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johnalm

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  1. So I have an undergrad in engineering (chem/mat) - I know many engineering peers had the same reaction that law school is "easy". But I don't think that tells the whole story. Let me put it this way - If you are OK with gliding through law school with a B/B+ or P(ass) average - then law school is quite easy as compared to engineering. It's much much easier to get an average B grade in law school, then it is in engineering. However, -if your goal is to get an "A" or "H(igh) P(ass)" average (depending on your school) - then I disagree law school is a "joke" as many people would say (barring a few talented and gifted few who are just naturally smart). I do find that to reach that higher grade level in law school (which can offer you bounties during recruitment, etc - as law school grades follow you for longer than they should) - you do have to put a good pound of work. That means, making sure you do your readings, your outlining, understanding concepts. Yes, law school concepts are not as difficult as theremodynamics, etc in general - but the application of the law to different fact situation is not always so simple either (that's why the SCC judges are not idiots, but usually top of the class students - it's a complex world). Also - importantly - your being graded on a curve with other very smart and intelligent people - and let me tell you, there are very brilliant ppl in your class who are not from STEM backgrounds - so your grade is really a measure of how much better you understand the material than your peers. Law school does have the illusion of being simple because - unlike engineering, maths, etc - you are not being gutted with 5 assignments per week, midterms and finals - and don't get me started on the labs, which are like half a course in themselves. In many respects, actually, engineering is sort of like working in a law firm - alot of fast paced deadlines. Rather, law school is an endeavor of self-studying - and you choose to do more or less, depending on what your grade objectives are. For some people, a B is all that is needed - but the market competition is ferociious, and your grades go a long way. There are of course a few parallels - in maths/engineering, you walk in with a formula sheet and you apply the equations to the test problem numbers. Your ability to do well continges on how well you understand the mathemtical formulas, their underlying theory and principles and their application to different contexts (i.e., the numbers on your exam paper). In law school, as well, you walk in with your own formula sheet of sorts (your case outline with all the derived legal principles), and your ability to do well is related to how well you understand the application of these legal principles to the test fact problem (i.e., rather than test numbers, you deal with test facts). They are both very logical fields, and have more in common then lets on. Those are just my honest two cents.
  2. Very good point - you're absolutely correct on this count
  3. To add to this crazy mess of a discussion, I agree that the value (as opposed to ranking) of law school is very heavily dependent on your class rank. For example, just speaking to Ontario schools and McGill: Uof T - The top 10% at UofT are platinum; top 25% do extremely well; top 50% are in a great position - but if you end up in the bottom 50% of your UofT class, I can't honestly say that your UofT degree will necessarily help you (as borne by the ultravires stats). Bottom 50%, btw, is not an insignificant number...that's half the class Osgoode has always been slightly overrated in my opinion. If you are in the top 10% you are gold; top 25% you are in a very great position. Beyond top 25%, I also can't see that your Osgoode degree will be your golden ticket. Many Osgoode grads have a tough time finding jobs (which is unfortunate - all bright people). McGill - top 10% you are platinum; top 25% you are doing very well. But same with Osgoode, beyond top 25% - can't say your set, many struggle beyond the top 25% (althought, all are very birght individuals) Queen's/Western - top 25% you should do good, everything beyond is hit/miss. On this point, I find Queen's is compared to Western on their bay street hiring, and Western edges out a bit. But Queen's is often overlooked for the fact that they do much better for BigLaw Ottawa recruit (due to proximity, and many people from ottawa who go to queen's) - of which western doesn't fare out well (if it all) - but this is not reflected in the ultravires stats. As well, Queen's gets many much more appellate and SCC clerkships. Perhaps the value ranks might go something like this: Rank 1: Toronto (Top 10%); McGill (Top 10%); Osgoode (Top 5%-10%) - these people can nail NY summer jobs, and get 1L bay St jobs + clerkships ------ Rank 2: Toronto (Top 25%); Osgoode (top 15~20%); McGill (top 15~20%); Queen's (top 10%); Western (Top 10%) --- these guys get Bay St jobs easily ----- Rank 3: Toronto (Top 45~50%); Queen's (Top 25%); Western (Top 25%); Osgoode (top 25%); McGill (top 25%) --- have a good decent chance of getting a bay st job ----- Rank 4: Everyone else in TO/Osgoode/Queen's/Western/McGill This is just for those schools - too complicated to factor the rest of the schools. But I'd like to note that very superior undergrad performance can definitely help boost your opportunities.
  4. Assuming you want to come back to Canada, I think you should go for UofT, and for the following reasons: 1) When you get a degree from the U.S., to go back to Canada, you have to write the NCA in addition to the Ontario bar exam (assuming you want to practice in Toronto). I have to admit, I don't know how the NCA process works coming from the higher tier American schools, but I assume there is still an exam or two. So that's NCA + Bar exam. 2) Conversely, when you have a degree from UofT, all you have to do is write the New York Bar exam to go work in NYU. 3) Getting a summer job in NY from UofT is probably more difficult than getting a summer job in NY coming from NYU law (I think only like 10 - 13 students maybe geting NY summer jobs from UofT?).This is true. But if you are willing to apply to NY after graduating law school from UT and waiting 1-2 years as an associate, it is actually quite simple to get a job at an NY law firm (top tier) once you have passed the NY bar exams and you have worked a year or two. All of the top 100 law firms in NY are bigger than the biggest Canadian law firm (OK, maybe slightly exaggerated), and there is a plentiful of jobs. It's a revolving door in terms of the number of jobs for junior mid-level associates because of how fast people come and leave. 4) UT is probably cheaper all together: tuition + living than NYU I know NYU has the prestige factor, but I think UT is more practical. I think my opinion may be a bit different if you were going to Harvard, Yale or Stanford.
  5. You know - despite the many helpful positives about this website - one of the regrettable things I found in recent years is how pessimistic some of the “old guard” users can sometimes be, really just knocking people down for no apparent reason. I do agree with the original reply which was a friendly heads-up about the nature of the site, but then a lot of what proceeded was a bit uncalled for in my opinion. OK - the guy was a little casual with his words, but that misses (and tbh is frankly, irrelevant) to his point about the nature of the OCI process. Arash - thank you for taking the time to write a positive note reminding anxious students that not everything in the recruitment process is in ones hands, and to be generous and kind to others. That was very thoughtful of you - and I just wanted to say that.
  6. I don't think you should drop out - 1L is a bit of a rough road. I think you will find that in 2L and 3L you might find law school to be more interesting, owing to the more specialized courses. C/C+ is not the end of the world. I should also note, having a degree in law also opens other non-legal avenues, whether in policy/government, business, etc. I think you should put aside the books, pat yourself on the pat for getting through 1L, take a breather, take a month or two to clear your mind, and then consider again when you are more refreshed. You've been through alot, and I think its time to relax for a while. See how you feel come July/August
  7. This is a flawed conclusion from the data that it depends on school. You don't know, for example: 1) how many applicants are applying from each school; and 2) the quality of the applicants applying. The data doesn't tell the whole story.
  8. man, go redo the LSAT and get into UT or something. The GPA is the hard part, the LSAT is the easy part - just practice a little bit more
  9. A degree alone doesn't make you rich - regardless of whether you have an MBA or a law degree. There is no golden ticket. Also the 100% stat rate for UofT MBAs is the most nonsense stat ever (even if its exaggerated) - no idea where you got that from. Anyways, becoming successful in law or MBA requires you to maneuver and climb the professional ladder after you graduate school - whether in a firm or corporate environment. That's why a lot of smart kids don't necessarily make partner, and why some kids who didn't graduate top of their class end up making partner. The world is so much more complicated than a golden ticket. I think at this stage, you really need to just ask yourself whether you would enjoy doing law.
  10. This thread is interesting - here we thought that in, 5 or 6 years time, we might be seeing Western/Queens v. Ryerson threads (e.g., location). Yet, here we are in the first year, and we already have an Osgoode v. Ryerson thread. Just comes to show you - Ryerson really is here to stay I guess
  11. Better call up Rick Singer and see if he can get you on the varsity soccer team, his fees are high though Jokes aside - try working for a few years and applying as a mature student, might help!
  12. I feel a lot of people in this thread are projecting their insecurities to answer a relatively simple, and mundane question... The answer is that if you want to switch jobs later on in your career (e.g., say 2-5 years post-call), a lot of employers still look at your grades, and will request transcripts. A general policy is having good grades doesn't hurt you, having bad grades may hurt you. So try to give your best at all stages of law schools
  13. I believe it's on a 10.0 scale
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