Celebrating 10 years! 2007-2017

Status/Class: $150k+ Computer Programmer vs. $sub-100k Lawyer

Pretty accurate http://www.halfsigma.com/2006/05/ca reer_and frugal_and_puzzled02/25/10
The computer programmer gigs aren't nearly as lucrative as t KarlMarx02/25/10
Looks like Ross Perot was right. No way to turn back the tid Soothesayer902/16/12
A lot of people in this thread claim that IT is being outsou adamtheengineer02/16/12
The people in India generally quality test after another tea beat12307/23/15
Status is relative to your friends. lawlyer8207/16/15
I'd rather be married to my software developer husband that unfrozenlawyer02/25/10
An easier stance to have when enjoying the security of marri frugal_and_puzzled02/26/10
I don't have any status. We are just worker bees. unfrozenlawyer02/26/10
Precisely. Not exactly the thing most (lazy) humans are see frugal_and_puzzled02/26/10
... Guest02/26/10
What a bunch of baloney - f&p. I met my husband when I was e AssociateX02/16/12
500k in the bank? So you married the guy for his money? Bangbus02/19/12
Well then your friend sucks at being a prestige whore... Aka anonattempt07/23/15
My father is a successful entrepreneur. My family almost di unfrozenlawyer02/26/10
i thought you pulled your family out of the barrio via your MataHairy02/15/12
Why did they do that? geoffrey02/16/12
did you really just spell "bye" incorrectly? lol at the comm asdfgh1234502/16/12
As a decorated astronaut and the world's richest race car dr therewillbeblood02/19/12
double unfrozenlawyer02/26/10
nvm geoffrey02/16/12
My husband is in a sales/customer service job that requires Frida02/26/10
Did you read the link? The point was that money is not the frugal_and_puzzled02/26/10
I read the link -- I just think it is dumb. I guess I care a Frida02/26/10
LOL. Frugal, for someone who claims to follow the "Mill stateofbeasley02/26/10
I am finally seeing the light. Seems like this "status" thi frugal_and_puzzled02/27/10
I agree with you in the sense that we live in a world where TheImmigrant02/15/12
I think a lot of it has to do with the general impression of digitalserf02/26/10
Development (programming) = outsourced. IT consulting, on t kansas02/26/10
My husband's company is always looking for people too. unfrozenlawyer02/26/10
the garbage man making 900k trumps everyone else in prestige turde02/26/10
Have fun trying to pay your bills with superficial, meaningl OhioDocReviewer02/26/10
CAPITAL. unfrozenlawyer02/26/10
Money is power, and money is access. The notion that "XOXOH stateofbeasley02/26/10
Not with $400 limit and a $250 annual fee. unfrozenlawyer02/26/10
Apparently, paying bills is for suckers anyway. Welcome to frugal_and_puzzled02/27/10
Are you seriously that insecure about your image? What is t stateofbeasley02/27/10
Any ambiguities would be readily resolved if people would ju Venceremos02/27/10
What matters more? Snobby parties or being about to afford a Frida02/28/10
Depends if you want to marry the cashier at CVS or an educat frugal_and_puzzled02/28/10
From a purely shallow perspective, if you look at sites like stateofbeasley02/28/10
Close, but you're not quite there. I am talking about sex frugal_and_puzzled03/01/10
I'm not sure why you changed the goalposts all of a sudden. stateofbeasley03/01/10
Good point, Beas. I still say you're more likely to mar frugal_and_puzzled03/02/10
"Hi, Christophe Rocancourt!" OhioDocReviewer03/02/10
You would seriously prefer marrying a shrewish, controlling, therewillbeblood02/19/12
Absolutely. You know nothing about how the lower class oper frugal_and_puzzled02/19/12
We don't get invited to those parties... Our parties have penncruncher02/28/10
Vence? Want to take this one? I know you see it too. frugal_and_puzzled02/28/10
I know a fair amount of people that own convenience stores. penncruncher02/28/10
what i have always heard that the reason convenience stores JJPisdead02/28/10
I can't believe it only "costed" so little. Screw prestige! frugal_and_puzzled02/28/10
Pretty sure I wouldn't want to party with those people. lawlyer8207/16/15
Prestige without money is an oxymoron in America, and the on toiletexpert02/28/10
Amen! Some lawyer came to my house the other day. He is run penncruncher02/28/10
I don't know what the current exchange rate is, but surely a aknas02/28/10
You know, that doesn't seem like a terribly bad gift. Especi Snooder03/04/10
(bump) frugal_and_puzzled02/15/12
Why would you bump this? If I were you I'd just pretend I ne gribble02/15/12
All this thread does is prove what a tool Frugal is. MedicalDoctor02/15/12
http://helloexactly.ytmnd.com/ OhioDocReviewer02/16/12
My 2 cents: Prestige is just a societal indicator of "whe HCDevid02/16/12
Computer programming is a shrinking field. Not exactly fruga Miseslibertarian02/16/12
Your link shows 21% job growth between 2008-2018. That is we CattleProd02/16/12
That's for software engineers champ. The bls put both on the Miseslibertarian02/16/12
You're an idiot. 0000107/18/15
Here's a recently e-mailed listing of jobs for me in the DC aknas02/16/12
I live on the West Coast and the image of Software Engineers CattleProd02/16/12
Yeah, because everyone can work in Google, Facebook, and etc baraban02/16/12
"SV is full of extremely smart people who didn't get lucky w CattleProd02/16/12
Why are you comparing 150K programmers to sub-100K lawyers? baraban02/16/12
Yeah, that is what's comparable really. The actual average s TheImmigrant02/16/12
No it isn't. Anyone with experience can make $100,000+ in in CattleProd02/16/12
I'm not saying that you're wrong, I'm saying that you exagge TheImmigrant02/16/12
"Why not compare 150K programmers to biglaw associates, for CattleProd02/16/12
I totally agree. Sorry but most people who are programmers a GS1302/19/12
Well for comparison's sake, the same argument can be made of gribble02/16/12
"200 years ago the factory owners/landowners were the presti CattleProd02/16/12
Not according to frugal lol. gribble02/16/12
I agree that prestige is a lagging form of status. Stereotyp CattleProd02/16/12
The grass is always greener somewhere else. I've switched f baraban02/16/12
I'm pretty sure that every kid who studies liberal arts has TheImmigrant02/16/12
True with me, also. I was smart, but lazy. inthehills02/19/12
F&P (*gulp*) has a very solid point in general that income a thecharmingmresq02/16/12
I think we're confusing prestige and power. Money and/or a andy02/16/12
The top politician in the world is prestigious. The top 300 gribble02/16/12
Completely wrong on the money for politicians point. Look at HCDevid02/16/12
It all depends on location. In the Tri-State area and Chi wawaweewa02/16/12
lol pro athletes own most of those professions in terms of d gribble02/16/12
You might as well say, "cartel kingpins own all!". Pro at wawaweewa02/16/12
Computer still hands down beats law. My aspie cousin got a carol14207/15/15
The thing about programming is it's much higher status than therewillbeblood07/15/15
Funny thing is that I am pretty sure he is actually retarded carol14207/16/15
Sounds way worse than affirmative action to me. AA admits st elitttist07/21/15
In the tech world people don't look down on you for bs unlik gs1307/17/15
Meh tech world is a meritocracy. Techies can smell a poser imoothereforeim07/17/15
This thread shows the lack of understanding from a lot of pe typ307/16/15
Finally someone who distinguishes between IT and developer. 0000107/18/15
As someone in computer science, we're some weird mofos. Girl tuliotanaka07/17/15
"IT" encompasses such a large cross-section of jobs, it's ha onegin07/20/15
This is the correct response. Using law to segue into som typ307/21/15
I just moved to CT and I'm torn between choosing two career boseisaltplace12/05/17

frugal_and_puzzled (Feb 25, 2010 - 10:52 pm)

Pretty accurate
http://www.halfsigma.com/2006/05/career_and_clas.html

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KarlMarx (Feb 25, 2010 - 11:37 pm)

The computer programmer gigs aren't nearly as lucrative as they were in the 90s. I work in IT and it seems like most of our coding/production testing labor is being contracted out to India. Those that are in-house seem like they are recent immigrants from India/China.

Instead of getting more in-house programmers, my department just contracted all the work out to a Indian datacenter. Was just setting up the machines for the project today, many of the coders didn't look happy about the project.

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Soothesayer9 (Feb 16, 2012 - 12:52 pm)

Looks like Ross Perot was right. No way to turn back the tide with what we have now in the WH crosshairs: Mittens and Obammy.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EAHM9rXjdUo

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adamtheengineer (Feb 16, 2012 - 10:01 am)

A lot of people in this thread claim that IT is being outsourced. It's true. It's also true that organizations are foregoing staff for SaaS. However, developers are still in high demand. Have the people claiming otherwise on this thread looked at job boards? Have they read about the talent acquisition fights between Facebook, Google, and Apple? You must be living in a black hole if you think significant engineering responsibilities can be outsourced to India or Pakistan.

"If you pay peanuts, you get monkeys," says Vijay Thadani, chief executive of New Delhi-based NIIT Ltd. India, a recruitment firm that also runs job-training programs for college graduates lacking the skills to land good jobs.

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703515504576142092863219826.html

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beat123 (Jul 23, 2015 - 7:56 am)

The people in India generally quality test after another team member in the USA does.

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lawlyer82 (Jul 16, 2015 - 10:56 am)

Status is relative to your friends.

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unfrozenlawyer (Feb 25, 2010 - 11:06 pm)

I'd rather be married to my software developer husband that to some grad from my TTTT. Class is overrated bullshit.

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frugal_and_puzzled (Feb 26, 2010 - 11:15 am)

An easier stance to have when enjoying the security of marriage, and the spoils of his gainful career.

Contrast that to being a single woman. Status now plays a massive role what you're "getting" from him. In fact, status is now *everything*, b/c your name is not on his paycheck NOR his debt!

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unfrozenlawyer (Feb 26, 2010 - 1:16 pm)

I don't have any status. We are just worker bees.

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frugal_and_puzzled (Feb 26, 2010 - 1:29 pm)

Precisely. Not exactly the thing most (lazy) humans are seeking when trying to marry "up" !

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Guest (Feb 26, 2010 - 1:42 pm)

...

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AssociateX (Feb 16, 2012 - 10:07 am)

What a bunch of baloney - f&p. I met my husband when I was earning peanuts. He works in IT in a civil service position. I now outearn him by a good $10-15K. To me, I did marry up in the sense that my husband had a good $500K in the bank (investment portfolio, savings, retirement, etc) and no debt. My friend was a prestige whore and married a guy from NYLS she was dating and this poor schmuck had over $175K in loans (UG & LS) and can't budget to save his life...and his 2nd law job in 6 years only paid $67K. Try sustaining a family of 4 on that income - they lived in a basement apartment for 5 years to save $$ to buy a tiny shack house in a NYC suburb. They can't afford to even take a Disney vacation.

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Bangbus (Feb 19, 2012 - 7:43 pm)

500k in the bank?

So you married the guy for his money? That 500k, assuming it's properly invested, probably "out earns" what you make--and your husband is still bringing home a paycheck. Unless you have other assets of comparable value, you are not making more money than your husband--remember that.

Also, prestige is just one quality by which 99% of women on this earth judge a man. As Tom Lykeis used to say, women just want men with fame, money, and power.

Your friend married for prestige, and you married for money. If you or your friend were really hot and smart, either one of you could have bagged a guy with more money, fame, and power. But you probably don't have much to bargain with, so you settled for an IT guy with a lot of money. Good for you.

This concept is not baloney, you can see it all around you.

For example, your friend's husband has no money, fame, or power, and in your eyes he is a "poor schmuck" who can't budget to save his life and only earns 67k.

From the limited information you've provided, he actually sounds like a decent guy, but you have already judged him as unworthy.

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anonattempt (Jul 23, 2015 - 8:26 am)

Well then your friend sucks at being a prestige whore... Aka probably not the case.

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unfrozenlawyer (Feb 26, 2010 - 9:52 pm)

My father is a successful entrepreneur. My family almost disowned me when I married my family and they certainly limited my inheritance. Some people go from rags to riches. I went from riches to rags for my 150k a year husband. Good by Bentley.

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MataHairy (Feb 15, 2012 - 9:55 pm)

i thought you pulled your family out of the barrio via your ivy league education? Which is it?

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geoffrey (Feb 16, 2012 - 12:39 am)

Why did they do that?

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asdfgh12345 (Feb 16, 2012 - 6:59 am)

did you really just spell "bye" incorrectly? lol at the comment below this. the # of ppl on here who create alternate personalities is truly one of the most hilarious parts of this site. i thought this was a lawyer forum, but some of you think it's a WoW-esque place to create fictional characters. LOL

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therewillbeblood (Feb 19, 2012 - 3:38 pm)

As a decorated astronaut and the world's richest race car driver I am offended that you would dare accuse me of such things.

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unfrozenlawyer (Feb 26, 2010 - 9:52 pm)

double

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geoffrey (Feb 16, 2012 - 12:37 am)

nvm

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Frida (Feb 26, 2010 - 2:05 pm)

My husband is in a sales/customer service job that requires no formal education (but he has been doing it ten years). He makes about $25,000 more per year than I make as an attorney. Higher education beyond undergrad is seriously overrated.

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frugal_and_puzzled (Feb 26, 2010 - 4:18 pm)

Did you read the link? The point was that money is not the issue, it's the status. Two totally different things. A garbageman makes $100k, but he has ZERO social status. He doesn't go to black tie parties, even though he can afford a tux. Get it?

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Frida (Feb 26, 2010 - 4:59 pm)

I read the link -- I just think it is dumb. I guess I care about money more than status.

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stateofbeasley (Feb 26, 2010 - 10:54 pm)

LOL.

Frugal, for someone who claims to follow the "Millionaire Next Door" path, you seem obsessed with image and "class", something that the author of "Millionaire Next Door" downplays in almost every chapter.

Black tie parties? ROFL!

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frugal_and_puzzled (Feb 27, 2010 - 1:36 am)

I am finally seeing the light. Seems like this "status" thing is really what it's all about. I thought you were supposed to work hard and save up. I think I missed the entire point.

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TheImmigrant (Feb 15, 2012 - 9:57 pm)

I agree with you in the sense that we live in a world where essential resources aren't scare, but social capital is highly scarce. We all have our material needs taken care of. It's the social/love life that leaves us wanting. I consider income relevant to the extent that poor income is indicative of social rejection. Getting that raise/promotion/fellowship/plumber apprenticeship is about social skills.

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digitalserf (Feb 26, 2010 - 2:08 pm)

I think a lot of it has to do with the general impression of American IT workers as arrogant toads. A lot of companies got burned by Y2K and now routinely outsource to avoid the "high priests" of tech.

On the other hand, IT has been gutted by Indian offshoring centers. We created the computer in the USA but are now too retarded and/or cheap to hire and use our native staff.

As seems to be the trend, there appears to be no middle ground. Corporate American really won't stand for any attitude from the working class (including attorneys). Once you get a little uppity they just outsource you.

Now, the only real place for unions in in the local, state and federal governments, which are going broke and collapsing under the weight of massive outlays of salary, pension and health benefits for employees. Meanwhile, the private sector workers are losing benefits, having salary cut and competing with the third world for their survival.

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kansas (Feb 26, 2010 - 4:24 pm)

Development (programming) = outsourced. IT consulting, on the other hand, is still hiring and pays quite well, but only people with 1) technical chops and 2) people/management skills. My sweetie is an engineer and consults for a MS partner, and they are always looking for people. It can't be outsourced.

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unfrozenlawyer (Feb 26, 2010 - 11:41 pm)

My husband's company is always looking for people too.

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turde (Feb 26, 2010 - 4:49 pm)

the garbage man making 900k trumps everyone else in prestige. Wall Street bankers and biglaw partners are little bitches compared to him.

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OhioDocReviewer (Feb 26, 2010 - 9:58 pm)

Have fun trying to pay your bills with superficial, meaningless tripe like PRESTIGE.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z6xkT7FMyTc

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unfrozenlawyer (Feb 26, 2010 - 9:59 pm)

CAPITAL.

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stateofbeasley (Feb 26, 2010 - 10:56 pm)

Money is power, and money is access. The notion that "XOXOHTH OMG PRESTIGE" means anything without money to back it is a joke.

Anyone with a credit card can pretend to be rich.

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unfrozenlawyer (Feb 26, 2010 - 10:57 pm)

Not with $400 limit and a $250 annual fee.

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frugal_and_puzzled (Feb 27, 2010 - 1:35 am)

Apparently, paying bills is for suckers anyway. Welcome to 2008+,

Imagine going to parties and telling people you're a mechanic. Actually, you wouldn't even be at those parties. You'd be in the sticks somewhere.

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stateofbeasley (Feb 27, 2010 - 8:09 am)

Are you seriously that insecure about your image? What is the point of denigrating mechanics and those who live "in the sticks"?

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Venceremos (Feb 27, 2010 - 9:37 am)

Any ambiguities would be readily resolved if people would just carry the 23rd edition of the Carrington-Buffetta Prestige Ratings with them to parties and social engagements. (24th edition due out mid-March.)

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Frida (Feb 28, 2010 - 3:22 pm)

What matters more? Snobby parties or being about to afford a nice house and have kids?

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frugal_and_puzzled (Feb 28, 2010 - 4:30 pm)

Depends if you want to marry the cashier at CVS or an educated professional.
If it's the latter, you're better off being an in-dent law student.
If the former, than debt-free homeowner mechanic is just fine.

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stateofbeasley (Feb 28, 2010 - 9:38 pm)

From a purely shallow perspective, if you look at sites like Seeking Arrangement, men are looking for youth and beauty, and women are looking for money and security.

From the man's perspective, whether the woman is a CVS cashier or educated professional matters little compared to whether she is young and hot or not.

From the woman's perspective, whether the man is an auto mechanic or educated professional matters little compared to whether he can provide for her or not.

Being a debt-ridden TTT law school graduate with poor job prospects doesn't matter so much for a hot woman because she has a better chance of scoring a man who can provide -- she has what men are looking for. Being a debt-ridden TTT law school graduate with poor job prospects is a big minus for a man though. Not being able to provide for a family, and having the financial drain of loan payments is a huge minus. You won't see broke-ass lawyers getting attention on sites like Seeking Arrangement. You can have a JD, MBA, and LL.M, but if you don't have the dough, forget about it.

That's about as brutal and honest as I can put it.

Men look for attractive women. Women look for men who can provide.

From a commonsense perspective, "social status" just doesn't overcome unattractiveness in a woman. And "social status" doesn't overcome a man's inability to provide for a family.

From both a 'peace of mind' standpoint and 'marriage/kids' standpoint, "social status" is ultimately just not that relevant.

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frugal_and_puzzled (Mar 1, 2010 - 8:38 pm)

Close, but you're not quite there.

I am talking about sex and dating.
NOT having 2 kids when the truth comes out
Unemployed lawyer beats the $100k plumbers 9 out of 10 times.

See, what you overlook is that she's not asking for your W2 or Sallie Mae statements. She's looking at your shoes. It takes $500 to look like a million bucks. It takes $100 for a decent dinner. Done.

Want proof?
Put up 2 profiles.
Plumber and lawyer.
Leave salary out. (Or don't!)

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stateofbeasley (Mar 1, 2010 - 9:08 pm)

I'm not sure why you changed the goalposts all of a sudden. In your Feb. 28 4:30PM post, you were talking about marriage. Now its just about dating and hookups?

If marriage to the "educated professional" of your dreams is your ultimate goal, then you've said nothing to counter my 9:38 PM post. Ok, so you might get a shallow date due to your "prestige", but that $600 spent putting up a fraud of an exterior won't get very far beyond that.

Again, look at sites like Seeking Arrangement. What you overlook is that she's absolutely asking how much money you can spend on her.

A plumber who can shower lots of money on a sugar baby is going to get lots of attention.

Broke unemployed lawyer, no attention.

Are you in law school? Law school graduate? Are you a shill for the law school industry? Because you seem awfully invested in proving to everyone that empty prestige is a great thing.

Not much more I can say about this. None of your arguments make much sense.

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frugal_and_puzzled (Mar 2, 2010 - 6:23 pm)

Good point, Beas.

I still say you're more likely to marry higher with $0 and a JD than if you're a Con Ed lineworker. You simply will run in different circles and geographies. And have different social status, and implied family pedigree and wealth. Loafers vs. sneakers.

And, you'll date higher too, which is all about short term.

I disagree the faking it won't take you far.
Women fake debt all the way into their 5th year of marriage!!
For men, it can get to into months of sex before anything's amiss.
I am sure some people here can attest to it.

I have absolutely nothing to do with law.
In this thread, I simply think the OP article on status/class is insightful.
Something most people are not willing to admit or even recognize.

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OhioDocReviewer (Mar 2, 2010 - 7:42 pm)

"Hi, Christophe Rocancourt!"

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therewillbeblood (Feb 19, 2012 - 3:41 pm)

You would seriously prefer marrying a shrewish, controlling, unpleasant woman with a great job and a graduate degree over a beautiful, sweet, fun CVS cashier?

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frugal_and_puzzled (Feb 19, 2012 - 6:12 pm)

Absolutely. You know nothing about how the lower class operates, little child.

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penncruncher (Feb 28, 2010 - 4:58 am)

We don't get invited to those parties...

Our parties have girls like these :) (NSFW)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e5jwEzINfd0

While I may live out in the sticks at least I got a 130k or so cash on hand now and I'm pretty glad I didn't splurge it on law school.

thank you Nando :)


Also, fuck prestige rankings and shopping in general. I hate shopping. I just feel like I'm getting royally fucked up the ass cause I know whatever I'm buying costed the owner of the store half of whatever he's selling it to me.

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frugal_and_puzzled (Feb 28, 2010 - 9:32 am)

Vence? Want to take this one? I know you see it too.

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penncruncher (Feb 28, 2010 - 10:52 am)

I know a fair amount of people that own convenience stores. When you buy something for $2.50, the store owner usually got it for $1.

Shoot, you can visit a sams club yourself and see how much you are getting ripped.

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JJPisdead (Feb 28, 2010 - 3:12 pm)

what i have always heard that the reason convenience stores are such a ripoff is they are too small to buy stuff in such bulk that they get it as cheaply as, say, sams club. for that reason, bigger stores can sell items at a lower price and still make a profit.

i have to imagine convenience store owners are still making a nice profit on the stuff they sell.

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frugal_and_puzzled (Feb 28, 2010 - 4:31 pm)

I can't believe it only "costed" so little.
Screw prestige!!

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lawlyer82 (Jul 16, 2015 - 10:59 am)

Pretty sure I wouldn't want to party with those people.

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toiletexpert (Feb 28, 2010 - 12:41 am)

Prestige without money is an oxymoron in America, and the only reason you see it is inertia from when certain jobs used to lucrative or held primarily by rich people.

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penncruncher (Feb 28, 2010 - 5:08 am)

Amen!
Some lawyer came to my house the other day. He is running for judge and he went to Texas Tech Law. When he graduated he said times were just as tough as they are now(92 when he graduated). He said all the people that landed big law when he graduated were people who had direct family connections (there dad was a partner at V&E, etc..). He also was mentioned how he thinks "hiring will pick back up this year". In my head I thought along the lines, "i've been hearing this for two years about the legal profession".

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aknas (Feb 28, 2010 - 2:55 pm)

I don't know what the current exchange rate is, but surely a legal European title of nobility is cheaper than unleverageable nondischargeble law school loans.

From 2,000-400,000

'Genuine Titles' Bought and Sold.
(Proof of ownership is required)
Established. 1996
Heritage Researchers and Purveyors of Titles, with over 20 years of experience in Genealogical Research
Thousands of satisfied customers in 14 years of business.
How to avoid being ripped off ?

http://www.nobility.co.uk/

We Sell Genuine Bygone English Lordship Titles
and Titles of Nobility and Feudal Titles of France, Spain, Ireland, Scotland, Switzeland and Italy
'Hundreds of Years Old' Recorded in English History Books, including Titles once held by Kings & Queens of England & Titles held by Knights Templars & Hospitallers.

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Snooder (Mar 4, 2010 - 1:35 am)

You know, that doesn't seem like a terribly bad gift. Especially if it comes on a nice parchment or vellum with some decent packaging. I mean, people routinely spend as much on really good suits or high end electronics, so why not spend it on something just as useless that'll last longer?

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frugal_and_puzzled (Feb 15, 2012 - 9:47 pm)

(bump)

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gribble (Feb 15, 2012 - 9:57 pm)

Why would you bump this? If I were you I'd just pretend I never wrote any of this.

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MedicalDoctor (Feb 15, 2012 - 11:08 pm)

All this thread does is prove what a tool Frugal is.

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OhioDocReviewer (Feb 16, 2012 - 12:37 am)

http://helloexactly.ytmnd.com/

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HCDevid (Feb 16, 2012 - 12:35 am)

My 2 cents:

Prestige is just a societal indicator of "where the money's at". All the things we think of as prestigious, are generally things which were a pretty good indicator of wealth for multiple decades and as a result have large inertia, even if the reality is currently changing or no longer true.

As law continues to have more shitlawyers and dropouts, and garbagemen continue to make more money than lawyers, if the trend doesn't break then garbagemen WILL become more prestigious than lawyers in just a few decades if not sooner given how much quicker information percolates in society these days.

For a bit of history, this is the exact same thing that happened to investment banking from the 1950's on, and to hedge funds and PE firms from the 80's on.

Investment Banking didn't start generating large amounts of money until the conglomerate merger activity that became a fashion after WWII. Even into the 70's and early 80's, a corporate lawyer would've turned up his nose at the idea of becoming a trader or banker. Now, you see hordes of BigLaw lawyers squirming to try to get in past the door even if they take a significant initial paycut.

Hedge Funds & PE were also viewed as where people went when they "couldn't hack" banking, up until the 80's when the partners started raking in paychecks that made the banks' managing directors squeal with envy. Of course, the people who were there in the 80's and 90's are now usually the ones who've made billions.

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Miseslibertarian (Feb 16, 2012 - 12:55 am)

Computer programming is a shrinking field. Not exactly frugal to get into it is it?
http://www.bls.gov/oco/ocos303.htm

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CattleProd (Feb 16, 2012 - 12:05 pm)

Your link shows 21% job growth between 2008-2018. That is well above average.

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Miseslibertarian (Feb 16, 2012 - 3:37 pm)

That's for software engineers champ. The bls put both on the same page. computer programming is shrinking by 3%.

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00001 (Jul 18, 2015 - 12:57 am)

You're an idiot.

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aknas (Feb 16, 2012 - 7:58 am)

Here's a recently e-mailed listing of jobs for me in the DC area, from a jobs website that I unfortunately joined. Notice that buried near the bottom of the list of technology/computer positions is a small paralegal I position. I'd have to go to salaries.com, but I think that the Department of Labor pay rate for Paralegal I is somewhere around $19/hr. And any hs diploma or GED mouthbreather with a paralegal certificate qualifies.



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CattleProd (Feb 16, 2012 - 12:12 pm)

I live on the West Coast and the image of Software Engineers and Information Technology out here is far different. With Facebook, Google, Microsoft, Amazon, Oracle, and every other major IT company based near San Francisco or Seattle. Out here the information technology crowd is king. They are all of the billionaires and millionaires.

The nickname for Microsoft guys around Seattle is M&M. "Microsoft Millionaire" There are thousands of retired techies in their 40s from Microsoft. Many are now doing their own startups around the region. Same thing is happening from Google and Amazon techies that hit it. Facebook will be next when those guys cash out.

Lawyers don't even rate on the social scale here. Everyone wants to get a CS degree from Stanford or the Univ of Washington. The women all want to land an engineer making $100,000 to $150,000 (plus stock) at one of the top IT companies.

Many of the people who run for political office (and win) are information technology types. All of the social fundraisers for charity are run by that crowd. All of the venture funds are organized by the information technology groups.

Lawyers are just a service provider for the real money. Lawyers are the hired help.

As I have written before on this forum, I have two brothers in information technology and they are crushing it. $125,000+ (Microsoft) and $180,000+ (Cisco). That is doctor level money these days and they have more upside than most doctors with the stock that is common in information technology.

There is no question at all that Info Tech > Lawyers in the "prestige and money" game these days.

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baraban (Feb 16, 2012 - 12:39 pm)

Yeah, because everyone can work in Google, Facebook, and etc. You have to be very, very good. And if you are that good, you will have options regardless. And they are NOT all rich, just a very small proportion. SV is full of extremely smart people who didn't get lucky with start-ups and just settled down for a regular salary without getting rich.

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CattleProd (Feb 16, 2012 - 12:46 pm)

"SV is full of extremely smart people who didn't get lucky with start-ups and just settled down for a regular salary without getting rich."

Yeah, a regular salary of $100,000 to $150,000 plus benefits, 401k matching, heathcare, paid vacation, bonuses. That sucks. Dude, that is top 5% level of income nationally. It puts lawyers to shame. That is almost Biglaw/Midlaw money and there is a lot longer longevity in information technology than the average associate in Biglaw. And you don't even need a graduate degree. Undergraduate degree in CS is sufficient to reach that level of income and stock option potential.

I cannot even begin to describe to you how many families around here have both parents working at Microsoft or Amazon or Boeing or Starbucks (HQ, not a store) or Expedia or Tmobile or Facebook or Google or EMC or Cisco or F5 Networks or (insert 100 other tech companies that pay the same because of competition for talent). $250,000+ in family income is common here. Information technology unemployment is something silly low like 2% in the Seattle region.

The point of the thread is where the "prestige" is. Around here it isn't with lawyers. All of the social life (charities, politics, clubs) are dominated by the information technology crowd.

Status/Class: $150k+ Computer Programmer vs. $sub-100k Lawyer

No question. Info Tech trumps Lawyers now and the trend is moving even more in their favor.

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baraban (Feb 16, 2012 - 1:03 pm)

Why are you comparing 150K programmers to sub-100K lawyers? Why not compare 150K programmers to biglaw associates, for example? Or compare 60K IT support folks to shitlaw lawyers... But sure, there is no question that it's easier to make a decent salary as a middling IT guy rather than a middling lawyer.

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TheImmigrant (Feb 16, 2012 - 1:36 pm)

Yeah, that is what's comparable really. The actual average salary for programmers is about 1/3rd what prod's brothers make. I don't know why everyone likes to have such skewed opinions on these things.

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CattleProd (Feb 16, 2012 - 2:16 pm)

No it isn't. Anyone with experience can make $100,000+ in information technology. That is the difference between information technology and law. As you gain experience in IT your salary or bonus tends to reflect it.
In the law, because of the declining overall need for lawyers (Legalzoom.com, Suzie Orman kits, doc review automation) our income is getting squeezed and experience is no longer reflected in dollars.

The law firm business model of hourly billing is broken. People are demanding cost certainty. They want a flat fee for a given job. The law firm model, which typically requires an office and staff, is becoming financially unprofitable for many lawyers.

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TheImmigrant (Feb 16, 2012 - 3:31 pm)

I'm not saying that you're wrong, I'm saying that you exaggerate, a lot. A programmer has to have a lot more skill/talent than an attorney to begin with. It's practically apples to oranges.

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CattleProd (Feb 16, 2012 - 2:09 pm)

"Why not compare 150K programmers to biglaw associates, for example?"

Sure. Let's make that comparison. What is the average lifespan of a Biglaw associate? 3-5 years at that number of $150,000+
What is the average lifespan of a software engineer, app developer, network engineer? 25-35 years? Most of those guys start exceeding $100,000 around 5+ years of experience and don't need a graduate degree.

Shitlaw = low level help desk information technology work. Those are the mouth breathers making $30,000 to $40,000. But I would argue that the low level help desk skills still have more upward mobility than shitlaw lawyers. Those guys can gain more experinence and have potential to move into higher paying jobs. Lawyers typically lack such upward options.

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GS13 (Feb 19, 2012 - 3:07 pm)

I totally agree. Sorry but most people who are programmers and in IT are not making 150K a year! Just like most lawyers don't make 150K a year.

Plenty of IT/Computer engineers start in the mid 50s range.

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gribble (Feb 16, 2012 - 1:48 pm)

Well for comparison's sake, the same argument can be made of big law. But here's the thing in favor of programmers: they aren't 6 figures in the hole, they're younger, and they can actually get those $50k jobs easier than the law grads that miss out on big law (which is most of them).

I agree that "prestige" is a lagging indicator. "Prestige" is made up solely of what the high earners are, and changes over time.

200 years ago doctors were not prestigious, but lawyers were. Now doctors are clearly ahead of lawyers, but lawyers are beginning to just drop out entirely as more and more people get through the grinder. Doctors are now among the most prestigious classes.

200 years ago the factory owners/landowners were the prestigious ones, and white males were de facto more prestigious than minorities or women. It's a pretty stupid system that I don't know why people would want to support it and give it credence.

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CattleProd (Feb 16, 2012 - 2:11 pm)

"200 years ago the factory owners/landowners were the prestigious ones"

They still are.

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gribble (Feb 16, 2012 - 2:54 pm)

Not according to frugal lol.

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CattleProd (Feb 16, 2012 - 3:29 pm)

I agree that prestige is a lagging form of status. Stereotypes die slowly. The rise of the IT profession has been happening since the early 90s. It sort of had a decline after 2000 with the internet stock bubble, but never really had a crash. The bulk of the jobs continued to grow, just not the stock mania. It seems to be in full force again these days.

The law has been in a steady decline for decades and just seems to be plunging right now.

Perspectives on "job prestige" are catching up. I would say a CS undergraduate degree has 10X more value (time spent, dollars it costs vs income you can achieve) than a legal degree.

Technology is cool and fun. The law is boring and kills brain cells. Most lawyers don't have the raw intelligence do enterprise class information technology.

Most lawyers were lazy in college and didn't know what to study, so they just ended up in law school becaue their undergrad degree was useless or too generic. The smart kids were taking tough math and science classes, so they had options. I wish my parents had slapped me around with more guidance about the real world back then.

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baraban (Feb 16, 2012 - 3:52 pm)

The grass is always greener somewhere else. I've switched from high-tech to patent law a number of years ago and haven't looked back too much. That said, if I ever was good enough to get a job in Google, I'd probably never end up in this field.

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TheImmigrant (Feb 16, 2012 - 10:30 pm)

I'm pretty sure that every kid who studies liberal arts has parents who think he is handicapped, and thus they don't slap them around.

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inthehills (Feb 19, 2012 - 5:49 pm)

True with me, also. I was smart, but lazy.

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thecharmingmresq (Feb 16, 2012 - 4:15 pm)

F&P (*gulp*) has a very solid point in general that income and prestige are (or can be) divorced. In it's most logical extreme, president of the united states is in the top 10 most prestigious jobs in the world (maybe ever) and gets less than 300k a year. General Petreus was getting less than 200k a year while he was responsible for a land invasion of 2 countries.

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andy (Feb 16, 2012 - 4:25 pm)

I think we're confusing prestige and power. Money and/or a high political position confer power. No argument with the President and his generals there-- they have a lot of power. But long before he was President, Barack Obama was a community organizer with a law degree. Did that give him more prestige than a 100k computer programmer? I don't think so. And he certainly didn't have power.

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gribble (Feb 16, 2012 - 10:05 pm)

The top politician in the world is prestigious. The top 300 or so are, probably more than that, but definitely the top one. Now if you're going to compare the top in the profession and talk about prestige, the top of every profession is always going to be more prestigious than the bottom feeders of the other professions.

Do you really think Bill Gates, the computer programmer, has less prestige than a shit law attorney? Is that really the argument you are trying to make here?

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HCDevid (Feb 16, 2012 - 10:47 pm)

Completely wrong on the money for politicians point. Look at the salaries that any EX-President commands. $500K - $1MM per lecture alone. Or look at the types of jobs they take post-politics or even during.

John Edwards got a cushy do-nothing job on the board of directors of a hedge fund. 4-Star generals work for Carlyle Private Equity.

While politicians and military with high prestige might have low CURRENT pay, they all have the ability to easily make a few million bc of their connections and experience.

Even if you look at something like a grunt in the Navy SEAL's or Marines, they have the option to make $200-400K a year as a mercenary.

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wawaweewa (Feb 16, 2012 - 11:07 pm)

It all depends on location.

In the Tri-State area and Chicago, the prestigious professions are finance/ banking/media/ law/ real estate.

In the Texas area specifically and Midwest in general it's any job having to do with commodities/farming/natural resources. All the way at the bottom from the miner/ oil worker making 70k to the CEO's of Cargill Corp.,ADM, XOM, KOCH Inudstries, etc.

In the west it's High Tech/start ups/ web based.

In Miami and LV it's real estate and club owners.

In DC it's law, lobbyists, think tanks, and defense firms.

It's different in every region and the women in every region know what to look for.

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gribble (Feb 16, 2012 - 11:18 pm)

lol pro athletes own most of those professions in terms of drawing women.

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wawaweewa (Feb 16, 2012 - 11:26 pm)

You might as well say, "cartel kingpins own all!".

Pro athletes aren't statistically significant.

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carol142 (Jul 15, 2015 - 2:40 pm)

Computer still hands down beats law. My aspie cousin got a good gig as software developer after missing an interview with the company. They felt bad and still hired him. Meanwhile top graduates in law are unemployed.

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therewillbeblood (Jul 15, 2015 - 2:45 pm)

The thing about programming is it's much higher status than it used to be. Programmer in the 80's and 90's brought to mind a geeky guy in a short-sleeved white button-up with a pocket protector. Now it's tattooed hipsters.

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carol142 (Jul 16, 2015 - 11:19 am)

Funny thing is that I am pretty sure he is actually retarded. He had "academic help" in high school at a technical school because he was not smart or mainstream enough for a regular high school. His teachers did 100% of his homework, every test was untimed and he was allowed to ask teachers questions during the test and the teachers would handwrite his answers. He ended up graduating #1 in his class. He picked a college based on the academic support system at the college. He would be working in a convenience store without academic help. It's almost as bad as affirmative action.

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elitttist (Jul 21, 2015 - 12:33 am)

Sounds way worse than affirmative action to me. AA admits still have to actually do all of their own work.

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gs13 (Jul 17, 2015 - 1:31 pm)

In the tech world people don't look down on you for bs unlike the legal profession which is filled with pompous jerks

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imoothereforeim (Jul 17, 2015 - 1:49 pm)

Meh tech world is a meritocracy. Techies can smell a poser from a mile away and don't look kindly upon said person. People whose careers are based on Open Road Narratives and the like would be laugh out of the industry.

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typ3 (Jul 16, 2015 - 10:12 am)

This thread shows the lack of understanding from a lot of people on JDU.

There is a big difference between an IT person and a person who is a developer for a company.

The first integrates existing products and is seen as an expense for the company by most C-Suites. The latter builds products to be sold and is obviously both an expense and an asset to C-Suites. The talent between these two can sometimes be extremely different and the skill sets are pretty different. A lot of people can read code and understand it, fewer can sit down and write clean bug free code that works.

Yes both are subject to outsourcing. But those who are in IT will be outsourced much more quickly than those building products because IT can be outsourced to the cheapest way to achieve the service, whether thats SaaS / remote employees / contracted 3rd party etc. Developers can outsource to the cheapest firm in India, but the difference between a senior Google/Apple developer and the software mill in India can be as much as a 10:1 difference, if not more as the code base becomes more complex and the opportunity for bugs to occur increases. There really isn't a difference in IT because you can't say install MS SQL on your company server 10x better than another IT person or migrate a database 10x better. Plus half of these tasks have been automated over the last 15 years.

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00001 (Jul 18, 2015 - 1:03 am)

Finally someone who distinguishes between IT and developer. Developers are NOT info tech workers. You will not see dev / programming /software engineering jobs under IT. They will more likely be listed with DBA, QA, and BA. IT is sysadmin, helpdesk, sys engineer, etc. IT tends to be operations. Programming tends to be R&D, it can be operations too but it's a drastically different skill set.

Also, from my experience in the industry outsourcing dev's just isn't happening anymore. It never turns out right. You are seeing a much larger push to SaaS. If the company is actually hiring developers they are hiring h1b at worst, but usually are hiring from the local universities.

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tuliotanaka (Jul 17, 2015 - 4:22 pm)

As someone in computer science, we're some weird mofos. Girls, not techies themselves, would really only be in it for the money.

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onegin (Jul 20, 2015 - 7:37 pm)

"IT" encompasses such a large cross-section of jobs, it's hard to talk prestige. I guess most people think "programmer" but there are Architects, Directors, MD's all within an IT organization that wear nice suits, have corner offices, go to black-tie events and whatever else people associate with prestige these days.

It baffles me why more unemployed or underemployed lawyers don't start looking into something like PMP, Business Analysis, Financial Data Analysis, etc. The skill-set is close to law and with a decent resume, you could probably sell at least 1 interviewer on your competency as a BA. The average BA salary right now is somewhere in the $80k range, which is nothing to sniff at compared to some entry-level law jobs out there right now.

Finally, sites like Coursera and Edx will basically pay for you to get a verified certificate in some track (project management, tech, whatever) if you can show a genuine interest in completing the program and a financial hardship. If you can slog through a few courses to learn the relevant skills, it certainly wouldn't hurt to try, costs nothing and definitely beats unemployment.

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typ3 (Jul 21, 2015 - 10:04 am)

This is the correct response.

Using law to segue into some sort of financial analysis. It's for the most part basic SQL queries and spreadsheets and you can claim you took corporate finance / corporate law in law school.

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boseisaltplace (Dec 5, 2017 - 5:03 pm)

I just moved to CT and I'm torn between choosing two career paths: IT desk vs. paralegal. I have a BA in English Literature. I want to choose a career where it's easier to get jobs if my boyfriend and I get relocated again (he's an engineer). Both positions are not my dream careers. I need something with a decent and steady income ($35-$40K and up). Any thoughts?

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