So, how can you afford to survive while in law school?

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heyhowdyhey
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So, how can you afford to survive while in law school?

Postby heyhowdyhey » Fri Jul 08, 2011 9:45 pm

What I mean is, literally, how can you afford to keep yourself alive?

The thread below about the eating budget led me to asking this. I'm assuming the majority of people here do the full-time program in law school and do not work at all during the academic year.

So, with no income whatsoever, how do you afford things such as rent and food?

I mean, I know a lot of people take out loans for the actual tuition. But I'd like to do as much as possible to lessen the size of my debt, so taking out loans for rent and food and gas and all of the other living expenses does not seem agreeable. Do most people take out loans for these things as well?

And when people get full-ride scholarships, do these include a certain amount of money for your living expenses as well? Or is full-ride just the tuition itself? Do partial scholarships include cost of living stipends?

Sorry for all the questions.
Last edited by heyhowdyhey on Fri Jul 08, 2011 9:55 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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blurbz
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Re: So, how can you afford to survive while in law school?

Postby blurbz » Fri Jul 08, 2011 9:52 pm

Yes, most people take out loans to cover the cost of living. Some schools offer stipends, but those are very, very rare. In my opinion, it makes a good deal more sense to take out loans to live rather than try to juggle a job while in school: Your grades will determine the beginning of your career and your starting salary, the better they are, they higher it will be and the margin of error is likely substantially greater than the amount of money you'd save by working during school.

That, and I buy cheaper caviar and try to limit myself to one bottle of Scotch per week.

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Patriot1208
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Re: So, how can you afford to survive while in law school?

Postby Patriot1208 » Fri Jul 08, 2011 9:53 pm

you take out loans to cover total cost of attendence.

jmill
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Re: So, how can you afford to survive while in law school?

Postby jmill » Fri Jul 08, 2011 10:19 pm

blurbz wrote:Yes, most people take out loans to cover the cost of living. Some schools offer stipends, but those are very, very rare. In my opinion, it makes a good deal more sense to take out loans to live rather than try to juggle a job while in school: Your grades will determine the beginning of your career and your starting salary, the better they are, they higher it will be and the margin of error is likely substantially greater than the amount of money you'd save by working during school.

That, and I buy cheaper caviar and try to limit myself to one bottle of Scotch per week.


My god man how do you live?

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WVUCelticFan
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Re: So, how can you afford to survive while in law school?

Postby WVUCelticFan » Fri Jul 08, 2011 10:24 pm

jmill wrote:
blurbz wrote:Yes, most people take out loans to cover the cost of living. Some schools offer stipends, but those are very, very rare. In my opinion, it makes a good deal more sense to take out loans to live rather than try to juggle a job while in school: Your grades will determine the beginning of your career and your starting salary, the better they are, they higher it will be and the margin of error is likely substantially greater than the amount of money you'd save by working during school.

That, and I buy cheaper caviar and try to limit myself to one bottle of Scotch per week.


My god man how do you live?


He didn't mention the one bottle of bourbon, one bottle of Irish whiskey, some rye....
Whiskey gets its own line in my budget.


But like other posters have said, most people take out loans for the full cost of attendance, although that may be lower than what the school allows you to take, depending on your lifestyle and their leniency.

schooner
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Re: So, how can you afford to survive while in law school?

Postby schooner » Fri Jul 08, 2011 10:38 pm

Also, how are people paying for their summer expenses if they didn't get a paying job? Don't your loans cover just the school year?

23402385985
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Re: So, how can you afford to survive while in law school?

Postby 23402385985 » Fri Jul 08, 2011 10:39 pm

schooner wrote:Also, how are people paying for their summer expenses if they didn't get a paying job? Don't your loans cover just the school year?


Porn.

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Patriot1208
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Re: So, how can you afford to survive while in law school?

Postby Patriot1208 » Fri Jul 08, 2011 10:56 pm

schooner wrote:Also, how are people paying for their summer expenses if they didn't get a paying job? Don't your loans cover just the school year?

Must top schools give stipends. For instance WUSTL gave people 3k for the sumner.

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Mickey Quicknumbers
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Re: So, how can you afford to survive while in law school?

Postby Mickey Quicknumbers » Fri Jul 08, 2011 11:09 pm

smoke when you're hungry, that's like .20 a meal.

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thecilent
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Re: So, how can you afford to survive while in law school?

Postby thecilent » Fri Jul 08, 2011 11:13 pm

Mickey Quicknumbers wrote:smoke when you're hungry, that's like .20 a meal.

This is credited

schooner
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Re: So, how can you afford to survive while in law school?

Postby schooner » Sat Jul 09, 2011 2:24 am

Patriot1208 wrote:
schooner wrote:Also, how are people paying for their summer expenses if they didn't get a paying job? Don't your loans cover just the school year?

Must top schools give stipends. For instance WUSTL gave people 3k for the sumner.


Thank you. I'm confused though. Are those stipends just advances on loans?? What do people at other schools do to survive financially over the summer?

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straxen
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Re: So, how can you afford to survive while in law school?

Postby straxen » Sat Jul 09, 2011 2:54 am

Things people do, off the top of my head:

1. Don't use up all your funds from your student budget (doable) and spread the loans out over the summer
2. Get a paying summer job
3. Get summer funding e.g. Public Interest funding from school
4. Use savings, from previous job or otherwise
5. Get a S.O. with a real job to pay the bills (this for the most part is what I'm doing, I quite recommend it :P )
6. Rack up credit card debt
7. Mooch off parents

You won't starve to death.

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Bildungsroman
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Re: So, how can you afford to survive while in law school?

Postby Bildungsroman » Sat Jul 09, 2011 3:02 am

Even though the estimated budget from a school is for the 9 month academic year, you can probably make it stretch to the full twelve with careful planning. I've worked out my budget for the next year and it will allow me to live comfortably for the full 12 months.

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Patriot1208
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Re: So, how can you afford to survive while in law school?

Postby Patriot1208 » Sat Jul 09, 2011 12:05 pm

schooner wrote:
Patriot1208 wrote:
schooner wrote:Also, how are people paying for their summer expenses if they didn't get a paying job? Don't your loans cover just the school year?

Must top schools give stipends. For instance WUSTL gave people 3k for the sumner.


Are those stipends just advances on loans??

no

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rinkrat19
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Re: So, how can you afford to survive while in law school?

Postby rinkrat19 » Sun Jul 10, 2011 3:05 pm

straxen wrote:Things people do, off the top of my head:

1. Don't use up all your funds from your student budget (doable) and spread the loans out over the summer
2. Get a paying summer job
3. Get summer funding e.g. Public Interest funding from school
4. Use savings, from previous job or otherwise
5. Get a S.O. with a real job to pay the bills (this for the most part is what I'm doing, I quite recommend it :P )
6. Rack up credit card debt
7. Mooch off parents

You won't starve to death.

Northwestern has another option if you're going to do a summer judicial externship. You take a judicial practicum class during the summer to go along with your externship, which allows you to take out loans to cover your summer living expenses, since you're still enrolled in classes. Perhaps some other schools have a similar program.

Renzo
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Re: So, how can you afford to survive while in law school?

Postby Renzo » Sun Jul 10, 2011 3:22 pm

thecilent wrote:
Mickey Quicknumbers wrote:smoke when you're hungry, that's like .20 a meal.

This is credited


QF not being in New York. I'm pretty sure cigarettes are like a buck each here.

lawgod
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Re: So, how can you afford to survive while in law school?

Postby lawgod » Sun Jul 10, 2011 3:23 pm

Shake gunners down for their lunch money.

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MTal
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Re: So, how can you afford to survive while in law school?

Postby MTal » Sun Jul 10, 2011 3:24 pm

1. Don't accrue 150k in non-dischargeable debt to go to law school for the small chance of being an attorney. Even if you realize the chance, your starting salary will most likely be somewhere in the 35-50k range with few if any benefits.
2. Get a job. Really almost ANY job will do.
3. Work hard at your job. Work as hard as if it was your own business. Show enthusiasm for what you do and get along with co-workers and superiors.
4. Get promoted to management. This will take anywhere from 3-5 years, depending on where you are. At this point, you will be making anywhere from 60-80k.
5. Keep working management job and enjoy middle class life, OR, save up enough funds to start your own business. Either way, life will be good.

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Verity
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Re: So, how can you afford to survive while in law school?

Postby Verity » Sun Jul 10, 2011 3:25 pm

Here's my actual monthly budget:

Rent: $600
Utilities, etc: $100
Food: $950
Clothes: $300
Miscellaneous: $25


If you plan your budget, you will be able to afford anything.

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kwais
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Re: So, how can you afford to survive while in law school?

Postby kwais » Sun Jul 10, 2011 3:25 pm

Verity wrote:Here's my actual monthly budget:

Rent: $600
Utilities, etc: $100
Food: $950
Clothes: $300
Miscellaneous: $25


If you plan your budget, you will be able to afford anything.


300/month in clothes? fo real?

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Verity
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Re: So, how can you afford to survive while in law school?

Postby Verity » Sun Jul 10, 2011 3:28 pm

kwais wrote:
Verity wrote:Here's my actual monthly budget:

Rent: $600
Utilities, etc: $100
Food: $950
Clothes: $300
Miscellaneous: $25


If you plan your budget, you will be able to afford anything.


300/month in clothes? fo real?


Damn, I thought the food part was funnier.

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pjo
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Re: So, how can you afford to survive while in law school?

Postby pjo » Sun Jul 10, 2011 3:29 pm

[quote="MTal"]1. Don't accrue 150k in non-dischargeable debt to go to law school for the small chance of being an attorney. Even if you realize the chance, your starting salary will most likely be somewhere in the 35-50k range with few if any benefits.
2. Get a job. Really almost ANY job will do.
3. Work hard at your job. Work as hard as if it was your own business. Show enthusiasm for what you do and get along with co-workers and superiors.
4. Get promoted to management. This will take anywhere from 3-5 years, depending on where you are. At this point, you will be making anywhere from 60-80k.
5. Keep working management job and enjoy middle class life, OR, save up enough funds to start your own business. Either way, life will be good.[/
quote]

Lol. If only things were that easy. Try just finding a job straight out of college now, let alone being able to hold onto it for 3-5 years without getting laid off.

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Ford Prefect
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Re: So, how can you afford to survive while in law school?

Postby Ford Prefect » Sun Jul 10, 2011 3:30 pm

Verity wrote:
kwais wrote:
Verity wrote:Here's my actual monthly budget:

Rent: $600
Utilities, etc: $100
Food: $950
Clothes: $300
Miscellaneous: $25


If you plan your budget, you will be able to afford anything.


300/month in clothes? fo real?


Damn, I thought the food part was funnier.

I assumed steak night was every night. You can't just live off rice and beans.

I will be living off rice and beans.

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kwais
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Re: So, how can you afford to survive while in law school?

Postby kwais » Sun Jul 10, 2011 3:32 pm

Ford Prefect wrote:
Verity wrote:
kwais wrote:
Verity wrote:Here's my actual monthly budget:

Rent: $600
Utilities, etc: $100
Food: $950
Clothes: $300
Miscellaneous: $25


If you plan your budget, you will be able to afford anything.


300/month in clothes? fo real?


Damn, I thought the food part was funnier.

I assumed steak night was every night. You can't just live off rice and beans.

I will be living off rice and beans.


taco bell has 4 times the steak and still has room for rice and beans. problem solved

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MTal
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Re: So, how can you afford to survive while in law school?

Postby MTal » Sun Jul 10, 2011 3:32 pm

pjo wrote:
MTal wrote:1. Don't accrue 150k in non-dischargeable debt to go to law school for the small chance of being an attorney. Even if you realize the chance, your starting salary will most likely be somewhere in the 35-50k range with few if any benefits.
2. Get a job. Really almost ANY job will do.
3. Work hard at your job. Work as hard as if it was your own business. Show enthusiasm for what you do and get along with co-workers and superiors.
4. Get promoted to management. This will take anywhere from 3-5 years, depending on where you are. At this point, you will be making anywhere from 60-80k.
5. Keep working management job and enjoy middle class life, OR, save up enough funds to start your own business. Either way, life will be good.[/
quote]

Lol. If only things were that easy. Try just finding a job straight out of college now, let alone being able to hold onto it for 3-5 years without getting laid off.


It's eminently doable, take retail for example. You can start as a stocker and eventually move up to store manager. Target/Wal-Mart managers make about ~70k depending on location.