What should I do next?

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jojo13
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What should I do next?

Postby jojo13 » Wed Mar 07, 2012 5:09 pm

I need some advice...
I have a B.S. in Aviation and an M.S. in Safety Management/Human Factors from university in the Big Ten. I am also a commercial pilot. My undergrad GPA was 3.2 and graduate GPA was 3.6. I have taken several practice LSATs and scored mid 160s to mid 170s. I will have 3-4 years of work experience in management consulting and airline safety by the time I would be applying to law schools.

So yes, I know I am in a very specialized industry, and getting a law degree would make me even more specialized. That is kind of the point though; I am interested in getting into law related to aviation (and other transportation) accidents. I am currently looking for someone that does this kind of work to get advice, but I thought I would also try here.

I would appreciate any suggestions on what other research I should do, what level of law schools to look at, and what type of law to study.
Thanks!

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Doorkeeper
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Re: What should I do next?

Postby Doorkeeper » Wed Mar 07, 2012 9:11 pm

What law schools you get into is going to be determined mainly by your undergraduate GPA and your LSAT score. Since you can't change your undergrad GPA, you need to focus on doing as well as possible on the LSAT. If you can pull a low to mid 170s on the LSAT, you can get into a T14 school (Georgetown, Northwestern, Duke, etc). You'll do a lot worse if you can only manage a mid-160s.

Also, when you write your personal statement you should probably address why you want to go to law school. The admissions people will be curious as to why you're switching careers. Your narrow interest might be of help to you here, since you're not completely changing your area of interest.

Basically, make sure you kickass on the LSAT.

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JCFindley
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Re: What should I do next?

Postby JCFindley » Wed Mar 07, 2012 10:29 pm

The only school that I could find with an "aviation law" area of study was Kent in ORD. (I think it was Kent) Doesn't much matter though because that specialized program won't help you in the real world.

I was a military pilot and commercial airline pilot for a LONG time. I considered doing what you are looking at and may yet but I may not.

There really aren't a lot of positions anywhere doing what you are talking about.

The airlines themselves all have legal departments to protect them in case of an accident but mostly to do what other industry lawyers do with contracts and labor and all that stuff.

The FAA, NTSB and TSA will have legal departments but not sure how truly active they are in the area you are looking at.

Your best bet would be the pilot unions. ALPA being the largest of them. They do have VERY active legal departments that train in exactly what you are interested in. (They are also VERY active in contracts....) I would say the very best way to get information on the subject would be to call ALPA Legal in Herndon VA. Just tell the receptionist what you are trying to find out and see if she can put you through to one of the attorneys there. Unless they are busy they will usually bend over backwards to point you in the right direction....

Beyond that you are probably looking at ambulance chasing after a crash which I am sure wouldn't interest you just looking at your brief overview.

Best of luck

JC

BTW, the T-14 that you will hear over and over about on hear will not help you nearly as much as your current background does now but could help you find a different job in the event the few aviation jobs are full when you graduate.

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Gail
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Re: What should I do next?

Postby Gail » Thu Mar 08, 2012 12:42 am

170+ on your LSAT will be great. Wherever you go, that WE will attract a few OCI firms.

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JCFindley
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Re: What should I do next?

Postby JCFindley » Thu Mar 08, 2012 9:42 am

BTW, as I was looking through the federal job market on USA Jobs this popped up under a search for NTSB. (I am not looking for JD jobs but figured it might be relevant to this discussion.)

http://www.usajobs.gov/GetJob/ViewDetails/310746700

jojo13
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Re: What should I do next?

Postby jojo13 » Fri Mar 09, 2012 10:38 am

Thank you all for the advice! It is much appreciated!

r6_philly
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Re: What should I do next?

Postby r6_philly » Sat Mar 10, 2012 6:05 pm

JCFindley wrote:
BTW, the T-14 that you will hear over and over about on hear will not help you nearly as much as your current background does now but could help you find a different job in the event the few aviation jobs are full when you graduate.


Why wouldn't T14 help? The whole point of going to a top school is to open up doors and give you options.

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JCFindley
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Re: What should I do next?

Postby JCFindley » Sat Mar 10, 2012 10:56 pm

r6_philly wrote:
JCFindley wrote:
BTW, the T-14 that you will hear over and over about on hear will not help you nearly as much as your current background does now but could help you find a different job in the event the few aviation jobs are full when you graduate.


Why wouldn't T14 help? The whole point of going to a top school is to open up doors and give you options.


Wont help as much as his current background for what he is talking about doing.

Lets say he wants to go to ALPA and work in their legal department and specifically in accident investigation. Or really, anywhere else doing the same thing. Now, lets say he goes to Rutgers and the only other person applying for that job is the top graduate at Yale. The OP has the background to understand the 50% of the job that has nothing to do with law where as the Yale grad is obviously smart and can be trained but it would be a long time before he/she understands the whole picture of the investigation.

I could be wrong of course, but these are not your normal legal markets and the rating system is not going to matter as much as the background he already has. If he gets into Yale and doesn't have to pay anything for it, all the better.

JC

jojo13
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Joined: Wed Mar 07, 2012 2:50 pm

Re: What should I do next?

Postby jojo13 » Sat Mar 17, 2012 11:53 am

Wont help as much as her current background for what she is talking about doing.


I think networking is the most important thing to do before I commit to law school. Aviation and law are similar in the fact that it's an "old boys club." It's all about who you know, especially as a woman in either industry. I will also have to see how the LSAT goes...

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JCFindley
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Re: What should I do next?

Postby JCFindley » Sat Mar 17, 2012 1:13 pm

jojo13 wrote:
Wont help as much as her current background for what she is talking about doing.


I think networking is the most important thing to do before I commit to law school. Aviation and law are similar in the fact that it's an "old boys club." It's all about who you know, especially as a woman in either industry. I will also have to see how the LSAT goes...


Sorry, I meant "her" and "she" :)




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