Celebrating 10 years! 2007-2017

It's 2018, Law & Law School Have Been Exposed As Scams For a Decade. Why Do Lemmings Still Fall....

for the lawland scams? Seriously. With all the info out ther jbthealmightyprophet05/31/18
The schools still sell a dream and will affirm for the stude thirdtierlaw05/31/18
Is this Nando? jbthealmightyprophet05/31/18
Because it works for some people. Not everyone is miserable. dandydan05/31/18
This is a misnomer. Of course, there are lots of tremendousl guyingorillasuit05/31/18
Exactly. It's great that some people had positive experience 6figuremistake06/01/18
There are relatively few option for "success" and "prestige" superttthero05/31/18
Because saying "i'm going to law school" is still more prest e36m305/31/18
A lot of law schools hide behind their parent university. I jdcumlaude05/31/18
Not only is this true, but the parent universities were more dupednontraditional06/01/18
Because simply put, what else are they going to do? Law scho onehell05/31/18
This. This. This. The majority of graduates are unprepare brokelawyer05/31/18
Yup, this was me after graduating UG in 2008, not ashamed to barneystinson05/31/18
Credited (because that was me 10 years ago, including the us lazlo05/31/18
It’s been proven that cigarettes cause a host of health pr greenhorn05/31/18
I really really wish law school would aquire the "prestige" wolfman05/31/18
Look, if you even casually watch the news, you know you can plunky05/31/18
OP, law schools continue to enroll large numbers of lib arts flyer1405/31/18
I think it is a combination of a few things 1. Lay presti confused1l9306/01/18
I definitely agree with you on #2. People make a lot of hap caj11106/01/18
jbthealmightyprophet (May 31, 2018 - 6:22 am)

for the lawland scams? Seriously. With all the info out there how does anyone who is not a member of the Preferred, Protected and or seriously Connected ("PPC") classes even think about going to law school...I mean scam? How?

God bless!

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thirdtierlaw (May 31, 2018 - 7:04 am)

The schools still sell a dream and will affirm for the student everything that the student's parents and guidance counselors had told them since they were kids.

There is also the governmental factor. "Well there is no way that the government would still be lending all this money if it was actually a scam, the government may be inefficient but overall it has the populations best interest at heart."

It's a well known psychological phenomenon. People choose to believe articles that support their beliefs and reject the articles that go against their beliefs, no matter how credible either source actually is. It is easy to write off forums and the handful k
of major exposes into the scam as bitter people. Especially when the schools are still popping out articles about the million dollar degree and success stories.

This is why, even with all the information out there, I still don't blame the students who enroll. My ire is directed strictly at the schools and government.

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jbthealmightyprophet (May 31, 2018 - 9:45 am)

Is this Nando?

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dandydan (May 31, 2018 - 10:01 am)

Because it works for some people. Not everyone is miserable. Not everyone is capped at 50k per year. Not everyone works in a sweat shop. Some people like their jobs. Some people like the prestige. Not everyone is a depressed click monkey making $26 per hour sitting in the filth-filled basement at Sullivan & Cromwell. Some people actually make it in this profession, even if they do not post on JDU.

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guyingorillasuit (May 31, 2018 - 10:41 am)

This is a misnomer. Of course, there are lots of tremendously successful people in law, and lots of happy people. The question that some of are asking is whether or not the average matriculant at a 3rd or 4th tier school, borrowing $200,000+ with interest, is destined for success. I would argue that he or she is not.

If you believe that we are saying no one is happy in this profession, or that no one should attend law school, you are wrong. If you believe everyone who argues against borrowing hundreds of thousands of dollars to attend a failure factory is "capped at 50k per year" or is a "depressed click monkey", you are also wrong.

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6figuremistake (Jun 1, 2018 - 8:56 am)

Exactly. It's great that some people had positive experiences, but if you're an 0L looking to pay sticker at a low tier, second tier, or even non-elite first tier school, you're taking a huge gamble.

It's just not rational to borrow that sort of money for the outcomes most graduates experience. I guess if you can get a deep, deep discount and you really, really want to be a lawyer, there's some wisdom to the decision.

Nevertheless, they don't pay for those fancy buildings and cushy professorial positions by handing out tons of scholarships. There are still plenty of lemmings mortgaging their futures on this fool's errand.

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superttthero (May 31, 2018 - 10:08 am)

There are relatively few option for "success" and "prestige" obsessed people who for whatever reason don't want to or can't do engineering, CS, or med school (the first two at a decent school) or that can be top of their class in a few other fields at top schools.

We still have armies of liberal arts morons who think they are as smart as a top google engineer, but think it's just that they aren't math inclined, who feel they can beat out the odds and have their own Legally Blond story.

As long as these people exist and the Gov't still provides loans, no amount of scam blogging is going to make the problem go away for good.

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e36m3 (May 31, 2018 - 10:47 am)

Because saying "i'm going to law school" is still more prestigious sounding to most liberal arts grads than "i'm taking the only low paying entry level job available to me." It's also viewed as the more ambitious choice by everyone around them. Very few 22 year olds have a realistic long term view of their career prospects, so many of them pursue the option which will net them the immediate positive reinforcement that they've been conditioned to expect.

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jdcumlaude (May 31, 2018 - 10:53 am)

A lot of law schools hide behind their parent university. It lends legitimacy to the program even when the results and job outcomes are not great.

I tend to notice that if the University has a law school, but no medical school there is often a pretty sharp drop in outcomes. May not be true all the time, but there seems to be a correlation.

If the law school is the "crown jewel" of the university...or more accurately, the "only jewel" the outcomes tend to be week. Tends to lend to the theory of top14 or bust.

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dupednontraditional (Jun 1, 2018 - 1:32 pm)

Not only is this true, but the parent universities were more than happy to rake in the excess cash in the high-scam years. Now that the reverse has been happening, the parent universities are all “what have you done for me lately?” to their law school subsidiary.

Take Valpo, for example...when times were good, the university was cashing in...

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onehell (May 31, 2018 - 11:51 am)

Because simply put, what else are they going to do? Law school is the only graduate school option that leads (in theory) directly to a career AND which also requires no prerequisites or experience of any sort beyond a BA (in anything, from anywhere) and an LSAT score (almost any score will do now that the lowest tier schools accept scores well down into the 140s)

So, your typical liberal arts major is in a bind. They don't have the science prereqs for the health professions. They can't do STEM without doing undergrad all over again. And no MBA school that's worth a damn will let them in without real, professional work experience, which they won't be able to get unless they either went to an elite school, majored in something practical, or have some kind of an inside connection. They could get some silly humanities MA, but by now they've realized this will not have any chance at leading to a job. The average such grad would not be able to get into a funded PhD which would be the only way in to academia, and even that would be a long shot.

So, they can move back home and work at Starbucks and feel like a failure, or they can go to law school which gets their rent paid for 3 years and keeps their parents happy. It is, quite simply, the path of least resistance.

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brokelawyer (May 31, 2018 - 12:06 pm)

This. This. This.

The majority of graduates are unprepared, and many are simply uneducated. But the bar for entry into law school is ridiculously low, and no one mocks a person for going that route. Scared rats always take the easiest and most attractive path, even when it goes over a cliff.

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barneystinson (May 31, 2018 - 2:29 pm)

Yup, this was me after graduating UG in 2008, not ashamed to admit it. Job market sucked and didn't want to get paid $25k at the non-profit I interned with while in school. So, took out $100k in loans to attend a T25 trap law school without really understanding what I was getting myself into. I am one of the lucky ones, though - found a job I like and am quite successful. Many others I know were not.

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lazlo (May 31, 2018 - 2:59 pm)

Credited (because that was me 10 years ago, including the useless social science MA lol)

Even more than accurate employment statistics, I think prospective law school students would be better served if they understood that the legal profession is the epitome of private enterprise, for good and bad. It is a serious mistake to think a successful legal career involves just showing up to work, doing your job, and in return collecting a steady paycheck. At least beyond the trainee first few years.

Law is just like any other business sector in the economy: full of risk, with most rewards for success going to those at the top. If you just want to be paid, unless your skills are in high demand your compensation will not be that great. For most college grads without elite skills, the non-entrepreneurial choice is you start work at a company at the ground floor and try to work your way up.

A legal career is essentially no different than that. The difference is that it will cost you hundreds of thousands of dollars of non-dischargeable debt and 3+ years before you even start. If more college grads understood that, then they would be able to make a more informed choice about starting a career.

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greenhorn (May 31, 2018 - 1:05 pm)

It’s been proven that cigarettes cause a host of health problems. They’re terrible for you. Yet we still have the plenty of people still getting into the cigarette smoking habit.

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wolfman (May 31, 2018 - 1:40 pm)

I really really wish law school would aquire the "prestige" of cigarette smoking (today among young people and outside of certain subcultures there is a pretty automatic presumption of regular cigarette smoker = loser/weirdo); instead, it is seen as almost as good as med school, especially among the uneducated/first-in-family college grads, immigrants and minorities... LOL just LOL, the scam targets the very groups it claims to want to "help" for failure, bitterness, regret and life-long debt with laser-like precision.

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plunky (May 31, 2018 - 1:40 pm)

Look, if you even casually watch the news, you know you can make millions in consulting coming out of Cooley, so I don't see the problem.

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flyer14 (May 31, 2018 - 2:55 pm)

OP, law schools continue to enroll large numbers of lib arts grads because clique is immutable and Losers lose.

(This is not a troll post.)

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confused1l93 (Jun 1, 2018 - 2:19 pm)

I think it is a combination of a few things

1. Lay prestige- People choose careers for a variety of different reasons. I think for some people they really value what others think about them. I know for me personally, a lot of the reasons why I chose to go had to do with the fact that my friends and family really respected my decision. They saw me as a success and that felt really good at that time.

2. College Graduates are not mature enough to make lifelong commitments like this- Through your 20s your going to make a lot of mistakes. You are still trying to figure out how the world works and its inevitable that your going to make some poor choices. It just so happens that Law School is a particularly unforgiving choice. To make matters worse, your in a particularly vulnerable state of mind. You are particularly insecure as you have not accomplished anything yet. You feel like a loser and are starting out life at the "bottom of the totem pole." Applying to Law School is a quick fix to this problem.

3. The mind has an interesting way of rationalizing decisions- For me personally, I KNEW that Law school was a horrible career choice. However, the forces of both (1) and (2) are stronger than I think many people appreciate. My mind started to come up with all sorts of reasons on why to apply and why to continue.


Conclusion: When trying to convince someone not to go to Law School do not try and repeat the same old information they are already aware of (job prospects/debt). They have already been exposed to that information and have found a way to rationalize their way through it. Instead, address the core of the issue. That it is OK that they haven't figured out their life at 21-22 years old and neither has anyone else. Once a law school prospective internalizes this they are FAR less likely to go.

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caj111 (Jun 1, 2018 - 4:15 pm)

I definitely agree with you on #2. People make a lot of haphazard decisions while in college or shortly after and while they may be "still young", some of these decisions have lasting impact on their lives and aren't so easily undone.

Let me add here, all this bad publicity about law school, with the lack of jobs afterwords and the bad situations people find themselves in has had *some* effect on law schools in general. A number of law schools have closed down in the last few years and not all of them were those crummy fly by night storefront places in California (Whittier and Valparaiso law schools for example surprised me maybe other people aren't so surprised). Furthermore, a large number of law schools have cut their incoming 1L class sizes. On top of that, a number of proposed new law schools have been put on hold.

To expect larger numbers of law schools to close or seriously shrink their class size is unrealistic though - as another person mentioned, there's been a lot of bad publicity about cigarettes, and cigarette consumption in the USA has fallen because of that, but you still see cigarettes sold at gas stations and drugstores everywhere. Per capita consumption of cigarettes in the USA peaked in the 60s and then started falling every year thereafter. It's still higher than it was in the 1920s though.

At the end of the day, suckers are born every minute and there is always going to be a lot of ignorance. Law schools will continue to capitalize on that.

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