I just finished my masters. I want to chase this money but I keep wanting to go back for one last degree. Please advice 1. Harvard law school 2. Stanford PHD engineering 3. MBA HSW, M7 4. Career/startup own firm

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That’s great! Just realize that tens of thousands of applicants have gpa’s equal or greater to that, and yet there are fewer than a thousand spots at the top 3 law schools. So there must be a lot else to it: LSAT, a compelling personal statement/genuine reason to want to go to law school, and recommendations from people who believe law school is right for you. Also, law school is pretty grueling, even for those who love it, so I wouldn’t do it if you don’t want to be a lawyer, just like you shouldn’t do a PhD if you’re not genuinely passionate about pursuing that area long term. Talk to a few people who have pursued these paths and see how much their experiences and lives seem like a fit to your experiences and goals before setting out to tackle one of these paths. Just my two cents.

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My suggestion is decide what you have your skills advantage at. Find the largest and most prestigious players in that industry / career path and get a job at the best one you can attain. Grind it out and outwork your peers for at least the next 10 years after that point. Persuasion / reading / writing: law, hard sciences and math: engineering, thinking outside the box: do business strategy consulting, etc. You’ll have to slug it out with a lot of very smart people who will be working 70 hours a week or more fresh out of college for the next 10 years. You need to be confident that you can compete with them on plain intellectual horsepower. After that, know that being smart and having the right degrees is not enough. Look up “Wall Street oasis investment banking analyst hours” and “investment banking target schools” on Google. There are small armies of undergrad students who will be working 100 hours per week at Wall Street banks for the next 3 years and 80 hours per week forever after. They all are ivy / Harvard grads and many will talk of their own start up ideas later in life. You need to clearly and convincibly be well above average regarding the skills you choose and then well above average on worth ethic which needs to persist at age 35 just as much as it did at age 23. For this last bit, you are going to want to at least mostly enjoy the work on day one (because genuine passion goes away with time and then work will grind on you where you’ll then let off the throttle on the professional development that has been propelling you upward). Look up “Wall Street oasis post MBA investment banking associate hours” these are the working hours of those HSW MBA grads. My $0.02 that’s worth truly nothing relative to your perspective is that I think a start up (particularly if it’s not tech and you have complementary tech skills) is a bad idea. While it might work, it’s about 99% certain that it wouldn’t. Regarding the top 3 / M7 MBA, you should look up on Poets and Quants or other resources to see how realistic your current opportunities are to get there. Treating it like it’s on the table while also not knowing what you want to do with your life seems like there might be a bit of a handicap regarding your future odds relative other peers your age who have had it on their mind since sophomore year of undergrad and chosen / researched the necessary caliber of employers under successful career paths that will get them there. Those roles could be filled now as PwC for example recruits their intern class from fall semester juniors and 80%+ of its full time roles are filled by those interns who are given signed job offers long before graduation. Investment banks are the same, so I think the idea of picking what you are best at, shelving the other 3 unrelated options, and going all in to succeed there is the best bet.

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You need to define your goals a bit more. This post reads like you’re just chasing clout -

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“I want to be an astronaut, maybe a famous painter, so I think I’ll join the navy seals and attend Juilliard for my ego” ^basically the same energy.

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Those are wildly different options. What do you want to do/value in life? Also, why just Harvard law or just Stanford engineering?

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Do not go to law school if you do not want to be a lawyer.

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Don't do a PhD just for the ego/prestige. It's hard work no matter where you are and it's often thankless and low paying. The upside is that often with a technical PhD it won't put you in monetary debt but a lot of people working through a PhD have serious depression at one point so it's not a decision to be taken lightly.

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50% of phd students reported depression in a study

Did you even get into these programs or are you just asking if you should try to?

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These all seem like what you think are the most prestigious in different areas but actually have wildly different educational and professional lives. A lot could be learned by doing some research into which, if any of these, you have a legitimate shot at. Do you have a phenomenal engineering background and research ideas? Have you looked into the LSAT? Have you realized that Harvard yale and Stanford all have median scores about the 99th percentile on that test? Etc.

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@johngraham Yh I have a stellar profile somewhat. 3.85 undergrad 3.92 Grad.

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That will mean nothing to Harvard law, especially if you don't end up in the 99th percentile on the LSAT.

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You are right I do not want to be a lawyer so a JD is a bad idea. I never wanted to do a PHD because of the length but wearing my friends doctorate gown over graduation weekend made me second guess my decision. MBA is the wisest choice and I have about a year to prep for GMAT

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DO NOT get an MBA without work experience. I might step on a toe here with a reader likely already having an MBA, but an MBA is worthless after considering cost and lost salary if it is not from a top 15 program. Real returns come from M7. You will not be able to get an M7 without having roughly 5 years of work experience. If you burn your MBA opportunities by going to W&M as an example while fresh out of school, it will not propel you. An MBA is for pivoting a career, breaking into mid management roles when you have the existing technical skill sets, and creating a structured interviewing environment where you are protected by a university career services dept so the same employers don’t d*ck you around and interview every soul that can fog a mirror for 6 months prior giving you a decision. Please keep your powder dry on the MBA. M7 or nothing and know exactly what you want to do after the M7 so that you have the skills that will get you that role before others in the M7 program who worked for 5 years (maybe even in that exact industry).

Thanks PWC 1. I actually have a job but I just need to keep up and remain amongst the highest earners for my age so I like to plan ahead of time my options for that

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@Mck1 I just graduated I haven’t actually started my job yet. I mean like getting an MBA 2 years after working

I choose a t-14 law school, pretty terrible decision. All things being as equal as they can be and assuming that you want to gain something substantive and refine hour ability to sort through the noise, I would def. choose a PhD (in fact I am). MBA’s, especially in light of the DEI era are a joke. Just talk to your average MBA student. Ask yourself, do you see this person being able to actually creating something if lasting value to society? Also, read the Harvard business review, the writing is so poor and the analysis is laughably surface. Regarding law school, I would be weary and only attend if you want to be a lawyer. This might sound obvious, but it’s not too many. Regarding the PhD path, I would argue if done correctly it’s the most applicable for a much wider range of application because of the processes inherent to it. IMO, the only place within the academy where slow and methodical process are not only allowed, but required. It In theory, it wouldn’t make sense that a PhD would be more suited for broad application, but in today’s world things are constantly changing and the sort of intellectual curiosity that a PhD fosters will make more adept toward those realities.

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Whatever you wanna actually do.

Overall I want to have my own startup and end life as a politician to help my nation

Yh my political system is not the same as US but good take

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In full please. I don’t know what those are

Google them.

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@senior analyst 1. No I haven’t applied to any yet. Just planning my next big career move.

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