Business school a better investment?

(Please Ask Questions and Answer Questions)
User avatar
katie96
Posts: 87
Joined: Sun Feb 21, 2010 2:47 pm

Business school a better investment?

Postby katie96 » Fri Jul 15, 2011 1:13 pm

Given that the applicant has all necessary qualifications to be accepted into a T25 or better law school or business school, which route is more profitable? Specifically, which degree is more marketable in making $$$ and paying the student loans that would come with either path of study?

I just graduated in May with a degree in English. I have over three years of experience working as a full-time paralegal at a medmal law firm (and have advanced within the office) and am still employed with said office. Does this WE count for business school, even though I was in UG simultaneously for the majority of my time working?

I know the typical TLS answer is if you want to be a lawyer, go to law school. Truthfully, I can see myself taking either path. If I could get into a top MBA program (I am set on NYC, so NYU would be ideal), then getting an MBA might be a better investment... or not? Thoughts?

User avatar
Aberzombie1892
Posts: 1907
Joined: Sun Mar 29, 2009 10:56 am

Re: Business school a better investment?

Postby Aberzombie1892 » Fri Jul 15, 2011 1:17 pm

Business school would offer a better financial return on investment. However, that does not mean that it is for everyone.

User avatar
Moxie
Posts: 665
Joined: Thu Aug 06, 2009 3:27 pm

Re: Business school a better investment?

Postby Moxie » Fri Jul 15, 2011 1:22 pm

Aberzombie1892 wrote:Business school would offer a better financial return on investment. However, that does not mean that it is for everyone.


It obviously depends on what business school you're considering. HWS would likely improve your employment prospects, but the same can't be said for less respected regional institutions.

User avatar
Patriot1208
Posts: 7044
Joined: Tue May 18, 2010 11:28 am

Re: Business school a better investment?

Postby Patriot1208 » Fri Jul 15, 2011 1:23 pm

Depends on what school and your personal experiences. But I seriously doubt you'll be getting into a top mba program with three years as a paralegal unless thete is something you aren't telling us.

ran12
Posts: 1003
Joined: Sun Oct 31, 2010 4:28 pm

Re: Business school a better investment?

Postby ran12 » Fri Jul 15, 2011 1:24 pm

The 3 years of WE might be sufficient for some b-schools. You would be in a minority segment in terms of work background. A top b-school might take a shot with you if you break 740 or so but it's hard to tell b/c you're not the typical MBA candidate. There are business school programs catered towards people like you though.

Duke has a Master of Management Studies program specifically for people in your situation. It's basically MBA-lite b/c you take all the core MBA courses taught by the MBA professors at the MBA level. That program is 10 months long. You start in July and graduate in May. You get all the advantages of being a MBA student with the exception that you probably won't qualify for MBA level jobs right out of it. My friends who did the program got I-banking jobs paying in the 70-80k range. The thing about this program is that after you graduate and work a couple years, you're a prime candidate for top MBA programs.

The payoff of a MBA is def higher than a JD. Graduates of top b-schools get into good firms and companies and can make 100k+ sooner than most JDs. 5 years in, if you're at a top I-banking firm, you could be making 3 times or more than an attorney would be b/c the compensation structure is so different.

With that said, with a JD you have the flexibility to get into finance and banking whereas with a MBA, you can't really go into legal practice except for securities and M&A advising. There are actually firms stocked with b-school grads without JDs that cater specifically for M&A and leveraging type of deals.

People are afraid of getting a MBA b/c of the economy and fleeing towards law and medicine but b-school is the safer and smarter choice for certain people b/c it's easier to get into top programs and get the elite jobs.

User avatar
bk1
Posts: 18424
Joined: Sun Mar 14, 2010 7:06 pm

Re: Business school a better investment?

Postby bk1 » Fri Jul 15, 2011 1:29 pm

Depends on the law school and depends on the business school. With business school work experience is a big factor so it's hard to tell people at law schools "hey if you can get into a top law school you should just go to a top business school instead." You can be a K-JD get into HLS based on just GPA/LSAT, HBS... not so much.

User avatar
katie96
Posts: 87
Joined: Sun Feb 21, 2010 2:47 pm

Re: Business school a better investment?

Postby katie96 » Fri Jul 15, 2011 1:34 pm

bk1 wrote:Depends on the law school and depends on the business school. With business school work experience is a big factor so it's hard to tell people at law schools "hey if you can get into a top law school you should just go to a top business school instead." You can be a K-JD get into HLS based on just GPA/LSAT, HBS... not so much.




And I'm guessing my paralegal experience doesn't exactly count as the type of WE HBS is looking for. Not that I'm thinking HBS is realistically within my reach. Stern is my dream. Do you guys think top B-schools are a bit more lenient in admitting women, given that the majority of admitted students are male?

User avatar
Patriot1208
Posts: 7044
Joined: Tue May 18, 2010 11:28 am

Re: Business school a better investment?

Postby Patriot1208 » Fri Jul 15, 2011 1:40 pm

The goal is to be successful at what you do, that's even more important than what you do. Unfortunately being a paralegal doesn't give you a lot of leeway in that regard. You'd be better off taking a job where you can differentiate yourself even if you have to take a lower paying or not a prestigious job.

User avatar
katie96
Posts: 87
Joined: Sun Feb 21, 2010 2:47 pm

Re: Business school a better investment?

Postby katie96 » Fri Jul 15, 2011 1:46 pm

Patriot1208 wrote:Depends on what school and your personal experiences. But I seriously doubt you'll be getting into a top mba program with three years as a paralegal unless thete is something you aren't telling us.



The number of admitted applicants going straight from UG to MBA is on the rise, or so I hear. I would prefer to finish all of my schooling now rather than work for a few years and return for an MBA.

User avatar
AreJay711
Posts: 3406
Joined: Tue Jul 20, 2010 8:51 pm

Re: Business school a better investment?

Postby AreJay711 » Fri Jul 15, 2011 1:50 pm

B-school is safer but the higher upside is really only for people at top schools. I'd probably rather be at a middle law school that a middle b-school right out of undergrad.

User avatar
Patriot1208
Posts: 7044
Joined: Tue May 18, 2010 11:28 am

Re: Business school a better investment?

Postby Patriot1208 » Fri Jul 15, 2011 1:57 pm

katie96 wrote:
Patriot1208 wrote:Depends on what school and your personal experiences. But I seriously doubt you'll be getting into a top mba program with three years as a paralegal unless thete is something you aren't telling us.



The number of admitted applicants going straight from UG to MBA is on the rise, or so I hear. I would prefer to finish all of my schooling now rather than work for a few years and return for an MBA.

This is true, but it's still the VAST minority at top schools. And in general the few people who do it have great internships, great grades, great gmats, and prestigious undergraduate schools. I'm assuming you are lacking at least a couple of those. The tyoe of mba that is likely to admit you now is a waste of money for you, same as a lot of law schools. Outside of the top mba programs the real value is networking and adding to experience, not increased job opportunities.
Last edited by Patriot1208 on Fri Jul 15, 2011 2:01 pm, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
TommyK
Posts: 1309
Joined: Fri Jun 25, 2010 3:08 pm

Re: Business school a better investment?

Postby TommyK » Fri Jul 15, 2011 1:58 pm

katie96 wrote:
Patriot1208 wrote:Depends on what school and your personal experiences. But I seriously doubt you'll be getting into a top mba program with three years as a paralegal unless thete is something you aren't telling us.



The number of admitted applicants going straight from UG to MBA is on the rise, or so I hear. I would prefer to finish all of my schooling now rather than work for a few years and return for an MBA.


The number of admitted applicants going from UG to MBA is probably on the rise largely due to all the crappy MBA programs out there that would put the crappy law programs to shame. Nobody wants to recruit somebody who went from UG to a crappy MBA with no WE. WE informs your MBA education and because of that the elite programs don't allow many candidates with shallow WE in. If you want to get your MBA from University of Phoenix, go ahead. It won't catapault your career, though.

User avatar
katie96
Posts: 87
Joined: Sun Feb 21, 2010 2:47 pm

Re: Business school a better investment?

Postby katie96 » Fri Jul 15, 2011 2:01 pm

TommyK wrote:
katie96 wrote:
Patriot1208 wrote:Depends on what school and your personal experiences. But I seriously doubt you'll be getting into a top mba program with three years as a paralegal unless thete is something you aren't telling us.



The number of admitted applicants going straight from UG to MBA is on the rise, or so I hear. I would prefer to finish all of my schooling now rather than work for a few years and return for an MBA.


The number of admitted applicants going from UG to MBA is probably on the rise largely due to all the crappy MBA programs out there that would put the crappy law programs to shame. Nobody wants to recruit somebody who went from UG to a crappy MBA with no WE. WE informs your MBA education and because of that the elite programs don't allow many candidates with shallow WE in. If you want to get your MBA from University of Phoenix, go ahead. It won't catapault your career, though.



Nope, not looking to get an MBA from a "crappy" program. :D

User avatar
rayiner
Posts: 6184
Joined: Thu Dec 11, 2008 11:43 am

Re: Business school a better investment?

Postby rayiner » Fri Jul 15, 2011 2:03 pm

katie96 wrote:
Patriot1208 wrote:Depends on what school and your personal experiences. But I seriously doubt you'll be getting into a top mba program with three years as a paralegal unless thete is something you aren't telling us.



The number of admitted applicants going straight from UG to MBA is on the rise, or so I hear. I would prefer to finish all of my schooling now rather than work for a few years and return for an MBA.


That's not how MBA's work. Outside the tippy-top MBA programs, the degere really just helps you to amplify your existing work experience. For example, a big chunk of MBAs (1/3) are engineers who work for several years then get the degree to help them move into management positions. Going to a non-top MBA (and NYU isn't one of the top programs) with no work experience doesn't make any sense.

User avatar
crossarmant
Posts: 1116
Joined: Fri Jan 14, 2011 8:01 am

Re: Business school a better investment?

Postby crossarmant » Fri Jul 15, 2011 3:14 pm

rayiner wrote:That's not how MBA's work. Outside the tippy-top MBA programs, the degere really just helps you to amplify your existing work experience. For example, a big chunk of MBAs (1/3) are engineers who work for several years then get the degree to help them move into management positions. Going to a non-top MBA (and NYU isn't one of the top programs) with no work experience doesn't make any sense.


+1

From most everyone I've talked to, MBAs are kinda useless, especially if you've no work experience. But I think, as is always the case with TLSers, this is a case of "Grass is always Greener". If you look through USNews stats on top MBA programs, even UChi and Harvard have lower rates of employment at graduation and lower starting salaries for their MBAs than for their JDs. As AreJay said, I'd rather be in a mid-range law school, than a mid-range MBA program. At least JDs train you for a profession and count as little more than fluff on a resume.

User avatar
Patriot1208
Posts: 7044
Joined: Tue May 18, 2010 11:28 am

Re: Business school a better investment?

Postby Patriot1208 » Fri Jul 15, 2011 3:29 pm

crossarmant wrote:
rayiner wrote:That's not how MBA's work. Outside the tippy-top MBA programs, the degere really just helps you to amplify your existing work experience. For example, a big chunk of MBAs (1/3) are engineers who work for several years then get the degree to help them move into management positions. Going to a non-top MBA (and NYU isn't one of the top programs) with no work experience doesn't make any sense.


+1

From most everyone I've talked to, MBAs are kinda useless, especially if you've no work experience. But I think, as is always the case with TLSers, this is a case of "Grass is always Greener". If you look through USNews stats on top MBA programs, even UChi and Harvard have lower rates of employment at graduation and lower starting salaries for their MBAs than for their JDs. As AreJay said, I'd rather be in a mid-range law school, than a mid-range MBA program. At least JDs train you for a profession and count as little more than fluff on a resume.

Well no, this post is too far the other way. The kowledge you learn at most mba programs is fairly useless, but this is true for a JD as well. Upside is higher for top MBA programs, which is why you hear people talk about them. And i'd rather not be at any mid range school.

dkt4
Posts: 316
Joined: Sat Feb 05, 2011 6:33 pm

Re: Business school a better investment?

Postby dkt4 » Fri Jul 15, 2011 7:41 pm

short answer: an mba is probably not a better investment. honestly, people on here say T14 or bust all the time (which is bullshit imo, but whatever)...b-school is an even more pronounced drop off. at least for practicing law you need the degree...the vast majority of jobs you would get out of b-school don't require an MBA - it's usually for expanding your industry knowledge & contacts, with a heavy emphasis on the latter.

but, it's only 2 years, so you probably won't sink yourself quite as much financially.

ant5do
Posts: 34
Joined: Sun Jun 05, 2011 1:22 pm

Re: Business school a better investment?

Postby ant5do » Fri Jul 15, 2011 7:50 pm

katie96 wrote: or bust all the time (which is bullshit imo, but whatever)...b-school is an even more pronounced drop off. at least for practicing law you need the degree...the vast majority of jobs you would get out of b-school don't require an MBA - it's



there's a bit of misinformation above, but i'm sure it's all well-intentioned

try these sites for better insight into MBA admissions and general pre/post MBA prospects.

http://www.poetsandquants.com
http://www.wallstreetoasis.com

GL

User avatar
rayiner
Posts: 6184
Joined: Thu Dec 11, 2008 11:43 am

Re: Business school a better investment?

Postby rayiner » Fri Jul 15, 2011 8:11 pm

ant5do wrote:
katie96 wrote: or bust all the time (which is bullshit imo, but whatever)...b-school is an even more pronounced drop off. at least for practicing law you need the degree...the vast majority of jobs you would get out of b-school don't require an MBA - it's



there's a bit of misinformation above, but i'm sure it's all well-intentioned

try these sites for better insight into MBA admissions and general pre/post MBA prospects.

http://www.poetsandquants.com
http://www.wallstreetoasis.com

GL


TBF, those sites show that the job market for MBAs is even more competitive than for JDs. They'll regularly use HSW as the minimum cut-off, and if you think getting V100 is tough look at the requirements for getting a BB banking gig.

User avatar
MTal
Posts: 854
Joined: Tue Dec 11, 2007 6:47 pm

Re: Business school a better investment?

Postby MTal » Fri Jul 15, 2011 8:25 pm

katie96 wrote:Given that the applicant has all necessary qualifications to be accepted into a T25 or better law school or business school, which route is more profitable? Specifically, which degree is more marketable in making $$$ and paying the student loans that would come with either path of study?

I just graduated in May with a degree in English. I have over three years of experience working as a full-time paralegal at a medmal law firm (and have advanced within the office) and am still employed with said office. Does this WE count for business school, even though I was in UG simultaneously for the majority of my time working?

I know the typical TLS answer is if you want to be a lawyer, go to law school. Truthfully, I can see myself taking either path. If I could get into a top MBA program (I am set on NYC, so NYU would be ideal), then getting an MBA might be a better investment... or not? Thoughts?


The best path to $$ is getting a job and working your way up, not through a degree.

User avatar
Patriot1208
Posts: 7044
Joined: Tue May 18, 2010 11:28 am

Re: Business school a better investment?

Postby Patriot1208 » Fri Jul 15, 2011 8:32 pm

ant5do wrote:
katie96 wrote: or bust all the time (which is bullshit imo, but whatever)...b-school is an even more pronounced drop off. at least for practicing law you need the degree...the vast majority of jobs you would get out of b-school don't require an MBA - it's



there's a bit of misinformation above, but i'm sure it's all well-intentioned

try these sites for better insight into MBA admissions and general pre/post MBA prospects.

http://www.poetsandquants.com
http://www.wallstreetoasis.com

GL


For mba specifically gmatclub is probably better than both those sites. Although WSO has great interview advice.

dkt4
Posts: 316
Joined: Sat Feb 05, 2011 6:33 pm

Re: Business school a better investment?

Postby dkt4 » Fri Jul 15, 2011 9:53 pm

ant5do wrote:there's a bit of misinformation above, but i'm sure it's all well-intentioned

try these sites for better insight into MBA admissions and general pre/post MBA prospects.

http://www.poetsandquants.com
http://www.wallstreetoasis.com

GL


was referencing the OP's b-school prospects, not all b-school applicants. there's quite a few who are going through for specific reasons.

bdubs
Posts: 3729
Joined: Sat Feb 06, 2010 2:23 pm

Re: Business school a better investment?

Postby bdubs » Fri Jul 15, 2011 10:10 pm

As someone who evaluated both options and ultimately settled on a JD/MBA, I can say that the MBA (from an M7) is probably a better investment in a purely short-term financial sense for those that have either option. However, you are approaching it from the wrong angle entirely (as several posters above have mentioned).

The choice between law school and business school should be about more than just financial prospects. You need to be good at whatever it is you decide to do, and that generally requires interest in the field to maintain your performance without burning out. You can be very successful from either course of study, so choose the one that provides you with the motivation to achieve something substantial.

Also, your current work experience will likely not be seen as adequate preparation for a top business school.




Return to “Law School FAQ”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: houritsu, MarkinKansasCity and 3 guests