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Author: Windowseat Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Favorite Fools Feste Award Nominee! Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 308881  
Subject: Student loans - Lawyers Date: 1/10/2011 3:36 PM
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This is a link to a lengthy NYT article that appeared over the weekend. It gives some details about the amount of the student loans that law school grads have been racking up. A quarter of a million is not uncommon, and very few new lawyers will get the kind of jobs that will pay them enough to pay off the debts.

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/01/09/business/09law.html?pagewa...

Several different students, professors, deans. and the like were interviewed about how to make the danger clearer to students, but nothing seems workable. For some reason it's not legal to hit people over the head until they decide they'd be happier as a beauty consulatant or truck driver.

Comments? Thoughts?

Nancy
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Author: TheEvilDrP Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool CAPS All Star Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 300668 of 308881
Subject: Re: Student loans - Lawyers Date: 1/10/2011 4:13 PM
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From the article:

WHEN Mr. Wallerstein started at Thomas Jefferson, he was in no mood for austerity. He borrowed so much that before the start of his first semester he nearly put a down payment on a $350,000 two-bedroom, two-bath condo, figuring that the investment would earn a profit by the time he graduated. He was ready to ink the deal until a rep at the mortgage giant Countrywide asked if his employer at the time — a trade magazine publisher in New Jersey — would write a letter falsely stating that he was moving to San Diego for work.

“We were on a three-way call with my real estate agent and I said I didn’t feel comfortable with that,” he says. “The Countrywide guy chuckled and said, ‘Everyone lies on their mortgage application.’ ”

Instead, Mr. Wallerstein rented a spacious apartment. He also spent a month studying in the South of France and a month in Prague — all on borrowed money. There were cost-of-living loans, and tuition of about $33,000 a year.. Later came a $15,000 loan to cover months of studying for the bar.

Today, his best guess is that he should be sending $2,000 to $3,000 a month in total, to lenders that include Wells Fargo, Citibank and Sallie Mae.

“There are a bunch of others,” he says. “I’m not really good at keeping records.”



Okay, here is the problem I keep seeing with the kids who have hundreds of thousands in college debt:

They are borrowing from their future to finance the present.

They want to study abroad, drink lattes, buy real estate and ignore the problem. They are not paying attention to how much they owe or considering alternate ways to finance their education. This guy almost bought a condo but then decided to study abroad and use his loans to support his living expenses while he studied for the bar.

You rarely hear about the students who work their way through the same schools with the same tuition or the students who use scholarships and grants. My sister worked her way through college, earning two BAs at the same time, and then later earned two MAs all on her dime or her employer's dime. I think college tuition is increasing at an insane and untenable rate but I also think these students bear some responsibility for their actions.

I will add a caveat, though: When I was in college, I could not find anyone in the financial aid office who could or would explain the student loan documents to me. I was 34 at the time and held a mortgage as well as other financial instruments but the student loan paperwork I was given seemed to deliberately confuse the rate and payment terms.

Admittedly, that was several years ago so it may be clearer now but it took me some time to read through each document and find information that I felt should have been clearly and prominently displayed (similar to a GFE or credit card terms chart). The point, though, is that I did the legwork and understood what the loans would cost me at that time and in my future.

Minxie

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Author: Windowseat Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Favorite Fools Feste Award Nominee! Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 300669 of 308881
Subject: Re: Student loans - Lawyers Date: 1/10/2011 4:24 PM
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I'm definitely all for transparency and understanding the rules and so on. That may help some of them cut back a bit. But there's also this, from the last page.

“Bank bailouts, company bailouts — I don’t know, we’re the generation of bailouts,” he says in a hallway during a break from his Peak Discovery job. “And like, this debt of mine is just sort of, it’s a little illusory. I feel like at some point, I’ll negotiate it away, or they won’t collect it.”

They might not collect it, but it's not going away.

And I also liked the part where he said he was glad to have the degree because it made him look important to his friends and relatives. Best excuse I've ever heard for going a quarter million in the red. Let's see how he feels ten years from now when he can't get a job because his credit rating is down the tube.

Nancy

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Author: TheEvilDrP Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool CAPS All Star Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 300670 of 308881
Subject: Re: Student loans - Lawyers Date: 1/10/2011 4:29 PM
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They might not collect it, but it's not going away.

And I also liked the part where he said he was glad to have the degree because it made him look important to his friends and relatives. Best excuse I've ever heard for going a quarter million in the red. Let's see how he feels ten years from now when he can't get a job because his credit rating is down the tube.


It isn't real money to him. It won't be until he gets a job and they start garnishing his wages. He might not even be able to be admitted to the bar; after all, don't they check your credit or your bill payments or something?

Minxie

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Author: Windowseat Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Favorite Fools Feste Award Nominee! Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 300671 of 308881
Subject: Re: Student loans - Lawyers Date: 1/10/2011 4:37 PM
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It isn't real money to him. It won't be until he gets a job and they start garnishing his wages. He might not even be able to be admitted to the bar; after all, don't they check your credit or your bill payments or something?

Yes. The NYS bar rejected someone a while back. He had mega huge debts; the interest had been piling up. That wasn't the entire problem: the problem was that he didn't make any attempts to pay them back.

As I recall, there was something about a disability as well, but the bar just didn't want to take a chance.

Nancy
a quarter million in the red, after getting a degree from one of the lousiest schools. And he went there because he liked San Diego.

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Author: wasmick Big gold star, 5000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 300672 of 308881
Subject: Re: Student loans - Lawyers Date: 1/10/2011 4:39 PM
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And I also liked the part where he said he was glad to have the degree because it made him look important to his friends and relatives.


I thought you said these were law degrees?

Here's hoping his friends and relatives are all used car salesmen.

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Author: Windowseat Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Favorite Fools Feste Award Nominee! Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 300673 of 308881
Subject: Re: Student loans - Lawyers Date: 1/10/2011 4:47 PM
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Here's hoping his friends and relatives are all used car salesmen.

I kind of got the impression that in his family, and among his friends, there weren't a lot of people with college degrees, never mind an advanced degree.

So they might regard the JD as being more important than it actually is.

Nancy

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Author: wasmick Big gold star, 5000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 300674 of 308881
Subject: Re: Student loans - Lawyers Date: 1/10/2011 4:56 PM
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Bless their hearts.

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Author: TheEvilDrP Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool CAPS All Star Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 300676 of 308881
Subject: Re: Student loans - Lawyers Date: 1/10/2011 6:01 PM
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I kind of got the impression that in his family, and among his friends, there weren't a lot of people with college degrees, never mind an advanced degree.

So they might regard the JD as being more important than it actually is.


I had the impression that he was the first person in his family to attend college.

Minxie

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Author: SooozFool Three stars, 500 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 300677 of 308881
Subject: Re: Student loans - Lawyers Date: 1/10/2011 8:41 PM
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Several different students, professors, deans. and the like were interviewed about how to make the danger clearer to students, but nothing seems workable. For some reason it's not legal to hit people over the head until they decide they'd be happier as a beauty consulatant or truck driver.

I'm amazed at articles like this. Good grief! People applying to law school are supposed to be adults who seek one day to capably and zealously represent the interests of others. How well-suited are they for that responsibility if they're not even curious or aware enough to know that there's a glut of lawyers out there; that law schools accept tuition payments without offering a corresponding guarantee of obtaining gainful legal employment; and that one should maintain a reasonable ratio of loans to actual earning potential?

D'oh!

Soooz

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Author: determinedmom Big red star, 1000 posts Feste Award Nominee! Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 300678 of 308881
Subject: Re: Student loans - Lawyers Date: 1/10/2011 9:42 PM
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How well-suited are they for that responsibility if they're not even curious or aware enough to know that there's a glut of lawyers out there; that law schools accept tuition payments without offering a corresponding guarantee of obtaining gainful legal employment; and that one should maintain a reasonable ratio of loans to actual earning potential?

A big part of the problem is that most law students (not all) are used to be the exception. That is, these are the kids that did well in high school. Then, they went to college and mostly made exceptionally good grades. And, then they took the LSAT and did well. They have been high achievers their entire life.

When I started law school way back in the last millenium, I attend a well regarded good law school, the one that was considered the ticket for a good job in my state. Virtually everyone that I knew graduated in at least the top 10% of their college class. Just being admitted to the law school was very difficult. Most applicants didn't get in.

So they were sure, absolutely sure, that they were going to be honors graduates of law school. They were going to get those high paying jobs. They didn't need to think about the median starting income because they weren't going to make it. They were the exception.

Of course, 90% of them ended up being totally shocked not to graduate with honors.

Fast forward 30 plus years and it is an even worse situation. When I went to my law school, as a flagship state university its tuition was a little higher than undergraduate tuition. But, not much. My parents who were not wealthy by any means easily paid it from accumulated savings. Now, that same school charges law school tuition that is far higher than undergraduate tuition and is more like the tuition for a private university.

It is still hard to get in and those who get in still think they will be the exception. They are all too sure they will be able to find a job since they attend such a fine school and have such a record of achievement.

The vast majority of students who graduate from good law schools are bright, excellent students who have never failed at very much in life. And they focus entirely on the small likelihood of making a huge salary and are sure that they won't be in the group to earn the median or less than that.

Then there are the students who really shouldn't be in law schools. These are largely the students who go to the, well, not so good schools. Many of these schools have been started for no other reason than to extract money from students who shouldn't be in law school. Their chances of passing the bar, let alone getting a job, aren't great. And the students are so desperate to succeed that they hope they can beat the odds.

The bottom line is that too many lawyers are being churned out. Why people want to join the profession is beyond me. The reality is that it is a very family unfriendly, demanding profession if you want to achieve financial success. (The work itself is fine and I was at a good firm but I am talking overall). Yet, no one wants to hear this. When my niece was 16 she asked me about becoming a lawyer and I gave her the honest pros and cons. Apparently I wasn't negative enough as she is now a newly minted lawyer (yet, she did beat the odds and actually is one of those with a good job). Colleagues and I have discussed the fact that many in other careers make far more money than lawyers make (particularly on a per hour basis) and have less education, fewer student loans, and a more family friendly lifestyle.

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Author: wasmick Big gold star, 5000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 300679 of 308881
Subject: Re: Student loans - Lawyers Date: 1/10/2011 10:02 PM
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People applying to law school are supposed to be adults who seek one day to capably and zealously represent the interests of others. How well-suited are they for that responsibility if they're not even curious or aware enough to know that there's a glut of lawyers out there; that law schools accept tuition payments without offering a corresponding guarantee of obtaining gainful legal employment; and that one should maintain a reasonable ratio of loans to actual earning potential?


This assumes facts not in evidence.

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Author: exeter17 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 300681 of 308881
Subject: Re: Student loans - Lawyers Date: 1/11/2011 9:05 AM
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*
A big part of the problem is that most law students (not all) are used to be the exception. That is, these are the kids that did well in high school. Then, they went to college and mostly made exceptionally good grades. And, then they took the LSAT and did well. They have been high achievers their entire life.
*

I beg to differ. An MD has to undergo pre-med. Law students do not have to. My friend is a lawyer and he told me he became a lawyer since it was "an easy way for a dummy like me to make a lot of money".

He wasn't a high achiever. He's only a so-so lawyer too :)

I'm not saying there aren't brilliant lawyers - just look at Denny Crane :)

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Author: YewGuise Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 300682 of 308881
Subject: Re: Student loans - Lawyers Date: 1/11/2011 9:58 AM
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Colleagues and I have discussed the fact that many in other careers make far more money than lawyers make (particularly on a per hour basis) and have less education, fewer student loans, and a more family friendly lifestyle.

What careers in particular? Seriously. DS is applying to law schools. He did a semester's internship at a law firm while an undergrad, and liked it, so if he gets a job as a lawyer he'll probably like it; however, I believe part of his decision-making process is that with a degree in history he doesn't know what else to do. Except teach history, which he's definitely not interested in doing.

It is still hard to get in and those who get in still think they will be the exception. They are all too sure they will be able to find a job since they attend such a fine school and have such a record of achievement.

And are they right? Does graduation from a 1st or 2nd tier school guarantee a job? DS isn't applying to "safety" schools because he says that if he goes to a 3rd tier or lower law school he won't be able to get a job, so that's good for him to recognize. The question is whether he'll get a job if he goes to a 2nd tier school.

What I found shocking about the article is not that some law schools fudge their graduates' employment numbers, but that they all do, even the top schools, which shouldn't need to.

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Author: legalwordwarrior Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 300683 of 308881
Subject: Re: Student loans - Lawyers Date: 1/11/2011 11:27 AM
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And are they right? Does graduation from a 1st or 2nd tier school guarantee a job? DS isn't applying to "safety" schools because he says that if he goes to a 3rd tier or lower law school he won't be able to get a job, so that's good for him to recognize. The question is whether he'll get a job if he goes to a 2nd tier school.

I don't think there's actually any education out there that will guarantee every graduate a job. Much as mick mentioned in another thread, hard work will get you further than the "right" degree. That said, aren't most state law schools considered 2nd tier? Our state legislature is full of graduates from Texas Tech's law school. I;m not sure if lawyers love to be politicians, or if politicians love to be lawyers ;0)

In our area I know quite a few lawyers who are in varied fields. I know a handful of lawyers who do PI work, and they make pretty good money, though not as much since TX cracked down on tort reform. I know some who work for the insurance companies against wrongful termination suits and other business ventures, who make really good money, and I know some local prosecutors who moonlight as teachers at the local community college just to make ends meet.

I know one of my daughters former classmates who apprenticed with a local plumber is now making very good money. The best thing about that being that pipes will back up and the guy or girl to fix it can't be outsourced. Same for one of my former classmates who now works in pest control. Not a glamourous job, but one that puts steady food on the table and has allowed him to continue to provide for his family, even when his wife's company was sold three times in two years. So I guess it's all in how you look at it and YMMV depending on how hard you're willing to work to attain your goals.

LWW

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Author: determinedmom Big red star, 1000 posts Feste Award Nominee! Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 300684 of 308881
Subject: Re: Student loans - Lawyers Date: 1/11/2011 12:52 PM
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With a degree in history, getting a law degree may well improve marketability.

I routinely see people in business, particularly in sales, who make significantly more than the vast majority of attorneys. Commercial insurance brokerage. Energy sales. Some engineering related work, again the ones that make the most money aren't those who just do the technical work but those who have the knack for selling projects.

Graduation from a 1st or 2nd tier school most certainly does not guarantee a job. I think it helps. But I've certainly seen people who graduated from those schools and either had no job or had jobs that didn't pay particularly well or were part time.

Read this article:

http://www.slate.com/id/2272621/

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Author: determinedmom Big red star, 1000 posts Feste Award Nominee! Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 300685 of 308881
Subject: Re: Student loans - Lawyers Date: 1/11/2011 12:55 PM
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Law students do not have to. My friend is a lawyer and he told me he became a lawyer since it was "an easy way for a dummy like me to make a lot of money".

He wasn't a high achiever. He's only a so-so lawyer too :)


A single example does not disprove my point. Bear in mind, I was talking about students who go to competitive law schools where it is difficult to get into.

My experience most lawyers who are "a dummy" don't end up making a lot of money. They think they will but usually don't. Are there exceptions? Sure.

But overall lawyers who go to competitive law schools -- whether public or private -- have been high achievers their entire life and many can't conceive of the possibility that they won't continue in that vein even when competing with other law students who have a similar background.

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Author: wasmick Big gold star, 5000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 300686 of 308881
Subject: Re: Student loans - Lawyers Date: 1/11/2011 12:56 PM
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I beg to differ. An MD has to undergo pre-med. Law students do not have to. My friend is a lawyer and he told me he became a lawyer since it was "an easy way for a dummy like me to make a lot of money".


Becoming a lawyer is learning a trade, just like any other. Take the classes, pass the tests, get the degree, get a job.

All the rest is just bullsh*t.

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Author: determinedmom Big red star, 1000 posts Feste Award Nominee! Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 300687 of 308881
Subject: Re: Student loans - Lawyers Date: 1/11/2011 3:42 PM
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Becoming a lawyer is learning a trade, just like any other. Take the classes, pass the tests, get the degree, get a job.

All the rest is just bullsh*t.


Not really. Oh, I agree that becoming a lawyer is learning a trade.

But, not everyone is well suited to every trade or career. Earlier in my career, I worked with a young attorney who had done all that. But, it sort of amazed me that he had passed the door. He just didn't have what they call the "legal mind." He couldn't analyze documents or case law in the way that a court would analyze them. He constantly came up with the wrong answer because he didn't read and understand documents like a court would read and understand them. I worked with him to teach him. Others worked with him. But, he just didn't get it. He does not at all dumb. Just not suited to legal analysis.

There are all kinds of things that I could take the classes and pass tests and get a degree and would be absolutely terrible at if I got the job.

There are other things that I could take classes until the end of time and I would just never get it.

It is easy to think that being a lawyer doesn't require any special abilities like, say, medicine does. Most people would probably agree that being a physician requires something other than just being reasonably intelligent. Yet, many people (wrongly) think that being an attorney just requires reasonable intelligence and no special skills.

Back in the dark ages I got into law school based almost entirely on my LSAT score. My undergraduate grades were...indifferent. To be clear, I had the lowest college GPA of anyone that I knew in my law school class. I had a friend who applied to the same law school with a college GPA much, much higher than mine. She did not get in. I got in the first week they sent out acceptances.

Why? At that time, more than 30 years ago, the most important part of admission was the LSAT (they literally considered nothing other than college GPA and LSAT. There was no essay, no interview and they could care less about your extra-curricular activities). My LSAT score was very high. At that time the LSAT test tested reasoning. (It now tests other things). My law school felt that the most important predictor of success in law school was whether one had the ability to logically reason and to analyze. They didn't really care that much about GPA or what you did in your spare time or if you had overcome adversity or anything else. If you could reason like a lawyer, then you would do well in law school. So admissions highly valued reasoning.

So with my very low B (3.16) GPA I was admitted to a very good, very competitive law school. (And they were right -- I did graduate with honors and went on to a successful career). The thing is that being a good lawyer really does need the ability to reason and think like a lawyer. Some people do unfortunately get through law school who aren't strong in those areas. And, by and large, they tend to struggle with practicing law.

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Author: determinedmom Big red star, 1000 posts Feste Award Nominee! Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 300688 of 308881
Subject: Re: Student loans - Lawyers Date: 1/11/2011 3:48 PM
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passed the door

Sigh..what would I give for an edit button.

passed the bar

(that is what I get for talking to my daughter leaning against the door while I was writing the above post)

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Author: wasmick Big gold star, 5000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 300689 of 308881
Subject: Re: Student loans - Lawyers Date: 1/11/2011 5:15 PM
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But, not everyone is well suited to every trade or career.

I agree completely; and I think that's true of every profession. I don't view the legal profession as any different from any other.

Not everyone can be trained to be a good plumber either. Many, many people can, but not all.


It is easy to think that being a lawyer doesn't require any special abilities like, say, medicine does. Most people would probably agree that being a physician requires something other than just being reasonably intelligent. Yet, many people (wrongly) think that being an attorney just requires reasonable intelligence and no special skills.

Having agreed with the first paragraph, I would obviously agree with this one as well since it says essentially the same thing.

What I disagree with is with the idea that it's germane to the legal or medical profession only. I think it applies to all.

That said, many, many people can be trained into myriad trades and be successful. I don't think the requisite skills for these professions are rare by any stretch.

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Author: llamalluv Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 300691 of 308881
Subject: Re: Student loans - Lawyers Date: 1/11/2011 6:13 PM
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LOL, I thought you meant he was so dumb you couldn't imagine how he got in the building, let alone got through the bar exam.

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Author: bibliophage One star, 50 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 300692 of 308881
Subject: Re: Student loans - Lawyers Date: 1/11/2011 7:32 PM
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I am getting very annoyed with the NYT for publishing these pieces where they highlight a legitimately disturbing trend and then focus the article around someone who has been such an outrageous idiot that it's hard to have any sympathy for them whatsoever (the young woman who took out 200K in loans for a women's studies degree and then was surprised when she had trouble landing anything that paid more than $20/hour comes to mind.) Couldn't they have found someone who didn't choose a fourth-rate law school on the basis of good surf and who didn't subsidize European vacations with his loans?

I guess law schools are entitled to charge whatever the market will bear even though the costs have gone up so dramatically, but the misleading statistics bother me. I agree that some degree of due diligence is needed prior to applying to graduate school of any type, but if I were looking at law school when I was 21, I might have believed statistics from the school reporting 90% employment and 160K starting salaries, especially if I didn't know any practicing lawyers or current law students to tell me differently. (My husband, who spent 5 years in 2 big firms and loathed every minute, has a standing offer to friends and family to talk people out of going to law school).

The bright side, of course, is that 5 years ago everyone was bemoaning the high cost of law school because it was forcing all the graduates to take high-paying firm jobs to pay their debts and no one was going into public interest law or government jobs. Now that the firm jobs have dried up, those jobs are looking a lot better and attracting a higher caliber of applicant.

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Author: SeattlePioneer Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Favorite Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 300697 of 308881
Subject: Re: Student loans - Lawyers Date: 1/13/2011 12:14 AM
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<<“Bank bailouts, company bailouts — I don’t know, we’re the generation of bailouts,” he says in a hallway during a break from his Peak Discovery job. “And like, this debt of mine is just sort of, it’s a little illusory. I feel like at some point, I’ll negotiate it away, or they won’t collect it.”

They might not collect it, but it's not going away.>>



Oh, I do expect a student loan bailout. The Democrats have already had some candidates tuning up on that issue, with lots more to come.

We just need to get by the business of illegal immigrants being sold into peonage. Once that issue is gone, a new generation of privileged, educated peons will be applying to get an exemption from paying their student loans.

It another of many financial bubbles, no different than the housing loan bubble we are working our way through now.



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Author: Jacketfan Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 300709 of 308881
Subject: Re: Student loans - Lawyers Date: 1/13/2011 3:39 PM
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I think college tuition is increasing at an insane and untenable rate but I also think these students bear some responsibility for their actions.

In large part, tuition is increasing at an insane and untenable rate because students are willing to borrow whatever it takes, and banks are willing to loan whatever it takes. At some point, someone has to take the first step to stop the madness.

In a perfect world, US employers would take a hard look at what jobs really require college degrees, and make that known. That would stop the runaway cost of higher education. You'd probably smell smoke and see skid marks.

Of course, being a lawyer requires law school. So my suggestion is probably outside the scope of this thread. Not to mention outside the scope of reality.

v/r
Tom

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Author: JAFO31 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 300715 of 308881
Subject: Re: Student loans - Lawyers Date: 1/13/2011 6:43 PM
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Jacketfan:

<<<I think college tuition is increasing at an insane and untenable rate but I also think these students bear some responsibility for their actions.>>>

"In large part, tuition is increasing at an insane and untenable rate because students are willing to borrow whatever it takes, and banks are willing to loan whatever it takes. At some point, someone has to take the first step to stop the madness."

Lenders got ths Bankruptcy Code changed to make student loans virtually non-dischargeable, so they have little incentive to change.

And until the data catches up that a college degree is no longer assurance a significantly larger lifetime income (in general), it will be difficult to get students to listen,

See e.g., "The report titled "The Big Payoff: Educational Attainment and Synthetic Estimates of Work-Life Earnings" (.pdf) reveals that over an adult's working life, high school graduates can expect, on average, to earn $1.2 million; those with a bachelor's degree, $2.1 million; and people with a master's degree, $2.5 million.

Persons with doctoral degrees earn an average of $3.4 million during their working life, while those with professional degrees do best at $4.4 million."

http://usgovinfo.about.com/od/moneymatters/a/edandearnings.h...

"The figures are based on 1999 earnings projected over a typical work life, defined as the period from ages 25 through 64."

Id.

"In a perfect world, US employers would take a hard look at what jobs really require college degrees, and make that known."

What is the incentive for the employers?

Regards, JAFO

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Author: Jacketfan Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 300735 of 308881
Subject: Re: Student loans - Lawyers Date: 1/14/2011 10:09 AM
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Lenders got ths Bankruptcy Code changed to make student loans virtually non-dischargeable, so they have little incentive to change.

Agreed.

What is the incentive for the employers?

None really. I suppose they could justify lower starting salaries, with four years of satisfactory work experience bringing raises up to what they now pay 4-year college graduates.

But I don't expect that to happen. That's why I started with "In a perfect world..." All I know is the laws of supply and demand are the reason for runaway tuition costs. And it is my personal feeling (backed up by experience with the DoD civilian workforce) that too many jobs are currently mandating a college degree to very little value added.

v/r
Tom

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Author: AdvocatusDiaboli Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 301418 of 308881
Subject: Re: Student loans - Lawyers Date: 3/17/2011 10:40 PM
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This is a link to a lengthy NYT article that appeared over the weekend. It gives some details about the amount of the student loans that law school grads have been racking up. A quarter of a million is not uncommon, and very few new lawyers will get the kind of jobs that will pay them enough to pay off the debts.

And student loans are not cancellable in a bankrupcy, are they?
This is a very bad situation in which very young, very inexperienced people are suckered into a debt trap that will literally destroy their lives.

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Author: SeattlePioneer Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Favorite Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 301420 of 308881
Subject: Re: Student loans - Lawyers Date: 3/17/2011 10:47 PM
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<<This is a link to a lengthy NYT article that appeared over the weekend. It gives some details about the amount of the student loans that law school grads have been racking up. A quarter of a million is not uncommon, and very few new lawyers will get the kind of jobs that will pay them enough to pay off the debts.

And student loans are not cancellable in a bankrupcy, are they?
This is a very bad situation in which very young, very inexperienced people are suckered into a debt trap that will literally destroy their lives.>>



Not to worry.

The government is going to bail people out, one way or another. If you can pass amnesty laws for illegals, a bail out/loan forgiveness, BK or otjher means to let student loans debtors off the hook is inevitable.


The people who didn't take out loans will be proven to be the suckers.



Seattle Pioneer

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Author: NoIDAtAll Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 301426 of 308881
Subject: Re: Student loans - Lawyers Date: 3/18/2011 2:04 AM
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The people who didn't take out loans will be proven to be the suckers.



Seattle Pioneer


You would be one of the "suckers", I gather?

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Author: SeattlePioneer Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Favorite Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 301433 of 308881
Subject: Re: Student loans - Lawyers Date: 3/18/2011 1:59 PM
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<<The people who didn't take out loans will be proven to be the suckers.



Seattle Pioneer

You would be one of the "suckers", I gather?>>



Shucks, I came along before student loans were invented!



Seattle Pioneer

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