Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Putrid Smells of Desperation: ABA-Accredited Law Schools Now Handing Out Money to Attract Students


http://www.jdjournal.com/2014/12/02/how-soon-before-law-schools-start-closing/?hvid=5nWoRi

The Swine Now Handing Out Bundles in Scholarship Money: On December 2, 2014, Daniel June posted a JD Journal piece labeled “Law School Closings a Possibility.” Here is his take on the situation:

“Western Michigan University Thomas M. Cooley School of Law was the first of what may soon become a trend: they closed their Ann Arbor campus, some what of a diploma mill, to answer the deflating enrollment rates. They are all feeling it. Law schools across the board are making concessions and devising ways to get through the difficult legal market in the somewhat hope it will get better soon. 

As Northwestern University School of Law Dean Daniel Rodriguez told the New York Times, “I don’t get how the math adds up for the number of schools and the number of students. We all know it’s happening, and we are all taking steps that urgent, not desperate, times call for.” 

These “urgent” times mean changing the tone of law school to a buyer’s market. “74 percent of first-year students this academic year received financial aid, compared with only 30 percent in 2009,”the New York Times reported, and University of St. Thomas School of Law professor Jerry Organ made the comparison of law schools to dental schools, which went through their own crisis after reaching a height in 1979. Due to changes in consumer needs for dentistry, demand declined, and eventually schools had to close. 

Which law schools? Just the diploma mills? Actually, those who score middle to high range on the LSATs who are losing interest. With 204 accredited law schools competing for these students, Rodriguez admitted that, “It’s insane. We’re in hand-to-hand combat with other schools."

Campuses like Wayne State University of Law School are offering a minimum $4,000 scholarship for incoming students and upwards to $1 million in scholarships for current students. Northwestern likewise is offering 74 percent of 1Ls scholarships, up from 30 percent in 2009. This is consistent with many other schools.” [Emphasis mine]

It’s nice to see that the law school pigs are in hoof to hoof combat with each other over students – especially when you consider that the typical applicant is dumber now. Hell, Northwe$tern Univer$ity $chool of Law – ranked as the 12th best law school in the entire damn country – is now awarding scholarships to nearly ¾ of its first year class! Then again, it is only the second best law school in the city of Chicago. In the past, kids would have gladly borrowed the full amount to attend such a school.

http://taxprof.typepad.com/taxprof_blog/2014/10/strongorgan-will-10-of-law-schools-close-by-2019.html

Other Coverage: On October 21, 2014, Paul Caron reported on the Cockroach Jerry Organ post on the Legal WhiTTTeboard, in an entry entitled “Organ: Will 10% of Law Schools Close by 2019, Just as 10% of Dental Schools Closed 25 Years Ago?” Check out this conclusion:

“The law school experience tracks pretty closely the dental school experience over the first ten years reflected in the charts. For law schools, 2014 looks a lot like 1985 did for dental schools. ... 

[T]he provost and president of a university with a law school likely will be asking: How “mission critical” is the law school to the university when the law school has transformed from a “cash cow” into a “money pit” and when reasonable projections suggest it may continue to be a money pit for the next few years? How "mission critical" is the law school when its entering class profile is significantly weaker than it was just a few years ago, particularly if that weaker profile begins to translate into lower bar passage rates and even less robust employment outcomes? How “mission critical” is the law school to the university if its faculty and alumni seem resistant to change and if the law school faculty and administration are somewhat disconnected from their colleagues in other schools and departments on campus? 

Some universities are going to have difficult decisions to make (as may the Boards of Trustees of some of the independent law schools). As of 1985, no dental schools had closed, but by the late 1980s and early 1990s, roughly ten percent of the dental schools were closed in response to significant declines in the number and quality of applicants and the corresponding financial pressures. When faced with having to invest significantly to keep dental schools open, several universities decided that dental schools no longer were “mission critical” aspects of the university. 

I do not believe law schools should view themselves as so exceptional that they will have more immunity to these market forces than dental schools did in the 1980s. I do not know whether ten percent of law schools will close, but just as some universities decided dental schools were no longer “mission critical” to the university, it is not only very possible, but perhaps even likely, that some universities now will decide that law schools that may require subsidies of $1 million or $2 million or more for a number of years are no longer “mission critical” to the university.” [Emphasis mine]

In the final analysis, “higher education” in America is BIG business. It all boils down to money, people. “Educators,” univer$ity “presidents,” and boards of trustees or regents DO NOT GIVE ONE GODDAMN about YOU, the student or graduate. These in$titution$ are propped up by the federally-backed student loan $y$tem. Do you think - for one millisecond - that a bank would otherwise lend someone, with no collateral, $30K so that they can earn a Bachelor’s degree in Film Studies from State U or a law degree from TTTT Cooley?!?!

Conclusion: The pigs and cockroaches are DESPERATE for asses in seats. Even Daniel Rodriguez, dean at Northwestern Law, employed that word in his description of the situation. The bitches and hags are attempting to balance the following interests: (a) keeping enrollment levels high or decent; (b) maintaining or increasing their respective commode’s ranking; and (c) not going broke in the process. 

Since it is now an “applicant’s market,” the rodents are throwing scholarship money at prospective and current students, in order to keep up enrollment. While schools such as Northwestern – which have a good reputation and a large university endowment – can engage in this academic “arms race,” you can bet your ass that dozens of ABA-approved toilets cannot keep up this pace for long. Independent, stand-alone commodes cannot sustain this type of activity for much longer. Up to this point, creditors have bailed out the swine at TJ$L – and large universities such as Texas A & M have purchased or partnered with financially troubled dung heaps. However, at some point, college and univer$ity administrators – who fancy themselves as shrewd businessmen - are going to decide that they are not going to shell out millions of dollars to acquire shaky institutions.

31 comments:

  1. At least when someone graduates from dental school, they know how to do a filling. Law schools don't even try to teach basic legal skills. Law schools rely on the lecture model of cramming large numbers of students into rooms. It generates a lot of revenue for law schools, when they are charging 30K, 40K, or 50K per person, per year, but it does not do much for learning basic legal skills.

    The professors are extremely overpaid. They work, maybe 2-4 hours a week, doing core teaching work. How difficult is it to teach a typical torts, contracts, or property class, the same material year after year? After a couple years it must be like auto-pilot. The equivalent of Pat Sajak hosting the Wheel of Fortune, after twenty years.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You answered your own question:

      Dental school, in part, was controlled by expensive clinics, where students learned dentistry--think malpractice insurance, materials, expensive processing, etc. There was also expensive research to consider.
      Now, corporate, entrepreneur schools are getting in on the loot--no more research, hyper tuition and phoney dental work. The more the ABA keeps costs up, the less ability for turd institutions to open more schools or operate...

      Delete
  2. Burn, baby, burn!

    Disco Inferno!

    Burn, baby, burn!

    ReplyDelete
  3. How humorous it is to see law deans sink to the commercial tactics of used car salesman, offering "cash back" with purchases.

    I wonder if we'll see high pressure sales tactics on admitted students day. "10% off tuition! but only if you sign on the dotted line today!"

    Genuine, bonafide, electrified, six car monorail . .

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    Replies
    1. Already happened.

      https://www.insidehighered.com/news/2013/07/08/law-school-makes-applicants-24-hour-offer

      Delete
  4. I would love to be a fly on the wall at an American Assn of Law Schools conference these days, and hear what the Deans and Profs are saying behind closed doors.

    ReplyDelete
  5. 10% of law schools closing will only be 20. That's still not enough. It should be at least 25%...and that's a good start.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. If 10% suddenly close, there will be more to follow.

      No way will the sudden closure of 20 schools NOT be felt by the general population, specifically the pre-law, undergraduate population. People will realize how value-less a JD degree from a toilet school is, so nobody will apply there.

      Delete
  6. There should only be 50 law schools at most. And even that is probably too high considering the lecture model and cramming so many students in.

    Not that many people need legal services. I would say probably we need half as many lawyers as there are doctors out there, since doctors serve the entire population, while lawyers pretty much only serve the population with assets and business activity, which in current America is less than half the population.

    So whatever number of medical students there are a year, there should be half as many law students. I wonder how many that would leave, maybe 15 schools? 30?

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    Replies
    1. I think you are absolutely right, and please allow my to attempt to answer your question.

      There are about 1,100,000 lawyers in the USA, and there are about 661,000 doctors. So 330,500 lawyers (which is 1/2 of 661,000) is a little more than 1/4 the total number of lawyers we have today.

      Thus, based on this logic, 50-60 law schools should be allowed to stay open, presuming the Juris Doctor degree isn't replaced with something else and law school remains 3 year.

      Of course, dealing with lawyers isn't enough; we still have to do something about paralegals too. Paralegal services is NOT a regulated profession, thus there is no definitive rule stating what a paralegal can or cannot do.

      If, however, we require paralegals to obtain a 1 or 2 year Masters degree AND take some certification exam, this profession can begin to do some of the more mundane aspects of law--real estate closings, representation in municipal court, drafting wills, document review, etc.

      Under this system (which empowers paralegals), we will really only need lawyers for litigation and few other specific/complex tasks. Thus, the total number of lawyers may be reduced even further.

      Delete
  7. These sales tactics are a joke. It's like the Holiday Inn touting their free continental breakfast. Bullshit. They include the cost of their crappy breakfast in the cost of the room.

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  8. If T14 member Northwestern is giving 'scholarships' to 3/4 of their first year students then what hope do lesser schools have? Third Tier schools seem doomed to either fail outright due to insufficient enrollment and revenue, To be humbled by lack of money and slowly bleed out what little prestige they had, or to survive only by fluffing their classes with waterheads, lemmings, and other morons and watching helplessly as they fail the bar exam and fail their school's reputation.

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  9. "It’s insane. We’re in hand-to-hand combat with other schools."
    This one quote shows how out of touch and totally self-absorbed the law school deans are. These guys have led lives of utter comfort where they were always warm and dry and safe; most have never even litigated a case.
    The only hand to hand combat any have ever seen was in the rush to the open bar at the last conference-the free drinks courtesy of federal loans.
    It is insane that a supposedly educated person would use this metaphor to describe the scam coming undone. It's ridiculous.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. "... hand-to-hand combat with other schools."

      Yup, it's called the "adversarial nature" of the US legal system. You teach it, now live it!

      Delete
  10. True. If some guy grabbed his wife's ass at a bar, this bastard wouldn't even think of engaging in hand to hand combat with the guy.

    ReplyDelete
  11. 12-3-14 6:16 PM, you nailed it.

    How do they think their Student Loan Conduits feel after they're tossed out with 6 figures of loans and forced to compete for jobs in a market where they simply do not exist?

    Meanwhile, these pampered Fat Cats are concerned with what? Only with collecting their fat, fat paychecks every 2 weeks. Because that IS what it's really all about: The money.

    Lives of utter comfort, yes. At the expense of the current - and future - lives of their students.

    These are not good people. These are the Scum of the Earth. That is academia. None of them are worth anything.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I wouldn't write off all academia, or tenure for that matter. In Latin countries, professors are known to be firebrands of revolutionary work. In fact, during the CIA's Condor Operation in the 1970s, the university was usually the last holdout for the resistance, the university possessing sanctuary (much like churches), with the counter revolutionary armies storming lecture halls.
      But our self-censoring U.S./U.K. academics, complete shills and con-men. Screw em!

      Delete
  12. Hand to hand combat tactics will come into play when these law professors are sacked from the schools and are forced to compete for the crumbs constituting today's legal job market (i.e., doc review, e-discovery "specialist." etc.). Then again, don't these declawed housecats always brag about how Biglaw would embrace them back with 7 figure comp. packages, a corner office and equity partnership?

    ReplyDelete
  13. And it's one, two, three,
    What are we fighting for ?
    Don't ask me if you'll be fine
    Just sign on the dotted line !
    Next stop is Vietnam;
    And it's five, six, seven,
    Open up the pearly gates,
    Well there ain't no time to sing for joy
    You'all gonna be unemployed!
    Whoopee! we're all gonna die.

    ReplyDelete
  14. And it's one, two, three,
    What are we fighting for ?
    Don't ask me if you'll be fine
    Just sign on the dotted line !
    And it's five, six, seven,
    Open up the pearly gates,
    Well there ain't no time to sing for joy
    You'all gonna be unemployed!
    Whoopee! we're all gonna die.

    (With extraneous line removed. My bad.)

    ReplyDelete
  15. nd it's one, two, three,
    What are we fighting for ?
    Don't ask me if you'll be fine
    Just sign on the dotted line !
    And it's five, six, seven,
    Open up the pearly gates,
    Well there ain't no time to sing for joy
    You all gonna be unemployed!


    (With both extraneous line removed. My double bad.)

    ReplyDelete
  16. Have you seen this Nando?

    http://www.journalgazette.net/article/20141125/BLOGS01/141129633

    ReplyDelete
  17. Your federally backed student loan dollars at work.

    ReplyDelete
  18. http://dealbook.nytimes.com/2014/11/04/worth-nothing-failing-law-schools-are-kept-on-life-support/?_r=0

    On November 4, 2014, Pig Steven Davidoff Solomon of the Universityof California, Berkeley, wrote a New York Times DealBook piece labeled “Creditors Keep Troubled Law Schools on Life Support.” From his opening:

    “A recent debt restructuring at Thomas Jefferson School of Law shows that a law school may be worth absolutely nothing.

    We are more than four years into a law school pullback, one made worse by a sharp downturn in jobs for lawyers and heated rhetoric by critics who say law schools are loading up students with debt and no jobs. Enrollment last year was 39,675, a decline of 24 percent from a 2010 high of more than 52,000 students. This year’s number has not been announced, but a decline of an additional 5 to 10 percent is expected.

    It doesn’t take an economist to know that lower demand has hurt almost all law schools outside the top 10 terribly. Hardest hit are law schools in the lower tier, where law school applications have fallen even more rapidly.”

    Later on, the jackal makes the following observation:

    “There are lessons here for the entire law school system.

    First, a closed law school is worth little, or most likely nothing, to creditors. The value is only in the revenue stream it produces and perhaps its building. (You could say the books also, but these are increasingly fewer.) And these days, that revenue stream is down 20 to 40 percent, meaning that if law schools were for-profit businesses, most would be failures.

    A troubled law school is like Dracula: hard to kill. Creditors will not do so because even keeping a struggling school alive means there is some possibility of repayment.

    Most law schools, however, don’t have huge bonds to service, or at least, the debt they have is borne by the university. For these schools, the calculus is even easier. If a closed law school is worth nothing and a nice big building without students is useless, then keeping it open remains the only option.

    Shutting down a law school at a larger university also puts the administrators and others out of work, with few options for employment. They have every incentive to keep the school alive.”

    This is simply $elf-$erving behavior. As we all know, these academic swine do not give one damn about their students, graduates, or the general public. They don’t care if they are taking in morons who have slim chances of passing the bar exam. After all, these pieces of garbage don’t have to repay their pupils’ MASSIVE student loans.

    Keep in mind that the vast majority of tenured cockroaches at ABA-accredited toilets have not practiced law in decades. These vile bitches and hags will do and say anything, in order to avoid engaging in real work.

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  19. Georgetown closed its dental school in 1988 or 1989; Boston University closed its dental school in the early 90s.

    ReplyDelete
  20. I'm with Nando that the pigs will do everything to keep the schools open. My father in law is a dentist and that is the easiest job in the world (as long as you don't mind looking in people's mouths all day). Four days a week 8-5 and between 350k to 400k a year. And since the dental schools teach real skills instead of the soft ones like law schools such as how to "think like a lawyer" transition back to private practice was no big deal. I would love to see some of these arrogant condescending professors stride into state court with that attitude before some moron affirmative action judge from a TTT. This will change this outlook and I cannot wait.

    ReplyDelete
  21. The law skools are giving these bullshit tuition discounts and callling them scholly's because they know it will tickle some egos. It makes it more likely admitted morons will accept and enroll.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. How dare you insult my $1,000 merit scholarship! My 140 LSAT and 2.0 GPA got me an awesome discount from TJL$.

      Delete
  22. I enter into a third tier, possibly fourth tier law program a couple years ago. I will not say which one. I am going there essentially for free, because my employer is paying for it.

    During orientation (waste of my time), they made us fill out forms. The form asked me which school I applied to, what scholarships they offered, and the value of the scholarships. I lied about all three aspects. It is none of their business.

    ReplyDelete
  23. http://lawprofessors.typepad.com/legalwhiteboard/2014/10/what-law-schools-can-learn-from-dental-schools-in-the-1980s-regarding-the-consequences-of-a-decline-.html

    Take a look at the Cockroach Jerry Organ piece, from October 20, 2014 – which appeared in the Legal WhiTTTeboard. The entry was entitled “What Law Schools Can Learn from Dental Schools in the 1980s Regarding the Consequences of a Decline in Applicants.” Here is the pig’s opening:

    “For four consecutive years we have seen a decline in the number of applicants to law school and a corresponding decline in the number of matriculating first-year students. Over the last year or two, some have suggested that as a result of this “market adjustment” some law schools would end up closing. Most recently, the former AALS President, Michael Olivas, in response to the financial challenges facing the Thomas Jefferson Law School, was quoted as stating that he expects several law schools to close.

    To date, however, no law schools have closed (although the Western Michigan University Thomas M. Cooley Law School recently announced the closure of its Ann Arbor branch).
    Have law schools found ways to cut costs and manage expenses in the face of declining revenues such that all will remain financially viable and remain in operation? Is it realistic to think that no law schools will close?

    Although there may be a number of people in the legal academy who continue to believe that somehow legal education is “exceptional” – that market forces may impose financial challenges for law schools in the near term, but will not result in the closing of any law schools -- this strikes me as an unduly optimistic assessment of the situation.

    To understand why, I think those in legal education can learn from the experience of those in dental education in the 1980s.

    The Dental School Experience from 1975-1990

    In the 1980s, dental school deans, along with provosts and presidents at their host universities, had to deal with the challenge of a significant decline in applicants to dental school.
    At least partially in response to federal funding to support dental education, first-year enrollment at the country’s dental schools grew throughout the 1970s to a peak in 1979 of roughly 6,300 across roughly 60 dental schools. Even at that point, however, for a number of reasons -- improved dental health from fluoridation, reductions in federal funding, high tuition costs and debt loads -- the number of applicants had already started to decline from the mid-1970s peak of over 15,000.

    By the mid-1980s, applicants had fallen to 6,300 and matriculants had fallen to 5,000. As of 1985, no dental schools had closed. But by the late 1980s and early 1990s there were fewer than 5000 applicants and barely 4000 first-year students – applicants had declined by more than two-thirds and first-year enrollment had declined by more than one-third from their earlier peaks. (Source – American Dental Association – Trends in Dental Education – U.S. Dental School Applicant and First-Year Enrollment Trends 1955-2009 (copy on file with author).)”

    For $ome rea$on, the parasite forgot to mention that this particular drop in applications is also resulting in a decline in the quality of applicants. Remember, smarter students who scored high on the LSAT are eschewing law school at a MUCH HIGHER RATE than the idiots who performed poor to fair on the test.

    http://taxprof.typepad.com/taxprof_blog/2013/01/nlj-applicants-.html

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Nando, I am a supporter of yours from the (now popped) pharmacy school bubble.

      In regards to dental school closures, I have to make an addenum to your post:

      The main reason the dental schools closed (there is a quality article online I read) was declining rigor of the entering body, coupled with lower prestige for dentistry (at least at that time).

      The article didn't really stress finances; however, there were no stand-alone dental schools then. Additionally, it is much more expensive to run a dental school (think actual running clinic, probably almost a million dollars).

      Delete

 
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