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Messages - TTom
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« on: February 07, 2009, 10:09:43 AM »
Thanks. Is it entirely inappropriate to ask the interviewer what starting attorney salary is, at a law clerk interview? I already have another route I was planning on taking (Be a PD then do private criminal defense), and if this is going to pay me the same as I would make as a PD, I don't think I would do this.
If you want to go into criminal law, why in the world would you take a job doing foreclosures? Even if it paid 10-20k more a year, why would you go into a field you're not interested in? Are you looking to work in an area where you'll be happy? Or you'll just make the most money? If it's just money, you shouldn't have gone to law school.
« on: February 06, 2009, 10:50:26 PM »
And your last point is dead-on. But that isn't fair to the consumer. I mean, USNWR, to which the article seemed to primarily refer, purports to do all it can in the name of consumer protection. Yet, the irony is that it harms the consumer. If I were a Martian (which my friends are not convinced I am not), I would think Thomas Jefferson School of Law and some of these other schools were just lousy. But I sat in on a TJSL class and loved it. Do BAR passage rates indicate quality? To a degree. But external factors affect BAR passage. For just one example, could it be that the typical TJSL student is taking the BAR without a job offer in-hand, and, thus, has far less enthusiasm for the exam? $160K + $20K+ in bonuses (with full benefits, profit sharing, $300 car allowance and Lakers' tix) is a heck of a motivator for a 25 y/o. And if you don't have it...
So the self-fulfilling prophesy arg. goes a long ways, and in many directions. I mean, TJSL begins w/lower numbered students and low job prospects and it's self perpetuating. But the quality of the education might actually be great.
So people from ttt and tttt schools pass the bar at such a low rate because they don't have 160k jobs waiting for them? Really? Most tier 1 students don't have 160k jobs waiting for them, much less 100k, and they seem to be passing the bar fine.
Let me take a shot in the dark: you go to a lowly ranked school. You barely cracked 150 (or did you?) on the LSAT but told yourself that you were just as smart as all those Harvard kids, that standardized tests were just a crock. Now, to make yourself feel better, you post threads about how USNews is a crock too.
Maybe the education at Thomas Jefferson is just as good as the education at a tier 1. I don't know. It doesn't matter. The professors at Harvard could be worse than the professor's at Thomas Jefferson, and Harvard would still produce better lawyers. If you're not that bright going in to a school like TJ, you're not going to come out any brighter.
« on: February 06, 2009, 06:13:39 PM »
Wondering if anybody had some advice for me. I've been awarded a full tuition scholarship to the University of St Thomas MN and I've been awarded a $60,000 scholarship to DePaul College of Law. DePaul would be my first choice but their scholarship would be broken down to 20K every year not to mention the costs of living expenses ($38K est) so I would definately have to pull hard on whatever loan money I could scratch up. That means that I would be deep in dept by the time I graduated. The St. Thomas offer is better because of the full tuition thing and I do have 14 months of GI Bill money left over from my undergrad days. Basically, I want to know your opinion on whether I should go with the full tuition Tier 3 school or should I opt for the Tier 1 school and the dept. Also, does anybody think that I might have room to scholarship negotiate with DePaul?
There are a million questions you'd want to answer before deciding, such as Where do you want to work? The Twin Cities or Chicago? Both of these schools are very regional and tend not to place outside of their region. But... let's be honest: Job prospects coming from St. Thomas are not going to be good. The pro is that you'll end up with a law degree on the cheap. The con is that you'll end up with a cheap law degree. In this market, I don't believe any ttt/tttt is worth going to. Even with a tt degree from DePaul you're going to have a tough time (especially outside of Chicago).
« on: February 04, 2009, 11:32:53 AM »
That is all.
« on: February 04, 2009, 11:31:57 AM »
Case in point: people who wreck their health and impose part of their medical costs on the rest of us.
Is this supposed to be provocative?
« on: February 04, 2009, 11:28:21 AM »
there is a forum dedicated to distant learning LLB degrees, www.externalaw.com it is a free and non-commercial community.
As a distant learner I think it is important to specifically take care of this issue.
I'll bite. What is an external law student?
« on: January 31, 2009, 01:00:53 PM »
I'm glad someone brought this topic up. I have been amazed at how little my classmates seem to notice or care about the economy right now. When I talk about how important grades will be for OCI in this economy, people look at me like I'm crazy and say something like "oh we're at a top 25 school, we'll be fine. as long was we get at least B's we'll get a good job". Tons of people I know here haven't even submitted a single resume or cover letter anywhere. It's ridiculous. I can't believe the lack of panic. I'm freaking out. But that may just be me
I think your classmates are oblivious to reality. Although I only go to a tt, I'd say only 25% of my 2L class has paying jobs lined up for next summer. Law is not what it used to be, especially in this economy.
ps The good news is that your self-assured (smug?) cohorts will be way behind the curve when it comes to getting employment.
« on: January 30, 2009, 12:01:01 AM »
I'll try to give as much info in as short amount of space. I'm a 1L, top %30 at a second tier law school. I have a pretty good resume, which I think is helping me. Anyways, I was granted and interview and ultimately accepted a judicial internship with a federal district judge. Today, before I withdrew any "applications," I received a letter in the mail offering me a judicial internship with a federal magistrate judge (for the second half of the summer).
I realize that by taking the judicial internship, I will qualify for financial aid, but will not make any money. I originally hoped to work for a court half the summer, and a firm half the summer (partly for experience, partly for money). However, I received the offer and now I'm not certain of what to do! I have already worked at a small law firm (as a paralegal), and although ONE firm still hasn't rejected me following their "reception," I don't have the greatest chance of BIGLAW. Should I accept the judicial internship with the magistrate judge, in addition to the district judge internship, or start sending out more resumes to medium sized firms and hope for a paying job? Is two judicial internships not as valuable as a judicial internship/firm experience? What about judicial internship (magistrate) v. non-profit?
As for following graduation, I have no clue what I would like to do.
Thanks so much!
I'm not understanding your situation. Would you only be clerking for the district judge for the first half of the summer? Regardless, turning down an offer after you have accepted is bad form. The legal community is smaller than you think. I wouldn't do it. Truth is, you shouldn't have accepted it when you still had offers outstanding that you were interested in.
As for the magistrate judge, what's the lure?
« on: January 29, 2009, 12:35:10 PM »
am I in trouble w/ biglaw prospects? or do I just have a perspective problem and am feeling screwed for no good reason?
I'm always amazed at how freaked out people get. I go to a tier 2 school and every engineer I know (including those in the middle of the class) has landed a summer associate position paying top of the market.
« on: January 29, 2009, 09:35:11 AM »
So before the big downturn in the legal market hit, I had a number of callbacks with national biglaw firms. Apparently I picked (or was picked) by all the ones that were downsizing and so in retrospect it wasn't so bad that I didn't get an offer. I did get an offer from a corporate in-house summer associate position with a substantial likelihood of employment after graduation in a northeast metro. I've been just researching firms and also in-house positions and I've noticed that many of them require "firm experience" for consideration. Will going straight in-house hurt my chances of advancement elsewhere? For example, would it hurt me later on when I apply for a biglaw job again or when I apply for another in house position? The thing is is that after I accepted the in-house offer I got another summer offer from a midlaw firm and turned it down. Looking back, I am not really sure that was the best course to take. Thanks.
My understanding is that the reason in-house positions usually require firm experience is that they don't want to train you. That's a cost they'd rather let firms pay for them. They know that when associates are fed up with firm life they'll seek jobs in-house. It makes sense. In a corporation an in-house attorney is nothing but overhead; you're never going to generate revenue by developing a book of clients.
So it used to be that people would start at firms, all the while trying to move in-house. I've heard from professors, however, that in-house isn't quite what it used to be. Still, it's probably better than big firm life and I know some Fortune 500s that pay better than market in their region. (By market, I mean what the top firm in that region is paying.)
I wish to amend my response to state that as law students we probably aren't the best people to ask about career paths. Perhaps ask your career services department for contact information for graduates working in-house. They will be much better informed.
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