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Author Topic: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?  (Read 48753 times)

dischord

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Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
« Reply #40 on: July 10, 2009, 12:08:27 PM »
They all express the fear that once the market turns around, I'd bolt which isn't necessarily true since I take my commitments quite seriously (I made it through 3 years of law school after all). It pains me when they pass me over not even for Associate/BA degree holders but for friggin' HS DIPLOMA folks?!?!?! I keep getting turned away with the "you're overqualified" spiel.


Did you try, or have you thought about trying, to leave it on there but approach the question like, "I realized after working my internships/ 2 years of school/at some point in the process that I hate practicing law but I decided to finish the degree because I'd already made the commitment"?  In a weird way they might interpret that as a reason you wouldn't leave if a legal gig popped up -- not only because you don't want to do law, but because you stick with stuff once you start.

Anyway, I grew up in a sort of academic bubble, and it has been shocking to go out into the real world and see the depths of American anti-intellectual/anti-academic bias.  I don't think I'll ever truly understand this sentiment.  I just wished I had caught on sooner that higher education is often more of a detriment than a pathway to success, since I ended up going to law school as a result of failing to get a job with a good undergraduate degree.
At least I can f-ing think.

lawschoolsucks

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Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
« Reply #41 on: July 10, 2009, 12:22:26 PM »
They all express the fear that once the market turns around, I'd bolt which isn't necessarily true since I take my commitments quite seriously (I made it through 3 years of law school after all). It pains me when they pass me over not even for Associate/BA degree holders but for friggin' HS DIPLOMA folks?!?!?! I keep getting turned away with the "you're overqualified" spiel.


Did you try, or have you thought about trying, to leave it on there but approach the question like, "I realized after working my internships/ 2 years of school/at some point in the process that I hate practicing law but I decided to finish the degree because I'd already made the commitment"?  In a weird way they might interpret that as a reason you wouldn't leave if a legal gig popped up -- not only because you don't want to do law, but because you stick with stuff once you start.

Anyway, I grew up in a sort of academic bubble, and it has been shocking to go out into the real world and see the depths of American anti-intellectual/anti-academic bias.  I don't think I'll ever truly understand this sentiment.  I just wished I had caught on sooner that higher education is often more of a detriment than a pathway to success, since I ended up going to law school as a result of failing to get a job with a good undergraduate degree.

I definitely tried the "After my work experience, I realized I hated the practice of law but wanted to finish what I started"....No go. They still thought I was full of sh!t and I was really sincere and earnest about it (my interviewing skills are great, after all I did have employment every summer in law school). Honestly, they see people with our credentials as a threat to them and their jobs. Like I said, I also went to an top college with a good degree and now have a law degree. Half these people in the hiring department barely graduated HS. There is no way they want you working in their office and given them a run for their money. It's sad that academic success and intellect are frowned upon. Which is why I dumb myself and my resume down. Utterly disgusting.

Matthies

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Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
« Reply #42 on: July 10, 2009, 12:32:56 PM »
They all express the fear that once the market turns around, I'd bolt which isn't necessarily true since I take my commitments quite seriously (I made it through 3 years of law school after all). It pains me when they pass me over not even for Associate/BA degree holders but for friggin' HS DIPLOMA folks?!?!?! I keep getting turned away with the "you're overqualified" spiel.


Did you try, or have you thought about trying, to leave it on there but approach the question like, "I realized after working my internships/ 2 years of school/at some point in the process that I hate practicing law but I decided to finish the degree because I'd already made the commitment"?  In a weird way they might interpret that as a reason you wouldn't leave if a legal gig popped up -- not only because you don't want to do law, but because you stick with stuff once you start.

Anyway, I grew up in a sort of academic bubble, and it has been shocking to go out into the real world and see the depths of American anti-intellectual/anti-academic bias.  I don't think I'll ever truly understand this sentiment.  I just wished I had caught on sooner that higher education is often more of a detriment than a pathway to success, since I ended up going to law school as a result of failing to get a job with a good undergraduate degree.

I definitely tried the "After my work experience, I realized I hated the practice of law but wanted to finish what I started"....No go. They still thought I was full of sh!t and I was really sincere and earnest about it (my interviewing skills are great, after all I did have employment every summer in law school). Honestly, they see people with our credentials as a threat to them and their jobs. Like I said, I also went to an top college with a good degree and now have a law degree. Half these people in the hiring department barely graduated HS. There is no way they want you working in their office and given them a run for their money. It's sad that academic success and intellect are frowned upon. Which is why I dumb myself and my resume down. Utterly disgusting.

The ABA has a book on thier website called something like "Marketing yourself for non law jobs with a law degree" maybe your schools library has a copy/ Also the Kimm Walton book Guerilla tactics is really good, pick them up after the bar
*In clinical studies, Matthies was well tolerated, but women who are pregnant, nursing or might become pregnant should not take or handle Matthies due to a rare, but serious side effect called him having to make child support payments.

LSDSL

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Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
« Reply #43 on: August 23, 2009, 07:53:57 AM »
bump

SASS

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Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
« Reply #44 on: August 23, 2009, 09:41:39 AM »
So now I've started looking at jobs in other fields (I've completely taken law school and my jd off of my resume and have been using my finance/marketing degree to job hunt- a jd is a scarlet letter if you're trying to pursue non-legal careers). It's a sad state of affairs for the completely oversaturated legal community. Good luck OP in your job search.

How do you explain your 3 year absence from the job market? 

Also, and no offense to your background, but it deeply disgusts me that non-legal employers would rather have someone with just a marketing B.A. than someone with a J.D. 

I know the whole rationale that they think that the J.D. will just leave.  But seriously, it's ridiculous that in this economy people with professional and graduate degrees are less valued than people with just B.A.s or even Associates'.  I even ran into this problem after undergrad -- I went to a really elite college and got a liberal arts B.A., but would be passed over for office jobs for Associates' holders. 

Anyway, you'd think that more people would see the value of an employee who's better educated and willing to work hard and challenge himself. 

No offense taken. Seriously it disgusts me too. I kept going into non-legal interviews (the one or two that would even talk to me) and instead of talking about the current job and why I'd be a good fit, they spend the entire time wondering why someone with my educational background doesn't want to practice law. Obviously it's not that I don't want to, it's that I can't with the market the way it is now. But I obviously don't tell them that. They all express the fear that once the market turns around, I'd bolt which isn't necessarily true since I take my commitments quite seriously (I made it through 3 years of law school after all). It pains me when they pass me over not even for Associate/BA degree holders but for friggin' HS DIPLOMA folks?!?!?! I keep getting turned away with the "you're overqualified" spiel.

So now, I just don't even want to bother explaining anything to these idiots in HR and I have simply just taken law school off my resume. How do I explain the 3 year gap? Well luckily for me, I had some side jobs I would work during the school year (yeah on top of a full time schedule with moot court/journal/clubs) over the weekends in sales/marketing so I don't have as big a gap to explain.

I went to a top college so I'm hoping it holds water in interviews, but for now, my law degree is completely worthless to me.

Sorry, I feel for your situation and wish you the best.  I am curious though, would taking a degree off your resume be a like lying on it and be grounds for firing?  I don't know, I am curious what others think about this.

chevelle

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Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
« Reply #45 on: August 27, 2009, 07:10:58 PM »
Sorry, I feel for your situation and wish you the best.  I am curious though, would taking a degree off your resume be a like lying on it and be grounds for firing?  I don't know, I am curious what others think about this.

I thought about doing that because I have a masters in biology and employers seemed to just look at me and say "oh you must want to do IP, but we're not hiring in that right now." Ultimately, I didn't think it would make much sense to just take a year and a half of hard work off my resume.

lawschoolsucks

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Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
« Reply #46 on: September 01, 2009, 10:21:41 PM »
So now I've started looking at jobs in other fields (I've completely taken law school and my jd off of my resume and have been using my finance/marketing degree to job hunt- a jd is a scarlet letter if you're trying to pursue non-legal careers). It's a sad state of affairs for the completely oversaturated legal community. Good luck OP in your job search.

How do you explain your 3 year absence from the job market? 

Also, and no offense to your background, but it deeply disgusts me that non-legal employers would rather have someone with just a marketing B.A. than someone with a J.D. 

I know the whole rationale that they think that the J.D. will just leave.  But seriously, it's ridiculous that in this economy people with professional and graduate degrees are less valued than people with just B.A.s or even Associates'.  I even ran into this problem after undergrad -- I went to a really elite college and got a liberal arts B.A., but would be passed over for office jobs for Associates' holders. 

Anyway, you'd think that more people would see the value of an employee who's better educated and willing to work hard and challenge himself. 

No offense taken. Seriously it disgusts me too. I kept going into non-legal interviews (the one or two that would even talk to me) and instead of talking about the current job and why I'd be a good fit, they spend the entire time wondering why someone with my educational background doesn't want to practice law. Obviously it's not that I don't want to, it's that I can't with the market the way it is now. But I obviously don't tell them that. They all express the fear that once the market turns around, I'd bolt which isn't necessarily true since I take my commitments quite seriously (I made it through 3 years of law school after all). It pains me when they pass me over not even for Associate/BA degree holders but for friggin' HS DIPLOMA folks?!?!?! I keep getting turned away with the "you're overqualified" spiel.

So now, I just don't even want to bother explaining anything to these idiots in HR and I have simply just taken law school off my resume. How do I explain the 3 year gap? Well luckily for me, I had some side jobs I would work during the school year (yeah on top of a full time schedule with moot court/journal/clubs) over the weekends in sales/marketing so I don't have as big a gap to explain.

I went to a top college so I'm hoping it holds water in interviews, but for now, my law degree is completely worthless to me.

Sorry, I feel for your situation and wish you the best.  I am curious though, would taking a degree off your resume be a like lying on it and be grounds for firing?  I don't know, I am curious what others think about this.
 


I was definitely thinking the same. So during one of my interviews for the non-legal position I'm currently in (thank GOD!), I just came clean. They didn't see it as lying because I made sure to label my employment experience as "Relevant Employment"- to me, I didn't think law school was relevant to the position. In the end, as chevelle noted, I didn't feel like I should have to hide one of the biggest accomplishments of my adult life. I at least wanted to get my foot in the door and land an interview. After that, I disclosed my JD. Luckily for me, they saw my degree as an asset and I got an offer on the spot.

The job market, in general, sucks- not only for lawyers. I think a lot of us are willing to do and/or say anything we can to be able to pay off over $150k of debt..... What I would give to not have been a part of the Class of 2009  :-[

Contract2008

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Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
« Reply #47 on: September 02, 2009, 09:03:47 PM »

I was definitely thinking the same. So during one of my interviews for the non-legal position I'm currently in (thank GOD!), I just came clean. They didn't see it as lying because I made sure to label my employment experience as "Relevant Employment"- to me, I didn't think law school was relevant to the position. In the end, as chevelle noted, I didn't feel like I should have to hide one of the biggest accomplishments of my adult life. I at least wanted to get my foot in the door and land an interview. After that, I disclosed my JD. Luckily for me, they saw my degree as an asset and I got an offer on the spot.

The job market, in general, sucks- not only for lawyers. I think a lot of us are willing to do and/or say anything we can to be able to pay off over $150k of debt..... What I would give to not have been a part of the Class of 2009  :-[


What job was it and how much do it pay?

LSDSL

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Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
« Reply #48 on: October 26, 2009, 12:32:55 AM »
Since I'm the one who started this topic, I figured I'd give you all an update.  I found out I passed the IL bar, but still dont have a job.  I havent even gotten an interview yet.  This seems hopeless and I'm starting to regret ever going to law school.  9.8% unemployment sucks...

Contract2008

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Re: Studying for the BAR, huge DEBT, no JOB, WHAT DO DO?
« Reply #49 on: October 26, 2009, 02:02:19 AM »
Since I'm the one who started this topic, I figured I'd give you all an update.  I found out I passed the IL bar, but still dont have a job.  I havent even gotten an interview yet.  This seems hopeless and I'm starting to regret ever going to law school.  9.8% unemployment sucks...

What have you done so far though?