Law Schools, Money, Student Loans

Open Thread: It’s Time For Another Round of Tuition Hikes

Over the past year, we’ve devoted a great deal of coverage to the value proposition of going to law school. While reasonable people disagree on just how much law school should cost (Canadian professor Robert Martin starts the bidding at $12 a year), there is a growing consensus that the cost of legal education is already too high — and is continuing to go up, despite the faltering job market.

Law schools can’t be counted on to help their students get jobs in this economy — but that’s not about to make them stop raising tuition. And we are now in the season of tuition hikes. Over the summer, when students are off campus and thus generally unable to engage in violent protest, many administrations look to raise tuition.

We’d like to track these hikes on Above the Law, so send us your tips when your school raises (or, God forbid, doesn’t raise) tuition.

As a jumping off point, we have news that Brooklyn Law School is raising tuition. Because you know, anytime you can sport a sub-80% employed at graduation rate, a tuition hike makes a lot of sense….

Brooklyn Law School had weak employment numbers even in a world where law schools are shamelessly inflating their employment numbers. Increasing tuition at this point would seem inconceivable, but it’s been a while since law school tuition had any relation to post-graduate employment reality.

At least Brooklyn didn’t try to sell or spin its tuition increase. Instead the school is just dispassionately informing its students that they’ll be just a little bit more screwed next year:

The Finance Committee has approved the following tuition schedule for the 2010-2011 academic year:

Full-Time: 2 & 3F: $46,284

Part-Time: 2 & 3P: $34,714, 4P: $34,226

Student Fees remain at $326 for the academic year.

You will receive a tuition and a housing (if applicable) statement in the middle of July. Any portion of your tuition, housing or fees not covered by pending aid or a payment plan must be paid in full by August 13, 2010.

Tipsters inform us that full-time tuition was $43,000-plus last year.

You really have to feel bad for rising 3Ls at Brooklyn. Many of them were shut out of the summer job market and are now facing the daunting prospect of interviewing for jobs as 3Ls. We already know that nobody wants to hire 3Ls, so not only do they have to go through the motions of trying to get jobs they can’t get, they’ll have to pay more while their doing it. They’ll have to pay more than ever before to sit around during a useless 3L campaign waiting for the inevitable.

Of course, Brooklyn Law students are not alone in their suffering. Which other law schools will take the opportunity to raise tuition despite a still-terrible legal economy?

Earlier: UCLA Students Protest Fee Hikes

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