June 13, 2019 8:59 pm at 8:59 pm #1742364
Debating wether to get a BTL or more mainstream pre-law degree, any experience? Do you know if a BTL helps or hurts?June 14, 2019 10:18 am at 10:18 am #1742456zahavasdadParticipant
BTL is generally worthless in the secular worldJune 14, 2019 11:58 am at 11:58 am #1742515June 14, 2019 1:41 pm at 1:41 pm #1742585ubiquitinParticipant
“BTL is generally worthless in the secular world”
I have no idea what this line is supposed to mean. I suspect it is gibberish,.
“Do you know if a BTL helps or hurts?”
compared to what?
are you asking if you take the same grades but compare a BTL to a “more mainstream pre-law degree,” Then obviously the BTL hurts. (Do yo uhave a hava amina otherwise?)
On the other hand are yo u asking if a BTL helps compared to nothing or a diploma you type up on microsoft word , then obviosuly it helps and people HAVE gone to Law schools ( even prestigious ones) with a BTLJune 14, 2019 3:39 pm at 3:39 pm #1742605
There are no formal requirements for admission to law school. If you have a BTL, an interesting resume and a good background for pre-law (writing skills in English, a respectable background in history/social sciences), and good LSAT scores, a BTL should get you into an American law school (it also helps to be able to pay the $150K or so tuition without financial aid).
If the school offering the BTL has regional accreditation, it is worth as much as any other degree that is of little relevance to the graduate program you are going to. One can always supplement a BTL by taking courses to improve one’s “resume”.June 16, 2019 12:33 am at 12:33 am #1742747Yserbius123Participant
@zahavasdad Completely false. Some law schools that are frequented by frum men may take issue with a BTL because they’ve seen so many of them, but for the most part it’s an excellent way to skip a huge chunk of undergrad requirements. Many graduate schools will accept a student with a BTL and a few required courses.June 16, 2019 9:32 am at 9:32 am #1742815
If you are not looking to attend a top tier law school, it doesn’t really matter what undergraduate degree you get and who issues it as long as the institution is accredited. Your LSAT and possibly an interview will make the entrance decision.
Currently, there are loads of empty seats at American non-top tier law schools. Being an attorney is not what it used to be in terms of income, advancement, etc. It has changed drastically in the past 30 years.
I have hired associates who have BTLs, pre-law degrees (whatever that really means) and a BS in IT. I am more interested in where they attended law school, where they interned, what courses they took in law school (and grades earned) AND that they have passed the state Bar Exam. Except for my children and spouses, I do not hire anyone who has not passed the Bar Exam and is licensed.
If you expect to earn a paycheck while studying for the Bar Exam and learning on the job, best bet is to start with a government agency (DA, etc) who uses tax dollars to underwrite your cost,June 16, 2019 10:32 am at 10:32 am #1742944lakewhutParticipant
Don’t do pre-law undergrad. Maybe you see yourself in tax law. Then do an undergrad in accounting e.g. If you do well on the LSAT you can get into a good law school. But, you need good discipline for that. Do you actually want to practice law or do you want to do it for the money?June 16, 2019 2:10 pm at 2:10 pm #1743014
@CTLAWYER, would having a BTL in place of a different degree affect my odds of getting intoa school like NYU or columbia? It doesn’t really seem worthwhile to attend law school unless it’s one of the 2.June 16, 2019 3:11 pm at 3:11 pm #1743059ubiquitinParticipant
“would having a BTL in place of a different degree affect my odds of getting intoa school like NYU or columbia? ”
Asked and answered .
Are you really asking if a BTL is equal to a real degree?June 16, 2019 6:07 pm at 6:07 pm #1743120
It doesn’t seem worthwile to attend Law School unless it’s NYU or Columbia???????????????????
University of Chicago #4
I wouldn’t count on getting into most of these with a BTL, although it has been done occasionally.
NYU get a real degree
NY Law, BTL should be fine.
Where are you going to practice? For a white shoe goyische firm or Wall Street firm? They’ll want a real college diploma hanging on your office wall besides your JD and Bar Certificate
Some small private firm that does wills, estates, personal injury and real estate closings…they won’t care
Government it doesn’t matter.
I and all my children and their spouses are products of Ivy League universities and law schools. and YES, the old boy (and now girl) network does help land business. Many a trust client has found us by looking in the alumni directory for a Penn, Harvard or Yale Alum practicing in our area.June 16, 2019 9:07 pm at 9:07 pm #1743139lakewhutParticipant
What CTL is saying is its not what you know, it’s who you know. Ultimately, your interview skills are key to getting good jobs.June 17, 2019 9:33 am at 9:33 am #1743308
@lakewhut I want to practice corporate law, the combination of law and business is right up my alleyJune 17, 2019 9:33 am at 9:33 am #1743296
@CTLAWYER, I picked those 2 because I want to stay one NY city, the others are included in that groupJune 17, 2019 9:52 am at 9:52 am #1743275Neville ChaimBerlinParticipant
If you know people and are planning on getting a job through the frum, heimish hiring system in an NY community, then you don’t need to worry about having an Ivy league degree. If you don’t know anyone and you’re just planning on applying to job opening online, you’ll have a bad day probably either way.June 17, 2019 10:35 am at 10:35 am #1743383ploni doeParticipant
You will have to score higher on the LSAT with a BTL. No idea if it is true, but when I was applying to lawschool around 15 years ago, rumor was NYU does not accept BTLs. You can get an FDU degree in a short period (not exactly sure, but think it’s 6 months or a year) through online courses. However, I do not know if laws schools view this better than a BTL. Once in a law school, what school you are in is more important than your undergrad degree, and most firms will take people with BTLs.June 17, 2019 11:08 am at 11:08 am #1743413
Please don’t put words in my mouth.
The OP is asking about Law School Admissions, and who you know will not generally get you admitted. That said, your name, such as Kennedy, Rockefeller, Bush might move you up on the list. Legacy admissions are far more prevalent in undergraduate admissions that professional school.
I spoke about who you know aiding in bring in clients to the firm.
OP says he wants to practice corporate law, he would not generally be involved in bringing clients.
Unlike most jobs, what you know is determined by the licensing exam (Bar Exam).
If you pass, you are qualified to start working, much of what you’ll do has to be learned on the job, it isn’t taught in law school.
For example, I teach as an adjunct at a law school in Massachusetts. They have a completely different court system than CT. Civil suits less than xxx dollars and criminal cases with penalties less than one year in jail are in District Court. Bigger cases are in Superior Court. CT has no District Courts, everything starts at the Superior Ct level. A new lawyer coming out of Harvard Law working in CT would have to learn our court system and filing requirements. The CTL firm is in the Family Law, Wills, Trusts and Estates Business, In CT Divorces are part of Superior Court business, In Mass they are part of Probate Court.
I’m also licensed in NY. Your basic trial court is called Supreme Court, in 40+ other states, that’s the name of the highest Appellate Court. You have Surrogate’s Court, similar but not the same as Probate Court in other states.
Most small firms don’t want to bear the expense of a new associate having to learn how it works in the firms’ state, sop will look for graduates of state law schools, or those who have interned in the state. Easy in NY, but CT only has three Law schools: Yale, UCONN, and Quinnipiac, so most applicants come from out of state schools. Our firm has work in MA, CT, NY and FL so I look for associates who are admitted to those Bars first.
I currently have 2 application from graduates of UMICH who are following spouses going to Medical School at Yale. Impressive resumes, but training cost is too high, knowing they’ll leave withing 3 years when spouse gets an intern match out of state, so I’ll probably hire local grads for the two opening I have this year.June 17, 2019 12:06 pm at 12:06 pm #1743434
It should be noted that the non-elite law schools are having trouble finding people to fill classes, so if you meet their minimum requirements and don’t require financial aid, it isn’t hard to get it. Only the very top of their class has a chance of getting into “Big Law”, but if what you want is to hang out a shingle it doesn’t really matter where you went to law school. In some states, one can even qualify to take the bar exam by “reading law” (private tutoring and independent study while working as a de facto paralegal). If one’s goal is to be a respectable lawyer in one’s own community (in New York that means serving those with no connection to Wall Street or Midtown or large corporations or large organizations, e.g. serving those who live in Brooklyn outside of downtown Brooklyn), going to an elite law school won’t help as much as being competent and well connected in your comunity.
Of course if the person asking the question is interested in getting rich, then they probably should go to an elite school in which case a BTL is only very helpful if it is in addition to an undergraduate degree in a secular subject from a leading college.June 17, 2019 3:27 pm at 3:27 pm #1743584
Law schools don’t usually offer Financial aid, they help arrange loans. This is quite different from undergrad or masters programs that have fellowships or teaching assistant positions to help with the cost. Maybe a law student could get a part time job in the law library, few and far between.June 18, 2019 9:10 am at 9:10 am #1743852
CTL, maybe you should hire an English major. It is incorrect to use “who” in reference to a thing (“government agency (DA, etc) who uses tax dollars to underwrite your cost”). If all government agencies do this it should be a comma followed by “which”. If not no comma and “that”. BTW, those government agencies require a three-year commitment. I would imagine that larger firms and corporate legal departments also hire people before passing the bar exam. That is why they send recruiters to law schools.June 18, 2019 11:06 am at 11:06 am #1743948bk613Participant
Im not sure which schools you are referring too. But i know numerous people who got very generous financial aid offers from St Johns, Rutgers, Cardozo, Fordham, even Georgetown.June 18, 2019 11:09 am at 11:09 am #1743956Neville ChaimBerlinParticipant
Was that really necessary? This isn’t even an argument thread, just advice.June 18, 2019 11:09 am at 11:09 am #1743973
To CTLawyer: Law schools don’t usually offer Financial aid,
I believe that has changed, particularly for the non-elite law schools who want to fill a class with students likely to bring credit to the school. They might offers significant “scholarships” to a big chunk (perhaps 20% of the class), but require a certain grade point average to keep the scholarship after the first year, with that grade point average being such that at most 10% will qualify (in other contexts this is called “bait and switch”). With non-elite private law schools having trouble filling all seats, they optimize revenue by discounting (offering scholarships) so long as the revenue they still get exceeds marginal costs.June 18, 2019 2:30 pm at 2:30 pm #1744064
Neville, every thread in the CR is an argument thread.June 19, 2019 10:03 am at 10:03 am #1744349ploni doeParticipant
To clarify Akuperma’s point, law school grades are curved. All people with scholarships are put in the same section. It is therefore mathematically impossible for everyone to keep their scholarship due to the curve (if you get a 99 and everyone else gets 100 on a final, your grade will be a D). I think 10% is to low, but a significant portion will lose scholarships.June 21, 2019 8:58 am at 8:58 am #1745295
Ploni, it depends on the minimum GPA needed to keep the scholarship. It is also highly unlikely to that all except one will get 100 and even if that happens the one with the 99 will probably not get a D but a B+. Moreover, if non-Ivy League schools have empty places it is in their interest not to push out students.
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