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Author Topic: How do you know if withdrawing is the right decision?  (Read 4173 times)

Poetgirl80

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How do you know if withdrawing is the right decision?
« on: October 12, 2008, 06:37:34 PM »
I'm considering leaving law school. I realize that nobody can make this decision for me... which is why I won't dump all the details on this board seeking advice. Instead, I'd like to know if others were in the same situation, and what was the moment when you were sure that you wanted to leave? Are you glad you did? And logistically, does it make more sense to finish the semester or leave now? (My success has nothing to do with my choice, so knowing my grades is not a factor). Thanks.

NeverTrustKlingons

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Re: How do you know if withdrawing is the right decision?
« Reply #1 on: October 12, 2008, 08:35:21 PM »
Consider whether you are disenchanted with what you're studying (law school itself) or where you're studying (that particular law school).  If it's the latter, maybe investigate transfer possibilities.  I hated my first school and did my best to get out of there. 

As far as law school as a whole, if you don't want to be a lawyer, I would leave.  Don't buy into the "JD will help me with whatever I do" story -- that may or may not be true, and in any case there are tons of ways to beef up your resume without spending three years in grad school.
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thorc954

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Re: How do you know if withdrawing is the right decision?
« Reply #2 on: October 12, 2008, 09:14:29 PM »
I'm considering leaving law school. I realize that nobody can make this decision for me... which is why I won't dump all the details on this board seeking advice. Instead, I'd like to know if others were in the same situation, and what was the moment when you were sure that you wanted to leave? Are you glad you did? And logistically, does it make more sense to finish the semester or leave now? (My success has nothing to do with my choice, so knowing my grades is not a factor). Thanks.

I agree with the other comment, you really have to decide why you arent happy.  I was miserable my first year and miserable my second year.  So far, the third year is not as terrible, but only because I am avoiding classes and doing practical hands on stuff.  Law school is not that much fun.  Every year around this time, there is a thread on here with a bunch of people that are really depressed.  The environment can make you get that way.  All you are doing is the same old thing every day.  It takes over your life.  You have to decide for yourself whether you actually want to be a lawyer.  Think of why you went to law school in the first place.  I still remember the first time I stepped foot into a court room and the goose bumps I got. I felt like I really belonged there and knew I wanted to be a lawyer.  If you dont want to be a lawyer, think of what else you could do.  If you would go to another graduate program instead, then it is probably better to finish the semester out so you dont have a withdrawal on your record (may make them think you couldnt handle graduate level material or something).  If you think you may ever want to go to law school again in the future, you may not want a withdrawal either.  If you know there is something you would rather do, why waste another month of your life? You might as well just drop now. 

It is a major decision that you have to make for yourself.  Just know that you arent the only one that isnt happy (not that I mean that to belittle how you are feeling but just to let you know that there is nothing wrong with you for thinking you might not want to do it).

Best of luck to you, and I hope you make the right decision.

RonSantoRules

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Re: How do you know if withdrawing is the right decision?
« Reply #3 on: October 12, 2008, 11:38:58 PM »
Withdrawing now would allow you to enroll in an ABA accredited school next year if you decide to do so. If you drop out/withdraw after taking even one final exam, ABA rules prohibit you from enrolling in an ABA accredited school for two years. Just something to keep in mind if it is a "I hate the law school I am at" versus "I hate being in law school in general." If you are not certain you want to close off law as a career path, it might be better to get out now and try again next year at someplace different.

I also would add that feelings like this are pretty common about the halfway point the semester for most students. The same feelings of general shitiness happened both of my years in grad school (and to everyone else in my program), and just last week, I was researching jobs and thinking about how I could get out of law school and find something else to do with my life. But I took a day off, got the hell out of the library, went and visited my girlfriend, and that re-energized me.

Law school is like groundhog day. Every day is the same, you see the same people in the same places doing the same stuff every damn day. You get no feedback and basically pay 40K a year to teach yourself law and get harassed by professors. What a racket.

My advice would be to give it till Thanksgiving and see if you still feel the same. If you do, take an extended holiday and forget law school. The debt isn't worth it if you don't want to be there.   

"Legapp" Stands for "Legal Application"

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Re: How do you know if withdrawing is the right decision?
« Reply #4 on: October 13, 2008, 12:51:01 AM »
I'm considering leaving law school. I realize that nobody can make this decision for me... which is why I won't dump all the details on this board seeking advice. Instead, I'd like to know if others were in the same situation, and what was the moment when you were sure that you wanted to leave? Are you glad you did? And logistically, does it make more sense to finish the semester or leave now? (My success has nothing to do with my choice, so knowing my grades is not a factor). Thanks.

Feel free to give more detail, because we'll be able to give you better advice.  FWIW, lots of people hate law school but like being lawyers.  Is it the career of law you're not sure about?
I am officially a law school graduate : )

Diet Yomajesty

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Re: How do you know if withdrawing is the right decision?
« Reply #5 on: October 13, 2008, 01:39:18 AM »
You get no feedback and basically pay 40K a year to teach yourself law and get harassed by professors. What a racket.

Boy is that well put.

PoetGirl, I'm very sorry to hear you're not loving it, as I feel like we fought through the app process together. I don't know if I can be of any help, but I can lend an ear if you want to vent. And I'm familiar with your geographic area if I can offer any insight in that capacity.
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StevePirates

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Re: How do you know if withdrawing is the right decision?
« Reply #6 on: October 13, 2008, 01:06:15 PM »
Sounds to me like you want to quit, but don't want people to think poorly of you.

People will not.  Who do you think people would despise more, the one who tried a new experience, didn't like it, so stopped.  Or the one who tried a new experience, hated it, but kept doing it for the approval of others.

I'd rather hang out with the first one.

Drew P. Bottom

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Re: How do you know if withdrawing is the right decision?
« Reply #7 on: October 14, 2008, 11:08:12 AM »
How long have you been wanting to quit? There are times in my life when I want to quit everything I do. But generally, when I wait a few days, I realize how glad I am that I did not quit. Lots of people hate law school. I think probably half of people hate law school. You can find jobs that you won't work more than 50 hrs a week, even as an attorney. You won't make 160k, but there are jobs.

Whatever you do, don't rush your decision. You said you'll end up with 100k in debt? Maybe you should finish your first year and transfer somewhere cheaper. I went to a cheaper school a few spots lower on the rankings than some others I got into just so I could have lower debt and more options. It also does take the stress off your back knowing that you don't HAVE TO take the highest paying job possible just to keep your head above the water. (If you do take that job, it's out of free choice!)

Don't rush the decision and make a huge mistake. But, at the same time, law school isn't for everyone. But, if I were you, I'd lower my head and press on through, transferring to a cheaper school after my first year.
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servinglife

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Re: How do you know if withdrawing is the right decision?
« Reply #8 on: October 14, 2008, 04:02:58 PM »
I almost dropped out of Georgetown UG after my freshman year because I was making a lot of money selling cars over the summer. I had a great social life and friends at the dealership and probably could have gone on to a lucrative career in management there.

How happy am I that I made that decision? Exceedingly. It took me awhile to enjoy school, and I will pay for the bad grades (in terms of less chance of getting into or $ at certain schools) I earned sophomore year b/c I didn't want to be in school. Looking back now, though, I would never trade my education.

As far as your decision goes, you might not want to stick it out. But you have already paid for this semester. I would at least go through the end of the semester and see if things change. You might break up with the boyfriend. You might find another guy or more friends in law school. Don't exchange short-term happiness for previous long-term goals unless you are certain your l/t goals have changed. My advice: don't think about dropping out until you have completed the semester. Focus on school and learning to have a good work-life balance. At the end of the semester revisit this decision. You will have a little more perspective them.

hth.

Ninja1

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Re: How do you know if withdrawing is the right decision?
« Reply #9 on: October 14, 2008, 05:46:34 PM »
We all think about quitting and doing pretty much anything else all of the time.

At this point, you've already paid for your first semester. You might as well soldier through these last two months (you're halfway there), try to enjoy it, and see how you do. If your grades come back and are *&^%, easy decision (just don't deliberately sabotage yourself). If, however, you actually get good grades this semester, it will probably make it much easier to swallow next semester.

Hope that helps.


Law school is like groundhog day. Every day is the same, you see the same people in the same places doing the same stuff every damn day. You get no feedback and basically pay 40K a year to teach yourself law and get harassed by professors. What a racket.


Very well said.
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