Need help deciding how to financially destroy my life

A forum for applicants and admitted students to ask law students and graduates about law school and the practice of law.
User avatar
withoutapaddle
Posts: 451
Joined: Thu Oct 03, 2013 3:29 pm

Need help deciding how to financially destroy my life

Postby withoutapaddle » Tue Nov 25, 2014 11:40 am

I'm trying to decide between a JD/MBA, or a MSF -----> work for two years in energy finace/trading---> MBA

My Background:

GPA: 2.86 (State school)
GMAT:720
LSAT: N/A. I've been taking pratice tests and scoring in the 168-173 range.

Work Experience:
1 year and 6 months experience in mortgage operations at Wells Fargo
1 year experience an analyst in global securities operations at Merrill Lynch.
2 years experience as a Sr. Financial Analyst at Bank of America
1 year and nine months experience as board of director for 501 (c) nonprofit organization.

Volunteer:
Bank of America Volunteer
Eagle Scout
Commmunity projects with fratnerity in college.

I'm really interested in private equity or securiites transactional law. Also, I can financial model, which may help me to land a position in the M&A department within big law.

All in the JD/MBA will cost me around 250K-300K. The MSF and MBA programs would run me 200K all in.

User avatar
Kratos
Posts: 6778
Joined: Sat Oct 04, 2014 3:50 pm

Re: Need help deciding how to financially destroy my life

Postby Kratos » Tue Nov 25, 2014 12:25 pm

Why do you need to get an advanced degree? Seems like a waste of money

User avatar
withoutapaddle
Posts: 451
Joined: Thu Oct 03, 2013 3:29 pm

Re: Need help deciding how to financially destroy my life

Postby withoutapaddle » Tue Nov 25, 2014 12:43 pm

If I went the MBA route, I would like to pursue a career as an investment banking associate. I was going to use the MSF to have an alternative GPA and transcript when applying for MBA programs.

Cogburn87
Posts: 467
Joined: Mon Jul 13, 2009 11:26 pm

Re: Need help deciding how to financially destroy my life

Postby Cogburn87 » Tue Nov 25, 2014 12:49 pm

withoutapaddle wrote:Also, I can financial model, which may help me to land a position in the M&A department within big law.

You should talk to some actual M&A lawyers about what they do every day before you commit to destroying your life (I get that the title of the thread was meant to be glib, but it's actually fairly accurate).

User avatar
withoutapaddle
Posts: 451
Joined: Thu Oct 03, 2013 3:29 pm

Re: Need help deciding how to financially destroy my life

Postby withoutapaddle » Tue Nov 25, 2014 12:55 pm

The 200K+ amount of debt that I'm going to incur, not including the opportunity cost of not working for three years, really scares me. Paying a $2,500 payment a month plus all the other bills I have is downright frightening.

Unfortantely, Businesses require an advanced degree ---> Governemnt provides loans to cover cost of attendance----> Schools charge a house for a piece of paper. I'm trying to decide what would be the best course of action based on my experience, and career prospectives.

User avatar
Icculus
Posts: 1421
Joined: Tue Mar 02, 2010 12:02 am

Re: Need help deciding how to financially destroy my life

Postby Icculus » Tue Nov 25, 2014 12:58 pm

withoutapaddle wrote:The 200K+ amount of debt that I'm going to incur, not including the opportunity cost of not working for three years, really scares me. Paying a $2,500 payment a month plus all the other bills I have is downright frightening.

Unfortantely, Businesses require an advanced degree ---> Governemnt provides loans to cover cost of attendance----> Schools charge a house for a piece of paper. I'm trying to decide what would be the best course of action based on my experience, and career prospectives.


An MBA is basically useless without some kind of other experience.

User avatar
jbagelboy
Posts: 9647
Joined: Thu Nov 29, 2012 7:57 pm

Re: Need help deciding how to financially destroy my life

Postby jbagelboy » Sun Nov 30, 2014 1:19 pm

Icculus wrote:
withoutapaddle wrote:The 200K+ amount of debt that I'm going to incur, not including the opportunity cost of not working for three years, really scares me. Paying a $2,500 payment a month plus all the other bills I have is downright frightening.

Unfortantely, Businesses require an advanced degree ---> Governemnt provides loans to cover cost of attendance----> Schools charge a house for a piece of paper. I'm trying to decide what would be the best course of action based on my experience, and career prospectives.


An MBA is basically useless without some kind of other experience.


If you look at the OP, withoutapaddle has that experience, and plenty of it. I think a reputable MBA would be, in the abstract, a useful qualification here. Assuming those year figures are post-grad and not some part time during UG shit, those are requisite qualifications for basically any MBA program. The problem is that OP may be locked out of the M7 despite a strong GMAT and substantial work experience. I don't think many degrees outside of a core set of 7-10 schools really provide the added value to make the investment worthwhile.

I would apply to northwestern's JD/MBA 3-year program for the hell of it since it doesn't require an LSAT score (or take the LSAT, score 170 and up your chances). I think it's highly unlikely you will get in. That being said, most of us here are just speculating on your chances at somewhere like Kellogg, CBS, Booth, Wharton, ect. I would take a look at some business school forums or admissions sites if you haven't done so already.

Don't go to just law school with your career goals (for example, M&A associates do not work with rigorous financial models), and don't pay for a shit tier MBA that will just shoot you out as another wells fargo clerk.

User avatar
RCSOB657
Posts: 2276
Joined: Wed Jun 18, 2014 2:50 am

Re: Need help deciding how to financially destroy my life

Postby RCSOB657 » Sun Nov 30, 2014 1:43 pm

Anecdote

My brother has better qualifications than you with at least twice the amount of work experience and is published in his field. The MBA he will complete in April still hasn't even gotten him a better position with his current company yet. In fairness however, he does have a family and really cannot uproot easily. On the other hand his specialty is done more online than in person and moving isn't really required.

User avatar
withoutapaddle
Posts: 451
Joined: Thu Oct 03, 2013 3:29 pm

Re: Need help deciding how to financially destroy my life

Postby withoutapaddle » Sun Nov 30, 2014 2:18 pm

If you look at the OP, withoutapaddle has that experience, and plenty of it. I think a reputable MBA would be, in the abstract, a useful qualification here. Assuming those year figures are post-grad and not some part time during UG shit, those are requisite qualifications for basically any MBA program. The problem is that OP may be locked out of the M7 despite a strong GMAT and substantial work experience. I don't think many degrees outside of a core set of 7-10 schools really provide the added value to make the investment worthwhile.

I would apply to northwestern's JD/MBA 3-year program for the hell of it since it doesn't require an LSAT score (or take the LSAT, score 170 and up your chances). I think it's highly unlikely you will get in. That being said, most of us here are just speculating on your chances at somewhere like Kellogg, CBS, Booth, Wharton, ect. I would take a look at some business school forums or admissions sites if you haven't done so already.

Don't go to just law school with your career goals (for example, M&A associates do not work with rigorous financial models), and don't pay for a shit tier MBA that will just shoot you out as another wells fargo clerk.


Do you think the JD/MBA is worth it from Cornell?

User avatar
chuckbass
Posts: 9957
Joined: Sun Nov 27, 2011 9:29 pm

Re: Need help deciding how to financially destroy my life

Postby chuckbass » Sun Nov 30, 2014 2:40 pm

RCSOB657 wrote:Anecdote

My brother has better qualifications than you with at least twice the amount of work experience and is published in his field. The MBA he will complete in April still hasn't even gotten him a better position with his current company yet. In fairness however, he does have a family and really cannot uproot easily. On the other hand his specialty is done more online than in person and moving isn't really required.

So... You're proving jbb's point, as I'm assuming your brother is not getting his MBA from an M7?

User avatar
RCSOB657
Posts: 2276
Joined: Wed Jun 18, 2014 2:50 am

Re: Need help deciding how to financially destroy my life

Postby RCSOB657 » Sun Nov 30, 2014 2:44 pm

If you're asking in his case was it wasteful spending, yeah probably.

User avatar
jbagelboy
Posts: 9647
Joined: Thu Nov 29, 2012 7:57 pm

Re: Need help deciding how to financially destroy my life

Postby jbagelboy » Sun Nov 30, 2014 3:30 pm

withoutapaddle wrote:
If you look at the OP, withoutapaddle has that experience, and plenty of it. I think a reputable MBA would be, in the abstract, a useful qualification here. Assuming those year figures are post-grad and not some part time during UG shit, those are requisite qualifications for basically any MBA program. The problem is that OP may be locked out of the M7 despite a strong GMAT and substantial work experience. I don't think many degrees outside of a core set of 7-10 schools really provide the added value to make the investment worthwhile.

I would apply to northwestern's JD/MBA 3-year program for the hell of it since it doesn't require an LSAT score (or take the LSAT, score 170 and up your chances). I think it's highly unlikely you will get in. That being said, most of us here are just speculating on your chances at somewhere like Kellogg, CBS, Booth, Wharton, ect. I would take a look at some business school forums or admissions sites if you haven't done so already.

Don't go to just law school with your career goals (for example, M&A associates do not work with rigorous financial models), and don't pay for a shit tier MBA that will just shoot you out as another wells fargo clerk.


Do you think the JD/MBA is worth it from Cornell?


That's an illustrative example of my statements, actually.

First, ex ante input, Cornell JD is not splitter friendly (pretty solid 3.1ish floor IIRC), and the MBA program, while substantially less competitive than first tier b-schools, still posts a 3.3+ GPA median. https://www.johnson.cornell.edu/Two-Year-MBA/Key-Facts. I think if you want to find a JD/MBA program you would qualify for, you'd have to settle for less.

Output-side, placement wise Johnson punches decently but still pretty far below the weight of M7 programs. https://www.johnson.cornell.edu/Career- ... -Year-MBAs. Granularity can be deceptive, but it looks like about 15% of Johnson grads find work in the type of elite finance position that might justify the prohibitive sticker cost of the program; consulting numbers are more difficult to navigate, but I would be comfortable saying only 35-40%* at most of the outcomes make the degree/debt worthwhile given your current employment history and the options available to you now.

In sum, your chances at a positive outcome would be better from the Cornell JD (let's say 70%** positive) than the MBA; ceteris paribus, this means rationally you'd target a large law firm, which brings me back to some of the points I made earlier: you're basically asking whether sticker debt at a lower T14 is worth it. The answer is most adamantly no. Your stated career interests only further affirm this negative.

*/** I know I'm painting with broad strokes here, but I'm not going to delve into it any deeper right now.

User avatar
twenty
Posts: 3153
Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2012 1:17 pm

Re: Need help deciding how to financially destroy my life

Postby twenty » Sun Nov 30, 2014 4:18 pm

I bet WUSTL or UMinn would give him a lot of money, though probably not super likely to land him the job he wants in law. My guess is even if he did get into either school with a full ride (which is entirely possible, actually), it wouldn't be worth the three years in school to pad his resume with a better-looking GPA/degree. That said, I think it's worth looking outside the echo chamber on occasion. You obviously have to overcome the overwhelming "don't go to law school if you don't want to practice law" narrative, but I'm not entirely convinced that WUSTL/UMinn on a full ride would be a terrible idea for OP. It'd certainly be a better plan than MSF -> MBA. Plus, he could drop out pretty quickly if he finds that this isn't a path he wants to take.

Okay, that all said and done, I think there's some grass-is-greener business going on here. Is there some reason you're thinking of completely uprooting your career trajectory right now when you've got Sr. Financial Analyst on your resume? At the point where you're making 80k~ a year right now, you have a decent quality of life, and you're (presumably) on track to be earning 100k a year before you turn 30, why throw that all away to (best case scenario!) take on a ton of student loans to have a chance of marginally-better employment to what you have right now? In the very near future, you will become "that guy with work experience" that doesn't need to show your GPA on your resume. Maybe I'm just completely nuts here, but is IB really worth giving up what you have now?

User avatar
withoutapaddle
Posts: 451
Joined: Thu Oct 03, 2013 3:29 pm

Re: Need help deciding how to financially destroy my life

Postby withoutapaddle » Sun Nov 30, 2014 4:47 pm

The only reason I wanted to do the master of finance is that it would give me a chance to redo my GPA and get a name brand college on my resume. I really don't think an MBA outside the top 10 is worth it.The GPA from the master of finance would give me a chance at a top 10 school.

In regards to law school. It seems that I'd be paying sticker no matter what if I was accepted to a T-14. If I didn't get big law with that much debt I'd be screwed. I guess I could apply to investment banking positions with the JD but it would be hard to get a position

User avatar
withoutapaddle
Posts: 451
Joined: Thu Oct 03, 2013 3:29 pm

Re: Need help deciding how to financially destroy my life

Postby withoutapaddle » Sun Nov 30, 2014 4:51 pm

. Double post

User avatar
twenty
Posts: 3153
Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2012 1:17 pm

Re: Need help deciding how to financially destroy my life

Postby twenty » Sun Nov 30, 2014 5:05 pm

I guess my question is why? A (big) purpose in getting a brand-name degree with a high GPA is to land a position like the one you already have. Is this one of those things where you can't break into management without an MSF/MBA?

User avatar
withoutapaddle
Posts: 451
Joined: Thu Oct 03, 2013 3:29 pm

Re: Need help deciding how to financially destroy my life

Postby withoutapaddle » Sun Nov 30, 2014 5:23 pm

The msf would help break into a management role. Also, it could open doors to ib or quantitative financial analyst roles (make more money than financial analysts). The msf is also one year and 70k less than a MBA. From I've seen on linkedin the msf can place into consulting as well.

User avatar
jbagelboy
Posts: 9647
Joined: Thu Nov 29, 2012 7:57 pm

Re: Need help deciding how to financially destroy my life

Postby jbagelboy » Sun Nov 30, 2014 5:26 pm

withoutapaddle wrote:The msf would help break into a management role. Also, it could open doors to ib or quantitative financial analyst roles (make more money than financial analysts). The msf is also one year and 70k less than a MBA. From I've seen on linkedin the msf can place into consulting as well.


you place as an analyst though, not an associate. I had a couple MFin's start in my analyst class. Someone with your experience should not be dovetailing with 22 year old BA's.

User avatar
Ron Mexico
Posts: 13536
Joined: Mon Oct 07, 2013 8:32 pm

Re: Need help deciding how to financially destroy my life

Postby Ron Mexico » Sun Nov 30, 2014 5:28 pm

you volunteered at a bank?

User avatar
jbagelboy
Posts: 9647
Joined: Thu Nov 29, 2012 7:57 pm

Re: Need help deciding how to financially destroy my life

Postby jbagelboy » Sun Nov 30, 2014 5:30 pm

Ron Mexico wrote:you volunteered at a bank?


no dude. come on. it's a community service program for employees: http://about.bankofamerica.com/en-us/gl ... LwHqv4LpXf

User avatar
Icculus
Posts: 1421
Joined: Tue Mar 02, 2010 12:02 am

Re: Need help deciding how to financially destroy my life

Postby Icculus » Sun Nov 30, 2014 10:25 pm

jbagelboy wrote:
Icculus wrote:
withoutapaddle wrote:The 200K+ amount of debt that I'm going to incur, not including the opportunity cost of not working for three years, really scares me. Paying a $2,500 payment a month plus all the other bills I have is downright frightening.

Unfortantely, Businesses require an advanced degree ---> Governemnt provides loans to cover cost of attendance----> Schools charge a house for a piece of paper. I'm trying to decide what would be the best course of action based on my experience, and career prospectives.


An MBA is basically useless without some kind of other experience.


If you look at the OP, withoutapaddle has that experience, and plenty of it. I think a reputable MBA would be, in the abstract, a useful qualification here. Assuming those year figures are post-grad and not some part time during UG shit, those are requisite qualifications for basically any MBA program. The problem is that OP may be locked out of the M7 despite a strong GMAT and substantial work experience. I don't think many degrees outside of a core set of 7-10 schools really provide the added value to make the investment worthwhile.

I would apply to northwestern's JD/MBA 3-year program for the hell of it since it doesn't require an LSAT score (or take the LSAT, score 170 and up your chances). I think it's highly unlikely you will get in. That being said, most of us here are just speculating on your chances at somewhere like Kellogg, CBS, Booth, Wharton, ect. I would take a look at some business school forums or admissions sites if you haven't done so already.

Don't go to just law school with your career goals (for example, M&A associates do not work with rigorous financial models), and don't pay for a shit tier MBA that will just shoot you out as another wells fargo clerk.


Point takn, RC fail on my part. Here I think a top MBA or JD/MBA from NU (3 years is key) may be not a bad decision.

User avatar
withoutapaddle
Posts: 451
Joined: Thu Oct 03, 2013 3:29 pm

Re: Need help deciding how to financially destroy my life

Postby withoutapaddle » Thu Dec 04, 2014 10:42 am

I ended up getting an interview in NYC with a big 4 consulting firm, so that made my decision easy when it came to law school. I think I'm just going to stick with business at this point. Especially with my GPA, I don't have a chance at HYSCCN even with a 180




Return to “Ask a Law Student / Graduate”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Capitol_Idea and 6 guests