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Author Topic: Joining the military - last resort or smart consideration?  (Read 2645 times)

Jonesm13

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Joining the military - last resort or smart consideration?
« on: April 02, 2012, 04:00:30 PM »
I am currently a 3L about to graduate in a month or so. I will be taking the dual-state NJ/PA bar exams, and I am scared out of my wits about finding a job. I do not attend a first or second tier law school. I am also not on law review. I have clerked for an Appellate Judge (state) and I have clerked in a small domestic relations firm.  Currently, I am working in the Law Clinic as a defender for juveniles.

Quite honestly, my loan amount is above $150K. I am extremely worried about finding a job, and I have been seriously considering all avenues, including the military. I have attended meetings with the Air Force and Marine JAG representatives, so I know a little bit about the programs. However, I wanted to see what other people thought. Joining the service pretty much guarantees a job in today's economy. It also guarantees a pay grade. Am I considering this option way too soon? Should this be an "end of my ropes" option or a serious option to consider while applying to the 9000+ firms?

I apologize if this is somewhat of a repeat post, but I am new to this website and it seems as though it sort of died out. Any thoughts are greatly appreciated  8)

sollicitus

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Re: Joining the military - last resort or smart consideration?
« Reply #1 on: April 02, 2012, 05:13:57 PM »
Look into all options. See what works out best.

Remember that most law schools grads will NOT qualify for military service (too fat, short, lazy, ADD meds,etc)
Also, remember that even if JAG says no, there are other options too in the service if you wanted to be a reservist and get loans paid off or forgiven (depending on branch of service) while still doing your main job during the week.

FalconJimmy

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Re: Joining the military - last resort or smart consideration?
« Reply #2 on: April 03, 2012, 10:29:34 AM »
It is a bit surprising that we still see this attitude these days.

No, military JAG is hardly a last resort.  In fact, a lot of folks who thought of this as an act of desperation are going to get a cold slap in the face when they get their rejection letters.  The military may not be hiring the top 10% out of Harvard, but they absolutely are competitive.

As the other poster pointed out, look around your law school class.  Many of them are too fat, or have some health condition that would preclude them from serving. 

If anybody looks at a career that involves around 80,000 a year to start, plus a 20 year retirement, 30 days paid vacation a year and world-class benefits as "last resort", sorry, but to be blunt, that person is too stupid to practice law anywhere. 

For a select few, there are better offers out there.  For those outside the top tier and outside the top 10% of the 2nd tier and below, this is not just a good option, but probably one of the best ones you could possibly find.

SoCalLawGuy

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Re: Joining the military - last resort or smart consideration?
« Reply #3 on: September 23, 2012, 05:27:08 AM »
If I were in this situation, I'd apply to more firms and yeah, use the military as a very last resort. In the end, I presume you want to work in the law field, right?

Duncanjp

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Re: Joining the military - last resort or smart consideration?
« Reply #4 on: September 23, 2012, 01:03:40 PM »
The military is an option to be seriously considered by anybody with a college degree and a J.D., whether you're accepted into the J.A.G. program or not. Your education will make you an immediate officer candidate, and they are not likely to throw you in front of a lot of flying bullets in a first-wave assault on Hamburger Hill with that kind of pedigree. You can live in the officer's quarters while you repay your student loans and serve the country at the same time. It's easy to save money or repay debts while serving, and it will give your resume an excellent boost. That said, you need to have what it takes to be an officer. There's a long road to travel between officer candidate and second lieutenant.

avarist

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Re: Joining the military - last resort or smart consideration?
« Reply #5 on: September 28, 2012, 01:06:24 PM »
The military is an option to be seriously considered by anybody with a college degree and a J.D., whether you're accepted into the J.A.G. program or not. Your education will make you an immediate officer candidate, and they are not likely to throw you in front of a lot of flying bullets in a first-wave assault on Hamburger Hill with that kind of pedigree. You can live in the officer's quarters while you repay your student loans and serve the country at the same time. It's easy to save money or repay debts while serving, and it will give your resume an excellent boost. That said, you need to have what it takes to be an officer. There's a long road to travel between officer candidate and second lieutenant.
yeah 2 weeks at "camp challenge"....... ::)
http://www.goarmy.com/careers-and-jobs/become-an-officer/direct-commission.html

Not exactly 4 years of ROTC, or 11B OCS. If you can meet the physical requirments, have the degree, and.......... well actually yup thats about it for this type of MOS.

Apply, if you get it then you are in. If not, then either fix the flaw(if possible) or move on to other options.
Remember, there are civilian JAG opportunities as well if you don't meet the military physical requirements.

Duncanjp

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Re: Joining the military - last resort or smart consideration?
« Reply #6 on: October 02, 2012, 11:57:19 PM »
Or, if you don't meet the physical requirements, exercise until you do. I used to run laps around my block with a backpack full of books to get ready before I enlisted. The hardest thing I had to do in Marine Corps boot camp was control my laughter at the sight of so many others huffing and puffing to do a few pullups or to run a few miles.

avarist

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Re: Joining the military - last resort or smart consideration?
« Reply #7 on: October 03, 2012, 12:35:35 AM »
Or, if you don't meet the physical requirements, exercise until you do. I used to run laps around my block with a backpack full of books to get ready before I enlisted. The hardest thing I had to do in Marine Corps boot camp was control my laughter at the sight of so many others huffing and puffing to do a few pullups or to run a few miles.
huh, and here I thought CS gas might have been unpleasant...........guess those laps around the block made you able to breath toxic fumes...... ::)
(presuming the marines have to do MOP Gear training like the Army)

Duncanjp

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Re: Joining the military - last resort or smart consideration?
« Reply #8 on: October 06, 2012, 04:21:10 PM »
Or, if you don't meet the physical requirements, exercise until you do. I used to run laps around my block with a backpack full of books to get ready before I enlisted. The hardest thing I had to do in Marine Corps boot camp was control my laughter at the sight of so many others huffing and puffing to do a few pullups or to run a few miles.
huh, and here I thought CS gas might have been unpleasant...........guess those laps around the block made you able to breath toxic fumes...... ::)
(presuming the marines have to do MOP Gear training like the Army)

"Huh?" back atcha.   ???

Of course we were gassed and yes, it was unpleasant. But watching each other react when the mask was removed was one the funnier moments of boot camp, especially after you had already put your turn in the tent behind you. My only point was that if the Army won't accept you because you don't meet the physical requirements as a result of spending your life in front of video games, there is something you can do about it besides looking for something else to do. You can get off your butt and exercise until you're fit. The physical requirements will preclude very few people if they're determined to be accepted. I was already in pretty good shape, but I got myself into fantastic shape before I ever left for San Diego. And if a person arrives in terrific shape, even Marine Corps boot camp isn't completely unbearable, unpleasant as it can be. Then, when daily exercise no longer intimidates you, there are moments when boot camp can be absolutely hilarious.

avarist

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Re: Joining the military - last resort or smart consideration?
« Reply #9 on: October 06, 2012, 11:50:50 PM »
I'm pretty sure the physical requirments for direct commission officers is a LOT lower than enlisted marines.

I saw Chaplains who didn't looked like whales. They had rank on their shoulders and were active duty.