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Author Topic: U of Minnesota vs. UC Hastings  (Read 3988 times)

petermharrington

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Re: U of Minnesota vs. UC Hastings
« Reply #10 on: February 23, 2010, 03:47:11 AM »

I think you need to reserve your judgment until you actually graduate from law school yourself.  A lot of people out there aren't making it.  They're switching careers and doing whatever they can to defer their loans. Believe me.

Just because you were able to land a paralegal job at a prestigious BIGLAW firm doesn't mean that they'll also hire you as a graduate.  There's a big difference between working as a paralegal at a BIGLAW firm like Sullivan & Cromwell or Cravath versus being hired as an associate there.

And despite what you may think, the pedigree of your law school has a lot to do with whether you get hired by a BIGLAW firm or not. It really is a big deal despite what you want to make it out to be.

I really don't think you're in a position of authority here on the matter. I really don't think you know what the hell you're talking about to be quite honest.  No offense.


bigs5068

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Re: U of Minnesota vs. UC Hastings
« Reply #11 on: February 23, 2010, 02:11:11 PM »
You are absolutely right regarding BIG LAW I have no desire to do BIG LAW ever again, my goal is to be a lawyer in San Francisco. Therefore, I went to school in San Francisco going to Golden Gate absolutely closes some doors and I will probably never work in Big Law with a degree from a Tier 4, I am not trying to argue that. For what this person posted it sounded like they wanted to live in L.A. and be a lawyer. If that is the case they should go to school in L.A. If they want to work in Big Law then they probably should go to Hastings or Minnesota, but the odds of them ending up in L.A. are decreased greatly if they go to either of those schools.

Minnesota is a great school and they will have a way better chance of landing a BIG LAW job in the Midwest maybe in cities like Chicago or Minneapolis, but California employers are not going to stop in their tracks for someone from University of Minnesota.   California is not lacking prestigious law schools UCLA, USC, Stanford, Hastings, Davis, and there is a long list they are really not going to look to the Midwest to recruit from the 22nd best school when they have many great schools in state that was my point.  

Really it depends on what what the OP's goals are, if it is to work  in Big Law and nothing else then Minnesota might be the best choice, but they will probably end up in the Midwest. Or if they want to do Big Law in the Bay Area then Hastings might open the door for that. Certainly Hastings will offer a better chance of employed in L.A. than Minnesota does, but I wouldn't say either school gives you a great shot at working L.A.

It sounded like the OP wanted to work and live in L.A. and the best way to do that is to go to school in L.A. If they go to LMU or Pepperdine the odds of BIG LAW are minimal, but they will find reputable employment in the L.A. area from either of those schools.

Not everybody wants to work in Big Law and the OP said nothing about working in Big Law. The OP simply asked what school had a better reputation in L.A.  The obvious answer to that is L.A. schools even lower ranked ones, will have more connections in L.A. than a fairly well ranked school out of state like Minnesota.  Obviously, U of M will carry more weight than Western State or La Verne even in L.A.. However, if you are looking solely for employment in the L.A. area and you are choosing between Loyola Marymount or U of M the answer should be obvious, LMU will open more doors in Los Angeles than Minnesota will.  U of M will certainly open more national doors nationally and give you a shot at BIG LAW than LMU will, but look to the call of the question before saying I don't know what the hell I am talking about.


petermharrington

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Re: U of Minnesota vs. UC Hastings
« Reply #12 on: February 24, 2010, 05:20:20 PM »

You make some good points.  And I didn't mean to discount your intelligence.  You're obviously a bright and knowledgeable guy.

I just think that you should withhold judgment until you test the waters yourself post-graduation.  This rotten economy has really taken its toll on the legal sector. 

I think that the USNWR rankings are more in play now than ever due to the competitiveness of any and all legal jobs. 

bigs5068

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Re: U of Minnesota vs. UC Hastings
« Reply #13 on: February 27, 2010, 03:23:09 PM »
You are right I am not an expert in the legal field I am a first year law student and can only speak about my personal experience.  When I was deciding between law schools I was stupidly caught up in the rankings, granted I was not deciding between Harvard and Yale. Rather Michigan State, Gonzaga, and Golden Gate. MSU and Gonzaga are higher ranked the GGU, how U.S. news came to that conclusion I don't know.  What makes Gonzaga 100 and GGU 132??? it is beyond me. However, I was really caught up in the rankings though and nearly made a horrible decision. Had I gone to either of those higher ranked schools, my fiance would have been out of luck for job prospects in East Lansing or Spokane. Instead we moved to SF and she has a GREAT JOB! and it has made financing way easier.  I also had no desire to live in either Michigan or Washington post graduation.  I am sure had I gone to MSU I probably could have gotten a job somewhere in Michigan where I have no desire to live. Had I gone to Gonzaga I probably could have gotten a job in Washington, but I love California and it is where I want to live. Employers in the Bay won't care that I went to the 100th best school that they never heard of, opposed to a school ranked slightly lower in their immediate area.  The professors and career services at Golden Gate have connections in San Francisco.  They don't have much pull outside of the Bay, but the Bay is where I want to live and I think that is pretty much what you fill find at any T-4 school.


I agree the recession is certainly having an effect on the legal market, particularly BIG LAW. People are trying to cut costs and most of the times you don't need a Harvard attorney do get what you need. Some people and business would be content to deal with a cheaper attorney who went to a T-4 than a Stanford attorney charging 3 times as much. I have met a a lot of solo practitioners and small firm GGU alum and they are doing fine. Obviously, they are not making 300,000 a day or anything, but they are surviving doing a job they like in an area they want to live. They will not sit on the U.S. Supreme Court or be the next President and I think they realized that when they went to a tier 4. 

Certainly BIG LAW is more concerned than ever with reputation, but even if you go to Harvard and so on at least at OMM they weren't really actively recruiting, when I left no matter what school you were going to they were not really hiring.  Obviously, I can't speak for BIG LAW everywhere or even other offices of OMM, but just my own personal experience at one BIG LAW firm. I honestly think a lot of the outrageous lifestyle lawyers, bankers, stockbrokers, were living are kind of on the way out, because they are the reason we got into this mess in the first place.

Certainly, there are exceptions and I am sure there are people who have recently been hired at a BIG LAW firm. I am not trying to say it is not possible, just harder than usual and people considering law school, should focus more on location than ranking.  The main reason is that unless you are in the T14 you are probably going to work in your school's location. As you said I am a first year law student and I have not tested the waters at all and I don't go to a T-14 so I could be completely wrong.  They are just my observations on my limited experiences.   


blackberry123

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Re: U of Minnesota vs. UC Hastings
« Reply #14 on: May 22, 2010, 06:51:16 AM »
At the end of the day the better choice, even within the T14, but especially elsewhere, is generally to go to school where you want to practice. Often people who play it a different way get locked into a job market that they weren't really interested in. Law degrees are (at least straight out of LS) are less portable than you might think.