Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Do Clerkships Make Financial Sense? Part 3

In Part 1 of this series we discussed the cost to the student of completing the clerkship and found it to be an estimate of $95K.  In Part 2 we discussed one of the typical reasons cited for undertaking a clerkship - that it "will make you a better lawyer" - and we found that the comparison was flawed.  That typically people were comparing themselves before the clerkship to themselves after the clerkship - and they really should have been comparing themselves after the clerkship to themselves after having completed a year at a law firm.  In this post we will address the remaining reasons for performing a clerkship that are typically cited.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Do Clerkships Make Financial Sense? Part 2

In the first part of this series, we discussed the cost to the law student of performing a clerkship.  We determined a ballpack estimate that the clerkship will cost the law student about $95K.  Now let's take a look at the typical reasons to complete a clerkship that law schools tell students - and whether they are warranted in practice.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Do Clerkships Make Financial Sense? Part 1

Law Schools typically push graduating students to undertake clerkships, but do clerkships really make financial sense for the law student?  The law student that undertakes a clerkship will spend one to two years working for a judge, often writing or revising the judge's opinions or performing other research work.  Law schools fixate on the "prestige" of the clerkship and the "valuable experience."  However, it is often only top students that are accepted into clerkships - the same students that would be taking the (admittedly few) jobs available at the top of the salary range.  We will take a look at the pros and cons of clerkships below.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

The 4 Ways That New Associates Can Free Up The Most Cash To Pay Down Loans

Around this time every year, a new crop of associates starts at law firms around the country.  This year's crop is much smaller in the past and has had to fight a lot harder to get in.  Also, the recent layoffs have forced associates to confront the possibility that their employment may be eliminated quickly at any time - and that a new job in another law firm may not be available.  This new reality has made the new associates a lot more conservative in their financial consumption choices on average - which is probably good for their long term futures.  However, here are the five areas where associates could still free up a bundle of cash that could go toward loan payments.  More after the break.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Pogo Goes To Law School

As reported at AboveTheLaw and originally reported in the Newark Star-Ledger, there is a great recent article entitled "Irate law school grads say they were misled about job prospects."  Now, I won't go so far as to call law school a scam, but the article does have a good point that prospective law students are not able to clearly evaluate the law school opportunity prior to attending (and usually graduating) from law school.  Also, it seems clear that the law schools are not being as transparent as they could be with regard to hiring information - even accounting for variations due to the recent economic crisis.