Law Schools - Where and Why?

Discussion in 'Business, Careers & Education' started by El Argentino, Nov 2, 2011.

  1. DLester

    DLester Senior member

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    I cannot believe that anyone is contemplating law school right now.

    with few exceptions,
    THERE IS NO WORK FOR ENTRY LEVEL LAWYERS
    THERE IS NO WORK FOR ENTRY LEVEL LAWYERS
    THERE IS NO WORK FOR ENTRY LEVEL LAWYERS
    THERE IS NO WORK FOR ENTRY LEVEL LAWYERS
    THERE IS NO WORK FOR ENTRY LEVEL LAWYERS

    Do something else unless your soul compels you to be a lawyer.
     


  2. skitlets

    skitlets Senior member

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    Acceptances are rolling in. I'm pretty set on law school now.

    What does conventional wisdom say about attending a school around the T20 vs a regional T30?

    Say I want to practice in the Bay Area, attend UC Hastings or Irvine or go to best school, something like WUSTL?
     


  3. Benzito

    Benzito Senior member

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    Unless you are going to a GREAT school (T14 is the common standard, duh) with national reputation and prestige, I can't see why you'd skip Hastings, Davis, or Irvine (You can get in there? Good on you!) if your long term plans are to stay in California. Heck, do you really think WU will get you a better chance than, say, Santa Clara (this is about as low as you could reasonably go, and that is probably not even on your radar screens)?

    I'm not licensed in CA, but I know enough who are and several others who tried, and failed, to pass the CA bar. I am sure someone will correct me if I am wrong, but I recall that out of state passage rates for CA are quite low. Maybe another factor weighing against going elsewhere if you are just going to come back and try to get a job.

    Where did you apply again?
     


  4. skitlets

    skitlets Senior member

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    I got need and merit based fee waivers, so I applied to a ton of schools. I'm not concerned with passing the CA bar based on where I attend school. I don't think any of the universities I'm thinking of attending really teach towards it.

    Yes, ultimately I want to practice in the Bay Area. I grew up here, my family and my girlfriend reside here. I didn't apply to Santa Clara although I'm thinking I should for financial aid leverage. The question I posed in my previous post really is just a hypothetical. I haven't heard from the majority of schools and financial aid information will not be released for any couple of months for the schools that did accept me. I'm just having fun thinking of the possibilities, making a choice will be easier once I have all the cards in hand.
     


  5. Ambulance Chaser

    Ambulance Chaser Senior member

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    Only if you define payoff solely by financial remuneration. Most law students are not under the illusion that they will be making investment banker money even in the best-case scenario; they want to save the world and/or get up in court and argue like the lawyers on The Practice and The Good Wife. Neither is likely to happen, but that's an entirely different discussion.
     


  6. sns23

    sns23 Senior member

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    and only a handful of bankers make that type of money. Many more lawyers make great salaries in the high 6 figures.
     


  7. retronotmetro

    retronotmetro Senior member

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    If you are set on practicing in the Bay Area, I'd go with Hastings over a non T-14 just based on local reputation and network, unless you had a huge scholly offer somewhere. Just know that you are going to have to kick ass on your grades to get a job out of Hastings. Historically the biglaw grade cutoff at Hastings has been around top third, but I think it has crept much higher these days.

    I would pass on Irvine if Hastings was in the mix. It may well end up being a great school, but nobody knows how to assess it yet and there won't be any real network in the Bay Area for a long time. Years from now it will be great to look back and say you were one of the trailblazers of a top school, but that won't pay your bills in the meantime. Davis had the same problem for years.

    I don't think many schools make it a point to deliberately "teach toward the bar" in CA. It's mostly a multistate test, and the CA-specific areas (community property) are easily covered in bar prep. I think that the clinical/practical focus of some CA schools might give their students a small advantage on the performance sections of the bar, but it isn't a huge edge.
     


  8. skitlets

    skitlets Senior member

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    Thanks for the insight, especially the comparison to Davis. Davis is ranked higher than Hastings but the employment numbers are nearly identical, which makes sense given the relative newness of Davis. The employment numbers for Irvine have looked very promising, despite the lack of an alumni network. I think they placed the highest % of clerks outside of HYS.

    I'll just have to sit tight and see how scholarships and acceptances pan out. Hastings hasn't even begun sending out acceptances.
     


  9. reidrothchild

    reidrothchild Senior member

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    +1. Forgive me if this has already been covered, but even if you're one of the "lucky" ones who gets into a great school and finishes high enough to get a job that will allow you to pay your school loans and live decently, said job will be very unpleasant. If you're truly set on law school, go to the one that will cost the least.
     


  10. Kai

    Kai Senior member

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    I agree, but would limit that to top 10.
     


  11. sns23

    sns23 Senior member

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    That is a bit silly.
     


  12. akatsuki

    akatsuki Senior member

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    Disagree - top 10 if you want to be able to pay down your debt and actually make some money by having, you know, a job.

    Otherwise you will be scrambling to be top 3-5% at a lower tier school to get the job that the guy with gentlemen C's at Harvard wouldn't even look at.
     


  13. onix

    onix Senior member

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    ^ I thought that we spent 10 pages to discuss the exact same thing. Are we going to discuss it again?
     


  14. odoreater

    odoreater Senior member

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    This is basically what I do. :slayer:
     
    Last edited: Jan 10, 2012


  15. randomkoreandude

    randomkoreandude Senior member

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