He probably would have made a great modern law professor, but Aristotle would be a crappy practicing attorney.
Here’s an argument you don’t hear everyday: law firms who hire the smartest people are hurting their business.
That’s the gist of the argument by Bill Henderson, a professor at Indiana University’s Maurer School of Law who studies the legal profession (and whom we’ve quoted often in these pages). At least if we define “smart” as people who did very well on the LSAT and go to the “best” (as in highest-ranked) law schools. Henderson says that there are a lot of different skills that go into being a profitable lawyer, and being a slightly better standardized test taker than somebody else is not the most important of those skills.
Hey, you know what Aristotle says: “I know enough to know that being able to quote myself makes me an over-educated douche who can barely balance my abacus.”…
Given the legal economy, prospective students should clearly be shooting for law schools in the top-15. But, not everybody can rock the all powerful LSAT. Going to a law school in this group can still result in Biglaw jobs for graduates who want them — especially if the school is located in the market where you ultimately want to practice.
18. USC (Gould)
19. Washington University in St. Louis
20. George Washington
22. Boston University
22. University of Minnesota
22. Notre Dame
27. Indiana University
28. Boston College
28. William and Mary
28. U.C. – Davis
Thoughts on these schools? I’ve got some thoughts on this particular group of rankings as a whole…
Do you know how to drink responsibly? I hope so. By the time you get to law school, I really hope that you at least know how to avoid criminal behavior when drunk. Law school administrators do too. At the Indiana University Mauer School of Law, the Dean of Students decided to send 1Ls preparing for a bar crawl a little reminder. Here’s how one 1L described the email:
I am a 1L at Indiana University Maurer School of Law and I feel like we have an unusual predicament. Tonight, (4/2), the 1Ls organized a bar crawl with shirts for members of the class to go out and have a good time at the time we felt was our last opportunity before the big exam grind. The administration has apparently heard about our bar crawl, and is not too pleased. We got an email today (1 hour before the bar crawl) from the Dean of Student Affairs
We’re talking about a bar crawl in Bloomington, Indiana. I know that there isn’t a lot to do in the Midwest — aside from getting outrageously drunk and maybe tipping a cow — but we are talking about adults here. IU thinks they are qualified to get themselves into six figures of debt, surely they can be trusted to go out for a night on the town without hurting themselves.
The advice from the Dean of Students reminds me of what your mother would say before you go out to the state fair …
If you’ve been paying attention, you might have noticed that the value proposition for going to law school is diminishing. Legal salaries are in a deflationary state, despite the fact that law school tuition is on the rise. And that debt/salary ratio is really only a concern for the law school graduates who are lucky enough to find an actual legal salary. Many recent law school graduates and current law students are having difficulty turning their legal education into a job as an attorney.
Confronted with these challenges, law school administrators have taken a number of innovative steps. There’s the “let’s totally ignore the problem and hope new law students are too stupid to research what’s happening in the legal economy” move. Hey, nobody ever went broke betting on the gullibility of the masses. A cherished yet under-reported program is the “let’s juke our employed-upon-graduation statistics and hope that U.S. News doesn’t really notice or care” option. Don’t knock that one until you’ve tried it. But my favorite thing is when law schools go with a “let’s announce a new initiative that won’t actually help anybody get a job, but it will look like we are doing something.” Trying something that was pioneered by the crew of the Titanic is an option that’s too good to pass up.
The latest example of this wonderful strategy comes to us from the Maurer School of Law at Indiana University. Apparently the administration has spent weeks cooking up a new plan that will allow 2Ls to take classes over the upcoming summer, and then graduate early in December 2010 (as opposed to May 2011). That’s right, if you are desperate to get out onto the barren job market as soon as possible, IU can make that happen for you.
By allowing students to graduate early, IU is bucking a trend. At other law schools, the idea is to allow students to graduate later — for a fee, of course — as schools try to grab just a little more money out of students before they enter the jobless recovery.
Exciting details after the jump.
It’s Friday, just shy of 5 PM Eastern time. Where are the bonus announcements? The silence is suspicious. If you’re sitting on bonus news that we haven’t reported, please reach out to us by email (subject line: “Associate Bonus Watch”). Thanks.
* Ann Althouse: We love it when she gets medieval — or should we say me-diva? — on a hapless blogger’s a**. [Althouse]
* Jesse Sneed: The Indiana University law student, who riddled his casebooks with bullets, is going home to grandma. [Blogonaut]
* Tim Wu: These ladies aren’t the only ones in love with the high-profile prof; Google thinks he’s pretty cool, too. [BusinessWeek]
* Barry Richard: S**tstirrer extraordinaire. [National Law Journal]
Earlier this year, we visited Bloomington, Indiana, where we spoke at the Indiana University School of Law. We enjoyed our visit. The students we met were cool, friendly, and well-adjusted (especially for law students).
But we never met this guy. From the Indy Star:
An Indiana University law student suspected of firing shots outside of an apartment building on Bloomington’s southwestside today is in custody, police said.
Jesse Sneed, 27, Wood River, Ill., is charged with criminal recklessness with a weapon. He was arrested about 8:15 a.m. when he tried to sneak out of the building and drive away in a vehicle, police said. Police officers secured the scene about 11:30 a.m.
A message from the law school’s dean, plus some weird details about the incident, after the jump.
We recently posted about a controversy at the Indiana University School of Law, in Bloomington. A law student at IU alleged that a fellow student punched her in the face and broke her nose.
Not surprisingly, the post unleashed an avalanche of reader responses. Some questioned the accuser’s account of events, while others defended her. You can review the comments, including some by the accuser, by clicking here. (We think this comment does a good job of summarizing the conflicting theories.)
In the interest of providing balanced coverage, since we previously posted the accuser’s side of the story, we now offer another take on the incident. Some of these observations surfaced in the comments to the earlier post; but we realize that many of you may not have read through all the comments, which were voluminous.
These points are paraphrased from an email we received:
1. The accused student didn’t “punch” the complainant. He playfully touched her face during a drinking game. But because she has an especially fragile bone structure, her nose was broken by this contact.
(We are reminded of the proverbial “eggshell plaintiff” from Torts class.)
2. The comments and quotes by the accused, which may sound callous if viewed in a vacuum, were his own way of refuting false accusations. He’s the kind of guy who would respond to such allegations by being inflammatory — to show how, in his view, the allegations are ridiculous and baseless.
3. The accused student is one of the more good-natured and intelligent students at this school. It would be a pity for something like this to possibly ruin his career.
We feel we have now given airtime to both sides. And we hear, both from sources at the school and from the accuser’s blog, that the drama is now dying down. But if you have thoughts on this incident, feel free to share them in the comments. Update: We won’t stoke the fires further with yet another post about this controversy. But for the record, please note the accuser’s comments on this post (here and here), as well as this post on her own blog. Earlier: Midwestern Law Students: Not So Nice After All?
Earlier this month, we paid a visit to the Indiana University School of Law, in Bloomington. We gave a talk to a group of law students, then went out to lunch with some of them. We were impressed by how cool and friendly everyone was.
But IU Law may have a less pleasant side. Some allegations, from a tipster:
Male law student punches female law student in face, breaks nose in 2 places, student complains, university does nothing….
Or something along these lines, details to be fleshed out. Excitement at University of Indiana Bloomington School of Law.
This week we’re on a mini-publicity tour of sorts.
On Tuesday evening, we spoke before the Yale Law School Association in Washington, DC. This morning we’re writing to you from a hotel room in lovely (but rainy) Bloomington, Indiana, where we’ll be delivering a talk later today at the Indiana University School of Law.
We’ll be posting throughout the day. Our hotel, as well as the entire IU campus, is blessed with wi-fi. But we will be offline at times as well, especially around the lunch hour (which is when we’ll be speaking).
A college graduate without student loan debt is akin to reading a kind quote about Kim Kardashian in a tabloid—it’s rare.
In the past eight years, student loan debt has nearly tripled to a whopping $1.1 trillion, and in the past 10 years, the percentage of 25-year-olds with such debt has risen from 25% to 43%
It’s gotten so bad, in fact, that New York Fed economists warned last month that the burden of student debt could stilt consumer spending by twentysomethings, as well as further hamper the recovery of the housing market and economy.
To get a better idea of what massive student loan debt (we’re talking over $100,000 massive) looks like, we talked to an attorney who graduated with a large student loan debt. We also consulted LearnVest Planning Services CFP® Katie Brewer to see just how their repayment plans stack up.
S. Fischer, 36, Attorney Graduated: 2001
How Much I Borrowed: $100,000
What I Still Owe: $45,000
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Ed. note: The Asia Chronicles column is authored by Kinney Recruiting. Kinney has made more placements of U.S. associates, counsels and partners in Asia than any other recruiting firm in each of the past six years. You can reach them by email: email@example.com.
Deal flow has clearly picked recently up for most US associates, counsels and partners in Hong Kong/China and Singapore. We are on the phone with a lot of these folks on a daily basis, many of whom we have known for years. Further, the head of our Asia team, Evan Jowers, and Kinney’s founder and president, Robert Kinney, frequently meet in person with leading US partners in Asia to assess their needs and keep on top of the inside scoop at as many firms as possible. The need for legal recruiting help in Asia from experienced recruiters appears to be live and well. In March, Evan and Robert were in Beijing at such meetings, in April, Evan was in Hong Kong, and for half of June Evan will be in Shanghai and Hong Kong. Thus its pretty easy for us to tell when there has been an across-the-market pick up in capital markets and corporate work.
On an average day in Asia when Evan and Robert visit firms, they typically have 5 to 9 meetings a day, mostly with US partners in the market. The reason they have these meetings is not simply because Kinney makes a lot of US attorney placements in Asia and that a particular firm may have openings; instead these are just visits with friends. After years of working together as business partners, the folks at Kinney are actually these peoples’ friends. The firms Kinney work closely with in Asia (which is just about every law firm – call us if you want to know the one firm in the world we will never place anyone with again, ever, and why) look forward to the visits, or at least act like they do. After seven years in the market, many of the client partners are former associate candidates. Also, these US partners see Kinney as a very good source of market information as well, because they know how deep their contacts are in the market and how frequently they are speaking to counterparts at peer firms.
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