Law School

The economy is still bad…

I’ll admit it. I’m a little nervous about going to law school. We’re talking $30,000 a year invested in my education. I feel pretty confident that I’ll be able to get a few academic scholarships here and there along with government aid, but I highly doubt my entire 3 years in law school will be paid for like it was in undergrad. So, that means I will be carrying some debt after graduation.

I didn’t even worry about how I was going to pay for my undergraduate education. Okay, I did a little bit. I knew my parents didn’t have the money to send me to school so I worked 2 jobs in high school to save money, dual-enrolled to gain college credit early, and made sure I worked hard in high school. It paid off. I earned enough academic scholarships, saved enough money and received enough financial aid that I’m not in any debt now school-wise. Except of course, I’m still paying for my car. I’ll pay that off right before school starts. Yay.

Law school is something I really want to do, and I refuse to let newspaper articles and statistics scare me. Unemployment is high for everyone in all fields. Believe it or not, even some nurses are having a hard time finding jobs. My future mother-in-law told me some time last month that she read somewhere that a local hospital in Melbourne, FL received something like 200 applications for 50 nursing spots. Unreal. The market is saturated right now with thousands of laid-off people with years of experience and Ph’ds that it’s making things even harder for recent grads with no work experience. Competition is tough. The shrinking economy is also killing certain fields as well a.k.a. journalism and certain parts of education.

What’s even crazier is the budget cuts across the board at schools. When I learned that UCF, my alma mater, was cutting programs like actuarial science (my fiance graduated with a B.S. degree in this and is doing quite well), cardiopulmonary sciences and possibly the entire statistics department, I was floored. Seriously? The statistics department?  Are they crazy? Most of the programs at UCF require statistics in order to get a certain degree. Statistics is valuable for research and funding for the university. I can think of 20 other programs they could lop off and not feel a thing.

The economy is crappy. Jobs are still hard to come by, and I’m still living in the highest unemployment area in Florida. My hope is that there will be some recovery in the next year. Lots of people are heading back to school to sort of “hide” from the economy persay. I’m not going to school for that reason, but it’s not a bad idea for people who are unemployed and looking to change career paths.

But, as always, there is no guarentee that another degree with make things better.


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