Ep. 178: The Law Career Playbook with Rachel Gezerseh

If you’re a long-time listener of the show, you may be questioning whether or not you should go to law school. And if you’ve decided you’re going to take the plunge, your next concern might be “how the f*ck am I going to get a job afterwards?” Well fear not, dear listeners. Today, the guys talk with Rachel Gezerseh. After graduating from Southwestern in the top 10% of her class, Gezerseh hustled her way into a career in big law. Her blog, Breaking Into BigLaw is a great resource for students who are interested in working in the BL, and dispels some myths about the inability to work in Big Law if you haven’t gone to a top-ranked school. Rachel shares her perspective, and talks about her upcoming book, The Law Career Playbook.

Stick around after the interview to hear the next installment of LSAT Fundamentals. This week? It’s all about Logical Reasoning. But before all of the hubbub begins, the guys recount the tale of their joint talk in DC, which may or may not include Nathan breaking into Ben’s house in the dead of night. The guys also chat about the flood of excellent LSAT Demon fan art that came in after the last episode. You’ll be seeing them soon, no doubt, on places like the Thinking LSAT Instagram account (y’all better smash that follow button!). And, of course, the guys discuss which of the pieces of fan art will end up as matching tattoos for Nathan and Ben.

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9:44 – The guys grill Rachel Gezerseh on the important things in life: how the hell do you get a job as a lawyer? Can you work in big law, even if you haven’t gone to a badass law school? What’s the day to day work like in big law? And, is this sh*t even fun? Rachel shares her story about graduating in the top tier of her class at Southwestern. At the time, her advisor basically told her she had no chance of working in Big Law. But RG got her hustle on, played the numbers game, and willed her way into big law. She talks about how most lawyers want to give back to the next generation, and that’s why she’s created so many resources to help would-be lawyers get the confidence and the skills to go out and get the law jobs they want.   

28:23 – Pearls vs. Turds: It’s your weekly wisdom review, dear listeners. And the guys have yet to find a pearl out there. For this week’s “wisdom,” we travel through the falderol of Nathan’s desk to find a glimmering, beautifully designed flash card from McGraw Hill. Presumably one from a like set of professionally designed cards. And on this veritable piece of LSAT-prep artwork? Is it a pearl, or a turd of wisdom? The guys carefully review the card, which instructs test takers to pace themselves through a section by first reading…all of the f*cking questions, and then first answering the ones that you’re “best” at. Then go through and answer the ones you’re, y’know, OK at. And lastly go through again and answer the ones that give you the most trouble. Ben and Nathan throw this otherwise flashy card squarely into the “Turd” category.   

34:37 – LSAT Fundamentals: This week on LSAT fundamentals, Nathan and Ben go deep on LR. They share their observations and philosophy on this part of the test based on their 10+ years of experience of teaching the LSAT. The guys show how they break down LR questions, and discuss how they tackle the hardest questions on the test. They cover how to best prep for this section, and give some tips on how to build your prep into a more comprehensive test preparation—from single questions (like in the LSAT Demon), to 35-minute sections, to complete practice tests. Here are some of the key takeaways:

  • LR is a sentence-by-sentence exercise. Once you own the passage, you’ll be ready for the question.
  • Last week’s theme of taking the passage seriously carries over—these are mini RC questions.
  • Meeting intermediate accuracy goals is important. Correctly answer 5 out of the first 5, 9 out of the first 10.
  • When you get a question wrong you’re making two mistakes—you were drawn to the wrong answer choice. And you avoided the right answer choice.
  • Accept the reality of the test—most of the time, the test tries to trap you by going against what you know to be true in real life, when in  actuality, you need to think in terms of what is true to the test.

Things to remember? The LSAT actually makes sense. It’s easier than you think, but it requires attention and grit beyond what you might expect. You have to force yourself to understand it, but once you do, it will make a lot of sense.

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