Law School

Ask Jeremy: What are the odds of getting in?

In a recent question all the way from India, Anita asked me about getting into JD/MBA programs.

See below for the question and below that for my video response.

Hi Jeremy,

I am from India. I was born and raised there and I currently work in India. I have a 760 GMAT and am sure that I can manage a good LSAT score as well. Do you think the odds of getting into a JD / MBA program are greater than getting into an MBA program at H/S/ W ? Would you happen to have the stats on what % of applicants to JD/ MBA program at H/S/W are admitted ?

Thanks !
Anita

 

 

In short:

1. Consider the other great JD/MBA programs.

2. Don’t get caught up on stats.

3. Focus on your story.

4. CLICK HERE for recent admissions advice.

Good luck!

Most law school applicants

… apply to law school the same way. They have very similar backgrounds, few years of work experience, focus way more on the LSAT than anything else, and end up choosing the highest ranked school that lets them in. Most of these applicants are smart, no doubt about it. But here is the problem.

 

Most law school applicants get low LSAT scores at least once, and then become afraid to take the test again. Many never take it a second time.

Most law school applicants spend so much time on the LSAT that they forget about the importance of having a good story

Most law school applicants write lofty essays about making a difference in the world, but nearly every single one wants to work at a big law firm by the end of their first year

Most law school applicants are hyper-competitive and don’t do a good a job working together

Most law school applicants apply to law school with very little ‘real’ work experience but don’t realize this is the case

Most law school applicants are more argumentative than collaborative

Most law school applicants are caught off guard during 1L

Most law school applicants haven’t developed certain professional leadership skills

Most law school applicants get rejected from more schools than they get in to

 

The good news is that if you are reading this post RIGHT NOW, then you do not have to be like most law school applicants

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Tuesday, September 4th, 2012 Business School, Law School, Leadership No Comments

School is Expensive

Just today, we attended a financial aid information session at the law school. Every year financial office can give their obligatory talk about how student loans. During the session, we all pulled out our loan papers and saw how much debt we had to pay back. The average amount … well let’s just say it was a lot of money. Enough to scare just about everyone into being happy they decided to take big law jobs upon graduation.

The interesting part of the whole scenario is that we feel this way, even though most of us have REALLY great jobs to walk into in the fall.  MBAs that go into banking and consulting firms Law students into high paying law firm roles.  Jobs that not only pay six figures but also provide lifestyles that the average person never even dreams of. But in spite of that, we’re still all a bit nervous about the big $100K+ number at the bottom of our loan forms.

But imagine the student that attends an expensive grad school program but doesn’t have the options we have. Imagine the student that comes out with $100K in loans but only makes $40K per year. Or the student that also comes into grad school with $100K in loans form undergrad Or worse yet, the student with six figure loans who can’t find a job.

The school systems makes it very difficult for some students to get started after graduation. For most of us, it is nearly impossible to pursue our real interests – the ones we talked about in our applications.  And for almost everyone, it also makes it really scary.

Education Matters and we have to do something about this.

 

** See below for a short blurb about school being expensive from Seth Godin’s recent manifesto: Stop Stealing Dreams

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It’s also not very good at doing what we need it to do. We’re not going to be able to make it much cheaper, so let’s figure out how to make it a lot better.

Not better at what it already does. Better at educating people to do what needs to be done.

Do you need a competent call-center employee? School is good at creating them, but it’s awfully expensive. Do we really need more compliant phone operators, and at such a high cost?

Given the time and money being invested, what I want to know, what every parent and every taxpayer and every student should want to know, is: Is this the right plan? Is this the best way to produce the culture and economy we say we want?

What is school for?

If you’re not asking that, you’re wasting time and money.

Here’s a hint: learning is not done to you. Learning is something you choose to do.

Monday, April 2nd, 2012 Business School, Education, Law School No Comments

How Did You Do?

Just last week, the dishwasher stopped working as well as it used to.  Now we have to clean dishes a lot better before putting them in. And a few weeks ago, the same thing happened to the dryer. Sometimes we have to put clothes in two times before they dry now.  And it’s not the first time I’ve seen this happen in the building. I don’t know why it’s happening exactly, maybe it is because they are old. But either way, one thing is for sure. I bet the janitor who fixed them has no idea.

Like I said, I bet the janitor who put these appliances in has no idea what happened. My guess is that despite the complaints he will continue to confidently take the same steps in every apartment here. And that makes sense right? After all he has no idea that they stopped working. We didn’t tell him. And he didn’t ask.

I propose that this same phenomenon happens in business school. MBAs do homework assignments but often don’t know how they did after they finish. Professors don’t “clearly” tell us and we certainly aren’t in a rush to ask. It happens a lot in group assignments too, as one person from the team often gets the homework back in their mailbox, and the rest of the group forgets to ask what grade the group got. And by forgets, I mean they often don’t care to ask.

It happens all the time in classes with problem sets, especially when those assignments are a small part of your grade. TAs put the graded homework in your mailbox and you never check your grade. It happens with midterms and finals too. Sometimes they sit there for weeks before you pick them up. Often times until the following quarter when things slow down.

And perhaps it makes sense. We’re all busy people. And it feels really good to finish and to get through the hard problems. So why ruin that feeling with the possibility of a poor grade?

Perhaps this is why consultants don’t always follow up after they are done consulting for a client.  They get busy with other clients. Then they forget. And in some cases, they probably don’t want bad feedback.

On the other hand, this never happens to lawyers. One difference between lawyers and MBAs, is that law students always check their grades. And lawyers always ask clients how things went and if there is more work to be done.

Interesting dynamic.

Tuesday, February 21st, 2012 Business School, Law School No Comments

Happy Thanksgiving. Here’s What I’m Thankful For

It’s hard to believe but this is my last Thanksgiving as a student. Reflecting back on my time here at Northwestern as well as my undergrad days at Stanford, it’s hard not to recall how many great classes, great job opportunities, interesting professors and best of all great classmates I’ve had along the way. Not a day goes by that I don’t think about how lucky I’ve been to have the experience. And that leads me to what I’m most thankful for this year.

Ever since I started my blog (and graduate school) a few years ago, I’ve received quite a few emails from readers.  Many of them wanted tips or advice for selecting programs. Others had specific admissions questions. Others were visiting campus and were looking for someone to speak to while they were here. And some simply wanted to say thanks for keeping up my site.

I read every one of those questions and did my best to respond to all of them, though admittedly I think I missed a few.  In the course of all of this, I’ve come to find that there are a lot of people that want to go to business school and to law school, but that there are very few seats at these places. After all, there are only 230 seats at the law school and only 600 at Kellogg despite over 7,000 applications. More importantly, there are exponentially more people all over the US and world that want to go to great undergraduate universities, but a large majority will never have the opportunity to attend a 4-year university.

This has all come to an apex today, as education has become THE hot button issue, given the rise in education costs and decreasing number of jobs available given the economy. Even though this has have led critics to critique the value of education, I’ve learned firsthand that getting an education is still an incredibly powerful tool. A tool you can use to not only change your circumstances but also find the success that many of us were never raised to even dream about having.

More than 3 years later, after seeing all the opportunities I’ve had access to school, those words are even more true.  And that leads me to a few of the things that I’m most thankful for this year:

I’m thankful for having the chance to get an education and the opportunity to be enrolled in a great graduate program today. This is especially true considering where everything started (Youngstown, OH), as my access and economic means were significantly limited.  It was certainly not something that always seemed possible.

I’m also thankful for the opportunities I’ve had access to as a result of being in school. Great clubs, great organizations and great job opportunities. My goal is to continue to do what I can to help others from my community create those same opportunities.

I’m also thankful for my parents who supported me and pushed me along to pursue a better education. Sometimes it seemed hard but when I was young my parents made sure that I stayed on track. In large part, because they wanted me to achieve the things they never had the chance to.

I’m also thankful for my great classmates, many of whom are some of my best friends today. When you’re going through the fire in school, it’s always great to have classmates and friends you can count on and enjoy the experience with.

I’m also thankful for the JD-MBAs here in my program. Not only a really smart group but also a group where every one of us undergoes the same process. We have to take extra classes. We all have limited bidding points and multiple sets of emails to manage. We all have to move cities multiple times. And worst of all, we all have to get on the shuttle every day in the final year.

And finally, I’m thankful for the Internet, where we can I share this message with lots of people.  Not only is the net revolutionizing modern communication but it’s also helping democratize access to information for those who need access the most.

In sum, I’m thankful for education. I don’t take it for granted, and you shouldn’t either. The jobs we have access to, earning potential we can achieve, and most importantly the role we have the opportunity to take on in society are all a privilege. So we should treat them as such. We should use them as a platform. A way to give back to those that helped us. And a way to improve access in our communities. For every person that got into a great school,  there are tens of thousands in the US and millions other nations that would love to same chance. The chance to have our seat in school. To take the exam that we complained about afterward. To go to the classes we thought about skipping.  So let’s show the world we are thankful and that we were the right people for the seats.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone! Hopefully it’s filled with family, friends, and most of all with lots of “Thanks.”

Thursday, November 24th, 2011 Business School, Careers, Education, Law School 8 Comments

Mayor Cory Booker Comes to Chicago

On Monday, October 10th at 6pm Chicago time, I’ll be attending an event with Mayor Cory Booker in downtown Chicago. The event is held at Luxbar and is geared specifically at young professionals.  As many of you probably know, Mayor Booker has had tremendous success during his tenure as Mayor. He has worked on issues like educational reform and he has been striving to make Newark a model for successful urban education. It will be interesting to not only hear hear his thoughts about Newark but also about his plans to improve education in the future.

So you’re probably wondering, what are some of his ideas?  What are some of the things he believes in?  And what is his vision for the future? Since being elected into office, Cory has undertaken a few public interviews explaining.   On Morning Joe’s Education Nation on MSNBC, he discussed Education Reform (CLICK HERE to see what he talked about). Similarly, on NBC Nightly News with Brian William’s, he discussed the report on Newark Public Schools and the Mark Zuckerberg $100 million challenge grant  (CLICK HERE for the video). Further, I might also recommend checking out this great speech he gave at Williams recently.

According to Cory’s web page, you can also see some of the issues he believes in most.  He posts a PDF entitled 25 accomplishments in 25 months. Likewise, he also posts collection of videos and articles HERE that discuss the ideas he considers most important.

Because of this thought leadership, this year, Time Magazine named Cory one of the 100 most influential people in the world. One of my former classmates recently said, “I believe he’s leading forward-thinking policy around Urban development, Education, green-space preservation, and more. He’s the mayor of Newark, but he’s become an icon around the world.” And, in the words of one of my friends Suneel Gupta, “It’s been a while since I’ve been truly inspired by a policy maker.”

The buzz today is that Booker represents a new generation of leadership in the US. And that he is transforming Urban America one day at a time. This is why a number of people are going to enjoy going to the event in Chicago next week. So if you feel inspired by reading his background, then perhaps you will join in at one of his events around the country. The one in Chicago is  on 10/10. Let me know if you’ll be there.

You can see more details and sign up for the event here. And should you decide to sign up: you should sign up using the names of my good friends … and change agents Emanuel Pleitez and/or Suneel Gupta.

Wednesday, October 5th, 2011 Law School, Leadership 2 Comments

Negotiating in Business School and Law School

The ability to negotiate well is one of the most important tools you can have in business. Not only do you negotiate deals with clients and vendors but you also spend time negotiating on your own behalf. For example, we all have to negotiate our own salaries and employment terms. Well, in spite of their importance in business, negotiations is also popular at the law school. And this semester, I’ve been enrolled in a negotiations course where we are learning many of the basics about how to negotiate going forward.

This semester I am taking a negotiations course at the law school. As a JD-MBA, we have the choice to either take the class at the law school or at the business school; and either way, the units count for both schools.  As far as I gather, the two options are pretty similar conceptually. But they do have a couple of tangible differences that can influence which school we decide to take the course at.

The first difference is the principle versus agent distinction. At Kellogg, you negotiate as the principal. This means you take on the role of CEO, or newly hired employee, and think about what your interests are. From there you determine the best strategy and negotiate to come up with the best deal possible.

On the other hand, at the law school, we negotiate as agents (e.g. lawyers). In that role, we think about the best interests of our client, take on the role as representative, and work to structure a deal on the client’s behalf. Unlike our professors at Kellogg, our negotiations professors at the law school are not tenured professors. Instead, they practicing attorneys, who not only negotiate for a living but also get trained to teach negotiations throughout the semester.

Another distinction is the type of students in the class. On the business side, you have people with more experience negotiating. They’ve negotiated deals at banks and consulting firms. They’ve negotiated employment agreements more often since they’ve worked longer. And they have more work experience generally, so that lends itself well to understanding terms of a negotiation. On the other hand, law students tend to be a lot more aggressive. They read more details of the case. Find more loopholes. And are a bit more focused in trying to win.

And finally, another difference is the type of professor that teaches the course. Unlike Kellogg, where negotiations courses are typically taught by tenured faculty, at the law school the class is taught by practicing attorneys. My class is taught by a corporate lawyer at Sidley Austin. He focuses his practice on real estate transactions, where he represents international lenders, real estate funds, investors, public and private companies, and developers.

In general,the course is broken up into a number of negotiations – we usually have one negotiation per week. Before each negotiation, we do a pre-negotiation analysis where we discuss these concepts in the confines of our own positions and interests. This is helpful because it ensures we come to class very prepared.

Likewise, after the negotiations process, we spend the class discussing some of the fundamentals of negotiating. So we talk a lot about things like BATNA, zones of interests, mutual gain, concessions, and reservation points. The terms and tools are good because they help you to remember what things to think about; how to understand your opponents underlying interest; and how to consider the importance of ethics in the process.

In sum, I’d say that the best negotiators create the most value possible, take their fair share, give others value as well, but prevent themselves from being exploited by the other side.

In the end, it pays to know your opponent. Know their strengths and weaknesses. Understand your interests and theirs. And analyze who has the upper hand.

In the words of Sun-tzu (as quoted by Bud Fox in the movie Wall Street) “If your enemy is superior, evade him. If angry, irritate him. If equally matched, fight, and if not split and reevaluate.”

Monday, October 3rd, 2011 Business School, Law School No Comments

First JD-MBA Social of the Year

JD-MBAs are some of the most interesting students on campus. New students in the program go to classes like contracts and torts, and then they start thinking about law firms such as Kirkland & Ellis, Mayer Brown, and my firm Vedder Price.  Second year students are a world apart. They move up to Evanston start taking classes in finance and marketing,and then they spend the next few months looking at firms like McKinsey, Bain, and Blackstone, among others. And then there are the third year students. We  head back and forth between both campuses, split their time with classmates in Chicago and in Evanston, and are trying to decide whether to go into law or business. And because of all these disparate experiences, we often come together in a big group to support each other through the process.

Well just yesterday we formally came together for the very first time.  Most people arrived about twenty minutes after the event started and found their way to the top floor of the building where the event was held. We spent most of the time there trying to meet some of the 1Js (first year JD-MBAs) and also reconnecting with ones that we had already met.

The 1Js had the goal of trying to better understand the student experience. They wondered how their first midterms and finals would be. If law school would be as hard as people say it is. If they’d have to keep working hard for all three years.

The 2Js had the goal of asking about how hard Kellogg would be. Would recruiting be competitive? Should they recruit for one industry or another? And what would be the impact of working in the law for the summer? On the other hand, the 2Js also provided real time practical advice for the 1Js. Given they just finished their first year, they not only remembered vivid details of the experience but they also had strong opinions.  Things like when to move to Evanston. How to schedule your finals. What exams to pass out of. And how to make it through 1L.

3J had the goal of meeting the people they hadn’t met yet. Give some of us are smack dab in the middle of recruiting right now, some of us still haven’t met as many people as we’d like.  We were fielding questions from both the 1Js and 2Js about our experiences so far, and how it was finally splitting our time between two campuses.

But more important than giving tips on how to maximize the JD-MBA experience is that just yesterday we all took a moment to meet everyone in the program. To not only discuss how to fine tune your career strategy at Kellogg or the law school but also think about ways to connect with everyone in the program and hear about all the interesting paths many JD-MBAs had taken.

We heard about Js that are going to Cravath, Cooley, and Kirkland on the legal side. Others who are in a highly competitive Venture Capital program here at Kellogg and starting their own businesses that span a number of industries. Others who spent time at Lehman and Goldman before the program. And some recruiting with McKinsey, Bain and BCG as we speak.

And in the end, no matter how tough the program feels at times, events like this remind us that we indeed have a pretty special group.

Friday, September 23rd, 2011 Business School, Law School No Comments

The End of Summer Means It’s Offer Season

This is an interesting season for all business school and law school students across the US. When you step outside in the streets of Chicago, everything suggests that summer time is still here. Not only are people still wearing shorts, t-shirts, and dresses but others are still on vacations and on the beach. On the other hand, there’s also a lot of excitement in the air because the fall semester is also here. That means that fall classes are beginning to commence, current students are starting to think about what they want to do upon graduation, and last but not least, they are also starting to hear back about full-time offers from their summer employers.

Over the past two or so weeks, many of my law and business school classmates have been getting news from their summer employers. Some of them that work for typical employers that get back on the last day of work, which is a nice sigh of relief for those that received positive news. Others who have to wait a week or two before employers get back to them. And another group that won’t get responses anytime soon because their jobs are a tad less traditional. These firms don’t have typical recruiting cycles, so offers may not be given for a few more weeks, and perhaps maybe not for a few months.

Interestingly enough, as I was writing this entry, I recently heard back from one of my summer employers.  One of the firm Partners called me by phone and gave me the good news that the firm (and the group) wanted to extend me a position. The Partner noted that I was the only person that he was able to get live so far, which I suspect is because a lot of people are either still traveling or they are back in class these days.

In the legal world, most offers stay available until November 1, though in most cases it’s not ideal to make an employer wait so long. At big law firms, it’s possible the partners that really like you may start favoring other incoming associates that accepted offers more quickly.  At small law firms, that may not be the case, though it is likely that everyone at the firm would see that you waited, and in the legal world that typically means that you are thinking about other options, as law students do typically tend to go back to their summer employers.  The same thing could hold true at consulting firms.

On the business side, its a lot more typical to hold out on offers for a bit. However, in most cases, firms probably wouldn’t take it as personally as MBAs tend to switch jobs after the summer much more frequently. As a result, offers often extend past the November 1st deadline into December and January to allow students to partake in recruiting if they wish to.  In fact, just yesterday I spoke with a classmates that worked at a bigger company over the summer, and he said that he has until February to make a decision; and that his firm was completely understanding of him doing a second round of recruiting this year.

Whether or not you plan to go back to your summer, it feels pretty good to everyone to have an offer in hand. Not only does it relieve the stress in the current economic environment but it also means that you can start thinking more about what it is you want to do, rather than simply focusing on finding employment.  Because more important than just finding any job, is that you take the time to find one that you’re really passionate about.  Because only at that point,  will we be able to unlock your potential and achieve the utmost success in your role.

No matter which camp you fit into: Congratulations on your offers. And good luck in your continued search.

Thursday, September 1st, 2011 Business School, Careers, Law School No Comments

First Day of Classes … Again

Do you remember the last time you had a first day at school? You spent you first day touring your undergraduate university campus, buying books, and getting ready for orientation. Well what about the first day of your last year at school? The day you became a senior and you felt like you were on top of the whole world; like nothing could ever bring you down. Well, for those going to graduate school, we get to relive those moments all over again. We get one more chance at being the new kids on campus, and eventually one more chance at being the older kids on campus. And on Monday I joined my law school, business school and JD-MBA classmates as we embarked on our first day at Northwestern.

Incoming Kellogg students have long been awaiting this moment. Excited to finally have what some call a two year vacation. Thrilled not to have to go to work every single weekday morning. And pumped from heading all over the world on the Kellogg KWEST trips (CLICK HERE to see my post prior to my KWEST trip)

On the other side, Northwestern Law students have also been excited about starting law school. In large part because class, not orientation, actually started on Monday. This is finally the moment that many of them have been waiting for. Ready to prove they can excel in the classroom. Prove they have what it takes to be great lawyers and litigators. And convince the masses that they’re up to the challenge of not only getting great legal jobs, but also doing so in one of the worst economies ever.

No matter which group you belong to, classmates have been meeting up all over  Evanston and all throughout Chicago getting to know their classmates. This is especially true for those who first day comes in the final year being a student. For them, it’s the last year they won’t have to spend the great majority of their time in class but will also spend time working and meeting up with friends. So they’re excited to make the most of it.  To get to meet more of their classmates. And to help make the campus a better place.

Because this is such a big moment in one’s career as a student, the respective Deans will also be making appearances. At Kellogg, Dean Sally Blount will be making remarks next Wednesday at the OLC (Kellogg auditorium). I look forward to trying to attend that session. On the law school side, the new Dean Daniel Rodriguez will be making remarks today, in just a few hours (CLICK HERE for more information on him).

As part of their overall speeches we look forward to hearing about their plans for this year and their visions for the future. Likewise, I’m sure many of my classmates look forward to hearing about how Northwestern is doing in the current economic climate. Particularly on the law side, where things are still picking up from the recent recession.

But perhaps more interesting than all of that is that the talks will bring the student body together and hopefully inspire more collaboration than before. To come together during times of change and help new leaders be as successful as possible. Either way, the first few days should be fun for everyone.

And either way, all good things must eventually come to an end. And over the next few days/weeks we’ll all have to buckle down and get to work. For 1Ls classes will start picking up pretty quickly so they’ll be in the library for much of the day. For 3L/3Js, we’ll work harder to finish up our writing and other requirements we need to complete. For 1st years at Kellogg, orientation will come to an end and classes and networking sessions will soon pick up. And for 2nd years at Kellogg, recruiting happens in just a couple of weeks.

Best of luck no matter which camp you fit into. And best of luck if you’re applying this fall in hopes to be part of the group next year.

Wednesday, August 31st, 2011 Business School, Careers, Law School 3 Comments

Dean Daniel B. Rodriguez to Visit Northwestern Law on Wednesday

Over the past year, [former] Dean Van Zandt’s resignation as Dean of Northwestern Law School has sparked a lot of discussion regarding his achievements, his vision, and his plans for the future at The New School. And he probably deserves the attention. After all, he is the guy who not only transformed the world of law school programming, but also the one who came up with the modern JD-MBA program.  But today, new Dean Daniel Rodriguez is the one at Northwestern that’s starting to get most of the attention. And on Wednesday that attention will finally result in a visit here at Northwestern.

This Wednesday, new Northwestern Law Dean Daniel Rodriguez will finally be making an appearance at Northwestern Law.  The purpose of his visit is to address the student body in advance of becoming the full time Dean this winter.

The event is intended for the entire student body and faculty members takes place in just a few days on Wednesday, August 31, at 4 p.m. His visit will serve as a formal introduction to the Law School community where he will give a talk in Thorne Auditorium and then meet some of the students in the Atrium.

In advance of that, he recently sent a letter to the student body discussing Northwestern and his transition. See below for the letter.

To:        The Northwestern Law Community

 

From:    Dan Rodriguez

 

Re:        A Note to the Northwestern Law Community

Colleagues:

It is with great enthusiasm, tempered with appropriate humility, that I have accepted the honor of becoming Northwestern University School of Law’s next dean, effective at the beginning of the spring semester.  Thanks are due to a great many members of this wonderful law school community, and I hope to be able to give these thanks in person over the course of the coming academic year.  More importantly, I hope to earn this trust with my hard work and good service over the course of my deanship.

I am very clear that this is a trust in every salient sense of the word.  Northwestern Law’s reputation as one of the nation’s top law schools reaches across many generations of lawyers and has been built methodically with the hard, passionate work of committed faculty and staff.  We will continue to work hard on behalf of our students and with the sense of purpose owed to our distinguished alumni who are truly a “who’s who” of the profession’s best and brightest.   I am a newcomer to this community to be sure, but one who has admired from afar what the Law School has accomplished, what it stands for, and I now recognize its potential for even greater excellence.  The celebrated Chicago architect, Daniel Burnham, advised famously to “make no little plans, for they have no magic to stir blood and probably themselves will not be realized.”  Yes, indeed this reflects my ambitions and objectives for Northwestern Law as I undertake this important post.

There will be other venues to speak more concretely about plans and policies, about opportunities and ideas, and about expectations and resources.  For now, let me share just a few thoughts by way of general framework.  First, I will work to the best of my ability, and with the integrity, honesty, and transparency befitting this leadership position to advance the Law School in all its extraordinary dimensions.  Second, the core goal around which planning and implementation will find its rightful place will be to serve the educational mission of the Law School — to provide a first-class legal education for Northwestern Law’s students and to forge opportunities for them to realize great professional success in their chosen endeavors.  And third, the Law School’s best aims will require a collaborative, inclusive process, with constant attention on my part and on the part of the Law School’s faculty and administration, to the good ideas that emerge from thoughtful, energetic members of our community working together.

Northwestern Law is rightly proud of its reputation for innovation, and David Van Zandt’s able leadership during the past 15 years has created a solid foundation on which to build.  Here we make big plans; we think outside the box; and we lead the way in developing initiatives suited to this rapidly changing profession.  Such innovation requires creativity, agility, and boldness enlightened through collective engagement in a common enterprise.  My deanship will be guided by this common enterprise and I look forward to joining with all of you in these collaborative pursuits.

A last introductory thought about the coming transition:  The Law School moves ever forward, and the fall semester will be, as always, a busy and dynamic time filled with vital energy and purpose.  We are all very fortunate to have Professor Kim Yuracko serving for another semester as Interim Dean and I know I speak for the entire community in both admiring and supporting her continuing, excellent work on behalf of the Law School.  As the dean-designate, I will spend quality time during the fall semester (and, in truth, quantity time) in learning about the Law School, engaging actively with Law School constituents, and reflecting on the challenges and opportunities ahead.  I will eagerly reach out to you in the coming weeks and I encourage you, likewise, to reach out to me.  In doing so, you can help me better understand your hopes and ambitions for the Law School and thereby shape the agenda of the school in the months and years to come.  Thanks, in advance, for all your input; and thanks for the very warm welcome you already have given me and my wife, Leslie Oster.

Northwestern Law has accomplished much in its long history as one of our most prestigious — and also interesting — law schools.  Yet, I am confident that its best days lie ahead.

Very best regards,

Dan Rodriguez

 

 

Tuesday, August 30th, 2011 Diversity, Education, Law School No Comments

Applicant Question: How is Your Time At Vedder Price Going?

Everyone in business school and in law school hears this question a lot.  How did your summer go? Did you like the work you did? How did you like the firm and the people there? Do you want to go back? It’s what a first year asks a second year at Kellogg. And what a second years asks a third year in law school. Well, in a recent question from one of my readers, I was asked how things are going at my law firm (Vedder Price) this summer. See below for the question; and below that for my response.

—–

READER QUESTION

Hi Jeremy:

You said you were employed at a law firm. How is that going? Are you working for the litigation department or the corporate side? What is your area of specialization? Would you mind describing a typical day as a summer associate?

Cheers,

(Name)

——

MY RESPONSE

Hi (name),

Thanks for reading and for your question about Vedder Price.

Overall, my experience so far with Vedder Price has been quite good.  As a bit of background information, I was lucky enough to get a job there as a first year law student, which was especially nice last year during the middle of the economic downturn.  So this is actually my second summer at the firm.

During the last summer, I worked across many of the practice areas. I worked with the corporate group and investment services group, and I also worked  with the litigation and employment groups.  Within those groups, the assignments always varied, where I worked on mergers and acquisitions deals, construction litigation cases, non-profit litigation memos, executive compensation negotiations, and employment law disputes.  I really enjoyed my time there and appreciated to opportunity not only to get a wide range of legal experiences but also to do so during my first summer.

This summer, my experience with the Firm has been a lot more focused, but still very positive overall. It started at the beginning of the summer, when I was attending all the social events and getting to know people, even when I was still working at my first employer, a management consulting firm. The firm had dinners, happy hours, baseball games and WhirlyBall just to name a few activities.This really confirmed how much I liked Vedder Price.

Just this week, I officially started back up at the firm, and I joined the firm’s Corporate group. Specifically, I am working with the Finance and Transactions team, which is headed up by the firm CEO and President, Mr. Michael Nemeroff. Ironically, I will be meeting up with tomorrow afternoon to talk more about the group; it will be good to chat with him more about the firm and how things are looking for the future.

In general, the Finance and Transactions group is split up into two parts: Mergers & Acquisitions and Financing.

The Mergers and acquisitions group works on every aspect of corporate strategy, dealing with the buying, selling, dividing and combining of different companies and similar entities. Most M&A transactions touch on a variety of specialty legal practice areas, including intellectual property, employee benefits, executive compensation, taxation, antitrust law, environmental, real estate and estate and financial planning.

The Financing and Secured Transactions attorneys represent borrowers, lenders, and mezzanine financiers in a broad array of transactions.  Lending clients, including commercial finance companies, banks, trustees, credit providers and other institutional lenders, receive the benefit of Vedder Price’s experience in structuring asset-based, general commercial and cash-flow loan transactions, loan restructurings and equipment leasing transactions.

In general, most new F&T lawyers at Vedder Price start off working both with the M&A group and the financing group. Then after spending about a year working across the groups, they tend to choose one path or the other depending on their interest, work flow, and partners they tend to work with.  I suspect I’ll be taking the same approach during my time.

This past week, I’ve spent a bit more time on the M&A side, helping with contract reviews and due diligence.  But since I’m only at the firm for a few weeks, it’s hard to see the full deal. Further, I’ve spent equally as much time meeting folks at the firm as I have working on projects.  So far, it’s been great, and I look forward to seeing how the rest of the time here goes. And when I do, I’ll be sure to update on everything.

Stay tuned to hear how the rest of the summer goes.

Thursday, August 11th, 2011 Business School, Law School No Comments

Northwestern Law Announces New Dean Daniel Rodriguez

After almost a year of searching, just last week, Northwestern Law school named a new Dean, Daniel Rodriguez. This comes after former Dean David E. Van Zandt ended his 15-year tenure as dean of Northwestern Law last year.  While Dean Van Zandt will definitely be missed by the students, faculty and administration at Northwestern, everyone still agrees that it’s very exciting to have the new dean.  Not only is Dean Rodriguez professionally accomplished but he’ll also bring a fresh perspective and net set of experiences to the school.

Daniel Rodriguez will take the post Jan. 1, the university said in a news release. And it sounds like everyone at Northwestern can’t wait to for him to arrive.  Northwestern Provost Daniel Linzer said “Northwestern President (Morton) Schapiro and I are extremely pleased that professor Rodriguez, who is known nationally for his legal scholarship and public law work, has accepted our offer. We are confident that his talents are well suited for leading our great law school.”

One reason everyone is excited is because the new Dean is very accomplished. Currently, he holds the Minerva House Drysdale Regents Chair in Law at the University of Texas School of Law. Rodriguez’s background is also impressive. Not only is he a graduate of Harvard Law who is published in a wide number of places, but he was also even named one of the nine transformational deans of the decade in an article by the ABA Journal. Above the Law wrote a similar article about him.

For current and incoming students at Northwestern, it will be interesting to see how things change over the next year or two. Will there be changes in the curriculum? Will the composition of the student body shift over time? Will Northwestern continue to come up with innovative programs that others schools haven’t considered yet?

It’s too early to answer all of those questions now. But it’s worth remembering that it was Dean Van Zandt was one of the early founders to the accelerated JD-MBA program at Northwestern. A program that not only caught on but that also took off. So much that schools like Yale, Wharton/Penn, Columbia and Cornell to name a few, have already followed in Northwestern’s footsteps to create programs of their own.

As a result, it looks like Rodriguez has some big shoes to fill.  But I’m sure he’ll be up to the challenge given his background, legal training, and diverse set of experiences. The only question now is, what is Rodriguez going to come up with next?

In anticipation of his arrival, just a few days ago, Northwestern Law also wrote a press release about the Dean’s appointment that it sent out to students. See below for the email that went out to the school.

Congratulations and best of luck to the new dean!

—-

To:      Northwestern Law Community

From:  NU Provost Dan Linzer

Re:      Northwestern University Announces New Law School Dean

It is with great pleasure that President Schapiro and I announce that Daniel Rodriguez, currently the Minerva House Drysdale Regents Chair in Law at the University of Texas School of Law, has accepted our invitation to serve as Dean of Northwestern University School of Law and Harold Washington Professor, effective January 1, 2012.  He succeeds David Van Zandt, who had served as the Dean of the school from 1995 to 2010, and Kim Yuracko, who has been serving as interim dean of the School and will continue to do so until the end of the calendar year.

Professor Rodriguez, a graduate of the Harvard Law School, is a nationally prominent scholar in administrative law, local government law, and state constitutional law.  He is a leader in the application of political economy to the study of public law, and he has authored and co-authored a series of influential articles and book chapters in this vein.

Before joining the University of Texas law faculty in 2007, Rodriguez served for seven years as Dean and the Warren Distinguished Professor of Law at the University of San Diego School of Law.  While serving as Dean, he expanded the size and stature of the faculty, created interdisciplinary programs and new academic centers, and undertook the first major capital campaign for the law school.

Before becoming Dean at the USD School of Law, he was a tenured professor of law at the University of California, Berkeley (Boalt Hall School of Law).  He has been a visiting professor at the University of Southern California, Illinois, and Virginia law schools, as well as at the University of California, San Diego and the Free University of Amsterdam.  During the Spring 2011 semester, he was the Stephen & Barbara Friedman Visiting Professor of Law at Columbia Law School.

In addition to his scholarly work, Professor Rodriguez has consulted with federal, state and local agencies, has served as an expert witness, has testified before Congressional committees and legislative working groups, and has served in various professional leadership roles, including as a member of the Executive Committee of the Association of American Law Schools and the Council for the ABA Section on Administrative Law and Regulatory Practice.  He is an elected member of both the American Law Institute and the American Bar Foundation.

We are very excited about the appointment of Professor Rodriguez as Dean of the Law School.  Please join me in congratulating him and welcoming him to Northwestern University.  Please also join me in thanking Interim Dean Kim Yuracko for her outstanding service, and the search committee, and particularly chair Shari Seidman Diamond, for the committee’s excellent work.

Choosing Classes at Kellogg and Northwestern Law School

Since the first day we stepped foot in Chicago, we all realized that we had a more limited schedule with classes that were curved, some that were required, and others where we could only be at Kellogg or the law school. Well this year things are changing just a bit. Not only do we get to pick every one of our elective classes but we also get to split our time between Kellogg and the law school. But despite being happy to finally have choices, for some, this is proving to be a daunting task given all the moving parts in the process.

With our final year in the JD-MBA program on the horizon, it’s finally time to bid for classes. We just started getting emails from Kellogg and from the law school over the past week or two. And as of now, we don’t have much time left before we have to start making some decision! Bids for Kellogg are due next Wednesday, just a few days from now. And law school bids are due in about two weeks. As such, a number  of JD-MBAs are spending a few hours thinking about classes this weekend.  Deciding which classes we want, planning our classes to align the schedules of both schools, and thinking about what classes they want to take before we are done with the program.

One class I’m considering is Entrepreneurial Law. On one hand, it’s one of the more popular and interesting classes at the law school.  On the other, it will probably cost me a fair amount of points. I also plan to take Negotiations and at some point this year Executive Compensation law, given my background on the topic and expertise of my law firm, Vedder Price.

Another class I’m considering is entirely new to Kellogg called Social Dynamics and Networks.  Just last year, the class was introduced by my MORS Professor (Uzzi) and it looks like it’s shaping up to be really interesting. And who could think of going through Kellogg without at least considering the class Managerial Leadership, by Harry Kraemer, executive partner at Madison Dearborn and former CEO of Baxter.

In general, most students hope to get a good academic experience but also want to have a bit more fun this year. After two grueling years of curved classes, struggling to learn new concepts, and tirelessly searching for summer jobs, some Js really want to focus on taking courses they want. Not just those that put them in the right place professionally.

Sounds exciting, right? Well, not too fast. Like most things, there are also some challenges.  The process of picking classes where the time works at both schools, where you have enough bid points, and where you end up content, not only with the class material but also the workload and professors is not always easy.  Similarly, some of might also have to think about recruiting now, which happens at both schools in August and September.

But either way, it’s a fun time to be in the program. And it will be interesting to see how things play out for us over time. So stay tuned to hear what happens! And best of luck to everyone that has to choose classes.

 

Saturday, July 16th, 2011 Business School, Law School 2 Comments

Reasons a JD-MBA Might Choose Law Over Business

The number of students interested in JD-MBA programs is increasing faster than ever before. Not only is the degree combination becoming more popular, but more and more schools are also offering programs increasing the overall number of students.  But despite that rise in popularity, JD-MBAs will always have to face one tricky dilemma – they will eventually have to choose whether to enter law or business upon graduation. For some the answer is obvious. But for most, choosing the right move is more difficult … like picking your next move in a game of chess. Not only do students have to determine what career is the best fit, but they also think about which pays the right salary, aligns most with their skill set, and sets them up to reach their career goals, not only in the short run but also in the long run.

The number of JD-MBAs that go into law versus business typically differs by school. That’s because some schools are located in regions where law firms are more centrally located, while other schools may have a better law school or business school in terms of ranking or recruiting. Further, the number also changes with the economic times, as the job opportunities ebb and flow in the respective industries.

Historically, many JD-MBAs have gone into business. That’s because in the long run, many JD-MBAs see business as a more lucrative path and think that a business career offers more work life balance. Likewise, many JD-MBAs also enjoy the MBA portion of the JD-MBA program because that portion is usually more social and less combative.

But not all JD-MBAs go into business. In fact, at Northwestern the split has historically been closer to 50/50, where about half go into law and the other half into business, and sometimes more than that the summer.  As such, I’ve decided to come up with a list of some of the possible reasons a JD-MBA student might make this decision.

Note that the list is not comprehensive.  Further, the bullets on the list also may not represent prevalent reasons that students choose. Instead it’s simply a list of some of the things that came to mind as I was writing the post.

  1. Law firms pay a higher average base pay out of graduate school
  2. You’re going to be an associate anyways and you prefer writing and reading to doing math
  3. Your background and/or skills are more aligned with the legal profession
  4. The law firms wined and dined you during recruiting and you couldn’t resist (this could apply to anyone)
  5. You know that you can always move to business fairly easily if you don’t like law
  6. You have an interest in government or politics and think law seems like a logical first step
  7. You want to learn deal-making but don’t want to be an investment banker or work in private equity
  8. You’re used to working long hours so you were up to that challenge
  9. You watched Law and Order growing up and always wanted to see what it felt like to be a lawyer
  10. You want to try it out for the summer and plan to recruit again next year if that doesn’t work out
  11. Many of your JD-MBA classmates decided to try out law so you didn’t want to miss out (FOMO)
  12. Your parents were lawyers so you want to be one too
  13. Law school recruiting happens first. So once you got an offer you decided to take it and stop recruiting.
  14. You have a good business network and could make a lot of money if they eventually became clients
  15. You go to a school that offers a lot of good business-law classes and want to see how it works in practice
  16. You are interested in business but want to distinguish yourself first

Feel free to comment if you have any additional reasons.

And good luck with whatever route you decide to take!

Saturday, June 25th, 2011 Business School, Careers, Law School 1 Comment

Wildly Important Goals

One thing I’ve learned in graduate school is that its important to have goals. Goals about what you want to accomplish, what industries you want to work in, which people you want to meet, and which classes you want to take. That’s because with goals, you have a clear sense of what’s important and you can make sure that you get a lot more of those things done. But sometimes, even having goals isn’t enough if you have too many of them. And so often times you need one goal that’s far more important than the rest.

One way I like to think about it is with the term WIG … otherwise known as Wildly Important Goals. I use the term WIG to describe those things that I’m most interested in pursuing.  The game changing ideas that you want to relentlessly work toward for as long as necessary. The ones that not only keep you up randomly until 3am when everyone else is sleeping but that also wake you up at 5am when the sun hasn’t risen yet. In business school, they’re the ones you skip the best party of the year to work on when everyone else is out.

Over the past two to three years, I’ve done my best to always have a WIG.  I had one coming into the JD-MBA program in law school my first year. I had one this year at Kellogg and pursued it even in spit of core classes and recruiting. And I have a new one now that I am working on for twelve to fifteen months.

In my view,  some things in life are worth spending the extra time on. Fine-tuning every detail for. Becoming an expert at. And giving it your all.

Because as you continue to progress in your career, the competition gets harder and the people get smarter. And as a result, it become much harder to achieve all your goals. Especially the worthwhile ones that the smartest people pursue.  So if you want to do well, sometimes you have to hone in. And if you want to hone in, then you have to make a point to pay special attention to it, especially in the midst of all the chaos surrounding you at school and at work. One way to do that is by identifying an important goal well ahead of time  and then working relentlessly to achieve it.

That’s what I mean by WIG.

So … what’s your WIG?

What woke you up today at 5am?  And will you be up at 5am tomorrow working on it again?  I’m sure your competition will be.

Saturday, June 18th, 2011 Business School, Law School 21 Comments

Merger Article: Reflecting on the 2010-2011 School Year at Kellogg

To the second year Kellogg students from the class of 2011 that will graduate in two weeks, congratulations! What a wonderful achievement! To the class of 2012 about to head off to your summer internships, congrats on finishing your first year, and best of luck for the summer. As a current MBA student, I can’t say enough about how unique the MBA experience is. For many it’s the long-awaited gateway to a new career. For others, it’s a way to learn more about not only about the world but also about yourself. And for some, it’s considered to be the most transformative two years of their lives. But no matter which camp you fit into, it’s important to reflect on the year. And just a few weeks ago, the Merger selected me to write the “Year in Review” article where I talked about just that.

In just two short days, the last version of the 2010-2011 Merger will become available. For the past year, I’ve written articles in each of the newspapers, andI had the great fortune of being asked to write one of the “year in reflection” articles for this edition. Not only was it a great chance to reflect on the past year, but also a chance to challenge the students and myself to do great things after Kellogg.

See below for the article.

———

 

YearReview

Title: Reflecting on the 2010-2011 School Year

Author: Jeremy C. Wilson

2010 was an interesting year. Most of us left high-paying banking and consulting jobs and finally decided to return to business school. And what timing! The financial crisis was finally starting to fade and the prospects of recovery left the business world enormously hopeful. At the same time, the nomination of Sally Blount as the first female Dean of Kellogg had just made business news history.  Many of us were excited to be back in the classroom during such interesting times, especially as we knew the markets were recovering just in time to land our dream jobs at business school.

But one thing we didn’t know is that many of us would also be scrambling in business school. Many of us had to scramble to learn accounting and finance since it was our first time ever taking the classes.  Others of us scrambled to stay awake in DECS and MECN, after spending the night before prepping for upcoming job interviews. And some of us scrambled all year trying to figure out exactly what our dream job was, or if that job even existed.

And so that leads me to the million-dollar question today. The one question that’s been on everyone’s mind since last August. What is the best opportunity to pursue at Kellogg? And what can I do to ensure that I maximize my success?

Having heard from a lot of successful alum over the past year, there’s a variety of things go into it.  Getting started early, laying the groundwork, putting yourself in the right position at the right time, knowing how to seize opportunities, and most of all having passion.

Because making it all the way to the top is hard; and the competition can be stiff. We all saw it in our core classes at Kellogg and during recruiting. Someone always knew more, someone always worked harder, and someone always practiced more cases. Every time. It was inevitable.

But business school is a piece of cake if you compare it to becoming world class at the professional level. Coming up with the idea for the next big internet start-up, becoming a Fortune 500 CEO, winning a seat in congress, or being part of the deal team that takes Facebook public.  In fact, statistically speaking, you have a better shot of becoming a professional athlete.

In a recent talk few weeks ago, Jonathan Reckford, CEO for Habitat for Humanity emphasized that same point. That it’s not just about going to the best school or getting the good grades.  But that made it to his position because he figured out his “professional purpose” and did everything he could to pursue it.

Jim Hendry, the General Manager of the Chicago Cubs agreed when he spoke in my Sports Leadership class. That it takes 1,000 little things to go right to make it to the top, so passion for your industry more than anything else makes the difference.  Because if you’re not ready to go all out, then you’re not taking the big risks, and you’re not making the sacrifices. He noted that he turned down a job that paid nearly three times as much, just before landing his GM role in Chicago.

There are plenty of MBAs from all the top schools that face this same dilemma. They get good grades and work at “top” firms but don’t have passion. So they never become the Managing Partner, can’t land a coveted CEO role, and can’t garner the support to fund their political campaign.

Don’t get me wrong.  The majority of Kellogg alumni go on to lead highly successful lives by almost every possible measure. Good jobs. High incomes. Happy families. And I have no doubt that all of us will achieve the same upon graduation. But for just for one minute, I’m talking about something a little more. Like creating the social network that becomes Silicon Valley’s most admired company. Being the first female to Dean at two top business schools. Or best of all, figuring out a strategy to capture the world’s most wanted criminal after eight years.

So for just one moment, what’s more important than heading off top firms for the summer is that we all take a moment to reflect on all the lessons we’ve learned in our first year at Kellogg.  Furthermore, we should also understand that to achieve our utmost success, it’s imperative that we spend next year uncovering our deepest passions and doing everything we can to relentlessly pursue them. Only then will we be able to put all of our talents to their best use and unlock our greatest potential for change.

—————

Please let me know what you think. I welcome all comments and all feedback.

Wednesday, June 1st, 2011 Business School, Careers, Law School 16 Comments

One Difference Between Business and Law School

Business school and law school are different – kind of like the left side of your brain is different from the right side. And not just because my classes are different and the topics discussed in the classrooms are different but also because my classmates are different and the flow of the conversation in the classroom are very different.  As the year continues to go by, that fact continues to become more and more evident.

If you are in a business school class, more often than not, numbers are king. You have to think about the financials. Build out the business plan. And think about quantitatively-proven strategies to help you execute that business plan.  Likewise, the cases are often about getting the right answer. So even though all the other aspects of the case are important, getting the right answer is usually most important, especially in classes like finance and accounting.

On the other hand, law school is more about the reasoning behind the answer. So we read hundreds of pages of cases. Discuss those cases in class. And think a lot about what a reasonable person would do in a similar situation. So even if arguments have been made in the past, we are also asked to formulate our own arguments and think about how to disprove the counterarguments. And not just in written form but also publicly, because most professors use the Socratic Method in class.

Like I mentioned in my last post, our arguments have to be good. Because the professors will probe, and because we have to make our arguments in front of lots of people whose opinions we care about, at least during our first year.  So you have to put in the work to be ready.

On the other hand, business school often has less work. Because once you come up with the answer, then you can be done.  Likewise working in teams often helps the flow of the discussion enormously. The exception might be in a very technical subject, and you have to do a lot of work just to learn some of the basics.

Upon reflection, I’m glad I am in the JD-MBA program. The program gives me a chance to mix it up a little. Build different skill sets. Meet different types of people. Indulge in different learning styles. And activate both my left brain and right brain.

What about you? Are you considering a JD-MBA program? If not, should you be?

Friday, April 22nd, 2011 Business School, Law School No Comments

JD-MBA Speaker Series – Nicholas D. Chabraja Former CEO General Dynamics

There’s a movement taking place in the business and legal worlds. As a senior executive at a public company today, it’s just about impossible to escape complex legal issues. Similarly, if you’re a leading corporate lawyer, you consistently run into business issues, not only at your firm but also at the firms of your clients. The next question then, is obvious. Is it possible to have a career that combines both business and law. And if so, how can you do it? Well, the Northwestern JD-MBA program seeks to answer that exact question. As today the program sponsored a talk by Nichlas D. Chabraja to talk about the intersection of business and law.

Kudos to Northwestern’s JD-MBA program for once again taking the lead in facilitating conversations with both the business school and law school.  Over the past few years, there has been a lot more momentum with regards to the collaboration of the business and legal industries. And Kellogg has stayed well ahead of that trend.

Last year, Northwestern Announced the first JD-MBA Professorship, which not only came with $3MM funding made in honor of General Dynamics recently retired CEO, Nichlas D. Chabraja, who as Northwestern law alum. This year, Mr. Chabraja agreed to join us on campus as today he will give his ideas about the intersection of business and law in the future.

See below for the ad placed in the halls at Kellogg.

Northwestern JD-MBA Association
presents a discussion with
Nicholas D. Chabraja
Retired Chairman and Chief Executive Officer
General Dynamics Corporation

The Northwestern JD-MBA Association is pleased to host a discussion with Nicholas D. Chabraja, retired Chairman and CEO of General Dynamics Corporation. A graduate of Northwestern University (WCAS ’64, Law ’67), Mr. Chabraja began his career at Jenner & Block before joining General Dynamics as its General Counsel in 1993. After four years in that role, he became Chairman and CEO and served in the position until his retirement in 2009. Mr. Chabraja’s training as an attorney and his success in running General Dynamics make him uniquely suited to discuss the continued convergence of the legal and business worlds. During his tenure as CEO, Mr. Chabraja utilized a keen understanding of both disciplines in order to transform the company and better align it with the evolving needs of militaries around the world. As a result of these efforts, sales increased from $4 billion in 1997 to $32 billion in 2009, with General Dynamics most recently moving up to #69 on the Fortune 500 ranking. We hope that you’ll be able to join us for this insightful event.

Monday, April 4, 2011, 5:15 p.m.

Jacobs Center – G40

This event is free and open to the public.
Reservations are not required. Students may register at Campus Groups.
Monday, April 4th, 2011 Business School, Careers, Law School No Comments

The Top 10 Blog Posts of 2010

Although I think a lot more about quality than quantity on my website, I do pay attention to what my readers are paying attention to. Not only do I keep up with trends in reader comments, the emails that come in behind the scenes, and the topics that spur conversations with friends, but I also count the number of hits that posts get. While it’s not the perfect measure, it is the easiest and the most tangible way to see what people are paying attention to. To that end, here below are 10 most popular posts of 2010, as measured by “hits”. I look forward to continuing to write about things you find interesting in 2011.

  1. 2010 Law School Rankings: National Law Journal’s Go-to Schools
    2010 Law School Rankings based on number of placements at top law firms in the US
  2. Korean Popstar In My Section And Diversity At Northwestern
    Post about a Korean pop star that was in my section at Northwestern Law School
  3. 2010 Princeton Review Law School Rankings
    2010 Law School Rankings by Princeton Review
  4. Applicant Question: Playing the MBA Wait-List Game
    My response to an applicant question about being waitlisted for an MBA program
  5. Careers Question: Undergraduate Major and Path To CEO
    My response to a question from an undergraduate student about what to major in at college
  6. Northwestern JD-MBA Class of 2012 Profile
    A quick profile of the Northwestern JD-MBA Class of 2012
  7. US News MBA Rankings and Law School Rankings
    2010 Business School and Law School Rankings by US News
  8. Applicant Question: Asking for an MBA Recommendation Letter?
    My response to a reader’s question about letters of recommendation for MBA programs
  9. My Thoughts on Day At Kellogg (DAK), Round 1, Class of 2012
    Reflecting about my experience at Day at Kellogg (DAK) last year during the first round
  10. Good Article: College Majors of Top CEOs
    My thoughts on college majors and an article about what CEOs have majored in

A couple of notes on the top posts. First, is that the real #1, #2, and #5 posts are my Homepage, the Archives, and About my Blog respectively.  I have not listed those in the rankings above. Second, is that some posts have the advantage of being on the net longer than others. In general, the advantage is not as large as it sounds, as posts generally see their most hits in the first couple of weeks of being posted. However, posts from December are likely at  distinct disadvantage. And finally, keep in mind that these aren’t my opinions about which posts are good. Instead it’s the actual rankings based on hits by the readers. In the next week, I’ll also share a few of the posts I think are must reads.  Stay tuned to see which ones they are.

Happy New Year everyone!

Friday, December 31st, 2010 Business School, Law School No Comments

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