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Messages - CJScalia

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Nothing wrong in the above answers, so I'll just add to it, the general trend is that out of 10 associates, 1 reach partnership. That's not necessarily because the other 9 fail or get fired though, it's more often (ignoring the current recession) a matter of people finding out that it just isn't worth it, and wanting other things in life.

Most law firms (again, pre-recession) do not require you to stay on partnership track. If you'd prefer doing 1700 billable hours in a year and understanding that means you won't reach partnership, that's fine.

More commonly, we see lawyers branching off from BigLaw to in-house counsel at corporations, taking up positions at smaller firm with a less rigorous requirements etc, going into solo practice etc.

Personally, I spent both 1L and 2L summers at a NYC BigLaw firm, and ended up making the decision not to go there when I graduate this summer. I'd rather put in slightly less hours, be slightly less of my boss's biatch, and be able to do slightly more of my non-professional interests. Thus, I'm going to a smaller firm.

Do understand that slightly less actually means slightly less. You can pretty much forget about a 40 hour week even at a smaller firm if you have ambitions of making partnership. On the other hand, this varies a lot from firm to firm.

At the end of the day, if your priority is on having a manageable work week, lots of time for other activities etc, solo practice is really the place to go. Obviously, at a solo practice you have the caveat of "what you kill is what you eat". So sure, nobody is stopping you from going home at 4, it just cuts into your pay check.

Best of luck wherever you go.

I'm not sure how the two are different.

Any paper you write, whether it's in English, History or Law, is going to be either a response supporting a statement or a response discrediting a statement.

If it's the routine-part of writing you don't like, then yes, being a lawyer has a whole lot of that.

I'm not really catching the difference you're drawing though, so whether or not this is helpful to you I don't know.

(a) Patent-related courses/externships: Cardozo has more patent-related courses (e.g., "Patent Claim Construction") that will be directly applicable to my job, (supposedly) allowing me to 'hit the ground running.'  Furthermore, Cardozo also has externships that are specifically IP-related while Hastings does not (I think).


(b) Quality of teaching:  I have read complaint(s) about the quality of teaching at Cardozo (but no such gripes for Hastings).  I have also read that the turn-over rate for Cardozo professors is relatively high -- teachers don't stick around for long.  (I don't remember if I had read all this in a single post on some discussion forum.)

I have not heard any such complaints from the people I know at Cardozo. Mind you, I don't study there myself, so this is hearsay, but I'm at another NYC school, so I know a few people at 'dozo. Generally speaking, they seem satisfied with their profs. There's always going to be exceptions, there's people unhappy with some profs at Yale, Stanford and Cooley too.
(c) Class selection:  Hastings has a lottery system for enrollment in upper-division elective classes so students may be limited in their course selection.  I don't think Cardozo has this problem.  Furthermore, Cardozo has some really interesting classes such as "Philosophical Foundations of the Common Law" and "European Legal Theory" which are very tempting (but perhaps are only irrelevant distractions).

First of all, once in law school, you're going to be picking classes on three criterias. 1) The professor is a generous grader 2) The subject matter is going to be on the bar exam and 3) I'm actually interested in learning about this stuff.

And yes, that's a ranked list.

(d) J.D./L.L.M. joint degree:  Cardozo allows students to complete their JD and LLM in IP law in seven semesters.  There are certainly conflicting opinions about the actual value of LLM degrees.  However, having the opportunity to earn another degree while possibly waiting for the economy to more fully recover is not a bad plan.

There is no conflicting opinions on the value of LLM degrees. Their value is 0.

Exception granted if it's a tax LLM from NYU or Georgetown. The rest of them are all equally worthless.

(a) Alumni network: Hastings' alumni network in the SF bay area is extensive.  Cardozo's alumni network is smaller since it is a relatively new law school.

Then again, Cardozo is in the largest city in the country. By and large, I wouldn't put much thought into this.

Very few people I know actually got employed thanks to their alumni network, I really wouldn't put much weight to this.

(b) Class-standing:  All things being equal, I will most likely achieve a higher class-standing at Cardozo.  However, I read that Cardozo groups all their scholarship-winners together into the same sections(s) to increase competition (and possibly save money on grade-contingent scholarship awards).

Why would you assume that?
I'll give every "0L" this advice when thinking about law school. Do not assume anything about your law school GPA. I don't care if you're 180/4.0 when starting law school, this is a different beast. You have literally no idea how your success (or lack thereof) in law school is going to be.

I will say this much, being a diligent and effective student will most likely assure you in the top half of the class. Where in that top half you will end up, you will have absolutely no idea until first semester grades are in.

Are there any considerations I have missed?  How would you decide?
Any suggestions, advice, or comments very much appreciated.   
Thank you.

Yeah, it's easy. Do you want to be in Cali, or do you want to be in NYC? Both schools are regional, and at the end of the day that's what it comes down to.

Also, take a word of advice from my Patent law professor. "DO! NOT! TAKE! THE! PATENT! BAR!". His words, not mine.

If you want to be in NYC, then Cardozo for sure.

You'll be better off at Cardozo than Fordham PT as well, so I'd just tell them to GTFO right away.

Welcome to the Big Apple, young padawan.

Choosing the Right Law School / Re: CUNY vs Brooklyn/Cardozo $$
« on: March 19, 2010, 12:35:08 AM »
What are the ranking requirements at Dozo/BLS?

Me, personally, I'd feel comfortable with a limit to be in the top half of a class, because that's sort of within your own control. If you work diligently, you will be in the top half of the class. If their requirements are more like top 25% or top 10%, I'd be much more cautious.

Everyone going into law school are dead certain they'll be top 10% of their class. Generally speaking, they won't. And as far as I know after 3 years in law school, I can't give you any formula for predicting how well you'll do.

So, to summarize.

If you need top 50% to keep scholarship; Cardozo
If you need something higher than 33% to keep scholarship; CUNY

Just to add my 2 cents to this conversation; I don't believe in luck at all as a factor when it comes to grading. Maybe this is only applicable to my school, but through 5 semesters so far every single grade I've gotten has been spot on how I judged my own performance on the respective finals.

Choosing the Right Law School / Re: Brooklyn law vs. st johns
« on: March 03, 2010, 06:32:59 PM »
Don't choose on rank. Visit the schools, each law school has its own vibe. You might discover one feels a lot better to you than the other. Do a little research on their clinical programs or their concentrations. Look at their faculty and see if they are doing research that interests you. 

Yeah, this is great advice, if you do not care the least about getting a job post graduation.

That being said, the schools are fairly evenly matched. Brooklyn is undoubtedly ahead of St Johns though.

Saying that competition for jobs is high, at this point in time, is probably the understatement of the century. Competitions for jobs are high at schools like Georgetown; at schools like NYLS and Pae they're virtually non-existent at the moment.

That might change by the time current applicants are graduating of course, but yeah, going to a high-cost-low-rank school isn't a good choice at this time. Go for something a bit more local and/or budget friendly.

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