Ann Levine

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Job Prospects and Law School Rankings

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Law School Expert and admission consultant Ann Levine will speak with current students at Bay Area law schools spanning the U.S. News Rankings of law schools (including Golden Gate, USF, Hastings and Berkeley). Hear how they view their job prospects and what they and their peers are doing to find summer employment in the legal field.
Tags:
law jobs
law school
law school rankings
Berkeley Law
choosing a law school
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archived

Transcript

0:00
Ann Levine

Hi. This is Ann Levine and welcome to the Law School Expert, Blog Talk Radio show. This is the fifteenth Blog Talk Radio show that we've done and previous versions can be downloaded on iTunes or directly from Blog Talk Radio. This is a very special show, we are trying an experiment and we are coming to you live from San Francisco. This is my first time having guests with me as we record the show and I've got some wonderful guests today. Today's topic, as you probably know, is job prospects and law school ranking. We are were talking with a microcosm of law students from a surviving metropolis that has several different law schools and we're going to talk to people at four different law schools today and learn about how people are feeling about jobs. Those of them who have summer jobs, what they -- how you can boost your process of getting a job once you are in law school. There has been a lot of press about whether a law degree is economically viable and how graduates from different law schools are __1:14__ and I have a great group today to get a good sense of the intimate question and I have with me today Marissa who is at Berkeley __1:23__ and Yvonne who went at Hastings and calling in shortly will be Sarah from University of San Francisco and Mike from Golden Gate. But we're going to talk with the two ladies I have here with me today first and get a sense of why they the chose the school they're attending and what they hope to do with their law degrees and just start the conversation of how are people feeling about jobs. Marissa, do you want to start?

1:50
Marissa

Okay. Hi everyone. I do think that -- I mean, I have a job already and I started working last semester which I think made a really big difference. I do that before the second semester just because your second semester for the first few years we were at the writing classes through the end and then you will hear about other people getting a job and it can make you really, really nervous so, it's only easier to do it in advance __2:16__ that are certain __2:20__. I do think that people are __2:31__ you know, year and a half ago but the legal industry is so pretty reactive and so even nothing is better, it's still pretty __2:45__ for people.

2:46
Ann Levine

So you say that you started working last semester. I would love you to tell the people a little bit about what that means and so to give them the perspective that you did have experienced working in a big firm before you went to law school and how that - how you think that helped you __3:02__.

3:07
Marissa

I don't go into big law but I did make a lot of contacts and the thing that I learned is -- you know, when the economy today hit a lot of school that were going in were deferred, and a lot of people of that were deferred in public interact for about six months or a year before they started working at a big __325__. So I got my job through a friend who had that exact thing situation, so he was deferred at the firm that I had been working at as the __3:37__ and he was at a public interest organizations and he also did public interest in the summer. So you know he had worked for this organization that did a lot of several celebrities that I was interested doing. I contacted a lot of other friends, people I need __3:57__ who were in law school who are in a great organization, friends of friends, friends of family and because when I talked to the career counselor, they had told me realistically if you're going to do public interest then if it is something a little bit different, I mean I was interested may be working abroad which is actually what he was doing and they said honestly, it's going to be on you to __4:22__ working.

4:25
Ann Levine

Okay. That's really helpful. Yvonne, why don't you tell us a little bit about your story and your experience with how people are feeling about jobs at Hastings and what you did in particular __4:35__ for the summer.

4:38
Yvonne

Well __4:39__ and so I knew that I wanted to go into the criminal defense field preferably become a public defender upon graduation. And so really public experience is to -- this summer, I want to work in the court room, the criminal court room, with a judge to see the procedural aspects of the criminal field and so therefore I sort of preparing the documents, the resumes, the writing samples, the letter, the references, and I got them together so that in January of this year, I started sending applications and preferably I wanted to stay in San Francisco more broadly I suppose, the Bay Area in general because I know that I love to practice here and so to establish relationship which is really important. So I sent out a large number of applications, surrounding Santa Clara, Alameda, and San Francisco of course, and I was accepted for a judicial extern at this summer in Santa Clara Superior Court.

5:44
Ann Levine

Well, that's great. So you attended a criminal court as well?

5:47
Yvonne

Yes. It is the judge that I am working for. He does the law and motion counter and then also the felony preliminary hearing which is really exciting.

5:55
Ann Levine

Okay. Lovely, but during the summer exactly what you've told me a year and a half ago. We're going __6:00__ also the contrary in a moment __6:05__ I think that we have Sarah on the line here, let me see if I have got her. Sarah, is that you?

6:12
Sarah

Hi!

6:14
Ann Levine

Hi! Welcome to the show. We have been talking a little bit with Marissa and Yvonne about _6:20__ that are helpful or feeling at Hastings and Berkeley about the economy and effects of getting higher then so I wanted to -- I am so glad you're here to add the USF perspective.

6:33
Sarah

Well, actually I am at Pacific McGeorge.

6:37
Ann Levine

I totally don't do that. You know, you are funny Sarah. This is so funny. We were sitting here and I think that how much I think how the law school is wrong. Is that USF?

6:52
Sarah

No. You know what -- you know, it is actually really funny because a lot of my friends in McGeorge, we have talked about how McGeorge came like a huge space from basically feeling from USF by offering all of us really nice scholarships. So if you do -- for law school students out there, if you do get a very nice scholarship, take it! It's perfect.

7:22
Ann Levine

Tell me about that. You know very well that is one of my favorite topics on the planet is that I want people to have a choice between a school they feel is highly ranked and very respectable and a really nice scholarship at another really good law school. So I want to talk to you about you were referred by my good friend, Adam Vera is the Dean of Admissions at your law school.

7:45
Sarah

Right.

7:46
Ann Levine

Right there and see what you -- how you are feeling about that and how you are feeling about jobs and what do you make the right decision?

7:54
Sarah

Okay. I'm a Bay Area girl at heart. Born and raised on the Peninsula and so moving to Sacramento was definitely a big gulp. But you know, I am actually really liking it. One of the upsize is rents in Sacramento is instantly cheaper than what you would find in San Francisco. I actually think what I pay for my gorgeous one bedroom apartment in a beautiful facility. I could have a very, very nice cardboard box on chestnut ad mail. So...

8:39
Ann Levine

But they don't think it's so funny. So keep talking Sarah.

8:43
Sarah

No. I mean, it's so true. I will say though that I am working very hard to transfer to Hastings just because my Bay Area self really misses San Francisco, but I have found a job over the summer and one of the things that I am working for a firm that is specializes in law like sexual harassment, civil rights advocacy and I really recommend that students work really hard and buckle down on their first round of exams because they are really important and really teaches us to be able to send to an employer.

9:24
Ann Levine

That's a really good point. It's one thing I do want to talk to all about is how much grades do you matter or don't they and I have done some Blog Talk Radio shows in the past interviewing people were five and ten got the law school about how they got their jobs and how they built their careers and they extend to it all this passive of grades and ranking bench, law review and moot court, how much all really matter to you and found out that also to your listening to what is going on is the number one number guy, has social skills and business skills so he is not. I laugh but you know that a big deal __10:02__gunner like the GW box posted each other on Facebook. Okay. I was the gunner, I was that __10:07__. I totally was but I grown and changed enough in the last 15 years to recognize that I was that person so like how is that guy doing versus you guys you're all really sociable, and you're all doing the things that you set out and how much do you guys think really ranking and moot court, so it is a little early perhaps to talk about moot court, law review but tell me a little bit more about that Marissa.

10:31
Marissa

I think that it is a hard question to answer because it depends so much on what you want to do. If you want to go into Academia, then there is a really specific task that you need to follow. You need to get, you need to have amazing grades. You definitely need to be on law review, I would say probably your work experience and things like that are less important factors. If you want to go into big law. It is also kind of hard to get, I think that definitely matter and it also helped if you can add diversity in their firm and you know take that well but I mean, they are not, they have their own interest as well. So, you know, that a lot of people felt pressure, disperse here to do things, and to do a lot of things in my school. There are a lot of people that did like mock trials and moot court and I didn't end up doing those things just because I did not feel like I am with the extracurricular that I already had, but I think people did feel pressure that kind of do it all in a way that they would not had in years past. I don't really know how much that slave in to getting their jobs that you want. I did not see that turns -- I honestly I thought all their students get jobs first and anyway, I am talking about students that were like well into their 30s. But one of them was an engineer, and another one of them had several graduate degrees, and I think maybe that is the economy people are putting on their work experience because they don't a lot of times don't are not very happy with paying a lot of money for people to be trained on the job. And so I think work experience may say a bigger factor and was like with big laws.

12:31
Marissa

With public interest, I mean -- I don't really know what to say about that except that in my experience, in my friends' experience it did seem to be a lot of networking. It was definitely experiencing your commitment sure but a lot of it was networking. Oh, and I almost forgot -- okay, this is really interesting. At least, I don't know if this is like nationwide but at least in California there was this December 1st rule, where you could not apply for things and talk in December 1st, and I remember talking to some classmates who were really frustrated because they waited last December 1st and a lot -- they found out a lot of went out already had job offers right then because they have applied before that deadline because I guess, one of the judges that __13:15__ look tired and so would kind of wink, wink.

13:20
Ann Levine

Yeah. That's really interesting. That is the point where is noting for sure. I also think it is interesting to note -- and you are talking Marissa about how having a niche seems to be a big factor in finding employment -- and actually one of my previous shows called "How To Get Hired", there is a rookie attorney again, I always close this because I thought and some people at the time, it is such a great point by J. Eric Davis who is the managing partner of a big firm in Miami and he said on my show, look at what's marketable right now, like look at Tunisia's that are big, you know, he would say like, M and A not so hot, litigation really hot, bankruptcy really hot, like look at what's hot now and find a niche for yourself and work your way into it and someone else is trying to -- I don't know if you guy know any friends who have been trying this but you coming up the blog and a topic of blog showed that you are really interested in it writing about it, getting sort of publishing yourself in it. I don't know if you have any examples or that kind of thing going on over Hastings one.

14:30
Marissa

No I don't have any blog examples, but I want to get down to the grade, I think the grade, they open the door for you and you know, when you are in a big pool of applicants and the employers looking through sure and I mean it surely stands out and all of the extracurricular activities do stand out. But once you get the interview, once you get an interview, it is all about presenting yourself and how you can act with the employer, how you present yourself with your experiences and that your passion, and I think those ultimately are really exciting and I think the employer looks for those and especially if you are doing public interest work or with me, working in a court room or public offender outside of school, I mean after school. Employers are looking how you can relate to clients and how you view the overall appeals and what you are passionate about. So grades yes, preliminary matters, but I think ultimately, if you can show the employer what you can do which you can offer, I think that is really valuable.

15:22
Ann Levine

And since you guys know and come as if they are getting into law school for a second. The same thing goes listeners, when you are applying to law school that the numbers will get you on the door but they are not the end of it all and in the end it is how you present yourself and how you advocate for yourself and what your goals are. And how you communicate them. So I think that it is just a general principle that applies in life. If you are go getter and you are smart and you make things happen, then great, then you are going to be fine in life and if you are the person who waits and bitches, about how the current development office does not do anything for you with whom she does never heard that before because it's something like -- You're in law school, you're all happy. Right there. You are the person who is going to be bitching to your boss that you don't have enough work to do instead of going out and getting yourself a new client. I think these are just universal lessons in life. I definitely want to talk to you guys about you know, maybe some more anecdotes like sharing what you are doing and feeling and you know who you seen be successful and outside of yourself, other things you have done and so we have not even given you a chance to talk about, what you know. So why don't we start back to you.

16:39
Marissa

Actually, what I did was I went to an event through the California consumer attorney association through McGeorge and if you are student consumer law where you are interested in any branch of law at your law school, it is very important to get involved in your specific class because they can kind of gear you into what events or good networking events and what events are even not so good for what you want to be doing and I met Crystaline at that event and they will get us card and then I submitted a resume, so I think going to that event specifically really helps me get into the door and just to pick it back on the end side, you know, you have to be a go getter but not obnoxiously so I definitely noticed that a lot of people who work for lack of better words gunners for the first toss of the year has really stopped talking because they kind of like, because they kind of listen, so you know, go out there but do not be obnoxiously aggressive.

17:54
Ann Levine

Yeah. I think that is a good lesson for the success in law school generally, I always tell the story about as I remember in law school six years ago, it was like you went up and talk about it, he was a paralegal and know what you need to jeopardize. You know, we use textbooks, we didn't like what you guys do and you know what, but then I note that he was really quiet second semester and he was --

18:16
Marissa

Yeah. It happened.

18:19
Ann Levine

So you know, it is not a happy tale for him but it just got show you to be intimidated just because someone comes in with that attitude, that is the great point, you know I have so many anecdotes of attorney, by marriage attorney and most of my friends are attorney and actually I was talking to my sister-in-law yesterday and the _18:37__ thing is going to get a hundred email tomorrow because in saying this but she is talking about hiring an attorney and an intern in the Bay area in the eBay and in which law school since you go to the higher end you know last time she did this, she got 125 resumes, but just as to show people are hiring and really they want people who are going to work hard and not just sit back and wait for paycheck in write legal memos. You know, they want people who will relate to the client, who will take a load off of them and that small businesses, small firms are hiring on middle-sized firms that my husband and partner and the firm that has eight offices in California and they have been hiring. They just hired a recent graduate actually from my law school, University of Miami, and I was like I don't know how he got out to Santa Barbara, California but he did. They are jobs out there. But you know, this does go into how low a salary can you afford to take when you get out and I think that where you choose to go law school really place into that and how many choices are available to you that you can just dismiss some offers, if you know you won't not be able to pay your bills but that does limit where you will be able to work and how that is sort of playing out with you and your friends, I think, it is a good thing to talk about as well.

19:53
Marissa

Right. I don't actually know a lot of people in law school who talk about their big firm experiences and I just want to throw out that in while you are still a student, it might pursue you to work for a mid-sized firm because you would not be able to put more on your resume as you are moving out through your law school career that you were able to do more than just open the mail. At a more mid-sized firm, you can be able to guess inventorying that you would need and at a huge firm that is multinational, you might not be able to get that kind of mentoring experience.

20:36
Ann Levine

I think that definitely depends on the mentor you are assigned to. You know, and how good that attorney, is it doing that or whether they are just looking for a slave for the summer. I think that that falls into it as well, I think that the level of experience you get, you work in a big firm, you might be stuck in a law library and you know the one time you might get to follow us an attorney to court, you might be the fourth person there on the case, you know they might have a senior associate or senior partner, junior partner at a senior associate and you are not doing much other than typing the files to the left and I think that when you look for jobs in smaller setting that you get more hands on experience in many cases, but talk to me to about salaries and what people are talking, I mean, what kind of salary do you think people are talking about getting when they are getting out of law school and not going to take firms and how do you guys feel that place into what you are taking out in months and not getting too sensitive there and I happened to be talking to two people who have the public interest mind that areas of focus but you know I think even then, it definitely place in it just the reality. These are public law school students. They are going to public law school, but they are really pricey public law schools, I mean this is not like private even though you are both in state resident, the California, you are paying a lot of money to go to school, then so you are over there going to private school with a base little scholarship, so how are those factors change how you feel about your future? How about you Yvonne?

22:13
Yvonne

You know I would say, I was reading the article.

22:16
Ann Levine

The New York Times article?

22:18
Yvonne

Yeah. It is everything in the article and you know, law school -- it does not come and see you a job, it does not promise you $100 a year. It promises you the opportunity if you can make it through, and again, do the opportunity and for a lot of us, the opportunity has been a childhood dream. Not actually become sentimental but it is something that a lot of students have dreamed about doing for a long time and so, you know yes, in front of it was a lot of debt. Yes, we will put through a lot of stress, trying to find summer jobs and really make something of ourselves and make it through and then only it's then to try to pass the bar and then you get the bill and you get all the money that you have to be back, but I think if you are willing to put yourself out there, if you are willing to struggle through and they get happen, you will find a job and you will face the debt because you think it's worth it and it is worth it. So I think there is something that to be said about, oh law school it is really expensive, it is expensive but there are words that you can get out of it and what you can do for people. There really is no money in all to that and totally strongly about that.

23:22
Ann Levine

I love that you are not jaded in the law school experience experience, yes but [crosstalks] I love the law school, and you guys know that about me, I love law school but I also think what this goes to is you have to be committed to attend law school, you have to be committed to being an attorney and entering the profession and if you are doing this because it is the only way your parents can continue having health insurance on you or you know, my parents I get called from a lot of parents who are pressuring their kids, "Don't take time off after graduation. Go right into school" and I think that is when I start to worry about people because if you are not committed going in, you are not going to have the fight in you to get where you need to go with the degree, and also __24:10__ was reading a business book recently and it was talking about the meaning of job security and how someone works for 15 years to this company as the computer software guy or what have you and how he thought that he was always proud to the fact that he had jobs security and then of course he lost that job as weight off and later started his own business and realizes that is job security and being able to employ yourself and relying your own self to get a pay check, and you guys know me well actually I want to be a proponent of that mindset and that and I think that is what a law degree really is. I mean, it is something you are putting in your back pocket that makes you able to employ yourself. It is a profession and it is not necessary going to be easy to employ yourself but it is always possible. You never have to wait for a company to hire you to do what you are trained to do, and so I think that is really important. And I have interviewed on the show before, people who graduated from local, Andrew Polucci, he graduated from law school, he opened a solo practice in Virginia. He is doing awesome. I think that he can do that, you can do that. I mean, that is not for everyone because most people learn the practice of law in their jobs and not in law school as Marissa and I were discussing before we went live, but I think that is really important to recognize.

25:23
Ann Levine

I also want to say for those of you who are listening live because they see a number of you are. I am happy to take questions in the chat room. You can simply put them there and you can adjust them to me or to Yvonne or Sarah or Marissa and we will be happy to answer them, I just want to know that I had two gentlemen also scheduled to join this today but the flu is apparently going around all the law schools in the San Francisco bay area and it is like the plague. They weren't even up to calling in. so we certainly hope Mike and Anthony are feeling better and in the mean time, I'd love to continue to hear from you guys about, you know, what is it people really can do once they are in law school? Why do you each give to make this easy? Everyone give me three things, you think are the most important for people to do once they start law school to find a job for that first summer. Okay? You got it, you are thinking on it? Alright, who wants to go first? You have three ideas Sarah? You've shared some of them already. You went to a networking event, you took a business, you followed up, I mean, that is what it took. Any other examples from friends on what they have done? Marissa, how about you?

26:36
Marissa

Okay. One of my friends was in -- he is in law school in New York. He is at the lower range law school. It is a quite a saturated market and he was really smart because he got in contact with a lot with previous employers and follows on them and he was really good about a lot of online networking. I mean, I would not underestimate LinkedIn just because like you really can make yourself look pretty good on a site like that, but he said something to me that I thought was really interesting and is very true and he said, you know it is in the interview the entire time, I mean, it is not an interview just when you get the interview. It is an interview, the second you talk to somebody, how he follows up with them, how you present yourself, how interested you are, if you are interested without (crosstalk).

27:32
Ann Levine

Yeah. You agree too Sarah?

27:34
Sarah

I completely agree when I am with Crystalline I am really sending an email to him with my cover letter and my resume within two days. I wanted to show him that I am excited about this, I really wanted it. I think you know after meeting him for thanking him for giving me the opportunity. It is just really important to keep that kind of personal line of communication going. They are busy -- the people who run big -- small-sized or medium-sized or big-sized firm, they are going to see people. No one is going to give you the opportunity but you.

28:20
Ann Levine

I think that definitely too. And for those of you who are listening right now, and currently on wait list at law school, I think the exact same advice applies and Marissa is winking at me but this is how you get in off the wait list too as you show interest, you take initiative, you get in their faces nicely, you visit, you follow up. I mean, we are talking about the things that are really relevant right now. For those who are waiting to decide where you will be attending and you're listening to this podcast perhaps to decide if you go to the higher rank school or do you take a scholarship to the lower rank school or what your priorities are in choosing a law school. I think that all of the advice that people are getting you now about their jobs that come in to play when you are trying to get a law school to give you a chance as well. Did I give you enough time there to think of?

29:07
Marissa

Yeah.

29:08
Ann Levine

Additional things?

29:09
Marissa

No I just want to comment. Being in law school, getting into law school, getting a job, you really need to put yourself out there and you really need to make connection even though it is uncomfortable at times or you don't know how to say it or I mean, thank you letters are great and it is a small community. You might not think it is the small community but it is. The Bay Area, criminal law, whatever field you decide to go into, people remember you, and they will remember how you acted if you didn't get the externship or the internship or you did get it. It's really how you access a lot about who you are and what kind of attorney you will ultimately become.

29:46
Ann Levine

And he is anxious about once you get the job either is about how you do. If you show up late to that externship or you're texting or Facebooking, I mean, people see the kind of worker you are and that gets around too. And one thing, I have talked to you guys about is how do you guys feel about other law schools. Like for example, Berkeley people totally turned out about Stanford people versus you know how -- do you guys have perceptions about competing with people from other schools? Did you feel like you are competing with people from your own classes or you just feel like you happened to go to school with these people but your jobs searches on your own no matter whether you went to school. I mean, how important do you feel your school is in all of these and it's okay to be a little bit not PC about it. Tell me how you really feel because that's really what people who were deciding right now between Hastings and Berkeley or between you know, USF and Golden Gate. You know, this is what they are really wanting to know is, are they going to regret a decision for taking a scholarship at Sta. Clara versus going to Hastings. You know, tell us a little bit about how you guys feel about this and whether you really think it matters. Does it feel as important now as it did a year ago?

31:01
Marissa

I think it matters to an extent. And this is Marissa from Berkeley by the way.

31:09
Ann Levine

Right.

31:10
Marissa

So I do think first of all that people once in your law school and you kind of -- at least at Berkeley I feel like we forget that there are other schools out there because everyone compares each other to like -- the people they see everyday. So I don't really ever hear people worrying about Stanford or Harvard or Hastings. I don't really hear people talking about it. Though I guess to qualify that, I do think that there are people who are kind of rest on their world and think because you are out of school but you know, this ranking and you don't have to work it hard or things should just kind of come easily and that really just cannot be further from the truth. Because I mean, sure they are always -- you know attorneys or judges who will hire from their alma mater or you know, they like the known commodity and maybe the known commodity is the top ever for him and so we are very fortunate. (crosstalks)

32:06
Ann Levine

I know, yeah we're having it serious theory about that.

32:09
Marissa

I know, I know.

32:11
Ann Levine

I mean, do we get what you are feeling?

32:14
Marissa

But I mean, I think, there are people that think that ranking and grade should be enough. And I think honestly they kind of screw themselves because they are not enough. Like they are definitely, yeah, they are not enough to get the job that you want. They are sure. There are some of them players that won't look at you if you are in the top five and then I mean, there is only so much you can really do about that but you can still do what you want to do and you can still get a great job I think seeing from a lower to your school. I think you just have to approach it from a different angle but you can screw yourself out of the good job no matter what's going on really. I mean, depending on how you handle things and whether -- I mean, if you act in titles like I deserve this kind of job because I am at this school. I mean, that's just kind of a recipe for disaster I think.

33:08
Sarah

I completely agree.

33:10
Ann Levine

Tell me more about that Sarah. How the people at McGeorge feel right now and how do you feel about you know turning down other schools and being where you are.

33:19
Sarah

You know, I think that being in law school is one of the things where it is such a daily crime where you are so insulated with -- you know, you have a daily date with you and your books.

33:33
Ann Levine

Marissa brought her book with her.

33:35
Marissa

I know.

33:36
Sarah

Marissa, you are a girl up to my own heart. You know, it's -- I often forget that there are like even other people out there in the world who are competing for the steam job as I am but I think with Marissa and Yvonne have said is you know, spot on is that it's really how you choose to comfort yourselves out there and in the real world I do think that a lot of it is location, location and location if you want to apply for a Sacramento firm or being a student at McGeorge it's very advantageous but if you want to be in San Francisco being at Berkeley or USF or Hastings is much more you know, those firms located in San Francisco or in the Bay area much more familiar with those law schools but I do think that how you write or how you present yourself is equally important.

34:38
Ann Levine

And it's not like, it's so terribly hard to drive an hour and a half from Sacramento to San Francisco to a network of it if San Francisco is where you want to be.

34:47
Sarah

Oh, absolutely and I have done that many times at CAOT. I went to a women's hockey event through California attorneys. It is important, if you want to be where you want to be. You have to avail yourselves to those opportunities.

35:04
Ann Levine

How about you Yvonne? How are people feeling in Hastings about this?

35:07
Yvonne

Hastings people are definitely pretty competitive. I think, I mean of course we are competitive within ourselves but yeah, we think about Berkeley. We think about Berkeley in the East and up there. Yeah, for sure I think -- but at the end of the day, okay we are going to Hastings, we are going to Berkeley. You know, what comes down to, you know, what you put in to resume and how you present yourself. So there is nothing you can do about it and I think it makes good for a competition and I mean, we had USF and the Golden Gate and McGeorge in Sacramento and Stanford we are also close. And you know, California or wherever you are going to work, it will be so big but I think at the end of the day it's not that important and I think people have jobs right now of course they are really focused on setting for the bar and finishing off their last semester really strong but some of them do have jobs that are already lined up and those are the students that are pretty much and have been on top of their school work all three years and have been passionate and excited and they go get in mentality. These students are thrilled. They don't have job to find up after graduation. They are not that worried and we just had IPEP, there is OCIs on campus interviews, and people in Hastings seem to have pretty positive attitude or at least the ones that I talk to.

36:25
Sarah

Well, it is all about who you are trying your self worth too.

36:29
Ann Levine

So we got a -- we do have, you know, it's funny I thought okay. It's my group that I have today going to be a little too happy, you know are we like -- I think I do tend to attract that clients or former clients who like my attitude in that respect. So it's going to be fine if you work hard. And I mean, you know, I don't want to take it too lightly. I mean, I blogged and that New York Times article came about the debt that law students are taking on and you know salaries, allowance to pay it back. And then the first thing I did on my blog and twitted and say they don't go to law school before reading this. I mean, I feel that the people who do the research and know how hard it is and you know they really done their research on it are the people that who are going to go into the law school with the right mindset and make it happen for themselves and people who go in just thinking it will be fine and look out doing the research first aren't people who are going to see this and bitter and that's what really what I am trying to avoid. You know, I want to put those lovely sites like JD undergone out of business. Because I want everyone who is going to law school to see talking to people who are in law school and be ready to be proactive about finding jobs and to be smart about taking on that versus taking a scholarship somewhere. So I have a client right now who is so excited to have gotten into Berkeley for next year and then who got a really great scholarship to beat you and so he is thinking, "God! What do I do here?" and I knew he has a great division to be in you know.

37:59
Van

Absolutely.

38:00
Ann Levine

Especially for people you know, who aren't going to have parents to fall back on you're not going to have a husband to fall back on or a wife what have you I think that. You got to take the finances into account. When you start looking at -- no one really pays a law school back in 10 years. Okay, let's be honest. You can validate them and you pay them back over 30 years with low interest rate like...

38:21
Marissa

__38:21__ we could do.

38:23
Ann Levine

Yeah. Yeah. You are going to loan forgiveness programs in certain careers; you know there are things that you should also see. Okay, what would the loan payments be like? And what will my car payment be like? And how much will be left for rent or mortgage? And gosh, in five years, do I think I am going to get married and I want to buy a house? Where do I see myself? I had a great conversation this week, I went to speak at Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo, and I met one of my client's who start law school in the fall and she tried in with this bunch really great, great local applicant and we were talking about, I was so impressed with how pragmatic she was about the fact that look in five years, she wants the luxury of having kids if she decides about who she is and wants to be with her life and that she wants out and what career, what choice in terms of scholarship does she need to be looking at if that what she wants to be like. And you know feminist and went back when I was in law school and I am like taking all the gender in the law course, would have a fit at that conversation, but now that I am a mom and a wife, and you know you definitely get a perspective that these issues become very real. I also want to go back to one other thing which Marissa mentioned earlier about the non-traditional students and how they are fairing the job. You said it thousand times and I will say it again, business experience is business experience and it applies a law. A law is a business and 90% of law jobs it's a business. The hours you build. The claims you get for yourself. The file you bring in and it is very possible that the non-traditional applicant's people in their 30s have a sense of that. It might have been that their previous business was in computer sales or have you, but they know what they have to do to relate to people and they know that the bottom line is what really matters and in most areas legal practice, you know this a way to make a living. And you have to know how to make the living out of it. And fine, you might start as the public defender but you may then go in and see private practice and you are going to have to know, okay how to claim come to me and how many clients do I have to have to pay my rent and to pay my secretary.

40:23
Ann Levine

You know these -- I think that older applicants have naturally a really more realistic view of these things. And so for all of the non-traditional applicants they are always asking in my blog and calling me Ann, what about this? Will people really hire me if I am 35 and graduated in law school? I think the answer is absolutely yes. I think that some jobs may not and that's okay, you need to find the one that is right for you. And as long as you are not 55 turning law school and taking on debt, it's going to take you 30 years to pay back. You know that probably isn't reasonable, but for people who can pay their way or almost see their way, and they have them financial lives together, I think there is a lot of potential there. And so that was a really great point, it is about business experience? Is it about networking? It is about reaching out to people. And I would say to people that business experience is not something that you should overlook. And so a lot of people actually are scared to put on their resumes for law school that they have been working, the business they have been for it during college is a family business. I think you should absolutely put that down. I think the people who grow up in family businesses have a really keen understanding of financial realities and that is very endearing to perspective employers. May be not on the public interest side it may not be as relevant, but you know if a small firm who is relying on the bottom line to pay their family thinks that you also care about that bottom line to feed your family, that makes the big difference. And we have about three minutes remaining. I am going to check the chat room one last time for question. Although, there is a bunch of people in the chat room, but they are pretty quiet today. Anything else that you guys are -- I am going to give you all one more chance. Any other thoughts that you would like to share before we close out. Anything you are thinking of Sarah that I might have forgotten to mention that you think people should know?

42:14
Sarah

I just think that it's a really, really tough year, work hard, do your outlines early and try to maintain someone says balance in your life. I really don't have anything to offer. If you are looking for a job in your first summer of your one-out-year, go to advance, find an interest girl on campus, go over the advance. At every law school there is a link on their website for current students to have business cards printed out for a very cheap rate. So, take advantage of that, take advantage of your law school [crosstalk]...Career opportunities at the career center. [crosstalk]

43:11
Ann Levine

Because we have one minute left and you know Marissa had a thought to share as well.

43:14
Marissa

Oh, I shouldn't say that. I have actually recommended to a lot of my classmates and I don't think you should overlook the fact that these are your professional colleagues in response that it is a small community. And you never know when you might need somebody else. So I would consider that definitely of not being competitive over jobs with people. You'll never know when they can help you out too.

43:39
Ann Levine

That's a great suggestion. I think that when you are sitting down at law school rather than you know, I could be a little bit __43:46__ who can't retire or whatever, like think about that you are going to know these people a very long time in many cases. And even though I live very, very far from where I went to law school and couldn't live much further, and still in touch with a lot of those people based at law school I liked them on Facebook. And when they start, you know when they are doing things, they ask me you do I know anyone who does a certain area of law out in .L.A. You know working goes far and it's in law school, people who are going to be practicing law with and they are going to be jerks. I'm not going to lie to you. The same percentage of jerks in law school, it's anywhere else on the planet, they are just louder in law school and so you know, you don't have to be that person you don't have to hang out with that person. As you can hear I hope our wonderful guests today there are a lot of nice people in law school, who are also really bright and go getters too. And if you surround yourself with those people, you will be in really good shape. I want to end by really thanking the three of you for taking time out of your first year, not writing your legal brief today and coming and spending time with us. This is my favorite part that I do, is to see the success of really fantastic people. So thank you for listening, tune into other Blog Talk Radio shows and check us out at lawschoolexperts.com.

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