I was in my later 20s when I started law school - not really non-traditional, I guess, though I had been out of college a few years and had a career as a paralegal. After doing really well in my job and being told I'd "make a great lawyer," I tried the LSAT, did great and got into a T14 and also some other schools with scholarships. I was married with a 1.5 year old child at the time. Long story short, I was like D.H. in that the acceptance letter from my 1st tier toilet said that I was a shoo-in for an awesome career, blah blah...I only later learned that a married mother with kids is not getting a job in law. I've been on interviews where they asked all about my husband and child, how I could work long hours and care for her, what my husband did for a living (I guess to see if he could be a stay at home daddy), etc. In short, things that were none of these peoples' f-ing business. I decided to shit-can the "dream" after that. I was lied to by my law school who only later (like D.H., again) told me that getting a job as a mother would be a "problem" and I should not wear my wedding ring to interviews. SCREW THEM, law, lawyers, the law school industrial complex AND the horse it rode in on! I am angry but not bitter, and have managed to find something to do that I really love and that in no way involves law. My heart breaks for single moms and dads trying to make lives better for their kids who succumb to the law school scam. Let's get the word out so hopefully it will happen less! I'm doing my part!
P.S. I guess what made me the sickest about this whole slimy experience was my career services dept. telling me to remove my wedding ring for interviews. Was that so as not to raise "red flags" that I may not be able to work 80 hour weeks for the measly $35K the shit firm wanted to pay me, or was it so the sad sack middle-aged shitlawyer could think he had a shot at younger meat? Who knows? I never found out 'cause I told the woman to go screw herself. That is when I started becoming liberated from this shitty profession, and I make sure to tell everyone I meet who even mentions the words "law school" what a raw deal it is all the way around.One of the themes of law firms that I have harped on its their amazing ability to circumvent the law. Law Firms and Lawyers sworn to uphold the law (kinda) regularly discriminate, fail to pay benefits and/or taxes when legally bound to. Law Schools have grown wise to Law Firms' illegal tendencies and have addressed the issues with law students. Here's a non-conclusive list of suggestions that I have heard of to land a legal job and circumvent their discrimination and other bizarre preconceptions:
- If female, don't wear a wedding ring. Married women will get pregnant soon after becoming associates and won't be able to meet the billing requirements of a large firm.
- If male, do wear a wedding ring. It makes law firms think you're responsible and willing to meet billable hour requirements to support a family.
- If you have curly hair, straighten it and wear it in a law pony tail or bun. I guess this is so you can minimize your ethnicity. All women should wear their hair in a low ponytail, a bun or a straight bob.
- If female, wear a skirt suit and never a pants suit.
- Always wear hose, only nude.
- For both sexes, only wear suits that are grey, black or dark blue.
- If female, don't wear a shell, wear a button down shirt under your suit.
- If male, a dark red tie is a power tie. Wear a dark red tie.
- If female, wear pearls. Don't wear any jewelry than a pearl necklace and earrings.
- Never discuss your personal life with interviewers. Don't mention a significant other, especially if female. Significant other means pregnancy in the imminent future.
Does anyone have any "guidelines" to add?