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Author Topic: Are we delusional? How not to be one of the miserable $ unemployed  (Read 2577 times)

wellpreserved

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As an incessant researcher I have no doubt come across some of the same stuff you guys have:

- the employment stats for new ls grads suck
- only the top of the iveys get jobs
- the debt load crushes any chances for work
- it was the biggest mistake of so-and-so's life
- law school students are miserable and lawyers are drug addicts with a penchant for dicount whores
- etc., etc.

Not that I discount the pretty staggering mountain of evidence that suggests law is not the pie in the sky career choice so many think it is, but I'd sure love to hear how so many of us non-trads are justifying our return to school.

I do not think I'm so special that none of the stats will apply to me. I do think that I have a different definition of a successful career than students who maybe haven't worked for ten years in middle level, dead end careers. So, I like to think I won't be so insulted by an offer to do contract work or 45K a year.

I also have some relevent sales, training and marketing experience I hope would suggest to employers that I don't have to be trained on the basics of "how to work in the real world."

I'm open to moving just about anywhere and I'm vetting schools based on the COA for the very purpose of not having a 100k student loan monkey on my back. And, look, I'm one of those people that has worked an actual crappy job - scheduled bathroom breaks, ridiculous work schedules, abusive management - so long hours and working to prove yourself doesn't sound like hell to me.

I mean...have I not thought of most things? Or am I crazy to think I won't be one of the posters over at Anna Ivey's blog or this guy's blog (http://barelylegalblog.blogspot.com/)nine months to a year post graduation?

How have you guys reasoned this to yourself and to your loved one's?  And if i'm missing something please let me know.

Maybe I'm just being sensitive today. :)
I tested between 151 and 162. I hoped for the high end and ended up in the middle. Still, not a bad plan overall, I think.

LSAT: 156 (not taking it again and you can't make me)
GPA: 3.4ish. Still a semester to go
URM, non-trad, 12 yrs work exp, published
Looking for low debt and high aid

aerynn

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Re: Are we delusional? How not to be one of the miserable $ unemployed
« Reply #1 on: July 07, 2007, 03:15:09 PM »
I think some of the stats are for specifically biglaw jobs at the top of the payscale.  Check your employment stats for the schools you are looking at, but I think most of the T1 schools have something like 85% law-job employment 9 months out of graduation.  Some of those jobs are not the $125K, 80 hours/week jobs, but they might be $50K a year, 50 hours a week.  And for a non-trad, that might be a better fit, honestly.
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bamf

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Re: Are we delusional? How not to be one of the miserable $ unemployed
« Reply #2 on: July 07, 2007, 03:18:08 PM »
The internet is a haven for the unsatisfied.  People who are successful and happy don't feel the same need to broadcast how happy they are ... they're out being happy.  This leaves the Loyola2Ls of the world to flood the internet with their bitching.  I'm not saying that no one is going to have an uphill battle to success or that these stories of unhappiness aren't true ... but I don't think they are as universal as the internets would have us believe.
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The F-cktard Express

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Re: Are we delusional? How not to be one of the miserable $ unemployed
« Reply #3 on: July 07, 2007, 03:39:31 PM »
You should figuring out how to forge your own path, and doing whatever it takes to get you to that point.

And don't go too far into debt. Seriously.

Vapid Unicorn

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Re: Are we delusional? How not to be one of the miserable $ unemployed
« Reply #4 on: July 07, 2007, 03:47:26 PM »
I just assumed I would rock the curve.
Just another 2L.

wellpreserved

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Re: Are we delusional? How not to be one of the miserable $ unemployed
« Reply #5 on: July 07, 2007, 04:26:23 PM »
You should figuring out how to forge your own path, and doing whatever it takes to get you to that point.

And don't go too far into debt. Seriously.

I have what i think is a pretty solid plan. However, some of the entries over at Anna Ivey's blog and others suggest that some of the unemployed did too. Now, they're either lying about how well they did in ls, have a different definition of words like "networking" and real world experience or their personalities suck. I wonder which it is and in what numbers.

i just seem to be hearing way more negative remarks than positive ones in this journey.
I tested between 151 and 162. I hoped for the high end and ended up in the middle. Still, not a bad plan overall, I think.

LSAT: 156 (not taking it again and you can't make me)
GPA: 3.4ish. Still a semester to go
URM, non-trad, 12 yrs work exp, published
Looking for low debt and high aid

qmmm

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Re: Are we delusional? How not to be one of the miserable $ unemployed
« Reply #6 on: July 07, 2007, 05:27:35 PM »
I agree with bamf.  To paraphrase one of my favorite movies, 'The More the Merrier', there are two types of people in this world: those that write in diaries everything that they wished that they did that day; and those who don't because there doing everything that they wanted to do that day.

That being said, I think that there is likely another problem: unreal expectations.  If you've been lived in a culture that tells you repeatedly that achieving a law degree will lead to a six figure salary right out of law school, you're likely to believe that not only is it possible but that it's probable.  Matthies is right, if that's why you went to law school in the first place you have to hustle; you either have to secure a position in a top school, be in the top 10% of your class, or pound the pavement.  The point is that you have to set yourself apart from the herd in some manner.  However, if you think that probable that you'll score the salary you desire simply by finishing law school, then you're likely not going to try to separate yourself from the herd.  That's when reality comes crashing down and some people can't handle it.

EDIT: The six figure salary was an arbitrary number.  Everyone has their own definition of wealth.  I simply used six figures because that's sort of a baseline for biglaw in secondary legal markets.

Slim

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Re: Are we delusional? How not to be one of the miserable $ unemployed
« Reply #7 on: July 08, 2007, 02:00:17 PM »
Non-trads definately have a different definition of success. I suspect very few of us actually want to be treated like *&^% 1years at biglaw (or will tolerate it). Most of us are confident that the big money will come with time and experience.  A lot of the posters here are looking for instant easy gratification.  A lot of us non-trads know nothing is instant or easy.  I have a 9 year plan after L.S.  with best case and worst case scenarios.  Either way if all else fails what is it that I really have to loose?


Enlighten the people, generally, and tyranny and oppressions of body and mind will vanish like spirits at the dawn of day. - Thomas Jefferson.

wellpreserved

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Re: Are we delusional? How not to be one of the miserable $ unemployed
« Reply #8 on: July 08, 2007, 02:16:24 PM »
Non-trads definately have a different definition of success. I suspect very few of us actually want to be treated like sh*t 1years at biglaw (or will tolerate it). Most of us are confident that the big money will come with time and experience.  A lot of the posters here are looking for instant easy gratification.  A lot of us non-trads know nothing is instant or easy.  I have a 9 year plan after L.S.  with best case and worst case scenarios.  Either way if all else fails what is it that I really have to loose?




I cannot help but think you are right. I think I have just been shocked to find so many people are so, um, delusional. I live in this bubble of my own making where people know how it feels to work a crappy job, only go to law school because they want to and have done all the contingency plan work.

I think I'm withdrawing from  further research. :D I know what I want and now I just pull the trigger.

I, too, have a ten year plan. Even with a low level public prosecutor or defender job I will, sadly depending on how you look at it, will be better off than I am now. I don't have six figure investment banker positions being thrown at my feet - not that i'd want that life it were.
I tested between 151 and 162. I hoped for the high end and ended up in the middle. Still, not a bad plan overall, I think.

LSAT: 156 (not taking it again and you can't make me)
GPA: 3.4ish. Still a semester to go
URM, non-trad, 12 yrs work exp, published
Looking for low debt and high aid

1rakayla

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Re: Are we delusional? How not to be one of the miserable $ unemployed
« Reply #9 on: July 09, 2007, 09:45:02 AM »
I have also had some concerns about my law school decision after reading some of the negative posts and blogs lately. To be honest, it kind of scared me. I talked to my SO about it and he reassured me that people make their own successes. I dont have a 10 year plan, but I intend to do well on the LSAT so that I can have some money offers from my choice schools and incur as little debt as possible.  So I guess I have a 3 month plan for now.