After graduating from college, I found myself facing the choice of either going to business school or going to law school. I ended up opting for business school, and as I said in my last blog post, that has turned out to be one of the financial moves I am grateful to have made. In making the decision to go to business school rather than law school, I didn’t just toss a coin. I carried out (what felt like) an objective comparison, and concluded that business school was a better bet than law school. That is why I opted to go to business school, rather than going to law school.
In my view, business school is better than law school to the extent that the folks who go to business school get to avoid the intricacies associated with bar exams. It is often said that the bar exam is set up as a mechanism by people who are established in the legal profession to bar the entry of new people into the profession (or at least to limit the numbers of people who enter the profession). There is perhaps some merit in this argument, especially when you consider the fact that the exam seems to be one where candidates are set up to fail.
Further, business school is better than law school to the extent that one has more options upon graduating from business school. From law school, one has very few options: either join a big-time law firm (as an undervalued ‘associate’), join the government as a law clerk or join a small-time law firm as a struggling ‘partner’. Business school graduates on the other hand tend to have more options. Some go to Wall Street. Some go to work in exciting start ups. Others go into the government: where, for instance, I know of a fellow we went to business school together who subsequently ventured into the management of county jails and who seems to be enjoying himself in the correctional industry. He tells me that his work serves to add value to jail inmates’ lives and to ‘make a difference’. Others still venture into the academia, even as other try their luck in entrepreneurship… the opportunities seem to be limitless for business school grads.
Finally, business school is better than law school to the extent that the business school studies are less demanding than law school studies. The very names of the qualifications tell you about the differences in the complexity of the studies: at business school, you get a MBA whereas at a law school you get a Juris Doctor (JD). The very name Juris Doctor sounds scary.