Thursday, September 2, 2010

Should I stay or should I go?

Stay. True, there's what Lat said, but let me add:

1. I went to a school that's a little worse than his (usually ranked in the low 20s in U.S. News) pre-crash. Post-crash, the two may be roughly comparable. That is, we were high up enough that lots of people got Biglaw jobs, but lots of people also didn't. The people in the less favored half of the class usually found something without much trouble. In lots of cases, it was criminal law, after multiple stints in clinics or externships. Fed. govt. jobs at somewhere not-that-sexy, not-DOJ may also be an option, especially if he can manage to land an internship at one of these agencies this summer.

2. We're not told anything about the person's undergrad background or pre-law-school work experience, so we don't know what marketable skills this person may or may not have. But... like... pretty much every other sector of the economy is also suffering. Leaving a graduate program after one year does not really send an attractive signal to most employers. I can hear the questions from a mile away: "Why did you leave law school? Well, why did you go in the first place if you really weren't sure you wanted to practice law? Did you do any research in advance? Yeah? Well, why should I think that you did research on why you want to work in my field? How do I know you're not going to want to run off and do something different in a year?" The alternative -- a one year gap on the resume -- is no more attractive.

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