What proportion of HLS students end up working in law?

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brownpride
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What proportion of HLS students end up working in law?

Postby brownpride » Sun Nov 25, 2012 12:37 pm

I know that the conventional wisdom is not to go to law school unless you want to be a lawyer, and that makes sense for the majority of schools. But we know that there are a lot of people who go to HLS or maybe YLS with long-term intentions that don't include law but perhaps politics, policy, diplomatic service, business, human rights work, etc. I'm guessing this is more the case at HLS than anywhere else because a lot of people choose to attend for the network, joint degrees, etc. Also, a lot of people who go to HLS would otherwise be able to go to another T-14 with money and still land biglaw if they worked very hard, but instead opt for HLS because they sometimes aspire to do more than just practice law in their career. So for those who are familiar with HLS, can you comment on whether or not there are a lot of students whose long-term goals aren't to remain in law? What other sorts of interests do they have?

delusional
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Re: What proportion of HLS students end up working in law?

Postby delusional » Sun Nov 25, 2012 1:21 pm

brownpride wrote:I know that the conventional wisdom is not to go to law school unless you want to be a lawyer, and that makes sense for the majority of schools. But we know that there are a lot of people who go to HLS or maybe YLS with long-term intentions that don't include law but perhaps politics, policy, diplomatic service, business, human rights work, etc. I'm guessing this is more the case at HLS than anywhere else because a lot of people choose to attend for the network, joint degrees, etc. Also, a lot of people who go to HLS would otherwise be able to go to another T-14 with money and still land biglaw if they worked very hard, but instead opt for HLS because they sometimes aspire to do more than just practice law in their career. So for those who are familiar with HLS, can you comment on whether or not there are a lot of students whose long-term goals aren't to remain in law? What other sorts of interests do they have?
There are probably a number of people who don't necessarily want to be lawyers, but will be by the time that three years of law school pass. I know a couple people who are not going to be lawyers unless their plan A doesn't work out, but those people are rare and the two that I know both have pretty unique circumstances. The people that I'm thinking of have interviewed with consulting firms and investment fund type things. I also had a friend who graduated last year and went into consulting, after interning at a hedge fund during school and deciding he didn't want to do law full time.
TL;DR: It happens, but usually it was clear from the person's background that they had other interests and were going to have other options.

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twenty
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Re: What proportion of HLS students end up working in law?

Postby twenty » Sun Nov 25, 2012 11:26 pm

You basically have three options once you're inside HLS.

1) Biglaw -> pay off debts -> stay in biglaw/go inhouse.
2) Do a "law related job" as defined by LIPP's eligibility threshold.

From http://www.law.harvard.edu/current/sfs/ ... index.html

The distinctive intellectual skills acquired in a legal education are generally recognized as useful in the job; and
Of those who hold this position, it is not unusual for them to be members of the legal profession.


Interpret that how you want.

3) Have a family that's willing to shell out about 200k for your legal education so that you can use your law degree not actually using your law degree.

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englawyer
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Re: What proportion of HLS students end up working in law?

Postby englawyer » Mon Nov 26, 2012 9:22 am

delusional wrote:
brownpride wrote:I know that the conventional wisdom is not to go to law school unless you want to be a lawyer, and that makes sense for the majority of schools. But we know that there are a lot of people who go to HLS or maybe YLS with long-term intentions that don't include law but perhaps politics, policy, diplomatic service, business, human rights work, etc. I'm guessing this is more the case at HLS than anywhere else because a lot of people choose to attend for the network, joint degrees, etc. Also, a lot of people who go to HLS would otherwise be able to go to another T-14 with money and still land biglaw if they worked very hard, but instead opt for HLS because they sometimes aspire to do more than just practice law in their career. So for those who are familiar with HLS, can you comment on whether or not there are a lot of students whose long-term goals aren't to remain in law? What other sorts of interests do they have?
There are probably a number of people who don't necessarily want to be lawyers, but will be by the time that three years of law school pass. I know a couple people who are not going to be lawyers unless their plan A doesn't work out, but those people are rare and the two that I know both have pretty unique circumstances. The people that I'm thinking of have interviewed with consulting firms and investment fund type things. I also had a friend who graduated last year and went into consulting, after interning at a hedge fund during school and deciding he didn't want to do law full time.
TL;DR: It happens, but usually it was clear from the person's background that they had other interests and were going to have other options.


+1 on this. i would say the vast majority end up in something law related but a decent chunk of the class at least flirts with the idea of something business related (consulting, banking, etc)..maybe 15% somewhat interested and 3-4% actually going into it. something like that.

some opportunities are part of the recruiting machine: mckinsey and bain come to OCI and interview just like the law firms. it is as simple as adding them to your bidlist. other opportunities require knocking on doors, networking, etc. the primary club for these folks is HALB: http://www3.law.harvard.edu/orgs/halb/

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englawyer
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Re: What proportion of HLS students end up working in law?

Postby englawyer » Mon Nov 26, 2012 9:24 am

fyi career stats here : http://www.law.harvard.edu/current/care ... index.html

as the stats show, about 15% of people pursue something non-traditional (academia, business, public interest, gov, academia).

brownpride
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Re: What proportion of HLS students end up working in law?

Postby brownpride » Mon Nov 26, 2012 11:27 am

Thanks for the replies!




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