Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Live at the Improv

A law student writes:

American University is holding improv lessons to help students learn how to network and interview. Sometimes when I walk around the school I feel like I must be in the twilight zone. There are postings all around the school for discussions on helping the poor and oppressed around the world without the slightest hint of irony.

A fuller description of the nonsense is provided here:

 http://www.wcl.american.edu/wcl_events/event_detail.cfm?event_id=35153

(I recommend clicking on the link to get the full flavor of this. I would paste the linked material into the post except that it wrecks the formatting for some reason).

Meanwhile a law professor writes:

We just got the nine month employment statistics for the class of 2012.  The administration fired the entire CSO staff in the summer of 2011, and spent a lot of money hiring new, supposedly far better people, on the theory that the terrible employment outcomes for the 2011 class were in part a product of the CSO's ineptness.  Now I have to admit the previous staff did strike me as inept, while the new people seem much better.  The net result of all this is that the class of 2012 ended up with exactly one more person in a lawyer job than the class of 2011.
 Repeat as necessary.

I was talking to a network news producer yesterday about which law school is going to be the first to go.  I don't wish unemployment on anyone (OK I do wish it on some law school deans), but at the same time there's little doubt that the first ABA school to go under will, as Voltaire said, "encourage the others"  in various beneficial ways.

And while I don't think American will be the first to go, the school's increasingly grotesque behavior in the face of its absurd price structure and bottom of the barrel employment statistics makes it perhaps more deserving of this distinction than any other school -- or at least any other school whose very name isn't already a mordant joke.


170 comments:

  1. First among equals

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Some firsts are more equal than others.

      Delete
  2. It's good to see that Third Tier Drake is moving around chairs on the TTTiTTTanic"

    http://www.law.drake.edu/newsEvents/details.aspx?eventID=2013-studentPortfolios

    “Drake Law unveils student portfolios

    Law schools are under fire for failing to prepare students for practice. At Drake University Law School, teaching students how to practice law has always been our focus, long before it became trendy. The next generation of Drake graduates will prove it.

    Beginning with the 2013 entering class, Drake students will be required to prepare an electronic portfolio containing short videos and documents evidencing the students’ proficiencies. Students will work with their advisors to update and improve the portfolio contents as well as their skills as they progress through school. Employers will have easy access electronically and contents will vary by student interest.

    Andrea Charlow, associate dean of the Law School, says, “Unlike many law schools, Drake professors have practiced law and bring that experience into substantive classes, the way it occurs in ‘real life’: our students regularly try felony cases, draft and lobby legislation and argue cases before the State Supreme Court.”

    Jennie Zwagerman, director of career development at Drake Law, says “For employers who base hiring decisions on one interview, an easily accessible video and portfolio offers a chance to take a deeper look into how a student handles real practice situations.”

    At a time when law schools are being criticized, Drake Law is taking positive steps to help students prove they are ready to practice law. At Drake, the proof is in the portfolio. For more information about the student portfolios at Drake University Law School, contact Andrea Charlow, associate dean, at andrea.charlow@drake.edu or 515-271-2066.”

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. required portfolios, sounds awesome.

      Delete
    2. No employer will take the time to look at these portfolios. What nonsense. Each employer has hundreds of applicants for each job.

      Delete
    3. This ship be sinking!

      Delete
    4. Is that the strains of " nearer My God to Thee". I'm beginning to hear frm the ships band? Wonder how those useless law schools in my Tennessee mountain home (Lincoln and Belmont) are selling their students. Through prayer?

      Delete
    5. "No employer will take the time to look at these portfolios. What nonsense. Each employer has hundreds of applicants for each job."

      This statement is 101% correct but it misses the point. The portfolios are a gimmic to dupe clueless applicants into thinking this particular TTT will give them a special leg up in the job market that all the other TTTs won't. Sure beats telling them that in practical terms there is no job market for their graduates.

      Iceberg! Right ahead!

      Delete
    6. Any 0L who believes this type of portfolio works is smoking something. Were these people born yesterday?

      Delete
    7. "At Drake University Law School, teaching students how to practice law has always been our focus, long before it became trendy. The next generation of Drake graduates will prove it."


      Ahem. Is there some reason Drake You is not relying on the CURRENT generation to "prove it"?


      Might have something to do with that 53% employment score, eh?

      Hmmm?

      Delete
    8. Another special-snowflake gimmick.

      Delete
  3. even the not-as-funny-as-he-thinks-he-is tucker max is getting into the anti-law school game:

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/tucker-max/law-school_b_2713943.html

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think I've read that before a few years ago although it looks like he might have tweaked a few sections of it.

      Delete
    2. Tucker was blasting law school (mostly on faux prestige and lifestyle grounds) on his old blog back in the day.

      Dude is arrogant, a terrible writer, and not funny at all, but he hit the nail on the head.

      Delete
  4. The professor complaining that there was only one more person hired to a lawyer job than during the previous year is looking at it wrong -- the percentage of the class with lawyer jobs is probably much higher because the Class of 2012 almost certainly contains fewer students than the Class of 2011.

    Even if it does not, the 2012 group probably had worse credentials coming in. The fact that employment did not fall should be counted as a success.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Not sure if this is a joke or just another law professor who can't do math, but at the national level the class of 2012 was bigger than the class of 2011.

      Delete
    2. LLM in international comedy law.

      Delete
    3. 99+% of LLMs are international law comedies.

      Delete
    4. Perfect example of someone clueless about hiring.

      Delete
  5. I think a lot of the articles over at Top Law Schools, but check out this dated (2009) piece on American, especially this gem:

    "To conclude that career prospects are grim, however, would be incorrect. Around 93% of graduates have employment secured within nine months of graduation and American University Law School places fairly well nationally—to a much larger extent than most schools which are comparable in reputation and ranking."

    http://www.top-law-schools.com/american-university-law.html

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I bet an admin at American wrote that

      Delete
    2. All those articles are old. No one updates them. All the info is on the forum. Though, maybe they should take some of them down if they are misleading.

      Delete
  6. Why isn't WCL alumnus James Mitchell working as a high-powered attorney, or using the versatility of his JD to work on Capitol Hill?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. He's using his versatile JD to be a standup comic. Duh. Had he not gone to law school, he could've still been a stand-up comic, but without the versatile JD. It's not a difficult concept.

      Delete
  7. Two observations:

    (1) While being able to "think on your feet" and project a winning image is important, without actual substance backing it up then we're talking about turning out law students who are glorified used-car salesmen. The problem is that 99.9% of law students have no transferable book of business, and all the spit-polish in the world does nothing to change that. Thus legacy hires.

    (2) While I was no fan of my alma-mater's CSO, they can't manufacture jobs out of whole cloth, to be fair. Hiring and firing dingbats who have no real advice to offer, on the other hand, is mere rearranging of deck chairs.

    Look, lol skool prof/deans, the answer is simple: what was once a license to print money, allegedly, in the 1960s has lost real value over the interventing decades. Stop blaming the recession - the changes are structural, overproduction has driven prices down, and technology and outsourcing has ushered in Thunderdome.

    Soon, you yourselves will see how the other half (or 99%) live. It's called the "free market". I'll set out the Welcome mat.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. All dressed up and no where to go...

      Delete
    2. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_UbGtjnluyY

      "It's a dead JD's party...who could ask for more?!"

      Delete
    3. "Hiring and firing dingbats ... is mere rearranging of deck chairs."


      You've missed the point. Firing and hiring of dingbats is FUN. I Like That. :-)

      Delete
  8. well the scam extends to lots of education. there was an article I read yesterday that each k-5 teaching opening in a caralina receives 400-600 applicants and that the schools are graduates many times more teaching graduates than possible openings.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. My neighbor has a teaching degree, and he's having a difficult time finding a full-time teaching job. We live in the same neighborhood where we grew up. He's subing at the elementary school we both attended and where he uncle teaches. Even with these connection he can't land a full-time gig at the school. He basically has to wait until one of the teachers retires or dies. It must be very difficult for someone with no connections at all.

      Delete
    2. link to article http://www.freep.com/article/20130219/FEATURES01/130219044/K-5-teacher-overload-Too-many-trained-not-enough-jobs?odyssey=mod|newswell|text|FRONTPAGE|p

      Delete
    3. At least your neighbor is subbing. That is a first step towards a job. Lawyers in the same situation are working in retail, doing doc review or working for free. There is no need for the lawyers's services in real full time permanent legal jobs or in temporary jobs that may lead to full time permanent legal jobs. There is a demand for your neighbor's services.

      Delete
    4. You realize doing doc review makes more than subbing, right? A sub makes an $80 flat rate. Whereas doc review is at least $20/hour.

      Delete
    5. True, my neighbor works another job. But subbing does provide him with an in.

      Delete
  9. What do CSO's really do to justify their existing? As others have pointed out, they can't create jobs that don't exist. In the age of the internet and social media, anyone with a computer and internet access can find out what jobs are available. When jobs are plentiful, JD's will do OK, and when there are hundreds of applicants for every job, CSO's can't do anything about those odds.

    I can only think of two possible uses for a CSO. First, if they have the connections they may know of jobs that are not advertised. Second, they might try to convince non-legal employers that hiring JD's is good for their business (but to sell an idea to someone else it helps if the seller believes it him/herself).

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. "When jobs are plentiful, JD's will do OK, and when there are hundreds of applicants for every job, CSO's can't do anything about those odds."

      But the point, BamBam, is that jobs will never again be plentiful until we stop producing twice as many lawyers as jobs. The economy will never grow fast enough to take up the slack.

      And there was a golden age, but it was after the 1960s. I once came across a Martindale Hubbell from 1975. I was dumbfounded to see how tiny the biglaw firms in my state had been in 1975, and how they tended to have more partners than associates. The business grew like mad until the recession of 1989. Since then it's been up and down but the general trend has been down and will continue to be down for a long, long time.

      Delete
    2. At top schools they are a form of conspicuous consumption- i.e., we need 13 career officers including three assistant deans because everyone needs their own personal CSO. They might be overworked come OCI time but that's only because there are hundreds of firms at OCI. Otherwise they twiddle their thumbs.

      At lower ranked schools you have people saying "but it's not FAIR that Harvard students get a huge CSO and our students don't" and that it's racist/classist not to try and provide the same quality education as Harvard. It also helps the school's USNWR ranking. One dean once said that he could burn money and count it towards the rankings if he could figure out some educational purpose for doing so.

      It would be much better to have a CSO that basically proofreads resumes and schedules OCI, and then rely on interested alumni for mock interviews and general career advising.

      Delete
    3. The director of the CSO at my law school informed me, with a straight face, that helping me to find a job is not their role.

      What the fuck is their role, then?

      Delete
  10. How do these people still not understand how the legal hiring market works? CSOs do not create jobs. CSOs cannot market your students any better than they are already desperately marketing themselves. The highest paid CSO in the country is not going to make employers hire any more deeply into your class than they've been hiring for decades.

    A simple conversation with any student who has been through the hiring process will tell you this. Hell, grasping the basic logical principle that correlation =/= causation will quickly lead you to this conclusion.

    All you need in a CSO is someone who can 1) proofread resumes for typos, 2) schedule mock interviews and OCI once a year. One person can do all of that.

    ReplyDelete
  11. lustylarrylikesitintheairporttoiletFebruary 19, 2013 at 7:34 AM

    Isnt it great irony that phonetically "Cooley" is slang for @ss in Spanish. fitting

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Um, not to defend Cooley, but not really. Culo is spanish for ass. Sometimes even cola. Not cooley. Unless maybe you're puerto rican or something...

      Delete
    2. Native Spanish speaker here. Culiar (pronounced [COOL-EE]-AR) is slang in some countries for "to fuck." Seems fitting, given what Cooley does to their students.

      Delete
    3. Coolie is slang for indentured servants of Asian decent.


      (Example - the Chinese railroad workers brought into the US in the 1800's).


      Now THAT - inescapable indentured servanthood - seems a fitting meaning for Cooley.

      Delete
  12. If it weren't for the student loan scam, the law school scam would end. There would be some semblance of a profession in law. Lawyers could actually make a living. A new entrant (far fewer of them) could actually hope to carve out a life for himself or herself.

    We have crazy market distortion in law. The federally funded factory cranks out 45,000 people per year for 15,000 jobs. It's like a factory in the damned Soviet Union.

    Government be gone from funding. Would this mean that only the wealthy go to law school? Well, disproportionately yes. But so what? The driven poor could eat their lunches in practice later on and actually hope to make a living in law.

    The current system is that anyone with a pulse who is marginally literate can get a law degree. At the same time, no one can make a living practicing law. So what damn good is it???

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Soviet factories were not noted for over-supply - shortages were the norm.

      Delete
    2. The up or out policies also distort the job market in the legal profession. There are 5,000 to 7,000 jobs exclusively for recent grads that will disappear for those people in a few years. The law firms are glutting most specialties by laying off experienced lawyers with no jobs open for these lawyers. More and more alums of these firms join the ranks of unemployed lawyers each year.

      Delete
    3. "Soviet factories were not noted for over-supply - shortages were the norm."

      But at least on paper, they always exceeded their quota.

      Delete
  13. A night at the law school improv:

    So this law dean walks into a brothel and says, no sweetheart, usually naive young women pay me tuition dollars to f!@# them!

    Oh, snap. And don't forget to tip your waitresses.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you! I'll be here all weekend! Make sure and try the veal cutlet!

      Delete
    2. First thing I thought when I read this: "Try the veal!"

      Good on ya, Anonymous @ February 19, 2013 at 8:16 AM.

      Delete
    3. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J0dUKiphkKk

      "Food... alright?!"

      Delete
  14. To the best of my knowledge, there are two three-dimensional likenesses of Thomas M. Cooley in Ann Arbor, Michigan.

    One is a statue of old Tom at the entrance to the Cooley Law School Ann Arbor branch campus building. He holds out his hand as if he's asking for money. Really. http://mattlargesculpture.com/wp-content/uploads/CooleyAA.jpg

    The second is a bust of old Tom, located in the University of Michigan Law School faculty lounge.

    ReplyDelete
  15. Hi Folks, Dean LeDuc here, dean of the second best law school in the land, Cooley Law Schooley. If you people would only travel over to the Cooley website, you'd see that hiring is picking up.

    The Sun is still shining: the sub-150 LSAT crowd is still buying Cooley diplomas. And the Sun really shines in Tampa, site of our new campus.

    Ain't life grand??!!

    ReplyDelete
  16. Puta tu madre, cabron!!!

    ReplyDelete
  17. These comments put a smile on my face as I sit before my laptop ready to tee off on another week of contract work. Thanks for that, folks. Much appreciated.

    Oh, and my middle name is hustle.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Crux of hustle law
      Or
      Crux hustle of law?

      Which is it?

      Have a good week and hang in there .

      Delete
  18. Check out this article about UVA Law School, from one of our weekly papers here in Charlottesville, Va. They state they raised tuition due to lower enrollment.

    http://www.c-ville.com/law-school-enrollment-dropping-nationwide-and-uva-law-is-no-exception/

    ReplyDelete
  19. The mother fucker in the above UVA article talks about $1000 dollars breaking the bank. No it's not the 1000 dollars it's the $250,000 dollars it's going to cost you to attend UVA.

    ReplyDelete
  20. Lawprof,

    I have always disagreed with your "the problem is there aren't enough jobs" post.

    The problem is that law school costs too much. If law school cost $2,000 a semester, the lack of jobs would not be a problem. The people who aren't hired would brush themselves off with little collateral damage.

    The problem is the cost.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. "The people who aren't hired would brush themselves off with little collateral damage."

      If you want to make that stick you will have to address the issue of how a JD on your resume kills a lot of opportunities. I know an Ivy undergrad who threw over a promising career to attend a TTT and is now living with relatives and scraping by on doc review, unable to piece together enough hours to re-qualify for unemployment benefits, and unable to get a non-law job.

      Delete
    2. Rime of the Recent Law Grad...albatross and all

      Delete
    3. But you can't work full-time while you're a full-time student. You still need to borrow for living expenses: books, fees, room and board, health insurance, transportation, etc. It's going to end up being 20k a year for that.

      Delete
  21. The problem is that there are not enough jobs. Even for experienced lawyers who paid much less to go to law school, there is a very high level of unemployment. It is very hard to get a nonlegal job with a JD unless one has a job, is well liked and is moving within the company. That does not do anything for the hundreds of thousands of unemployed and underemployed JDs. They cannot get any type of job other than retail.

    This has nothing to do with cost. There is a glut of lawyers. Supply exceeds demand by several times.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. There is a glut of lawyers. But there's also a glut of young people generally in America relative to the level of jobs.

      White baby boomers lost a big chunk of their savings (house value, 401k, pensions axed) and they're holding onto their jobs.

      So as bad as the job market is, it's even worse because the normal rate of attrition has come to a standstill.

      Delete
    2. And yet ... people are still in denial.

      http://jdunderground.com/all/thread.php?threadId=41351

      Delete
    3. The college grads and even college students I know are getting good jobs. These are not jobs gotten through connections. These guys got them on their own. All of them have successful upper middle class parents. I do not see these young adults working in retail or with no career options. They have very good jobs. None are looking at law school.

      Delete
    4. This is in the metropolitan areas of large northeast cities - NY and Boston. None of the kids I know are suffering from lack of employment opportunities. Maybe the economy is better in the northeast than elsewhere for college students and recent grads. I know someone in Chicago who is looking, but that person really did not look for long.

      Delete
    5. "White baby boomers lost a big chunk of their savings (house value, 401k, pensions axed) and they're holding onto their jobs."

      This is actually a very job point - borne out by BLS and Federal Reserve statistics.

      The 25 to 54 employment to population ratio has seen a historic contraction (back to levels last seen in the early 90's) while the 55+ ratio has soared to unprecedented heights.

      The great American jobs machine...has an impacted colon.

      Delete
    6. Wow, fancy that: the children of successful upper-middle-class parents are finding good jobs! Film at fucking eleven.

      Delete
  22. American University represents the heart of the scam. If this school dies the end will be near.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I've practically begged people to not go there. One girl went anyway because of being a special snowflake and refused to listen.

      This years TLS thread had a comment I copies earlier. Basically, they don't want to hear what a bad decision it is to go to American.

      Delete
    2. They deserve what's coming to them. American is a trap school in every sense of the term.

      Delete
    3. But it's got a PATRIOTIC name!

      Delete
    4. What we see with American is the power of the US News rankings scam. American is a trap school. It is potentially THE trap school. Yet it is still powerful and still able to draw plenty of lemmings solely because of its place in the Top 50. 0Ls fixate on the rankings and the distinction between being at school 50 and being at school 51 is everything to them.

      But if American dies, it is a major victory and would send the fear of God into the lesser toilets. The school is just in straight cash grab mode as it tries to scam its way into the new building. It recognizes that it will have to take a hit in the rankings, but it thinks it can triangulate when it does take a rankings hit.

      Delete
    5. Why do you hate American?

      Delete
    6. what's not to hate?

      Delete
    7. Top 10 trap schools:

      1. Emory
      2. Minnesota
      3. Notre Dame
      4. Boston College
      5. American
      6. Wake Forest
      7. William & Mary
      8. Illinois
      9. Cal-Davis
      10. Fordham

      Delete
    8. Also, no GULC?

      Delete
    9. why is Emory a trap school. I worked in DC over the summer with someone from a TTT who had been accepted to both Emory and Maryland as a transfer and I told him to go to Emory. I said if you go to Maryland your just going to end up like most of us you went to schools barely in the top 50. If Emory is the number 1 trap school then forgive me fellow scammed for I have greatly sinned.

      Delete
    10. it's a trap in the sense that the cost relative to projected return is insanely out of whack. if you finish well after the first year (top quarter, maybe? probably better) you'll have good options. if you don't... consider dropping out.

      for this reason i would advise some one to go to emory for first year to take a spin on the wheel. if your lucky number comes up, that's great. if not, get out. going in with that attitude makes it less likely someone will stick it out just due to the "sunk cost" issue.

      Delete
    11. Damn I feel real bad then. This guy was going from a TTT. I mean he had to get out of the TTT, I thought Emory was a good option.

      Delete
    12. GULC is still ranked 13th and pushes too many people into BigLaw to be a true trap school.

      GW's omission was a legit mistake. Place is a total trap school.

      Emory is absolutely a trap school. I think you f'ed up telling a kid to go Emory over Maryland, especially if he's an MD resident.

      Delete
    13. not Maryland resident. But yea I hope I didn't lead him to a worse school. I did tell him he needs to check the stats and go to LST and compare the schools. Ultimately it's on him, I didn't like pitch Emory I just said I knew a student at Maryland who was struggling and that I didn't know if it was worth it to transfer from his TTT to Maryland.

      Delete
    14. Take Minnesota off the list. It's clearly regional, but if you're a resident, it definitely is not a trap. If you're from NYC and plan to return to practice law, don't go to Minnesota. UMN undergrad alum here. I would add Boston Univ., George Washington, Pepperdine, Northeastern Univ., Emory (agreed), take BC off the list - they have a good reputation IMO (expensive but not a trap). Take Notre Dame off too. They have a national rep. You go to American U, GW, BU or Pepperdine, get ready to pay. But please don't come whining to me in 3 years when you're a debt slave with no legal job.

      Delete
  23. "The problem is that law school costs too much. If law school cost $2,000 a semester, the lack of jobs would not be a problem. The people who aren't hired would brush themselves off with little collateral damage."

    This could be true for some people, but it relates to what I think is a pretty interesting part of the scam and that is the amount of time it takes for scammed to graduates to accept what has happened. This can take several years. Graduates who don't immediately find permanent legal jobs will waste 2 or 3 more years trying to do anything quasi-legal (in my case, doc review) in a desparate attempt to launch their career, justify their degree, and save face with their family and friends who now expect them to work as a lawyer.

    Its no big surprise to me that so many of the regular commenters here are people who did manage to obtain decent employment. We can see the victims for what they are, even when they don't see it themselves, or don't want to.

    ReplyDelete
  24. Law Prof, is WCL counting this graduate that became a comedian as employed? or was he unemployed till just now when the school hired him to come in and shoot the shit with current students.

    ReplyDelete
  25. Even after admitting to yourself that you have been scammed, transferring out of the law becomes very difficult. After sending out literally hundreds of resumes, non-legal employers aren't biting. The only legal employers I have heard from have been document review outsourcing outfits, but I find that work to be very depressing. I recently did a stint of Cravath, where I got the sinking feeling that most of my work was part and parcel of a gigantic billing scam. They didn't care how much, or how crappy our work product was. Several people would sleep at their desks and watch youtube videos all day. The law is the most useless, most pointless make work b.s. industry in the history of mankind. I just want to get out. I'd rather scrape defecation stains off the wall at a gasoline station, than put up with this bull, at least you are doing something useful.

    ReplyDelete
  26. Anonymous@10:22--that is a very good point, and adds further to the opportunity cost of law school (3 yrs actually in school, plus whatever time an un/underemployed JD loses with unpaid internships which appear to be mandatory for most to break into the field). I would think that after a year or so, if one is unable to find a real legal job it would be time to move on.

    There are not enough jobs, period. Even if every law school closed down tomorrow it would take many years for equilibrium to be reached

    ReplyDelete
  27. I actually feel sorry for CSO staff. There is literally nothing they can do to get graduates into jobs that don't exist and often they become scapegoats. At my law school, they did some deckchair shuffling a year or so ago, but the results are the same. No jobs means no jobs.

    Yeah, some of the advice sucks. Most of them are recent grads who couldn't land anywhere else telling students to "network" or to milk their pre-law experience/contacts.

    But the best advice they could possibly give - to quit and find a non-law opportunity - would likely get them censured if not fired. The second-best thing they could do - make contacts with non-law employers to land graduates in positions that don't have a stigma - would get them scoffed at by current students who still think jobs exist.

    Let's say I'm a CSO person. I call up a friend in the insurance industry and tell him about the plight of recent law graduates and that our graduates have a lot of transferable skills. He sees the light and secures spots in their training programs for our law graduates. I take this to median level grads and their responses would be as follows: 1) I could have done that out of undergrad; 2) I can't pay [x] debt with starting out as an insurance agent/adjuster; 3) FIND ME A LAW JOB.

    I honestly wonder if a law school completely axed its CSO, just paid a flunkie to man Symplcity if the employment results would change any. I would bet they'd stay the same.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. No sympathy for them. If you are benefiting from the scam and not actively attempting to destroy it then you can go to hell.

      Where is the law school Bradley Manning. I wish one of these admins would just recognize the injustice and publish the fraud we all know they are hiding in their files.

      Delete
    2. The scammier insurance companies are already aware of our plight and have moved in the pick our bones clean. Companies like AXA Advisors have been putting ads on the sympliticty sites of Philly schools for a while now. They often call the position something along the lines of "the JD executive management program."

      Delete
    3. ^ About as slimy as their sales pitch when they cold call.

      Delete
  28. I'd nominate UC Irvine as most deserving to be desolved immediately:

    1) Studies performed on the need for a 5th University of Califronia law school screamed "NO NEED!" but they opened it anyway;

    2) It's a public school, yet tuition for in-state students is more than some private schools at over 43k a year (just tuition, not living expenses), all to fund Chemerinsky's vein playhouse of buddies on the faculty, at California taxpayers' and the University of California's expense;

    3) There is no indication that the school will produce better prepared, or more marketable graduates than the glut of other schools in the area.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Nah, UC Irvine is fine. There are 20 million people in SoCal, 2 public law schools is about right.

      I'd nominate Illinois and Villanova as first against the wall.

      These were the most explicitly scammiest law schools, and they were found guilty by the appropriate regulatory bodies.

      Delete
    2. But Illinois is one of the top 3 law schools in Illinois out of like 10. And Villanova is an ivy league school.

      Delete
    3. I wouldn't mind if UC Irvine was still around.

      Its neighbor schools on the other hand (Whittier, Chapman and Western State) need to close.

      Delete
    4. Not to be a pedant, but Villanova is not an Ivy League school. Maybe you're thinking of Penn?

      Delete
    5. It is difficult for a lay person such as a member of the public or a local attorney practicing personal injury law to comprehend just how significant a contribution UC-Irvine is making to the discourse.

      Delete
    6. How does MD Kirk School of Law fit in all this?

      http://mdkirklawschool.com/home/docs/Disclosure_Statement.pdf

      Delete
    7. http://www.hark.com/clips/gzztfzsqzp-remember-this-well-there-shall-be-no-peace-as-long-as-kirk-lives

      "Remember this well. There shall be no balance in the legal profession as long as Kirk remains open."

      Delete
    8. I might be biased as a Villanova Law alum, but I don't think Nova will close. Given their proximity to Drexel, Widener, dual Penn States, and Rutgers-Camden, I think they will try to tread water.

      I think Philly can handle three schools, with PA only having 5. Penn serves as the token Ivy, Temple the state, and Villanova the private. PSU handles other parts of the state, except for Pitt in Pittsburgh. Widener, Drexel, Duqesne, and the other PSU have to go...

      Delete
  29. Why does American Law School exist?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Unlimited federal student loans with no actuarial standards.

      Period.

      Without those, the school would cease to exist almost instantly.

      This is true for probably half the law schools in the country.

      Delete
    2. You have Georgetown, George Washington, George Mason, UVA, Washington and Lee, William and Mary, U Maryland and all the T10 schools in this crowded market. Why would anyone think $50K at American is a good idea. You'd have to be either very brave or very uninformed to enroll there.

      Delete
    3. or have very rich parents...

      Delete
    4. I got shot down for suggesting this once, but even rich parents and trust funds have limits on what they feel is a worthwhile expense of money. Not for nothing, the super wealthy are unlikely to send their kids to a school like American because it simply isn't good enough.

      Delete
  30. Whittier, TJ or Cooley should close first. They are at the top of the shit pile and deserve the longest and most memorable fall.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Cooley is too big to be the first to close. The first to go will be a small one.

      Delete
    2. Agreed. Cooley has too much government $$ to go belly up right away. A small law school will go under first. Here's my best guesses, in no particular order: Vermont Law, NESL, Western New England, some of the TTTTT dumps in California, Barry Univ., Ohio Northern, Quinnapiac, Drexel. As you can probably tell, I'm on the East Coast.

      Delete
  31. ATL has an article on the new book by Bruce MacEwon on biglaw: growth is dead, now what.

    http://abovethelaw.com/2013/02/calling-all-law-firm-partners-the-future-of-big-law-reception/

    Here is one quote:
    ATL: What was the most depressing or disheartening thing you discovered in writing the book?

    MacEwen: How many lawyers are in denial about the permanence of the changes we’re experiencing; they want to believe it’s cyclical when it’s structural. And more importantly, what the human consequences already have been and will continue to be for some time, from partners and associates to staff and recent JD grads. As Bill Henderson has said, the upward mobility law school escalator is broken.

    ReplyDelete
  32. That is about right, but the fall was also caused by their own stupidity. Cooley and TJ were sued by their alumni. TJ tried to get the suit dismissed because the lead plaintiff was offered and turned down a job, as if that was relevant. What was relevant is that the plaintiff found a former staffer who said she was told to manipulate employment data. That suit is ongoing and TJ will pay. Cooley was dumb enough to sue the lawyers suing it and the alumni who wrote the "Thomas Cooley Law School Scam (http://thomas-cooley-law-school-scam.weebly.com) so Cooley is still in for a long and tortured litigation that it can't afford against public interest organizations protecting free speech, and trial lawyers protecting their Porches.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Who is doing the doc review for those cases? I'd love to dig through the schools' electronic communications.

      Delete
    2. You have to get to discovery first.

      Delete
    3. The TJ lawsuit is in discovery.

      Delete
  33. What was the most surprising thing you discovered in the course of writing Growth is Dead?

    MacEwen: That the story actually cohered. You could see that the Great Reset had consequences in the market, particularly in terms of the (over-)supply of talent and clients’ new willingness to exercise their power over demand. And you could see that people more or less rationally following their own self-interest, given the incentive structures in front of them, had system-wide consequences that no one might have actually intended.

    More importantly, you could see how so many of those repercussions had been waiting in the wings, as it were, and just needed something to launch them on stage, front and center. We were on an unsustainable trajectory before 2008.

    ReplyDelete
  34. About law school scam lawsuits:
    http://abovethelaw.com/2013/02/its-time-for-the-new-york-court-of-appeals-to-drop-the-hammer-on-the-law-school-lawsuits/

    Because someone mentioned these lawsuits in the comments, the plaintiffs have filed a motion to reinstate their claim.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Steve Diamond is going to be pissed.

      Delete
  35. NYTimes op Ed piece today folks.

    ReplyDelete
  36. Where's it at? Please provide link if possible. Thanks!

    ReplyDelete
  37. re: 7:20 am

    so many el-ed teachers shouldn't even be in that racket. shame on the colleges that credential the woefully unqualified. the fact is lots of people are getting credentialed for jobs that don't exist and for which they would be unqualified (by virtue of other factors like talent, skill and intelligence) even if they did exist. the whole thing is a sham.

    i used to walk around my undergrad campus and wonder how in the hell all these el-ed and phys-ed majors were going to find jobs. now i know. they weren't. did the school know? should it have known? i say yes, and i say there is a heightened duty of care as between a school and its students. people laugh me out the room every time i say there should necessarily be a fiduciary relationship there, but why not? tremendous amounts of money are changing hands, the school is non-profit ostensibly doing a public service. come on now! if this is merely a market transaction, then show the schools their tax bills, inclusive of all the years they were exempted. pony up or start being good fiduciaries!

    ReplyDelete
  38. American...Love it or leave it.

    ReplyDelete
  39. http://www.nytimes.com/2013/02/18/opinion/to-practice-law-apprentice-first.html?partner=rssnyt&emc=rss&_r=0

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. If biglaw can get a class of 1st years at low cost or free, they will drastically change cost structures. I expect there to be a lot of support for this - no more costly SA program, you could require a low paid summer just to see if they make the cut to work for you as an apprentice.
      Then you can do a year of training them, pay next to nothing, support a few worthy students with good stipends for living expenses and then pick the best to come on as second years.
      This is awesome if you are running a biglaw firm.

      Delete
    2. Promotional piece for the author's law school. Unpaid advertisement.

      Delete
  40. "(OK I do wish it on some law school deans)"

    *85%* of *all* law school deans.

    And shooting, not firing - unless you meaning firing squad.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh hai Leiter! Nice troll...

      Delete
  41. Bet those fired CSO employees has a lot of *very* interesting stories to tell about how the employment statistics sausage gets made/ordered by the Deans.

    Come on, people!

    We need to start thinking like federal prosecutors dealing with the Mafia.

    Because we are.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You need to get to the discovery stage first....

      But what if you obtained an affidavit from these past CSO types (like maybe the one who was at DePaul and now is at City of Chicago) and attach it to the complaint?

      The judge may just say yes the stats are bad, but who would've believed it? Or, that's just "puffery."

      Delete
    2. No we need whistle blowers. We need people who can't stand the scam anymore and sacrifice for the greater good and reveal the scam. I know some of these Admins hate what they are doing, they need to be encouraged to reveal the scam. These people have the documents they know what their law school mills are guilty of. Hand them over, give them to Lawprof.

      Delete
  42. OK, off topic rant...
    A buddy at work has a 22 yr old son graduating college this year. His goal for the past 10 years is to be a lawyer. We were talking for 20 minutes, and for 5 of those minutes, i told him "You know, the labor market for legal expertise is very saturated. Web sites and books are giving info stating that only 10%, 15% of graduating lawyers are getting jobs. Do you want some info on this?"
    And the ostrich said "No, he's a very hard worker, and this is his dream."
    I gave him more info about $200K non-bankruptable student debt, the bankrupting of firms, etc. But he's NOT INTERESTED! Talk about taking firm, positive action to not even review information that disputes their assumption, the assumption that lawyer = upper middle class guarantee.

    Even with LawProf's constant devotion to education, you can't convert a zealot in their unswerving beliefs.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. How much is he paying for law school?

      Delete
    2. Don't give up, give him the info and have him talk to recent grads or students at the law schools he is considering. I've had to go through this with people I know who are trapped and want to go to law school to get into a higher paying job. You just have to force feed them the medicine, they will thank you when they aren't a 3L, jobless, debt ridden and depressed.

      Delete
    3. "How much is he paying?" He's not accepted into law school yet.

      "Don't give up": Ugh, i probably will. I'm very uncomfortable playing the truth-filled missionary, and i have to honor his decision to ignore the info.

      Delete
  43. I think that the 0Ls who are going this year counting on biglaw based even on 2011 stats are buying into a pipedream.

    I really wish that no one would go to school unless on a full scholarship.

    I read these posts about paying sticker at NYU when you want entertainment law in LA - because NYU has placed better in biglaw over taking the scholarship at USC or UCLA, whatever.

    Why does no one say: what if you get no job?
    Although in this case, the parents are paying for NYU- it is still well over $250,000.

    I just don't get it. Do these kids know anything at all about making life decisions?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. This is why Lawprof and other will have little to no sympathy for the incoming 1Ls.

      Delete
    2. "I just don't get it. Do these kids know anything at all about making life decisions?"
      I don't get it either. I research everything. And many people i know never research. They make bold, declarative statements with 100% certainty that they are absolutely right, and no future event could ever invalidate their decision. If i give them counterarguments, books, websites, they just smirk.
      -
      At my YMCA is a 24 yr old boy handing out towels. He was reading a philosophy book, and told me he was graduating with his BA in philosophy. I told him i could help him find work as a grant writer or something, and he just half-heartedly said "um, yeah, mabye..." That was 2 years ago, and he's still handing out towels part time.

      Delete
  44. Why would anyone go to school, even on a full ride, if their chance was slim to none at getting a job upon graduation?

    Even if you can get a job:

    1. It probably won't be a $160k biglaw job;

    2. Even if it is, the likelihood that you'll be able to keep it long-term is remote;

    3. Despite #1 or #2, the likelihood that you'll enjoy the job is remote.

    This is what is called a losing proposition folks.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Tomorrow's Lawyers — An Introduction to Your Future

      http://www.law.com/jsp/lawtechnologynews/PubArticleLTN.jsp?id=1202588261328

      Delete
  45. More signs of desperation... and what can I do to get you in a law school seat today...
    ---
    From University of Miami: Got letter in mail today saying they will give me $2k more per year for scholly if I give my seat deposit by April 1

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. If the letter actually says "What can i do to get you in a law school seat today", write back
      "You can guarantee me that if i graduate from your school, and I don't find a legal job paying $80,000+ within 12 months, that you'll refund 50% of my tuition."

      Delete
    2. No, that was a Campos quote from his post about the GULC merit scholarship play that backfired on them/

      Delete
    3. Also require that they pay that 50% into escrow. You know why.

      Delete
  46. Hah. "Limited to 20 people."

    ReplyDelete
  47. And while I don't think American will be the first to go, the school's increasingly grotesque behavior in the face of its absurd price structure and bottom of the barrel employment statistics makes it perhaps more deserving of this distinction than any other school."

    So American might be the Bear Stearns of law schools...( we already know that Cooley, TJ, and their ilk are the CounTTTrywides). Guess that make GULC Lehman Bros...2007 called and they want their toxic CDOs back.

    ReplyDelete
  48. You just know that any LS connected to a larger institution has a too big to fail pitch ready to go for the mother school. Also, there's the "greater benefit of the surrounding community" tripe that the two Penn States were spinning recently. Anything to keep the $$$ flowing, no matter the source.

    ReplyDelete
  49. Why You Should Not Go to Law School
    by Tucker Max

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/tucker-max/law-school_b_2713943.htm

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Tucker's a shameless self-promoting attention ho.

      Delete
  50. Upthread at 5:28 it was said, "But you can't work full-time while you're a full-time student. "


    Sure you can. If you're both blessed with a really good memory and accustomed (already) to working your butt off to get ahead in life.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. How, pray tell, do you expect to work a full schedule (9-6) when the majority of your classes (all for most 1Ls) are between said times? You would have to be extremely blessed to find an employer who is cool with that, IF work is available.

      I worked roughly 30 hours a week my 3L year in addition to taking a full course load and doing various resume-building projects. It isn't a matter of working hard - I had one good night of sleep a week and forgot I had a television - it's a matter of the day not having enough hours, employers not putting up with your odd schedule, and risking low grades damaging your employability later.

      I would NEVER advise a 1L to work full time. At best, they could pick up 20 hours a week.

      And of course even when I worked nearly full-time for 18 months, I still had to borrow money to pay for living expenses and wound up with 40k in non-tuition debt. $14/hr doesn't go that far given how expensive law school can be.

      Delete
    2. You work odd shifts, nights and weekends. 1L was hard to get a full 50 hours in, but it was do-able. After that (2L, 3L) - c'mon, it's not hard to get full time work in there. I crammed my sections together so that I could (in a given semester) either go MWF or TH or go all week but be done by 1pm.

      I never plugged my TV in, so yeah, I hear you there. But I did the same thing in UG. Worked usually 40-50 hpw.

      As for grades, I would have cut back if working had interfered.

      I was also married and my first two children were born during law school.

      I did not sleep much, though.

      I didn't really address debt. Don't get me wrong - while I didn't have any, it's not just due to working during LS. I worked 5 years full time between UG and LS, so we had savings to draw on. As mentioned above, I worked all through my UG (which did cover costs), so no debt there. And my wife also had a pretty good job while I was in LS, making almost as much as I was.

      Delete
    3. I somehow managed to work very substantial hours during first year while attending every class, completing all reading and other assignments on time, and getting excellent grades.

      Delete
    4. TheValvolineDeansAMGpwnsyouFebruary 20, 2013 at 4:03 AM

      So you admit to violating the rules about how many hours a fulltime law student can work? where is your respect for the rule of law? either way i suggest you GFY as nobody else wants to.

      Delete
    5. Don't project your bedroom failures on me. Sorry you ain't getting any. I hear Palmer Handy loves you, though.

      Delete
  51. Takes a BA to get job as receptionist at a law firm. Also, the firm's runner wants to go to law school next year:

    http://www.nytimes.com/2013/02/20/business/college-degree-required-by-increasing-number-of-companies.html?hp&_r=0

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. This is insane. Education is valuable. Individuals who are knowledge-hungry tend to be more driven and more interesting. That does not mean that education is good regardless of price, that a college degree denotes you as knowledge-hungry, or that the knowledge-hungry are better employees.

      We're witnessing the negative consequences of the triumph of the academy. So damned smart that they ruined the whole system and have lined their pockets selling credentials to hr departments.

      This should not be surprising. Hr is where companies have placed their troglodytes for generations. These are the decisions such people make.

      Politicians won't do anything to fix it, because school is unquestionably good. What a country!

      Delete
    2. Look at the picture of the receptionist. She didn't get hired for her degree . . .ha-cha-cha-cha-cha!

      Delete
  52. I am so sick of hearing stories about how Heap Big Hard Worker rose at dawn, attended every class and aced each course while juggling gigs as a freelance poultry inspector and a sabermetrician consultant.

    We get it: You are fucking awesome.

    The rest of us have limits and frailties, oh great one.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I was one of the those big hard workers in the 80's. The capacity to work hard, even extraordinarily hard to get through law school, hold a part time job, be at the top of the class, edit the law review (all things I did) should be viewed positively.

      Having said all of this, I have extreme sympathy for positions like yours, sick of hearing of the good old days. But it is not that you and your generation are frail or have limits. You likely are even more keenly focused than we were. In fact, I would bet on it. No, it is rather that the world has changed, and I mean really, really changed. The opportunities to find meaningful, decent part time work during law school have shrunk to almost nothing (I had a $35 hour part time job, and managed investments I made in a trading job prior to law school). And law school is now hugely overpriced, so the pressures to be at the top of the class went from intense to insane, meaning that very few can rationalize holding a modest job in the face of this kind of pressure. Better off to live on loans and play the increasingly risky law job lottery, doubling down on a bet than often increases in its risk and misery. Don't take the bait - those who can relate the Horatio Alger stories are indeed somewhat worthy of admiration, but they could not do today what they did then. Flat out, no way. Law tuition at my top 10 school in the 80's? Overpriced even then at 12,000 a year. Debt at the end of law school (and note many student loans then did not accrue interest while in school)? None. It could be done then. Not now. No matter what kind of fantasy I engage in about being Superman in the 80's (believe me, I wasn't, just a hard worker with a top flight athletic background with no fear of competition), I am a product of luck and a much more supportive economic environment. Of course, I did not know it at the time. I am not sure the Horatio Algers of yesteryear who post here quite comprehend this fact - it is not in their interest to do so.

      Look at it this way. As the economy has
      become ruthlessly efficient, law schools have become far more inefficient, raising its tuition several orders of magnitude beyond inflation with no real improvement in educational quality. The inefficiencies have evolved to benefit a mostly very liberal class of apparatchiks who feel entitled, all on the backs of students.

      Delete
    2. 5:19, you really are the best!

      Now fuck off, you god damn gloating boomer. Why are you here, bragging about your top 10 school, your "top flight athletic background", and how you edited the law review and worked in a high dollar investment job part time etc etc etc brag brag float brag brag bore bore bore.

      You have nothing in common with us, you have no sympathy, and you are part of the problem.

      Do boomers really not get how despised they are?

      Delete
    3. 5:45, you are totally off base. I was a t20 in the 1980s and it was a different world. My school is now listed under this post as a trap school, but in my day it cost $8,000 a year. I lived very frugally and came out with $10,500 in debt. Was recruited right off campus to a mid-sized firm in a major city, starting at $38,000 (about 80ish in today's dollars) plus bonus, soon raised to $42,500. My college friends were all making in the low twenties. It was a good investment at the time. It is a horrible investment now, if you could even call it an investment.

      And frankly, I have less sympathy for the present generation than 5:19 does. I was very cognizant of how much I could hope to earn and how far in the hole I was going. I also decided at the outset to only apply to upper-echelon schools (this was pre- USNWR rankings) as judged by the GPAs/LSATs of their students. Looking at today's situation with the same intellect and insigt I possessed at age 21 I would never consider anything but HYS, to which I would never be accepted. A friend of mine's son was looking at law school a few years back and he made the same analysis. When he saw his LSAT wasn't going to get him into HYS, even with an Ivy UG, he went to a prestigious MBA program and has done very, very well.

      Delete
  53. the ny state law school scam lawsuits are being appealed:
    http://www.law.com/jsp/nlj/PubArticleNLJ.jsp?id=1202588733671&Plaintiffs_take_law_school_fraud_cases_to_New_Yorks_highest_court

    ReplyDelete
  54. Just looked at my schools 2011 stats on their website and I think you need to be a cryptogropher to decipher that shite, they have a link to the ABA version which is much clearer..wonder why they didn't post that instead? Makes me wonder how they're going to dress up the 2012 stats...their hands need to be forced harder

    ReplyDelete
  55. I'm Feb.19 at 8:33 and 10:29 PM. Sorry you're tired about hearing how some people worked hard and had it work out for them.

    By the way, I'm not a boomer. Nor, like the 80's LS apologist boomer who later replied, did I have a job that paid anywhere near $35/hr. More like $19.

    People whine about their circumstances, yet do nothing to mitigate the bad outcomes.

    I. Just. Don't. Get. It.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. So you're the same guy throwing out responses like "[d]on't project your bedroom failures on me. Sorry you ain't getting any. I hear Palmer Handy loves you, though"?

      Seriously, though, I think the problem is that you're confusing working hard to get ahead (which is, I agree, a ticket to success - I've done so myself) with working hard as an attorney to get ahead as an attorney (which is, I think, moronic). The legal "profession" is a dying one. Anyone with any sense should GTFO of it. And warning 0Ls to avoid it isn't whining.

      Delete
  56. Legal recruitment, legal job markets and the legal profession by Jonathan ... taken from our Daily Legal Jobs Blog - if you would like to apply for any post please email a CV to ....
    Law Jobs,legal careers, law careers, lawyer jobs, attorneys of color

    ReplyDelete

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.