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Comments (58)

  • Prospect in IB-M&A
Jan 10, 2021 - 11:41pm

Well, it depends on what you want to do after the program. If you're leaning towards more of a law-based profession, then the JD rankings matter more. If you're leaning towards more of a business-based profession, then the MBA rankings matter more. Side note, I'd suggest doing a JD or an MBA depending on exactly what you want in your career. I don't really see why you would do both.

Jan 10, 2021 - 11:59pm

Yup. Want to be a lawyer? do YLS

want to be a banker/consultant/tech person? booth.

This is exactly the reason JD/MBAs are silly by the way...

for what its worth, Yale law is gonna take you way farther in my opinion... how many presidents and senators have gone there? but thats my bias speaking obviously

Aug 22, 2021 - 3:09pm

arbjunkie

Yup. Want to be a lawyer? do YLS

want to be a banker/consultant/tech person? booth.

This is exactly the reason JD/MBAs are silly by the way...

for what its worth, Yale law is gonna take you way farther in my opinion... how many presidents and senators have gone there? but thats my bias speaking obviously

Nothing any law school teaches or confers upon its over-paying students led to outsize success.  Hundreds graduate from HLS every year.  For the Ted Cruz or Bill Clinton who graduate from these places every five years, there are thousands who have no shot at anything approaching prominent success.  More will makes less than 300k ten years out than over 500k.  Law school admissions used to be way more competitive, too.  It is unlikely future leaders will come from these places at the same rate going forward.

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Aug 22, 2021 - 3:12pm

PaulEvansLoafers

Not marginal at all. Yale law is held in much higher regard, for better or for worse. 

I would not say "much" higher.  Businessmen treat lawyers like parasites, which is not even unfair much of the time.  In Big Law, there is a Yale stigma (go on Top Law School Forum if you do not believe this; the education is essentially a philosophy masters), going to Harvard or Stanford is often better for big law long-term if tuition is less.  You can, if you play your cards perfectly well and do not make a single error, get into HBS or SBS or some other program to get better exit ops than law.

Aug 22, 2021 - 3:13pm

You can't do better than Yale Law

Not one successful financier in private equity regrets not becoming a lawyer.  Most big law partners who primarily service private equity clients would trade places with their clients without hesitation, and maybe sell their first-born in the process.  

  • Prospect in IB - Cov
Aug 23, 2021 - 12:12pm

I was referring to the fact that Yale is widely regarded as having the best law program. I'm sorry that you had such a shitty time in law school. Mitt Romney got a JD/MBA, and it worked out for him okay (founder of Bain fucking Capital).

  • Associate 2 in PE - Other
Jan 11, 2021 - 1:52am

People on this site really like doing deep dives into the nuances, but I'm confident that both programs would give you the exact same opportunities. It's always more on the individual than the school, never forget that. Pick the school you like more as a whole.

I would take Yale, but that's my preference. I know their MBA program isn't too strong, but Yale is a better school overall and has a stronger alumni network.

Aug 22, 2021 - 3:14pm

People on this site really like doing deep dives into the nuances, but I'm confident that both programs would give you the exact same opportunities. It's always more on the individual than the school, never forget that. Pick the school you like more as a whole.

I would take Yale, but that's my preference. I know their MBA program isn't too strong, but Yale is a better school overall and has a stronger alumni network.

This is patently untrue.  The opportunities at both will be very different.  Yale will not open up doors in finance, consulting, or management.  To the extent YLS grads receive offers in those fields, it is due to prior experience and serious hustling.  Even then, it is far more unlikely than going to a decent MBA program.  Also, the education at a decent business school will be both an easier workload and more tangible material, rather than grueling nonsense in what is an advance liberal arts curriculum (the JD).

  • Summer Associate in IB - Cov
Jan 12, 2021 - 9:07pm

My impression is that Yale Law is so much further ahead and more impressive than the 3 other schools (2 Chicago and Yale SOM) that you shouldn't think twice and do Yale.  Feels like being a scientist and doing your phd at MIT - just by virtue of being the best school for an already very smart group, some of your peers will be off the charts. 

I think it is a step-change from Chicago and your classmates are going to go much further - like Supreme Court and White House further.  There will not be a bank, law firm, fund, or government job that will think you are not capable out of Yale Law, whereas even with a JD-MBA from Chicago you will fight an uphill battle in some areas of the world.  I am at another M7 and there is a difference between Booth and Yale SOM, but ppl will definitely go to SOM over Chicago (don't want to leave East Coast, want social impact work, etc.) but I cannot imagine a great reason for picking Yale Law over Chicago other than scholarship.  

Also aren't there programs for Yale Law and HBS if you really wanted? 

  • Business School in IB - Cov
Aug 23, 2021 - 1:33am

T30 tho. Every law forum you just shit on the profession of law entirely. Not our fault you went to Arizona State and expected Cravath

Source: someone who hated and left law school to go into banking (just be fair and unbiased, ok?)

Jan 14, 2021 - 4:22pm

I can tell by reading the comments that (probably) no one on here is an actual lawyer.  I graduated from an okay law school (T30, hence my name; no regrets on taking the scholarship and avoiding the T14 debt) and worked in big law.  I, like most of my professional compatriots if you liquor them up enough, regret attending law school and taking a big law position every single day.  I am out of the profession and still regret it, as there are no business side exit options to speak of that you could not obtain out of undergrad.  

There are almost no opportunities Yale Law will provide that Chicago will not.  Both can land you Supreme Court clerkships and tenure track professorships (the most competitive positions in law by far; if you attend Yale Law the overwhelming odds are that you will not be qualified for either).  Both will give you a chance at a V5, a moderate chance at a V20, and a very likely shot at a V50 firm.  When you are dealing with YLS, HLS, SLS, and Chicago (nitpickers will say Chicago is not in the same grouping), the opportunities will be about the same depending on where you end up on the curve.  If you want litigation and know this (you watched your parents be litigators, you were a paralegal, or you have some sustained, multi-year exposure that would grant you this conclusion with certainty), then YLS is the answer to maximize your options to the utmost extent.

If you are unsure you want to be a litigator, are thinking of transactional law, or do not know you want to be an attorney at all, DO NOT go to YLS.  Better yet, DO NOT go to law school period.  The JD is a scarlet letter on a resume, and will dilute the value of your MBA.  Booth will give you so many more options and so much more flexibility than the three other schools.  There is a reason why the sharpest, most successful undergrads no longer go into JD programs.  They go into tech, consulting, finance, F500 management, medicine, really anything other than law.  If you have decen undergrad/work experience credentials, you will be floored by what passes at YLS.  There will be tons of no-name state schools and people who worked bogus jobs before (as long as you score high enough on the LSAT and have a good GPA, nothing else matters).  The network at an MBA program will be lightyears ahead (b-school students are more put together and well-adjusted; law students are neurotic and tweaked).

If you are still considering going to law school, please take an hour to read this thread in its entirety, if anything it is underselling the sacrifices you will be making: https://www.top-law-schools.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=4&t=261392

Jan 14, 2021 - 6:07pm

Shareholder activism is a niche field for lawyers. If you are going to law school planning to be transactional, assume you'll be general corporate/M&A. Firms need bodies to throw at that work. Rotational programs are dwindling, and odds are you will not be in a niche group (appellate litigation, non-STEM IP, real estate, bankruptcy) even if you want it and tailor your coursework and resume. Once you are assigned to a group, transitioning to another department at a firm is not easy, you are specialized early. 
 

with restructuring, you are more likely to get to an advisory or fund role by going to business school. Lawyers "can" end up in these positions, but they'll be far behind on the technicals and modeling. As a fifth year associate looking to make the move, you'll be sacrificing eight years of legal education and experience and still behind your peers. 
 

tl:dr if you have any interest in business ops, finance, or investing, do not go to law school. An MBA is a more versatile and valuable degree. 

  • Analyst 2 in IB - Cov
Aug 22, 2021 - 11:05pm

As someone on this site who is very familiar with big law, would respectfully disagree with you on your comment regarding clerkships. The best schools for clerkships are YLS, SLS, and HLS hands down, especially since ~90% of the SC Justices went to one of these 3 law schools. While great schools, there is a steep drop off for Chicago, Columbia, Penn, etc.

Also, have spoken to many who graduated from Chicago law and they were not pleased with their education (was way too academic versus more practical law teachings their peers at Columbia, Cornell, and Penn law had for instance).

Aug 22, 2021 - 2:53pm

This is really simple.  

For you, which is the main degree and which is the bolt on?  That should determine your choice (Chicago if you want to do business, Yale if you want to go into law).  

Yes, YLS is the most impressive of the bunch as a standalone institution, but it will NOT confer an advantage if your main career interest is business instead of law.  

The truth is you're the weak. And I'm the tyranny of evil men. But I'm tryin', Ringo. I'm tryin' real hard to be the shepherd.
  • 1
Aug 22, 2021 - 3:07pm

Winnfield

This is really simple.  

For you, which is the main degree and which is the bolt on?  That should determine your choice (Chicago if you want to do business, Yale if you want to go into law).  

Yes, YLS is the most impressive of the bunch as a standalone institution, but it will NOT confer an advantage if your main career interest is business instead of law.  

Although YLS may have the "prestige", this must be qualified.  Laymen (non-white collar professionals) will think you do DUIs/wills/divorce law no matter how good your JD is, just like many of these normal people think an investment banker is a glorified suburban loan officer.  This is not a knock on normal people, it is a warning to many "prestige" obsessed 0Ls.  White collar professionals in finance and consulting will have a decent notion of what big law/clerking/other "prestigious" legal paths are, and will in no way envy you.  At no point will they regret not going to law school (the standards of which have fallen enormously since the 1990s, when admission was actually competitive).

Anyone with the ability to get into UChicago business (translation: anyone not incurably dyslexic in arithmetic) should NOT go to Yale Law.  

Aug 24, 2021 - 10:03am

Look, I get it.  I wouldn't go to law school - even YLS - even if you paid me.  I never understood the JD/MBAs I met during my time in b-school.  But hey, ultimately, one of these degrees is the "main" degree, and the other is the "bolt-on" to distinguish yourself among your peers in your chosen field.  Arguably no one in a bulge bracket bank or MBB will be envious of their Yale SOM peer with an YLS degree; they're going to respect the Booth graduate with a CLS degree more.  As for the other way around... will an YLS graduate in Big Law be more respected due to also having a Yale SOM MBA?... Hmmm.  Don't know.  But pretty confident about the way around.

The truth is you're the weak. And I'm the tyranny of evil men. But I'm tryin', Ringo. I'm tryin' real hard to be the shepherd.
  • 4
  • Analyst 1 in IB-M&A
Aug 24, 2021 - 12:47pm

This thread is hilarious. All of you are out of your mind if you think anyone from either school isn't the sort of candidate that firms would slobber over, full stop, end of discussion. The JD/MBA broadly versus a JD/MBA from the two listed in this thread have very different outcomes. A JD/MBA from either displays a gross combination of networks and understanding that is valuable anywhere. 

Both degrees are ultimately splitting hairs, the exception being for yale law there is a clear difference for Supreme Court clerkships, but if that's your goal, this question is obvious, choose Yale.

There is no firm in the country that wouldn't want a candidate from the top law school in the country and a top 10 B-school or a school in the top 4 for both. If an individual struggles to get a job coming from either the problem is the candidate, not their graduate school. For example, if you can't explain compellingly why you got the degree and how it plays into your future, yeah no shit, you are not going to get hired. Additionally, if you got the degree and don't have previous experience at like a bank or PE firm, Apollo probably won't be interested because you lack the experience to be qualified-not because of your degree. This website sometimes is wild. 

Aug 24, 2021 - 9:18pm

This thread is hilarious. All of you are out of your mind if you think anyone from either school isn't the sort of candidate that firms would slobber over, full stop, end of discussion. The JD/MBA broadly versus a JD/MBA from the two listed in this thread have very different outcomes. A JD/MBA from either displays a gross combination of networks and understanding that is valuable anywhere. 

Both degrees are ultimately splitting hairs, the exception being for yale law there is a clear difference for Supreme Court clerkships, but if that's your goal, this question is obvious, choose Yale.

There is no firm in the country that wouldn't want a candidate from the top law school in the country and a top 10 B-school or a school in the top 4 for both. If an individual struggles to get a job coming from either the problem is the candidate, not their graduate school. For example, if you can't explain compellingly why you got the degree and how it plays into your future, yeah no shit, you are not going to get hired. Additionally, if you got the degree and don't have previous experience at like a bank or PE firm, Apollo probably won't be interested because you lack the experience to be qualified-not because of your degree. This website sometimes is wild. 

Assuming this is not a three year program, that is two extra years of tuition and lost income to obtain that JD v. the MBA alone. This is probably about 400k at Yale if you had a real job before in the private sector.  And please, outside of litigation finance, can you name a job that the JD makes the difference as opposed to a mere MBA?  What roles are accessed at a noticeably higher rate?  Generally, the JD program is a solitary affair and a massive distraction from the networking you describe. No trips to Croatia or Bali for JDs at HLS, T13 students do not ball out like their b school counterparts. You'll be reading "Parents Involved" or "Iqbal" instead of going to that MBB reception. It sucks, and for what?  You can brag and be a poindexter or advance your career in a hard headed manner. 
 

Booth is at a different level than Yale business, which is regarded by many as a fugazi. And please do not tell me an MBA is looked highly upon by law firms, I have explained why not elsewhere. 

  • Analyst 1 in IB-M&A
Aug 24, 2021 - 10:17pm

Since you are coming across with an extreme level of confidence. I'll bite, I'm in one of the programs, you are making this not nuanced, when like most things it is. 

A few considerations:

  • this didn't specify a 4 year versus 3 year program. If 3, the trade is 0 for just a JD or 1 for an MBA.
  • This isn't a conversation on opportunity cost. If we are going down that route, different story and a more complex decision that should incorporate your financial support for the degree, previous earnings etc. Instead, it's comparing the two programs. 
  • Basically no jobs require/ use an MBA either. Arguably the value in getting one is a career switch, signaling, and the network. None of these are valuable for an entry associate position in finance or law, but the value matrix changes as an individual and their peers age. That said, the signaling and network is substantial for these schools, you are underestimating it massively. Clearly you had a bad experience with your degree, most JD/ MBA's at Yale and Uchicago would likely disagree. 
     
  • Edit: That said, this isn't a light decision. Be sure you like the law or you will be miserable. Also, obviously it is a substantial amount of money and opportunity cost of doing other things. Really a wrong choice for many and t30 is correct, but it's nuanced. You are better off asking people who have just graduated with the degree about their experience-I did it when I applied and it was helpful.
Aug 24, 2021 - 10:37pm

Since you are coming across with an extreme level of confidence. I'll bite, I'm in one of the programs, you are making this not nuanced, when like most things it is. 

A few considerations:

  • this didn't specify a 4 year versus 3 year program. If 3, the trade is 0 for just a JD or 1 for an MBA.
  • This isn't a conversation on opportunity cost. If we are going down that route, different story and a more complex decision that should incorporate your financial support for the degree, previous earnings etc. Instead, it's comparing the two programs. 
  • Basically no jobs require/ use an MBA either. Arguably the value in getting one is a career switch, signaling, and the network. None of these are valuable for an entry associate position in finance or law, but the value matrix changes as an individual and their peers age. That said, the signaling and network is substantial for these schools, you are underestimating it massively. Clearly you had a bad experience with your degree, most JD/ MBA's at Yale and Uchicago would likely disagree. 

I did say it "can" make sense to get a JD-MBA for some niche positions. Maybe you are pursuing one, mon amie?

1. I don't think UChicago or Yale do a three year programs unless it is new. I'm not inclined to look it up. Most attorneys and businessmen I know who did the three year program regret losing that summer after 1L and wish they could have interned instead. They could have learned how crappy law is earlier, in the office. 
2. Most people at a Booth level MBA program had a passable income beforehand. Most top JD students are straight from undergrad or former waiters at Applebee's. Few had okay prospects after a bogus BA degree, that is why they are doubling down with an advanced liberal arts degree (the JD).  The debt load for JDs has increased tremendously since I graduated, far outstripping inflation even with merit scholarships. If your parents are rich and you want a JD for whatever faux intellectual trappings pop culture led you to believe it grants (Matlock/Law and Order/Boston Legal/Suits), go ahead. I'm giving advice for career advancement. 
3. Few jobs formally require it, many do informally depending on experience and BA pedigree (if you are a Podunk State Sociology BA holder, that MBA is required in a way a Harvard Econ BA isn't). An MBA signals, allows a switch, and provides a network in a way the JD does not. And it will probably be cheaper, les work, and certainly teach more tangible material. 
4. The ones you spoke to disagree because of survivorship bias. Those who regret in law do not discuss it openly, go on old JDUnderground forums or "Inside the Law School Scam."  Most attorneys do not think it was worth it, even in big law surveys. Read above post, I enjoyed law school all things considered. 

Funniest
Aug 24, 2021 - 10:40pm

Addressing edit: unless you have a parent in big law or was a big law paralegal, you really cannot know if it is a good fit. The best alternative is to obtain a 120 page purchase and sale agreement and play around with word redlining for eight hours. Do this six days in a row with cross references, closing docs, and flow of funds for the closing. Now imagine this for forty years. 

Most Helpful
Aug 25, 2021 - 8:57am

This is a strong post in the sense that it sets it up nicely: "Number 1 plus Top 10-15" vs "two Top 4" degrees.

Also clear that if your goal is a Supreme Court clerkship, you go to the top law school.

But on the professional side, it misses the mark.

Let's be real: for a professional, the two degrees are less than the sum of their parts.  

There are very, very jobs out there that really require - and therefore benefit - from a dual JD/MBA skillset.  You're really going into business, or going into law.  

As such, one of the degrees is your primary degree, and the other is a bolt-on.  If you want business, it clearly makes more sense to go to Chicago.  The MBA is undisputedly more prestigious; the law school isn't Yale, but it's generally considered 4th.  If you want law, you have to distinguish between Big Law vs the end goal of being a judge.  For the latter, go to Yale.  End of story.  For the former...  harder to say.  Two top four degrees, vs the top law degree and a lesser MBA...  

Choose accordingly.  The choice says more about the candidate than about the programs. 

The truth is you're the weak. And I'm the tyranny of evil men. But I'm tryin', Ringo. I'm tryin' real hard to be the shepherd.
  • 7
Sep 3, 2021 - 11:02am

Read through the whole thread and this post sums in up well. At the end of the day, you're going to have to pick a career that aligns more with law or business. I don't think there are any jobs out there that specifically require both. RX is the only one where a legal background might come in handy, but there are plenty of great RX bankers/investors without a law degree.

Having considered a JD/MBA, I can admit that there is some allure to it and it would be interesting from a purely intellectual pursuit, assuming you have the time and money to do the 2nd degree.

With that being said, you ultimately just need to think about which you want to pursue more, law or business(consulting/banking, etc). Having worked with many lawyers, in my opinion law is a worse career unless you actually enjoy it (which very few seem to). The upside to law is that it has a very set path to becoming a partner and it is fairly rigid in that structure. The downside is that the work is tedious, in my opinion, more tedious than banking, the comp is lower until you get to the higher levels, and the upside is always severely capped. No law firms get massive bonuses for investing in a great company or selling a company for more than the target range. You get your billables and that's it. 

With that being said, Law is more "prestigious" and depending on what you want to do, can have more social impact, which appears to some. If you're looking to just grind and make solid money, you'd be better off in banking. Higher pay and similar set path to MD.

  • Associate 3 in PE - Other
Sep 4, 2021 - 11:17am

Former lawyer from a T25 here in special sits / opportunistic credit at an UMM / MF. I tend to be normally on the "don't fuckin' go" train on law school. And note what my view of a good firm is different than the standard person's since I lean into distressed land. 

Yale law will have a higher ceiling vs. Booth MBA on investment focused jobs without prior investing experience (primarily hedge funds), however will have a much lower median placement due to lack of focus on investment recruiting resources.  Yale has those random one-offs that have pretty unreal exits that are generally entirely self driven.  That being said, Yale's placements may just be due to the fact that they tend to get some of the brightest in the country who could have gotten that job from Booth, however the number of people at Yale Law who even want to go to investment side is likely pretty limited and significantly less % of the class than at Booth.  For the small amount of employers who won't look below HBS / GSB, YLS / HLS can sneak in (probably SLS as well, I just don't see a ton of those grads around.)  The hard skills for investing aren't really rocket science, so hiring the best athlete and training them may provide more value to a fund than taking an above average athlete who has a bit more of the hard skills pre-developed. 

The comment above about big law employers having issues with Yale students, is similar to the concept of Harvard / Stanford not having a ton of investment banking placement.  Its not the most desired / best outcome for them.

Saying all that, I would think about getting just an MBA.  Saves a year and is marginally better. 

Sep 4, 2021 - 11:43am

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  • Associate 3 in PE - Other
Sep 4, 2021 - 12:27pm

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