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Messages - OConnorScribe

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I found a thread on 2L Search that speaks directly to this topic, and it was started by a nervous HLS student at the median:,4011586.0.html

See, he's nervous like everyone else at the median, and knows what is stake in 2L. And he's not precisely sure he can just coast and get a great firm job -- and doesn't seem to want to coast. Plus the "go f yourself" poster is exactly the kind of poster I don't like.

He does mention something insightful, though, that I hadn't considered: The real competition at Harvard's top is not for  firm work; it's for federal circuit and district court clerkships, of which they probably attain quite a few. The Harvard pool for firms, then, starts a little lower down the list. While we place a couple or a few federal clerks, we certainly don't infiltrate the federal bench as much as HYS does.

So, this topic comes more into focus now. It's good to have some clarity. 

Job Search / Re: Class Rank is out: Did I get screwed out of top 10%?
« on: July 08, 2008, 11:31:07 PM »
I agree with the assertion that you can proceed with submitting materials directly to the firms. OCI is a nice mechanism, but it's not the only path you can take. If your school wants to slap you down in such a ridiculous way, treat it as a ridiculous slap it is and proceed independently with confidence. Because top 10.04% of the class is still damn good, even if the school deems you to be too short to ride the roller coaster.

Never let a law school mess with your psyche. I've adopted that philosophy, because fear, uncertainty and belief in the school-bred mytholology damn near killed me (physically and spiritually), and now that I'm six or seven weeks removed from the first-year fishbowl, I see how ridiculous that was. Part of my experience this summer has been to learn who *really* to listen to and trust. Hint: It isn't your school's administration or career counselors or fellow students.

I apologize if I touched a nerve or offended anyone here with the "lazy unaccomplished boob" wording ... I'm a bit of a fabulist with language at times. Point I was making was this: I understand that most people who attend law school, any law school, worked hard to be there and work hard to learn the law and make the grade. The assertion, however, that the *very bottom* of a school's class would have an advantage over someone with let's say a top-third rank at another school in a good legal market bothers me. Granted, the bottom of HLS' class doesn't face the same fate as the bottom of mine -- we have a 2.0 minimum grade requirement at the end of 1L to maintain admission, and the bottom 10% upon graduation may never practice law at all (and probably shouldn't). Yet just as the top is generally at the top for a reason -- the top of my class worked incredibly hard to be there, with luck factoring in only marginally -- so too is the bottom generally at the bottom for a reason. And by bottom, I mean bottom, not median or 40% or 65%. I just can't fathom how No. 600-something at HLS can be a fate of little consequence in terms of entry-level positioning. That means you got outperformed at something by more than *600* other people; and that's ugly. And please don't tell me No. 600-something would still outperform anyone at Pace, because that's nonsense.

And how am I a [p]ussy, as someone upthread insinuated? That's an odd thing to say.

My school is T3, not a T4 -- get ir right. And maybe I don't know how it goes as far as the search in T14 ... but half of all new BigLaw associates are gone in five years, so maybe it's better that I don't. SO ... you're saying you can be a lazy, unaccomplished boob and still make top dollar leaving a T14. If that's true, that's horrendous.

Give the emetophiliac a $35K bonus ... now!!

Current Law Students / Re: Fifth Tier Toilet
« on: July 08, 2008, 06:26:07 PM »
I disagree.

Less schools = smaller supply of legal services = higher fees from clients = better for lawyer's pockets.
More schools = larger supply of legal services = lower fees from clients = better for the world.

I think the biggest problem is that lawyers are greedy, the probable reason being that law school is expensive.  Although, there are a lot of people with a sense of entitled even before they go to law school (look at this board).

Bingo, and they think just by going to law school they should be entitled to big money. WTF ever happened to making money becuase you were better at what you did than everyone else? Now people think they deserve it, not becuase they are actauly good lawyers, but just becuase of the name on thier diploma.

You should read the "2L might be as important as 1L" thread I started. The attitudes in there are amusing.

Sorry to hear about your exile from Phoenix because of ASU's stupidity. Honestly, if I was faced with a choice between attending Denver or going to Phoenix Law at night, I'd still go to Denver. Tis a shame, because ASU is like T65.

The only "off the wall" premise proffered in this whole thread is that Harvard and Pace can be compared as schools ... and that didn't come from me. Harvard has Larry Tribe. Pace has Tribe's treatise on reserve. 

I only dispute the notion that somehow the bottom of any class, including Harvard's, could compete for the top jobs in the country. I merely contend that the debt for the full cost of law school is a scary as hell prospect for anyone who underperformed or didn't do as well as they hoped in 1L. I think that paying the debt in the first couple of years will be brutal for all but the angels. And I believe that 2L could be just as critical as 1L, even if a great first year opens up more doors -- the top has to make sure they don't stumble and trip over the door jamb and everyone else has to work hard not to stumble and trip again. 

Current Law Students / Re: Fifth Tier Toilet
« on: July 08, 2008, 06:02:31 PM »
The Stony Brook-Touro marriage was proposed, but Touro strongly batted down the idea ... though that move makes an enormous amnount of sense.

I understand that Phoenix Law's hook is the part-time and evening programs, but Tucson and Phoenix are pretty symbiotic (I lived in PHX for two years). To me, U of A and ASU can be grouped in the same market. Perhaps this is an indictment of ASU -- they really should have part-time and night options there. To open a school primarily to serve those populations (which, in reading Phoenix Law's site promo copy, definitely seems to be THE major selling point of the place) strikes me as flimsy and unnecessary. But hey, maybe you're right -- the metro area is pretty damn large now.

Current Law Students / Re: Fifth Tier Toilet
« on: July 08, 2008, 03:15:17 PM »
Agreed -- there really are too many damn law schools. I think that one or two per regional job market is sufficient (i.e., only one in Westchester County, only one in Buffalo, only one in Syracuse, but two in Portland, two in Houston and so on). However, New York legislators are talking about opening a law school at Stony Brook. Does Long Island need three law schools? No!! Granted, Stony Brook is a SUNY and would be a cheap option. But c'mon. Did Phoenix need a second law school with ASU already there and with U of A in Tucson? Does St. Thomas really expect it'll have a reach outside of Minnesota? All's these schools are doing is creating B-list outfits in major markets that don't need them

The only recent add to the accredited list that makes any sense to me is Drexel, because they've adopted the Northeastern co-op model, chosen to specialize in hard IP, bioethics and entrepeneurial business, (a perfect fit for its undegrads fand for other engineering/science-leaning schools) and put themselves directly in contact with the Philly workforce. They were smart.

Otherwise, this is a ridiculous movement.

To respond to a couple of things:

Debt is debt is debt is debt!!! Everyone's worried about this and has to deal with it. It's not fun. Doesn't matter where you attend school. Those of us paying for the whole thing on loans are in the same boat on the ground floor. Emphasis on ground floor. So, yes, -$150K at Harvard is the same thing as -$150K at Pace is the same thing as $-150K at Cooley. And for two years or so, life is going to be tight for everyone, even if some of us are fortunate to get the platinum positions (not me, mind, you, but you know what I'[m saying ...)

If it really is true that any Harvard student can get any job they want -- and I still don't believe that -- what does that say about the employers? These folks have to be idiots to hire anybody who's proven to be mediocre or not as good statistically as peers ... this must be what's driving the BigLaw attrition stupidity. A hack is a hack no matter where he or she attends school ...

And all Harvard hands on deck -- we need to be fair to you. I've opened up a can of worms here by making the initial debt risk/reward statement, and at this point it would be instructional to know from top HLS students if the dregs of your class are truly competing for the same jobs you are.  Because if that's the case, I sympathize and find that outrageous.

And the embassador's kid thing was hyperbole and exaggeration. Allow a middle-classer like me to have some fun here ... :-)   

Median at Pace could get you as much as $65-70K if you integrate yourself into the Westchester legal community and bust your butt re: moot court, externships, practical experience and pure unadulterated networking.

Not wonderful, but not a disaster.

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