Thursday, October 15, 2009

JD Preferred: The Holy Grail.

Remember when we decided to go to law school and we were told that a person with a JD can do anything ? Kind of like, when I was a child and my teachers said I could become anything I wanted when I grow up... president, an astronaut, or Miss USA!  Yah right.  I'm a woman--so I can't be president. I don't think I'm physically fit or rich enough to get to space.  And I'm not hot enough to become Miss USA.  Oh well... 

And what of the theory that JDs can do anything?  That also proved false.  After all, as an attorney, I'm often considered overqualified for most positions.  What does that mean anyways?  A JD is really a glorified BA.  Can I do anything at all that involves having intellect?  I've decided that means that Employers expect that you, as an attorney, would want to be paid more than they're willing to give. Little do people outside the legal field know, we're willing to take peanuts and tastykakes for a job in this economy.  

I think that those wise sages from career counseling meant, "If you can't find a decent job in the law, you may be able to get a job in another field if you sufficiently mask those three years you spent in law school."

There is one elusive job that escapes me... the JD preferred job... Where you can actually use your legal expertise without being a lawyer.  Oh, how I yearn for that sort of job.  Where I can straddle two industries and get the hell out of this one eventually.  What sort of jobs are these?  I don't know. I'm still looking for one.  But if I manage to get one, I will be so happy.


  1. I've decided that you can "do anything" with a law degree in the same way that you can "do anything" with a LAS degree. As long as the job doesn't require a particular skill-set, you can probably puzzle it out. Though, whether or not an employer want an employee without any skills is an entirely different question.

  2. I think you're right on point; "do anything" with a JD doesn't mean a thing. It's as believable as believing in Santa (in my opinion). It's exactly like having a BA (not a BS because there's almost no extra science or math involved), and akin to an undergrad accounting degree. It's a little more specialized than a general undergrad major but takes way longer, and costs lots more.

    In most cases you are as qualified as an entry level person who went through undergrad but are older because of the extra schooling. Sound true at all?

  3. The person who's hurt the most is someone who earned the JD without good grades, connections and work experience. Welcome to my world.

    --Ability to think critically under pressure. Translation: ability to withstand a Socratic professor's line of questioning from outlines from previous 1L class.

    --Ability to meet deadlines in a short amount time. Translation: ability to pull an all-nighter for the legal research paper that's due the next day.

    --Demonstrated ability to drive up revenue and lower costs. Translation: paid tuition and fees, thereby driving up revenue.

  4. Nobody ever checks out my links. I spend a lot of time selecting those. :P

  5. You definitely can NOT do anything with a JD as employers consciously freeze you out, assuming you'll soon take off for the typical, six-figure law job.

  6. no, I've been reading the links. Just confirms everything you've been saying and what we've all observed ourselves.

  7. All are right: a JD means very little to nothing. After graduating in the middle third of my class and failing the bar, I was finally--after a few years of bread & water--able to secure a measley position in my former career, law enforcement. My present job is better by quite a bit, but it's still not the Holy Grail we were told. Frankly, in upper management law enforcement, I'd rather have black skin or female anatomy which is worth tons more than any law degree. Politics sucks.

    1. But the black unemployment rate is always twice the rate of the white unemployment. So this statement makes no sense. Maybe you should try to pass the bar. That might help.

  8. ^ Well, your problem was that you failed the bar no?

  9. 2014, 10 years out of law school and I can't get hired anywhere. It is an unbelievable reality. 10 years of general practice experience in almost everything except corporate law. If you don't get into the big law firms to start, you may as well forget about it. It is a club and the criteria for being let in is absurd. Only the top 10% of law grads from the top 25 law schools are welcome. The rest of us can just starve. It's as if having the JD is a curse. Most employers are intimidated by you and the others don't see you at all. I've literally put out 40 applications in the last 3 months, and I've only had 1 call back. There is no middle ground. I am at my witts end. The JD is simply worthless in this market and I am pissed.



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