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Author Topic: T4 transfer to T2/T1  (Read 5763 times)

cconnoll

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T4 transfer to T2/T1
« on: March 19, 2009, 02:21:50 PM »

Iv Gotten a lot of feedback from this site. appreciate all of it!

I'm debating between Whittier (11,200 scholarship) or Cal Western (no scholarship).......I plan to be at the top of my class and transfer (I know I know, everyone who plans on attending T4 schools plans to transfer, and I understand that it will not be easy).
If any of you knew that you would not be retaking the LSAT again (154), which school would you attend based on the premise of being top 10-15% of class and seeking to transfer to:

UC-HASTINGS
UC-DAVIS
BERKLEY
UCLA
USD
ASU
possibly USC, STANFORD

Also, I understand that alot of 1L's @ T4's go in with the idea of transferring, does this mean that your average T4 1L class  could have very stiff competition in terms of GPA, considering that sooo many students are looking to pull off 4.0 GPA in hopes of transferring. Even stiff-enough competition to be on par with T3's? T2's?

ANY feedback is much appreciated  :mrgreen:

willametterules

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Re: T4 transfer to T2/T1
« Reply #1 on: March 19, 2009, 08:07:02 PM »

Iv Gotten a lot of feedback from this site. appreciate all of it!

I'm debating between Whittier (11,200 scholarship) or Cal Western (no scholarship).......I plan to be at the top of my class and transfer (I know I know, everyone who plans on attending T4 schools plans to transfer, and I understand that it will not be easy).
If any of you knew that you would not be retaking the LSAT again (154), which school would you attend based on the premise of being top 10-15% of class and seeking to transfer to:

UC-HASTINGS
UC-DAVIS
BERKLEY
UCLA
USD
ASU
possibly USC, STANFORD

Also, I understand that alot of 1L's @ T4's go in with the idea of transferring, does this mean that your average T4 1L class  could have very stiff competition in terms of GPA, considering that sooo many students are looking to pull off 4.0 GPA in hopes of transferring. Even stiff-enough competition to be on par with T3's? T2's?

ANY feedback is much appreciated  :mrgreen:


I had the exact same LSAT and took a T4 scholarship....transferred.  I hated the LSAT and vowed to never retake.  I'm now 6 classes from graduation.  My advice in hindsight?  Suck it up and retake, it is a hell of a lot easier to get in the 160's than it is to be top 10% at a T4 and transfer to a top program.  Not to mention if your T4 is particularly sucky, top schools probably won't touch you even if you are top 10%.  Also, it is no fun to try to move, network, make friends, learn the ropes at a new program etc... all in one summer (I even got married as well). 

Notice that I didn't bag on your dream of excelling and then transferring to a top program... or how it adds a new level competition at T4s and how the brutal curve trashes many people's chances.

I'm going to say it again...retake before you settle for your T4 plan... I wish I had at least tried even though things did work out.

mnewboldc

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Re: T4 transfer to T2/T1
« Reply #2 on: March 26, 2009, 08:29:51 PM »
To transfer you need good grades during your first year of law school. Your grades for the first year will rest almost entirely on 8 exams and a few papers. So by not retaking the LSAT you're basically assuming 1) I will be able to comprehend everything that's taught to me despite the fact it's probably an entirely new subject for me, which must be analyzed in an even more novel way, 2) I won't get sidetracked by a curveball question on any of these 8 exams, 3) my grade won't be adversely affected by failure to answer any question whilst cold-called, especially early in the semester when I haven't figured out how to answer that question, 4) I am smarter than almost everyone in a random sampling of 200-300 people who have my same credentials, and 5) no intangible factors (sickness, etc.) will work to contravene 1) and 2). My con law final, for example, took place in a blizzard and I think someone got into an accident and couldn't make it. A few kids came down with the flu.

Looking further down the road the picture gets worse. Law firms hire based on 1L grades. One of the critiques of the current collapse of the legal industry is that it took too many people from lower-ranked schools. So even if you transfer to a T1 from a T4, you'd have to assume that the folks doing the hiring will have changed their thinking, which basically means that you're assuming the economy will have drastically improved by the time your first year has ended.

A lawyer would never risk so much on so many assumptions, especially when it is so cheap, comparatively, to re-take the LSAT. In this job market, law school on a whole is dicey, and T4 without connections is suicide.
Cornell 2011

mnewboldc

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Re: T4 transfer to T2/T1
« Reply #3 on: March 26, 2009, 08:31:45 PM »
Sorry. By "it" in the second paragraph I meant "big law firms."
Cornell 2011

beaverfuzz

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Re: T4 transfer to T2/T1
« Reply #4 on: March 26, 2009, 09:27:56 PM »
One of the critiques of the current collapse of the legal industry is that it took too many people from lower-ranked schools.

I have never heard this, and frankly I cannot think of any logical justification for that statement, unless you are talking about large law firms over-hiring in general. Even then I think it would be a stretch to say these firms inflated their payrolls only with graduates of "lower-ranked schools."

cconnoll

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Re: T4 transfer to T2/T1
« Reply #5 on: March 27, 2009, 02:03:18 AM »
One of the critiques of the current collapse of the legal industry is that it took too many people from lower-ranked schools.

I have never heard this, and frankly I cannot think of any logical justification for that statement, unless you are talking about large law firms over-hiring in general. Even then I think it would be a stretch to say these firms inflated their payrolls only with graduates of "lower-ranked schools."




I think the "collapse" he's referring to is in regards that the ABA continues to accredit more and more schools. Plus, look @ all the non-accredited schools per state, Cali has like 20 alone. Peoples College of Law comes to mind lol...I think its just the idea that the legal education system PUMPS out ALOT of prospective lawyers.

mnewboldc

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Re: T4 transfer to T2/T1
« Reply #6 on: March 27, 2009, 11:15:34 AM »
Beaverfuzz,

I cannot speak to what you may have heard or not heard about the cause of industry-wide morass. However, I never sought to establish "logical justification" for the statement you mention, because that statement relies not on logic but on an industry-wide bias that someone who got lucky on one day (i.e., LSAT-taking day) and gained admission to a higher-ranked school as a result is somehow more capable, at least initially, of doing thousands of hours of work per year in actual firm practice. The justifiability of the "critique" is not the issue. The issue is whether or not law firm hiring personnel will actually take this bias into account when adjusting their policies for a tighter market, and deciding from which law schools they will choose their incoming associates. Given the rampant elitism of this profession, it is by no means a "stretch" to conclude that graduates from lower-ranked law schools will bear the brunt of the cost of downsizing, and that hiring personnel will employ backwards-looking "logic" (i.e., that it was the hiring from those lower-ranked schools that caused a detrimental swelling of the ranks) to "justify" their decision.
Cornell 2011

beaverfuzz

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Re: T4 transfer to T2/T1
« Reply #7 on: March 27, 2009, 12:57:20 PM »
I said I thought it was a mistake to assign the broad collapse of the industry to the overhiring of graduates outside the top tier.    It is a matter of overstaffing in general, a point on which we agree. Firms have found they are too big to efficiently meet the current needs of their clients. Firms are overstaffed with graduates from many schools.
 
I also disagree with your assessment that lower-ranked attorneys will be the first to go. While I admit there is a heirarchy during the initial hiring process, the importance of this diminshes expontially once actually in the workforce. Any elitism that exists is not so pervasive as to compel firms to fire associates who are meeting their billable requirements over those who are not, regardless of where they went to school. Once you get in the door, no one cares about the name on your wall. It's about performance.

RMEGRL

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Re: T4 transfer to T2/T1
« Reply #8 on: March 27, 2009, 01:58:44 PM »
Assuming you can transfer, you will have very little time to prep for OCI at your new school, and you might even miss OCI completely.  Then, you will have to list your old school on your resume, and you will have to list your status as a transfer student.  Even if you get interviews, they will ask you why you transferred and expect a brilliant response. You risk getting no offers from OCI, even if you get interviews, for the following reasons:
1) you will be competing with the top 10% from your new school (overcoming the taint of your T4 is difficult without a track record at your new school);
2) the interviewers (every last one of them) will be alumni from your new school, and they may not respect you as a transfer student (note that the interviewers are not the ones who selected you for an interview; selection is by the recruiting coordinators);
3) OCI between 1st and 2nd year is when the best job opportunities are available, and Big Law firms do not generally interview 3Ls at all - they want to get 1Ls and 2Ls into thier summer programs and hire from that pool. 

This is from experience.  I transferred T4 to T1 and was accepted four days prior to the first deadline for OCI.  I got a ton of interviews and only one offer. My one offer came from an alumni who had also been a transfer student.  What sucks is that many of the same firms interviewed at my old school; since I was #3 in my old class, I would have probably gotten a better job offer from OCI at my old school.  Like it or not, the status of "transfer" is frowned upon by all, except others who have transferred.   

I wrote on to Law Review, made the Board of Editors, and made the top 10%, so it worked out for me. I know my degree has value down the road, not just in getting my first job. However, I know another guy who is not so fortunate.  Like me, he is in the top 10% and made Law Review, but he cannot get Big Law firms to talk to him because they have already made their picks from the class of 2009.  He has no job yet, and he transferred T2 to T1.  He missed OCI, as many transfers do, because he applied as a transfer to a lot of schools, and waiting on decisions from other schools caused him to miss the first OCI deadline, which was in the middle of July.  I just applied to one school, so I knew I would go if accepted.

Good luck to you.  If you really want to transfer, go for it.  Plan on working a little harder, and know the risks and have a fabulous answer to the question "why did you transfer?" when you go to your interviews. 
If you get up one more time than you fall you will make it through.

mnewboldc

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Re: T4 transfer to T2/T1
« Reply #9 on: March 27, 2009, 05:03:28 PM »
Beaverfuzz,

I certainly agree with you that, once you get your foot in the door, experience should matter more. However, I did not agree with you that the cause of the problem is overextension in general, nor would I agree with you, because that explanation is quite broad, and thus is probably as false as it is true. All I said was that it was wrong for firms to assert a bias based on what I believe is an arbitrary ranking system. I did not agree to endorse the opposite of cronyism, because I do not think the world, insofar as it has been framed here, can be divided cleanly into night and day. I also said that "one" critique of the current firm system was that it took on too many lower-ranked students. By saying "one" I did not say that this is the way things actually are. There could be, and probably are, many other factors contributing to the current retraction of the legal market (popular sentiment against the billable hour, the recession, top-heavy partnership structures, etc.). The goal is not to figure out what reality is or what it should be, but to determine that policy consideration that firms will actually utilize in going forward that actually matters to us. What matters to us is getting jobs after we graduate. As far as that's concerned, I think firms will wind up hiring fewer first-year associates overall, and that students from lower-ranked law schools will bear the brunt of this retraction - as the phrase "hiring policies" suggested.
Cornell 2011