Law School Discussion

Law Students => Job Search => Topic started by: LSDSL on June 23, 2009, 11:18:27 PM

Title: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: LSDSL on June 23, 2009, 11:18:27 PM
I'm in a real jam here and hoping someone out there has some advice for me. 

Here's my situation:  I just graduated from a west coast regional school ranked in the 60's on USNWR, I've got a 3.0, and wrote onto law review.  I had legal jobs both law school summers but nothing to exciting.  Now, I'm studying for the bar exam in IL (which is where im from and where I want to practice) but have no job and no prospects.  I want to work in Chicago but I have no network or leads and to make matters worse, I'm in debt in excess of 150K.  I'm going crazy.  What do I do?  Will things turn out well for me??? Any advice would be appreciated.  I'm just looking for some guidance.
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: new2law on June 23, 2009, 11:43:49 PM
Best of luck man. I am just on the start of my legal training, so I cant tell you what its like once you've passed the bar, but you may want to consider private practice. Also, I can give you some experience. Join the National Guard or Reserve they will pay off a lot of your college debt if you enlist into a JAG unit as an officer. They will pay off even more if you sign up as an E-4 Specialist too. It would look good on a resume and remove a lot of that debt and help to defer the rest of it while in service. They may have changed the rules for new recruits in the last few years a bit but I am a military NCO so I tend to think that way. Its an idea to consider.
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: Ninja1 on June 24, 2009, 04:55:57 AM
Not sure if either of these will work, but the first two things that come to mind that don't require you to join the military are:

Get some random job at a local school district and get on the new fed loan repayment plan.

OR

Enroll in classes at wherever at least half time.
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: Ninja1 on June 24, 2009, 04:57:56 AM
Best of luck man. I am just on the start of my legal training, so I cant tell you what its like once you've passed the bar, but you may want to consider private practice. Also, I can give you some experience. Join the National Guard or Reserve they will pay off a lot of your college debt if you enlist into a JAG unit as an officer. They will pay off even more if you sign up as an E-4 Specialist too. It would look good on a resume and remove a lot of that debt and help to defer the rest of it while in service. They may have changed the rules for new recruits in the last few years a bit but I am a military NCO so I tend to think that way. Its an idea to consider.

You would have to be beyond retarded to go into the military as an E-4 with the level of education a law school grad has.
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: new2law on June 24, 2009, 11:19:42 AM
You'd think so but a lot of people do it. It pays off more student loans. It depends on if you're in it to payoff the loans or to get an ego stroke when you look in the mirror. I knew a lot of E-4 with MBA or above. Its crazy but true. Its not for everyone though.


Best of luck man. I am just on the start of my legal training, so I cant tell you what its like once you've passed the bar, but you may want to consider private practice. Also, I can give you some experience. Join the National Guard or Reserve they will pay off a lot of your college debt if you enlist into a JAG unit as an officer. They will pay off even more if you sign up as an E-4 Specialist too. It would look good on a resume and remove a lot of that debt and help to defer the rest of it while in service. They may have changed the rules for new recruits in the last few years a bit but I am a military NCO so I tend to think that way. Its an idea to consider.

You would have to be beyond retarded to go into the military as an E-4 with the level of education a law school grad has.
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: Bob Loblaw Esq. on June 24, 2009, 11:42:08 AM
Best of luck man. I am just on the start of my legal training, so I cant tell you what its like once you've passed the bar, but you may want to consider private practice. Also, I can give you some experience. Join the National Guard or Reserve they will pay off a lot of your college debt if you enlist into a JAG unit as an officer. They will pay off even more if you sign up as an E-4 Specialist too. It would look good on a resume and remove a lot of that debt and help to defer the rest of it while in service. They may have changed the rules for new recruits in the last few years a bit but I am a military NCO so I tend to think that way. Its an idea to consider.

lol

problem: OP has a great deal of debt with no job
 
solution: join private or public sector

problem solved.
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: Dr. Balsenschaft on June 24, 2009, 12:26:29 PM
Get a job.  What do you expect people to tell you?  Searching for a job sucks and it will probably be hard, but you do all the things you need to do to get a job - send out resumes, look for jobs, and NETWORK.  If you're from the area, you should know some lawyers.  Everyone knows lawyers or, at the very least, knows people who know lawyers.  Talk to these lawyers.  Ask them if they know of anyone who's hiring.  Ask them if they have any bright ideas about how you can get a job.  Go to where lawyers hang out (for example, bar association events) and talk to lawyers there.  It's really not rocket science, it just sucks.  You might not end up with the job you want either, but you'll end up with a job and that's a start.     
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: LSDSL on June 24, 2009, 01:16:12 PM
Get a job.  What do you expect people to tell you?  Searching for a job sucks and it will probably be hard, but you do all the things you need to do to get a job - send out resumes, look for jobs, and NETWORK.  If you're from the area, you should know some lawyers.  Everyone knows lawyers or, at the very least, knows people who know lawyers.  Talk to these lawyers.  Ask them if they know of anyone who's hiring.  Ask them if they have any bright ideas about how you can get a job.  Go to where lawyers hang out (for example, bar association events) and talk to lawyers there.  It's really not rocket science, it just sucks.  You might not end up with the job you want either, but you'll end up with a job and that's a start.     



I know I know I know.  It's just that I'm so disheartened and fed up with the whole process, though I do like your idea a whole lot better than joining the military!  I wish I just had some statistics to let me know that I'm not alone.  Especially w/ this economy, there must be a huge number of law grads w/o jobs.  I wish I knew what percentage of law students take the bar exam w/o knowing where/if they'll be working.
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: Dr. Balsenschaft on June 24, 2009, 01:46:53 PM
You should be disheartened.  It's a miserable process because it seems so hopeless at times.  There's really nothing wrong with being miserable in and of itself.  It's a perfectly normal reaction to your situation.  Just don't let your miserableness turn into a depression that keeps you from doing what you need to do.  Study for the bar, take the bar exam, and then start looking for a job. 

As far as getting a job without knowing whether you passed the bar exam first, if an employer doesn't want to talk to you until after you pass the bar, then that's fine, just keep a running list of these employers.  If an employer doesn't even respond to you, keep a running list of these employers as well so you can try to contact them again after you pass the bar.     
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: LSDSL on June 24, 2009, 03:12:23 PM
You should be disheartened.  It's a miserable process because it seems so hopeless at times.  There's really nothing wrong with being miserable in and of itself.  It's a perfectly normal reaction to your situation.  Just don't let your miserableness turn into a depression that keeps you from doing what you need to do.  Study for the bar, take the bar exam, and then start looking for a job. 

As far as getting a job without knowing whether you passed the bar exam first, if an employer doesn't want to talk to you until after you pass the bar, then that's fine, just keep a running list of these employers.  If an employer doesn't even respond to you, keep a running list of these employers as well so you can try to contact them again after you pass the bar.     


Is there anyone else out there in my situation?  How unusual is it to be studying for the bar as a recent graduate and not already have a job?
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: Ninja1 on June 24, 2009, 03:35:31 PM
You'd think so but a lot of people do it. It pays off more student loans. It depends on if you're in it to payoff the loans or to get an ego stroke when you look in the mirror. I knew a lot of E-4 with MBA or above. Its crazy but true. Its not for everyone though.


Best of luck man. I am just on the start of my legal training, so I cant tell you what its like once you've passed the bar, but you may want to consider private practice. Also, I can give you some experience. Join the National Guard or Reserve they will pay off a lot of your college debt if you enlist into a JAG unit as an officer. They will pay off even more if you sign up as an E-4 Specialist too. It would look good on a resume and remove a lot of that debt and help to defer the rest of it while in service. They may have changed the rules for new recruits in the last few years a bit but I am a military NCO so I tend to think that way. Its an idea to consider.

You would have to be beyond retarded to go into the military as an E-4 with the level of education a law school grad has.

I don't think going the officer route has as much to do with an "ego stroke" as it does with the fact that a 1st Lt. makes more in their first year than an E-4 makes after 30 years in service, and almost double what an E-4 makes in their first year. Big deal if they don't pay off as much of your debt, you'll make so much more money as an officer it won't be a problem to pay the difference. And if you join the military, I'm fairly certain you can get in on a federal loan forgiveness program. Not to mention the quality of life differences between officers and enlisted.

There's a reason I said "retards" and you said "MBAs". ;)
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: UnbiasedObserver on June 24, 2009, 05:49:12 PM
Best of luck man. I am just on the start of my legal training, so I cant tell you what its like once you've passed the bar, but you may want to consider private practice. Also, I can give you some experience. Join the National Guard or Reserve they will pay off a lot of your college debt if you enlist into a JAG unit as an officer. They will pay off even more if you sign up as an E-4 Specialist too. It would look good on a resume and remove a lot of that debt and help to defer the rest of it while in service. They may have changed the rules for new recruits in the last few years a bit but I am a military NCO so I tend to think that way. Its an idea to consider.

lol

problem: OP has a great deal of debt with no job
 
solution: join private or public sector

problem solved.

Is this the actual, mythical man that is Bob Loblaw?  :D
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: UnbiasedObserver on June 24, 2009, 05:51:44 PM
Get a job.  What do you expect people to tell you?  Searching for a job sucks and it will probably be hard, but you do all the things you need to do to get a job - send out resumes, look for jobs, and NETWORK.  If you're from the area, you should know some lawyers.  Everyone knows lawyers or, at the very least, knows people who know lawyers.  Talk to these lawyers.  Ask them if they know of anyone who's hiring.  Ask them if they have any bright ideas about how you can get a job.  Go to where lawyers hang out (for example, bar association events) and talk to lawyers there.  It's really not rocket science, it just sucks.  You might not end up with the job you want either, but you'll end up with a job and that's a start.     

This is the credited response.  You need to go to bar association events and network NOW so you're not in a more dire situation.  If I were you, I'd be scared to know that I'm 150k in debt with no job and that I might have to take a job I hate just to pay off crushing debt.

OP, you were on law review!  You had legal jobs!  You're in a better situation than MANY people.  Take advantage of that and get working!  :)
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: new2law on June 24, 2009, 09:24:16 PM
You can say retards all day, some people with MBA's still did it. There's nothing wrong with the officer route either. I take it that you served as an officer? Which branch?



You'd think so but a lot of people do it. It pays off more student loans. It depends on if you're in it to payoff the loans or to get an ego stroke when you look in the mirror. I knew a lot of E-4 with MBA or above. Its crazy but true. Its not for everyone though.


Best of luck man. I am just on the start of my legal training, so I cant tell you what its like once you've passed the bar, but you may want to consider private practice. Also, I can give you some experience. Join the National Guard or Reserve they will pay off a lot of your college debt if you enlist into a JAG unit as an officer. They will pay off even more if you sign up as an E-4 Specialist too. It would look good on a resume and remove a lot of that debt and help to defer the rest of it while in service. They may have changed the rules for new recruits in the last few years a bit but I am a military NCO so I tend to think that way. Its an idea to consider.

You would have to be beyond retarded to go into the military as an E-4 with the level of education a law school grad has.

I don't think going the officer route has as much to do with an "ego stroke" as it does with the fact that a 1st Lt. makes more in their first year than an E-4 makes after 30 years in service, and almost double what an E-4 makes in their first year. Big deal if they don't pay off as much of your debt, you'll make so much more money as an officer it won't be a problem to pay the difference. And if you join the military, I'm fairly certain you can get in on a federal loan forgiveness program. Not to mention the quality of life differences between officers and enlisted.

There's a reason I said "retards" and you said "MBAs". ;)
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: christianlawyer09 on June 24, 2009, 10:31:23 PM
You can say retards all day, some people with MBA's still did it. There's nothing wrong with the officer route either. I take it that you served as an officer? Which branch?

Yes, but if they got their MBAs from Troy University, Capella, American Military U.,ect., then their degrees don't really mean much.  You're using "MBA" to imply that these people are well-educated and well-credential and are still choosing to enlist instead of becoming officers.  But MBA programs are everywhere and anyone who wants to sign up can get into at least 1.  Thus, these people of whom wou speak, it's fair to say, are probably not representative of the best and brightest our country has to offer.   
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: new2law on June 25, 2009, 12:02:39 AM
Watch it jackass what did you score on the ASVAB anyways? It had better be a 99 with that attitude. Even if they did have what you consider "lesser" degrees the military reconises schools like AMU. A lot of soldiers are too busy saveing your pompus ass to sit down at harvard. As a result they use DANTES, online courses, or whatever they can to get their degree. As for picking to go enlisted, if what difference does it make what the private sector would think of their degree? If the Army says you can be an officer with it, then you can. If that person then chooses to go enlisted instead it has nothing to do with the degree but a personal choice. Besides online schools get you less in debt to begin with, so it decreases your odds of needing to go down the enlisted path. Most of the guys in AIT that I knew with degrees got them from state schools. Not that it matters though. Do you get it now? You could be an A student at harvard or a C student at AMU, you still get the same rank on your ACU when you swear in.


Yes, but if they got their MBAs from Troy University, Capella, American Military U.,ect., then their degrees don't really mean much.  You're using "MBA" to imply that these people are well-educated and well-credential and are still choosing to enlist instead of becoming officers.  But MBA programs are everywhere and anyone who wants to sign up can get into at least 1.  Thus, these people of whom wou speak, it's fair to say, are probably not representative of the best and brightest our country has to offer.   
[/quote]
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: Matthies on June 25, 2009, 08:51:06 AM
Get a job.  What do you expect people to tell you?  Searching for a job sucks and it will probably be hard, but you do all the things you need to do to get a job - send out resumes, look for jobs, and NETWORK.  If you're from the area, you should know some lawyers.  Everyone knows lawyers or, at the very least, knows people who know lawyers.  Talk to these lawyers.  Ask them if they know of anyone who's hiring.  Ask them if they have any bright ideas about how you can get a job.  Go to where lawyers hang out (for example, bar association events) and talk to lawyers there.  It's really not rocket science, it just sucks.  You might not end up with the job you want either, but you'll end up with a job and that's a start.     

Best advice here, but entails more work that bitching about not having a job and how hard it is to get one.
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: LSDSL on June 25, 2009, 09:14:40 AM


Best advice here, but entails more work that bitching about not having a job and how hard it is to get one.
[/quote]



Thanks for your advice, buddy.  That really added a derth of information to the conversation.  Over 5,000 posts, huh?  Derrrrrr
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: Matthies on June 25, 2009, 10:16:15 AM


Best advice here, but entails more work that bitching about not having a job and how hard it is to get one.



Thanks for your advice, buddy.  That really added a derth of information to the conversation.  Over 5,000 posts, huh?  Derrrrrr
[/quote]

Yep, and if you look back trhough them you would find a bunch of good advice for people in your situation tht I have posted (saying the same things everytime) for the last 5 years. Try it. Or just start athread and ask what should I do rather than look around for what others have done.

Try this one http://www.lawschooldiscussion.org/prelaw/index.php/topic,4020306.msg5345642.html#msg5345642 and this one http://www.lawschooldiscussion.org/prelaw/index.php/topic,4020463.msg5345274.html#msg5345274
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: LSDSL on June 25, 2009, 10:42:43 AM
Ohhh I didn't realize you were the LSD police.  Next time I want to post something, I'll be sure to check with you first. 
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: UnbiasedObserver on June 25, 2009, 11:12:35 AM
Thanks for your advice, buddy.  That really added a derth of information to the conversation.  Over 5,000 posts, huh?  Derrrrrr

While I don't condone the manner of Matthies' reply, he has been helping people with fantastic advice about job searching/networking/whatever for literally years.  If people want to learn more about what to do instead of merely whining, they should check his threads!   :)
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: Matthies on June 25, 2009, 11:38:34 AM
Ohhh I didn't realize you were the LSD police.  Next time I want to post something, I'll be sure to check with you first. 

I probably owe you an applogy, I was bing somwaht of a jerk, sorry about that, its not usually my style but I'm having a rough day myself and you just happened, through no fault of your own, to get sniped at for it. Sorry about that. But do look up some of my older posts on netowrking, that's going to be your best shot right now and where I would put most of my eggs, along with some mass maling and looking up almunia. And no your not alone, but with some leg work you can get past this. Good luck.
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: new2law on June 25, 2009, 01:54:30 PM
He just seemed to imply that there was a difference in the degree impacting the rank and I wanted to correct that. As for military not being as smart as private sector remember that there are JAG officers there too. I admitt I knew a few dimwits in the service most with only a GED but you have to pass the ASVAB with a decent scoreto get into harder jobs like the ones that they train you for a Huachuca. A lot of college grads cant do it. Its a fact. If I seem defensive of enlisted as an option it is becuase I am enlisted. I went in before college and got my first college credits in service. I got my associates degree on campus, but did my Bachelors degree online the way that a lot of military does it. I still passed the LSAT and got into lawschool.


I don't think you'll have much luck convincing people that enlisted kids have some innate intelligence that would shine through if they weren't so busy "saveing your pompous ass."  Much respect for those folks, but that's just not a realistic statement.  Your point, that A's at Harvard or C's at AMU (what's that?) lead to the same military rank and ability, is exactly my point--you don't need to be intelligent (in the reading & 'riting sense) to be enlisted in the Army.  And like all things, jobs that don't require intelligence don't attract high numbers of intelligent people.  This all excludes officers of course--although officers will tell you that West Point's SAT percentiles are so low because it admits enlisted men after a few years of service, which indirectly speaks to the point.


OP, yeah, lots of people are stuck in that rut.  There were two LR members at my T20 who graduated without jobs.  And everybody else is right; you've just got to pound the pavement.
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: Sean1 on June 28, 2009, 07:54:15 PM
you are not alone. there are hundreds of law students who are currently studying for the bar, without jobs and with thousands of $ in debt. the few jobs went to students at the tier 1 schools. they are not feeling it like we are at the tier 2 schools. most of the student loans can be deferred until employment, luckily. hang in there and try not to think about anything but the bar exam for now. then in August, think about getting a part-time job while still looking for full-time legal work. i also wish there was some statistics showing the number of unemployed recent law grads.
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: linquest on June 29, 2009, 11:01:02 PM
OP- I emailed you some suggestions.
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: LSDSL on June 30, 2009, 02:59:36 PM
OP- I emailed you some suggestions.


PLS just post here.  I didn't get an email. 
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: linquest on June 30, 2009, 04:55:58 PM
Don't feel too bad.  There are tons of people in your situation, especially this year now that legal industry is in a tanker.  Right now, it doesn't help that so many law firms have been laying people off, so there are a lot of attorneys that have already been practicing that you are now competing against.  Beyond the firms (mostly Biglaw firms that are now in trouble) and government agencies (many now in hiring freezes) that hire well in advance, most legal employers prefer to interview people who have already passed the bar so they can start working right away.  I also have a friend who just got a job offer last week, so there's hope that you can interview and get a job while you're studying for the bar.

I know from personal experience that Chicago is a tough market to break into if you don't have connections.  At least you are from IL, so that will help show that you're not here on a whim besides the fact that you're taking the bar here.  Where did you do your legal internships?  Is there a particular type of law or practice setting that you are particularly interested in?  I might be able to give you some networking tips based on that. 

Have you already checked for alumni from your school in Chicago?  I know you went to school on the West Coast, but it's entirely possible that there are some out here (that's how I networked from my East Coast school).  Also, check out Kimm Walton's "Guerrilla Tactics: For Getting the Legal Job of Your Dreams", great book on job hunting.
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: chevelle on July 04, 2009, 11:20:58 PM
OP: I graduated top 10% from a T2, law firm jobs both summers (local midsize firm that only makes offers when it can...and decided not to in this economy), law review editorial board...I'm studying for the NY bar now. I have zero job prospects. I've tried everything...networking, hundreds of resumes sent out...career fairs at school where i talk to lawyers and their response is something like, "I wish I could help you. My firm's not hiring first year associates. But people should be begging to hire you." But I had one interview all year and the firm decided not to hire anyone.

It's real frustrating. I know a lot of others in my position. But I'm just trying to not get real upset (though I have my moments where I throw my Bar/Bri books down and ask what the point of all this is), pursue any lead I can, and I just study for the bar and figure when that's over I'll really do nothing else but look for a job.

I don't know if this makes you feel any better, but I hope it makes you realize you're not alone.
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: Contract2008 on July 05, 2009, 05:58:43 AM
OP: I graduated top 10% from a T2

It's real frustrating. I know a lot of others in my position. But I'm just trying to not get real upset (though I have my moments where I throw my Bar/Bri books down and ask what the point of all this is), pursue any lead I can, and I just study for the bar and figure when that's over I'll really do nothing else but look for a job.

I don't know if this makes you feel any better, but I hope it makes you realize you're not alone.

How did you end up at top 10% and law review, but no offers? 
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: chevelle on July 05, 2009, 08:42:50 AM
OP: I graduated top 10% from a T2

It's real frustrating. I know a lot of others in my position. But I'm just trying to not get real upset (though I have my moments where I throw my Bar/Bri books down and ask what the point of all this is), pursue any lead I can, and I just study for the bar and figure when that's over I'll really do nothing else but look for a job.

I don't know if this makes you feel any better, but I hope it makes you realize you're not alone.

How did you end up at top 10% and law review, but no offers? 

My school has a terrible, terrible OCI. There aren't more than 30 or so firms that come, and the ones that say they want "top 10%" will really only interview the top 3% or so, and the firms that want, say, "top 25%" only interview people ranked in the top 15%-25%. I even contacted some of those firms directly and said I was interested, but they didn't offer me OCI interviews. I just got ignored. I sent stuff out on my own...nothing but rejection letters.

I was told that my rank put me in a weird place where I was not "good enough" for Biglaw but still "too good" for most local midsize firms. Quite a few people ranked around me experienced the same thing.

I took the job I had over the summer of 2008 back in late Fall 2007, and they made it sound like, if they had room, they gave offers...and they always seemed to have room. They did not give any summers offers this year, because of the economy. I feel like I really got screwed, because an offer was even hinted at late in the summer when I was working there.

I do feel like I've been ignored and turned away by many local firms that my school's OCS thinks should be begging to hire me, yet no one can tell me why. I showed a million lawyers my resume and they all say it's great. Admittedly, I might come off a little shy and quiet in interviews. But I hardly get interviews to begin with.

My background is in biology, and I even applied to a posting for a first year associate at a local IP firm that wanted science backgrounds. When I didn't hear anything, I contacted the firm's HR and they told me they "had no interest" in me. Ouch.
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: Matthies on July 05, 2009, 10:52:10 AM
Its tough out there no doubt. At my T2 there seems to be two kinds of students, those that have gone the OCI/mass mailing route and those that have networked (and what I consider networking is pretty hard core). The OCI/mass mailing folks have had universally bad results. There are just too many folks out there all applying to the same jobs as everyone else that itís a real employers market.

Those folks that have networked heavily all have jobs. The job Iíll be starting after the bar I got over breakfast and was created just for me. They have never actually seen my resume, never asked for it, hired me through recommendations. They will bill me at a paralegal rate till I get bar results, than at their lawyer rate. They are also cool with the fact and know I plan to look for something else while doing this job (environmental public interest work) and I can work from home too. They are also cool with me picking up side work if I need it and will pay my malpractice insurance up for six months as soon as I pass.

Totally great, flexible job to start out with as I look for something else in the environmental flied (other than the PI pay apscte of it) but I never had to do an a real interview, provide my resume or even my transcripts. And they have already introduced me to other folks in the environmental law filed that might have openings for me later on. So the networking continues.

Chevlle have you joined the local bar, chcked to see if any Inn of Court around? Right after the bar start hitting these and CLE's hard and start making some freinds in the legal commnity. They will introduce you to others and often know about jobs that are not advertised so you will be one of the few applying. 
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: Matthies on July 05, 2009, 11:12:15 AM
OP: I graduated top 10% from a T2

It's real frustrating. I know a lot of others in my position. But I'm just trying to not get real upset (though I have my moments where I throw my Bar/Bri books down and ask what the point of all this is), pursue any lead I can, and I just study for the bar and figure when that's over I'll really do nothing else but look for a job.

I don't know if this makes you feel any better, but I hope it makes you realize you're not alone.

How did you end up at top 10% and law review, but no offers? 

 

I do feel like I've been ignored and turned away by many local firms that my school's OCS thinks should be begging to hire me, yet no one can tell me why. I showed a million lawyers my resume and they all say it's great. Admittedly, I might come off a little shy and quiet in interviews. But I hardly get interviews to begin with.


.

Oh, and I think the shy and quite thing is hurting you more than you realize. Its likely you also come off as timid. Your cover letters might be timid as well. This does not seem like much, but its bad for a lawyer, lawyers arenít shy, quite people. Youíre not applying for a cubical job. They want, although its never said outright, take charge folks who can make critical decision on their own and put peoplesí feet to the fire when it needs to be done. This does not mean you have to be gregarious, loud, or even an extrovert, but you canít come off as quite, shy or timid or your adversary (and your employers) will see this as a weakness.

Go get some books from the library on networking and how to talk to strangers. Think seriously about joining toastmasters, you need to be an extrovert when youíre looking for a job and its CRITICAL to networking, you need to be able to walk up to strangers, strike up a conversation and keep it going for ten mins at least.
 
Some people are born with that skill, most are not, but it can be learned, and just like anything else you get better with practice. As much as I preach networking on here I bet most folks think Iím a very outgoing guy in RL. Iím not, Iím a hermit, I prefer to be ALONE 99% of time.

In the last 10 days I have seen 4 people face to face, and talked to two on the phone and thatís pretty ĎoutgoingĒ for me in such a short time. I donít like going out, Iíd rather stay home alone in my cave. BUT I can turn on the charm when I need to like a light bulb, and I make it a habit to force myself to go to one networking function a week, talk to one new person, try and make one new friend even if inside I HATE IT, because thatís what you have to do in the legal world. Youíll learn quickly if you have not yet, that everyone knows everyone else in the legal world. Who you know beats everything and how the legal work gets done. Knowing your adversaries, the judges you appear before, all that is vital info you get from other lawyers. You need to be able to ask for it and get it.
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: vap on July 05, 2009, 04:59:11 PM
you are not alone. there are hundreds of law students who are currently studying for the bar, without jobs and with thousands of $ in debt. the few jobs went to students at the tier 1 schools. they are not feeling it like we are at the tier 2 schools. most of the student loans can be deferred until employment, luckily. hang in there and try not to think about anything but the bar exam for now. then in August, think about getting a part-time job while still looking for full-time legal work. i also wish there was some statistics showing the number of unemployed recent law grads.

More like "thousands" than hundreds.  And it's not just tier 2 and below feeling the burn in this economy.  Plenty of tier 1 students are entering (and will be leaving) their third year without a job.  In an e-mail to its students, Georgetown recently warned that offer rates at firms would be drastically low this year, and even many offers would be for deferred employment to begin in 2011.  http://abovethelaw.com/2009/06/advice_for_summers_from_george.php
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: coquita on July 06, 2009, 01:30:37 PM
I graduated either in the top 10% or 15% of my class (will know for certain in August when rankings are up). I don't have a permanent job, but have a post-bar internship with a small chance of being hired because of gov't cutbacks. Yes it sucks, just don't let it get you down now. Treat Barbri like school and just push through it and worry about jobs after the bar. Networking really does help. I met someone at get together this weekend that said they would work on getting me placed somewhere  if I don't get an offer after my internship. No resume or anything, just a family friend of my husband. That is how things work in this economy.

After the bar (emphasis on after)...use your family and friends to get some connections, and have them spread the word about you.."Oh my ___ just graduated from law school and did really well and is looking for a job after the bar." That definitely can get some interest in you. It has helped me in the past, and is how I got my internship my current internship. I told my summer employer that I was interested in a post-bar internship with an government office and had applied, they saw them at a job fair and gushed about me to them. Got the internship after a 10 minute interview. Networking is definitely important.

Good luck!
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: LSDSL on July 09, 2009, 09:14:00 PM
BTW studying for the Bar is no picnic.
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: Contract2008 on July 09, 2009, 11:22:43 PM
BTW studying for the Bar is no picnic.

It's not that bad if you went to a decent law school and didn't end up at the bottom 25% of the class.  It's just like an extra half semester of law school. 
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: lawschoolsucks on July 10, 2009, 12:38:05 AM
Tier 3 grad here. 150K in debt. Moot court. Law journal. Top Half of class (yeah not great but ah well). Had an in-house clerk position 1st summer and a summer associateship my second summer at a local midsize firm with a great rep. I was positive I was getting an offer (had it hinted to by more than one partner) and then all of a sudden all of the summers were bumped with no offers due to this toxic waste dump of an economy. Tons of attorneys were laid off in my area and there are hiring freezes all over the place. Most of my classmates are jobless (even our #1 got bumped from his biglaw firm).

I too am studying for the bar with no hope of a job afterwards. The crushing debt is scaring the crud out of me and it's sending me into a state of despair. This was the absolute worst year to graduate from law school. Along with studying for the bar, I send out resumes to at least 10-15 places EVERY SINGLE DAY.

I wholeheartedly regret law school because of this mess. My degree isn't worth the paper it's written on. I actually contemplated the military myself but didn't want to be deployed. So now I've started looking at jobs in other fields (I've completely taken law school and my jd off of my resume and have been using my finance/marketing degree to job hunt- a jd is a scarlet letter if you're trying to pursue non-legal careers). It's a sad state of affairs for the completely oversaturated legal community. Good luck OP in your job search.
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: dischord on July 10, 2009, 08:30:30 AM
So now I've started looking at jobs in other fields (I've completely taken law school and my jd off of my resume and have been using my finance/marketing degree to job hunt- a jd is a scarlet letter if you're trying to pursue non-legal careers). It's a sad state of affairs for the completely oversaturated legal community. Good luck OP in your job search.

How do you explain your 3 year absence from the job market? 

Also, and no offense to your background, but it deeply disgusts me that non-legal employers would rather have someone with just a marketing B.A. than someone with a J.D. 

I know the whole rationale that they think that the J.D. will just leave.  But seriously, it's ridiculous that in this economy people with professional and graduate degrees are less valued than people with just B.A.s or even Associates'.  I even ran into this problem after undergrad -- I went to a really elite college and got a liberal arts B.A., but would be passed over for office jobs for Associates' holders. 

Anyway, you'd think that more people would see the value of an employee who's better educated and willing to work hard and challenge himself. 
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: likewise on July 10, 2009, 08:50:23 AM
In the same boat as the OP here -- still looking. And studying for the bar with this crap hanging over my head is simply no fun. My grades are dead center, no law review or moot court. I have 10 years of business and writing experience (usually a downside, not an up), and I did co-author an article.

Anyhoo, I've applied for virtually EVERY open legal gig within commuting distance since I arrived in my market 8 weeks ago (which means, like, a dozen). No interviews even granted. My hurdle, unfortunately, is that I'm trying to get a gig in the midwest with a JD from a regional East Coast school. Yes, try getting hired in Des Moines with a degree from Temple. No fun.

Networking. I stay well-connected with the folks I interned with last summer (in the midwest), but they're a close-knit community, and there's NO work in that practice area right now. I guess there's more networking to do, and I need to get on top of it. Think that's likely my only hope.
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: lawschoolsucks on July 10, 2009, 09:54:04 AM
So now I've started looking at jobs in other fields (I've completely taken law school and my jd off of my resume and have been using my finance/marketing degree to job hunt- a jd is a scarlet letter if you're trying to pursue non-legal careers). It's a sad state of affairs for the completely oversaturated legal community. Good luck OP in your job search.

How do you explain your 3 year absence from the job market? 

Also, and no offense to your background, but it deeply disgusts me that non-legal employers would rather have someone with just a marketing B.A. than someone with a J.D. 

I know the whole rationale that they think that the J.D. will just leave.  But seriously, it's ridiculous that in this economy people with professional and graduate degrees are less valued than people with just B.A.s or even Associates'.  I even ran into this problem after undergrad -- I went to a really elite college and got a liberal arts B.A., but would be passed over for office jobs for Associates' holders. 

Anyway, you'd think that more people would see the value of an employee who's better educated and willing to work hard and challenge himself. 

No offense taken. Seriously it disgusts me too. I kept going into non-legal interviews (the one or two that would even talk to me) and instead of talking about the current job and why I'd be a good fit, they spend the entire time wondering why someone with my educational background doesn't want to practice law. Obviously it's not that I don't want to, it's that I can't with the market the way it is now. But I obviously don't tell them that. They all express the fear that once the market turns around, I'd bolt which isn't necessarily true since I take my commitments quite seriously (I made it through 3 years of law school after all). It pains me when they pass me over not even for Associate/BA degree holders but for friggin' HS DIPLOMA folks?!?!?! I keep getting turned away with the "you're overqualified" spiel.

So now, I just don't even want to bother explaining anything to these idiots in HR and I have simply just taken law school off my resume. How do I explain the 3 year gap? Well luckily for me, I had some side jobs I would work during the school year (yeah on top of a full time schedule with moot court/journal/clubs) over the weekends in sales/marketing so I don't have as big a gap to explain.

I went to a top college so I'm hoping it holds water in interviews, but for now, my law degree is completely worthless to me.
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: dischord on July 10, 2009, 10:08:27 AM
They all express the fear that once the market turns around, I'd bolt which isn't necessarily true since I take my commitments quite seriously (I made it through 3 years of law school after all). It pains me when they pass me over not even for Associate/BA degree holders but for friggin' HS DIPLOMA folks?!?!?! I keep getting turned away with the "you're overqualified" spiel.


Did you try, or have you thought about trying, to leave it on there but approach the question like, "I realized after working my internships/ 2 years of school/at some point in the process that I hate practicing law but I decided to finish the degree because I'd already made the commitment"?  In a weird way they might interpret that as a reason you wouldn't leave if a legal gig popped up -- not only because you don't want to do law, but because you stick with stuff once you start.

Anyway, I grew up in a sort of academic bubble, and it has been shocking to go out into the real world and see the depths of American anti-intellectual/anti-academic bias.  I don't think I'll ever truly understand this sentiment.  I just wished I had caught on sooner that higher education is often more of a detriment than a pathway to success, since I ended up going to law school as a result of failing to get a job with a good undergraduate degree.
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: lawschoolsucks on July 10, 2009, 10:22:26 AM
They all express the fear that once the market turns around, I'd bolt which isn't necessarily true since I take my commitments quite seriously (I made it through 3 years of law school after all). It pains me when they pass me over not even for Associate/BA degree holders but for friggin' HS DIPLOMA folks?!?!?! I keep getting turned away with the "you're overqualified" spiel.


Did you try, or have you thought about trying, to leave it on there but approach the question like, "I realized after working my internships/ 2 years of school/at some point in the process that I hate practicing law but I decided to finish the degree because I'd already made the commitment"?  In a weird way they might interpret that as a reason you wouldn't leave if a legal gig popped up -- not only because you don't want to do law, but because you stick with stuff once you start.

Anyway, I grew up in a sort of academic bubble, and it has been shocking to go out into the real world and see the depths of American anti-intellectual/anti-academic bias.  I don't think I'll ever truly understand this sentiment.  I just wished I had caught on sooner that higher education is often more of a detriment than a pathway to success, since I ended up going to law school as a result of failing to get a job with a good undergraduate degree.

I definitely tried the "After my work experience, I realized I hated the practice of law but wanted to finish what I started"....No go. They still thought I was full of sh!t and I was really sincere and earnest about it (my interviewing skills are great, after all I did have employment every summer in law school). Honestly, they see people with our credentials as a threat to them and their jobs. Like I said, I also went to an top college with a good degree and now have a law degree. Half these people in the hiring department barely graduated HS. There is no way they want you working in their office and given them a run for their money. It's sad that academic success and intellect are frowned upon. Which is why I dumb myself and my resume down. Utterly disgusting.
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: Matthies on July 10, 2009, 10:32:56 AM
They all express the fear that once the market turns around, I'd bolt which isn't necessarily true since I take my commitments quite seriously (I made it through 3 years of law school after all). It pains me when they pass me over not even for Associate/BA degree holders but for friggin' HS DIPLOMA folks?!?!?! I keep getting turned away with the "you're overqualified" spiel.


Did you try, or have you thought about trying, to leave it on there but approach the question like, "I realized after working my internships/ 2 years of school/at some point in the process that I hate practicing law but I decided to finish the degree because I'd already made the commitment"?  In a weird way they might interpret that as a reason you wouldn't leave if a legal gig popped up -- not only because you don't want to do law, but because you stick with stuff once you start.

Anyway, I grew up in a sort of academic bubble, and it has been shocking to go out into the real world and see the depths of American anti-intellectual/anti-academic bias.  I don't think I'll ever truly understand this sentiment.  I just wished I had caught on sooner that higher education is often more of a detriment than a pathway to success, since I ended up going to law school as a result of failing to get a job with a good undergraduate degree.

I definitely tried the "After my work experience, I realized I hated the practice of law but wanted to finish what I started"....No go. They still thought I was full of sh!t and I was really sincere and earnest about it (my interviewing skills are great, after all I did have employment every summer in law school). Honestly, they see people with our credentials as a threat to them and their jobs. Like I said, I also went to an top college with a good degree and now have a law degree. Half these people in the hiring department barely graduated HS. There is no way they want you working in their office and given them a run for their money. It's sad that academic success and intellect are frowned upon. Which is why I dumb myself and my resume down. Utterly disgusting.

The ABA has a book on thier website called something like "Marketing yourself for non law jobs with a law degree" maybe your schools library has a copy/ Also the Kimm Walton book Guerilla tactics is really good, pick them up after the bar
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: LSDSL on August 23, 2009, 05:53:57 AM
bump
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: SASS on August 23, 2009, 07:41:39 AM
So now I've started looking at jobs in other fields (I've completely taken law school and my jd off of my resume and have been using my finance/marketing degree to job hunt- a jd is a scarlet letter if you're trying to pursue non-legal careers). It's a sad state of affairs for the completely oversaturated legal community. Good luck OP in your job search.

How do you explain your 3 year absence from the job market? 

Also, and no offense to your background, but it deeply disgusts me that non-legal employers would rather have someone with just a marketing B.A. than someone with a J.D. 

I know the whole rationale that they think that the J.D. will just leave.  But seriously, it's ridiculous that in this economy people with professional and graduate degrees are less valued than people with just B.A.s or even Associates'.  I even ran into this problem after undergrad -- I went to a really elite college and got a liberal arts B.A., but would be passed over for office jobs for Associates' holders. 

Anyway, you'd think that more people would see the value of an employee who's better educated and willing to work hard and challenge himself. 

No offense taken. Seriously it disgusts me too. I kept going into non-legal interviews (the one or two that would even talk to me) and instead of talking about the current job and why I'd be a good fit, they spend the entire time wondering why someone with my educational background doesn't want to practice law. Obviously it's not that I don't want to, it's that I can't with the market the way it is now. But I obviously don't tell them that. They all express the fear that once the market turns around, I'd bolt which isn't necessarily true since I take my commitments quite seriously (I made it through 3 years of law school after all). It pains me when they pass me over not even for Associate/BA degree holders but for friggin' HS DIPLOMA folks?!?!?! I keep getting turned away with the "you're overqualified" spiel.

So now, I just don't even want to bother explaining anything to these idiots in HR and I have simply just taken law school off my resume. How do I explain the 3 year gap? Well luckily for me, I had some side jobs I would work during the school year (yeah on top of a full time schedule with moot court/journal/clubs) over the weekends in sales/marketing so I don't have as big a gap to explain.

I went to a top college so I'm hoping it holds water in interviews, but for now, my law degree is completely worthless to me.

Sorry, I feel for your situation and wish you the best.  I am curious though, would taking a degree off your resume be a like lying on it and be grounds for firing?  I don't know, I am curious what others think about this.
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: chevelle on August 27, 2009, 05:10:58 PM
Sorry, I feel for your situation and wish you the best.  I am curious though, would taking a degree off your resume be a like lying on it and be grounds for firing?  I don't know, I am curious what others think about this.

I thought about doing that because I have a masters in biology and employers seemed to just look at me and say "oh you must want to do IP, but we're not hiring in that right now." Ultimately, I didn't think it would make much sense to just take a year and a half of hard work off my resume.
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: lawschoolsucks on September 01, 2009, 08:21:41 PM
So now I've started looking at jobs in other fields (I've completely taken law school and my jd off of my resume and have been using my finance/marketing degree to job hunt- a jd is a scarlet letter if you're trying to pursue non-legal careers). It's a sad state of affairs for the completely oversaturated legal community. Good luck OP in your job search.

How do you explain your 3 year absence from the job market? 

Also, and no offense to your background, but it deeply disgusts me that non-legal employers would rather have someone with just a marketing B.A. than someone with a J.D. 

I know the whole rationale that they think that the J.D. will just leave.  But seriously, it's ridiculous that in this economy people with professional and graduate degrees are less valued than people with just B.A.s or even Associates'.  I even ran into this problem after undergrad -- I went to a really elite college and got a liberal arts B.A., but would be passed over for office jobs for Associates' holders. 

Anyway, you'd think that more people would see the value of an employee who's better educated and willing to work hard and challenge himself. 

No offense taken. Seriously it disgusts me too. I kept going into non-legal interviews (the one or two that would even talk to me) and instead of talking about the current job and why I'd be a good fit, they spend the entire time wondering why someone with my educational background doesn't want to practice law. Obviously it's not that I don't want to, it's that I can't with the market the way it is now. But I obviously don't tell them that. They all express the fear that once the market turns around, I'd bolt which isn't necessarily true since I take my commitments quite seriously (I made it through 3 years of law school after all). It pains me when they pass me over not even for Associate/BA degree holders but for friggin' HS DIPLOMA folks?!?!?! I keep getting turned away with the "you're overqualified" spiel.

So now, I just don't even want to bother explaining anything to these idiots in HR and I have simply just taken law school off my resume. How do I explain the 3 year gap? Well luckily for me, I had some side jobs I would work during the school year (yeah on top of a full time schedule with moot court/journal/clubs) over the weekends in sales/marketing so I don't have as big a gap to explain.

I went to a top college so I'm hoping it holds water in interviews, but for now, my law degree is completely worthless to me.

Sorry, I feel for your situation and wish you the best.  I am curious though, would taking a degree off your resume be a like lying on it and be grounds for firing?  I don't know, I am curious what others think about this.
 


I was definitely thinking the same. So during one of my interviews for the non-legal position I'm currently in (thank GOD!), I just came clean. They didn't see it as lying because I made sure to label my employment experience as "Relevant Employment"- to me, I didn't think law school was relevant to the position. In the end, as chevelle noted, I didn't feel like I should have to hide one of the biggest accomplishments of my adult life. I at least wanted to get my foot in the door and land an interview. After that, I disclosed my JD. Luckily for me, they saw my degree as an asset and I got an offer on the spot.

The job market, in general, sucks- not only for lawyers. I think a lot of us are willing to do and/or say anything we can to be able to pay off over $150k of debt..... What I would give to not have been a part of the Class of 2009  :-[
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: Contract2008 on September 02, 2009, 07:03:47 PM

I was definitely thinking the same. So during one of my interviews for the non-legal position I'm currently in (thank GOD!), I just came clean. They didn't see it as lying because I made sure to label my employment experience as "Relevant Employment"- to me, I didn't think law school was relevant to the position. In the end, as chevelle noted, I didn't feel like I should have to hide one of the biggest accomplishments of my adult life. I at least wanted to get my foot in the door and land an interview. After that, I disclosed my JD. Luckily for me, they saw my degree as an asset and I got an offer on the spot.

The job market, in general, sucks- not only for lawyers. I think a lot of us are willing to do and/or say anything we can to be able to pay off over $150k of debt..... What I would give to not have been a part of the Class of 2009  :-[


What job was it and how much do it pay?
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: LSDSL on October 25, 2009, 10:32:55 PM
Since I'm the one who started this topic, I figured I'd give you all an update.  I found out I passed the IL bar, but still dont have a job.  I havent even gotten an interview yet.  This seems hopeless and I'm starting to regret ever going to law school.  9.8% unemployment sucks...
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: Contract2008 on October 26, 2009, 12:02:19 AM
Since I'm the one who started this topic, I figured I'd give you all an update.  I found out I passed the IL bar, but still dont have a job.  I havent even gotten an interview yet.  This seems hopeless and I'm starting to regret ever going to law school.  9.8% unemployment sucks...

What have you done so far though? 
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: linquest on October 26, 2009, 12:12:22 AM
LSDSL - Congrats on passing the bar!  Maybe I'll see you at swearing in on Nov. 5th?  Keep your chin up-- I believe actually having your law license in hand will help your job search.
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: LSDSL on October 26, 2009, 03:35:17 PM
Since I'm the one who started this topic, I figured I'd give you all an update.  I found out I passed the IL bar, but still dont have a job.  I havent even gotten an interview yet.  This seems hopeless and I'm starting to regret ever going to law school.  9.8% unemployment sucks...

What have you done so far though? 



I basically check like 8 websites everyday and apply to virtually all the open positions, whether I'm crazy under-qualified or crazy over-qualified.  I virtually never see an ad looking for "RECENT BAR PASSERS NEEDED!!"  The crazy thing is that, technically, if I wanted a job, I could have one.  My brother and 2 other guys started their own Employment Law firm in LA a few years ago and apparently they're going to start looking to hire someone.  It's a great opportunity, but I want to stay in Chicago (plus I've only taken the IL bar).  He said he wants an answer from me by December 1st as to whether or not I'll take it.  Your thoughts on the matter?
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: LSDSL on October 26, 2009, 03:38:18 PM
LSDSL - Congrats on passing the bar!  Maybe I'll see you at swearing in on Nov. 5th?  Keep your chin up-- I believe actually having your law license in hand will help your job search.

Yup, Nov. 5th is the big day.  I'll be downtown for the ceremony.  I actually just got my tickets today for it.  You'd think having a license would help, but not yet...  Between you and me, I wish I could just skip the swearing in.  I've had it with ceremonies and celebrating.  Between graduation, 2 graduation parties, a party after I finished the bar, a party after I passed the bar, I'm sick of partying...especially when I still feel like I have nothing to celebrate!
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: Contract2008 on October 26, 2009, 06:28:46 PM
Since I'm the one who started this topic, I figured I'd give you all an update.  I found out I passed the IL bar, but still dont have a job.  I havent even gotten an interview yet.  This seems hopeless and I'm starting to regret ever going to law school.  9.8% unemployment sucks...

What have you done so far though? 



I basically check like 8 websites everyday and apply to virtually all the open positions, whether I'm crazy under-qualified or crazy over-qualified.  I virtually never see an ad looking for "RECENT BAR PASSERS NEEDED!!"  The crazy thing is that, technically, if I wanted a job, I could have one.  My brother and 2 other guys started their own Employment Law firm in LA a few years ago and apparently they're going to start looking to hire someone.  It's a great opportunity, but I want to stay in Chicago (plus I've only taken the IL bar).  He said he wants an answer from me by December 1st as to whether or not I'll take it.  Your thoughts on the matter?

You shouldn't take it today or tomorrow, you should have taken it yesterday.  What's wrong with you?  Take it!!! 
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: mugatu on October 26, 2009, 06:34:11 PM

You shouldn't take it today or tomorrow, you should have taken it yesterday.  What's wrong with you?  Take it!!! 

lol

TITCR
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: LSDSL on October 28, 2009, 04:00:26 PM
Since I'm the one who started this topic, I figured I'd give you all an update.  I found out I passed the IL bar, but still dont have a job.  I havent even gotten an interview yet.  This seems hopeless and I'm starting to regret ever going to law school.  9.8% unemployment sucks...

What have you done so far though? 



I basically check like 8 websites everyday and apply to virtually all the open positions, whether I'm crazy under-qualified or crazy over-qualified.  I virtually never see an ad looking for "RECENT BAR PASSERS NEEDED!!"  The crazy thing is that, technically, if I wanted a job, I could have one.  My brother and 2 other guys started their own Employment Law firm in LA a few years ago and apparently they're going to start looking to hire someone.  It's a great opportunity, but I want to stay in Chicago (plus I've only taken the IL bar).  He said he wants an answer from me by December 1st as to whether or not I'll take it.  Your thoughts on the matter?

You shouldn't take it today or tomorrow, you should have taken it yesterday.  What's wrong with you?  Take it!!! 

I dont know if it's that easy though.  If I plan to practice law in Chicago, is it really the right move to live in LA doing glorified paralegal work??? Unless I take the Cali bar, I can't do anything too exciting, dont you think?
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: Contract2008 on October 29, 2009, 06:03:03 PM
Since I'm the one who started this topic, I figured I'd give you all an update.  I found out I passed the IL bar, but still dont have a job.  I havent even gotten an interview yet.  This seems hopeless and I'm starting to regret ever going to law school.  9.8% unemployment sucks...

What have you done so far though? 



I basically check like 8 websites everyday and apply to virtually all the open positions, whether I'm crazy under-qualified or crazy over-qualified.  I virtually never see an ad looking for "RECENT BAR PASSERS NEEDED!!"  The crazy thing is that, technically, if I wanted a job, I could have one.  My brother and 2 other guys started their own Employment Law firm in LA a few years ago and apparently they're going to start looking to hire someone.  It's a great opportunity, but I want to stay in Chicago (plus I've only taken the IL bar).  He said he wants an answer from me by December 1st as to whether or not I'll take it.  Your thoughts on the matter?

You shouldn't take it today or tomorrow, you should have taken it yesterday.  What's wrong with you?  Take it!!! 

I dont know if it's that easy though.  If I plan to practice law in Chicago, is it really the right move to live in LA doing glorified paralegal work??? Unless I take the Cali bar, I can't do anything too exciting, dont you think?

Take the offer, start studying for the CA bar tonight, and be an attorney in few months. 
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: LSDSL on November 02, 2009, 03:36:00 AM
Since I'm the one who started this topic, I figured I'd give you all an update.  I found out I passed the IL bar, but still dont have a job.  I havent even gotten an interview yet.  This seems hopeless and I'm starting to regret ever going to law school.  9.8% unemployment sucks...

What have you done so far though? 



I basically check like 8 websites everyday and apply to virtually all the open positions, whether I'm crazy under-qualified or crazy over-qualified.  I virtually never see an ad looking for "RECENT BAR PASSERS NEEDED!!"  The crazy thing is that, technically, if I wanted a job, I could have one.  My brother and 2 other guys started their own Employment Law firm in LA a few years ago and apparently they're going to start looking to hire someone.  It's a great opportunity, but I want to stay in Chicago (plus I've only taken the IL bar).  He said he wants an answer from me by December 1st as to whether or not I'll take it.  Your thoughts on the matter?

You shouldn't take it today or tomorrow, you should have taken it yesterday.  What's wrong with you?  Take it!!! 

I dont know if it's that easy though.  If I plan to practice law in Chicago, is it really the right move to live in LA doing glorified paralegal work??? Unless I take the Cali bar, I can't do anything too exciting, dont you think?

Take the offer, start studying for the CA bar tonight, and be an attorney in few months. 


My brain says yes but my heart says no...
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: 'blueskies on November 02, 2009, 01:35:56 PM
What does your empty wallet say?
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: Angry Gorilla on November 02, 2009, 01:44:20 PM
My brain says yes but my heart says no...

My brain says no, but my body says YES!
(http://www.4vf.net/wp-content/uploads/2009/09/adec14da18s.ctsy.jpg.jpg)
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: LSDSL on November 02, 2009, 10:43:44 PM
What does your empty wallet say?

Money isn't everything, right?  I know we're expected to sacrifice a lot for this profession, but I can't sacrifice happiness.  At most, I'll work out there temporarily, with hopes that it will land me a job in Chi town within 6 months.  Fool proof!
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: Joey Porsche on November 02, 2009, 11:01:12 PM
This plan has fail written all over it.
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: LSDSL on November 03, 2009, 04:22:15 AM
This plan has fail written all over it.

Thanks for piping in, Joey.  Appreciate it.   
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: mccarthy on November 03, 2009, 07:38:43 AM
Joey's a regular ball of sunshine, isn't he?  ;)
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: Contract2008 on November 03, 2009, 11:26:59 AM
This plan has fail written all over it.

Thanks for piping in, Joey.  Appreciate it.   

Seriously.  Why aren't you not considering take the job, be there for 3 years, get some experience and after three years when the economy recovers, you go back to Chicago and land your dream job. 
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: Miche on November 03, 2009, 04:58:00 PM
You should be disheartened.  It's a miserable process because it seems so hopeless at times.  There's really nothing wrong with being miserable in and of itself.  It's a perfectly normal reaction to your situation.  Just don't let your miserableness turn into a depression that keeps you from doing what you need to do.  Study for the bar, take the bar exam, and then start looking for a job. 

...

I'd second Dr. Balsenschaft's advice, and further point out that Dr. B's advice is entirely on point for the situation right now. You're depressed about having only California options. Nothing wrong with being disappointed at what's transpired so far. That's a reasonable response. But you can't let "feeling glum" stand in the way of actual progress.

According to your prior posts, you've been diligent about rustling job prospects. Assuming you followed Dr. B's advice, you made a note of all the firms who wanted to talk to you after you received your bar results and you've already zipped off friendly "remember me?" e-mails to them all. You've networked, schmoozed, asked everyone who knows anyone to talk about you, etc.

If it's true that you've shaken the bushes and trees in Chicago, doesn't it seem sensible to move to try something new? Work at your brother's firm. You can do a lot more than glorified paralegal work -- you can do everything but sign the pleadings and argue in court. So, research, write, talk to clients, negotiate with opposing counsel, learn the law, learn how the legal industry really works, meet people, make friends, and have something substantial to add to your resume.

You can always return to Chicago after you've "done the west coast thing." No firm will question your geographic loyalty. If there's really any doubt, work out a deal where your brother's firm has a collegial relationship with an employment firm in Chicago. Then, there'll be cross-referrals and joint articles and any number of ties that will keep your resume full of Chicago. I don't think that's necessary, though. The best thing for you to do is add something new to the package that you present employers and come back to try again. Coming back is proof enough that you really want to be in Chicago.

You've expressed a lot of concern about your debt, especially. You don't want to run out of deferment time when there's a real solution right in front of you. It's okay to feel bad about where you are -- but keep putting one foot in front of the other, despite how you feel.
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: LSDSL on November 04, 2009, 02:21:16 AM
You should be disheartened.  It's a miserable process because it seems so hopeless at times.  There's really nothing wrong with being miserable in and of itself.  It's a perfectly normal reaction to your situation.  Just don't let your miserableness turn into a depression that keeps you from doing what you need to do.  Study for the bar, take the bar exam, and then start looking for a job. 

...

I'd second Dr. Balsenschaft's advice, and further point out that Dr. B's advice is entirely on point for the situation right now. You're depressed about having only California options. Nothing wrong with being disappointed at what's transpired so far. That's a reasonable response. But you can't let "feeling glum" stand in the way of actual progress.

According to your prior posts, you've been diligent about rustling job prospects. Assuming you followed Dr. B's advice, you made a note of all the firms who wanted to talk to you after you received your bar results and you've already zipped off friendly "remember me?" e-mails to them all. You've networked, schmoozed, asked everyone who knows anyone to talk about you, etc.

If it's true that you've shaken the bushes and trees in Chicago, doesn't it seem sensible to move to try something new? Work at your brother's firm. You can do a lot more than glorified paralegal work -- you can do everything but sign the pleadings and argue in court. So, research, write, talk to clients, negotiate with opposing counsel, learn the law, learn how the legal industry really works, meet people, make friends, and have something substantial to add to your resume.

You can always return to Chicago after you've "done the west coast thing." No firm will question your geographic loyalty. If there's really any doubt, work out a deal where your brother's firm has a collegial relationship with an employment firm in Chicago. Then, there'll be cross-referrals and joint articles and any number of ties that will keep your resume full of Chicago. I don't think that's necessary, though. The best thing for you to do is add something new to the package that you present employers and come back to try again. Coming back is proof enough that you really want to be in Chicago.

You've expressed a lot of concern about your debt, especially. You don't want to run out of deferment time when there's a real solution right in front of you. It's okay to feel bad about where you are -- but keep putting one foot in front of the other, despite how you feel.


Thank you for taking the time to offer me your advice.  I do appreciate it.  I know what you're saying makes sense, but do you really think I should be there for 3 years?  I was thinking 6 months, tops...?
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: Contract2008 on November 04, 2009, 11:16:07 AM
You should be disheartened.  It's a miserable process because it seems so hopeless at times.  There's really nothing wrong with being miserable in and of itself.  It's a perfectly normal reaction to your situation.  Just don't let your miserableness turn into a depression that keeps you from doing what you need to do.  Study for the bar, take the bar exam, and then start looking for a job. 

...

I'd second Dr. Balsenschaft's advice, and further point out that Dr. B's advice is entirely on point for the situation right now. You're depressed about having only California options. Nothing wrong with being disappointed at what's transpired so far. That's a reasonable response. But you can't let "feeling glum" stand in the way of actual progress.

According to your prior posts, you've been diligent about rustling job prospects. Assuming you followed Dr. B's advice, you made a note of all the firms who wanted to talk to you after you received your bar results and you've already zipped off friendly "remember me?" e-mails to them all. You've networked, schmoozed, asked everyone who knows anyone to talk about you, etc.

If it's true that you've shaken the bushes and trees in Chicago, doesn't it seem sensible to move to try something new? Work at your brother's firm. You can do a lot more than glorified paralegal work -- you can do everything but sign the pleadings and argue in court. So, research, write, talk to clients, negotiate with opposing counsel, learn the law, learn how the legal industry really works, meet people, make friends, and have something substantial to add to your resume.

You can always return to Chicago after you've "done the west coast thing." No firm will question your geographic loyalty. If there's really any doubt, work out a deal where your brother's firm has a collegial relationship with an employment firm in Chicago. Then, there'll be cross-referrals and joint articles and any number of ties that will keep your resume full of Chicago. I don't think that's necessary, though. The best thing for you to do is add something new to the package that you present employers and come back to try again. Coming back is proof enough that you really want to be in Chicago.

You've expressed a lot of concern about your debt, especially. You don't want to run out of deferment time when there's a real solution right in front of you. It's okay to feel bad about where you are -- but keep putting one foot in front of the other, despite how you feel.


Thank you for taking the time to offer me your advice.  I do appreciate it.  I know what you're saying makes sense, but do you really think I should be there for 3 years?  I was thinking 6 months, tops...?

It takes you more than six months to be licensed in CA (study and get result) assume that you do pass it.  You should have at least 2 years commitment.  At least!  It passes by really fast.
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: LSDSL on November 04, 2009, 03:09:01 PM
You should be disheartened.  It's a miserable process because it seems so hopeless at times.  There's really nothing wrong with being miserable in and of itself.  It's a perfectly normal reaction to your situation.  Just don't let your miserableness turn into a depression that keeps you from doing what you need to do.  Study for the bar, take the bar exam, and then start looking for a job. 

...

I'd second Dr. Balsenschaft's advice, and further point out that Dr. B's advice is entirely on point for the situation right now. You're depressed about having only California options. Nothing wrong with being disappointed at what's transpired so far. That's a reasonable response. But you can't let "feeling glum" stand in the way of actual progress.

According to your prior posts, you've been diligent about rustling job prospects. Assuming you followed Dr. B's advice, you made a note of all the firms who wanted to talk to you after you received your bar results and you've already zipped off friendly "remember me?" e-mails to them all. You've networked, schmoozed, asked everyone who knows anyone to talk about you, etc.

If it's true that you've shaken the bushes and trees in Chicago, doesn't it seem sensible to move to try something new? Work at your brother's firm. You can do a lot more than glorified paralegal work -- you can do everything but sign the pleadings and argue in court. So, research, write, talk to clients, negotiate with opposing counsel, learn the law, learn how the legal industry really works, meet people, make friends, and have something substantial to add to your resume.

You can always return to Chicago after you've "done the west coast thing." No firm will question your geographic loyalty. If there's really any doubt, work out a deal where your brother's firm has a collegial relationship with an employment firm in Chicago. Then, there'll be cross-referrals and joint articles and any number of ties that will keep your resume full of Chicago. I don't think that's necessary, though. The best thing for you to do is add something new to the package that you present employers and come back to try again. Coming back is proof enough that you really want to be in Chicago.

You've expressed a lot of concern about your debt, especially. You don't want to run out of deferment time when there's a real solution right in front of you. It's okay to feel bad about where you are -- but keep putting one foot in front of the other, despite how you feel.


Thank you for taking the time to offer me your advice.  I do appreciate it.  I know what you're saying makes sense, but do you really think I should be there for 3 years?  I was thinking 6 months, tops...?

It takes you more than six months to be licensed in CA (study and get result) assume that you do pass it.  You should have at least 2 years commitment.  At least!  It passes by really fast.

I wasn't planning on taking the CA bar.  I'd be certain to be stuck there then.  :)  I can still do a lot w/o being licensed there.
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: mugatu on November 04, 2009, 03:16:06 PM
OK. 

Say no to things and be poor and struggle. 

Problem solved!
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: mccarthy on November 04, 2009, 05:16:24 PM
Taking the bar in CA would not obligate you to a damn thing. Do you really have two options here?
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: Joey Porsche on November 08, 2009, 10:37:39 PM
This plan has fail written all over it.

Thanks for piping in, Joey.  Appreciate it.   

Just a
(http://www.areyoucured.com/Portals/0/Dose%20of%20Reality.gif)
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: coquita on January 01, 2010, 08:43:33 PM
Bump.

I am in the same quandry. I just got told by my brother-in-law that an associate position is mine at the firm he worked with if I wanted it. However, it is 150 miles away, so I would need to live away from my husband for awhile until it was economically feasible for him to move (he has a job where we live now). Also my brother-in-law would be my supervisor. And finally, the firm he works for is one of those with an attorney that appears on TV. I am worried that once the economy picks up, it would be hard for me to move back into what I want to do with that on my resume. Thoughts?

P.S. - my husband is making enough for us to survive on while I defer my loans...but it is tight. I am working for a government office, who still hasn't heard whether they have the funds to hire any attorneys or not. Help!
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: Contract2008 on January 02, 2010, 12:03:04 PM
Bump.

I am in the same quandry. I just got told by my brother-in-law that an associate position is mine at the firm he worked with if I wanted it. However, it is 150 miles away, so I would need to live away from my husband for awhile until it was economically feasible for him to move (he has a job where we live now). Also my brother-in-law would be my supervisor. And finally, the firm he works for is one of those with an attorney that appears on TV. I am worried that once the economy picks up, it would be hard for me to move back into what I want to do with that on my resume. Thoughts?

P.S. - my husband is making enough for us to survive on while I defer my loans...but it is tight. I am working for a government office, who still hasn't heard whether they have the funds to hire any attorneys or not. Help!

Is your brother in law secretly interested in you?    :o
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: coquita on January 04, 2010, 12:24:47 PM
No way, just trying to help.
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: OldCraig on January 05, 2010, 09:42:40 AM
Make the government sorry for what they did when they gave you the loans in the first place and declare bankruptcy.
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: Contract2008 on January 05, 2010, 11:24:04 AM
No way, just trying to help.

Yeah, I am sure that's what it is.   ;)  ;D
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: LSDSL on January 06, 2010, 03:20:12 PM
Bump.

I am in the same quandry. I just got told by my brother-in-law that an associate position is mine at the firm he worked with if I wanted it. However, it is 150 miles away, so I would need to live away from my husband for awhile until it was economically feasible for him to move (he has a job where we live now). Also my brother-in-law would be my supervisor. And finally, the firm he works for is one of those with an attorney that appears on TV. I am worried that once the economy picks up, it would be hard for me to move back into what I want to do with that on my resume. Thoughts?

P.S. - my husband is making enough for us to survive on while I defer my loans...but it is tight. I am working for a government office, who still hasn't heard whether they have the funds to hire any attorneys or not. Help!

Well, 150 miles isn't really THAT far...so it might not be that bad.  Things to consider are: Do you really want to work there or do you figure it's "better than nothing?"  Also, will this really help to get you your dream job in the location that you want?

Call me crazy, but I think the legal job market is getting better.  The new year has brought a renewed sense of optimism about the economy and I think we'll see a spike in firms seeking to hire.  My advice is stall the brother-in-law as much as possible and keep looking where you live. 

That's what I've done w/ my brother (remember, I'm the OP).  I had an interview yesterday and another scheduled next week, when previously it seemed like entire months would go by without me hearing anything.  Thinks are turning around in the job market.  I can feel it.
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: coquita on January 07, 2010, 12:57:27 AM
Yeah, my husband and I decided it was not worth it, because it would be a "better than nothing" type of job. I had an interview with a small firm this week, and just applied to an opening at another small firm. I agree that maybe things will pick up, but I would like for it to happen before I use all of my deferment months.
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: coquita on January 11, 2010, 03:35:40 PM
Bump.

So after looking for jobs, I got an interview with an attorney that has a horrible reputation in her field. Then I was contacted by an attorney from another firm (bankruptcy) for an interview. I checked his bar records and he had to resign under charges and finding of misconduct in 1996 (committed fraud and went to jail) and was inactive until this year (when he decided to work in bankruptcy and loan modifications. Ergh. I am just hoping to get a job with a reputable attorney at this point...
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: chevelle on January 11, 2010, 05:04:49 PM
still in the same position.....

i had an interview with a firm i loved in november. i got a call back. i loved the firm more after the call back. it's been almost 6 weeks now since the interview...i called last week to say i was still interested and was told they still haven't made a decision.  :(

had another interview a couple of weeks ago where the partner looked at everything on my resume and said it was boring (including law review). i didn't get that job, can't say i was all that upset though.

i had another interview today. i guess it went okay. i'm hoping i get it, but i've lost all hope at this point.

i am too in a position where, my husband makes enough for us to get by, but things are getting tight. i feel like such a loser.
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: Contract2008 on January 11, 2010, 08:41:33 PM
Bump.

I am in the same quandry. I just got told by my brother-in-law that an associate position is mine at the firm he worked with if I wanted it. However, it is 150 miles away, so I would need to live away from my husband for awhile until it was economically feasible for him to move (he has a job where we live now). Also my brother-in-law would be my supervisor. And finally, the firm he works for is one of those with an attorney that appears on TV. I am worried that once the economy picks up, it would be hard for me to move back into what I want to do with that on my resume. Thoughts?

P.S. - my husband is making enough for us to survive on while I defer my loans...but it is tight. I am working for a government office, who still hasn't heard whether they have the funds to hire any attorneys or not. Help!

Well, 150 miles isn't really THAT far...so it might not be that bad.  Things to consider are: Do you really want to work there or do you figure it's "better than nothing?"  Also, will this really help to get you your dream job in the location that you want?

Call me crazy, but I think the legal job market is getting better.  The new year has brought a renewed sense of optimism about the economy and I think we'll see a spike in firms seeking to hire.  My advice is stall the brother-in-law as much as possible and keep looking where you live. 

That's what I've done w/ my brother (remember, I'm the OP).  I had an interview yesterday and another scheduled next week, when previously it seemed like entire months would go by without me hearing anything.  Thinks are turning around in the job market.  I can feel it.

How and where did you get these interviews?
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: LSDSL on January 19, 2010, 02:42:46 PM
still in the same position.....

i had an interview with a firm i loved in november. i got a call back. i loved the firm more after the call back. it's been almost 6 weeks now since the interview...i called last week to say i was still interested and was told they still haven't made a decision.  :(

had another interview a couple of weeks ago where the partner looked at everything on my resume and said it was boring (including law review). i didn't get that job, can't say i was all that upset though.

i had another interview today. i guess it went okay. i'm hoping i get it, but i've lost all hope at this point.

i am too in a position where, my husband makes enough for us to get by, but things are getting tight. i feel like such a loser.




I just got a rejection for a firm I liked that I interviewed for last week.  I was really really hoping to get this one.  Now I'm at the end of my rope.  I dont know what to do.
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: coquita on January 26, 2010, 08:37:08 PM
Bump.

Just got rejected by a good firm. Blargh. How is everyone else doing?
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: LSDSL on January 28, 2010, 05:52:15 PM
Bump.

Just got rejected by a good firm. Blargh. How is everyone else doing?


Well, I got rejected from that job I interviewed for and really wanted.  Though things are looking up now... I just got re-hired as a Law Clerk at the firm I worked for before 3L.  It doesnt pay much, but at least its SOMETHING.  I dont want to become an actual attorney for the firm though, as I hate family law and they focus on family law.  I'm just going to keep applying and work this crappy job until something pops!  Good luck to everyone and dont give up hope!
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: Contract2008 on January 28, 2010, 06:26:35 PM
Bump.

Just got rejected by a good firm. Blargh. How is everyone else doing?


Well, I got rejected from that job I interviewed for and really wanted.  Though things are looking up now... I just got re-hired as a Law Clerk at the firm I worked for before 3L.  It doesnt pay much, but at least its SOMETHING.  I dont want to become an actual attorney for the firm though, as I hate family law and they focus on family law.  I'm just going to keep applying and work this crappy job until something pops!  Good luck to everyone and dont give up hope!

How are things looking up? 

What state are you in?
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: coquita on January 29, 2010, 08:30:13 PM
Bump.

Just got rejected by a good firm. Blargh. How is everyone else doing?


Well, I got rejected from that job I interviewed for and really wanted.  Though things are looking up now... I just got re-hired as a Law Clerk at the firm I worked for before 3L.  It doesnt pay much, but at least its SOMETHING.  I dont want to become an actual attorney for the firm though, as I hate family law and they focus on family law.  I'm just going to keep applying and work this crappy job until something pops!  Good luck to everyone and dont give up hope!

West coast or in IL? If it's on the West Coast, I think it's very possible you got hired at the place I interviewed at. That would be hilarious.
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: LSDSL on January 29, 2010, 10:17:28 PM
Bump.

Just got rejected by a good firm. Blargh. How is everyone else doing?


Well, I got rejected from that job I interviewed for and really wanted.  Though things are looking up now... I just got re-hired as a Law Clerk at the firm I worked for before 3L.  It doesnt pay much, but at least its SOMETHING.  I dont want to become an actual attorney for the firm though, as I hate family law and they focus on family law.  I'm just going to keep applying and work this crappy job until something pops!  Good luck to everyone and dont give up hope!

West coast or in IL? If it's on the West Coast, I think it's very possible you got hired at the place I interviewed at. That would be hilarious.



I'm in Illinois, working in a suburb of chicago.  The good news is that I get to stay where my home is.  I do dislike my job though,so of course I'm gonna keep looking. 
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: Giraldo on February 05, 2010, 02:46:11 PM
Unfortunately, over the last couple of years it has become increasingly common for the number of law school grads in a similar situation. Five years ago the law school I graduated from had over a 90% employed rate 6th mths after graduation.  Now, I have noticed that my law school has deleted their percentage stats altogether.  I've talked to another that is graduating from a law school similarly ranked as LSDSL (in the 50's) and it's getting worse: more people do not have a job than not, which was better than even a couple of years ago.

So you want to talk stats: I would say unless you are graduating from a top 25 or highly connected, there's about a 50% chance that the person sitting next to you is just about an unemployed and stressed out as you are.
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: Thistle on February 06, 2010, 09:14:08 AM

i am too in a position where, my husband makes enough for us to get by, but things are getting tight. i feel like such a loser.


i graduated with honors from a decent regional school in may; and there were no jobs anywhere if you werent a member of the good 'ol boys club....  :P   so i moved to a larger market where i really didnt know anyone (sympathies to the OP) and it took me six months of busting my ass to get an offer.  in the meantime i did odd jobs such as research and appellate work (which a lot of trial lawyers despise) on the cheap....

i also took 6 hours of class from a local U in something relatively simple to keep the student loan collectors at bay, and so i could live in graduate housing (also cheap).

i filled out at least two hundred apps and i cant tell you how many letters of interest; and i must have had around 30 interviews where i was told "we had over 200 applicants for one position, many of whom have been in practice for over 5 years" ...

the job market sucks.

i finally got an offer from a federal agency doing quasi-legal work; the money is decent, the benefits are good, and my student loans are being paid for me; better still they are also paying for me to start an llm in the fall as well as giving me some time off to study for the local state bar in july.  i'm finally doing ok, but it was scary as hell for a while, to the point to where i had to borrow money to pay my rent :(

good luck to all of you who are still searching......
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: LSDSL on April 05, 2010, 09:57:09 PM
bump 8)
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: coquita on May 10, 2010, 12:20:02 AM
I got a job with the feds doing legal work but not practicing. All of my coworkers in the same position and my supervisors are attorneys and legal analysis is my main job duty. However, it is a temporary one year position and I can't count it as experience practicing law. So I think I will keep looking for jobs after I take a month or so break from the search. However, it seems that permanent positions in my department open up frequently and they like to move current employees into them so I hope I can get a permanent position before my term ends.
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: bigs5068 on May 10, 2010, 03:25:18 PM
Just to let people know these kinds of posts are common for every industry. Don't say it is only law school, it doesn't really seem like anyone is saying that on this thread, but I just want to make a point that I have friends that got degrees in computer science who looked for months to get jobs, people with teacher's credentials who struggled to get jobs, people who want to be cops or firefighters that struggle to get jobs, clinical psychologists, M.D.'s., J.D's, Engineers, and down the line. It is very hard to get your start in a career no matter what it is.

Don't get discouraged if you have a hard time finding a job education is for a lifetime and the odds are in the long run it will pay off, but there is the remote possibility it will not. I have not graduated from law school yet, but after I got my bachelor's I worked for 3 years and believe or not I was not handed a job when I got my B.A. I had to take a sh*t job when I first graduated, then 6 months later I got a cooler one and it just took time and there is a lot of disappointment, looking for a job is probably the most annoying thing in the world.  I will expect a struggle to find a job when I get my J.D.  it is a tough world out there. 

Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: cvtheis on May 10, 2010, 07:27:18 PM
I appreciate what you are saying; finding a decent job in law is as bad, if not worse, than other professions.  It is definitely WORSE for law graduates (especially non-T1s) because the employment problem is compunded by the fact that (1) folks have paid out an extra $150K and 3 years to gain ZERO advantage when it comes to getting employed, (2) law schools continue to churn out record numbers of JDs - about 43K/year, and (3) the market for legal jobs is shrinking.  In Vegas they call that a 'suckers bet.'

Just to let people know these kinds of posts are common for every industry. Don't say it is only law school, it doesn't really seem like anyone is saying that on this thread, but I just want to make a point that I have friends that got degrees in computer science who looked for months to get jobs, people with teacher's credentials who struggled to get jobs, people who want to be cops or firefighters that struggle to get jobs, clinical psychologists, M.D.'s., J.D's, Engineers, and down the line. It is very hard to get your start in a career no matter what it is.

Don't get discouraged if you have a hard time finding a job education is for a lifetime and the odds are in the long run it will pay off, but there is the remote possibility it will not. I have not graduated from law school yet, but after I got my bachelor's I worked for 3 years and believe or not I was not handed a job when I got my B.A. I had to take a sh*t job when I first graduated, then 6 months later I got a cooler one and it just took time and there is a lot of disappointment, looking for a job is probably the most annoying thing in the world.  I will expect a struggle to find a job when I get my J.D.  it is a tough world out there. 


Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: bigs5068 on May 10, 2010, 10:02:40 PM
No it is not a suckers bet.  The population is increasing, there are more lawyers now than ever. There are more NBA players now, because there are more teams. NHL 50 years ago had 6 teams now there are 30 something. More people are playing hockey than ever and there are more NHL jobs now.

There are more computer scientists than ever, more people with teaching credentials, more J.D's, more M.D's.

It is outrageoulsy expensive, but at least you can make a lot of money sometimes. If you are an M.D. you have to do 5 years or so of Residency even if you are #1 in the class and you make jack my friend is locked in for 5 years making 40k in Arizona. He might F*up on an operation or something and it will all be a waste. You assume the risk. 

At least as a lawyer you CAN land a big law job, though it is very unlikely. 

No profession is a guaranteed road to success.  Unless you know something I don't. If you know of something I can easily get into and make sh**tons of money PLEASE LET ME KNOW! I will honestly do it as long as it is not illegal (anyone can get into the drug trade, which is a quick way to make a buck.) Not for me though.

If you really want to be a lawyer and are that concerned with financing you can go to North or South Dakota State Schools and pay like 6K or something and I am sure it is cheap to live up there.   You can get out real cheap and I considered it, but I have no desire to live in those states.

It is expensive you should know that and it is a risk any potential student should know that. However, anything worth doing requires you to take a risk. You can stay in your home town and work for a bank or your Dad's company or whatever play it safe and you will be fine, but have a really boring life.

Or you can put yourself out there and you might get screwed over in fact you will get screwed over and make mistakes, but that is life.




Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: guacamole on May 27, 2010, 06:01:52 PM
http://www.shitlawjobs.com/
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: invader on September 27, 2010, 11:48:43 AM

They are also cool with the fact and know I plan to look for something else while doing this job (environmental public interest work) and I can work from home too. [...]


What kind of "work from home" are you talking about?
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: louiebstef on September 27, 2010, 11:30:36 PM
For those of you in the Silver Spoon crowd who look down your noses on JAG (military service) as a fallback: "Oh my GOD!"

Here are the approximate numbers:

O-2 (beginning rank for those with only a J.D. and bar passage)/under 2 years service
Base Pay: $43,300 (taxable)
BAS/BAH allowances: $ 20,000 (approximate)
PLUS cost of living adjustments up to 25%

with tax advantage: $70,000/year

Why THAT is terrible!  Better to sit home and whine on the internet about being unemployed....watching the ticker on that
law school debt.

FYI, when I retired (after starting as a dirty, uneducated ENLISTED man) my final compensation:

Warrant Officer (CWO4) with 22 YRS service:
Base Pay: $76,000
BAS/BAH: $25,000

with tax advantage: $109,000/year

Now I have to make due with making only $35K or so in annual retirement pay (which started at age 42).
Oh yeah...forgot about that fully paid BA degree, along with fully paid 1L with $18,000 stipend.

Life is UNBEARABLE!
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: louiebstef on September 27, 2010, 11:34:08 PM
Moral of the story:

If YOU know nothing about military service, please do not put it in a negative light sight unseen.
There are benefits that many of the hungry T3/T4 3Ls should be thinking long and hard about.

A few years of JAG service could really put a dent in that debt,  some of which may be forgiven
by military service.
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: louiebstef on September 27, 2010, 11:40:49 PM
By the way, that same poor dude who lowered himself to join the JAG Corps (of any branch) after about 10-12 years or so service:

RANK:
O-5(Lt. Colonel/Commander) 10-12
Base Pay: $81,500
BAS/BAH: $30,000 (NON-taxable)
tax advantage: $10,000

TOTAL COMPENSATION:  $122,000/year

just TERRIBLE!

You could then resign your commission, join the Reserve (to keep earning points for retirement), and take
that opportunity to join your hometown firm as a partner. 

Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: Morten Lund on September 29, 2010, 08:40:38 PM
Well, this thread just depressed the heck out of me. 

I don't really have many useful suggestions other than to keep up the search effort, and try to find SOMETHING to do that will improve your resume in the meantime.  These days, not having worked as a lawyer right out of school does not carry stigma, but a year-long blank on your resume after graduation will do you no good.

Also, what Louie said.  Military (or gov't in general) is a very legitimate option, if you can get in, and should not be looked down on.  Of course, these days NOTHING should be looked down on. 

Either way, good luck to all of you.
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: bigs5068 on September 29, 2010, 09:52:18 PM
How is the OP doing? They wrote that 5 months ago so I wonder how it played out.
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: LSDSL on October 02, 2010, 01:02:31 PM
Hey all,

Well, I know some of you were looking for an update so I figured I would provide one:)  I'm still working at the same place that I did between 2L and 3L, and I'm still there as a "Law Clerk," though I'm making $17/hr and I have full benefits.  It certainly could be a lot worse, and it certainly could be a lot better, too.  There was an attorney position that opened up in the firm, but I didn't express an interest in it, as we practice primarily Family Law and I can't stand that area of law.  I honestly would want to practice as a family law attorney for one day.  Not to put down that discipline, but it's just not for me. 

I've just kept continuing to apply to jobs thru various law school's career boards, craigslist, etc.  I've had a few more intereviews but nothing that's materialized yet.  They say the job market is supposed to be getting better, but I don't see it.

How are you all doing?  We should keep updating one another.

Cheers and good luck


-LSDSL
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: bigs5068 on October 02, 2010, 06:13:39 PM
At least you are making money and it could be worse. I noticed you passed up the family law attorney position and I was curious if lawyers who have been working for awhile think that is a wise move in general. Is it better to wait until something opens up in an area you would really like to work or is it better to just get some type of experience as an attorney?  As an example if someone really wanted to be in  real estate, but can't find anything would it be wise to work as a District Attorney and get unrelated litigation experience. Or would it better to wait until you found a real estate position?
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: john4040 on October 14, 2010, 03:16:19 PM
At least you are making money and it could be worse. I noticed you passed up the family law attorney position and I was curious if lawyers who have been working for awhile think that is a wise move in general. Is it better to wait until something opens up in an area you would really like to work or is it better to just get some type of experience as an attorney?  As an example if someone really wanted to be in  real estate, but can't find anything would it be wise to work as a District Attorney and get unrelated litigation experience. Or would it better to wait until you found a real estate position?

I think it really depends on the nature of the practice - whether it involves transactional work or litigation - and your desires.  If you want to litigate, a "family law" practice that focuses primarily on transactions (i.e., divorce, wills, etc.) would not be particularly helpful.  However, if the "family law" practice handled cases, that experience would be helpful to an aspiring litigator. 

In this market, beggars cannot be choosers; but I would not take transactional-heavy position if I wanted to litigate (and vice versa).  Nevertheless, I would speculate that - particularly during your first years where you're learning to draft motions, take depositions, etc. - if you wanted to litigate, any type of litigation skills (even if the subject matter of the litigation is completely unrelated to your desired field) are both valuable and transferable.
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: louiebstef on October 14, 2010, 09:39:23 PM
I like the approach that John suggests.  Unfortunately, that is the reality that most of us are (or will be) facing.
Were I in the OP's shoes, I think I'd be too impatient not to grab at ANYTHING that faintly resembled
substantial practice.  I (seriously) am pulling for all you grads....

We had a saying in the military when things were completely jacked up:

  SEMPER GUMBY!   (Always FLEXIBLE!)  Oh NO, Mr. Bill!
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: Thane Messinger on October 15, 2010, 06:46:28 PM
There is a general antipathy towards military service by a fair percentage of the general population--and perhaps a greater percentage of folks who attend law school--yet this is often out of ignorance and prejudice rather than thought.  With the right attitude, the military is a tremendous choice.  It certainly provides numerous advantages for the new graduate, including a salary and benefits that are better than 85% of graduates in even a good market get.

If you are thinking of this and have little personal exposure to the military, there are books and blogs about the military experience, and chances are you can track down a nearby JAG office and talk with attorneys there.  Yes, they do actually have phones (and answer them).  Chances are you can earn an invite on base (or post) for a look-see.


For those of you in the Silver Spoon crowd who look down your noses on JAG (military service) as a fallback: "Oh my GOD!"

Here are the approximate numbers:

O-2 (beginning rank for those with only a J.D. and bar passage)/under 2 years service
Base Pay: $43,300 (taxable)
BAS/BAH allowances: $ 20,000 (approximate)
PLUS cost of living adjustments up to 25%

with tax advantage: $70,000/year

Why THAT is terrible!  Better to sit home and whine on the internet about being unemployed....watching the ticker on that
law school debt.

FYI, when I retired (after starting as a dirty, uneducated ENLISTED man) my final compensation:

Warrant Officer (CWO4) with 22 YRS service:
Base Pay: $76,000
BAS/BAH: $25,000

with tax advantage: $109,000/year

Now I have to make due with making only $35K or so in annual retirement pay (which started at age 42).
Oh yeah...forgot about that fully paid BA degree, along with fully paid 1L with $18,000 stipend.

Life is UNBEARABLE!
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: FalconJimmy on March 15, 2011, 06:58:56 AM

You would have to be beyond retarded to go into the military as an E-4 with the level of education a law school grad has.

I'd say it's an unusual choice, but not necessarily a bad one.  It does help you get rid of debt.  If you've just hung out a shingle and are starving while trying to establish your own firm, it would give you a way to get health benefits. 

The other thing is that some people sincerely enjoy it.  I joined the reserves after 9/11 because I felt the need to do something to serve the country.  However, I am doing it today because I genuinely enjoy it so much. 

Granted, if you get that biglaw job at $160,000, they're not going to be very tolerant of you having a part-time job, regardless of what it is, but I don't think the OP is in that boat.

Also, let's be frank, here.  There are a lot of law schools out there and a lot of folks who attend will NOT be working in the law.  The military is a viable and relatively well-paying career.  It doesn't pay what biglaw pays, but frankly, your garden variety logistics officer probably has far greater earnings potential, a monumentally better retirement system, and considerably better benefits than a person who graduates in the bottom 3/4 of their class from a T2 school or worse.

Granted E-4 pay isn't that great, but an E-4 will still make about $3,000 a month, (1/3 of which is allowances, which are non-taxable) with excellent benefits and 30 days a year off.  Plus, he'll be getting a heck of a lot of his federal loans forgiven.

I would venture to guess that 1/4 to 1/3 of the brand-new attorneys graduating this year won't do much better.
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: FalconJimmy on March 15, 2011, 07:05:04 AM
For those of you in the Silver Spoon crowd who look down your noses on JAG (military service) as a fallback: "Oh my GOD!"

The harsh awakening for them will come when they realize that the military doesn't just give these jobs to anybody.

Their selection rate is highly competitive. 

The reality is that an O-3 makes about $7,500 a month.  ($1,500 of which is non taxable because it comes in the form of allowances.) 

30 days off per year.  50% retirement after 20 years of service.  75% retirement after 30 years of service.

Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: FalconJimmy on March 15, 2011, 07:28:32 AM
I don't think going the officer route has as much to do with an "ego stroke" as it does with the fact that a 1st Lt. makes more in their first year than an E-4 makes after 30 years in service, and almost double what an E-4 makes in their first year. Big deal if they don't pay off as much of your debt, you'll make so much more money as an officer it won't be a problem to pay the difference. And if you join the military, I'm fairly certain you can get in on a federal loan forgiveness program. Not to mention the quality of life differences between officers and enlisted.

I'm only aware of one college loan repayment programs for officers outside of medical fields. 

It's this one:

http://www.marinecorpstimes.com/news/2008/07/marine_officers_072008/

Air Force?  Navy?  Army?  I'm not aware of any college loan repayment.

A new O-2 makes about 60% more than a new E-4.  I'm sure you were just exaggerating for effect, though.

And this comparison is only meaningful if a person is able to get a slot as a JAG.  They're very competitive.
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: FalconJimmy on March 15, 2011, 07:36:56 AM
By the way, that same poor dude who lowered himself to join the JAG Corps (of any branch) after about 10-12 years or so service:

RANK:
O-5(Lt. Colonel/Commander) 10-12
Base Pay: $81,500
BAS/BAH: $30,000 (NON-taxable)
tax advantage: $10,000

TOTAL COMPENSATION:  $122,000/year

just TERRIBLE!

You could then resign your commission, join the Reserve (to keep earning points for retirement), and take
that opportunity to join your hometown firm as a partner.

To pick a nit, after 10 years of service, a person would likely be an O-4.  O-5 promotions typically happen around the 16 year mark.  Maybe 14 for a JAG since they are considered to have two years of constructive service.

Still good money, though.

As for leaving to go reserve, no, you don't resign your commission.  The day you resign your commission, you cease to be an officer.  The commission is what makes you an officer.  If you resign it, you're done.  Game over. 

Again, picky, but just trying to keep the discussion factual.

As for being an officer while establishing a law practice, that's a good idea and a path I may pursue.  At that point, your drill pay (for the one-weekend a month) is starting to get considerable.  An O-4 over 10 makes about $850 a month just from drill.  The main reason some might want to consider it is the inexpensive (currently $200 a month for full medical coverage) health insurance you can get.  Health insurance is a beeyotch if you're self-employed.  (Hell, it's a beeyotch no matter what, but at least when you work for somebody else, some poor employer is usually paying part of it.)  Also, as a drilling reservist, you can earn a military retirement.
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: Specks on July 08, 2011, 12:30:21 AM
I've noticed a lot of people talking about joining the JAG corp, but does anyone know how that selection process works? I've seriously considered it for a while now and have just been apprehensive about making any sort of commitment/contract. It seems to be getting more of a viable option lately thought. My top 2 choices have always been JAG or hanging my own shingle. The only thing that trips me up is that I'm really not that patriotic. I mean, I like this country just fine, but I'm not above seriously critiquing a lot of our policies. I worry that this sort of attitude will kill me during the interview process. Thoughts?

Also, not exactly on topic but still about employment: Does anyone know a good book that helps people choose their field of law? I have an LSAT student I'm teaching that asked and I have no idea what to say to her.
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: Thane Messinger on July 08, 2011, 02:15:06 AM
Specks -

As to the process, each branch maintains its own selection criteria and process.  Search via each branch's recruitment site.  (I believe there were links to each elsewhere, but they're easy enough to find.) 

Quite a few members of the military are critical of national and social policies, but you do have a fair concern.  While it's certainly possible to be blase about patriotism, that's not a terribly good start.  (If you'd like to ignite a sense of pride in these United States, click on Transparency International, find their annual list of global corruption, choose any of the nations in the bottom half--via a game of darts is fine--and go teach English there for two years.  Actually, two months will likely do it.  You'll become so patriotic your own parents will threaten to disown you if you don't cease and desist humming God Bless America.)

Hanging your own shingle?  Unless you're willing to work harder there than you will in Officer Training School (or Candidate School, depending upon the service), no. 

If "no" is a bit too brusque (as I've been guilty of), read Lund's first two Jagged Rocks of Wisdom books.  Substitute "client" for "partner."  If you're still inclined in that direction, that's a good sign.

As to choosing an area of law, not even a 3d-year law student should spend too much time on this.  This is hard for pre-law students to fathom, but there are really only two tracks in law school: litigation and transactional . . . and those aren't all that hard-and-fast.

I could recommend a book, but that would be a tad self-interested, yes?   = :   )

Best of luck to you and your tutee.

T.

Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: Specks on July 09, 2011, 12:20:01 AM

Hanging your own shingle?  Unless you're willing to work harder there than you will in Officer Training School (or Candidate School, depending upon the service), no. 

If "no" is a bit too brusque (as I've been guilty of), read Lund's first two Jagged Rocks of Wisdom books.  Substitute "client" for "partner."  If you're still inclined in that direction, that's a good sign.

Heh. Thanks for the heads up Thane. I'll have to check that book out. I mean, I know hanging your shingle is  no walk in the park and I certainly expect to work much harder than I would even at big law. The thing is, I'm currently running my own LSAT tutoring service right, and I find it really fun--even the part where you have to go pound the pavement for clients. But you're right, I should be looking into this more deeply before I just leap. Recently bought "Solo By Choice" and I'm planning on actually cracking it in August. Will put your recommendation on the reading list as well.

As to choosing an area of law, not even a 3d-year law student should spend too much time on this.  This is hard for pre-law students to fathom, but there are really only two tracks in law school: litigation and transactional . . . and those aren't all that hard-and-fast.

I could recommend a book, but that would be a tad self-interested, yes?   = :   )

I tried to explain the difference and how most have 1 thought going into law school and an entirely different inclination once they graduate. No dice. Hence the book rec. :) But now that you mention it, I know the perfect one. ;)
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: LSDSL on March 13, 2012, 01:31:34 PM
Since I'm the OP, I thought I'd update you all on my progress.  Recall, I started this thread when I woke up one night in a panic because I was studying for the bar and had no job.  After working as a Law Clerk at the firm I clerked for the summer before 3L, I was promoted to Staff Attorney, which was essentially a change in title only. 

Three weeks ago, I started a new job working for one of the counties near Chicago, where I have a sweet judicial clerkship gig.  Though the pay still isn't spectacular, I'm getting great experience, the hours are amazing, and it looks great on a resume. 

I know the job market still sucks but (I'm told) it's getting better little by little.  Please keep the faith, people.  If you're activly looking for work in the legal field, something will come.  Trust me. 

- LSDSL
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: sollicitus on March 13, 2012, 01:34:36 PM
So after all this term being a clerk, was it all worth it?

I know people gun for those gigs, but I for the life of me can't tell why.

Hope you enjoy it and the best, I just wish you better is all.
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: LSDSL on March 13, 2012, 01:39:09 PM
So after all this term being a clerk, was it all worth it?

I know people gun for those gigs, but I for the life of me can't tell why.

Hope you enjoy it and the best, I just wish you better is all.


It was worth it.  You have to take what you can get.  It's easier to talk about whatever experience you got rather than why you  have a tremendous gap in your resume's timeline. 

- LSDSL
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: sollicitus on March 13, 2012, 01:46:38 PM
good point. Pay now vs no pay is better (obviously) plus the resume part. Factor in extra experience too, and take vs nothing I would take too.

I just see people in school bragging about clerkships as a goal (longterm even) and it makes we wonder if they were dropped on their heads as kids or what.

Sure, its competitive to get some of them, so what?

It's a long line in the breadline, dosn't mean I want to stand in it for the rest of my life.
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: LSDSL on March 13, 2012, 02:02:27 PM
I'm sorry, I thought you were referring to my "Law Clerk" position at my old job.  I didn't mean to belittle my clerkship.  Clerkships are among the most competitive jobs in the legal field for a reason.  Judicial Clerks have uncanny access to the thought process that judges use.  Having that kind of insight is something that can't be taught.  This (usually) translates into intreviews and job offers down the road. 

- LSDSL
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: sollicitus on March 15, 2012, 01:54:47 PM
I'm sorry, I thought you were referring to my "Law Clerk" position at my old job.  I didn't mean to belittle my clerkship.  Clerkships are among the most competitive jobs in the legal field for a reason.  Judicial Clerks have uncanny access to the thought process that judges use.  Having that kind of insight is something that can't be taught.  This (usually) translates into intreviews and job offers down the road. 

- LSDSL

My point exactly. The theory that "competitive" means "better".
By that theory the only person worth marrying is the one you win on the bachelor.
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: jack24 on March 15, 2012, 03:08:58 PM
This thread is very interesting. 
I think the economy is getting better, but I still think some law students are absolutely delusional.  My first comment would be that JAG is insanely competitive.  It isn't just difficult to get it, it's almost impossible if you are a normal civilian law student. 

Next, I'll tell you about a few of the jobs I didn't get during my ridiculously long and vigorous job search.

This all occurred in the late summer months of 2011:

1:  Staff Attorney position for a state supreme court. ($61,000/yr)   I made the top four out of 150 applicants, but I was rejected all the same.
2:  District Court Judge Clerk ($38,000/yr), they received 120 applications from law school graduates.  I did not get an interview.
3:  A 50/50 split office share with a solo practitioner (Who Knows?/yr)  I made the final two out of twenty interviewees.  Yes, twenty post-bar applicants actually interviewed for a 1099 spot with no benefits where you get 50% of what you collect.
4:  An associate position at a large firm in a small market.  The hiring partner is a friend of my fathers, and he told me that they received over 300 applications, 50 of which were from IVY league graduates.  He also mentioned that they hired two summer clerks out of 115 applications.
5:  An associate position in a small firm in a small market.  They interviewed ten candidates and they only offered $35,000 a year with no bonuses.  They managed to hire an attorney licensed in two states.

I ended up finding a decent job, but I ended up getting lucky.

So, yes, you can get a job, but there aren't really any easy avenues right now.  Even independent contractor doc review positions are competitive.
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: john4040 on March 17, 2012, 11:37:46 PM
This thread is very interesting. 
I think the economy is getting better, but I still think some law students are absolutely delusional.  My first comment would be that JAG is insanely competitive.  It isn't just difficult to get it, it's almost impossible if you are a normal civilian law student. 

Next, I'll tell you about a few of the jobs I didn't get during my ridiculously long and vigorous job search.

This all occurred in the late summer months of 2011:

1:  Staff Attorney position for a state supreme court. ($61,000/yr)   I made the top four out of 150 applicants, but I was rejected all the same.
2:  District Court Judge Clerk ($38,000/yr), they received 120 applications from law school graduates.  I did not get an interview.
3:  A 50/50 split office share with a solo practitioner (Who Knows?/yr)  I made the final two out of twenty interviewees.  Yes, twenty post-bar applicants actually interviewed for a 1099 spot with no benefits where you get 50% of what you collect.
4:  An associate position at a large firm in a small market.  The hiring partner is a friend of my fathers, and he told me that they received over 300 applications, 50 of which were from IVY league graduates.  He also mentioned that they hired two summer clerks out of 115 applications.
5:  An associate position in a small firm in a small market.  They interviewed ten candidates and they only offered $35,000 a year with no bonuses.  They managed to hire an attorney licensed in two states.

I ended up finding a decent job, but I ended up getting lucky.

So, yes, you can get a job, but there aren't really any easy avenues right now.  Even independent contractor doc review positions are competitive.

Good info, but I'm curious as to (1) your stats, and (2) your new job.  Congrats, by the way!
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: jack24 on March 19, 2012, 11:01:03 PM
T2, Top 25%  LR Board, Moot Court, 5 years finance experience.

5-10 atty firm, corporate litigation, small market
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: john4040 on March 19, 2012, 11:06:24 PM
Nice.  We're actually about even on the stats.
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: LSDSL on March 20, 2012, 02:02:19 PM
I'm sorry, I thought you were referring to my "Law Clerk" position at my old job.  I didn't mean to belittle my clerkship.  Clerkships are among the most competitive jobs in the legal field for a reason.  Judicial Clerks have uncanny access to the thought process that judges use.  Having that kind of insight is something that can't be taught.  This (usually) translates into intreviews and job offers down the road. 

- LSDSL

My point exactly. The theory that "competitive" means "better".
By that theory the only person worth marrying is the one you win on the bachelor.


Did you stop reading after my third sentence? 
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: sollicitus on March 21, 2012, 01:07:31 PM
I'm sorry, I thought you were referring to my "Law Clerk" position at my old job.  I didn't mean to belittle my clerkship.  Clerkships are among the most competitive jobs in the legal field for a reason.  Judicial Clerks have uncanny access to the thought process that judges use.  Having that kind of insight is something that can't be taught.  This (usually) translates into intreviews and job offers down the road. 

- LSDSL

My point exactly. The theory that "competitive" means "better".
By that theory the only person worth marrying is the one you win on the bachelor.


Did you stop reading after my third sentence?

No, I read it all. I just know people with far less than a JD with the exact same title and judge access. Plus that only helps if you are working cases under that same judge later on, and in reality you will probably not be since if you want to work for a firm you will have to go where the work is, and that will probably be in a different district.

Unless your long term goal is to be a prosocuter or public defender (puke to both for long term goals, enjoy eating dollar store food for life) then it is not nearly as great as you are trying to sell it as.

There was a guy on here awhile back trying to brag about how "great" using his JD to get into the FBI was. Same general theories: Competitive to get into, etc.  (plus he seemed brainwashed by made for tv movies about the glory of FBI,Texas Ranger,blah,blah,blah)  He was an idiot.
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: jack24 on March 21, 2012, 08:17:57 PM
Sollicitus:

1: Prosecution isn't a bad gig anymore.  Three or four years of experience in a medium market and it's likely you'll make $70,000+.  Nothing amazing, but not dollar store.

2: Law degrees are highly coveted by the FBI.  It's the third most desirable degree after a Masters in Computer Science and a Masters in Accounting/CPA. 

While "competitive" doesn't mean "better", there are a lot of perks to some government jobs (Prosecutor, FBI agent, Jag Officer).  The hours are pretty manageable and the work can be fulfilling.  The loan forgiveness programs are also pretty great.    I intered at a prosecutor's office in a county with 300,000+ people  My supervisor worked an average of 45 hours a week for 80,000 a year.  He rarely had to do any paperwork and he was in court all the time (in the same building as our office).  There is a reason why they get 100 applications for every open spot.
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: sollicitus on March 22, 2012, 04:34:05 PM
Two sides to every coin I guess. I just see people crying their brains out how 1st year law grads no longer can make $160,000 a year day one, so mentioning the idea of working up to $70,000 as societies janitor dosn't much seem like winning the lottery when viewed from that persepective.

I often hear 1's (and even worse those who have yet to even take the lsat) act like they know the world, and I angers me to the point my blood wants to boil over their stupidity. Point being, since a 3L has yet to do all the things that the grads are saying, I will try to hold my tongue on some of it. I bet 3L's with opinions are just as annoying to grads as those previously mentioned are to everyone as a whole.
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: LSDSL on June 19, 2012, 02:18:48 PM
Bumpy bump bump
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: SoCalLawGuy on September 23, 2012, 03:34:49 AM
Have you decided what to do yet?
I work as a project manager, at an IT firm and so I managed to put some money aside but I was already working when I decided to attend law school. I know it's hard but with a bit of luck everything might turn out OK for you.
Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: mauranicholson on June 01, 2013, 12:22:11 PM
I know I'm late to this discussion...but I was in your same boat last year.  I was 2nd in my class, passed two bars at once and couldnt even get an interview, nevermind a job.  I had tons of legal experience so I I started my own firm when I graduated and now am having great success.  just get a good network of mentors and go for it.

www.abostonlawyer.com

Title: Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
Post by: LSDSL on October 16, 2017, 11:11:27 AM
OP here chiming in YEARS after my initial post.  In my prior post, I stated that I got a judicial clerkship working at the trial court level.  I ended up having that job for about 4 years.  Since then, I managed to leverage that position into an elbow clerk position with a justice at the appellate court.  The benefits are great, the hours are great, and the pay is respectable!  Perhaps my favorite part is that I am now 1/2 of the way to having all my law school debt forgiven under PSLF. 

To anyone reading this who is as desperate as I was back when I started this thread-- Keep your head up!  Good things WILL come if you work at it.   Best of Luck, everyone!