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Author Topic: Master of Jurisprudence  (Read 8288 times)

Hamilton

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Re: Master of Jurisprudence
« Reply #10 on: September 01, 2010, 03:22:20 PM »
Thats great, if that is the dream, by all means go for it.  I do not know what your situation is, all I am saying is go in with all of the facts, think long and hard about where you are going to school, what your REAL job prospects are (do not rely on the law school's employment and salaty stats, they are pure BS), and how much debt you are going to take on.  As an example, a private Tier 3/4 will cost you at least $100K with no scholarships - you would have to be nuts to take on that debt right now in this job market.  Not wanting to be rich sounds good right now, but you need to be able to eat and pay bills (and student loans).  Believe it or not, you WILL want an improved lifestyle. 

I need a JD to practice law. It would be a nice to have a fancy degree and I agree it would make me more marketable but at the end of the day I need a legal education to get me where I want to be. I'm not interested in BIG Law or clerking. Besides being poor isn't really a new condition for me.

bigs5068

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Re: Master of Jurisprudence
« Reply #11 on: September 01, 2010, 03:48:18 PM »
Yes the debt is an issue, but believe it or not it is a GLOBAL recession and jobs are and will always be hard to come by in any field. If you know of some degree that is free or dirt cheap and will guarantee me a sweet high paying job let me know. The thing that most law student's do not seem to grasp is that the legal field is as hard as anything else out there. Also in regards to the legal market and everything in general education is a LONG-TERM investment the economy goes up and goes down it is the way it is has been since the start of America. This not the first recession in American history and it will not be the last, the beauty with having  a J.D. is that although no the market is not great it will bounce back and be good again. Same logic applies to anything.

As an example my Dad is an aerospace enginner he specialized in building missles etc for Boeing. When the cold war ended military funding dropped tons of people were laid off and he was extremly lucky to keep his job. Boeing, Rockewell, all these companies were not seeking out new enginners for a few years, but war came up again and now it is a great field to be in. In he real world no matter what field you are in there will be ups and downs that is the way it is and always will be.

Hamilton

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Re: Master of Jurisprudence
« Reply #12 on: September 01, 2010, 07:32:48 PM »
Your "run of the mill" Masters degree is less expensive than a JD, so is a MBA.  Nobody says that anything in life is guaranteed, but right now law school is an even worse risk for many.  A JD is EXTRA debt with ZERO odd increase of finding work, perhaps WORSE odds if you focus the effort on working in law.  The recession will end - probably in 8 years or so (we have not seen the worst and it is not ending soon).  In the mean time loans need to get paid back - hard to do with no job.  I doubt the legal market will come back to the levels it was before the recession.

Would you pay twice as much for a lottery ticket if it did not have a bigger jackpot or better odds at winning?  Right now a JD is the same deal - pay extra for the degree with no improvement in odds or payout.

Yes the debt is an issue, but believe it or not it is a GLOBAL recession and jobs are and will always be hard to come by in any field. If you know of some degree that is free or dirt cheap and will guarantee me a sweet high paying job let me know.

bigs5068

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Re: Master of Jurisprudence
« Reply #13 on: September 01, 2010, 08:36:37 PM »
There are law firms that are hiring believe it or not. I just got a job through my tier 4's OCI paying me an outrageous amount of money this summer,(enough to pay off the third year of law school entirely), which is a salary I never expected to get when I enrolled at GGU.  Granted I am highly ranked at my school and am one of the few people who got a job through OCI. However, a lot of people did not even apply to one job for OCI and we had about 60 employers come. I am sure 60 employers  is a minuscule number compared to a lot of schools, but 60 firms were desperate enough for people to come to a lowly tier 4, which goes to show firms, government agencies etc are hiring.  Crazy as it may sound law firms are still in business and even need lawyers to operate. So there are jobs in the legal market and getting a J.D. will help you get a job as a lawyer.  In fact you have a 0% chance of getting a job as a lawyer unless you go to law school. The whole system has not been destroyed, but there have been better times to go to law school.

The bottom line of everything is that if you want to be a lawyer go to law school, if you want to be a teacher get a teaching credential, if you want to be a cop go to the police academy, a doctor med school. The list goes on and on and no matter what you do people will say don't do this don't do that, but you know what you only have one life and you might as well go into the career you want. Obviously, use some common sense, but believe it or not law school has a lot better odds of returning it's investment than the lottery does. Even if you never make it if you really enjoy the law and don't make money at least your in a career you like. Honestly, education is a risk, but a calculated one and unless you get a degree in religious studies or basket weaving there are jobs for any degree. However, jobs always have and always will be hard to find no matter what you do.

smartandunique

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Re: Master of Jurisprudence
« Reply #14 on: September 01, 2010, 10:07:04 PM »
U GO bigs5068 !

the white rabbit

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Re: Master of Jurisprudence
« Reply #15 on: September 02, 2010, 05:45:16 AM »
Yes that is somewhat correct, but that is true of any form of education. The world is getting more and more competitive, law school is outrageously priced, but you can make it up. You need to realize that education is a LONG TERM investment odds are if you go to a tier 3/4 you may start out making only 50k, which when faced with a 100k loan accruing interest seems sh***y. However, if you are a halfway competent attorney in a few years you will be more experienced and be paid more generally.

Sometimes I feel like I just go around this board disagreeing with bigs, but somebody's got to do it.

Thinking of 50k a year as a worst case scenario is horribly wrong.  You may start out making nothing.

Plenty of people who are competent but just didn't get their foot in the door end up working contract attorney jobs (doc review) where regardless of number of years of experience, you get paid the same amount and have few opportunities for professional advancement.

Bigs paints an entirely too rosy picture of things.

Yes the debt is an issue, but believe it or not it is a GLOBAL recession and jobs are and will always be hard to come by in any field.

The problems with employment for graduates of lower-tiered law schools existed long before the current recession.  Even during the boom, it was an uphill battle.

It sounds like you have the right attidue, and if you want to practice law go to law school.

This is like saying, "if you want to fly go ahead and jump out that window."  OP, I'm not saying DON'T go to law school.  Just think through whether or not it's a smart decision.  Even if you're competent and hard-working and know what it is to struggle, that doesn't make handling a massive debt load on minimal income any easier to handle.  Bigs is correct to an extent that the problems with law school costs are shared with all types of education.  That's because it's a problem for all types of education, not because it's not a problem anywhere.  Law school is probably just the worst example.

In terms of your actual question about the Master of Jurisprudence, I've never heard of it being of practical use anywhere.  I would look into the JD only, and pursue it if after collecting all necessary information, it makes sense from every angle.

Good luck.  :)
Mood: Tired but cheerful.  :)

Hamilton

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Re: Master of Jurisprudence
« Reply #16 on: September 02, 2010, 08:40:08 AM »
I think we are in nearly 100% agreement - we just see it differently.  You think it is a worthwhile risk.  Having done it and looking back, I dont think it is for most (i.e. those paying full price, at a T3/4, not in the top 10% of their class, and not with a burning desire to be a lawyer).

Honestly, education is a risk, but a calculated one and unless you get a degree in religious studies or basket weaving there are jobs for any degree. However, jobs always have and always will be hard to find no matter what you do.

bigs5068

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Re: Master of Jurisprudence
« Reply #17 on: September 02, 2010, 11:30:57 AM »
Maybe you will make less than 50k, maybe you will never get a job as a lawyer. I don't think anyone that goes to a tier 3/4 expects anything to be handed to them or certainly should not.  When I went to a no name state school for undergrad I didn't think anything would be handed to me. Yet I have always found jobs, because I work at it and bust my ass and that is what you have to do.  I am not a natural genius by any stretch of the imagination.  I wish I could have gotten a LSAT score like you did and gone to a top 10 law school. Honestly, I could have studied for 20 years and probably never broken a 160. You have the gift of being able to do that and that is awesome.  However, the majority of people in the world can't get into a top 10 school for anything. 

People of your ilk who go to a top 10 school and give advice to people like me or the OP on the risks of attending a tier 4 are basically out of line. I realize you would never have attended a tier 4, because you must have killed the LSAT. That is awesome and good for you, I imagine you probably killed the SAT as well. With the logic your using it would be like telling anyone that took the SAT and didn't get into at least some chump ivy league school like Brown for undergrad they should be relegated to McDonald's. That just won't work, I mean not everybody can or even does expect Big Law or Judicial clerkships when they go to law school. Those are not the only jobs available in fact the majority of legal jobs are not Big Law or Judicial clerkships PD's, DA's, small firms, mid-size firms, etc are the majority of people use. I realize Big Law etc were your expectations and you achieved them, which is awesome. Honestly, everybody who goes to a tier 3/4 or a no name undergrad, or no name dental school etc knows they are not going to Harvard. However, these schools are not awful horrendous place that people who have never set foot or even considered such a school like yourself make them out to be.

All I have ever tried to say to people is listen to people with first hand experience at a school. Those are the people you want to listen to, and I like my school. It is not Stanford or Harvard by a long shot. There are problems with it for sure, but so far it has done everything and more than I expected. From what I have seen so far granted I am only a 2L and maybe I will be in for a rude awakening is that the legal field is like anything else. If you work hard, are respectful to people, and just do the basic things you are supposed to do it will probably work out. Will there be struggles of course, and there is a chance you may never make it of course. I am still in debt and it is scary, but I feel I made the right choice. Bottom line tier 3/4's are not going to have people drooling over you and I hope that is a newsflash. However, as I said before if you want to be a lawyer go to law school.



Hamilton

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Re: Master of Jurisprudence
« Reply #18 on: September 02, 2010, 12:14:36 PM »
YOU get it, a lot of people dont.  There are a lot of folks out there going to law school b/c it might be interesting or seems like the thing to do - those are the folks I am speaking to.  As I said before (stinkypants just wasn't cutting it as an alias) I am a T4 grad.  There are huge risks, lots of downside, and not great job prospects for the T3/4 grads - unfortunately some folks DONT get it, spend $100K on a JD, finish low in the class and are then basically screwed.  The law schools wont advise them to reconsider - heck, they keep building MORE law schools and need to fill the seats - thereby screwing more students.  You and I do not disagree - we all get it that thare are no promises in any field or that law school is not an easy ticket to work.  Unfortunately, that is the dream being sold by law schools and there are just folks out there lacking the maturity or appreciation to understand the down side.  I was there, one gets blinded by the prospects of being a law student and finishing law school - Looking back I wish I had quit after first term but I finished near the top of my class.

The troubles in the legal market are not only the result of a global recession - it is a bubble and the bubble has burst... just like tech stocks, just like real estate, just like financials, and just like gold soon will.

People of your ilk who go to a top 10 school and give advice to people like me or the OP on the risks of attending a tier 4 are basically out of line. I realize you would never have attended a tier 4, because you must have killed the LSAT. That is awesome and good for you, I imagine you probably killed the SAT as well. With the logic your using it would be like telling anyone that took the SAT and didn't get into at least some chump ivy league school like Brown for undergrad they should be relegated to McDonald's. That just won't work, I mean not everybody can or even does expect Big Law or Judicial clerkships when they go to law school. Those are not the only jobs available in fact the majority of legal jobs are not Big Law or Judicial clerkships PD's, DA's, small firms, mid-size firms, etc are the majority of people use. I realize Big Law etc were your expectations and you achieved them, which is awesome. Honestly, everybody who goes to a tier 3/4 or a no name undergrad, or no name dental school etc knows they are not going to Harvard. However, these schools are not awful horrendous place that people who have never set foot or even considered such a school like yourself make them out to be.

the white rabbit

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Re: Master of Jurisprudence
« Reply #19 on: September 03, 2010, 07:00:56 AM »
So it's kind of like this:

Bigs and White Rabbit are walking across a bridge over a gorge when they see Smartandunique standing on the railing with a bungie cord tied to her waist.

Smartandunique: "Should I jump?"
Bigs: "You should if you want to!  It'll be awesome!"
White Rabbit: "That looks dangerous.  Are you sure you measured the cord properly?"
Bigs: "People of your ilk who have never gone bungie jumping are out of line giving advice!"
White Rabit: "Um, huh?"
Mood: Tired but cheerful.  :)