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Messages - jack24

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Additional question.  I am teaching a college political science class this fall.  How douchey, on a scale of one to ten, would it be to ask them to call me Doctor?

I don't really want the freshmen to call me by my first name, and "Mr _____" seems odd to me.   Perhaps i'll go with "professor."

Current Law Students / Re: Best Option
« on: August 01, 2012, 09:40:48 AM »
Legal Careers are so unpredictable, so it's hard to give great advice.

Lawyer starting salaries have been dropping since 2007, and the median starting salary for the class of 2010 was $63,000 for those who were working full time and reported a number.  So that means the median starting salary is much lower.

For those who reported in 2008, the bimodal distribution is pretty clear, which means a significant percentage of graduates make under 50,000.  And you have to figure that a large percentage of those who do not report their salary are not making good money.

Lawyers do have pretty good income potential over the long term, though.

So when considering law, it really comes down to some heavy introspection.  1) Will you do well academically, 2) will you aggressively and effectively network, and 3) will you like working as a lawyer?   

The sad thing is that #1 is unpredictable, #2 is generally overestimated by people, and #3 is almost impossible to know because you can't predict what job you'll end up in.  I absolutely love white collar criminal defense and construction litigation, but I hate family law, collections, and probate.  I had to take a job where I primarily do family law and collections, and I'd rather be outside digging ditches.

Financially though, I still believe the law is a good investment.  If you take out 120,000 in loans, you'll probably be paying loan payments of $10,800 a year for 25 years.  I think the median lawyer from the schools you mention will probably make 10k a year more than the median bachelor's degree holder or the median MPA or MBA from the schools you mention.

Paralegal work isn't bad, but there is a low income ceiling.  You can easily probably find a good job for 50k a year with good hours, but you'll never make much more than that (adjusted for inflation).

Law School Admissions / Re: Just looking for feedback
« on: July 24, 2012, 11:00:05 AM »
Gonzaga might be a good fit for you.  It's not on the coast, but it's still in Washington.
You'd probably have a good shot at Oregon (higher LSAT lower GPA).  I had similar stats and I was waitlisted there.
You might be able to get some money to go to McGeorge (university of the pacific)
I also got massive scholarships at some T3 schools in the northeast. 

I think the most important think for someone with your numbers is to figure out where you'd like to work.  You will need to depend quite a bit on networking and internships, and it's difficult to network and get internships in a city you don't live in.

You have always been in the bottom 1/3 of LSAT takers.  Your worst score put you in the 13th percentile.  140 is like 37/100 on the test.   People should be able to get 50% by process of elimination and coin-flip luck.

So rather than bash you, I'll tell you what I've learned.   You can go to a Cal-credited school, pass the bar and get a job if you have a little luck and some serious networking game. 

You should really start meeting family law attorneys.  These people often work at smaller firms, so the job potential isn't great, but you can learn alot about what they are looking for.  Your background in social work will help you to navigate a lot of legal issues in juvenile cases, so you'll need to lean heavily on that. 

You are fighting against a stereotype that might be true.  You look dumb on paper.  7-8 out of 10 people did better than you on the LSAT.  So you have to make up for that with connections, heart, and a sincere desire to practice a certain type of law.  Lawyers focusing on family, criminal, and public interest law really love dedication and interest. 

Honestly, if you can't figure out a way to meet with ten lawyers in areas you are interested in in the next month, you don't have the tools you need. (unless you just don't have any time).

Law School Admissions / Re: Just looking for feedback
« on: July 23, 2012, 05:02:10 PM »
On paper, You are a moderately qualified regional candidate.   You'd probably fit in very well at some flyover schools like Kansas, Oklahoma, Nebraska, or New Mexico.  Those schools are all fairly strong in their respective medium/small markets.

What region are you looking for?

I have no idea how to answer your question, but if you aren't a flame, I'd like to know more about your situation.

Why did you do so poorly in the second semester?  One D pulling you down can be written off to a really bad day, but you must have had something like a 1.5 gpa the second semester.   Any explanation?

I really don't mean this to be harsh, but in order to return to school (don't know why you would) you'll need to convince an admissions person that you've changed.  What can you change?  Were you incredibly lazy (tough to change)?  Suffer from debilitating anxiety (maybe some meds?)? or are you too dense for law school (tough/impossible to change)?

If you really want to go back to law school, I hope you have some story about tremendous personal loss, paralysis, or a healing medical condition.

Current Law Students / Re: Going Back to Law School.
« on: July 23, 2012, 09:13:44 AM »
Hi there. I was academically dismissed after my third semester in my prior law school. The two year ABA requirement period of staying out will soon lapse and I was wondering if there is a chance to get back into law school. During my time off I overcame health issues and personal issues as well. I applied to an ABA approved paralegal program and did well in it. I want to complete my legal studies and become a lawyer, but will I be given a chance to accomplish that? I am starting to apply law schools that have a spring start date, but do I need to get a letter of good standing even after sitting out 2 years? Thank you for your insight.

What level of Law School will you be applying to?

Legend: Look at the data in my link if you haven't already.

99% of Cornell grads who took the NY exam passed it.  77% of the Cornell grads who too the Cali exam passed it.  Are you saying the discrepancy might be caused by the individual effort of the grads?

Can you give me some weight on the "might".   You have a group of very intelligent, hard working law students who all had similar LSAT scores and were educated at the same school.  I think the exam is the cause for the discrepancy, not the individual effort.

The data easily meets the probable cause or preponderance standards.  I'd say it's clear and convincing, if not beyond a reasonable doubt. 

Incoming 1Ls / Re: T Minus 4 Weeks
« on: July 19, 2012, 10:55:52 AM »
Will your prep be helpful? Sure, assuming you can remember it, or assuming you made outlines you can use.

But the next question is now what?  You'll learn thousands of pages worth of nonsense in your classes and you'll have a lot of hours throughout the semester to prep.  Are you going to brief all of the dissents for every supreme court in alphabetical order?

I think people mistakenly say that 0L prep isn't worthwhile, but what they mean is that it isn't really necessary.  If you are diligent from day one of law school, you have plenty of time to learn what you need to learn to do well.   If your 0L prep gives you more free time to spend with your family and on your hobbies, then fantastic.

I estimate a common law school semester consists of:

2000 hours awake
225 hours in class
45 hours actually taking finals.
500 hours of actual class prep (overkill, in my opinion)

That leaves 1230 wakeful hours to do everything else.

So you have around 10.3 hours a day to spend on extra studying, exercising, eating, playing, etc.

Time ain't the problem.

My suggestion to most 0L's is to work on their typing speed, read a lot of whatever you like, and read some books about how to write well.

Learning future interests or the erie doctrine in the summer before law school is probably a waste of your damn time.

Yeah, I don't know that it has harder content, but I think it's probably harder to pass.  Maybe due to protectionism.

Harvard graduates 560 students a year. (
The first time bar passage rate is between 97.1 and 98.5% ( ;
This means that between 8 and 16 out of 560 Harvard grads fail the bar from each class (all jurisdictions combined)
8 Harvard grads failed the California bar in July of 2011.

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