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Author Topic: Is law a good career to get into?  (Read 678 times)

sh89

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Is law a good career to get into?
« on: August 14, 2007, 09:18:38 PM »
I will begin college in 3 weeks(I am 18), and I have pretty much decided that law is something that both fascinates and interests me.

However, I've been chatting with some fellows, and they have been hinting that law is NOT a good career to get into. First, they say that it is very demanding(I could care less since I currently work 60 hours in construction ;) ). Second, they saw that it is almost impossible to find a job straight out of law school unless you go to a very prestigious law school and graduate in the top 10%.

Is this true or are these people wrong? Is law a good career choice to get into?

bruinbro

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Re: Is law a good career to get into?
« Reply #1 on: August 14, 2007, 11:15:21 PM »
The following is my response to your two points:

1) This is true. Working at a major law firm is demanding. That is why they pay you $160,000 as a first-year associate.

2) The is not totally accurate. It is generally not difficult to find a job if you do fairly well at a decent law school. The rub is that the salary may not be so wonderful in light of massive student loans (should you have them). Moreover, the two parts of the advice given to you are in discord: job hunting is generally easy if you go to a prestigious school OR if you are in the top 10% at most law schools. If you have both (top %10 AT a prestigious school), you will have firms clawing one another to retain your services.

My advice would be to enjoy your freshman year and try to get some type of legal experience as your summer job/internship for next summer.
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just dot

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Re: Is law a good career to get into?
« Reply #2 on: August 15, 2007, 08:43:37 AM »
I will begin college in 3 weeks(I am 18), and I have pretty much decided that law is something that both fascinates and interests me.

However, I've been chatting with some fellows, and they have been hinting that law is NOT a good career to get into. First, they say that it is very demanding(I could care less since I currently work 60 hours in construction ;) ). Second, they saw that it is almost impossible to find a job straight out of law school unless you go to a very prestigious law school and graduate in the top 10%.

Is this true or are these people wrong? Is law a good career choice to get into?

A law degree doesn't mean you have to go into biglaw (large law firms, supposedly the highest paying starting jobs out of law school). There are many things you can do with a J.D.  You need to do your research the next few years to see if any of the things you can do with it are for you. I applaud you for thinking in this direction now.  You will need to be careful during your undergrad years to keep your GPA up so you can be a competitive candidate when you do apply for law school.

I don't believe the statistics you were given regarding post-law school employment.  Go onto the websites of some of the law schools you think you might consider later on.  They have statistics stating their placements.  Any law school in the top 50 (or really even top 100) is probably going to have post-law school employment in the 90% and above range.  It's just not true that there are long lines of lawyers in the unemployment lines.

I agree with the advice the other poster gave you about trying to get work at a law firm.  I think it would be great experience and would also give you a feel for what lawyers do.  If you don't like one firm, though, be open to trying another.  There are as many different types of lawyers as there are people.  Maybe one area of law isn't for you but another is. 
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SergioCQH

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Re: Is law a good career to get into?
« Reply #3 on: August 15, 2007, 09:27:19 AM »
Don't trust self-reported employment figures. Look at the school's reporting rate, and add the non-reporting percentage to the unemployed percentage divided by the reporting percentage to get a true estimate of how many unemployed graduates there are from that school.

walk it out

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Re: Is law a good career to get into?
« Reply #4 on: August 15, 2007, 11:22:24 AM »
I will begin college in 3 weeks(I am 18), and I have pretty much decided that law is something that both fascinates and interests me.

However, I've been chatting with some fellows, and they have been hinting that law is NOT a good career to get into. First, they say that it is very demanding(I could care less since I currently work 60 hours in construction ;) ). Second, they saw that it is almost impossible to find a job straight out of law school unless you go to a very prestigious law school and graduate in the top 10%.

Is this true or are these people wrong? Is law a good career choice to get into?

Just enjoy your time at school, study hard, and re-visit this idea in 3 years.

I am Penny Lane

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Re: Is law a good career to get into?
« Reply #5 on: August 15, 2007, 11:53:52 AM »
In the meantime, study as hard as you can and knock out the best grades you can. If you decide to further your education you will need them.
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