Posts Tagged ‘graduate school’

TIME Magazine Article: Just How Bad Off Are Law School Graduates?

I don’t think it is just the scam blogging I think the problem is so obvious that mainstream media has to address it:

TIME Magazine Article (03/11/2013): Just How Bad Off Are Law School Graduates?

The first thing I’ll note is that this piece focuses on recent graduates, when I say recent I refer to those who graduated in the past four years, primarily when the economic collapse occurred until now. This problem has been pervasive for decades and band-aiding it with non-profit centers while students have nearly mortgage-sized debt and no ability to pay or discharge the debt will not cure the law school malady. Here’s an excerpt:

And it gtimeets worse still. There are a surprising number of job postings for lawyers that offer no salary at all, including government law jobs. That raises the question — as one headline put it — “Would You Work as a Federal Prosecutor — For Free?

Being unemployed — or working at minimum wage — is rough in the best of circumstances. But it is especially crippling for students who get out of school with six-figure debts that are not dischargeable in bankruptcy. The average debt load for law school graduates is now over $100,000 — and at some schools, it tops $150,000.

My favorite part is: Prospective law students are already responding to the dismal job market. Applications to law school are expected to hit a 30-year low this year — down as much as 38% from 2010. Some law schools have responded by shrinking their class sizes, and there have been predictions that in the not-too-distant future some lower-ranked law schools might have to close entirely. (emphasis mine)

Keep it up!, with more  schools closings, more professors will lose their jobs or not make tenure and then the law school administrators and those who tortured us a purveyors of the industry in the name of intellectual pursuit will know how it feels on the other side. The message is beyond clear, it is translucent: Do not go to law school, it simply is not worth it (and stop being rude to those who did years ago, we were trying to make better lives for ourselves but apparently it was based on a lie).

Get the word out, don’t let your son, daughter, sister, brother become a victim of joblessness, insurmountable debt. Just tell them “say no” to law school–they’ll thank you in the long run.

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Too Many Lawyers Not Enough Jobs: New York Edition

The statistics cannot be ignored, slow economy, too many lawyers not enough jobs = Do Not Attend law school. We warned you and now more than ever main stream media is catching up. Because it’s so obvious and so overwhelming. Where before, say five or more years ago, one had an excuse, no knowledge of deceptive statistics, false encouragement of upward mobility, the higher education will make your life better. The Wall Street Journal is telling you there aren’t enough jobs for attorneys and they’re just referring to the NEWLY minted law graduates; not those who have been laid off or otherwise terminated, from the high ranking partnerships to the staff attorney who find that there is no resources awaiting them in the legal industry.So add that to the 9,000 new law school graduates in New York alone. Here you go:

New York Times Report Show Lawyer Surplus Law Jobs Shortage, Lawcrossing Finds 29,000 Attorney Jobs

Pasadena, CA — (SBWIRE) — 06/29/2011
The New York Times is reporting that the tough job market for new lawyers is partly a result of a lawyer glut in the law jobs market.

The article is based on data gathered and analyzed by Economic Modeling Specialists Inc. (EMSI), a consulting firm specializing in economic analysis and employment data. The figures gathered by EMSI in fact show that the law schools are graduating more JDs than the economy can absorb for the next few years.

EMSI has taken as its baseline the number of people passing the bar in every state and DC in 2009. The numbers were then put up against the number of estimated job openings for lawyers in those states for the period 2010-15. In every state except Wisconsin and Nebraska, plus DC, there was a lawyer surplus.

The biggest surplus was in New York. 9,787 people passed the bar in 2009 for an estimated 2,100 openings for the period 2010-15. Nationwide, there were only 26,239 job openings for lawyers, while 53,508 people passed the bar. California was in second page with almost 3,000 lawyers in surplus.

Even Nebraska and Wisconsin just have negligible surpluses of law jobs for lawyers. But even though attorney jobs for new lawyers are scare, they exist in most states. LawCrossing is a job aggregator site for all types of legal jobs. The site has been able to locate over 5,500 attorney jobs in New York alone. Nationwide it has located over 29,000 attorney jobs.

More Law Schools See Surge in Law School Applications

On July 6, 2010 Life’s Mockery reported that UMass Law School had a surge in law school applications: https://lifesmockery.wordpress.com/2010/07/06/in-the-news-a-new-unaccredited-law-school-has-surge-in-applications-enrollment/ Well, the madness hasn’t ceased, the operative words are more and surge, sounds like legal-industry-gluttony at this point. Today the National Law Journal reports: (False) Hope drives rise in law school applications 

All Rights Reserved

Hope drives rise in law school applications: Despite grim job statistics in nearly every corner of the legal world, law school applications increased by 7% over last year.

 The grim job statistics in nearly every corner of the legal world are surely enough to make any aspiring lawyer think twice about diving into massive debt to attend law school. [emphasis mine]. Apparently not for many, hopefully for others. Even with this frank start to the article, people are so desparate as to believe that obligating themselves into more debt will resolve their personal financial woes in this turbulent economy. Does this make sense? No.

“How much do applicants know about the contraction of jobs in the legal industry? It’s hard to say,” said Brian Tamanaha, a professor at Washington University in St. Louis School of Law who has urged law schools to provide more accurate information about graduate employment. “People could be thinking, ‘Well, in a few years things will change.’ I think we’re seeing a structural change in the industry. Even if things do come back, it won’t be to the same degree we saw just a few years ago.” My word, we bloggers have been saying this for a while, but I guess it’s considered speculation unless a professor says it. The legal industry is forever changed, there are IVY leaguers who cannot even find decent paying jobs, work is outsourced overseas, student loan debt, $40,000-$50,000 average attorney pay, do not go to law school. O.k. I’m back.

“In a climate like this one, we’re seeing applicants who are conscientious shoppers looking to get the greatest value for their dollar,” said Aaron Latham, the interim director of law advancement at Alabama, which won the NCAA Bowl Championship Series football title last year.  Apparently they’re conscious in a parallel world to take on this type of debt in this contracting field, or they would not have decided to go to law school in the first place.

The idea of law school as “the great default” is hardly new. Law school has long been more attractive than business school or medical school to college graduates with vague career ambitions, Leipold said. He attributed that in part to the versatility of a law degree, which can translate into the corporate world, public policy or any number of other fields.  Of course not, but who continues to propagate that “you can do anything with a law degree” and prestige with it’ll work itself out. I will say that at this point it’s not all the legal industry faults, sure deans, professors, lawyers who graduated in prior generations are culpable but we have unwitting lay people who have this imagery no doubt fueled by the media and the entertainment industry of law being a fast-paced glamorous life with a fast track to financial success. One can see how bad it is when the article states that most 0Ls do not know the reality of the legal industry and therefore have no idea what they are getting themselves into.

However, the idea that law school is always a solid choice should be retired in light of the growing price of a legal education and the dimming jobs prospects, several critics said. He’s saying that idea does not hold true, step into the real world and there are no jobs. Drop out of law school while you can! Do you want to subject yourself to over $100,000 debt, putting off having a family, no available jobs, depression, psycho attorneys on projects who are mentally ill or became that way because of the mental-institution like environment encouraged by staff attorneys? (that’s if you get a contractual job). Or perhaps you will enjoy having a J.D. on your resume and being practially locked out of nearly every other field as being overqualified or your degree being to specialized or not considered a true doctorate where you won’t qualify for fellowships in the future unless, you guessed it you plan to go BACK to another graduate school after law school.

“People who haven’t done any investigation into what lawyers do are foolhardy to pursue law school,” said Zearfoss, the Michigan admissions dean. “Anyone using law school as a default should rethink that.” Oh my, I may have to take some of my previous words back, believe me this law school dean just called you a fool for attending law school at this point. The image of the bully Nelson pointing at you saying “ha-ha” popped in my head. No matter how raw the honesty, he doesn’t reflect the majority of law school academia, at least so far.

“In 15 years of teaching, I’ve known a lot of students who came here because they didn’t know what they wanted to do,” Tamanaha said. “A lot of this is about cyclical irrational decision-making. It’s based on a very human trait, which is overoptimism. For the people who have always wanted to be a lawyer, they should go to law school. For anyone else, it’s not a good decision.”

O.k., so you have been called a fool and irrational for attending law school, do not let your ego allow you to make likely one of the worst decisions in your life. 

“Just because you wish for something, doesn’t make it true.”  ●Disney’s The Princess and the Frog

Conversation I Overheard at a Cafe: Lawyer vs. Mentee

The conversation was already in progress when I grabbed my seat. Pure entertainment. The 40+ year old guy is discussing career options to a young lady who I figure is in her first year of undergrad. Alot of her answers were wrought with I don’t knows and uncomfortable snickers and a reference to high school. The guy is boring her about when he trained bodybuilders and how it was his policy not to date the women he trained, but got an exception for one lady who he did not end up marrying. Apparently that lady relocated from whatever state she was from and ended up going to law school with him. This is such an inappropriate conversation to have with a barely legal adult–pervert. Then he brags that has a law degree from George Washington (GW) School of Law. Then I heard the words “when I used to practice law I enjoyed it.” “I appreciate my law degree though it has nothing to do with what I’m doing now.” Then asks her was she going to work and her wage. She makes $7.50 an hour working at Arby’s. Wait this non-degree holder makes only $2.50 less than most Census workers? The ‘mentor’ then tries to schmuck (verb usage) her into graduate school, telling her she will make 10x than what she makes now at Arby’s. Now mind you he already mentioned that he went to law school but isn’t using his degree, yet encourages her to get even more education. He bought into his own b.s. and was selling it to an uninformed consumer. Oh he then asks her whether she was familiar with twitter and good with [sic] social networks account and when  she is established maybe she can work in one of his workshops–no clue what he was refereing to. Wait, you’re her mentor but telling her to become succcessful with no real guidance so you can benefit from her education and probably rip-off her salary. Some mentor. A Latino waitress walks by and he decides to impress the mentee with his Spanish language skills. Then he says, I decided to speak Spanish to stress the importance to her of learning a foreign language. She seemed so clueless that I wanted to write all of these blogs on a piece of paper and slip it in her bag. He was a b.s. artist and not even a good one but anything would sound impressive to an unwitting 18 year old.