Uga, did you eat the grades?

Well, it’s the middle of June, and it seems that some law students are still waiting for their grades. As we know from past discussion of the issue, this is a fairly common practice. The only problem with it is that it keeps law students fiending for their last grade like a crack addict searching frantically for his last rock.

The worst part of this situation is the fact that the grade delay may be keeping these law students from becoming gainfully employed. The legal job market may allegedly be on the rise, but when law students can’t do more than offer two-fifths of their updated transcripts to prospective employers, you can take a wild guess as to where their résumés will be headed.

So, while the professors are taking their sweet time grading their exams and possibly costing you a job, your classmates are banding together to try to figure out how to resolve the problem. First, they go to the Student Bar Assocation. Then, when they don’t like the answer they get from the SBA (“there’s a grading deadline, I’m sure we’ll get our grades soon”), they go straight to the source, the administration. Finally, when the administration’s response isn’t good enough (“it’ll be okay, you’ll get your grades when you get your grades”), they come to Above the Law. And we’re happy to help.

Hey, University of Georgia School of Law, we’re looking at you. Where are your grades?

We received this email from a disgruntled UGA Law student yesterday, on June 14, 2011:

Our administration is not doing a darn thing about our complaints and the only solution a few of us came up with was to get it published on ATL.

Good choice! It looks like the devil went down to Georgia, but instead of looking for souls to steal, he was looking for grades. So, what exactly is going on over at UGA?

We finished exams on May 18th (with a start date of May 2nd). Many of us are still lacking grades. I myself am missing 3/5 grades. I am currently in the process of interviewing for clerkships. Over the course of the past two days, I have gotten three phone calls from three different chambers requesting updated grades and ranks. I have interviewed with two of these judges, and one was wanting to schedule interviews. It was obvious from my phone calls that they are going to go with students who have grades/ranks in.

Now normally, I’d side with the law school on this issue (don’t ask me why, I guess just really liked law school). There’s a grading deadline, and most professors sometimes, when they feel like it, if they’re not doing other more exciting things, tend to abide by that deadline. That deadline is usually about one month after final exams have concluded. UGA Law’s finals ended on May 18, so the grading deadline should be right around the corner. Again, in a normal situation, I’d tell this law student to quit the Gollum-esque search for the precious, right along with the bitching.

But this isn’t a normal situation, because um, hello, this law student might be getting passed up for a clerkship because the school can’t get its act together. Georgia Law administrators, you’re doing it wrong! You’re supposed to fudge the employment stats after the fact, not before. Seriously, law students shouldn’t have to reenact one of Tom Cruise’s last good roles and scream, “SHOW ME THE GRADES,” just so they can remain competitive in an already overpopulated job market.

Our tipster’s email didn’t stop at a lack of grades for current students, though. Apparently, UGA Law still hasn’t deemed its 2011 graduates worthy of receiving their final grades.

Further, the deadline for the Georgia Bar to submit transcripts is June 15th. This is my second-hand conversational knowledge, but departing graduates who have phoned Deans White and Kurtz have been greeted with no assurances that grades will be in on time. One was assured that UGA has a good relationship with the bar, so things will be okay. That does not seem to make anyone feel better. A similar problem is being encountered with rising third-years who need to be sworn in for third year practice.

Okay, really? Really? The class of 2011 at UGA Law graduated on May 21. Being late is usually not a good thing, people. This is pretty unforgivable, if true. As someone who has ruminated about the bar exam a few times, I totally want to have everything in order while I’m trying to focus.

Does anyone have additional inside information about the lack of grades down in Georgia? Please let us know. For the rest of the law students reading, if any of your professors are still hoarding your grades, please let us know about that, too, either in the comments or by email.


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