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Messages - FalconJimmy

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621
However, I am not sure there is a huge demand for M.B.A's, Doctors, Nurses, Teachers, Cops, I honestly am not aware of any position that people are like man there are just not enough of these around.

This is off-topic, but I'm not sure what you're saying is true.  Nurses?  Doctors?  They go to an academically rigorous course of study and there IS demand for them because the degrees aren't that easy to get, and the number of schools that can confer the degree is limited.  Some nursing schools are difficult to gain admission to, and all MD and DO programs are difficult to gain entry to.

Teachers?  Other than in inner cities, teaching jobs have been hard to get for the last 4 decades.  The degrees are not hard to get, and the jobs are relatively attractive (to the right kind of people.)  Lots of grads relative to the opportunities = hard time finding a job.

MBAs?  I think there's a cautionary tale in there for JDs.  Granted, JDs have two things that MBAs don't:  the bar exam and ABA accreditation.  MBAs have an equivalent accreditation:  AACSB, but you can open up an MBA program without being AACSB accredited.  I'd say about 1/4 to 1/3 of MBAs aren't.  Ultimately, there are a few elite MBAs that will open doors.  Unfortunately, the remainder are unremarkable and undistinguishable.  Your AACSB accredited MBA from University of Texas at Arlington is not really that different than the non-aacsb program at University of Dallas in the minds of most people.

Plus, business is very different than law.  Business has always been an area where A students work under C students because business success depends a lot more on intangible and interpersonal factors.  For the most part, an MBA is more of a check-off degree.  It doesn't do much for your career, other than lets you continue on the trajectory you're already on.  A few business employers want to know your gpa.  The vast, vast majority will never ask.  Class rank is essentially a non-factor.  5 years into your career, nobody will ever care where your degrees came from.  (Contrast to law where you carry your law school's name and class rank with you essentially throughout your entire career.)

Basically, when a degree becomes ubiquitous to the point that pretty much anybody who feels like getting one can get one (which is basically where the MBA is, now), it loses pretty much all its value.

Again, Law isn't EXACTLY like that, because of ABA and bar exams.  However, it's a lot closer to being an MBA than being an MD.

I sincerely doubt that any med school grads are wondering if they'll be able to get jobs.  Even nurses may not be able to get the exact jobs they want, but they can find jobs right now.  In fact, they're finding jobs that pay as much as a lot of law jobs, and you can be an RN with an associate's degree.

With Law, my impression (non-expert, obviously) is that most reasonably bright people who want to go to law school can go.  However, only SOME will be employed as attorneys, later.  The weed-out process happens after graduation, not before.  Contrast to med school where the weeding out happens pretty much before your first day of med school classes.  If you get in, chances are you'll finish.  If you finish, you'll get a job in the field. 

With Law, if you get in, chances are you'll finish IF YOU WANT TO, but when you finish, if all you did was get the degree, without excelling in some way (by either going to a very distinguished school, or placing high in your less distinguished school), that's just not a guarantee of employment.  In that way, the law degree is a heck of a lot like an MBA or teaching degree.

622
Current Law Students / Re: Latest you have got an acceptance letter?
« on: March 30, 2011, 05:41:50 AM »
I sent them my application the day I got my LSAT.  They sent me an acceptance packet within a week.  I believe my packet was in "review" for about 3 days.

OTOH, another school I applied to (call it my stretch school) had me in review for about 3 weeks and eventually rejected me. 

623
Current Law Students / Re: Latest you have got an acceptance letter?
« on: March 29, 2011, 08:19:58 PM »
BTW I hate the mailman with his smug blue shorts, goatee and chipper disposition.

He's mocking you.  If he's wearing one of those jungle-explorer pith helmets, that's a direct insult. 

I'm accepted to the only law school in my hometown.  So, I'm happy.

624
Visits, Admit Days, and Open Houses / Re: Wayne State: Worth it?
« on: March 29, 2011, 02:12:29 PM »
pretty big assumption that there is a "boom" coming anytime soon...

Yep.  I wonder if anybody made that assumption.  Pretty clear I didn't.  There will be one someday, but not in the foreseeable future.

625
Minority and Non-Traditional Law Students / Re: Law School at 52
« on: March 29, 2011, 01:45:36 PM »
Your 52 and don't start school until Late August.  Withthe 4 year plan -you won't be practicing law until age 57ish. 

In a different day and age, this might be a good reason not to attend.

These days, people stay healthy much, much longer.

They also intend to work much, much longer. 

It's not uncommon to see people practicing law past their 70th birthday. 

The law is one of the few professions where it's probably feasible to be long in the tooth, yet still be able to function at a high level, provided your mind stays sharp.

626
Not to burst the OP's bubble (I would still apply), however, I don't believe that attending a top 10 school - in itself - will help too much with JAG.  It is my understanding that JAG typically selects the top performers at any given law school, regardless of the school's rank.  I believe JAG prepares a document every year showing the respective schools of its hired classes.  From what I recall, regional schools fared quite well in the selection process.

That really makes a lot of sense.  It isn't generally the military's practice to differentiate much between schools.  Basic accreditation is usually all they look for.  Their policies tend to be a one-size fits all approach with a broad policy that leads to consistent decision making that can be delegated down to a relatively low level.



Nevertheless, the economy does seem to be picking up for entry-level and lateral hiring.

That's good news.  IT's an (almost imperceptibly) slow economic recovery, but it is still a recovery.

627
Taking labor or employment wouldn't have really helped you much for HR, the law is simple.  You can pick it up very quickly.  Basic employment law is that you can't discriminate based on race, sex, color, national origin, religion, disability or age if over 40.  Basic labor law is that if the employer violates collective bargining laws, there isn't much downside for them.   

I agree that taking labor law isn't a make or break, here.  Hiring issues are one facet.  However, HR people are dealing with regulatory compliance nearly every day.  Not just hiring decisions and union contracts, but everything from HIPAA to OSHA to everything in-between.  They're interacting with the law to a very high degree on an almost daily basis.

As for JAG, good recommendation.  A top 10 school will undoubtedly help. However, keep in mind that JAG positions are extremely competitive right now.  This is not a refuge for people with no other options.  I wouldn't say it's as competitive as biglaw, but probably on par with trying to get a federal position.

628
Law School Admissions / Re: Messy Application and Need Advice
« on: March 29, 2011, 08:04:30 AM »
Hmmm... not sure what to say, here.  It's going to be a fight for you, especially right now.

My first choice school is a 4T (due to location and my personal circumstances), and I was accepted with a 3.01/159.  However, they were wait-listing other applicants.  So, it's competitive now, even for T4s. 

Your GPA is really going to be a hindrance.  Your only shot is to beat the living snot out of the LSAT.  I mean, you will probably need to pull down like a 165 or better unless you can find a place that will read your personal statement.

I wouldn't count too much on that, though.  Admissions is pretty much all based on LSAT and GPA.  The US News Rankings have really reduced it to that and very little else.

As a side note, I applied to a T2 and just got my rejection notice.  I think during other times, I would have gotten in.  (I actually got into the MBA program at the same school, and at the time, the MBA program was #47 in USN&WR.)  However, with the crappy economy, EVERYBODY is applying to law school.  Not just all the recent baccalaureate graduates, but folks with 2 years worth of unemployment benefits, folks who just got let go but have a severance package, etc. 

Down economies produce an abundance of applicants to schools. 

There are certainly schools that will take a chance on you, but they're way down in the 4T.  If you're determined not to go to a 4T school, I don't mean to discourage you, but I don't think you have a realistic shot.

Now, that being said, 4T has a few things going for it.

First, if you graduate first in your class from any school, you will get opportunities.  Might even be able to work biglaw. 

Thing is, you need to graduate maybe 1st, 2nd or 3rd in your class to get those opportunities from a T4, where you might be able to get them with a top 10% from a T2 or a top 20% from a T1.

Second, you CAN transfer.  If you do well in 1L year, there is some T2 school, somewhere, that will let you transfer in.  For transfer applicants, LSAT and GPA are very small factors and sometimes they are complete non-factors.

Now, this only applies if you show up to your T4 school and kick some major butt.  However, if that's not what you're planning on doing, then it won't matter what school you graduate from:  you will not get a job in the law unless your dad's name is on the letterhead of the firm. 

Right now, Law School is a really dog-eat-dog proposition.  Graduate at the top? You'll do well.  If you skate on through and graduate middle of the pack, you're going to be screwed.  It'll basically much worse than a graduate degree in the humanities, because at least with a Ph.D. in Humanities, you can teach somewhere.

629
Minority and Non-Traditional Law Students / Re: Law School at 52
« on: March 29, 2011, 07:51:05 AM »
So, I got accepted into a top 100 law school at the tender age of 52. I am excited in that I always wanted to be a lawyer, took my first lsat back when dinosaurs walked the earth, but other priorities prevailed.  Will start fall 2011; but have a question...... how will my "classmates" view me?  really don't want 4 years (going part time due to job) of being alienated.... just curious.

I'm not quite in your boat, but I'm not that far from it.  Let's just say we're rowing in the same lake.

I think they're going to view you as old.  However, I think there are two things that will impact this:

1.  Is it near the top?  Or more like 80-ish? 
2.  Is it full-time or part-time?

Frankly, a lot of the schools lower down the pecking order have quite a few non-traditional students.  It's not that we old folks can't go to schools like Harvard and Yale, but frankly, if we were the types who could nail down a 179 LSAT and a 3.92 GPA, we wouldn't be looking for a career change in our 50s.  We'd be pondering retirement after shooting out of the cannon at full speed when we were youngsters.

I think a lot depends on your personality.  If you act like "the old guy" and want to talk about a bunch of stuff that isn't interesting to anybody, then they're going to find you annoying and generally avoid you.  However, if you have a good personality, can recognize group dynamics and are not a chore to be around, it shouldn't be that bad.  I struck up a conversation with a few "kids" on preview day and if they were put off by my age, they sure didn't show it.

Of course, I was talking to them about things they were also concerned about:  the job market, job prospects, what law school will be like, where are the good places to live near campus, etc. 

So, I don't think being old will be that big of a deal at a lot of schools. 

The folks who are going to have trouble will be the old guys who go in thinking that they have a bunch of wisdom to impart on young people and who never shut up about how they did this, or that, or whatever.  The other law students aren't your kids, they're your peers.  If you show them that respect, they will likely reciprocate.

630
Minority and Non-Traditional Law Students / Re: CPA and Law school
« on: March 29, 2011, 07:39:03 AM »
Hey guys,

I'm graduating this year and will work Big 4 accounting (audit) for 2-3 years.  I will get my CPA this summer.  I've always wanted to be a lawyer, and am really working as an accountant to learn business.

What is the value of a CPA for law firm recruiters?  I don't think it counts for much in law school admissions, but my goal is to go into an area where accounting will be useful, such as corporate or tax.  Are there other legal specialties where accounting will be helpful?  How much does the CPA count for BigL?  I would like to make more than 70-80K per year after graduating law school, because if I stay with Big 4 accounting, my salary would be 80-100K anyways (less law school debt). 

Does anyone have experience or know of people in this situation?

Thanks in advance.

Just wanted to throw a couple things in the mix, here.

First, you could look for a Masters of Taxation degree.  That will get you somewhat into the sphere of tax law.

The other possibility, if you go to law school, is that you could get an LLM in Tax after finishing law school.

The value of the CPA?  If you go to law school, who knows.  The most important factors will be your school and GPA, but maybe if all other things are relatively equal, a background in accounting could help you get a job on Wall Street or with a federal regulator.

However, I think most folks will agree:  once you start down the JD path, your job prospects down the road will depend on your school and your class rank.  Really, anything else is a secondary consideration of very little importance.

Best of luck.  Being a CPA is a good thing to be right now.

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