(Closed) Advice!! MS in Finance vs. MBA and Law School???

posted 8 years ago in Career
Post # 3
Member
8738 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: September 2011

My feeling is that an MS in Finance is very specific to being in the financial realm. Do you want to focus on finance? Or do you want a general business degree.

An MBA will open a lot of doors in the business world and you can concentrate in whatever you like (finance, entrepreneurship, marketing, etc) whereas an MS in finance ties you to the financial sector more tightly.

Also, business school is often a fantastic place for networking and meeting other people with similar interests. I know many people who’ve gone to do a joint JD/MBA.

What is drawing you to an MS in finance vs a general business degree?

Post # 5
Member
2394 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: April 2010

Having a graduate degree is helpful, but I wouldn’t necessarily invest the time and/or effort in an additional graduate degree if its primary purpose is to enhance your law school application credentials.

When it comes down to it, law school admissions is largely governed by two numbers:  your undergraduate GPA and your LSAT score.  Unless you’re truly interested in business and would feel comfortable pursuing a career in the field if law school doesn’t work out, I’d save the time and money and invest it in LSAT prep.

Post # 7
Member
8738 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: September 2011

@CaliSun23: Unless you have a really strong interest in finance (and I’m talking about wanting to become a financial analyst, chief financial officer, etc) the MBA would probably be more appropriate.

Large corporations are a lot more than just “financial statements”.

Post # 8
Member
931 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: March 2011

@teaadntoast: Agreed completely. Depending on which law school you’re applying to. A law school like Northwestern (for example) is a bit more unique and looks for work experience and things like that. But for most it’s just GPA/LSAT.

Of course, I’m not sure I would recommend that anyone go to law school at any time in the near future given how bad the market is (and will remain at least for the next few years) for young lawyers. Big firm jobs are hard to come by right now, even for top tier law school students.

On the other hand, I fully support getting a free MBA if that’s what you think you want to pursue. To be honest, it’s a much better idea than law school unless you’re 100% sure that’s where you want to be.

Post # 10
Member
2394 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: April 2010

@CaliSun23:  I think there’s a middle ground between not going at all and charging ahead with no thought for the future.

Are you open to a part-time program that would allow you to continue working while getting your JD?  Would you be willing to trade some school prestige for hefty scholarships or grants?  Is it imperative that you do big firm work?  Are you wedded to your particular geographic area, or would you be willing to move somewhere else to take advantage of a (slightly) less saturatedmarket?

Post # 11
Member
2394 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: April 2010

@iRun2004:  Agreed completely. Depending on which law school you’re applying to. A law school like Northwestern (for example) is a bit more unique and looks for work experience and things like that. But for most it’s just GPA/LSAT.

True, Northwestern has a reputation for wanting work experience – but unless your last name is Zuckerburg, your resume won’t overcome poor performance as an undergraduate or a lukewarm LSAT.

Post # 12
Member
5889 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: May 2012

how do i get a free MBA?  seriously, that is my dream.  not even kidding.

Post # 13
Member
293 posts
Helper bee

If you really want to go to law school, prepare for the LSAT and get the highest score possible.  Big law = tier 1 law school, and the only way to get there is with a stellar LSAT (like 170+ lsat) and kikazzz recommendations (like from a Senator or Federal Court of Appeals Judge).  And teaadntoast is right – nothing will overcome a mediocre LSAT.

The best boost is a phenomenal LSAT score.  Period.

Post # 15
Member
293 posts
Helper bee

Lots of *big law* firms have pro-bono programs that their attorneys participate in . . . google your tush off and find out which big firms (and big partners) support the different charities and organizations, and go from there . . . You really have to use your creativity there (if you don’t already have the contacts). 

Not to be a Debbie Downer, but . . . Have you ever *billed* time before?  I am assuming that you haven’t (most haven’t and never will), and that the concept of a *billable hour requirement* is quite foreign and not nearly as scary as it should be.  Big law = big billable hour requirements (generally 2,000+ just to break even – even more if you really want to be a partner) which greatly impacts your (and your husband’s) quality of life.  The sacrifice needs to be worth it . . . Why do you want to be an attorney?  If it is for the *money,* choose another path.  The average attorney salary is $40k . . . and only the few that make it into big law (and survive there – it is seriously cut-throat) really pull in the big numbers.     

Post # 16
Member
860 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: May 2011

I’m going to second what MissCosmopolitan said.  Do NOT go to law school for the money.  I think a lot of law students go in with the idea that they will come out and make six figure salaries.  This wasn’t even true when the market was booming… even for students from top law schools. 

Unless you are working at a big firm, you will make between $40-$60K a year on average starting out.  You will work long hours.  You really have to like the law.

If you do work for a big firm, you will make big money… but it will pretty much equal out to $20 or $30/hour… sometimes even less… they own you… nights/weekends… very difficult to plan a vacation- even for a few days. 

I did a summer at a big firm, and know a few people that still work at big firms.  Most of them are miserable, emotional wrecks (with the exception of one person).  You can expect phone calls/e-mails all hours of day and night.

 

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