How insular is Boston?

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How insular is Boston?

Postby CPAlawHopefu » Thu Oct 06, 2016 1:28 pm

Every time I do a search here on the necessity of having ties to a region, Boston never fails to pop up as one of the prime examples of insular cities where ties becomes almost like a pre-requisite to breaking into its market.

I've read many responses on what constitutes a tie and the answer varied - some say attending a LS in the region is sufficient to establish a tie while some say that unless I'm able to describe that one park that every local townfolk once knew 15 years ago but no longer exists (basically I need to have grown up there since childhood) I am a lost case.

I'm from the west coast and I know nothing about Boston other than its sports team and atrocious accent. But I've done an extensive research of the city and its legal market and it seems to be ideal. The COL is in line with what I'm used to, it has a disproportionately large legal market, and I look forward to four seasons there (where I am now, we have two seasons - hot summer and cool summer). I've visited the city a week ago and stayed there for few days and I loved the vibe and history. Of course, a couple days is no where near enough to "figure a city out" but the first impression was nothing but positive and I can see myself launching my career there unless an anomalous disaster happens.

But my only "tie" there would be the LS and I am unsure how receptive Bostonians are towards "foreigners" that's not on a first name basis with Timmy down at the baa.

I would like an input on this please, thanks.

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Re: How insular is Boston?

Postby guynourmin » Thu Oct 06, 2016 4:16 pm

I'd think toning down the atrocious accent and Timmy down at the baa talk would be a start. People in Boston will hire you, more or less. If you go to BC, are in the top 25% of your class, and apply broadly, getting biglaw isn't guaranteed, but you probably have as much of a shot at it as going to your local law school and doing the same as where you already have ties. You're overthinking this imo.

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Re: How insular is Boston?

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Thu Oct 06, 2016 4:21 pm

It's definitely possible to develop ties by going to the local law school and working at it over your 3 years (I'd even wager that BC is better for developing Boston ties than Harvard is, because there's good reason to go to H completely independent of any interest in working in Boston, which is less the case for BC. Not that Harvard wouldn't still put you in a better place overall so it's kind of moot but just for comparison's sake). A lot of it will depend on how good the legal market is where you're trying to go.


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Re: How insular is Boston?

Postby tomwatts » Thu Oct 06, 2016 4:25 pm

Agreeing with the crowd. Going to law school there is enough. It's probably a good idea to do your first summer there, too, just to be sure, and because your first summer is generally not leading to a permanent job, they don't much care if you have ties, so you shouldn't have any problems getting the first summer job. Once you've established law school and 1L summer in the city, you can tell employers that you intend to stay, and they're probably not going to doubt you too much. "Ties" are unlikely to be your problem in that situation. (School ranking/grades/whatever else might be your problem, but ties probably will not be.)

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Re: How insular is Boston?

Postby Biglaw Investor » Mon Oct 24, 2016 10:10 am

Echoing the other commenters, but I figure it's helpful to see a consensus. I'm from the South, went to law school in Boston, and agree that going to law school in the area is enough to establish ties. The city is really one big college town at the end of the day. Now, making partner down the line? That I'm not as sure about - but the firms aren't going to object to hiring you.

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