Law Schools

We’ve got some major news since our last installment of the Comment of the Week series: the first winner out of four rounds of the competition has claimed his prize. Congratulations again to guest9999999, who proved that at least one person reads these columns. I suppose we’ve got to cherish the small things in life.

This week, when choosing our top comment, we decided to go with one from a post that all of the Above the Law editors thought was pretty funny, but in the end, the topic apparently made our readers believe that I was even dumber than they had originally thought — as if such a thing were even humanly possible.

Of course, I’m talking about the Cooley Law shoeshiner post….

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Back in October 2011, we brought you some depressing news about the battle of boobs v. brains when it came to LSAT accommodations. While students with ADD were permitted to receive double the standard testing time on each section of the exam, along with other test-taking luxuries, the Law School Admissions Council essentially gave nursing mothers a response that amounted to “tough titties” — literally.

(Maybe LSAC figured that if a pregnant woman can go into labor during the bar exam — and then pass the test — taking the LSAT while nursing shouldn’t be a big deal.)

Now, nine months later (how very apropos), LSAC has birthed a major about-face for women seeking entry to the legal profession. If you’re a nursing mother or are pregnant and plan to be nursing at or around the time of the next LSAT administration, it might serve you well to listen up….

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Now a dangerous weapon in MA.

* The first day of jury deliberations in the Rajat Gupta insider-trading case ended without a verdict. Benula Bensam’s boredom is epic — the poor girl can’t even blog about the trial anymore. [Bloomberg]

* Baker & McKenzie is celebrating its 50th year in Toronto, Canada by handing out spring bonuses luring in lateral hires. Welcome aboard to Kent Beattie, formerly of Slavies Davies. [Globe and Mail]

* You can run, you can hide, but you can’t escape Sandusky’s love. Alleged Victim No. 9 testified that he screamed for help in vain while staying in the former coach’s allegedly “soundproof” basement. [CNN]

* It’s hard out here for a shoeshiner: Cooley Law grads suing their alma mater over allegedly misleading employment statistics may face an “uphill battle” when it comes to fraud allegations. [WSJ Law Blog]

* The CEO of Caesars Entertainment has proclaimed that he has “tremendous confidence” that online poker will become legal in the near future. So much for keeping your poker face on that one, eh? [MSN Money]

* Imagine my surprise when I found out that a yet another man in Springfield, MA, was arrested for assault and battery with a dangerous weapon. Here’s the surprise… the dangerous weapon was wasabi sauce. [TIME]

Staci here. Do people who went to lower-ranked law schools have an edge on other bar examinees in terms of subject matter mastery? After all, lower-ranked law schools tend to have a much heavier focus on bar-related courses than you’ll find at HYS, CCN, or other top-ranked law schools.

For example, at most second-tier law schools, you’ll find that the majority of these courses are mandatory (no ifs, ands, or buts about it): Constitutional Law, Contracts, Criminal Law, Civil Procedure, Property, Torts, and Evidence.

See what Mr. Bar Exam has to say about this — plus catch a glimpse of a BAR/BRI professor playing a special little ditty on a banjo, just for the Above the Law audience….

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* Some law schools are thinking about reducing class sizes, but others are not. Said one dean, “People want to go to our school, and why should we say no?” [The Faculty Lounge]

* The fun coming out of the Seventh Circuit just doesn’t stop. Do you know what an “interrobang” is? [Volokh Conspiracy]

* Speaking of the “What What (In the Butt)” opinion, here’s some analysis from Professor Ann Althouse. [Althouse]

* Yeah, we know, we’re not supposed to give tax advice. So think of this as housing advice: if you earn $1 million or more, avoid living in a blue state. [TaxProf Blog]

* Free Winona Eggs Benedict! A New York City Council bill seeks to remove “unnecessary obstacles” to getting Sunday brunch. [City Room / New York Times]

* An Australian journalist’s thoughts on how to reform the Anglo-American legal system. [The Atlantic]

* Hmm…. should I look into buying the domain name www.david.lat? [Legal Blog Watch]

* How Dewey go through $43 million in six weeks? Is this like Brewster’s Millions or something? Discussion after the jump….

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We’ve aimed for even-handedness in our coverage of Stephen M. McDaniel, the 25-year-old Mercer Law School alumnus accused of killing his neighbor and classmate, Lauren Giddings. We’ve written about the lurid allegations against him, and we’ve shared with you the reminiscences of a former roommate who found McDaniel a bit creepy. But we’ve also raised the possibility that some of the evidence against him might be fake, and we’ve even discussed whether perhaps McDaniel has been framed for the Giddings murder.

In our continuing quest to tell both sides of this story, today we bring you supportive words from a college classmate and friend of Stephen McDaniel. This individual believes that McDaniel is being treated unfairly in the court of public opinion — and he’d like to set the record straight….

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Even though the job market for new lawyers is still stagnant and depressing, going to and graduating from law school, especially a highly-ranked law school, is still looked upon by friends and family as a huge accomplishment. It’s something to be proud of, something to brag about.

After all, law school graduates have completed three to four years of relatively difficult work, and most take a state bar examination — neither of which is viewed as a simple feat by the general public. Factor into this equation being a middle-aged working mother, and these achievements seem even greater.

Imagine what would happen if someone claimed that she had finished all of this rigorous legal training, when in fact, she never had. It’s all pomp and circumstance until someone discovers that you’ve allegedly been lying through your teeth for years.

That is exactly what happened in Texas recently, and now campus officials are investigating a woman who claims that she attended a law school that was, until recently, a top 50 law school in the U.S. News rankings….

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* Kleiner Perkins responded to Ellen Pao’s gender discrimination suit, and it’s not pretty. Not only does the firm’s answer deny her allegations, but it also calls into question her work product. [San Jose Mercury News]

* Joe Amendola’s preferred strategy at the Jerry Sandusky trial seems to be the use of the “tried and tested technique” of ignoring all of the alleged accusers’ tears and making them cry all over again. [New York Times]

* Who in their right mind would attempt to fake being a lawyer these days? Michelle Fyfe, a 43-year-old woman from Texas, is accused of forging a law degree from SMU Dedman School of Law. [Dallas Morning News (sub. req.)]

* Say hello to Baltimore Law’s new dean, Ronald Weich, the former assistant attorney general who penned the notorious false gun letter to Congress. Surely this ex-DOJ official will stand up to Bogomolny. [The Hill]

* This must be like getting it caught in your zipper — but much, much worse. A Brooklyn man claims that members of the NYPD “strangled his penis,” so he’s suing. [Huffington Post via Courthouse News Service]

* Reuben G. Clark Jr., a founding partner of Wilmer Cutler & Pickering (Wilmer­Hale), RIP. [Washington Post]

* The Justice Department dropped the remaining charges against John Edwards. That’s an anti-climax for the record books. [WSJ Law Blog]

* Gina Chon, the Wall Street Journal reporter whose sensuous e-mails with Brett McGurk, a U.S. ambassadorial nominee, were released last week, resigned her job at the paper. But temporary unemployment is no match for true love (or super hot sex, for that matter)! [Washington Post]

* UMass Law is now the first accredited public law school in Massachusetts. Thank God, because our law school reserves were running dangerously low. [Boston Globe]

* JPMorgan’s CEO admits, “I was dead wrong.” Congratulations, I hope that makes you feel better. Now why don’t you give us taxpayers all our money back? [Gothamist]

* The attorney for FunnyJunk is totally befuddled by the Oatmeal’s hilarious response to his legal threats, as well as the internet at large’s response to the response. Come on man, loosen up and feel the lulz. [Gawker]

* Congratulations to Andrew Schilling, the former top civil prosecutor at the Manhattan U.S. Attorney’s office, who is joining BuckleySandler as a partner. [Thomson Reuters News & Insight]

* I get stopped at the airport because some TSA agent thinks my belt buckle looks like a bomb or something, but this guy becomes a commercial pilot??? I just don’t get it. At all. [Wall Street Journal]

* I do not envy the guy who has to explain the $19,000 strip club credit card bill to his wife. [Daily Business Review]

Shouldn’t law schools just start issuing tents to people at graduation? Or at least umbrellas that could double as tents?

Our last caption contest illustrated the use of law firm swag in a happy locale. Go to Cravath, get a beach towel, and be able to afford a beach vacation.

This caption contest involves the creative use of law school swag. But I don’t think Columbia Law School intended for its umbrellas to be used in this fashion.

At least, I hope this isn’t an intended use of Columbia Law umbrellas…

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