to maneuver up through a company. I would assume that there are cases where companies pay their employees to go to law school and come back to work in the company as an attorney.

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Re: Do You Regret Going to Law School?

Postby bjsesq » Tue Apr 16, 2013 9:31 pm

LaBarrister wrote:
bjsesq wrote:
bizzybone1313 wrote:I imagine most corporations that hire JD's probably pay in the $75-$100K range-- if one is graduating from the T-14 anyways. I don't really know. But anything above $70K would be pretty good. One wouldn't drown in debt once one gets above the $70K mark or so. After raises and bonuses, people could begin chipping away at that debt and make a comfortable living.


But HOW does one get this magical job?


I think it is most common to have firm experience before going in-house. I've heard of people getting these jobs after establishing a relationship with a company via company-associate experience. Typically, associates go in-house to take a pay cut but enjoy fewer weekly hours, seeing as they become salaried employees of that company.

I don't know about other disciplines, but all I ever hear about when it comes to in-house attorneys is IP work. That's because that's all I ask about. I'm sure there are others. But, with an engineering degree, one has many ways to maneuver up through a company. I would assume that there are cases where companies pay their employees to go to law school and come back to work in the company as an attorney.


Oh, cool. Just gotta get a firm job. Tso simple.

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Re: Do You Regret Going to Law School?

Postby Kronk » Tue Apr 16, 2013 9:32 pm

lol

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Re: Do You Regret Going to Law School?

Postby bizzybone1313 » Tue Apr 16, 2013 9:32 pm

NoodleyOne wrote:
bizzybone1313 wrote:I imagine most corporations that hire JD's probably pay in the $75-$100K range-- if one is graduating from the T-14 anyways. I don't really know. But anything above $70K would be pretty good. One wouldn't drown in debt once one gets above the $70K mark or so. After raises and bonuses, people could begin chipping away at that debt and make a comfortable living.

Dude, you're a 0L. Just remember that. The job market is what it is. Shit isn't QUITE as bleak as TLS makes it, but the conservative attitude is generally a good one to have when you're putting down 6 figures for a degree.


Fair enough. I never said to pay sticker at Georgetown. I am not dispensing bad advice. Just because I haven't graduated from law school, it doesn't mean I should be excluded from contributing to the conversation. Some of what I have said are more in the form of questions and general inquiry into the field of law. After the economy recovers fully, it seems that it would start becoming a little bit safer to attend a respectable law school.




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