Self-awareness: it’s a really important character trait. As you go about your day, your life, and your life’s work, it’s important to have an understanding of who you are and how you are perceived.
But what if your self-perception is grossly misaligned with objective reality? Well, then things could get tricky. You might make a mistake like perceiving yourself as sober when you are really drunk. Or perceiving that you are just drunk-driving down the West Side Highway when you are really drunk-driving while black down the West Side Highway.
Luckily, not all “self-awareness v. reality” conflicts result in serious consequences. For instance, if your self-perception doesn’t match reality while you are enrolled at New York Law School — well, then that’s just going to be hilarious.
As exhibit A, I present a Craigslist ad posted by a current 2L at NYLS. She’s looking for an unpaid intern to help her out with “things I need to do.” In return, she offers the great experience of learning about the law and about law school — secondhand, of course — from a prestigious NYLS student.
Nope, I’m not making this all up. But don’t worry, once you get a look at her picture, everything will make sense…
We’re at NYLS and I’m in an argument with my friends for resumes for interviews with law firms.
I’m a member of MENSA and I think it’s okay to put “Member, MENSA” under my interests on my resume. Some of my friends say it’s not okay. What do you think?
– Smarter Than the Average Bear
Dear Smarter Than the Average Bear,
Let’s just cut to the chase here: listing “Member, MENSA” on your résumé is incompatible with attending New York Law School. If you don’t have the IQ or EQ to realize that, somebody needs to revoke your MENSA membership immediately and slash your tires with a Phi Beta Kappa key pin…
How much would you pay to go see graduation at New York Law School? Nothing? Don’t be so sure. What if I asked: how much would you pay to go see a very slow moving trainwreck where you had no moral or ethical duty to save any of the passengers?
Ah ha, see, you’d pay something to see that. And one New York Law Student wants to know how much. From Craigslist:
COME SEE 300 OR SO UNEMPLOYED LAW GRADS SWEAT OUT PAYING BACK THEIR LAW SCHOOL LOANS!
Graduation is tomorrow and tickets are still available! Let’s check out all the details…
This is my last report about the Harvard Law School/New York Law School Future of Education Conference. If you read the previous installments, you’ll note that assembled law school deans, professors, and other educators spent a lot of time talking about the past. Towards the end of the day however, the conference turned forward looking with a panel about “Possible Alternative Models” to legal education.
The future, it seems, is in a holding pattern until law school professors can figure out how to get tenure under alternative models of legal education.
On Friday, we told you that at least one corporate GC thinks that first and second year associates are “worthless.” But at the Harvard Law School/New York Law School Future of Education Conference, it wasn’t just business people that had negative things to say about the current state of legal education.
The panel: “Top Three Problems with the Current Model” brought together law firm leaders, consultants, and legal educators to all share their thoughts on what, precisely, is wrong with American law schools.
There were five panelists and a moderator (on my legal pad I made the notation “five person panels are dumb”). And between all five of them, I guess you could say that “everything” is wrong with American legal education. But each of them in turn highlighted different aspects of the process that needed fixing…
Today I attended the Future of Education Conference, sponsored by Harvard Law School and New York Law School. New York Law School hosted a pretty interesting event. The fact schools as different as HLS and NYLS were coming together to host it (part two of the conference will be at HLS this October) is illustrative of the breadth of legal educators who are trying to deal with the declining “value proposition” of going to law school.
Here’s a little rule I just made up: People who do poorly in legal writing at New York Law School should not file pro se complaints against their school. It’s a good rule for people who don’t want to embarrass themselves.
I think I’ll call my brand-new maxim the “Timothy Keefe Rule.” The kid deserves something after getting smacked around by a New York appellate court. Here’s the set up, from the First Department opinion in Keefe v. New York Law School:
Plaintiff, a transfer student at defendant law school, commenced this action alleging, inter alia, that defendant breached an implied contract of good faith and fair dealing with him as a result of a grade he received in his Legal Writing II course. Claiming that he was unfairly disadvantaged because he did not take Legal Writing I at the law school, plaintiff seeks to require the law school to change its grading system from letter grades to pass/fail.
Keefe’s suit was dismissed at the Supreme Court level, and the dismissal was affirmed by the Appellate Division. I sure do hope he tries one more time at the Court of Appeals, because this is the kind of terrible argument I can’t get enough of …
Times are tough for the paper that gives us all the news that’s fit to print, so we almost feel badly about calling the old girl out on this. But it is the New York Times after all.
The paper recently mentioned NYLS-grad-turned-cupcake-entrepreneur Lev Ekster, who’s gotten lots of attention from us, as well as from other media outlets. But this recent article on the vendor truck turf wars incorrectly states that Lev is an NYU Law grad. Here’s a screenshot:
The NYT is not the first to make this mistake. When Thrillist first broke the cupcake story in mid-May, it made the same mistake, since corrected. We all make mistakes, but we’d like to try to prevent the MSM making this one in the future. Here’s our memo (with love):
To: The New York Times and other media outlets
From: Above The Law
Re: New York Law School vs. New York University Law School
Today, the proprietor of Cupcake Stop, Lev Ekster, stopped by our office with his delicious wares. Yumyumyumyumyum.
Ed. note: For the record, I really hate donuts. I don’t even particularly like sweets. I owe my girlish figure to (1) things that can be wrapped in bacon and (2) a zero tolerance policy when it comes to exercise.
The most important part of the visit was the excellent food. Lev brought over his three best-selling creations: cookie dough, Oreo cookies ‘n cream, and red velvet. I’d never had a cookie dough cupcake, but its gustatory greatness cannot be denied.
Lat preferred the cookies and cream flavor, while Kash opted to continue looking beautiful.
After we finished stuffing our faces, we sat down to talk with Mr. Ekster. Our notes from the interview, plus pictures of the cupcake-y goodness, after the jump.
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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: firstname.lastname@example.org.
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.
In a land that is right here and in a time that is right now, a technology has arisen so powerful that it can replace basic human document review. Is it time to bow down before our new robot overlords?
First, here’s a little story about me: my life in the legal world began as a paralegal. My first case was a GIANT patent infringement case that was already six years old and had involved as many as five companies, multiple US courts, the ITC and an international standards committee. I knew nothing about any of this.
On my first day, my supervisor (a paralegal with at least eight other cases driving her crazy) sat me down in front of a Concordance database with a 100,000+ patents and patent file histories. “Code these,” she said. I learned that “coding”, for the purposes of this exercise, meant manually typing the inventor’s name, the title of the patent, the assignee, the file date, and other objective data for each document. I worked on that project – and only that project – for at least the first six months of my job. After a week or so, time began to blur.
What I know, in retrospect and with absolutely certainty, is that as time began to blur, so did my judgment. So did my attention to detail. If you could tell me that I did not make at least one mistake a day – one inconsistent spelling, one reversed day and month, one incorrectly spaced title – I frankly would need to see your evidence. I would not believe it. The human mind is trainable but it is not a machine.
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