Have you ever seriously considered the terror a baby calf must feel? Chained in darkness its whole short life before being led unceremoniously to its grisly demise. I haven’t, because veal is delicious. But if I were to consider the depressing life arc of my entree, it would still not be as tragic as this collection of messages from incoming law students walking through the gates of a law school that readers of this site — or frankly anyone willing to do a little research — know will leave a supermajority of them heavily indebted and jobless.
But these students don’t know that yet. Or at least they’re dutifully refusing to believe it. Behold the hopes and dreams of a generation of students, memorialized on Twitter….
(Please note the UPDATE at the bottom of this post.)
Charlotte School of Law, an Infilaw Joint, welcomed its incoming class this week. And what a class it was! As you may remember, in a world of declining law school applications, Charlotte received a whopping 3,342 for Fall 2013. Employing the strict scrutiny of a for-profit venture, Charlotte admitted 73 percent of those students giving the school a median GPA of 2.91 and LSAT of 144 according to Law School Transparency. As one observer notes of that LSAT score, “One need only be semi-conscious to earn a score this low.” Indeed. And that’s the median. We can only imagine the numbers for this incoming Fall 2014 class.
In an effort to be “fun” and “youthful” or whatever vague emotion the admissions department hoped to inspire, Charlotte invited its incoming students to Tweet their thoughts and experiences with the hashtag #CSLnewstart. Hashtags allow individual Twitter users to become part of a bigger discussion than if they tweeted to their audience alone. That’s the good thing about a hashtag. Hashtags also make it so much easier for outsiders to monitor and troll what you’re saying. That’s the bad thing about a hashtag, and something Charlotte’s public relations gurus may have wanted to consider before serving up this dish.
The always genius Law School Lemmings culled the #CSLnewstart tweets and reproduced the most heart-wrenching. Here are only a few:
Blessed to see another day and chase my dreams. I WILL be great. #cslnewstart
— briana (@ibRie_) August 18, 2014
— Chet lydia Effler (@ChetEffler) August 16, 2014
today I made a choice to become a better me than I was yesterday. #cslnewstart
— A. Chatman (@_pochap) August 14, 2014
Take down that poster of the cat attempting to just hang in there because these are the most inspiring folks ever. Unfortunately, these messages bring the problem with for-profit law schools into sharp relief. Target those with unbridled enthusiasm for law — or what they assume law to be — and hope that they’re willing to ignore the rejections of other, well-regarded law schools, and just believe that the school that gobbled them up on the rebound is going to deliver the same professional opportunities. These schools build their business model around feasting on the hopes of myopic students, like some latter day, degree granting Moloch.
The info I've received while at #cslnewstart would cost me millions if the attorneys and students sent me an invoice. A wealth of knowledge
— Mary Watson, B.S. (@StilettoExec) August 15, 2014
Actually it would be significantly less. The best law school in America is charging $284,387, and they don’t have any incentive to undercharge the Illuminati they’re graduating every year. Meanwhile, by the comparable accounting, Charlotte costs around $230,000, and it shouldn’t even be that much. Also, a pro-tip, this is the first few days of 1L where everyone in the country is trying to sip from a firehose. It may seem mind-blowing, but trust me, that’s not unique to the Charlotte experience. Look, I’m not so elitist that I think everyone has to go to a T14, but when a law school is offering next to nothing in the way of employment numbers and is still charging around 85 percent of the cost of going to Yale, it’s not offering a valuable alternative path to law, it’s trying to pull a fast one.
— Dimitri (@dpanchen) August 15, 2014
#cslnewstart Orientation is positioning us for nothing short of greatness. LOVING what Im hearing and feeling.
— Mary Watson, B.S. (@StilettoExec) August 14, 2014
Charlotte boasts a 30.3 percent employment score, which is a good deal short of greatness. Charlotte would earn a lot of points if orientation consisted of a crusty old professor taking the lectern and stating, “Look to your left, look to your right, only one of you will have a job to pay off your crippling debt.” But I’d assume that’s when InfiLaw would call security.
Law School Lemmings has even more Tweets from the Charlotte orientation if you still want to peruse sadness.
Jesus, now I need to watch Old Yeller to cheer up.
UPDATE (8/21/14 9:18 a.m.): Looks like Charlotte Law responded… sort of.
An enterprising reader Tweeted this story with a warning to the hashtag for Charlotte 1Ls. Then the poor individual running Charlotte’s Twitter handle made a critical mistake.
Oh yes they did, Sandra. Charlotte Law took a Tweet ripping them and linking to this post and then sent it out to their feed. Maybe the only thing sadder than the 1L Tweets is knowing the school is so desperate for publicity that they’re just knee-jerk Retweeting anything that’s ever said about the school without bothering to look at it.
Earlier: Which Law Schools Received the Most Applications For Fall 2013?
That Time The Boston Bar Association Denounced Me
School Threatens To Call Security When Dean Candidate Suggests It’s A Crappy Law School