duke, uva, cornell, or retake

Discuss comparisons of various school choices and the various metrics that inform them, including rankings, student life, location, etc.
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DankHill
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duke, uva, cornell, or retake

Post by DankHill » Sat Mar 13, 2021 5:51 pm

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Hey_Everybody
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Re: duke, uva, cornell, or retake

Post by Hey_Everybody » Sat Mar 13, 2021 6:05 pm

Seems like you underperformed your stats a little. I had a slightly lower LSAT and much lower GPA and I'll be graduating from a mid-T14 with only a slightly higher debt load than you're looking at at UVA/Duke/Cornell. But maybe that LSAT flex thing really has things all messed up. I definitely don't think you'll be forced into biglaw with that debt load. Especially because in any gov position you'll be eligible for PSLF. Not really sure about fed gov stuff, but I think a median T14 student with the right kind of experience would be competitive for city attorney positions in areas where they have ties. I don't know about biglaw at all really, but I think a median student at any of those schools should obviously have no issue landing biglaw if that's what they wanted. Don't think UCLA or Vandy are gonna be worth saving that little bit of money unless one of those is in one of the markets where you have ties and want to end up, if you're gonna attend next year I'd probably go with one of the T14 schools where you got in. Same with Wash U, but at least there your savings are a little more substantial.

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DankHill
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Re: duke, uva, cornell, or retake

Post by DankHill » Sat Mar 13, 2021 6:09 pm

Hey_Everybody wrote:
Sat Mar 13, 2021 6:05 pm
Seems like you underperformed your stats a little. I had a slightly lower LSAT and much lower GPA and I'll be graduating from a mid-T14 with only a slightly higher debt load than you're looking at at UVA/Duke/Cornell. But maybe that LSAT flex thing really has things all messed up. I definitely don't think you'll be forced into biglaw with that debt load. Especially because in any gov position you'll be eligible for PSLF. Not really sure about fed gov stuff, but I think a median T14 student with the right kind of experience would be competitive for city attorney positions in areas where they have ties. I don't know about biglaw at all really, but I think a median student at any of those schools should obviously have no issue landing biglaw if that's what they wanted. Don't think UCLA or Vandy are gonna be worth saving that little bit of money unless one of those is in one of the markets where you have ties and want to end up, if you're gonna attend next year I'd probably go with one of the T14 schools where you got in. Same with Wash U, but at least there your savings are a little more substantial.
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Re: duke, uva, cornell, or retake

Post by Hey_Everybody » Sat Mar 13, 2021 6:10 pm

Internships/externships. If you want that kind of job it's gonna help to spend your summers doing that kind of work. True of pretty much any kind of job tbh

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DankHill
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Re: duke, uva, cornell, or retake

Post by DankHill » Sat Mar 13, 2021 6:13 pm

Hey_Everybody wrote:
Sat Mar 13, 2021 6:10 pm
Internships/externships. If you want that kind of job it's gonna help to spend your summers doing that kind of work. True of pretty much any kind of job tbh

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Re: duke, uva, cornell, or retake

Post by Hey_Everybody » Sat Mar 13, 2021 6:17 pm

DankHill wrote:
Sat Mar 13, 2021 6:13 pm
Hey_Everybody wrote:
Sat Mar 13, 2021 6:10 pm
Internships/externships. If you want that kind of job it's gonna help to spend your summers doing that kind of work. True of pretty much any kind of job tbh

That was my impression. How about UVA for lower level fed gov work? Obviously, DOJ/SEC etc will be very grade selective, but how about other three-letter agencies? From my posts so far it should be clear that I'm not necessarily prestige-driven and would ultimately prefer stability and a decent (in legal terms) work-life balance.
I mean honestly if you want good work life balance don't become a lawyer my friend. But I really don't know anything about fed gov jobs. Maybe someone will jump in who does. My understanding is it's gonna be pretty tough to snag those right out of law school. Not impossible or anything, but pretty hard. In all likelihood if you go to UVA unsure of what you want to do, you're gonna wind up doing OCI because everyone else is doing it and go into biglaw. That's what happens to the vast majority of T14 students. And it may make it easier to move into fed gov in the future if you do that, but again, not my area of expertise

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DankHill
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Re: duke, uva, cornell, or retake

Post by DankHill » Sat Mar 13, 2021 6:20 pm

Hey_Everybody wrote:
Sat Mar 13, 2021 6:17 pm
DankHill wrote:
Sat Mar 13, 2021 6:13 pm
Hey_Everybody wrote:
Sat Mar 13, 2021 6:10 pm
Internships/externships. If you want that kind of job it's gonna help to spend your summers doing that kind of work. True of pretty much any kind of job tbh

That was my impression. How about UVA for lower level fed gov work? Obviously, DOJ/SEC etc will be very grade selective, but how about other three-letter agencies? From my posts so far it should be clear that I'm not necessarily prestige-driven and would ultimately prefer stability and a decent (in legal terms) work-life balance.
I mean honestly if you want good work life balance don't become a lawyer my friend. But I really don't know anything about fed gov jobs. Maybe someone will jump in who does. My understanding is it's gonna be pretty tough to snag those right out of law school. Not impossible or anything, but pretty hard. In all likelihood if you go to UVA unsure of what you want to do, you're gonna wind up doing OCI because everyone else is doing it and go into biglaw. That's what happens to the vast majority of T14 students. And it may make it easier to move into fed gov in the future if you do that, but again, not my area of expertise

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Hey_Everybody
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Re: duke, uva, cornell, or retake

Post by Hey_Everybody » Sat Mar 13, 2021 6:25 pm

DankHill wrote:
Sat Mar 13, 2021 6:20 pm
Hey_Everybody wrote:
Sat Mar 13, 2021 6:17 pm
DankHill wrote:
Sat Mar 13, 2021 6:13 pm
Hey_Everybody wrote:
Sat Mar 13, 2021 6:10 pm
Internships/externships. If you want that kind of job it's gonna help to spend your summers doing that kind of work. True of pretty much any kind of job tbh

That was my impression. How about UVA for lower level fed gov work? Obviously, DOJ/SEC etc will be very grade selective, but how about other three-letter agencies? From my posts so far it should be clear that I'm not necessarily prestige-driven and would ultimately prefer stability and a decent (in legal terms) work-life balance.
I mean honestly if you want good work life balance don't become a lawyer my friend. But I really don't know anything about fed gov jobs. Maybe someone will jump in who does. My understanding is it's gonna be pretty tough to snag those right out of law school. Not impossible or anything, but pretty hard. In all likelihood if you go to UVA unsure of what you want to do, you're gonna wind up doing OCI because everyone else is doing it and go into biglaw. That's what happens to the vast majority of T14 students. And it may make it easier to move into fed gov in the future if you do that, but again, not my area of expertise

See above - I said good work-life balance in legal terms, so maybe somewhere between a 9-5 and 2400 billable years. I get that honors programs are hard to get - I was thinking about state/local as a backstop of sorts. Is it relatively common to do OCI, snag a summer, then turn the firm down if you decide to do something else (say a city attorney gig?)
Alright, fair enough. Just be aware that "good in legal terms" is still gonna be pretty terrible work/life balance. No, it's not common to do that partly because people are afraid to turn down a locked in job for $190k a year and roll the dice applying to a bunch of city attorney's offices to make $50 or $60k. Believe it or not, biglaw is the easiest job to get coming from a T14 if your grades are half decent. It would in all likelihood be harder to land a city attorney position, it's not really a backup. I know this sounds weird, but it's kinda how things work

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DankHill
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Re: duke, uva, cornell, or retake

Post by DankHill » Sat Mar 13, 2021 6:36 pm

Hey_Everybody wrote:
Sat Mar 13, 2021 6:25 pm
DankHill wrote:
Sat Mar 13, 2021 6:20 pm
Hey_Everybody wrote:
Sat Mar 13, 2021 6:17 pm
DankHill wrote:
Sat Mar 13, 2021 6:13 pm
Hey_Everybody wrote:
Sat Mar 13, 2021 6:10 pm
Internships/externships. If you want that kind of job it's gonna help to spend your summers doing that kind of work. True of pretty much any kind of job tbh

That was my impression. How about UVA for lower level fed gov work? Obviously, DOJ/SEC etc will be very grade selective, but how about other three-letter agencies? From my posts so far it should be clear that I'm not necessarily prestige-driven and would ultimately prefer stability and a decent (in legal terms) work-life balance.
I mean honestly if you want good work life balance don't become a lawyer my friend. But I really don't know anything about fed gov jobs. Maybe someone will jump in who does. My understanding is it's gonna be pretty tough to snag those right out of law school. Not impossible or anything, but pretty hard. In all likelihood if you go to UVA unsure of what you want to do, you're gonna wind up doing OCI because everyone else is doing it and go into biglaw. That's what happens to the vast majority of T14 students. And it may make it easier to move into fed gov in the future if you do that, but again, not my area of expertise

See above - I said good work-life balance in legal terms, so maybe somewhere between a 9-5 and 2400 billable years. I get that honors programs are hard to get - I was thinking about state/local as a backstop of sorts. Is it relatively common to do OCI, snag a summer, then turn the firm down if you decide to do something else (say a city attorney gig?)
Alright, fair enough. Just be aware that "good in legal terms" is still gonna be pretty terrible work/life balance. No, it's not common to do that partly because people are afraid to turn down a locked in job for $190k a year and roll the dice applying to a bunch of city attorney's offices to make $50 or $60k. Believe it or not, biglaw is the easiest job to get coming from a T14 if your grades are half decent. It would in all likelihood be harder to land a city attorney position, it's not really a backup. I know this sounds weird, but it's kinda how things work

.
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Re: duke, uva, cornell, or retake

Post by Hey_Everybody » Sat Mar 13, 2021 6:45 pm

My point is just that the easiest job to get will be biglaw for a median T14 student. That doesn't mean you won't be competitive for other jobs. But it's just like applying for any other kind of job, there's a lot about it that's outside your control. Biglaw jobs are different, the firms come to you, the school will hold your hand through applying, the interviews (from what I've heard) are pretty relaxed, and you'll have a shot to interview with a shitload of firms all at once. There's nothing else really like it in the world of job applications. It's definitely gonna be harder to grind for a city attorney position, even if you're still competitive for one. And to be really competitive, you'll want to spend your summers doing that, not biglaw. They're just sort of different tracks, and you'll have to decide after your first year which one you want to be on. That's not to say it's impossible to move between them, just to emphasize the point that if you go to law school unsure of what you want to do, in all likelihood you'll sort of get funneled into the biglaw track. But if you go with the goal of being a city attorney, intern and extern with city attorney offices, make connections there, and hustle, you'd obviously be competitive for entry level local gov jobs.

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DankHill
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Re: duke, uva, cornell, or retake

Post by DankHill » Sat Mar 13, 2021 6:48 pm

Hey_Everybody wrote:
Sat Mar 13, 2021 6:45 pm
My point is just that the easiest job to get will be biglaw for a median T14 student. That doesn't mean you won't be competitive for other jobs. But it's just like applying for any other kind of job, there's a lot about it that's outside your control. Biglaw jobs are different, the firms come to you, the school will hold your hand through applying, the interviews (from what I've heard) are pretty relaxed, and you'll have a shot to interview with a shitload of firms all at once. There's nothing else really like it in the world of job applications. It's definitely gonna be harder to grind for a city attorney position, even if you're still competitive for one. And to be really competitive, you'll want to spend your summers doing that, not biglaw. They're just sort of different tracks, and you'll have to decide after your first year which one you want to be on. That's not to say it's impossible to move between them, just to emphasize the point that if you go to law school unsure of what you want to do, in all likelihood you'll sort of get funneled into the biglaw track. But if you go with the goal of being a city attorney, intern and extern with city attorney offices, make connections there, and hustle, you'd obviously be competitive for entry level local gov jobs.
Gotcha. So basically I'd have to commit to one or the other by the time 1L summer position applications go out?

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Re: duke, uva, cornell, or retake

Post by Hey_Everybody » Sat Mar 13, 2021 6:51 pm

DankHill wrote:
Sat Mar 13, 2021 6:48 pm
Hey_Everybody wrote:
Sat Mar 13, 2021 6:45 pm
My point is just that the easiest job to get will be biglaw for a median T14 student. That doesn't mean you won't be competitive for other jobs. But it's just like applying for any other kind of job, there's a lot about it that's outside your control. Biglaw jobs are different, the firms come to you, the school will hold your hand through applying, the interviews (from what I've heard) are pretty relaxed, and you'll have a shot to interview with a shitload of firms all at once. There's nothing else really like it in the world of job applications. It's definitely gonna be harder to grind for a city attorney position, even if you're still competitive for one. And to be really competitive, you'll want to spend your summers doing that, not biglaw. They're just sort of different tracks, and you'll have to decide after your first year which one you want to be on. That's not to say it's impossible to move between them, just to emphasize the point that if you go to law school unsure of what you want to do, in all likelihood you'll sort of get funneled into the biglaw track. But if you go with the goal of being a city attorney, intern and extern with city attorney offices, make connections there, and hustle, you'd obviously be competitive for entry level local gov jobs.
Gotcha. So basically I'd have to commit to one or the other by the time 1L summer position applications go out?
No, but you decide whether or not to do OCI during your 1L summer. So I'd recommend doing your 1L summer at a city attorney (if that's something that interests you). If you like the work, then you know you want to hustle for local gov jobs. If you don't, then you can still do OCI. And from what I understand, your instincts are right that city attorney kind of jobs do have some of the best work/life balance in the legal world.

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DankHill
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Re: duke, uva, cornell, or retake

Post by DankHill » Sat Mar 13, 2021 6:57 pm

Hey_Everybody wrote:
Sat Mar 13, 2021 6:51 pm
DankHill wrote:
Sat Mar 13, 2021 6:48 pm
Hey_Everybody wrote:
Sat Mar 13, 2021 6:45 pm
My point is just that the easiest job to get will be biglaw for a median T14 student. That doesn't mean you won't be competitive for other jobs. But it's just like applying for any other kind of job, there's a lot about it that's outside your control. Biglaw jobs are different, the firms come to you, the school will hold your hand through applying, the interviews (from what I've heard) are pretty relaxed, and you'll have a shot to interview with a shitload of firms all at once. There's nothing else really like it in the world of job applications. It's definitely gonna be harder to grind for a city attorney position, even if you're still competitive for one. And to be really competitive, you'll want to spend your summers doing that, not biglaw. They're just sort of different tracks, and you'll have to decide after your first year which one you want to be on. That's not to say it's impossible to move between them, just to emphasize the point that if you go to law school unsure of what you want to do, in all likelihood you'll sort of get funneled into the biglaw track. But if you go with the goal of being a city attorney, intern and extern with city attorney offices, make connections there, and hustle, you'd obviously be competitive for entry level local gov jobs.
Gotcha. So basically I'd have to commit to one or the other by the time 1L summer position applications go out?
No, but you decide whether or not to do OCI during your 1L summer. So I'd recommend doing your 1L summer at a city attorney (if that's something that interests you). If you like the work, then you know you want to hustle for local gov jobs. If you don't, then you can still do OCI. And from what I understand, your instincts are right that city attorney kind of jobs do have some of the best work/life balance in the legal world.
.
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Hey_Everybody
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Re: duke, uva, cornell, or retake

Post by Hey_Everybody » Sat Mar 13, 2021 6:58 pm

DankHill wrote:
Sat Mar 13, 2021 6:57 pm
Hey_Everybody wrote:
Sat Mar 13, 2021 6:51 pm
DankHill wrote:
Sat Mar 13, 2021 6:48 pm
Hey_Everybody wrote:
Sat Mar 13, 2021 6:45 pm
My point is just that the easiest job to get will be biglaw for a median T14 student. That doesn't mean you won't be competitive for other jobs. But it's just like applying for any other kind of job, there's a lot about it that's outside your control. Biglaw jobs are different, the firms come to you, the school will hold your hand through applying, the interviews (from what I've heard) are pretty relaxed, and you'll have a shot to interview with a shitload of firms all at once. There's nothing else really like it in the world of job applications. It's definitely gonna be harder to grind for a city attorney position, even if you're still competitive for one. And to be really competitive, you'll want to spend your summers doing that, not biglaw. They're just sort of different tracks, and you'll have to decide after your first year which one you want to be on. That's not to say it's impossible to move between them, just to emphasize the point that if you go to law school unsure of what you want to do, in all likelihood you'll sort of get funneled into the biglaw track. But if you go with the goal of being a city attorney, intern and extern with city attorney offices, make connections there, and hustle, you'd obviously be competitive for entry level local gov jobs.
Gotcha. So basically I'd have to commit to one or the other by the time 1L summer position applications go out?
No, but you decide whether or not to do OCI during your 1L summer. So I'd recommend doing your 1L summer at a city attorney (if that's something that interests you). If you like the work, then you know you want to hustle for local gov jobs. If you don't, then you can still do OCI. And from what I understand, your instincts are right that city attorney kind of jobs do have some of the best work/life balance in the legal world.
Instincts and some connections - a close family member is a career local gov employee (not legal, but practices tend to be the same). That's nice - and from what I understand, doing PI/gov that first summer doesn't foreclose biglaw, correct?
Nope, won't foreclose it at all. Pretty much everyone does some form of PI/gov work their 1L summer.

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DankHill
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Re: duke, uva, cornell, or retake

Post by DankHill » Sat Mar 13, 2021 7:01 pm

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Re: duke, uva, cornell, or retake

Post by pancakes3 » Sat Mar 13, 2021 7:08 pm

UVA $$.

Massmail + OCI everyone. You can absolutely do OCI and hustle for other jobs.

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Stranger
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Re: duke, uva, cornell, or retake

Post by Stranger » Sat Mar 13, 2021 7:15 pm

Yeah, if the price on these is the same, UVA is probably your best option. Not by so much as to rule out Duke entirely if you love Durham, but I think with your blend of goals, UVA is the best play.

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DankHill
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Re: duke, uva, cornell, or retake

Post by DankHill » Sat Mar 13, 2021 8:05 pm

Stranger wrote:
Sat Mar 13, 2021 7:15 pm
Yeah, if the price on these is the same, UVA is probably your best option. Not by so much as to rule out Duke entirely if you love Durham, but I think with your blend of goals, UVA is the best play.
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Re: duke, uva, cornell, or retake

Post by Stranger » Sat Mar 13, 2021 8:16 pm

DankHill wrote:
Sat Mar 13, 2021 8:05 pm
Stranger wrote:
Sat Mar 13, 2021 7:15 pm
Yeah, if the price on these is the same, UVA is probably your best option. Not by so much as to rule out Duke entirely if you love Durham, but I think with your blend of goals, UVA is the best play.
Still going to wait on one of HYS and one of CCN, but yeah, that's where I'm leaning. Looking forward to joining the ranks of the LSL "posting elite" once I take the plunge. :lol:
Come to the lounge and shitpost away. No need to wait for your final decision.

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Re: duke, uva, cornell, or retake

Post by Slytherpuff » Sat Mar 13, 2021 11:33 pm

Hang in there while you wait on your other schools, but UVA would be a very solid choice here. From UVA, DC big law to fed gov (or in house) would be in play for you. Hopefully you'll have non-BL options, but just keep in mind that a few years in big law will open a LOT of doors if you have difficulty landing a PI job - and my experience is that DC is much more humane than NYC if you pick the right firm.

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DankHill
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Re: duke, uva, cornell, or retake

Post by DankHill » Sun Mar 14, 2021 1:45 am

Slytherpuff wrote:
Sat Mar 13, 2021 11:33 pm
Hang in there while you wait on your other schools, but UVA would be a very solid choice here. From UVA, DC big law to fed gov (or in house) would be in play for you. Hopefully you'll have non-BL options, but just keep in mind that a few years in big law will open a LOT of doors if you have difficulty landing a PI job - and my experience is that DC is much more humane than NYC if you pick the right firm.
.
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DankHill
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Re: duke, uva, cornell, or retake

Post by DankHill » Sun Mar 14, 2021 1:52 am

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Re: duke, uva, cornell, or retake

Post by Stranger » Sun Mar 14, 2021 8:49 am

The good news is, even if you go to biglaw, you likely won't be trapped in biglaw for long. The tendency to push people out after a few years is often a driver of the move to government and in-house positions. You're not going to make partner and spend your career there just by accident.

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Re: duke, uva, cornell, or retake

Post by Slytherpuff » Sun Mar 14, 2021 12:38 pm

DankHill wrote:
Sun Mar 14, 2021 1:45 am
Slytherpuff wrote:
Sat Mar 13, 2021 11:33 pm
Hang in there while you wait on your other schools, but UVA would be a very solid choice here. From UVA, DC big law to fed gov (or in house) would be in play for you. Hopefully you'll have non-BL options, but just keep in mind that a few years in big law will open a LOT of doors if you have difficulty landing a PI job - and my experience is that DC is much more humane than NYC if you pick the right firm.
That's my impression too. How do you go about "picking the right firm," though? Is there more information available to law students than there is available to 0Ls? I've been basing my impressions of each market on the NALP database and TLS/LSL hearsay, which is obviously not an ideal way to research job placement
Law student information isn't great but yes, you have more information than 0Ls do. Firms will be trying to sell themselves to you, but you can at least start picking up on which firms are sweatshops if you talk to enough people.

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Re: duke, uva, cornell, or retake

Post by Slytherpuff » Sun Mar 14, 2021 12:50 pm

Stranger wrote:
Sun Mar 14, 2021 8:49 am
The good news is, even if you go to biglaw, you likely won't be trapped in biglaw for long. The tendency to push people out after a few years is often a driver of the move to government and in-house positions. You're not going to make partner and spend your career there just by accident.
Just to clarify, many associates do leave big law within the first few years, but it's a matter choosing to leave (because the job is rough) and not your firm making you leave. You have to be pretty bad at your job to get pushed out by the firm after a few years. Decent lawyers who aren't partner-material won't start to be pushed out until years 5-7 or so, because firms need decent mid-levels and senior associates. But agreed that you will not make partner by accident, and doors will open quickly enough that you can leave big law fairly soon if it's not your thing.

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