Archive for June 16, 2010

Another Unemployed Attorney Confessional: Another Blog

Although the author’s blog is not dedicated to the legal industry, she is an unemployed attorney who appears to chronicle her current life situation. Anyway, I saw the blog’s most recent post:

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

What I want to be when I grow up.

Remember when you were little and you used to tell people what you wanted to be when you grew up?  When I was really young I would tell people that I wanted to be a teacher (like most super young kids do).  When I reached an age where I realized you could do things other than be a teacher…but since I knew nothing else, I was at a loss of what to really do.

Many things intrigued me about being a lawyer.  One of the main things is that lawyers do just that – they practice law.  It is certain, it is ascertainable, it is controlled.  Naturally, my type-A self would be attracted to the profession.  So off I went.  I loved the law, I loved the environment and I loved that I knew what I was going to be when I grew up.

I was laid off nearly one year ago.  On June 26, 2009, both of my bosses walked into my office (which is never a good sign) and told me they could no longer afford to keep me.  I knew prior to this news that something had to happen, I just hoped I would not be the first to go.  That hope was incredibly unrealistic considering I was the most junior associate.  For the first time in my life I was unwillingly out of work.  I was 32 weeks pregnant.

At first I thought I would get a job right after I had Nikolai.  Then I thought by Christmas for sure.  By January I started to panic.  By February I started to give up.  Now I realize that there are thousands of unemployed attorneys in the twin cities and I am just another drop in the bucket.  Employers can chose whomever they would like – and for whatever reason I am not what they like.

With the end of my unemployment compensation looming and the prospects of my legal employment dimming, I am once again facing the question: what do I want to be when I grow up… I really have no idea what I am really looking for when I search for jobs.  I don’t have a specific career path in mind.  I wish things were different and I will never shake the feeling that I have simply given up on my dream, but life doesn’t always take you down the road you planned.

So, wherever this new path takes me, I hope I end up being what I want to be when I grow up.

Posted by Anne at 7:28 AM

At least she had one child at least to start a family. I’m not sure about why she is surprised about the amoung of unemployed attorneys in her area, must be a newer law graduate. Well, JD Underdog, looks like you’re not the only attorney deciding to leave the legal field altogether. What’s interesting is that her parents had some form of higher education, oft-times we hear about first generational or first sibling to make it to college or graduate school. You think you have arrived, yes you have at the nearest unemployment line on the other side of the tracks.
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Another News Article: “Law Degree Can’t Guarantee Law Firm Offer”

All Rights Reserved

*ABSOLUTELY NOT*

O.k., I posted an article published by a Lansing Michigan newspaper dated May 31, 2010 entitled 

Law degree no guarantee for jobs | lansingstatejournal.com | Lansing State Journal at this Life’s Mockery post on the same date: https://lifesmockery.wordpress.com/wp-admin/post.php?post=609&action=edit

A more recent article  dated June 6, 2010: Law degree can’t guarantee job offer | The Columbus Dispatch, the sentiment is echoed.

“A few years ago, a law degree was practically a ticket to a comfortable life. The recession has changed that for most new graduates.” Interesting, so the author implies that merely a few years ago MOST new graduates would’ve had a comfortable life except for this recession thing that ‘messed everything up.’ Really? We must survey those graduates who were pre 2007/2008 and see how many were actually practicing the law, full-time, able to live based on that salary and meet their student loan obligations then one can assess what was considered a comfortable life.

This naive guy says the following: ““I have no problem paying my dues,” Kay said. “The problem is, I can’t even get a job at the bottom.” When a person pays dues, he or she in return is negotiating some form of benefit, the mere fact that this guy is unable to make it as a bottom feeder in the American economy should alert the reader there was a switch and bait, “gotcha” game played.

The article becomes a little more honest: “The National Association for Law Placement released a survey last month showing an overall employment rate of 89 percent for 2009 graduates for whom status was known. That’s 3 percentage points below 2007’s historic high and the lowest rate since the mid-1990s. The group noted that the new number reflects increases in temporary and part-time employment.” [emphasis mine]

Meaning out of the thousands of alumni of the various law schools throughout the country that actually partook of the survey (could’ve been 50 or a 1,000) 89% were employed. If I went around and asked 10 people I knew were employed and they all said yes I can easily offer that out of the people I surveyed, 100% were employed, which by no means reflect the actual legal industry and broader economy.

“In good times, top law students were almost guaranteed good jobs based on first-year grades and their experience as summer associates.” Some of us didn’t know this game either, many first years’ would have saved tens of thousands of dollars in debt had they just quietly banished themselves from the law school game.

We can say, this is good that the curtain is being slightly lifted, but proceed with caution, note how the article makes it appear that this change in the legal industry just happened and it’s all due to the recession. The article doesn’t discuss the MASSIVE shift in the business aspect of practicing law nor does it mention the proliferation of law graduates in the past 10 or 12 years, yep it’s some extraordinary feat that only the economy is responsible for. Let us not forget cause and effect…this change in the legal industry was not by happenstance people.

The final advice that these blogs have been trying to inculcate in your head is summarized here: ”

Niels Schaumann, vice dean for faculty at William Mitchell College of Law in St. Paul, Minn., said: “The more urgent question is: What do you tell people who are thinking about going to law school?

“I don’t recommend it to people looking to make a lot of money. If you’re not interested in helping people in some way or providing service to your clients, it’s not for you.” [emphasis mine]

O.k., that was some honesty…but what could’ve been a little more accurate is: “I don’t recommend it to people looking to make a decent living or survive off an average lawyer’s salary.” There, that about does it.