Law School Discussion

Deciding Where to Go => Acceptances, Denials, and Waitlists => Topic started by: jbean29 on March 27, 2012, 08:01:18 AM

Title: Anyone getting scared about their decision to go to law school
Post by: jbean29 on March 27, 2012, 08:01:18 AM
Between the articles, this forum, another forum I am on.. all I keep hearing is about how I will end up in debt without a job.

I have no other choice to attend a 4 tier at this point, and I am pretty confident that I will be able to transfer out.. that is my plan, but this is the rest of my life and I am about to get into a lot of debt and be thrown into a not great job market in 3 years.. I really don't want to regret ignoring everything I have been hearing.

But I honestly do want to be an attorney more than anything, and have always wanted to.

Title: Re: Anyone getting scared about their decision to go to law school
Post by: legend on March 27, 2012, 02:06:31 PM
Well first thing you need to do is not take anonymous internet posters very seriously including me. I realize that getting everything this way is the easiest to access, but you have to think spending hours a day whining on the internet might have something to do with their struggles to find a job. They might just making the whole situation up as well bottom line is me, and anyone else on LSD, Top Law Schools, etc is kind of full of it and stories, experiences, etc get exaggerated or somebody is trying to sell you something. So just don't take it to seriously one way or another.

No with that said is the legal job market great? No it is not, but neither is anything else at the moment. The reality is finding a job has always been hard coming out of law school. Talk to practicing attorneys and ask how they got their start most of them will tell you it was not glamorous. I know mine wasn't, but it is going well now. The first two years out of law school though I struggled doing doc review and other B.S depressing jobs, but I eventually found something I really enjoy and have been at it for three years, and now I am glad I went to law school. There were certainly times when I questioned my decision during law school, while studying for the bar, and when looking for work after graduation. However, always remember education is a long term-investment and you have the right motivation for going to law school, which is you want to be a lawyer.

As for the Tier 4 thing I will be real and tell you are more than likely not going to transfer out. 100% of students at every ABA school are smart, hard working, motivated, and 100% of them truly believe they will be in the top 10 or 20%, which is where you need to be transfer. You can see how that math plays out there and there is a 80 to 90% chance you won't be in good enough academic standing to transfer out. Does that mean your legal career is over? No. There are plenty of good lawyers from Tier 4 schools and plenty of poor lawyers from tier 1. Remember U.S. News is a magazine nothing more and it can't guarantee how good of a lawyer someone will be. Furthermore, there are really weird that couldn't find a job at McDonald's in every law school, medical school, college in America. Your personality, work ethic, and ambition is going to play a big role in whether or not you succeed.

I won't say that going to a Tier 4 is better than going to a Tier 1, but getting into law school is an accomplishment in and of itself and something to be proud of. It is unfortunate that so many students feel so inferior, because an unregulated for profit-magazine in Pennsylvania says X schools is better than Y school.

I wish you the best of luck in your legal career, and sadly me nor anyone else can guarantee whether it will work out or not. However, law school is like any other big commitment, and it is scary and the debt is a real thing to consider. I would also be willing to be your first few years out of school won't be glamorous, but no matter what profession you start in it's not to fun working your way up. Again Good Luck to you.

Title: Re: Anyone getting scared about their decision to go to law school
Post by: john4040 on March 29, 2012, 02:44:13 AM
I have no other choice to attend a 4 tier at this point, and I am pretty confident that I will be able to transfer out..

BWAAHAHAHAHA!!!  You and everyone else at your T4 are "pretty confident" that they will transfer out.  Since only the top 5-10% will have that opportunity, that leaves a good 90-95% that are SOL.  You shouldn't go to a law school in hopes that you will transfer out - the odds are stacked pretty heavily against you.  But, good luck to you, you'll need it!

getting into law school is an accomplishment in and of itself and something to be proud of.

No.  It used to be an accomplishment - until more and more law schools opened up that started admitting anyone with a pulse.
Title: Re: Anyone getting scared about their decision to go to law school
Post by: sollicitus on March 29, 2012, 04:46:35 PM
Between the articles, this forum, another forum I am on.. all I keep hearing is about how I will end up in debt without a job.

I have no other choice to attend a 4 tier at this point, and I am pretty confident that I will be able to transfer out.. that is my plan, but this is the rest of my life and I am about to get into a lot of debt and be thrown into a not great job market in 3 years.. I really don't want to regret ignoring everything I have been hearing.

But I honestly do want to be an attorney more than anything, and have always wanted to.

I am confused. How can you "have no other choice" but to attend a T4 and still be sure you will be able to transfer out? Do you even understand that most of those who do, are 100% scholarships with 170 LSAT's who attended to save money and then transfered out when they finally got better offers elsewhere?

You know all this right?

If your "only choice" is purely financial or geographic, then you may be right. If it is due to GPA or LSAT, you are beyond wrong. Just accept it and move on. Even someone with a 2.0 in undergrad and a 150 LSAT can still get enough C's to graduate. Don't sweat that part, but don't lie to yourself either.
Title: Re: Anyone getting scared about their decision to go to law school
Post by: sollicitus on March 29, 2012, 04:49:45 PM
I just noticed the part where you said you will "be in a lot of debt" at the T4. You are there for the "only choice" AND having to pay a "lot of debt" for it, so you can NOT be the 170 lsat and 3.9 GPA.

You will NOT transfer out. (period).

You should still be able to graduate since the VAST majority still do (even T4's have over 70% pass)
Just accept that fact right now, or it is a waste.
Title: Re: Anyone getting scared about their decision to go to law school
Post by: blue54 on March 29, 2012, 07:48:40 PM
I would avoid law school at all costs right now, especially a tier four. Yes, I am an anonymous poster, but when there are hundreds, if not thousands, of us out here talking about how bad it is, if law schools are getting sued, if law grads are struggling to find a job that just pays 40K per year without benefits and all of this is well documented at reputable news outlets such as Bloomberg and the New York Times, you cannot ignore the weight of evidence and think otherwise. STAY AWAY!!!

Where do I get my information from? Most of it is personal. I graduated last year from a T2 (which basically means a T4 in this economy).  Very few of my friends right now have jobs, and those of us who are lucky enough to have a job in the legal field are pulling in around 50K.  But Bloomberg, NYT, Wall Street Journal, lawsuits, scam blogs, it's everywhere.  Don't be an idiot and ignore all of noise.

Furthermore, don't listen to this crap argument "yeah, but you will struggle to find a job in any other field. May as well go for it."  What a stupid, illogical argument.  "Yeah, you may as well take on 150K of non-dischargeable debt to wait at tables/be a barrista at Starbucks/go solo and get sued for legal malpractice. That makes total sense."  I have an idea: take your B.S. in a useless humanities subject and go teach English overseas.  You will make about what you would make as a first year associate at a law firm, without a 2000 hour billable requirement and an egomaniac of a boss demanding you take two depositions per day for weeks on end.

Before I file a lawsuit, I make sure I do some investigation.  I do a background check on my client, research case law, etc.  If I were contemplating law school, a simple Google search would be all it would take to make me run very, very far away.  I was lucky enough to get a good scholarship, so I wasted 3 years of my life and have very little debt.

Run as far away from your T4 as you can.  You won't transfer because you have absolutely no idea how well you will do your first year.  And going from T4 to T14 (the only place you can actually get a decent job these days) is near impossible.

A major news outlet just did a story about how NYU and Columbia law grads are struggling to find jobs that pay 50K per year.  Given the weight of evidence against going to law school, what makes you think you will be different?  I swear if you say it's because you are "special" or "have a drive no one else has", then you are a lost cause and it's not worth anyone's time trying to convince you otherwise.  You know the answer to your question. 
Title: Re: Anyone getting scared about their decision to go to law school
Post by: sollicitus on March 29, 2012, 09:05:58 PM
I would avoid law school at all costs right now, especially a tier four. Yes, I am an anonymous poster, but when there are hundreds, if not thousands, of us out here talking about how bad it is, if law schools are getting sued, if law grads are struggling to find a job that just pays 40K per year without benefits and all of this is well documented at reputable news outlets such as Bloomberg and the New York Times, you cannot ignore the weight of evidence and think otherwise. STAY AWAY!!!

Where do I get my information from? Most of it is personal. I graduated last year from a T2 (which basically means a T4 in this economy).  Very few of my friends right now have jobs, and those of us who are lucky enough to have a job in the legal field are pulling in around 50K.  But Bloomberg, NYT, Wall Street Journal, lawsuits, scam blogs, it's everywhere.  Don't be an idiot and ignore all of noise.

Furthermore, don't listen to this crap argument "yeah, but you will struggle to find a job in any other field. May as well go for it."  What a stupid, illogical argument.  "Yeah, you may as well take on 150K of non-dischargeable debt to wait at tables/be a barrista at Starbucks/go solo and get sued for legal malpractice. That makes total sense."  I have an idea: take your B.S. in a useless humanities subject and go teach English overseas.  You will make about what you would make as a first year associate at a law firm, without a 2000 hour billable requirement and an egomaniac of a boss demanding you take two depositions per day for weeks on end.

Before I file a lawsuit, I make sure I do some investigation.  I do a background check on my client, research case law, etc.  If I were contemplating law school, a simple Google search would be all it would take to make me run very, very far away.  I was lucky enough to get a good scholarship, so I wasted 3 years of my life and have very little debt.

Run as far away from your T4 as you can.  You won't transfer because you have absolutely no idea how well you will do your first year.  And going from T4 to T14 (the only place you can actually get a decent job these days) is near impossible.

A major news outlet just did a story about how NYU and Columbia law grads are struggling to find jobs that pay 50K per year.  Given the weight of evidence against going to law school, what makes you think you will be different?  I swear if you say it's because you are "special" or "have a drive no one else has", then you are a lost cause and it's not worth anyone's time trying to convince you otherwise.  You know the answer to your question.

summery: don't go since you got a bad shake (see how easier and quicker it was that way)?
Title: Re: Anyone getting scared about their decision to go to law school
Post by: blue54 on March 29, 2012, 09:54:56 PM
 I got a "bad shake"? You have got to be kidding me, right? I really hope we meet in court someday. Since you obviously have resorted to quasi-personal attacks, and can't for the life of you back your statements up with facts, I have, in the spirit of open discourse, presented you with a random spattering of credited media outlets reporting on the oversupply of attorneys, the result of which is giving us all a "bad shake."  If all you can do is respond with an inflammatory opinion, well, actually, I am anticipating nothing less.

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/01/09/business/09law.html?pagewanted=all

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=afIhC1AKOQE

http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/02/20/the-bad-news-law-schools/

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/07/17/business/law-school-economics-job-market-weakens-tuition-rises.html?pagewanted=all

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052702304692804577283691965596610.html

http://online.wsj.com/video/opinion-the-law-school-bubble/1B2D874C-CB9C-4897-9681-AA1F166ADEA1.html





Title: Re: Anyone getting scared about their decision to go to law school
Post by: cerealkiller on March 29, 2012, 11:01:47 PM
Blue54, save yourself the effort. In all seriousness, I think this guy might be borderline retarded. This cretin just hops from thread to thread insulting and antagonizing anyone who makes the mistake of acknowledging his lowly existence.


Title: Re: Anyone getting scared about their decision to go to law school
Post by: jack24 on March 30, 2012, 12:54:57 PM
Hey jbean29:

This thread is kind of crazy.

I would dissuade you from going to law school, but it's really not the worst choice in the world. 

There are basically three ways of getting a legal job these days
1: Knowing someone
2: Dominating law school, particularly at a law school employers care about.  (This applies to some T4 schools.)
3: Hustling at the right time and getting lucky.

As an example, Let's say you get into Washburn University in Topeka Kansas.  It's a low ranked school, but it's pretty well respected in Topeka, Kansas City, and Wichita.   Those are three decent job markets.    Let's say you dominate at Washburn (Top 10%, Law Review Editor, etc).  You could probably transfer to Kansas or another decent T2 school, or you could just stay at Washburn and continue to dominate. (highly recommended). 
If you have VERY STRONG connections, like a family member who owns a firm, it doesn't really matter where you go to school. 
If you dominate, your resume will have significant regional appeal.   If you were in the top ten percent after 1L, you are likely to get a good internship somewhere in the region, which could lead to a good job. 
However, if you moved to San Diego or something, you may have a tough time even though your resume is very impressive. Then you'd have to hustle.  Unfortunately, your effort doesn't pay off that well if you aren't in the area.  I finished law school and moved to my home state.  My networking efforts were ten times as effective when I actually lived where I want to work.   SO, if you are going to go to a T4 you really have to consider the market you want to live in.  You also have to consider the fact that half of your classmates probably won't get a law-firm or government job.  Even less will like their jobs.

Law degrees are incredibly valuable in many ways.  Some are possible to quantify in hindsight, some aren't (i.e., the increase in analytical ability that many law students enjoy).    My investment looks like it will pay off, even though the job hunt was brutal and long.  That said, it's not going to pay off by a ton.  I understand you want to be a lawyer, I did too, but you have a very low chance of practicing in the type of law you want.  The lawyers that enjoy their jobs are either lucky, or just have the right kind of attitude and focus, which means they can enjoy most anything.

I think most candidates should attack a few other markets before coming to law school.  If they still aren't finding the challenge and interest that they are looking for, then go to law school.   If you are going to law school for the money and you are going to a T4, you probably have less than a 30% chance it will pay off, even in the long run.




Between the articles, this forum, another forum I am on.. all I keep hearing is about how I will end up in debt without a job.

I have no other choice to attend a 4 tier at this point, and I am pretty confident that I will be able to transfer out.. that is my plan, but this is the rest of my life and I am about to get into a lot of debt and be thrown into a not great job market in 3 years.. I really don't want to regret ignoring everything I have been hearing.

But I honestly do want to be an attorney more than anything, and have always wanted to.
Title: Re: Anyone getting scared about their decision to go to law school
Post by: jbean29 on March 30, 2012, 05:58:30 PM
Thanks for the replies.
Title: Re: Anyone getting scared about their decision to go to law school
Post by: sollicitus on March 31, 2012, 08:06:12 AM
I got a "bad shake"? You have got to be kidding me, right? I really hope we meet in court someday. Since you obviously have resorted to quasi-personal attacks, and can't for the life of you back your statements up with facts, I have, in the spirit of open discourse, presented you with a random spattering of credited media outlets reporting on the oversupply of attorneys, the result of which is giving us all a "bad shake."  If all you can do is respond with an inflammatory opinion, well, actually, I am anticipating nothing less.

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/01/09/business/09law.html?pagewanted=all

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=afIhC1AKOQE

http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/02/20/the-bad-news-law-schools/

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/07/17/business/law-school-economics-job-market-weakens-tuition-rises.html?pagewanted=all

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052702304692804577283691965596610.html

http://online.wsj.com/video/opinion-the-law-school-bubble/1B2D874C-CB9C-4897-9681-AA1F166ADEA1.html

In reply to my bad shake comment, you give links of bad shakes....... :-X
You are too quick to jump for no reason, you should look into that.
Never said you were wrong (nor did I say you were right for that matter) Just summerized it. Relax, Stroke out, whatever, your choice.
Title: Re: Anyone getting scared about their decision to go to law school
Post by: IClawstud on April 02, 2012, 06:59:20 PM
This is the most depressing thread to read 12 days before seat deposits are due. I know there is a lot of negativity around attending law school, and I know there is some very accurate and reputable  information, but I still think if it's something you really want to do go out and do! Not everyone can go to Harvard and Yale, and not everyone can make it into the T14's. Remember a law degree is a long term investment. The economy isn't always going to be as bad as it is right now and who knows what it will be like in three years. As long as you aren't head deep in debt or having to put yourself 200k in debt to finance law school I think you should keep up the hard work and hit law school and your career in full stride.

 Best of luck to everyone.

One more anonymous poster.
Title: Re: Anyone getting scared about their decision to go to law school
Post by: legend on April 02, 2012, 07:09:49 PM
This thread has gotten pretty ridiculous as it usually does on anonymous internet boards. Just go to yahoo news and read what people write underneath any news story.  Generally it gets pretty ridiculous pretty fast, and that is the same as what you see on these boards and others. I wouldn't take anything you read here or top law schools, or any anonymous internet site to seriously.

If you want to be a lawyer then you should go to law school. Nobody can guarantee it will work out, but nobody can guarantee anything. Good luck to you in law school and like any big commitment it is scary.
Title: Re: Anyone getting scared about their decision to go to law school
Post by: Hamilton on April 03, 2012, 05:13:59 AM
You guys should be scared and depressed reading this thread - because it is real.  Yes, I too recommend avoiding LS unless you are going to a T1 or high T2 (no I am not a Tier snob - it is just reality).   That said, many will go to law school... just keep this info in mind and do not be afraid to walk away as you learn more and confront your reality.  The jobs and money simply are not out there and as you research you will see that that fact has moved out of the world of scamblogs and into the main stream like the WSJ and NYT.
Title: Re: Anyone getting scared about their decision to go to law school
Post by: jack24 on April 03, 2012, 10:30:05 AM
Legend:
Why don't you make an argument?  Draw on your experience or statistics or something?
Go back and read my post and tell me why someone shouldn't take my advice seriously?  I did well at a T2 and I found a good job.  Now I have a good, not thrilling, job after a brutal job search along with a ton of debt.  I think a lot of people on here offer reasonable advice to consider.

Law school isn't just a big commitment, it's broken. Why are T4 schools every bit as expensive as T2 and T1 schools?  The price of law school is tied to the market, not to cost.  That means that you don't necessarily get much out of it other than the degree.  The price of tuition has shot up because of how easy it is to get federal loans.
Why are many leading firms claiming that lawyers are not graduating from school with sufficient training?

If you want to be a practicing lawyer, then you have to go to law school.  What most people are focusing on here is how it's not necessarily a good financial decision for the majority of applicants.  Instead, the decision should be based on experience with the field and job prospects in an area you will reasonably enjoy.   


This thread has gotten pretty ridiculous as it usually does on anonymous internet boards. Just go to yahoo news and read what people write underneath any news story.  Generally it gets pretty ridiculous pretty fast, and that is the same as what you see on these boards and others. I wouldn't take anything you read here or top law schools, or any anonymous internet site to seriously.

If you want to be a lawyer then you should go to law school. Nobody can guarantee it will work out, but nobody can guarantee anything. Good luck to you in law school and like any big commitment it is scary.
Title: Re: Anyone getting scared about their decision to go to law school
Post by: legend on April 03, 2012, 01:50:32 PM
Jack,

Your post was actually quite good, and I spoke to broadly. My broad post actually goes to further my point though, I am just writing on here in between breaks killing time and nothing I say should be taken to seriously. I thought some of the posters were way to overbroad themselves. I.E. Law schools take everyone with a pulse, you should be scared and depressed for considering law school so and so on. Those are very broad statements coming from anonymous people on the internet in regions and from schools the OP likely has absoultly no connection to.

Of course there is some merit to the posts, and they can get you thinking, but my main point is lawyers generally don't know what they are talking about when dealing with specific things. So certainly an anonymous internet poster with no familiarity about someone asking for advice should not be taken to seriously.

As for the system being broken I would say it is. There are numerous flaws in the law school system and the education system in America. However, I can't think of any system in the world that works flawlessly, and law school is no different. Some changes should be made and hopefully they will be, but schools are business who have uneven bargaining power against students. That is the way it is every form of education, and it's not fair, but is what it is and changes are unlikely forthcoming.

I thought your analysis of your own personal situation was great. However, my main point is that you are talking about your own personal experience in whatever location you may be referring to. I imagine the job outlook in Miami is substantially different than in North Dakota. On these boards people speak very broadly, and 0L's who don't know any better often take it far more seriously than they should.

I think you can agree if someone wants to live in North Dakota they would better off speaking to lawyers in North Dakota than obtaining advice from me, you, or any of the other posters that are likely completley unfamilar with North Dakota.

I enjoy reading your posts, and everyones, but my fear is that to many 0L's take it to literally and should realize that what is being said is not absoulte fact and far from it. One person's experience in law school is almost always drastically different than the next, and education more often than not is what you make of it.

Title: Re: Anyone getting scared about their decision to go to law school
Post by: Anti09 on May 23, 2012, 01:36:03 PM
OP. save yourself and your financial future and avoid that T4 at all costs.  If you're going for free and you feel like working in the immediate area, fine, go ahead.  But otherwise, don't even think about taking out big loans to finance it.  You say you don't want to end up in debt with no job, yet if you take out loans to attend a T4, that's exactly what is going to happen.  You say you read about how terrible the market is everywhere; well, these aren't a few disgruntled graduates spouting off.  This is a widespread phenomenon.  This happens to a lot of people, and it can happen to you just as easily.

Do your research and save yourself now, while you still can.
Title: Re: Anyone getting scared about their decision to go to law school
Post by: legend on May 23, 2012, 03:46:05 PM
You can end up with debt and no job, but that is not limited to tier 4's or legal education alone. If you want to be a lawyer and T4 is your option go in with common sense, but your are by no means doomed. Plenty of T4 grads end up having better careers than T1 grads and vice versa. The name of your school matters to some extent, but the reality is your own judgment, ambition, and actual ability often play a far more important role than your pedigree.

To anyone considering law school I think this is a great quote.

"It is not the critic who counts: not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles or where the doer of deeds could have done better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood, who strives valiantly, who errs and comes up short again and again, because there is no effort without error or shortcoming, but who knows the great enthusiasms, the great devotions, who spends himself for a worthy cause; who, at the best, knows, in the end, the triumph of high achievement, and who, at the worst, if he fails, at least he fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who knew neither victory nor defeat.  Theodore Roosevelt.

If you want to be lawyer you may fail and you might succeed, but if being a lawyer is your dream would rather fail or be a timid soul that never tried?


Good luck.

Title: Re: Anyone getting scared about their decision to go to law school
Post by: oiuiuko on May 23, 2012, 10:11:10 PM
This conversation about how brutal the legal market is reminds me a lot of what I heard before pursuing a career in the entertainment industry. As hard as it is, the legal field is not more competitive than entertainment.  From my experience, if you cultivate your talents, work hard and know the right people, you will most likely be marketable.  Turn that frown upside down and keep hustling  ;)
Title: Re: Anyone getting scared about their decision to go to law school
Post by: Anti09 on May 24, 2012, 09:06:57 AM
This conversation about how brutal the legal market is reminds me a lot of what I heard before pursuing a career in the entertainment industry. As hard as it is, the legal field is not more competitive than entertainment.  From my experience, if you cultivate your talents, work hard and know the right people, you will most likely be marketable.  Turn that frown upside down and keep hustling  ;)

Too bad the entertainment industry has nothing to do with the legal industry.  You might be able to make a comparison if you ignore the fact that a law degree puts you potentially a quarter million dollars in debt whereas the entertainment industry doesn't. 
Title: Re: Anyone getting scared about their decision to go to law school
Post by: Cher1300 on May 24, 2012, 10:28:23 AM
The biggest issue really is the debt versus job prospects.  So you need to ask yourself what you would be willing to do if you can't find a job in six months with 150K in debt or more if you have undergrad debt still.  I know a lot of lawyers and am going to a tier 4 at night, but I'll have a job waiting for me when I get out.  However, if that job doesn't pan out, I need to have a plan B.  I'm older and will able to finance about half of my education and won't be stuck with 100K in debt.  The woman I'll be working for/with, graduated in 2007 - right before the recession hit.  She worked for a title company for about 8 months when she was let go because the real estate market took the first dive.  She was forced to hang her own shingle because her only experience was in real estate.  So she put her name on the public defender list and started doing crappy work like traffic violaions and other misdemeanors.  She only made 28k her first year.  However, through those low paying assignments, she also met other attorneys and started networking.  They would refer clients to each other in other areas like bankruptcies, guardianships, divorces, etc.  It took a while but she is now established and going on her fourth year in private practice and loves it.  She was lucky because she only had 50K in debt because she was able to get scholarships, etc.

There are other things you can do if you don't get a job right away, but you need to be prepared.  Obviously, the less debt you have, the more freedom you have to explore other choices.  But the debt is very real when compared to job prospects and I don't think people really take into account just how much 150K can weigh you down and scare the #$%* out of you if you find you can't get a job in six months.  That's what people are trying to advise against.  Especially 22 year olds with undergrad debt on top of law school debt.  Now you are talking 200K in school loans, and it seems those students are thinking the debt is not that big a deal.  I can assure you that it is a big deal when you can't get a job and this is an important thing to consider.  Good luck.
Title: Re: Anyone getting scared about their decision to go to law school
Post by: legend on May 24, 2012, 03:18:51 PM
In response to the entertainment industry comment I think the analogy does apply. The reality is no easy career path exists. Ask a doctor, nurse, pilot,  lawyer, CEO, professional athlete, firefighter, police officer, etc how competitive it was for them to get where they are. I imagine all of them will say it was very difficult and all of them started at the bottom and instead of complaining about how unfair everything was worked to succeed. This is proven by Cher's story 28k a year is nothing, but you have to build experience. When I started out I was in a similar position doing mind numbing doc review, but I kept getting more experience, meeting people, and not giving up. It was not fun starting out and honestly the first two years out were terrible,  but I paid my dues and really enjoy my career now. In almost every career you have to pay your dues that is simply the way the world works.

As a sidenote remember that Harvard, Yale, Stanford have more than just law schools. They have business schools, nursing schools, public administration schools, so and so on. In each industry you have to compete with graduates from Harvard, Yale, Stanford it is not only a law school phenomenon.

To elaborate on Chers point the debt is expensive,  but again look outside the legal profession and you will see degrees in other professions are just as expensive. I just googled NYU tuition and the school of social work popped up. NYU is 41k per year for a social work degree.  That is very expensive and  if you go to nursing school, medical school, social work school, a police academy, etc they are all expensive. In the end no matter what educational/career path you choose it will be expensive, time consuming, and there will be no guarantee of  a job at the end of it. You are also going to have to pay your dues in any profession.

In conclusion the legal profession is a tough business, but so is everything else. If you want to be a lawyer then go for it you might fail and you might succeed, and I will refer back to the Teddy Roosevelt quote I mentioned earlier. You can sit back and be scared of things not working out or actually go for it, but you should only do that if you truly want to be a lawyer.

Good luck to OP as you start your legal education and career. If you pursue your legal career there will be many ups and many downs, and there will be many ups and downs if you choose some other path. If you know being a lawyer is what you want to do then going to law school is the right choice. Otherwise 30 years down the line you will wonder what would have happened had you actually gone for it and while looking back you will likely wish you have taking a risk and failed opposed to being a timid soul that knows neither victory or defeat.
Title: Re: Anyone getting scared about their decision to go to law school
Post by: Maintain FL 350 on May 24, 2012, 05:18:14 PM
No matter where you go to law school (with the exception of a few very elite schools) you will likely end up unempoyed and in debt at graduation if you don't start working on a plan from day one. Many law students commit two huge mistakes in my opinion: they choose rankings over scholarships and have entirely unrealistic notions reagrding their post-law school options.

If you develop an attainable goal before starting law school, hustle like crazy to obatin internships in that same field, and can minimize debt, you'll probably be alright. The key is to be realistic. If you're going to a T4 don't waste time dreaming about the 1/100 chance that you might get a biglaw job or a federal clerkship. If you do, you'll be disappointed and frustrated. If, however, you set your sights on small family law firms (for example), you can probably buld up some great experience and make some solid contacts.

The people in my class who had jobs at graduation or shortly thereafter started developing these kinds of contacts in the first year. Everybody else (including some top academic performers) waited until the end or relied too heavily on OCI, mass resume drops, etc. I've worked a couple of private and government law offices now, and have seen how a well-connected, experienced T4 grad can beat out a random T1 grad when it comes to getting hired. That's why blanket statements regarding the futility of attending a lower tier school are so often flawed, they never take into account the applicants eventual goals.

It's important to remember that apart from a handful of uber-elite schools, most T1s are essentially strong regional schools that won't give you an edge outside of your region. Depending on what you want to do, a full or substantial scholarship at a local T4 might make more sense that 150k debt from a non-elite T1. 
Title: Re: Anyone getting scared about their decision to go to law school
Post by: Anti09 on May 25, 2012, 08:53:57 AM
In response to the entertainment industry comment I think the analogy does apply. The reality is no easy career path exists. Ask a doctor, nurse, pilot,  lawyer, CEO, professional athlete, firefighter, police officer, etc how competitive it was for them to get where they are. I imagine all of them will say it was very difficult and all of them started at the bottom and instead of complaining about how unfair everything was worked to succeed. This is proven by Cher's story 28k a year is nothing, but you have to build experience. When I started out I was in a similar position doing mind numbing doc review, but I kept getting more experience, meeting people, and not giving up. It was not fun starting out and honestly the first two years out were terrible,  but I paid my dues and really enjoy my career now. In almost every career you have to pay your dues that is simply the way the world works.

To elaborate on Chers point the debt is expensive,  but again look outside the legal profession and you will see degrees in other professions are just as expensive. I just googled NYU tuition and the school of social work popped up. NYU is 41k per year for a social work degree.  That is very expensive and  if you go to nursing school, medical school, social work school, a police academy, etc they are all expensive. In the end no matter what educational/career path you choose it will be expensive, time consuming, and there will be no guarantee of  a job at the end of it. You are also going to have to pay your dues in any profession.

Way to completely misrepresent the situation.  Not a single one of the professions you listed- with the exception of possibly Doctor or Nurse- requires as a prerequisite a graduate degree that, at sticker, can cost upwards of a quarter million dollars.  Professional Athlete?  Seriously?  Police Academy?  You think that costs $40k / year for tuition for three years?  Honestly, use common sense. 
Title: Re: Anyone getting scared about their decision to go to law school
Post by: FalconJimmy on May 25, 2012, 09:08:12 AM
But I honestly do want to be an attorney more than anything, and have always wanted to.

Seems pretty simple, then.

Right now, the unemployment rate for new college grads is like 50%, depending on who you talk to.  I don't see anybody recommending that kids no longer go to college.

I just read an article that said that PharmDs are graduating to find zero jobs.

Honestly, this is the worst economy of my lifetime and I've been alive a while, now.  If you used the current economic climate as a meter, you would only major in Electrical Engineering, Information Technology, Accounting, Nursing or Medicine.  All other education would be completely wasted tuition dollars.

Someday, we'll come out of this recession.  God only knows when. Maybe not for another 10 years.

However, you should ask yourself:  do you plan on being alive 10 years from now?  Because if you do, then you might want to plan for a world in the post-economic apocalyptic America.

I don't advise against going to Law School.  I don't advise for it, either.  It's a serious decision and one you should really think about.  I mean, if you were contemplating joining the military, you wouldn't do it lightly.  They'd own you for 4-6 years (or more) and you might die.  IN light of that, Law School isn't so bad.

I'd say the way to go is to go to law school if you must.  Do your best.  Then vote Democrat until the day you die because Republicans are the a-holes who made student loan debt non-dischargable in bankruptcy.
Title: Re: Anyone getting scared about their decision to go to law school
Post by: legend on May 25, 2012, 02:40:45 PM
No jobs for nurses
http://www.bizjournals.com/baltimore/stories/2009/04/06/story3.html?page=all

Harvard Doctors
http://articles.nydailynews.com/2009-04-07/entertainment/17919325_1_reality-tv-reality-television-reality-fans

Graduates in general
http://suite101.com/article/graduating-with-no-job-a119625

accountant job struggles
http://www.cpanet.com/cpa_forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=37159&PN=13

engineer job struggles
http://engineerboards.com/index.php?showtopic=15766

It took me 3 minutes to find these 5 articles/postings/documentaries on google. I am also certain I could find numerous articles about how great these professions are.

The reality is no matter what profession, school, location, etc you work in success is up the individual far more than anything else.

 There are websites and newspaper articles in every profession detailing how hard it is to find a job, but it has always been hard. I point to my earlier post and urge anyone to ask a law professor, accountant, police officer, pilot, firefighter how easy it was for them to get there. I am certain you will hear stories about how difficult and uncertain they were when pursuing their career goal. It is hard to start a worthwhile career and law school is not a golden ticket.

To any 0L's out there realize what you read from any poster myself included on this site or others is anonymous information that is often greatly skewed, misrepresented, wrong, or simply does not apply to you. Each individual has their own unique situation and analyze what is best for your own specific situation.

In regards to the OP if you want to be a lawyer and you have thought about the costs, struggles, and actually know what lawyers do on a day to day basis I would say go for it. If you have no legal experience I would recommend at the very least volunteering in a law firm before making such a time consuming and financially significant decision.

Good luck to anyone who pursues a legal career, but before you do pursue law school be certain it is the career you want.


Title: Re: Anyone getting scared about their decision to go to law school
Post by: jack24 on May 25, 2012, 04:12:40 PM
An additional problem lawyers face is a problem with specialization.   You really don't have any specialized education paths aside from a Tax or IP path.   Most of those in my graduating class would probably say they ended up in an unexpected job.   A prosecutor, midlaw associate, and biglaw associate will have completely different experiences.  In fact a transactional attorney and a litigator at the same 100+ attorney firm will have completely different experiences.

So in this economy, you can't really plan what type of law you'll end up in, unless you plan on opening your own firm.
Title: Re: Anyone getting scared about their decision to go to law school
Post by: Duncanjp on May 26, 2012, 12:49:07 AM
I'd say the way to go is to go to law school if you must.  Do your best.  Then vote Democrat until the day you die because Republicans are the a-holes who made student loan debt non-dischargable in bankruptcy.

Yeah, those a-holes. The very idea of thinking that the government shouldn't let intelligent adults blithely off the hook after they have signed contracts to pay a price they agreed to pay in exchange for something they wanted. Fuckers.
Title: Re: Anyone getting scared about their decision to go to law school
Post by: FalconJimmy on May 27, 2012, 11:47:53 AM
I'd say the way to go is to go to law school if you must.  Do your best.  Then vote Democrat until the day you die because Republicans are the a-holes who made student loan debt non-dischargable in bankruptcy.

Yeah, those a-holes. The very idea of thinking that the government shouldn't let intelligent adults blithely off the hook after they have signed contracts to pay a price they agreed to pay in exchange for something they wanted. Fuckers.

If you disagree with the concept of bankruptcy, so be it.  Suffice to say that it has been a part of American life for quite some time now.  Perhaps living in Victorian-era England would be more your style.  After all, debtors prison seems like a wonderful idea.  Why in the world would you ever allow people to have a fresh start, especially after Republican policies got the economy to this point? 
Title: Re: Anyone getting scared about their decision to go to law school
Post by: oiuiuko on May 27, 2012, 11:48:18 AM
This conversation about how brutal the legal market is reminds me a lot of what I heard before pursuing a career in the entertainment industry. As hard as it is, the legal field is not more competitive than entertainment.  From my experience, if you cultivate your talents, work hard and know the right people, you will most likely be marketable.  Turn that frown upside down and keep hustling  ;)

Too bad the entertainment industry has nothing to do with the legal industry.  You might be able to make a comparison if you ignore the fact that a law degree puts you potentially a quarter million dollars in debt whereas the entertainment industry doesn't.

1. Entertainment industry has nothing to do with the legal industry? So all those attorneys working in entertainment, and all those 'entertainment law' journals you find in law schools do not suggest a strong connection between the two industries?

2. Pursuing a career in entertainment can put you in just as much debt, if not MORE, as a relevant program at a private undergrad can be MORE expensive than attending law school.
 
Title: Re: Anyone getting scared about their decision to go to law school
Post by: Duncanjp on May 27, 2012, 03:33:11 PM
I'd say the way to go is to go to law school if you must.  Do your best.  Then vote Democrat until the day you die because Republicans are the a-holes who made student loan debt non-dischargable in bankruptcy.

Yeah, those a-holes. The very idea of thinking that the government shouldn't let intelligent adults blithely off the hook after they have signed contracts to pay a price they agreed to pay in exchange for something they wanted. Fuckers.

If you disagree with the concept of bankruptcy, so be it.  Suffice to say that it has been a part of American life for quite some time now.  Perhaps living in Victorian-era England would be more your style.  After all, debtors prison seems like a wonderful idea.  Why in the world would you ever allow people to have a fresh start, especially after Republican policies got the economy to this point?

You're assuming that the quantum of forces that push and pull on the nation's economy distill down to the influence of a single political party. This militates against everything I've learned in law school. I would maintain that both of the two major parties share equal credit for the status quo of the economy. At the same time, a substantial amount of the pressure on the economy lies well outside the power of either party, or both parties together, to withstand. It's a global economy. But ultimately, I don't want to see either party cut loose to work its terror on the country unchecked by the other.
Title: Re: Anyone getting scared about their decision to go to law school
Post by: Anti09 on May 29, 2012, 09:11:27 AM
This conversation about how brutal the legal market is reminds me a lot of what I heard before pursuing a career in the entertainment industry. As hard as it is, the legal field is not more competitive than entertainment.  From my experience, if you cultivate your talents, work hard and know the right people, you will most likely be marketable.  Turn that frown upside down and keep hustling  ;)

Too bad the entertainment industry has nothing to do with the legal industry.  You might be able to make a comparison if you ignore the fact that a law degree puts you potentially a quarter million dollars in debt whereas the entertainment industry doesn't.

1. Entertainment industry has nothing to do with the legal industry? So all those attorneys working in entertainment, and all those 'entertainment law' journals you find in law schools do not suggest a strong connection between the two industries?

2. Pursuing a career in entertainment can put you in just as much debt, if not MORE, as a relevant program at a private undergrad can be MORE expensive than attending law school.

Lol you can't really be so dense as to ignore the difference between working in the entertainment industry and working in entertainment industry law.  You also can't be stupid enough to fail to realize that going to law school requires undergrad as a prerequisite, and therefore would incur the same amount of debt PLUS law school costs. 

Crawl back in your hole, troll.
Title: Re: Anyone getting scared about their decision to go to law school
Post by: oiuiuko on May 30, 2012, 08:32:04 PM
Anti09 - Do not insult me on this forum with name calling. You will be reported for abuse. Be frustrated not with me, but with your own failure to communicate effectively in writing. To refresh your selective memory:

You said, verbatim: "the entertainment industry has nothing to do with the legal industry." Yes, you actually wrote this.

You also said, verbatim: "a law degree puts you potentially a quarter million dollars in debt whereas the entertainment industry doesn't."  This statement is absurd at best because it implies that an education in entertainment cannot potentially put you in just as much debt as a law degree when in reality it can. Disagree with my interpretation of what you said? Read your statement again. You are taking issue not with me, but with the most basic elements of english writing and logical reasoning.  Own up to the fact that your statements were absurd and you simply got called out on it.
Title: Re: Anyone getting scared about their decision to go to law school
Post by: Anti09 on May 30, 2012, 09:09:22 PM
Anti09 - Do not insult me on this forum with name calling. You will be reported for abuse. Be frustrated not with me, but with your own failure to communicate effectively in writing. To refresh your selective memory:

You said, verbatim: "the entertainment industry has nothing to do with the legal industry." Yes, you actually wrote this.

You also said, verbatim: "a law degree puts you potentially a quarter million dollars in debt whereas the entertainment industry doesn't."  This statement is absurd at best because it implies that an education in entertainment cannot potentially put you in just as much debt as a law degree when in reality it can. Disagree with my interpretation of what you said? Read your statement again. You are taking issue not with me, but with the most basic elements of english writing and logical reasoning.  Own up to the fact that your statements were absurd and you simply got called out on it.

lol you are just darling.  On the off chance you aren't a troll, let's take this one step at a time:

1) That's not abuse lil bruh.

2) You were comparing the job opportunities of the legal industry with that of the entertainment industry.  When I pointed out the fact that they were entirely unrelated, you then chose to re-interpret my statement literally.  As in, there was no relation whatsoever between entertainment and law.  Anybody with two brain cells to rub together knows this is not the case, and based on the context it is obvious what the statement intended.

3) Do you not know how to quote people on forums?  And you can stop saying "verbatim" lol.

4) I'm still not sure how someone with "an education in entertainment" (?) can spend a quarter million dollars doing so or why that would ever be necessary.  Did they spend seven years getting a degree in Theater Tech?  I'm actually genuinely curious.

5) I'm taking issue with the basic elements of English writing?  What? ...oh, forget it, you're clearly a troll.
 
Title: Re: Anyone getting scared about their decision to go to law school
Post by: oiuiuko on May 30, 2012, 10:10:44 PM
Anti, calling someone names is abusive. Therefore calling someone a troll is abusive. Do you follow my reasoning?  I hope that's not an overload.

I "chose to re-interpret [your] statement literally."  How was I supposed to interpret it?  Was I supposed to ignore the nonsense pervading the literal context and only consider the irrational, whiny emotional undertones?

To correct you again, some people with more than 2 brain cells may in fact believe that law and entertainment have nothing to do with each other; people can be incredibly ignorant. Consequently, when I don't know you and I read your silly post for the first time, I have no reason to assume that you aren't as ignorant and/or stupid as your post reads.

The basics of writing in English stipulate that your words be intelligible when interpreted literally if you want people to understand you. Let me know if that's not clear - I'm willing to work with you on this.

Your ability to communicate effectively in writing evinces your quality as a legal practitioner and advisor to prospective students. The kids here better listen up.

I would explain to you how an education in entertainment can create a similar amount of debt, but I'm afraid that informing you will lead you to actually back up your claims in the future with evidence, instead of just shooting from the hip - something that would take away much of the 'charm' that made your original post so much fun to tear apart.   
Title: Re: Anyone getting scared about their decision to go to law school
Post by: Anti09 on May 31, 2012, 09:09:58 AM
Anti, calling someone names is abusive. Therefore calling someone a troll is abusive.

Not if it's true lil bruh.

Quote
I "chose to re-interpret [your] statement literally."  How was I supposed to interpret it?  Was I supposed to ignore the nonsense pervading the literal context and only consider the irrational, whiny emotional undertones?

To correct you again, some people with more than 2 brain cells may in fact believe that law and entertainment have nothing to do with each other; people can be incredibly ignorant. Consequently, when I don't know you and I read your silly post for the first time, I have no reason to assume that you aren't as ignorant and/or stupid as your post reads.

So you're admitting you're wrong then?  ok, good.

Quote
The basics of writing in English stipulate that your words be intelligible when interpreted literally if you want people to understand you. Let me know if that's not clear - I'm willing to work with you on this.

Your ability to communicate effectively in writing evinces your quality as a legal practitioner and advisor to prospective students. The kids here better listen up.

TL;DR: blah blah, nonsense.

Quote
I would explain to you how an education in entertainment can create a similar amount of debt, but I'm afraid that informing you will lead you to actually back up your claims in the future with evidence, instead of just shooting from the hip - something that would take away much of the 'charm' that made your original post so much fun to tear apart.

So again, you're admitting that you're wrong?  Sweet.  Feel free to, you know, throw in an actual argument anytime.
Title: Re: Anyone getting scared about their decision to go to law school
Post by: oiuiuko on May 31, 2012, 11:35:17 AM
Anti - Once again, you're writing nonsense.  It seems english isn't your 1st language. You never passed the bar, did you?