Law School Discussion

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Messages - Dixon

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11
I think that it's a great idea. I can't remember names OR faces.

12
Where should I go next fall? / Re: U. of South Carolina or Ole Miss?
« on: April 25, 2005, 12:10:34 AM »
South Carolina does have a pretty tight legal market and it's only going to get tougher to get a job now that the Charleston School of Law is up and running.  The good old boy system is very much alive there and people with connections go to the front of the line for jobs.

But if you really want to live in SC then that it the school to attend.

13
Where should I go next fall? / Re: Baylor vs. Arkansas
« on: April 22, 2005, 11:09:37 AM »
     I don't think Arkansas has a "bad" reputation althouth it certainly is not known for being highly selective.  I looked into where I want to practice and it won't be much of a problem.  I am also keeping in mind that having massive debt can limit where can practice more so than the reputation of the school that you attended.

14
Where should I go next fall? / Re: Baylor vs. Arkansas
« on: April 22, 2005, 10:34:22 AM »
     I've pretty much narrowed down my choices to Arkansas and my state school. Money is a big issue for me because I want to return to my home town which has a high cost of living but relatively low salaries (everybody wants to live here!). I also have grad school loans to pay off.

     It will be hard to move to where it gets cold in the winter but I figure I can suck it up for three years. And living in an SEC town will be a lot of fun. Hope to see you there.
 

15
In researching schools I have talked to many lawyers in the area where I want to practice and I have noticed that almost every single one of them has little idea where particular schools stand in the "tiers". Of course, they know Duke is better than Mississippi College and that Emory is more prestigious than South Carolina but when it comes to schools outside of their experience they have no clue where the magazine ranks them or how they stand in relation to other schools.

I've learned what many people above have already stated: that outside of the top schools rankings mean little and it's best to go schools in the region, and the state if possible, where you want to practice.

16
Where should I go next fall? / Re: Baylor vs. Arkansas
« on: April 20, 2005, 12:27:25 PM »
I was not even seriously considering Arkansas until they sent me money that would make going there pretty much free (except for books and living expenses). I don't live near Arkansas and I don't want to practice there so I contacted several attorneys and the regional hiring manager for a large firm in the area where I want to set up shop and asked their opinion.

They all told me that all things being equal that going to the school in the state where I want to practice is best. But when you throw money into the picture things change. When asked in an interview why I chose to go to Arkansas saying that I went because they gave me money is perfectly acceptable.

Arkansas may not be "ranked" very high but that's because it's mission is to train people that want to practice in Arkansas and therefore it has little national exposure. I was told that if I wanted to practice in NYC or DC then going to Arkansas was a bad idea. But having a degree from Arkansas would not hinder me in finding a job in the deep south. The hiring manager pointed out that as long as I had good grades and extracurricular activities (like law review and moot court) than I would be fine.

Remember to that if you have connections in the area where you want to practice then it is a different ball game entirely. If you have someone that can help you line up a job then there is no reason not to take the money.

I don't know if I'll end up going to Arkansas but escaping law school with little debt from a solid school is a tough opportunity to pass up.

17
Reviews, Visits, and Rankings / Re: What's it like in the North?
« on: April 17, 2005, 11:56:35 PM »
No, I'm not picking on you at all. I'm dead serious. I have never lived where there is snow and I have no idea what the heck to expect.

18
Reviews, Visits, and Rankings / Re: What's it like in the North?
« on: April 17, 2005, 11:49:38 PM »
I might be going to school in the north (Kentucky) and I am concerned about walking my dog in the snow. Do I need to buy little dog boots so my dog (a beagle) does not get frostbite? We spend a lot of time outside doing hound activities (chasing ball, cats, and digging holes) and I would hate to have him get hurt. Is the north filled with dogs wearing shoes?

19
I wondered about this an asked around and this is what I found out. It may or may not apply to the area where you want to practice.

Firms tend to hire new lawyers from schools that they are fimiliar with. They have a better idea of the strengths and weakenesses of particular programs and can better gauge the capabilities of their new attorneys. They know what areas the graduate may need better training in and what he can do right away. All things being equal it is a safer bet to go with what you know.

I have also heard that firms like to hire people that they know are going to be around for awhile. Someone that grew up in New York and went to school in New York is more likely to stay in New York than someone from Virginia that just wants to get a taste of big city life for a couple of years and then leave.

You also have more chances to network with other lawyers in the area where you went to school.

This does not mean that you can't find work in an area where you did not go to school. It's just that getting a job has a lot more to do with who you know and how much the firms decide they know about you than it does with geographical position.

20
General board for soon-to-be 1Ls / Re: Louisville, anyone?
« on: April 03, 2005, 03:38:39 PM »
I emailed my the sister of a friend of my sister that graduated from Louisville a couple of years ago and asked her some candid questions about the school. I would be happy to send it to you if you PM me.


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