A Conversation I’ve Never Had

“Hey Mike, nice to meet you. Looks like this is going to be an interesting case.”

“You too, Jordan.”

“…so… where did you go to law school?”

Widener.”

“…oh. I guess it’s pretty hard to get into a good school. I’m so sorry to hear that.”

“Yeah, tell me about it. Clients won’t hire me because I didn’t go to a T1 law school. They don’t care about my trial experience or my practice areas. Clients simply won’t hire me because I went to a T4. My friends and family won’t even retain me.”

“Man, I’m so glad that I went to Temple, a T2. That’s normally the first thing my clients do – they Google where my law school was ranked and then make a decision to hire me based on that. It’s great, because I can charge almost 3x the times of lawyers who went to a T4. Clients say that where their lawyer went to law school is the most important decision when it comes to hiring them.”

“…I sure wish I had gone to a T1 or a T2. It’s impossible to make it from a T4. I wish clients hired based on skill and reputation…”

“Speaking of which, did you see that Villanova dropped like 10 spots in the US News and World Report rankings????”

“REALLY?!?!? Oh man!!!! Those kids are so screwed! No one will hire Villanova graduates anymore!!”

“Seriously. Where a school is ranked pretty much dictates all of our hiring decisions. Villanova is practically a T3 now! Hell, I’d hire DREXEL graduates over them! Drexel is up and coming in the rankings. I bet it will be a T2 soon. I’ll certainly be keeping a close eye on it.”

“So do you think University of Chicago or Columbia will be ranked #5 this year?”

“Dunno, but I bet it will be close…”

8 Responses to A Conversation I’ve Never Had

  1. This blog is not written by a T1 grad? Why am I reading it?

  2. TA says:

    Let me tell you about a conversation I actually had with a freshly minted lawyer (FLM) that just started out at the firm I worked at a few years ago:

    FLM: I got an A in my evidence class

    Me: Yeah … I don’t give a shit.

    FML: Oh.

  3. The last conversation I had about law school:

    “Why are you rooting for the Saints? Didn’t you grow up in Pennsylvania?”

    “Yeah, but I went to law school in New Orleans and became a Saints fan.”

    “Oh.”

  4. Heather says:

    It seems like clients and lawyers know full well that school rank, academic rank, and whether or not you were on the journal have little to nothing to do with your ability to be a competent effective lawyer. Nonetheless, I find that firms often put limiting language in their job posts that sends the opposite message: “top x% of class”, “strong academic record”, “journal experience preferred,” etc. Why is this? Why do firms seemingly discourage candidates who chose work experience over journal and straight As and encourage candidates who will be annoyingly confidant that their A in Evidence means they are a good lawyer?

  5. Kate says:

    As a May 2012 Widener Law DE grad with a great job in a small firm and passing score for, at least, PA (and hopefully NJ soon to come) – thanks for this post!

  6. […] Rushie opines on the importance of attending a “good” law school. (Philly Law […]

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