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Posted: 5/11/2002 8:53:49 AM EDT
I am 36 years old and am a Network Administrator/IT Mgr. I have three small kids and a great wife. I want to get off the certification treadmill and do something I would really be interested in. i like what I currently do, but in all honesty, I can't compete with the true 'tech people' - you know the guys who rush home after work so they can write new scripts and tight code. I like to read or play music after work personally and don;t much like sitting infront of a monitor all day. I can either go get my MBA and transition more into the IT Mgmt side of things or I could go all out and go to Law School. Or I guess I can keep taking certification after certification, year after year just to maintain my current position and salary range. My company will pay tuition for either so it is my call. Any lawyers or MBA's out there who can tell me what they think?
Link Posted: 5/11/2002 8:59:21 AM EDT
Link Posted: 5/11/2002 10:12:25 AM EDT
If you don't like what you are doing now, do it. I went to law school at the same age as you after working primarily in the newspaper business. My income has tripled and the work is usually pretty interesting. Of course my friends tell me that after first working in the news biz and then becoming an attorney, all I have to do now is sell used cars and then run for office and I will have all the scummiest professions covered . . .
Link Posted: 5/11/2002 10:48:41 AM EDT
I'm a lawyer, but did it before marriage and kids. When would you go to school - during the day, or evening? Day takes 3 years, full time; night school can be very difficult, esp after working all day. Some schools have a joint JD/MBA program, but I think this adds a year. The biggest question would be how this affects your home life, IMO. You should do it if you can manage, even if you don't practice law. Its a star on your resume that can put you ahead of the rest.
Link Posted: 5/11/2002 11:18:23 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/11/2002 11:18:54 AM EDT by GSG9]
Sure you should try it! I'll even recommend the school in my town, the Appalachian School of Law [url]www.asl.edu[/url]. They just had their graduation last week. Jake
Link Posted: 5/11/2002 2:04:06 PM EDT
Link Posted: 5/11/2002 3:40:24 PM EDT
Every lawyer I talked to about going into law said: "Don't go into law". Always pissed me off, because I thought I'd be good at it. But when everyone with that job hates it and hates themselves for doing it, the warning bells kind of go off.
Link Posted: 5/11/2002 3:59:28 PM EDT
I'm in law school right now. 33 and no kids or wife. I can't see how people with families can do it. Currently I'm in the midst of hell with finals this week. (WTF am I doing on ar15.com?) I sit here and tell myself to walk away. I ask myself why did I ever do it. For 13 years I have kicked ass and taken names in whatever I have done. This is the first time in a long time I feel like a loser. I've been involved in a gunfight where I was pinned down behind a small rock for 45 minutes. Yes, I had intense fear during that time but I coped with it. But, I am having a horrible time copping with the fear I am going through now; It does not let up... I can seriously see myself as an alcoholic if this is the type of pressure I'll have to endure for a career. All in all though; I can see myself as a lawyer 2 years from now. Perspective is all relative, I just wish I wouldn't have to be put through the ringer like I am right now. If you go, WANT IT! Just don't think it's your ticket to the big bucks because it is not. There are relatively few "rich" lawyers. If you can't stand change, DON'T GO. I used to like being an academic; now I can't even read a book for enjoyment.
Link Posted: 5/11/2002 4:40:18 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/11/2002 4:41:34 PM EDT by Aimless]
Link Posted: 5/11/2002 5:07:52 PM EDT
FWIW, my wifewoman graduated #1 in her law school class, clerked for a fed judge, got a big firm job, and is quitting after 3 years to stay home w/ our kiddos.
Link Posted: 5/11/2002 5:26:04 PM EDT
Hello. My first job (was a litigation clerk at a Mid-town Manhattan law firm. Mostly anti-trust and corporate defense stuff. The junior attorneys at this firm were Phi Beta Kappa from top-10 undergraduate colleges and in the top-10% of their top-10 law school. They were doing work that a paralegal would do in smaller/less prestigious firms. They were required to bill 2000 hours a year (so their bar-study & non-billable time was on top of that). That's probably what you can expect from a large firm...these firms are basically document processing engines. As a college student, I was not senior enough to do anything but stamp "Confidential" and verify numbering on the documents we produced. The people who number-stamped the documents were 4th and 5th tier graduates waiting for their bar results/job offers. The paralegals were 3rd to 4th tier graduates waiting for bar results/job offers...or the sons and daughters of people with political connections (some were capable). I temp-ed as a litigation clerk back here in the Bay Area while looking for a job. Most of my peers were also graduates waiting for bar results/job offers. They were from a school that was 4th tier nationally but a 2nd tier locally. My father has a former subordinate who graduated from law school (don't know if he passed the bar or ever argued a case). He analyzed and wrote contracts for selling/leasing mainframe computers. My points are... 1) If you're not in the "recruiting funnel" you will have a hard time finding a "case/trial" job. 2) If you don't go to a powerhouse school (1st or 2nd tier), you will have a hard time finding a "case/trial" job. 3) Graduating is one thing, passing the bar and working on your first case are quite another and many don't consider you an attorney until you've done all three. Kinda like the education, certification, and project experience troika for IT. You may be forced to wait tables until you've done all three (volunteering at the public defenders for the third)...unless you are on the recruitment track (see #1 and #2). 4) There are many "non-case/trial" jobs that a law degree will get you the job. Contract writing/analysis is just one. Most larger companies have attorneys to handle all sorts of "non-case/trial" work including recovery of overdue payments, etc. (yuk!). These "attorneys" do their thing unless there's a problem...then the company turns the problem over to a previously retained trial firm. The average attorney never sees a courtroom except during jury summons. The average attorney never works on a case. My recommendation would be to do the MBA or a MBA/JD combo. Just being a lawyer doesn't really do it anymore...your undergrad/work experience needs to help steer you into a specialty (engineering for patents, etc.). HTH, James P.S. Remember, the "first-year associate" is the first real job for many people graduating from law school. They will be going through the same disgust as we-all did on our first jobs. So unhappiness will be common. P.P.S. The way off the certification treadmill is to learn the other side of the business. Don't be an IT specialist...be an IT guy with experience in high-tech discrete manufacturing. An IT guy with experience in spares distribution/returns recovery. Then people will keep you around because you know the business better than the people who flutter in and out on the business side.
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