juliachild-ish wrote:Ah, but potentially other law schools do train you how to be a successful lawyer and work extremely hard (I'm just a 0L though, so what do I know).
As someone who has attended both a lower T14 and Harvard, let me address a couple things:
law school trains you how to work extremely hard. You're expected to bring that with you, or have some natural talent that enables you to live without it, or end up in the bottom of the class. In fact, that's a large part of the reason top schools are focusing so much on prior work experience now; it's a sign that you already know
hard work. Getting into Harvard means essentially you've been pre-screened and deemed likely to have that quality already.
2) I think there may be a sense of entitlement among some Harvard students, but it's on an individual basis. If you're not entitled when you get here, it's not likely to make you that way. People who carry that sense of entitlement, I think, bring it with them, and it's more noticeable here because the Harvard name just feeds that already-existing trait.
3) You get roughly the same classroom training at Harvard and other law schools. The difference in classroom education is not, based on what I can tell, significantly different from what you'd get at a lower T14, or even a lower T1 school. You're learning roughly the same subjects, often from the same casebook, and from professors who themselves learned at HLS/YLS and use that as a model for teaching. The reason professors at Harvard are impressive is typically their prior experience and knowledge, or their current scholarship and publishing, not that they're somehow magically better at teaching law than every other school out there.
4) You're responsible in law school for determining your own level of practical training, and this is true everywhere you go. I think a lot of people here just do three years of classroom study and don't take an interest in real-world legal training, so when they graduate they have little experience in practical application of law. But the school offers clinics, workshops, and student organizations that enable you to prepare yourself if you choose to do so
. By now I've written dozens of motions, briefs, and letters used in actual litigation through the clinics, internships, and pro bono work that I've done.
It's just bad to assume that stereotypes are universal, in general. You can come here and do poorly. You can go elsewhere and do well. There's a definite name advantage to going to Harvard, but you shouldn't assume that coming here over another school magically means everything about who you are as an individual will be radically different when you graduate.