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Messages - WhiteyEMSR

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71
Can you direct me to the exact site? I can't find where bar passage rates are listed by school for this time around. I would like to see how Detroit Mercy grads did. I heard that the rate went down a lot but haven't confirmed. Thanks.

Are you going to Ave Maria? If you are, did they not tell you about the Florida move? I think that's crazy if they didn't. My roommate (former AM student) can't stop talking about how crazy Tom is. Also, I guess the faculty tried to get the board of directors to get rid of the dean, but they refused. I think it's rough times for Ave.

72
Well, AveMaria is doing great actually. As far as the comment about too much religion in the classrooms that is just not true at all. Have you ever observed a class there? If not, then aren't you just assuming (we all know what happens when you just assume things)>
AveMaria came in first again in the state of MI bar exams, and uofM came in third I believe. (just a comment) AveMaria is not moving to FL, where did you get your info?

Another thing, I have heard also about AveMaria moving to T2, anyone else?


I get most of my information from two former Ave Maria students that have tranferred to Notre Dame this year, one is my roommate. I can give you his email if you like. Also, you could have googled "Tom Monaghan" and florida in the time it took you to write that message and you would have got many hits. Here is one http://www.opinionjournal.com/editorial/feature.html?id=110008818
Another is here  http://www.cruxnews.com/rose/rose-28may04.html
You will see AM's board "unanimously approved" the move. Where do you get your information?
One more http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tom_Monaghan
One more, really  http://experts.about.com/e/t/ti/timeline_of_controversy_at_ave_maria_school_of_law.htm

I believe there is no chance that Ave Maria could move to tier 2 after being accredited for a short period of time, having no alumni base and considering the move to Florida. As you can glean from the article, many professors are unhappy with the move to Florida as are students. Nobody can adequately predict what the rankings will do anyway. Again, where do you get your information? I'm curious to see where you got info on the most recent bar passage rate. I know Ave was strong in 2004, but I also know very few people took the bar and only 37% were employed at graudation. I can show you this infor too if you like.

EMSR

73
It's not that I think they are bad schools. In fact, I think they are excellent schools. I speak mostly for UDM, and the faculty is stellar, and I really think Dean Gordon is doing something to improve the reputation of the school, although I disagree with some of his policies.

The fact is that regardless of the quality of education, USNWR really screws things up, and schools like the ones you mention get the raw end of the deal. Top firms want lawyers from top schools; there really is no way around it. The fact remains that to get a firm job coming out of any school in Michigan besides UM is extremely competitive. Even at UM to get a job at a top Vault firm you need close to excellent grades.

Sure top MI firms come to the schools you mention. Dykema, Dickinson, Honigman, Butzel, etc. all interview at these schools, but they only take the very top students. Getting a job with a small to midsize firm can be just as competitive.

I think that chances at Wayne State are probably better than the other MI schools because Wayne brings more law firms to campus. Also, they MIGHT go a BIT deeper into the class. You will still need to be in the top 10-20% to get an interview and probably in the top ten people overall to get a callback.

Nalpdirectory.com is a great resource. You can search by law school and see what firms come to campus. Not every firm will be listed, bu the big ones will be. You can see that firms like Dykema, for example, might take 6 or 7 students for a summer after interviewing at a *&^%-load of schools. You might think MI schools get preference, but I don't think that is the case. I may have already mentioned this, but none of my friends that remained at UDM have secured positions through OCI. All of the students I know at Notre Dame who interviewed with all the MI firms got at least a couple of callbacks. I got them from Dykema, Dickinson, Butzel and Thrun Law Firm. Another transfer student (from MSU) got an offer with Dickinson Wright and another (Ave Maria) with Butzel Long. They also don't know very many people at their old schools who are having luck with law firms.

Reputation of school means a lot, much more than it should in my opinion. I think USNWR sucks for doing what they have done to some very smart students. I have a couple good friends at UDM that are thinking of doing study abroad programs this summer because they can't get callbacks. These are smart people, law review and moot court, which are extremely challenging to do at the same time.

Anyway, I am rambling. My point, if you want to work for a law firm, you better get good grades if you are going to a lower ranked school in Michigan. Firms have a lot of smart students to choose from and very few spots to fill.

EMSR   

74
Choosing the Right Law School / Re: t3/t4 chances
« on: November 08, 2006, 02:13:32 PM »
So, is there no way to work your way back up to the to 10-20%?  That was my question - because, what's the point of transferring up if you are delegated to the bottom half of your class no matter what you do.


Am I being clear?

B


Ahhh, sorry, I misunderstood your question.

I'm not sure why you say that one would be delegated to the bottom half of the class. Just because you transfer schools doesn't mean you have a GPA of 3.1 or below (which would be bottom half at my current school). You simply start over as if you were a first year, I suppose.

As I said above, the most important process you will go through in LS if you hope to get a BigLaw job is the OCI (on campus interveiw) process. When a tranfer student interviews the fall of their 2nd year with law firms, the tranfer student uses his/her credentials from the first year law school. For example, while I may not have had an established GPA at Notre Dame, I still had a 3.7 and a ranking of 2/163 from my first year at Detroit Mercy. These are the grades that employers saw and these will never change.

Many firms have requirements/recommendations, such as "top 25% required, journal preferred, moot court preferred." This is a common one, and I was allowed to use my first year grades/journal/moot court recognition in spite of the fact that I was interviewing at ND where I technically had no journal experience, no moot court and no GPA.

Employers really liked transfer students this year and all that I can think of got offers. It does kind of suck that I need to do really well this semester to get an established GPA at ND, but it doesn't matter that much as I already have a job offer.

Hope this helps a bit more,
EMSR

75
Choosing the Right Law School / Re: t3/t4 chances
« on: November 08, 2006, 12:19:24 PM »
Yes, you lose your ranking and your GPA. Some schools, mostly lower tiered, will allow you to be eligible for law review if you made the journal at your transferor school.

76
Choosing the Right Law School / Re: t3/t4 chances
« on: November 07, 2006, 09:48:29 PM »
You should keep in mind that transferring is a viable option. Many people on this board say you need to be in top 10% or so to transfer up. I'm not sure this is the case across the board. I transferred from UDM to Notre Dame. There are other transfers here from tier 4 schools (one from Michigan State) that have around 3.1-3.4 GPAs. This seems relatively low considering ND is a top 25 school.

I think if you got the 1st year out of the way at a tier 3 school, ended up in around the top 25%, maybe even lower, you could at least transfer up to a tier 3 school, if that is your goal now. I'm not sure the differences in job opportunities btwn a tier 3 school and a tier 4 school, but if this is what you want, I think you would have a good chance after completing your 1st year. UDM had students, some outside of the top 20% definitely, transfer to Michigan, Notre Dame, Loyola Chicago, Syracuse, Depaul, hmmm, semms like there are more, but I can't think of them.

Anyway, taking a year off and hoping to get a better lsat score might not be as productive as getting the 1st year of hell out of the way and then transferring up. Of course you always run the risk of doing bad in your first year. As far as lsat predicting success, it didn't for me. I scored a 147 on the lsat and finished 2nd in my class.

Good luck.

EMSR

PS- Ave Maia LS is moving to Florida (probably). Tom Monoghan is convinced it is a good idea. Not too sure that it is. I think it runs the risk of losing accreditation if a lot of the professors/students don't decide to go along. Anyway, just a thought.

77
Just a couple of things.

I transferred from Detroit Mercy. Many students I know did not do well during the most recent OCI, smart students, law review, etc. There are two transfers at my current school from Ave Maria and one from Michigan State, and they say the same things regarding the scarcity of offers. I would definitely stay away from Ave Maria. Monaghan (I think I spelled that correctly) runs AM like a sole proprietorship and is moving the school to Florida. Keeping accreditation will be a problem if faculty won't move. Michigan has 6 law schools. There is not a huge demand for attorneys.

Next, speaking with older attorneys doesn't mean a heck of a lot. Speak with recent graudates. The market was a lot different ten, even five years ago. Making a lateral move after a few years will make your school a bit less important on your resume, but a more recognized school will carry you much farther. As to large law firms, they usually hire laterals from other top law firms.

One more thing. Keep in mind the importance of OCI, especially if you want to work for a firm. Don't only rely on what firms come to your school but find out who the firms are hiring. UDM and State bring in all the top MI firms (Dykema, Dickinson, Honigman, Butzel, Bodman, etc.), but not all of these will take sudents from these lower tiered schools.

Actually one more thing. Take eveything you hear on this board with a huge grain of salt. I think your best bet would be to talk with students who currently went through the OCI process at the schools you are considering. Stop them in the hallways when you visit and ask them. Look out for yourself. Don't listen to Joe Schmo who "knows tons of attorneys that went to Cooley and work for Skadden."

I feel like an a-hole, but I hope this was helpful.

Please, ask questions.

EMSR

78
Choosing the Right Law School / Re: t3/t4 chances
« on: November 07, 2006, 06:17:54 PM »
Thought I'd repost this as I saw Detroit Mercy mentioned.

I attended the University of Detroit Mercy for my first year of law school. I transferred for my second year, and I'm very happy I did. Working hard and getting good grades is definitely important, but it is MUCH more important if you are planning on attending a tier 4 school.

First of all, not nearly as many firms interview at tier 4 schools as they do at higher tier schools. Look up Detroit Mercy on nalpdirectory.com and then look up any tier 1 or tier 2 school. UDM brings in around 20 firms I think. The firm I accepted an offer with only has two attorneys from UDM (out of 2200 lawyers), and these two are partners that are long standing at the firm.

Secondly, you must be at the top of your class to even be considered by law firms. I don't care if they have 20 lawyers or 2200 lawyers. Grades are an objective was of showing qualification. By top of the class I mean TOP to even get interviews. Many firms limit the people they will even consider for initial interviews to top 10-20%. I have many friends still at UDM that can't get jobs that did very well their first year, some on law reveiw, some on moot court and some on both.

Thirdly, keep in mind that the easiest and most efficient way of getting firm jobs (I understand not everyone wants to do the law firm thing, but with 100,000 in debr many of us don't have the option) is through the OCI (on campus interview process) your 2L year. Talk to the CSO at the schools you are considering, see what firms interveiw there, who they hire, how many they hire, etc. Talk with students that go to these schools! When you are visiting stop them in the hallways. Ask questions, preferablt not only from administration as they will try to deceive you. Nalpdirectory.com is helpful.

Law school is a huge investment. Many students do not get jobs. People on this board say "Work hard, pass the bar, and you'r sure to get a job. It doesn't matter what school you go to." I disagree with these statements. It makes all the difference in the world. Protect yourselves by asking questions of everyone you can. What I say is especially true with regard to firm jobs. 

I'm sorry to be harsh, but I see many of my friends, very smart people, very frustrated about their job situations. The OCI season is over, and the vast majority of them have no jobs lined up for the summer. I used to speak very highly of UDM, but with hindsight I see that many things that the administration told me were not true. Keep in mind what I am saying is only from what I have heard regarding UDM and other schools that students transferred from to my current school. Also, I was only concerned with law firms, not govt, public interest, etc. But, if you want to do these things, check on your schools' loan forgiveness programs, scholarships, etc.

Good Luck. PM me with any questions. EMSR

79
Choosing the Right Law School / Re: T4's Woith Attending???
« on: November 07, 2006, 06:16:13 PM »
I attended the University of Detroit Mercy for my first year of law school. I transferred for my second year, and I'm very happy I did. Working hard and getting good grades is definitely important, but it is MUCH more important if you are planning on attending a tier 4 school.

First of all, not nearly as many firms interview at tier 4 schools as they do at higher tier schools. Look up Detroit Mercy on nalpdirectory.com and then look up any tier 1 or tier 2 school. UDM brings in around 20 firms I think. The firm I accepted an offer with only has two attorneys from UDM (out of 2200 lawyers), and these two are partners that are long standing at the firm.

Secondly, you must be at the top of your class to even be considered by law firms. I don't care if they have 20 lawyers or 2200 lawyers. Grades are an objective was of showing qualification. By top of the class I mean TOP to even get interviews. Many firms limit the people they will even consider for initial interviews to top 10-20%. I have many friends still at UDM that can't get jobs that did very well their first year, some on law reveiw, some on moot court and some on both.

Thirdly, keep in mind that the easiest and most efficient way of getting firm jobs (I understand not everyone wants to do the law firm thing, but with 100,000 in debr many of us don't have the option) is through the OCI (on campus interview process) your 2L year. Talk to the CSO at the schools you are considering, see what firms interveiw there, who they hire, how many they hire, etc. Talk with students that go to these schools! When you are visiting stop them in the hallways. Ask questions, preferablt not only from administration as they will try to deceive you. Nalpdirectory.com is helpful.

Law school is a huge investment. Many students do not get jobs. People on this board say "Work hard, pass the bar, and you'r sure to get a job. It doesn't matter what school you go to." I disagree with these statements. It makes all the difference in the world. Protect yourselves by asking questions of everyone you can. What I say is especially true with regard to firm jobs. 

I'm sorry to be harsh, but I see many of my friends, very smart people, very frustrated about their job situations. The OCI season is over, and the vast majority of them have no jobs lined up for the summer. I used to speak very highly of UDM, but with hindsight I see that many things that the administration told me were not true. Keep in mind what I am saying is only from what I have heard regarding UDM and other schools that students transferred from to my current school. Also, I was only concerned with law firms, not govt, public interest, etc. But, if you want to do these things, check on your schools' loan forgiveness programs, scholarships, etc.

Good Luck. PM me with any questions. EMSR

80
Choosing the Right Law School / Re: IU-B vs Case....Wayne?
« on: October 17, 2006, 06:50:02 PM »
I know this is an old posting, but I wanted ot offer my two cents for anyone doing a search regarding the OP's original topic. Salary information gets debated constantly in these forums by students who are usually not very informed on the subject. Looking at "average salary charts" created by various outside organizations will not give you an accurate reading of what most students are making. The majority of employment with mid-big law firms is met through the OCI process, which is mostly restricted to bigger law firms, firms that can predict what position they will be in with regard to hiring two years ahead of time. Samller law firms, maybe looking for 1-2 associates out of all the MI schools, are much fewer and farther between. The firms in the Michigan market are usually looking to hire about 4-7 students on average from a number of different schools. The best way to research salary statistics is to look at the NALP forms and see what the bigger law firms are paying, how many summer associates they are taking, what their grade/journal requirements are, and what schools they recruit from.

Personally, I think that to say the average Wayne grad makes 70,000-80,000 a yr upon graduation is ridiculous and simply not true. To get recruited by a firm that pays this amount of money is not easy. First of all, even the biggest Michigan firms only take between 4-7 summer associates each year. These firms start at 90,000 (Butzel Long) and pay as much as 125,000 (Honigman Miller). Firms like Dykema start at 105,000 however they pay their summer associates significantly less. To secure these postions you need TERRIFIC grades and probably journal experience. Of course, once you pass the paper test, it becomes more about personality, etc, but the only things that will get you interviews or call-backs (depending if your school's OCI process operates by a lottery system or has firms screen their applicants) is your academic record. For the firms that pay less than the numbers above you still need great grades, and keep in mind that these firms take SIGNIFICANTLY fewer summer associates due to the fact that their numbers are fewer and hiring capability not as great.

Second of all, the summer associates that these firms are taking are not all from Michigan schools, even mostly from Michigan schools. I can give you a personal example. I did my first year at Detroit Mercy and transferred to Notre Dame. At Notre Dame I got call-backs from ALL the Detroit firms. Pretty much everyone whom I have talked to interviewing in MI from ND has gotten callbacks from at least a couple of MI firms. The friends that I have at UDM are not even getting initial interviews with these firms. I can assure you that the case is similar with Wayne. With firms taking so few associates each year, why would they not interveiw only the top students? Why not top schools? To even get considered for these top firms you need sweet academic credentials. I have been through this process and have seen others go through it. Check the attorneys profiles at the firms you are looking at in Michigan. Look at the Wayne grads they are hiring. They will all have some academic credential after their name. Many will have law review, which is restricted to the top 10 students and some write ons. 

Thirdly, consider law firms outside of the Michigan market. Dykema, Honigman, Dickinson, Butzel, Bodman, etc, are not national firms, although they do have small offices in other states. These firms are the biggest firms, for the most part, you will find interviewing at UDM and Wayne. Consider firms like Skadden, Jones Day, Kirkland, Sidley etc, firms with many more attorneys that offer employment at a national or international level. These firms will not interview at schools like UDM and Wayne. Check their websites. See where their attorneys are from. The firm I will be wroking for this summer has no grads from UDM and one partner from Wayne. This is out of over 2000 attorneys. I have seen IUB's name on the firm's profiles (again check nalpdirectory.com). I have not seen Wayne or UDM. This was a huge reason for tranferring from UDM. I also wanted to keep my options open in Michigan, and I was accepted to Wayne, but I did my own research and came to the conclusion that I was in a more marketable position at ND for Michigan firms. And, as I said, I got callbacks from every MI firm I interviewed with. 

Anyway, I don't mean to be harsh. Getting a job paying over 50,000 coming from a lower tiered school is not easy. Be realistic. It sucks, but firms care VERY MUCH about stellar grades and stellar schools. UDM boasts a 90% employment placement rate and a 55,000 salary average, but this is NOT true from the students I have seen graduate this school and my friends that have just got through the OCI process with no luck. Many students are frustrated. Ask students where they are working the summer of their 2L year, and see what they say. Many travel with abroad programs. Very few will list the big firms stated above. Contrary to popular belief, there is not much difference between a tier 4 like UDM and a tier 3 like Wayne when it comes to interviewing at big firms. Sure Wayne probably does better on average, but it is still HIGHLY competitive. If you think you are assured a 70,000 job coming out of Wayne just because of the school's name you are dreaming.

Stop looking at independent studies and numbers posted by the school, and do your own research. Good luck to you all.

 

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