Law School Discussion


« on: April 18, 2008, 09:02:05 PM »
How is everyone else wrestling with balancing family needs and deciding to go to law school?

I was accepted this past week to my first school and honestly never thought that I would ever have the opportunity to go to law school. I am very excited but want to make sure I am doing the right thing for my family.

I already have a secure career for which my family and I moved 3 years ago for, as I am the main providor in our household. In order for me to go to school we would have to pack up, sell the house, and move again. I have a very supportive wife but I am mainly concerned about the impact on our sons, ages 7 & 8 who have begun to get settled in here and are doing really well.

I am also unsure as to how we will make ends meet for 3 years while living off of loans and piling up debt. Is there anyone else having the same difficulties and how are you dealing with your situation?

Thanks for the support.

« Reply #1 on: April 19, 2008, 02:19:02 PM »
OK, here is my two cents on this situation.

First of all, congratulations on being accepted to a law school.  I can only hope that you take a moment and realize that many people who want to venture down this path do not get even get past first base, and you have successfully accomplished that. I applied to over 15 law schools and got 13 rejects, so I know what it feels like to get that "yes".  So, pat yourself on the back and smell the rose in front of you for a moment. 

Now, on to your answer. I am in a similar boat to yours, as I am a non-traditional student, have a stable living environment, good job and I am engaged to be married next year.  I have been accepted into 2 law schools which are over 1500 miles from my home, thus entry into one of them will require me to move a considerable distance to attend either one.  My fiancee has known all along about my desire to go to law school, thus has been supportative and looks forward to moving.  Hopefully, your spouse and kids feel the same way.  I would say that you cannot be complacent about the opportunity cost that law school entails for those, like yourself, who are settled in a community.  You will have to relocate your family, therefore your kids will have to attend a new school, find new friends and learn a new environment.  Your spouse will have to find a new job, a new school (if they are studying as well) and also assimilate into a new environment.  All of this will take place while you a studying your rear off, reducing the time you will be around to kiss the spouse, pet the dog, help with the kid's homework, etc. We all know the benefits of law school.  I would ask you if the opportunity (and financial) cost are worth the sacrifice?

Personally, I have chosen to pass on the law schools that I have been admitted into this cycle (one admit is conditional and requires me to go to a summer program) and retake the LSAT to try and solicit more scholarship funds next cycle.  Taking 3 years off work and piling on Student Loans to survive is a daunting thought.  But, add in your family's welfare, and the thought has to become even more frightening.

If you must follow your dream to law school, and I can only suggest you go into this venture with your EYES WIDE OPEN, not glossed over at the possibilities and be realistic about your potential for success as an attorney.  You may be the next Charles Darrow or Thurgood Marshall, who knows?  Good luck with your choices. 

So now, do you want the red pill or the blue one?


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« Reply #2 on: April 25, 2008, 11:29:11 PM »
if you're really undecided, it might be best not to go through all the uprooting and financial issues.  I'm not usually one to advocate trying again next cycle, but if it meant you possibly going to a local law school (so, not having to move), it might be worth it.  also, what are your wife's chances for employment, either in your current location or if you were to move?

I don't have kids yet, but I hear they are pretty resilient.  If you were to move for law school, they'd adjust pretty well (they are still quite young).  The problem becomes, what about after you graduate?  Would you move again for a job?  At that point your kids would be in that pre-teen stage, and they probably wouldn't handle another move so well.

Good luck!