Law Schools

Ed. note: Have a question for next week? Send it in to [email protected].

Dear ATL,

I am an aspiring law student getting ready to send off my law school application.  However, I have a problem: I can’t go to the only law school that makes sense for me; not because I did not score well enough, but because of an American Bar Association rule whose blanket coverage does not really apply in its intended sense to my situation.  The rule deals with not allowing anyone to attend a full time law program while working more than 20 hours per week.

Currently, I have my full time dream job as New York City fireman and, honestly, I could not imagine quitting it for anything.  However, it does not mean that obtaining my J.D. and having the opportunity to give back more to the community and stimulate my mind on my days not at the firehouse is not also an aspiration of mine.  Unfortunately, it seems that both of my dreams cannot be achieved in an economically feasible manner.  Only one of the schools in the area is a state school and affordable (see: rational) for me to attend, but they only offer a full time program….

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Pls Hndle Thx: Should New York’s Bravest Brave Law School?”

It’s frigid in the Northeast, but the cold temperatures can’t obscure all the signs that spring is upon us. America is engaged in an unnecessary military action in the Middle East, purported Wake Forest Law students are freaking out, and I’m talking myself into a Mets ticket package. Yeah baby, spring is in the air.

And so it’s time for another rite of spring: Above the Law’s annual Law Revue video contest. For the third year in a row, we will be accepting submissions for the funniest law-student-generated video clip of the year. The Annual Law Revue (or whatever the parody show is called at your law school) allows students to poke fun at law and life. And now, thanks to the wonder of file-sharing sites, the musical creations last beyond the run of the show, and can be enjoyed (or hated) over and over again on YouTube. We’ll watch all the videos, and you guys will vote for the best.

Last year, Northwestern took home the honors with a brilliant parody of an Annie Lennox song. Check it out to see a winning effort.

As in any contest, THERE ARE RULES. The rules are listed below. Since many of you aspire to be lawyers, we trust that you are CAPABLE OF FOLLOWING RULES. Those who do not follow rules will be punished, in this life and the next….

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Above the Law’s Third Annual Law Revue Contest Starts… Now!”

Bow down before the most popular.

Over the past few weeks, we’ve seen a seemingly endless stream of law school rankings. For example:

If you thought that rankings fatigue would set in at some point, think again. Every new set of law school rankings, no matter how arbitrary or methodologically suspect, generates buzz and massive web traffic. The message that readers are sending to publishers: MOAR LAW SCHOOL RANKINGS.

Publishers are hearing it, loud and clear. U.S. News, the kings of the rankings game, just released a new rank-ordered list: the 10 most popular law schools.

How do they define “most popular law school”? And is your law school or alma mater one of them? Some of the schools on the list might surprise you….

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “More Law School Rankings: The Top Ten Most Popular Schools”

Even witches must pay full price for BAR/BRI.

Law school is expensive. We get it. Preparing for the bar exam is expensive too. We know.

What’s a law student to do? Taking out more loans is the obvious answer, but at a certain point, one cries out, “!No más!”

Some have turned to, for lack of a better word, begging — like this aspiring UNC law student, and this 3L at Arizona State. But their efforts were not well-received. In these troubled times, we all have our own financial burdens to bear.

Alas, one student at Temple Law School didn’t get the “no begging” memo. She sent out a Facebook invitation to almost 800 people, requesting their attendance at an event entitled “HELP [REDACTED] RAISE MONEY FOR THE BAR EXAM IN JULY!!!!”

Yes, she’s asking her law school classmates — some of whom are probably just as cash-strapped and debt-burdened as she is — to just give her money.

Or pay her for one of her magic spells. Because she’s a witch, you see….

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Law Student Witch Sells Spells for Bar Exam Prep Course Money
(And begs her classmates for cash, too.)

You know an email has gone viral when we get unsolicited emails asking us to not post something we just received from a bunch of people all at the same time. Let’s hope Wake Forest School of Law is ready for its closeup.

Someone — claiming to be a Wake Forest law student, and calling himself or herself “Wes Law” — apparently woke up this morning with a bug up the ass. The object of pain was apparently the law librarians at Wake Law. And so the supposed student asked a rhetorical question: “Is there someone who can please explain why do we even have librarians at this law school anymore, and to what purpose they serve?”

What followed was a tirade against the services provided by the librarians, naming names in a flurry of accusations and insults. The entire campus is talking about it, with a few people even trying to answer the question.

I’ve never been to Wake Forest, so I’ll have to answer his question with my own rhetorical question: U mad, bro?

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Purported Wake Forest Law Student Slams Wake Forest Law Librarians”

Are you a law student (or lawyer) who belongs to one of the following groups?

  • You’ve lined up summer employment, and you want to ensure that you make the best of the opportunity (e.g., that you get an offer, if that’s an option).
  • You haven’t lined up summer employment, and you’re interested in ideas and leads about what to do.
  • You’d like the chance to pose specific questions about your career development to a panel of knowledgeable experts.

Anastasia Boyko

If you fall into any of the foregoing categories, then you should attend our panel discussion on Wednesday, April 6, We Know What You Should Do This Summer. You can sign up for the event, which we’re co-sponsoring along with the Practical Law Company and the ABA Law Student Division (Second Circuit), over here.

We’ve been revealing our panelists over the past few weeks. We’ve already lined up Steven Molo, founding partner of MoloLamken (and a former partner at Shearman & Sterling and Winston & Strawn), and Anastasia Boyko, professional development manager at Practical Law Company (and a former attorney at Akin Gump and Katten, as well as a former investment banker).

King Milling

Today we announce our final panelist: King Milling, the New York recruiting partner of Orrick. King is a member of Orrick’s corporate practice, where he focuses on M&A and leveraged buyouts. Prior to joining Orrick, he was a partner at Kirkpatrick & Lockhart (now K&L Gates).

They’ll be joined by Above the Law’s own David Lat — a former Ninth Circuit clerk and assistant U.S. attorney, who will discuss public sector opportunities — and Elie Mystal, who will moderate.

The diverse panel features litigators and transactional attorneys; lawyers with private and public sector experience; a former state prosecutor and a former federal prosecutor; and attorneys who, collectively, have worked at eight Am Law 100 firms. The discussion will be spirited and candid — more frank than what you’d get from your law school career services office. And there will be ample time for audience Q-and-A, so you’ll be able to get your specific queries answered directly by these great panelists.

Get TicketsIt’s less than two weeks away, so don’t delay. You can sign up over here (and feel free to spread the word to your friends).

We hope to see you on April 6th!

And now things get interesting. As we continue to run through the U.S. News 2012 law school rankings, we get to a crucial set of schools. The schools in this batch are certainly top tier, but they’re not “top 14″; for the most part, though, they charge like top 14 schools (especially the private ones).

So this is the batch of schools where we usually hear questions like: Should I go to this school at full price, or a much lower-ranked school for free? And our answer is usually, “How much lower-ranked are we talking about?”

The bottom line is that when people get into schools like Duke, or Penn, they are going to end up going to that school. But when people get into some of the schools on this list, they do seriously consider other options. Should I retake the LSAT, score better and apply again? How much financial aid am I getting? What’s the job market like in the [secondary market] this school is located in, just in case I get stuck there? Is it worth it to go into this much debt for a degree from that school?

These factors should come into play no matter which law school you get accepted to, but at this point on the U.S. News list, cost factors take on increased importance…

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Open Thread: 2012 U.S. News Law School Rankings (16 – 30)”

* Were you skeptical of all the law schools reporting to U.S. News that the median private-sector starting salary for their graduates is $160,000? Forbes explains why your skepticism is warranted. [Forbes via Constitutional Daily]

* On a related note, if you want to be a millionaire, you should definitely go to college. Law school? Not so much. [CNNMoney.com]

* Ninth Circuit to LGBT community: no gay marriage for you — yet. Request to vacate stay DENIED. [Poliglot / Metro Weekly]

* Former Qwest CEO Joseph Nacchio is suing his former defense lawyers, claiming that he was improperly charged for expenses like attorney underwear. If I had a client like Nacchio, I’d need new boxers too. [Bloomberg]

* Georgetown Law’s outgoing SBA president, William Broderick-Villa, is worried about GULC’s U.S. News ranking: “I do not like sharing the #14 spot with Texas one bit…. I’ve heard students tell me for awhile they fear that Texas will overtake us. And Texas is hungry.” [Georgetown Law Weekly (Google Cache)]

* An update on the partner who, when called out for blowing a deadline, threw his secretary and former associate under the bus (previously discussed here). SFL asks: “What happened to old-fashioned groveling?” [South Florida Lawyers]

* Congrats to my friend and law school classmate, Dan Stein, who has left the S.D.N.Y. U.S. Attorney’s Office (where he headed the public corruption unit) and joined Richards Kibbe & Orbe. [Richards Kibbe & Orbe]

Negrodamus sees a future where only people who actually want to be lawyers go to law school.

A reader sent in an encouraging list from the New York Times. Well, encouraging to me and others who want the demand for legal education to decrease to levels the legal economy can sustain.

According to this story, the Times asked 18 high school seniors in San Diego to predict their futures over the next ten years. None of them saw themselves as lawyers. They saw themselves as doctors and nurses and scientists, but not attorneys….

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “In Five Years, Will the Endless March Of New Lawyers Finally Stop?”

Invisible Unemployed

The new proposals for regulating law schools coming out of the American Bar Association’s Law School Accreditation Committee are not perfect, but they represent a major step in the right direction.

Now if we could only get the entire ABA to see that allowing law schools to provide misinformation to potential students is bad for everybody.

The National Law Journal reports that there are three major changes being proposed by the Accreditation Committee: changes in the way law schools report employment information, dropping the LSAT requirement, and dropping the requirement that law schools retain a tenure system…

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “ABA Law School Accreditation Committee Makes Strong Proposals”

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