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Author Topic: Well, I got into law school...  (Read 9888 times)

cusc2011

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Re: Well, I got into law school...
« Reply #10 on: July 11, 2011, 03:14:55 PM »
Duncanjp - well said!  Life is what you make in every human endeavor.  I know multi-millionaires who went to small colleges in undergrad, etc.    I got into a a ABA school in my late 20's but I did not have the fiance to attend an ABA school.  At the time I applied to law school's in my late 20's I only been working about 2 yrs at an entry level position for a Fortune 500 just getting my career started.  I always wanted to go then and now to law school but at 40 yrs old with the goal of retiring in the next 20 years that not a smart move on my part to encounter 100k of debt.  I make a 6 figure income and have for the last 5 years and my career is still on the up rise.  I do feel that a law degree will get me over the hump in becoming a top executive for a Fortune 500.  The main thing for me is to get "licensed", at this stage of the game not caught up if its ABA or not. It would make absolutely no sense for me to add 100k of law school debt, just to make 20k more if I'm lucky and lose 3 or 4 yrs of income.

If a person is in their 20's or early 30's I recommend try and get into an ABA school but beyond that the scope changes.

I went to an SEC school for undergrad and  went to an ACC school for grad school. I want a law degree just something I want plus after I retire, I may want to do some freelancing in taking on a few cases as a second career of my life.

calgal27

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Re: Well, I got into law school...
« Reply #11 on: July 12, 2011, 10:28:54 PM »
I do not feel the least bit embarrassed that I am attending a state law school.  There are several in Alabama that are state run and Birmingham seems to have a great reputation in the state.  I am 45.  I will be 50 by the time I graduate.  Why in the world would I need an ABA law degree?  I do not want to be starting out as a first year associate in a firm at my age.  Besides, I have over 20 years experience working as a legal secretary and a paralegal.  I am going to know more about the law and procedures than most of my classmates.  And that is what is going to give me an advantage if I decide to become a practicing attorney.  Even in the worst of recessions, I can get a job at the drop of the hat with my legal background.    With my years of experience and top that with attending law school, I am pretty sure I can get a job in a law firm while in law school.  In my 25+ years of being in the working world, finding a job has been the least of my worries. 

I know there are a lot of law students looking for a job.  The problem is they have high expectations of what they want to be paid and someone told them along the way that the expensive law degree they received is going to guarantee them a great job.  Heck, even getting a college degree these days is not a guarantee of that. 

I don't listen to anyone who is negative.  Life is what you make of it and in the end... it isn't going to matter where I attend law school.  All that matters is that I did.

phreejazz

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Re: Well, I got into law school...
« Reply #12 on: July 14, 2011, 09:28:50 PM »
I'm following the same route, in a different state.  You're right in not listening to the nay-sayers.  I can name, without even thinking hard, three judges currently sitting on the bench in my area who graduated from a non-ABA school and several prominent local politicians.  I personally know several students working as attorneys in prestigious firms who graduated recently from that same non-ABA school, etc. etc. etc.  Granted, not every non-ABA program is created equal, but that's the point: any gross generalization about such programs is inaccurate.

Are there obstacles to overcome that wouldn't be there with an ABA degree? yep.  But work experience, the right networking, etc. more than make up for it.  I suspect that those who make blanket statements about how bad of an idea it is, how anyone who does it is wasting their time and money, etc etc etc haven't bothered to actually look into it.

Cher1300

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Re: Well, I got into law school...
« Reply #13 on: July 15, 2011, 01:05:29 PM »
I have to agree with what has been said here.  I live in California and will be going to a school that wasn't ABA approved until 2009.  However, the alumni of working, successful attorneys and judges are numerous. 

At 41, I considered a state approved school, but wanted one with an ABA accreditation because I want to take the bar in another state where all my family and long time friends live.  This decision was also made because I'm considering moving back to my home state in the future. 

Choosing a law school really depends on your needs, age, and drive.  There are many people who really just want to work for someone else and can't imagine working out of their home or starting a general practice.  Many want to work for "big law."  Most of them are younger people who haven't worked professionally and will have three-figures in debt to pay.  For older students, they are more financially set.  Undergrad debt is paid, there is money in the bank, etc.  People working full-time and going part-time in the evening still have a job if they can't find a legal job, etc. 

If you want to be a lawyer, and you love what you do, you will be successful.  We are in a recession, so there are not many jobs out there.  You have to find a way to make your way no matter what your profession.

Duncanjp

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Re: Well, I got into law school...
« Reply #14 on: July 16, 2011, 02:48:03 AM »
I'm following the same route, in a different state.  You're right in not listening to the nay-sayers.  I can name, without even thinking hard, three judges currently sitting on the bench in my area who graduated from a non-ABA school and several prominent local politicians.  I personally know several students working as attorneys in prestigious firms who graduated recently from that same non-ABA school, etc. etc. etc.  Granted, not every non-ABA program is created equal, but that's the point: any gross generalization about such programs is inaccurate.

Are there obstacles to overcome that wouldn't be there with an ABA degree? yep.  But work experience, the right networking, etc. more than make up for it.  I suspect that those who make blanket statements about how bad of an idea it is, how anyone who does it is wasting their time and money, etc etc etc haven't bothered to actually look into it.

A year ago I was called to testify in a jury trial over a civil matter, and as it turned out, the judge who heard the case went to my school - Lincoln Law School of Sacramento. The Sacramento County DA went to Lincoln. Judges, DAs, and attorneys in counties all over the Northern California region can be found who went to this locally reputable school, alongside judges, DAs and attorneys who went to ABA schools and other state schools. Ultimately, they all had to pass the same exam. Lincoln certainly isn't UC Davis or McGeorge, the local ABA law mills, but somehow all of those state-school legal professionals crashed through the opaque ABA barrier to have successful law careers. It's not that their experiences mirror the experiences of all who graduate from state schools, but it points a rather telling finger toward the partial mythology that has arisen around the ABA education. Again, I'm not going to argue or pretend that I wouldn't rather attend an ABA school if I were younger and had the time to realize the benefits of the association and didn't have a career already. I definitely would. But state schools do not consist of slackers and halfwits, which perception is both misinformed and naive.  Most of the people I've encountered are highly driven, extremely bright, energetic people working in government, business and vertical areas within the legal field. It's indisputable that many legal professionals have carved out successful law careers after attending state-accredited law schools at a quarter the cost of an ABA degree. So I don't heed the predictions of young, inexperienced ABA graduates. Sometimes it feels like all the warnings against attending state schools belie a certain desire to keep the ranks of lawyers just as elite and uncrowded as possible to ensure that they who "deserve jobs" are protected against facing any more competition than they already have from T1 schools.

The only truly dire warnings that need to be given are to those who are contemplating mortgaging their future to half-truths and heavy chains.

fortook

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Re: Well, I got into law school...
« Reply #15 on: July 19, 2011, 04:07:13 PM »
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Very nicely written.  How much time did you spend on it in a somewhat informal forum?
"Thank you for inviting me, Mrs. Palin." "Thank you for cutting your mullet, Levi."

phreejazz

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Re: Well, I got into law school...
« Reply #16 on: July 20, 2011, 04:22:12 AM »

<regretful snip>

The only truly dire warnings that need to be given are to those who are contemplating mortgaging their future to half-truths and heavy chains.

I just wanted to say..... very well put.

Duncanjp

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Re: Well, I got into law school...
« Reply #17 on: July 21, 2011, 12:57:34 AM »
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Very nicely written.  How much time did you spend on it in a somewhat informal forum?

Oh, ad hominem. Cool!

Duncanjp

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Re: Well, I got into law school...
« Reply #18 on: July 21, 2011, 01:13:49 AM »

<regretful snip>

The only truly dire warnings that need to be given are to those who are contemplating mortgaging their future to half-truths and heavy chains.

I just wanted to say..... very well put.

Thanks, Phreejazz. Merely one dude's opinion. Hope you're kicking butt wherever you're going to school.

fortook

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Re: Well, I got into law school...
« Reply #19 on: July 21, 2011, 09:36:18 PM »
Ad hominem? Hmmm.  I wasn't attacking you views or your character. I'm pretty impartial to this subject, frankly.  For all you know I may agree with you.  If you like state accredited schools, well- cheers.

Language is a fun tool, often misused, over used and/or abused.  I was just saying, possibly in too harsh a way, you are over using language.  If you are using your language skills to radiate intelligence you may have over used language in this forum.  This is not really a place for verbose language and excessive use of it will back fire and radiate the opposite.  A stylistic critique or opinion on my part is not meant to be hostile and certainly not meant to be ad hominem. Personally, I got no problem with ya man.  Good luck, really.
"Thank you for inviting me, Mrs. Palin." "Thank you for cutting your mullet, Levi."