Wednesday, April 19, 2006

High Undergraduate GPAs at Top Law Schools: What Do They Mean and What Are Their Consequences for Legal Education?

Pamela Karlan, a distinguished expert on voting rights and civil procedure at Stanford Law School, writes:

I read, with both interest and a fair amount of distress, the 75th percentile LSAT rankings.  The distress came from seeing the staggering 75th percentile GPAs.

These could reflect at least three states of the world, two of them unfortunate.  First, and most optimistically, the 40 schools on your list could all be admitting kids with amazing undergraduate academic achievements.  (A 3.96 means, for example a student with 34A's and 2 B+'s as an undergraduate; a 3.85 could mean half A's and half A-'s.)

Second, the GPA's could reflect rampant grade inflation at undergraduate institutions.  Leave aside the abstract debate over whether the current generation of students is so much abler than its predecessors that good students should never see a grade below A- or B+.  Most law schools have mandatory means or curves, and I'm aware of none where that mean is over around 3.4.  (Even at the schools that don't have official means, I would guess the actual mean is no higher than that.)  Thus, virtually all law students will have lower, substantially lower, GPA's in law school than they had in college.  (E.g., at my own institution, 25% of the students had GPAs equivalent to what the number 1 student in the normal graduating class is likely to have.)  This drop has a number of unfortunate consequences.  Many of us are familiar with a huge demoralization effect the day first-semester grades come out and people who've been told all their lives that they are "A's" at everything that's measured hear for the first time that they're "B's."  They give up, and simply float through the remaining five semesters.  Many have a self-protective defensive reaction: if the law doesn't love them, then they distance themselves from it.  In addition, at law schools where there are course-selection strategies that allow students to manipulate their GPA's, students are then drawn not to taking what's good or useful for them, but rather what's most likely to boost their GPAs back toward the range they've internalized as normal.  The high UGPAs mean that many of our students have never really learned to bounce back from academic disappointment (the "C" I got my first semester of college is one of the best things that ever happened to me) and like learning to ride a bicycle, it's harder to learn that the older you get.

Third, to get those astronomical UGPA's, students necessarily had to be either (a) extraordinary across the board for their entire undergraduate career (the student who bombs the first year of college because she wasn't yet ready for the work or who was planning to be a physicist before he realized he didn't have the mathematical ability can't get one of these sky-high GPAs) or (b) strategic and risk-averse, taking only the kinds of courses in which they'd get A's, from the time they were 17 or 18 years old.  I'd bet it's more the latter than the former.  One of the things I always though the U.S. had over many other advanced countries was that we didn't expect students to specialize in only what they were good at when they were still teenagers.  But in order to get a 3.9 UGPA, students really can't take things well outside their comparative advantages.  Many of us see the consequences of this in what our students do: they're passive and non-entrepreneurial in their job choices, going to large firms not because that practice particularly attracts them, but because it seems less "risky" right out of law school than going to smaller firms or government jobs.  Many of them haven't exercised their intellectual imaginations in years.  Many are in fact not particularly well educated, since the science majors took few writing courses, the humanities people took perhaps one semester of economics and flee any quantitative subject, and the social and hard scientists know no American (let alone world) history at all.

Now, of course, we're talking here only about the 75th percentile.  Perhaps we could find the students who are comfortable with risk, entrepreneurial, academically and intellectually adventurous, and resilient among the other three-quarters of the class.  But even the 25th percentile at top 20 schools have staggering UGPAs.  And that sets the tone for the student body.

I'm not sure, as long as US News drives so much of the world, that there's anything to be done.  But it's frustrating if what we're trying to do is to train imaginative, entrepreneurial, courageous, resilient lawyers with broad perspectives that one of the central criteria for admitting students undermines our chances of doing that.

I find myself in rather strong agreement with Professor Karlan's observations.  Comments are open; no anonymous postings; please post only once (comments may take awhile to appear).

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I too am inclined to agree. I'd only add that I wouldn't be too hard on law school admissions policies and the USNWR in this regard; I think the problem is much more widespread. If you look at undergraduate admissions at elite institutions, the same pattern seems to emerge, and the same likely hypotheses -- with extraordinary pressure to succeed in high school (and an equivalent vulnerability to failure in the undergrad years, albeit without as much pressure from forced curves) and risk aversion during high school course selection. My guess is that these habits are largely learned by the time college is underway, and in any event before many or most have focused their sights on law school. Maybe the solution is to be more severe/realistic in college, and to force breadth in the curriculum, but the problems aren't limited to pre-law types.

Posted by: Edward Swaine | Apr 19, 2006 8:52:24 PM

Here is an e-mail I just sent to professor Karlan,

I read your blog on Professor Leiter's website. As an undergraduate, who plans to attend law school and majoring in political science, I have been told by counselors to make sure I keep a high GPA. That is, don't take "hard" classes. I have resisted that advice and I'm taken courses in statistics, economics, mathematics, and a foreign language. Though my GPA is lower than it would have been if I too was strategic, I now feel Ibetter prepared for the world. Additionally, there has been times I felt regretful for taking these courses because I knew it would keep me out of the top law schools but your blog vindicated my decision. Thank you for your honesty.

Posted by: Phil Asgedom | Apr 19, 2006 9:10:38 PM

Karlan's analysis, especially the more pessimistic parts, seems spot on. Any intellectually honest student will confess that of course there are ways to game the system, and even a brief look at admissions numbers will tell you that strategic behavior pays. I know that my UGPA, at 3.59, is well below the 25th percentile here at Harvard, a 3.68. I also know that the classes weighing that average down were usually the most advanced and most challenging classes I took, which means they were the ones I learned the most in. There are strong disincentives to challenging yourself.

But what about the other side of the equation? I got in to Harvard Law School because I filled in the right bubbles in a four-our test. That hardly seems fair either. In fact, you could make a decent case that the strategic risk-minimizers will do better out in practice than we clever bubble-fillers. But what about the "imaginative, entrepreneurial, courageous, resilient [students] with broad perspectives" who are thougtful, deliberate, and don't respond well to time pressure?

Posted by: Trevor Austin | Apr 19, 2006 9:15:43 PM

I agree and have seen it in action. So let's say that, as the GPA data suggest, law schools face a crop of risk-averse, self-protective, under-educated, grade-sensitive college grads. What to do about it? How can you reach these students and get them to challenge themselves, so they don't float or give up or reject law?
It sure doesn't seem as though the law school environment, today, is likely to discourage or temper the unhelpful traits the post points out. More often I've seen the opposite happen: law students, who aced college because of high intellectual curiosity and breadth of insight and diligence, feel the pressure to get A's at all cost once they enter law school. Does law school further close their minds?

Posted by: JSchusterman | Apr 20, 2006 1:11:29 AM

I, too, think that Professor Karlan's is largely "spot on." But one factor her missive doesn't consider: money.

As we all know (but too often forget), law students today take on staggering amounts of debt to attend school. (One would-be student I just spoke to yesterday had narrowed his choices to a school that would require "only" $60K in debt and one that would require $120K.) Awareness of that debt may not affect undergraduate course selection, but it darn sure accounts for a lot of what happens after the first semester of law school -- after all, students have to do well enough to get a job that pays enough to service that debt.

It isn't just paying off debt, of course. The money is attractive on its own, too. The average starting salary for first year lawyers in the major cities is now higher than what a senior DOJ trial attorney will make after 25 years of government service, and of course it is light years beyond what lawyers who work for non-profits or state or local governments earn. (A few months back I went to a birthday dinner for a classmate. Looking around the 9-10 people at the table, I realized our combined annual earnings were over $1.5 million. That's an insane number for a bunch of twenty-somethings.) Rightly or wrongly, law students are attracted to these salaries, and view high (or at least "acceptable") GPAs as their meal tickets, at least for a few years after graduation.

It's tough to ask students to take risks with a self-financed $60, $90, or $120K education. Maybe if we figure out how to break the cycle of debt-and-job placement, then we will have some luck. (As I said: maybe. It seems to me that most lawyers I know, including the ones decades out of law school, are generally risk averse sorts.)

Posted by: Ryan Danks | Apr 20, 2006 6:27:47 AM

Another consequence of this fixation on undergraduate GPA's is the systematic discrimination of undergraduates with majors in engineering and the hard sciences. There is ample evidence that there has been less grade inflation in these areas than in humanities and social sciences and so even the best students are likely to have lower GPA's. It can't be good for the profession to weed out those who have experience and interest in these areas.

Posted by: Paul H. Edelman | Apr 20, 2006 6:31:30 AM

Are admissions people really looking at pure GPA? Are they not looking at the courses and grades in the context of each other? I know that undergraduate admissions officers do this.

Posted by: Jason Wojciechowski | Apr 20, 2006 6:31:46 AM

I think Pam's absolutely right. One way to counter the obsession over GPA in law schools might be to admit more students who have been out for a few years and, hopefully, have gained more of a perspective on what they should be getting out of school.

Posted by: Jim Salzman | Apr 20, 2006 6:35:20 AM

As a recent college graduate and a first-year student at one of those law schools with an extraordinarily high average incoming GPA, i think two points need to be added to the present discussion. First, I think that Professor Karlan's post suggests that students are either "strategic and risk averse" or prone to "exercising their intellectual imagination". Instead, I think many modern college students--especially those who do well at top schools--succeed by balancing these two impulses. Thus, one's schedule is forged not simply by an attempt to get the highest grades, but by a balancing act involving academic interests, course requirements, expected grades, commitments to extracurricular activities, and graduation requirements. Students may think strategically at times, but they are not machines driven by strategy and risk aversion alone. While the strategic thinking may strike some as out of place at the college level, we should not overemphasize its influence.
Second, Professor Karlan's post does not adequately account for the pressures facing modern college students and for the reasons these pressures exist. To get into a top college, most students had to begin to think strategically long before their freshman year. Why? Because access to the top colleges has expanded tremendously in the last forty years. Admissions requirements have risen tremendously as the competition for admission has become fiercer, and high school students can no longer depend on their educational pedigree alone (eg having been in the top half at Andover) as a means of ensuring their entrance to a top college. A similar process has taken place within law schools. This expansion of access to elite educational institutions, while undoubtedly a positive and just change, has required all students, regardless of their family and educational pedigree, to think strategically. Moreover, as law schools and other post-college institutions have expanded their doors to a broader variety of students, college students have become aware of the limited value of their degrees and the competition they will face after college. Most college students do not think they have (and most likely do not in truth have) the luxury to treat college as a time for intellectual exploration alone. The "pure" liberal arts ideal is premised on a non-instrumental relationship to education that has been rendered unworkable by the positive changes within American education over the last half century.

Posted by: Casey | Apr 20, 2006 6:36:52 AM

I wonder whether Professor Karlan's comments better describe the situation at Harvard or similar elite schools than at Maryland or schools of that ilk or even schools further down the totem pole. My sense of the universe at the University of Maryland is that almost anyone with a fair degree of intelligence can wind up with a very high GPA if they devote themselves to that effort, even if they take fairly demanding courses in the humanities and social sciences (I think Professor Edelman is correct that maintaining a higher average in the sciences is more difficult). And unlike elite schools, the top 10% at average state U. may wind up with a high GPA simply because they are smarter than most of their peers. In short, at average state U., a commitment to hard work or significantly above average intelligence is likely to result in a very high GPA without grade inflation or shopping for weak classes.

Posted by: Mark A. Graber | Apr 20, 2006 6:52:52 AM

I read admissions files for law school and can say that we definitely look at the transcript, not the GPA. How I evaluate a transcript depends on the school (e.g. Duke has absurd grade inflation), the major (a 3.2 in chemical engineering is very impressive; not in psych) and the grade trends (senior year straight As). I think Prof. Karlan's three states of the world are really just three descriptions of one world, where we have brilliant students working in grade-inflated environments, expecting and receiving very high marks.

The top 25% of the top tier law schools is a very small group of remarkable individuals, and I don't find it hard to belive that there are 2000 who truly were brilliant in undergrad and achieved brilliant grades. To suggest that the straight-A student is not 'comfortable with risk, entrepreneurial, academically and intellectually adventurous, and resilient' is absurd.

Posted by: Michael Machen | Apr 20, 2006 7:27:46 AM

While I think Ms. Karlan makes good points, I think she sets up a bit of a false dichotomy here. One need not be either uniformly impressive or risk-averse. As Casey has already touched on, there is a bit of balancing to be done.

For example, I was an engineering major and largely took only technical courses for my first two years of undergrad. When I started thinking about law school, I took a few law related liberal arts courses to test the waters. It was soon apparent that it was much easier to get high marks in liberal arts courses than engineering courses. So, for the final two years of undergrad, I loaded my schedule with upper-division liberal arts classes in addition to my required engineering courses. While my engineering classes continued to get harder (and my grades lower), my libarts grades compensated. I was certainly not "uniformly impressive," but neither was I risk-averse. I rarely researched professor grading statistics in advance but rather just took whatever sounded interesting.

Did I take classes strategically? Absolutely. But my undergrad academic experience was more well-rounded (and I was better prepared for law school) than if I hadn't.

Posted by: William Rothwell | Apr 20, 2006 8:30:47 AM

I agree in part with both Prof. Karlan and Michael Machen. I agree that not everyone with a high GPA is intellectually stunted and risk averse (not by a long shot), and there is a lot more in the application to look at beyond a pure GPA to help admissions officers weed out those who have a 4.0 by majoring in underwater basketweaving at Podunk U.

But I have a real problem with US News on this point. Given that a raw GPA is entirely meaningless (without examining it in light of major, school, grade inflation, difficulty of courses taken, amount of reaching outside comfort zones, etc.) I find it completely irresponsible for a ranking system to base any part, much less a large chunk, of its ranking on those raw GPA numbers. So long as those percentiles are out there, and so long as students make decisions based on US News, admissions officers will have to take into account raw GPA when looking at a file, and will have to think carefully about whether they can keep their stats where they "need to be" and still admit that interesting candidate who majored in science, tanked their freshman year, or took 6 semesters of Chinese and got Cs.

Applicants bear a responsibility here as well. They complain that admissions officers don't look beyond the GPA to the whole person behind it, then they make decisions based on which school has the highest GPA and LSAT scores - saying that a 1 point difference on the LSAT or a few hundredths on the GPA are an indicator of higher "student quality."

Posted by: Marsha | Apr 20, 2006 8:34:29 AM

Is it possible Prof. Karlan has only just discovered cynicism? (I haven't, that's for sure.) I'm more inclined to concur with the comments that adjust and complicate her remarks. There's more to this than grade inflation and one silly magazine, and some of it has to do with the fact that in certain educational venues in the US, specialization is very strongly urged at the expense of old-fashioned "well roundedness," perhaps not officially, but certainly via a sort of shallow cultural adoration of expertise. And how can we know from these numbers whether or not many students have had no opportunity to "bounce back from academic disappointment"? Do undergrads these days have no opportunity for positive and negative feedback before the grades are delivered? Is she recommending disappointment as a pedagogical tactic?

Posted by: Dean C. Rowan | Apr 20, 2006 8:43:17 AM

think Mark has a point. Those of us from state schools, even good state schools (UCLA, in my case) did NOT benefit from Ivy and LAC-like grade inflation (the average GPA at the UCs is in the 3.0-3.1 range, and it's lower at most state schools, as opposed to average GPAs near 3.5 for a place like Wesleyan.) I often wonder if admissions officers take that into account, or whether USNEWS pressures them to just look at the number. There was really only a slice of the campus gunning for those sky-high GPAs, mostly - yup! so they could get into elite law or med schools. Everyone else seemed to be doing fine, though.

My own GPA, like Trevor's (hi Trevor!), was the product of hard work plus personal-interest-motivated class selection, and ended up below Harvard's 25th percentile, though I certainly didn't think of 3.6 as "low" at the time. And frankly, I'm glad it isn't higher, because I was very active in debate and other things around campus, and I didn't overly stress myself out, and I was happy. Sadly, for a lot of students, their actual lives get sacrificed to the GPA. I can only hope they're getting some of that time back in law school, though the library on a Tuesday night suggests some people just never quit pushing themselves.

Posted by: Andrea Saenz | Apr 20, 2006 8:56:04 AM

think Mark has a point. Those of us from state schools, even good state schools (UCLA, in my case) did NOT benefit from Ivy and LAC-like grade inflation (the average GPA at the UCs is in the 3.0-3.1 range, and it's lower at most state schools, as opposed to average GPAs near 3.5 for a place like Wesleyan.)

Interesting. I had a 3.28. That reflects three years on the Dean's List and the departmental honor on graduation. My program, undergraduate, was obviously different from some of the others I've seen discussed.

When I was in school, I had a friend from Lehigh, whose 90% mark at the time was 2.78. Just read in the WSJ that they are giving out scholarships that require keeping a 3.0 -- they've given way to a smidge of grade inflation over the years.

The problem, of course, is that if you don't want LSATs to become the be all and end all, and if you aren't going back to the parent's membership in the right country club mode, GPAs have to have some impact. With thousands of applicants, some sort of screening is going to take place. Unless you want to require GRE and GRE subject tests in major (or some other standard test that measures actual learning in major).

I'm glad this is getting some intelligent discussion, just do not have a solution at all. Look forward to learning more as I read more comments.

Posted by: Stephen M (Ethesis) | Apr 20, 2006 11:07:57 AM

I am finishing my 2nd year at Hofstra Law, so my comments are restricted to my experiences there. However, I am curious to see how my experience compares with that of other law students/observers.

I find it relevant that the law schools themselves continue to reward their students based largely on academic achievement, regardless of their furthering a genuine intellectual curiosity. That is to say, if you look at who comprises the law reviews and journals, by and large, you will see the top of any law school class. Based on Ms. Karlan's observations, with which I agree, some of these students are likely to be the same students whose lack of intellectual curiosity allowed them to achieve the high UGPAs.

So why do they even bother with law review/journals? Well, if you're in law school you'd have to be an idiot not to based solely on what the hiring firms look for in a satisfactory candidate. This, in turn, may lead to an eventual "dumbing-down" of a large part of the legal-academic world. Students who do not have intellectual curiosity of their own will fake it, so to speak, just to be able to put their law review/journal membership on their resume to further resemble what the big firms are looking for. There are, however, countless other students at law school who have intense intellectual curiosity of their own, but due to their relatively lower GPAs, are never encouraged to explore it.

That, to me, is the most disappointing aspect of law school. The fact that you can be an extremely bright individual, as most in law school are, and have a ravenous intellectual curiosity but still end up with grades that do not reflect either of these aspects. Once that happens, my law school seems to ignore your existence.

Posted by: Lloyd Reisman | Apr 20, 2006 12:06:04 PM

I'm finding this discussion quite interesting, and I assume (hope?) that these same discussions go on behind admissions committees' closed-door policy meetings.
What I am wondering, however, is whether or not there are any statistics, or even qualitative observations from those in the know, on just what these UGPA's and LSAT's correlate to in terms of law school performance. e.g. Do the 75th percentile UGPA and or LSAT students end up in the 75th percentile of a given law school's class, and vice versa for the 25th percentile UGPA and LSAT students? If so, then perhaps looking at raw UGPA and LSAT as key admissions decision-making tools, without regard to undergraduate institution or major or a history of non-predictive testing results for a given student, is an effective practice that makes (relevant)sense.
However, if not--if the 75th percentile UGPA and/or LSAT students do not tend, on average, to end up at the 75th percentile of the law school class, and vice versa for the 25th percentile UGPA and or LSAT students--then is that not a clear sign that not only is USNEWS tunnell-vision hurting the intellectually curious risk-takers who have experienced and bounced back form failure and who have engaged a greater breadth of coursework as undergrads (by denying them admission to the best schools), but such tunnell-vision is also corrupting the make-up of our law school classes (and thus our pool of future lawyers) by using poor predictors of law-study performance as the paramount admissions standards?
That is, if the latter situation is the case, then not only are law school classes made up of less interesting/intellectually curious students than they might otherwise be, but also less (legally) able students (in terms of the student body as a whole). Comments/answers anyone?

Posted by: Phillip | Apr 20, 2006 12:17:42 PM

Assertions that US News drives so much of the world feed a silly cycle of misplaced empowerment. I hope this is hyperbole.

If law professors are dissatisfied with the entering level of their students, perhaps they should participate in the selection process.

Regarding the general level of risk-aversion in law students, isn’t the fact that law schools place so much emphasis on numbers an indication of the institution’s own tendency to risk-aversion? When risk-averse institutions seek risk-averse students, can anyone be truly surprised when risk-averse alumni are the end result?

Posted by: Carl | Apr 20, 2006 1:50:04 PM

Isn't part of the problem the LSDAS as well? In the application process law schools only see the LSDAS transcript (not an official undergraduate transcript). All they see is GPA (total and by year) and major(s). So even if a law school cared that I took challenging courses in my philosophy and English majors--Milton, Beowulf, avoidance of survey courses and courses with professors reputed to be "easy," etc.--they don't have that information. The same thing holds true for my nonmajor courses, about which law schools have even less information. As a result, I'm probably off to start law school at the University of Minnesota (still a very good school), when I could have easily gamed the GPA factor and gotten into a Cornell or Duke instead. I believe I received a better education this way, so overall I don't regret my decision, but it's hard not to regret (at least a little) missing out on the enhanced career prospects from those schools. And the conventional wisdom among applicants and pre-law advisors is definitely "get the best grades you can, period," which I find very disappointing or disturbing.

Posted by: Joe | Apr 20, 2006 3:30:53 PM

I agree wholeheartedly with Professor Karlan's remarks, especially regarding the unfortunate consequences of risk-averse students.
I'd like to tell a story of my own to highlight the point. After growing up in the US, at the age of 14 I move abroad with my family. High School in the foreign country did not work out so well for me, so I took the SAT, and managed to get into a (forgive the term) "USN Top 50" college at the end of my junior year in HS. I got to college thinking that it's time to explore different fields that appeal to me (after all, the undergraduate degree is liberal arts). I was interested in philosophy, politics, math and physics. I took some tough math and physics courses in the first year, only to discover that I wasn't cut out for it - the kind of work that these courses required just didn't interest me enough and I wasn't that great at it anyway. I took Philosophy 101 in the Spring and realized that I truly loved it. So, at the end of freshman year, I had a B/B+ GPA, with B's in my math and science courses and A's in the others. This of course put me in a very low standing with the remainder of the class. When I spoke to the Dean at the end of the year, and discussed future options, including the possibility of Law School, he told me that with that GPA, I could already forget the "top 15's", since my GPA was too low. It was all over at that point?!
I knew plenty of students there who would not take physics, for example, because it was harmful to their GPA. How absurd, I thought.
Realizing that this system was completely averse to the possibility of exploration, what I then did, was to go back to the country I was at for HS, took the state matriculation exams, and started again over there, as if I never spent the year in the US school.
One advantage such foreign systems have is that since the degree is specialized, you are compared to students in your major area. Additionally, course work in other areas that did not work out can be dropped from the transcript. In general, courses in excess credit are dropped, so the student has the possibility to try something out, and if it's not for him, it doesn't count against him. The grade average at the end of the degree is composed of the 120 or so relevent credits that the student wishes to keep.
For some reason, in the US this is impossible. Even when repeating a course, the former grade stays on, and often the new grade cannot be higher than a C. Who will take difficult or challenging courses under such circumstances? Certainly not somebody with any grad school or professional school ambitions!

Posted by: Jay Jurgenson | Apr 20, 2006 4:24:25 PM

I'm surprised how many posters are operating under the illusion that the core function of college is education, rather than to serve as a sorting mechanism for employment and graduate school (while also serving the interests of the faculty and administrators who run it).

Posted by: David Bernstein | Apr 20, 2006 6:25:25 PM

A couple of points of clarification:

First, it is true that the LSDAS *report* does not include actual course grades, but the LSAC does attach copies of transcripts with that report, when they send it to schools. (Students cannot see those transcript copies when they access their LSDAS account, however). Second, the LSDAS report also includes a GPA median, of all students who applied to law school from that institution, in the three years prior to the applicant's graduation, along with an LSAT median, of all students who applied to law school from that institution, in the three years prior to the applicant's LSAT. (Note that the three-year periods may not be the same.)

This does provide some sort of proxy for grade inflation: schools with low GPA medians but high LSAT medians will often have less grade inflation, particularly considering that law school applicants tend to have higher grades overall.

Point being that, no matter the source, law school admissions officers have access to contextual information about GPAs and LSAT scores. I don't doubt they *look* at that information. The question is, given the importance of rankings to applicants, alumni, and donors, how much weight do they give to that contextualizing information?

Posted by: kristine | Apr 20, 2006 6:37:23 PM

I don't think I realized that law schools don't see the actual undergraduate transcript.

Where does that leave people who go to non-traditional schools like Bennington and Hampshire? I'm obviously invested in this as someone who didn't get into a couple of top law schools (my numbers were not stellar, but certainly competitive at those schools) having come from an "alternative" undergrad college.

Posted by: Jason Wojciechowski | Apr 20, 2006 8:31:19 PM

Let's face it: lawyers are paid to be "strategic and risk-averse" rather than "imaginative, entrepreneurial, courageous, [and] resilient." People who are more the latter than the former are unlilkely to be happy in law school let alone practicing law.

Posted by: AF | Apr 22, 2006 12:21:56 PM

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