I write not necessarily expecting a response, having read both your ebook and a daily reading of ILSS, and have been thoroughly convinced that law school would be financially ruinous to me. I graduated from [highly-ranked university], with good grades and a decent LSAT, but the only option was instate sticker price at [top 30 school] which after consideration would have been nearly a $90,000 mistake that I am glad I did not make. Yet, I still regularly see old undergraduate colleagues boasting of their accomplishments at their third tier law schools which I view with a mix of schadenfreude and pity.The looming question that I often get stuck with, is what else should these individuals be doing? This is something I have not been able to answer for myself. I have a degree in political science and history, both with a focus on the American legal system. Had I known the realities of law school in 2006, when I entered college, I may very well have studied something different. But pressures of a middle class family made me believe the law was a career I would be well suited in. I still feel that way: my skill set is completely built around writing, reading, and research within legal sources. So to all those out there who naively thought law school was the next natural transition after receiving a liberal arts degree focused on legal studies, what should we do? Even those of us fortunate enough to be employed are not utilizing our skill set, and perhaps that's more an indictment of our economy, but I am left wondering.
It's disheartening to have parents, relatives, and professors place expectations on you, and to honestly believe one would be a good lawyer, but then to refuse to meet those expectations because I believe earnestly that the economics don't work. I am still unsure of how to address those expectations of family and old professors.
Though, to end on a better note, at least the professors that once pushed me into a legal education are now finally starting to understand. My constitutional history professor has expressed to me that she is no longer recommending law school to any of her current undergraduates and is happy to explain the economics of it to them.For many, though, I fear its too late.Sincerely,
Meanwhile the good folks at LSAC are launching a new initiative in response to plunging LSAT administrations and law school applications:
From Community College to Law School
A new LSAC diversity initiative aims to create opportunities for interaction between law school representatives and community college faculty and staff. The goal is to raise awarenessabout law school preparation and legal career opportunities for two-year college students from racial and ethnic groups underrepresented in the legal profession. Community college faculty and transitional counselors can take advantage of new opportunities to learn about the paths to law school, law career opportunities, and the benefits of DiscoverLaw.org and DiscoverLaw.org Months.
The initiative kicked off this fall when community college faculty and staff attended seminars in Chicago and San Francisco as part of a collaboration between LSAC’s Diversity Initiatives staff and Street Law, Inc. Street Law is dedicated to teaching about law, democracy, and human rights; the seminars helped Street Law participants learn about the ways that DiscoverLaw.org can help students become successful law school applicants.
Additional seminars are being planned to help community college students discover careers in law.
When in doubt, fleece the poor and minorities. Lookin good, LSAC.ReplyDelete
Yes, "underrepresented" here is a "progressive" term for "cash cow".Delete
"Yes, 'underrepresented' here is a 'progressive' term for 'cash cow'."Delete
Don't forget about "accessible" and "diversity."Delete
"balanced class of students"Delete
"Well, my 152 LSAT did get into Iowa and UC-Hastings, but DeVry.edu School of Law was offering a 40% break on tuition for all three years, no stips."ReplyDelete
Down from their already low price of $50k/year.Delete
They even threw in this free Macbook Air. I'm already ahead on my investment.Delete
I'm holding out for the collection of ABBA CDs.Delete
There is a long list of things one can do without going to law school. I would start by trying to figure out where there will be opportunities in my geographic area for businesses and look for enry level work there. Unlike a poster yesterday, who had a law degree and no job, if you do not have the law degree at all, you have many more options. Real estate is coming back now, and you may want to look in that area if you have an interest. That would be my choice if I were a college grad now and not going to grad school. Another choice would be CPA or actuary.ReplyDelete
Buy or start a small business. You'll be your own boss and make a tough, but potentially good living.Delete
If you're smart and diligent enough to get through a good college with grades good enough to get you into a top-100 law school, you're smart and diligent enough to run a small business. So, run a driving range, a preschool, a specialty plant nursery, a self storage facility, a gas station, a landscaping company, a real estate appraisal company (formerly a lawyer job), a document review and compliance company (formerly lawyer jobs), a medical billing company, a tobacconist, a demolition crew, a nonferrous scrap metal processor, etc.
Not realistic for those of us who don't have money.Delete
Then borrow money and go to law school and be indebted for life in a job you hate if you can get a job at all.Delete
Get a shitty job now. Save your money, then start a small company doing shitty jobs. Then, at age 50, stop doing the shitty job and work as the boss of those doing the shitty jobs and cash checks.
I posted a list before. The problem is to completely give up on law as an option, not to wistfully. Look at it from time to te as if it was more than a mirage.Delete
Look at the jobs all the people who never planned to go to law school are doing. They aren't filled with regret and longing because law never appealed to them.
If you have to go back to an inexpensive college and do a second degree in something else.
This isn't so hard- there are plenty of people who have jobs who aren't lawyers, even those with undergrad degrees in social sciences.
This question seems so stupid and immature to me. Be grateful you didn't fall for the scam, dust yourself off and figure out something else. To say how hard it is to read of successes from
TTT schools just show you are not yet outside the scam.
"Then borrow money and go to law school"—Ever heard of a false dichotomy?Delete
Excellent. I would add cop, firefighter, plumber, carpenter, electrician, hair dresser, etc. to the list. If you cant get any of those jobs, then I would recommend doing what 8:44 suggested: work as many shit jobs as possible for as long as you need to save and become a small business owner.
Not gonna happen.Delete
People who attend law school want upper-middle-class respectability.
As LawProf noted on his post about social stigma, many of those who can't land law jobs "cover." They find a substitute job which they can either hide or which they can spin as having the same status as a law job.
The problem with being a successful hair salon owner is that everyone knows you are a hair salon owner.
Then do this:Delete
Wish I had done that when I was younger.
If people really feel that way, then let them pay the price of squalor, have prestige and starve.
I'll recommend CPA. If you can get the prereqs and get into a good MAcc program, you could have the whole thing done in 2-3 years of concentrated effort, both the prereqs and the MAcc. Some MAcc programs don't even have prereqs (but they're intense as hell, that's the flipside) so you could look into those if you can do well on the GMAT.Delete
Here's a good summary of the public accounting field, if you're interested:
I DON'T recommend pursuing a career in actuarial science. Accounting doesn't really involve much complex math (for some reason people think it does because we work with numbers a lot) but being an actuary does. People that kick ass at math major in engineering or physics, not political science and history.
as a CPA and CFA charterholder, i know completing an MAcc or MSTax is very hard. You have to be pretty much living and breathing in the library. It's just like engineering.Delete
^^^^ Ha-ha-ha-ha-ha, good one, LOLOLOLOL.Delete
Just like engineering. LOL.
I am also a CPA and CFA (and a JD) ==> to equate accounting with engineering is RIDICULOUS! The CPA and CFA curricula are a breeze - there is nothing difficult about either one. Any idiot can get these credentials.Delete
I'd like to retell the story of my friend who went from a pizza delivery driver to an executive for Target making 200K+.ReplyDelete
My friend and I were once both poli sci majors at a state school, working on the weekends as pizza delivery drivers. After college, I went to law school, and he kept delivering.
I had a typical experience. I graduated with no job and struggled for a long time. I have a nice permanent job now through sheer luck. But I don't make that much.
My friend kept delivering pizza until Pizza Hut realized he would be a good manager, so they promoted him. He was 10 times smarter than the next smartest employee, so he quickly went from shift manager to assistant manager to store manager. He was running the store by age 23. He ran the store for 2 years. He worked long hours for low pay and the job was embarrassing (being manager helped, but its still Pizza Hut)
At age 25, with 2 years of store management under his belt, he had considerable experience in managing both money and people. This was attractive to Target and they hired him for a management position in one of their big warehouses. This job paid about 60K, a considerable step up. By 27 he had been promoted to a higher management position, by 29 yet another. Now under the Target umbrella, he could apply for jobs advertised internally and he applied for a job that has something to do with coordinating the shipment of groceries to Target stores. After 2 years at this he got another promotion and now works in Minneapolis in HQ. I don't know exactly what his job is now, but I know he negotiates contracts with vendors to supply groceries to Target stores. His title is on his email, I looked it up, he makes at least 200K. He's 33.
The thing that is most amazing to me about my friend's career path is how accidental the whole thing was. There is no school that offers programs in what he does and there are no potential 0Ls who know about what he does. Nobody knows about what he does. How many other jobs are out there like that? Just because you can't imagine them right now doesn't mean they aren't out there.
The mentality of young people today (for whatever reason) is that you have to plan a career from college foward. This is why people ask the question "what else if not law school?"
You can always go to law school at age 28 or 30 or whatever, so why not take a few years after college to just do something, anything and see what happens. Go to work for any large organization, even if you start in a very menial role. Its ok to have a menial job when you're 22. That's the one time that it's ok, so take advantage.
Your friend's career has worked out well for him. Best of luck to him! However, it's not likely that this is a story that will repeat itself too many times.Delete
For every one person who achieves the success that your friend did, there are countless others who toil away at the lower levels. Chances are, most people will not end up as lucky as your friend did.
Hope is not a plan.
Indeed, these are deceptive anecdotes. That one person happened into a good result doesn't mean that people in general can do the same.Delete
Yes, law school is the only answer. Everyone should go.Delete
That does not follow. Please learn a bit of rudimentary logic.Delete
Please educate my simple ole self. Please explain what I should conclude from your brilliant post.Delete
Here are jobs people I know have:Delete
Music producer - dubstep DJ
Worker in an apple store
Bartender in upscale hotel
Graduate school for archeology
Marketing something low level at an ad agency
New media person in advertising
Anthropologist for google
Game designer/ game tester
Artist ( but she is very talented and went to art school)
Public relations with a small firm
You might have to move if you live in small town USA to a bigger city, but there is work.
Usually I don't like anecdotal stories like this one, because they're pretty individual dependent. But this one makes a great point.Delete
I agree with the idea that success is "accidental" the commenter posted. My generation (Gen Y if you will) seems to be obsessed with planning, scheduling, and organizing our lives, particularly around school. It's as if there's a laid-out, linear path that we can follow from high school to our "dream" job.
It's not like this. For anyone. It's really more about random opportunities, working hard and making connections (not just social ones). These days there are no sure bets when it comes to careers, and no one will tell you what to do or not do. There's a lot of uncertainty out there, which makes us nervous. Don't be, because everyone is in the same boat here.
Success and happiness can come if you pay attention to what's actually in front of you, and if you work with it as opposed to doing what you're "supposed" to do.
Yes anecdotes like these can be misleading. There are no easy solutions here. Just take whatever job you can get (within reason), network at all times, live frugally and minimize debt.Delete
6:42 here. I wanted to respond to some of these comments. Its true that hope is not a plan, but I agree with the person who noted that planning might be the wrong approach. Or rather, that we are too consumed with planning that we feel we have to spend huge amounts of money on graduate degrees in order to launch careers.Delete
I realize that there is some "ageism" in legal hiring, but I think anybody can afford to take 2 or 3 years after undergrad to just work some job, whatever crummy job they can get with whatever crummy credentials they have. Work hard, do your best, see what happens. Maybe you'll discover that this crummy job can lead to a career. Maybe it won't, and then you can go to law school. You haven't really lost anything by waiting a short while and you could potentially gain a lot.
6:42 again. I'd like to make another point my friend's experience as compared to my own. The legal world is a very competitive world full of extremely smart people. If you plan to work in the legal world, you need to be extraordinarily smart and capable to stand out.Delete
You do not need to be nearly as smart and capable to stand out at Pizza Hut. Any TTT applicant who can score 150 on the LSAT is going to stand out at Pizza Hut. My friend is only now reaching a point in his career where his peers are true rivals in smarts and ability. He spent the first 5 or 6 years being better than anybody around him and impressing everybody along the way. I, on the other hand, impressed absolutely nobody with my middling grades from my middling T30 law school (T40 now).
Admittedly, I only have this one anecdote to go by, but it seems like there could be some wisdom here applicable generally. For career success, put yourself in a situation where you will be the smartest and the most able person around. Don't put yourself in a situation where you'll be mediocre.
I think of the incredible amount of talent and intelligence wasted on things like doc review projects. You've got hundreds of smart and able people working as click monkeys because they are determined to be "lawyers". These people could all be making good salaries out in the world working at jobs none of us know about and are smarter and more capable than most of the people doing just that.
"from my middling T30 law school (T40 now)"Delete
Your friend was a lucky corn flake or whatever Campos calls the students who "think they can"Delete
The writer asks: "what else should these individuals be doing?" Then provides the clue to answering this question: "But pressures of a middle class family made me believe the law was a career I would be well suited in."ReplyDelete
Get out of the mindset that the narrow, unimaginative, conformist worldview instilled by parents, peers and the higher ed racket defines the only pathways to personal fulfillment. Consider careers where a BA is not necessary, but where the knowledge and skills so acquired (such as they are) may become an advantage. Stop worrying about impressing anyone but yourself.
Historically, only a small percentage of persons made a lucrative living "completely built around writing, reading, and research within legal sources" and we are returning to the historical norm. Undergraduate degrees, let alone grad schools, will soon come to be viewed as unnecessary luxuries for all but a few.
This does mark the end of intellectualism. Most institutions of higher ed have zero claim to providing a genuine intellectual experience. They are corporate drone factories and profit centers.
Meant to say "does NOT mark the end of intellectualism."Delete
I agree that the vaunted intellectualism of institutions of higher ejookayshun is mostly myth. Only by happenstance can intellectualism be found there.Delete
I agree with this. My fiance is a programmer who dropped out of high school in Iceland because there was an opportunity in the late 90's to learn new programming languages and techniques. Eventually recruited to the U.S., he has spent the last ten years building an expertise in functional programming. In his 20's, he wasn't making $160k and it wasn't glamorous work or anything, but now people fly him all over the world to lecture. A recruiter recently told him "we are targeting the top five people in the world in your field, and you're one of them." If you are gifted at something and you can get people to recognize and pay you for that gift, no one will care that you have no "education" section on your resume. Your love of the subject and body of work will speak for itself.Delete
To the emailer wondering what to do with his/her life: I'm almost finished with LS (thank God I've got a job lined up), but every day I think about the time I've wasted. I have observed my area and believe I've discovered an amazing niche market for a consumer product. A small business loan of a mere fifty thousand dollars would get this business off the ground. Every day I wonder if someone else is going to jump on this market share before I get the chance to, assuming I ever get the chance to. I never would have thought of myself as the type of person to start a small business, but sooner or later you start to understand your community and what it wants and needs. You're clearly smart, start observing and planning in earnest and I bet you'll be surprised what you find.ReplyDelete
In the meantime, again, you're likely above average in terms of intelligence. Leverage that asset into a job anywhere in the world. Businesses are always on the lookout for smart people (who are unencumbered by a JD). Banks (commercial and retail), insurance, sales, service, shipping and receiving, logistics, whatever!
As a last option, consider the following. Now, I know you don't want to admit to yourself that you wasted four years getting two degrees that are not worth a lick in the market place, but swallow your pride and get past that. Assuming you could get accepted, pursue a degree in a more useful field, say, business/management, accounting, engineering, etc... Do research and figure out the growth fields this coming decade. I tell any aspiring law student that if s/he has ANY ability in math whatsoever, go spend 2 1/2 or 3 years getting an engineering bachelors degree. It's worth more than 3 years and a JD, and it's not even close.
Basically, original emailer, the world is your oyster. You are in a position 90 pct of the people reading this blog would kill for, even the "successful" readers.
Where are all these businesses that are constantly clamoring for smart people?Delete
I have an LSAT competitive for T14 (probably sticker) and opted not to apply to LS and instead pursue a second bachelor's in electrical engineering. I can't tell you how many people who pat me on the back and tell me I'm making a great decision.Delete
I only have 1.5 years and I still want to go to law school, but hopefully next cycle things will be beginning to sort themselves out. I know at least that going in with a BSEE, no matter where I attend I'll hopefully be in a much better position for a satisfying law job.
It also gives me a fallback option if (when?) law school doesn't work out.
just take the PE or work at Con Edison. My friend joined the Con Edison management program at 80k and 7 years later he's making about 145k. he had a dual major, one of which is EE (and the other is another related engineering field)Delete
@ 12:50 - finish the EE, take the US patent bar examination, then get a job as a patent agent. While doing this, if you still want to be a lawyer (and of course there are limitations to remaining an agent), go to LS evenings. It's also possible that in a few years that firms might start paying for part of LS for their agent employees.Delete
Another option - get the EE then start work at the USPTO as a patent examiner. Go to LS evenings same as above. Note USPTO used to pay for LS too. It does not currently, but if the economy picks up it may begin doing so again.
Startups. Good grades from a top university and some passion is all you need to get in the door.ReplyDelete
I know this because I dropped out of law school to do it and had a pretty easy time getting offers. Polisci degree from top state schoolDelete
"Startups. Good grades from a top university and some passion is all you need to get in the door."Delete
So they aren't looking for smarts per se......
My cousin had a similar story, although he was not as successful. He started working at 15. Traditional college was never an option (working class, not particularly studious), but he eventually made assistant manager. When he was in his early 20s he lateraled over to a big box chain, then became a store manager. At this point his employer was paying him to go to the local state college and get a business degree. When he graduated, they moved him up to distribution center manager. He now makes around 80K, with no SL debt and a family. He's not making it rain, but it's a solid middle class income that many 30 year old lawyers would kill to have.ReplyDelete
Unfortunately, folks from backgrounds like his are now going to be hit with a barrage of advertisements from lower ranked law schools. But they should be used to it by now, since for-profit scam schools, beauty schools, real estate seminars, and culinary schools have been targeting those populations for years.
Sounds like this correspondent is a bit too worried about what his parents think. He is an adult and it's his life. If his parents are insistent on him being a lawyer, maybe they would co sign his student loans (or better yet, pay for law school out of their funds, and then he can pay them back when he gets that big firm job.)ReplyDelete
I'm a "success story" in that I graduated 11 years ago and have been steadily working for the feds ever since. I have never had a period of unemployment (which I am very thankful for!) But, if I had it to do over again, I most likely would not go to law school. I've had a couple of good/decent jobs in law, and two terrible horrible jobs, one of which I am still in. The problem is, there are good jobs out there, but there is a much larger proportion of terrible jobs. You can't guarantee that you're going to luck out and get (and keep) a good job for 40 years of your career. Most likely, some or all of your career will be stuck in one of the terrible jobs, or unemployed. Also, I, too, was one of the poli sci majors who loved writing and researching, was very interested in the law and politics, etc. Going to law school also seemed like a stable career at the time (remember, 12-13 years ago), and I grew up with a lot of economic instability, so that really appealed to me. But the thing is, in my current (crappy) job, I don't get to do much research or writing at all. Instead, I spend my time frantically copying/pasting nearly identical briefs, and writing incredibly boring statements of facts about issues that no one could find interesting, at a rapid pace, because we're understaffed and the workload keeps increasing. On the rare occasions when I get to do some original research and writing, those are really red letter days. Honestly, I would get to do more writing if I had a basic 9 to 5 non-writing job, and wrote a blog in my spare time. So I don't know "what else you can do," how about anything else? Because the law is not what it's cracked up to be anymore, even if you do get a "good job" and manage to keep it for a long time (big if). The problem is, people don't see this reality until they've started practicing. But all of us are saying, count yourself lucky that the scam was revealed before you took the plunge and committed to this career, because many other things are going to be more fulfilling than this.ReplyDelete
*also, I still have 6 figures of debt, so there's that, too!
paragraph breaks are your friendDelete
I have been asked the question "if not law school, what else should I do with my useless liberal arts degree?" more times than I care to remember. Here is the thing. I don't know most of the people who ask me that question very well. I don't know what their favorite drink is or whether they prefer blondes or brunettes. And yet, they expect me to give them a roadmap that will guide them for the next 40-50 years. I am not a career counselor. I assume colleges have those, after all, they sure are raking in the cash as last I checked, my alma mater is charging more than $50K a year to attend.ReplyDelete
I really don't get the fascination with law school or a legal career. The law is a treacherous career with no stability and a guarantee that your stress levels will be at occupational hazardous equivalents. The pay is overrated.
Now LSAC wants to recruit from community colleges. What's next? Prisons? I mean I have read stories in which law schools have admitted convicted murderers, pedophiles, drug dealers, larcenists, etc. When I went to law school, having a criminal record was a bar to getting into law school. I suppose the schools are in surivival mode and will take anyone with a pulse and the ability to sign a check. This is what has become the sad state of our "noble" profession.
I wish I was 20 years old again. I would have avoided law school and ventured off to China, Thailand or South America. I am sure I would have been happier there than getting plugged into the student loan matrix and getting hosed by evil men disguised as "distinguished" scholars.
David Brooks wrote a few years back that, when he talks to students at highly selective universities, "they think there are five jobs."ReplyDelete
What this means is "there are about five jobs that will cause everyone to validate or compliment the student."
No one wants to be a pizza delivery manager or a warehouse foreman at 25. Most middle-class people that age are driven by a need to put as much space as possible between themselves and anything seen as blue collar.
Notice how everyone wants to work in media as a writer or producer or booker, but no one wants to make a lot more money by working in media as an electrician or carpenter or seamstress.
People want status. Law School promises status.
"Law School promises status" for those too timid and weakminded to ignore the opinions of clueless parents, schoolmates and neighbors and find their own path to happiness on their own terms.Delete
Act like a sheep, end up like a sheep.
You are not your job.Delete
You are not how much money you have in the bank.
You are not your fucking khakis.
Ah, yes, David Brooks, with his repertoire of "duh" observations passing as enlightened thought.Delete
The real question is where high school students get these ridiculous ideas? In my case, my father made it crystal clear that many occupations are for losers, and not just things like mechanics or plumbing, but things like teacher and salesman.
See, many boomers have the following view of the world: everyone has a skill-set and talent level, and to take a job below your skill-set and talent level is a "waste" akin to an offense against nature. They can justify this view because TO THEM there was always a shortage of talent compared to jobs available. In the boomer generation, way more people wound up with incomes and occupations above their skill and talent level than the other way around.
Unfortunately, Gen X and Gen Y are bearing the brunt of the reverse, where talent and skill vastly outnumber the amount of jobs available thanks to a variety of socioeconomic forces (off-shoring, wealth concentration, credential inflation, etc.). The result is that a generation of kids have parents who think they're "wasting" talent unless they do jobs that simply aren't available.
That's okay if you have parents who you hate. For those of us who grew up with overly-caring, overly-delusional parents who are just CONVINCED there are plenty of great professional jobs out there that would hire us, it's psychologically crushing.
Boomer parents basically refuse to give up believing in the Santa Claus economy, and pushing their children towards status oriented jobs is just an offshoot of that.
9:05, exactly. Excellent analysis.Delete
I hate boomers. The law school scam is their doing.Delete
Some parents get it, but often when they do it's too late.Delete
What are those five jobs? Doctor lawyer accountant??Delete
Banker. Hedge fund type.Delete
WTF? how are u gonna talk about 5 jobs and not tell us what they are?? is it prostitute, pimp, drug dealer, human trafficker and law school dean?Delete
I would imagine the 5 jobs are doctor, lawyer, engineer/science, businessman, and academic (PhD).Delete
If you talk to kids at elite liberal arts schools who want to make money, 90% will say one of those 5.
This effort to attract minority students is pure evil genius. It will not only fill seats, but also give the law schools the ability to yell “RACISM” whenever someone questions their sales of $150k pieces of paper. Additionally, the glut of unemployed and underemployed minority lawyers will be able to be explained away with cries of institutional racism (which also gives law professors, whom may or may not use capital letters in their names, a topic for law review articles).ReplyDelete
The Indiana Institute of Technology and Underwater Basketweaving is betting the lot on the race card.Delete
A law school scam article by Bloomberg is being covered by the Drudge Report under the headline "American Dream Fades for Generation Y Professionals..."ReplyDelete
My advice to young college grads: get a shitty job (or two or three) for 3 years, and do it well. Don't even try for a low-level white collar job, because everyone with similar credentials is trying to get one.ReplyDelete
Instead, be the best bar back, pizza maker, landscaper, warehouseman, gas station clerk you can and enjoy being young. Get your own apartment, go out and meet people, and date, and get a hobby, and learn about life. And as you're doing that, you'll have an economic opportunity come up, or you'll spot one, or you'll meet someone who needs someone. And you'll still be you, and you won't hate your job or your life, and you won't be a sheep.
And eventually, you'll start Ted's western bar and karaoke, or greenfields landscaping, or international commercial drywall, or you'll be invited to join the ranks of consolidated reinsurance of the netherlands, and you'll be happy with life. That's how it works out.
If you try forcing yourself into another man's profession in a crowded field because of status, or fear, you will hate your job and your life.
TITCR (that and the muni jobs with delicous political milk).Delete
I'm sure you mean well, but this is terrible advice. I worked full time as a hostess for six months after graduating college before finding a teaching job, and it was not something I would recommend. You do not make enough to live on, so getting an apartment and going out to meet people are out of the question. Particularly, since you're working nights and weekends, having any kind of social life is impossible. It's unreliable work and you cannot count on doing that for 3 years.Delete
Its actually good advice. You have to have some selectivity - perhaps hostess wasn't the best choice for you. But you're saying hold out for that decent paying white-collar secure career. Follow your dream! You deserve better!Delete
Which is a mistake, as many other posters here have pointed out. There aren't enough secure white-collar decent-paying jobs for all the college graduates. From what I've been reading you were lucky to get that teaching position (I don't know why anyone would want to be a teacher given how we treated our teachers in school, but apparently there are more applicants than there are places).
Take the best job you can get (with some provisos, like I said). Work hard and live within your means.
Actually live below your means is the best advice.Delete
What to do without a law degree? The same thing that most of us are doing with a law degree. Despite having a license to practice law (what a joke) I was faced with this very same question after being unable (like most of my recent law graduate friends) to find a lawyer job. I spent 2 1/2 years looking, and I speak several languages and have an excellent work history.ReplyDelete
I decided I could no longer afford to work one more unpaid internship in a vain attempt to get a paid legal job, so that meant that I now faced the difficult task of deciding what other career I could now do. It was even more difficult for me than the OP because I had spent the last few years in unpaid legal internships, so all my experience (which wasn't enough to get a legal job) was in the legal field. This excluded me from a lot of jobs that required 2 years of experience specific to a particular field.
While it has been challenging to come up with options, once I began to think outside the 'legal job' box, I actually found it was easier to find a non-legal job than a legal one.
Here are some ideas that may work for you: try USA JOBS - there are so many jobs out there. I apply to about 3-4 per week and am currently preparing for interviews. None of the jobs that I look at require a law degree. Also, see if your undergraduate institution has a subscription to PSJD and if not, contact PSJD to see if you can have access to their database. Look at their category for non-legal jobs or legally related jobs - there are many out there.
Look at idealist.com - type in 'researcher' or 'writer' position and you will find numerous non-profits offering jobs for writers/researchers, including advocacy positions (perfect for PoliSci degrees.) Competition is tough, however - prepare for the job search to take some time. Other writers have suggested looking at start-ups - an excellent suggestion.
Also, do research on some organizations where you want to work. Start saving your pennies now and when you are ready, offer to do an unpaid internship there. You may find it leads to a paid job. If not, it will improve your resume in the area you wish to work in and may lead to a job in the future. Also, look into other fields that you may want to go into or that are currently booming and consider graduate education in that field. Currently, in the city where I live, there are three lawyer jobs, all requiring 7 years of courtroom experience and therefore unavailable to me. In contrast, there are 76 social worker jobs. Because I wanted to do public interest work, I would have had a much better chance of actually doing that where I live if I had gotten a social worker degree and would have had about 1/10th the debt. Don't be defined by your previous (must be a lawyer) expectations. Once you get rid of the "law school is my only option" you will discover a world full of choices - much more than had you gotten a law degree. The law degree really does restrict you because most employers see you only as a lawyer who wants to fight. And having the ensuing and unmanageable debt really does destroy most career choices for you. Good luck! Realize the world is your oyster and that you really have much more choices than most people on this board, who are now burdened with unreasonable debt and stuck trying to find a job in a field that just doesn't have any for someone just coming into the profession.
Not to blow out your candles, but I don;t know *anyone* who has successfully navigated the USAJobs website to the end of job offer and employment.Delete
Jobs in the government are all about who you know.
Come on, don't exaggerate or it undermines your point. A social worker does not have 1/10th the debt of a law school. I'm getting a dual MSW/JD and my public school charges $20k/year for each. Even if you were only doing social work, you'd take on $80k in debt if you're borrowing for living expenses (and you need to, since the clinical placements make it hard to work for $). Please don't tell me you borrowed $800k to go to law school.Delete
In a way this posting addresses one of my biggest issues with law schools – that far too many students are admitted who are simply not suitable candidates to be lawyers. That is to say that it seems to me that too many go to law school à défaut de mieux, that having decided that they want a well paid white collar job – the go into “pre-law” as a major at age 18 or 19 (see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pre-law) and end up becoming law students robotically. They then spend 3 years bored to tears studying a subject they find almost completely disinteresting – and then if they are lucky become one of the awful and unpleasant self-hating people that populate much of the profession or alternately simply cannot succeed as lawyers.ReplyDelete
The worst aspect of what has happened is that so many law graduates are being pumped out that it is increasingly hard for even those suited to being lawyers to get a start in the profession. Moreover, the shear level of competition in the profession is drastically undermining legal ethics – as firms do anything to win and retain clients – anything.
There is another aspect of the legal model that is also broken, and that is the leverage model of law firms especially combined with hourly billing. It is the leverage model that means that at 3-5 years experience BigLaw lawyers become uneconomic – because while their experience means that they are effective and efficient, hourly billing does not favor efficiency – while the leverage model does not favor higher pay for non-equity holders. It is more profitable to have 2 first years and a contract attorney, with cheaply paid highly billed paralegals do the work than a mid-level lawyer.
But returning to the law schools, a major issue is that law schools, because they make so much money off students, have become pretty dedicated to admitting some of the most unsuitable people to be lawyers into law school. What is somewhat perverse is that the origin of the ABA accreditation US law schools was in part the complaint that law office training as well as the night schools of the 20s and 30s were allowing unsuitable people to become lawyers….
The Bloomberg article mentioned by a poster above "American Dream Fades......" is not to be missed. Employment in the law discussed with problems with other majors.ReplyDelete
Thank you and the above poster for posting that article.Delete
This comment has been removed by the author.ReplyDelete
Law schools get desperate and start making inroads at community colleges, where they can exploit minority and low-income students. And people sometimes get upset when I refer to the law school scammers as pigs and cockroaches. Hell, at least cockroaches will look after their own.ReplyDelete
When are we going to start seeing ABA recruitment "initiatives" in homeless shelters, state mental hospitals, ABA meetings and homes for victims of domestic violence? I can see the selling point now: "These groups have been historically under-represented in the profession. We want to provide these opportunities, because we care. Plus, who better to represent indigent clients in our Homeless Legal Clinic?
We're even thinking of opening a law clinic auto accident victims. So far, we're tentatively calling it the Clinic for Victims of Car Accidents Where the Driver of Manual Transmission Autos Were Disadvanted by Being Left Handed. If you have a better idea, enroll in our law school - and come up with a better name."
The few community college people I know are knowledgable about money and won't take on $200,000 of debt. When you can barely make a car payment, you learn quickly the cost of carrying debt.Delete
Most of thes kids will be more likely to join the armed forces for money to go to school rather than go into debt.
>The looming question that I often get stuck with, is what else should these individuals be doing?ReplyDelete
The cost of moving to the Bay Area, bunking up with roommates, and hanging a job at a random startup is maybe $3k in relocation expenses. After following this route for 3 years, a person has a vetted skillset and a network of actual contacts, not just parents' friends and clueless old profs. Yet how many kids do this?
You can tally up 10 reasonable alternatives to law school, granted all of which require some unglamorous work in one's twenties and some actual thought into how to make it happen (you know, those critical-thinking skills).
It has less to do credible alternatives and more to do with the massive blind spots on the part of suburban parents and their children.
Dear Professor Campos,ReplyDelete
When I was considering law school I looked at the cost of attending the schools of my choice. At the time, I decided that I was unwilling to take on debt to finance another degree. So, I went to work. I never looked at the employment stats or believed that I was a special snowflake that would be selected for Biglaw. I simply decided that it was foolish to take on outsized debt with no present ability to pay it off. It’s that simple. I worked for several years and finally entered law school as a non-traditional student. I didn’t take on any debt. It’s that easy. I now enjoy a nice second career as a government lawyer. Anyone who took out a loan, based on anything other than their own research regarding realistic employment outcomes, with little or no present chance of being able to pay off the debt required to finance law school, deserves what they get. It’s that easy.
You did no research but you condemn others who don't ? Great example.Delete
10:05, we genuflect before your awesomeness.Delete
Being suckered into a sour bet is not the same as being foolish.Delete
Some people strive to defend the ignorant from the ethically dubious and opportunistic.
The worst part about being ignorant is you most often don't know.
i'm not worthy....Delete
Many of these comments inadvertently reveal the age problem.ReplyDelete
It's extraordinarily difficult for a white person with a graduate degree who is over the age of 35 to obtain jobs at start ups, manufacturing firms, craft unions, etc.
and yet, somehow they do.Delete
Do you have any statistics on this? Have you applied for and been turned down from more than 300 jobs , like many law graduates?Delete
Or is this just an assumption? If you have nothing to offer, no one is going to hire you.
I'm not getting why it's harder for a "white person" than any other person to do those things. Start ups are usually almost entirely made up of "white people."ReplyDelete
I think that is the deep sound of bitterness you hear.Delete
"Similarly, the number of hours logged by first-year and mid-level legal associates -- a productivity measure of young lawyers -- fell 12 percent from 2007 at some of New York’s largest law firms, says Jeff Grossman, national managing director of Wells Fargo Private Bank’s Legal Specialty Group in Charlotte, North Carolina. Yet profits per partner climbed $50,697 to $1.5 million on revenue of $66 billion last year, according to a separate survey of 86 of the world’s top law firms by The American Lawyer magazine."ReplyDelete
Disgusting. The primary stakeholders at the top of the "guild" are making out like bandits (law professors and biglaw partners), while the peons at the bottom are being exploited.
That quote does nothing to illustrate your point.Delete
No question partners do well. The published numbers though are far better than the reality.Delete
We're living in an age of universal insanity.ReplyDelete
1) Props to the guy above who mentioned that his dad had drilled it into him about how so many jobs were beneath him.
Cracked Magazine, which is now a social satire mag like The Onion, did a piece recently headlined "5 Ways We Ruined the Occupy Wall Street Generation."
Number 5 was Making You Ashamed To Take Manual Labor Jobs. "We told you your whole lives that those jobs were for idiots and failures. You think you're too good for those jobs because that's what we've been fucking telling you since birth."
2) Young people understand intuitively that, once you take a job which is "beneath" you, employers won't consider you for that other, better job you prefer.
So aspiring lawyers string together unpaid internships, volunteering, contract work -- anything to arguably stay in the legal field and remain viable for a lawyer job.
Because once they take that job in logistics/wholesaling/sales, their potential legal career evaporates.
Don't blame the kids for that. Blame the a-hole HR people and hiring partners who think that only one set of experiences can create a good first-year associate.
They fuck you up, your mum and dad.Delete
They may not mean to, but they do.
They fill you with the faults they had
And add some extra, just for you.
But they were fucked up in their turn
By fools in old-style hats and coats,
Who half the time were soppy-stern
And half at one another's throats.
Man hands on misery to man.
It deepens like a coastal shelf.
Get out as early as you can,
And don't have any kids yourself.
some practical optionsReplyDelete
1. enroll in a 1 year Master of Taxation program at an instate school.
2. enroll in a 2 year Master of Accounting program
3. marry up
4. score 178 on the next retake
The fourth option won't work.Delete
but Elle Woods scored 179 on her LSATDelete
Ok, fine, I'm no fan of the boomer generation either. It's full of self obsessed, callow a-holes, as far as I'm concerned. But at what point does an adult start to take responsibility for his/her own destiny and choices in life? It's fine for an 18 year old to say "my parents taught me to look down on manual labor and that law school was the path to respectability." It's kind of embarrassing though when a 25 year old uses what his/her parents told him/her as an excuse for working unpaid internships in the hopes of gaining a foothold in a deteriorating profession. My parents messed me up too, but at a certain point you gotta start making choices based on rational factors rather than "mom and dad will think I'm a failure if I do XYZ."ReplyDelete
You don't think it is worth exploring where the law school scam message is coming from and who in society are perpetuating it?Delete
Why don't the boomers take responsibility for what they created? What they have made is horrendous for many people.
The mess was created by the greed and intentional blindness of the law schools to the poor employment outcomes of many of their grads and by a policy of the US government that hands out unlimited educational debt like candy and is not unique to law schools.Delete
The victims of this scandal run the gamut of ages.
Seriously, who are these people that are unable to tell their parents to fuck off?Delete
So, who was in charge of the law schools when the scam blossomed and thrived for decades? Was it the greatest generation doing this to their kids? Or was it those kids , the boomers, ruining their own kids lives and feeling proud of it?Delete
You were lucky enough to find a career that allowed you to be able to save up for law school. Try to entertain the notion that not everyone was that fortunate. I had a BA as well as a diploma from an overseas university, spoke several languages and worked for several years. Despite my best efforts (and perhaps because I was a female) I was only able to get low-paying, office jobs. I couldn't save for law school on $10 an hour receptionist salaries.
If you were priviledged enough to have a $40,000 a year job that allowed for you to save for law school, be grateful. Not everyone is so lucky and for some, loans are the only way they will be able to afford $100,000 in tuition and living expenses, unfortunately. In addition, try to throw in health scares and other unforeseen, uncontrollable events (robberies, vehicles breaking down, etc.) and you will find that there are other variables that may affect whether one is able to save enough to attend law school. Try to keep an open mind for possibilities and circumstances different from your own.
what is this feminist crap? when your office job doesn't pay well you have options that men don't. you can always strip for tips and rake in the big bux! can u imagine if one of us men tried that? we'd all be holding out beggars cup by the end of the shift.Delete
Guys can strip and be prostitutes too. Expand your horizons. What, you don't want to have sex with people you're not attracted to? How do you think female prostitutes feel?Delete
You can't avoid a stigma if it's widely shared.
Boomers, Echos, Xs and Ys -- all of them believe to some extent that taking the "wrong" job disqualifies you from the "right" job.
You could be the world's best proofreader, but Hearst isn't going to take your resume seriously if your most recent gig was working with motorcycles.
One of the worst pieces of advice we received was "Don't worry about what other people think." But other people's opinions control our lives -- the opinions of teachers, admissions committees, Human Resources people, hiring managers, even resume software.
It's all well and good to say "You should do X or Y," but the reality is doing X or Y will cut you off from any possibility of doing Z.
There's something to be said for being your own boss, even if it's in a shitty industry/position.ReplyDelete
Stigma, status, the decisions of others -- all are real, and all impact your life because you want to trade labor for money as another man's servant.
Try to be your own boss in a crappy job. You might end up highly successful. Later on, you can at least have a reason when you try to re-enter life as a servant.
Does everyone agree with this guy that "the economics don't work" because he'd have to take on 90K in debt in order to attend a top 30 law school? Would the economics work at 50k? 25K? Delivering pizzas for a few years or "marrying up" hardly seem like better prescriptions for success.ReplyDelete
Assuming he wants to be a lawyer, I'd say at 25K it makes sense, and at 50K it's a close call.Delete
Are you talking per year or total? If someone can get a degree and owe less than $20,000 total it might be worth it but only if they really want to be a lawyer.Delete
Criticizing the LSAC diversity initiative is racist. Why shouldn't people of color participate fully, as advocates, in our majestic system of law? Maybe the good ole' boy white male network that still runs the law profession is afraid of a little competition?ReplyDelete
OK, I'm full of shit.
@11:23 I also started working for $8.00 per hour. I worked full time and attended undergrad and grad school at night – which sucked. I was opposed to debt even for undergrad. If I wasn't able to save the $ necessary for law school, I wouldn't have gone. The job opportunities available to me at the end of law school were limited but I wasn't limited by the salary since I had no debt. It’s all about choices.ReplyDelete
I just want to say one word to you, just one word.ReplyDelete
Only a Boomer would refer to that.Delete
One of my jobs was a corporate pilot. One of my duties was taking the bosses daughter on trips to see what "elite" private colleges would enroll a very rich girl with middling grades and mild dyslexia. The answer : All of them.ReplyDelete
It was then I realized the question being asked was: "Will you please take my daddy 's money?"
Sub "student loans" for "daddy" and we are where we are with the LS scam.
There must be more to it than that. Why would the "elite" schools give her a break? Uncle Sam's money (paid in full up front) is just as good as your boss's dough, right?Delete
No, because Uncle Sam can't be expected to follow up with multi-million-dollar donations.Delete
You don't need a law degree to do writing, reading, and research within legal sources. You don't need a law license to do writing, reading, and research within legal sources.ReplyDelete
You need law school to get a law license. A law license allows you to appear before judges. Period. Full stop.
Once you realize that 99% of the law school graduates are not going to make that much, and are going to put in long hours not making much money, the choice becomes easier.
Once you realize that you will be lucky to make $60,000 per year as a lawyer, and you are likely to be making $20,000 per year, finding a job which pays just as well is not as big of a challenge. This is more true when you realize you can have a job which pays just as well as law, without the crushing debt and lost years which comes with a law degree.
I think its a matter of looking around and recognizing that there are many jobs out there which do not require a specialized training.
Contrary to what many people will tell you, many jobs are cookie cutter jobs. Employers do not want employees who are imaginative, creative or innovative. They want employees who follow instructions, who follow standard operating procedures, and who simply do a limited number of tasks. The same is actually true for most legal employers as well.
Starting a small business is not a particularly good solution. Most of the people suggesting it have never started one. I have started several.ReplyDelete
95% of all small business fail within the first five years. Most fail in the first year.
Most small businesses are under-capitalized. Getting a loan to start a business is real difficult if you don't have any assets in the first place.
Also, the marketplace is rigged against the small businessman. For example, if you go into retail, you quickly discover that not all retailers pay the same price for their inventory. You soon discover that it is difficult to compete against Walmart or Amazon, when Walmart are paying 30% of list price for their inventory, when you are lucky to be paying 60% of list price. Never underestimate monopoly power.
Similarly, most restaurants are an invitation to lose your shirt. Competing against McDonald's is next to impossible. You will find more hairdressers in your typical community than lawyers.
All in all, starting a small business is not a realistic solution. Moreover, you don't need any sort of college degree to start one.
It's a matter of starting the right business. landscaping and construction are good businesses to start if you are willing to work hard. they do not have the monopoly problems that you reference and there is plenty of work to go around to competent, honest workers.Delete
Yes I just went by the home depo lot. There are plenty of undocumented workers who will underbid you in that area. This is true in van nuys and all over laDelete
And 95% of start-ups are bad and/or under-funded ideas. These kinds of stats are always used to make it look like business success is a crap-shoot.Delete
And how many businesses have you guys started?Delete
"It's a matter of starting the right business..." Yeah! It's so easy. Just pick the right business.
I see a lot of construction people sitting around without any work. If you have not noticed, the housing market tanked a few years ago.
I also know a few guys in landscaping. They make a good living, because they married wives with jobs.
Yeah! 95% of the business are underfunded. You want to start a business, just borrow the money from your parents. Just as clueless as Mitt Romney!
-- All very bad ideas coming from people who don't know what they are talking about.
How to Marry UpReplyDelete
Be charming and fun. This is basic advice for anyone looking for a mate. Without these qualities you're really going to have a hard time of it.
Study the society page in your newspaper. It's essential that you're familiar with prominent families and local big shots. After a few weeks of investigations, you'll have a feel for the major players in the best circles. Focus on available prospects.
Upgrade your appearance. No matter how fabulous you already are (inside and out, of course) there's always room for improvement. Join a gym and lose the spare tire, get a new haircut and overhaul your wardrobe. See 28 Get a Drastic Makeover.
Enroll in finishing school to gain ease and familiarity with the finer points of social etiquette. Learn how to carry on witty and lively conversations, and if you lean toward bluntness, school yourself in the gentle art of diplomacy in all areas of your life.
Volunteer for a high-profile charity that attracts philanthropists. Any city is likely to have a publicly supported hospital, opera or symphony, or school. A fund-raising position will put you into direct contact with the well-heeled. If a conflict of interest arises, deal with it after that ring is on your finger.
Use your volunteer position to stay informed about major fundraisers, opening night at the opera or ballet, polo matches and museum dedications. Your work will give you credibility and help secure invitations to all the hot events. Find dates from among your fund-raising contacts by subtly dropping the hint that it's their duty to accompany you to an upcoming event. Avoid overplaying the guilt card or you'll have an unwilling escort.
Join a prestigious club. You have many choices depending on your interests. A country club is an obvious choice. Many yacht clubs have associate or social memberships for people who don't actually have a boat or lots of cash. See 428 Organize a Sailing Team.
Don't forget the polo tournaments! It wasn't by random chance that Ralph "Lauren" chose a polo player as the symbol for his elitist fantasy nonsense clothing line. The Yachtie connection is always good, too!Delete
quitcher whinin and getcherself a job.ReplyDelete
Get terminal cancer.Delete
^^^ too late, asswipe. Why do you think I'm so grumpy. But thanks anyway.Delete
"It's all about choices."
11:23 here. My sister didn't choose to be paralyzed. Yet she is. And medical costs cost a lot. There are hundreds of thousands of people everday who don't choose illness, yet still have to pay for such health conditions. And unless you ever had to pay $100,000 for a health condition that you didn't choose and still was able to pay another $100,000 for law school, please don't say it's only about one's choices.
For example, you mention you started working at $8 an hour. Can I assume that at the time you were living in the US? So, you weren't born in a third world country and you were able to get an education as a child here in the states for free that allowed you to get a job that earned $8 an hour when you were old enough to work. You're a step ahead of my sister-in-law, who, before she could even consider going to college here in the US, had to earn about $10,000 on a housekeeper's salary to properly emigrate here so she could have a chance at a future and an education, because in the country where she is from, no such opportunities are available to children who come from her class/background. If you didn't have to worry about such concerns, you were already way ahead of the game and could instead focus on saving your $8 an hour to attend law school and not pay to emigrate.
Where did you reside when you were working on your $8 an hour salary? Any chance it was at home with your parents or a spouse? If so, you are already ahead of some of my friends, who didn't have the luxury of having such a support system. A significant portion of their $8 an hour salary went to pay for rent.
Are you largely free of expensive medical conditions? If so, you are much better off than many people I know, who, despite having insurance, still have to pay hundreds of dollars a month in medication costs for conditions they can't even control. Bet it would have been pretty hard for you to save up for law school if you had to come up w/ $400 to $500 a month on your $8 an hour salary for medication. Perhaps you would have never got your start if you were confronted with such costs.
Did your salary ever get increased from $8 an hour? Then thank God that you were able to work in an economic climate where your company could give you raises, unlike the situation many people face today, having to accept wages much lower than what they are worth, or having to work for years without a raise, or worse of all, having to go through being laid off or unemployed, through no fault of their own, even though they may be excellent workers. No doubt that would have a significant impact on a person's ability to save for law school.
I get where you are coming from because like you, I earned enough to pay for my undergrad without taking out loans. Furthermore, I worked while attending school, and I waited years to attend undergrad until I had the money to pay for it. I was also lucky because I had good circumstances (no costly health conditions, good economic conditions, etc.) that allowed me to focus on saving for my education. However, those circumstances changed drastically and despite possessing the same saving instinct and hard work ethics that allowed me to save for undergrad, I was unable to do the same for law school. Having done it both ways, I can say without a doubt that circumstances beyond one's own will play a large role in allowing one to save up for one's own education. And I hope you can be more open to that.
Even more a cry baby.Delete
""It's all about choices."Delete
11:23 here. My sister didn't choose to be paralyzed. Yet she is. "
Thank you for your entry. You have been named the Non Sequitur Of The Day Award winner.
that must be a fancy award.Delete
Why would you still go to law school after completing a BSEE? just be an engineer you'll make better money, if you think you're going to get into IP you still have scam goggles on, you'll salary cap out of the system after just a few years - making law school a break even endeavor..actually it'll be a loss cuz you'll have wasted 3 years
I'm going to a community college to start over in a industry where there are jobs, what a wasted youthReplyDelete
See, I think this is a very smart move. Good for you.Delete
I see a lot of people commenting about engineering degrees leading to a stable job...so what happens if everyone gets an engineering degree?ReplyDelete
The saturation in engineering has been going on for a decade plus already. I know two recent grads from upper-tier engineering programs (like top Big Ten schools) who had to go back and get masters degrees to even be marketable. The one was even told in an interview to get a good job in engineering (mech., I think), you need a masters nowadays.Delete
On the plus side, a masters in engineering takes less time than a law degree starting at age 18, which is a sign of how warped the legal education system is. On the downside, you'd just be entering another credential arms race where you're already a generation behind.
And people can get pushed out of engineering at a fairly young age as well.Delete
Something thats been bothering me is that you see the skilled trades (plumbing, machine operation, etc.) being talked up in the media, with talks of skills shortages etc. I'm always leery when the media starts talking up a skills shortage, because its normally a sign of just the opposite situation.Delete
Is there a possibility of oversaturation there as well? I'm sure there are plenty of diploma mill-style vocational training schools out there who will be happy to give you a (near worthless) trade certificate if you're willing to pay through the nose.
Here is an anectdotal success story to warm the cockles of your capitalistic hearts:ReplyDelete
Once upon the time there was this guy who became a law professor and got in on the bottom floor of the best gig in town: Federal Suudent Lending.
Now he's doing really well and the last thing he wants is for consumer bankruptcy protections to be restored for bankrupt former students of his.
You really think the evil capitalist oppressors are behind student loans?Delete
It's more the Federal government guaranteeing the loans. That allows higher ed to charge whatever they want and companies to give students the loans risk free.
In the UK, where there are no gov't guarantees for the law conversion course, banks STOPPED making loans to people studying the 2yr, grad-level course to become a lawyer.
If Federal gurantees were withdrawn and student loan debt were dischargeable, then US banks would STOP lending for many JDs (and BAs). Especially with default rates going up as they are.
Then leftists would be complaining that the evil capitalists restrict access to loans, especially poor and minorities. (Same as they did pre-subprime lending crisis).
"I see a lot of people commenting about engineering degrees leading to a stable job...so what happens if everyone gets an engineering degree?"ReplyDelete
Then engineering becomes the new law degree. Of course, average undergraduate debt is only $25k, but law school debt is $125k.
There's already too many engineers, scientists, STEM PhDs. Although perhaps not in some fields, in some places. But many, like my friend who did aerospace engineering at UMich, cannot find jobs. NASA and Boeing only need so many of the hundreds of aero engineer grads graduating each year.Delete
So he did a masters in finance and now works in finance. (*gasp* "evil misallocation of talent!", thought many of the readers. "We need more engineers and scientists, like media and politicians and Bill Gates claim".)
Many there's too many educated people period? Maybe if we were really the rational economic actors, before going to law school or even college we would do a rational analysis showing that being a handyman or plumber pays more than being many species of white-collar cubicle jockey, and refuse to attend law school or even college.
See also http://100rsns.blogspot.com/p/complete-list-to-date.htmlDelete
Law should be an undergraduate subject. That way these engineers (and anyone else) can get their legal knowledge without the opportunity-limiting stigma of a JD. Many people can also realise they dont like law without paying for 3 years of extra school. Studying law will also lose its false cache as something very special to be yearned for. Knowledge of law can also diffuse into society at lower cost.ReplyDelete
There's 4 reasons. We can still limit entry to the profession with a very hard bar exam.
Having gone through law school, I have no idea why the JD is a separate degree. There is nothing taught in law school that could not be taught in the junior and senior years of a good 4-year program, as they are in numerous other professions.Delete
If one can be 18 with basic calculus, chemistry, literacy, etc. and wind up 3-5 years later a pharmacist, professional journalist, engineer, architect, or numerous other positions of trust, why does it take 7 years to learn how to argue positions and push paper?
It's absurd, really. People talk about getting rid of the third year. F that. Get rid of the whole thing and offer a bachelor's of law.
1st semester: composition, logic, intro to poli sci, elective
2nd semester: composition 2, philosophy of law, intro to business, elective
3rd semester: legal writing 1, Amer. legal history, 2nd poli sci class, elective
4th semester: legal writing 2, legal procedure 1, 2 electives
5th semester: tort law, contract law 1, legal procedure 2, legal ethics/law office management 1
6th semester: real property law, contract law 2, constitutional law, trials/evidence 1
7th semester: legal ethics/law office management 2, trials/evidence 2, criminal law, business law 1
8th semester: 4 electives in topical areas
Upon graduation, you get a provisional license allowing you to practice under another lawyer. After 2 years, you can be certified for admission.
The 7-year program is nothing more than an academic waste that only enriches the irovy tower. It has little to no basis in theory or necessity.
Thank you for this. I agree and couldn't have said it better.Delete
There's just no reason law should be a 3 year JD program. Those guys 100 years ago who invented this 3yr, grad-level system were just plain wrong.
I think that the person who got in top 30 school, should probably have attended depending on what school he got in.ReplyDelete
There are very little alternatives for people with out some sort of masters. People with MA's from Columbia are only making 42k a year, while people with liberal art B.A.'s are working at starbucks.
So, I am very hesitant to say that someone who may have gotten into law school should not attend by Campos, but what is the alternative?
You're saying that someone should attend law school knowing that he/she will most likely not be able to get a job in law after graduation (because about half of the graduates now don't get those jobs.) What the hell kind of advice is that?Delete
If you're hellbent on borrowing a bunch of money for education, why not get any other grad degree and see what happens? Business school? Library school? Master of public administration? None of those degrees are going to limit your prospects, plus at least they would be fun to get (maybe not business, but the others).
Same goes for people stuck with a useless JD - your options are not great, but I think if I were in your situation I would go back to school in another subject. That way the JD won't limit you from getting a job in the new field - employers might think it's a little weird, or they might see it as a bonus (law librarian, etc.) Yeah, it's more debt but I guess you just have to do IBR and hope for the best - at least you would have a job!
This is wrong.Delete
First of all, when someone says that he got into a "Top 30" school, you can bet that it wasn't Harvard or Michigan or even UCLA; it was probably Alabama or similar. And an Alabama is not worth attending these days.
That other degrees aren't working out especially well does not mean that a person is justified in going for a JD at the cost of huge, non-dischargeable debt.
Why does " I can't figure out another job"="go to law school"??Delete
I have a great deal of sympathy for victims of the law school scam. But for anyone who understands the score and understands the bleak employment outlook, the soul-crushing debt and the casino odds against them if ever practicing law, if you decide law school is your only option, you are cutting your own throat.Delete
There is no reason to go to law school . There is certainly no reason to go to law school because you can't think of anything else.
There are so many different industries and jobs if you live in an urban area. The jobs do not come overnight. Raises do not come overnight once you get a job. However, just because someone has a job at $42,000 is not a reason to go to law school. As this blog has shown, many people do worse after law school - no job or a job paying little more with hundreds of thousands of dollars of debt and no job security.Delete
Some of the $42,000 jobs right out of college have good career paths. Accounting firms for example. Education is another example. The sky is the limit in accounting, and in teaching there are great jobs like principal and great jobs security and hours and some of these jobs pay a lot. It is crazy to go to a law school rated number 30, which likely only gets half of its grads jobs, many of which are fly-by-night type jobs because an entry level BA job pays in the $42,000 range.
Very few undergraduates can land an entry-level job at $42,000. That's one of the reasons people go to law school, not that they're unsatisfied with the $42,000 jobs they have.Delete
Re: teaching - jobs are very hard to get in that field, and the career path is not nearly as good as you advertise. To get to principal anymore, you'll probably need to get a master's degree, have some other management experience, and boot-lick the right people.
Had I gotten a $42,000 job out of undergrad, I never would have applied to law school. I had a 3.8 at U of Chicago. Six months of job searching and I wound up taking a crappy gig at $30k or so, and that was back when the economy was "better."
To start at $42k, I probably would have signed a lifetime contract for the right employer. And this is a solution for the median grad because any ol' grad can snag one of these thar 42k jobs instantly?
But the whole point of this blog is that half of law school grads also can't snag a 42k per year job anymore. Why would you borrow 200k to have a result equal to or worse than what you have with a bachelor's degree?Delete
@ 12:50 yesterday -ReplyDelete
Finish the EE, take the US patent bar examination, then get a job as a patent agent. While doing this, if you still want to be a lawyer (and of course there are limitations to remaining an agent), go to LS evenings. It's also possible that in a few years that firms might start paying for part of LS for their agent employees.
Another option - get the EE then start work at the USPTO as a patent examiner. Go to LS evenings same as above. Note USPTO used to pay for LS too. It does not currently, but if the economy picks up it may begin doing so again.
Up until recently any engineering graduate in most disciplines, that had or could get a security clearance, and fog a mirror could get a good, high-paying job in the defense industries with companies like Lockheed, Boeing, Northrop Grumman, Raytheon, and General Dynamics. Those days are coming to an end as the defense budget will be cut in real terms.ReplyDelete
I think the only reasonably safe fields are Petroleum and Marine Engineering and maybe Accounting with the CPA achieved after a few years. Perhaps Business Administration also.
You know, when I was young I wanted to drive a fire truck. But then I got married and had kids and now I'm just a lawyer. Worse, a criminal lawyer. Where's the status in that? Worse yet, a public defender!ReplyDelete
You know I wish when I was younger I had traveled around more often and maybe engaged in more risky sex, and a lot more recreational drug use too.
You know what, my anxiety and unhappiness is almost certainly related to my early career choices. There's a void there that I could maybe fill as a confessional blog responder. I don't know what it pays, but I know I'm witty. I have a sharp tongue. I can smell blood in the water and intellectual inferiority really steams my potatoes.
You know what Mr. "I'm so sad I didn't get into law school and now I feel bad." You probably don't know modus ponens from modus tollens, but your word choice is appalling. Listen up, law schools are nothing but flim flam side-show debt-burdening soul-sucking life-ruining pseudo graduate schools. Get off your clearly privileged middle class (likely Caucasian) rear end and do something useful.
I had a cousin who licked stamps for the post office part-time back before self-adhesive stamps during a water crisis in Loredo, and now she's the post-master at a very up-scale zip code.
Whatever you do, don't go to law school. Personally, I often have my first drink before the sun is over the yardarm because I can't stop thinking about how it would have been if I had made it to upper middle class status rather than lower moderate middle class status.
Wow, that felt good. I'm a little nervous about spelling errors or possible over/under use of hyphens, but for the most part I think I nailed it. I'm not sure if I used enough intellectual phraseology. Crap, I'm not sure phraseology is a word.
Now I just feel empty again. If only I was a mechanical engineer focusing on accounting equipment in a growing industry that offers student loan repayment and intellectually challenging work. Oh well, back to professional blog responder I guess. (Should that be blog-responder?)
"But then I got married and had kids and now I'm just a lawyer. Worse, a criminal lawyer. "Delete
And aren't all lawyers criminals?
I have always been rather fond of the old "flim flander" term and the next time the opportunity comes up I am going to use it.
I think professor Harold Hill was called a flim flander, but will have to devle into research to verify that :)
BTW: Professor Harold Hill: DOESN"T KNOW THE TERRITORY!!!!!!!!!!!
I read and article not too long ago that said that even the Catholic Church is rejecting people for entrance into the Seminary if they have too much Sl debt.ReplyDelete
So there you go kids. Even the Vatican is going to stay away from the multi billion dollar toxicity of the pure products of America, including the debt.
If or rather when I can find the link that discusses that again I will send it. But trust me, that is what I read.
Impossible debt radiates in so many glorious and Heavenly ways!
Must create a need.ReplyDelete
Must create a need.
I think the King and the Duke from Huckleberry Finn were finally tarred and feathered in the end, and our forebears would probably have done that with the law school scammers as well.
So let me ask you: Do the young kids that don't want to go to law school button their knickerbockers BELOW the knee?
Do they use words like: "Swell" and terms like: "So's your old man?"
Oh folks we got trouble. Right here in River City. Which Rhymes with a .....
Better herd them all into a law school en masse.
Go away. Keep your promise.Delete
please kill yourself.Delete
He shouldn't kill himself. We need people to perform medical experiments on, since PETA disapproves of the use of animals.
This is wrong. You've obviously never had a family member commit suicide. You can never advocate that someone should kill themselves.Delete
Ask him to stop commenting.
Tell him to get help.
But advocating suicide, I'm going to strenuously object.
Yeah well, and here is a year end tribute to the boomers and their idols:ReplyDelete
Paul McCartney wrote: "The Pope smokes dope" and made money from it, and he was knighted by the Queen of England.
And John Lennon, as his mind was deteriorating, wrote: "Woman Is The Nigger Of the World"
And Yoko is probably bigger than US Steel by now, as Philosophy Professor Alan Bloom might have said.
Dick Cavett happened to own incredibly valuable Long Island Real Estate.
Yoko's bad singing voice is still very prominent on a very popular Christmas song. War is Over.
"Sir" Elton John wrote a song and that I still think is outrageouly offensive and racist, called: "Island Girl"
And as Alan Bloom said about Mick Jagger:
" a cardinal representative of the hypocrisy and erotic-sterility of pop-music. Pop music employs sexual images and language to enthrall the young and to persuade them that their petty rebelliousness is authentic politics, when, in fact, they are being controlled by the money-managers whom successful performers like Jagger quietly serve. "
Doesn't anyone think the following boomer production is just a little bit insulting and offensive?
Go the hell away, you idiot. NOBODY wants you commenting on this blog!Delete
Go "take care" of your parents. And try working for once.
Here are some similar JD Painterguy characters.Delete
"My name is Matt Foley, I am a motivational speaker, and I live in a van down by the river."
The Legend of Mokiki and the sloppy swish
He should volunteer for medical experiments to repay his student loans.
I swear, are you good for ANYTHING besides crying and spending other people's money?!Delete
Yes; he paints.Delete
What, once a year? To keep up appearances (so to speak)?Delete
I know a layabout when I see one. Nothing but excuse-making.
There is such a lemming approach to law school About a quarter of the class at the top undergraduate schools in the U.S. apply to law schools. As a graduate, I have never heard of my undergraduate school having panels about different career options post-graduation. Schools need to connect students with grads. They need to expose students to many different career possibilities. Without that you have these clueless law school applicants on TLS who have no idea of what they are getting into.ReplyDelete
Clueless TLS posters, like the ones psyched up about applying to Drexel Law because it has a delicious cookie truck?Delete
See one or two threads ago...
A story: My supervisor had me going through a stack of resumes (60) for non-legal position the other day. She wanted me to pick a few for interviews. I came across one person who was a licensed attorney and currently out of work. I told my supervisor about it.ReplyDelete
My supervisor had apprehensions for the reasons discussed here....the person will leave when a law job comes along, they are over-qualified, the job is beneath them, etc.
I advocated for this person, explained to my boss that the reasons she gave were mythical and a bunch of bs, etc. I then asked her if she like my work...she said I was one of the best employees she has ever supervised...I reminded her that I was an attorney.
She smiled and told me to set up the interview with this person. This is a good job. A gov job.
Law schools were where the rich send their children to put a spit shine on them, and where the middle class went to get decent jobs. Rich kids can do better now (finance, tech, media), and now the middle class is bailing. I wonder what's next for the schools?ReplyDelete
Law schools were where the rich send their children to put a spit shine on them, and where the middle class went to get decent jobs. Rich kids can do better now (finance, tech, media), and now the middle class is bailing. I wonder what's next for the schools?ReplyDelete
After targeting poor minorities, I fully expect law schools to start going overseas and selling the JD IS YOUR FUTURE message to foreigners like mad. Also expecting 6-year BA/JD programs and other gimmicks. These shysters are desperate to keep the wheels of injustice spinning.Delete
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