Law School Discussion

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Messages - SwampFox

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41
I am 28 and have 3 yrs of police experience and 6 yrs corrections. I am currently a soph at Sam Houston State University and major in Criminal Justice with a 3.2 GPA. The have classes there that helps "pre law" students in preparing them for law school. My question is by the time I get my undergrad and apply for law school, I will probably 32, what scholarships will be available for someone my age? What classes should my electives be to better help my prepare law school. How will my previous experience help my? Thanks and God Speed!
If you do find a scholarship for non-traditional students, it'll be the first one I've ever heard of.  Lord knows there are scholarships for every other demographic, hobby, or personality tick.

42
(though it looks like your a KY boy, already, so you know about that).
Sorry about that...I clicked on the wrong person's profile.

43
Where should I go next fall? / Re: Albany ($$$) vs. Seattle U. ($)
« on: April 28, 2009, 08:49:10 PM »
I know a couple of Albany grads very well, and neither one had an easy time finding work, even a couple of years before the recession started.  They both graduated with good class ranks, too.

44
Notre Dame
WUSTL
UC Hastings
George Washington
Georgetown


At the risk of asking a silly question, is there something wrong with concentrating on getting into the good, but slightly-less-prestigious schools?  You might not get into any of these, but there are plenty of lower Tier 1 and Tier 2's that would happily take someone with a 171 LSAT, low grades or not.  Not all, but certainly enough to make it worth your time to try.  At the risk of sounding pessimistic, *somebody* gets into these schools each year, but the odds are stacked high the other way.  These schools reject plenty of folks with GOOD grades; even with extra classes and super recommendations, it's a longshot.  I know there's no rule against applying to schools all over the ranking map, but maybe the original poster might make better use of time and application money (and experience less frustration) trying for a less ambitious goal.

45
Law School Applications / Re: Low GPA- 2.2
« on: April 28, 2009, 08:29:27 PM »
Agreed.

46
There are very few bad parts of town, but one of them is unfortunately not too far from the university.  A few questions:
1) How close do you want to live?  Within walking distance, a couple of miles away (bike ride), a fifteen minute drive?
2) What kind of place do you want to live in?  Rented house?  Cheap old apartment?  House converted to apt.?  Well-furnished complex?
3) What kind of part of town do you like?  Right near campus?  Near lots of shopping & entertainment?  Downtown?  "Bohemian?"  Rural area?
Pretty much anywhere in town is cheap, compared to big cities (though it looks like your a KY boy, already, so you know about that).

47
Reviews, Visits, and Rankings / Re: New US News Rankings...
« on: April 24, 2009, 08:40:01 PM »

Maybe it's just me.  Maybe I just live in my own delusional little world.


No, I'm with you, too.  The overarching importance of these rankings is treated like holy dogma at this site.  It's repeated ad nauseum.  Realistically, how many people here who preach the word of rankings have any substantial knowledge of this?  Given that most everyone here is either a law student or a soon-to-be law student, how can any of them have experience hiring someone?  Even people who have been interviewed cannot know how much their education plays into the decision.  This discussion with an actual recruiter is the first I have heard anyone offer any real proof.
I personally am skeptical of the rankings' importance in getting hired as 1) it does not jive at all with my experience in other fields, and 2) the handful of attorneys I have spoken with on this say it really hasn't mattered.
Is there some statistical evidence that being, say, attending #42 in the rankings is so much better in pay and hot jobs than #59?

48
For the last few years, I have interviewed quite a lot of people for jobs (both by myself and with others). I would argue that the prestige of the school was, in fact, the LEAST important criterion on the resume, and a resume only gets you in the door for an interview.  Hiring lawyers might be different than hiring people with just a bachelor's or master's degree, but I don't think someone's school was even the most important aspect of education we looked at; I think how tough your major was (did you study physics or sociology?) and your GPA were more important.  Why?  The world is full of people who, for perfectly valid reasons, choose a less-prestigious school and are perfectly competent at what they do.  I won't say that an Ivy-league education doesn't look impressive, but I'd still interview the guy from Virginia Tech if he's qualified just the same.
More importantly, your resume just gets you an interview; the interview is really what matters for getting the job.  In fact, I don't ever remember a case where the prestige of the school was even considered in the final decision.
I'm sure someone will rabidly dispute this all day, but this is honestly the way things work in most lines of work.

49
That wasn't a bad article but to some extent it was fear mongering. I'm a finance major and I've crunched  numbers to figure out what kind of return I should expect on a legal education using a 40 year working life, lost wages of 35-60k for 3 years, and a 7 percent interest rate. The amount is actually only 13-15k more per year. Before you start writing me angry comments let me explain something that doesn't mean that law school is a good investment if you can make 13-15k more per year with a JD. What it means is that from an investors standpoint you would actually be neutral about law school if you could get that return and be in favor of it if you could get more. Of course, I realize that traditional investment models have their limitations when evaluating something like an education because of the time and lifestyle investment. Still though I think that if you want to be a lawyer the actual amount of return you should be expecting from your law school investment isn't anywhere near as staggering as you might think.

Agreed. The problem with many of people's fears is that they are the result of people thinking "job". That has to stop. Lawyers are the leaders in this society and should continue to be. The world is changing fast, and, as was the case with the 1990's, those who fail to create will be left behind, figuratively and literally. Lawyers are suited for many careers, and legal knowledge is highly portable, geographically and professionally. Newly graduated JD's should expect nothing but what they left undergrad with, an education. If people prepare to graduate without a job but ready to hit the ground running, they presumably develop a backup plan, or, heck, the law job becomes the backup plan, and any law job offer becomes a nice surprize rather than a breath of relief.

I want to be an entertainment lawyer, but I also want to start a magazine, write films and continue to act. I will put my degrees to work, along WITH my JD. If others would think the same way, they would feel much butter about their futures. I am one who truly does not give a FF whether I get recruited or not. I'll make something happen. A law graduate from Loyola, CA started DADA Tennis Shoes, and she hasn't looked back since. Hill Harper graduated from Harvard Law, but became a Hollywood actor...and a multi-millionaire! Folks, use what you have...ALL of what you have.

Try looking at this blog and its responses:

http://www.calicocat.com/2004/08/law-school-big-lie.html

I do disagree with what the writer says about the portability of law jobs. As stated above, I think a law degree is damn valuable.

I'm going to have to disagree.  Yes, technically, law students are receiving an education...to get a job in a specific field.  If I can't realistically get one of those jobs after spending three years of my life and tens of thousands of dollars, why am I doing it?  If you want "lifetime enrichment," read some books in your spare time; you don't need a law degree to do that.  Yes, some people go to law school and then succeed in something else...but the lesson to be drawn shouldn't be "Wow!  I could go to law school and do something totally unrelated and glamorous!"  Rather, it should be "Why did these people waste three years and a small fortune in law school when they really wanted to do something else?"  If you want to be an actor, go to acting school, or get a job at Paramount, or wash cars in Beverly Hills, but don't go to law school.
Yes, a law degree is very valuable...to practice law.

50
General board for soon-to-be 1Ls / Re: Pre Law School Job
« on: April 18, 2009, 10:04:45 PM »
Were you required to pass the patent bar (and if not, why not)?  I can't find the PDF presently, but I feel pretty certain that the patent bar required a hard science degree.

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