Job Searches, Law Schools, Texas

Admissions Office ‘Keeps It Real': Except for the Part About the Value of Going to Law School

In the before times, in the long, long ago, everything about law school was hard. Getting in was hard. Completing the training was hard. Passing the bar was hard. Everything was hard and everything was stressful.

And legal educators and successful lawyers were proud that it was hard. The hardness is what made it mean something. I remember one of the reasons some people in my family told me to go to law school instead of business school was that law school was harder, and thus it intrinsically had more value.

But now, we don’t want law school to be hard. We don’t want thousands of students to break their dreams against high barriers to admission. We don’t want kids to be so stressed out that they spend their first year crying themselves to sleep at night like a new, fleshy prisoner in a penitentiary.

We want law schools to be like a goddamn camp — a goddamn hippie law learning camp where the professors are “down to earth,” and the administrators are there for “encouragement,” and there’s freaking ice cream in the student lounge. Look to your left, now look to your right: all three of you will be getting smiley faces on your transcripts!

This trend to make law schools the “aww shucks” destination for regular folks has made all the way down to Texas, the state that’s supposed to be the balls of this country….

(To finish the above analogy: the Northeast is the brains, California is the tits, the rust belt is the backbone — note the crumbling, the South is the sword arm, Big Sky & the Northwest are the nose and the only places worth smelling, and Vegas is probably the finest booty on the planet, yet still an ass. But Texas is definitely where our balls live.)

One would hope that law schools in Texas would at least be committed to having students who could handle their business like grown ass men and women. But the purported message from the Texas Tech Law website is trying to be so “hip” that it’s sickening. Here’s the backstory and screen shot that was up on TexAgs, a message board for Texas A&M students:

If I made a list of ten things about life that I hated, this message would include somewhere between 9 and 137 of those things.

I hate:

  • The fact that this dude’s girlfriend is applying to every law school.
  • The Texas Tech motto, “from here, it’s possible,” which is actually a subtle way of saying, “it’s a goddamn crap shoot, but you can’t blame us when things go bad.”
  • The mere reality that Texas Tech has a waitlist
  • The faux self-deprecation of “keeping it real” which is actually a desperate attempt to seem cooler than your average admissions committee.

And those are just the hateful things I could pound out in five minutes.

But the thing I hate the most, the most incredible scene from this whole disaster, is the implication that students should not listen to all the available information on Texas Tech… because somehow that’s “keeping it real.”

Keep it real folks. Don’t go to “message boards”; don’t become informed on the possible consequences of pursuing a legal education. Don’t find out about the job market in your chosen field. Dear God, PLEASE DON’T ask us anything about our actual employment outcomes for recent graduates. Just keep it real and make your decision on where to go to law school based on the advertising brochures we provide you when trying to get you to buy our services. FOR REALS!

Because, hey, we don’t want anybody to freak out. We don’t want to separate the people who can manage stress from those who crumble under pressure. We don’t want people to spend their time while their application is pending in deep and rigorous thought about whether a life-altering decision to receive legal training is the right path take.

Instead we want people to kick back, relax, and find a freaking hobby.

Maybe that’s actually good advice. Because, you know, IT’S POSSIBLE that three years at Texas Tech Law won’t result in a good paying legal job and that thing you started as a hobby will become your only marketable skill.

Texas Tech Law School Admission Screen []

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