Law Schools - Where and Why?

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

  1. Ambulance Chaser

    Ambulance Chaser Senior member

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    From what I have heard, the law job market is that bad. For jobs that allow you to pay off your $150K debt in a reasonable amount of time, anyways. Not only do new graduates have to worry about finding jobs, junior associates have to worry about being let go because they're more expensive than new graduates.
     


  2. sns23

    sns23 Senior member

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    Top 25% of the class does not cut it these days . Even the top 5% are having trouble finding employment
     


  3. silvere2

    silvere2 Well-Known Member

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    As usual, it depends on the school. Top quarter at my lower T14 had no problem finding a market paying job. In fact top 1/3rd or so had great results, middle 1/3rd had middling results and the lower 1/3rd struggled. But virtually everyone found a job, maybe not paying 160k but still paying, by the time they graduated. But at 90% of law schools yes, this is the case.
     
    Last edited: Nov 4, 2011


  4. onix

    onix Senior member

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    Many mixed signals in this thread. My recommendations for everyone who goes to law schools:

    - T14, or at least top 20. Else, don't bother.
    - Factors to get in: high (LSAC calculated) GPA to have your profile passed the first round, high LSAT to get some serious consideration, then personal statement and LORs.
    - For high archivers: all T14 have full ride and some do match their competitors, so if you already have high GPA, works on your LSAT to get over 172, a full ride is very likely.
     


  5. sns23

    sns23 Senior member

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    To say that if you do not get into a top 20 school to not bother at all is pretty shoddy advice. It is fine to go to any top 100, but be prepared to work to finish at the top of the class to have any shot of landing a high paying big firm job.
     


  6. onix

    onix Senior member

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    I would agree if it was 10-15 years ago.

    With top 20 graduating thousands every year, skyrocketing tuition cost, shrinking job market, the competition/pressure after graduating is too tough. And getting into top 20 is not as tough as it sounds, 3 months drilling on and plowing through all PrepTests put most people somewhere between 165 and 170 LSAT, and that with a, says, 3.75 GPA put one in a bunch of top 20 already. I would rather go hardcore for 3 months than trying hard for the next 3 years.

    Of course, you will most likely to disagree. Just my experience.
     


  7. ConcernedParent

    ConcernedParent Senior member

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    All big, suffering markets :embar:.

    Want to: Los Angeles, Bay area, NYC; wouldn't mind: Boston, DC, Chicago, Philly, maybe Austin. I'll be one of those usual people and say I can't envision myself in the midwest or south.
     


  8. skitlets

    skitlets Senior member

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    I'm applying to schools this month. The advice I've gathered from various law school forums is Tier 1 at the minimum. Only top14 are worth full price. Of course, a lot depends on what you want to do and where you want to practice.

    I want to stay local to the Bay Area so UC Hastings is about as low as I'd go. PM me if you want to talk about the admissions process or the LSAT.
     


  9. skitlets

    skitlets Senior member

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    The LSAT is definitely a learn-able test. My logic-spatial thinking is terrible and I suck at logic games. I PT'ed 170+ with 4 months of moderate studying and scored a bit under that. A 3.75gpa and 170+ LSAT gets you considered at a lot of good schools.
     


  10. sns23

    sns23 Senior member

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    Impossible since only a few percent of test takers score in that range.
     


  11. onix

    onix Senior member

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    Obviously possible for that 8% above 165.

    Also, just see the post right above you. He did that.
     
    Last edited: Nov 4, 2011


  12. silvere2

    silvere2 Well-Known Member

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    Ok, well unfortunately in this economy the only schools that would open you up to all of those markets are Yale, Harvard, Stanford. So, these are the school I would avoid in the Top 20, with explanations for each:

    Wash U: Great school, they give out a ton of scholly money, but they're a midwestern powerhouse with not much placement outside unless you're in the tippy top of your class.

    Vanderbilt: Usually I recommend Vanderbilt to a lot of people with grades for the lower top 14. Their NLJ + Clerkship placement is historically as good as Cornell and Georgetown, and some years been even better (though Cornell had a superstar year, so this year they happen to be lower), they place in a wide variety of markets (50% in NY/DC, 10% in Cali), and they love giving out scholarship money. Sticker at Georgetown, Cornell, Duke versus a scholarship at Vandy would be a no brainer in my mind, I would take Vandy every single time. Their small class (about 180 students) also makes placement easier during a recession. However, they place about 30% of their class in the south, and for someone who would be absolutely miserable living in the south the risk is too great.

    UT: If you had said you wouldn't mind Dallas or Houston, I would have recommended UT. However, Austin is a relatively small market that requires quite strong ties. Going to law school at UT usually isn't enough to stick around in Austin, you would need something like undergrad at UT, marrying/married to someone in Austin, parents live in Austin, things like that.

    GW: Extremely expensive school in one of the most expensive cities in the world with one of the most competitive legal markets, and a top 14 as practically its next door neighbor. Its easy to see why GW is a very risky choice without a TON of scholarship money. With that said, they give out a really big scholarship that amounts to around 100k and first year room and board free. With that scholly I would consider it, otherwise no way.

    And the one school I would recommend outside of the Top 20 is Boston University. BU places more or less like they're in the ut/ucla/vanderbilt range, however they're ranked outside the Top 20. They have great northeast placement in general including NY and (obviously) Boston.
     


  13. bringusingoodale

    bringusingoodale Senior member

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    preemptive law school drop out right here...

    These threads always make me feel either like I was sooo right or that I just should have tried harder
     


  14. sns23

    sns23 Senior member

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    He said most people can get a 165-170 after three months of studying and lots of practice. That is just a ludicrous statement as only a few percent score in that range, far from "most."

    You don't have to go to a top school to be successful. However, it is going to be challenging. You just have to be cautious when taking on a lot of debt, as well as have a reasonable view on the reality of the future
     
    Last edited: Nov 4, 2011


  15. skitlets

    skitlets Senior member

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    I have a feeling most people taking it aren't studying enough or even productively. Almost everyone who puts in 15 hours/week for 3 months scores 160. That's just studying the basics + PT'ing. If you're a good test taker or know how to address your weaknesses, 165 for sure. Even if you aren't, there are advanced test programs that will do that for you.
     
    Last edited: Nov 4, 2011


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