29 Reasons NOT to go to Law School (and Become a Software Developer Instead)

Yes. Yes, you did law school. Yes, you did.

Instead, Become a Software Developer

So my story continues.

Time and $$$ — What it Takes to Become a Software Developer

Becoming an employable software developer takes roughly 9 months and costs by my estimates costs around $25,000 — that is including buying a $2,000 mac pro.

Ok — now 29 NOT to go to Law School and Become a Software Developer Instead!

  1. Lower Tuition & Debt — Law school costs an average of $130,000. Even the most expensive tech school costs only $40,000 and there is a lot of financial aid and innovative “Pay it forward” financing models.
  2. Forget 3 Years of Law School — Law school takes roughly a year to prepare for, and 3 years to complete. It will take you roughly 3 months to prepare to enter a 3–6 month bootcamp or a more in depth program like Make School’s Product College. It might take you as long as 3 months after to secure a job. So a conservative grand total of a little more than a year.
  3. Forget the LSAT — The LSAT take months to prepare for and are completely inane. Most developer schools, like Make School, want to see real projects that you’ve built for entrance, so you are doing something meaningful even before you begin.
  4. Forget the Bar — As a software developer the only bar you have to think about serves beer and margaritas.
  5. A Great Salary — don’t lawyers make more than software developers? Lawyers are always saying “I charge $520 per hour”. That’s a lot! Right? Wrong. Lawyers make on average $55 an hour. The median salary is $100,000 — the same as a software developer. (Ref Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Handbook)
  6. Less Work — lawyers and law firms are famous for their long hours. Software developers are famous for their more relaxed schedules.
  7. No Chasing Ambulances — As a lawyer you have to are essentially a contractor. You have to get clients. As a developer, you usually are paid a salary and don’t have to worry about clients.
  8. Build Things — Being a software developer you build products people use every day.
  9. No Suits — forget about suits. Software developers can wear anything they want.
  10. Computers — You’re gonna use them 95% of the time in either job anyways.
  11. Join the Zeitgeist — The law was the Zeitgeist in the 1700–1900’s, but these days technology is what is moving, changing, and pushing the world forward. Come on in!
  12. Start Startups — Lawyers don’t make startups, software developers do.
  13. Have Impact — Lawyers can help their clients and set important precedents with their cases. However, software can also make a huge impact. Software can be used to make systems that dramatically improve education, equity, and the environment.
  14. Be Future Proof — Anyone can tell you the robotic overlords are coming eventually, but software developers are likely going to be one of the last humans to have jobs. Along with massage therapists and olympic gymnasts.
  15. Hackathons — Hackathons are when you go to a conference and build a whole product in 50 hours. Its an amazing rush.
  16. Don’t Not Have Fun —A picture of a common lawyer party:



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Educator, Founder, Engineer. Interested in Evidence Based Education and Solving BIG Problems.