February 20, 2014
Law firm hiring, the latest NALP report for fall 2013
Good, not great: much better than the depths of the recession, and holding steady or improving from last year in most parts of the country, but not close to being back to pre-recession levels (no surprise there).
February 19, 2014
Harvard's own survey of employers about what classes students should take
Here. Unsurprisingly, "experiential" learning of the kind a minority is trying to force upon everyone does not loom large.
UPDATE: Blog Emperor Caron breaks out charts showing the results.
February 18, 2014
UCLA Law's student body now only about 3% African-American
Students have made a video about the experience; there is also a thoughtful response from Dean Moran at the end of the linked article.
February 17, 2014
More price competition between law schools
This time in and around Kansas City.
February 11, 2014
A dozen years out, most law school graduates glad they went
Once again, we may be certain that actual evidence will have no effect on cyber-ranting, but it hopefully will have an effect on rational observers; among the preliminary results:
Graduates of the top 10 law schools who worked full-time earned median pay that was $73,500 more per year than graduates of Tier 4 schools. And among graduates of Tier 3 schools, grades made a big difference. In that group, those with the highest grade point averages had median pay that was $121,500 more than those with the lowest grades....
The 2012 respondents were largely happy with their decision to attend law school. Asked to rate their satisfaction with their decision to become a lawyer on a 1-to-5 scale, the average was 3.92. Asked whether law school was a good investment on a 1-to-7 scale, the average was 5.5. Asked whether would go to law school if they had it to do over again using a 1-to-7 scale, the average was 4.91.
The findings show a movement from private practice to business since the first wave of the study. The percentage of respondents working in the business sector was 27.7 percent in 2012, compared to only 8.4 percent in 2003. At the same time, the percentage of respondents in private practice was 44.1 percent in 2012, compared to 68.6 percent in 2003.
The median remaining educational debt for the survey respondents in 2012 was $50,000, compared to $70,000 in 2003. Nearly 48 percent had no debt remaining in 2012, compared to only about 16 percent in 2003.
February 10, 2014
Harry Arthurs (Osgoode) on the impossibility of producing "practice-ready" lawyers
Arthurs, former Dean of Osgoode and one of Canada's most eminent legal scholars, gives a talk well worth watching by anyone genuinely interested in what reform of legal education can and cannot do.
UPDATE: Steve Diamond (Santa Clara) comments, and also provides a link to the manuscript version of the talk.
Simkovic & McIntyre review of Tamanaha
February 03, 2014
On "financial exigency"
Stephen Diamond (Santa Clara) comments.
January 31, 2014
Signs of the times: Albany Law School declares financial crisis...
...and is threatening to fire faculty, including possibly tenured faculty. It is not clear, however, that there really is a financial crisis there (follow the link to the Albany AAUP website). Albany did, however, suffer an S&P downgrade last year. Any firings of tenured faculty are likely to result in costly lawsuits, given the evidence in the public domain.
Note that Albany Law School is a freestanding law school, and is not part of the State University of New York system. It is also one of four law schools in "upstate" New York (the others are Syracuse, SUNY-Buffalo and Cornell, though Cornell is not sending graduates primarily into the upstate markets). The New York City area is served by Columbia, NYU, Fordham, Cardozo, Brooklyn, NYLS, St. John's, Hofstra, Pace, Touro, Seton Hall, and Rutgers-Newark (not to mention the many schools farther from New York that send large numbers of graduates there).
January 30, 2014
More factual problems for law school bashers: law students are not unhappier now than they were before the recession
An amusing, but related anecdote: a former student told me he tried to challenge one of the hysterical scam bloggers about his claim that "a very large percentage of alumni wind up out of the law within a few years and much of the remainder had higher earnings potential at 35 than they do at 55" and that "most BigLaw associates are gone by year 5 to lower-bracket employment options." The challenge consisted of: what is the evidence for these claims (since none had been cited or linked)? The scam-blogger didn't even approve the question for the comment section, and no answer has been forthcoming. Hardly surprising, since the law school bashing has become an utterly fact-free pastime (at least when it doesn't devolve into cyber-harassment and sexist abuse.)