Law Schools

Elie here. Did you know that New York-area law schools charge money for the use of their libraries during bar exam study time?

Did you know that people coming to New York to take the bar are willing to pay for the use of these libraries, thereby avoiding the homeless people masturbating at the New York Public Library?

Did you know that New York Law School, of all places, is probably offering the best library deal?

These are some of the things you’ll learn about in this week’s episode of Mr. Bar Exam….

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Last month, we solicited law school success stories from you, our readers. We’re often quite critical of law schools around these parts. So, to even out the scales a bit, we’re going to be running a series of happy stories, focused on graduates who are glad they went to law school.

We’ve tried to organize the success stories under a few broad themes, to lend some structure to the discussion. Some of the themes exist in tension with each other, and not all themes will apply to all readers. By the time the series is done, however, we hope that the stories will collectively shed some light on the question of whether one should go to law school.

Let’s launch into our first collection of law school success stories. They could be grouped under the theme of “go cheap, or go home”….

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There’s a Canadian out there living the dream. He graduated from law school at the University of Toronto in 2009, during the heat of the recession.

But now, just three years later, he’s completely debt-free. A little while ago, he made his last debt payment of over $100,000, in cash.

Of course, he didn’t make that kind of money being a lawyer. There aren’t a lot of people who graduated in 2009 from law school who were able to pay off their debts through their work in law.

But I still consider Alex Kenjeev my hero. Slow rolls his debts, makes a bunch on money, then dumps bags of cash on the bank to leave him alone.

It could still happen….

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On Friday, we reported on an aggressive and arguably misleading sales pitch from the people at Rutgers Law – Camden. The pitch, aimed towards students who had taken the GMAT, made this claim (among others): “As a direct result of the quality of legal education at Rutgers, of those employed nine months after graduation, 90% were employed in the legal field and 90% were in full time positions.” The school was clearly trying to make the economic case for going to law school, something you don’t see as much of in this difficult economy — at least from schools willing to tell the full story of their employment outcomes.

We wondered whether Rutgers was being as forthright as it could with its potential students. Over at Inside the Law School Scam, Professor Paul Campos took a closer look at the Rutgers numbers, and not surprisingly he found them to be highly suspect. Law School Transparency also shed more light on how Rutgers cooked up these numbers, and they went so far as to call for the resignation of the school’s associate dean of enrollment, Camille Andrews, who sent out the recruitment letter.

If you thought Rutgers Law Dean Rayman Solomon was going to throw Dean Andrews under the bus for this adventure in advertising, you haven’t been paying attention to how the law school game is played. Dean Solomon has come out in defense of his school’s recruitment materials.

I’m not entirely sure about the meaning of what he said, but there were definitely words involved…

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It’s that time of year again. Graduation, graduation parties, beer, beach parties… and studying for the bar exam. Fun times. That being so, it’s finally time for us to unveil the three winners of the 2012 Bar Review Diaries Contest. Our winners will receive free Themis bar preparation in exchange for providing us with weekly updates on their lives as they study for the bar.

Without further ado, let’s meet Andrew, Jeanette, and Nathan!

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Couldn't find a pic with the stately Dickson Poon banner.

Back in March, we received a tip that King’s College in London had received a huge gift to their law school and decided to rename the institution in the benefactor’s honor: Dickson Poon School of Law.

We didn’t write a full story at the time, because frankly I thought I was being trolled. I mean, Dick Poon Law? Dicks On Poon? Really? Come on. That’s like all of Britain trying to take the piss out of me.

But it is true. King’s College changed the name of their law school after a £20m donation from Dickson Poon, who is a philanthropist and the owner of Harvey Nichols (aka “Harvey Nicks”).

Now, while making a bunch of Poon jokes has a tang of immaturity, it appears even King’s College is sensitive to plastering Poon all across the diplomas of its new graduates.

The school sent out a very interesting letter trying to calm new students, reassuring them that the school’s new name wouldn’t besmirch their résumés for the rest of their lives….

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You failed the New Jersey bar exam. Oh, wait, no you didn’t. Actually we don’t know, because according to our tipsters, New Jersey is in the midst of another huge bar exam screw-up.

You’ll remember that when it came time to release the results of the July 2011 bar exam, there was a rumor that the New Jersey Board of Law Examiners lost the tests. The exams were missing for a time, but after we ran our story, they magically appeared — with no explanation from NJ BOLE on why there was a delay.

At least when the results finally came out, they were correct. Students who took the February 2012 New Jersey bar exam might not have been treated to that kind of basic competence…

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* There’s a war on prison rape. I’m excited about this. I can’t wait to bang prison rape in the ass. [Simple Justice]

* Meanwhile, there’s more rape probing on the Dominique Strauss-Kahn front from a French prosecutor. [Fox News]

* On the eve of his law school graduation, a student reflects on “the most colossal f*** up of [his] life.” [Shady Nation]

* Jamie Dimon has had better months. [Dealbreaker]

* Defamation by half-truth. [The Volokh Conspiracy]

* The California bar results are out. Congratulations to all who passed. [State Bar of California]

* There are a lot of bones to pick with this week’s Blawg Review. [Cyberlaw Central via Blawg Review]

Mr. and Mrs. Zuckerberg

* With more allegations of misconduct revealed, the Canadian Judicial Council met to discuss Justice Lori Douglas’s sex scandal inquiry. Unlike her legs in her nude picture spread, this media circus will likely close in July. [Winnipeg Free Press]

* “I want to apologize. Obviously, mistakes were made.” Admitting you’ve got a problem is just the first step. Greenberg Traurig’s executive director apologized for the Biglaw firm’s apparent screw-ups in a Rothstein-related trial. [Miami Herald]

* Blind Chinese dissident Chen Guangcheng will be enrolling at NYU Law School on a fellowship. The administration is giving him a ritzy faculty apartment that comes complete with a kitchen full of Chinese food. He already knows how to eat like a law student. [New York Times]

* Facebook is being sued in an amended consolidated class-action complaint for $15B over privacy issues, but Mark Zuckerberg was too busy getting married to Priscilla Chan to let it bother him. [Bloomberg]

* “What [the f**k] comes next?” That’s what law school grads asked themselves when their commencement speakers tried to slap on a happy face and speak positively about the job market. [Connecticut Law Tribune]

* But perhaps future law school grads will be able to find jobs more easily thanks to class offerings geared toward in-house counsel lawyering skills. Keep on dreaming that impossible dream. [Washington Post]

* How does a small-time DUI attorney from California go from being an unknown to being a household name overnight? By filing a lawsuit filled with tawdry allegations against actor John Travolta. [Los Angeles Times]

We talk a lot about the value of a law degree, but one thing most people seem to agree about is that a law degree isn’t very useful unless you want to be a lawyer. The people who go to law school because they think it is the doorway to riches and wealth are often the ones most sorely disappointed.

Well, unless they go get a JD/MBA at Rutgers Camden. ‘Cause, you know, that’s where you go if you just want to make straight bank.

At least, that’s the impression you’d get if you had received this Rutgers Law sales pitch….

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