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Author Topic: Not to rain on overbody's parade, but do you all realize...  (Read 3002 times)

vap

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Re: Not to rain on overbody's parade, but do you all realize...
« Reply #20 on: February 01, 2008, 09:40:57 AM »
I do agree that there should be a cut-off for law schools (there probably should be no T3 or T4).

i disagree with this.  i don't think the solution is to limit the number of lawyers or opportunities for people who want to become lawyers.  i think there are people who would do well in law who simply don't have the numbers to get into higher ranked schools.  i think the solution is rather for the ABA to refuse accreditation to any law school whose tuition and costs do not bear a reasonable relationship to the expected job prospects (we can debate reasonable relationship later).

This debate rattles on LSD, XOXO, and jdunderground all the time.  It really is silly for someone to say "let's abolish the T3 and T4 schools." 

Arguments for:
1.  Protect some people (less than 20,000), from illusions of grandeur.
2.  Increase salaries for all other lawyers.

Arguments against:
1.  Increase the cost of legal services, thus reducing the number of lower-income individuals who can afford legal services.
2.  Even further perpetuate an elitist market.
3.  Freedom of a person to choose his/her career.

vjm

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Re: Not to rain on overbody's parade, but do you all realize...
« Reply #21 on: February 01, 2008, 09:44:03 AM »
I do think that debt management/ investment return is an important factor which everyone should take into consideration when deciding whether and where to go to law school.

Having said that, I think the conclusion that "Lower ranked school= no BIGLAW= you'll die of starvation" is a little over the top. There are many options out there for people with JD's. There are many individuals who go to lower ranked schools, examine their interests and options, and go on to do work which is meaningful to them and supports them.

I am planning on becoming a public defender. I have no interest in BIGLAW. I don't think there is anything inherently wrong with BIGLAW as a career choice, but it would be wrong for me. I am looking at LRAP programs in every school I am applying to, as well as federal assistance with repayment. I currently live on $17,000 a year (roughly), and I own a house, have a new-ish car, and eat regularly. I am sure that I will be able survive on what I will get paid after graduation.

Of the legal mentors I have been fortunate enough to encounter thus far, about half are T14, and half are not. They all do work they love, and all are just fine financially.

Thank you to the original poster for addressing this issue in a calmer and more   respectful manner than appears elsewhere. I don't agree with you, but it is a very important issue.

::hops off soapbox::

Dr. Rose

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Re: Not to rain on overbody's parade, but do you all realize...
« Reply #22 on: February 01, 2008, 10:18:09 AM »
...how much 130K in student debt is? I mean, besides the students admitted to the top half of the T14 that are virtually assured BigLaw, everyone else is making a seirous gamble if they plan on paying full tution to a Tier 2 or even bottom part of T50 school. 130K is ALOT of money to pay back, especially at 9%+ interest and you better be DAMN SURE you have a 80K+ job lined up right out of law school if you want to avoid crushing, life altering debt.

Now invariably people will respond with the usual accusations that I'm a pessimist or that I am bitter because such and such a law school denied me. But try proving to me that spending 100K+ on a law school education that may land you a 40K job after graduation, or none at all in some cases, is worth it.

There are plenty of options open to defer the debt you will incur:

1)   Work for a few years, save some money for school, be a paralegal and see if law is for you

2)   Go part-time and work to defer the cost

3)   Take scholarships at lower ranked schools.

All of you who have never held a real job, worked in a law firm or paid you own way or have been successful at anything but school are taking a risk. Most people donít end up staying in the first real profession they enter. Biglaw has an 80% turnover rate. If you suck at being a lawyer not even that Yale degree is going to save you. Yes, top 14 degree means you much likely to get a higher paying first job, it does not mean you are guaranteed to keep it long enough to pay off your loans. Its not like you can just lateral from one big firm that let you go to another big firm, if you suck at your profession. Nor is a mid-sized firm going to pay you big bucks if youíre an ex-big law 3-year associate, all you have done is write memos and dock review, you donít have any practical experience they want, a 1st year associate at a small firm knows more than you do.

Life is full of risk, if you want to be a lawyer, and you actually happen to be good at something you know nothing about now, then it will all work out in the end, you will payy off your loans at some point, even if you go to the best school and you turn out not to actually be a good lawyer, that debt is not going to disappear when your high paying job does.

I think either way the pople who go to law school just to make money are going to be dispaointed, either becuase of debt, or becuase of what the work really is, or becuase they paid alot of money to eneter a profesion they know zero about. If you go to law school truley wanting to be a lawyer you'll not be as rich with lots of loans, but you will enjoy what you do everyday, evetually you will get those loans paid off, and will likley be better at it than someone who just went for the money. 


Well said!

TheWESTWESTWEST

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Re: Not to rain on overbody's parade, but do you all realize...
« Reply #23 on: February 01, 2008, 10:54:30 AM »
I actually started this thread after I finished reading an article where individuals shared their debt stories. The majority of those with truly massive debt were either:

A) People who couldn't control their expenses and racked up gigantic credit card debt.

B) Law school graduates.

My post was NOT aimed at individuals who have either planned out their finances in advance, are going to state schools, have received scholarships, or already have a job lined up upon graduation. Rather, it was directed primarily at those individuals who are willing and ready to incur massive debt at T2-T3-T4 schools due to their own delusions of grandeur and the lies that many of these diploma mills feed them.
I truly believe that many private Law schools outside of the T2 are running quasi-criminal operations, duping thousands of young adults into taking on tens of thousands of dollars of debt, only to end up in a saturated field with limited job prospects.

Man Crush

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Re: Not to rain on overbody's parade, but do you all realize...
« Reply #24 on: February 01, 2008, 11:17:27 AM »
These arguments sound good but what about smaller states like Idaho, Wyoming, Montana etc.  I'd suggest letting each state have at least one ABA accredited law school so some of these 3T and 4Ts can still produce lawyers for their local areas.  I don't see many 2T and 1T graduates finding "BIGLAW" or small frims in Billings Montana, Boise Idaho, or some of these other small towns throughout the west (and probably other areas of the country) attractive, unless they are from the area originally.  Also, about 3T and 4T private schools, they do seem a bit shady to me.  The publics are a much better deal.  U of Idaho and Wyoming all under 15k/year whereas others are 20k+. 

BTW, I am also very scared of debt and scholarships will play a huge role.

I do agree that there should be a cut-off for law schools (there probably should be no T3 or T4).

i disagree with this.  i don't think the solution is to limit the number of lawyers or opportunities for people who want to become lawyers.  i think there are people who would do well in law who simply don't have the numbers to get into higher ranked schools.  i think the solution is rather for the ABA to refuse accreditation to any law school whose tuition and costs do not bear a reasonable relationship to the expected job prospects (we can debate reasonable relationship later).

This debate rattles on LSD, XOXO, and jdunderground all the time.  It really is silly for someone to say "let's abolish the T3 and T4 schools." 

Arguments for:
1.  Protect some people (less than 20,000), from illusions of grandeur.
2.  Increase salaries for all other lawyers.

Arguments against:
1.  Increase the cost of legal services, thus reducing the number of lower-income individuals who can afford legal services.
2.  Even further perpetuate an elitist market.
3.  Freedom of a person to choose his/her career.
"Would I rather be feared or loved? Um... Easy, both. I want people to be afraid of how much they love me."
-------------------

vap

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Re: Not to rain on overbody's parade, but do you all realize...
« Reply #25 on: February 01, 2008, 11:55:31 AM »
Its not like you can just lateral from one big firm that let you go to another big firm, if you suck at your profession.

actually you can do this so long as it's not too obvious that you suck at your profession.  ;)

Yea, you need to see the writing on the wall and lateral BEFORE the firm makes the decsion for you  ;)

exactly.  but they'll probably give you a lot of time before they do this.  i mean how often do you hear about people getting pushed out for performance reasons? 

Frequently.  Law firms are businesses that cut excess fat.  Partners make less money if associate performance is weak.

pinkfeather

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Re: Not to rain on overbody's parade, but do you all realize...
« Reply #26 on: February 01, 2008, 12:02:59 PM »
Making six figures is easy, saving $20,000 per year is not. Once you put yourself into big debt, it's not easy to get out.
I have worked several years to pay off my graduate student loan, and finally have some saving. My income is ok but the inflation and DC's living standard do beat me a lot. I have to be in budget and be disciplined to save, which is not easy at all. I hate to be in debt again so this time if I am in, I will avoid asking for so much loan from the beginning. I am going to keep my current job at least part time, be happy with my old car, perhaps move to a cheaper apt... If I need to find a loan, I will shop around to find something lower than 5%. The compound rate is a magic.

Astro

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Re: Not to rain on overbody's parade, but do you all realize...
« Reply #27 on: February 01, 2008, 12:03:59 PM »
strongly disagree.  wiimote bashes lower tiered schools and the people who attend them solely for the purpose of making himself better about himself; he has no concern for the well-being of others.  i'm not convinced that OP is doing the same, rather he appears (for now) to be trying to provide a public service announcement that he believes to be of value. 


You of all people should be able to recognize new flame tactics.  :D
J, if you didn't bring enough penis for everyone, you shouldn't have brought any penis at all. 

botbot

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Re: Not to rain on overbody's parade, but do you all realize...
« Reply #28 on: February 01, 2008, 12:31:10 PM »
This post awakened me to just how stupid I was being in my legal pursuits.  I filed my drop out papers today, just in time for the 75% refund.

THANKS OP YOU SAVED MY LIFE.

Dr. Rose

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Re: Not to rain on overbody's parade, but do you all realize...
« Reply #29 on: February 01, 2008, 12:32:38 PM »
This post awakened me to just how stupid I was being in my legal pursuits.  I filed my drop out paper today, just in time for the 75% refund.

THANKS OP YOU SAVED MY LIFE.
Ahahaha!