Paul Campos wrote:
Do not go to law school unless you have a very good reason to believe you want to be a lawyer.*
*Note this is a necessary but not sufficient condition.
What would you suggest OP does instead? I feel like the lack of work experience makes a JD the best way for OP to break into the sort of business career s/he seems to want.
The idea that significant numbers of people go from SLS into something other than law is wrong.
2010 SLS NALP report:
3 went into "business" (this category would include all the kinds of jobs -- "consulting and policy" -- the OP is interested in).
The vast majority of the class (85%) either went big law or clerked, which is usually a prelude to big law. Almost all the rest became government or PI lawyers (also things the OP seems to have little interest in, although they don't seem to cause as much revulsion for him/her as the idea of big law). Big law is exactly what the OP doesn't want to do, and it's by far the most likely thing the OP will end up doing. What qualifications will the OP have three years from now to get into high-level consulting or policy work that he/she doesn't have now? Will he/she have any relevant work experience? No, because summering for a big law firm is not relevant work experience for those kinds of of jobs. He/she will have a JD but a JD, even from SLS, is almost never by itself a sufficient credential for highly competitive non-law jobs.
This is just the TLS myth that there's something magical about a YSH degree. The only "magical" thing about it is that it's the best degree you can get for getting jobs that require law degrees
. That a tiny handful of people go on to do other things straight out of law school is a reflection of those graduates' backgrounds before they went to law school
, not that SLS sprinkled magic pixie dust on them.
So I don't know what the OP should do, but I do know that going to law school while planning not to practice law never makes sense, unless you're going to law school for non-career related reasons.