Job Searches, Law Schools

Now That’s Transparency: ‘Most Honest Law School’ Admits a Graduate Is Employed as a ‘Sheep Farmer’

When we crowned the University of Michigan Law School as our Most Honest Law School, my colleague Elie Mystal chalked it up to their good, old Midwestern values. But just a few weeks after winning our March Madness competition, Michigan Law actually did something really honest — the school released all of its employer statistics for the classes of 2009 – 2011 (not to mention that it was the first elite law school to release its 2010 NALP report to Law School Transparency). Now if that’s not transparent, then we really don’t know what is.

While you ponder when the rest of the T14 is going to step up to the plate and reveal all of its employment information, we’ll help you analyze the data, and tell you what it could mean for you….

Here’s one of the many tips we received about Michigan’s all-inclusive list of employer statistics:

I assume you’ve seen this, but if not… well all I can say is, wow.

Huge props to UM for releasing this data; it sets a new bar for transparency when you’re willing to admit that once of your grads is now a sheep farmer.

Yes, one of Michigan’s graduates is currently employed as a freakin’ sheep farmer. We’d say that with that kind of a job, he must be the black sheep of his family, but that would be mean. But not to worry, because other Michigan grads weren’t exactly sheepish about admitting where they were employed. From left to right, these are some of the law school’s less-than-prestigious employment outcomes from 2011 – 2009:

Even from this segment of the list (which is available in its entirety on the next page), you can see that the recession has squeezed employment opportunities for recent law school graduates. And the harsh realities of post-recession Biglaw employment are made really obvious, too (left to right, 2011 – 2009):

Where did all of the Biglaw jobs go for these top law school graduates? Maybe this is why they’ve got people working as sheep farmers, actors, and waiters.

If the job prospects look like this from Mighican Law, is this really a time when people should be looking into going to law school? Maybe the best test takers are right to stay away?

To these employment outcomes, we say, bahhhhhhhh humbug….

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