There are a lot of other options out there. I think you and I can agree that you should go to law school if you want to be a lawyer, and then find a way to make it work. (Although I think a lot of people go to law school without enough experience to know if they want to be a lawyer)
Feel free to ignore the rest of this post, but I'm very bored in a very boring 3L class, so I need something to do.
I want to contrast the experience of an attorney I know and a potential alternative.
This attorney was on Law review, he was in the top half of his class at a school ranked in the 60-80 range. He built up 90,000 in debt in law school, and he got a job in a good DA's office in a medium sized metro area (Population around 2 million).
He started 8 years ago at 50,000/year and now he makes 83,000 per year. He and I are good friends so he told me his ballpark salary for each year.
Another man I know got his degree in business and got a job as a community banker. He started his career the same year my attorney friend started law school, so it's perfect for this comparison.
Here's how the 11 years worked out for the two of them.
Year One: Lawyer -30,000 ; Banker (Teller) 19,500
Two: Lawyer -30,000 ; Banker (Car Loans) 24,500
Three: Lawyer -30,000 ; Banker (Assistant Manager) 29,000
Four: Lawyer: 50,000 ; Banker (Branch Manager) 38,000
Five: Lawyer 52,000 ; Banker 42,000
Six: Lawyer 54,000 ; Banker 46,000
Seven: Lawyer (Promoted) 62,000 ; Banker 50,000
Eight: Lawyer 65,000 ; Banker 52,500
Nine: Lawyer 67,000 ; Banker (Regional Manager) 63,000
Ten: Lawyer (Promoted) 80,000 ; Banker 66,000
Eleven: Lawyer: 83000 ; Banker 69,000
If we don't consider any interest, then the lawyer sits at a total income (minus loans) of $423,000 over 11 Years
The Banker sits at $499,500.
Eventually the lawyer will probably pass the banker, unless the banker gets a better promotion or has a different successful business venture. Maybe the lawyer might even jump into private practice and start making $200,000 a year.
To those who want to go to law school: Just consider how this was a good candidate who got a decent job right out of law school about 8 years ago (When the market was probably a lot better than now). Law school might be a good investment, but think of what else you could accomplish with 3 years of freedom and close to 100,000 dollars?
I just don't think anyone should go to law school unless their primary motivation is that they want to work as a lawyer for 45-70 hours a week.
"good investment" is a relative term. If you read my earlier posts I was argueing with some idiot who wanted to believe that most lawyers will make under $30K. You are saying(very correctly) that most will make well over $55K. Many will make well over $100K.
This is a good thing. I think we both should be able to argue that.
We also agree that students loans are payable based on income. So a "huge" debt is a relative term also. If you make the big bucks, you can pay it back with little problem(so why thebitchin? ) If you get screwed and make tiny amounts, you walk away debt free since it evaporates in a few years anyways with $0 payments, or close to it.
You are right most will make in the middle at first, and it will help them ease into it. People just want to cry. Let them cry.
In all reality what else is there out there? Medical school? Fine, but most lawyers wouldn't be fit to work in a butchershop let alone an ER.
That leaves what, cutting hair?