Falling Enrollment, Future Employment

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justonemoregame
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Falling Enrollment, Future Employment

Postby justonemoregame » Sun Jan 13, 2013 3:27 pm

I think this may have been addressed somewhere before, but I don't recall the thread, and was hoping some people could weigh in on this now that we probably have a better picture of where enrollment is heading this fall.

From ITLSS, 1L enrollment for the past four years:

2010: 52,500

2011: 48,700

2012: 44,481

2013: 34,700 (projected)

Naturally, in a few years' time, we should see employment percentages increase, provided that the number of job opportunities remains constant. Would it be true that the average graduate of a strong regional may stand more to gain from this trend than the average graduate of a T-14? I ask this because last year, the top 14 schools only dropped 74 students from their total enrollment, an average drop of about 5 students per school. Combine that with the type of jobs T-14 students chase, biglaw and competitive PI, won't top law school students be competing with about the same number of people for the same number of jobs, despite the strong downward trend in enrollment?

ercmilla
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Re: Falling Enrollment, Future Employment

Postby ercmilla » Sun Jan 13, 2013 5:13 pm

justonemoregame wrote:I think this may have been addressed somewhere before, but I don't recall the thread, and was hoping some people could weigh in on this now that we probably have a better picture of where enrollment is heading this fall.

From ITLSS, 1L enrollment for the past four years:

2010: 52,500

2011: 48,700

2012: 44,481

2013: 34,700 (projected)

Naturally, in a few years' time, we should see employment percentages increase, provided that the number of job opportunities remains constant. Would it be true that the average graduate of a strong regional may stand more to gain from this trend than the average graduate of a T-14? I ask this because last year, the top 14 schools only dropped 74 students from their total enrollment, an average drop of about 5 students per school. Combine that with the type of jobs T-14 students chase, biglaw and competitive PI, won't top law school students be competing with about the same number of people for the same number of jobs, despite the strong downward trend in enrollment?


Where did you get this projection?

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TripTrip
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Re: Falling Enrollment, Future Employment

Postby TripTrip » Sun Jan 13, 2013 5:19 pm

ercmilla wrote:
justonemoregame wrote:I think this may have been addressed somewhere before, but I don't recall the thread, and was hoping some people could weigh in on this now that we probably have a better picture of where enrollment is heading this fall.

From ITLSS, 1L enrollment for the past four years:

2010: 52,500

2011: 48,700

2012: 44,481

2013: 34,700 (projected)

Naturally, in a few years' time, we should see employment percentages increase, provided that the number of job opportunities remains constant. Would it be true that the average graduate of a strong regional may stand more to gain from this trend than the average graduate of a T-14? I ask this because last year, the top 14 schools only dropped 74 students from their total enrollment, an average drop of about 5 students per school. Combine that with the type of jobs T-14 students chase, biglaw and competitive PI, won't top law school students be competing with about the same number of people for the same number of jobs, despite the strong downward trend in enrollment?


Where did you get this projection?

http://insidethelawschoolscam.blogspot. ... ns-to.html

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justonemoregame
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Re: Falling Enrollment, Future Employment

Postby justonemoregame » Sun Jan 13, 2013 6:42 pm

I have a related question - how can someone looking at employment stats today account for decreasing enrollment and its potential effects? Again, I'm thinking of strong regional schools here, mostly because I don't think T-14s will significantly reduce enrollment.

The latest employment data is from 2011, but the current 1L class sizes of many law schools will be significantly smaller than the classes graduating in 2011. And if the above projection is accurate, the class of 2016 will be even thinner. As an example, UF graduated 409 students in 2011, and reported right around 58% of that class working in full-time, bar-req'd jobs. The current crop of 1Ls number 287, a 30% reduction.

If you assume a roughly equal number of job opportunities for the c/o 2016, would it be outlandish to assume a 75% or greater score for the same types of jobs?

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XxSpyKEx
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Re: Falling Enrollment, Future Employment

Postby XxSpyKEx » Mon Jan 14, 2013 6:20 am

justonemoregame wrote: Would it be true that the average graduate of a strong regional may stand more to gain from this trend than the average graduate of a T-14? I ask this because last year, the top 14 schools only dropped 74 students from their total enrollment, an average drop of about 5 students per school. Combine that with the type of jobs T-14 students chase, biglaw and competitive PI, won't top law school students be competing with about the same number of people for the same number of jobs, despite the strong downward trend in enrollment?


Not really. The number of biglaw and competitive PI is less than the aggregate number of t14 grads. The t14 grads that don't wind up in either of those two categories compete for the same jobs as the regional school grads, and a lot of these employers will hire the t14 grads (particularly the ones with ties to the regional markets) before hiring students from the regional school. I mean just think of it. Assume you're a 50 attorney law firm that practices in commercial trial litigation. Why would you hire X student from Y regional school, when you have resumes from 50 t6 grads who are more than happy to take those jobs? But there are obviously exceptions to this.

justonemoregame wrote:I have a related question - how can someone looking at employment stats today account for decreasing enrollment and its potential effects? Again, I'm thinking of strong regional schools here, mostly because I don't think T-14s will significantly reduce enrollment.

The latest employment data is from 2011, but the current 1L class sizes of many law schools will be significantly smaller than the classes graduating in 2011. And if the above projection is accurate, the class of 2016 will be even thinner. As an example, UF graduated 409 students in 2011, and reported right around 58% of that class working in full-time, bar-req'd jobs. The current crop of 1Ls number 287, a 30% reduction.

If you assume a roughly equal number of job opportunities for the c/o 2016, would it be outlandish to assume a 75% or greater score for the same types of jobs?


There will not be "roughly equal number of job opportunities for the c/o 2016" as the c/o 2011. 2011 was the single worst year. OCI for that class was in fall of 2009. Shit was really bad then. There was literally close to no lateral movement at all, people were getting canned everywhere, 2Ls from the prior classes were getting no offered/deferred, people were getting offers rescinded. Things have improved since then (not by a huge margin, but they have improved). I find it somewhat unbelievable that things will continue to be this bad in the fall of 2016.

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justonemoregame
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Re: Falling Enrollment, Future Employment

Postby justonemoregame » Mon Jan 14, 2013 9:15 am

I take your points about T14 grads taking lots of small-mid size firm jobs, and about the general employment outlook being better for 2016 grads than c/o 2011, even if only slightly so.

The latter point is why I think one's chances of landing a FT, LT legal job out of a lower-ranked regional school will be significantly better for current 1Ls and the c/o 2016 than it was a few years ago, especially where that law school has substantially decreased its class size. I know this question sort of asks for crystal ball gazing, but it seems to reason that if a law school cuts 25-30% of its graduates, its employment number should rise significantly.

The reason I bring this is up that I know a lot of people debating T-14 at sticker v. regional w/$$$ (or whatever other scenario) are relying in part on the latest ABA employment data and/or LST. It's often said on TLS than at many lower-ranked schools, one has a coin-flip's chance of being an attorney, and based on the available employment data, this has been a reasonable assumption since a lot of schools seem to fall right around the 50% mark.

However, the biggest factor affecting this employment score is the abundance of graduates. Less graduates + similar opportunities = better raw outcomes. (I'm sure there is a wide gap in the "desirability" of some 2-10 firm jobs). Anyway, I don't think it would be unwise to take falling enrollment into account when you are weighing up your chances of FT, LT employment. Many law schools will be pumping out fewer grads in 2015 and beyond. At UF, the classes of 2014 and 2015 will be competing with 100 fewer grads each than was the class of 2011.

Many law schools have had sharp decreases since 2011, and I think comparing these numbers can prove helpful.

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Re: Falling Enrollment, Future Employment

Postby ajax » Mon Jan 14, 2013 9:36 am

justonemoregame wrote:I take your points about T14 grads taking lots of small-mid size firm jobs, and about the general employment outlook being better for 2016 grads than c/o 2011, even if only slightly so.

The latter point is why I think one's chances of landing a FT, LT legal job out of a lower-ranked regional school will be significantly better for current 1Ls and the c/o 2016 than it was a few years ago, especially where that law school has substantially decreased its class size. I know this question sort of asks for crystal ball gazing, but it seems to reason that if a law school cuts 25-30% of its graduates, its employment number should rise significantly.

The reason I bring this is up that I know a lot of people debating T-14 at sticker v. regional w/$$$ (or whatever other scenario) are relying in part on the latest ABA employment data and/or LST. It's often said on TLS than at many lower-ranked schools, one has a coin-flip's chance of being an attorney, and based on the available employment data, this has been a reasonable assumption since a lot of schools seem to fall right around the 50% mark.

However, the biggest factor affecting this employment score is the abundance of graduates. Less graduates + similar opportunities = better raw outcomes. (I'm sure there is a wide gap in the "desirability" of some 2-10 firm jobs). Anyway, I don't think it would be unwise to take falling enrollment into account when you are weighing up your chances of FT, LT employment. Many law schools will be pumping out fewer grads in 2015 and beyond. At UF, the classes of 2014 and 2015 will be competing with 100 fewer grads each than was the class of 2011.

Many law schools have had sharp decreases since 2011, and I think comparing these numbers can prove helpful.


A decrease in supply of labor is indeed needed. However, many argue that because of structural changes in the profession, the demand for labor will also continue to decrease.

Also, there have been quotes of something like 90k jobs opening up in the next 10 years to meet the supply of 40k newly minted JDs per year.

In conclusion, I'm not so certain it's going to be as rosy as you make it seem.

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justonemoregame
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Re: Falling Enrollment, Future Employment

Postby justonemoregame » Mon Jan 14, 2013 9:44 am

Yeah, I don't want to paint a rosy picture - getting a job should still be highly competitive, and there will still be an oversupply of JDs. I don't know about 40,000 per year, though. Projections for 2013 entering class is about 35,000 and doesn't account for attrition.

Are you sure the 90K figure is correct? I thought the estimates were closer to 20-22K per year.

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Re: Falling Enrollment, Future Employment

Postby Tiago Splitter » Mon Jan 14, 2013 12:28 pm

justonemoregame wrote:Are you sure the 90K figure is correct? I thought the estimates were closer to 20-22K per year.

It's around 90K (the Dean Mitchell interviewer says 78K) if we assume lawyers do not retire.

I do think this could have a bigger impact outside the T-14, and if that's the case then for someone who doesn't want BigLaw taking the full ride makes more sense than it used to. That said, I think a large portion of people who say they "don't want BigLaw" don't know exactly what that means.

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Re: Falling Enrollment, Future Employment

Postby XxSpyKEx » Mon Jan 14, 2013 4:34 pm

Tiago Splitter wrote:
justonemoregame wrote:Are you sure the 90K figure is correct? I thought the estimates were closer to 20-22K per year.

It's around 90K (the Dean Mitchell interviewer says 78K) if we assume lawyers do not retire.


Which they really never do. I swear every attorney who makes it 25-30 years in usually really enjoys being an attorney and will work in some capacity until he or she dies or is incapable of working. At least that's how it seems when you meet all these old geezers that are in their 80s who are practicing not because they have to, but because they want to.

ze2151
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Re: Falling Enrollment, Future Employment

Postby ze2151 » Mon Jan 14, 2013 4:43 pm

there is such a glut of lawyers right now, we've got a long way to go before this drop in enrollment starts making the jobs picture for attorneys rosy.

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manofjustice
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Re: Falling Enrollment, Future Employment

Postby manofjustice » Mon Jan 14, 2013 4:46 pm

I did a horseshoes and hand grenades analysis somewhere on these boards. Can't remember where. But I ballparked that with falling enrollment, we would be halfway recovered from 2009 levels to, IIRC, 2007 levels. All IIRC. Don't have time to find the thread.

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Re: Falling Enrollment, Future Employment

Postby ExBiglawAssociate » Mon Jan 14, 2013 5:07 pm

XxSpyKEx wrote:
Tiago Splitter wrote:
justonemoregame wrote:Are you sure the 90K figure is correct? I thought the estimates were closer to 20-22K per year.

It's around 90K (the Dean Mitchell interviewer says 78K) if we assume lawyers do not retire.


Which they really never do. I swear every attorney who makes it 25-30 years in usually really enjoys being an attorney and will work in some capacity until he or she dies or is incapable of working. At least that's how it seems when you meet all these old geezers that are in their 80s who are practicing not because they have to, but because they want to.


Credited. Lawyers never really retire, and even when they do, they still communicate with their former clients and give advice. It's pretty rare for a retired lawyer to simply hand over all of his/her clients to a younger attorney and ride off into the sunset.

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Re: Falling Enrollment, Future Employment

Postby bowser » Mon Jan 14, 2013 5:14 pm

The projected enrollment number OP has is wrong. It's gonna be higher. It's probably based on using the same ratio of applicants-to-enrollees found in the previous year, but when the number of applicants collapses that ratio falls (it was about 1.67 applicants for every enrollee previous to last year, but that ratio didn't bear out in 2012--if it had there would have been slightly under 40K enrollees for this past year's incoming class.)

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Re: Falling Enrollment, Future Employment

Postby Tiago Splitter » Mon Jan 14, 2013 5:15 pm

Tiago Splitter wrote:
justonemoregame wrote:Are you sure the 90K figure is correct? I thought the estimates were closer to 20-22K per year.

It's around 90K (the Dean Mitchell interviewer says 78K) if we assume lawyers do not retire die.

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Re: Falling Enrollment, Future Employment

Postby thelawdoctor » Mon Jan 14, 2013 5:17 pm

People complain that there are too many lawyers, this should be good news for them.

Yes lawyers work into old age, but less new lawyers still means less total lawyers, plus when applying for entry level work you only really compete with other entry level people.

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Re: Falling Enrollment, Future Employment

Postby eric922 » Mon Jan 14, 2013 5:19 pm

Tiago Splitter wrote:
Tiago Splitter wrote:
justonemoregame wrote:Are you sure the 90K figure is correct? I thought the estimates were closer to 20-22K per year.

It's around 90K (the Dean Mitchell interviewer says 78K) if we assume lawyers do not retire die.

Well that depends? Do they work for Wolfram & Hart? :)

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Re: Falling Enrollment, Future Employment

Postby ExBiglawAssociate » Mon Jan 14, 2013 5:20 pm

thelawdoctor wrote:People complain that there are too many lawyers, this should be good news for them.

Yes lawyers work into old age, but less new lawyers still means less total lawyers, plus when applying for entry level work you only really compete with other entry level people.


Who you compete with doesn't really matter when there are few entry level jobs to begin with.

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Re: Falling Enrollment, Future Employment

Postby thelawdoctor » Mon Jan 14, 2013 5:21 pm

Biglaw_Associate_V20 wrote:
thelawdoctor wrote:People complain that there are too many lawyers, this should be good news for them.

Yes lawyers work into old age, but less new lawyers still means less total lawyers, plus when applying for entry level work you only really compete with other entry level people.


Who you compete with doesn't really matter when there are few entry level jobs to begin with.

It does if they are more qualified than you and not enough open positions for you both to get in.

In theory less new lawyers in the long run with older ones eventually retiring will in the long run mean more open spots too (albeit but not for many years)

ercmilla
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Re: Falling Enrollment, Future Employment

Postby ercmilla » Mon Jan 14, 2013 6:50 pm

TripTrip wrote:
ercmilla wrote:
justonemoregame wrote:I think this may have been addressed somewhere before, but I don't recall the thread, and was hoping some people could weigh in on this now that we probably have a better picture of where enrollment is heading this fall.

From ITLSS, 1L enrollment for the past four years:

2010: 52,500

2011: 48,700

2012: 44,481

2013: 34,700 (projected)

Naturally, in a few years' time, we should see employment percentages increase, provided that the number of job opportunities remains constant. Would it be true that the average graduate of a strong regional may stand more to gain from this trend than the average graduate of a T-14? I ask this because last year, the top 14 schools only dropped 74 students from their total enrollment, an average drop of about 5 students per school. Combine that with the type of jobs T-14 students chase, biglaw and competitive PI, won't top law school students be competing with about the same number of people for the same number of jobs, despite the strong downward trend in enrollment?


Where did you get this projection?

http://insidethelawschoolscam.blogspot. ... ns-to.html


I'm not seeing the methodology here. He must have used something to give him good reasons - anyone know what it was?

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justonemoregame
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Re: Falling Enrollment, Future Employment

Postby justonemoregame » Mon Jan 14, 2013 6:56 pm

I think he uses a methodology similar to what bowser mentioned above. I think this was his original post on it:

http://insidethelawschoolscam.blogspot. ... dgame.html

He gives an estimate of about 37,000 there

There's also a post about BLS projections for job openings over the next decade. I can't believe we're only supposed to see an average of 7,500 per year or so. What happened to this "45,000 JDs crashing into 25,000 jobs" business?

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justonemoregame
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Re: Falling Enrollment, Future Employment

Postby justonemoregame » Mon Jan 14, 2013 7:02 pm

Biglaw_Associate_V20 wrote:
thelawdoctor wrote:People complain that there are too many lawyers, this should be good news for them.

Yes lawyers work into old age, but less new lawyers still means less total lawyers, plus when applying for entry level work you only really compete with other entry level people.


Who you compete with doesn't really matter when there are few entry level jobs to begin with.


This is true at the individual level, which is where we all have to make our decisions. This illustrates the cruelty of applying these aggregate numbers to one lone scenario.

It seems to me that substantial cuts in enrollment can be translated into some real gain in one's chance of desirable employment, but at the end of the day, how much more comfortable would you be if you held your chances out at 65% as opposed to 55%?

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Tiago Splitter
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Re: Falling Enrollment, Future Employment

Postby Tiago Splitter » Mon Jan 14, 2013 7:18 pm

justonemoregame wrote: I can't believe we're only supposed to see an average of 7,500 per year or so. What happened to this "45,000 JDs crashing into 25,000 jobs" business?

Like I said above, some lawyers will retire and some will die.

thelawdoctor
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Re: Falling Enrollment, Future Employment

Postby thelawdoctor » Thu Jan 17, 2013 10:23 am

makes you wonder if medical schools are seeing the same thing too, or if it's just us

if so, I bet the number of MD/JD joint grads are going down even most drastic. Might be time to look into that for some of the prelaws reading this.

doyouevenlift
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Re: Falling Enrollment, Future Employment

Postby doyouevenlift » Fri Jan 18, 2013 11:15 am

The amount of baby boomers that will die/retire (even if you say these guys rarely retire) in the next 10 years will be the largest number to be looked at as far as making room for new graduates.




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