Best LS for Women's/Human Rights in an Islamic context?

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stiss87
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Best LS for Women's/Human Rights in an Islamic context?

Postby stiss87 » Mon Nov 15, 2010 1:14 pm

I'm currently finishing my BA with a major in Middle Eastern Studies and minors in political Science and public Law. I messed up my first LSAT and will retake in February since I'm only applying next year.
Any ideas which schools are the best in the fields listed in the title?
Thanks for your help

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romothesavior
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Re: Best LS for Women's/Human Rights in an Islamic context?

Postby romothesavior » Mon Nov 15, 2010 1:17 pm

stiss87 wrote:I'm currently finishing my BA with a major in Middle Eastern Studies and minors in political Science and public Law. I messed up my first LSAT and will retake in February since I'm only applying next year.
Any ideas which schools are the best in the fields listed in the title?
Thanks for your help

Not even sure what you're asking, but Yale/Harvard are TCR.

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nealric
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Re: Best LS for Women's/Human Rights in an Islamic context?

Postby nealric » Mon Nov 15, 2010 1:18 pm

The one that won't drive you into debt.

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plenipotentiary
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Re: Best LS for Women's/Human Rights in an Islamic context?

Postby plenipotentiary » Mon Nov 15, 2010 1:23 pm

What is it that you want to do and why do you think a legal degree will help you do it?

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stiss87
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Re: Best LS for Women's/Human Rights in an Islamic context?

Postby stiss87 » Mon Nov 15, 2010 2:06 pm

Basically my dream would be doing a joint degree like the JD/MSFS (Master of Science in Foreign Service) or JD/MASSP (Master of Arts in Security Studies) at Georgetown and then join a non-profit organization somewhere in the Middle East working with/for women, who still are discriminated by their country's laws. Even if I don't get into Law School, I would try to get into the two Masters degree mentioned above. The JD would just (I think) open more doors when it comes to getting a job after school.

EDIT: More info. I only know about the Georgetown program because the director of the School of Foreign Service came to my university to do a lecture. Any other similar programs?

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nealric
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Re: Best LS for Women's/Human Rights in an Islamic context?

Postby nealric » Mon Nov 15, 2010 3:06 pm

The JD would just (I think) open more doors when it comes to getting a job after school.


You have to keep in mind that while a JD can open doors, it can close them too.

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stiss87
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Re: Best LS for Women's/Human Rights in an Islamic context?

Postby stiss87 » Mon Nov 15, 2010 3:36 pm

nealric wrote:
The JD would just (I think) open more doors when it comes to getting a job after school.


You have to keep in mind that while a JD can open doors, it can close them too.


What do you mean by that?

whymeohgodno
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Re: Best LS for Women's/Human Rights in an Islamic context?

Postby whymeohgodno » Mon Nov 15, 2010 4:08 pm

Yale.

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nealric
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Re: Best LS for Women's/Human Rights in an Islamic context?

Postby nealric » Mon Nov 15, 2010 4:09 pm

What do you mean by that?


Non-legal jobs assume you will really want a legal job.
You become "overqualified" for a lot of jobs.

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fugitivejammer
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Re: Best LS for Women's/Human Rights in an Islamic context?

Postby fugitivejammer » Mon Nov 15, 2010 6:18 pm

nealric wrote:
What do you mean by that?


Non-legal jobs assume you will really want a legal job.
You become "overqualified" for a lot of jobs.


I feel like normally, TITCR, but for the type of field she's going in, a JD isn't going to hold her back. Some non-legal jobs might not take on JD (claiming they are overqualified) to avoid having to pay them a higher rate for a job that doesnt require someone to have a JD OR to avoid the chance that a JD employee might pick up and leave for a higher paying legal job of some sort. Since the OP is planning to work in the middle-east for a non-profit, the employers might not have to worry about either concern -we are talking about a completely different mind-set there.

The real question is, does the JD provide you enough benefit for the field you want to pursue, OP? The time/effort required and monetary cost of a JD probably beats out any other graduate program you have in mind, and I dont really understand yet how you plan to use the JD or where it becomes vital for your interests. The JD doesn't seems to carry far outside the legal field, especially without w/e as a lawyer at a firm.

Since you're planning to work in public interest, the pay ur probably expecting to receive will be on the lower end of the scale, which would make paying back your law school debt a very serious concern. I just dont understand how the cost/benefit of getting a JD makes sense for you since it doesn't sound like u'll actually b practicing law. I'd probably recommened getting another Masters if that's what u want to do at a school w/ a name that'll carry internationally a bit, over getting a JD.

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YankeesFan
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Re: Best LS for Women's/Human Rights in an Islamic context?

Postby YankeesFan » Mon Nov 15, 2010 6:31 pm

Hey stiss87,

I currently work in Human Rights so I feel like I could give you a pretty good answer on this one. Pursuing a JD is a great idea (I'm doing that as well), but know that getting an MA in Human Rights, Foreign Policy or International Affairs is an equally worthwile path to go down (it can even be on top of a JD). As for an Islamic context, this really is not a huge qualification for your career. Most of the time you will spend your days and conversations trying to translate ideas from Western standards into ideology and terminology of another society, so being able to grasp multiple cultural value systems and frame them in terms of the other will be your most valueable asset and a skill you will learn with an MA in International Affairs or the like.

As for schools, I would look at the joint degree program at American, GW or GTOWN. Even look at the Comparative and International Law at Catholic. Seton Hall also has a joing JD/MA in Diplomacy and Whitehead is looked upon favorably. Or shoot for a T-6.

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stiss87
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Re: Best LS for Women's/Human Rights in an Islamic context?

Postby stiss87 » Tue Nov 16, 2010 3:48 am

whymeohgodno wrote:Yale.

Not going to happen with my numbers. Even if I increase my LSAT score to 180.

fugitivejammer wrote:
The real question is, does the JD provide you enough benefit for the field you want to pursue, OP? The time/effort required and monetary cost of a JD probably beats out any other graduate program you have in mind, and I dont really understand yet how you plan to use the JD or where it becomes vital for your interests. The JD doesn't seems to carry far outside the legal field, especially without w/e as a lawyer at a firm.

Since you're planning to work in public interest, the pay ur probably expecting to receive will be on the lower end of the scale, which would make paying back your law school debt a very serious concern. I just dont understand how the cost/benefit of getting a JD makes sense for you since it doesn't sound like u'll actually b practicing law. I'd probably recommened getting another Masters if that's what u want to do at a school w/ a name that'll carry internationally a bit, over getting a JD.

My end goal might be to work for the UN in the legal field. Maybe work at a Human Rights Court. I'm still very undecided were exactly I'll end up in 15 years but I'd like to keep all doors open.
As for paying for law school I'm hoping to be able to do it on my own, so no loans/debts.

YankeesFan wrote:Even look at the Comparative and International Law at Catholic.

I'm an atheist. I might not fit in. But thanks for all the other tips. I will check them out.

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fugitivejammer
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Re: Best LS for Women's/Human Rights in an Islamic context?

Postby fugitivejammer » Tue Nov 16, 2010 6:31 pm

Well to answer you original question, I don't think distinction's between law school's are made specifically enough to give you "the best schools for women's/human rights in an islamic context". I think u should look at a school's ranking and focus on public interest as two of the largest deciding criteria - also its ability to place or hold weight internationally, which will b a bit more important for you. Try to get the highest ranking school u can pretty much - some schools to keep in front of you are Stanford, Columbia, NYU, Berkeley, Cornell, Georgetown since they all seem to put a bit more emphasis on public interest or international law.

What I was getting at with my last post was: is a JD necessary for you to pursue your goals? It seems you have a general idea of where u want to be in so-many-years, but will u b working as a lawyer? It doesn't seem like it to me - it seems more like u want to work in this area to some capacity, but just want the JD since u think it'll open more doors and provide opportunity. I think u should decide what you really want to do in that area you are talking of - if u know u want to practice law, then get the JD. If ur not sure, then I just feel ur wasting a lot of time and $ for a degree u wont use - u can get a masters if u wanted and probably get the same exact benefit, if not more (only downside is u lose the chance to practice law if that's what u want to do).

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romothesavior
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Re: Best LS for Women's/Human Rights in an Islamic context?

Postby romothesavior » Tue Nov 16, 2010 8:46 pm

Do not, under any circumstance, go to Catholic, American, or Seton Hall unless it is free.

Also, please realize that international law is the typical desired field for every wide-eyed, clueless 1L. Anna Ivey has a good article exposing international law for what it is: a marketing tool used by schools to get students to come there (unfortunately her web site is down or something because I couldn't access the page, but you should Google it and give it a read). Are there jobs in international law? Yeah I'm sure there are some. But the kind of work you are talking about doing is likely UBER competitive, especially for someone outside of the most elite schools.

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worldtraveler
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Re: Best LS for Women's/Human Rights in an Islamic context?

Postby worldtraveler » Tue Nov 16, 2010 9:51 pm

OP do you speak the languages of the region? Have you spent time living there? If either of these are a no, then you need to go take care of that before you start law school. The non-profits you want to work for will expect you to at minimum speak some Arabic or French and have at least studied abroad in the Middle East.

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vegenator
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Re: Best LS for Women's/Human Rights in an Islamic context?

Postby vegenator » Tue Nov 16, 2010 9:57 pm

Doesn't Michigan also have a joint jd ma in middle eastern studies? I might be confusing this with georgetown, so double check...

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stiss87
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Re: Best LS for Women's/Human Rights in an Islamic context?

Postby stiss87 » Wed Nov 17, 2010 1:19 am

worldtraveler wrote:OP do you speak the languages of the region? Have you spent time living there? If either of these are a no, then you need to go take care of that before you start law school. The non-profits you want to work for will expect you to at minimum speak some Arabic or French and have at least studied abroad in the Middle East.


Yes, I speak Arabic, Farsi and French also. By the time I will start LS I'll have lived there for 1 year +, maybe more.

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stiss87
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Re: Best LS for Women's/Human Rights in an Islamic context?

Postby stiss87 » Wed Nov 17, 2010 1:20 am

vegenator wrote:Doesn't Michigan also have a joint jd ma in middle eastern studies? I might be confusing this with georgetown, so double check...

Ok thanks will do.

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stiss87
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Re: Best LS for Women's/Human Rights in an Islamic context?

Postby stiss87 » Wed Nov 17, 2010 1:28 am

romothesavior wrote:Do not, under any circumstance, go to Catholic, American, or Seton Hall unless it is free.

Ok noted.

romothesavior wrote: Also, please realize that international law is the typical desired field for every wide-eyed, clueless 1L. Anna Ivey has a good article exposing international law for what it is: a marketing tool used by schools to get students to come there (unfortunately her web site is down or something because I couldn't access the page, but you should Google it and give it a read). Are there jobs in international law? Yeah I'm sure there are some.

I'll try to find the article and read it.
romothesavior wrote: But the kind of work you are talking about doing is likely UBER competitive, especially for someone outside of the most elite schools.

I know that they are uber competitive, that's why for now it's only a dream.

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worldtraveler
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Re: Best LS for Women's/Human Rights in an Islamic context?

Postby worldtraveler » Wed Nov 17, 2010 5:07 am

stiss87 wrote:
worldtraveler wrote:OP do you speak the languages of the region? Have you spent time living there? If either of these are a no, then you need to go take care of that before you start law school. The non-profits you want to work for will expect you to at minimum speak some Arabic or French and have at least studied abroad in the Middle East.


Yes, I speak Arabic, Farsi and French also. By the time I will start LS I'll have lived there for 1 year +, maybe more.


In that case you should be in a fairly good position. Aside from studying for an awesome LSAT score, you should try and get some experience in the field pre-law school. Seek out internships or a low level position with an NGO in the region. These connections are huge and can really help in the future.

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capitalacq
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Re: Best LS for Women's/Human Rights in an Islamic context?

Postby capitalacq » Wed Nov 17, 2010 6:50 am

nealric wrote:
What do you mean by that?


Non-legal jobs assume you will really want a legal job.
You become "overqualified" for a lot of jobs.

not jobs you'd really want with an advanced degree...

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kazu
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Re: Best LS for Women's/Human Rights in an Islamic context?

Postby kazu » Wed Nov 17, 2010 6:59 am


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romothesavior
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Re: Best LS for Women's/Human Rights in an Islamic context?

Postby romothesavior » Wed Nov 17, 2010 2:12 pm

stiss87 wrote:I know that they are uber competitive, that's why for now it's only a dream.

Ask yourself this question: could you practice law if it wasn't international law? (And as a side question, are you sure you know what being a lawyer entails?) If the answer is yes, then by all means continue down this path. Use TLS as a resource to find out about law school and the legal economy, and make sure you do as well as you possibly can on the LSAT. Either go to an elite school or go to a school in the region you want to practice in on a big scholarship. Continue to chase the dream of international law, and if it works out, then great! If it doesn't, you can try to practice law domestically and hopefully you will be happy doing that.

If you don't think you would want to be a lawyer outside of this narrow field of international law, then you need to reassess and possibly try to enter this field in ways other than law. There are plenty of ways to help people that don't require you to spend lots of time and money on a law degree, and you may have a great shot at breaking into it with your language and background.

Your language skills and experience being abroad will help a great deal if you decide to pursue law in this way. I certainly don't proclaim to be an expert in this field, and I'm sure worldtraveler knows far more about it than I do. But I'm just trying to serve as the voice of caution here, because many, many students attend law school (especially non-elite law schools) thinking they will get to travel the world and fight for justice, only to come out crippled with debt with no shot at a law firm job, let alone an NGO job.

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worldtraveler
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Re: Best LS for Women's/Human Rights in an Islamic context?

Postby worldtraveler » Wed Nov 17, 2010 6:27 pm

I'm getting really tired of people constantly pulling out that Anna Ivey article. In it, she's talking mostly about people who want to work for a law firm yet somehow save the world. It's really not applicable to the international human rights field that the OP is talking about. Granted, a lot of people who want to go into this field have no idea what the hell it is, but it actually is a fairly large field with a fair amount of job opportunities. The problem is that it is hard to break into. It can require a ton of degrees or unpaid internships, foreign language skills, and lower level work experience just to get a job. Unlike law firm hiring, and like most of the world outside law school, it's also all about connections. You need to know someone who knows someone, which means getting experience before law school is crucial. You also want to go to a school with a fairly large "public international law" faculty, meaning those with work experience in the UN or NGOs that can help you find connections.

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Re: Best LS for Women's/Human Rights in an Islamic context?

Postby tipler4213 » Thu Nov 18, 2010 3:02 pm

I have similar interests, although I think my career focus is more governmental/legal than yours. I speak French and Arabic and have lived in both regions extensively. I have applied Early Decision to NYU (strong international and public interest focus--peak for my numbers). I am also applying to do the joint degree program with the Harvard Kennedy School's Masters in Public Policy with a concentration in international relations.

Other programs of interest include UPenn joint degree with islamic studies, GW, GU, UT joint degree in Middle Eastern studies. I would also consider many of the t-14 schools that link with Harvard Kennedy School, Woodrow Wilson School, Paul H. Nitze School, and the Fletcher school if I were you.
Last edited by tipler4213 on Mon Nov 22, 2010 2:01 pm, edited 1 time in total.




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