Is There A "Right" Time To Attend Law School?

In the last few years law school applications have seemed to be at an all time low. Students have had disbelief there were jobs to be had outside of the three years they spend eating, breathing and sleeping the law. When thinking about this, it is a logical reason not to apply when considering the economy downfall and lack of jobs in other businesses as well. However, according to LSAC (the Law School Admission Council) on February 26th of this year there were 252,657 applications submitted by 38,541 applicants for the 2016-2017 academic year. Based off of this, the number of applicants have increased from this time last year by 0.05% with the number of applications increasing by 0.02% from the 2015-2016 academic year. LSAC has predicted the total number of applicants this year will be around 55,857.
By having a law degree, it has shown to increase earnings anywhere from $30,000-$60,000 per year when compared to only a bachelor’s degree. Looking at the numbers, the debt of law school could easily be paid off if the student is lucky and receives a well paying job. Going back to the economy issue, the question future law school students may ask themselves is whether it is a “good time” to attend law school right now. Is there a right time to apply, possibly take out loans, and put everything you have into school for three years? The answer seems to simply be “no.” There is no “right” time to attend law school.
According to the Washington Post, both middle and high ability law students graduating in a booming economy see a large boost of earnings for around four years after their graduation, but the effect can sometimes fade. Possible reasonings for the earnings decreasing after the four years out of law school may be the unemployment rates of today, the starting salaries lower than usual due to the economy, or changes in the law school enrollment process.
Taking all the factors regarding the process of law school and possibly low income in today’s work force after graduating into consideration, I remember my mother always telling me I must love what I do to be happy and successful. Though times may be rough right now for recent graduates, it is always crucial in any situation or life decision to weigh the pros and cons. As of now I have had the pleasure of interning for the Rice Divorce Team for almost a year. Not only have I seen them work hard in everything they do, they create a warm and welcoming atmosphere for clients, co-workers and everyone alike, which I have been incredibly thankful for. I sometimes think my idea of a law firm may be flawed, I have never left the office one day unhappy or woke up dreading to go to work, which I am sure is not the case with everyone.
Though law school will more than likely not be as exciting as interning, I have learned if I am lucky enough to land a job at a firm half as amazing as Rice, Amundsen & Caperton, the hard work and dedication will pay off. I have learned the study of law is definitely one you must love and stay dedicated to, but like my mother said, “If you love what you do, you’ll be happy and successful.”
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