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Picking a Law School? Be Cheap and a Big Fish

Posted Oct 30, 2007 8:58 AM CDT
By Debra Cassens Weiss

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The Wall Street Journal has advice for law students who want to avoid graduating into a tough job market with a huge law school debt. Of course, the job market is best for grads of elite schools. But those who can’t get into a top-ranked school may be able to get a better job, or at least hold costs down, if they follow these tips from the newspaper:

  1. Unless you have been accepted into a top-ranked law school, hold costs down by attending a state school. Check out the “Official Guide to ABA-Approved Law Schools" for more information.

  2. If you can’t get into one of the top 30 or so ranked law schools, go to a lower-ranked school where you will be a “big fish” as one of the top students.

  3. Go to a school where a good percentage of students get interviews with the big, high-paying law firms or land jobs as federal appeals court clerks. Brian Leiter, a law professor at University of Texas-Austin, keeps statistics on clerk placement.

  4. Get good grades at a lower ranked school and then transfer to an elite school. This doesn’t necessarily guarantee a big-firm job, but it may help.

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