SaulGoodmansEvilTwin wrote:So, let me give you a run down of my current situation and my thoughts and goals, then feel free to flame me or caress me gently with soothing, sagacious advice:
I'm a 44 (as of this month) year old white male, married with 2 kids, about to graduate from ASU with a degree in History and some Philosophy coursework. I work full time as an emergency paramedic, and have done so for over 20 years. In that time I've worked as a paramedic all around the world, especially in the oil and gas industry. I speak Esperanto and Russian at a high-intermediate level, and basic Spanish. Obviously I have an extensive medical background.
Dad was a lawyer, and for years and years, I swore I would never become a lawyer. However, I finally realized- all the things I like and am really good at (reading, writing, logic, analysis, language, etc) pretty much make me a perfect candidate for being a lawyer. And thanks to Dad, and his years of Socratic dinner-table dialogue, I probably even think like a lawyer.
However, there are other motivations: I inherited (I miss my Dad...) an extensive amount of real estate (that isn't worth much in this economy, sadly) and legal training would be of great use in the years to come in dealing with it. Also, my years of experience abroad mean I am very interested in working in either the oil and gas industry or perhaps for a government or educational organization. My background would, I think, help me in getting into, for example, a management position in an international oil company's health and safety division, or doing admiralty law, or teaching abroad.
The biggest reason though- I'm getting way too old to do what I'm doing. The 24 hour shifts are killing me- sleep deprivation, heavy lifting, and boatloads of stress are a recipe for an early grave.
Money is also an issue- 2 kids are going to graduate from HS in the next 6 years, and momma wants them to go to Stanford. What I'm doing now pays ~$70K in a good year working internationally, and ~$45K in a year without any international work- which is an extremely difficult and competitive area.
Where I am at now:
Cowtown, NM. Own a nice house I can sell to get maybe $200K in the bank. I have taken 1 practice LSAT and scored 154 without studying. I got 66% right on LR, 43% right on LG and 89% right on RC. My LSAC GPA is 3.54. I am planning on taking the December LSAT. I have the Powerscore LG book, Nathan Fox's Disrespecting the LSAT LR book, and 30 practice tests to study and take over the next 3 months. I think I can easily get 165, and probably 170 on the LSAT in December. That will hopefully get me into UNM law school (cheap!) but I'm prepared for the fickleness of law school admissions and to apply to ASU, UofAz, etc. I'll even apply to a couple of "reach" schools like Columbia or Cornell, just for shits and giggles.
So, my goals are not to get into a top law school. I'm not looking to go for Biglaw. I'm not even sure I'll want to practice law, although if I do it would be because it was awesome money and it would probably be in medico-legal. Basically I want to make a comfortable living, get my kids through school, and work internationally or for a major oil or maritime company. My dream job would look something like working for a Norwegian oil or shipping company in their HSE or Legal department, making $100K+ a year while living in Oslo. But I'd also be happy working for the State Department as a Embassy legal guy, or even teaching at a foreign university as long as the money paid all my bills (and the kids tuition).
My law school aspirations can be summed up as: Go high or go cheap. And since I'm not likely to get into a top-ranked school even with a 170/3.5, I'm more interested in cheap.
Whew, this guy finally shuts up:
So I ask you, dear legal eagles, to tell me any advice you may have, or to poke holes in my plan. Let 'er rip!
If you don't chase your dream at the age of 40+, when will you go for it? Wait for another 10 years and have some 20 years old telling you don't do it again?
Your kids will take out loan when they go to Stanford, and they should. You obviously have provided good parenting and it's time to let the kids become adults and take loads off your shoulder.
I would say your dream is not easy but not totally unrealistic.
You only live once and for better or worse, you should chase your dream at your golden age. I believe that even if you don't land on your dream job, you will do just fine. Good luck