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Author Topic: Recent PharmD grad wanting to add JD  (Read 5376 times)

pharmd2010

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Recent PharmD grad wanting to add JD
« on: November 17, 2010, 12:58:43 AM »
Evening all.  Looking for a few opinions here.  I am a recent PharmD graduate and am currently working as a Pharmacist for a major retail pharmacy chain.  I started developing an interest in law school in my last two years of pharmacy school.  I am quite interested in pharmacy practice type law and have at least a passing interest in corporate representation.  I am interested to see if anybody out there has looked into the PharmD/JD combination.  Is there much demand out there for someone with those credentials?  I also keep reading that law school ranking is important when entering the job market, does anybody know how much impact a school's ranking really has on the ability to land a decent job?  I'm sure I'll have more questions later as I dig deeper into the idea of going back to school.  Any insight the collective may be able to provide would be most helpful.

Hamilton

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Re: Recent PharmD grad wanting to add JD
« Reply #1 on: November 17, 2010, 06:13:11 AM »
Disclaimer, I am generally a voice against going to law school unless you are going to a high-ranked school, getting a good scholarship and have a burning passion to be a lawyer.  Rankings/school reputation do matter, that is fact - regardless of going for a biglaw job or not.  Right now the legal market is difficult - do your homework.  Law schools are pumping out record numbers of JDs, law firms are laying off lawyers - do the mah.  Also, law is no guarantee of a 6 figure salary, at this point law school is becoming a glorified trade school.  Finally cost - a JD will generally cost over $100K in tuition and books.  It is a terribly high price to pay in dollars, sweat and tears to satisfy an interest that has developed.

IMO, you got your PharmD - focus on that career and being the best you can be.  Take a break from school, earn some money, enjoy your career, and enjoy life.  Dont feed the law school beast, it only encourages it. 

bigs5068

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Re: Recent PharmD grad wanting to add JD
« Reply #2 on: November 18, 2010, 01:03:08 AM »
The rankings outside of the top 20 or so are irrelevant. Nobody cares if you went to the 34th or 82nd best school, but Hamilton is right about the extreme costs. If you do a decent job on the LSAT and have a solid undergraduate GPA you can get a huge scholarship at a lower ranked school. If you want to practice pharmacy type law simply getting a J.D. from any ABA school would likely do. The costs are outrageous at any school for what you get at sticker price, but if you can get a huge scholarship law school is worth it.

Hamilton

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Re: Recent PharmD grad wanting to add JD
« Reply #3 on: November 18, 2010, 09:35:09 AM »
Rankings do matter outside of the top 20 b/c they ARE reflective of the school's overall reputation within a region. 

The rankings outside of the top 20 or so are irrelevant. Nobody cares if you went to the 34th or 82nd best school, but Hamilton is right about the extreme costs. If you do a decent job on the LSAT and have a solid undergraduate GPA you can get a huge scholarship at a lower ranked school. If you want to practice pharmacy type law simply getting a J.D. from any ABA school would likely do. The costs are outrageous at any school for what you get at sticker price, but if you can get a huge scholarship law school is worth it.

jack24

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Re: Recent PharmD grad wanting to add JD
« Reply #4 on: November 18, 2010, 11:55:17 AM »
I don't see your PharmD as being a huge advantage over graduates in the field of corporate representation, but have you ever thought about I.P. law? (Intellectual property, has a separate bar, usually requires a hard science degree in addition to a J.D.)
You have the hard science background, and you'd probably be a great candidate for jobs in the field, especially those dealing with medical patents.

Both Bigs and Hamilton are sort of right about rankings.   
Bigs is right because the rankings outside the top twenty don't matter that much to the best students who are exceptionally diligent and persistent in finding jobs and getting good grades.

Hamilton is right because rankings outside the top twenty DO matter for the vast majority of students.

You also have to look at the region you are in.   For Example, if you wanted to work in Arizona, a degree from Arizona State or Arizona (ranked 38 and 42) would probably be far more valuable than a degree from Minnesota or Iowa (ranked 22 and 26).   
In Utah, a degree from BYU law is about as good as anything (aside from schools like Yale and Harvard)  So outside the top 14 or whatever, the regional opinion of the school is more important, in my opinion.

I go to a T2 (50-100) which happens to be the most highly ranked school in a medium market.   The top students at my school have a lot of opportunities at semi-biglaw firms in the area, but it is much harder for them to get biglaw jobs in chicago, washington d.c., or New York.
 

Evening all.  Looking for a few opinions here.  I am a recent PharmD graduate and am currently working as a Pharmacist for a major retail pharmacy chain.  I started developing an interest in law school in my last two years of pharmacy school.  I am quite interested in pharmacy practice type law and have at least a passing interest in corporate representation.  I am interested to see if anybody out there has looked into the PharmD/JD combination.  Is there much demand out there for someone with those credentials?  I also keep reading that law school ranking is important when entering the job market, does anybody know how much impact a school's ranking really has on the ability to land a decent job?  I'm sure I'll have more questions later as I dig deeper into the idea of going back to school.  Any insight the collective may be able to provide would be most helpful.

bigs5068

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Re: Recent PharmD grad wanting to add JD
« Reply #5 on: November 18, 2010, 12:27:53 PM »
Jack is right the regional reputations matter. The most important thing when choosing a law school is LOCATION. If you can go to a school that is top in it's region like BYU in Utah then you should go, if you want to live in Utah. If you want to live in Nebraska then University of Nebraska is a great choice. Harvard & Yale grads are probably not going to be fighting you for jobs in places like Utah or Nebraska either.


 If you want to live in one of the big market areas L.A., N.Y, S.F where law schools are being built on top of eachother the U.S. News rankings do not mean much and then you should get out as cheaply as possible. There are the elite school in those areas and if you have a chance to go to a top school in one those regions then go. However, if you go to  a highly ranked U.S. News school that is 3rd in it's own region then U.S. News is something you should not look at.  Schools like Hastings in S.F. or Loyola Marymount in L.A. or Cardozo in N.Y. are schools like that. They are highly ranked all in the top 50 I think, but they are 3rd place in their own area and nobody will be impressed. If you are going to Loyola Marymount you will be in direct competition with UCLA & USC plus plenty of Harvard & Yale grads will be trying to move to L.A. as well. Going to the 48th best school will not impress anyone when faced with that kind of competition. Hastings is 3rd place in it's own region because Stanford & Berkeley are right there, and again Harvard & Yale grads will be trying to move to S.F. the 46th best school will not impress anyone.

Bottom line is you have the option to go to a school that is TOP in it's region then go, if you want to live in that area. Otherwise take as much scholarship money or attend a state school, because paying 80k more to go to a school that is 3rd in it's own region is a ripoff. This is because the burden will be on you to find your own job and having an extra 80k in debt will not make that process any easier.


pharmd2010

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Re: Recent PharmD grad wanting to add JD
« Reply #6 on: November 18, 2010, 05:21:22 PM »
Jack24,  I am considering IP Law but I assumed that those positions were quite a bit harder to come by.  I don't really have the option of going to a highly ranked school, kids have me tied to Charleston so IP seems like a huge mountain of a struggle.

Thanks everybody for chiming in.