Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Meanwhile, back in law school...

Applications are dropping again, or so says the National Law Journal. This is three years in a row. The only bright news is that the falloff is only 4.6% instead of 7.4%. Now we need to see enrollments drop. The first-tier schools will always have enough good bodies to fill classes, but the lower-tier schools? Let me tell you that some of the best lawyers I have met went to so-called lower-tier schools, but these schools need to set realistic expectations for their students. They need to say, even though it hurts, that if they dream of working at Cravath, it is almost certainly not going to happen. They'll have big debt and a job paying as much as they might have with a BA (and sometimes even less). There's nothing wrong with that, but students at all levels should go to law school becauzse either (a) they want to parlay that experience (and the accompanying cost) into something meaningful or (b) they love the law. Stop thinking about the money, except to the extent that you need it to pay off loans. Do what you love and the money will follow.