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Author Topic: Debt  (Read 1453 times)

shae

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Re: Debt
« Reply #20 on: April 24, 2006, 06:15:07 PM »
the nalp foundation did a huge study which girafffe posted a link to.

Essentially,

Grades matter more than where you went

it goes top 10

top 14-21

top 21-100

tier 3 and tier 4

the only real difference is at the top if your middle of the pack (3.0-3.25) tier 4 grads make 3,000$ per year less than grads from 21-100 with (3.0-3.25)s. look at the numbers, unless you plan on have a gpa 3.5-4.0 on paper its not worth it actually according to that study consiering debt unles syou score 3.75-4.0 its not worth it at all

th

where is this link you speak of?

HippieLawChick

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Re: Debt
« Reply #21 on: April 24, 2006, 06:17:05 PM »
Man...this is a tough one. I can tell you that I made $50 K last year and paid for a $9,000 car in 5 months, which came to $1500 per month, and it wasn't a real hardship at all.  I had no issues paying my rent, electric, cell phone, cable internet and even going to some concerts, sporting events and a couple dinners out.

If you don't charge up your credit cards, it can be done here in WI for $50,000, but I don't know about Florida.

brave_cane

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Re: Debt
« Reply #22 on: April 24, 2006, 06:26:40 PM »
Screw this sugarcoated soft talk.  This guy is about to make a major decision, let's give it to him straight.

Dude.  $200,000.  $1500-$1600/month for longer than you can conceivably imagine (you can't really plan beyond a few years at any given time, and even that's a stretch most of the time).  Let those numbers and what they mean settle in.  Let it marinate. 

That's rent for a decent place and nice car.  A mortgage.  A condo.  Investments.  Vacations.  Leisure.  TIME!! Time that you could spend doing something enjoyable.  Time that you won't get back.  Take your pick.  You will NEVER be able to look at those payments and not think about what else you could be doing with it.  If you fall into the middle of the road and earn $50-70K, you're going to be talking some serious regret.

Planning to have kids?  Your wife better be caking it.  BTW, that's a lot of debt to take on in a marriage, and an astute woman will see that and consider it.

$200K?  The f.uck outta here.  Right now you're designing the blueprint for your own prison and giving yourself a life sentence.

Dude, don't believe the hype.  Three years is nothing.  By the time you feel like you really can't take anymore, it's almost over. 

Personal note: the last 3 years have been hell for me.  I'm dead serious man, I'm living in a city I can't stand, surrounded by people who are at best background noise, have been soul searching the whole time and only recently finding anything worthwhile (i.e. answers).  I can't imagine that law school could contrive any situation as stressful and anxiety provoking as what I've gone through.  I've had to plot, scheme, edure sh*t, eat sh*t, and bide my time until I could plan a way out.  But you know what, it's pretty much over and even though I wish I could have avoided it all, I'm stronger for it.  That's life.  Some of it sucks ass, some of it kicks it.  The Madness will never stop, dude, it just bypasses your sometimes. To me, your choice looks like a) suck it up for 3 years, or b) pay out the ass for the next couple of decades to skirt three years of unpleasantness.  Don't do it, man, don't do it.

Look, you can reason that going to a law school where you're the most comfortable will maximize your chances of making it to the top of your class.  True.  But what is also likely to be true is that everyone else attending that school is of the same mindset.  Given the absence of any other information (which will continue to be absent since you can't see the future) you should put yourself right at the mean, and look at what that will get you.  The fact that you guess $50K shows that you have at least given this some consideration.

Did you say something about having the option of going to another school for much less debt?  Unless that's in a place where you really don't want to practice after law school, go there.  Or at least seriously consider it.  You have options.  Not the least among them is taking another year to think and come up with even more options.  I dunno about four years in the service.  That sounds to me like a decision that has more to do with avoiding something than a strong desire to move toward something.  Unless you're avoiding something really bad, be careful not to make such a decision.  But, you would know better than me.


This has been a longer post than I intended.  I usually lurk more than I post, but i felt like this needed my attention.  Hope it helps some.

You have made some excellent points.  The reason I am stuck in this problem is that my undergradute degree was in Criminal Justice.  Therefore, there aren't too many jobs besides law enforcement or some other government job that I can qualify for.  If I thought it was possible to get an entry level job that paid 20 bucks an hour, I would take it in a heart beat.  However, when I began undergrad, I had the intentions of going into law enforcement.  Obviously, my ambitions have changed drastically.  

Realistically, the only jobs I can find that I can qualify for make 10-11 dollars tops.  By that rate, it would take forever to pay off my 40k undergrad debt and save some money.  I wish I would have studied some other useful major that would qualify me for a good paying job.  But I didn't and that's my own fault.

Now as for applying to cheaper schools, I am from Illinois.  I had applied to SIU and had gotten in.  But honestly, I didn't want to spend three years of my life to just make 50k.  At least at Miami the starting salary ranges are higher and there are more opportunities.  I had hoped on getting some decent scholarship opportunities from law schools but I didn't do great on the LSAT like I had planned (156).  My undergrad GPA was a 3.94 though.  I was fortunate to get in but no money.


PaddyWack

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Re: Debt
« Reply #23 on: April 24, 2006, 09:11:41 PM »
Your GPA is nice.  My advice: take another year, scrape together $1500 and take an LSAT prep course.  If you bump your score up another 8-10, or even 5-6 points, you'll have much better options.  Make up some story about your dying grandmother that will explain your previous score, and write and addendum about it.  I don't even know you and I know that you're at a crucial junction.  Don't rush this, man.  Think it all through.

aerynn

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Re: Debt
« Reply #24 on: April 24, 2006, 11:06:57 PM »
I agree that suffering for 3 years is better than being trapped by debt.  Bartender or become a waiter for a year, study for the LSAT and bump the score to get into a school you love and get some merit money.  Pay down that debt even a little will help.

Also, I don't hear you saying you want to go to law school because you really love the law, I hear you saying you are going to law school because you can't think of anything better to do with your major.  I got an English degree for my undergrad, so I feel your pain, but seriously.  The debt will enslave you to a job you might not like.  Go to law school when you know being a lawyer is what you really want to do.

Suggestion: try teaching.  You can live anywhere, establish residency in the state where your dream school is for some cheaper tuition (if you go public), and pay down your debts.  Figure out what you are really looking for in life.
Here's how it went for me for Fall 2006 admission:
168/3.67
In: Emory($$), UGA ($), W&M ($$), GW($)
Waitlisted:American(W), UVA (W)
http://lawschoolnumbers.com/display.php?user=aerynn

queencruella

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Re: Debt
« Reply #25 on: April 24, 2006, 11:52:30 PM »
If you're interested in Florida, just getting your LSAT up a few points can most likely get you into FSU and get your debt down dramatically, especially if you move down here for a year so you can get in-state tuition for the full 3 years or you can get a job in the Miami area and reapply next year for the part-time program so at the very least you can pay your own living expenses.

As for Aerynn's teaching suggestion, with an out-of-field degree in Florida it is very hard to get a job and you'll have to get a lot of training on your own dime. It's definitely not worth it if you aren't going to stay in it for several years.

aerynn

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Re: Debt
« Reply #26 on: April 25, 2006, 08:35:58 AM »
My stepsister got a job in Florida teaching kindergarden with a business degree (undergrad) and then did an Internet thing to get her certificate.  High school may be tough, but you could do elementary fairly easily, I think, unless they changed the rules from 5 years ago.
Here's how it went for me for Fall 2006 admission:
168/3.67
In: Emory($$), UGA ($), W&M ($$), GW($)
Waitlisted:American(W), UVA (W)
http://lawschoolnumbers.com/display.php?user=aerynn

queencruella

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Re: Debt
« Reply #27 on: April 25, 2006, 08:56:42 AM »
My stepsister got a job in Florida teaching kindergarden with a business degree (undergrad) and then did an Internet thing to get her certificate.  High school may be tough, but you could do elementary fairly easily, I think, unless they changed the rules from 5 years ago.

It varies depending on district and your gender. If the OP is male, it's much better to go for middle school/high school because they seem to favor men, but that isn't the case in elementary school. I also remember that 5 years ago it was a bit easier to get a teaching job because the economy wasn't quite at its worst yet. Universities have also revamped secondary ed degree programs in the past few years to get people out into the field more quickly.

mirror

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Re: Debt
« Reply #28 on: April 26, 2006, 06:49:54 PM »
???
You still get financial aid if you work.  I have worked for a few years and have a $25,000 efc according to fafsa.

I have gotten the max Stafford loans (18.5) from every school w/at least $4000 in subsidized loans (max $8.5).

You may not get grants, but schools will still loan you the money.  And if you have to take out loans above and beyond Stafford you will qualify for better rates if you lower your debt and build your credit rating for a few years.
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of course you can get loans, im talking about legitimate financial aid - need based grants.  ive worked for a couple years and therefore dont qualify.  some people will get a lot more in grant $$ than i have saved

norcaldude

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Re: Debt
« Reply #29 on: April 26, 2006, 07:40:03 PM »
Is it possible to live a comfortable life in Miami if I end up only making 50k a year? 

No.  Why are you only planning on 50k a year? If you are going to work in g'vmnt or public interest you should take the school with the better loan forgiveness program, some places are pretty generous with that, others less so and it varies wildly.

unless your idea of comfortable is living in a 1 bedroom apt and driving a ten year old toyota, then no.  you got some great advice earlier in this thread. 

try teaching or being a cop (dunno about FL, but this pays like $60k/yr starting in northern california) for a few years, scrape up some cash, pay off some loans, get your act together, raise your lsat, and go to a T1 if you're set on law school.