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I am looking into graduate schools, and I came across the idea of Law School. I am very involved with Environmental events and such at school now, so I thought about getting a degree with a focus in Environmental Policy. However, I don't know how beneficial it will be for me if I end up working at an Architectural Firm. I am also very interested in Sustainability, etc., so I feel that this could be important to my education on the subject.
Its not as uncommon as you think. I have a friend who went into Law School right after getting her 4-year B.S.Arch. I haven't kept touch with her but I'm sure she is doing better than most of us.
I asked this exact question a few years ago. Click on my history to see the comments others posted. I decided not to do law school just because I didn't want to take on the extra debt after my master degree. Law school is still an option I might consider in a few years after I have some architectural experience under my belt.
The job market for newly minted lawyers right now is probably worse than for architects. Incurring additional debt to jump from one sinking ship to another doesn't sound like the wisest move to me. Study environmental law on your own if you want but don't go the whole law school route. You'll end up spending a lot of time, money and effort in courses about other aspects of the legal profession which you only need if you plan to practice law which it doesn't sound like your objective.
What geezer perfect said. Plus NO ONE outside of the legal field will hire a lawyer. At least potential employers will not hold your architectural degree against you if you have to work in a related, or even unrelated, career field.
I believe a law degree with a Bachelor of Arch would be a great combination to have if you plan on starting your own Arch firm. Especially in terms of contracts and the such etc. I plan on looking for someone with B.Arch/JD to collaborate with. This is all due in time till I get my M.Arch from Michigan.
"At least potential employers will not hold your architectural degree against you if you have to work in a related, or even unrelated, career field."
Are you so sure of this?
Yes. Most people have a positive attitude toward anyone who has completed an architectural degree, never mind the nonsense of not being able to call them architects unless they have undergone the slave labor bit. On the other hand, no generic business will hire a lawyer to do even the most basic low-skilled non-legal job. Why? Because of the unending misery of lawsuits should he/she get a paper cut, or trip on the stairs, or spill coffee on themselves. Never mind having to lay them off if business goes south. By getting a law degree the degree holder has spent three years, tens of thousands of dollars, and selected themselves out of the workforce altogether, because there are no law jobs either.