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Messages - bigs5068
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« on: August 28, 2015, 01:10:05 PM »
Years ago I used to post on this board prior to making my law school decision and during law school and just thought an update would be nice.
I am writing this for anyone scared or uncertain about law school and to give an honest first hand account of my experience.
The post below was made after my 1L grades were released and I was satisfied then and am satisfied years later.
I finished in the top quarter of my class and a little better than that not top 10% and not outside of the top 20% so if anyone cares they can make a guess, I was involved in mock-trial, on a journal, etc.
The day after graduation I did not have a job offer, because like everyone else I had to study for the bar exam. Firms, etc were interested, but they all said let us know what happens with the bar.
I took the bar and passed first time, but it was terrifying the day after I got my results I was offered 3 jobs none of, which made me a millionaire overnight and I actually accepted the lower paying one, because it was something I wanted to do. After a few years I changed jobs to make a bit more money, which was not that hard to do, but I had to work for it. I certainly felt scared that I would fail the bar, never get a job, etc during law school and the bar exam. I was also lucky to get a job right after results were released several of my friends did not get offers for a few more months.
The point of this is to give a brief and honest opinion about attending GGU or any other law school. I was clearly an above average student at GGU, which is a marginal ABA school reputation wise at best. However, the professors, programs, etc were great and I loved the experience. I would choose GGU again if I had to, but I know there were some disappointed students.
I was a solid student, but I did not have a job at graduation and neither did the majority of my friends at Hastings or USF, but as far as I know everyone that took the bar and passed has gone on to obtain legal employment, but it was not easy.
So to anyone reading about GGU or considering attending any school that is not Harvard you can get a job as a lawyer they exist, but GGU or these other schools will not pass the bar for you or result in employers saying wow he was the 38th best student at X school, we need to find a way to hire him/her. That will not happen either.
In summary use common sense when applying to law school. I feel the amount of misinformation regarding law school is overwhelming, but common sense goes a long way.
GGU and schools of its elk do not guarantee success or failure.
« on: November 23, 2011, 06:38:58 PM »
Numerous Articles about how Nurses, MBA's, Architects can't find jobs. Two second google search type in Profession X no jobs and you will see a slew of articles.
Nurses Can't find Job Articles.
2)http://nursingcrib.com/news-blog/why-graduates-cant-get-a-job/MBA's cant find jobs
2) http://www.businessweek.com/bschools/content/oct2009/bs20091029_862211.htmArchitects Can't find jobs
This is just an article about every recent grad between 22-26 unable to find work http://www.businessweek.com/magazine/content/09_42/b4151032038302.htm
So no it is not just law schools it is everything. The job market is hard and it always has been, but now everybody can click on google and find someone else to complain with them. Starting a career is terrifying and no form of education trains you how to be a professional as soon as you graduate just the way it is.
As for expense look the tuition at these places is the same as law school
Undergraduate tuition for enginneering from USC a reputable school 21,000 per semester x 8 semesters= 168,000 in tuition alone. http://www.usc.edu/academics/classes/term_20113/tuition_and_fees.html
Engineering is expensive and there is no guarantee of a job there.
Nursing at University of Pacfici decent school in California 17k per semester http://www.pacific.edu/Campus-Life/Student-Services/Student-Accounts/Stockton-Tuition-and-Fees.html
So 34k per year right on part with law school tuition.
I agree with most of what your saying, but my point is law school is not much different than anything else. Education is expensive, it does not guarantee you a job, if you go to Harvard, Yale, Stanford for anything you will have more doors open to you.
Or maybe your right and law school is the only thing that is expensive and jobs can't be found. I have a lot of non-lawyer friends who say the same thing about their degree, but maybe they are just complaining and law students are the only ones that really have it tough.
« on: November 23, 2011, 04:13:18 PM »
Finding a job always has been and always will be hard. This does not apply to law school alone. http://news.yahoo.com/photos/millions-of-workers-zero-jobs-1322006105-slideshow/;_ylt=AlAuRM6pvV2RSGBEpSirbebNt.d_;_ylu=X3oDMTRkcWFsNzQ1BG1pdANQb2xpdGljcyBGZWF0dXJlZCBMZWZ0IFJhaWwEcGtnA2RkZDNhNzlhLWJkMTUtMzhlZC05OTFiLWY4NzVkNzAyYjI0NQRwb3MDMwRzZWMDTWVkaWFGZWF0dXJlZExpc3QEdmVyA2QzNGRjZDE4LTE1NjUtMTFlMS1iMTE4LTNiN2JhMzAxNGFhYg--;_ylg=X3oDMTNoYXVxYXFkBGludGwDdXMEbGFuZwNlbi11cwRwc3RhaWQDODY2NGFhOGMtMDljMS0zODY3LWFjYjItYjczNjg3NzI4NDkzBHBzdGNhdANwb2xpdGljc3xkZXN0aW5hdGlvbjIwMTIEcHQDc3RvcnlwYWdlBHRlc3QD;_ylv=3
Just some photos, but it was on Yahoo first page. It sucks to find a job whether your an architect, nurse, pilot, lawyer, cop, firefighter, it is freaking hard. Going to architecture school, flight school, nursing school none of it is cheap. Don't choose your profession based on the "supposed" money your going to make, because odds you will struggle choose the profession you will enjoy. I guarantee you at some point in your life you will get a job. Then you likely never post on lawschooldiscussion again. The economy is not great for lawyers or anybody right now, but this is the not first time there has been an economic downturn. Money will be around again then s*** will hit the fan again. I am sure both of you will be literally be shocked and the world would be if by the year 2021 you have not worked a single day. It sucks and I know for a fact I will be in the same situation in a few months if I pass the bar.
I know one person that failed the bar 3 times. They found a job in the meantime and finally passed, but it was a long hard road. Be thankful you have passed the bar it is a big accomplishment and you are a lot better off than many people that didn't pass. Have patience and I would be bet a lot of money that in 10 years you will have at least worked one day in a legal job. Hopefully I am right and I agree with a lot of your points law school is a long, expensive, and difficult road with no guarantee of a job at the end of it. If you go to law school expecting anything to be handed to go to school for anything then you will be waiting around for a long time. Finding a job sucks.
I really think law schools or any school should make you earn how much your borrowing before they let you enroll in school. I don't know how many undergrad-straight to law school or some other grad school I have met and things do not work out for awhile. School is nothing like the real world and you should have to work at least a year or two before going into any form of grad school. I would strongly agree if they imposed that requirement on incoming students.
« on: November 22, 2011, 04:52:24 PM »
Agree with pretty much everything you said, but I always ask what educational institution isn't a money maker. This is not law school alone, but nurses, pilots, cops, teachers, and so on have a very difficult time starting their career. Lawyers are not alone in.
Schools also misreport their information good old puffery, but if you read between the lines of any school you can see that many of there students did not report. They could do a better job disclosing for sure, but if you look at almost any schools stats you will see that many didn't report. lawschooltransparency.com does a good job of reporting the real fact.
Your point also goes to show the ridiculousness of U.S. News you graduated from a Top 50 school and many law students think it really means something, but U.S. is News is nothing more than a for private magazine offering complete B.S. and your top 50 school could easily be 80th in a year or so. Their formula makes absolutely no sense and is based on people across the country filling out scantrons numbering between 1-5. As a result of this absurd magainze and formula like the current 11 way tie for 84th place. http://grad-schools.usnews.rankingsandreviews.com/best-graduate-schools/top-law-schools/law-rankings/page+4
(Direct from U.S. News)
To my main point I would wait a few years before saying law school is the worst mistake of your life. Education is a long-term investment and it almost never pays off right away. Many people have posted on this board and others saying your exact sentiment only to later find a job.
I will also tell you a recent story. I play on a Bar League basketball team and I go out with the lawyers afterwards and they all tell me the same story and they went to schools ranging from T14 to Tier 4. They all say it sucked to start out they were taking odd jobs to make money and so on, but they eventually got in the field and are doing well everyone one of them, but it was a huge struggle. Although one guy did go to the 2L summer associate job full time offer at graduation and the person was not a T14 grad.
However, I totally get the fear of finding that first job, bills coming in, uncertainty, all of it, but this does not apply to law school alone it applies to almost every profession out there. With that being said I'm willing to bet in 3 years you will sing a different tune. Remember how long 3 years is you were in your first day of law school then and as you know a lot can change in three years. . So before saying it the absolute worst thing that ever happened give it some time. I am willing to bet things will turn around for you. Well good luck and for everyone's sake I hope I am right.
« on: November 22, 2011, 02:52:59 PM »
Yea I suppose cost of living is really high though. So that is one of the major drawbacks to going to school in the Bay Area or any major market like NYC, DC and so on. The debt grows real fast and even if you get a job cost of living is not cheap. I have a huge scholarship at my school and my debt from cost of living just for rent and so on it pretty damn high.
There are some cheaper state schools if you can establish residency in them. I remember really considering Florida International University. It is only 10k a year or something and in Miami, which isn't as expensive and if you want warmer weather well that is a good place to go.
I have loved my law school experience so far and I was pretty cautious with money and so on, but could have done some things differently regarding educational cost and so on. I looked my bill and 100k in debt would be 180k if not for the scholarships and that is a LOT of money especially considering it will be growing at 8% interest, which is 8k a year in interest alone. Big numbers a little intimidating and it is going to suck to pay back, but again glad I choose the path I have enjoyed pretty much everything about law school.
I think some of the schools you had listed like Texas Tech is only 15k per yer for tuition and 13k for living expenses so 28K.
Santa Clara 38K tuition 21K cost of living so 59K per year.
By the time you are done you would have 86k in debt from Tech or 180k from Santa Clara. Then the interest accumulations on 180k v 86k is significant.
However, if the Bay Area is where you want to be then by all means come to Santa Clara, but if you really don't have a geographic preference then look at costs. The most important things when choosing a school are Cost & Location.
If you know where you want to end living or at least think you have a strong idea then go to school in that region. On the flip side if you could not possibly see yourself living in Texas then don't go to Texas Tech. 3 years is a long time to spend somewhere and odds are you will end up living where you go to school. I know there are exceptions, but the majority of people stay where they started. Often you will get a girlfriend/boyfriend while at school, makefriends, all that stuff you build over three years and it will hard to leave. So choose your location carefully because odds are that is where you will end up living for a long time.
Then of course cost as you can see the difference between Tech and Santa Clara 100k in savings is significant especially when you calculate the interest that applies. Kind of a long rant, but it is important to really consider all these things.
When I was applying I was applying all over the country not really thinking about location, cost, and so on. I thankfully made the right choice based on where I wanted to live, but I almost went far far away and I continually think of what a big mistake that would have been. Three years of law school is a long long time and it is a life changing experience for better or worse and living in a city your happy with is very important. Anyways, I will stop my likely incoherent rant here. Good luck on your applications and so on.
« on: November 21, 2011, 10:52:18 PM »
I'm familiar with Santa Clara and San Jose. None of the other ones you listed. Santa Clara is a fine school and San Jose is a nice city the 10th largest in America, which is very surprising, but true. You are only an hour away from San Francisco as well so if you wanted see the city it would be easy to do.
Santa Clara has a pretty good reputation in the Bay Area, but the Bay Area is one of the most competitive places in America. Like Boston or New York. Santa Clara is probably the 4th / 5th most highly regarded school in the Bay Area and you will be competition with 9 law schools. Stanford, Berkeley, Hastings, USF, Santa Clara, Golden Gate and the CBA schools JFK, San Francisco, and then UC Davis and McGeorge are not far away.
San Jose is a nice town though it is perfect weather almost year round and Santa Clara is nice I have nothing bad to say about it. It is a Jesuit school and that is kind of present there, but that might be a result of the few people I know there being Jesuit to begin with so they probably bring up more than the normal students there.
Anyways, Santa Clara gets a thumbs up for me, but it is expensive and finding a job will be difficult, but it can be done.
« on: November 19, 2011, 02:49:34 PM »
If you have really have no standards about where to live and work then I would say establish residency in South or North Dakota then go to school there. I believe it is under 10k per year for tuition and the cost of living is minimal. You could get an ABA degree for under 50k and the South Dakota is allegedly one of the easiest to bars pass. Every JAG person I interviewed with said they just took the South Dakota Bar because all you need for JAG is to be licensed in one state. It is just 150 MC questions (I think) and your good to go. If you want a cheap law school degree, bar passage, etc then the Dakotas are the place to go. They are ABA approved schools and like any other ABA school they will teach you the law. North Dakota or South Dakota or not Harvard, but there are certainly on par with a majority of other schools that are far more expensive.
« on: November 15, 2011, 02:15:05 AM »
Your right doing well in school and passing the bar doesn't guarantee you anything. Getting a job as a lawyer is more competitive than ever, but then again I ask what professions isn't competitive. What form of education is cheap? Making it in life is difficult and school is not the real world. Getting A's in architecture school won't guarantee you a building contract or make your buildings up to code. To get a building contract you will compete with possibly hundreds of other firms and even if you get the contract you will have to bust your ass to get the job done. If you screw up the project then a bunch of lawyers will fight eachother so they can represent the architect. The real world is far more competitive than school. In school your paying to be there in the real world you have to bring value or your gone end of story.
That is why school is the first baby step into any profession. Doing well in school does not mean your going to succeed in your career even if you went to Harvard. Life is hard no matter what field your in and law is no different. Don't go to law school if you expect anything to be handed to you. It is very possible you will study for 3 years pass the bar and struggle to find a job. That is the reality of it, but that is the same for anything out there. However, odds are in time you will find a job after 100's if not thousands of rejections, but someone will give you a shot. Then you have to make the best of the shot your given and if your not getting sh** done you will be back on the streets no matter what school you went to or what your class rank was.
« on: November 11, 2011, 04:03:32 PM »
I would consider the location first and foremost. If you want to be in Phoneix then go to Phoneix, Charlotte go to Charlotte, Michigan-Cooley.
Secondly what are the terms on these scholarship offers? Most schools if not all schools that offer merit based scholarships require you to maintain a 3.0 or maintain some percetnage in the class. Most 0L's presume they will get a 3.0 or be in the top 35%, because they are special, but everyone at any ABA school is smart and hardworking and on the first day of school 100% of students think they will be in the top 10%, but 90% are wrong. This also goes to the 3.0 requirement, which almost every student at an ABA school thinks they will get. However, law school grading is NOTHING like undergrad. Usually only 35% of first year law studetns can have a 3.0 or higher based on the curve. Even if everyone does an amazing job only 35% can have a 3.0. So there is a 65% chance in that situation you will lose your scholarship nothing personal just the reality of it. So check the conditions on the scholarship that makes a HUGE difference. It can save you 20-30k which is a lot of money.
Another thing to consider is going to a state school that offers way lower tuition. A school like Florida International University is WAY cheaper than any of those schools mentioned only 12k a year so even without a scholarship you are paying way less. If you really want to save you can go to North Dakota or South Dakota I believe it is only 6-7k and cost of living is minimal so you could get out debt free and I woudl say Cooley, Florida Coastal, and the schools you have listed are on par with North Dakota, South Dakota, Florida International Unviersity, and CUNY in New York is a very cheap school as well. They are all ABA approved and you basically are getting the same thing, but you can get it MUCH cheaper from a state school and looking at your selections it doesn't seem like you have any geographic limitations.
Hopefully that is somewhat helpful.
« on: November 07, 2011, 10:47:10 PM »
Where is 61% coming from? According to LSAC their bar passage was 96% http://www.lsac.org/LSACResources/Publications/2011OG/aba4127.pdf
That doesn't mean Phoenix is a great school or bad school. Whether someone passes the bar or not is largely up to the individual.
Berkeley had an 87% bar passage rate last year. 28 Berkeley grads failed the bar first time around does that make Berkeley a bad school? No it doesn't those people probably didn't do the requisite studying and will likely pass the second time around. Michelle Obama a Harvard Grad failed the bar the first time around and Harvard is not a bad school. She is not doing to bad for herself either despite failing. The Bar is something you need to start a legal career, but there are plenty of atrocious licensed attorneys that passed the first time. There are also many great lawyers and judges that failed first and even second time around.
If you attend Phoneix or any ABA school odds are you will pass the bar. Passing the bar does not mean you will get a job and that is a whole other struggle. Even if you get a job you will need to perform and perform well to keep it. Law is a competitive profession and no matter where you go it is a long road. It certainly helps to go to Harvard, Yale etc, but 99% of the population can't get into the Ivy League. Going to a non-elite school you will have an uphill battle ahead of you, but it is a winnable battle if your willing to put the time and effort in.
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