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Everything posted by Ghalm

  1. Rumour has it that one large bay street firm has increased their articling salary from 1450 a week to 1700 a week. Also, Law and Style magazine reported a month ago that Bennett Jones and Davies raised their articling salaries to 1850 a week (https://lawandstyle.ca/law/on-the-record-why-did-bennett-jones-and-davies-reward-their-articling-students-with-a-raise/). So, what do we think? Is this an indication that the large firms on Bay street will increase their articling student salaries? What does it take for that to happen? Is one firm moving away from the norm enough?
  2. You have to show the fin. aid office that you applied for gov. aid (osap or your own province), been approved, and have a funding estimate. So, yeah they probably take it into account. Also, my experience for the past 2 years is that it has been generally accurate so long as you are accurate in the information you input in. It is sometimes a couple hundred dollars more or less than what was estimated based on my experience/what my friends tell me.
  3. To your first point regarding LPs and Fs. Yes they do exist. However, LPs are discretionary, up to 10%. In my first year, I had two Profs say they do not give LPs, another prof showed us his last 3 exams with answers and memos detailing how many students got which grade, and out of the past 3 years only one student got an LP in his class. There are some Profs that give out LPs, but my sense is that its not as widespread as 10% of every class receiving an LP. These 3 classes were all your standard black letter law classes. I do not think I said, nor did I imply, that people with many Ps are going to suddenly be competitive to top jobs in the profession. I was merely saying that based on my anecdotal experience as a current student at UT Law, people are not that anxious about their grades, because, in part, a P is interpreted as a B and the spectre of a B- C+ C C- does not exist. And, I would add, that the spectre of an LP is not as scary given the likelihood that they are not as widespread as 10% of each class.
  4. The rate that the CDO floats around is 40% to 35% who do not have a job after the recruit. This is probably because around 10-15% per cent end up taking jobs in NY.
  5. Also, most students come into UofT with Megbean's mindset. This is probably the case because they are generally the overachievers in their undergrad programs and are accustomed to getting the highest grades. People mellow out because they realize that the vast majority of students, including those in the top 10%, will get one or more P on their transcript and thats OK.
  6. Yes, it does help those at the bottom. But, I think it helps everyone really since the vast majority of students get a mix of grades, including students with overall grades in the top 10% (some of which I know had Ps on their transcript). That is, it helps all students view the lower grades on their transcript in a relatively more positive light than if there were B-, C+, C, C- grades on transcripts. I think the Assistant Dean Academics introduced the grading scheme to the first year class by essentially saying that the admin. eliminated grades below a B, and that helps those who land in the bottom 55% - 45% of a given class to look better.
  7. Well, I think from the perspective of a UofT student, when they look at a P, which as mentioned above is given to 55% to 45% of a class, on their transcript, they view it as an equivalent to a B. They probably do not view it as a B-, C+, C, or C-. I would expect that someone with a C+ or C on their transcript would feel more anxious about their grades going into a job recruit than someone with Ps on their transcript. I would also suspect that people would be more anxious about their grades if the spectre of a B-, C+, C, or C- is floating around as they study instead of the spectre of getting a P.
  8. Based on my experience and what I hear from my friends and aquaintences in my year and other years, the grading system does help reduce anxiety. It’s true that some students are desperate for the HH in every class, but a good many of us are happy with the mix of Hs and Ps that most people get. As mentioned above, a P can mean anything from B to C-, and everyone views them as a B. So, it’s not viewed as a bad grade. Also, people tend to mellow out after 1L first semester about grades. Of course, this is based on what people say out loud to each other and the general vibe one feels about grades from the 2L class.
  9. You rank the places you want to go. I am pretty sure its a lottery. If you do not get your ranked choices then you are usually offered some alternatives. You pay UofT tuition + living expenses for the relevant area.
  10. One thing you can do is look at the past few years worth of Ultra Vires Recruitment Specials that show the approximate placement rates of students from different schools at various firms. You can see how often various boutique bay firms hire UofT students vs. other schools.
  11. In terms of additional debt, its no secret UofT is more expensive. However, we have a relatively decent financial aid program that, at the very least, tends to bring UofT's annual tuition close to, if not the same as, Osgoode's annual tuition for those who are eligible. I am not sure Osgoode's fin. aid is as generous as UofT. A friend of mine who goes to Osgoode said that you have to demonstrate that you have maxed out your LOC and Gov. resources to obtain a bursary (not sure how true this is). That is not the case with UofT. Either way, my point is that the choice between UofT and Osgoode are not so so so stark debt wise, and thats one reason I chose UofT over Osgoode. Also, I wouldn't rule out bay street full service firms right away. I went into law school not being interested in bay street, but when i exposed myself to different events where lawyers came and spoke about their practice, i realized that the work seems a lot different, and a lot more interesting, than what it is assumed to be based on student preconceptions.
  12. Thank you for this insightful account, Providence!
  13. That is an important question! I’d love to see that too for if they are not substantive then I’d say it’s time for some further refinement.
  14. I am sorry who said we are just raging from the outside lol. Clearly, I am acknowledging such systemic issues... and I am commending firms that are adjusting their approaches to account for said issues. Not sure why you seem to think such commendation and call for further refinement is the same thing as stopping one’s life and raging from the outside...
  15. I agree with you to an extent. Though, I would like to think that I and others who may agree with the perspective I am advocating for are not just coming from a place of “feeling sorry” for themselves. It is true those from said groups must get their first and ought to strive to do so according to the requirements. I also think it ought to be the case that we shouldn’t just repeat the errors of hiring committees of yesteryear when Jewish lawyers where working their way up. I don’t think it’s the same as it was then this day and age, progress has been made. And, I commend the firms that shun complacency and opt to pursue further progress on this issue by adjusting their approaches to recruitment etc.
  16. I do not think this is an appropriate characterization of the issue. This issue being a question of a “basic skill set” is not all that it is. This places all the burden on individuals from underrepresented social groups. While certainly, being personable, kind, and charming, may be considered a basic and valuable skill set for this profession, I do not think a dominant culture informed by certain racial, class, and gender groups that can repeatedly alienate unndrepresented social groups is just something those from said underrepresented social groups should just suck up and deal with lol. Such a dynamic exists, and from my perspective I think it ought to be changed to the extent that it can be changed. To be thinking of how to be more and more inclusive and open to underrepresented social groups is, I think, an important objective of the profession. This objective may very well be advanced by adjusting the interview process in terms of questions or kinds of activities a firm hosts. I am happy to hear your viewpoint is coming from a visible minority perspective. It’s also important to know we don’t all have the same ideas on this issue.
  17. So I agree with you on faking it until you make it. And how important it is to be able to mingle and be social lol. I was able to fake it until I made it and I got 3 offers from my three top choices and took my top choice so I’m not hating on the process or calling for its end. The only thing is, i think people and firms should recognize that visible minorities (and others who are not from the dominant culture or class) tend to have this extra burden of having to fake it until they make it, or to exert themselves not to break down mentally due to any feeling of inferiority when they find themselves where the poster laaasy18 found himself in. Doesn’t mean visible minorities should claim victim, throw their hands up and disengage and call foul like someone implied my post was endorsing, it just means to recognize this and if you as a firm or lawyer think it’s a problem then you can adjust for it. I as a VM would commend such a recognition and adjustment, which is what I said in my post in response to hdosajhn’s post that you quoted. For example, lenczner scrapped its receptions on the basis of a similar idea as described above. I even think they specifically referenced a precedent jd article that talks about these same things as one avenue of critique against the oci process. This adjustment to their process I think is commendable. You may disagree, you’re welcome to do so.
  18. Congratulations! Thank you for your perspective. I too, as a poc male, was particularly impressed by firms that conducted their interviews, or meals, with an awareness that light chit-chat about various social/cultural phenomena (sports, music, travel etc.) may potentially serve as a barrier to those from social groups that do not generally have access to the capital to engage in said activities (travel, for example), or whose cultures otherwise do not allow for much exposure to said activities (certain sports, for example)!
  19. I am glad to hear this, i love it when a firm is straightforward, unlike one firm i dealt with that ghosted me and did not update me on how i was cut from their list. Not my experience at all... in fact I thought BLG really went to great lengths to be straightforward with me. Of course, this is may have been because they liked me (I received an offer which I had to regrettably decline). I never said the magic words even though they gave me implicit opportunities to do so if it was true, and on each opportunity I was transparent with them about where my mind was at and it did not hurt my chances. I thought they accommodated my schedule, were upfront about whether certain things entailed an expected attendance (e.g. their top candidates lunch), were prompt with their communications with me, and put me in front of some amazing lawyers throughout the process! So, I am with Nayaab on this one... I was pleasantly surprised that BLG was different than their rumoured reputation!
  20. Yes I would echo that last point too, I feel like when it’s clear the firm wants you that’s when these “taboo” topics became perfectly fine and understood as necessary for the student. I told numerous lawyers that I don’t care about cultural fit it’s about the insight you can share about the firm and it’s policies on x y z topic... but no way I could do that without having their love first lol
  21. same here, when it became clear that a firm wanted me i definitely felt completely fine asking questions about associate training and career development leading to partnership - and i got offers from the firms where such a conversation was had.
  22. So I guess we just now wait for an email confirmation or something if we accepted a phone offer? edit: for anyone thinking this, answer is yes, just got an emailed offer letter lol
  23. Just out of curiosity, when you have to regrettably decline a firm's job offer, why do they ask if they could know which firm you ended up choosing? How could such info shape the firm's recruitment strategy, or is it just about curiosity?
  24. Thank you very much for your perspective!
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