Choosing Schools Advice

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SN2006
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Choosing Schools Advice

Postby SN2006 » Mon Jan 09, 2017 7:23 pm

Hello all,

I just graduated from Penn State this past May with a degree in economics. My LSAC gpa is a 3.77. I've taken the LSAT 3 times: 155 (October 2015), 160 (December 2015), and 157 (December 2016). I'm undecided if I should pursue going to the highest ranked school I can get into or take a free ride at a lower ranked school.

Luckily, my parents would be able to help me pay for school so loans would not be a huge issue, but at the same time, I don't have any aspirations for BigLaw. From what I've read, it doesn't seem to be worth the money. Maybe someone could elaborate more on if it's that bad or not also. Overall, I'm more interested in a career in business, so would a higher ranked school help in that regard or are they mainly only better for BigLaw? I know some may say forgo school completely, but I'm only 21 and think I'd like to work as a lawyer for some time after graduation before eventually moving to other things, as I've seen many people do. Also, I wouldn't incur much debt and I believe I would really benefit from going.

I initially applied last cycle but ended up being put on reserve at Columbia till late July, at which point I had passed all seat deposit deadlines at other schools. My options last cycle were:

GW/ND at sticker
Ohio State at $29,000 a year
Temple at $7,000 a year
Maryland at $10,000 a year
Pitt for free

Out of these options, or even suggest any other schools, what does everyone think is the best option? I also looked at BU, BC, UNC, and Fordham but I'm not sure if they'd be worth the extra cost. I'm from PA so that is why I mainly looked at these schools, but I don't have significant ties so I'm open to many places. Also, the numbers above are only tuition costs. Lastly, my thought process now is that if I were somehow accepted to any T14 schools (highly unlikely, I know) but that they would be worth the cost, but maybe GW/ND might not be. Could anybody please elaborate on if they would agree or disagree with that, I know I could be totally wrong. I greatly appreciate any feedback anyone may have. Thanks in advance and I apologize for the long post.

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trebekismyhero
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Re: Choosing Schools Advice

Postby trebekismyhero » Mon Jan 09, 2017 8:49 pm

None of these schools are worth paying sticker or even close to it. Are you from western PA? if so I think Pitt would be the no brainer.

If you would rather be in Philly, Temple at that cost is fine.

But if you are more interested in business, why are you thinking about getting a law degree? You should work for another year or two and then get an MBA. None of these schools will help you get into business. To the extent that there are any law schools like that, it would only be the very top and even then they would have still been better off probably going to HBS, Booth, Wharton, etc.

thereelfeels
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Re: Choosing Schools Advice

Postby thereelfeels » Mon Jan 09, 2017 9:00 pm

Really depends on where you want to be, as you're looking at regional schools across the board - ND or GW aren't worth sticker, IMO. Ohio State at that price even seems steep unless you're dead set on Ohio.

If you want to work in Western PA, go to Pitt. If you want Philly, go to Temple. You could probably swing UMD at $10K if you want DC or Baltimore, but that's risky at that price.

Disclaimer: I went to Pitt, but would be glad to answer any questions you have about the school.

cavalier1138
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Re: Choosing Schools Advice

Postby cavalier1138 » Tue Jan 10, 2017 9:45 am

If you're more interested in business, get an MBA. Why would you think law school is a natural path to that?

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Cow
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Re: Choosing Schools Advice

Postby Cow » Tue Jan 10, 2017 1:15 pm

I’ll preface this by saying that I’m a 2L, so I can’t comment on BigLaw and most of my information is based on what I’ve anecdotally heard and my own research prior to enrolling in law school.

First, if you’re certain you want to go to law school, then Pitt is far and away your best choice of the schools you’ve listed because it won’t saddle you with enormous debt. Less debt = more job flexibility. Do not, under any circumstances, pay sticker for law school—even, in my opinion, if you get into a T14 at sticker. Most T14s have strong loan repayment assistance programs, but I think all of them except for Yale hinge their LRAPs on you having some type of legal job. In other words, if you take on sticker debt at a T14 you’re probably going to be locked into a legal career for a minimum of 10 years, best case scenario. If your parents are able and willing to foot the bill for T14 at sticker, then you’re a lucky individual and that would be an amazing outcome.

Beyond T14, the rankings don’t matter that much; since you don’t want BigLaw, then rankings should not even be a consideration. Instead, the two main factors you should consider are employment outcomes (the percentage of graduates who end up working a legal job that requires a JD, post-graduation) and cost of attendance. The other factor that may be relevant in your case is geography, because there is a good chance you will end up working in the state where your law school is located. You can get employment outcome data on schools from the non-profit Lawschooltransparency.com.

Second, I would caution you to reevaluate going to law school at all if your end goal is business. Are there JDs who go on to have successful business careers? Yes. But there are more MBAs who go onto successful business careers. If you already know this is your goal, get the degree that’s tailored to that goal. The JDs in the business world are folks who realized the practice of law wasn’t for them, and succeeded despite having gotten a JD instead of an MBA, not because of it. For instance, imagine you’re planning for retirement. You’ll probably put your money in a retirement account instead of buying lottery tickets. Why? Because that’s far more likely to give you the outcome you’re looking for. Just because a small number of people have won the lottery and retired doesn’t make it a smart strategy. The same holds true for JDs with business careers.

I’m not trying to tell you that it’s a bad idea to go to law school, but just understand that a JD degree is used to practice law: nothing more, nothing less. Three years of your life plus a substantial chunk of cash is a big investment if your end goal isn’t law-related. I’m not terribly familiar with JD/MBA programs or their employment outcomes, but you might consider looking at that type of program. Best of luck to you!

BigZuck
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Re: Choosing Schools Advice

Postby BigZuck » Tue Jan 10, 2017 1:54 pm

Graduate from college. Get a job for 3-4 years. Don't think about law school in the meantime. On your 26th birthday think about law school again. Do you still want to go? Then you can start thinking about where to attend.

The plan you laid out is very foolhardy IMO. Going to a middling law school for boatloads of money as a 21 year old who wants to backdoor into something else would be a very poor life choice. Take some time off, work, and acquire some more direction in life.

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Ferrisjso
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Re: Choosing Schools Advice

Postby Ferrisjso » Tue Jan 10, 2017 8:34 pm

Going KJD is better than waiting a few years. I don't understand why people are so pro waiting(tuition will only go up and your numbers will only get you less and less of a good deal). Apply to schools in the regions where you want to practice and go to the school that gives you the best deal. Maybe you should wait one year because to be fair you've waited quite a long time to start applying and might not get the money you would have applying earlier but otherwise go for it! Good luck!

cavalier1138
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Re: Choosing Schools Advice

Postby cavalier1138 » Tue Jan 10, 2017 9:51 pm

Ferrisjso wrote:Going KJD is better than waiting a few years. I don't understand why people are so pro waiting(tuition will only go up and your numbers will only get you less and less of a good deal). Apply to schools in the regions where you want to practice and go to the school that gives you the best deal. Maybe you should wait one year because to be fair you've waited quite a long time to start applying and might not get the money you would have applying earlier but otherwise go for it! Good luck!


Jesus, are you just contrarian for the fun of it?

There is no situation in which going KJD is better than waiting a few years. No one over the age of 25 would endorse that ridiculous statement. Not only do your chances of admission and scholarship increase with work experience outside of school, you gain valuable insight into what you actually want to do with your life. Not waiting to go to law school is a boneheaded maneuver.

Beyond that, not waiting in the OP's specific situation is an even more boneheaded maneuver, because the OP doesn't know what the hell they want to do. They're considering taking on debt to go to mediocre-or-worse schools to get a job they don't even want because of some misguided idea of what a traditional career path after law school looks like. OP is interested in business, so they're looking at the wrong type of degree.

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Ferrisjso
Posts: 196
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Re: Choosing Schools Advice

Postby Ferrisjso » Tue Jan 10, 2017 10:57 pm

cavalier1138 wrote:
Ferrisjso wrote:Going KJD is better than waiting a few years. I don't understand why people are so pro waiting(tuition will only go up and your numbers will only get you less and less of a good deal). Apply to schools in the regions where you want to practice and go to the school that gives you the best deal. Maybe you should wait one year because to be fair you've waited quite a long time to start applying and might not get the money you would have applying earlier but otherwise go for it! Good luck!


Jesus, are you just contrarian for the fun of it?

There is no situation in which going KJD is better than waiting a few years. No one over the age of 25 would endorse that ridiculous statement. Not only do your chances of admission and scholarship increase with work experience outside of school, you gain valuable insight into what you actually want to do with your life. Not waiting to go to law school is a boneheaded maneuver.

Beyond that, not waiting in the OP's specific situation is an even more boneheaded maneuver, because the OP doesn't know what the hell they want to do. They're considering taking on debt to go to mediocre-or-worse schools to get a job they don't even want because of some misguided idea of what a traditional career path after law school looks like. OP is interested in business, so they're looking at the wrong type of degree.


The OP said he wanted to "work as a lawyer for some time after graduation". He is asking for advice choosing schools akin why the thread is titled "Choosing Schools Advice", not whether or not he wants to be a lawyer(although that's pretty important to obviously). He has pretty good stats and had good options last year. It also looks like he is in a financial situation where he'd be easily able to attend school without loans. Not all people are in the same situation where those factors matter.

I am not a contrarian for the fun of it. I just believe that many of the "choose a school" and "chance me" threads are overly negative to the point where they almost always ignore the question asked in the original post. Choosing your post UG path is a difficult decision and I want to try to provide answers to peoples questions(their actual questions, not whether they should retake or take a year off) in as positive a manner as possible. That doesn't seem to exist largely,for people with LSAT scores under 165 for whatever reason:( Sometimes people act more like they're talking down someone from jumping off a building and less like they're answering someone's question about a school(s).

existentialcrisis
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Re: Choosing Schools Advice

Postby existentialcrisis » Wed Jan 11, 2017 12:33 am

Going k-jd is almost universally a terrible idea.

-a k-jd

SN2006
Posts: 7
Joined: Mon Jan 09, 2017 6:53 pm

Re: Choosing Schools Advice

Postby SN2006 » Wed Jan 11, 2017 1:02 am

Cow wrote:I’ll preface this by saying that I’m a 2L, so I can’t comment on BigLaw and most of my information is based on what I’ve anecdotally heard and my own research prior to enrolling in law school.

First, if you’re certain you want to go to law school, then Pitt is far and away your best choice of the schools you’ve listed because it won’t saddle you with enormous debt. Less debt = more job flexibility. Do not, under any circumstances, pay sticker for law school—even, in my opinion, if you get into a T14 at sticker. Most T14s have strong loan repayment assistance programs, but I think all of them except for Yale hinge their LRAPs on you having some type of legal job. In other words, if you take on sticker debt at a T14 you’re probably going to be locked into a legal career for a minimum of 10 years, best case scenario. If your parents are able and willing to foot the bill for T14 at sticker, then you’re a lucky individual and that would be an amazing outcome.

Beyond T14, the rankings don’t matter that much; since you don’t want BigLaw, then rankings should not even be a consideration. Instead, the two main factors you should consider are employment outcomes (the percentage of graduates who end up working a legal job that requires a JD, post-graduation) and cost of attendance. The other factor that may be relevant in your case is geography, because there is a good chance you will end up working in the state where your law school is located. You can get employment outcome data on schools from the non-profit Lawschooltransparency.com.

Second, I would caution you to reevaluate going to law school at all if your end goal is business. Are there JDs who go on to have successful business careers? Yes. But there are more MBAs who go onto successful business careers. If you already know this is your goal, get the degree that’s tailored to that goal. The JDs in the business world are folks who realized the practice of law wasn’t for them, and succeeded despite having gotten a JD instead of an MBA, not because of it. For instance, imagine you’re planning for retirement. You’ll probably put your money in a retirement account instead of buying lottery tickets. Why? Because that’s far more likely to give you the outcome you’re looking for. Just because a small number of people have won the lottery and retired doesn’t make it a smart strategy. The same holds true for JDs with business careers.

I’m not trying to tell you that it’s a bad idea to go to law school, but just understand that a JD degree is used to practice law: nothing more, nothing less. Three years of your life plus a substantial chunk of cash is a big investment if your end goal isn’t law-related. I’m not terribly familiar with JD/MBA programs or their employment outcomes, but you might consider looking at that type of program. Best of luck to you!


Thank you very much for your input. I definitely see what you're saying about the MBA so I will definitely look into the JD/MBA program. Best of luck to you as well!

SN2006
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Re: Choosing Schools Advice

Postby SN2006 » Wed Jan 11, 2017 1:10 am

Ferrisjso wrote:
cavalier1138 wrote:
Ferrisjso wrote:Going KJD is better than waiting a few years. I don't understand why people are so pro waiting(tuition will only go up and your numbers will only get you less and less of a good deal). Apply to schools in the regions where you want to practice and go to the school that gives you the best deal. Maybe you should wait one year because to be fair you've waited quite a long time to start applying and might not get the money you would have applying earlier but otherwise go for it! Good luck!


Jesus, are you just contrarian for the fun of it?

There is no situation in which going KJD is better than waiting a few years. No one over the age of 25 would endorse that ridiculous statement. Not only do your chances of admission and scholarship increase with work experience outside of school, you gain valuable insight into what you actually want to do with your life. Not waiting to go to law school is a boneheaded maneuver.

Beyond that, not waiting in the OP's specific situation is an even more boneheaded maneuver, because the OP doesn't know what the hell they want to do. They're considering taking on debt to go to mediocre-or-worse schools to get a job they don't even want because of some misguided idea of what a traditional career path after law school looks like. OP is interested in business, so they're looking at the wrong type of degree.


The OP said he wanted to "work as a lawyer for some time after graduation". He is asking for advice choosing schools akin why the thread is titled "Choosing Schools Advice", not whether or not he wants to be a lawyer(although that's pretty important to obviously). He has pretty good stats and had good options last year. It also looks like he is in a financial situation where he'd be easily able to attend school without loans. Not all people are in the same situation where those factors matter.

I am not a contrarian for the fun of it. I just believe that many of the "choose a school" and "chance me" threads are overly negative to the point where they almost always ignore the question asked in the original post. Choosing your post UG path is a difficult decision and I want to try to provide answers to peoples questions(their actual questions, not whether they should retake or take a year off) in as positive a manner as possible. That doesn't seem to exist largely,for people with LSAT scores under 165 for whatever reason:( Sometimes people act more like they're talking down someone from jumping off a building and less like they're answering someone's question about a school(s).


Yeah I'm also a little surprised at how negative some comments on here have been. Assuming I went to school this fall, I would graduate at 24, which is still very young. I'm not seeing how I would regret this decision so greatly, especially if I went to school for free. I've seen some of the jobs I could have gotten right out of undergrad and not many of them were worth delaying school over to be totally honest. And again, I would be graduating debt-free.

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mjb447
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Re: Choosing Schools Advice

Postby mjb447 » Wed Jan 11, 2017 1:37 am

My guess is that people don't really understand why, if you're most interested in a career in business, you'd want to spend a few years as a lawyer before moving on to other things, particularly as there's an opportunity cost of three years for law school (compared to two or so for MBA, zero for entering workforce immediately and climbing the ladder) plus tuition etc. even if you're not paying. You'll always find a law school willing to take your money, but going to law school takes a long time to pay dividends and it sounds like you're not that interested in a career where a JD is necessary or even a huge asset. (And it's kind of silly to expect law students/lawyers to respond to the question posed in a thread without addressing possible faulty reasoning underlying the question asked.)

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Ferrisjso
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Re: Choosing Schools Advice

Postby Ferrisjso » Wed Jan 11, 2017 1:57 am

SN2006 wrote:
Ferrisjso wrote:
cavalier1138 wrote:
Ferrisjso wrote:Going KJD is better than waiting a few years. I don't understand why people are so pro waiting(tuition will only go up and your numbers will only get you less and less of a good deal). Apply to schools in the regions where you want to practice and go to the school that gives you the best deal. Maybe you should wait one year because to be fair you've waited quite a long time to start applying and might not get the money you would have applying earlier but otherwise go for it! Good luck!


Jesus, are you just contrarian for the fun of it?

There is no situation in which going KJD is better than waiting a few years. No one over the age of 25 would endorse that ridiculous statement. Not only do your chances of admission and scholarship increase with work experience outside of school, you gain valuable insight into what you actually want to do with your life. Not waiting to go to law school is a boneheaded maneuver.

Beyond that, not waiting in the OP's specific situation is an even more boneheaded maneuver, because the OP doesn't know what the hell they want to do. They're considering taking on debt to go to mediocre-or-worse schools to get a job they don't even want because of some misguided idea of what a traditional career path after law school looks like. OP is interested in business, so they're looking at the wrong type of degree.


The OP said he wanted to "work as a lawyer for some time after graduation". He is asking for advice choosing schools akin why the thread is titled "Choosing Schools Advice", not whether or not he wants to be a lawyer(although that's pretty important to obviously). He has pretty good stats and had good options last year. It also looks like he is in a financial situation where he'd be easily able to attend school without loans. Not all people are in the same situation where those factors matter.

I am not a contrarian for the fun of it. I just believe that many of the "choose a school" and "chance me" threads are overly negative to the point where they almost always ignore the question asked in the original post. Choosing your post UG path is a difficult decision and I want to try to provide answers to peoples questions(their actual questions, not whether they should retake or take a year off) in as positive a manner as possible. That doesn't seem to exist largely,for people with LSAT scores under 165 for whatever reason:( Sometimes people act more like they're talking down someone from jumping off a building and less like they're answering someone's question about a school(s).


Yeah I'm also a little surprised at how negative some comments on here have been. Assuming I went to school this fall, I would graduate at 24, which is still very young. I'm not seeing how I would regret this decision so greatly, especially if I went to school for free. I've seen some of the jobs I could have gotten right out of undergrad and not many of them were worth delaying school over to be totally honest. And again, I would be graduating debt-free.


Yeah, you're in a good situation. Your LSAT score is well above average, you beat 85% of the people taking it!(They were advising a 166 to retake on another thread lol) Your GPA is objectively great even by most of the retake crowd's standards. With no debt I don't see how this is a problem(the main critique most people get on here is taking out arguably to much debt to justify a schools employment prospects). I see where they're coming from to an extent wanting to make sure you want to be a lawyer, but if you weren't considering practicing law why would you be on here? I also agree 1000% on the whole undergrad jobs not being worth it point. For me part of the appeal of Law School is to be able to go from school straight into somewhat meaningful work(also desperately want to escape my hometown). I'm a 0L but one part of the consensus on here I agree with wholeheartedly(that the rest of them will probably agree with) is to go to school wherever you want to live/practice. The hardest obstacle in my decision right now is selecting between three regions(when I get all my decisions I'm going to make a thread on it). Go to whatever region you like(with the possible exception of Indiana or DC, even if your parents are paying for it that's a ton of money you probably shouldn't pay if you're not in love with either of those places). Ohio State is more justifiable. If I were in your shoes though I would probably go with the consensus on here among the people who gave you advice and go to Pitt(I have no interest or bias towards any of the regions you're looking at, so for me and most outside observers I'd guess, free wins). I would also think over if you wanted to be a lawyer(I don't think anyone needs to take several years to think about that though) if you have any uncertainty in your mind. Best of Luck!

01panm
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Re: Choosing Schools Advice

Postby 01panm » Wed Jan 11, 2017 2:33 am

Ferrisjso wrote:
Your LSAT score is well above average, you beat 85% of the people taking it!(They were advising a 166 to retake on another thread lol)


I don't see anything inherently wrong with advising a retake on a 166. There are very few scores for which retaking is self-evidently unnecessary, and 166 isn't one of them. If somebody is PTing above 170, they should definitely retake a 166. If somebody is T14 or bust without a stellar GPA, they should retake a 166. If somebody is looking for a full ride at a T20 (thinking WUSTL) they should retake a 166.

It's not necessarily about the raw score itself. OP has a 160, and if they have reached their potential (which it seems like they have) and are satisfied with the career outcomes at Pitt (or similar school) then not retaking is fine. Many people aren't able to meet those two conditions, so retaking is the safer choice.

cavalier1138
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Re: Choosing Schools Advice

Postby cavalier1138 » Wed Jan 11, 2017 8:42 am

Ferrisjso wrote:Yeah, you're in a good situation. Your LSAT score is well above average, you beat 85% of the people taking it!(They were advising a 166 to retake on another thread lol) Your GPA is objectively great even by most of the retake crowd's standards. With no debt I don't see how this is a problem(the main critique most people get on here is taking out arguably to much debt to justify a schools employment prospects). I see where they're coming from to an extent wanting to make sure you want to be a lawyer, but if you weren't considering practicing law why would you be on here? I also agree 1000% on the whole undergrad jobs not being worth it point. For me part of the appeal of Law School is to be able to go from school straight into somewhat meaningful work(also desperately want to escape my hometown). I'm a 0L but one part of the consensus on here I agree with wholeheartedly(that the rest of them will probably agree with) is to go to school wherever you want to live/practice. The hardest obstacle in my decision right now is selecting between three regions(when I get all my decisions I'm going to make a thread on it). Go to whatever region you like(with the possible exception of Indiana or DC, even if your parents are paying for it that's a ton of money you probably shouldn't pay if you're not in love with either of those places). Ohio State is more justifiable. If I were in your shoes though I would probably go with the consensus on here among the people who gave you advice and go to Pitt(I have no interest or bias towards any of the regions you're looking at, so for me and most outside observers I'd guess, free wins). I would also think over if you wanted to be a lawyer(I don't think anyone needs to take several years to think about that though) if you have any uncertainty in your mind. Best of Luck!


Please stop giving advice to people. And especially please stop giving advice based on that idiotic metric of your "You did better than [X]% of test-takers," mantra. Most people who go to law school shouldn't be going to law school, and having a mediocre LSAT (yes, 160 after 3 takes is, in fact, mediocre) should not be seen as a rubber stamp of approval that a legal career is the right thing to do.

OP: Everyone's point (except for the one 0L who is convinced that law school is a great choice for everyone who doesn't know what they want in life) is precisely that you are too young to be making this decision. You're about to invest three years of your life and a not-insignificant amount of money into a career path that you have already said you don't want to stay in. The fact that the above poster has not bothered to actually read your career goals should not be filling you with confidence, and you should seriously be questioning why you've responded most warmly to that post instead of the majority of other posters who are either law students, lawyers, or ex-lawyers. Look up "confirmation bias", and ask yourself if it's operating here.

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jbagelboy
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Re: Choosing Schools Advice

Postby jbagelboy » Wed Jan 11, 2017 1:09 pm

Where do you want to work, geographically?

Fyi, OP is not k-jd.

chili_davis
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Re: Choosing Schools Advice

Postby chili_davis » Wed Jan 11, 2017 1:34 pm

OP...If your intention is in fact to work in "business" following a brief stint in the legal profession, remember there are still consequences for those actions that will have long-term effects. Those 3 years can be used gathering work experience and working towards your MBA (which will be leaps and bounds more valuable to your career goals). In addition, although you can graduate "debt free" you will still be missing out on 3 years of investments towards your retirement. Also, if you take a break to go for your MBA full-time then you will be missing out on an additional 2 years! Sounds like you need to really ask yourself what you want to invest your time and energy towards, rather than choosing to go to law school because you can. Good luck OP

BigZuck
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Re: Choosing Schools Advice

Postby BigZuck » Wed Jan 11, 2017 3:24 pm

Ferrisjso wrote:
cavalier1138 wrote:
Ferrisjso wrote:Going KJD is better than waiting a few years. I don't understand why people are so pro waiting(tuition will only go up and your numbers will only get you less and less of a good deal). Apply to schools in the regions where you want to practice and go to the school that gives you the best deal. Maybe you should wait one year because to be fair you've waited quite a long time to start applying and might not get the money you would have applying earlier but otherwise go for it! Good luck!


Jesus, are you just contrarian for the fun of it?

There is no situation in which going KJD is better than waiting a few years. No one over the age of 25 would endorse that ridiculous statement. Not only do your chances of admission and scholarship increase with work experience outside of school, you gain valuable insight into what you actually want to do with your life. Not waiting to go to law school is a boneheaded maneuver.

Beyond that, not waiting in the OP's specific situation is an even more boneheaded maneuver, because the OP doesn't know what the hell they want to do. They're considering taking on debt to go to mediocre-or-worse schools to get a job they don't even want because of some misguided idea of what a traditional career path after law school looks like. OP is interested in business, so they're looking at the wrong type of degree.


The OP said he wanted to "work as a lawyer for some time after graduation". He is asking for advice choosing schools akin why the thread is titled "Choosing Schools Advice", not whether or not he wants to be a lawyer(although that's pretty important to obviously). He has pretty good stats and had good options last year. It also looks like he is in a financial situation where he'd be easily able to attend school without loans. Not all people are in the same situation where those factors matter.

I am not a contrarian for the fun of it. I just believe that many of the "choose a school" and "chance me" threads are overly negative to the point where they almost always ignore the question asked in the original post. Choosing your post UG path is a difficult decision and I want to try to provide answers to peoples questions(their actual questions, not whether they should retake or take a year off) in as positive a manner as possible. That doesn't seem to exist largely,for people with LSAT scores under 165 for whatever reason:( Sometimes people act more like they're talking down someone from jumping off a building and less like they're answering someone's question about a school(s).

...do you even know what lawyers do? When a client asks them a question they have a duty to give the best advice they can, let the client know of possible factors/scenarios/outcomes they aren't considering, etc. Obviously no one is giving legal advice here but thinking/suggesting that a forum full of law students/attorneys should tell people what they want to hear or just rigidly and reflexively stick to the narrow confines of what they're asking is just super bizarre.

If people want to be pat on the back or told what they want to be told they should ask for law school advice from extended family members. That's not what this forum is for. This forum is for well reasoned advice from people who have actually been there before/know what they're talking about.

OP- You know how you look back on your 15 year old self and you think "Man, that guy/girl was kind of an idiot"? That's what you'll think of your 21 year old self when you're 27. Your brain hasn't even finished developing yet. You're obviously going to do what you're going to do and no one is going to tell you otherwise because it's impossible for any outside factors to penetrate that little preconceived notion of what your life trajectory is supposed to look like (especially when it comes to precocious freshly-minted college grads such as yourself) but seriously, I suggest you do a deep soul-searching dive, do more research, and at least seriously consider what people are trying to tell you here.

SN2006
Posts: 7
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Re: Choosing Schools Advice

Postby SN2006 » Wed Jan 11, 2017 3:43 pm

cavalier1138 wrote:
Ferrisjso wrote:Yeah, you're in a good situation. Your LSAT score is well above average, you beat 85% of the people taking it!(They were advising a 166 to retake on another thread lol) Your GPA is objectively great even by most of the retake crowd's standards. With no debt I don't see how this is a problem(the main critique most people get on here is taking out arguably to much debt to justify a schools employment prospects). I see where they're coming from to an extent wanting to make sure you want to be a lawyer, but if you weren't considering practicing law why would you be on here? I also agree 1000% on the whole undergrad jobs not being worth it point. For me part of the appeal of Law School is to be able to go from school straight into somewhat meaningful work(also desperately want to escape my hometown). I'm a 0L but one part of the consensus on here I agree with wholeheartedly(that the rest of them will probably agree with) is to go to school wherever you want to live/practice. The hardest obstacle in my decision right now is selecting between three regions(when I get all my decisions I'm going to make a thread on it). Go to whatever region you like(with the possible exception of Indiana or DC, even if your parents are paying for it that's a ton of money you probably shouldn't pay if you're not in love with either of those places). Ohio State is more justifiable. If I were in your shoes though I would probably go with the consensus on here among the people who gave you advice and go to Pitt(I have no interest or bias towards any of the regions you're looking at, so for me and most outside observers I'd guess, free wins). I would also think over if you wanted to be a lawyer(I don't think anyone needs to take several years to think about that though) if you have any uncertainty in your mind. Best of Luck!


Please stop giving advice to people. And especially please stop giving advice based on that idiotic metric of your "You did better than [X]% of test-takers," mantra. Most people who go to law school shouldn't be going to law school, and having a mediocre LSAT (yes, 160 after 3 takes is, in fact, mediocre) should not be seen as a rubber stamp of approval that a legal career is the right thing to do.

OP: Everyone's point (except for the one 0L who is convinced that law school is a great choice for everyone who doesn't know what they want in life) is precisely that you are too young to be making this decision. You're about to invest three years of your life and a not-insignificant amount of money into a career path that you have already said you don't want to stay in. The fact that the above poster has not bothered to actually read your career goals should not be filling you with confidence, and you should seriously be questioning why you've responded most warmly to that post instead of the majority of other posters who are either law students, lawyers, or ex-lawyers. Look up "confirmation bias", and ask yourself if it's operating here.


Well first off, I'm not going to deny the confirmation bias completely, everyone has bias and I know that. But truthfully, I just keep noticing this gloomy outlook, especially regarding non T14 schools. It almost sounds like everyone who doesn't go to them is doomed. I obviously know things would be easier graduating from one of those schools, but at the same time, I don't hinge my success in life to the school I attend. By the same token, plenty of people graduated from Harvard and really aren't doing incredible things. I've decided to really only apply to schools now that would be close to free, if not totally, so I also would not call it a "non-insignificant amount of money." Lastly, we have the rest of our lives to work, so I don't see this rush to start working; if I wanted, I could work part-time second and third years of school.

SN2006
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Re: Choosing Schools Advice

Postby SN2006 » Wed Jan 11, 2017 3:47 pm

jbagelboy wrote:Where do you want to work, geographically?

Fyi, OP is not k-jd.


Most likely Pittsburgh/Philly after graduation, but I would also like to move South when I'm older if I had the chance.

SN2006
Posts: 7
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Re: Choosing Schools Advice

Postby SN2006 » Wed Jan 11, 2017 3:56 pm

BigZuck wrote:
Ferrisjso wrote:
cavalier1138 wrote:
Ferrisjso wrote:Going KJD is better than waiting a few years. I don't understand why people are so pro waiting(tuition will only go up and your numbers will only get you less and less of a good deal). Apply to schools in the regions where you want to practice and go to the school that gives you the best deal. Maybe you should wait one year because to be fair you've waited quite a long time to start applying and might not get the money you would have applying earlier but otherwise go for it! Good luck!


Jesus, are you just contrarian for the fun of it?

There is no situation in which going KJD is better than waiting a few years. No one over the age of 25 would endorse that ridiculous statement. Not only do your chances of admission and scholarship increase with work experience outside of school, you gain valuable insight into what you actually want to do with your life. Not waiting to go to law school is a boneheaded maneuver.

Beyond that, not waiting in the OP's specific situation is an even more boneheaded maneuver, because the OP doesn't know what the hell they want to do. They're considering taking on debt to go to mediocre-or-worse schools to get a job they don't even want because of some misguided idea of what a traditional career path after law school looks like. OP is interested in business, so they're looking at the wrong type of degree.


The OP said he wanted to "work as a lawyer for some time after graduation". He is asking for advice choosing schools akin why the thread is titled "Choosing Schools Advice", not whether or not he wants to be a lawyer(although that's pretty important to obviously). He has pretty good stats and had good options last year. It also looks like he is in a financial situation where he'd be easily able to attend school without loans. Not all people are in the same situation where those factors matter.

I am not a contrarian for the fun of it. I just believe that many of the "choose a school" and "chance me" threads are overly negative to the point where they almost always ignore the question asked in the original post. Choosing your post UG path is a difficult decision and I want to try to provide answers to peoples questions(their actual questions, not whether they should retake or take a year off) in as positive a manner as possible. That doesn't seem to exist largely,for people with LSAT scores under 165 for whatever reason:( Sometimes people act more like they're talking down someone from jumping off a building and less like they're answering someone's question about a school(s).

...do you even know what lawyers do? When a client asks them a question they have a duty to give the best advice they can, let the client know of possible factors/scenarios/outcomes they aren't considering, etc. Obviously no one is giving legal advice here but thinking/suggesting that a forum full of law students/attorneys should tell people what they want to hear or just rigidly and reflexively stick to the narrow confines of what they're asking is just super bizarre.

If people want to be pat on the back or told what they want to be told they should ask for law school advice from extended family members. That's not what this forum is for. This forum is for well reasoned advice from people who have actually been there before/know what they're talking about.

OP- You know how you look back on your 15 year old self and you think "Man, that guy/girl was kind of an idiot"? That's what you'll think of your 21 year old self when you're 27. Your brain hasn't even finished developing yet. You're obviously going to do what you're going to do and no one is going to tell you otherwise because it's impossible for any outside factors to penetrate that little preconceived notion of what your life trajectory is supposed to look like (especially when it comes to precocious freshly-minted college grads such as yourself) but seriously, I suggest you do a deep soul-searching dive, do more research, and at least seriously consider what people are trying to tell you here.


Truthfully, I get what you're saying. I don't want it to seem that I'm disregarding anything that didn't align with my previous views. Because of you guys, I've decided to not even apply to GW or ND or really any school that I'd have to pay sticker for. And for that, I really thank you. But if I were to go to school for free, I don't see how it would be this catastrophic decision. Plenty of people don't graduate undergrad until 23 or so anyway and I would still be working summers and maybe during second or third year. I know some may think I'm crazy, but this is more of a gut feeling that I should go.

SN2006
Posts: 7
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Re: Choosing Schools Advice

Postby SN2006 » Wed Jan 11, 2017 3:58 pm

chili_davis wrote:OP...If your intention is in fact to work in "business" following a brief stint in the legal profession, remember there are still consequences for those actions that will have long-term effects. Those 3 years can be used gathering work experience and working towards your MBA (which will be leaps and bounds more valuable to your career goals). In addition, although you can graduate "debt free" you will still be missing out on 3 years of investments towards your retirement. Also, if you take a break to go for your MBA full-time then you will be missing out on an additional 2 years! Sounds like you need to really ask yourself what you want to invest your time and energy towards, rather than choosing to go to law school because you can. Good luck OP


I see your point, I'm definitely going to look more into an MBA. Thank you.

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trebekismyhero
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Re: Choosing Schools Advice

Postby trebekismyhero » Wed Jan 11, 2017 3:59 pm

SN2006 wrote:
cavalier1138 wrote:
Ferrisjso wrote:Yeah, you're in a good situation. Your LSAT score is well above average, you beat 85% of the people taking it!(They were advising a 166 to retake on another thread lol) Your GPA is objectively great even by most of the retake crowd's standards. With no debt I don't see how this is a problem(the main critique most people get on here is taking out arguably to much debt to justify a schools employment prospects). I see where they're coming from to an extent wanting to make sure you want to be a lawyer, but if you weren't considering practicing law why would you be on here? I also agree 1000% on the whole undergrad jobs not being worth it point. For me part of the appeal of Law School is to be able to go from school straight into somewhat meaningful work(also desperately want to escape my hometown). I'm a 0L but one part of the consensus on here I agree with wholeheartedly(that the rest of them will probably agree with) is to go to school wherever you want to live/practice. The hardest obstacle in my decision right now is selecting between three regions(when I get all my decisions I'm going to make a thread on it). Go to whatever region you like(with the possible exception of Indiana or DC, even if your parents are paying for it that's a ton of money you probably shouldn't pay if you're not in love with either of those places). Ohio State is more justifiable. If I were in your shoes though I would probably go with the consensus on here among the people who gave you advice and go to Pitt(I have no interest or bias towards any of the regions you're looking at, so for me and most outside observers I'd guess, free wins). I would also think over if you wanted to be a lawyer(I don't think anyone needs to take several years to think about that though) if you have any uncertainty in your mind. Best of Luck!


Please stop giving advice to people. And especially please stop giving advice based on that idiotic metric of your "You did better than [X]% of test-takers," mantra. Most people who go to law school shouldn't be going to law school, and having a mediocre LSAT (yes, 160 after 3 takes is, in fact, mediocre) should not be seen as a rubber stamp of approval that a legal career is the right thing to do.

OP: Everyone's point (except for the one 0L who is convinced that law school is a great choice for everyone who doesn't know what they want in life) is precisely that you are too young to be making this decision. You're about to invest three years of your life and a not-insignificant amount of money into a career path that you have already said you don't want to stay in. The fact that the above poster has not bothered to actually read your career goals should not be filling you with confidence, and you should seriously be questioning why you've responded most warmly to that post instead of the majority of other posters who are either law students, lawyers, or ex-lawyers. Look up "confirmation bias", and ask yourself if it's operating here.


Well first off, I'm not going to deny the confirmation bias completely, everyone has bias and I know that. But truthfully, I just keep noticing this gloomy outlook, especially regarding non T14 schools. It almost sounds like everyone who doesn't go to them is doomed. I obviously know things would be easier graduating from one of those schools, but at the same time, I don't hinge my success in life to the school I attend. By the same token, plenty of people graduated from Harvard and really aren't doing incredible things. I've decided to really only apply to schools now that would be close to free, if not totally, so I also would not call it a "non-insignificant amount of money." Lastly, we have the rest of our lives to work, so I don't see this rush to start working; if I wanted, I could work part-time second and third years of school.


It is not a gloomy outlook on non-t14 schools. Almost everyone has said if you actually want to be a lawyer in Western PA, Pitt for free is solid. It is that you have said you want to end up in business. So going to law school for three years instead of working and then getting an MBA is a waste of time. Law school does not train you for business and businesses rarely hire lawyers to do anything on the business side of things. That takes years of effort that you could just skip by working and then going to business school. If you are unsure what you want to do, don't go to school now.

cavalier1138
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Re: Choosing Schools Advice

Postby cavalier1138 » Wed Jan 11, 2017 4:02 pm

SN2006 wrote:...I don't hinge my success in life to the school I attend.


Unfortunately for you, most legal employers do hinge your success in the legal field to that exact attribute. There are firms and government positions that simply will not look below a certain level when taking applicants. You don't appear to be interested in those kinds of jobs, but you also don't appear to be that interested in being a lawyer at all.

If you're going to go for free, just be aware of the opportunity costs. You're not wasting money, but you're giving up money that you could be earning and a career that you could be building. Law school is for people who want to be lawyers, period. Not for people who maybe want to be lawyers but really want to run their own business.




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