Hey, little boy, do you want to go to law school?

I got home from New York last night, exhausted and ready to sleep in my own bed instead of a different couch every night. I noticed a couple things as soon as I set foot into the San Francisco airport. Everyone here wears jeans. Us Californians love our casual clothes. Also, fried food and all meat products and candy are outlawed here, so we are all in excellent shape. We have and enjoy trees, and we live in apartments large enough to have closets.

For better or worse, there are a lot of things about California that make us different and drive Newt Gingrich to say he wants to shut down our region’s federal appeals court.

One of our specialties is our penchant for unaccredited law schools. Say what you will about them — there are advantages and disadvantages — but what about an online only, unaccredited law school that spams law school students who have already enrolled at other, more prestigious institutions?

Shady? Or brilliant marketing strategy? Decide for yourself, courtesy of a generous tipster….

When I first saw this email from the California School of Law, it took a moment for me to realize there was no “University of” at the beginning. Plus the fact that this institution appears to be an online-only law school. (The entire email is pasted on the next page. It is long.)

As previously indicated in a prior email from California School of Law, based on a review of your preliminary application and subject to your successfully completing the remaining steps in the application and enrollment process, it has been determined that your educational credentials meet the credentialing requirements for admission to our Juris Doctorate program at California School of Law. Congratulations!

People from my high school went to online-only universities all the time, it was no big deal.

All realism elitism aside, it is honestly not the online aspect of the California School of Law that’s a little strange. Why are they sending acceptance letters to people who didn’t apply, and are already enrolled somewhere else?

More significantly, look at what they claim to have as far as bar passage rates test scores:

The Students from the California School of Law have done exceptionally well on the First Year Law Students’ Exam that is required by the California State Bar. In two recent exams the results were as follows: June, 2010, 75% of the law School’s “First Time Takers” passed and in June, 2009, 100% of the law School’s “First Time Takers” passed.

UPDATE (7 PM): To clarify, this statistic refers to the California First-Year Law Students Examination (FYLSE or “baby bar”) that the state requires students at unaccredited schools to take, not the actual bar exam. According to the school’s official website, the school is so new that the first group of graduates would have taken the test in July 2011. As one astute commenter points out, however, it doesn’t look like anyone from the school even sat for the bar in July 2011. (Previous wording, which may have been unclear, has been removed.)

The institution’s website also describes the benefits of attending in the eternally optimistic law school language we’ve come to know and love:

What type of career opportunities can I expect after graduation? California School of Law’s Career Services department will help students explore employment opportunities in law and law related fields. Many California School of Law graduates will use their Juris Doctor degree to obtain jobs in the legal field with law firms, corporations, government, etc. Others will use the degree to complement previous work and life experiences. Those with a background in health care may find themselves transitioning to employment in the medical insurance field. Business people with a Juris Doctorate are better prepared to run their own business or move quickly up the corporate ladder. Still others will devote their new skills to work in the community, in non-profit or in the public interest sector. The skills and knowledge gained at California School of Law can be used to create career opportunities in virtually every field.

But you know what, tuition is only $30,000 — not per year, but for the entire degree. What a bargain. Do you get what you pay for? Sure. But leaving your house to go places, like class or the store or a job, is overrated. A paycheck is nice, but sitting in front of your computer all day in your pajamas can be fun, too. I’m a blogger. I should know.

(The entire email from California School of Law is on the next page. If any readers have attended the school, please share your experiences — positive or negative — in the comments.)


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