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Author Topic: Going to W&L and practicing in Cali  (Read 826 times)

ronin3782

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Going to W&L and practicing in Cali
« on: April 14, 2005, 12:50:50 AM »
Has anyone, or does anyone know someone, who went to Washington and Lee for their JD, and ended up coming back to CA to practice. I sent in my deposit yesterday, but i'm just afraid i'm going to be pigeonholed into working in DC/VA area after i graduate. And when I say working in CA...i mean working in CA biglaw making the bucks...not some 80k a year job.
I will miss LA :-(

KODIAK

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Re: Going to W&L and practicing in Cali
« Reply #1 on: April 14, 2005, 07:58:31 AM »
My best friend is a 3L at W&L and I have talked with him quite a bit about their job placement.  He actually knows a few people from CA and says they were nuts to go to W&L.  Their program is very small.  I could actually email him today and ask if their plans to go back to LA are working.
My friend wasn't in the top 10% so he did his job searching by himself.  He got a good job in Northern VA but said that the guy who interviewed him didn't even know W&L had a law school, and the guy was born and raised in VA.  My point is that while W&L has a really good program, their placement is limited to DC and the South, and honestly not that many seem to go to DC.  I think it would take a TON of both effort and luck on your part to land a big time job in Cali coming from W&L.  Also, depending on where you're coming from, Lexington might drive you insane really quick.  Hope that helps.

dubris

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Re: Going to W&L and practicing in Cali
« Reply #2 on: April 14, 2005, 10:07:30 AM »
ronin3782,

If you wanted CA biglaw, why did you turn down GULC?

krbr

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Re: Going to W&L and practicing in Cali
« Reply #3 on: April 14, 2005, 10:12:30 AM »
ronin3782,

If you wanted CA biglaw, why did you turn down GULC?

My sentiments exactly.

On Martindale there are 74 people listed as W&L grads who practice in California.  Start networking.
165/3.38, 3 yrs WE
Pending: UCLA (slack-asses)
Yes: BU, Illinois ($8k), W&M (in-state + $5k), UC-Hastings, Temple($7.5k), Miami($20k)
Waitlist: GWU, UVA (general resident list), USC
No: NW, Penn, Mich, Boalt, G-Town, Texas

Judge

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Re: Going to W&L and practicing in Cali
« Reply #4 on: April 14, 2005, 12:17:23 PM »
The job market question is funny.  A lot of people look at W&L and other such great schools and go to lesser quality schools because of job stats, but they need to consider a few things.

1)  Many of the people who go to W&L self-select jobs in the South because W&L grads are like Gods down there.  So the fact they have such an alum base is not because the school doesn't try to go west coast, but rather people choose the South themselves.

2)  The school seems to be making real efforts to recruit students that want to go to California and other Western states.  I applied to many schools, W&L was on of them, stating I wanted to practice in Cali, and was heavily recruited.

3)  Have you taken a look at the firms the recruit at W&L and participate in their job fairs?  You have some big hitters, like Cravath, Swaine & Moore, Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom, Kirkland & Ellis, etc, etc, etc.  The school doesn't seem to publish this info clearly enough, but its true.

4)  This is the most important point everyone seems to forget.  Firms don't hire schools, they hire students.  Good students everywhere will bet out crappy students at the best schools.  Initially they may have the recruiting edge, but the still need to put together a resume (all past work and skills included), they need to interview, and they generally need to be competent.  Assuming you have a decent preparation for law school, schools like W&L will give you the advantage in this area.  They train great lawyers (even considering their specialization are weak and they aren't top ten).  So don't expect your school to get you a job.  You have to do this, your school just gives you the tools.  That's why great students in places like Hastings or Cardozo can still beat out others for big law jobs who are in top 20/25 schools.  Essentially, your resume and interview will speak for themselves to firms that DO recruit W&L grads.

BoscoBreaux

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Re: Going to W&L and practicing in Cali
« Reply #5 on: April 15, 2005, 02:52:56 PM »
Has anyone, or does anyone know someone, who went to Washington and Lee for their JD, and ended up coming back to CA to practice. I sent in my deposit yesterday, but i'm just afraid i'm going to be pigeonholed into working in DC/VA area after i graduate. And when I say working in CA...i mean working in CA biglaw making the bucks...not some 80k a year job.
If you wanted to practice in CA, then there are many CA schools, some "lower ranked," that may have been a better bet for you.

fat_daddy

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Re: Going to W&L and practicing in Cali
« Reply #6 on: April 16, 2005, 04:27:02 PM »
My cousin attended W&L and got a great job at Klinedinst in San Diego. They have quite a few W&L grads there.
Attending: University of the Pacific-McGeorge

ronin3782

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Re: Going to W&L and practicing in Cali
« Reply #7 on: April 16, 2005, 06:59:47 PM »
ronin3782,

If you wanted CA biglaw, why did you turn down GULC?

I got a lot of money from WL, while nothing from most of the rest  :P
But honestly, ive been talking to those schools. If anything changes close to good $ wise, its a no brainer.

Has anyone, or does anyone know someone, who went to Washington and Lee for their JD, and ended up coming back to CA to practice. I sent in my deposit yesterday, but i'm just afraid i'm going to be pigeonholed into working in DC/VA area after i graduate. And when I say working in CA...i mean working in CA biglaw making the bucks...not some 80k a year job.
If you wanted to practice in CA, then there are many CA schools, some "lower ranked," that may have been a better bet for you.

Ya...but the problem with CA is that there are few schools in the 20-30ish rank (my target). Sure we have Boalt and Stanford (cant get in), UCLA and USC (maybe get in), and Hastings (the only one that fits that criteria). Got rejected from SC, and I havent heard from Hastings yet. The more and more I think about it, i think i'm going to go there if i get in. I love SF and all, but i don't like the cutthroat huge school stigma of Hastings. I went to UCLA ug, where i was just a number...and i liked the personal appeal and collegial nature of WL.

My cousin attended W&L and got a great job at Klinedinst in San Diego. They have quite a few W&L grads there.

Ya, the admissions office really pushed his name. But #1 I don't like placing all my bets on one horse, even if that horse is loyal #2 Looking at his webpage, he only pays 80K a year to start. Thats pretty low even for a firm his size of 50+ attys.


What do you guys think of prospects between WL and WashU? I mean WashU has more general name recognition. But in terms of employers while checking NALP, it seems about the same in CA, but maybe they are wrong.
I will miss LA :-(

ronin3782

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Re: Going to W&L and practicing in Cali
« Reply #8 on: April 17, 2005, 05:39:10 AM »
Still no word from Hastings  :-[
I will miss LA :-(

tacojohn

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Re: Going to W&L and practicing in Cali
« Reply #9 on: April 17, 2005, 12:29:51 PM »
I'm sorta surprised you didn't look at some of the other southwest/pacific coast schools, like Oregon, Arizona, or ASU.  I don't have any statistics, but they're bound to have more grads in California than W&L.