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Current Law Students / Re: 1L First Semester Grades
« on: December 02, 2015, 03:13:48 PM »
Again, Loki I agree with you.

To go back to by Basketball example, ending up as a high school basketball coach is not a glamorous job, but if you truly love basketball and that is your passion then that is great.

I went through a similar path in basketball and ended up in some crazy places and gave up more lucrative regular job offers to pursue basketball, because I loved it. However, at some point I decided I did not want to keep living in China going to obscure villages to play basketball getting by and hoping x-shady Chinese basketball owner would pay me after the game, which did not always happen.

However, I have friends that stuck with it and are now assistants at D2 colleges or in a high school and they are extremely happy. However, they are making $45,000 in Nebraska and getting by and hoping that one day they will get a head coaching job or maybe become an assistant in the NBA somewhere. There is no guarantee of it, but they are pursuing their passion. If you really love basketball that is great.

The law is similar and I think we both agree that you shouldn't incur the costs, three years of your life, etc to figure out if law school is for you. Instead, you have to really want to be a lawyer and unless your admitted to Harvard, Yale, etc I strongly encourage a law school applicant to get a Paralegal Certificate first and work in a law office. If after that experience they are still dead-set on going to law school, but Golden Gate at full freight is their only opportunity then I would recommend it.

If some kid out of undergrad just doesn't want to start work or likes watching Law & Order and can only muster a 152 on the LSAT and thinks sure why not go to law school. Then I would give that kid the same advice you are.

To the stats issue. I don't know how else to back it up. Law students graduate in May? Am I wrong? You cannot sit for the California Bar Exam until you graduate from Law School and the exam is in late July.

You then have to sit and wait like a jacka** until the Friday before Thanksgiving to get your bar results.

Then the typical law student swears in at their school ceremony in December.

If that is not the process then I really f'ed up, because I went through the purgatory of waiting for bar-results clerking at some b.s. places making $15 an hour as a "clerk" from August to November.

However, p I had several job offers that were contigent on me passing. I sat around like a complete jackass waiting for the f'ing aholes that grade the bar-exam to give me my results so I could start real attorney work, instead of hustling to make a $100 a week.

However, none of the real jobs wanted me to start if I was going to have to go right back to taking the bar exam. Why would they waste the time, resources and money to implement me into their work environment, which I was not even licensed to do until my results came out?

If there is a way to avoid that situation then I am an idiot, but very few jobs if any were eager to hire someone until results were out. With more than 50% of takers not passing the first time would you? If some kid came into our office right now and seemed great, but could not make court appearances etc and if we did hire them they might have to take 4 months off to study I would not hire them. Instead, I would hire one of the countless people licensed already as would any reasonable business.

Thankfully, I passed and I accepted a job offer, but did not start until mid-January, because after I passed I went on a trip. The last thing on my mind after passing the bar exam, going on a cross-country trip and starting a new job was filling out my employment statistics with my law school.  In fact, I never filled it out so I am likely one of the people listed as "unemployed" according to the statistics.

In all honestly, did you fill out anything after graduating? On top of the countless things I have to do everyday that is not my #1 priority. However, for some reason I spend time on this board, but I like it, however more productive uses of my time could be found, including filling out the stats, but I didn't do it. I personally don't know many of my classmates that did either.

In summary my personal experience is how I dispute the statistics and I don't think anything in my experience is that unusual.

So as usual, I think we agree for the most part.  If a OL is considering law school research everything and take the commitment seriously. Don't half ass a 3 year and $100,000 plus investment.

Furthermore, do not I repeat do not attend Golden Gate, USF, Santa Clara etc if you don't want to be a lawyer. That is one of the biggest issues I saw. I don't how many people at my school said oh yea I am in law school, but I don't really want to be a lawyer. "WTF?" Unless you have time and money to burn then sure enjoy the intellectual challenge it provides.

However, if your an undergrad student already $50,000 in debt that has never worked a day in your life and you scrap by with a 2.9 from Humboldt State and then eek out a 151 on the LSAT and GGU says hey we will take $200,000 of your money. Then I would tell that kid to do some research and work for a little bit to realize how much $200,000 actually is and see if the life of a lawyer is for them.



Current Law Students / Re: 1L First Semester Grades
« on: December 02, 2015, 01:29:37 PM »
Again, I agree with everything, but not the numbers there are far more than 21% of Golden Gate Graduates that passed the bar working in law-firms right now.

The statistics for law school employment are absurdly flawed. As an example it requires you to report employment 9months after graduation. However, it is literally impossible for an attorney of GGU, USF, Santa Clara or any other California Law School or anyone taking the California Bar Exam after graduation to even be a licensed attorney until Mid-Late November.

Since graduation is in May there is no way for anyone to be a licensed attorney working in a law-firm until 7 months after graduation and Christmas is not exactly hiring season. Additionally, California Bar Passage statewide was below 50% if I am not mistaken.

So the numbers just don't make any sense and I do not agree with any statistics, because it does not take account any of these factors. If it was 18 months for all students of these schools that passed the bar exam then I am open to hearing those numbers, but the current statistical breakdown makes no sense.

Now should you go to GGU, USF or any of these schools excpecting to have anything handed to you? No. In fact, you probably will not have a glamorous job.

To use the 14 yr old example let hypothetically lets make him a 17 yr old is 6'4 220 pounds and moderately athletic and the 4th best player on his mediocre high school varsity team.

Is he going to make the NBA? Highly unlikely.

Is the kid going to be a division 1 starter? highly unlikely.

Is the kid going to be make a division 1 roster? highly unlikely.

Could the kid tryout and make a Junior College team somewhere in the U.S? Probably if he really wanted to seek it out.

Could this same kid then walk on or get a small scholarship to a D2-D3 or NAIA school. A little more difficult, but likely.

Could this kid then play in some league somewhere in Europe making $40,000 a year. Yes.

With all this experience could the kid then become a high school coach somewhere and make a living through baskeball. Sure.

Is doing any of those things easy? Is the kid willing to relocate to Weed, California for two years to play JUCO basketball and then play at Humboldt State for 2 years.

Then move to Germany while making scraps to play in an empty gym?

If he is then he can have a career in basketball if he really loves B-Ball.

It is a far cry from the NBA, but it is a living playing basketball.

This is the same for law students at these schools.

If you go to GGU and expect a Supreme Court Clerkship out of school, well not happening. If your open to moving to Mendocino County to be a Child Support Attorney and get your feet wet, because you really want to be a lawyer you can go on to make a living as an attorney.

That is my point. Is it possible to succeed from GGU, USF, Santa Clara? Of course.

Are you going to have an experience like Tom Cruise in the firm? No. not even if you are Valedictorian.

Current Law Students / Re: 1L First Semester Grades
« on: December 02, 2015, 10:19:46 AM »
Everything you say is true, but I don't think I am being overly optimistic, but I am not unnecessarily pessimistic either.

None of the paths are easy plenty of doctors I know can't believe that law school is only 3 years and you have the same rights as any other lawyer immediately after passing the bar. There is no residency requirement in the law, you can pass the bar and make a court appearance the next day. Furthermore, there is no special requirement to be a trial attorney like there is to be a surgeon and so forth or obtain one of the numerous specialties in the medical field. You are simply an attorney licensed to practice law. The day I swore into the California Bar I had as much right to represent a client in California as Chemerinsky did. Pilots similarly do not just get to fly commercial airliners after going through pilot school they have to go through all kinds of b.s. So in that sense law school wins in that once your in you are in, but there is no set path of what to do next, which is stressful.

Since those rights exists immediately there are plenty of jobs for lawyers in the U.S. South Dakota for example is paying lawyers to simply move there.

The problem is everyone out of law school expects a corner office in NY City and well that is not easy to get. Even now I live in San Francisco, but I don't want work in San Francisco I have to commute, but 20-30 miles out in the East Bay there are plenty of jobs for lawyers.

Anyone attending law school or any form of school for that matter needs to have realistic expectations.

Law school is not a golden ticket nor is any other form of education. Law school is also more expensive than it should be I will not debate that, which is why as you say costs should be a concern I agree 100% with that.

As you describe in your own post becoming a pilot is not easy and more or less you need to be in the military to start that career. Well the law is not much different JAG is actively recruiting for any ABA law grad and if you want to get some solid experience out of the gate JAG will do it, but you will be in the military and it is a sacrifice.

I was offered a job by Army JAG, which I turned down. However, it was available, but it was realistically an 8 year commitment and I could be sitting in a base in Afghanistan right now, which was a sacrifice I personally was not willing to make.

So if a licensed lawyer wants to get a job somewhere doing something as an attorney there are options. Every rural public defender office in California is hiring. Mendocino County. Tuluare County, has D.A., Child Support Attorney, Public Defender etc.

I could go on and on, but nobody wants to live in these places, but if you want to get a job and have a license to practice law it is available.

SF Public Defender though is booked and not hiring.

So there are jobs for attorneys, but the odds of a J.D. from some mid-level school with a 3.1 getting the corner office in the TransAmerica building with  $200,000k salary after graduation is not going to happen. This is true of even Harvard Grads.

Law school is difficult and getting a degree does not guarantee success, but if you have a J.D. and passed a bar exam and your sole goal is to get a job somewhere you can get one. JAG is an option, Move to South Dakota or some rural county somewhere and there is work. None of these are dream positions though.

Again this is true of all professions unless as I said earlier there is some easy to get, high paying, low stress, challenging when I want to be, glamorous job, that lets me take time off whenever I want. Please, please let me know and I will be eternally grateful.

Unfortunately, doctors, lawyers, nurses, cops, pilots, etc are classified as jobs that you "work" at. There is a reason it is called work and not fun. Work can be fun at times, but for the most if anyone in any profession was told you know what we will pay you $200k to not work and do whatever you want they would take it.

I think the issue is people in their bubble whether it be pilots, doctors, lawyers, nurses etc think their situation is unique, but it isn't. There are pros and cons and this golden job that I described above as far as I know doesn't exist, because if it did everyone would be doing it.  Again if it exists and I have been overlooking it for 32 years then let me know and I will walk out of this office right now and you should to.

Current Law Students / Re: 1L First Semester Grades
« on: December 01, 2015, 06:08:40 PM »
Well pilot school, med school and the like are all very expensive the same as law school if not more.

Med School is 4 years, plus residency etc and far more costly than law school.

Cops and Fireman unlike the other professions are limited in to their income potential. There salaries are set and there is no real private sector Fire Department or Police Department so the cost is less, but the rewards are less as well.

You can make an insane amount of money as a lawyer, but it is extremely difficult and more often that not making money in the legal profession requires you to argue on behalf of things that are not easy to argue for.

Law school is expensive and undeniably is more expensive than it needs to me. In reality that ABA for all intents and purposes has a monopoly and they are abusing it as evidenced by the skyrocketing tuition, but this kind of thing is not that uncommon.

It is a far from perfect situation, but if you want to be a lawyer go to law school. However, realize it will not be an easy journey and you could end up being out 3 years and $100,000+ for the right to do a job your not interested in doing.

Is law school right for everybody? No.

However, people make mistakes and attending law school could be a terrible decision or a great one. If we knew how things would turn out life would be pretty easy.

Law school is pretty much like anything else it has its pros and cons. It is a not a career death sentence to anyone that attends nor is it a guarantee of a million dollar salary per year.


Law School Admissions / Re: International student and financial aid
« on: December 01, 2015, 04:13:24 PM »
Maintain is right on point, if your goal is to be a lawyer in France then get a legal education there.

An American Law School will not teach you anything about French Law, but you can simply do the LLM for a year and take the grueling bar exam, but if you succeed at that your licensed to practice law in a U.S. State, which would probably be very helpful in France.

I would contact schools in the U.S. City you want to relocate to and tell them your situation.

I.e. if you want to be in San Francisco contact University of San Francisco, Golden Gate, and Hastings to see what they offer to French Students.

In New York reach out to New York Law School, Touro, Cardozo, Brooklyn, NYU, etc and see what they offer.

The admissions department at any school is more than happy to talk about a good plan for you.

Current Law Students / Re: 1L First Semester Grades
« on: December 01, 2015, 04:08:44 PM »
Glad to see you are back Loki.

Excellent post above regarding GPA and the subsequent what employers look at Law Review, Moot Court, etc.

As for the job issue, of course getting a job anywhere is hard and you will be rejected.

Becoming a Public Defender is doable, but many people have to volunteer for a few months doing that before a fullt-me job is offered, so on and so on.

However, as far as I know nobody is handing out jobs to anyone. Furthermore, I don't think to many J.D.'s are working at McDonald's you can have a non-legal job that is not McDonald's in fact I met many people in law school that had no desire to be lawyers and ended up with decent jobs. (Although they did not need a J.D. to get them), which goes to your point of be sure law school is for you.

I don't think the job market is any different for teachers, nurses, businessmen/woman, etc, cops, fireman, etc ask any professional out there how they started and it will not be some easy road. They started doing some entry-level job and worked their way up. To do this they were rejected countless times and the law is no different.

If anyone thinks that if you get a J.D. firms will have private jets waiting outside of your graduation hall to wine & dine you in hopes that you will choose to work for their firm for $250,000 starting. Well that is not going to happen.

If there is a job like that out there, I would love to know about it, but I don't think it exists.

So as Loki points out law school is not for everyone and there is no guarantee you will succeed just because a law school accepts you. Your going to have to fight, claw and deal with rejection with a J.D. just as you will in any other profession.

Again, unless there is some easy to get, high paying job, that is challenging when you want it to be, but whenever you want a little time off you can have it, and people are impressed by it at cocktail parties and so on. I would LOVE to know about it.

If I am being missing that gig for 32 years then shame on me, but please for the love of god if it exists let me know.

Law School Admissions / Re: International student and financial aid
« on: November 30, 2015, 05:42:45 PM »
Maintain is right on point.

You may also want to consider getting a J.D. or its equivalent in France and then getting an LLM in the U.S. This will only require one year of school in the U.S., but a foreign degree and LLM will allow you to sit for the bar exam in many if not all states.

Just an additional option. I know many people from the University of Paris obtained LLM's at my school to sit for the bar exam.

Current Law Students / Re: 1L First Semester Grades
« on: November 30, 2015, 05:34:33 PM »
Basically, yea if you are a licensed attorney you can find a job, unless you a female dog and moan about it.

If you graduated at the bottom of your class from a non-elite school, you are not getting a big-law associate job out of law school, but you can get a job as a Public Defender, in a small-firm, etc Here is a litany of jobs for attorney's through California.

Will the Valedictorian of Harvard have more doors open to them than a student with a 2.8 out of Santa Clara Law? Yes.

If you have a 2.8 GPA from Santa Clara are you doomed to giving handies to bums on Greyhound? No.

There are plenty of jobs out there, but any graduate even the Valedictorian of Harvard has to apply to them and both will get rejected from jobs.

However, if you are a licensed attorney in any state, anywhere, you have had a pretty good life to be perfectly honest and had a lot go your way. If you can't get a job not the most amazing job in the world, but a decent job with a B.A. a J.D. and a license to practice law, look in the mirror it probably has a lot more to do with you than the school you attened.

Studying for the LSAT / Re: Need advice, please
« on: November 25, 2015, 08:56:09 AM »
Well it sounds like you are putting in a ton of effort and 143-146 are not amazing scores, but they are not terrible. I believe it puts you slightly under the top 50% of test takers.

A 165 may not be doable, to be perfectly honest it would put you in the top 20% of test takers and as you learned in your prior experience at the other law school it is not easy being in the top 50% of the class, let alone the top 20%.

I suppose you can take a Kaplan or other LSAT program, but again a 165 is difficult to get.

Additionally, the law school rank really does not mean that much, my school went from being a top 100 school when I enrolled to now being 138th I think and my job has not fired me, nor has a job denied my motion, in fact believe it or not the only time i ever discuss law school rankings is on this board. As a lawyer it never comes up.

Remember U.S. News is a for-profit unregulated magazine that has found a niche making insecure law students think it means something. Since you have gone through 1L you know the stress, confusion and insecurity that is prevalent in any 1L class. What better way to make money than to make up some ranking based on nothing in that situation, it is a genius move on their part, but it really means nothing.

So as to getting a 165 all you can really do is take the LSAT again and see what happens. If you want to spend a few thousand more dollars enroll in a course, but there is absolutely no guarantee you will get a 165 and odds are if you got a 143-146 originally a 20 point jump is unlikely, maybe a 150-155 is doable, but even if you got a 165 the bigger issue will be not getting academically dismissed.

A good LSAT score doesn't mean anything once your in school and more importantly even if you get a 165 on the LSAT it does not mean your passing the bar either.

Good luck to you, but don't set unrealistic expectations on yourself. Law school is doable and even with a 143 LSAT you can graduate from law school and a get a licensed to practice law. What you do with it after that it is up to you.

Here is a good article that explains how to choose a law school, even if you get a 150, 165 and I personally hope you get a 180, but since only 1% of people get a 180 there is a 99% chance you will not.

Politics and Law-Related News / Re: POTUS
« on: November 24, 2015, 02:46:35 PM »
Precisely to you blatant hypocrisy is nothing, which is fine it is pretty commonplace in politics. Conversely to me a Politician under investigation is nothing new either.  Reagan example authorized drug deals to get weapons there was an investigation into that, but nothing happened and I frankly think that is worse than what Hilary did, but i still don't think it is that big of an issue.

When your responsible for mass amounts of power you are inevitably going to do something questionable and your political opponents will do whatever they can to publicize and criticize you for it.  To me that is commonplace and it certainly does not help Hilary's cause.

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