Reflection time

March 14, 2004

One's birthday is a good time to evaluate where one is in life. Lately, I've been wondering whether going to law school was a good decision.

I enjoy law school itself a lot. The work fits in well with my strengths. However, in contrast to my initial thoughts, law school is not 3 years away from the lousy job market. Instead, law school 3 years wading through the job market. Between summers, a permanent job and a clerkship, that's a lot of resumes floating around in e-mail and envelopes.

The easiest way to find employment is through on-campus interviewing (OCI). Unfortunately, this is one of the big problems with going to a "second-tier" school like Brooklyn. The OCI program is minimally useful for those of us not on Law Review. Law is a highly prestige-oriented profession, and the fall recruiting programs are the best example of this principle in action. The better ranked the school, the deeper employers will go into the class rankings to choose people to interview.

This is not to say that it's impossible to get an excellent job from my position. It just requires some persistence, networking and some shameless self-promotion. Self-promoting and networking are not my personal strengths. As someone who is shy and reserved, my natural instincts don't lean towards schmoozing. I doubt anyone enjoys looking for jobs, and I am no exception. I would rather be learning and creating than trying to convince someone to employ me.

So, I am wonder if going to law school was a mistake. Am I really better off in terms of where I am in my career than if I did not choose to go back to school?

I've also been wondering if I wouldn't mind moving out of the Greatest City in the World to some less-urban setting, closer to skiing. But that's a topic for another post...

Posted by Andrew Raff at March 14, 2004 07:24 PM
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