Law Schools

porn pornography XXX video.jpgThere are significant similarities between the legal profession and the gay porn industry (which are not mutually exclusive, of course). Here are some thoughts on the subject from Queerty:

We’re not sure which is harder: working in law or working in gay porn. They’re both very competitive, require working closely with pricks, and their rough, late night hours can really take it out of your ass.

University of Louisiana-Lafayette law student, Jeremy Williams, has worked in both fields. In law, he’s a paralegal and very close to graduating from UL with a “near-perfect” GPA. In the porn field, you may know him as Mustang power bottom Jay Armstrong — he’s starred on the site Bait Buddies and in such films as Alabama Takedown, Big Muscle, and Forced Entry, a film in which he famously took a double-penetration. Hard work, indeed.

Small correction: we don’t believe Williams is a law student, since UL doesn’t have a law school. It seems he’s a student in the university’s political science department (which includes law and international relations). Also, for the record, he appears to be a former porn star; according to Queerty, he hasn’t been in an adult film since March 2007.

But where you might find an ex-porn star-turned-lawyer kinda hot, not everyone feels that way, least of all one of Williams’ professors, who’s threatening the student with “consequences” for his “vulgar” career.

O RLY? More info, plus pics, after the jump.

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Gerald Ung Gerry Ung Jerry Ung Jerald Ung Temple Law School 3L shooter shooting.jpgMany law students these days are angry and frustrated. If the allegations are true, one has resorted to gun violence (and not just against his casebooks). From Philadelphia’s Fox 29:

A Virginia man is in custody after a weekend shooting in front of Fox 29′s studio in Philadelphia that was caught on camera. Temple University grad student Gerald Ung allegedly shot Villanova graduate Ed DiDonato at 4th and Market Streets early Sunday morning.

According to WPVI, the suspected shooter, Gerald Ung (pictured), is a third-year fourth-year law student at Temple’s Beasley School of Law.
UPDATE (1 PM): Temple has confirmed that Ung, 28, is — or “was,” to use the exact language from the Philadelphia Inquirer article — a law student there.
CORRECTION: Ung is not a 3L, as we originally wrote. Rather, he’s a fourth-year law student in Temple’s evening program.
It is unclear what exactly provoked the shooting, although it appears that Ung and DiDonato were engaged in an argument before the incident. You can see this by watching (somewhat grainy) video footage of the altercation over here. One tipster’s reaction:

This happened in my hometown, which I miss less and less these days. And the [alleged] perp lived three blocks from where I used to live. I wonder if having an appreciation of the law and how much it’s going to run over you makes it any more difficult to sit in jail knowing you’ve done something like this.

UPDATE (2 PM): A different perspective on this incident, after the jump.

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CPAC 2010 logo.jpgWhen I think of the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC), I think of, well, conservatives. When I think of Liberty University, which claims Jerry Falwell Jr. as its chancellor, I think of conservatives. So when Liberty Law School sponsors a CPAC event, I don’t expect there to be major conflicts between the two organizations.
And, apparently, I would be totally wrong about that. A tipster sent us this link from OneNewsNow:

Liberty University Law School has withdrawn as a co-sponsor of next month’s Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in Washington because a Republican homosexual activist group is being allowed to co-sponsor the event.

If there are some people who think the anti-gay-marriage movement is nothing but bigotry in drag, it’s because of institutions like Liberty Law School.
More details after the jump.

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Brooklyn law school logo.JPGAs was evident last year, I kind of get giddy around the time colleges and law schools start picking their commencement speakers. I don’t know why. You remember graduation for the rest of your life and it’s interesting to me to see the people your school picks to give you a proper send-off.
And you never know when commencement will put you in the prime seat for history changing news. Remember, the Marshall Plan was unveiled at Harvard Commencement, 1947.
The highlight of last year’s law school commencement speaker circuit was Columbia’s choice of former California Governor Gray Davis. Obviously, I’m talking about “highlight” in terms of comedic value. I mean, any time you can invite a (failed) Governor to speak at your school, it’s an opportunity you have to take.
It’s a little bit early to start a full tally of law school commencement speakers. But one of the early entries is pretty exciting.
Check out who is coming to Brooklyn Law School this spring, after the jump.

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Kash computer internet ban law schools.jpgAs 2010 gets underway, a couple of law schools are taking steps to keep students from accessing the internet while they’re in class. This would be a pretty mundane and much expected story, if we all lived in China.
The most extreme attempt by a law school to captivate an audience comes from Villanova Law. Professors there on a case-by-case basis have been banning the use of laptops in class. That’s right, some professors are going totally old school and forcing their students to take handwritten notes, just like students did in the 1800s. A tipster puts Villanova’s attempt to turn back the clock this way:

There seems to be a growing movement at Villanova Law to ban laptop use in class. Last year, an entire section of 1Ls was not permitted to use laptops and both a contracts and crim law professor in another section banned them as well. Now a Con Law professor teaching 2Ls has banned them for Con Law 2 this semester.
In general, the professors doing this complain that students who use laptops in class tend to surf the web or gchat/IM rather than pay attention, which distracts both themselves and classmates around them who look at their screens. As a result, these professors claim that class discussion is harmed. I can’t dispute that logic, but I do think laptops in class benefit many students. Personally, I take extremely thorough notes in class because of my laptop and only surf the web when some jackass makes an asinine point just to hear himself speak, so the laptop is a tremendous educational tool for me.

I had a very good professor who once said: “If you are more entertained sitting at home after you’ve already paid to attend my class, the fault lies with me.” Why don’t more professors internalize this basic truth? Professors — professors whose high salaries are made possible by the students they teach — should be able to be more entertaining and informative than “the internet.”
Shutting down the ‘net, even to the point of outlawing laptops altogether, isn’t going to make students pay attention. Trust me, students are capable of zoning out in any number of ways. Ever heard of a doodle?
Luckily, Villanova’s acting dean, Doris Brogan, tells us that the bans are the actions of a few professors who are experimenting, not the stated policy of the law school.
The news from Dean Brogan, and a look at Albany Law School’s draconian test run, after the jump.

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Great Gatsby book cover.jpgIt’s been a while since we debated which class of associates got screwed over the most because of the global economic meltdown. Is it the class of 2009? That was the class who enjoyed the first round of (sometimes indefinite) incoming first year deferrals. Maybe you think the class of 2010 is most screwed? That class ran into reduced (or canceled) summer programs, fewer hiring opportunities, and reduced salaries.
I don’t think the class of 2011 qualifies. Those people have had every opportunity to read the writing on the wall and adjust accordingly.
But what about the class of 2008? Remember them? That’s the class where a lot of people were just straight up fired. Some of those people saw their careers end before they even began. The website Visualize Law has a very interesting chart about what happened to people in the class of 2008.
Let’s take a look after the jump.

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Crushing Debt Obligations.jpgSo I’m sitting on a veranda enjoying 70-degree Los Angeles weather, a cuban, and a crisp copy of the Los Angeles Times.* What could possibly make this better?
I’ll tell you: an op-ed in a mainstream publication acknowledging the over-saturation of the legal job market that I’ve been preaching about for months. Today’s L.A. Times piece could have been written by me, it could have been written by a number of ATL commenters, but it was written by a D.C. lawyer who understands the ABA’s role as an absentee professional organization:

Part of the problem can be traced to the American Bar Assn., which continues to allow unneeded new schools to open and refuses to properly regulate the schools, many of which release numbers that paint an overly rosy picture of employment prospects for their recent graduates. There is a finite number of jobs for lawyers, and this continual flood of graduates only suppresses wages. Because the ABA has repeatedly signaled its unwillingness to adapt to this changing reality, the federal government should consider taking steps to stop the rapid flow of attorneys into a marketplace that cannot sustain them.

Hello, mainstream media. As Sam Seaborn might say: Let’s ignore the fact that you are late to the party and embrace the fact that you showed up at all!
After the jump, more public flogging of the ABA.

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Crushing Debt Obligations.jpgI graduated law school in 2003, owing Harvard University just under $150,000. At the time, I had no idea what starting my professional career $150K in the hole would do to my life. I figured I’d work hard, make money, and pay my loans out of my general non-disposable income funds — kind of like my cable bill.

Seven years, two careers, numerous deferments and defaults, and one global economic meltdown later, I still owe a ton of money. Now, however, I pay it to various debt collection agencies and lawyers. When prospective landlords run a pro forma credit check on my application, they come back looking at me like I’ve been convicted of multiple war crimes. Every raise I’ll ever get will be eaten up by the collection agencies until sweet death allows me one everlasting and satisfying default. And, oh yeah, I don’t even want to practice law anymore — I quit my Biglaw job because, despite the debt, I really wanted to have a job that I enjoyed. So I essentially purchased a $150,000 disposable good. My time working in Biglaw was kind of like a very expensive vacation that I debt financed.

I mention all this because I am the cautionary tale prospective law students never want to think about. I mention all this because it is noble to crush false hope. I mention all this because there are way too many people poised to follow in my financially ruinous steps….

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terracotta warrior terra cotta army.jpgHow do you say schadenfreude in Mandarin? Babel Fish won’t tell me. In fact, Babel Fish doesn’t even have an option to translate German into Mandarin or Cantonese. (I think that’s BS — I’m sure you can get a good schnitzel in Beijing — but that’s beside the point.)
Anyway, back to China. The ABA Journal reports:

A new study supports the tales of woe told by recent law graduates in China.

It is more difficult to find a job in law than any other profession studied, the China Daily reports. The story cites a June 2009 study by China’s Academy of Social Science and the Mycos Institute, a consulting company.

Mmm … terracotta law students.
I wonder how much (if any) private debt Chinese law schools saddle their students with?
Additional details after the jump.

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Minnesota law logo.jpgI know most law professors don’t like giving or grading exams. They’re busy people with many commitments that don’t have anything to do with preparing the next generation of lawyers.
But given the legal economy, given how important law school grades are right now, how can professors justify putting almost no effort into the examination process? We already had a case on an NYU Law professor using previously published questions on an exam this fall. And now we have a substantially similar situation at the University of Minnesota Law School. A professor there used exam questions that had previously been made available to some students, but not the entire class.
Details after the jump.

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